Selective Lack of Sentiment is the Value-Add of Ideology

Kevin Williamson kicked off the thought process with this paragraph – referring to the Nation and Mother Jones magazines

Rather than bring out the best in them — the muckraking, the unsentimental view of American life made possible by a politics not excessively burdened by patriotism — President Donald Trump and his merry men have driven the Left deeper into daft identity politics and vague conspiracy-mongering. Where once there was Christopher Hitchens, now there is the “interactive privilege simulator.” That is not progress.

Which does raise the thought that it is the unsentimental side of an ideology that has value.

That would break out to

Liberals (not the populist left) contribute insight onto

  1. The military
  2. Foreign Policy
  3. The criminal justice system
  4. Come to think of it, anything involving flags and guns
  5. What life is actually like on the bottom

Conservatives (not the populist right) contribute insight into

  1. Education
  2. Poverty/anything even remotely resembling an underclass
  3. Anything involving the “intersectional/priviledge” – though that is probably a recent development

Libertarians (there are no populist libertarians) contribute insight into

  1. The actual working of the state, and it’s victims
  2. Insight about the planning fallacy, and central planning – that probably includes all of the insights libertarians have

God, Batman and Eisenhower

Sometimes I think belief in god is a matter of resolution and detail. For example, god in quite a few forms makes perfect intuitive sense in a big-picture here is the cosmos view. It makes much less intuitive sense if you look at the world on the scale of your morning commute. It makes intuitive sense again when you look through a microscope or think about string theory, quarks or things on that level.

Similarly Batman makes perfect sense when viewed at comic book resolution, much less so in a movie, even less in real life.

As for Eisenhower, I’m not sure where he fits into any of this – I just remember being struck by reading that the first four hours of his day as president was spent in solitary reading – he seemed to get the idea of resolution and problem solving right.

More to come on this over time.

The wisdom of Moskos

From the Cop in the Hood Blog

The ten leading states — as in cops most shootingest states — in rank order, are New Mexico, Alaska, Oklahoma, Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, Wyoming, West Virginia, Montana, and Idaho. It certainly seems like if we were to focus on the states that have the highest rates of police-involved shootings (and by far), we could find some low-hanging fruit to reduce the number of said shootings. But to do this we’d have stop thinking of police-involved shootings as primarily related to race

It’s all worth reading (and short) – it’s amazing what we lose by ceding intellectual territory to the high side of the Jordan Peterson spectrum (I need to write that concept up).

Christmas musings

From this Kevin Williamson column

But that isn’t exactly what happened. Not really. He was not called wonderful or mighty — He was called criminal and heretic. We may call Him the Prince of Peace now, here at 2,000 years of safe reserve, but He knew very little peace in His own time. He was rejected even before His birth: We hear in the traditional account of the Nativity that “there was no room at the inn,” but many contemporary scholars believe that this translation represents a mishandling of the Greek, which specifies not a pandokheion, an ordinary commercial inn, but a kataluma, something quite different: the guest room in a family home. (I am indebted to the Reverend David Rea of Providence Presbyterian Church in Dallas for this insight.) That is a very different story: Mary and Joseph were not turned away by an overbooked hotelier but by their own family, who were no doubt filled with shame and indignation at Mary’s irregular condition. All the best people, the straight and the good and the true — they never really change. They’ve been insufferable since 6 b.c., at least.

How much can the interpretations change based on Greek translations?