08-15-20 6:04  •  Canceling Elvis

Marky: There is a picture of Elvis with his arm around his girlfriend and someday wife, Priscilla, when he was 25 and she was just 14. Now go ahead and cancel the King of Rock and Roll like you canceled Michael Jackson and R. Kelly.

Plier: That kind of relationship was acceptable back then, and they never had sex until they got married, which they didn't do until after she turned 18. Yawn.

What's interesting is that "The King" stole his music from black musicians.

Marky: Please provide the source that states that Elvis Presley stole music from black musicians. And the color of skin was irrelevant information.

Elvis was not responsible for his own music. He was the tool of record company executive Sam Phillips, who chose what he would cover. Phillips was explicitly looking for a white man who could sing with the soul of black musicians, to cross the sound of rockabilly blues over to white audiences.

"I always said," Phillips told everybody, "that if I could find a white boy who could sing like a black man I'd make a million dollars." He did.

Marky: Plier is always making every discussion about race! Is she going to call out Whitney Houston for "stealing" Dolly Parton's song, or is that a sin only white people can commit?

Actually I disagree that musicians must be called out for "stealing." Music is naturally in the public domain. Rules originally meant to let artists profit from their creations, now mainly funnel money to a few at the top of a vast entertainment-industrial complex. This makes no sense. Music is a human transcendence, and spreading musical memes is a form of communication. It belongs to us all.

I also don't agree that it was necessarily racist of Sam Phillips via Elvis to appropriate the new sound. The racism was baked into the edges. Sam realized that as great as this music was, it was unacceptable to mainstream white America at the time because it was made by black people. That's racist. With Elvis, Rock and Roll became as American as Apple Pie, but the long development of African American musical styles that led to it were unacknowledged and unknown to most fans. That's racist. And, black musicians could travel the country playing music, but were often prohibited by law from staying in the hotels whose clubs they frequented. Systemic apartheid is racist to the core.

I think we will only worry about who invented what music until the apartheid is gone. Then we can really sing together.

Marky: No one was discussing segregation! The topic at hand was about Elvis marrying a young bride. And as it seems she frequently does, Plier chose to introduce the topic of a minority getting screwed, being judged, being oppressed, or being victimized.

Since I've asked her to provide a source to her allegation that Elvis stole from black musicians and she hasn't provided one, I'm concluding that she is unable to provide one.

The source is the well-known quote from Sam Phillips that he deliberately used Elvis to introduce rockabilly blues to white audiences and get rich. He discovered Elvis as a nobody doing completely different music and steered him to the new sound.

One source of many for this quote is:
The Man Who Invented Elvis.

Elvis did not literally "steal" anything, but the metaphor is shorthand for the way Sam Phillips appropriated the creativity of black musicians and Elvis got all the credit. Since this is typical of the way dominant cultures exploit and oppress subaltern cultures, it's important to understand how it occurs.


Holly: This post isn’t about race, but I think at this point white people are starting to feel so vilified for reasons that are unworthy to target someone that they’ve had enough.

Sorry white people, the history is never going to be pretty. Poke America anywhere along the color line and evidence of systemic racism is right there.

All we need to do is stop doing it, and then this history will not hurt us anymore.

Holly: History doesn’t have to be pretty, but we should be careful of how often we attempt to vilify people without good warrant because of their skin color. Too much of that will cause a backlash.

I'm not seeing who got vilified in this post. Elvis was accused of "stealing" black music which he essentially did, or his producer did. That's not vilifying. Why even quibble about this fact?

There is nothing in here than anyone alive today should feel 'vilified' over. Just bringing it up, in a post about a guy who happens to provide a really good example of systemic racism, should not hurt anyone. Why does it?

Holly: Elvis was vilified in this post.

Oh boo hoo. Elvis was a human being and a product of his time and this post was started in order to dish on him. It won't hurt him. It should not hurt you.

On the other hand, sharing information about where the King of Rock and Roll got his music, and why it had to be that way, could help educate people, especially those who simply assume he was a genius. The real geniuses were black musicians (at inventing incredible music) and white producers (at profiting off of it).

Marky: I am willing to accept history as it was/is. And on behalf of the people that were hurt in the past, I do not believe that simply ceasing the behaviors of the past will make "history not hurt" anymore. The hurt doesn't just go away once the behavior has stopped. I understand that the hurt is still felt.

If you (general) want color to not be a factor, I would think it might help if you (general) stopped inserting the adjective that describes color before the noun.

Please allow me to respectfully disagree on this point.

I agree that people will still feel the pain of the past. But the reason why it is causing so much suffering now is because it is not in the past. The behavior hasn't stopped.

People of color in America are systematically discriminated against in housing, employment, law enforcement, education, even health care. We haven't done nearly enough to address it, and to address the massively unlevel playing field left by generations of apartheid. If we want color to not be a factor in the future, we have to correct the problems our history is creating in the present.

When the numbers show that there really is no difference in housing, employment, law enforcement, education and healthcare because of racial discrimination, then yes, it will still be a painful history. But it won't keep creating new pain, and instead it will create pride, as we'll all be able to say, yeah, it was bad, but we fixed it.

Right now almost every facet of life is impacted by this legacy. It will no longer be a tangent on every discussion when it is fixed.

08-13-20 4:22  •  Biden - Not Mean

Kelly: Biden ain’t any better. Either way we will get four more years of gaffes.

Biden is nicer. I'd rather have gaffes from someone who's heart is in the right place than deliberate mean every day.

Sherry: Hoop point. These past 4 years have been an endless tirade of childish insults and tantrums. I'm tired of it.

Tellinya: Biden, nicer?? The guy who called a reporter "a dog-faced lying pony soldier"?

Besides being untrue, that's just about the least important part of choosing of a candidate.

No. Niceness is the fundamental requirement of civilization. That is why it is called 'civility.'

Tellinya: no, civilization usually leads to "niceness" in the masses aka citizens aka "civility". w/o civilization, we would have no laws and people would just murder you and take your things (anarchy), not so nice. this is why civilization leads to "niceness".

Plenty of great leaders were not so nice and sometimes its necessary to preserve the republic. Do you think WW2 was nice? was it necessary?

Civilization is the social agreement to work for each other's purposes instead of against them. World War II was not the epitome of civilization, it was the complete breakdown of it. Niceness - say, an ounce of civility in Europe after WWI for example - would have made WWII unnecessary.

In any case, I'm certainly not looking for a leader to bring WWII levels of mean to every situation no matter how big or how small, and particularly not to use against my fellow Americans. Why would anyone want that?

But since mean is what you want, and you have produced overwhelming evidence showing that Biden is actually meaner than Trump, he should definitely be your choice for President. Welcome to Team Biden!

08-13-20 4:22  •  Mail-In Voter Fraud - and Mean

Val: Just about daily, it seems, there's a new article published about a person being caught and prosecuted for some type of tampering with ballots. You don't have to be a rocket scientist to see what's going on and reason through the ramifications. Mail-in voting will expose us to even more already massive voter fraud!

Mompo: Don't waste your breath trying to explain it to liberals.

Val: I usually don't respond to them, but sometimes I can't let the disinformation go. Yet 100% of the time it's absolutely pointless. Their response is so predictable.

Hi there Val! I was quite concerned with the possibility that mail-in voting could be fraudulent. So, I very carefully examined the sources you have provided.

Val: Nadler is on CSPAN way back in 2004 talking about how highly susceptible to fraud mail in voting is.


Did you actually watch this? First of all, this is not even about mail in voting; Nadler is objecting to paper ballots. Secondly, he has no data, just a claim that voting machines are better. Watch it at least until :47, when they quote an MIT study showing that hand-counted paper ballots are among the most reliable and accountable.

Val:This woman pre-marked several hundred ballots Democrat: Courier Press.

Pretty shady, but just one person and only 400, not ballots, but ballot applications. Not indicative of systemic abuse. And anyway this involves absentee ballots, which are currently in great favor over mail-in ballots.

Val: A few more examples: CNN.

Did you read it? Yes, this was weird and illegal voter fraud, but it doesn't seem like an example of election rigging.

"The local city councilman allegedly approached one or more voters in Paterson, where he was running, collected official mail-in ballots and delivered them to the Passaic County Board of Elections without identifying himself as the bearer."

Apparently the maximum number of ballots that one person can deliver for others is three, and you have to identify yourself as a bearer when you deliver them. I'm sure this guy and his aides will rot in hell for this, but it's not indicative of widespread abuse.

Val: This - NorthJersey.

This link is behind a paywall, but I did some digging anyway. The "fraud" in this article refers to the same group from Paterson that did the weird ballot delivery thing, see above. The other problems include mistakes like Republicans getting Democratic primary ballots and a mail truck burning. A clusterfuck for sure, but not indicative of widespread abuse, and easily correctable with competence.

Val: This - California Globe.

This is not a report, it is an editorial re-hashing of the claim that millions vote illegally in California because they are not citizens. The author is consigned to imagining that Padilla was secretly "delighted" by technical errors, or that the timing of Jean Shimoto's announced retirement was a little too convenient. Please.

Val: Tracking of election fraud cases by state: Heritage Foundation.

Thanks, I checked it out. A look at the actual numbers for voter fraud in California show a few dozen cases on record, and two thirds of those come under the heading of 'False Registration.' Based on my back-of-the-napkin calculations that's about .00000225% of the vote that is fraudulent. It's heinous but is so infrequent and insystemic that it has practically no influence on election legitimacy.

In particular, I looked at their numbers for Colorado, where I live, and where we do mail-in voting for every election. It shows that between 2005 - 2018 there were 8 incidents of fraud for mail in voting out of nearly sixteen million votes cast, another insignificant percentage. In other words, Colorado's vote-by-mail works great.

The questions of safety and legitimacy are important for our looming pandemic election. However what you have provided is not evidence that mail-in voting is illegitimate or even that voter fraud is widespread. Some of this indicates the exact opposite.

I appreciate the opportunity to look into this, so thanks very much Val!

Mompo: You need to remember, Val, you are trying to reason with the less intelligent people in this group.

No, the problem is not our intelligence, it is that almost everything she provided was wrong.

Mompo: I know most of them are sick with 'Trump Derangement Syndrome', but I try to hold out hope that someone or a few someones will actually read what we, the conservatives, post and maybe a light bulb will go off in their heads.

See above.

08-09-20 1:46  •  Gay Bath Houses

Kelly: And now they are talking about re-opening gay bath houses in San Francisco! They are amending the Heath Code, requiring the Director of Health to “adopt minimum health and safety standards” for commercial adult sex venues.

“What this ordinance will do is allow for adult sex venues to be apart of our economic and cultural recovery when it is safe to do so,” Mandelman said.

In the minds of degenerate leftists, seedy red light districts, sex clubs, orgies and promiscuity are a part of their "culture".

Harm reduction is not degenerate.

Tellinya: Public bathhouses bring degeneracy to the PUBLIC. Only complete sickos would consider it their "culture". I have sex, you probably have sex 99% of people do. When people ask me what my culture is, I don't say, "fucking".

Art, music, language, those are culture. Gay orgies are not, if it is that's a disgusting culture.

Sex is culture. It is in art, music and language everywhere, even where it is being savagely repressed. Grow up.

Tellinya: What demographic besides gay men in the USA describe sex as their culture?

Listen to every single pop song. Read every Shakespearean sonnet.

Also consult the cosmetics and fashion industries. And car culture.

Also advertising, and entertainment. Our entire culture revolves around sex. Only the blind could miss it.

Tellinya: Only degenerates claim their culture IS sex. Can't you read? He said:

“What this ordinance will do is allow for adult sex venues to be apart of our economic and cultural recovery when it is safe to do so.”

It doesn't matter how big or yellow you make this quote, you can't make it bad. Sex is "apart" of every culture and that is all this says.

08-08-20 7:26  •  Teens, Property...and Oprah

Tellinya: You won't believe this article in Teen Vogue.

The offending article, written by political journalist Kandist Mallett, details the mounting eviction crisis across the US after millions of Americans lost their jobs during the coronavirus pandemic and have been left with the threat of homelessness hanging over them.

'While we’re working to abolish the police, we must also work to dismantle what the police were put here to protect: property,' it reads.

Today's distribution of "property" is from the unethical actions of our ancestors. We should examine how it is that some people have massive choices in life and other people have almost none, through no action of their own, but through the actions of our ancestors. Why are we today bound to respect the bloody lines they drew? Especially when the legacy unfairness of our system is killing people?

Hearing this would not hurt a teen, even if they disagreed.

Holly: You can’t change the nature of life itself because you don’t like it.

I would disagree. Some things can't be changed, like gravity, but others can, like human behavior. I think the whole experiment of civilization has been an attempt to change human behavior, to make humans able to cooperate in large groups to accomplish more than we can manage as warring tribes.

Particularly when the 'nature' in question is human nature, we have already changed a lot, and for the undeniable better. There is still a lot not to like, though, so here's to changing it for the better still.

Tellinya: Our system is perfectly fair! This black police officer wrote a guest column for Turning Point, USA, destroying the whole concept of "white privilege." He says:

"Like, you can get a mortgage loan that I can’t get?

Hmm. I got a loan – at a great rate by the way – and I got the house. Why would a banker not give a loan to someone who met the loan requirements? He doesn’t want to make money? I’ve never heard of such a banker."

Studies have shown that people of color are turned down for mortgages at disproportionate rates. This author just can't imagine a banker turning away money! But it happens.

https://www.chicagotribune.com/business ... story.html

Fifty years after the federal Fair Housing Act banned racial discrimination in lending, African Americans and Latinos continue to be routinely denied conventional mortgage loans at rates far higher than their white counterparts.

This modern-day redlining persisted in 61 metro areas even when controlling for applicants' income, loan amount and neighborhood, according to millions of Home Mortgage Disclosure Act records analyzed by Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting.

Tellinya:It's just a bunch of hypocracy. Like, who is Oprah to talk about "white privilege," she's a billionaire.

What else should Oprah do with her enormous platform, than call attention to systemic inequities?

Holly: This isn't just human nature, it's all of nature. Whether you're talking about Humans, Bears, Bees, Lions or Squirrles... Everyone defends their home and has a sense of their home being theirs to defend.

I would agree that people feel that their dwelling is "theirs". The weird thing is that it usually isn't. That is what we should fix.

Tellinya: They want to abolish private property, the foundation of liberty.

Private property is the antithesis of liberty. It makes people serfs in their own dwelling. People should own the place they live because they live there. Instead most homes are owned by banks and landlords, mainly by dint of getting there first.

Congratulations, descendants of the First Ones. Everyone else, eat dirt.

Holly: All I gotta say is, be careful of what you wish for. Take away your right to own your own home and the land said home is built on, you open a door I’m sure nobody wants opened

Most people don't own that home or land now. Most of it belongs to banks and landlords. The people who actually use it have little rights to it - if they mess up even a little with the constant stream of payment they can end up with nothing, out in the street.

We'd be better off if people actually owned the places they lived, while banks and landlords owned less. That is really what needs to change, and the reason it won't.

08-01-20 7:26  •  Trump and Power

Rebecca: After railing about “fraudulent” mail-in ballots without any basis in fact, President Donald Trump bizarrely urged Americans on Friday to use absentee ballots — which are mailed in.

“People should go and they should vote — or do it absentee ballot,” he told reporters Friday, a day after he floated delaying the election.

Holly: He knows that one of the only things that really sells in America is distrust. I think he’s playing with you.

If by "playing," you mean softening targets for denying the election results, then yes.

Holly: People have to choose, either Trump is a genius or Trump is an idiot. He can’t be both.

Is he so far into dementia that he’s unable to put together a proper sentence, or is he so smart that he is able to reform American law and lay down generational plans that secure dynasties?

Trump is an idiot savant. Stupid, but good at one thing - playing Americans. However he is an extremely useful idiot for what Foucault would call the forces of power.

Holly: I think we are getting into who may be behind the scenes pulling the strings while Trump is the puppet onstage. If that is true, people should pay a lot less attention to Trump, not more. If he is the distraction, look behind you, not at him.

Rebecca: It's possible to do both.

Holly: You can’t really, not very well anyways. That’s why the distraction method is so often used.

Would most people even know where to look once they have looked away?

Follow the money.

07-30-20 11:58  •  Bringing Down the Statues

MerryMom: Here is my two cents.

When slavery was going on; it was the norm. It was considered okay. Many people owned slaves. We now know that slavery is not okay. We have evolved and learned better.

So, I think removing confederate statues, renaming towns and military bases is wrong. We should teach about the history.

Hattie: I agree with you. If we don't learn from history we are bound to repeat it, right? I don’t think we should judge the past through our moral values of today. Like we should judge George Washington, someone who did good but just happened to be a slave owner like pretty much everyone at the time?

People who did slavery knew it was wrong even then.

Hattie: Oh really? You were there? You talked to them?

They wrote it down.

Hattie: What?

Read about the time. Why do you think there were there abolitionists?

Besides, anyone who recognizes human suffering can see it is wrong.

Statues are monuments of respect. Monuments can exist to teach about slavery and honor the suffering of the victims, but they don't look like triumphal statues of slavers.

Mom2Bee: I don’t have a strong opinion on this either way.

Perhaps I can craft a position that would appeal to you.

Confederate statues should come down because, as Pink Butterfly noted, they were erected during the Jim Crow era to maintain apartheid. Triumphal statues of the villains are the poorest way to learn from that history.

Additionally, the United States has supported statue-toppling as PR. When we invaded Iraq in 2003, U.S. forces staged the toppling of the statue of Saddam Hussein in Firdos Square. It was filmed and hyped as the work of "liberated" Iraqis, while the truth is that there were very few Iraqis present and they were goaded into removing the statue by Americans who provided sledge hammers. Real news of the day was pushed aside to endlessly loop footage of "Victory in Baghdad."

The point is that removing statues is a powerful statement of repudiation which Americans appreciate when it suits them. If a statue is truly offensive then people of a community should remove it, by themselves if that is what it takes.

I also think anyone with their hand on a statue when it goes down should be charged with vandalism. They should be okay with that. If it's really important for an offensive statue to come down, a vandalism charge is more than worth it.

Even if this doesn't sway your opinion one way or the other, thanks for the opportunity to speak!

MerryMom: So Lincoln freed the slaves but that wasn't good enough, because on the other hand He was kind of racist. That's why they are removing statues of him all over. So sad.

They are just decorations. Don't be sad for them. Be happy that America is telling the whole truth for once.

We can always build new monuments, honoring better things. Maybe someday they will look at what we honored and want to tear it down. Maybe we honored the wrong thing, maybe they want a new spaceport. Eventually change happens.

The point is that monuments are not sacred. If they don't suit the time they can be changed and it isn't sad.

MerryMom: You have to vote to have the statue removed. If you don’t vote and they vote to keep it, you have no room to moan and groan about it.

Maylo: Except it’s not that simple for several places. A shining example is Birmingham, AL. The majority black city voted to have their Confederate statues removed, and the state made a law protecting those statues. Now that the city took it down, they are being fined $25k by the state.

MerryMom: It is what it is. If any group wants to be taken seriously they have to follow the law, otherwise they are destructive thugs.

The Founding Fathers were destructive thugs. Sometimes that's what it takes.

RC_Cola: Oh God, you're one of those.

You should know that the Founding Fathers never enslaved anyone. Africans were enslaved by other Africans and then sold as property. Americans weren’t taking and enslaving free people - they were buying chattel.

Maylo: Justifying slavery, really?

It's ridiculous to claim that Americans didn't do the enslaving, they just "bought the already enslaved." First of all, that's worse, not better. Second of all, enslaving is a continuous process. Every day people were "owned" the slavers were enslaving them.

It's even wrong to say that 'most people owned slaves back then." Slaves outnumbered the ones called "masters" by dozens or hundreds. It would be more accurate to say that, in those communities, most people were slaves back then.

07-29-20 6:51  •  Religious Extremism

Holly: Too many political decisions in America are being made by religious extremists. Many believe that the U.S. must protect Israel because it is prophesied.

Someone's Mom: Not all religious people in America are extremists.

Holly: What constitutes religious "extremism" to you?

People who follow the religion more than you are extremists; people who follow the religion less than you are heretics.

Holly: LOL!

Someone's Mom: Religious extremists are not the majority. The way Holly talks, it does read like she is saying that all Americans think like this.

Many Americans who claim to be Christian do think like this and operate geopolitically because of it. The whole world is in thrall to what some people believe about the Middle East.

It's easy to say, that's not my religion. *I* only believe reasonable things. But what is reasonable to believe about the supernatural? What is reasonable to do because of it?

Holly: What do you think should be done?

Ending geopolitics by supernaturalism would be a reasonable start.

Someone's Mom: But, “reasonable” is quite subjective. For example, I myself find atheism to be quite unreasonable. But it’s quite reasonable for others and what I believe is probably unreasonable for them.

Ultimately you can’t demand others put their views aside to only do what’s “reasonable” to you.

So what is reasonable to do? How much should geopolitics be based on religious beliefs?

Someone's Mom: Well, there may be an unsolvable conflict. It happens. But you can’t tell the people involved to put their beliefs aside because they seem unreasonable to you.

I'm stunned you would rather have unsolvable conflict than even try to consider questioning your beliefs.

Is "not based on the supernatural" really too much to ask from geopolitcal decisions that affect who lives and who dies?

Someone's Mom: For your information, I have questioned my beliefs, and found them to be exactly what scripture says they should be. I have no reason to question them further.

And again, just because YOU see it as “supernatural” it doesn’t mean that for others it’s not a reality they believe as factual.

They may "believe it as factual" but they can't prove it. It could just as easily be wrong. That is below any standard of reason.

No set of unprovable assertions has merit over any other. Why not make geopolitical decisions based on facts on the ground that can be established?

Someone's Mom: But by your standards of “reason”, you also have no proof. Your views also fall short, according to your standards of reason. You also can’t prove you are right.

About what?

Someone's Mom: I'm sorry, maybe I'm confused because I am making dinner, what do you mean?

What claims am I making that I can't prove?

Someone's Mom: Well, maybe I misunderstood, but you seem to claim that all those beliefs are “supernatural” and therefore false. That the only reality is what we can physically see. But you can't prove that, so you could just as easily be wrong too.

Someone's Mom, thank you for discussing this with me because it's an important point.

I am not claiming that your beliefs are false. I am saying that they can't be proved. They could be wrong, at least in some of the details. There is no way to establish that they are 'righter' than the supernatural beliefs of others.

That doesn't mean we have no facts at all. Plenty of stuff can be proven and established. More than enough material, I would suggest, upon which to make geopolitical decisions about who lives and who dies.

How much more unresolvable conflict should we have for supernatural claims that *could* be wrong?

Someone's Mom: You are very welcome. You’re one of the few here who can have a discussion without insulting and attacking!

I think we agree on the bottom line. We cannot prove who’s right and who’s wrong. So we really can not impose one set of standards for all.

Great to talk to you too, but that is not what I am saying either.

I am saying there should be a standard and the standard for geopolitical decisions should be 'not supernatural.'

Read more in the Archives.