News of the Week (September 30th, 2018)

 

News of the Week for Sept. 30th, 2018


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Kavanaugh Hearings: Verdict First Trial Later

     The Senate Committee holding hearings for Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanagaugh have heard from his first, and more credible, of his accusers and from Judge Kavanaugh himself. There were two aspects to the hearing: An inquiry into the veracity of the accusation and politicial drama that was based on pure emotion.

     The honest inquiry into the veracity of Prof. Ford’s claims was brief and matter of fact, limited by the necessity of dividing up the questioning into 5-minute chucks bewteen the Democratic members of the Comittee waxing poetically over Ford as a victim. While some may decry the kind, emotionless, and matter-of-fact approach of Rachel Mitchell, who spoke to Ford on behalf of the Republican members of the committee, Mitchell nonetheless did lay bare many inconsistencies even there was no knock-out blow that people have come to expect from TV courtroom shows. This went from a “he said she said” scenario to one where the “he said” side offered evidence and witness statements. This approach also allowed the Republican members of the committee to avoid look like the Spanish Inquisition interrogating a woman who was portrayed as a weak and vulnerable waif in need of sympathy.

     Alone, Ford’s half of the hearing would have been devastating. However, Judge Kavanaugh met emotion with emotion, to the point where he stirred the Republican members to decry the bullying and delaying tactics of the Democratic Senators, and even early on cower some of said members. The Republicans on the Committee have looked at the evidence and have sided with Judge Kavanaugh, which is why they believe that further delay is not warranted. Sen. Lindsey Graham was particularly notable in his defense of Kavanaugh and his disgust with the circus around him.

     Meanwhile, the Democratic members of the committee, perhaps because of their “questioning” of Dr. Ford that they referred to Judge Kavanaugh as someone who they considered guilty combined with a lack of intestinal fortitude to come right out as say they thought he was an accused rapist, relegated themselves to character assassination over Judge Kavanaugh’s legal drinking in school and college and trying to portray him as a denizen of Animal House.

     The spectacle even devolved into questioning over… high school fart jokes.

     It is a sad state of affairs when the future of the Supreme Court—the future of the United States of America itself—is dependent on the explanation and nuances of a teenage fart joke.

     The only other tactic the Democratic members of the Committee had was to demand an FBI investigation. While this is just part and parcel of an established list of delaying tactics, it a move that could garner support, or at least give a fig leaf to Senators who will vote NO. However, there is something about the hearings that no one is talking about that demonstrates the protest by those who demand we delay the Kavanaugh vote, to investigate what happened, to be absolutely malicious: Most Democrat Senators in committee already declared him guilty.

     In many, of not most, of their “questions” to Dr. Ford, Democrat Senators spoke not of the alleged or purported assault, but of when—not if—Judge Kavanaugh assaulted her. How can the Senate Democrats on the Committee decry lack of investigation during the hearings when they’ve already gotten sufficient evidence, as far as they are concerned, to reach a verdict?

     In effect, the Senate Democrats are saying “Verdict First; Trial Later”.

     Update: A salient point was made about the call for an FBI report.

     During the Clarence Thomas hearing, Senator Leahy was on the Committee at that time as well; despite the FBI report, he still not only voted NO, but also still says to this day that he believes Anita Hill. Even with a FBI report that did not substantiate claims against the nominee, opposition from Leahy was unchanged. Why would a FBI report now, then, make a difference?

     Update 2: Senator Flake has voted with the Committee to advance the nomination to the full Senate, but wants a time and scope limited FBI investigation before said vote in a weeks time, and Senator Murkowski agrees. While an FBI report that doesn’t add anything to what is already known won’t change Leahy’s or most other Democrats’ votes, it would give Sens. Murkowski, Flake, and Collins the cover to vote YES.

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Quick Takes – Broke: Mathematics; Woke: STEAM; Bespoke: Social Justice Mathematics

     Another “quick takes” on items where there is too little to say to make a complete article, but is still important enough to comment on.

     The focus this time: 2 + 2 = 5

     First, a little mood music:

     Carrying on…

     What would a professor who specialized in “equity issues in mathematics education” think what should be don’t about all that icky “objects, truths, and knowledge” in math?

     Something called “Mathematx

“The relationship between humans, mathematics, and the planet has been one steeped too long in domination and destruction. What are appropriate responses to reverse such a relationship? How do we do work now (inside and outside of schools) that will reverberate and touch the lives of future generations? Drawing upon Indigenous worldviews to reconceptualize what mathematics is and how it is practiced, I argue for a movement against objects, truths, and knowledge towards a way of being in the world that is guided by first principles–mathematx. This shift from thinking of mathematics as a noun to mathematx as a verb holds potential for honouring our connections with each other as human and other-than-human persons, for balancing problem solving with joy, and for maintaining critical bifocality at the local and global level.”

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Transing Academia

     Yuval Levin pointed out in the book “Tyranny of Reason”, a religious limitation to objective scientific study by, IIRC, Aquinas that stipulated that observation and reason ought to be paramount provided that such evidence is not construed to contradict devine truth, in which case it is the evidence, or more specifically the interpretation of the obvious truth, which must be eschewed because it contradicts the pre-determined truth and accuracy of a reality which is presumed to be true based upon an unwavering religious revelation of adherence.

     While such a sentiment could, and has, been often used to belittle any scientist with a shred of religious sentiment—and even those who don’t seek recourse to religious scripture but are simply deferential to the accumulated knowledge of the ages—such sentiment is now considered sacrosanct when it facilitates the view of the the post-Modernist Left who revel in (pseudo-)relativist eschatons of feelz.

     Such is a case with a condemned research article that noted that many adolescents who declared themselves to be “transgender” did so after exposure to social media that extolled such “transgender” mentality or moreover to the presence of peers who demonstrated their institutional wokeness by coming out as “transgender” and being praised by the institutionally privileged and institutionally empowered.

     And just who condemned such thoughtcrime?

     The university, Brown University, where the author currently works. Rather than support their own faculty, the university decided to condemn any mention of such heresy not based on any reasoned objection, but based on how a study could “invalidate the perspectives of members of the transgender community“.

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Kernal of Social Justice

     The threat from “Social Justice” in technology comes not just from corporations, but now can be found in the open source community, as can be seen by Linux adopting a “social justice” friendly “code of conduct” (CoC), where vague prohibitions of trolling and “insulting” comments come hand in hand with punishing people for “improper” pronouns.

     This new “code of conduct” is already being used as a cudgel to punish the doubleplusungood unpersons:

     However, ironically enough, this very same CoC could be used by those burned by the SJWs to burn Linux to the ground:

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What Does A Socialist Dictator Do When People Flee? Blame The “Wreckers” While Living High On The Hog!

     What do you get when you combine hyperinflation, mass unemployment, a destroyed education system, and murder rates that make war zones look safe?

A hellhole that people are trying to escape from no matter what, despite even countries that Venezuela doesn’t even border need to crack down on the wave of refugees. Of course, considering that this has led to a measles epidemic in Brazil, it is understandable.

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News of the Week (September 23rd, 2018)

 

News of the Week for Sept. 23rd, 2018


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Trump’s Greatest Asset, Redux

     The unhinged Left continue to be Trump’s greatest asset.

     The RNC has previously put together an ad highlighting the willingness of the Left to proudly air their insanity. Since then, the Left has continued to provide fresh new insanity to throw into the mix:

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Quick Takes – Capitalism: Extermination; Racism; Redistribution

     Another “quick takes” on items where there is too little to say to make a complete article, but is still important enough to comment on.

     The focus this time: From each according their means to all Nomenklatura according to their want.

     First, a little mood music:

     Carrying on…

     One can always tell if they are part of the new Nomenklatura or the new Kulak class by whether their speech is “free speech” or “hate speech”…

“A socialist student group at Iowa State University has repeatedly made threatening comments about conservatives on social media, but the school says the comments are protected speech.

“In one recent tweet, the school’s Young Democratic Socialists of America (YDSA) chapter called for the hanging and extermination of all ‘capitalists.’

“‘The left has done a good job radicalizing juggalos, weebs, furries, but I will not rest until ‘hXc’ stands for hang+Xterminate capitalists,’ the group wrote in an October 4 tweet that has since been deleted.

“After students brought the tweet to attention of the university, it replied via twitter by stating ‘this falls under free speech’ and then offering available ‘resources’ to student if they ‘feel threatened or harassed.'”

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Freeing the Humanities from Academia

     The greatest assault on Western Civilization came from the inside, and what was once the deepest reposit of that knowledge: Academia. This is nowhere seem more deeply than in the purging of the humanities of millennia of learned knowledge and the wisdom of generations to make room for its antithesis.

     Little wonder, then, that liberal arts colleges and humanities in general are dying in the academic sphere as they lose any and all value with the replacement of cultural and civil knowledge with “social justice” and post-Modernist nonsense.

     How, then, can the humanities be saved. While some are more than happy to throw accelerant on the fire to see the Progressive Left burn with thousands of years of collected wisdom in order to “own the libs“, a wise and prudent person understands that this, our heritage, must be saved and preserved.

     One alternative, previously noted, is to have a conservative version of the campus teach-in, which would provide students “1st, to dismantle at the root the basis of the Left’s beliefs; and 2nd, to provide an alternative worldview”. However, if academia is to won back, it will not be through overt and cathartic action, but sub rosa though a counter-Gramscian march that will slowly change the underlying basis until those who wish to save Western Civilization can effect their own Fabian moment.

     However, this is far from guaranteed. In lieu of, or better still in parallel with, a slow and quite infiltration of academia, alternatives to academia as holders of all we have gained from Western Civilization must be established. History, philosophy, et al. are not things to just concede to the Left while quaffing the absence of something perceived as inherently tainted and impure, living in the false paradise of anti-educational bliss; these are all things that we have a moral responsibility to cherish and protect—an inheritance to hand down to future generations.

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