September 29, 2020

Live(ish) Blogging The Presidential Debate 9/29/2020

No promises. AdobeStock_96191568

9:04 PM: No gaffes yet. Of course, only Chris Wallace is speaking.

9:06 PM: Biden found the podium without aid. The verdict is in: Expectations exceeded.

9:08 PM: Trump got extra orangey for the occasion. It's the little things.

9:10 PM: Biden is hitting on all points. Unfortunately, he's hitting on them all at once.

9:13 PM: Chris Wallace might need some pepper spray.

9:14 PM: And a baton. Maybe a shield.

9:19 PM: I need more whiskey.

9:20 PM: Chris Wallace probably needs whiskey, too.

9:21 PM: That might not be a bad idea. Everyone gets whiskey!

9:22 PM: Did someone tell Trump, "be yourself" just before the debate? I thought I heard that. Bad advice.

9:26 PM: Biden accuses Trump of not doing enough about Covid, and also accuses him of shutting down the economy.  Interesting.

9:31 PM: Trump basically just called Biden stupid.  Jefferson would be proud.

9:34 PM: Now he's making fun of the masks Biden wears. Add that to great moments in oratory.

9:36 PM: Trump making a decent point. One I would make in pretty much the same way regarding masks.  Maybe it's the whiskey affecting my judgment.

9:38 PM: Trump making sense again about the economy.  I need to stop drinking.

9:40 PM: I need whatever shots they gave Biden. He sounds fairly lucid.

9:44 PM: Okay, Trump is starting to sound, well, like Trump.  Good, it means I'm not drunk. It means I'm not totally drunk.

9:46 PM: Biden: "Buy American." What?!

9:47 PM: Biden: Talking up manufacturing jobs. What?! Aren't these Trump talking points?

9:50 PM: Chris Wallace is getting ready to lob a flash bang at Trump, I swear.

9:53 PM: Here comes the flash bang.

9:55 PM: Biden has been debating a long time. I remember when he wiped the floor with Ryan in 2012. This is a pretty good, albeit older, version of that.

9:56 PM: And then he repeats the proven "very fine people" lie.  Lots of reasons to criticize Trump. That's not one of them.

10:00 PM: Chris Wallace asked why Trump ended "racial sensitivity training," suggesting that he does not know anything about Critical Race Theory. Unfortunately it's not clear that Trump does either.

10:06 PM: You know the accusation of Trump being a bully? He's not really doing much to dispel that tonight.

10:08 PM: Trump is very good at not letting Biden shoot himself in the foot.

10:10 PM: Wallace just threw a softball to Trump to denounce white supremacists and he screws it up. He really is his own worst enemy.

10:13 PM: Longest seven hours of my life. It's been seven hours, right?

10:16 PM: Oh, good, more yelling.

10:19 PM: Planet Moron's views on so-called "climate change" are well known. I can't think of a better person to make our case than someone who is not Donald Trump.

10:27 PM: Interesting, Biden just said the Green New Deal would pay for itself, and then says he doesn't support it. A great opening. Trump totally walks over it with nonsense about Biden "losing the left."

10:39 PM: Well, that's seven hours of my life I'll never get back. It's been seven hours, right?

J.

 

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September 29, 2020 at 09:01 PM in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (3)

Bringing The Unmasked Bandit To Justice

Alecia Kitts, aka "The Unmasked Bandit," has finally been brought to justice.

It’s hard to watch, the wanton sitting, the flagrant and repeated breathing, and yet there she was:

Sitting outside, all but alone, watching a middle school football game.

NOT WEARING A MASK.

Words really can’t quite capture the horror. You may want to skip the video if you are easily upset at the sight of someone’s face:

We know we’re not supposed to judge people by their appearance, but let’s face it, she fit the profile: A petite woman, early middle aged, a mom, had asthma.

She should have just tased herself and called it a day.

Yes, you could argue that forcing people to wear masks outside while socially distanced is contrary to everything we know about this virus but then again shut up.

Besides, as the Logan Police patiently point out, she was not arrested for not wearing a mask.

That would be ridiculous and a complete overreach of state authority.

She was arrested for trespassing on school property because she refused to vacate the area because she was not wearing a mask.

How that equates to being arrested for not wearing a mask we’ll never understand.

As Governor Mike DeWine explained, they just wanted the “kids to play,” and if that means tasering their parents, then so be it.

It won’t stop here unless we stop it now. Already three people were arrested in Idaho, possibly inspired by the Unmasked Bandit in Ohio, for not wearing masks while singing gospel hymns.

We can’t allow this to go on. We must preserve order, no matter what the cost.

In other news, widespread rioting continues unabated.

J.

Want to let your feelings be known without getting arrested? For now, anyway. We have these and more available here or just click the pictures. Hey, it's still a feel country.(But you might want to hurry.)

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September 29, 2020 at 02:18 PM in Covid-19/Coronavirus, Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0)

September 27, 2020

TBH, We Could Live Without Faulkner

The Boston Globe Reported this week that some Boston school teachers are taking “racial justice” into their own hands and ditching teaching anything written by a white person for the entire school year and substituting works written exclusively by “authors of color.”

It’s probably worth pointing out that choosing which books your students read based solely on race is not at all racist.

Teachers say they are doing this because they noticed that dead white men have “dominated high school English classes,” with reading lists “chock-full of Shakespeares, Hemingways, Faulkners, and Fitzgeralds,” who were “overwhelmingly white, male, and Eurocentric.”

We should probably also add that using gender and ethnicity to judge the worthiness of an author is in no way sexist or prejudiced.

We feel like we should clear those things up right up front so as to avoid confusion.

As it turns out, having a reading list that is largely “Eurocentric” in a country whose culture, founding principles, and very origin is largely Eurocentric,

“Is doing some harm to the souls of our students who are Black, indigenous, and people of color, and it’s honestly doing harm to the souls of all our students."

And again, just to emphasize, assuming a culture, and the timeless truths and principles it developed, is inextricably tied to race and gender is not in any way racist or sexist and noting that teaching this culture is harmful to people because of their skin color is not at all condescending.

Really, what’s wrong with you?

The article highlights one teacher’s experience, Joana Chacon:

 “As a young Latina who spent much of her adolescence in Seattle, Chacon rarely saw herself or her Salvadoran background reflected in her schools’ literature and history curriculums.”

When you think about it, it’s really bizarre that a country that is not El Salvador would spend so much time not focusing on El Salvadoran history and literature.

Keep thinking about it. It might take a while.

“It was teaching me that certain things were right and good and certain things were wrong and bad, and my culture was in the bad category.”

It’s been a while since I was in school, so I checked in with my son, and somehow he missed the “El Salvadoran Culture Is Bad” unit. 

Probably out sick that day.

Or does the mere exclusion of that history suggest the culture is bad?

If so, we're going to need to extend the amount of time kids spend in school to about 700 days a year if we don't want to offend anyone. (Hopefully there will still be time to squeeze something in about the Declaration of Independence.)

You might be thinking that it would actually be a great idea if kids were taught about other cultures, other histories, other points of views, and include books that go beyond purely Eurocentric authors and include Toni Morrison and Sherman Alexie who are every bit as American as Hemingway and Fitzgerald and you’d be absolutely right.

Which is why pretty much every school in the nation already does that and has been for decades. (My school spent weeks on indigenous cultures and that was in the '70s. We were very woke. We also wore bell bottoms, which as western Eurocentric culture goes, was admittedly not a high point.)

But that’s not enough anymore. According to Chacon, we need to completely abandon literature that in any way reflects the Eurocentric roots of American culture and principles.

Where did she get this idea?

“College exposed Chacon to antiracist teachings for the first time. Those experiences informed her own approach as an educator.”

Oh, right.

J.

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September 27, 2020 at 01:43 PM in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (2)

September 25, 2020

Defund The Fire Department!

The attention that has been drawn to police misconduct has had us rethinking everything we thought we knew about how we should address problems with the delivery of public services.

AdobeStock_219713084We know that of the 650,000-plus police officers in this country in 2019, approximately 30 to 35 unarmed people were killed by police, 10 to 15 of whom were black.

How are we to interpret the fact that as many as .0053% of police officers were involved in questionable shootings? Should we treat it as the very serious problem it is and double down on training, establish methods to monitor accountability, and continue to refine systems and incorporate best practices to ensure we reduce these awful and needless fatalities?

Of course not. When you have as many as 1 bad apple out of every 18,500 police officers, the only mature, reasonable thing to do is to act rashly and without any consideration as to the consequences of your actions.

No one said it better than our current poet-philosopher and spokesperson for Nike (Now over 50% slave labor free!), Colin Kaepernick:

Indeed, the police must be abolished for the safety and well-being of our people.

But why stop there?  Now that we have established a new threshold at which abolishment of an institution is not only necessary but the only reasonable course of action to protect us, we need to look beyond the police.

And draw our attention to the fire department.

AdobeStock_359923139_Editorial_Use_OnlyLook at the numbers.

Out of a little over 1 million firefighters, at least 100 are arrested for arson every year.

That’s one out of every 10,000 firefighters, meaning there are proportionally nearly twice the number of bad firefighters as there are bad cops.

Should we address this problem directly, focusing on the 100 while preserving the firefighting function? You already know the answer. We can’t have the systemic arson of the firefighter system endangering us at every turn, worried that if we call the fire department, say, to get a cat out of a tree, there is a very good infinitesimally slight chance they will set fire to our own house instead!

AdobeStock_214937077That is why the fire department must be abolished for the safety and well-being of our houses. We can redirect the funds formerly spent on fighting fires to counselors trained in dealing with the natural grief that comes when your house burns to the ground.

The “Kaepernick Rule” can be applied beyond just public policy and effectively be used in your daily life. Fuel pump goes out in your car? Junk it, junk the whole thing. Throw it out. Its systemic fuel delivery problems must be addressed with a kind of frenzied lunacy if we’re ever going to get automobiles that work perfectly every time forever.

Is that too much to ask?

Fixing systems, addressing genuine problems directly in a sober and serious fashion is just not going to cut it anymore. What needs to be done now is to address every issue by engaging in wild mindless fury  and destroying everything we come across.

Only then can we truly have peace.

We’ll also still need a civilization, but how hard can building one of those be?

J.

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September 25, 2020 at 11:50 AM in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0)

September 23, 2020

What If You Wear A Mask But You Still Hate Your Grandma?

Like many people, you are probably sick and tired of hearing that if you don't wear a face mask, you must hate your grandma.

But what if you do wear a face mask, even if only on occasion, and yet STILL hate your grandma?

We'll tell you what:

You'd be living a lie!

Every time people see you, they're just going to naturally assume you actually love your grandma. Here at Planet Moron, we understand that not all our readers have the capacity to maintain any kind of close personal relationship, and that's okay.

Well, actually, it isn't. You should probably seek some help for that.

But in the meantime, it's important you be true to yourself, and your natural animosity towards older living relatives.

I Still Hate Grandma

Yes, now you can tell the world, I'm a responsible citizen and yet I still hate grandma.

We see this as a win-win.

Available here.

No, really, you can buy this.

J.

Also Available:

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September 23, 2020 at 03:13 PM in Covid-19/Coronavirus, Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (2)

September 22, 2020

Making The World A Better Place One Sobbing Child At A Time

Leo Guinan is just trying to “help others,” and like the old saying goes, charity begins at home.

Guinan Trump or Grandkids
We know Guinan wants to help others because he thoughtfully tells us in his byline:

“Trying to share my experiences in a way that might help others. I can change the world. I will change the world. Even if for a single person.”

Leo Guinan is changing the world!

Even if for a single, sad, bewildered child.

In fairness, it’s not as if he hasn’t tried to convince his dad of the error of his ways. He wrote an entire article about it. He struggled to understand how his dad could possibly hold an opinion different from his own. Then he got it: His dad was a victim:

“But now I know what happened. You have been victimized. Along with a good percentage of the population.”

His dad, no doubt decades his senior, who has seen and experienced more than he can possibly imagine simply isn’t as smart and sophisticated as Guinan. But really, who is?

It is a burden, but somebody has to bear it.

“If you would like to actually discuss any of the topics that Fox has been feeding you with an open mind, I will be happy to do so.”

When confronted with those who disagreed with his actions, Guinan demonstrated his open mindedness and maturity by picking up his Twitter account and going home.

Twitter Account That No Longer Exists 2

Just in case you remain unconvinced, he simply declares it so:

“One thing I pride myself in is having an open mind.”

Case closed.

“Right now, the Republican party is something I have never seen. The level of corruption and simply evil people in some very powerful positions is something that quite literally resembles pre-WWII Germany.”

You know you are dealing with a deep and serious thinker when they make a totally legitimate and not at all hyperbolic Hitler comparison.

As the old saying goes, go Godwin early, go Godwin often.

“I can help you find the historians who are quite clearly making these arguments.”

How thoughtful! It must have taken quite a bit of research to find historians who are making those arguments. He probably had to Google “liberal arts college” at least once and wait three nanoseconds for it to autofill.

He’s just trying to help his father like his father helped him:

“You helped me realize I needed to reach out for some help. I want to repay the favor.”

Guinan recognizes that voting Republican is akin to struggling with mental health issues as he himself has done.

(We wonder if there’s medication available for treating someone who votes Republican. Based purely on observation we would not be surprised to learn it was scotch.)

Guinan is simply trying to shield his children from one mental patient by holing them up at home with a different mental patient.

That's a special kind of love.

As you already know, despite his efforts to help his dad overcome his inability to agree with him, it didn’t turn out well:

“I wrote earlier about trying to express my reasons to my dad in a calm and intellectual manner. I actually thought I had been calm and well-reasoned.”

It’s abundantly clear that Guinan is a calm and well-reasoned man:

“Today I found out he put a Trump sign in his yard.

I got pissed. Really pissed.”

It takes a truly elevated intellect to greet political disagreement with confusion and anger. Plato wrote something about it.  Probably. Or maybe it was Dr. Suess.

AdobeStock_34303708Perhaps Guinan should have counted to 10 before acting out on his anger.

“And then I went for a walk to calm down. And the more I thought about it, the more I agreed with the message.”

Okay, maybe he needed to count a little higher.

Regardless, there is only one question that remains:

Will Guinan win “Father of the Year,” or “Son of the Year?”

You have to admit, it’s a pretty close call.

J.

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September 22, 2020 at 12:49 PM in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (1)

September 20, 2020

Some People Really Like Typing “Nazi” A Lot

As it turns out, there's a pretty decent chance you're a Nazi.

To sum up:

  • If you’re a Nazi, you’re a Nazi.
  • If you support a Nazi, you’re a Nazi.
  • If you support the wrong non-Nazi, you’re still a Nazi.

Oh, and one more thing.

Yeah, even thinking about supporting a Nazi, means you’re a Nazi.

That’s a lot of opportunities to be a Nazi! AdobeStock_98071719

It’s like a rhetorical Nazi bomb: Toss it into an argument, and it impales everyone with Nazism.

And fortunately, it doesn't matter how many times you say it, its impact is never diminished in the slightest. Why, you can call someone a Nazi over and over again in the same Twitter thread and that person will be equally pwned every single time.

This could be useful beyond just political arguments. If someone wants to suggest pineapple belongs on pizza, toss in a Nazi bomb:

  • If you put pineapple on pizza, you're a Nazi.
  • If you support people who put pineapple on Pizza, you’re a Nazi.
  • If you decide to just get your own non-pineapple pizza, thus aiding and abetting others in getting a pineapple pizza, you’re a Nazi.
  • If you ever so much as thought about any of the above: Nazi.

The logic of the argument is infallible.

Well, as long as you accept the premise that people must behave in the precise non-Nazi ways you prefer, and if you deviate at all, even for a moment, yeah, Nazi.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to make a martini. Gin of course. If you use anything else, you’re a…

J.

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September 20, 2020 at 07:22 PM in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0)

September 17, 2020

Well There’s No School Choice, For Either Girls Or Boys...

The New York City public School System announced once again that there will be a further delay starting in-person schooling.

In a particularly thoughtful move, the city gave the parents over three days to properly prepare for the otherwise unexpected delay, lining up childcare, changing jobs, perhaps going back to school and securing a degree in a new field. 

In light of this, and with all due apologies to Alice Cooper, we bring to you the informal New York City Public School System anthem:

Well there’s no school choice
For either girls or boys
Public has no voice
Unless you own a Rolls Royce

Well we won’t educate ya, but we’ll still get paid
That last union contract was a real upgrade

School's out for summer
School's out forever
Schools fund pay increases

No in-person
You can Zoom
You don’t like it
Have no room, yeah

We can teach in slippers
No accountability
But we still get good pensions
So we don’t need to think of a word that rhymes

School's out for autumn
School's out forever
Your futures’ all blown to pieces

We need more testing
We need more masks
Will it be enough?
Do you need to ask?

Out for summer
Out through fall
We will not come back at all

School's out for winter
School's out forever
We could get a fever
Covid, the best thing ever

J.

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September 17, 2020 at 07:05 PM in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0)

September 15, 2020

Consensus Watch - 9/15/2020

An ongoing series dedicated to vigorously monitoring emerging threats to The Consensus that global warming is real, caused by humans, and must be addressed at all costs. Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data.

AdobeStock_125738980The argument that the latest round of wildfires inundating  the United States is completely unprecedented and directly caused by global warming is complicated by the fact that they are not, and it is not.

Not to worry, this happens all the time. Since we already have a Consensus, this becomes less a tedious exercise in experimentation and data analysis, and more a matter of focusing on what’s really important in science:

Branding.

This is not new. It was discovered very early on that simply pointing out that, “boy, it’s been pretty hot this summer,” was not nearly catastrophic-sounding enough to be any help in securing tenure or being awarded lucrative research grants. No, if you were going to foment sustainable amounts of hysteria you were going to need something more powerful, something apocalyptic that would have enormous emotional appeal and help get six-figure book deals.

Originally, “Global Warming” fit the bill perfectly. It was an easy concept to understand. The globe was warming.  The entire globe!  Plus warming is a simple concept to understand. It’s still in use today in fact, as we used it just above.

Unfortunately, it ran into some trouble when the globe refused to, you know, warm.

This was the original branding challenge that The Consensus faced, but the solution was close at hand:

“Climate Change.”

With Climate Change, pretty much everything proves your point. Warming, cooling, floods, drought, as long as something changes, the theory withstands scrutiny.

Which brings us back to the wildfires.

People have been hearing about wildfires for a long time. You need to tie the wildfires directly to global warm… sorry, old habit. You need to tie the wildfires directly to climate change somehow.

Allow us to introduce you to the greatest thing since Sharknado:

Climate Fires.

It captures the imagination immediately. Climate fires! We’re causing the climate to change, the changed climate is causing fires, creating: Climate Fires!

But wait, there’s more. Your refusal to turn over control of your lives to the government makes you, wait for it:

AdobeStock_47320657A climate arsonist!

This is truly science at its best. Hyperbolic, terrifying, and vilifies your opponents.

This is a game changer people. The brand extensions are almost limitless.  We won’t have hurricanes anymore, we’ll have “ClimateCanes!” And if you insist on driving an SUV, you will be a "Climate Murderer."

Proof, as if more was needed, that there’s nothing you can’t accomplish...

With science!

J.

Support The Consensus by throwing money at us!

Unless, of course, you hate the environment. 

Click on the pics below for links to T-shirts, Mugs, posters, and all kinds of other crap you do not need.

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September 15, 2020 at 09:45 PM in Current Affairs, Global Warming with CONSENSUS WATCH | Permalink | Comments (0)

September 13, 2020

Review of Don't Burn This Book: Thinking for Yourself in an Age of Unreason by Dave Rubin

Our review of Don’t Burn This Book: Thinking for Yourself in an Age of Unreason by Dave Rubin started off in an unexpected manner when within the first four minutes of listening to the audio book (I purchased the Audible version) Rubin mentions in a totally offhanded manner that he was gay.

That shouldn’t matter, and apparently doesn’t given I had no idea.  But in our current environment with half the country embracing identity politics and intersectionality, it is, at least in a societal sense, still important and worthy of mention.

In fact, it is part of the argument Rubin makes in that as a conservative gay man, he runs counter to the entire narrative of identity politics that holds that your identity determines your politics. Given that this is the second book, however unintentionally, that I am reviewing about a gay man coming out as a conservative in as many months (Always a Soldier by Rob Smith was the first), this apparently is a thing.

The troubling ascent of the LGBT right wing

Okay, it’s definitely a thing.

And “troublesome” even.

This is, in part, what Rubin is talking about.

In the book he details the ways in which his preconceived notions about the left gave way to reality such as when he witnessed how allegedly open-minded progressives would savagely attack conservative African-Americans as “Uncle Toms,” or the time he interviewed Larry Elder and in the course of spouting standard liberal talking points that he took for granted as being true, ended up being very publicly schooled with actual facts from the always-informed Elder.

The character assassination he was witnessing up close and personal on the part of his leftist colleagues and friends, the false narratives, the growing cancel culture, and the hostility towards free speech if that speech does not fit the woke agenda, became increasingly clear. Rubin was going through this realization and ultimate transformation pretty much on screen as he hosted “The Rubin Report,” which I guiltily admit increased the entertainment value of his story immensely. (To his lasting credit, Rubin readily concedes this, a sign of a man truly comfortable in his own skin and genuinely interested in personal growth no matter how painful.)

Throughout the book he discusses this transformation, the slow realization that he was more conservative and libertarian than he was progressive, his difficult decision to “come out” as a conservative particularly given that people whom he had considered personal friends turned on him, wishing to never speak to him again.

He also goes through a number of issues, from drug legalization to gun control to women’s rights and so on detailing why he believes what he believes and suggesting that if you agree or find his arguments compelling, if only in part, you might not be the progressive you thought you were. While there is no question this book will be picked up primarily by preexisting fans with conservative and libertarian-leaning views, it clearly is also targeting people who are on the fence or who have started to question preconceived notions, and provides a detailed road map and motivation to explore such feelings further.

The entire tale is at once cautionary and inspirational, outlining the professional and personal hazards of embracing a more conservative view while providing motivation and counseling on how to do so.

Rubin self-narrates the audio book (always my preference for those competent to do so), and comes across as truly genuine, affable, open minded, and always open to being proven wrong.

Definitely worth a read. Or a listen!

J.

If you are thinking about purchasing Don’t Burn This Book, please consider using one of our many links! it costs you nothing but helps support our work here. "Work" might not be the right word. "Frustrated cries into an uncaring void," might capture it better but didn't test well with focus groups. (More about affiliate marketing links at the bottom of the right side bar.)

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September 13, 2020 at 03:00 PM in Books | Permalink | Comments (2)