Archive for January 9, 2021

Bad violence

Posted: January 9, 2021 by datechguy in Uncategorized

Twitter suspended the account of the U.S. President on Friday, citing a supposed “risk of further incitement of violence,” though it failed to actually identify any such prior incitement. No surprise there – Trump’s failures on Wednesday were legion, but they in no way amounted to “incitement,” which makes citing any incitement exceedingly difficult.

Not that Twitter’s actually concerned about the violence – they only object to what inspired the violence: Congress’s approval of the election of Joe Biden. When the Left was trying to burn down police stations and federal courthouses, Twitter genuflected to Black Lives Matter. And Twitter’s only too happy to oblige the communist thugs torturing the Uighurs of western China. But, then, that is their violence.  Leftist violence.

But even taking Twitter at its word, its decision doesn’t hold up. University of Wisconsin law professor and blogger Ann Althouse lists what she calls the seven “most violent statements.” None of them can be construed as encouraging violence or criminal acts, which is what the law actually requires. As UCLA law professor Eugene Volokh puts it, citing the 1969 Supreme Court case Brandenburg v. Ohio, which set the legal standard, “even ‘advocacy of the use of force or of law violation’ can’t be punished unless it ‘is directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action and is likely to incite or produce such action.’ Saying things that foreseeably move some audience members to act illegally isn’t enough.”

So the millennial hall monitors that run Twitter suspended the account of the U.S. President on Friday and then lied about why. They also suspended Gen. Michael Flynn and attorney Sidney Powell, who committed the sin of sharing conspiracy theories involving QAnon.

Oh, and then Google Play kicked Twitter alternative Parler off its platform.

And Apple is threatening to do the same.

And YouTube suspended Steve Bannon’s account.

And Simon and Schuster cancelled its publication of Senator Josh Hawley’s book.

Meanwhile, it takes an uproar to get Twitter to decide a tweet by communist China’s U.S. embassy promoting genocide violated its terms. It’s good to be Red in Twitterville.

As the Left loves to point out whenever conservatives point out the disparate way Twitter treats them compared to, say, genocidal monsters, Twitter and the other tech giants are privately owned companies, and so not subject to constitutional limits on free speech. Funny they don’t seem to recognize such rights when it comes to mandating private companies, say, pay for employee abortions – but when it comes to shutting conservatives up, the Left is only too happy to oblige. Their devotion to open discourse is, uh, falling into question.

But here the Left plays with fire, as it tends to do. After all, Twitter uses the internet, which was, as everyone knows, created by the U.S. government. Lawyers are crafty types; shouldn’t take long for an enterprising advocate to come up with some theory, arguing that the internet is a public utility, and discriminating against some is discriminating against all, or some line of bull of similar aroma.

Even Alexander Graham Bell didn’t go kicking racists like Woodrow Wilson off his telephone lines.

Though now that I think of it, that might not have been such a bad idea…

Sam:Those were the stories that stayed with you. That meant something, even if you were too small to understand why. But I think, Mr. Frodo, I do understand. I know now. Folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn’t. They kept going. Because they were holding on to something.

Frodo: What are we holding onto, Sam?

Sam: That there’s some good in this world, Mr. Frodo… and it’s worth fighting for.

The Lord of the Rings, the Two Towers 2002

McCoy: Spock, I’ve found that evil usually triumphs unless good is very, very careful.

Star Trek, the Omega Glory 1968

While I believe challenging the electoral college results was necessary and getting these folks on record was important I had no illusions that a sudden conversion of honor or courage would break out among our representative any more than it had among our judges or state representatives. As a Christian I believe all things are possible with God and it was certainly impossible if nothing was done so I figured go for it. It’s the same reason why I occasionally buy a lottery ticket. I would have accept a Little Christmas miracle if it happened but I wasn’t banking on it.

What really surprised me however over the last 48 hours was the number of people actually who expected the congress to show enough courage to stop the steal of the election when the various state legislatures, the various state and federal courts and the supreme court all punted. They didn’t think it was a million to one shot, they thought it might actually happen.

I’ve been thinking about why this might be the case and it hit me that the blame here isn’t so much with the various sites that have pushed the case or those who have used it as a fundraising ploy, but it’s instead because of a basic fact that has to some degree been hidden thanks to popular culture for quite a while.

You see in the Novels, Movies and TV we have seen all our lifetime people showing courage, striving for right and defying all odds to deliver for right and justice. Indiana Jones always picks the right grail. Wonder Woman always shows up to keep Batman from being fried. The Incredibles always stop the robot. NCIS gets their man or their terrorist. Rick manages to avoid arrest for shooting Major Strasser, Sgt. Rutledge saves his company and the true criminal is exposed in his trial, Peter Blood avoids execution and escapes to the Spanish Main.

In all these heroic tales the hero wins despite every bit of odds against him. but there’s a reason for that and it’s not as Mythbusters suggest due to technological oddities.

Why Imperial Stormtroopers Miss So Much. “Adam Savage of MythBusters fame decided to try and figure out just how fast the… whatever it is coming out of the blasters actually moves. Using the height Harrison Ford and the width of a door as visual references, Savage performs some arithmetic to come up with a shockingly slow speed: 130 miles per hour over 40 feet. For comparison, your average bullet comes out of the barrel moving at around 1,700 miles per hour. Stormtroopers may be better served by ditching the blasters for a good semi-auto.”

While this is fun the real reason why the storm troopers miss is because if they hit then the movie ends at the start. People want to pay money to see heroes in action. Nobody wants to pay money to see the bad guys win. The good guy wins because it’s written that way.

That’s one important consideration but there is another cultural phenomenon that is almost as old as recorded history, that we celebrate Heroes. There have been heroic epics as long as there have been heroes and those epic are so deep and so ingrained in our cultural standing that some of them have endured with us almost from the start of recorded time.

Why, it’s actually simple, because actual heroism is rare.

It takes a lot for people to risk the one life they have, or to risk the comfort they have and to lay it all on the line for a principle. We rightly revere our founding fathers not just because they came up with one of the most incredible forms of government ever in existence, but because they put everything on the line to do so and amazingly won.

This is in fact also why for 100 years after the Confederate leaders and Heroes where celebrated as American Heroes. They put everything on the line for their cause, a bad one and frankly a disgraceful one (if you don’t believe me read Confederate VP Alexander Stephens Crossroads Speech where he attacks the founding fathers for being in error by opposing slavery) but one they thought good.

When they lost they lost everything but still insisted that it had been a cause worth losing everything for. Even those who fought against them recognized this courage and respected it which is why they allowed those who shot at them and tried to kill them to be honored without objection because courage is a virtue so great that it is admired in any who hold it. In fact as late as the 1980’s a leftist like Ken Burns could make a documentary about the civil war without demonizing these folks without critique.

Of course

I doubt he would make that film today.

The truth is indifference and / or cowardice is the norm as is repression and censorship and slavery. The freedoms granted by our constitution and the freedom and prosperity that the United States has enjoyed since its founding are the exception rather than the rule in the history of man.

In fact they’re so expectational that for hundreds of years people have flocked here to make their lives. It’s, in my opinion, the greatest max movement of population in human history that was not driven by a war or famine or a natural disaster. It was driven by the chance for people to have to reach their maximum potential for themselves and their children and to do it without fear.

That very act is an act of courage, but the biggest enemy of courage is not cowardice, but comfort. It is very hard for a comfortable person to jump into the fight when by doing nothing they can live like a king. In fact Donald Trump showed that kind of courage by being serious about running for president. As long as he was considered a joke spoiler the elites were willing to laugh but once he became an actual threat to their power, then they endeavored to destroy him.

This is understood by those who are threatened by courage, in fact that’s why the press hailed Mitt Romney’s speech in the senate as if it was an act of courage when in fact it is the easiest thing in the word for a person to go along with the powers that be and support them, So when courage has to be suppressed it’s necessary to have something masquerade in its place.

People dream of being heroes, kids play at being heroes nobody dreams of being a coward.

Alas the lack of real courage that was shown at all stages of this farce comes with a price. All Americas will be paying it for a very long time.