Asking for it

Because, as we all know, elections matter. And when folks vote, they order what they want. And in this case, they got what they asked for.
– VPOTUS Kamala Harris

Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.
– H. L. Mencken

Twelve seconds:

March 15, 2020 – Debate with Bernie Sanders

The Biden campaign was quick to say that Biden’s statement was misinformation. Haha, they actually didn’t say that. They did explain “what information he really meant to convey.”

That’s just Joe, he said the quiet part out loud.

The approved meaning was there will be no more drilling on Federal land. A plausible explanation for what he meant to say. Not so plausible for his real meaning.

If fossil fuel extraction in your own country is an existential threat, why would you – POTUS – stop with Federal land? You can wield the full weight of the regulatory state against all US producers everywhere.

Joe’s error does not rise to Kinsley gaffe level (a slip of the tongue revealing some truth that a politician did not intend to admit), because a real Kinsley gaffe has a minimum bar: A history of public speech hinting that bewildered incognizance is not your standard method of dealing with reality.

If you have to decimate domestic oil production to finesse a campaign promise… If that implies pretending oil from Iran and/or Venezuela is preferable to United States production… If you refuse to accept oil from an ally by keeping Keystone XL closed when shutting down Russian oil…

Then it is not a gaffe. It’s a plan.

When any POTUS declares his intent to destroy an industry it has a tendency to affect capital markets.

U.S. oil drillers ‘dying on the vine’ as private equity flight prompts funding drought

…and to encourage overreach from Federal agencies predisposed to assist in the destruction. The Feds, with subsidies to investors like Warren Buffet, makers like Elon Musk, and scams like Solyndra have encouraged activist investors to lobby for environmental, social, and governance (ESG) purity. That’s probably more accurately described as DIE (diversity, inclusion, equity) investment.

ESG Watch: Heat turned up under banks for role in financing fossil fuels

The SEC is getting ready to make ESG reporting mandatory.

What will SEC’s climate disclosure rules mean for U.S. companies?

And do not forget legal obstructionism. Here’s an example – an arbitrary guesstimate made by biased bureaucrats called the “social cost of carbon.”

Biden Administration Halts New Drilling in Legal Fight Over Climate Costs

Gaslighting

Gaslighting is an emotionally-abusive strategy that causes someone to question their feelings, thoughts, and sanity. Someone who employs gaslighting tries to convince the other that their own perception of reality is wrong. The purpose of this is to convince the person being gaslit that they can’t trust their own instincts or thoughts. A gaslighter may try to convince you that your memories are incorrect, that you overreact to situations, or that something is “all in your head.” They may then try to convince you that their version of events is the truth.

In 2008, future Obama administration Secretary of Energy Steven Chu shared his vision for American energy policy:

“Somehow we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe.”

In the month before the Obama administration assumed office, the average price for a gallon of gasoline in the United States was $1.59. This week, [April 1, 2012] the price of gasoline has climbed to $3.79.

The Biden administration resumed Obama’s sabotage of our domestic oil and gas producers on day one. The average price for gasoline at the end of Biden’s first week of office was $2.39 a gallon. Prices have now hit above $4.

The Democrats, having pummeled investment in oil and gas extraction, pretend that production can be flipped like a light switch. Jen Psaki tells us there are “9,000 leases not being exercised.” This may be true, but it is entirely unrelated to the fact the United States is no longer energy independent. How does that even happen in under 12 months?

Leases not in use is a factoid servicing a Big Lie.

A friend wrote:

“A lease is but one element necessary to overcome to get oil to market: “Copious permitting paperwork over a period of months or years, financing from banks and investors being pressured to disinvest, means of getting the crude to refineries, refining capacity, taxes that threaten return on capital, and legal challenges.”

That’s a great summary of this must read article:
In-depth analysis debunks Biden admin blaming oil companies for not developing 9000 leases – Feds ‘spent over a year making it more difficult’ to drill & environmentalists ‘constantly sue to stop any development’

With Putin’s invasion of Ukraine the plot has gotten out of hand for the President. So, he complains that the oil and gas producers aren’t doing enough. Putin provides Democrats more cover for the real Green Ordeal objective, described masterfully in this excerpt from a book review by Peter W. Wood of Bewilderment, a novel by Richard Powers: RTWT.

[T]he real endgame is a remnant human population on a vegan diet perhaps supplemented with insects; the restoration of Earth’s landmass to animal-friendly wilderness; and small-scale cooperative (socialist) societies living in harmony with nature. Less utopian versions of this vision are available, but properly understood, all of them rule out modern life as we know it. People like Biden don’t take any of that seriously. Their interest is in the political game, not the endgame, but it is important to understand the premises and the motives of the activists who are driving the politics. They may never get their utopia, but they can cause profound misery in their attempts to reach it. And we are seeing some of that now.

‘Under My Plan, Electricity Rates Will Necessarily Skyrocket’

That was Barack Obama in 2008. Obama’s electricity plan was not implemented, but it lurks in the dreams of the Green Ordealers: Every environmental problem could be solved if there were fewer humans and they were all less well off.

It’s Critical Race Theory applied to all humans everywhere. White people may be colonialist, homophobic, and racist by the accident of being. But every human being is a planet killer by the same standard.

In support of Critical Humanity Theory, President Biden is emulating Obama’s plan. On his first day in office Biden targeted energy in the form of gasoline, natural gas, and propane.

Now, with a world supply shock from the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the rate of oil price increase is exceeding the trajectory Obama planned for electricity.

Adding to the gasoline price acceleration, Biden today banned imports of Russian oil (Good for him, but it’s only about 3% of US usage.).

The President warned us to be ready for the “Putin price hike.” Nah. It will be a joint effort. I think Biden had ‘the don’t let a crisis go waste’ principle in mind: “I can raise gas prices, blame it on Putin, and AOC will be happy.”

Everything to the left on that chart can reasonably be called the ‘Biden price hike.’ These stickers were being placed on gas pumps long before Vlad mobilized.

Since the President refuses to unleash American oil and gas production, or change his decision to shutter the Keystone XL pipeline, I think the price hikes remain his.

Instead of importing the Keystone oil from Canada, an ally, we’re begging in Venezuela, and soon Iran, for oil.

Oil which we will burn. Just like American or Canadian oil. CO2 will not be reduced, but we’ll pay a lot more to produce it. To thugs.

I admit Justin Trudeau is a thug too, but there’s more hope Canada will depose him. If there was ever a worthwhile nation re-building effort we should support – it’s Canada.

Enter Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg, telling us all we need to do to avoid high gas prices is buy electric cars.

“Clean transportation can bring significant cost savings for the American people as well. Last month, we announced a $5 billion investment to build out a nationwide electric vehicle charging network so that people from rural to suburban to urban communities can all benefit from the gas savings of driving an EV.”

Get back to me when that charging network you’re spending 5 billion taxpayer dollars on is complete, Pete. Meanwhile, how about a cost free initiative? Open Keystone XL and lift all Federal impediments to American energy production. We could be energy independent again.

Buttigieg is correct, there is a gasoline saving in driving an EV. That is not the same as saving money, saving energy, or reducing CO2 emissions, however.

There’s the cost of buying a new car you may well not need, and with groceries up 20%, maybe can’t afford. You also may be pinched financially by the cost of heating your home.

The taxes we pay to subsidize other people’s electric car purchases need to be accounted for.

And, what if everybody buys an EV? Will demand for electricity make prices:
a) rise,
b) fall,
c) remain the same, or,
d) go to zero, with a grid collapse?

Will the Feds add a special ‘transportation electricity’ tax in order to replace gasoline taxes? The Transportation Secretary didn’t address the question.

Electric cars get their power mostly from coal and natural gas. Prices on those fossil fuels are up, so that will raise electricity prices. Any money savings for electricity as fuel is unlikely to last without major investment in nuclear plants.

So saving money with an EV may be over optimistic in the mid-term. And, without nukes, in the long term.

Gasoline is the current energy hot-button. It’s a preview for the real green agenda: All energy costs must be high to discourage humans from reproducing.

You may find that objectionable. I do not mean every amateur environmentalist is an Extinction Rebellion fellow traveller, but the envirostatist elite are committed to that Malthusian principle. It explains a great deal, and its modern incarnation is well described by Paul Ehrlich and the Club of Rome 50 years ago.

Dezinformatsiya is in the eye of the beholden

Surgeon general Dr. Vivek Murthy has instructed major tech platforms, already squirming under Congress’ thumb, to submit information about CCP virus COVID ‘misinformation’ on social media, search engines, instant messaging systems, etc., etc.. Big Tech is to determine how much misinformation has flowed/is flowing through their sites.

He doesn’t mention email, but – in the name of ‘Public Health’ – I see no barrier to him asking NSA for a dump of all email with the phrases “Fauci lies,” “Joe Rogan,” “Wuhan flu,” or “Great Barrington Declaration,” and/or the words “ivermectin,” “hydrochloroquine,” “zinc,” and “Z-pack” in any combination.

As explained in the Federal Register, Dr. Murthy wants to know

“exactly how many users saw or may have been exposed to instances of Covid-19 misinformation,” [as well as] “Any aggregate data and analysis on how many users were exposed, were potentially exposed, or otherwise engaged with COVID-19 misinformation…

“The definition of health misinformation for the purposes of this RFI is health information that is false, inaccurate, or misleading according to the best available evidence at the time…

Starting with, but not limited to, these common examples of COVID-19 vaccine misinformation documented by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), any aggregate data and analysis on the prevalence of COVID-19 misinformation on individual platforms including exactly how many users saw or may have been exposed to instances of COVID-19 misinformation.”

So is the flip-flop advice from CDC about whether N-95 masks work serial misinformation? How about whether cloth masks work? Is it about the possibility the CCP virus leaked from a Chinese lab? Careers were stunted for asking that question. Scientists were heartily vilified.

Is it misinformation that natural immunity doesn’t count? How about counting death with COVID as death from COVID?

Is this misinformation from the CDC?

MYTH: COVID-19 vaccines can alter my DNA.
FACT: COVID-19 vaccines do not change or interact with your DNA in any way.

Both messenger RNA (mRNA) and viral vector COVID-19 vaccines work by delivering instructions (genetic material) to our cells to start building protection against the virus that causes COVID-19.

After the body produces an immune response, it discards all the vaccine ingredients just as it would discard any information that cells no longer need. This process is a part of normal body functioning.

The genetic material delivered by mRNA vaccines never enters the nucleus of your cells, which is where your DNA is kept. Viral vector COVID-19 vaccines deliver genetic material to the cell nucleus to allow our cells to build protection against COVID-19. However, the vector virus does not have the machinery needed to integrate its genetic material into our DNA, so it cannot alter our DNA.”

That myth/fact distinction seems to be not so settled science. BNT162b2 is the Pfizer vaccine. You can skip to the sentence I bolded:
Intracellular Reverse Transcription of Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 mRNA Vaccine BNT162b2 In Vitro in Human Liver Cell Line

“Preclinical studies of COVID-19 mRNA vaccine BNT162b2, developed by Pfizer and BioNTech, showed reversible hepatic effects in animals that received the BNT162b2 injection. Furthermore, a recent study showed that SARS-CoV-2 RNA can be reverse-transcribed and integrated into the genome of human cells. In this study, we investigated the effect of BNT162b2 on the human liver cell line Huh7 in vitro. Huh7 cells were exposed to BNT162b2, and quantitative PCR was performed on RNA extracted from the cells. We detected high levels of BNT162b2 in Huh7 cells and changes in gene expression of long interspersed nuclear element-1 (LINE-1), which is an endogenous reverse transcriptase. Immunohistochemistry using antibody binding to LINE-1 open reading frame-1 RNA-binding protein (ORFp1) on Huh7 cells treated with BNT162b2 indicated increased nucleus distribution of LINE-1. PCR on genomic DNA of Huh7 cells exposed to BNT162b2 amplified the DNA sequence unique to BNT162b2. Our results indicate a fast up-take of BNT162b2 into human liver cell line Huh7, leading to changes in LINE-1 expression and distribution. We also show that BNT162b2 mRNA is reverse transcribed intracellularly into DNA in as fast as 6 h upon BNT162b2 exposure.”

The misinformation definition does include “best available information at the time.” Which would seem sensible but for the examples of such information flipping back and forth on masking, for example, and D. Fauci’s admission that he lied about it. As he also admittedly lied about the threshold for herd immunity.

So, who determines the best available information? The government bureaucrats? Whom we know lie for political and CYA purposes?

When is mis actually dis? Maybe when spreading information you know to be false? Like Dr. Fauci’s mask/herd immunity lies, or his semantic games around gain-of-function, or his surreptitious interference with the Great Barrington Declaration?

And when does “at the time” expire? Is “vaccines do not change or interact with your DNA in any way,” now misinformation? Half-misinformation? It’s only been shown in vitro, after all. The ‘Public Health’ narrative is that we don’t tell the public until there have been a couple of gold-standard RTCs in vivo. The public won’t mis this information. If they had it they might choose not to follow our advice about an experimental vaccine.

What Dr. Murthy’s definition means is ‘whatever we tell you at the time.’ And with the threat of Congressional regulation, he’s looking to enforce that under the “Public Health” version of the 1st Amendment. So, it’s far from over when Murthy gets the social media data.

Why wouldn’t he also have to know about the disproportionate effects of the CDC’s unconstitutional seizure of the rental housing market?

I feel more like I do now than when I first got here.

Tonight’s State of The Union address is an appropriate time to examine how POTUS and VPOTUS developed their elocutionary skills.

It’s fairly certain you’ve never wondered what it would be like listening to the legendary Roman orator Cicero after he’d had a hit of the brown acid. A) He died before the brown acid was circulating, and B) he spoke Latin.

But that does not mean the experience can’t be simulated. For most people Cicero’s imaginary acid laced oratory wouldn’t differ much in intelligible content from the off-teleprompter efforts of our President and Vice President.

They story of how they honed their natural abilities with diligent study is not well known. Their role models were not who you might think.

They had tried studying legendary orators and logicians, but this ceased when the President’s handler’s realized that he misunderstood the apocryphal example of Demosthenes learning to speak with marbles in his mouth; and when the Vice President’s staff realized she thought “Syllogism” was the name of Aristotle Onassis’s yacht.

Instead, Biden and Harris spent months studying the skills of two men whose Presidential campaigns are the stuff of legend: Irwin “The World’s Foremost Authority” Corey, and Pat “We Can Be Decisive… Probably” Paulsen.

Corey campaigned for President in 1960 on Hugh Hefner’s Playboy ticket. His campaign slogans included, “Vote for Irwin and get on the dole” and, “Corey will run for any party, with a bottle in his hand.” Notable quote: “I don’t believe Spiro Agnew is a crook. If he was a crook, he’d still be in office.”

Corey was a talented comedian and actor for over 50 years. He lived to be 102, which attracted the President’s attention.

In the persona of a dowdy, wild-haired professor, his schtick was non-stop streams of nonsense peppered with physical comedy. His routines sound like today’s soft “sciences” academic papers.

Corey was a nearly perfect model for Biden. Nearly, because while Corey was a master of sesquipedalian nonsense, he didn’t make up polysyllabic nonsense words. For example, he would have considered that last sentence insufficiently confusing. This deficiency will bring us to Paulsen in a moment.

Corey’s appeal to Harris was a little different. It is exemplified by this post’s title, “I feel more like I do now than when I first got here.” (the title of an LP he recorded). This convinced Kamala Harris he was a man to emulate, as demonstrated when she saidIt is time for us to do what we have been doing. And that time is every day.

Here is Corey when he was 79, Joe Biden’s age, talking about his album. For Corey, it’s an act.

But, something was missing for Biden. He needed a larger degree of freedom, outside the bounds of the English language, to exploit his propensity to create incomprehensible neologisms. Enter Pat Paulsen.

Paulsen’s Presidential campaigns spanned 40 years, starting in the 60s. Shut Up And Get Off Your Butt! was the theme of his 1988 campaign. He was famous for incisive analysis of our immigration problems early in his career: “All the problems we face in the United States today can be traced to an unenlightened immigration policy on the part of the American Indian.”

Paulsen was also a talented comedian. His stage presence combined studied affectlessness, mistimed gesturing, deliberate mispronunciation, and brief excursions into garbled strings of vaguely English sounding phonemes.

Harris and Biden both found these skills compelling, though they emphasize different aspects of Paulsen’s persona in their own rhetorical flourishes.

Here, Paulsen anticipates the message we may well hear tonight,

I predict that based on Biden’s recent assertion that Americans’ dissatisfaction with his regime can all be laid at the feet of the CCP virus:

“As Vivek Murthy, the Surgeon General, points out, I think one of the significant things we are going to find ten years from now is a phenomenal negative psychological impact that CoViD has had on the public psyche.

And so you have an awful lot of people who are, notwithstanding the fact that things have gotten so much better for them economically, that they are thinking, but how do you get up in the morning feeling happy – happy that everything is alright?

Even though your job is better, even though you have more income.”

Joe Biden has not forgotten Demonsthenes’ marbles, but he has managed to learn to channel Paulsen with a touch of Corey. His intuitive grasp of Paulsen’s syllababble is a natural fit, and his attention span mimics Corey’s.

For example, Biden’s “trunalimunumaprzure” (sometimes rendered “true ninternuvidu presher”, or “true inder nah ma preh zer”) is pure Paulsen.

Corey’s primary contribution to the President’s affect was a standard bit where Corey appears to forget where he is.

Corey’s influence on Kamala Harris is made obvious at the Munich Security Conference, where she had been dispatched to deter Vlad Putin with sanctions…

“[W]e strongly believe – and remember also that the sanctions are a product not only of our perspective as the United States, but a shared perspective among our allies, and the allied relationship is such that we have agreed that the deterrence effect of these sanctions is still a meaningful one, especially because remember also, we still sincerely hope that there is a diplomatic path out of this moment. And within the context, then, of the fact that that window is still opening – open, although it is absolutely narrowing, but within the context of a diplomatic path still being open, the deterrence effect we believe has merit.”

Harris doesn’t have Professor Corey’s vocabulary, but she absolutely nails his concept.

It’s worth noting that we could do worse than electing a comedian as President. Ukraine’s President, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, has been criticized because he was a successful comedian. He seems to have turned out alright.

Sadly, neither Biden nor Harris are funny. Well ‘funny peculiar’, perhaps, but not “funny Ha, Ha.”

Bonus clips:
Pat Paulsen Freedom to Censor

Presidential Announcement March 3, 1968

Corey on … Who knows?

Dissent, a shared idea

“I believe that liberty is the only genuinely valuable thing that men have invented, at least in the field of government, in a thousand years. I believe that it is better to be free than to be not free, even when the former is dangerous and the latter safe. I believe that the finest qualities of man can flourish only in free air — that progress made under the shadow of the policeman’s club is false progress, and of no permanent value. I believe that any man who takes the liberty of another into his keeping is bound to become a tyrant, and that any man who yields up his liberty, in however slight the measure, is bound to become a slave.”
— H.L. Mencken

Ukrainians and Freedom Convoy truckers share this principle. You may disagree with their interpretation. If so: Use your words. And don’t try changing the definition of freedom.

The immediate risk of asserting that they are freemen is higher for Ukrainians than for truckers. The long term consequences of failure to resist tyranny are the same.

Trudeaupia’s false choice is that 1984 is not different from Brave New World. Though Justin did resort to the former when his estimation of the completeness of the latter turned out to be overly optimistic.

The Catastrophe of Canada | Rex Murphy and Jordan B Peterson

This is an important conversation.

What is happening in Canada is dreadful, not least because should Justin Trudeau remain in power it will show Canadians are not who they thought they were, do not have the institutions they thought they did, and are uninterested in recovering either their culture or representative democracy.

Is there some flaw in the British parliamentary system that has been exposed by the pandemic and changes wrought by social media? I wonder because, while serious authoritarian overreach can be alleged in most neoliberal democracies, Australia and New Zealand seem more up front about it than most. This most certainly includes the United States.

An hour. If you need an incentive to watch the whole thing, Here is a 5 minute summary. What goes before explores why it’s true.