Instapun*** Archive Listing

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October 2, 2011 - September 25, 2011

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Eavesdropping on
my own email

PYE CRUST. Sometimes I send mischievous emails to my favorite correspondents. I sent one last night to the commenter you all know as Eduardo. I directed his attention to this article at (I'll wait while you take the link and read it. I won't even tap my foot. It's pretty darned interesting.)

He responded this morning, saying (in part):

I'll have you know, reading this tonight has taken up my designated Sharpe time, so you should feel honored.  I also had to endure the awkward silence from my wife as I discussed this with her and the article started getting into aliens.  "What the hell is this InstaPunk guy brainwashing you with??" is what I'm sure she was thinking...

I am sick and fucking tired, to death, of people who think they're brilliant simply by invoking Darwinism or saying everything is random chance.  Happened again last week. They have not given much thought to anything.  I would much rather argue with Lloyd Pye about whether or not aliens created us to be their servants instead of arguing with somebody who believes that everything is nothing and will shout you down to prove his point...

It's like knowing the end of a really boring story. There's just no wonder or amazement. I don't know how people live like that. Maybe that's why they kill themselves so often. Like Hemingway. But things like the article you sent me present fun, exciting questions. So I guess this is a roundabout way of telling you I think I understand why you value your friendship with Lloyd and enjoy talking to him even though you disagree with him a lot, as you said. Who knows if he's right or not, but I'll bet talking to him is more interesting than anything my brilliant, nihilistic friends have to say.

He also asked what I thought of the article I sent him. So I responded with this:

"So what's your opinion?  How accurate does what they are saying seem to you?"

I don't know. But to me it's a more fruitful line of inquiry than the conventional wisdom of atheist scientists. I'm tired to death of the absurd, illogical assumptions that dominate "intelligent" mentalities. On the one hand there are no UFOs because why would they come here? On the other hand cosmologists are very very clear about the fact the earth-moon relationship is both incredibly rare and the principal reason why we exist as intelligent creatures. Why are these two subjects never discussed at the same time? The earth-moon relationship is a fucking beacon for anyone seeking intelligent life. Which means: IF there is intelligent life elsewhere in the universe, they are here watching us. Definitely.

What the atheists can't answer: Why is there mathematics? How can intelligence be an emergent property of a universe that is not itself intelligent? What part of "you can't get something from nothing" do they not understand?

The death of wonder is the death of the spirit. What I have never succeeded in conveying is my ABSOLUTE contempt for atheists. I don't regard them as rival philosophers. I regard them as incredibly stupid, incurious, and dull dull dull. We exist. We are here. Why? To have NO interest in that question is to me unspeakable. Just how fucking brain dead can you be?

I realized then that I hadn't quite shared this particular strain of contempt with all of you. Now I have.

FLASHBACK. Eduardo's email caused me to go back and reread the whole Lloyd Pye saga at InstaPunk. Here is where the rubber really hit the road. The best part is the comments section. (We lost a commenter because of the exchange, but that's life.)  I'm proud -- probably unjustifiably so, as usual -- of the fact that Lloyd Pye chose this site to enunciate a personal creed that would stand the whole country in good stead at this moment in time. And I'm also proud of the fact that our commenters damn near wrote a book about science, philosophy, and the nature of truth. Not to mention some moving personal revelations by commenters who were defending Pye (even if they didn't agree with him), counterbalanced by the stuffy non-personal posturings of those who saw themselves as superior to Pye. Is this relevant to the crisis facing our country right now? Yes. I think so. As always, you're free to disagree.

Lloyd's in AustraliaLondon at the moment. If he's checking in here (he is), I want to thank him again. His appearance here was strictly a favor to me. For all you skeptics, if he's not a unicorn, how do you account for the volume and care exhibited in the comments on his post? Hmmmm.

I'm still delighted to have him as a friend. I wish everyone could have someone like Lloyd as a friend. It keeps your mind sharp, believe me.

Seditious Hit

WEAPONS.3.1-14. Who knew? She has great hair and cheekbones and she rhymes 'listen'with 'system.' Inspired. Never heard the word 'accountability' in a song lyric before, either. The captions help, but what the hell is going on here? Are people really starting to fight back? It makes this old heart beat a bit more assertively. (As if anybody anywhere wants that to happen...)

Remind Me...

Yeah, I'm the one in the glasses. But I was awake the whole time. Honest.

WE ALSO REVIEW STUFF. The heat wave of the summer has had us in its grip. (Forget the AGW crap; it's been this hot before, and I keenly remember when.) That's why this weekend Mrs. CP and I hid in the air-conditioning with the new puppy and took in some teevee. I, of course, was spinning reviews of everything while we watched, because that's what incredibly brilliant idiots do with their downtime, and I'm just bursting with fully formed assessments of the following:

The Book of Eli
The Story of Us (marathon)
Revolution (marathon)
A Capitol Fourth
The Boston Pops Fourth of July Celebration
The Macy's Fourth of July Celebration
The Philadelphia Fourth of July Celebration
In Plain Sight
(one episode featuring a Catholic priest)

And a sleeper Irish movie called...

In America

If you want any of my perfect pearls of wisdom about these teevee things, remind me. I'll probably forget about them if you don't.

Wednesday, July 07, 2010


Yup. Them muslims made spacesuits before there was even space. Kewl.

NOT WANTING TO BE (ALWAYS) RIGHT. My Gawd. What are we supposed to think, or say? Our favorite commenter sent me this link via email. I'd seen it, but I couldn't begin to know what to do with it.

What the F___?!

Except that I'd said this a long long time ago.

The radical muslim interpretation is not one wild hare. It's two. Which should give everyone pause. There's a circling back that should make people queasy. He migrated to Indonesia as a child, where the evidence suggests he attended a muslim school as a muslim. That's not hard to understand by itself. One can outgrow early influences. But what if one doesn't outgrow early influences? He returned to the United States, clambered onto the most positive track anyone could hope to follow, and then found his way back to not just anti-American influences like Bill Ayers but much more problematic leading lights like Reverend Wright, who preached a perverse version of Christianity that found common cause with frankly religio-racial organizations like the Nation of Islam. The Reverend Wright was(is) an admitted admirer of Louis Ferrakhan. What was Obama doing in Wright's church? Is he really a Christian? Or is he a little known species of revolutionary we might term an "African Black Muslim"? Think about it.

Does that count? As saying something about the NASA absurdity? A long long time ago. Too bad I'm such a paranoid. I could be smart if I weren't so damned stupidsmart.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Saved to Paper

Have you seen 'The Book of Eli'? Same principle.

FOLLOW-THROUGH. We live in fascinating times. American liberty and freedom of speech have never been under greater threat from within. The Obama administration is clandestinely but determinedly seeking ways to control speech it doesn't like on both the airwaves and the internet. Simultaneously, we are living through the most astonishing democratization of the mass distribution of individual expression in the history of history. It's a "best of times, worst of times" moment that dwarfs anything Dickens could have conceived. What is bound to change is history itself, meaning our understanding of what history is and how it is best recorded.

Bear with me. I'm making an argument for why you should buy Doc Zero's new book, even though you may already have read some of its content. I've got it, I'm reading it, and more importantly I'll be keeping it on a small important shelf for the rest of my life. So should you. Now I'll explain why. If the argument seems roundabout, it really isn't. It's actually a process of spiraling in to the center of things.

The blogosphere isn't quite what it appears to be. Most of us are taken by its quality of right-nowness. Which is valuable and mind-expanding in its horizontal reach. Ninety-plus percent of all blogs are reaction snapshots: "Hey, did you hear about this? Here's what I think based on what I'm hearing across the internet." An inch deep and a mile wide. The internet infinity rippling out from an Everyman "I" who is, ultimately, one more pebble tossed into the electronic pool of the present. Insight -- when there is any -- is the sum of the ripples on the surface of that continuously expanding present. It lives and dies by hyperlink. Archetype: InstaPundit. In a sense this huge chunk of the blogosphere is a high-tech version of the child's game of "Telephone":  Here's what I'm understanding based on what he and she and they and their links are understanding and confirming. There may be nuggets of individual contribution, but that's all they are, however dressed up in clever rhetoric and pungent metaphors. Each voice is a spider crouched at the center of the particular web he spins. The web itself consists of what others are saying and doing -- how they're reacting --  right now.

But there's more to it than that. There are also vertical bloggers. These are not spiders, not spinning webs. They're more like the ice cores geologists collect to determine what was happening in a particular year or age of earth history. There is a fundamental physics that remains constant through time. Physics does not change from year to year or age to age. That's why the cores can be trusted  Their principal properties remain, despite the perceptual distractions of other influences. They're not spinning webs on the transient trees. They are what they are, and we can measure meaning from their constancy.

Because of this, we can also value them in the moments that sway others like hurricanes and earthquakes. The hurricanes and earthquakes are there to be seen in the cores, but their physics are not altered by mere weather. They are the immanent essence that allows us to put temporal events in perspective.

Too abstract? The diaries and letters of the keenest observers have always been prized. Samuel Pepys. James Boswell. Something about seeing what the clear-eyed ones had to say without the benefit of hindsight. A way of determining who's percipient and who's a shrewd rationalist after the fact. To me, for example, the credibility of William Shirer's monumental Rise and Fall of the Third Reich rests on the same author's Berlin Diary. He was there while it was happening and was not fooled. Therefore I can trust his scholarly history afterwards. I trust his core.

Before the internet age, the credentialing diaries and letters -- because of the labor involved in their assembly -- always came decades after the histories, biographies, and critiques that set the latches for conventional wisdom. Reagan, for example, was portrayed by the academic establishment as an amiable dunce for so long that his published letters and other writings were treated as an anomalous footnote when they were finally published, their inherent proof that Reagan was an astute political and cultural thinker arriving too late to dent the mass media mythology of his dim-wittedness.

But now we are in the internet age. If we could capture what the core thinkers were thinking during the Age of Obama, it wouldn't be possible to pull off the charade that still obtains in the case of FDR. And it was a charade. My dad was no blogger. He was just a man with a voice. He was articulate and specific about the fact that FDR's New Deal perpetuated rather than ended the Great Depression. As so many economists now understand. But we're left with the myth that FDR somehow saved capitalism from itself by turning a recession into the longest lasting Depression in the history of the United States. A huge, grotesque, continuously monstrous leviathan of a lie. Wouldn't it be nice if we had a blog record of all the people who knew what was happening, and why, while that fantasy was being created for the history books?

You bet it would. The Obama nightmare wouldn't have been able to perpetrate its frauds and sinister intentions if more people knew that objections to FDR's policies were not ex post facto sniping but delineated in stark, well argued terms at the moment they occurred.

Which is why you all need to buy Doctor Zero's book. It's a time capsule of beautifully argued rebuttals of Obama policies at each step of Obama's assault on America during his first catastrophic year in office. It's not reactionary spouting; it's the core proving its internally consistent physics AS events are unfolding. Logically, calmly, at times elegantly.

That's why we who care about the outcome and the impact on our children and grandchildren also have a responsibility to back up the hard drives of our minds by saving to paper. Yes, the record is there, electronically, right now. Will it still be there in a year or ten? When you want to prove in 2020 or 2040 that there were people who knew what was happening and tried desperately to stop it, what evidence will you still be able to present? The internet is only flashes of electricity that can be lost in a storm, hidden in impenetrable archives, or erased by persons and motives unknown.

Doctor Zero has written intelligently and rationally about the destruction of our nation and explained the reasons and their roots, as it is happening, Don't you want a day by day and month by month record of that? That you can hold in your hand and read out loud to your own children and grandchildren with the immediacy and passion of Shirer's Berlin Diary? If you don't, you're part of the problem of accelerating memory loss:

Here's your chance at being part of our nation's SAVE routine. Ultimate backup. Evidence. Proof. By the book. Buy the book.

Your act. That's what I mean by the "center of things."

UPDATE. This is neither here nor there, but the post Eduardo is linking is this. Granted, it's a decade old, but maybe he has a point. Ice cores aren't confined to those who have frigid names. Here's what Doc Zero said about the InstaPunk book proposed by Lake:

You absolutely should, for all the reasons you laid out in that review.

But the better half has made it clear I can't be involved. "You'd just screw it up with all your nitpicking," she said. Over to Lake and company.

Still. Nobody alive can duplicate this pre-Internet feat.

Sunday, July 04, 2010


Happy Birthday, USA!

WAYS.29-31. For your consideration, a look back at the Punk Testament of The Boomer Bible, which seems to know something of today.

1 The way of the Yanks was pure Hollywood,
2 A factory of dreams.
3 The studio was vast and rich,
4 Its people filled with ardor,
5 And wishes they knew could come true.
6 They produced for the millions,
7 Each dream to its kind,
8 As befits the American Way:
9 Some were mega-blockbusters,
10 With galaxies of stars,
11 Bright Technicolor locations,
12 And writers by the score;
13 Others were small and disarming,
14 Or black and white and intense;
15 Yet more were funny and charming,
16 Or thoughtful tries at making sense;
17 Some were playful fantasies,
18 A romp in the heart of a child,
19 While more than a few were tragedies,
20 With choruses that moaned and wailed.
21 Not all of them succeeded,
22 For the critics had their day,
23 And sometimes theaters hawked their seats,
24 To throngs who stayed away.
25 But the factory kept rolling,
26 And learned the most painful part,
27 That one man's vision won't suffice,
28 When you're making collaborative art.
29 There was one immense production,
30 A romance of civil war,
31 Which nearly broke the spirit,
32 Of those who ran the store:
33 The stars were frightened,
34 By a cast of thousands;
35 The producer fired directors,
36 By the dozens;
37 The writers quarreled,
38 And some of them quit;
39 And the crews were ensnarled,
40 In nearsighted snits.
41 But when it came time to shoot the nag,
42 And put an end to it,
43 They swallowed down their ire,
44 And clamped down on the bit,
45 Because they had to make a movie:
46 And that's all there was to it.
47 So they came together,
48 And made a giant hit,
49 Out of cannons and canons,
50 And freedom and grit.

1 The Way of the Yanks was union,
2 Before union meant a faction,
3 And they kept on making movies,
4 And trying hard to do it right.
5 They fought a lot,
6 And did things wrong,
7 And left a million miles of footage on the floor.
8 But they built on their genius for compromise,
9 And settled their differences time after time,
10 So that dreams could keep moving on out the door.
11 Their pictures made money,
12 And fattened their wallets,
13 Till their rivals felt envy,
14 And laughed at their zest.
15 But the Yanks loved success,
16 And gloried in winning,
17 Sure of their talent,
18 For fairy tale endings.
19 They knew the hero gets the girl,
20 And the bad guy always gets shot,
21 And no sin is ever left unavenged,
22 If the writer's on top of the plot.
23 That's why they finally took on the challenge,
24 Of showing the world the American Way,
25 In a foreign film,
26 Called world war one,
27 And a sequel called world war too.
28 But this time they ended with special effects,
29 That almost devoured the screen,
30 And frightened the audience half to death,
31 Not to mention the studio team.
32 For they started to wonder,
33 And doubt, and fear,
34 The rule they had taken for granted:
35 That happy endings would always be there,
36 If you did the work for what you wanted.

1 And now the studio is torn by strife,
2 And the dreams aren't coming so fast anymore,
3 Because of a snafu called real life,
4 And a runaway passion for evening the score:
5 The stars are locked in their dressing rooms,
6 And haven't been rehearsing;
7 The director's refusing to talk to the cast,
8 For fear they might ask for his vision;
9 And lighting's threatening to go out on strike,
10 Unless someone replaces the camera crew;
11 The propman is drunk and out of nails,
12 So the sets are fastened with glue;
13 A cast of thousands is counting its lines,
14 And demanding more scenery to chew;
15 The writer's obsessed with reworking key scenes,
16 Including tomorrow's, and finished ones too;
17 The backers aren't coughing up any more cash,
18 And they've told their lawyers to sue;
19 The stuntmen are saying the catwalk's too high,
20 And won't respond to their cue;
21 The ratings office is screaming for blood,
22 Because the script is so shockingly blue;
23 The mayor's attempting to ban camera cranes,
24 Which are spoiling the tourists' view;
25 Thanks to budget woes and myopic eyes,
26 The producer hasn't a clue,
27 And like the others he's forgotten,
28 That there's work to do,
29 Or else the dreams won't make it,
30 Old or new.

Many happy returns of the day.

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