Open Thread

I am going to quit blogging for a while to deal with increasing responsibilities elsewhere, but I encourage my faithful readers to continue the conversations on existing posts and on this one, on whatever topics interest them. I will probably comment occasionally on old posts or this one. Thanks for all your contributions, I’ve learned a lot from you.


About Polymath

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24 Responses to Open Thread

  1. narciso says:

    this was … sudden.

  2. Polymath says:

    No it wasn’t, if you count you’ll see things have been slowing down for 2 or 3 weeks.

  3. Anonymous Crab says:

    When you see a headline like this …

    Parenting by Gays More Common in the South, Census Shows

    …is your immediate first assumption that the Census probably wrote unclear instructions?

  4. Crab, no, it shows that Southerners are more open and tolerant and Northerners double faced and hypocritical. 😛

  5. Polymath says:

    As far as racial tolerance is concerned, Southerners tolerate blacks more on a personal scale, having always had them around, while many Northerners avoid blacks completely.

  6. Alvis Velthomer says:

    The news has been slow for this week. However, Obama’s approval rating is now back to over 50%. I guess the media’s hatchet job worked. I wonder how he can be so popular with the economy being so dismal. I bet even with 15% unemployment his popularity would still only be 40%. I think Auster is correct to say that there is only so much that Obama can bleed in terms of his support considering that most of his supporters are rabid and fervent with supporting him. I can only imagine the level of propaganda I can expect in 2012.

    Also, it appears the Republicans in the House have voted to repeal Obamacare, which is basically a waste of time considering that Obama will simply veto the repeal.

    Also, according to NumberUSA, all the frontrunners for the Republican nomination in 2012 are horrible on immigration, with the highest scoring one being Tim Pawlenty with a C. I am curious who the frontrunner will be considering that all of them have some big flaws to them, and none of them are drastically more popular than the others. When does the debating and campaigning even begin for the nomination? I remember for 2008’s campaign it was already underway in the beginning of 2007. I think over the summer is when we will start beginning to see some active campaigning.

    The media keeps harping the economy is in recovery, however, I don’t see it and most people certainly don’t feel it. I think most people are actually now dipping into their savings now just to keep afloat. I think we will start seeing some sort of a recovery this year, however, we will also start seeing some tremors about the dire fiscal situation of the United States, with probably some city defaults happening in the second half of this year.

    I have also been pretty busy lately, which has made it so that I cannot comment much. I probably won’t be able to have much free time until the end of February. Heck, I think even RV, has been very busy as well. However, I probably will make some comments if some big news event or particularly interesting story pops up.

  7. Alvis Velthomer says:

    There is an interesting interview about the book featured in that link.

    Basically, the elites today are pretty much secular evangelists (well I would not say secular, since today’s liberalism is much more like a theocracy). The elites and rich are becoming even richer and more liberal and that trend is looking continue that way in the future.

    Its for this reason (among many others) that I feel the Tea Party is doomed. There is simply no one among the elites that even favor some form of traditionalism or even old-school nationalism.

    The interesting thing mentioned is that they the new elites are embracing multiculturalism even more fervently.

    I have little faith in the future. The boundaries of depravity will pushed even further, and the unholy matrimony of ugliness and lies will reign supreme.

    I am actually thinking about leaving this country and going to Asia. I will probably be a thought criminal if I stick around anyway. I believe America will have European and Canadian styled hate speech laws by the end of this decade. I also think that other rightist issues that have not collapsed yet (low taxes and gun rights) will also start melting under demographic pressure.

    I predict Obama will become much more leftist and antagonistic in his second-term. The media has his back too.

    There is little to be optimistic about if you are rightist that is actually intelligent (which is few and far between in the mainstream).

    Sailer has mentioned that we might be in the Brezhnev-era of multiculturalism. I just wonder how much longer until we get to glasnost, and finally collapse.

    However, I think its imperative to keep in mind that the Soviet Union looked invincible in many people’s eyes even as late as the mid 1980’s. At least the internet has allowed us a space to express and exchange such heretical views.

    Christianity is also dying in America. This link shows it:

    Christianity is perhaps the last vanguard for rightists in America. With that removed what will rightists rally behind?

    I am very curious as to what will define “conservatism” in the next two decades.

    The key will be for shackles of white-guilt and Hitler’s haunting to be lifted. The only secular right that can thrive will be one based on blood and soil. Since blood and soil is outlawed and the Church is dying, there will be no right. There will simply be a cautious left in comparison to a evangelical one.

    This article had me laughing out loud – I’m thinking about forwarding it to the ADL and all the other organizations, but I’ll not waste my time. They mind only certain people making Hitlerian comments.

  9. Polymath says:

    My son just suggested something which gave me pause. There have been news stories about the coming “technological singularity”. I’m all for it if it arrives in time to be medically relevant for me. But he pointed out that the most likely way for it to occur will be as the result of a Manhattan-project type effort to develop AI. Is this something to worry about? Or should it be welcomed? I don’t want the entity that achieves this breakthrough first to have any interest in restricting me or controlling me. It’s conceivable that when this first occurs it will enable a world takeover.

  10. Alvis Velthomer says:

    In the next 100 years the human race will be dumber due to the low birth rates of Hi IQ people, and the extraordinarily high birthrates of the lowest IQ people. It could be very likely that your grandson will see a technological peak, and then a decline.

    The problem is that we are under the illusion that “all men are created equal” and that anyone can become a brain surgeon or a rocket scientist if only they were brought up a certain way or in the right schools. Our society has pretty much reverted into becoming a theocracy, only its a theocracy that does not rely on books or moral codes written hundreds of years ago or the worship of a diety. However, instead, there are mental “stops” and heresies like a theocracy, as well the of the worship of particular principles and morality. One of which being the equality of all of mankind.

    Perhaps continued economic decline might make people more open to ideas challenging the dogmas of post-Christian society, however, I am not optimistic about that even in such a scenario.

    Steve Sailer brought up an interesting observation about how the scale for immigration policy has shifted rightward. Initially there were only two acceptable opinions regarding immigration, the left’s multiculturalism (we should allow as much immigration as possible, and the native population should be accustomed to and accomodate the culture of the immigrants) and the right’s assimilationism (we should allow immigration as long as they get in legally and that they assimilate into the native country’s culture and language). Any advocate of immigration skepticism (that immigration might bring problems), let alone immigration restrictionism, was immediately lambasted and demonized. However, Thilo Sarrazin’s book seems to have made it acceptable to be an immigration skeptic in the mainstream in Europe, with assimilationism now becoming the preferred position on immigrants in Europe (Cameron and Sarkozy recently saying multiculturalism has failed). Perhaps restrictionism might become an acceptable position there, however, it seems that assimilationism will be the next position that would need to be discredited.

    Anyway, I am still really busy, and probably will continue to be so until late March. Its unfortunate this blog is not more active, but then again there has not been any notable events other than the events in Egypt, so what else has there been to comment on?

    Also, the talk of economic recovery is getting on my nerves especially with the rising gas and food prices. What recovery? Maybe if you are an investor or work for a big bank company with government tentacles there was a recovery, but certainly not for the rest of us.

  11. Polymath says:

    Ha. You beat me to it, I was just about to make the very same point about Sailer. He talked about the immigration debate in this excellent book review where he had other interesting things to say as well:

    Byron Roth’s The Perils Of Diversity: Apologies To The Grandchildren

    Demographics and the average IQ only matter if the singularity as envisioned by Kurzweil et al does NOT occur. If it does, the “technological peaks” will depend on a very small number of people. The question is who those people will be and where their loyalties will lie.

  12. rebelliousvanilla says:

    Eh, at least when we will stop being human, we will destroy ourselves. We are on that path now, so I suppose it is ok.

  13. narciso says:

    heh, singularity.
    i suppose it’s a race between the inexorable progress of sci/tech, in lane 1, and its opponents, “idiocracy” and the feminization/pc-ization of science, in lanes 2 and 3.

    upon first reading kurzweil’s book — if i recall correctly (it’s been some years now) — i was surprised by its childlike optimism. in projecting a final state of “intelligent universe” or whatever it was, not only did he downplay all the various malevolent scenarios, but he also neglected the fact that the first iteration of any newly advanced technology is always supremely buggy.
    what will happen the first — and, presumably, only — time we create a technology that is both (a) smarter than ourselves and (b) buggy as all hell?
    end well, that probably won’t.

  14. Polymath says:

    I just noticed that Mark Steyn is back in action after taking about 8 months off. He has not announced anything, and he never went completely away, but his website SteynOnline has gone from regular reruns with a new post every few weeks to new stuff all over the place (though he has not quite reached his old insanely productive level). Everybody should go there and spend several hours catching up. I have updated my blogroll.

  15. rebelliousvanilla says:
    Still thinking that somehow America is moving to the right now? What I find amusing is that these people somehow think that if the opinions of people change on something, the constitutionality of that thing changes. While I do agree that the law banning gay marriage is by all intents and purposes unconstitutional, the Constitution isn’t some fluid document. What matters is how people understood things when the laws were passed, not after changes in legal thought.

    And from what I see, the millenials are even more deranged than the older counterparts.

  16. rebelliousvanilla says:
    Yep, with a non-white majority electing leftists in Texas and Texas swinging to the left, you really think the GOP, even the pussified, no good one, will win anything?

  17. Alvis Velthomer says:

    RV is right. The youth here is becoming increasingly liberal. Contrast that with Europe were the youth is becoming increasingly wary on immigration. Also, things are only going to get worse considering that non-whites will continue to make up a larger portion of the youth here (already close to 50% of births), which means that the Right would need to capture all of the young whites in order to be relevant. And considering that our education system does a fine job on converting the children of Rightist parents into leftists, I am not holding my breath on white solidarity.

    Also, Texas is only a few presidential cycles away from being a Democratic state.

    I am guessing 2020 or 2024 is when we will see it go the way of California.

    The American Right is finished. It will instead morph into having all the positions that the Democrats have today.

    The only possible thing that I see ever stopping Regressives is resource scarcity, which will force people to become tribal. However, its extremely pathetic to rely on something like that in order to see a restoration to sanity.

  18. Polymath says:

    About Texas’s demographics: according to Tom Tancredo, who ought to know, speaking about nationwide data: “If you correct the voting data for income and education levels, Hispanics vote much the same way as other Americans of similar socio-economic status.”

    So the concern is about recent immigrants who are poorer, the Hispanics in Texas whose families have been there for a long time (which is most of them, since Texas was “diverse” from the get-go) are better-assimilated than in any other state (as polling data corroborates, when I supervised bilingual polls 97% of Hispanics in Texas chose to take the poll in English while in states like CA and FL 30% or more chose to take the poll in Spanish).

    There is a nice interview with Tancredo, with links to some stats he gives, here:

    Understanding the 67% hispanic vote for Obama

  19. Polymath says:

    Here’s a response by Peter Brimelow to the Texas demographic story (which has lots of good links that also deserve to be read):

    “It’s Basically Over For Anglos” In Texas. Or Have They Not Yet Begun To Fight?

  20. Alvis Velthomer says:

    Hey. I got some new bad news. I have always said that conservatism is nothing more than the defense of the the new borders created by liberals. As such conservatives have no actual principles, and are very much intolerant of anyone further right on the political spectrum than themselves. This is true even for the those outside of the mainstream right. As such, we should not be surprised that society becomes more leftist, since conservatives accomodate their worldviews around what is “acceptable” after leftists redraw the borders of acceptable discourse and beliefs.

    Really in 30 years what will conservatives be trying to conserve?

    Also, the Republicans are dumb and doomed. More people have confidence in Obama than them when it comes to the economy. Couple that with them continuing to sticking their heads in the sand on demographics and the culture war. The problem is that a true right-wing party would never be accepted in America due to the increasing liberalization of the voting population. So we will most likely see the Republicans further become the Democrat-lite. I think the only thing the Republicans will fervently try to hold onto will be their economic stances, however, that is perhaps even more foolish considering that the only activists on the Right in America are Christian-social conservative types. No one rallies for “economic liberty”, but they certainly do protest against “cuts”. Due to changing demographics, a large portion of the population will be dependent upon government jobs and AA for hiring and their middle-class lifestyles (most middle-class blacks work for the public sector). So as such the arguments for economic liberty will be much harder than for social conservatism, considering that economic liberty means a much more difficult standard of living for America’s changing demographics. The Republicans are so utterly short-sighted.

    Here is an excerpt from the latest Radio Derb that discusses this:
    How did things get this bad? How did the management of this nation’s affairs attain such altitudes of stupidity and irresponsibility? The answer, in a word, is democracy. Here’s a Washington Post-ABC News poll, reported in the Post last Tuesday. Highlights:

    * On the question of finding the right balance between slashing unneeded government spending and continuing essential functions, 43 percent side with the president, 42 percent with the GOP.
    * While 41 percent of Americans say big cuts in federal spending are likely to spur job growth, about as many, 45 percent, say such a move is more apt to result in job losses.
    * When it comes to dealing with the economy, Obama has an advantage: 46 percent say they put more faith in the president, 34 percent say so about congressional Republicans.
    * Obama has a 12-point lead on the question of who better understands the economic problems people face
    * The president has a nine-point edge on dealing with the deficit.

    Also, on the point of America becoming increasingly liberal is this:

    Its not just rapid nonwhite growth, but also the increasing liberalization of whites. However, supposing that the 1965 Immigration Act never existed, then I suppose that at least Rightists could have rebounded considering that they are now beginning to understand the role of academia, media, and culture in converting their children into the leftist camp, and thus work on proper understanding of methods to shield their children from this. However, its now too little too late, considering that even if all rightist whites were able to protect their children from indoctrination, there is now more nonwhite children than white ones.

    The stupidity of the Republicans is coming home to roost.

    I firmly expect Obama to take a hard-left shift after re-election. While there might be some initial outrage expressed at the midterm elections, the populace will accept the new leftward shift, and conservatives will fervently defend these new borders of acceptable beliefs, and cast out any one who had beliefs that were considered “conservative” in 2000.

  21. Polymath says:

    New post up.

    Another post will follow within a day or two about this story:

    The Nation’s Report Card: U.S. History 2010

    after I have had a chance to digest the data and analyze the way the MSM distorted it, though you can jump in here and comment if you want to. (Preview: the most important thing about ANY education-related story is the dreaded and mysteriously evil “GAP” between….well, you can probably guess what it is between. The second most important thing is that whether improvements or declines are emphasized is determined by which party controls the White House. There is no third most important thing, since those two priorities create a sufficient template for the MSM to write their stories.)

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