October 22, 2017

"What explains Weinstein’s identification with progressive causes?"

Asks Thomas Frank (at the Guardian). (Frank is the author of "What's the Matter with Kansas?" and a book that particularly on point here and that I read and liked a lot, "Listen, Liberal.")
Perhaps it was all about moral absolution, in the same way that lists of corporations-that-care always turn out to be led by outfits like Walmart, Goldman Sachs and Exxon-Mobil. In the world of the wealthy, liberalism is something you do to offset your rapacious behavior in other spheres. It’s no coincidence that, in Weinstein’s desperate first response to the accusations against him, he thought to promise war against the National Rifle Association and to support scholarships for women.
I don't think that's the reason. I think it's the culture of artists and quasi-artists to embrace liberalism. You'll look bad within your set if you don't. If you don't really believe in or care about politics, the easiest thing to do is to outwardly pose as liberal and throw some of your money at liberal causes. Hollywood is about exteriors. It's a visual medium about beautiful people. It's surprising that anyone there does anything other than espouse liberalism. Certainly, an ugly man seeking access to beautiful women would act out liberalism.

This makes me think of a scene in the movie "The Front" (script here), a 1976 movie about a blacklisted Hollywood writer. The character Hecky Brown (Zero Mostel) is accused of being a communist:
The question is, Mr. Brown, what have you done?

Nothing. I'm an actor.

Nothing?

Six years ago, I marched in the May Day Parade. I bought a Daily Worker subscription. But I never read it, not one word. Right from the mailbox to the garbage can. I was only trying to get laid. This communist girl, she had a big ass...

I am not interested in your sex life, Mr. Brown.

I was just telling you that girl was the reason.
Back to Thomas Frank. He says there's "something deeper" than expiating the sin of greed. This is something like what I said about, but again, it depends on these people having a conscience and needing to "rationalize" to deal with guilt:
Most people on the left think of themselves as resisters of authority, but for certain of their leaders, modern-day liberalism is a way of rationalizing and exercising class power. Specifically, the power of what some like to call the “creative class”, by which they mean well-heeled executives in industries like Wall Street, Silicon Valley and Hollywood.
I think vanity and self-interest explain more than guilt and conscientiousness — especially in the case of Weinstein! Frank must realize he's got a coherence problem here because he shifts from talking about moral absolution to hypocrisy:
That this strain of liberalism also attracts hypocrites like Harvey Weinstein.... This is a form of liberalism that routinely blends self-righteousness with upper-class entitlement.....
Vanity and self-interest.

179 comments:

Nurse Rooke said...

Hey, look! The Guardian closed down the comment section on that article!

The mod says it was opened "by mistake"!

rhhardin said...

He likes babes. Babes like feminism. So he likes feminism.

I don't know that he ever had to think about it.

Feminism allows babe bonking.

rhhardin said...

Conservatives tend to be gentlemen, if you want a bias.

rhhardin said...

Everything is run by compliance officers these days, is the only problem Harvey has.

I'd suggest creating his own blog and developing a fan base.

Talk about movies, invite women up.

Serr8d said...

Oh, come on. Thomas Frank is desperately seeking to distance liberalism from Harvey Weinstein. There’s nothing else to see here, really.

Tommy Duncan said...

I used to think many liberals lacked honesty and self awareness. Now I believe they intentionally avoid honesty and self awareness.

Amexpat said...

In HW's case, there's some similarity to the buying of an indulgence that used to be done in the Catholic Church. Part of his first response was to offer $5 million for for scholarships at USC.

I guess the "heavy" therapy he promised to go through would the equivalent of repenting his sins X number of times.

jwl said...

Liberalism is secular religion.

------------

wiki Indulgence - In the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church, an indulgence is "a way to reduce the amount of punishment one has to undergo for sins".

David Begley said...

I have a friend who is an artist. People assume she is liberal. She's conservative but keeps it quiet.

AllenS said...

Liberals are just making up excuses now. Nothing more than that. There are enough liberals around to buy what they are selling. Sad.

jwl said...

Johann Tetzel - As soon as a coin in the coffer rings, the soul from purgatory springs.

Diogenes of Sinope said...

"But the ultimate documentation of the utter moral vacuum in which our elite dwells is noted Hillary donor Harvey Weinstein. Hollywood has, for decades, taken upon itself to chide and chastise us normals for our many, many, many faults, because when you want to learn the difference between right and wrong, you need a movie star to help you out. And, to the surprise of no one, it was all a crock."

"So why should we normal Americans respect these people? Why should we submit to being constantly scolded, lectured, and treated as morally bankrupt simpletons anymore?" from a recent opinion piece by Kurt Schlichter

rehajm said...

JohnWayne Gacy found dressing like a clown attracted his target.

Chuck said...

From the same Thomas Frank column; a paragraph that Althouse left out of her commentary:

"There are sleazebags in every party, as Donald Trump frequently reminds us. But even so, Harvey Weinstein was unusual: a militant and vocal backer of a faith he appears to have violated in the starkest way."


A few days ago, Althouse blogged the New Yorker profile of Vice President Pence by Jane Mayer. I just got around to reading the whole article this weekend. And I see that in that case as well, Althouse was not tempted to blog about the reaction of Pence and his wife Karen to the Access Hollywood tapes of Trump with Billy Bush:

he awkwardness between Pence and Trump didn’t entirely dissipate. When the “Access Hollywood” tape surfaced, revealing Trump’s boast about grabbing women “by the pussy,” Karen Pence was horrified. According to a former campaign aide, Pence refused to take Trump’s calls and sent him a letter saying that he and Karen, as Christians, were deeply offended by his actions and needed to make an “assessment” about whether to remain with the campaign. They urged Trump to pray. When Trump and Pence finally did talk, Pence told him that his wife still had “huge problems” with his behavior. But in public Pence was forgiving, saying, “I am grateful that he has expressed remorse and apologized to the American people.” (A Pence spokesman has denied that there was any friction over the incident.)

Since Trump is not religious, and privately ridicules Pence's rigid evangelism, and since Trump has never been any sort of civil rights proponent, maybe that allows Trump to avoid the sort of rank hypocrisy that Thomas Frank was trying to deal with in the case of Weinstein. But still, the politician Trump is constantly -- and often successfully -- selling himself to evangelical Christians.

Wilbur said...


rehajm said...
JohnWayne Gacy found dressing like a clown attracted his target.

Really? I thought Gacy targeted young men, not prepubescent children. A clown would have little appeal to a 17 year-old hustler.

Gacy did use the clown gig, though, as another veneer of lies on the divide between what he was and what he wanted the world to see.

William said...

Harvey was indulging in something even more primal than horniness. Charley Sheen is an example pure libido. The id as superego. Harvey's predations were something uglier. They involved self loathing as much as humiliating the other person. You can't say that Harvey wasn't successful with the women, but neither can you say that he had an enviable track record with them.......I wouldn't mind spending the odd weekend indulging in Charley Sheen's hobbies, but I wouldn't want to be Harvey at any price.

AReasonableMan said...

He is not incorrect in stating that Goldman Sachs and Exxon-Mobil embrace these causes for transparently cynical reasons.

rhhardin said...

Karen Pence was horrified.

Proving that women shouldn't vote.

Annie C said...

Righto Amexpat. Rehab is the equivalent of ten Our Fathers, ten Hail Marys, and a good Act of Contrition.

Chuck said...

Sorry, that bolded quote from the New Yorker should begin with "The," not "he." It was one of those large-font T's that New Yorker editors are fond of to denote a new section of an article and it didn't copy for me.

Diogenes of Sinope said...

The Left knows the hoi polloi are idiots. That without the rule of our elites the vast majority of people would suffer immeasurably, They are doing us a favor.


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


“I trust that every animal here appreciates the sacrifice that Comrade Napoleon has made in taking this extra labour upon himself. Do not imagine, comrades, that leadership is a pleasure! On the contrary, it is a deep and heavy responsibility. No one believes more firmly than Comrade Napoleon that all animals are equal. He would be only too happy to let you make your decisions for yourselves. But sometimes you might make the wrong decisions, comrades, and then where should we be?”
― George Orwell, Animal Farm

Otto said...

Not only frank but ann "is trying to distance weinstein from liberalism by her "vanity and self interest" coda.Just one sinner does not refute the tribe or the ideology. She is correct . It is true that liberalism after the 50s turned to collectivism, which has a history of failure. But even classical secular liberalism takes a hit. Classical secular liberalism has blind faith in man - " just educate man and he will do good" - man is not a sinner. But wait, Ann says he is a sinner. So even classical secular liberalism is a flawed concept.

Oso Negro said...

"Certainly, an ugly man seeking access to beautiful women would act out liberalism."

Only if he can't afford a ticket to Thailand.

William said...

I saw the quotes from The Front. People joined the Communist Party either because of high minded idealism or because they wanted to get laid. Sure, Hollywood........Just as Harvey's predations were motivated by something nastier than lust, so did Communists join the party for reasons other than a quest for equality......I'm just now reading a biography of Lenin. He consistently chose the most Draconian and punitive forms of Marxist and revolutionary thought. The terror was not a means to an end but the whole point of the revolution. Lenin was a Communist because he wanted to kill people. And that's why the Communists chose Lenin and later Stalin. They like to kill people.

George M. Spencer said...

Control the words people use, and you control what they think.

"If thoughts can corrupt language, language can also corrupt thoughts."....Orwell, Politics and the English Language

For example, consider the word "progressive" as in "progressive causes" in the above headline.

MadisonMan said...

Follow the money. I suspect HW did what he did to maximize the amount of money he could make. And maximize the amount of tail he could get.

wild chicken said...

I see nothing inconsistent in a reprobate like Weinstein embracing a faith that has legal abortion as its core tenet.

"Get rid of it, baby."

dda6ga dda6ga said...

To get on in life all a young person needs is a good knowledge of the plays of Shakespeare and the Godfather (although an interest in some of the Kipling poems also helps).

SGT Ted said...

"Most people on the left think of themselves as resisters of authority..."

A lack of self awareness combined with gross self deception allows the fantasy that lefties have of themselves.

narciso said...

In other news of real significance:

http://americanthinker.com/articles/2017/10/secrets_and_lies_three_russian_stories.html

MikeR said...

Seems pretty ridiculous to me. A serial abuser of women - oh, he should have been a conservative, that's what they do!
Ridiculous.

Otto said...

@chuck. So let me get this straight: evangelicals shouldn't vote for anyone who is not a born again Christian, atheists shouldn't vote for anyone isn't an atheist, Jews shouldn't vote for anyone who doesn't believe in Judaism, and Muslims shouldn't vote for anyone who doesn't believe in Allah.

Mark said...

"What explains Weinstein’s identification with progressive causes?" . . .
outwardly pose as liberal and throw some of your money at liberal causes


Perhaps it was the identification with progressive causes and inward liberalism that explains Weinstein's behavior.

The left likes to define itself as inherently good and pure and then project any evil upon conservatives and Republicans (which are not necessarily the same), such that if someone who appears to be of the left is sexist, racist, etc., he must necessarily be secretly conservative or Republican.

Saint Croix said...

Liberals wear pussy hats and Weinstein sees a woman and thinks "pussy."

Liberals go to Vagina Monologues. Weinstein sees a woman and thinks "vagina."

Liberals go on Slut Walks. Weinstein sees a woman and thinks "slut."

If you train him to think this way, why would you be surprised that he thinks this way?

rehajm said...

Inevitably Frank couldn't make it to the end of the article without the obligatory dig at President Trump.

Fabi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chuck said...

Otto said...
@chuck. So let me get this straight: evangelicals shouldn't vote for anyone who is not a born again Christian, atheists shouldn't vote for anyone isn't an atheist, Jews shouldn't vote for anyone who doesn't believe in Judaism, and Muslims shouldn't vote for anyone who doesn't believe in Allah.

Well, how should I put this? Ah, I know; "No."

I think it merely interesting that evangelical Christians would support with any enthusiasm a candidate like Trump. Twice-divorced, thrice-married; an abuser of at least one wife; a notorious adulterer; a former pro-"choice" Democrat; and as Althouse herself theorizes, "pro-gay, and being cagey about it."

Since I brought up Mike Pence and the Jane Mayer profile of Pence in the New Yorker, I'd add one more thing that I found interesting. Among the many Democrat-oriented gripes about Pence was the one that Pence had "lost his spine" in entering the Trump White House, and that he was simply going along with everything Trump blurts. But the profile also noted how effectively the Trump Administration was being staffed with people from conservative think tanks and state houses who had been associated with David and Charles Koch. It was as if Pence (and a Pence-Koch wing of conservatism) was quietly assuming the power of the executive branch.


Fabi said...

A perfect Sunday morning -- Chuck is trying to change the subject to Trump after his pussycats (née: wolverines) got the brakes beat off them by Pedophile U.!

Chuck said...

It's a slow news day, Fabi, with no personal attacks against me until 9:04 am.

rhhardin said...

going along with everything Trump blurts.

Blurt itself is blurted.

Rusty said...

Jesus, Chuck. The subject is Weinstein, not Trump. Try to stay on topic. Althouse would appreciate it.
Let's ply a game, Chuck.
You like games don't you?
Let's see if you can post here for, let's say, the next 72 hours without mentioning Trump, the presidency or Washington DC.
Bet you can't.

cronus titan said...

Kennedy. Clinton. Edwards. Polanski. Those are some names of powerful men who were not held to serious account for their sexual conduct. THey were also liberals in good standing. Weinstein believes that supporting liberalism, and more importantly against conservatives, gets you a pass on sexual misconduct. Not a bad theory -- recall that it was liberal women who came up with the "one free grope" rule for Clinton. Had Weinstein limited his predation to ambitious nobodies from Kansas, he would have had a much greater chance of surviving this. He raised too much money and too influential in liberal circles to be outed for a nobody. THe Hollywood elites would not have cared all that much about some 21 year old from Kansas who knew no one. BUt he made the mistake of preying on Hollywood elite who was "one of their own." Not even a virtue signaling liberal like Weinstein could survive that.

Yancey Ward said...

Why do muggers wear masks? Is it shame? I don't think so either.

rhhardin said...

Pussy hats were cat ears.

Only prudes refer to them as vagina hats.

rhhardin said...

Sexual conduct is very biased.

What happened to sexual performance, a positive word. Or even sexual leadership.

Fabi said...

Please identify the personal attack made against you at 9:04 AM, Chuckles. And then do your best to stay on topic.

Chuck said...

Rusty said...
Jesus, Chuck. The subject is Weinstein, not Trump. Try to stay on topic. Althouse would appreciate it.
Let's ply a game, Chuck.
You like games don't you?
Let's see if you can post here for, let's say, the next 72 hours without mentioning Trump, the presidency or Washington DC.
Bet you can't.

In a blog post about a Thomas Frank column, in which Thomas Frank mentions Trump, and I quote Thomas Frank mentioning Trump, you think I strayed impermissibly off topic? Oh well, everybody's entitled to an opinion.

If I pissed you off, that's a good thing.

AReasonableMan said...

Rusty said...
Jesus, Chuck. The subject is Weinstein, not Trump.


The subject is sexual conduct and as such Trump is an interesting comparator to Weinstein.

chickelit said...

It's surprising that anyone there does anything other than espouse liberalism. Certainly, an ugly man seeking access to beautiful women would act out liberalism.

So how do you and Frank square this one:

So if you go carrying pictures of Chairman Mao,
You ain't gonna make it with anyone anyhow


Espousing communism (or Bernie-style socialism) actually works (for men at last) to get people laid in Hollywood. Was Lennon wrong or has there been a revolution?

Chuck said...

Fabi said...
Please identify the personal attack made against you at 9:04 AM, Chuckles. And then do your best to stay on topic.

Tell us all what part of your 9:04 post was "on topic."

Michael K said...

"Jesus, Chuck. The subject is Weinstein, not Trump. Try to stay on topic. Althouse would appreciate it."

There is no other game to chuck. Trump lives in his head 24/7.

Back when Hollywood was sane Humphrey Bogart got talked into flying to Washington to support "the Hollywood Ten>"

Then he saw what was happening and was furious. I think Betty Bacall was always a lefty and might have encouraged him but he was furious at the people who lied about the hearings and got him involved.

There are those who say it was the studio that was upset

That was the day when the producers were patriotic.

Bob Boyd said...

Cooking pot liberalism.

chickelit said...

Is Trump ahead of the curve, espousing populist ideas in order to get more pussy in today's tables turned society? The Hollywood old guard just hasn't caught on yet except for grand masters like Bulworth.

tim in vermont said...

Perhaps it was all about moral absolution

That's one reason.

I think it's the culture of artists and quasi-artists to embrace liberalism. You'll look bad within your set if you don't. If you don't really believe in or care about politics, the easiest thing to do is to outwardly pose as liberal and throw some of your money at liberal causes

That's another reason.

Certainly, an ugly man seeking access to beautiful women would act out liberalism.

That's a reason too!

Most people on the left think of themselves as resisters of authority, but for certain of their leaders, modern-day liberalism is a way of rationalizing and exercising class power.

Another reason!

Vanity and self-interest.

Yep! It's overdetermined! There are lots of reasons! What is amazing is that there is any resistance at all to the power of these reasons, It doesn't even matter if they are contradictory! To steal a line from Walt Whitman, HW contains multitudes!

It's pretty funny too that HW works just fine as an abbreviation for Hollywood.

chickelit said...

Is Trump ahead of the curve, espousing populist ideas in order to get more pussy in today's tables turned society?

Amend that to "better pussy" rather than "more pussy." Quality over quantity.

Fabi said...

Tu quoque, Chuck.

mtrobertslaw said...

Liberalism has always emphasized personal freedom. At one time it recognized that there must be some boundaries to freedom and much thought went into defining what those boundaries were. But that early form of liberalism has since decomposed into progressivism. According to this doctrine, the ideal form of government guaratees every citizen the limitless freedom to pursue whatever philosophy of life that he happens to think will to bring him happiness. In the case of Weinstein, he has picked hedonism-the pursuit of pleasure. In his case, he believes sexual pleasure brings him happiness. Is there any wonder then why he is drawn to progressive politics?

Francisco D said...

Chuck,

How does a left wing activist like Jane Mayer (who tried to make her bones defaming Clarence Thomas) get access to the inner thoughts of Mr. and Mrs. Pence?

Suspend your hatred of DJT and think about it.

Fake News? It's all the rage in the MSM. They want to create the illusion of chaos and incompetence in this administration and people like you are so stupid and hateful that you fall for it every time.

tim in vermont said...

Is Trump ahead of the curve, espousing populist ideas in order to get more pussy

Having a billion dollars (even if it is only several hundred million, for the sake of argument) will get you all the pussy a man could use. What really pissed off feminists about the Access Hollywood tape was Trump's frank statement that women are hypergamous. That's what I think anyway, because "women will let you" doesn't equal "you can rape them!"

Phil 3:14 said...

Dear Mr. Frank,
The issue is not Mr. Weinstein's hypocracy, its the hypocracy of all of those leftist Hollywood types and that of the various and sundry Democratic politicians.

rhhardin said...

Hippocracy is rule by horses.

tim in vermont said...

Can somebody here please provide cut and pastes of the actual details of evidence of attacks on women where Trump, for example, refused to take no for an answer and used the power of his position over the life and career of a woman to break down her resistance?

Or where he used force?

Not just links, though links would be helpful, but the actual text that you believe is damning against Trump. So far all I have heard is some accusation of something that happened on an airplane in view of other people, made by a Clinton campaign associate, and some oafish behavior that didn't amount to sexual assault, and a since recanted accusation made during a divorce where huge amounts of money were in play.

So Chuck, how about some of the text of the testimony of these women. Don't take the coward's way out of providing only a link then refusing to defend it, or even to explain what you found compelling in it.

Matthew Sablan said...

I think it is more likely that the two (political beliefs/being an abuser) are unrelated.

Fernandinande said...

Wilbur said...
A clown would have little appeal to a 17 year-old hustler.


I thought his clown gig was to attract Rosalynn Carter, Jimmy's wife, and other fellow Democrats.

rhhardin said...

Probably half the tu quoque's ought to be te quoque's, tui queque's, or tibi quoque's.

Odds favor te, just on case numbers.

rhhardin said...

Cui bono for instance is dative.

rhhardin said...

Vanity and self-interest

Guess the sex of the probable offender with no further information.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

It doesn't appear that "political psychoanalysis" is really your speciality. Or if you wanted to play that game, you could ask, "What prompted Mark Foley and Dennis Hastert's identification with conservatism? What prompted David Vitter's identification with conservatism? What prompted Larry Craig's identification with conservatism?"

I guess you're all, deep-down, a bunch of pedophiles, molesters, johns, and perverts generally. Or maybe its just the overwhelming greed and selfishness in your party that leads people to think it's no big deal to take a couple kids on down with them.

Political psychobabble.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

There is no other game to chuck. Trump lives in his head 24/7.

Well that is the way Trump wants it, of course. Not all of us come from the side of the aisle that plays hero worship as naturally as the right does. What hints do you advise in order to become a more obsequious follower? That's not our natural role, as it is yours.

tim in vermont said...

Well, TTR, the point is that HW doesn't really believe the shit he espouses politically, apparently. His actions would seem to prove it.

tim in vermont said...

Not all of us come from the side of the aisle that plays hero worship as naturally as the right does

LOL!!!! 'Barack Obama!

tim in vermont said...

Not all of us come from the side of the aisle that plays hero worship as naturally as the right does

Do a google image search of Obama and Halo.

David said...

I have long said that Liberalism is a fashion statement. It has gone farther, becoming a social prerequisite in many circles and a professional one in academia and some other employment sectors.

Gabriel said...

Screwtape knows why a man like Weinstein embraced progressive causes:

Do what you will, there is going to be some benevolence, as well as some malice, in your patient's soul. The great thing is to direct the malice to his immediate neighbours whom he meets every day and to thrust his benevolence out to the remote circumference, to people he does not know. The malice thus becomes wholly real and the benevolence largely imaginary. There is no good at all in inflaming his hatred of Germans if, at the same time, a pernicious habit of charity is growing up between him and his mother, his employer, and the man he meets in the train. Think of your man as a series of concentric circles, his will being the innermost, his intellect coming next, and finally his fantasy. You can hardly hope, at once, to exclude from all the circles everything that smells of the Enemy: but you must keep on shoving all the virtues outward till they are finally located in the circle of fantasy, and all the desirable qualities inward into the Will. It is only in so far as they reach the will and are there embodied in habits that the virtues are really fatal to us. (I don't, of course, mean what the patient mistakes for his will, the conscious fume and fret of resolutions and clenched teeth, but the real centre, what the Enemy calls the Heart.) All sorts of virtues painted in the fantasy or approved by the intellect or even, in some measure, loved and admired, will not keep a man from our Father's house: indeed they may make him more amusing when he gets there.

Fabi said...

"Not all of us come from the side of the aisle that plays hero worship as naturally as the right does."

Turn off the Internet -- it's over now!

Gabriel said...

In another age Weinstein might have been a temperance crusader, or an abolitionist, or a supporter of missionaries, but he'd have had the same disease--that his desire to do good for humanity is purely abstract, and blinds him to how badly he treats the individual humans he encounters.

Curious George said...

"Chuck said...
Sorry, that bolded quote from the New Yorker should begin with "The," not "he." It was one of those large-font T's that New Yorker editors are fond of to denote a new section of an article and it didn't copy for me."

sshole Chuck: I feel you pain.

Karen said...

It’s a desire for power over others because you think you know more than they do how to run their lives. Power always includes vanity and self-righteousness.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Well, TTR, the point is that HW doesn't really believe the shit he espouses...

So he's a sociopath. What's your point? That the raping and cover-ups weren't convincing enough of his low truth-telling capabilities? Ok, you got me. Let's make it a political thing instead. I forgot how much you guys love doing that.

Oso Negro said...

I am starting to admire the persistence of the men of Hollywood. EVERY single actress or singer who has gotten there has apparently received an unwelcome proposition. Yet NONE of them have ever given in. But still the men keep trying.

William said...

When younger, Trump was reasonably good looking and had fame and wealth working for him.. For all these advantages, he wasn't spectacularly successful with women. On the Access tape, he himself talked of a thwarted attempt, and women certainly have not had any reluctance to come forward and speak against him. You can argue that Trump's past history with women is neither edifying nor ethical, but I don't think you can fairly argue that he was a worse than Harvey or even that he was comparable to him. Such arguments are more revelatory of your biases than of Trump's flaws. It's like arguing that Frederica Wilson is a better person than John Kelly.

Laslo Spatula said...

Curious George at 10:16 AM...

Well played.

I am Laslo.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Do a google image search of Obama and Halo.

They came from the right. Some people are just naturally well-liked. Obama has a nice, natural, easy-going smile and comes up with some cool interactions. He can sing Al Green to audiences. He understands technology, pop culture, surfing, etc.

Trump has a bitchy scowl on his sourpuss face and complains 24/7 that people are mean to him. And like a lab rat on cocaine that keeps hitting the reward bar, the one piece of technology he actually knows is hitting the upload key on Twitter.

The fact that you can't tell which of these personalities more people will naturally find attractive says a lot about either the right-wing "mind" (if you can call it that) or why their side's leadership is so abysmal and just focused on the next bribe.

Maybe both.

Like a junkie hitting up his next fix. How noble of you all to enable Trumpster and the shallow addictions that encompass the entirety of his existence.

William said...

The question is not why Harvey embraced progressive causes but why Progressive causes embraced Harvey, especially when he was wearing that bathrobe.

Gabriel said...

@tim in vermont:Well, TTR, the point is that HW doesn't really believe the shit he espouses politically, apparently.

I'm quite sure he does; it just that his beliefs have little effect on how he treats the people around him.

If failing to act in accordance with principles means we don't "really" believe in the principles, then who can be said to believe in any principles?

Bill Crawford said...

Gabriel - a very apt quote from Lewis. Thanks!

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Trump's perma-pout implies constipation. As do his early morning Tweets. Not attractive at all.

But I suppose that's what right-wingers look for in a leader.

They should just have applicants for the job fill out a questionnaire that asks, "When is the last time you had a satisfying bowl movement?"

The applicant with the longest answer wins.

That's right-wing leadership for you. Constipation, explosive, pent-up rage and a jumpy trigger finger.

It's their formula for running the world.

BillyTalley said...

..."the culture of artists and quasi-artists to embrace liberalism. "

Here are the ordinates as I see them: The Left embraces revolution for the sake of liberty. The Right embraces the conservation of wisdom gained via previous generations. Immediate reality is more complex than the abstraction of ordinates, of course. Business embraces "creative destruction". Shakers are only a extremely tiny minority and not a rule. The only real extreme violent revolutionaries exist in high security prisons. Everyone else lives in an ideological cloud between the ordinates.

The American Revolution conserves freedom with periodic revolutions (elections) that are regulated by design so that gains are institutionalized and preserved with each cycle. As American Liberalism shifted towards the extreme Left in the past decades, forcing them to lose touch with the capacity to preserve past achievements, so that all they are capable of is the destruction of creativity.

All creative acts require revolution. Artists are natural revolutionaries. This is their anchor in the Democratic Party. Unfortunately, this fidelity also prevents them from questioning the inability of the Democratic Party to actually improve the lives of the electorate they purport to help. It's a stark fact that art cannot exist within the extremes, Right or Left. It would be wonderful if the creative class would realize that their natural home exists in the center, where the motion of revolution can ratchet forward, checking the ability to rotate backwards and real advancement can be gained. The ratcheting lesson exists in the Constitution, but the attachment to the fiction of positive rights prevents them from learning from it.

chickelit said...

They should just have applicants for the job fill out a questionnaire that asks, "When is the last time you had a satisfying bowl movement?"

As I recall, Obama disliked bowling and considered having the lanes converted to a basketball court.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

The Right embraces the conservation of wisdom gained via previous generations.

Nah - they're just uptight. Right-wingers learn less from history (or from anything) than anyone. They are anti-knowledge because letting in new information into their minds seems like a revolutionary act - even if it's just new to them, the learner, which all information - no matter how old - IS.

The right is doing the same things to our economy that the right did to America's and the world's economy in the 1920s, and we know what that led to. So don't give me this bullshit about the wisdom of previous generations. Find me a someone who lived through the Great Depression who approves of right-wing economic "policies."

They just want power. Total control freaks.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Interviews with Trump are ridiculous and a complete waste of time.

The next interview with him should just focus on his bowel habits. Set up the interview, make it all professional, and do like Ali G and get a slick reporter to just focus on that. He is stuck in the Freudian anal stage, obsessed with the one thing over which he's finally learning to exercise control. Like a toddler who's still impulsive, he's proud that his anal sphincter will at least cooperate with him more than his petulant parents will.

Just make every question to him about his bowel habits. Even at the WH press briefings. Ask him to describe them. In detail. Setting, place, timing, thoughts while in the act, etc. We already know about his well-done steaks, fast-food and two scoops of vanilla ice cream. Now it's time to go for the stuff that really matters. What does he do with it all once it's done exiting His Greatness? Is he afraid to let it go, to let it out? Does he give it all a nice send-off? Does the act of flushing fill him with conflict and anxiety, as when a narcissist says goodbye to the departed parent who abused and instilled in them their addiction? The addiction that defines them...

Trump doesn't want the presidency, or anything for America, really. He just wants to be recognized for the one thing over which he actually has any control. Let's give him that, I say.

rcocean said...

I don't believe it. There's no reason to believe Weinstein is a fraud and not a sincere progressive. He was just hypocrite on one part of the Progressive platform.

You don't give the money that Weinstein did, or devote the energy he did, to Progressive/left wing causes if you don't truly believe.

And I always hated "The front" - go read about the *real* communists in Hollywood. 90% of them were true believers. Some of them did join up for the benefits, and quit later for various reasons, but most didn't. You didn't need to be a commie to work in Hollywood in the 30s/40s, you just had to be a New Deal Democrat.

rcocean said...

People like Woody shed tears over the blacklisted commies. They don't mention the fact that the commies were promoting each other, giving each other jobs, and gray-listing anyone they thought was too "right-wing" or "Anti-communist".

And after the black list was over, the Commies went back to giving each other jobs, financing each others movies, and giving guys like Heston or Wayne a hard time.

Gabriel said...

@rcocean:He was just hypocrite

He's not a hypocrite for espousing feminism and treating women abominably. He would only be a hypocrite if doesn't really believe in feminism but desires other people to believe he does.

Hypocrisy is about what you privately believe vs publicly believe, it's not failing to live up to what you believe.

Gabriel said...

For example, the people who were Commies when young to get ahead in their profession and get laid, but didn't really believe in it: hypocrites. The Commies who believed in Communism but sold out: not hypocrites. They're sinners, if you like.

Unknown said...

Maybe people like Weinstein are after moral absolution. Maybe they're just posing. And maybe outfits like Walmart, Goldman Sachs and Exxon-Mobil can afford to be generous with no thought to moral absolution because they haven't done anything wrong except be successful.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

And I always hated "The front" - go read about the *real* communists in Hollywood. 90% of them were true believers. Some of them did join up for the benefits, and quit later for various reasons, but most didn't. You didn't need to be a commie to work in Hollywood in the 30s/40s, you just had to be a New Deal Democrat.

Ha ha. FDR's quasi-socialism was ssoooooooooooooooo much worse than what the right-wing aristocratic Republicans gave us at the end of their roaring 1920s.

Jesus. WTF was your own family doing in 1932? Driving a gold-gilded Mercedes Benz with The Great Jay Gatsby from West Egg to East Egg?

Talk about not learning from history - or anything. See what I mean? Being progressive wasn't some revolutionary ideology. It just meant you preferred getting a paycheck developing Appalachia and electrifying the Tennessee Valley to waiting in bread lines with the 20% other unemployed while some rich bastard told you how neat things were going to be once again (as with every previous depressionary bust cycle) once you were done "waiting it out."

American conservatives are different. They don't just stand athwart history and yell stop! They refuse to acknowledge its existence, or to learn from it at all.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

...lose touch with the capacity to preserve past achievements...

Here's a past achievement: The Glass Steagall Act. 85 unprecedented years of economic stability differentiating us from the previous, regular cycles of economic boom and depressionary bust. One would have thought we learned, but then the money-hungry Republicans convinced a conservative/corporate Democrat named Bill Clinton that short-term personal gain was more important...

And the rest is history. Nice to see that we can make what happened in Europe happen again twice in less than a hundred years. What an achievement!

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Fuck this. I'm out to enjoy the market and the day. Have fun discussing whether Hollywood is or is not full of horny hypocrites.

What a load of the world's problems that discussion will solve.

tim in vermont said...

They [Obama halos] came from the right.

LOL!!!! The right noticed them, that's for sure, in the WaPo and the New York Times, just for starters. It' is easy to convince yourself of anything if you ignore enough facts!

Virgil Hilts said...

Virtue signalling means you never have to say your sorry (or act with decency).
If you say the right liberal platitudes, you can (i) be a liberal professor, dress up in black and assault an innocent person with a bicycle chain, (ii) scream about the AGW crisis while flying your private jet, (iii) attack charter schools in name of teachers' unions while sending your kids to private schools, (iv) vote for/ woman's causes while cheating on your wife & treating young women like whores with your power the coin of the realm, (v) march for more govt. welfare while giving much less time or $ to charity as your same income but less virtuous conservative neighbor. Its the virtue signalling that counts, not the behavior, not the decency, not the treating of people with respect.

Chuck said...

Virgil Hilts;
Will Bill O'Reilly ultimately get away with a record of serial sexual harassment because he is so regularly intoning with platitudes about "patriots," and "Christmas," and "the folks"?

Bay Area Guy said...

"What Harvey Weinstein tells us about the liberal world"

It tells us that the Left is intellectually and morally bankrupt.

Gabriel said...

Will Bill O'Reilly ultimately get away with a record of serial sexual harassment because he is so regularly intoning with platitudes about "patriots," and "Christmas," and "the folks"?

Why is a "life-long Republican" engaging in leftist-provided whatboutism regarding Harvey Weinstein?

Gabriel said...

Bill O'Reilly seems to have been a pretty bad guy, and Fox seems to not have cared much while he was making them money. But the rest of the media and the entertainment world didn't cover up for him for decades; he seems to have hurt a much smaller number of people than Harvey Weinstein did.

So why the whataboutism Chuck? Who are you trying to convict of excusing O'Reilly while condemning Weinstein, and why?

Tommy Duncan said...

Earlier in this thread I said:

I used to think many liberals lacked honesty and self awareness. Now I believe they intentionally avoid honesty and self awareness.

I should have said:

I used to think Chuck lacked honesty and self awareness. Now I believe Chuck intentionally avoids honesty and self awareness.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

rcocean,

Anyone in the CPUSA who stayed in through the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact was an actual Communist. No exceptions. It doesn't matter if they suddenly changed their minds after the German invasion of the USSR.

Howard said...

Blogger rhhardin said...Karen Pence was horrified. Proving that women shouldn't vote.

NO. This proves that christian fundamentalist born again bible bangers shouldn't vote.

cubanbob said...

What HW really believes in politically is an unknown. And irrelevant. He was a big player in an industry that is socially and politically Left. If he were an open Republican Conservative he probably would have never been able to be as successful as he was and certainly never have been able to get away with with what did for for so long. Hollywood is in the fantasy business and HW spent what he needed to spend in both time and money to create the necessary fantasy to promote himself and to be able to do what he did for so long. And since he was so good at what he did as a producer Hollywood let a man of his talent get away with what (and and as long as he was publicly pious) he did since it put so much coin in the pockets of people who spend some of the coin in being (or appearing to be) virtuous. In another setting he could have been a TV Evangelist.

cubanbob said...

I think it merely interesting that evangelical Christians would support with any enthusiasm a candidate like Trump. Twice-divorced, thrice-married; an abuser of at least one wife; a notorious adulterer; a former pro-"choice" Democrat; and as Althouse herself theorizes, "pro-gay, and being cagey about it."

Chuck why do persist in making such a fool of yourself? Seriously asked. You know perfectly well why Evangelical Christians supported Trump so why do you persist with this foolery?

YoungHegelian said...

@cubanbob,

Chuck why do persist in making such a fool of yourself? Seriously asked. You know perfectly well why Evangelical Christians supported Trump so why do you persist with this foolery?

A foolishness made all the more apparent by the fact that Trump paid his political debts to the religious wing of the Republican Party right out of the gate by his appointments of Sessions as AG**, DeVos at Dept. of Ed., & Gorsuch to the SCOTUS.

Whatever may be the foibles of Trump's private life, politically speaking, he has taken better care of the religious right that W. ever did. Probably because he knew that if he didn't, he had already given them plenty of reasons to look elsewhere.

** No one knew at the time that Sessions would turn out to be so feckless, so it was done with good intentions & high expectations on both sides.

Howard said...

The radical christian right supports trump because, while he has paid for abortions and birth control all his life, he is willing to cut off access of these products and services to poor people. Nothing titillates am evangelical like sex oppression. This perverted fetish leads to toe tapping and a wide stance.

Fabi said...

That's cute, Howard! Any more whoppers to share with the group?

Drago said...

"Why is a "life-long Republican" engaging in leftist-provided whatboutism regarding Harvey Weinstein?"

Darn it!

There I was, just sitting there, minding my own lifelong republican business, when gosh darn it a bunch of thoughts occurred to me and, once again, despite my best intentions, I find myself 100% aligned with the leftist talking points of the day.

I mean, it's inexplicable how on every issue I end up on the lefty side of the rhetorical divide. I can't explain it! What bad luck.

What horrible, no good, very bad luck.

Dang.

Drago said...

Howard: "The radical christian right supports trump because, while he has paid for abortions and birth control all his life, he is willing to cut off access of these products and services to poor people. Nothing titillates am evangelical like sex oppression"

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say, oh so very respectfully, that Howard might just be a "tad" off the mark in his analysis.

The good news is that posting that made him feel better, and that's gotta count for something.

Rusty said...


"If I pissed you off, that's a good thing."

No. Chuck. You and the usual suspects don't have the capacity to "piss me off".
For the most part I view you as Chief Wiggums little boy.


Now Howard. Show us on the doll where Jesus touched you.

rcocean said...

"Anyone in the CPUSA who stayed in through the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact was an actual Communist. No exceptions. It doesn't matter if they suddenly changed their minds after the German invasion of the USSR."

I'd agree with that. Of course, the whole "I joined CPUSA in the 30s because they were "fighting Hitler" was always nonsense. How do you "fight Hitler" in the 1930s in NYC or Beverly Hills? And of course, all the liberals and socialists were against Hitler too. You didn't need to be a Commie to dislike Hitler.

BTW, the *new* excuse, is that the Commie were supporting civil rights. That's how Betsy Blair (Gene Kelly's 1st wife) justified becoming a Communist in 1946.
That's just as bogus as the "I wanted to fight fascism"

n.n said...

Liberalism is divergent. Progressivism is monotonic.

We need to reconcile moral, natural, and personal imperatives, and discover a conservation of principles.

buwaya said...

Trolls aside -

On the question of why corporations, or their executives, boards, or the decision-makers among their ultimate owners, to be more accurate, back liberal positions:

Having had a good look at much of the inside, it is a complex mix of reasons.

One of course is pure self-and-fiduciary interest. Opposition to the state ideology is always very risky. As we know, in ham sandwich nation, trouble is just up to a prosecutors discretion, or attention. In such a complex mess all are guilty anyway. One is forced to be a courtier just to avoid trouble, as Microsoft learned in the 1990's.

Another is benefit of regulatory capture. To capture one must play ball. To obtain benefits from regulation one must co-opt by joining the tribe. This means reciting their creed.

And, not least, is the matter of what Australians would call "doctors wives", the tendency for wealthy women to acquire liberal values due to fashion and group dynamics. That is the effect of the upper class social milieu. The culture of the international upper class is nowadays quite uniform, dominated by women (as always probably), and just as uniform in thought as any female society.

So it is not ALL about impersonal interest.

I am speaking of industrial firms, not the entertainment business, where all the above would be more intense I suppose.

Sebastian said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sebastian said...

"a faith he appears to have violated in the starkest way." Really? Maybe he actually bought the lib BS: that women are equal, that women are strong, that women can say no, that women seek opportunity just like men. "Gimme a massage!": what better opening bid to a job-hunting, agency-exercising, strong and independent woman?

Anyway, I agree with the hypotheses offered thus far. Just to pile on: a start-from-scratch Harvey would still pick progs as his team: 1. they are more likely to hurt him: progs fight and shame more intensely, so the risk of getting on their bad side is greater; 2. prog standards are entirely instrumental, so you can get away with things longer, and it is not even a matter of getting away: if Polanski is OK, then Harvey is OK.

n.n said...

To think, social progress followed with placing conception before choice thereby denying women's agency... and lives deemed unworthy, inconvenient, and profitable. Fortunately, fathers and sons have stood their ground, and rejected the female chauvinist thesis: I am man, therefore I rape, and sometimes rape-rape.

Equal and complementary. A law of religious/moral philosophy is a conservation of principles.

William said...

I heard the full Howard Stern interview with Harvey. Harvey presented himself as a good family man and devoted father. If he had one fault it was his passion for making great movies. He read a lot. That's why he was able to find those great scripts. There was too much money invested in his films for him to ever indulge in casting couch behavior. For the most part, Howard took him at his word and praised Harvey's courage and determination to make great movies. Subsequent revelations makes Howard look gullible and Harvey look slick and hypocritical.......In his interviews with Howard Stern--at least the ones I heard--Trump comes off as cartoonishly horn dog. He doesn't look good but neither does he look hypocritical. Advantage Trump in this match up.

Fabi said...

Most of it is regulatory capture, buwaya. The left is also more punitive toward their "enemies", so that is likely a consideration, too.

Chuck said...

YoungHegelian said...
@cubanbob,

"Chuck why do persist in making such a fool of yourself? Seriously asked. You know perfectly well why Evangelical Christians supported Trump so why do you persist with this foolery?"

A foolishness made all the more apparent by the fact that Trump paid his political debts to the religious wing of the Republican Party right out of the gate by his appointments of Sessions as AG**, DeVos at Dept. of Ed., & Gorsuch to the SCOTUS.

So to you both; indeed I really and truly do not understand why Evangelical Christians supported Trump.

Betsy DeVos never supported Trump in the primaries. A significant number of the students and Liberty University, many of whom (Cruz supporters; and wasn't Ted Cruz -- "Lyin' Ted" -- the obvious dream candidate for Evangelical Christians?) protested Trump in a Liberty speech. I'd bet anything that Neil Gorsuch of Colorado wouldn't have voted for Trump if they had had a primary election (they had a party caucus, as I recall).

Again, Trump has a personal record of positions unlike any serious Republican presidential candidate in the last 20 years. Pro-choice in the past. Pro-SSM in the past. Nobody would be surprised if Trump had paid for some abortions in NY.

But I'll just ask straight up; in a paragraph, can anyone explain why Trump would have been the attractive candidate for Evangelical Christians in the 2016 primary season?

I am sort of willing to stipulate that now, Donald Trump seems to be pressing executive branch action against legally normalizing the LGBT community(ies). It is a bit of a surprise to me, and I have to presume that it's a huge and nasty surprise to Ann Althouse if indeed she voted for Trump.

Chuck said...

.......In his interviews with Howard Stern--at least the ones I heard--Trump comes off as cartoonishly horn dog.

Because, why wouldn't a political hero of Evangelical Christianity go on the Howard Stern Show and play the part of a cartoonish horn dog?

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

No one knew at the time that Sessions would turn out to be so feckless...

I was hoping he would be! I mean, how could an AG who's fifty years behind the times be so ineffective? Who knew!

A modern, reality-based perspective is helpful even in law enforcement, apparently. This guy, who sees marijuana as the bigger threat to the public than the KKK, who thinks the problem is that cops are not allowed to be tough, authoritarian and respected enough by their communities instead of better integrated within them - apparently his biggest sin is that he still seems to understand any definition of conflict-of-interest and recusal terms that any lawyer not looking to be disbarred would also recognize.

The right has gone off the rails. The total control freaks are in charge of all our politics. It's their government, now.

Fabi said...

Evangelical Christians are one of the GOP's most reliable voting blocs. Who's Chuckles picking on now?

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

The left is also more punitive toward their "enemies", so that is likely a consideration, too.

Really?

Maybe we should seek to prevent them from voting, then - as the right does.

William said...

@Chuck: Just as a way of establishing a base line: Do you think Frederica Wilson has more dignity and honesty than John Kelly. Your opinions are always interesting and informative.......I think Carter, Obama, and the Bush family can be critical of Trump's marital history. I don't think that option is available to the Clintons, Harvey Weinstein, and all those in Hollywood who gave a standing ovation to Roman Polanski. The left is just as contemptible in their evasions and hypocrisy as any Christian fundamentalist or Catholic prelate. Probably more so, because yo will never see any major motion picture detailing their evils.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Evangelical Christians are one of the GOP's most reliable voting blocs. Who's Chuckles picking on now?

Hypocrites, I think.

Oh, that's right. Politics over morality. Carry on.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

The wingers here apparently need another history lesson. Republicans were not right-wing and conservative until Catholics Buckley and Reagan made them that way. All this intoning they do here for the right and conservatism is a modern-day innovation for Republicanism. Prior to that it was still the party of the rich, the elites, business/corporatism and any playboys of enough means to join the club (as now), but not conservative. The rich have liked social conservatism and religion because they feel it helps keep the restive working class in line and subservient to them, but they never used to endorse it for themselves. Hence, Trump. Endorsing a broader puritanism for everyone was, again, a Buckley/St. Reagan innovation. After '68/'72/'76 the business elites owning the Republican party figured they'd might as well champion Calvinism and Puritanism for themselves, as long as they were going to mandate it for their workers and the other plebeians they looked down upon.

That's probably why the modern-day myth of the "hard-working" rich business owner persists. And why the reality of a douchebag like Trump proves it wrong every day. He's about as involved and engaged and committed as Taylor Swift is to her current boyfriend-of-the-week.

buwaya said...

Marijuana is indeed a bigger threat to the public health than the KKK, which barely exists. Santeria and Voudun are bigger problems than the KKK (and they aren't).

Vastly more people use marijuana, and even if the rate is low, negative health and mental effects are well documented.

buwaya said...

The myth of the hard working rich business owner persists because its not a myth. The vast majority of businesses are owned and actually run by their founders, even today, and every large company began (or its antecedents began) as such founder-run businesses.

Hands-on operation of a large business is a 24x7 life commitment, as is just about any true upper management position. They make a lot of money, but to stay in those positions is really a life, not just a job.

There were Fords and Carnegies and Gates behind them all, and vast numbers of much more obscure people. Do a deep dive into the history of any industry and you will find them.

Fabi said...

@Toothless: as smart as your are and that you have all the solutions at you fingertips, I have to ask; How long does that line stretch in front of your house each morning with Fortune 100 employers desperate to hire you?

Honestly -- I'm blessed just to have these occasional interactions with you here.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Marijuana is indeed a bigger threat to the public health than the KKK, which barely exists. Santeria and Voudun are bigger problems than the KKK (and they aren't).

Vastly more people use marijuana, and even if the rate is low, negative health and mental effects are well documented.


What a bunch of filthy bull semen you suck on. Tell me how many deaths marijuana has caused compared to the legal products alcohol, tobacco, trans-saturated fats and other products you nattering nitwit. Well documented! It's documented that you pulled these ideas out your asshole!

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

@Toothless: as smart as your are and that you have all the solutions at you fingertips, I have to ask; How long does that line stretch in front of your house each morning with Fortune 100 employers desperate to hire you?

If that's your sole criterion for success or wisdom, you won't find any. I'm more biblical than you are apparently in understanding the basic fact that not only does man not live by bread alone, but that a lack of sufficient bread will kill him. I'm looking to avoid both scenarios, not play the game of whomever gets out of life with the most toys (or toys created) goes to Heaven the most times or whatever. Virtue does not go "clink" in one's pockets or rub together like paper.

Listen, before the agricultural revolution, let alone before industry, there was plenty of virtue and vice and just as much and as little to go around. To hoard and to hold and to gift. Nothing's changed. I do like what modern technology gives us, and capitalism helps with that a lot. But I don't there has to be a trade-off against the basic morality of not starving or bankrupting your neighbor through hospital bills. None of those jobs "created" means anything if the same number of people (and growing!) remain destitute.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

The myth of the hard working rich business owner persists because its not a myth.

What poppycock. Trump disproves it every day. Usually while in his bathrobe watching cable teevee or Twittering away petty insults in the wee hours of the morning. The hardest thing this fucker ever worked for was a compliment. Or to repair his permanently blackened reputation.

The vast majority of businesses are owned and actually run by their founders, even today, and every large company began (or its antecedents began) as such founder-run businesses.

I suppose that's why you want to do away with the estate tax. You really seem to feel that without aristocracy the engine of ingenuity will be broken irreparably! Stop incentivizing kids of the rich to work just as hard as their parents! Paris Hilton needs leisure, too! She hardly gets any as is!

buwaya said...

The Democratic party has always been (in the US North anyway) the same high-low mix as today, the high being largely established wealth, with the Republicans representing the bourgeois middle, and the noveau riche. The main exceptions were the US South and Jews, which remained leftist-Democrat though they got rich.

I speculate that the long term sclerosis of the US economy and the cumulative effect of social sorting is one reason for the shortage of true noveau riche types. Actual disruptive innovation has slowed to near nothing, and the return on investment on politics and regulatory capture have led to a more uniform and persistent upper class.

In the old days ideology was much less of an issue, probably because religion occupied most of that space. Genuine politics was much more about policies and interests than ideas. Buckley et. al. are mostly reactions to the intrusion of ideology replacing religion. That was Buckleys original point in 1951.

Fabi said...

Do you part your halo on the left side, Toothless?

buwaya said...

Ritmo,

Calm down, have coffee, take your medications (I am sure you have them).

I see business owners and executives every day. I have been in that mix all my life. This is the case. Its not a job, its your whole life. All your social interactions, even, have an external significance. You have no friends that are not implicated in professional and business interests.

If you have not been there, all you can do is project fantasies.

And the rest of your rants are bizarre. I am not opposed to estate taxes (above a certain level to exclude small business and the Mittelstand) and I am opposed to an economy based on inherited wealth, or wealth derived from corporatist exploitation of governments. Your current Democratic party is entirely that by the way, run by such "aristocratic" interests, using the "low" part of their mix as a vote farm.
A classic structure going back to the late Roman Republic, even down to the sources of wealth.

Drago said...

It's fun when Chucky lets the mask drop.

MadisonMan said...

The question is not why Harvey embraced progressive causes but why Progressive causes embraced Harvey, especially when he was wearing that bathrobe.

Because when embraced, money erupted out of his dick, and cascaded out of his ass.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Do you part your halo on the left side, Toothless?

If you're such a devil, and no one can trust your interests, arguments, or honesty, then do the right thing and exit the debate. Admit that your interests and integrity are too compromised to take up the interests and causes of the common man.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

I am not opposed to estate taxes (above a certain level to exclude small business and the Mittelstand)...

Your party is. And watch them make it happen.

...and I am opposed to an economy based on inherited wealth, or wealth derived from corporatist exploitation of governments.

Your party is not. Again, watch them make it happen. Trump is making estate tax repeal, which would benefit a tiny minority of trucking companies, the centerpiece of his proposal for them.

Your current Democratic party is entirely that by the way, run by such "aristocratic" interests, using the "low" part of their mix as a vote farm.

Who cares about them? What am I doing to help them? I'm talking about policies - which you seem to not following.

A classic structure going back to the late Roman Republic, even down to the sources of wealth.

Whatever. Show me the policy and who's changing it for the things you say you oppose and who is not.

buwaya said...

Its not "my" party. I voted for the Partido Popular, headed by Mariano Rajoy, and for Mr. Duterte. I am a foreigner commenting on your politics.

Back again to structures. Regulation benefits the high ground of society, because it mainly acts as a barrier to entry and a preserver and enabler, through addition of leverage, to existing wealth. It also acts as a barrier to the expansion of small and medium business and prevents the rise of competition for large business.

Your analysis of public policies suffers from a lack of knowledge and perspective, a failure of the big picture. Hence I have consistently recommended broadening experience and more useful reading. But a "bring a horse to water" and so on.

cubanbob said...

Chuck said...
YoungHegelian said...
@cubanbob,

"Chuck why do persist in making such a fool of yourself? Seriously asked. You know perfectly well why Evangelical Christians supported Trump so why do you persist with this foolery?"

A foolishness made all the more apparent by the fact that Trump paid his political debts to the religious wing of the Republican Party right out of the gate by his appointments of Sessions as AG**, DeVos at Dept. of Ed., & Gorsuch to the SCOTUS.

So to you both; indeed I really and truly do not understand why Evangelical Christians supported Trump. "

Now tell us again why you voted for Trump. Maybe it will give you a clue on why the Evangelic Christians voted for Trump. Incidentally if Felonia runs again against Trump in 2020 will you vote for her? Or if it's the fake Indian Princess populist millionaires who has done rather well in the world of non-profits and bankruptcy law? Or the photogenic, attractive Senator from California who is pretty much a Marxist and not know for her intelligence? So far that's what the Democrats appear to be offering. Even TTR who is more anti-Trump than you admitted he didn't vote for Felonia. Felonia and The Orange Cheeto were the only two candidates that could win the election. I'm not saying that TTR voted for Trump ( I believe he said he voted for some third party candidate) but Trump in-spite of it all was not quite as bad as Hillary. TTR if I misspoke I apologize. So again Chuck, why the persistent digging in to the foolery?

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Its not "my" party. I voted for the Partido Popular, headed by Mariano Rajoy, and for Mr. Duterte. I am a foreigner commenting on your politics.

Back again to structures. Regulation...


So instead of arguing specifics, you admit that you just want to argue in vague generalizations that have no connection between what's going on in the Philippines vs. what's actually going on here.

Then goodbye. I don't give a fuck about the Philippines. I'm talking about U.S. policy, and if you aren't able to, then adios. The conversation has no validity to me. I couldn't care about your ideological predilections when they're obviously just being used as a smokescreen to avoid talking the specifics about what's actually, in reality, taking place in my own much more important and influential country.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
cubanbob said...

Your party is not. Again, watch them make it happen. Trump is making estate tax repeal, which would benefit a tiny minority of trucking companies, the centerpiece of his proposal for them."

My wife and I are hardly plutocrats. We are small business owners, the "working class rich" so to speak. If we both died tomorrow our kids would be subjected to the estate tax on part of our estate. The question is why should they be subject to a tax on money that was already taxed? If it wasn't, then yes I can see the legitimacy of that being taxed when sold. But the estate tax isn't a capital gains tax or a deferred income tax. Its a wealth tax and due less than a year after the death. It's not a capital gains tax that is triggered when a sale is made.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Nah, you haven't mischaracterized me, Cubanbob. I'm willing to hear out people who honestly think Shillary would have been a better win than Trump, even Shillary herself, but she never completely convinces me at all. Even the title and reason for her current book tour convince me that she still can't help making it all about herself - even in losing! She might be a lot more knowledgeable than Trump, less lazy, might have even been more competent or persuadable by needed experts when necessary. But I'm in no way convinced of that and pretty convinced that she would have been doing worse for the country by continuing to divert attention from issues that Trump is not doing a good job of accurately addressing but at least highlighting and (possibly) championing.

She's a power diva. She pretends to do her work when she's the underdog doggy dog but when on top of things and her ego brims she's just as careless. For gods sake look at her campaign and how incompetently she and her supposedly brilliant staff of fellow over-confident brainiacs fucked that one up. If that alone doesn't disqualify someone for any further participation or commentary in American politics then I don't know what does.

buwaya said...

I have been a US resident for 36 years Ritmo. I married here, raised kids here, and most of my business career has been here.

Much more background in US affairs than Toqueville ever had. And, I think, much more than you have had.

And your constant disparaging of the Philippines is, frankly, the impulse of a depraved thought. Listen to yourself before you speak, and stop if it is the devil speaking.

Anyway, you do not care to deal in detail with policy proposals. The estate tax mainly affects just those small business and Mittelstand firms I mentioned, and limits great wealth insignificantly, because they can afford sheltering workarounds such as foundations.

If you wanted to discuss and not berate you would do a deep dive into the issue, present both sides, do a cost-benefit analyses, and question all sides.

cubanbob said...

The Toothless Revolutionary said...
Nah, you haven't mischaracterized me, Cubanbob. I'm willing to hear out people who honestly think Shillary would have been a better win than Trump, even Shillary herself, but she never completely convinces me at all. Even the title and reason for her current book tour convince me that she still can't even make it all about herself - even in losing! She might actually be more knowledgeable than Trump, might have even been more competent or persuadable when needed by needed experts. But I'm in no way convinced of that and pretty convinced that she would have been doing worse for the country by continuing to divert attention from issues that Trump is not doing a good job of accurately addressing but at least highlighting and (possibly) championing."

Setting aside our aside our policy and ideological differences there is no chance Hillary could in any way be more competent or effective than Trump simply because of the baggage of corruption she has and her inability to even accept any responsibilities for her actions. Hillary simply couldn't have chosen people who weren't sycophants and weren't willing to overlook all of the prior corruption and all the ensuing corruption to come as she is hopelessly compromised. You may not like Trump's picks for policy reasons but as far as i can tell none of them are wallflowers, incompetents or butt-kissers.

Fabi said...

"Admit that your interests and integrity are too compromised to take up the interests and causes of the common man."

That right there is some rhetorical frontier gibberish.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

My wife and I are hardly plutocrats. We are small business owners, the "working class rich" so to speak. If we both died tomorrow our kids would be subjected to the estate tax on part of our estate.

The estate tax only applies to those bequeathing more than $5.49 million. If you and your wife have that much in your business, and don't think of yourselves as plutocrats, then you're wrong. And if you want to avoid it anyway then simply transfer ownership before you die. It's not hard. If you don't trust your kids to run your business while you're already old and infirm and near death then WTF should the government give it a boost afterwards, just because you couldn't trust your kids to take ownership of it while you were still alive? That's a pretty convoluted reasoning.

The question is why should they be subject to a tax on money that was already taxed?

Taxes take place upon a transfer. That's how taxes work. Your kids are not the same legal persons as you. A transfer to them is no different than a transfer of paycheck from employer to employee or stock to owner or someone abroad to a domestic possession. Again, if you trust them so much with the business then transfer that ownership before you croak.

If it wasn't, then yes I can see the legitimacy of that being taxed when sold. But the estate tax isn't a capital gains tax or a deferred income tax.

It's still a transfer. A transfer that, again, you're simply ascribing to their possession by virtue of inheritance instead of by virtue of your faith in their stewardship of the business itself. If you think they'd do so great with it, then transfer it while you're alive. By waiting to transfer ownership until after you die you're explicitly telegraphing to American society and the federal government that you don't really trust them with the business, that you don't trust them to run it well, but just want to give it over to them as a form of inherited property. The U.S. government and American society have no interest in that. They have no interest in transmitting the inheritance of wealth within families to strengthen an aristocratic class. They have an interest in keeping businesses strong and as capable employers to keep the economy growing and you are giving them the message that you don't know how well your business can do that if you have to wait until the Hail Mary pass of your death to effectuate the ultimately necessary transfer of ownership to a new, and competent owner.

Its a wealth tax and due less than a year after the death.

Progressive taxation is much better than its alternative - regressive taxation. If it's a wealth tax then damn right and good thing that it is. That's what I said all along.

It's not a capital gains tax that is triggered when a sale is made.

It's worse. It's a sale without a purchase price. Its sole purchase price is being born to the previous owner - which is not a form of transaction that American society or our government need to or should favor. Bad economics. Let your kids and potential competent owners be on equal footing when vying to take over the enterprise. Or transfer to it to them beforehand, if you'd think they'd be such great stewards of it.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Goodbye Fabi.

You really do have a dozen different ways of admitting that the discussion is not one you're able to contribute to, don't you?

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Either direct your comments to U.S. politics then or don't, puti. I don't have time for this bullshit both-sides-of-your-mouth talking crap where you can't clarify whether you're talking about U.S. policy or not. It's 2017. Go read de Tocqueville when the discussion concerns 1830s issues.

Until then, goodbye to you, too. Business schmizeness. You have the attention span and relevance of a fucking housefly. I could dangle a mobile in front of you or roll some dice and be as likely to get a less distracted response from you.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

You may not like Trump's picks for policy reasons but as far as i can tell none of them are wallflowers, incompetents or butt-kissers.

Actually I've found that most of them are. There's a reason why he demands personal loyalty as his presidential absolute. Because he can and he needs to.

After Baghdad Bob Spicer went out on Jan. 21 and declared the inaugural crowd the best attended. EVER. PERIOD. I knew we were dealing with an alternative-reality cabinet. This was reinforced on the debacle/spectacle of the June cabinet meeting. Blessings! Incredible. That was straight-up Soviet-style shit.

Fabi said...

@Toothless: Your quoted verbiage in my response at 3:52 AM was not in any way a conversation -- it was a baseless accusation. Learn the elements of a proper argument and then get back to me.

Francisco D said...

Why do people continue to post when Ritmo takes over the thread?

He is worse than LLR/Sgt. Schultz, if that's possible.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

There was no 3:52 AM comment.

At 3:52 PM you made a personal accusation reinforcing your inane 2:25 PM, equally accusatory comment because you had no capacity for engaging the brute strength of force of the 2:02 PM comment. And even that comment was again a philosophical and practical rebuttal - a very effective one - of your third ad hominem of the thread (at least vis-a-vis this exchange): At 1:56 PM.

Stick to an objective fact or GTFO of the the thread. If all you want is to go personal I can make that happen for you, though. And I can guarantee you won't like it.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Why do people continue to post when Ritmo takes over the thread?

He is worse than LLR/Sgt. Schultz, if that's possible.


I can't say how impressed I am at the stupendous sense of focus and doggedly persistent attention to objective facts evident in this comment. Really! It's a wonder that threads aren't dominated by "Francisco D", with this level of thought, insight, civility and just plain winning attention to the actual issue at hand!

Francisco D. is an amazing contributor, and we are all lucky to have him. Let us all bow our heads for a moment and pay homage to the almighty Franciso C. I'm sure he's taught us all a thing or two, edified us beyond all measure, and made us better off for the effort. All Hail Generalissimo Francisco Z! He commands a mighty army of fact, reason and enlightenment into the blogosphere - unmatched by any militant autocrat that history's ever thrown at the media ever!

Francisco D said...

Ritmo,

Take your meds. They will help you.

cubanbob said...

TTR your comment on the estate tax is factually wrong. First the amount of gifting either pre-death or at the time of death is subject to to the tax minus the allowable exemption. As for the business, what exactly is your point? If we sold the business before our deaths we would pay a capital gains tax at 25% on the gain (and if we made enough money they would be subject to the estate tax on that gain). If we transferred it the kids while we are alive as a gift that in of itself is a taxable event. You also overlook that being small business owners, most of the owners are not passive investors waiting for the payday of the sale of the business but rather manager/directors and workers who earn their income from participating in the running of the business. Since the shareholders/partners of the business (most sane owners are Sub Chapter S or LLC ) are the ones liable for the taxes unless the children step into the business and run it completely the tax consequences are pretty bad for all concerned with your suggestion. So if the parents gifted the shares while they were alive (establishing the price) not only would the kids be in the position of having to take a distribution to pay the income tax on the business but doing so would increase their tax bracket on all their other income if employed. As for the rest of your comment, apparently as long as it doesn't personally effect you, you have no problem with others getting massively taxed for no reason other than class resentment. Perhaps people in high real estate markets like CA should get taxed by the IRS annually on the imputed wealth they gained by having Prop 13 capping their property taxes. Or the Silicon Valley workers taxed on the imputed income of all the meals and other personal services their employers provide them. Or the civil servants who get 60% of their final year of service plus unused sick days and vacation days for their twenty years of service at 40% above what they would have gotten if the were just getting Social Security ( not to mention tax them if they didn't contribute 12.4% to their pension and tax them if like in NY they are exempt from state income tax on those pension). If we are going to tax wealth then tax all wealth, including yours.

Birkel said...

Who hid the meds?

Michael K said...

"The conversation has no validity to me."

Do you even know how little validity there is to your rants ?

There are no links to supporting sources. It's all just invective and obscene ad hominem.

Take your meds. They will help you.

They might but he won't. Back to my book.

Reading would be good for you Ritmo.




cubanbob said...

Actually I've found that most of them are. There's a reason why he demands personal loyalty as his presidential absolute. Because he can and he needs to."

And Obama didn't? So far, none of his picks needed the job. They were all rather successful without him. They aren't looking for the big payday after they leave DC. They don't need Trump. For what it's worth, I have relatives in the architecture and engineering business who have dealt with Trump on several projects. They have told me that he hires competent people who aren't yes-men. His tactic is to keep pushing on the vendors to get as much as he can and he did that by acting unreasonably at times, being a blowhard at others, constant braying until he gets what he wants or as close as he can get to it. He is acting no different as president. In what universe can you possibly compare a Jeff Sessions to a Loretta Lynch or a Eric Holder and say Trump picked incompetent wallflowers or butt-kissers, never mind a Rex Tillerson to a John Kerry or Hillary Clinton.

Birkel said...

Meanwhile, an entire industry was and is devoted to the exploitation of young people. HW is but the one man singled out of the larger industry. Corey Haim could not be reached for comment. Corey Feldman was shouted down by Barbara Walters.

The HW scandal is breaking some of the hold Hollywood has on America. President Trump is devastating the MSM. Universities are performing ritual seppuku in full view of tax payers.

If only fewer dollars were extracted from the productive economy to be wasted in D.C. I could be fully satisfied. But D.C. without its mouthpieces is an impotent, angry bunch of would-be rulers.

Resist, we must.

Tim said...

I'm not a fan of the estate tax because that money does NOT IN ANY WAY belong to the government. The gov has already taken their share.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Do you even know how little validity there is to your rants ?

No, because your vantage point is of someone who hates basic, foundational ideas and concepts. So your idea of "validity" is one that no one cares for.

There are no links to supporting sources.

Most of what I say are just obvious conclusions from easily available supporting sources. If you need links to basic knowledge, just tell me which of them you're unfamiliar with, and I'll give you a link. Or you could just open up an encyclopedia. That counts as reading, too, you pompous ignoramus.

It's all just invective and obscene ad hominem.

Not all. Just the fun stuff!

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

Well, I'll look into it cubanbob. But the repeal effort sounds suspect. If there's really no other fair way to transfer a business then I'm not for confiscatory rates but I have my suspicions about what's really going on. If the effort really was for the purpose you pose then it's hard to see why they use a name that hearkens back so immediately to wealthy estates, rather than to a bustling small business.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

So far, none of his picks needed the job. They were all rather successful without him.

And using his offer of a job to enrich their "success" further. How many of his policies are designed to do something other than to benefit himself and his most wealthy cabinet in history?

Chuck said...

William said...
@Chuck: Just as a way of establishing a base line: Do you think Frederica Wilson has more dignity and honesty than John Kelly. Your opinions are always interesting and informative.......

Not even in the same universe. But just tonight I heard Gen. Barry McCaffrey on MSNBC saying that he's never met a more decent, honorable, capable man than Kelly, whom he has known closely for many years. But that Kelly's political tasking, to go after Rep. Wilson (who I have described as a back-bencher beneath any serious argument) was a terrible mistake in McCaffrey's view, and amounted to Kelly being thrown under the bus by Trump. Kelly should never have needed to say anything at all, on his own behalf. Kelly's personal story is well known to him. (It is a moving story, when he tells it.) Kelly got into this mudfight because of Trump's original clumsiness, Trump's cluelessness about the military, and Trump's appetite for petty fights.

I think Carter, Obama, and the Bush family can be critical of Trump's marital history. I don't think that option is available to the Clintons, Harvey Weinstein, and all those in Hollywood who gave a standing ovation to Roman Polanski. The left is just as contemptible in their evasions and hypocrisy as any Christian fundamentalist or Catholic prelate. Probably more so, because yo will never see any major motion picture detailing their evils.

No one on this blog has ever seen me write a charitable word for Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Harvey Weinstein or, uh, Roman Polanski.

Yes, I think those are some contemptible characters. Good lord, my position is so easy! I abhor Bill Clinton. And Bill O'Reilly. I abhor Harvey Weinstein. And (a bit sadly) Roger Ailes. And Ted Kennedy and Denny Hastert and Charlie Crist and Larry Craig and Gerry Studds.

Irrespective of party, I am not looking to cover for anybody.

Including, of course, Donald Trump.

Birkel said...

Like every good LLR, so called Chuck, fopdoodle extraordinaire, was watching MSNBC. And he believes the lying liars hired by MSNBC.

Chuck said...

Birkel said...
Like every good LLR, so called Chuck, fopdoodle extraordinaire, was watching MSNBC. And he believes the lying liars hired by MSNBC.

I was watching 4-star General Barry McCaffey on MSNBC. Purple Hearts (3), the Distinguished Service Cross (2), the Silver Star (2), U.S. Army Ranger Hall of Fame. "If you want to get into a debate with a 4-star... general, I think that's something highly inappropriate," to quote Trump's press secretary in relation to a reporter's questioning General John Kelly's foray into politics with his erroneouos recollection of Rep. Wilson at the Florida FBI building dedication.

Mind you, nobody personally attacked General Kelly on MSNBC. They attacked the stupid politics of the Trump White House.

FIDO said...

Henry II, after the murder of St. Thomas Beckett, had to walk barefoot and in sackcloth all the way from London to Canterbury, where he had to do a public confession, and get hit 5 blows from every bishop attending that day, and 3 blows from the 80 monks in Canterbury. Then he had to do a vigil.

I wonder what the liberal equivalent is in these days? Wearing a pussy hat in a Women's March, and going on the Ellen Show? Oprah used to be one of the Pontifex Maximus in Liberalism, wasn't she?

FIDO said...

There is this thing called 'grace on the cheap'. I notice it a lot on the Left.


The only time they offer any compliments or accolades, or even basic human courtesy to anyone on the Right is when they are totally out of power, ala Bush. Bush is the same man now as he was when president, but NOW they offer kind words and (of course) use him as a cudgel to beat on Trump. (Even though everyone since Reagan was Hitler to Democrats. Sad really how little imagination the so called creative class actually has)

AND, when it comes to CRITICIZING their fellow Lefties, it only happens when they are dead, marginalized or so out of power that they are far less relevant. Like Chuck's litany of horrible Democrats who are all out of power, or safely dead.

So yes, Chuck, your position IS easy!

Chuck said...

FIDO said...
...
...

AND, when it comes to CRITICIZING their fellow Lefties, it only happens when they are dead, marginalized or so out of power that they are far less relevant. Like Chuck's litany of horrible Democrats who are all out of power, or safely dead.

Which current Dem/left leader would you like me to criticize now? I might be very happy to oblige.

My curiosity is whether your theory of turning a blind eye applies to TrumpLand. Where Harvey Weinstein is a monster, but where the offenses of Trump, and Bill O'Reilly, and Eric Bolling are all ignored or rationalized.

Birkel said...

Fopdoodle,

So you happened to be watching MSNBC? Or you are so intimately familiar with its schedule that you knew precisely when to change channels to see the military beard MSNBC hired?

The military achievements of "McCaffey" (sic) do not make him an expert at national politics. Perhaps I will consult a lawyer for my medical problem, when next I have one.