Randy Rainbow weighs in on Alternative Facts

This is how I’d like to see the White House Press Corps respond to this administration’s bullshit artists.

The Watering Hole, Monday, May 9th, 2016: Are We There Yet?

Here’s two (well, sort of – you’ll see what I mean) predictions about frightening futures, which we seem to be fulfilling here in the largest superpower on the planet.

First, an interesting article entitled “Neil Postman Predicted Trumpocalypse 30 Years Ago”, by Dr. Richard D. Land at the Christian Post. Dr. Land discusses a 1985 book by Neil Postman called Amusing Ourselves to Death. Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business. An excerpt:

Postman started off his book by contrasting the two most dystopian visions of modern civilization’s future, George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949) and Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World (1932).
Postman’s contrast of the two dystopian visions of the future is chilling:

“What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one. Orwell feared those who would deprive us of information. Huxley feared those who would give us so much that we would be reduced to passivity and egoism. Orwell feared that the truth would be concealed from us. Huxley feared the truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance. Orwell feared we would become a captive culture. Huxley feared we would become a trivial culture preoccupied with some equivalent of the feelies . . .”

The Internet has changed the basic DNA of our culture, including our social and personal relationships and our information access. It has radically democratized communication, while at the same time condemning any effective editorial or verifying filter as the unwelcome control of a hated elite. Consequently, we are being engulfed not only in a sea of moral relativism, but information relativism as well. The immersion of our culture in Internet speak has brought us perilously close to a denial, if not a revocation of the late, great, Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s statement that “you are entitled to your own opinions, but you are not entitled to your own facts.” Now, opinions too often masquerade as facts, and fewer and fewer know the difference and increasingly fewer care.

As Postman pointed out, Huxley was trying to warn the future “that what afflicted people in Brave New World was not that they were laughing instead of thinking, but that they did not know what they were laughing about and why they had stopped thinking.”

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Now a more pithy prediction in a similar vein, from Carl Sagan’s 1996 “The Demon-Haunted World”:
sagan hauntedHave we arrived at any – or all of – these future visions?

This is our daily Open Thread – you know what to do.

The Watering Hole; Friday January 15 2016; For Republicans Everywhere!

I’ve decided that today my task is a simple one — to pass on some historically relished behavioral hints to the 2016 Republican Party. I have no doubt that they will find many of the hints useful, also some perhaps already tried and tested. Nevertheless, I do feel it is my duty to spread the word, so to speak, in case some of the current GOP office-seekers (those born after, say, 1946) might find something new and enabling.

So to Republicans everywhere: read this carefully, commit it to memory, and let it serve you well!

In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.

If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face . . . forever.

The process [of mass-media deception] has to be conscious, or it would not be carried out with sufficient precision, but it also has to be unconscious, or it would bring with it a feeling of falsity and hence of guilt. . . . To tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes necessary again, to draw it back from oblivion for just so long as it is needed, to deny the existence of objective reality and all the while to take account of the reality which one denies — all this is indispensably necessary.

The essence of oligarchical rule is not father-to-son inheritance, but the persistence of a certain world-view and a certain way of life . . . A ruling group is a ruling group so long as it can nominate its successors . . . . Who wields power is not important, provided that the hierarchical structure remains always the same.

The Party seeks power entirely for its own sake. We are not interested in the good of others; we are interested solely in power.

Power is not a means; it is an end.

One does not establish a dictatorship to safeguard a revolution; one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship.

The object of persecution, is persecution. The object of torture, is torture. The object of power . . . . is power.

Political language . . . is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.

The nationalist not only does not disapprove of atrocities committed by his own side, but he has a remarkable capacity for not even hearing about them.

Always create an external enemy so that you may take away rights from within, to take more control of your nation.

The fact is that every war suffers a kind of progressive degradation with every month that it continues, because such things as individual liberty and a truthful press are simply not compatible with military efficiency.

All issues are political issues, and politics itself is a mass of lies, evasions, folly, hatred, and schizophrenia. When the general atmosphere is bad, language must suffer.

Actions are held to be good or bad, not on their own merits but according to who does them, and there is almost no kind of outrage–torture, the use of hostages, forced labor, mass deportations, imprisonment without trial, forgery, assassination, the bombing of civilians–which does not change its moral color when it is committed by ‘our’ side.

And remember always:

Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past.

And so wrote George Orwell, both in his book 1984, and elsewhere. Meanwhile, the GOP creeps ever closer to the mass of lies, evasions, folly, hatred, and schizophrenia that long ago became their destiny.

Godspeed, GOP.

Bonus Link: RNC’s Dave Agema: ‘Obama Uses Taqiyya’ And Is A ‘Socialist Dictator’

They catch on fast!

😆

OPEN THREAD