Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Migration killing tourism

The European governments are going to have to choose between migrants and tourists:
Tourists from China are avoiding France amid surging violence and crime, a Chinese tourism expert has said, reporting that customers are turning to Russia as a safer destination.

President of the Chinese Association of Travel Agencies in France, Jean-François Zhou, said “increasingly violent” thefts and assaults are turning France into “one of the worst destinations for foreign tourists”.

Mr. Zhou, a representative for major Chinese travel agency Utour in France, reported a steep decline in visitor numbers from Asia, and said many tourists are now looking to Russia as a less dangerous holiday destination

“In 2016, there were 1.6 million Chinese tourists compared to 2.2 million in 2015. The  number of Japanese tourists dropped 39 per cent, and Koreans 27 per cent. Our tourists have turned to Russia, which is less attractive but at least it is a safe country. For Putin, it is an economic windfall”, he told Le Parisien.

Rising violence and aggression account for the drop, according to Mr. Zhou, who said: “For a number of Chinese tourists, the dream of visiting France and Paris has turned into a nightmare.

“[Chinese tourists] are robbed in the palace of Versailles, at the foot of the Eiffel Tower, in front of their hotel, as they leave the coaches … In high season, not a day goes by without tourists being assaulted.”
You can try to talk your way around reality as long as you like. But eventually, people are going to notice the gap between what you're saying and what they're seeing, and then the web of words will fail. I'm just surprised that Russia is already beginning to become a tourist destination. Should it eventually become more popular than the USA, the decline will be unmistakable.

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Hard BREXIT it is

It's far from over, but the British people are clearly no more interested in the dire threats from Europe than the God-Emperor Ascendant is:
Just a few weeks after the Brexit vote, I was confronted by one of Britain’s most senior bankers at a social event stuffed with the nation’s business elite.  The message was shrill: ‘This is a disaster. You have to help convince the Government we must stay in the single market.’

Now the banker, who has been patrolling the corridors of Whitehall with the same message ever since, has received a similarly robust response from the Prime Minister herself.

Britain will not remain part of the single market. It will not be seeking any off-the-shelf, Norway-style deals. Nor is it interested in a customs union — imposing standardised EU-wide import tariffs — which would limit its ability to forge independent trade deals with the world’s great economies.

Theresa May’s muscular bargaining position with Brussels has been immeasurably strengthened by two factors: the imminent arrival of Donald Trump in the White House; and the sparkling performance of the UK’s economy since June, which has defied all the ‘expert’ predictions of doom. A Trump presidency, we are now promised, will put Britain at the front of the queue for a trade deal — not at the back, as threatened by Barack Obama.

That is enormously significant because the U.S. is Britain’s biggest single trading partner, accounting for 20 per cent of our commerce with the rest of the world, and 6 per cent of the UK’s total output. Britain’s economy is showing a remarkable resilience in the face of Brexit beyond the wildest dreams of those who advocated that we should leave.
The economists and architects of the EU lied to get the nations of Europe into the EU. It shouldn't be terribly surprising to discover that they will lie to try to keep them from leaving and reclaiming their national sovereignty. Indeed, the harder the Europeans argue, lie, and threaten, the more it becomes obvious to everyone across Europe that the Brits, and everyone else, will be better off out of the bankers' corporatist state.


The toll

There is a common phrase one hears among skeptics of biracial relationships between blacks and whites, "burn the coal, pay the toll". But given my background in economics, I couldn't help wondering what, precisely, is the toll? Here are some relevant facts, figures, and probabilities for white women contemplating the costs and benefits of coal-burning.

  • 100 percent greater chance of getting divorced.

Marriages that took place between African American men and white women had twice the potential of ending up in divorce in comparison to marriages involving a white man and a white woman. White female and African American male couples also had the greatest chances of divorce out of all non-white and white marriages.
- "Is Interracial Marriage More Likely to End in Divorce?"

  • 3 percent chance of having legitimate children

92% of biracial children with African American fathers are born out of wedlock,with Caucasian mothers leading in that percentage [at 97%]. 90% of women who have children out of wedlock with African American men will not end up marrying that man, where as 10% will wed,  yet those that wed, or do have their children in wedlock, typically end up a single mother nonetheless due to divorce.
- "Ninety Two Percent: Examining the Birth Trends, Family Structure, Economic Standing, Paternal Relationships, and Emotional Stability of Biracial Children with African American Fathers"

  • 98 percent chance of not being financially supported by the child's father

Does the father of your children support financially? Caucasian: NO 98% YES 2%
- "Ninety Two Percent: Examining the Birth Trends, Family Structure, Economic Standing, Paternal Relationships, and Emotional Stability of Biracial Children with African American Fathers"

  • A one-in-three chance of encountering herpes.

White infection rate: 6 percent. Black infection rate: 32 percent.
- "Percentage of Adults Aged 20--29 Years with Genital Herpes Infection, by Race/Ethnicity", National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey

  • 1,524 percent greater chance of encountering gonorrhea

White male infection rate: 28.8/100,000. Black male infection rate: 467.7/100,000.
- "STD/HIV incidence rates in the US (breakdown by race) 2014", Centers for Disease Control

  • 1,524 percent greater chance of encountering gonorrhea

White male infection rate: 28.8/100,000. Black male infection rate: 467.7/100,000.
- "STD/HIV incidence rates in the US (breakdown by race) 2014", Centers for Disease Control

  • 670 percent greater chance of being murdered 

In this paper we examine patterns and trends in homicides between marriage partners in the United States for 1976 through 1985 using data from the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Supplemental Homicide Reports (FBI-SHR). We identified 16,595 spouse homicides accounting for 8.8 per cent of all homicides reported to the FBI-SHR during this 10-year period…. The risk of victimization was greater for spouses in interracial than in intraracial marriages … Spouse homicides in marriages where the husband was Black and the wife was White constituted 1.4 per cent of the total … Spouse homicide incidence rates were 7.7 times higher in interracial marriages relative to intraracial marriages.
- “Fatal Violence among Spouses in the United States, 1976-85,” by James A. Mercy and Linda E. Saltzman.

So, that's the toll involved. It's not even close to the cheerful middle-class picture so often presented by the television commercials. In light of the statistical probabilities involved, any parent who remains silent for fear of being called "racist" fully deserves the 18-year penalty that so often results from biracial relationships. I note that any parent who permitted their children to take such similarly high risks in other circumstances would probably be charged with abuse.

On the macro level, the obvious conclusion is that the media's propagandistic push for biracial relationships is just another front in its 52-year war on the family, of every race and color. And on Gab, a biracial individual commented on the truth of these observations concerning illegitimacy and child support: @voxday Hitting me right in the childhood

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The doomed presidency

(((Richard Cohen))) warns that the Trump presidency is doomed:
Whether he knows it or not, the specter of Lyndon Baines Johnson haunts Donald John Trump. There are some jarring similarities — two big, fleshy men given to vulgarities and gauche behavior, boastful, thin-skinned, politically amoral, vengeful, unforgiving and, most important, considered illegitimate presidents. For Johnson, that took some time to sink in; Trump is already there....

The president-elect will take the oath with a minority of the popular vote — a substantial deficit of almost 3 million votes. He enters the Oval Office with historically dismal poll numbers, lower now than right after he won the election. He has done nothing to woo the majority of Americans who rejected his candidacy and has, instead, adhered to his schoolyard habit of tweeting his every grievance, denigrating his every critic, making cameos with vaccine and global-warming doubters and, as if to show some versatility, rascals such as Don King and Kanye West. It is a “Gong Show” with no gong in sight.

Lyndon Johnson would no doubt warn Trump that he is already on thin ice and he will plunge through it the moment Congress takes the measure of his unpopularity. Johnson was a man of huge political abilities and experience, and his achievements in civil rights entitled him to greatness. Yet, when Vietnam went sour, so did the public, and it seemed, after a while, that his personal characteristics, scathingly caricatured by artists such as David Levine and Jules Feiffer, oozed out of him so that they obscured both him and his accomplishments. He was deemed capable of anything — of lying and perversion of all kinds. This is where Trump stands now.

By the end of the week, Trump will be the president. I wish him the best; I wish him the worst. The dilemma is how to separate loathing for him from love of country. I am leaving it to time to work that out. Meanwhile, Trump will have his moment, that’s for sure, but when things go wrong he will be chased from office — just like Johnson once was. The ancient Greeks knew why: A man’s character is his fate. In that case, Trump’s presidency is doomed.
My two-word rebuttal: Bill Clinton.

Now, LBJ was, in my opinion, the very worst president the USA has ever had, with the arguable exception of Lincoln. Say what you will of Wilson and FDR, (much less trivialities such as Carter, the Bushes, and Obama) but in both cases, the nation-state not only survived their administrations, but came out of them at least temporarily stronger than before, even though various seeds for long term problems had been planted. And LBJ managed to do his mortal damage to the nation in less than two full terms.

By signing the Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1965 and instituting the Great Society, LBJ murdered the American nation-state, which no longer exists any more than the Chickesaw nation in northern Mississippi or the Cherokee nation in Georgia do. The USA is now a multinational, multicultural, multireligious state, with less stability and worse long-term prospects than the Austro-Hungarian empire in 1900.

We should hope and pray the Trump presidency is as significant as LBJ's doomed one, although, of course, in the opposite direction. MAGA! MAWA! MAAA!

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Riding the Red Horse now in audio

The spectre of war once more looms on the global horizon. A new generation of writers and military theorists are addressing the new forms of warfare that now challenge the nation-state's monopoly on war.

Terrorism, technology, fourth generation warfare, the decline of the Pax Americana, and the rise of China are among the issues contemplated by the 20 contributors to Riding the Red Horse, a collection of 24 essays and short stories from technologists, military strategists, military historians, and the leading authors of military science fiction. From the Old Guard to the New, the anthology features some of the keenest minds and best-selling authors writing in the genre today. Three national militaries and three service branches are represented by the contributors, the majority of whom are veterans.

Edited by LTC Tom Kratman, US Army (ret), and Vox Day, Riding the Red Horse covers everything from real-world lasers, intelligence ops, threat assessments, and wargame design to space combats, fleet actions, and ground operations taking place in some of the most popular future universes in science fiction.

The anthology consists of contributions from Eric S. Raymond, William S. Lind, Chris Kennedy, James F. Dunnigan, Jerry Pournelle, Ken Burnside, Christopher Nuttall, Rolf Nelson, Harry Kitchener, Giuseppe Filotto, John F. Carr, Wolfgang Diehr, Thomas Mays, Benjamin Cheah, James Perry, Brad Torgersen, Tedd Roberts, Steve Rzasa, Tom Kratman, and Vox Day. Narrated by Jon Mollison, Riding the Red Horse is 14 hours and 8 minutes in audiobook format.


Tuesday, January 17, 2017

They took away his gay card

Great news, ladies! MILO is now officially straight!
Dear Milo,

You don’t frighten me.

I’m going to take my heels off so I can get down to your level. Let’s cover some basic ground: your bleach job and concealer several shades too light don’t make you Aryan, it just makes you look like Gerard Way failing to get into a frat party. You’ve taken all your self-hatred, warped it, and levelled it at vulnerable people. I think you’re pathetic and sad.

I’m not going to waste time telling you that you’re a bigot. The faculty has pretty well covered why you shouldn’t come here in their open letters to the chancellor. Besides, being called a Nazi doesn’t appear to stop you or anyone else on the alt-right from doing a goddamn thing....

When you get here on Feb. 1, we will be waiting here to strip you of your gay identity. You can have sex with all the men you want, but you’re not gay anymore. You’ve used your sexual orientation as an excuse to spit bile and galvanize cowards for long enough. Put your badge and gun on my desk. The community rejects you. You have never been one of us.

Neil Lawrence is a former Daily Cal columnist.
Sounds like someone is crushing pretty hard. The best part is where zhe announces zhe is a "five foot two, chronically depressed Jewish anarchist drag queen with no eyebrows."

Every. Single. Time.


The Alt-Right comes to Washington

Politico appears to be more confused than anything about what the Alt-Right is, what it represents, who is in it, or even what it is called:
Known until recently as the “alt-right,” it is a dispersed movement that encompasses a range of right-wing figures who are mostly young, mostly addicted to provocation and mostly have made their names on the internet. On the less extreme end, they include economic nationalists and “Western chauvinists” like Yiannopoulos, who wants to purge Islam from the United States and Europe; the movement also encompasses overt white nationalists, committed fascists and proponents of a host of other ideologies that were thought to have died out in American politics not long after World War II. Over the course of Trump’s campaign, these ideas came back to life in chat rooms, on Twitter and on the fringes of the internet—driven by supporters united by their loathing of progressives and their feeling of alienation from the free market Republican Party as it defined itself before Trump’s takeover.

This “new right” is now enjoying something of a moment. It’s not clear whether the movement helped fuel Trump’s rise or just rode its coattails. But energized by his success, this loose confederacy of meme-generating internet trolls, provocateurs and self-appointed custodians of Trumpism has begun making plans to move into Washington’s corridors of power, or at least shoulder their way into the general vicinity. When they look at Washington—a besuited city that moves to the rhythm of lobbying and legislative calendars and carefully worded statements—they see an opportunity for total disruption, the kind of overthrow the movement already takes credit for visiting on American politics....

For a bunch of media-driven provocateurs, members of the new nationalist right can be highly particular about their interactions with the mainstream press. Longtime bloggers Vox Day and Steve Sailer agreed to answer questions for this story only in writing. Charles Johnson agreed to an interview on the condition that he would also record it, a tactic more commonly employed by prominent politicians. He also declined to be photographed, explaining that only one photographer is allowed to take his picture for publication....

Yiannopoulos said he still talks to Bannon, but he declined to say about what. He disavowed any interest in Washington past the inaugural festivities. “Everybody in politics is a cunt,” he said. “They’re boring, untalented, unattractive people.” The real fight, he thinks, is the culture war he’s waging on college campuses. Yiannopoulos said he will leave Washington after Trump’s inauguration weekend with no desire to return.

“I’m like Cincinnatus,” he said, comparing himself to the 5th century B.C. patrician who was appointed dictator of Rome to repel an invasion and promptly returned to civilian life after the crisis passed. “I want to go do this shit and go back to my fucking farm.”
Since the guy completely wasted my time, didn't bother to quote me once - although, admittedly, doing so would have risked puncturing his prefabricated narrative about the Alt-Right going to Washington - and neglected to mention the name of Mike's "Finnish publishing house", in this case I'll provide the full set of questions and answers. I don't care if they want to ignore me, that's fine. But if you repeatedly contact me, ask me questions, and then ignore my answers, well, don't be surprised when I ignore your future requests.

This reminds me of the sports media, and the way that they constantly complain that the athletes either don't talk to them or refuse to give them anything but canned answers. Who do they think taught them to do that? The media clearly doesn't like the fact that we won't talk to them on the phone, and it won't be long before they are complaining that we don't bother responding to their emails anymore. Well, you see, Mr. Journalist Reporter, since you're obviously not going to utilize any of the answers we're giving you, there simply isn't any reason to talk to you in the first place.

This is why Stefan Molyneux doesn't bother with them at all. I may need to further alter my media policy in imitation of his. Or perhaps I'll simply tell everyone who contacts me to go talk to Milo. All they really want is quotes from him anyhow, so we might as well cut right to the chase.

Hi Vox,

Can I interview you for Politico Magazine about your plans for the next four years?

I didn't respond to that. I shouldn't have bothered responding to the next one, obviously.

 Hi Vox,

Bumping this to the top of your inbox. Can we arrange an interview?

Certainly. However, please note that I only do written interviews. We can do as many rounds of follow-up as you require.

Do you expect your writing will gain more traction in Washington during the Trump administration than it has in recent years?

I would tend to think so. Considering that I publicly predicted both the 2008 financial crisis and the Trump presidency long before they happened, it would seem to make sense to pay attention to those commentators utilizing effective predictive models rather than those that have proven repeatedly false. Regardless of what people think about it, it is increasingly obvious that the Alt-Right is the only philosophical perspective that is in line with both current science and the present historical trends.

Have you been to DC since Election Day? Are you planning to spend more time in DC during the Trump administration ? (I’m not sure where you’re based)

No, I haven't been there in years. And I have no intention of going there in the future.

Do you or other intellectuals you’re in touch with have plans for building a lasting political movement?

I have absolutely no interest in building a political movement, ephemeral or lasting. I am solely interested in writing books, designing games, and understanding what is true to the greatest extent of my ability to recognize it. While some of the people with whom I am in touch are actively involved in politics, and I support their efforts, that's just not something in which I'm interested. My parents were involved in politics and that exposure was sufficient to dissuade me from it.

What was your parents' political involvement and how did it dissuade you from pursuing politics?

They were heavily involved in Minnesota politics and were both delegates at the 1988 RNC. My father also ran Pat Robertson's presidential campaign in Minnesota and was close with Ralph Reed and the Christian Coalition. What I saw in the inner circles of the Republican Party was that with a few principled exceptions, most of the establishment figures cared about nothing but influence and money. They viewed ideology as something to keep the rubes occupied.

That's why Donald Trump smoked the GOP establishment so badly. He listened to the people and embraced their causes. The professional Republicans had been tuning them out for at least 28 years.

Plans to set up think tanks or run candidates for office or set up other political infrastructure?

None at all.

Do you have thoughts or plans on how to gain wider acceptance for ideas that are currently treated as taboo?

Reality has a way of imposing itself on societal taboos. Identity politics are upon the USA whether we like them or not. Acceptance for the Alt-Right perspective will occur due to the continued failures of liberalism and conservatism alike, as it is already obvious to anyone who is paying attention that the idea of a shiny happy multicultural, multireligious America is a complete and utter failure. How much more failure has to happen before people reluctantly abandon their false philosophical models cannot be known, but we know that sooner or later, they will.

In other words, we don't have to do anything but continue to point out the obvious to everyone, and eventually, inevitably, the sane and stable elements of the America public will come to accept it.

Who else should I talk to for this article?

Mike Cernovich, Peter Turchin, Milo Yiannopoulos, the Men of the West blog.

Do you have contact info for Molyneux?

Yes, but he won't talk to you. He never talks to the media in any form.

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How to kill your business

Why would you EVER take your computer to the Geek Squad, knowing that the FBI is paying them to inform on their customers?
Law enforcement has a number of informants working for it and the companies that already pay their paychecks, like UPS, for example. It also has a number of government employees working for the TSA, keeping their eyes peeled for "suspicious" amounts of cash it can swoop in and seize.

Unsurprisingly, the FBI also has a number of paid informants. Some of these informants apparently work at Best Buy -- Geek Squad by day, government informants by… well, also by day.

According to court records, Geek Squad technician John "Trey" Westphal, an FBI informant, reported he accidentally located on Rettenmaier's computer an image of "a fully nude, white prepubescent female on her hands and knees on a bed, with a brown choker-type collar around her neck." Westphal notified his boss, Justin Meade, also an FBI informant, who alerted colleague Randall Ratliff, another FBI informant at Best Buy, as well as the FBI. Claiming the image met the definition of child pornography and was tied to a series of illicit pictures known as the "Jenny" shots, agent Tracey Riley seized the hard drive.

Not necessarily a problem, considering companies performing computer/electronic device repair are legally required to report discovered child porn to law enforcement. The difference here is the paycheck. This Geek Squad member had been paid $500 for digging around in customers' computers and reporting his findings to the FBI. That changes the motivation from legal obligation to a chance to earn extra cash by digging around in files not essential to the repair work at hand.

More of a problem is the FBI's tactics. While it possibly could have simply pointed to the legal obligation Best Buy has to report discovered child porn, it proactively destroyed this argument by apparently trying to cover up the origin of its investigation, as well as a couple of warrantless searches.

Setting aside the issue of whether the search of Rettenmaier's computer constituted an illegal search by private individuals acting as government agents, the FBI undertook a series of dishonest measures in hopes of building a case, according to James D. Riddet, Rettenmaier's San Clemente-based defense attorney. Riddet says agents conducted two additional searches of the computer without obtaining necessary warrants, lied to trick a federal magistrate judge into authorizing a search warrant, then tried to cover up their misdeeds by initially hiding records.

The "private search" issue is mentioned briefly in OC Weekly's report, but should be examined more closely. Private searches are acceptable, but the introduction of cash payments, as well as the FBI having an official liaison with Best Buy suggests the searches aren't really "private." Instead, the FBI appears to be using private searches to route around warrant requirements. That's not permissible and even the FBI's belief that going after the "worst of worst" isn't going to be enough to salvage these warrantless searches.
One would think they are unaware of how Americans have learned that a justifiable use of a dangerous tactic always leads to unjustifiable uses of it. It's one thing for there to be a mechanism for reporting this sort of thing when evidence of egregious criminal wrongdoing is encountered, but it is absolutely something else entirely when private services are compensated and incentivized to hunt for it, or worse, create it.

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Pity the poor Never Trumpers

Given their inability to grasp the relationship between action and consequence, to say nothing of their inability to predict events, one could argue there is a case for the God-Emperor Ascendant to leave the Never Trumpers Never Employed even if he was inclined to let bygones be bygones.
They are some of the biggest names in the Republican national security firmament, veterans of past GOP administrations who say, if called upon by President-elect Donald Trump, they stand ready to serve their country again.

But their phones aren’t ringing. Their entreaties to Trump Tower in New York have mostly gone unanswered. In Trump world, these establishment all-stars say they are “PNG” — personae non gratae.

Their transgression was signing one or both of two public “Never Trump” letters during the campaign, declaring they would not vote for Trump and calling his candidacy a danger to the nation. One letter, with 122 names, was published by War on the Rocks, a website devoted to national security commentary, during the primary season in March. The other, with 50 names, including some repeat signatories, was published by the New York Times during the general-election campaign in August.

Now, just days before Trump is sworn in as the nation’s 45th president, the letter signers fear they have been added to another document, this one private — a purported blacklist compiled by Trump’s political advisers....

The conflict was exacerbated shortly after the election when Eliot Cohen, a State Department counselor during the Bush administration who had helped organize the War on the Rocks letter, aired new criticism of the Trump transition. In an opinion column for The Washington Post in November, Cohen said that a friend on the transition team had asked him to provide names of potential job candidates — with the stipulation that he include no one who signed either of the letters.

Cohen wrote that he became convinced there were “pent-up resentments” among members of the Trump team, and he warned young policy experts against working for the administration. Cohen has had no further communications with the transition team.

“Believe me — my phone is not ringing,” he said in a recent interview.
Forget not being hired. These jokers should be worried about being renditioned and droned. After all, they have called the President-Elect of the United States of America "a danger to the nation".

And what nation would that be, exactly?

The fact that they are so utterly clueless as to be surprised that they are not being offered employment by the very man they attacked so viciously and so publicly should alone be enough to prevent anyone from hiring them, not just the Trump administration.

In any event, once more the God-Emperor Ascendant is demonstrating his wisdom by refusing to place his trust in the bureaucratic elite that hates him and will fight him at every opportunity. I don't think Trump is going to disappoint his supporters, I think he is going to delight them by exceeding their expectations.

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APPENDIX N: The Literary History of Dungeons & Dragons

APPENDIX N: The Literary History of Dungeons & Dragons is a detailed and comprehensive investigation of the various works of science fiction and fantasy that game designer Gary Gygax declared to be the primary influences on his seminal role-playing game, Dungeons & Dragons. It is a deep intellectual dive into the literature of science fiction's past that will fascinate any serious role-playing gamer. It also contains an extensive interview with the designer of the Tunnels & Trolls RPG, Ken St. Andre.

Author Jeffro Johnson, an expert role-playing gamer, accomplished Dungeon Master and three-time Hugo Award Finalist, critically reviews all 43 works listed by Gygax in the famous appendix of the original D&D game books, and in doing so, draws a series of intelligent conclusions about the literary gap between past and present that are surprisingly relevant to current events, not only in the fantastic world of role-playing, but the real world in which the players live. Johnson is also the Editor of the Castalia House blog and a regular contributor there.

Featuring an Introduction by John C. Wright, himself an inveterate role-playing gamer, APPENDIX N is 355 pages, DRM-free, and retails for $6.99.

Brian Renninger described the significance of Johnson's APPENDIX N:

With this book we are coming out a dark age. Jerry Pournelle has said “The definition of a Dark Age is that we no longer remember what we once could do.” It’s not just that we have lost capability but, not knowing that we ever had capability that makes it dark. Of course, the term “Dark Ages” has fallen out of current fashion. It seems judgmental and unscientific to call that time after the fall of Rome and through the end of the Viking Age “dark” as if it were lesser in some way. But, I’m not an academic and history is not science. And, Rome was sacked. The aqueducts did stop running. Latin was forgotten, by all but a few specialists, to be replaced by the babble of dozens of local tongues. It’s dark because the records of that time are sparse – fewer people wrote and the people who did write, wrote on fewer topics.

Appendix N is just a reading list. But, a reading list tailored to a topic. The topic being inspirational works for playing the original role-playing game – Dungeons and Dragons. The list was intended to inspire players on adding variety to their game. And, to give players examples that explain why the game was made the way it was made.</

Jeffro Johnson set himself the task to read all of Appendix N in the context of its stated purpose. He found what he was looking for: clear evidence for many of the foundational rules of Dungeons and Dragons hidden in plain sight in the text of old fantastic adventure writing. But, he also found more – the nucleus of an earlier canon of fantastic literature. In that canon he discovered greater variety, subtlety, strangeness and a broader sophistication of theme than found in the general run of fantasy writing today. And, he found some damned fun stories.

So, for us, what has been forgotten? To a large degree, we have forgotten the scope that fantasy fiction can obtain when allowed unfettered freedom of imagination. We have forgotten that fantasy fiction can be just as edgy and daring when addressing the best of human nature rather than the worst. In fact, we have forgotten that literature can and should encompass all things. Or, even more, that literature should also encompass impossible things – especially fantastic literature.

And at Castalia House, Schuyler Hernstrom explains how it was that Appendix N started a literary movement:

Jeffro has indeed unearthed something. It is the hidden heritage of our beloved genres. I feel a little embarrassed, frankly, that I was so wrong about the fiction that I love so much. What I thought I knew about the genre was a series of walls and fences, put into place to guide me toward opinions and attitudes that were presented as things inevitable.... Jeffro’s work has become a lodestone, pulling at a set of emerging and disparate writers. We are out there, creating what we want from influences as varied as Lord Dunsany and anime. From the maps he drew we are navigating rivers back to their sources. We are exploring myth and knocking the rust off old ideas like heroism and honor. 

Some may wonder why Castalia publishes such seemingly esoteric books, especially given the fact that I'm not an RPGer, and never was except in the very most casual computer-game sense. The reason is that the dominance of the Left is cultural, and they arrived at their position of political influence in the West primarily through cultural means as per Gramsci rather than the economic means Marx predicted or the violent means Mao, Lenin, and Che utilized. Those on the Right who sneer at cultural matters as being irrelevant or unimportant fail to realize that they are playing a superficial and losing game. It is from children's tales and children's games that tomorrow's voters are made.

“Fairy tales do not tell children the dragons exist. Children already know that dragons exist. Fairy tales tell children the dragons can be killed.”
- GK Chesterton

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Monday, January 16, 2017

Happy Robert E. Lee Day

From Men of the West:
Today, according to Google, is Robert E. Lee Day.    As proven in the screen shot above, Google’s desktop version is reporting the holiday not as honoring Martin Luther King Jr, but Robert E. Lee.
That would actually make for a potentially effective meme next year. Instead of celebrating the sacred martyr of an alien tribe, celebrate a true American and a heroic man of Virginia and the South.


No one cares what you want

Jonah Goldberg expresses concerns, concernedly, that Donald Trump will fail to be the kind of president Jonah Goldberg prefers.
I very much want Trump to be a successful conservative president — which is to say, I don’t want him to be a successful statist president. I understand all-too-well that many of Trump’s fans do want him to be a successful statist president. They don’t use the word “statist,” preferring the rough synonym “nationalist.” They either sincerely think, or convincingly pretend to think, that there’s a meaningful difference between a statist and a nationalist. There isn’t. That’s a worthwhile argument to have, and there will be many opportunities to have it down the road. But if Trump is going to be a successful conservative president, I think his biggest fans will have to recognize their own tribalism.
The intrinsic dishonesty of some civic nationalists runs so deep that they do not even appear to recognize it when they make massive blunders like confusing statism with nationalism.

Jonah is smarter than this. He understands the difference between a nation - a group of homogeneous people - and a state - a sovereign political entity. He's written about the Kurds before, so he knows there is a Kurdish nation but not a Kurdish state. He's written about the Soviet Union before, so he knows there was a Soviet state despite there being no such thing as a Soviet nation.

Moreover, conservatives have been overt statists since the first Bush '43 administration. Has Jonah already forgotten "big government conservatism" or the bank bailouts of 2008? The fact is that conservatism is a dying non-ideology, and that's why all the anti-Trumpers and Never Trumpers are beginning to cozy up to the God-Emperor Ascendant, whispering their wicked advice in the hopes that they can influence him.

But it won't do them any good. Their electoral impotence, their intellectual irrelevance, and their lack of character was revealed in last year's primary and general election campaigns. And very, very few of them are indicating that they learned anything from the experience.

And as for tribalism, we readily admit ours. We would just like to see Mr. Goldberg and company be honest about theirs. Given the absence of a strong demographic majority, tribalism and identity politics are the inevitable order of the day. See Thomas Sowell for details.

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Martin Luther King, in his own words

The myth of Martin Luther King often appears to have more to do with Gandhi or the Buddha than to the actual man himself. It can be amusing to use his words to trigger SJWs, who don't hesitate to declare them deplorably racist right up until the moment they discover whose words they are.
Alex Haley: Your dissatisfaction with the Civil Rights Act reflects that of most other Negro spokesmen. According to recent polls, however, many whites resent this attitude, calling the Negro “ungrateful” and “unrealistic” to press his demands for more.

Martin Luther King: This is a litany to those of us in this field. “What more will the Negro want?” “What will it take to make these demonstrations end?” Well, I would like to reply with another rhetorical question: Why do white people seem to find it so difficult to understand that the Negro is sick and tired of having reluctantly parceled out to him those rights and privileges which all others receive upon birth or entry in America? I never cease to wonder at the amazing presumption of much of white society, assuming that they have the right to bargain with the Negro for his freedom. This continued arrogant ladling out of pieces of the rights of citizenship has begun to generate a fury in the Negro. Even so, he is not pressing for revenge, or for conquest, or to gain spoils, or to enslave, or even to marry the sisters of those who have injured him. What the Negro wants—and will not stop until he gets—is absolute and unqualified freedom and equality here in this land of his birth, and not in Africa or in some imaginary state. The Negro no longer will be tolerant of anything less than his due right and heritage. He is pursuing only that which he knows is honorably his. He knows that he is right.

But every Negro leader since the turn of the century has been saying this in one form or another. It is because we have been so long and so conscientiously ignored by the dominant white society that the situation has now reached such crisis proportions. Few white people, even today, will face the clear fact that the very future and destiny of this country are tied up in what answer will be given to the Negro. And that answer must be given soon.

Alex Haley: If it’s morally right for supporters of civil rights to violate segregation laws which they consider unjust, why is it wrong for segregationists to resist the enforcement of integration laws which they consider unjust?

Martin Luther King: Because segregation, as even the segregationists know in their hearts, is morally wrong and sinful. If it weren’t, the white South would not be haunted as it is by a deep sense of guilt for what it has done to the Negro—guilt for patronizing him, degrading him, brutalizing him, depersonalizing him, thingifying him; guilt for lying to itself. This is the source of the schizophrenia that the South will suffer until it goes through its crisis of conscience.

Alex Haley: One of the basic precepts of black nationalism has been the attempt to engender a sense of communion between the American Negro and his African “brother,” a sense of identity between the emergence of black Africa and the Negro’s struggle for freedom in America. Do you feel that this is a constructive effort?

Martin Luther King: Yes, I do, in many ways. There is a distinct, significant and inevitable correlation. The Negro across America, looking at his television set, sees black statesmen voting in the United Nations on vital world issues, knowing that in many of America’s cities, he himself is not yet permitted to place his ballot. The Negro hears of black kings and potentates ruling in palaces, while he remains ghettoized in urban slums. It is only natural that Negroes would react to this extreme irony. Consciously or unconsciously, the American Negro has been caught up by the black Zeitgeist. He feels a deepening sense of identification with his black African brothers, and with his brown and yellow brothers of Asia, South America and the Caribbean. With them he is moving with a sense of increasing urgency toward the promised land of racial justice.

Alex Haley: Do you feel that the African nations, in turn, should involve themselves more actively in American Negro affairs?

Martin Luther King: I do indeed. The world is now so small in terms of geographic proximity and mutual problems that no nation should stand idly by and watch another’s plight. I think that in every possible instance Africans should use the influence of their governments to make it clear that the struggle of their brothers in the U.S. is part of a worldwide struggle. In short, injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere, for we are tied together in a garment of mutuality. What happens in Johannesburg affects Birmingham, however indirectly. We are descendants of the Africans. Our heritage is Africa. We should never seek to break the ties, nor should the Africans.

Alex Haley: Do you feel it’s fair to request a multibillion-dollar program of preferential treatment for the Negro, or for any other minority group?

Martin Luther King: I do indeed. Can any fair-minded citizen deny that the Negro has been deprived? Few people reflect that for two centuries the Negro was enslaved, and robbed of any wages—potential accrued wealth which would have been the legacy of his descendants. All of America’s wealth today could not adequately compensate its Negroes for his centuries of exploitation and humiliation. It is an economic fact that a program such as I propose would certainly cost far less than any computation of two centuries of unpaid wages plus accumulated interest

Alex Haley: If Negroes are also granted preferential treatment in housing, as you propose, how would you allay the alarm with which many white homeowners, fearing property devaluation, greet the arrival of Negroes in hitherto all-white neighborhoods?

Martin Luther King: We must expunge from our society the myths and half-truths that engender such groundless fears as these. In the first place, there is no truth to the myth that Negroes depreciate property. The fact is that most Negroes are kept out of residential neighborhoods so long that when one of us is finally sold a home, it’s already depreciated. In the second place, we must dispel the negative and harmful atmosphere that has been created by avaricious and unprincipled realtors who engage in “blockbusting.” If we had in America really serious efforts to break down discrimination in housing and at the same time a concerted program of Government aid to improve housing for Negroes. I think that many white people would be surprised at how many Negroes would choose to live among themselves, exactly as Poles and Jews and other ethnic groups do.
Looking back with the benefit of 52 years of hindsight, it should be entirely clear to anyone with a reasonable grasp of history that the Civil Rights movement was founded on a series of misconceptions, erroneous beliefs, false predictions, and outright lies, and that those who opposed the movement were entirely right to do so. 1965 was a seminal year in the destruction of the United States of America, and it is deeply ironic that one of the more symbolically important destroyers is celebrated today.

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Social media and the threat to the status quo

I don't think it is a coincidence that we're seeing a growing push against social media from the Left, as it has largely ceased to serve their social justice purposes and has now been transformed into a sword that cuts both ways:
We are learning that all of our thoughts aren’t welcome, especially by social media company investors. We are also learning that social media companies are a business. This means conversation is encouraged as long as it runs the gamut from mundane to vicious but stops at the overtly sexual or violent. Early in its life-cycle Pinterest made a big stink about actively banning porn while Instagram essentially allowed all sorts of exposition as long as it was monetizable and censored. Facebook still actively polices its photographs for even the hint of sexuality as an artist named Justyna Kiesielewicz recently discovered. She posted a staid nude and wanted to run it as an targeted advertisement. Facebook mistakenly ran the ad for a while, grabbing $50 before it banned the image. In short the latest incarnation of the expository impulse is truncated and sites like Facebook and Twitter welcome most hate groups but most draw the line at underboobs.

Further, social media is no longer protected. As careless CEOs quickly discover saying the wrong thing in a “private” chat or deleting an errant tweet does not mean someone won’t screencapture your rant. In fact social media has become an id and ego collector, a fly strip where all of our worst thoughts are captured permanently. We exhale in anger and chuff in frustration. We tell people to unfollow us if they don’t like what we’re saying and we turn neighborhood pages into political cesspools. Then, when we cross too many perceived boundaries, an army of trolls is ready to pounce and our private spaces become public very quickly.

In short social media is no longer a safe place. I don’t mean this in the politically correct sense but in the very mental and physical sense. Whereas the web was once a broadcast medium it is now a two-way or many-to-many medium. Our errant Twitter thoughts can make us targets and we often don’t know we’re being watched. Entire wars can break out online that have real-world consequences – see Pizzagate – and hoaxes flit through the memetic bloodstream like cancer, breaking down our defenses. A prominent writer and friend recently mused about what would happen if he posted some political rants. The first thing that leapt to his readers’ minds was the potential for SWATing and doxing and then an visit from the FBI. Then, as evidenced by the above CEO example, you get fired.

Social media has become a very real, very visceral, and very censorial force and it can now only worsen the human condition. It was once an experiment but that experiment is over.
That being said, this is a genie who won't be easily put back in the bottle, because it still serves too many powerful and vested interests. What we can expect is what we are starting to see; a one-sided crackdown that will ultimately fail because it necessarily sacrifices the moral level of war, and in its hypocrisy, gives up both the moral and intellectual high grounds.

The intrinsic problem that the Left faces is that in its constant attempts to destroy every Right-wing figure who surfaces, those who survive become impervious to their methods and become examples to others. Observers then learn what approaches work, such as the open antifragility pioneered by the likes of MILO and Stefan Molyneux, and which ones don't, such as the aggressive anonymity that is easily neutered by a simple doxxing.

The Left can't win on an equal playing field, so they have fought dirty for nearly a century. That was effective so long as the Right was the establishment and sensitive to accusations of fairness and violating its own standards. But now the Alt-Right is rising, and has demonstrated that it is capable of winning on an equal playing field or tilting the field, as needed. This is why their attempts to discredit, disqualify, and destroy will be more furious than ever, and why antifragility and reliable allies rather than anonymity are necessary for every Alt-Right and Alt-Lite figure, however minor.

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Sunday, January 15, 2017

Divisional Round, Day 2

Yesterday went as expected. Atlanta walked over Seattle and New England had no trouble with Houston. Today, I think Dallas will run over the Green Bay defense and keep the ball out of Aaron Rodgers's lethal hands enough to win. No idea about Pittsburgh vs Kansas City, except that if it's close late, Mike Tomlin will manage the clock better than Andy Reid.

UPDATE: Wow! Incredible play by Rodgers, both to not fumble the ball on the sack, then to hit Cook to set up the game-winning field goal. But the game was lost, not won, by the Dallas coaching staff. I couldn't BELIEVE it when they downed the ball on 1-and-10, then didn't run the ball twice when facing third-and-3.

If you don't play to win in the playoffs, chances are you're going to lose. And Jason Garrett did not play to win. What on EARTH was he thinking, to give the ball back to Aaron Rodgers with 35 seconds and two time outs in a tie game?


Mailvox: the illustrated shiv

VFM #7634 wasn't entirely sure to whom Literally Who's self-outing as... something was referring.
I'm confused... is this another post about Scalzi?
No, as it happens, THIS is a tremendous post about the most important author in science fiction history, the Fifth of the Big Three, the biggest, baddest, bestselling dog at Tor Books, the man with more Hugo nominations than Arthur C. Clarke or Jerry Pournelle and more Hugo Awards than Ray Bradbury, A.E. van Vogt, Lester del Rey, Gregory Benford, Norman Spinrad, Terry Pratchett and Iain M. Banks combined, the writer whose innovative "he said, he said, he said" structure has shocked and awed and intimidated the entire science fiction writing community and forever altered the way it approaches writing dialogue.
Our case study today is John Scalzi, a quisling male emblematic of so much that has gone haywire with White American men (and their beards).

Exhibit A: This is Scalzi’s Christmas card. He signed off on it. He approved of it. This is how he wants the world to see him.

Exhibit B: Scalzi in love. Here Scalzi is in the submissive position, an obvious inferior looking up to his wifely better.

Exhibit C: Scalzi smooches. Kissing upward and nuzzling his doughy face into hard manjawline, eyes closed as his hunky lady peers into the middle distance looking burdened with the weight of the world (or for an escape from her husband’s octopus lips), Scalzi eagerly inverts the sexual polarity, taking on the role of the woman in his marriage, ceding all the T to his wife.

Exhibit D: Serious Scalzi. Scalzi tries to look serious (ie like a normal man), but is still out-mugged by his wife, who looks more serious, and tougher, than him.
People have mostly given up trying to sell the narrative, but I always found it bizarre when people tried to claim that I envied John Scalzi. On what planet, and for what reason, would I, or any man, ever envy a gamma male like that?

I find the most interesting thing about Scalzi to be the fact that he somehow managed to delay the inevitable gamma self-implosion until he reached a much higher level of success than is conventionally the case. This suggests that his implosion, when it inevitably comes, is going to be absolutely spectacular.

The best part of the Chateau post is the comments from the women there.
  • What I really despise about this guy is that he’s contributing to the further ruin of science fiction. So why do these mannish women latch on to these beta guys? Seeing stuff like this out of a man makes me hurt inside. It’s instinctive, like being scared of rattlesnakes. How do women kill them in themselves, and why would they want to?
  • Exhibit B made my ovaries shrivel.
  • Who’s that gay bloke standing next to the giant woman?
Some might fear that the lack of compassion and respect shown in this post might cost Heartiste any chance of being nominated for the Vox Day Mutual Respect Award from The Vox Day Center for Mutual Respect. However, I would observe that the metric for the Vox Day Mutual Respect Award given out by The Vox Day Center for Mutual Respect is "showing compassion and respect" for one's "fellow man", and therefore, due to the subject's observable lack of any identifiable signs of actual manhood, it would not be correct to hold this post against le Chateau.

Thank you for caring.

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Closing down corruption

Even prior to his ascendance, the God-Emperor Ascendant is cleaning up corruption in America by putting the Clinton Machine out of business:
The Clinton Foundation’s long list of wealthy donors and foreign government contributors during the 2016 elections provoked critics to allege conflicts of interests. Clinton partisans defended the organization’s charitable work, and dismissed claims that it served as a means for the Clintons to sell off access, market themselves on the paid speech circuit, and elevate their brand as Hillary Clinton campaigned for the presidency.

But as soon as Clinton lost the election, many of the criticisms directed toward the Clinton Foundation were reaffirmed. Foreign governments began pulling out of annual donations, signaling the organization’s clout was predicated on donor access to the Clintons, rather than its philanthropic work. In November, the Australian government confirmed it “has not renewed any of its partnerships with the scandal-plagued Clinton Foundation, effectively ending 10 years of taxpayer-funded contributions worth more than $88 million.” The government of Norway also drastically reduced their annual donations, which reached $20 million a year in 2015.

On January 12, the Clinton Foundation received more bad news: a WARN notice was filed with the New York Department of Labor. The main office of the Clinton Global Initiative in New York City would be closing, laying off 22 employees. The Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN) “offers protection to workers, their families and communities by requiring employers to provide notice 60 days in advance of covered plant closings and covered mass layoffs. This notice must be provided to either affected workers or their representatives (e.g., a labor union); to the State dislocated worker unit; and to the appropriate unit of local government.” The reason for the filing was stated as the “discontinuation of the Clinton Global Initative,” after CGI previously announced layoffs leading up to the general election.
There is no more value in the Clinton Foundation. The Clintons have nothing left to sell now that their 16 years of national power and influence have come to an end. However, that doesn't mean their nefarious activities have ended, as there appear to be an awful lot of loose ends lying about that require cleaning up now, given the growing number of mysterious deaths and disappearances of individuals connected to the foundation in some way.

The Trump administration's investigative efforts are likely to prove more than a little illuminating in the next year or two. And despite all the people are worrying about attempts being made on the God-Emperor Ascendant's life, I would expect that it is the Clintons who have considerably more to fear in that regard. Evil has a habit of callously casting aside its servants who are no longer useful to it.

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No apologies

Hater Foz Meadows refuses to apologize to the Jewish people for her despicable insult to Holocaust survivers. So hateful! Incredibly, she sneeringly waves off public demands for an apology as "batshit ridiculous".

Have you ever heard anything so nakedly anti-semitic? Sad!

And in the meantime, Literally Who isn't taking Literally Wu's latest bid for public attention lying down and has come back strong by coming out as... something nameless that appears to be somehow related to ambiguous non-cisgendered cross-dressing special snowflake status.
I’m going to tell you something I’ve been afraid to say for basically ever. And it’s gonna be messy, and it’s gonna go to some dark places (including eating disorders so pls be advised) because I’m barfing my heart out onto the page and hoping I can do it fast enough that I won’t reconsider, or hold back. I can’t say all this without first pausing to say this is only my story, and it’s a privilege that I am able to share it. I want to gently remind people that I’m only trying to speak for me and my own experiences, and in no way does that change or speak to others’ realities. I’m coming out (holy shit typing that made me anxious), so this is just my story.

My entire life I’ve not been a girl or a woman.

Growing up, I’d have hissyfits over being talked to or referred to as a girl. People have had to remind me that they see me as a girl or a woman my entire life, because it doesn’t exist in my head. All that ever has is “this isn’t me”.

When I was 12, I started smoking cigarettes because I thought they’d make my voice lower, and I was tired of hearing a high alien pitch come out of my face. About a year later, I started starving myself because i wanted to look like anything other than a girl, and because I didn’t identify with being a boy either. The closest thing I could find to what looked “right” was the waif thin androgynous body type, and when combined with my hatred of my own body I developed a full on eating disorder that I never told anyone about. At one point, I hovered around 100lbs, despairing that my hips were still wide, my shoulders and chest still broad, and that I’d be an hourglass no matter how much I starved.

I managed to recover, mostly, but the hatred of my own body remained, strong enough that I still can’t objectively see myself in the mirror with any sort of accuracy. I found out recently I’ve been wearing the wrong size of everything, always overestimating, always going baggier, always trying to hide what I’d been so ashamed of.
There is more. Oh, there is so much more than you could ever want to imagine. But it inspires a very important question, which is: how is Literally Who 2 going to respond to this? Let's face it, it's going to be hard to top the competition from the other two professional victims, especially when they've shown themselves more than willing to match death threat with death threat, and terrified-flight-from-home with terrified-flight-from-home, in the past.

I should think, at a bare minimum, LW2 is going to have to come out as a transgendered male rape victim and run for the U.S. Senate just to stay in the game.

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Saturday, January 14, 2017

Play fair or there will be no game

Mike Cernovich lays down a reasonable rule for the media:
You received this because you sent in a media inquiry. I generally don’t respond to media for a number of reasons. One is that I get a lot of them. Two is that traditional media doesn’t move the needle for me or the movement as well as social media does. Three is that most of you people won’t even describe me accurately.

If you do not agree to refer to me as an author and filmmaker, then I am not going to talk to you.

I’m an author and documentary filmmaker. Among other people, I interviewed Alan Dershowitz in his home for the feature-length documentary, Silenced. Scott Adams, Dave Rubin, Milo, and many others are in Silenced.

My first book, Gorilla Mindset, has over 735 reviews after 18 months. Maybe you don’t like the subject matter because you do not want to improve your own life, whatever. My second book, on Trump’s rise, already has over 200 reviews and has sold more copies than 99% of books released in 2016.

I am neither “alt-right” nor a men’s rights activist.

Mike Cernovich, author and filmmaker….If you lack the basic journalistic integrity to refer to me as who I am, then there’s nothing to talk about.
This is a good strategy for dealing with the media, as far too few reporters have the basic journalistic integrity to bother getting their facts straight.

And it's important to force them to do so, because they are the sort of people who won't hesitate to claim that Christianity, the Alt-Right, and White Nationalism are all one and the same thing.
Author and prolific Tweeter Joyce Carol Oates openly pondered the state of Christianity in America in a post to her Twitter account Thursday afternoon — and believes Christianity is now indistinguishable from white nationalism in many parts of America.
Thus demonstrating that a dedication to social justice and mental retardation are even less distinguishable.

NFL Divisional Round 1

Seahawks-Falcons. Seattle has the pedigree, but Atlanta has been the quietly good team this year, their loss to the Vikings notwithstanding. I'd expect Atlanta to win without too much difficulty.


This is really not good

The clock is rapidly running out on antibiotics. Indeed, it may have already run out.
A US woman has died from an infection that was resistant to all 26 available antibiotics, health officials said this week, raising new concerns about the rise of dangerous superbugs.

The woman, who was in her 70s, died in Nevada in September, and had recently been hospitalized in India with fractured leg bones, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported.

The cause of death was sepsis, following infection from a rare bacteria known as carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE), which is resistant to all antibiotics available in the United States.

The specific strain of CRE, known as Klebsiella pneumoniae, was isolated from one of her wounds in August.

Tests were negative for the mcr-1 gene -- a great concern to health experts because it makes bacteria resistant to the antibiotic of last resort, colistin.
This is genuinely terrifying. Remember, once a species becomes overpopulated, Nature usually figures out a way to cut it back down to size again. Human intelligence doesn't eliminate that reaction, it merely raises the bar. Immigration and global travel are creating significant health risks, and may even be putting the future of the species in jeopardy.

"The report highlights international travel and treatment overseas as a feature in the introduction of this pan-resistant isolate into the USA," he said.

Complicating matters is the fact that lower average intelligence across the West means that humanity is less able to address these concerns should they arise. Sooner or later, the Trump administration will have to look very seriously at denying antibiotics to everyone who cannot, or will not, abide by a strictly observed drug-taking regimen. The potential consequences are that serious.

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"nearly as good"

Those reviewing A Sea of Skulls should really be a little more careful. Such positive reviews bid fair to cause more than a few SF-SJWs to stroke out. Didact's Reach reviews A Sea of Skulls and finds it to be rather better than one might expect:
If the critics found ATOB a bit difficult to stomach because it proved to be such an effective demonstration of what a (supposedly) less skilled but (definitely) more disciplined writer could do when compared with GRRM's declining powers, they are going to very quickly find that A Sea of Skulls will be an even bigger shock to their worldview.

For with this book, Vox Day has not merely matched George R. R. Martin's fantasy writing skills and output. He has exceeded him, by miles, leaving old Rape Rape wheezing and panting in the dust.

In fact, I am willing to go so far as to argue that, with this book, Vox Day has catapulted himself into the storied and rarefied rank of writers that sits just below The Master himself.

That's right, I went there. I just said that Vox Day has written a book that is nearly as good as J. R. R. Tolkien's work.

Not as good. But not terribly far off, either.

From one fantasy fan to another, praise simply does not come any higher than that....

This book is, quite simply, an extraordinary achievement. With it, Vox has separated himself from all of his contemporary rivals and has clearly laid down a marker for everyone else to match- and I personally don't think anyone will be able to do so for years, maybe decades, to come. What he has written here is far more than merely a great book. It is a masterclass of what high fantasy could actually be.
That's just an excerpt. Read the whole thing there. Of course, what may be the biggest testimony in favor of the growing consensus that the ARTS OF DARK AND LIGHT series has unexpectedly become the best epic fantasy series going is the total silence on the part of those who usually don't hesitate to speak out critically every time I recommend a book, or, in some cases, exhale. Just as SF/F sites like Black Gate and File 770 inexplicably have nothing to say about many of the very best-selling authors in science fiction, SF authors such as Vaughn Heppner and B.V. Larson, who have sold literal millions of books, they are silent on the subject of a massive epic fantasy saga that some readers now consider to be the best to have appeared in decades.

Now, I am under absolutely no illusion that my work will ever reach the lofty height of Tolkien's. It can't. It won't. Tolkien's grasp of history, myth, and language are deeper than mine, and the greatness of his work reflects that. The Lord of the Rings is the greatest work of science fiction and fantasy fiction, and, based on my extensive reading of fiction dating back to Homer and the Lady Murasaki, it will remain so for the foreseeable future.

But that does not mean that it cannot be exceeded in various areas, some of which happen to be particular strengths of mine. The martial aspects, the magic systems, the politics, and the socio-sexuality are all elements that can be improved upon. Even the philosophy of evil, in my estimation, is rather on the thin side; who would actually want to serve Sauron? I never found Saruman's switching sides to be terribly convincing; yes, everyone wants to be on the winning side, but what is the point of being a lieutenant of evil if it requires living in squalor surrounded by orcs?

If nothing else, elf chicks are hotter. So are human chicks, and, arguably, dwarf chicks, for that matter. Is living in a mud pit surrounded by howling, bestial orcs really the way a quasi-immortal wants to spend the rest of his days? I'm just not seeing a credible motivation there.

And let's not even get started on the whole "fly in on a squadron of eagles and drop the One Ring in Mount Doom" strategy.

Anyhow, it's very flattering, and encouraging, to see the latest installment in the series has been so well-received. Fans needn't be concerned that any such praise will go to my head, as to the contrary, it has inspired me to buckle down, grit my teeth, and try to raise my game even more. When even those who openly detest me are willing to admit that AODAL is markedly better than ASOIAF and genuinely merits comparison to The Lord of the Rings, then perhaps I'll be willing to contemplate a little coasting.

In the meantime, I have about another one million words to write before AODAL will be finished. The only proper verdict at this point is: it's too soon to tell. I'm barely one-third of the way through the monster. I expect it will be around 1,660,000 words in the end.

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They canceled MILO

SJWs at UC-Davis shut down MILO's event there:
MILO’s event at the University of California, Davis has been cancelled after protesters tore down barricades and engaged in scuffles outside the venue. A camerman for ABC10 was also attacked with hot coffee. ABC-7 reports “violent interactions with protesters.” Video footage shows protesters jumping barricades and throwing them towards police.

Milo Yiannopoulos
My event at UC Davis tonight has been cancelled after violence from left-wing protestors. There are reports of hammers, smashed windows and barricades being torn away. The campus police can't guarantee anyone's safety so I'm not being allowed anywhere near the building. Stay safe, everyone.

“We were told by the chief of Davis police that they could not guarantee the safety of the students, the speaker, or the police officers if the event should go ahead. As the organisation hosting the event, we would have been held personally responsible for any harm caused as a result of its taking place. We were therefore forced to cancel the event.”
- Gabrielle McDowell, vice chair of the UC Davis College Republicans.
SJWs are going to SJW. This is precisely why we show them no breathing room, no mercy, and no quarter. None whatsoever.


Friday, January 13, 2017

A Bundle of Holding

This is an excellent deal for role-playing gamers from Autarch. I have Domains at War and backed the Sinister Stone Kickstarter, and it's all extremely well done. I'm not much of an RPG guy, but I know good game design when I see it, and Alex is very good.

We are pleased to announce that our friends at Bundle of Holding, driving their enemies before them and hearing the lamentations of their spouses and Significant Others, have launched the Adventurer Conqueror King System Bundle, featuring the Adventurer Conqueror King System. The offer is available here:

This discounted offer brings you almost the entire Adventurer Conqueror King System product line as DRM-free .PDF ebooks. For just US$9.95 you get all five titles in our Starter Collection (retail value $40):
  •     Adventurer Conqueror King System (retail price $10): The complete corebook with comprehensive, integrated support for play across all levels of a campaign. (Previously presented in the November 2013 Old School Revival offer.)
  •     ACKS Player's Companion (retail $10): Add 19 new ACKS character classes, and get under the hood to create your own classes.
  •     Domains at War: Campaigns (retail $7.50): Chart your heroes' rise to power with these rules for comprehensive military actions among kingdoms.
  •     The Sinister Stone of Sakkara (retail $10): This ideal introductory adventure highlights everything ACKS brings to your gaming table.
  •     Auran Empire Primer (retail $2.50): An introduction to the official ACKS campaign setting, a not-yet-fallen empire in late Antiquity ripe for conquest.
And if you pay more than the threshold price, you'll level up and also get our entire Bonus Collection with seven more titles (retail value $55):
  •     Dwimmermount (ACKS version, retail $10): Autarch's colossal 400-page science-fantasy megadungeon and campaign setting. Includes the Dungeon Tracker (retail $10), Map Book (retail $7.50), and Illustration Book (retail $5). (We presented the Labyrinth Lord version of Dwimmermount in the November 2015 OSR +4. The supplements are new to this offer and work with both versions.)
  •     Domains at War: Battles and Troops and Terrain (retail $7.50 each): Conduct the landmark conflicts from your Campaigns actions as easily as you run character combats.
  •     Lairs & Encounters (retail $10): More than 165 ready-to-play monster lairs, plus rules for creating and advancing monsters fit to challenge a kingdom.
And Help Pay For a Cure Disease Spell

Ten percent of your payment (after payment gateway fees) goes to the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation. The UMDF is a charity near and dear to lead designer Alexander Macris (that's me!) My wife, Amy, was the first player to run a bladedancer in the Auran Empire. She is now so sick with mitochondrial disease that she can't even play tabletop RPGs with us at all. Her illness has no cure and only limited treatments; the UMDF is trying to change that for her and countless other sufferers around the world.

Click here to get your Bundle of Holding now.


Summa Elvetica in print

Utrum Aelvi habeant anima naturaliter sibi unita. 

Do elves have souls? In a fantasy world in which the realm of Man is dominated by a rich and powerful Church, the Sanctified Father Charity IV has decided the time is ripe to make a conclusive inquiry into the matter. If, in his infallible wisdom, he determines that elves do have immortal souls, then the Church will be obliged to bring the Sacred Word of the Immaculate to them. But if he decides they do not, there will be holy war. Powerful factions line up on both sides of the debate. War-hungry magnates cast greedy eyes at the ancient wealth of the elven kingdoms and pray for a declaration that elves are little more than animals. And there are men who are willing to do more than merely pray.

The delegation sent to the High King of the Elves is led by two great theologians, brilliant philosophers who champion opposite sides of the great debate. And in the Sanctiff's own stead, he sends the young nobleman, Marcus Valerius. Marcus Valerius is a rising scholar in the Church, talented, fearless, and devout. But he is inexperienced in the ways of the world and nothing in his life has prepared him for the beauty of the elves--or the monumental betrayal into which he rides.

SUMMA ELVETICA: A CASUISTRY OF THE ELVISH CONTROVERSY is the prelude to the massive epic high fantasy saga ARTS OF DARK AND LIGHT. In addition to the novel, it contains eight additional tales of Selenoth, including the Hugo Award finalist, Opera Vita Aeterna. 520 pages. $27.99 hardcover, $19.99 paperback.

If you're collecting the series for your library, you'll definitely want this one to go with the other doorstopper. And speaking of series, isn't it fortuitous that WorldCon is experimenting with a Best Series Hugo this year?

An eligible work for this special award  is a multi-volume science fiction or fantasy story, unified by elements such as plot, characters, setting, and presentation, which has appeared in at least three volumes consisting of a total of at least 240,000 words by the close of the calendar year 2016, at least one volume of which was published in 2016. 

All right, let's see here:
  • Multi-volume science fiction or fantasy story. Fantasy. Check.
  • Unified by elements such as plot, characters, setting, and presentation. Check.
  • Has appeared in at least three volumes. Three volumes. Check.
  • A total of at least 240,000 words. 634,590. Check.
  • At least one volume published in 2016. A SEA OF SKULLS. Check.
It looks like the Rabid Puppies have a strong candidate for Best Series here. Isn't that nice? And as the reviewers have noted, as the series have continued, AODAL is stacking up increasingly well against ASOIAF.

Meanwhile, over at Castalia House, Dragon Award-winner Nick Cole has made his debut with a bang, with a post entitled You are Fake Sci-Fi:
Fake Sci-Fi is ruining actual Sci-Fi and here’s who’s to blame: Fake Science Fiction Writers. But first… a little background.

Science fiction has always been a rather fragile affair. At times it has not had the significance it enjoys now. In fact, there were times when it was, for all practical purposes, dead. Just a few grandmasters held the torch during those times, breathing life into the guttering flame during those dark unsexy years of the seventies and eighties when it was just us true believers. But now it’s enjoying a cultural renaissance.

Or is it?

If you’ve heard me talk before, you know that I have a point I occasionally rail on. And it’s this: SciFi is a weak medium that’s been high jacked by radical leftist thinkers recently, to advance cultural change through imaginative storytelling both visual and written in order to download their weird thinking into the collective hardrive.
Read the whole thing there.

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Mailvox: siding with Obama

Does John C. Wright really believe that everyone who sets foot on U.S. soil should automatically be granted U.S. citizenship? Or only those who are citizens of countries he describes as a "slave state"?
I recall the days when you referred to yourself as a libertarian, Vox. Now your obsession has reached a point where, given a choice between siding with Castro's slave state or rethinking your position on racial matters, you side with Castro. Given a choice between siding with Obama, who fundamentally hates every thing you love and who desecrates everything you hold sacred, and rethinking your position on race, you side with Obama.

On a personal note, the Left stopped seeming like humans to me and started seeming like remorseless enemy monsters in human form was when I heard them applauding the midnight military style raid on the house of Elian Gonzales, and cheering the news that the child would be returned to the island sized concentration camp. They hate liberty that much, the Left. They hate humanity, hate life, hate reason,truth and beauty.

Yet each of them was born as an innocent wee babe,cute and cuddly and poopy as were we all.

What changed them? What turns men into monsters?

I suggest that it is the lure of simple, elegant, powerful ideas which become like idols to them. The idol demands a small sacrifice at first, then more, then more.

I have always wondered why the first time one of them found his powerful idea and his cause was leading him into siding with what he himself despised and knew to be wrong, no friend warned him.
First, even when I described myself as a libertarian, I was always careful to reject the capital-L. And even though I voted Libertarian, I did not join the party. Why? Because I rejected both abortion rights and open borders, two strongly held Libertarian positions.

After reading Ian Fletcher's book, then going through the actual free trade arguments of both the classical and Austrian economists and realizing how outmoded and riddled with flaws they were, I began to understand that libertarianism was every bit as utopian, and every bit as impossible, as communism. It's not an accident that adherents of both ideologies rely heavily upon Panglossian hypotheticals, because real-world observations reliably illustrate their total dysfunctionality.

It was possible to argue for communism before technology replaced human labor. It was possible to argue for libertarianism before technology made it possible for immigrants to cheaply travel from one continent to another and remain in contact with their homelands. Now, both ideologies are obviously false and incorrect.

Second, consider the logical consequences of Mr. Wright's stance. Should fathers be deprived of their children and relinquish their paternal rights because the late mother happens to live in a different country? Should all natives of oppressive governments have the right to automatic legal residence in the United States? After all, there are worse governments than the Cuban government; Cuba is only one of 50 countries listed in the Not Free category by Freedom House.

Cuba's freedom rating is more than twice as high as the Central African Republic, five times higher than that of Uzbekistan, and virtually identical to that of China. How can Mr. Wright morally justify offering automatic residence to 11.2 million Cubans while denying it to 31 million Uzbekis and 4.7 million Central Africans who are objectively worse off? Given his reasoning, how can he possibly deny the right of residence in the USA to any of the 1.3 billion people of China?

There is absolutely no reason for me to even begin to consider rethinking my position on race. My position relies entirely on observable facts, sound reason, and the current state of science. The fact that I might, in this one instance, happen to think Obama acted in the American national interest, even if he did so for the wrong reasons, is not in any way relevant to my rational perspective on racial matters. If anyone has a racial obsession here, it is certainly not me.

Indeed, I found it to be both interesting and informative that Mr. Wright looks at this as a question of race rather than one of justice, national interest, or even demographic pragmatism, especially in light of the observations of Osric Pearl, a second-generation Cuban immigrant, in that particular regard.
American of Cuban descent, second generation. I have a few thoughts.

First, I agree with Obama's decision even if I think it was done in bad faith. The US has enough people and it doesn't need any more. The ones who have been arriving as of late have not been the best and the brightest, and have added nothing to the US except for more debt through social services and depressed wages.

Second, I know that this was done because of the elections. Obama is a petty man. Had Hillary won, Obama probably would have sat this one through and let Hillary take it down. Cubans hate the Clintons anyway, so there would be no love lost there. But Steve Sailor has this right, Cubans went for Trump 54%. They voted for him with the same percentage as white women. So yeah, a petty move by a petty man. Although good was done, it was still done under false presences. Had this been an honest move, he would have done it before the election, right around the time relations with Cuba were normalized.

Third, and this isn't something anyone here is going to like to hear, but it must be said. For the poster who stated that the "Exile" should now go back, the "Exile" is dead. Literally. Those Cubans who considered themselves "The Exile" were baby boomers/greatest generation of which most have died. The last member of that generation is my grandmother who is so old she can neither speak nor move. Their children, the Baby Boomers, either came to the US as young children or were born here. They are somewhat culturally Cuban, but this is the gist, the Cuba which they are culturally a part of is no longer alive. CUBA, is dead. Dead dead dead. They may think they are Cubans, but most Cubans don't acknowledge them as such. Indeed, they are very different in values and appearance.

And this is connected to my Fourth point. It's very interesting that in a blog like this, and others, where race matters and where differences of race are considered, few people consider this dynamic in another country, like say, Cuba. If anyone were to scan the faces of those who went to Fidel's funeral, one would see a sea of black people. When one of my family members visited in the 90's, she came back with rolls of tape and a sad heart. "It's just not the same," she said. I wonder why. A great aunt, not quite so PC, asked while watching the video of the trip what "all those black people are doing there." The people who made Cuba what it is, the White/mostly white Spaniards are gone. That means Cuba is gone. This is a tough pill to swallow because no one likes to admit these things since to admit them, one would have to discuss difficult issues about race.

It's been white flight since '56. I know this because the Cubans I grew up with don't look anything like the majority of Cubans who live in Cuba right now. There is no way that second and third generation children will go there and fell at home. This is very different from going back to Europe and being surrounded by a people and a culture who are familiar. As a comparison, my Aunt who found Cuba too Different to visit again goes to Spain all the time and thinks its great.

I am honest enough to admit this, but most Cubans are not. Instead, they will find some excuse or other to stay here. A few recent arrivals who can't cut it may go back, but those who were born here of the original three waves will be in no hurry to go. I suspect that the man whose half-Cuban niece considered going to Cuba after Castro's death will have a mysterious change of heart if she ever seriously entertains the idea and does a few preliminary visits. She may never speak the reason, because to do so will mean she will cross the bounds of social respectability, but she will know it in her heart. Namely, that the Cubans who live in Cuba look nothing like her Cuban parent and extended family. She may as well move to Detroit, with nicer black people.

Race matters. Even in Cuba.

Fifth, Socialism isn't dead there. Castro's death changes nothing. The family is still very much in power, and a successor has been named upon Raul's death. The majority black/mulatto population backs and happily does their bidding even though the ruling class is almost entirely white.

Cuba is dead to me. But it isn't just dead to me, it is dead, period.
From a recent review of Cuckservative:
It’s truly mind-boggling that a so-called “conservative” would support open borders, since immigrants typically vote Democrat, and support things like higher taxes, a higher minimum wage, more welfare, hate speech laws, gun control, and even Sharia law in the case of some Muslims. Immigrants also typically have a higher birthrate than the native white population of the United States, the GOP’s main voting bloc. But fear of being called racist (or xenophobic, or white nationalist, or nativist or some other magic word) is enough to make people like Mitt Romney, John McCain, Paul Ryan, Jeb Bush, Mitch McConnell, John Boehner, Glenn Beck, Erick Erickson, Jonah Goldberg, and Bill O’Reilly (who actually supports birthright citizenship) kowtow to the left’s immigration agenda. That, or some of these cuckservatives are financially beholden to corporate donors who benefit from cheap foreign labor. Either way, cuckservatives remind me of a quote paraphrased from the Roman orator Cicero:

“A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is less to fear.”
I submit that if anyone has made an idol of any ideas, it is those who still have faith in the demonstrably false notions of human equality and propositional nations.

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The Politics of the Possible

Classicist and historian VDH attempts to make sense of the Trumpist ideology, such as it is:

Trumpism promotes traditionalism. Trump showcases “Merry Christmas!” because his parents did. He believes in dressing formally and being addressed as Mr. Trump. And he insists that his children be well-behaved and polite.

You might object that Trump is thrice-married, Petronian in his tastes, and ethically sloppy or worse in his own business dealings. No matter: Trump seeks a return to normalcy all the more. His personal excesses apparently spur his impulses for traditional norms.

Perhaps Trump is like many Baby Boomers as they enter their final decades: They look back at their parents and grandparents, and wonder how they put up with their offspring — and see how far this generation has fallen short of their forebears’ ideals, which in turn sparks a desire for a return to normalcy in the wayward. Deists were believers in the abstract who otherwise shunned a living Christianity yet thought that active religion had social value for others. Similarly, Trump is a non-practicing moralist who believes traditional morality can restore structure and guidance to society.

So Trump is foul-mouthed but wants a return of decorum; he has been conniving but thinks his own recklessness is not necessarily a model for the nation.

National Greatness 

Nationalism is another Trump axiom — the deliberate antithesis to the progressive and Socratic idea of being “a citizen of the world.” In Trump’s mind, the U.S. is a paradise thanks to its exceptional values and the hard work of past generations; the mess elsewhere (to the degree Trump worries about it) is due to human failing that is not America’s fault. Trump laments self-inflicted misery abroad but feels that he and his country are not culpable for it, and, other than Good Samarian disaster or famine relief, we cannot do too much about it in the long term.

If Mexico wants good jobs or Europe seeks to re-arm, then they can first make their own necessary adjustments to give them what they need without necessarily involving the U.S., whose first obligation is to make sure that its own citizens are well, secure, and employed. It seems that in Trump’s view, America’s poor and forgotten have claims on this country’s attention that far outweigh those of the illegal immigrant or the globe-trotting internationalist; the lathe worker in Des Moines and the real estate broker in Manhattan, by virtue of being American, deserve more of Washington’s attention than international bureaucrats or foreign royals. The least American is preferable to the greatest foreigner.

To the Left, this is xenophobic, nativist, and Peronist; in the Trump mind, it is a long-overdue pushback against 21st-centurty globalism. Good borders make good neighbors; illegal immigrants who arrive by breaking the law will certainly keep breaking the law to stay. Americans cannot pick and choose which American laws to follow; why would they allow foreigners to do what they themselves cannot and should not do?
I would describe Trump's approach to governance, which is not an ideology proper, but rather an attitude more akin to conservatism, as the politics of the possible. Do what you can. Don't worry about what you can't. And always keep in mind that the best people, the very best, can accomplish more than anyone else thinks.

The God-Emperor Ascendant is the rare combination of ambition and optimism with pragmatism. It is, as we are beginning to see, a potent combination. And I, for one, will not be at all surprised if, eight years from now, he leaves the White House and enters the history books being widely regarded as a better and more popular president than Ronald Reagan.

That may sound absurd, but note that Trump is already showing signs of being much better at team-building, delegating, and holding his subordinates to high expectations than any president of the modern era.

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