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Feet of Clay

It may be that several idols will be toppled this week and next.

Justin Trudeau’s Liberals are falling  behind in electoral polling.

The Conservatives have moved slightly ahead, maybe significantly ahead, of the Liberals. I saw a poll that placed the Liberals as low as 29%.

Conservative
Erin O’Toole
32.5%
Liberal
Justin Trudeau
32.2%
New Democrat
Jagmeet Singh
20.2%
Bloc Québécois
Yves-François Blanchet
6.0%
Green
Annamie Paul
4.0%
Other (He whom the CBC will not mention)
5.0%
One of the advantages of not writing or thinking about Canadian politics for months is that one becomes like an ordinary person, one who has no public voice or influence. A detachment is felt from all power, all party positioning, even from partisanship itself. My opinion circle is tightly limited to my wife and a few friends.  I have not been especially keen on the Conservative chief O’Toole, nor have I been hostile. I have met him whom the CBC will not mention and, though I find him admirable, I do not agree with some of his positions. Mostly I think he is like an officer who would be too careless of the troops’ lives.
I have been pleasantly surprized at how well O’Toole is doing. While it may be that he is exerting a charm over the Canadian public, it is more likely that Canadians have decided simply to change the channel. I am quietly hopeful that this fatuous ass Justin Trudeau will be reproved, possibly defeated.
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As to President Biden, I am not disappointed. I am not outraged at the retreat from Afghanistan – after all it was President Trump who negotiated a pull-out with the Taliban. What vexes me is the shameful incompetence of Biden and the US military leadership, who seem more interested in diversity than military effectiveness.
For a look into the chaos of defeat, see this article in New York Magazine, for example.
The reason I hope Trudeau loses, and Biden suffers disgrace, is that we have been lied to, lectured, and condescended to by virtue -signalling nincompoops. Unless these people are decisively repudiated at the ballot box, we may expect more such manure to be fed to us. When will the people at the top start to talk in terms of their own fallibility, error, and show a little contrition?
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Elite failure, and lots of it, with more coming

Now that the Swamp has won the US election, we are presented almost daily with evidence that technological, bureaucratic, political, judicial and media elites will run rampant for the next four years, unopposed by the man in the White House.  I call it failing upward. Everyone knows a person or two who rise from one position to the next, failing in every post (by any reasonable standard of success) and yet continually rising to greater and more respnsible positions. But an entire social class of experts rising through demonstrable failure?   This is new, to me at least.

 

Two articles today on the same theme, one from Unherd, the other from American Digest, citing the brave dissenter, David Warren.

 

Jacob Siegel in Unherd says it best:

“The first important lesson from the past year is that this revolt against the experts is not a fringe phenomenon driven by QAnon loons, hysterical anti-vaxxers and other untouchables. It is widespread and its consequences are already profound. On the surface, people are simply rejecting the authority of institutions such as the CDC, which now openly advocates for racial preferences and places political calculations before the public good. But beneath that rejection, there is a cultural shift at the level of animating beliefs.

“For millions of people, a disenchantment has broken the spell which upheld their faith in rational, scientific knowledge as the best means to tame the natural chaos of reality and administer the business of society. On top of all the other disenchantments undermining America’s founding myths, this one erodes the foundation on which the entire technocratic regime of modern society rests.

“Given the rather obvious importance of public health officials in the midst of a pandemic, why not seek to replace them with a better class of expert, instead of attacking the basis of expertise? The answer to that is in the second lesson of 2020: far from losing status after the repeated errors and deceptions of the past year, America’s institutional elite is more powerful than ever….

“If you are one of the people or organisations which repeatedly got the coronavirus wrong, abetted wanton political violence and destruction, or once again misread the American electorate, odds are very good that your funding streams, political influence, institutional power and leverage over your fellow Americans are going increase over the next four years of the Biden administration.”

 

Remember to follow the science. A BLM mobor a march against white racism is outdoors and poses no health risk, whereas a religious congregation is indoors and constitutes a grave health hazard. Funny that, eh? People are treating science as a set of papal encyclicals rather than a rude, rough and bumptious struggle of ideas in actual contest. The authority being exercised over people meeting and congregating is supposedly based in “science”, but which seems to work only in one direction.

 

Thus religion must be suppressed in the name of public safety. David Warren gets it right, as usual.

“That every conceivable human evil may be advanced by methods of social isolation, has been this year’s “breakthrough” rediscovery, and points to its ultimate authorship, Below.

“In Ontario, for instance, under a simpleton premier, almost all human interaction is banned, except that of mass-market retailing. Starting on the Feast of Stephen (December 26th), familiar visitors to our households will become liable to fines of up to 100,000 Canadian dollars, and up to one year in gaol.

“While such lockdowns have been shown to have no effect whatever on the transmission of viruses already widely disseminated, wherever they have been studied, they are imposed as if they were “science,” by petty, and very sleazy, politicians. In no civilized jurisdiction had they such personal authority. But they are thrilled to discover that they can get away with it; that a public systematically misinformed, and deprived of prompt, decisive legal recourse, will obey their edicts, and thereby submit to enslavement. Throughout history, those willing to be enslaved, have been enslaved.”

 

To Jacob Siegel of Unherd once more

“Regime loyalty is the herd immunity of the ruling class, a protection against the consequences of their own failures. This is why the loss in authority that manifests in the “crisis of experts”, while real, doesn’t diminish their power. But it’s also why the regime has to become more ideological and nakedly coercive — for a kingdom of experts without reliable expertise falls back on propaganda and state power.”

 

 

Four years ago

 

 

 

The media have not changed. They have been against Trump since he announced his candidacy. I took this photograph on October 19, 2016. The Atlantic says “don’t vote for Trump” in the upper right corner. The New Yorker says “last chance to train Trump”. Time said “Total Meltdown”. And the Economist depicts Trump as the asshole of the Republican elephant.

Need I say more? There will be a hoax a week between now and November.

 

 

As the tsunami of unreason crashes against the shores of reason

I feel like an onlooker to a battle in the US Civil War. I can hear the rattle of musketry and the blast of cannon fire. In places our side, the Union, is falling back and needs reinforcements. In others the Confederate onslaughts are being driven back with losses. The outcome is still uncertain, but the generalship is superb. While my eyes tell me that the outcome is still in doubt, my ears are telling me that the attacks are being rebuffed. Our side is firing back accurately. Troops are moving to the right places. Commanders are keeping their cool and feeding in reserves at the right places and times.

General Biden is decomposing before our eyes, as Scott Adams says. General Trump is maintaining his cool. He was boring in his acceptance speech, largely because he was not allowed to be impromptu, and had to read off the teleprompter. His speech was long because he had so much to boast about. And the fascists of Antifa keep reminding us that the fate that awaits us is a perpetual boot to the face for being white.

In my view anti-whitism is the largely unspoken but real issue in the election. I mean that everyone is aware of the claims being made against white people, but no one is explicitly responding in public discourse to the challenge. As Barrelstrength is not in the line of fire we can respond more overtly to this gigantic lie. In brief, the manifest failure of American blacks to equal the performance of other ethnic or racial groups is being attributed to the evil power of systemic racism. Systemic racism is a weird voodoo that, unbeknownst to its practitioners, which are exclusively white people, is an evil emanation of white institutions, thoughts, and culture. Blacks are so feeble that they have fallen under the domination of these evil mojo emanations of Everything in the World made by White People, and since white people made everything in the United States (according to this view), systemic racism cannot be cured until everything white is destroyed.

This view has many white allies, which consist of BLM activists and antifa, and thier dupes in the intelligentsia.

Observe [below] the white woman in the pink sweater being menaced by an angry mob for failing to raise a fist for BLM. Ladies and gentlemen, this is your future, if Biden and the Democrats win. This picture is what the election is about. It is not anything smaller or different. It is not, therefore, about COVID, the economy, China, Russia, or foreign interference in US elections. It is about the future state of white people. Will there be a boot stomping on your face forever for being white, or not?

Seen in that light, the outcome of the election is obvious.

 

 

My ambivalence towards Trump

It is confession time. I was watching the interview between Peter Robinson of the Hoover Institution and Kim Strassel of the Wall Street Journal yesterday. There came the moment at minute 41:00 of the interview when Peter Robinson expressed perfectly how I feel about Trump, as Peter described Trump’s leadership style. Peter holds his forehead and gropes for the right closing question to ask Kimberly Strassel, and he says, “…a lot of people who like Trump (small pause) can’t stand him up to this point” and then he notes how people may have shifted to a more positive view over the past few weeks as the Donald has handled the coronavirus epidemic.

I think I will adopt that phrase as exactly capturing my ambivalent feelings: “Even people who like him can’t stand him“.

I would still vote for him in a heartbeat.

Robinson’s comment was the preface to a more comprehensive question to Strassel about whether in the past few weeks Trump has become “the country’s President”, the guy we need to succeed. To that I say, yes, we need him to succeed.

To the Trumpophobes my reaction may be seen as tragically inadequate, and to the Trumpophiles it may be seen as insufficiently zealous, perhaps. Insufficient zeal is not yet a thought crime. As a position on the Donald I am sticking to it. I like him but I can’t stand him. But he has my vote.

Which is about as relevant as approving of Caesar Augustus if you had lived during his reign, I suppose.

Bloomberg, South Carolina, and the States generally

Mrs Dalwhinnie and I recently drove north from Charleston, South Carolina for several hours to reach the I-95. It was the most depressing landscape of poverty I can recall seeing. Crap towns. Abandoned stores with plywood for windows. No agriculture to speak of, just endless pine forests. Hovels, shacks, bungalows, trailers. Scarcely a middle class, well-maintained house, for hour after hour. Dozens of Protestant churches for every five miles of road. A dozen varieties of Baptist churches, some little better than shacks, one Presbyterian Church for the prosperous, and a few African Methodist Episcopal, which looked positively prosperous next to the Southern Baptist. Two hours of driving on secondary roads through this desolation was utterly weird.

Image result for south carolina pine barrens

Anyone who thinks the US is rich compared to Canada needs to contemplate places like South Carolina before they get too confident. The same poverty exists in New Brunswick too, but I have not seen poverty so extensive as that of South Carolina. The region is a pine barrens. We have something the same as when you drive from Ottawa to Peterborough on Route 7, and come across little shacks selling blueberries. But this is the result of no soil and bare rock. In South Carolina the poverty appears to be without geographic limit.

This brings me to Bloomberg’s spending $500 million on television ads.

Roughly $1.50, for every American: 500 divided by 327

The claim that this would have produced a million dollars for every American is a mistake. The actual amount of Bloomberg’s expenditure would be $1.50 per American, which could get them a Coke or something, and not a million per American, as the people on TV seemed to think. Innumeracy is growing as fast as ignorance, thanks to modern education.

As we drove north on I-95 and then I-81, we did not see prosperity thicken until Virginia. The Shenandoah Valley looks as rich and productive as good soils can make it. At the upper end of it, near Maryland, were huge factories and warehouses, probably serving the Washington-Baltimore-Richmond prosperity zone. Even former coal mining and manufacturing towns of Scranton, Wilkes-Barre, and Binghampton, looked wealthy by comparison to South Carolina.

Mrs Dalwhinnie, who crossed the US in February, said that west of Iowa, a lot of the American West looks much like South Carolina: people living in trailers, scarcely any towns, Walmarts every third town serving as the only shopping available, and hard, hard lives.

These are among the people who will put Trump back into the Presidency. Life may be getting better for the lowest paid of the American population under his nationalist policies, but scarcely soon enough. For the well-off, they have only to look at their retirement savings accounts. They may not like Trump, but they like what he is doing for them.

https://www.pewsocialtrends.org/2020/01/09/trends-in-income-and-wealth-inequality/

Trump at Davos

Trump starts at the 2:26 minute mark. After a recitation of his economic successes, he reminds the audience that the US will never surrender to gloom and catastrophism, before concluding with allusions to the great cathedrals of Europe as emblems of hope, daring, and orientation towards success.

“You are going to be so tired of winning by the time I am through”, he said a while back. The prediction may be coming true.

He declared that in the previous two regimes, the US had lost 60,000 factories, and that since his coming to power, had regained 12,000 of them. 200,000 manufacturing jobs had been lost under Bush Jr. and Obama. This was the principal reason he decided to run, said he.

“The time for skepticism is over”.

He claims his policies are designed to improve the life of the American worker: “A nation’s highest duty is to its own citizens” [at 34:22] Would you not like to hear that coming from Justin Trudeau? “A pro-worker, pro-citizen and pro-family agenda”. Do you seriously imagine Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren have a chance against this?

I am ignoring the Trump impeachment hearings

I believe that what I am seeing on the Intertubes and reading in the papers is no more intelligible a message than the wind shaking the trees in a storm, the babbling of a two year old, even less, the dripping of water off a leaf somewhere on a branch of the Amazon. Crickets chirping in August. A nullity, a farce, a show told by idiots signifying nothing.

Trump did what he said he did. He attempted to get the Ukrainian government to investigate Joe Biden. He released the transcript of the call. Many people heard it. Many more people have read it. So what?

He was doing a quid pro quo: you want arms? Be useful to me. Admitted, confessed, recorded, done. A crime? No.

Trump will crush the Democrats in the next election and they seek to prevent it by an act of theatre. They are that desperate.

Peggy Noonan says that pro-Trumpers have no defence to offer of Trump. He does not need one. Next they will try to impeach Trump for farting in the washroom. I have dismissed the noises emanating from Washington. You might think about doing so too.