A Republic, if you can keep it

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Things you won’t see this Independence Day: Fireworks at Mount Rushmore.

Ostensibly, because of a fire hazard caused by the Mountain Pine Beetle.

But mostly it’s about envirostatism and identity politics.

Now, I don’t know how serious the beetle problem actually is, but I do know the Feds have been working on it since 2010, there were fireworks last year without incident, and Governor Kristi Noem believes they are safe. But Progressives don’t like Noem, and won’t waste a chance to reinforce the Native American land rights they use to block oil pipelines.

Many domestic concerns – the threat of inflation, teaching Critical Race Theory in government schools, burgeoning corporatist censorship, soaring crime, the transgender attack on women, and abandonment of oil independence push fireworks in South Dakota well down the list.

Then again, just last year, inflation, CRT, state directed private censorship, crime rates, high school track events where men compete with women, and oil independence were not so high up the list.

The fireworks ban is a small player in the “fundamental transformation” of the United States. It’s not about trees killed by pine beetles raising fire risk. It’s a psy-op vandalizing our regard for Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Old Glory, free markets, and individualism. It is just one more identitarian attack.

There are many bonuses for the Progressives. It reverses a Trump decision last year to allow the fireworks, and sticks it to South Dakota tourism – a state which had the temerity to elect a Republican Governor. So it checks the orange-man-bad box. It checks the race box since the pine beetles are on Indian land. Which means it checks the colonialist box. It draws support from envirostatists, who are well organized in SD to oppose oil pipelines. So it checks the climate change box. It checks the corporatist censorship box repeatedly: Where have you seen a guy who looks like the guy at the beginning of this video? SD ACLU files First Amendment lawsuit against KXL protest bill

Last time he was on national television we saw him beating a drum in Nick Sandmann’s face. Then lying about it; lies which sent the MSM into paroxysms of screaming “racist!” at Sandmann and calling him “punchable.”

It was made clear on video that Phillips was lying about the facts. A Year Ago, the Media Mangled the Covington Catholic Story. What Happened Next Was Even Worse.

And since he’s a face of “the movement,” it’s worth looking at his past behavior to evaluate his immediate allies as well as credulous fellow travelers like MSNBC, CNN, and the WaPo engaging in outrage-mongering, propagandist clickbait. Which was Phillips’ purpose. Still is.

If you want to gather to watch a National fireworks show, you are left with the White House. Where the beetles are of the Scarabaeinae subfamily and where you can’t criticize China or the click-bait artists will deem you racist.

So, celebrate the Founding of The United States of America, in the fashion you choose, as free citizens of the Republic. We can keep it.

Setting the revanchist table

Were BLM to apply its revisionist purges to the Democrats’ pseudo-history, they would be forced to abandon the Party:
Democrats: The Missing Years

That those Democrat sins are long past is an untenable objection for the statue topplers, 1619 Project acolytes, POC supremacists, and Democrat mayors in the plantation cities.

In any case, sins are still being committed.
Joe Biden: The New George Wallace

Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book has been rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And that process is continuing day be day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except the endless present in which the party is always right…

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

All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.

– George Orwell

Vade retro me, XX XX!

Get thee behind me, 20 20!

Yes, I know 2020 is actually MMXX in Roman numerals. But XX XX is 20 20 – how we pronounce the year. And you can’t use XXXX. That would be 40. As would XL. Go figure.

Wonder how to pronounce Roman numerals? I make 20 20 to be “Vīgintī vīgintī.” And 2020 renders as “Duo milia vīgintī.” 40 is “quadrāgintā.” Which grants XXXX and XL equality of outcome.

The Roman mathematical system has its disadvantages. Which you might expect when the numbers themselves are often math problems.

Multiplication alone would destroy the possibility of particle physics. And consider the width of the columns in your Excel spreadsheet, where 1944 would be rendered MDCCCCXXXXIIII. Some sources give MCMXLIV as an alternative, but this is disputed.

The lack of a decimal point, much less the annotation for fractions, would pretty much preclude precision replication of parts. Which makes you think the tolerances on a ballista precluded mass production. This probably did create good paying jobs in windlass carving.

The Roman mathematical system has advantages only in comparison to innumeracy.

The best contemporary advantage I can come up with is that House of Representative staffers preparing budget spreadsheets would suffer enough to maybe balance it. OTOH, like carving windlasses, they’d probably just hire more staff.

For peons, the only thing I can up with is that your ‘12345’ password would be ‘MMMMMMMMMMMMCCCXLV’ – harder to hack. But you wouldn’t be able to remember that password. Which is why you picked a joke password in the first place. And further complicating this whole password thing is that some experts (I don’t know why I think of Dr. Fauci) claim MDCCCCXXXXIIII is the same number as MCMXLIV.

Would you call this system base 10? It is putatively, but it fails some important tests.

Of the first 10 ‘digits’ the Romans had three unique single characters – I, V and X – 1, 5 and 10. Unique single characters that only show up later (L, C, D, and M) bring the total to 7. And they don’t participate in the first 10.

We use 10 unique single characters that represent the numbers in base 10, and they are the first 10 numbers. In binary (base 2) we have 2 unique characters. We have octal with 8. Etc..

For bases after 10 we do emulate the Romans. For example, base 16 (hexadecimal) uses letters. The number of unique single characters is preserved. 16 unique characters – 0 through 9 plus A through F, where A is decimal 11 and F is decimal 15.

But back to 2020.

While the numeric allusion fails, XXXX does get us to an Australian beer brand, 2 Dos Equis, porn videos, and a large clothing size. All of which seem appropriate for this year of working from home; as Aeron potatoes begin drinking at breakfast, watch porn with impunity, commit it on Zoom (I’m not looking at you Toobin*), and grow into their new 4XL T-shirts – the dress code for Zoom meetings. I haven’t checked, but I’d bet trousers have hit a sales slump.

I favor XX XX for the Latin equivalent of 2020. It insistently puts the ‘X’ in Latinx. It is congruent with 20 20 vision, 20 20 hindsight, double vision, and double counting. Respectively; what our public health martinets lack for every aspect of human existence save flawed computer simulacra, what our politicians cannot apply even as evidence of their failed policies becomes overwhelming, a symptom of poor blood oxygenation, and our recent election.

XXXX is an exceedingly rare genetic condition (Tetrasomy X). It is not to be confused with XX XX – which we’ll call double female – a gender classification yet to be appended to LGBTQWERTY. The combatants in the 2020 TERF wars who follow the science of genetics rather than the vagaries of “gender” could use a term for the transition from female to male and back. Women who have been men, after all, are women.

Finally, XX XX reminds me of those ‘Xs’ cartoonists employ on closed eyes to indicate a corpse. An ‘XX,’ then, suggests the cause of death is subject to more subtle interpretation than we might normally expect: “This person was found with an axe buried in their skull, but we found traces of CCP virus RNA on the axe handle. Count it as COVID.”

Oh, well, Happy MMXXI. The century turns 21.

Given how maturely it’s been acting of late, I think we need to hide the beer.

*I think we can discount any claims of some new penis recognition login technology.

“They had learned nothing and forgotten nothing.”

– Charles Maurice de Talleyrand: Speaking about the restored Bourbon dynasty after the abdication of Napoleon.

The Bourbons never forgot the executions of the elite during the Reign of Terror. They took no lessons from the French Revolution nor from the Napoleonic Empire: The French people had embraced lower taxation, meritocracy, and a resurgent individual pride in their country.

The Bourbons could not unify the France they despised.

USAToady David Rothkopf inadvertently demonstrates why Biden can’t unify Americans for similar reasons:
Biden’s National Security team reveals he has learned from the mistakes of past presidents
Link intentionally broken.

You can fix it if you you want to read a story praising Biden for selecting a bunch of retreads and hacks from the Obama years as National Security gurus; who did not learn from wide spread resistance to Obamacare, the rise of the tea party, their own hubristic initiation of a disastrous civil war in Libya, capitulation to Iran’s nuclear ambitions, acceptance of the Paris Accord Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming hysteria, destroying due process in higher education via Title IX “Dear Colleague” letters, or being caught lying about Benghazi over the coffins of American soldiers. A partial list.

These are the same people who refuse to abandon their various farcical conspiracy theories under the general headings “Russiagate” and “Ukraine.”

Their contempt for fully half of US citizens is even more intense than was Marie-Antoinette’s, and that USAToday article is wordy reprise of “Let them eat cake.”

Which was fake news in 1789.