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Saturday, December 8, 2018

What IF: No Collusion

The Omnivore was asked if he would be okay if, in the final analysis, Mueller finds no evidence of "collusion" with the Russians--just illegal felony campaign payoffs to mistresses? Would The Omnivore be okay with impeachment and removal--just for that?

Short answer: No.

Long answer: If The Omnivore were somehow "in charge" of the proceedings The Omnivore's preference would be as follows:

  1. Trump is indicted for felony campaign law violations
  2. Trump loses in 2020
  3. Trump goes to prison for  a few years for said campaign-finance violations
How Come?

Why is this the case? Well, we certainly do not want politicians of all stripes paying off witnesses to cover up things they have done. For the Trumpaloos the idea that Trump is a bad person is baked in (they believe he is somehow "not bad" despite doing all kinds of things they would not want done to them). For everyone else, though, if Obama pays off his partners in taking advantage of people we would want to know.

Same with Trump pursuing deals with the Russians during and up to the general election--it's not illegal--but The Omnivore believes we can all agree it's the sort of thing we should know about a candidate.

So--those laws are there for a reason--Trump violated them--he can do the time. 

That Said, Though

Removing a sitting president is playing bumper-cars with our nation. To be sure: Trump is doing a ton of damage right now but we don't want to needlessly enhance that. Remember that acts of party succession are the specific thing that America does better than almost anyone else historically. We are able to move from a Republican to a Democratic administration without wrecking the country.

That is endangered if we remove him.

So The Omnivore would prefer the system to play out.

Of Course If There IS Collusion . . . .

Rightly said, this is actually conspiracy and it looks like it's pretty clear the Trump team came, at least, right up the line if not over it. If there IS evidence they crossed the line then we have to remove Trump and his crew from office. We have no choice--violence be damned.

And The Omnivore thinks this is still quite possible--even probable--given what we've seen from Mueller recently. 

So this may all be moot, ultimately.

The Other Side Of The Coin

The real question is: "What do we do if there is evidence that Trump / Trump's people worked with Russia [ on something ]"--but the GOP Senate declines to remove him? What then? Well, that's pretty likely, really. Unless there is tape of Trump colluding (and there likely is not--and, even then . . .) the investigation will be spun as a purely partisan witch hunt.

This is, of course, projection--the Republicans in power know they are purely partisan and their constituents believe all kinds of false things--so they assume the same must be true on the other side. If Trump did collude there is no choice but to impeach him--it is something the House has to do (that the GOP House would not do it was integral to their stunning defeat in the midterms).

But what do we do then?

The Omnivore doesn't have a good answer for that. There isn't one--it's a constitutional crisis and there is no good solution for it.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

But She Lies . . .


The Omnivore asked his uncle--an Alabama farmer--what, exactly, his problem was with Hillary Clinton. This is a good question for people (for a number of politicians)--they won't tell you the truth--they'll tell you what they think is the most politically correct thing to say--which, in turn, tells you more about them than they planned.

"I think she lies," said the Omni-Uncle. Even over Facebook chat, The Omnivore could hear the pious tones in his voice. After all--how could he vote for a politician who lies?

He voted for Trump.

This, you see, tells you much about the Omni-Uncle.

Recently The Omnivore was told by a reader that her vote for Trump was against Hillary Clinton. Okay--that's fair--if it had somehow wound up being Jill Stein vs. Trump, The Omnivore would have voted for Trump.

But what, specifically, was the reason for such an amoral anti-Hillary vote (after all, we knew Trump was a disaster in the primaries--bragging about dick-size, grab-them-by-the-pussy, lying transparently about everything, etc.)? What were her sins? Enumerated, they were:

  • Breaking subpoenaed computers
  • Claiming the DNC was hacked but not turning computers over to the FBI
  • Using a private email server
  • Enmeshment in the Clinton foundation (Uranium One)
  • DNC chairwoman complaining about her taking money--and Bernie sanders.
  • Tarmac meeting
1. These Are All Bullshit

This list is hot off the presses of every right-wing outlet ever. If you trust those sources and look at nothing else, in fact, it's pretty damning. But if you do look at it . . . eh . . . not so much. Let's do it quickly.

Breaking Subpoenaed Computers

The timeline is like this: (a) she puts in the request for deletion (and her IT guys go through the process) (b) the subpoena comes in (c) the IT guy realizes they weren't deleted and does it (she actually broke the phones--not the computers). 
  • (a) This is perfectly congruent with policy and matches what other people have done (this includes breaking the phones--which is actually listed as a best-practice in government guidelines).
  • (b) Clearly the IT guy should not have jumped in here and done it
  • (c) Of the 30k emails deleted, 17k were later discovered. 
Since the government was able to recover more than 50% of the deleted emails--and found nothing nefarious--you have to believe that: 1. She got super lucky--her nefarious deeds were on the remaining 13k emails--and 2. she trusted her life with an IT guy who was something of a bozo.

The DNC Hack

Much has been made--usually by conspiracy theorists--of the DNC not handing over its servers to the FBI following the hacking attempt. In fact, the FBI received an "appropriate substitute"--an image of the computers. The FBI was, in fact, annoyed--but they decided they got what they needed.

Using a Private Email Server

The implication here, The Omnivore thinks, is that her use of one was explicitly to cover up dirty-dealing. Maybe. A more plausible explanation is that after decades of being hounded (Judicial Watch was created pretty much solely to "get" the Clintons) by their enemies, the Clintons are a bit paranoid. 

Uranium One

This whole thing is ridiculous. Uranium is not scarce. The Russians--even with Uranium One--don't control enough of it to make a difference. Supply constantly outstrips demand. It's a comparatively low-priced commodity. Y'all were lied to.

Oh--and the theory that Russia is selling the Uranium to evil regimes--by shipping it to Canada and then re-shipping it through intermediaries--it's possible--but the hysteria assumes that somehow American uranium is better than Russia's own uranium--which they sell and export with no restrictions.

The DNC Stuff

Bernie Sanders was never a good match with the DNC--he started with a law-suit over access to files (and illegal access of files) and then moved to bad-mouthing them (and vice versa). He lost to Hillary by millions of votes over a wide area--there is no plausible conspiracy theory that could have sabotaged that many votes in that many places. 

The Tarmac Meeting

The theory here is that Bill [ did something ] to influence the Justice Department in favor of Hillary on the FBI investigation. We now have statements from Comey himself that he didn't think trying her was viable. Furthermore, Bill and Hillary didn't need a super-secret surprise meeting to influence Lynch--she was already unlikely to go after a former--and much respected Secretary of State for something that many other politicians had already done (yes: Hillary used her own server which was pretty new--but, no, using private email was the real problem here).

So all of this is over-blown.

2. Trump Does All Of This WORSE

The real value comes when you look at this stuff in contrast to Trump. Hillary lies. Trump lies about the size of his inauguration crowd when there are clear pictures. Hillary has a charitable foundation people donated to. Trump runs an illegal slush fund and has foreign dignitaries staying in--and only in--his hotels when they want to speak to him. And so on.

Let's look.

Use of Private Emails / Servers

Ivanka used not only private email--but actually a private email server. She claims, like Clinton, she "didn't know the rules." This, after a blistering attack on Clinton for the same thing is, erm, a lie. Worse, the Trump campaign has used, in the White House encrypted messaging apps with self-destructing message timers--this violates the rules for documentation. 

They are doing it explicitly to avoid being surveilled--either by investigative agencies--or by mole-hunters in the West Wing.


Basically if you claimed you gave a shit about lax security with Clinton--but are okay with Trump--well, that says a lot about you.

None of it's good.

Emoluments and The Trump Foundation

The Emoluments clause in the Constitution prevents office holders from profiting off the office. Trump is doing this in broad daylight. He refused to step away from his holdings (Carter, famously, sold his peanut farm to avoid the appearance of impropriety). He has refused to release his tax returns which would give us insight into how he might be profiting.


Basically, if you are concerned about Clinton being unduly influenced by foreign powers--but not apoplectic about Trump? Well, it says a lot about you.

None of it is good.

Lots of Shady Characters--And Lots of Dirty Deals

You think the Tarmac meeting looks dodgy? Okay--The Omnivore sees you and raises the Trump Tower meeting. In this meeting we have:
  1. A meeting agenda that is explicitly: Russia wants you to win, we've got dirt on Clinton, come meet. Trump Jr. "I love it!"
  2. A meeting with people who had high-level access at the Kremlin (i.e. they were the kinds of people who could make a deal)
  3. When caught out, Trump made sure they lied about it--and then lied about lying about it.
NOTE: even the statement that Jr. was talking about "adoptions" is a lie for the credulous. Adoptions were stopped by Russia by the Magnitsky Act--which froze billions in Russian assets. A meeting about adoptions is a meeting about sanctions (over the assassination of a Russian journalist who said bad things about Putin).

If you think the tarmac meeting looked bad--but are not horrified by the Trump Tower meeting, well, it says a lot about you.

That's right: none of it's good.

Conclusions

If you voted against Hillary--for the reasons stated--but are still okay with Trump then those reasons are not why you voted against Hillary. There are other reasons--and they are less pleasant and you might not even be real clear on them yourself. 

Maybe take some time to figure that out.

Thursday, November 22, 2018

A Friend You Call To Help You Move A Body

Ask Yourself WHY They Chose Those Two Slogans For The Signs
You've heard the saying: "A friend is someone you call to help you move--a Real Friend is someone you call to help you move a body"? It's true--and thanks to Trump's statement on the killing of Jamal Khashoggi we know which kind of friend Trump considers Saudi Arabia.
Ask Yourself WHY Trump Chose To Open With That Slogan

Right now Trumpaloos are simultaneously holding the backs of their hands to their foreheads in a fainting pose because "the world is a dangerous place" while patting themselves on the back for being righteously cynical in appreciating the realpolitik their president is engaging in.

The combination of the two manages to be disingenuous and naive: they were upset about Obama paying a bribe to get back American servicemen from Iran (money that was, in fact, technically owed to Iran in the first place)--while also forgetting they were outraged by Obama bowing to the Saudi king.

Trump allegedly had Pompeo hand MBS a playbook for getting out of the mess he got himself into with an ill conceived and amazingly gruesome execution of an American resident. The reason that the Trumpaloos aren't upset about any of this is, they will tell you, America First.

Ask Yourself How Come The Nazis In America Chose That Slogan?
Reagan And The City On The Hill

The Omnivore was too young to vote for Ronald Reagan--but he was certainly old enough to watch him on TV. Reagan projected strength--he would stand up to the Russian Bear--but he also projected character and optimism. This was a time when, like today, the far left sold the message that America was not what it claimed to be.

Sure, said the leftist--those that today we recognize as "tankies"--stanning for North Korea, pining for Stalin--for real--America claims to be the good-guys--but look--Whattabout War Crimes in WWII (Dresden), The School of the Americas (teaching torture in South America)? Whattabout--

And on the right, the idea that America was the good guys--that America stood up to bullies--that America--if not perfect--at least aspired to be a beacon for what was good in the world. The Omnivore voted for that.

The Omnivore still does.

There was a reason that our worst actors--the American Nazi Party, the KKK, and now, The Trump administration have fallen back to America First--and the statement by the president is a prefect example of this.

You can't sell the average American on immoral behavior--but you can sell them on self-interest.

If you can frame the actions you are taking--bad ones--as helping the common man? Well, who can be against that? Whether it be segregation, teaming up with that Hitler guy, or getting gas prices down so we can all drive a lot--these aren't the actions of a morally corrupt organization--oh heavens no--they are the actions of someone who looks out for the poor downtrodden American everyman.

America First.

And you fall for it. Over and over and over.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

The American Division

On this day-before-Thanksgiving, The Omnivore wants to take a moment to explain to everyone what it is that actually divides us. We know partisanship is increasing--we know that our electorate is more and more heavily divided (than any time during the civil war and, let's just be clear: it's a good thing we don't line up on nice firm state boundaries like we did back then). The question is why.

The Omnivore is gonna explain it to you.

The Engines of Division

There are two major engines of division in America and they, not surprisingly, are somewhat intertwined. These are:

  • A feeling of cultural humiliation--a sense that "the right" is being looked down on by "coastal elites"--or being taken advantage of by (((globalists)))--or being sold out by "The Establishment." In all of these cases the alignment is the same: the right, Christians, straight people, and white men are losers. They are being bullied.
  • An inability to determine what is true, really true-true, or even, in many cases, presented as true. This comes from mistrusting "the media" and over-trusting "heavily biased or fake-news sources." This gives rise to conspiracy theories which the aforementioned humiliation helps take hold. In the end, we have two different realities--not two different perceptions.
The Division of Humiliation

Humiliation is the emotion associated most strongly with memory. For whatever reason, we are more likely to remember humiliations than just about anything else. Thank you evolution. Cultural humiliation is the sort of thing that led Germans to flock to Nazisim in the wake of the (explicitly humiliating) Treaty of Versailles. 

In America we don't have a peace-treaty that imposes punishments on the American right-wing. Instead we have: 
  1. An entertainment complex where "the right" is rarely the good guys and, in fact, often bad-guys.
  2. A growing un-churched population which increases the perceived threat to the deeply religious. Combine this with social moves towards allowing gay marriage and service, acceptance of transgendered people, and (yes, The Omnivore knows this seems weird) interracial marriage--and the religious have a sense that the liberal cultural revolution--led from the cities--is battering down the doors of convention ready to storm the chapel.
  3. A praxis that holds that people--a lot of people--and things said--a lot of things said--are racist. What "being racist" means has, in fact changed. A couple of decades ago, it meant being a Klansman. Today it means thinking that a black man is more likely to have lost his house to foreclosure because of laziness than a white man. People rightfully resent being called racist when they think they are not. This seems like a concentrated attack on them by a coalition of nebulous-but-powerful forces.
There are other humiliations, of course--Obama being elected and then re-elected was a humiliation for people who felt he was so obviously bad that a rational country, now exposed to him, could not possibly re-elect him. The losers in a culture where women are rising in education, executive positions, and political visibility has given us a large toxic slime of Men's Rights Activists, murderous Incels, and angry game/comics/star-wars fans who are looking for a place to express their toxic fandom-rage against perceived betrayals by their franchises (especially with regard to political correctness).

This is powerful, it is pervasive, and it has been going on for a long time.

The Division of Reality

The other division is that of reality itself. If the greatest trick the Devil pulled off was convincing people he didn't exist, the greatest trick the right-wing media pulled off was convincing its consumers that other media was totally lying to them. This has allowed everything from raw conspiracy theory and rampaging con artists to demagogues and state-propaganda outlets to flourish. 

Let's take some examples:
  • Was Seth Rich assassinated?
  • Was Trump wiretapped by an FBI Cabal using a falsified dossier to fool FISA judges?
  • Is it true that Mueller has found no evidence of collusion and has given up on that?
These are just a few of the many, many things that people consuming right-wing media believe to be fact (YES to all of them) when they are not.

Seth Rich - Seth Rich was a DNC staffer who was killed during the 2016 election. Conspiracy theory holds that he gave the DNC (or Podesta) emails to Julian Assange and was murdered by command of Hillary for his betrayal. To be clear: There is zero reason to think this is the case--but the conspiracy theory has a powerful hold on people on the right (including Sean Hannity) because it would clear Russia of the hacking which would, in turn, clear Trump.

The Wiretapping - The belief has morphed a lot (from wiretapping Trump Tower to unspecified means of surveillance of Papadopoulos to a vast plan to bring down the Trump campaign by a cabal inside the FBI). In fact: (a) people who have looked at the evidence find no wiretap whatsoever. (b) The FISA applications were reviewed by guys like Trey Gowdy who didn't find anything to complain about. (c) The idea that the dossier is a complete forgery requires that you believe that Fusion GPS--which is a mercenary group that works explicitly for "both sides," Christopher Steele (a highly respected British Intelligence operative), and the FBI would all be willing to torch their reputations for a dossier that didn't come out until Buzzfeed decided to publish it after the election.

It also ignores the fact that a lot of what the dossier suggested--that Russia was engaged in propaganda ops against the US to help Trump--was found to be actually true.

In short--people have to believe that Trump was illegally wiretapped because if you believe he was hiring people who deserved FBI surveillance and that investigations done by for-real experts uncovered the possibility of some really bad shit then you reach the pants-pissing conclusion that the Mueller investigation is probably a good idea after all.

Mueller Found Nothing - A great article of faith on the right is that Mueller has found nothing and is now either trying to pin non-crimes on people, make up evidence, or shut things down. The reasons for this abound--things like the idea that Papadopoulos got a light sentence or that Flynn was charged for lying rather than conspiracy. There are arguments that if Mueller had found something we'd know by now. There are arguments that Trump knows everything and doesn't seem worried (??). There are pleas that while, yes, Don Jr. did do the collusion meeting, nothing happened.

Never mind that we sure as hell didn't know about the Trump Tower meeting at all until someone broke the story--that as far as we can tell, Mueller hasn't leaked anything--and that what we have seen is evidence that Mueller is using what are called "speaking indictments" which are laden with details (more than required) to set up the telling of a story that hasn't yet been told . . .

No, we're told by right-wing media that the dossier was (somehow) proven falsified, that the Mueller investigation has found nothing, and that we know this because . . . Mueller hasn't interviewed Don Jr. or some shit.

This is all just patently false. We don't know what Mueller has. His non-leaking isn't evidence of anything. The belief that the above is true is just more lies that people on the right have been sold as absolute fact.

What Do We Do?

So you want to know how to put the country back together? You're not going to like the answer. The reason that people are susceptible to the humiliation narrative isn't because coastal elites have come to their small town and laughed at them. It's not because imperious professors have talked down to the humiliated. How does The Omnivore know?

Uh . . . the "elites" fly over those little rust-belt towns. That's why it's called fucking fly over country, you idiot. And the poor salt-of-the-earth famers weren't talked down to by elites because they don't fucking go to college.

Was that harsh? Hey--it gets better.

No--these guys were humiliated because (a) they were told they were humiliated by their media and (b) some of their deeply held beliefs (that gays are wrong, that transgender people are wrong, that blacks and whites shouldn't inter-marry, that finding black people lazy or violent is racist)--you know, those beliefs? They were told those beliefs were deplorable.

You know what? They agreed.


They felt talked down to because, in a lot of cases, they were racist--they just weren't Klansman--hood-wearing racists--so they thought "I'm safe--you can't call me that!" When they were, they threw a tantrum.

When the right-wing media determined it could make a shit-ton of money selling both outrage and prepper garbage to people who were afraid of hoping for a national collapse under Obama it created a feedback loop that promoted saying worse and worse things to get more and more money. This allowed for the creation of an Alt-America where Mueller, a war-hero stalwart Republican is a slimy Obama-kissing traitor . . . and McRaven is just a Hillary organ . . . and it's okay for the Saudis to kill American residences because [ whatever ].

So what do we do about it? 

Well, clearly we coddle these racist little snowflakes in their fake-news worlds until they decide it's time to butterfly out, right? That's what they're begging for? Isn't it? All this nonsense is just another valid point of view, right?

Monday, November 12, 2018

If You Give a Trumpaloo A Conspiracy Theory . . .

. . .  He'll want a rifle and some ammo to go with it . . .

Tell a Trumpaloo that Trump had anything to do with what happened in Pittsburgh you're going to get a horrified Trump-voter "laughing at you." Oh, it'll sound forced--but they'll be working over-time in order try to hold their line of belief that the Pittsburgh shooting happened in an ideological vacuum. To-wit, the Trumpaloo will do their best NOT to know that:

  • Gab.ai, the social media where the poster lived was lousy with vicious, high profile, anti-semitic Trump-supporters (such as WI-01 candidate Paul Nehlen). 
  • He was a strong adherent of Jim Quinn and worked at the guy's radio station--The Warroom--which was far right and loved Donald Trump. The shooter, himself, felt Trump was too Jew-friendly--but the idea that he was an ideological adversary of Trump's is nonsense.
  • He was very taken in with the language Trump has used about the caravan and the carvan's singular importance. The use of the term "Invaders." The idea that George Soros representing international Jewry was funding it. 
  • He echoed the term used on Fox Business News by Lou Dobb's guest from Judicial Watch calling the State Department the Soros-Occupied-State Department (which, of course, echoes the term ZOG--Zionist Occupational Government--the Jews that control America). These two people are great media allies of the President's.
  • POTUS himself refers to the caravan as a great story (even as he and his crew realize it is not a great threat) and have made a show of mobilizing the military to underscore to his adherents that the caravan is an existential crisis.
  • POTUS uses the term 'Invaders' to refer to the refugees and speculates that, sure, Soros could be funding the caravan. These are both winks-and-nods to the ideas that, again, Jews are levying war against America using refugees.

Today something we've known was coming since like Thursday finally happened: the provisional R-win in AZ was reversed to a D-Win. Now, under normal conditions there were would be some wailing and gnashing of teeth--but this isn't a normal situation. Why not? Oh--well, if you're going to pretend you don't know . . .

In case you think this is just random or an outlier:

And, of course, we know about the potential infection of votes--right?
"Well, of course the votes are infected," you, a Trumpaloo say. "They mixed in some invalids--about, oh--22 of them--with the REAL VOTES! See? See, I got facts."

The Omnivore places his chin in his hand, listening. "Do go on," says The Omnivore.

"Just like how illegal invaders infest our great nation with their vile squalling anchor-babies who are only here because of a flawed 14th amendment!!" you start to shriek.

"I thought as much," yawns The Omnivore.

"Why Do Tehy Kall US RACIST?" You tweet to your 1257 bot-followers.

Okay, The Accusations of AZ Corruption Are Bullshit--But IT'S JUST POLITICS

What was that?

"This is a ploy, Omnivore. Everyone understands it--it's just Trump-being-Trump. No one but guys like Acosta takes him serious." [sic]. "He's jest playin' the media like a fiddle--I love it, I do," you say, hands together against your tilted cheek--speaking dreamily.

"No one?" asks The Omnivore.

"NO. ONE." you say--suddenly . . . defensive? "Except the lugenpress--I mean--uh, uh, The #fakenews-media." You say it "hashtag" with some vocal fry. It's cuter that way, you think.

"Are we sure--because if someone didn't think POTUS was a big ass, wild-ass liar," starts The Omnivore.

"You're TWISTING MUH WORDS," you say--because for some reason your words always get twisted to sound like you're saying racist things--

Let The Omnivore Introduce You To VOAT

VOAT is kind of like Reddit, which you may have heard of--but they have ZERO restrictions on free speech. That's great, right? All Amuhircan, innit? Yeah. Let's go to their QAnon board and see what VOAT thought about the AZ recount . . . (click to embiggen)

"Well," you sniff, "they seem nice."

"Oh," purrs The Omnivore, "You have no idea." (click to embiggen)

"Goyim," you read--slowly--"stupid jew loving larping asses? Where is all this coming from?"

The Omnivore just stares at you.

"It sounds," you say, before you can catch yourself, "like that boy from Pittsburgh who shot up the--" But then you stop. No, no, no, you scream at yourself. Those are LIBERAL thoughts!!

The Omnivore cocks an eyebrow.

"It kinda does, doesn't it?"

"NOT. AT. ALL. AND IF IT DID, TRUMP HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH IT." you say--stonily.

"Oh, really?" asks The Omnivore, sounding disturbingly like Willy Wonka from the first movie. "Nothing? Nothing at all? Did he . . . call for another election?"

"That wasn't LITERAL!!" you say--suddenly unsure. Or was it just not serious?? Shit--I can't remember.

"Uh-huh--And when that doesn't happen do these people just decide nothing was to be done?" Asks The Omnivore--"I mean about (((The Jews))), right? I mean--there are thousands of readers of that VOAT subverse--you think that with Trump backing up their little conspiracy theories it's a safe bet that not one--"

"IT WOULDN'T BE TRUMP'S FAULT!" you yell. It sounds more like a bleat though--because as you yell it out, you realize that, well, it really would be. He is our elected leader--and you wanted him there--and really . . . this shit? It isn't out of character.

But you can't admit that--not to The Omnivore. Not out loud--but worst of all, and most of all, not ever, ever, ever to yourself.

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

But If You Try Sometimes . . .

The Omnivore thinks assesses (from a vast height, looming over social media) that the GOP feels relieved that the blue-wave didn't wipe out the Senate or Ted Cruz. For Democrats there seems to be a sense of disappointment that they didn't undo the 2016 election: that's fair--you get to have your hopes up, so long as you are clear-eyed about what the chances really seem to be and take what you get with some measure of realism (i.e. not claiming the vote itself was illegitimate).

That said, what happened last night was what absolutely had to happen in order to keep things from getting far worse.

  1. With actual intent on the part of the House to investigate / check the president we will get to see if there's really "there" there to a lot of the non-Russia questions the admin has raised (The administration? Well, yes--by not, for example, releasing Trump's tax returns).
  2. The House Investigative Committee vs. the FBI should be similarly shut down and the urges to declassify sources and methods can be ramped back.
  3. We won't have to live with Speaker Ryan trying to figure out how he can disagree with what Trump says without actually disagreeing with it in any material fashion (similarly, it'll be nice to have Flake out of office after the cycle ends--we won't have to listen to endless complaining followed by liberals saying "if you don't like it, maybe you could call your Senator--do you know any Senators?")
There's also the possibility that having guys like Nunes, DeSantis, and Cruz in office for the next few years will keep reminding liberals of what they don't like about the part.

The Omnivore has a few observations / questions:
  • It appears that most of the Obama-Trump districts came home to Democrats. Maybe Trump's racism convinced them that their worst fears were, in fact, realized?
  • This election seems to have brought out democrats in ways that previous mid-terms only dreamed of. We will need to see how that compares / holds up later in the next election.
For now, though, while there is stuff for everyone to feel good about, The Omnivore feels that this election met the requirement of giving the Democrats some leverage against Trump and Trumpism--and it has further entrenched Trumpism in the GOP meaning that they will be living with it for the foreseeable future.

Monday, November 5, 2018

The Trumpaloo Who Believes . . .

On Facebook a Trump-supporter explaining how Democrats were endangering the nation posted this:
The Democrats have a narrative. The mainstream media supports that narrative to the exclusion of all counter narratives. Antifa acts to suppress the free speech rights of anybody that would speak against that narrative.
That narrative expounds how group membership is more important than individual character-- the more victim groups that someone belongs to, the greater the weight given to their opinions. White men self-identifying as men are not members of any victim group their opinions are given no weight, at all, and are expected to not consider their own situation when they act in the public sphere. Anyone within a victim group that refuses to support the narrative, such as Candace Owens, is treated as worse than white. The narrative also expounds on how everything will be better if the US Constitution's provisions against tyranny are ignored, so the government can redistribute everything, at will.
The narrative of the Democrats is an appeal for a fascist America controlled by a national social democrat american party, with street level 'justice' meted out by antifa blackshirts.
The virtue of Tolerance is not shown by how one treats designated 'victim' groups, but how one treats people that disagree with them.
An intolerant bigot is anyone that would deny any right that they, themselves, are granted, to anyone that they disagree with. The Democrats and other leftist's make constant efforts to 'de-platform' conservatives to deny them their right to free speech.
The rhetoric driving political violence is logic chain embedded in the Democrat narrative that voicing dissent is hate speech and hate speech is violence.
I asked the guy whose page it was on (he wasn't the author but is right-wing, perhaps Trump-friendly) if he believed this nonsense and he did not want to engage--but was happy to have me post a rebuttal. So let's take a look at this egregious nonsense.

1. The Dem Narrative and Antifa

Out of the gate we have a weird story about the Dems having "a narrative" and Antifa acting to suppress the rights of free speech. What is that narrative? That "group membership is more important that individual character--that victim's rights provide 'victim points' and white men's opinions get no weight at all.

The end goal is total redistribution of everything. Full on communism.

Firstly: wait, what?? What the fuck? Where is this information coming from--who leaked the secret Protocols of the Elders of Leftism to this guy? Oh--okay, sure--he will tell you he can connect the dots--that he has enough individual quotes (for some reason, these conspirators periodically slip up and give the whole game away, saying something that is DEFINITELY true because the person on the other-side NEEDS to hear it that way)--but really? The idea of there being a massive left-wing conspiracy needs to have some proof behind it. What's the plan? Is it 5 years? 10? Fifty? Who alive today plans to reap the benefits of this full-on-communism.

Antifa has (a) participated in some campus protests (b) participated in rumbling with white nationalists. Is, say, Candace Owens getting beat up by Antifa? Is Fox News getting fire-bombed? The Gateway Pundit? Q-Anon? No. Antifa has shut up . . . Milo. They got a parade canceled in Oregon. They meanced Charles Murray. That's about it. Spooky.

To be clear, these things are not good--but they are also not the end of the republic (and The Omnivore thinks if you're going to go full-on Milo, you get what you ask for).

Unless you define Antifa as some kind of massive behind-the-scenes force that is shutting down all the good little nazis before they can have their tiki-torch march it sure doesn't seem they've managed to do much of anything.

Secondly, the the idea of victim-points and hatred of the white-man is true IF you live your life on left-wing Tumblr or in some academic departments. Otherwise? Uh--no. No, The Omnivore is here to tell you that in the world of high finance, white men pretty much run the world. In the military, in politics, in silicon valley? All white guys all the time, baby. If you don't think that's true, go check. The Omnivore will wait. The politics of victimhood only play out in very controlled online spaces. In the real world? Not so much.

Thirdly, the full-on-communism end-game--how exactly is that supposed to happen? The Omnivore understands Obama was supposed to be taking over Texas with JadeHelm'15--but, uh, that was super-stupid conspiracy theory. It sure wasn't fact. When the democrats had full control of government they passed . . . ObamaCare--which Trump failed to repeal. Why? Because it was popular.

2. Justice Meted Out By Antifa Black-Shirts

You (for many values of "you") do not know The Omnivore--so let The Omnivore tell you this: The Omnivore is a fucking black-belt in conspiracy theory and fake news. The Omnivore knows all the little dark corners of the Internet and the historic stuff printed at gun shows and f'ing whatever. All that shit--historical.

So The Omnivore knows this shit too. What spanky up there believes is that there are vast reserves of Antifa Black-Coats going out and busting heads--far more than the right-wing--and the media just doesn't report it. The say way that no one but Fox would post about the rampage of The Knock-Out-Game. This is a nice little conspiracy gem since you can't prove it's not true: lack of reporting about Antifa Attacks is just proof of the cover-up.

So what can we do? Well, we can start by asking the Global Terrorism Database. It holds that the rise in US Terror attacks is from right-wing sources. How about the FBI? Their domestic terror database shows that right-wing violence is a more significant threat than Islamic terror. Left-wing (antifa) violence doesn't factor. But maybe this is all just part of the massive body of lies? Who is correctly reporting the attacks?

Well, if you count shouting at law-makers in restaurants you may be able to improve your numbers--but short of that, The Omnivore thinks you're in trouble.

3. The Great De-Platforming!

We don't know for sure what the poster means by Antifa "de-platforming" people. Is he just restricting it to a handful of cases where security has closed down a venue? Or is he going wider with the removal of InfoWars and Gab and the banning of QAnon boards on Reddit? The former is pretty lame--if you deplatform a provocateur like Milo, everyone goes home happy (including--and especially--Milo)--but given the heavy-breathing implicit in the above rant, The Omnivore will assume the guy is het-up about Twitter kicking nazis off their board--and shutting up Alex Jones.

While there is a great deal to be pointed-and-laughed at here, The Omnivore will point out that there is a limited degree to which you can go and shit on someone's lawn before they will kick you off it. All these guys had multiple--way too many--chances. All of them were involved in behavior that was destructive to the platforms they were using. All of them had violated Terms of Service.

What eventually got them kicked off was a realization that they were a net-negative. Alex Jones doesn't really say anything worth listening to. Neither does Richard Spencer. Paul Nehlen can go do his nazi rants on Gab (as long as it stays up) or on a personal blog or whatever.

You don't need to shed any tears for these guys: they all--every last one of them--had it commin'.

4. Hate Speech Is Violence

In the end, he actually hits on a real point--the "left" does, in general, believe that hate-speech is violence. Now, in some cases, this means that if I go into a bar and start calling someone the N-word and they deck me, I may not win the court case. That isn't that big of a deal.

In other cases, though, we see rhetorical echoes in the very-real violence of mass shooters. The guy who shot up the Synagogue had Trump's language coming out of his mouth. There is some evidence that Incels can be inspired to act violently through peer pressure. Certainly the guy mailing his mail bombs--which so far as we know were real, if inexpertly made, devices--brought into the president's narrative literally. He mailed devices to the president's list of detractors. Perhaps he intended only to scare--but perhaps he hoped to kill or wound. We don't know.

We do know that inspiration is a thing, however. When Obama droned Al-Awalki he did so because the man was really good at inspiring Jihadi violence in the US. He'd already had results in the Ft. Hood shootings. If you think Obama was wrong to kill the guy, go ahead and make your case--but the counter-terror experts all thought that the man--with nothing but words--was a threat.

So, yeah--that's not the left-wing nonsense the guy thinks it is. It's just nonsense in the way he means it.

Conclusions

The theory that Antifa is some kind huge coordinated threat is projection. We know from leaked discord transcripts that alt-right guys who plan violence do fear "antifa" and have visions of antifa raiding their houses (presumably, in many cases, their mom's houses) and otherwise conducting well coordinated campaigns of violence. These don't actually happen though--the people who are recording the transcripts just release them to Unicorn Riot and get them posted on Twitter.

Then the nazi gets id'd and fired--do you want to work next to a nazi? The Omnivore hopes not.