Ej (napoleonofnerds) wrote,

Mini-Rants: All the vitreol, half the calories

- Being an atheist for no particular reason is not any more rational than being a theist out of blind obedience. That Richard Dawkins rails against the Papacy couldn't possibly be less convincing when he's setting up one of his own, appealing to "science" as devoid of intellectual content as Biblical fundamentalism. I'm really fucking tired of people pretending that nihilism is this self-evident rational principle, that it doesn't ravage the human spirit, decay public morals, quash creativity, and scavenge every tradition and patrimony in civilization for things it can falsely claim to be its own. When you demand empirical proof for everything you eliminate most of what it means to be human; love, hope, beauty, attraction, longing, commitment, despair, delirium, delight, loyalty, outrage, justice, joy, honor, arousal, angst, duty, depression, trust, agony, ecstasy, awe, oratory, contentment, courage, pride, poetry, rage, horror, euphoria, dysphoria, weltzschmerz, friendship, serenity, desire, dreams, grief, guilt, and glory are all entirely without empirical warrant and none are subject to logical proof. Meanwhile, things that science has apparently proven turn out to be hunches and best guesses disguised so as not to alarm the masses.

- I hope whoever supported Barack Obama are happy. You elected that worst kind of demagogue - a rhetorician with ambition but little else. He has no will to lead, no chance of making meaningful change, and as a nation we have literally blocked any person capable of meaningful policy-making from getting to the table at all. The fate of the free world may well depend on whether Olympia Snowe runs for another term while the rest of the mockery of republicanism we call a Congress contemplates their own greatness.

- You cannot bring a budget into balance by cutting all the stuff everybody likes and leaving all the crap we don't need. Have the balls to do things like means test Social Security benefits; collect payroll taxes on all earned income, including a progressive rate increase; declare bonuses indistinct from salary for the purposes of taxation; demand education and social welfare systems that don't systematically trap an ever-larger number of people in poverty at the expense of the state; do military procurement, the domestic energy portfolio, campaign financing, earmark reform, entitlement reform and lobbying reform the way we do the base closing commission - with a magic board that minimizes legislative meddling; meaningfully cut military spending and work on a diplomatic strategy that sees us either getting financial support from the rest of the world for being its police force or a radical reduction in our overseas commitments (if we were isolationists we'd only need forces sufficient to repel Canada and Mexico and ensure nobody can get to us from the sea, but that would not be good for the world); stop signing incredibly silly trade deals and lead the world in transitioning to a fair trade system regardless of how much it dicks over the Chinese; and generally stop being idiots.
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