OPEN THREAD 20200221

Basically, all legal free speech is allowed. We will assist the authorities in dealing with illegal speech. You are each other’s moderators. Have fun. And don’t forget to MAGA at nuclear levels.

Citizen U

Day 107 – BOHRIUM.


41 thoughts on “OPEN THREAD 20200221

        1. That’s really good.

          In the past the polisci guys talked about the bully pulpit as one of the levers of the Presidency. They’re going to have to rewrite their textbooks after Trump. Very aggressive public information war.

          Thank you Barry for the EO enabling it – kisses!!!

          This is irregular warfare. We’re not in a state of “peace” except in the sense accepted by treaty. This is irregular warfare: ANYTHING and EVERYTHING that can be done or gotten away with under international and U.S. domestic law. That means, A LOT. People don’t see that we’re at war b/c it is not a conventional conflict. Our treaties do not address this kind of conflict – which is the point, this is extra-legal means of engaging conflict. It makes community organizing seem quaint. Whoever cooked this up on the left, DAMN give them some credit…

          Russia and Ukraine was a pilot for the irregular warfare system, and the American Left? Well, son of a bitch, they’re in it too!

          But I think about the comm channels:

          Official releases from the White House. They’re 21st century releases, but they’re still mostly your corporate polished stuff. Emails from the WH, Tweets, some clever videos that are definitely edge by conventional marketing standards. But nothing too radical – and everything we’d expect from the WH in the 21st century.

          Press Conferences. Remember when Barry stopped by the WH briefing room just for a casual visit? Yeah. Today the WH briefing is obsolete. The journalists did it to themselves. We have some press briefings still but nothing like the Obama glory days. Though, do you remember Tony Snow? Miss that guy lots. Now we have to move the clown show outside to a roped off area where the chopper noise is deafening. Why? Simple. Trump has to have CONTROL of the reporters to prevent them from showboating. And it works.

          Media appearances. Cabinet members on TV shows, interviews with Maria Bartiromo. Kudlow on CNBC or Lou Dobbs. Trump on Bongino or Rush. They get the scoop b/c they are respectful and allow the message to get out, rather than shape the narrative.

          Social Media. Not the corporate style social media where we talk about Pinterest, Facebook live chats, Instagram posts, and all this muckety-muck that the WH media coordinators do. Nope: Straight up Twitter warfare. Not some HRC namby-pamby email CC-fest to craft The Perfect Tweet(TM). Nope, shoot from the hip authentic thinking. At least, the appearance of so. “Bbbbbut. . . HIS TWEETS!!!!!!!!!” Message gets around the media firewall. This is information WARFARE folks, not Sunday School. Tweets are a gattling gun.

          The Backchannel. WOW. All I can say is thank you Barry for your EO. Meanwhile, utter Genius. BEST LARP EVAH.

          Liked by 3 people

          1. Very nicely stated — I’ve had many of the same thoughts in the same way as a pool table after a break usually has all the balls….but you’ve racked ’em and put ’em on the dot.

            Liked by 3 people

          2. Had a crash and forgot another key channel:

            The Rallies. Not just your old stump speeches, actual honest, authentic conversation with a guy who is really funny. The man draws a crowd! He is entertaining but it’s not just that – people are LOYAL to this man like no one else I’ve ever seen. Every interview with people they tell stories about what Trump has done FOR THEM… for their COMMUNITY… for their FAMILY … getting them JOBS or RAISES… or helping the VETS… or getting the medical treatment they needed… He has touched people through policy in an unbelieveable way and his rallies connect people. MSM and the FAKE BS fascist narrative comparing him to German dictators is not only out of touch, it’s a desperation play to explain away something that cannot be explained away. So people line up in MASSIVE OVERFLOW CROWDS to hear him speak – and his message 100% bypasses the fake news.


            Everything is targeted to breaking down the BARRIERS that keep people from hearing the truth. “And we go around them like nobody else.”

            And related but not last, SOTU. It’s another political speech, but it’s not just another speech. Every one is a crown jewel of speech-writing and information content. Highlighting the HEROES is brilliant – creates HUMAN INTEREST. And we know it isn’t just a person, that it’s one of us. He connects with people and is real with them – at precisely the time and place made for our country to come together and be unified. Even the FAKE NEWS will show the SOTU and will NOT cut into it. This is the key part of the info war – he can’t call out the fake news during SOTU directly, but he can get a PURE MESSAGE OF TRUTH out to people who normally wouldn’t hear it.

            Liked by 2 people

            1. Yeah, this control of the media was really nasty. Fake Normal was easy for them to create and keep at a certain distance from actual reality, trying to lead us, once they had the whole thing, but it got pretty ridiculous.

              When I turned broadcast TV back on during a TV check, and early evening prime time had characters talking about teens having orgies with a damn laugh track set on “Oh, those darn kids will be kids”, I had no problem discerning that it was just pure CM (cultural Marxism) now.



              Yeah, no thanks.

              There’s gonna be HEAVEN TO PAY. 😀


              Liked by 2 people

        2. I had lunch with a friend from my old church yesterday.

          There is still a lot of work to do with people out there. A lot of disinfo still. He was very much in the critical of Trump b/c of his “character” and “things he says” and “the things he tweets”.

          He had NO IDEA that we are under a true, real information war.

          So many evangelicals I’ve talked to think you have to be critical of Trump or say things you don’t like about him before you can talk about his policy at all. They have this reflexive need to put some distance between themselves and Trump.

          It’s psychological. I don’t completely understand it, at least in the sense I can’t explain it.

          I know a lot of Christians see the spiritual and political as different realms. They see them through a dualistic lens – spirit good, political evil. Or at least, political corrupting and the spiritual needs to confront it in spiritual ways, a spiritiual psuedo-ethical high road. “I agree with what he’s doing but he can’t control his mouth.”

          They don’t trust the news media per se but they still rely on it. They follow the fake Barth advice on how a minister should carry the newspaper in one hand and the Bible in the other, and understand the news/world through the eyes of scripture.

          This weak kneed responsive approach to culture gets it completely wrong. WE ARE THE NEWS. Not the priest-class that claims an unimpeachable authority to tell us what the story is, the narrative of the day, and how we should think about it! “Without the news how will people know what to think??”

          WE ARE THE NEWS. The gospel is THE NEWS. The ultimate infowar. And we are on the offense. Unless we’ve allowed ourselves to be deluded that we are on defense.

          “The American people took back the idea of information. They took it back, and they used social media”. WordPress is good enough 😉

          We need to TAKE BACK THE NARRATIVE. I wrote to a friend of mine years ago pre-Trump about how we in the church keep talking about the wrong stuff. That the solution is simple. CHANGE THE CONVERSATION.

          Christ was the ultimate in information warfare, “X” if you will.

          Who do you say that I am?

          You are the Christ, the son of the living God!

          Blessed are you Simon Peter, this was not revealed to you by flesh but by the Spirit of God.

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Amen!

            Michael, IMO it’s a survival instinct. Humans are incredibly social, and the more civilized, the more they want to get along. I first became aware of my own virtue signaling when REAGAN was running in 80. I was in line, after the vote, and was talking with somebody I didn’t know well, but who knew a lot of the same people, and Reagan came up. The campus was TOTALLY against him, but one guy who we all knew had Reagan stickers everywhere. As we were talking, I snickered and joked about that guy. The dude I was talking to worked up the courage to say he decided to vote for Reagan, which startled me a bit. So I told him I did, too! But I realized at that point that I had been hiding it underneath lampooning the guy with the stickers.

            Anyway, years later, I got to thinking. I learned a lot about this stuff from my mother. The point where people start complying with socialism is a LOT SOONER than people think. She warned me strongly that when people can’t say what they REALLY THINK, it’s extremely dangerous.

            We are still not fully backed out from this stuff. Not at all. But it’s getting to the point where we CAN and WILL do it, and we need to be a lot braver, IMHO.

            Liked by 2 people

            1. Yes!!! We have to be BRAVE. We have to break out of the SPIRAL OF SILENCE (Chuck Colson).

              The Italian fascists changed the Pronouns to be more group-ist.
              In Germany, you greeted each other with a new salute.
              In Checkoslovakia, the green grocery put a sign in his window, “Workers of the World Unite!” (Havel, “Power of the Powerless”)
              Today ppl tell you their preferred pronouns and you’re supposed to play along calling him her.
              Or Political Correctness. Or Microaggressions. Or Privilege Flavor of the Day. Or which bathroom you use.
              And you aren’t allowed to say boldly that you unapologetically love Trump, or THERE WILL BE CONSEQUENCES.

              They’ve created a hostile climate of FEAR to CONTROL our speech.

              And once they control speech, Orwell style, they control our actions, and our social interactions.

              They take away our creational power to shape reality and reserve exclusively it to themselves.

              Liked by 2 people

              1. The pronouns thing is very insidious. I hadn’t really thought about HOW insidious it is.

                Some of the alleged trans people I’ve seen are literally guys dressed LIKE GUYS who simply wear their hair long and talk in a bad falsetto voice. No girl dress, no physical changes, nothing that would show any reason to think the person is either committed to the act, or at all a she – including some of them being BIG GUYS.

                Calling them she is almost impossible – it’s like saying a rock is water. I just evade, but it’s toxic thinking. They’re literally PRETENDING BADLY. It’s sick to support it.

                A trans who’s pulling it off – some of them looking pretty real – is like a costumed player – I can go along with it under some circumstances, just like I can say “that knight over there” at a Renaissance festival. As for bathrooms, I’m anatomical and surgical on it. You got a dick, you go to the men’s room. You don’t, you’re in the ladies’ club. That takes care of that issue.

                Cosmetic gender by trannies is what it is. I think it’s a bad choice, but I think a lot of things are bad choices, and I go along – in some but not all ways – with OTHER people making them. But it’s MY CHOICE how and where I go along with it. Mess with my free speech, or my kids’ minds, and it’s WAR.

                My prediction is that this larger cultural experiment of communism with gender will end sooner than people think, but that there will always be a thread of it in “these times” (unsure how long that lasts, though), because there always has been. People will want to run Girl on Boy hardware. It’s just the way humans are.

                Liked by 2 people

        3. Email exchange, November 2012, post-election. Some of my thoughts have changed in the Trump era but the thrust is the same. (Funny how I had a negative opinion of the “evangelical thought-leaders” then – LOL!)

          . . . OK The much better question and discussion is the questions of culture and media and politics.

          Cut to the chase: What is culture? We need a working concept of what we mean by culture.

          Shooting from the hip, I define culture as the practice of human beings, or if you will, the practice of human doings. The collective practices of humans in a particular social setting and time.

          120 years ago, pastors would have preached about the dangers of reading pulp novels. Oddly, it is hardly mentioned today, partly because reading pulp novels has fallen out of mainstream fashion. Magazines, gramophones, and even radios became the rage! The young people going and dancing and carrying on at juke joints, it’s a crying shame I’m telling you!

          In short, without going into the culture jammers and “Nation of Rebels”…

          How You Choose to Live Will Become Your Culture.

          Politics is only a reflection of the moral culture. There is some feedback into the culture over time, but what is happening political on day one was set up by moral cultural years ago. Grabbing the ring of power will NOT change culture, have no pretenses. But also do not think that this is justification to neglect to vote or stand for moral truth in the political sphere – we stand with Wilberforce not because we want power or to change culture, but because we stand for what is True and Right against wickedness and lies.

          Media is not culture. Media consumption may be what we do and that may become our culture, or in some cases the idol. My wife and I do not watch sports – sports has no place in our family culture. No NFL, no Cowboys, no college bowl games, no World Series, no NBA finals, no college basketball, etc etc. Some people would wonder if we were dead!

          Well, it’s getting late and to oversimplify: If you want to change the culture, start with yourself – your heart. How you live your life. Your marriage. Your family. Your Church. Your marketplace. Your tribe and nation. Your world. Step through the spheres with the mind of Christ, that hopefully has been renewed before now. Culture change starts by changing your own life. Not so much by hand-wringing about what Obama said this week and what Andy Stanley said and what Mohler said and…

          Think like James… what a man speaks shows his heart. Culture often occurs in conversation. Want to change the culture? Change the conversation. Transform the discussion.

          . . .

          Fast forward to 2019 and a little blog called the QTree.

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Yup. This is why I avoid movies. I was explaining this to my wife. So many movies had a subtle mission to corrupt American culture in specific ways. Even just the portrayal of alleged normal life TAMPERS strongly with our perception of reality and normalcy. I don’t want it. I want to help define normalcy and reality by living in it myself.

            Liked by 2 people

        4. And yes, I’m SICK AND TIRED of the FAKE NEWS setting the AGENDA for everything we THINK, DO, SEE, HEAR, FEEL, AND UNDERSTAND about our WORLD and REALITY.

          I rebelled against it whole-heartedly about 20 years ago. “How the News makes us Dumb.”

          But really it was Rush Limbaugh in 1993 that kicked it off.

          And doing that one thing that ALL LEFTISTS FEAR AND HATE: Going to church, and learning from a divine source that there is more to this life, this world, this reality than what we will wear, where we will go, and what we will eat. That we were meant for more than bread and circuses. A church that saw itself (at a minimum) as a MASH unit against culture, shining a light in darkness – not as a therapeutic moral deism to help people get from one week to the next, being shaped by culture rather than transforming it – salt without savor.

          The media truly is the MCM – if you aren’t grounded in a reality outside of Hollyweird, MCM, or the music industry (we don’t talk enough about their influence – but Trump knows and GETS IT, ask Kanye), or the publishing houses… you are LOST. Totally lost. Adrift in every sense, including the Biblical sense. Funny how that FAKEBOOK LIFELOG emphasizes to everyone to click “Like” for every music, movie, TV show, entertainment, sport team etc etc etc. Keep them distracted, don’t talk about God – Screwtape.

          For years I have tried to JAM the system with an ALTERNATIVE NARRATIVE. It worked for a while until LIFELOG and the others got wise to the tricks and started filtering everything down, until nothing I posted got seen by virtually anyone. . .

          Liked by 2 people

      1. It is said that Bh-278 might actually have a half-life of about 690 seconds — however, it is also said that flying unicorns eating rainbows might distribute skittles in their wake.

        Liked by 3 people

  1. As is getting to be usual, Bohrium was synthesized by two groups. The Dubnans tried smooshing bismuth and lead with chromium and manganese. Unusually, the other group wasn’t the Berkeley crowd or even the Stockholmers… was the German GSI Helmholtz Centre for Heavy Ion Research guys from Darmstadt, also smooshing bismuth with chromium. In other news, Portugal wins the World Cup.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. WOW.

    Italian cardinal: Catholics who don’t like Pope Francis can become Protestant
    ‘There are too many people talking about the pope. … Enough complaining,’ he said.
    Wed Jan 29, 2020 – 5:21 pm EST

    ROME, January 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — In an unscripted outburst, the president of the Italian Bishops’ Conference has expressed his frustration at mounting criticism of Pope Francis among Catholics, suggesting that those who do not appreciate his style of teaching and government should embrace Protestantism.

    Speaking at an annual meeting with media in Perugia, on January 25, Cardinal Gualtiero Bassetti said: “Criticism is fine, but this destructivism, no. If someone doesn’t like this pope let him say so, because he’s free to choose other paths.”

    “There are too many people talking about the pope,” the cardinal told journalists, in comments reflecting his perception of a growing disaffectedness among Catholics with the current pontificate.

    Cardinal Bassetti continued: “I said to someone, ‘Make the choice to be evangelical, if you don’t like the Catholic Church, if this boat is too tight.’ Our Protestant brethren have neither pope nor bishop; let everyone make their own choices. Enough complaining, it’s useless anyway.”

    Apologizing to the press for venting his frustration, the Italian prelate said: “Excuse the outburst, but everyone’s objective ought to be to look for answers for the good of the Church and humanity.”


    At least he at one point said “evangelical” rather than the pejorative “Protestant” 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  3. A truck driver stopped at a roadside diner for lunch and ordered a cheeseburger, coffee and a slice of apple pie. As he was about to eat, three bikers walked in.

    One grabbed the trucker’s cheeseburger and took a huge bite from it. The second one drank the trucker’s coffee, and the third wolfed down his apple pie. The truck driver didn’t say a word as he paid the waitress and left.

    As the waitress walked up, one of the motorcyclists growled, “he ain’t much of a man, is he?”

    “He ain’t much of a driver, neither,” the waitress replied. “He just backed his 18-wheeler over three motorcycles.”

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Musical Interlude #1-4.

    One of the problems with doing musical interludes in this format is that it cannot hold many wonderful pieces of music. As an example, the string quartet is normally four performers — two violins, a viola, and a cello (compare to lead guitar, rhythm guitar, bass, and drums of rock) — that perform four sections of music. These four sections are typically a sonata (a song-like section) in the major key, a slow section in a related key, a dance-like figure in the major key, then a rondo (small exposition) on the major key. Some works for string quartet run 65 minutes overall.

    Though they are lovely works and part of our musical heritage, it just doesn’t work to do musical interludes of that scale. So you’re getting ONE. Pause it on a different tab between sections.

    This is Dvorak’s “American Quartet”, composed when he was in Iowa. On the last page of the composition, he wrote: “Finished on 10 June 1893 in Spillville. Thank God! I’m satisfied. It went quickly.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. When one hears about, say, a “piano quintet” or a “clarinet quintet” it does not mean five pianos (or clarinets), it means a piano (or clarinet) plus one of these “standard” quartets.

      But then on the other hand Mozart composed 6 pieces for a “quintet.” I have no idea if that’s standard nomenclature, but it is two violins, two (not one) viola, and a cello. You could just as easily call it a viola quintet.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I made the comparison upthread to the standard rock band — lead guitar, rhythm guitar, bass, drums. I could have also added that they’d play a song with a verse and a chorus, intro and coda, that fit onto a 45-rpm vinyl “single” (which, later, was extended past 10 minutes, but generally was about three-and-a-half). There is a lot that you can do within this stripped-down standard.

        So, too, can you do a lot within the standard string quartet, with the song/slow/dance/resolution format. But that didn’t keep composers from regularly straying off the reservation with things like “rock oboe” or “string quintet”.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Quartets were very popular before recorded music, because they were reasonably complex pieces of music yet only required four musicians.

          The musicians, themselves, tend to form quartets and stick with them. They travel together so much they can just communicate with raised eyebrows while playing, they know each other better than they know their spouses, and oftentimes the cello has a frequent flyer membership.

          Liked by 2 people

          1. I don’t think that the goal was to be a complex piece of music, but rather to avoid the grind of repetition. Nobody wants to hear “Row, row, row your boat” for 30 minutes straight — but some of the finest quartets will do a song/slow/dance/resolve with motifs that are not much more ornate.

            Of course, I’m spoiled with this and tend to think of “complex” as multiple sections in different keys and time signatures, with polyrhythms and virtuosity throughout….

            Liked by 2 people

            1. I was thinking of just four different unique parts. In an orchestra, of course, you don’t necessarily get much more than that as many players will be doing the same thing, but it will be louder.

              You don’t need it to be that loud for a private party in someone’s house.

              Liked by 1 person

  5. This boy just turned 18, and for his birthday his dad gave him his vintage Harley Davidson and a jar of vaseline. The dad told his son, “Always keep this vaseline on you, and if it ever starts to rain put it on the body of the bike to keep the coat shiny”.

    The boy is super excited and rides it over to his girlfriends house to have dinner with her parents for the first time as a celebration for his birthday. Before they walk in the house, the girlfriend says to him, “Just so you know, my family plays this game where we don’t speak during dinner, and if anyone speaks, they have to do the dishes.” The boy thinks its a weird game but doesn’t put too much thought into it. They walk in the house and as they go to the dining room he sees a massive pile of dirty dishes stacked up in the sink. It looked as if no one had done them in weeks!

    So they sit down with her parents, and the boy decides he wants to see how much he can mess with them. The boy stands up, walks up to his girlfriend, rips off her pants, and starts banging her in front of her parents. The mother and father both look shocked and the girlfriend looks furious, but no one says a word. So next the boy goes up to his girlfriend’s mother, rips her clothes off, and starts banging her! At this point there are fumes coming out of the dad’s ears and the girlfriend starts to throw up, but none of them say a word. The boy realizes that his plan didn’t break any of them and starts walking back to his chair to eat. Out of the corner of his eye, he notices that it is beginning to rain outside. So he stops walking to his chair, and pulls out the jar of vaseline from his jacket, and the dad jumps up from his seat and yells “FINE, ILL DO THE FUCKING DISHES!”

    Liked by 2 people

  6. A father passing by his son’s bedroom was astonished to see the bed was nicely made and everything was picked up.

    Then, he saw an envelope, propped up prominently on the pillow. It was addressed, ‘Dad’. With the worst premonition, he opened the envelope and read the letter, with trembling hands.

    Dear, Dad. It is with great regret and sorrow that I’m writing you. I had to elope with my new girlfriend, because I wanted to avoid a scene with Mum and you.

    I’ve been finding real passion with Stacy. She is so nice, but I knew you would not approve of her because of all her piercing’s, tattoos, her tight Motorcycle clothes, and because she is so much older than I am.

    But it’s not only the passion, Dad. She’s pregnant. Stacy said that we will be very happy. She owns a trailer in the woods, and has a stack of firewood for the whole winter. We share a dream of having many more children.

    Stacy has opened my eyes to the fact that marijuana doesn’t really hurt anyone. We’ll be growing it for ourselves and trading it with the other people in the commune for all the cocaine and ecstasy we want.

    In the meantime, we’ll pray that science will find a cure for AIDS so that Stacy can get better. She sure deserves it!

    Don’t worry Dad, I’m 15, and I know how to take care of myself. Someday, I’m sure we’ll be back to visit so you can get to know your many grandchildren.

    Love, your son, Joshua.

    P.S . Dad, none of the above is true. I’m over at Jason’s house. I just wanted to remind you that there are worse things in life than the school report that’s on the kitchen table. Call when it is safe for me to come home!

    Liked by 3 people

  7. A 10-year-old girl was walking down the street when a big man on a big-old motorcycle pulls up beside her and says, “Hey little girl, do you want to go for a ride?”

    “NO!” says the little girl as she keeps on walking.

    The motorcyclist pulls up beside her again and says, “Hey kid, I will give you $10 if you hop on the back.”

    “NO!” said the little girl and proceeded down the street a little quicker.

    The motorcyclist pulls up to the little girl again and says, “Okay kid, I will give you $20 and a BIG bag of candy if you hop on the back of my bike for a ride.”

    At this point the little girl turns to him and screams angrily, “Look Dad, YOU bought a Honda instead of a Harley, so, YOU ride it!”

    Liked by 1 person

  8. It’s the 1st day of school at an American Middle School.

    The teacher introduces the new student – Takiro Suzuki from Japan.

    Class starts and she says:

    – Now we will see if you know your history. Who said “Give me liberty, or give me death!”?

    No one knows but Suzuki raises his hand:

    Patrick Henry, Philadelphia, 1775.

    – Very well, Suzuki. And who said “Government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the Earth.”

    Suzuki rises:

    Abraham Lincoln, Washington, 1863.

    The teacher looks at the other children and tells them:

    Shame on you, kids! Suzuki is from Japan and he knows American history better than you.

    A low voice from the back of the class says:

    – Fuck the Japanese!

    – Who said that? – Yells the teacher.

    Suzuki raises his hand:

    General MacArthur, Pearl Harbor, 1941 and Lee Iacocca at a meeting of the auctioneers in Chrysler, Detroit, 1982.

    The students are in complete silence when someone yells:

    – Blow me!

    The teacher absolutely enraged:

    – That’s enough! Who was that?


    Bill Clinton to Monica Lewinsky, The White House, 1997.

    Someone else yells:

    – Suzuki is a piece of shit

    Suzuki instantly responds:

    – Valentino Rossi, motorcycle race Grand Prix in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 2002.

    Everyone is hysterical, the teacher faints and at the principal shows up at the door:

    – Holy fuck! I have never seen such chaos.

    Suzuki is ready:

    – Minister of Finance Simeon Djankov, for the situation in Bulgaria, 2010.

    Liked by 3 people

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