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Archive for the ‘History’ Category

Trump Derangement Syndrome

Monday, September 23rd, 2019

 

As always, Victor Davis Hanson has produced a superb essay, which in this case helps explain much of why Trump is so violently hated.

The Daily Signal

The Real Reason for Trump Derangement Syndrome

Victor Davis Hanson

September 19, 2019

Donald Trump is waging a nonstop, all-encompassing war against progressive culture, in magnitude analogous to what 19th-century Germans once called a Kulturkampf.

As a result, not even former President George W. Bush has incurred the degree of hatred from the left that is now directed at Trump. For most of his time in office, Trump, his family, his friends, and his businesses have been investigated, probed, dissected, and constantly attacked.

In 2016 and early 2017, Barack Obama appointees in the FBI, CIA, and Department of Justice tried to subvert the Trump campaign, interfere with his transition, and, ultimately, abort his presidency. Now, congressional Democrats promise impeachment before the 2020 election.

The usual reason for such hatred is said to be Trump’s unorthodox and combative take-no-prisoners style. Critics detest his crude and unfettered assertions, his lack of prior military or political experience, his attacks on the so-called bipartisan administrative state, and his intent to roll back the entire Obama-era effort of “fundamentally transforming” the country leftward.

Certainly, Trump’s agenda of closing the border, using tariffs to overturn a half-century of Chinese mercantilism, and pulling back from optional overseas military interventions variously offends both Democrats and establishment Republicans.

Trump periodically and mercurially fires his top officials. He apparently does not care whether the departed write damning memoirs or join his opposition. He will soon appoint his fourth national security adviser within just three years.

To make things worse for his critics, Trump’s economy is booming as never before in the new 21st century: near record-low unemployment, a record number of Americans working, increases in workers’ wages and family incomes, low interest rates, low inflation, steady GDP growth, and a strong stock market.

Yet the real source of Trump derangement syndrome is his desire to wage a multifront pushback—politically, socially, economically, and culturally—against what might be called the elite postmodern progressive world.

Contemporary elites increasingly see nationalism and patriotism as passé. Borders are 19th-century holdovers.

The European Union, not the U.S. Constitution, is seen as the preferable model to run a nation. Transnational and global organizations are wiser on environmental and diplomatic matters than is the U.S. government.

The media can no longer afford to be nonpartisan and impartial in its effort to rid America of a reactionary such as Trump, given his danger to the progressive future.

America’s ancient sins can never really be forgiven. In a new spirit of iconoclasm, thousands of buildings, monuments, and statues dedicated to American sinners of the past must be destroyed, removed, or renamed.

A new America supposedly is marching forward under the banner of ending fossil fuels, curbing the Second Amendment, redistributing income, promoting identity politics and open borders, and providing free college, free health care, and abortion on demand.

An insomniac Trump fights all of the above nonstop and everywhere. In the past, Republican presidents sought to slow the progressive transformation of America but despaired of ever stopping it.

No slugfest is too off-topic or trivial for Trump. Sometimes that means calling out former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick for persuading NFL stars to kneel during the national anthem. Huge, monopolistic Silicon Valley companies are special Trump targets. Sometimes Trump enters cul-de-sac Twitter wars with Hollywood has-beens who have attacked him and his policies.

Trump variously goes after Antifa, political correctness on campus, the NATO hierarchy, the radical green movement, Planned Parenthood, American universities, and, above all, the media—especially CNN, The Washington Post, and The New York Times.

For all the acrimony and chaos—and prognostications of Trump’s certain failure—a bloodied Trump wins more than he loses. NATO members may hate Trump, but more are finally paying their promised defense contributions.

In retrospect, many Americans concede that the Iran deal was flawed and that the Paris climate accord mere virtue-signaling. China was long due for a reckoning.

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation proved fruitless and was further diminished by Mueller’s bizarrely incoherent congressional testimony.

Some of the most prominent Trump haters—Michael Avenatti, James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Anthony Scaramucci, and Rep. Adam Schiff—either have been discredited or have become increasingly irrelevant.

Trump has so enraged his Democratic adversaries that the candidates to replace him have moved farther to the left than any primary field in memory. They loathe Trump, but in their abject hatred he has goaded the various Democratic candidates into revealing their support for the crazy Green New Deal, reparations for slavery, relaxed immigration policies, and trillions of dollars in new free stuff.

In a way, the left-wing Democratic presidential candidates understand Trump best. If he wins his one-man crusade to stop the progressive project, they are finished, and their own party will make the necessary adjustments and then sheepishly drift back toward the center.

(C) 2019 TRIBUNE CONTENT AGENCY, LLC.

Commentary By

Victor Davis Hanson @VDHanson

Victor Davis Hanson is a classicist and historian at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, and author of the book “The Second World Wars: How the First Global Conflict Was Fought and Won.” You can reach him by e-mailing authorvdh@gmail.com.

 

Internet vs Web

Sunday, September 15th, 2019

The following was sent to me by my good friend, Dr.Stephen Dubel, from whom I have always learned important facts and new ideas. I think the following is indeed quite interesting.

The Internet vs. The Web

By Maeve Maddox

Although the hoi polloi (i.e., the masses) use the words Web and Internet interchangeably, there is a difference worth learning.

The Internet existed before the Web.

The first meaning of internet as it relates to computing was “a computer network consisting of or connecting a number of smaller networks, such as two or more local area networks connected by a shared communications protocol.”

The U.S. Defense Department had such a network called ARPANET–an acronym derived from Advanced Research Projects Agency Network.

From this DoD “internet” evolved “the Internet,” a global computer network that provides a variety of communication facilities–only one of which is the Web.

ARPANET was developed in the 1960s to enable researchers to use computers from remote locations. In 1982, the Internet Protocol Suite (IPS) was standardized and the Internet was officially defined as a global interconnected network. Although global, the new Internet was still mainly the reserve of people with the specialized skills needed to access it.

All that changed in the early 1990s when Tim Berners-Lee, a graduate of Oxford University, created a system of interlinked documents (e.g., web pages) that could be easily accessed by anyone using a browser. He called it the World Wide Web.

The Web, therefore, is not the Internet. The Web is one of many services that run on top of the Internet infrastructure. Other such services include email, FTP, and VOIP (e.g., Skype).

Here’s a typical misuse of the term Internet:

Are you unfamiliar with the Internet? If you want to know how to search the Internet, then you have to find the right search engine, type in your search as accurately as possible, and browse through the results to find the one you want. –WikiHow

 

I’m guessing that the Defense Department may know how to search the Internet, but when ordinary mortals go online to find cute kitten photos, they use search engines to search the Web.

 

 

 

Poor Joe and Poor Dems

Sunday, September 15th, 2019

TRENDING CONSERVITISM

 September 15, 2019

Poor Joe and poor Democrat party. He’s the best they have and he can’t even keep his teeth in place.

Biden Suffers A Denture Malfunction During Debate

RedState September 15, 2019

During Thursday night’s Democratic debate, ABC’s John Muir questioned former Vice President Joe Biden about failed gun control legislation in the wake of the 2012 Sandy Hook Massacre in Newtown, CT. Muir asked, “If you couldn’t get it done after Sandy Hook, why should voters give you another chance?”

What followed was a series of peculiar mouth movements and several slurred words as he struggled to adjust his dentures which appeared to have come lose. Another public humiliation for the “only candidate who can beat Donald Trump.”

Biden’s latest cringeworthy moment quickly went viral on social media along with captions such as “Joe Biden’s teeth doing their best to jump right out of his mouth” and “Wait for it… Did Biden lose his teeth for a moment before trying to enforce his stance on #guncontrol?”

The fact that Biden’s dentures came loose, in and of itself, is meaningless. However, as episodes which remind of us Biden’s age and possible mental impairment continue to pile up, one wonders how long the Democrats will allow this to continue.

The former vice president has always been gaffe prone, but his recent blunders go well beyond gaffe territory and the sheer number of them have left some voters wondering if he has become “too old” to serve.

There are signs that Democrats are concerned about Biden’s obvious decline. The New York Times recently reported that, “Recent interviews with more than 50 Democratic voters and party officials across four states, as well as with political strategists and some of Mr. Biden’s own donors, showed significant unease about Mr. Biden’s ability to be a reliably crisp and effective messenger against Mr. Trump.”

DNC leadership, not to mention Biden’s family members, need to realize that the former Vice President’s best days are behind him now. Even if Biden should win the Democratic nomination, which has become more doubtful, his decline will be showcased in a general election. And Biden’s lifelong career of public service will end in humiliation.

The post Biden Suffers A Denture Malfunction During Debate; When Will Democrats End Biden’s Public Humiliation? appeared first on RedState.

Immanuel Kant/The Categorical Imperative

Friday, July 12th, 2019

A major philosopher of the Enlightenment, Immanuel Kant , was born in Königsberg, Prussia in 1724. During Kant’s lifetime Königsberg, near the southeastern shore of the Baltic Sea, was the capital of East Prussia, and its dominant language was German. Altho’ geographically remote from the rest of Prussia and other German cities, Königsberg was then a major commercial center, an important military port, and a relatively cosmopolitan university town. Today Königsberg has been renamed Kaliningrad and is part of Russia.

Kant’s father was a saddle maker, but the son was a serious student. He studied theology, physics, mathematics, and philosophy at university, and worked for a time as a private tutor; he made very little money, but it gave him plenty of time for his own work. He lectured at the University of Königsberg for 15 years until he was eventually given a tenured position as professor of logic and metaphysics in 1770. Though he enjoyed hearing travel stories, he never ventured more than 50 miles from his hometown, believing that travel was not necessary to solve the problems of philosophy.

In his most influential work, The Critique of Pure Reason (1781), he argued against Empiricism, which held that the mind was a blank slate to be filled with observations of the physical world, and Rationalism, which held that it was possible to experience the world objectively without the interference of the mind; instead, he synthesized the two schools of thought, added that the conscious mind must process and organize our perceptions, and made a distinction between the natural world as we observe it and the natural world as it really is. He viewed morality as something that arises from human reason, and maintained that an action of morality is determined not by the outcome of the action, but by the motive behind it. He is also famous for his single moral obligation, the Categorical Imperative: namely, that we should judge our actions by whether or not we would want everyone else to act the same way.

He wrote, “Two things fill the mind with ever-increasing wonder and awe…the starry heavens above me and the moral law within me.

William Shakespeare

Wednesday, July 10th, 2019

T.S. Eliot opened his magnum opus, The Wasteland” with the following words: ”April Is the cruelest month . . . .” Well, perhaps. But I believe April is a wonderful month ­­­­––– Shakespeare, Immanuel Kant, and Ella Fitzgerald were all  born in April. And, often overlooked is the freeing of Dachau, that pit of evil, by the American army, on April 29, 1945. So, in the next 4 posts are a few words about all four of these April miracles.

April 23,1564, was probably the actual birthday of William Shakespeare, the greatest writer in the English language, who was baptized on April 26, in Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire, England. Unfortunately, he left behind no personal papers; so much of what we know, or think we know, about him comes to us from public and court documents, with a fair measure of inference and speculation. We do know that his father, John, was a glove maker and alderman, and his mother, Mary Arden, was a landed heiress. William’s extensive knowledge of Latin and Greek likely came from his education at the well-respected local grammar school. That was the extent of his formal education, which has led to hundreds of years of conspiracy theories disputing the authorship of his plays, since many found it unbelievable that he could have written so knowledgeably about history, politics, royalty, and foreign lands on a grammar school education. Various figures, such as Francis Bacon, Christopher Marlowe, the 17th Earl of Oxford, and even Queen Elizabeth I, have been put forward as possible — though unproven — ghost writers.

We know that he married the older — and pregnant — Anne Hathaway when he was 18 and she was 26, and she gave birth to a daughter, Susanna, six months later. Twins Hamnet and Judith followed two years after that, and son Hamnet died at age 11. It’s speculated that his son’s death hit Shakespeare hard, because he began to write Hamlet soon afterward.

He moved to London around 1588 — possibly to escape deer-poaching charges in Stratford — and began a career as an actor and a playwright. By 1594, he was also managing partner of the Lord Chamberlain’s Men, a popular London theater troupe. He was popular in his lifetime, but his popularity didn’t rise to the level that George Bernard Shaw referred to as “bardolatry” until the 19th century.

In 1611, he retired to Stratford and made out his will, leaving to his wife, Anne, his “second-best bed.” He died on or around his birthday in 1616, and was buried in the Church of the Holy Trinity in Stratford, leaving a last verse behind as his epitaph: “Good friend, for Jesus’ sake forbeare / to dig the dust enclosed here. / Blessed be the man who spares these stones, / and cursed be he who moves my bones.”

Though biographical details may be sketchy, his literary legacy is certain. He wrote 38 plays: including the great tragedies Lear, Hamlet, Macbeth and Othello. He also wrote 154 sonnets, and several epic narrative poems. He created some of the most unforgettable characters ever written for the stage, and shifted effortlessly between formal court language and coarse vernacular. The Oxford English Dictionary credits him with coining 3,000 new words, and has contributed more phrases and sayings to the English language than any other individual. His idioms have woven themselves so snugly into our daily conversations that we aren’t even aware of them most of the time, phrases such as “a fool’s paradise,” “a sorry sight,” “dead as a doornail,” “Greek to me,” “come what may,” “eaten out of house and home,” “forever and a day,” “heart’s content,” “slept a wink,” “love is blind,” “night owl,” “wild goose chase,” and “into thin air.”

Though we have no way of knowing whether the Bard of Avon was writing of his own impending retirement when he wrote Prospero’s soliloquy from The Tempest in about 1610, it’s satisfying to think so:

Our revels now are ended. These our actors,
As I foretold you, were all spirits and
Are melted into air, into thin air:
And, like the baseless fabric of this vision,
The cloud-capp’d towers, the gorgeous palaces,
The solemn temples, the great globe itself,
Ye all which it inherit, shall dissolve,
And, like this insubstantial pageant faded,
Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff
As dreams are made on, and our little life
Is rounded with a sleep.

 


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