January 15th, 2018

Playing telephone: are we tired of s***holeGate yet?

I am sorely tired of it.

On the other hand, it raises so many fascinating issues that it’s hard to keep from mulling it over once again.

Fortunately, a lot of other people have done the legwork so I’ll link to them in a moment.

But first I want to emphasize a couple of things that I think have gotten lost in the shuffle. The first is that the original WaPo story rested on the word of “several” anonymous people (I later heard it was two, but I’m not sure of that) who were not at the meeting with Trump but were “briefed” on it later. What they told the WaPo was what they had been told by others about what Trump had said (since then there’s been a great deal of back-and-forth disagreement by people who were at the meeting about what may or may not have been said, but I’m talking about the original story).

To the best of my recollection, that didn’t used to be the standard for journalism. It’s basically a little game of political telephone. Perhaps the WaPo likes to play games of telephone (especially against the right and/or Trump). But personally, I don’t, and it doesn’t matter who is being quoted or misquoted, or what party that person might be from.

One of the activities that led to my political change was the fact that I could find people’s actual words online—the complete text of a speech, for example—and could come to my own conclusions about what that person had really said rather than to rely on what the MSM (or some other informant with a bone to pick) had told me the person had said. I was naive enough at the beginning to be surprised to learn that my favorite news outlets quite often twisted or in some way misrepresented the words of people they didn’t like. But long long ago that ceased surprising me.

So, what did Trump actually say about Haitians or Norwegians or the people of other unspecified failed countries in Africa? We don’t know, you don’t know, the WaPo doesn’t know. I can think of innocuous ways to interpret the reports and I can think of ways that make Trump look very bad. But I wouldn’t trust Dick Durbin or the WaPo or the anonymous telephone-game players—or President Trump, either—on the matter.

One reason is that people often lie to serve their own interests or what they think is in their party’s political interests. Another is that people often are very poor reporters on what they said or what another person said. I’ve noticed it in my private life. I noticed it when working with people. I’ve noticed it with friends. I’ve noticed it and noticed it and noticed it. It’s the reason I often wish I had an audiotape of various exchanges, in order to solve the argument. But most of the time we don’t.

Trump needs to know that from now on he should either not meet privately with political opponents or he should tape everything (I think the latter is by far the best solution, and apparently they’ve begun to do it with interviews with reporters—see this).

But why don’t most Americans know not to trust games of telephone from either side? Is it because people tend to believe what they want to believe?

For what it’s worth, here’s what the WaPo was told by their anonymous informants who didn’t hear it themselves:

Trump then suggested that the United States should instead bring more people from countries such as Norway, whose prime minister he met with Wednesday. The president, according to a White House official, also suggested he would be open to more immigrants from Asian countries because he felt that they help the United States economically.

In addition, the president singled out Haiti, telling lawmakers that immigrants from that country must be left out of any deal, these people said.

The “deal,” by the way, was a reference to a deal that favors and encourages immigration from certain countries at the expense of other countries.

Not even Trump was talking about banning anyone, and he wasn’t talking about race. He was talking about economics and education—even according to those anonymous informants who are certainly not his fans. He was talking about whether we should favor and encourage more immigration from failed and depressed countries.

For the newest developments, here’s my roundup for today:

William Jacobson on why Durbin did what he did, and on Durbin’s history of lying.

More along those lines here.

Did Trump say “s***hole”?

And here, from the post I just linked, is one of the more bleakly humorous exchanges I’ve seen since this whole mess began:

A preface: all porn performers are described as “porn stars,” much as all models now seem to be supermodels, but [Jenna] Jameson really was a star. As such, she made a lot of money, got married and had a kid or two. And she turns out to be a conservative who is active on Twitter.

So: Sally Kohn, who I take it is a somebody on Twitter, tweeted this:

To which Ms. Jameson retorted:

By the way, the Salvadorans came here in 2001 because of earthquakes in the country, under a program labeled “temporary.” There was never any guarantee of staying, although:

“The past practice of allowing foreign nationals to remain in the United States long after an initial emergency in their home countries has ended has undermined the integrity of the program and essentially made the ‘temporary’ protected status a front operation for backdoor permanent immigration,” said Roy Beck, president of NumbersUSA, which favors less immigration overall.

Hard to argue that this is exactly what’s happened. A “temporary” program is wink-wink temporary. What’s more, no one is being expelled at this point; the status doesn’t change until 2019. Also:

A senior administration official briefing reporters on the decision said it was based on the status of El Salvador’s recovery from the 2001 earthquakes. The country has received millions of dollars in aid and rebuilt schools, homes and hospitals, the official said.

In the past two years, the United States has repatriated 39,000 Salvadorans, showing the ability of El Salvador to absorb an influx, the official said.

The government of El Salvador said on Monday that it was glad the administration decided to at least leave the program in place until September 2019.

“El Salvador’s Foreign Ministry lobbied heavily for the interests of our fellow citizens,” the government said in a statement, adding that it would continue to search for alternatives and seek action by the U.S. Congress to protect the migrants.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce had urged the government to extend TPS protections for Salvadorans, Haitians and Hondurans, saying “the loss of employment authorization for these populations would adversely impact several key industries,” including “construction, food processing, hospitality, and home healthcare services.”

All Congress has to do is pass a bill to protect the Salvadorans and make their status permanent. It has a lot of time in which to do it.

50 Responses to “Playing telephone: are we tired of s***holeGate yet?”

  1. M J R Says:

    Taqiya Definition

    Taqiya is a form of Islamic dissimulation or a legal dispensation whereby a believing individual can deny their faith or commit otherwise illegal or blasphemous acts while they are in fear or at risk of significant persecution.

    — — — — —

    It pertains to the religion called islam.

    It also pertains to the religion of leftism/Democrat-ism.
    A believing individual is entitled to lie, fabricate stories, and/or do whatever it takes to further the Great Cause of leftism (especially anti-Trumpism and also anti-G.O.P.-ism generally).

  2. Ken Mitchell Says:

    I’ve been to a great number of countries that qualify for the “shithole” designation. But a “shithole” country gets that way by having a crappy and corrupt GOVERNMENT, not necessarily crappy PEOPLE. However, if the prevailing cultural standards condone widespread corruption, thievery and dishonestly, then you’re generally going to find a shithole country run by a crappy government.

  3. Ken Mitchell Says:

    “El Salvador’s Foreign Ministry lobbied heavily for the interests of our fellow citizens,” the government said in a statement.

    One of the problems of tolerating illegal immigration is that we get people coming to America who don’t actually want to become Americans. Rather, they come here to siphon money out of the American economy and wire it elsewhere as remittances. El Salvador and Mexico are perhaps the two biggest offenders; they export people and import money.

    Donald Trump could almost certainly fund the Wall completely by imposing a 25% tax on remittances.

  4. Griffin Says:

    This entire kerfuffle sums up the last year in media.

    Anonymous sources, questionable facts, preening journalists, fake shock, hysteria, etc. etc.

    The other thing that I find really frustrating is how it has almost been lost to time that even if he said everything in the worst possible ways it was still done in private. To hear some people talk this has lowered political discourse to new lows when in fact we have literally hundreds of other anecdotes of far, far worse things being said and done in private by presidents.

    I know it’s nothing new but the dishonesty is so disheartening to me.

  5. Ken Mitchell Says:

    “Hard to argue that this is exactly what’s happened. A “temporary” program is wink-wink temporary. ”

    “Temporary” government programs are like a “temporary” home for a stray cat. Or a “temporary” tax, like Jerry Brown’s “temporary” income tax hike which was made permanent in the last election.

  6. Dave Says:

    I still don’t understand with so many puss*hat wearing single feminists out there no one offer to help these immigrants obtain green cards by marrying them, haven’t these feminists watch the proposal? It doesn’t even have to be marriage fraud, single feminists marrying single dreamers genuinely marrying each other out of true love you can’t find a better match made in heaven, feminists can finally find men worth loving in undocumented immigrants since they all hate white guys.

  7. AesopFan Says:

    Another is that people often are very poor reporters on what they said or what another person said. I’ve noticed it in my private life. I noticed it when working with people. I’ve noticed it with friends. I’ve noticed it and noticed it and noticed it. It’s the reason I often wish I had an audiotape of various exchanges, in order to solve the argument. But most of the time we don’t.” — Neo
    * * *
    I suspect every one of us could fill a 3-volume fantasy epic with examples. I decided long ago that most of my family and friends were not deliberately lying, but we all sure remembered things differently.
    One very acute childhood memory I have is of playing in the yard at my grandparents while Granny and the aunts argued over what did or didn’t happen, and if they agreed it did happen, when or where it occurred.

    But, I may not be remembering that correctly…..

  8. Oldflyer Says:

    President Trump doubled down on Senator “Dicky” Durbin today. Good for him.

    If Durbin’s colleagues, and the media, had even a modicum of honesty and fairness, they would note that Durbin cannot be believed about anything. I don’t know that he is a congenital liar, on the order of Hillary or Biden, or whether he only lies when he thinks there is a partisan benefit. Doesn’t matter. He has been caught more than once; and cannot be trusted. Ironically, one of his more egregious past lies was a scurrilous one about what was (not) said in a White House meeting.

    On the policy level, we should do what we can to help countries that have sunk so low that their citizens flee in droves. Oh wait; we have been doing that for decades with marginal benefit. The answer is not to import their culture. Nor do I buy the argument about negative impact on our economy if we don’t; not as long as we have our own underclass with an unemployment rate among its young men above 20%; and huge welfare costs.

  9. AesopFan Says:

    Ken Mitchell Says:
    January 15th, 2018 at 5:55 pm
    …they export people and import money.

    Donald Trump could almost certainly fund the Wall completely by imposing a 25% tax on remittances.
    * * *
    I have maintained for decades that the easiest way to stop illegal immigration of the “benign” type (just here to work, not gangs, drugs, thugs, etc (but it might work for that too)) is to (1) decide on a dollar figure for aid to country X; (2) determine how much we spend in the US for their citizens living here illegally; (3) add an estimate for remittances from them to family in X, since they are funding much of it by living on our welfare and sending the wages home; (4) deduct the total from the financial aid figure.
    The politicos of X have no interest in having their pot of gold depleted by their expatriates, and would become a lot more enthusiastic about helping on their side of the border.
    Of course, Congress could game the system by setting the aid figure too high to start with, but it would make the calculations and votes public.

    PS Pretty much any aid number is too high in my opinion; I don’t like even the concept of foreign aid of the “general cash” sort, although there are lots of different kinds, some more justifiable than others.
    President Trump’s decision to cut aid to the Palestinians unless they quit fomenting violence and thuggery is a solid check-mark on my list (if he goes through with it; it’s like Jerusalem and the Embassy: always promised and never done).

  10. AesopFan Says:

    From the Reuters article: “Congressional Democrats on Monday expressed support for finding a permanent solution to help Salvadorans in the United States. But that will be politically difficult at a time when there are rival immigration priorities, including providing permanent protection for “Dreamers” – undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children.”

    Maybe Trump is throwing this in the game as a negotiation card, similar to DACA: “we’ll leave some of the TPS non-citizens here, if they are not causing problems, if you fund & build the wall and close the lottery & family-migration programs.”

  11. AesopFan Says:

    From one of the commenters at PowerLine:
    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2018/01/the-not-so-honorable-dick-durbin.php

    “Durbin is a known liar. But, when Little Chuckie Schumer vouches for your integrity, you are in deep trouble. The only worse reference would be Harry Reid”

  12. n.n Says:

    forcing them back to a gang violence-ravaged and impoverished disaster zone

    The people who were left behind.

    So, the issue is not immigration, but rather emigration reform. In fact, immigration reform (e.g. refugee crisis) serves to obfuscate or suppress (e.g. privacy) the progressive conditions (e.g. trail of tears, abortion fields, diversity/racism/sexism, minority/single capital and control) in their homelands.

  13. Mac Says:

    There is a funny (for a change) meme going around that has Trump betting Putin that he can make CNN say “shithole” 100 times in a single day.

  14. Ann Says:

    Senator Graham today

    …took a dig at fellow Republican senators David Perdue of Georgia and Tom Cotton of Arkansas over their denial that President Trump called Haiti, El Salvador, and African nations “shithole countries.”

    “My memory hasn’t evolved,” Graham told the Post and Courier. “I know what was said, and I know what I said.”

    Graham, Perdue, and Cotton were among a bipartisan group of senators that attended an Oval Office meeting with Trump last week to discuss a potential immigration deal. During the meeting, the president reportedly referred to other nations as “shithole countries,” which he has denied.

    Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin, D-Ill., confirmed Trump made the remark, as well as other derogatory comments. Graham told Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., that press reports detailing Trump’s comments were “basically accurate.”

  15. n.n Says:

    re: progressive conditions

    Not merely rape, which is presumably characterized as day after regret, but rape-rape.

    The environment in certain third-world countries can objectively be characterized as “misfortune and trouble”, which is ostensibly why “charitable” foundations, NGOs, and Peacekeepers are often found in those places. And sometimes we just like to create misfortune and trouble, as in Libya, Syria, and Ukraine, for social progress, redistributive change, and to provoke the neighbors.

  16. n.n Says:

    A shitshow in Libya, and now in America. They must privately think that the baby is viable, so the witch hunts and trials will progress.

  17. Irv Says:

    It really doesn’t matter whether Trump said it or not. The intent of his comments are obvious not only from this conversation but from everything he said during the campaign. He wants a merit based immigration system so workers who want to assimilate are allowed in and freeloaders and enemies of our system who don’t want to assimilate are kept out.

    Arguing over the words just plays into the hands of the political correctness groups who use it to gain power and for no other reason. We should be laughing at them for even bringing it up.

  18. DNW Says:

    So you, as in a hypothetical refugee “you”, get to be anointed a refugee: that is to say a weakish person who would rather flee than fight, and whose choice is honored as valid.

    This assumes I suppose, that you imagine you are, or are objectively entitled by some secular or metaphysical fact or another, to rely on the hospitality of certain other persons who are very unlike you.

    Those would be persons upon whom it is incumbent to fight and to keep an open space, rather than flee, so it appears, so that you in turn may have somewhere and someone to flee to and rely upon.

    So then how, exactly, are these moral equations parsed out, all things being equal, as they most certainly are in progressive ideology?

    It was my father and grandfather’s, and father’s fathers’ responsibility going back 400 years to Ol Virginie to hack farms out of the forest, fight savages and the Kaiser’s bully boys, and Nazis and fascists and communists – so that you can camp on their descendants doorstep, and lay claim to a piece of their lives and against their pocketbook and eventually liberties?

    How the fuck does this work exactly … in terms of a defensible and demonstrable moral calculus?

    Joe, let’s say, the Argentine student Maoist ass-wipe gets to flee to America when he gets in trouble with the government he’s been trying to overthrow, because …

    Yeah, maybe I can see the “logic” of allowing Yazidi women and children refuge, here, if it physically cannot be enforced somewhere over there by killing those who wish to kill them. (But of course it really could be done there, as is being demonstrated now.)

    But by what principle does a 20 something male have the privilege of not engaging in social warfare in his own country?

    “By Any Means Necessary” and Madame Yvonne Falarca, prompt us to want, in a somewhat more imperative than academic sense, to know.

  19. neo-neocon Says:

    Ann:

    Well, that’s certainly clear as mud from Graham.

    Doesn’t Graham have the guts to actually say what he specifically recalls Trump saying, and how it differs from what the others say Trump said, other than that bunch of generalized claptrap such as “basically accurate”?

    And funny, isn’t it, how the reports break down on partisan lines (Graham has long sided with the Democrats on the subject of immigration). Words seem to be in the ear of the behearer.

    Games of hesaid/hesaid/hesaid/hesaid/hesaid…are so much fun.

  20. Ann Says:

    Yeah, it’s not exactly completely forthcoming on Graham’s part. But I also think the fact that Cotton and Perdue “evolved”, first saying they had no memory of what was said/not said and now saying they do have a clear memory doesn’t pass the smell test.

  21. neo-neocon Says:

    Ann:

    I don’t have time to look it up right now, but I believe you are misquoting them.

    I recall reading that they didn’t say they had NO recall of it; they said they didn’t remember exactly. And I bet that’s quite honest—nobody does. In addition, they’re not saying they remember exactly and precisely now, either. They’re saying they don’t remember him using that particular word (shithole, I assume), and that he wasn’t insulting to the people in other countries. That’s not necessarily a change from the first report of what they said (if you can find the exact quotes go right ahead; as I said, I don’t have time).

    I also think that earlier they didn’t think the story would go on and on and on, so they thought it was best to be silent, since their memories weren’t exact. But now they realize they had to tell what they DO remember.

    Graham, on the other hand—as far as I know, anyway—was silent till now. Why? Why does he now say his memory has not “evolved,” insinuating that their memories have “evolved”? Hasn’t his memory “evolved,” too, from being silent about it to speaking? (Again, if you can find earlier statements by Graham on what he remembers, be my guest.) And what is he actually saying? Nothing, really.

  22. Llwddythlw Says:

    Thank you Neo for another fine posting. I also enjoyed Andrew Klavan’s article in City Journal which I have linked here.

    https://www.city-journal.org/html/crudeness-and-truth-15668.html

  23. Mike K Says:

    On the issue of merit based immigration. There is no reason to believe that this is racist. I taught medical students for 15 years. Many of the students I taught were black. All but one of them were not American born. They were from Africa or the West Indies. They have trouble understanding American blacks. They consider the US to be a banquet that all are invited to. It was not affluence, either,. One African student was so poor that she could not afford a laptop, which has replaced the microscope. Still she graduated and is now in practice. The one American black student I had at the same time failed and was depressed in spite of efforts of two other black students (one African and one Trinidadian) to help him.

    Learn how many Ibo tribesmen from Nigeria are working in NY financial businesses as “quants.” One of my black African medical students was from Kenya. Her parents were both physicians but Kenya is so corrupt that both had quit government jobs and were living on their coffee farm.

    Merit-based immigration would be the least racist system.

  24. charles Says:

    This: “One of the activities that led to my political change was the fact that I could find people’s actual words online.”

    Yes, the web is a wonderful resource for finding the truth, isn’t it?

    So many times the MSM is claiming someone said something “offensive” (or whatever) and, yet, they don’t tell you exactly what was said. I think too many folks (i.e. voters) take the MSM at their word and believe that yes, he must have said something offensive.

    This time, even if it comes out that Trump didn’t say exactly that, it won’t matter because it will be just like Rathergate – fake but accurate in that it sounds like something they believe Trump would say and that alone proves he is a racist.

    All of this makes me wonder if “Walter Cronkite being the most trusted man in America” was a misplaced trust; perhaps, this is the game the MSM has been playing all along and only now is the web allowing us to see/hear the real story?

  25. neo-neocon Says:

    charles:

    On Cronkite, see this and this.

  26. neo-neocon Says:

    Mike K:

    Actually, it is racist to think that a merit-based program is racist.

  27. Dave Says:

    The notion that Merit based immigration will result in having most newly arriving immigrants being white is completely bogus. The More likely scenario would be quota being dominated by indians and chinese.

  28. Dave Says:

    The real victims of region based immigration are us chinese, average wait time for job based immigration for someone from China is 20-30 years, India 15-20 years, for someone who has the identical credentials but from other places like Nigeria, 3 year or less.

  29. William Graves Says:

    Seems to me that I once read somewhere:

    “Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”

    From this I would infer that bringing huge numbers of refugees to the US permanently just prolongs the agony for those who don’t make it here, by removing those who should be fighting for a new government in their own country? It should be a part of the invocation of the refugee program that, in exchange for the help, the nation in question surrender it’s sovereignty to the Congress and that we replace its government, with the Marines if necessary.

    On the other hand, maybe not? We’re not doing such a wonderful job in Puerto Rico, after all?

  30. vanderleun Says:

    Going for the Gold!

    “CNN Leaps Into The Toilet: Network Aired 195 Uses of ‘S***hole’ on Friday”

    https://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/nb/tim-graham/2018/01/15/cnn-leaps-toilet-network-aired-195-uses-shole-friday

  31. Dave Says:

    LOL

    Trump may or may not have actually called those countries shi*holes but CNN surely did 195 times. Even that was the exact word Trump used CNN called them shi*hole 195 times more than Trump did. No, CNN didn’t do it for the sake of reporting, they could have report the event just as accurately to the same effect with censoring beeps, they chose not to do so deliberately to amplify the effect to make the damage on Trump more profound. Every time CNN deliberately chose to use the exact word that they could have otherwise beeped over because it is more helpful to their agendas, they were hurting people living in those s***holes as much as Trump allegedly did by insulting those countries making their people rehearing those insults over and over again if not more since they purposely did it 195 times more. Besides, a fact that needs to be repeated again, Trump may have said those words accused by his known political enemies, the people have not heard he said it once in any form of recording, but we sure have heard CNN said it 195 times.

  32. Dave Says:

    reminds me of a prank we used to play very often back in elementary school.

    A mischievous monitor (we call it prefect in Hong Kong) would announce loudly in class saying something like this “Miss Chan said It is against the rules of school to say the words “f**k” “p***y” or “s**t” in the classroom”

  33. Manju Says:

    Graham, on the other hand—as far as I know, anyway—was silent till now. Why?

    He wasn’t silent. He spoke with Senator Tim Scott, confirming to him that press reports were accurate. He also released this statement:

    Following comments by the President, I said my piece directly to him yesterday. The President and all those attending the meeting know what I said and how I feel. I’ve always believed that America is an idea, not defined by its people but by its ideals.

    Nation of Ideas vs Nation of People is the central philosophical issue, though if he said it in the White House it probably raised the discourse well above Trump’s head.

  34. Mike K Says:

    I prefer “Nation of People.” “Nation of Ideas” makes me think of Lenin.

  35. arfldgrs Says:

    VIDEO:
    Jesse Jackson praises and thanks Donald Trump for a lifetime of service to African Americans
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J5lcART6TTE

    Meanwhile, as i said, a lot are saying its refreshing to hear someone in office be “authentic” and that was a leftist author that said that… when you been lied to so much for so long, even the stinky trujth smells beautiful…

  36. JFM Says:

    The MSM pattern: A sensationalist headline damaging to Trump followed by a sketchy article to justify the headline.

  37. s1c Says:

    Am tired because it just doesn’t matter. 3rd world countries (what are 2nd world?), by definition are s***hole (worlds etc).

  38. Steve57 Says:

    neo-neocon said:

    Mike K:

    Actually, it is racist to think that a merit-based program is racist.

    Neo, where’s your soft bigotry of low expectations? Have you no heart?

  39. F Says:

    Let’s see: we have a bunch of Salvadorans settled “temporarily” in the United States because of an earthquake that destroyed a bunch of infrastructure.

    Now (after plenty of time to repair that infrastructure) we are told — more by immigration activists than by the temporary refugees — that we should not send these people home because they have become productive citizens and have gone to school here.

    Isn’t this exactly the type of person who should return to help in the rebuilding effort in El Salvador?

    When I first started living and traveling in the Third World in the sixties, one of the criticisms of the USA was that we siphoned off the best and brightest, who came for education and never returned to their home country. It was called a “brain drain”, and America was criticized roundly for it, especially in India (where I lived from 1965-67). It is exactly what Google and Facebook are doing in very large numbers under the B(1) visa program, but you sure don’t hear criticism of those “progressive” employers.

  40. Steve57 Says:

    s1c, 2nd world countries were the former communist countries of the Soviet bloc.

    All communist countries that remained communist are now 3rd world.

  41. Steve57 Says:

    F, we can’t do nothing right. Embrace the suck.

  42. DNW Says:

    “Nation of Ideas vs Nation of People is the central philosophical issue, though if he said it in the White House it probably raised the discourse well above Trump’s head.”

    The trouble with that “philosophical issue”, is that it is just elevated sounding philosophical and logical nonsense ginned up for polemical/political purposes. Nonsense which hypostatizes abstract notions, and then substitutes them for concrete people.

    But take away the people and there is no crowd.

    “Nation”, then, becomes a kind of deracinated religious ideal committed to paper, to which actual persons are presumed to pledge allegiance.

    The real “Nation”, which is the historical equivalent of a people, becomes the equivalent of “the Kiwanis” of some crap like that.

    My considered opinion is that this kind of “nation” talk largely developed after the Civil War, when it became apparent that we were in no way, “one nation” in the traditional sense; but rather social and life-way enemies inhabiting the same landmass. The ideologues of the time needed something “common” to appeal to. So they appealed to a commitment to supposedly shared ideas, as the sign of “membership” in the “nation”.

    But the clash of ideals is precisely what most notably characterizes the current state of this polity: a clash between the submoral collectivists, or “species beings” as Marx would have it; and the edified, who have classically liberal intellectual and emotional preferences.

    Manju and I for example, no more share ideals, than Stalin and Jefferson did: and therefore the assertion that we are members of one “nation” in some philosophical sense, or that “Nation” can stand for some objective reference in a polity wherein antithetical ideals are continually at war, is as absurd as Manju’s “philosophical issue” contention.

    We inhabit the same polity, but are not of one nation, even under his “philosophical” definition.

    The remarkable thing about modern liberal hypocrisy on this question, is that they are now prone to making all kinds of noises suggesting that genetic inheritances define political preferences [which will obviously vary within so-called “racial” populations] , and that political preferences are merely rationalizations of innate biological coping strategies.

    Thus, the clowns of the left eventually arrive back at the very point they claim they have superseded.

    The only thing they manage to salvage is the point that there are undoubtedly some libertarian, natural-law leaning, quasi Aristotelians and virtue ethicists among any number of racial groups.

    The fact that the United States is not solely composed of such persons, whatever their nominal race, just proves that the idea of a proposition nation, as applied to this polity in particular, is nonsense.

  43. s1c Says:

    Steve57 Says:
    January 16th, 2018 at 11:26 am
    s1c, 2nd world countries were the former communist countries of the Soviet bloc.

    Oh I agree, but funny you never hear the words 2nd world country!

    Of course in today’s world just those words would be a triggering micro-aggression showing the existing patriarchy of the US

  44. Esther Says:

    “But what is the proof he said this? Do they have a recording?” I asked, (stupidly.)

    “That’s a Conservative line. (Snarl.) That’s what *they* are saying. It sounds like something he would say, and *we* know what he meant…” is what I was told angrily by a liberal acquaintance. (Whoops,)

    “But aren’t refugees fleeing shithole countries? Why else are they fleeing? It’s not like there are Norwegian refugees fleeing the happy, wealthy country of Norway.”

    “It was racist,” “when did that term become racist?” “we know what he meant..” And so forth.

  45. DNW Says:

    For those who might have missed it, during the ongoing s**tstorms, Dolores O’Riordan died at 46.

    If you cannot quite place the name, you will have heard the singer and the songs.

    From a live performance where she sings slightly off-key, Dreams. The studio versions are of course available too.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EVXng3sSxLE

  46. GRA Says:

    The left’s ever “softening” of matters (though it depends on the matter) by their choice of words in order to avoid reality. Let us see what we have:

    Shitholes become “violence-ravaged and impoverished disaster zone.”

    Illegal aliens/immigrants become “undocumented.”

    Freedom of speech becomes “hate speech.”

    Freedom of association becomes “bigoted.”

    There are others, but those will suffice.

  47. Irv Says:

    Political correctness should be either laughed at or ignored completely. The substance of it should never be given serious discussion because that’s were it derives its power.

  48. Dave Says:

    GRA:

    you forgot this

    Courtship becomes ” sexual assault”

  49. neo-neocon Says:

    Manju:

    In other words, he was silent on what I was referring to: exactly what happened. What did Trump say? What did Graham hear? All of that is another game of telephone (Scott said what Graham said to him?) and generic statements (Trump knows what he thinks? That’s nice; how about if WE know).

  50. neo-neocon Says:

    Manju, et at:

    As far as the question of whether Trump is judging people by national origin or by each person’s individual characteristics, beliefs, and skills, goes, see this:

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.
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