References today are this essay by Jesse James at Virginia Freeman's Society, and the discussion of same over at WRSA.
The essay is mostly excellent, with a pretty good summation of things as they are and have been, until it suddenly and inexplicably takes a turn off a cliff.
Which I noted.
Key graf from Jesse:
The way forward for our movement is much the same. Show up to rallies, get active with the younger people in the movement and if you’re too crippled to do that then fund those who can. Yeah you might get uncomfortable around some of the people, you might get hurt, you might even get shot by some psychotic Bernie supporter. What kind of men have we become if that is a sufficient reason to hoard a few more insipid days of mediocrity at the cost of your character and your country? Show up and influence things at a local and state level, there are no enemies to the right in this fight.Which nonsense I called out for codswallop in commentary at WRSA:
Total number of times anythingimportantinrecordedhistory was changed by a rally, from the anti-Neanderthal rally in Thag’s cave to yesterday: lemme see, carry the one…times…got it! That would be exactly zero.
You want to show up and influence things at a local and state level?I can rely on, and nearly predict with precision, that whenever I post something like that, here or elsewhere, so self-evidently obvious and demonstrably factual beyond any rational response, the kneejerk response of the Internet commentariat worldwide will be to respond to it with shock, scornful derision, ad hominems, and factless rants devoid of intellectual content. Pavlov's dogs have nothing on the great unwashed when it comes to denying the obvious because their feeeeeewings are hurt.
Don’t go to a rally.
Those are for people who couldn’t get an office appointment with their reps.
It’s hand-holding for the powerless.
You can sing kumbaya and beat on garbage can lids, and all you’ll do is piss off people with jobs for screwing up traffic.
FFS, stop copycatting the never-did-squat tactics of the hippie generation.
They never changed anything.
Or, in this case, because it pricked the bubble of their conclusions. Jesse responded:
Cute. The hippies changed nothing. Maybe not in CA but I’d say they had a demonstrable impact on law, society and the role of government. I’m not sure whether it’s ignorance or mens rea but you’re throwing false information out there. It’s ok if you don’t like me or my ideas, just use better arguments. These things are the equivalent of a recruitment pool and whether you want to or not If prefer to have a measure of influence in pointing the younger and less informed in the right direction. It also shows people they aren’t alone and strengthens the counter-culture I want established. We should not be thinking one dimensionally. The abortion activists would argue that rally’s and incessant political pressure does nothing.Truncated comment response there dictates this be done here, at leisure and at length, with my thoughts in bold.
Thomas Hutchinson (read about him)
Committees of Correspondence
Cute. Sorry Jesse, the word you're looking for is "factual".
The hippies changed nothing. Like I said.
Maybe not in CA but I'd say they had a demonstrable impact on law, society, and the role of government. Yes, they got arrested by the law, they provoked society into electing Ronald Reagan four times, overwhelmingly, twice in CA and then twice more nationally, and it was he who properly identified the role of government as the problem, not the solution, to anything. Some of us were alive at the time, and speak from experience, not thirdhand from textbooks.
I'm not sure whether it's ignorance or mens rea but you're throwing false information out there. Well played, Captain Butthurt. Whenever someone disagrees with your silly ideas, accuse them of stupidity or criminal intent, because THAT is how you argue your conclusions best and most forcefully. Reasonable people can never disagree with you on the merits, or lack thereof, of your ideas. It couldn't possibly be because you've stepped on your own dick, and become seduced by street theatre as if it ever did anything substantive, other than identify any group doing it as another bunch of loons needing a good PR-24 shampoo, to most people you're trying to reach, let alone to TPTB. The information I "threw out" was that rallies never accomplished anything. The way to refute that authoritatively is to list the rallies that have made a difference in anything important. (Say, how's that Tea Party agenda doing in a totally GOP Congress these days? Taxes any lower? ObamaCare repealed? Wall with Mexico built? Call Bitch McConjob and Quisling Ryan, then get back to me.) We could start with so much as one such. (Say, how'd that ranchers' rally go in Malheur? Any luck getting the feds to back down?) Or just concede the point to me, and get over it.
It's okay if you don't like me or my ideas, just use better arguments. Thanks for the permission; it's mighty white of you. I don't know you, so I really have no opinion either way. In point of fact, in the recent past, any number of times, I've praised your thoughts without hesitation, on your own site and at WRSA. My problem with the idea under discussion isn't one of subjective personal dislike, as if we were merely discussing the best flavor of ice cream, but rather of its utter impotence to achieve anything helpful, while simultaneously associating any group that uses it as another bunch of butthurt whiny children who see a public tantrum as a suitable response to their own diapers being wet. And I have no better argument on my side than facts, and the entirety of recorded history. As Casey Stengel used to tell folks, "You could look it up." Nota bene please that pointing that reality out neither calls you ignorant nor criminal, just wrong-headed, with small mountains of actual evidentiary weight behind my point.
These things are the equivalent of a recruitment pool and whether you want to or not I prefer to have a measure of influence in pointing the younger and less informed in the right direction. Fair enough: If you're using street theatre and public tantrums to recruit young people, you'll get people who are clueless, low-information, emotional, feelings-driven crybabies with poor impulse control. And soggy diapers. Let me know how that works out for whatever you think you're trying to accomplish. If you want a mob with a happy face (which is all that a rally is, on its best day) that's what you're going to get. And you won't point anyone in the right direction, but you will get people who are rather simplistic, unthinking, and prone to emotional outbursts, rather than anyone capable of rational thought and contemplative action, i.e exactly the opposite type from those recruited, e.g., by our own military, for things like officer candidates, senior non-commissioned leadership, or every elite group in any of the military services. You will appeal to the lowest common denominator a la Madison Avenue, rather than considered selection and recruitment of intelligent, adaptive, disciplined, and creative thinkers. Call me when you bring LZ Hindenburg into the docking mast, and I'll bring my camera to record the moment.
It also shows people they aren't alone and strengthens the counter-culture I want established. The mystery of how alone the counter-culture you want established is, was pretty conclusively solved for most people with IQs above plant life last November the 9th. If the fact that the highest-rated programs and sites are Limbaugh, Drudge, Fox News, O'Reilly, Hannity, Glenn Beck, and so on, by orders of magnitude over CNN, the NYTimes and WaPo, MSNBC, and most of lamestream media, going back for the last thirty years, didn't drive the point home with a golden spike of reality. Anybody who didn't know that is thus not very bright nor culturally aware, and anyone who needs a mob around them to feel loved and accepted probably isn't worth going after unless your intent is to loot the Food King and burn some cars. The Free Shit Army already has a pretty good lock on those types, and even if you could poach them, why in hell would you even want to??
We should not be thinking one dimensionally. Agreed. I'd really be happy if any thinking at all would take place, if only out of enlightened self-interest.
The abortion activists would argue that rally's and incessant political pressure does nothing. I couldn't give two shits what abortionists would argue, but their rallies, like those of the anti-abortion faction, have largely accomplished nothing but annoyance to most people, and for the other side especially, because they don't approach the issue intellectually nor morally, but rather from a desire to ratify their own choices, and find an easy excuse for their conduct. You can't argue someone into a position they didn't get to rationally, and you won't get them out of one that way either. Someone for or against justifying abortion gets there alone, not by the attitudes (or arguments, philosophical, moral, and rational) of anyone, and especially not of any mob. If someone views a fetus as a human life with its own DNA and its own claim on affecting your moral compass, they will decide one way. If they view it as mere tissue, entirely secondary to their desire to copulate without consequences or personal inconvenience, they will decide another way. The presence or absence of either mob in the public square will be of little effect to which way they come down.
Thomas Hutchinson (read about him)
Committees of Correspondence
The Sons of Liberty were Sam Adams' IRA to the Founders' Sinn Fein. Sam's cousin John famously defended the British redcoats over the actions of the very mob you would recruit and emulate, and his arguments against them and their behavior thunder down through the ages. It is, in fact, from John Adams' defense of the British soldiers in the Boston Massacre that we derive verbatim his argument that "Facts are stubborn things," while the indictments and false accusations of the mob's mouthpieces have been relegated to history's dustbin . Plus ca change, Jesse. And the Committees of Correspondence were just the opposite of what you want: they were private, even clandestine, bodies of thoughtful men, intensely interested in changing things, and who argued by pamphlet and essay, not mob action, in order to sway people's minds and gain support. They were not the people throwing tea in Boston Harbor, nor egging soldiers into committing manslaughter in self-defense to provoke passionate revulsion. They were largely, in fact, the people who became the delegates to Philadelphia, who signed the Declaration of Independence, a document of such singular logic and mental appeal that the like had never been composed before in all of recorded history. Mobs, on the other hand, go back unendingly to the dawn of recorded history. The first one I can recollect was outside Lot's house in Sodom. So...how did that mob work out?So, did you want to talk about the weather, or were you just making chit-chat?
Most of Jesse's essay was thoughtfully done and worthy of a careful read.
What was most jarring and frankly ridiculous was the sudden, wheel-jerkingly bad default to trying street theatre as if it was ever a good idea, and why my mind screeched to a halt at the scene of the wreck when I came to that point in the piece.
Pardon me all to hell for noticing the obvious.