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kencarman

Jul. 21st, 2017

01:35 pm - Inspection- What Their Silence Says

 Like many people on the left I certainly have had my Facebook debates. I hate them, to be honest, because Facebook is a lousy venue for rational, thoughtful, discussion. You have to explain and that makes the post long, complicated and worse than anything else: intellectual and well thought out. Exactly the kind of post many Facebook users won't: maybe even aren't able to, read.
 Facebook does well with short, snippet, posts. It's like a slightly more complex version of tweeting, which is also an insult. Facebook is a platform that serves bullies well, and enables them like stagnant water breeds mosquitoes under a hot sun.
 The most active partisans posters rarely hesitate to respond with mocking, insults and idiocy when confronted with an opinion they don't like, except...
 ...when there's an issue they'd rather just disappear. Has anyone else noticed one of these issues is election fraud? No, not "voter fraud." I'm sure you've read the inane arguments that include "you have to have a picture ID for..." something you don't. Plus this over simplification is intentional: an attempt to hide the fact that this goes far beyond a picture ID when the intent is to put obstacles in the way front of select communities... who tend not to vote REPUBLICAN. They'll blather on and on about voter fraud, providing anecdotal "evidence" directly out of out their wahoos. Or mention a handful... usually REPUBLICANS... who double voted. certainly not the millions Trump lies about over and over.
 The closest I've come to an argument over election fraud was one over placebo (provisional) voting. I think, perhaps, one of the reasons they don't confront election fraud issues is because they know their arguments are impossible to defend. His arguments: "it's only those who come with no ID" (a lie), "the provisionals are counted if the election was close." (A lie unless they can provide at least one example of this happening, and not anecdotal "evidence" from some right wing source). His talking points were so easily countered his posts melted into him yelling: claiming he knew exactly what he was talking about because he had worked elections. When I pointed out I had too and knew better than that he never responded again.
 When it comes to election fraud: posting links to Greg Palast exposes, talking about extreme gerrymandering, articles about how black communities got fewer machines and when they did the machines were often so bad they frequently broke down: silence. Electronic voting machine issues? Silence. Crosscheck? Now there's something you would think they'd be all over FaceCrack defending. Silence.
 Short list. Just put "silence" after each one you think of.
 I was raised in a family where frequently I'd want to talk about inner family conflict. Oh, they'd rag on the uncles and aunts, but real inner family?

  "We don't talk about that."
  "Why?"
  "Because we don't."

 We only started to really get along when we got away from each other, and sometimes not even then. Surprised? Shouldn't be.
 So I learned a long time ago when people don't want to talk far too often it's because they not only can't defend themselves, but they know what they're doing is wrong, and they want to continue doing it, and they want the whole topic to go away so, like roaches, they can start scurrying around again doing what they know they shouldn't do.
 All which fits election fraud perfectly. Indeed I believe voter fraud is an artificial issue designed as both a distraction and a cover for election fraud. It also serves their desire to turn America back to a time when most blacks were basically untouchables, had their own pools, water fountains and would be kicked out of where supposedly "superior" white folks go if they dared enter. A time when other non-whites were often treated almost as poorly. A time when non-heteros could be kept in the closet; tormented for who they are. Non-Christians were also suspect. Those left of radical right were to be treated with suspicion, and some accused of having associations with suspect groups: guilt, not just by association, but mere accusation. In other words everyone not like Bannon, the Trumps... was bullied into sitting down, shutting up, and should expect to be shot at the slightest imagined provocation, if any. Just make up one and Stand Your Ground... unless your black, stalked by a guy in the dark you doesn't identify himself, and your only known crime is being black and out at night. One example. A society where lynching is far more frequent and used to warn others they'd better be quiet, be subservient, or else.
 You know...

 "Make America great again?"



                                                    -30-
  Inspection is a column that has been written by Ken Carman for over 40 years. Inspection is dedicated to looking at odd angles, under all the rocks, and into the unseen cracks and crevasses that constitute the issues and philosophical constructs of our day: places few think, or even dare, to venture.

©Copyright 2017
Ken Carman and Cartenual Productions
all right reserved

Jul. 12th, 2017

10:51 am - Inspection- Of Republicons and Republocrats

 I have been an advocate for run off voting since I first looked into it after the 2000 election. But sans run off...
 My father was a dedicated Conservative back when there was a difference between Conservative and Republican, and I used to help the party with elections in the 60s. I think we are a weaker nation now than then because we really have only two parties of any consequence, that have any true chance of winning, and both parties like it that way, are determined to keep it that way.
 The 4 major parties were Liberal, Democratic, Republican and Conservative. Now to get the party's support these days a Republican has to be a Conservative, or what they call "Conservative" these days: most often a mix of the Fundamentalist Party, the NRA Party, the Libertarian Limited Party, the Anti-Worker Party and the War for Profit Party. But let's call them the Republocons.
  The Democratic Party has likewise morphed into the ex-Moderate Republican Party, Pro-Trade Deal Party and the Steal Republocon Idea Party, better referred to as Republocrats.
  Political correctness is enforced by party regulars for Republocrats and Republocons. Liberals mocked or ignored on the left, rightward moderates primary-ed and out spent to the point challenging the overall trend towards increasing rightward drift is a political death sentence. Both parties are corporatist parties. Thanks Supreme Court for making damn sure free speech is so limited by money most of us might as well be expressing our opinions after being exiled to Pluto. The election process has been so screwed with we don't even know if votes aren't deleted by black boxes programmed with Crosscheck lists. Media so corrupted huge Bernie rallies hardly got a whisper. The largest protest in American history, before the second Iraq War, got little to no coverage. Occupy's coverage amounted to pepper spraying by a sadistic cop, played over and over, so foam at the mouth right wingers could jack off to it mentally.
 Now before any changes, right up front, we need to recognize that such changes would be a no go unless the system we have for electing our politicians is fixed. Help America Vote should have been called "Help America's Votes NOT Count." That's the first hill we have to continue to charge up. If we don't, well, settle in for faux representation bought and paid for: a system based on sanctioned bribery. It's time to stop blaming one politician for this out of political convenience. You may hate Hillary and her connections, or Trump, or... but this isn't a Hillary or Trump only, Hillary or Trump specific, problem. Like most pols these days they products of the system itself. They are doing what may be supremely slimy, but has been Supreme-ly sanctioned and even necessary to function in the system as it exists now. Bernie may have gotten a lot of small donations but how far did he get? Blaming Hillary or Trump won't stop or solve any of this. It is caused by the very nature of the system as it exists now.
 This is the fight of my, and maybe even your, lifetime.
 But beyond that, well, I'd prefer run off voting. No parties, like our forefathers dreamed of and had for a short time, well probably the least likely of all the possibilities. But if neither is possible we could do worse than returning to the now mostly past tense (in power or influence) four major, independent, parties we had back then: Conservative, Republican, Democratic and Liberal.
 Two parties edging towards center: trying to attract moderates, independents, crossovers, and two on the outskirts provided a tug, and a pull back away from the center. Sometimes they ran the same candidates, sometimes not. Sometimes the influence was so great it flipped the election: that's what we did in 67 in Nyack, NY; back when my father and I were Buckley-style Conservatives. After working for Goldwater in 64 we brought the 67 election so close two years later the Republicans won by adopting some of our platform and one of our candidates. Liberals sometimes had the same affect on Dems, as my political center shifted over the years I saw that too.
 I miss the balance, the tug, the pull. If we can't have run off voting, and I find it less far likely parties will go extinct: two parties seeking to be more mainstream, and two pulling the opposite way, would be far better. I think we had better public policy: less extreme. I think we had less all or nothing, war-like politics. I think we had more rational discussions and debates where the goal was less demonization and more building a broad base with those, these days, they go out of their way to offend with phrases like, "The professional left." Instead of appealing to a wider base the goal now is to demoralize, discourage, disenfranchise those not in a far more narrow base you seek to activate. Once elected: if you dare call it that, pols rule for the few, while kicking the many to the curb.
 Trump's presidency is damn near the perfect example of this. He lost the popular vote big time: perhaps by far more than 2.8 million. In the few states that put them over the top in the college they won by small margins and disenfranchising far larger numbers of voters not likely to vote for them. Now they rule as if everyone voted for an extreme shift to the right.
 A vast majority of American voters are being kicked to the curb by a president enabled, in part, by a tyrant he admires far more than our forefathers. In fact one might argue they too are being kicked to the curb.
 Once we climb that very steep hill of returning us to an enfranchised voter-based system, if we can't get run off, if we can't exterminate the party-based system, even just empowering four parties spread out across the ideological spectrum might do the trick. Then we'd have better governance rather than the basest of base politics running the nation for the few. And we'd have better politicians.
 We'd sure as hell be better off with the four major parties than just Republicons and Republocrats.

                                                         -30-
Inspection is a column that has been written by Ken Carman for over 40 years. Inspection is dedicated to looking at odd angles, under all the rocks, and into the unseen cracks and crevasses that constitute the issues and philosophical constructs of our day: places few think, or even dare, to venture.

©Copyright 2017
Ken Carman and Cartenual Productions
all right reserved

Jul. 1st, 2017

10:23 am - Inspection- Here Comes One Party Rule

  The danger behind the The Nation's overdue article on the plan to end representative governance is not any mistake, or error... unless you include a lack of deeper analysis. While the MSM has been, at best, whistling past Kris Kolbach's graveyard for the votes of groups who dare to not vote the politically correct way: otherwise known as Crosscheck, not even The Nation comes close to asking serious questions that must be asked.
 For those who don't know, Kris Kolbach's Crosscheck pumps out raw data lists of voters in states that have adopted it and states use those lists to eliminate voters who have similar: not the same, names. If it's were just done randomly it still would be wrong. There's no reason to think James J. Brown in one state is the same voter as James K. Brown in another. But here's the kicker: those kicked off overwhelmingly have names commonly associated with groups that tend not to vote Republican, like blacks. Then, sure, a voter can try to get their right to vote back, but the history of that is filled with people being told their birth certificate, their passport, their driver's license is good enough, only to find election time they still can't vote. It's a worse than Groundhog's Day scenario no matter what they bring in to prove they are who they claim to be, and that they have the right to vote.
 This is all common knowledge among us who have been paying attention, despite most of the mainstream ignoring it all. But the questions unasked are especially highlighted in hellish red marker by Trump appointing Kolbach to solve their people voting the wrong way problem, then his subsequent demand all states provide voter's names, what their party affiliation is, SS numbers and a hell of a lot more personal info.
 OK, OK, let's make it clear as long as everything is on the up and up here Saint Kolbach and crew of angels will merely check to make sure you're not a double voter and off to the polls you go. As we know Kolbach has a perfect record of doing nothing but... Oh, wait. As the article itself points out he has been cited by the courts for having anything but. Don't worry, Kris, Trumpie is busy fixing that too by packing the courts with goosesteppers.
  But what the article doesn't mention is revealed by a series of questions. Exactly why do they need party affiliation? Please don't tell me it's just to make sure you are who the rolls say you are. Social Security numbers? Well, that's better in one sense: a better double check, if that's the actual intent. Telephone numbers? Addresses? Just how much are states permitted to reveal here? Can you assure us the info remains private and no Brownshirt goon squads will be hunting anyone down? Anyone see the latest NRA ad that essentially encourages that because liberals are so "violent?"
 Then we have the pesky situation where electronic voting machines have proprietary software: machines built and programmed by Republican Party connected companies. How are we to know Crosscheck lists aren't part of the programming? We would never know our votes were simply thrown away because there's "D" by our name, or we're Hispanic, or we have history of voting the politically incorrect way.
 Yes, yes, I know: we vote in private. (Sort of.) But primary time we choose which machine to vote on in some states, or it's loaded that way. How are we to know all this time the machines aren't flagging us as politically incorrect voters? In Nashville our votes go into a cartridge that's pulled every time someone votes. How are we to know the same cartridge is used every time or where that information goes?
 Word: we don't. Kolbach's demand for this kind of personal information may have one ultimate purpose: to target politically incorrect voters and make sure their votes don't count, or worse. Especially if addresses are included.
 In case you're curious, Mr. Politically Incorrect Voter, that would be YOU
.  

                                                                                        -30-
Inspection is a column that has been written by Ken Carman for over 40 years. Inspection is dedicated to looking at odd angles, under all the rocks, and into the unseen cracks and crevasses that constitute the issues and philosophical constructs of our day: places few think, or even dare, to venture.
©Copyright 2017
Ken Carman and Cartenual Productions
all right reserved


_______

Jun. 22nd, 2017

12:08 pm - Inspection- Do Not E-mail Me Again, Democratic Party, and STOP CALLING!

There comes a time when you realize the person who have been seeing isn't taking the relationship seriously. Worse than that not only do they ignore your concerns, but they keep making promises, asking for money, and never fulfill those promises.
 You really don't want to break their heart, but sometimes you wonder if they have any heart left to break.
 This is how I feel about the Democratic Party.
 Democratic Party, you know I would never date the one I used to be with so many years ago. He's become a bully and I swear he's out to kill you. The party I left for him: my first, was useless. In the state where I lived I couldn't even vote in a primary unless I joined some major party. Now my first party has been corrupted to the point they're the bully's puppy dog. The Conscience of a Conservative has turned into having no "conscience" at all.
 The second party, well I wasn't with him very long. It became obvious he was becoming abusive. This should have been obvious for many years when he does anything to get in the way of those who disagree with him, no matter how dishonest, how cruel, how many lives are ruined. He treats those who dare to disagree with him like roaches he must exterminate. Still you let him take advantage of you over and over again. You ignore constant warnings from your friends.
 So now, once again, as so often before, you ask for money. I understand. The way the Court enabled corruption, oligarchy and corporatocracy, getting money to fund elections is necessary. You certainly might try to do something about that: spend more time advocating, at least attempting to legislate against that, instead of leaving your candidates having to whore themselves out for money, but I would never leave you over that. Just hope someday you'll start doing the right thing.
  Oh, don't worry: the system we have in place leaves me little logical choice but to vote for you most of the time. But otherwise I am leaving. I want to leave because you keep asking for money that you only waste. Your success rate is so poor you might as well just give it to the bully. The Georgia special election is a great example. Here was a candidate who has done all she could to prevent groups that tend to vote for us from voting. For &%$#!'s sake she cut off voting after the run off election: months before the actual election... an illegal act the courts threw out.
  For now. Do you even comprehend the courts are being packed by the bully?
 But instead of spending all these years bringing such behavior to light you keep following the same old tactic. You want more money to "get out the vote," even though with Crosscheck, gerrymandering and other election fraud tactics soon "getting out the vote" will be pointless. For $@&!!!'s sake it's not even just about placebo voting, which is not voting at all because as far as we know those "votes" are NEVER COUNTED, no matter what. It's about that and so much more, and the fact you keep going back to what's increasingly becoming no solution at all: get out the vote.
  So much you refuse to even consider. Like how are we to know the electronic machines simply don't reject many votes due to Crosscheck or whatever? With machines built by companies owned and controlled by the bully's friends, with proprietary software, simply put: we can't know. And, apparently, you don't want to know.
 You act as if everything is on the up and up with tallying the vote, with the machines, with the rules that allow or reject voters. You enable them when they act like a potential voter is guilty of trying to vote illegally unless they prove themselves innocent. You know better than that. If it were just about driver's licenses or any picture ID that the state provides easy access to, OK, I'd understand that. But when a state college ID isn't accepted, but an NRA ID, does, you know what the goal here is. When a common black name like James K. Brown in Georgia can't vote because there's a James G. Brown in Iowa you know what the goal here is. When they keep changing the registration rules to suit their election needs, you know what the goal is.
They should have to prove a voter shouldn't have the right to vote, not make the voter jump through multiple hoops.
 How many people in Georgia were denied the right to have their votes counted who could have turned the election? We may never know, but you don't seem to give a f... Instead, "Get out the vote!" Charlie Brown cries as Lucy van Bully pulls the ball away.
 How many voters last November went to the polls thinking they voted, but they didn't? Why do you think exit polls have become so inaccurate? You could at least raise hell, in public, about that.
 Silence.
 Then the mournful cry of the dodo political party...

 "Get out the vote!!!"

  Better candidates might be nice, but that doesn't matter until you focus on fixing this. The time to start the drive, find the focus, rally us and the nation was after 2000. So after losing, ONCE AGAIN, have you learned your lesson yet?
OF...
 ...COURSE
 ...NOT.

 To quote the bully you let into the White House by ignoring, by marginalizing, all this, "They are laughing at us."
 I simply won't enable you anymore. You're like the wife who keeps coming back to her lout of a drunk with power husband who berates her, beats her and laughs at her meek efforts, bragging how much harder he'll beat you next time. Yet you refuse to really defend yourself, while spurning those like me who ask you to do what you must to really stand up for yourself.
 I can see it coming. Anyone with brains can. He's going to kill you, and soon he will permanently have his iron fist tightly wrapped around a one party nation. The party who fought a war against Saddam is becoming Saddam, and you're enabling that instead of admitting there's a serious problem and then focusing in on defanging the anti-election beast. Oh, I'm sure there have been court cases, but we need far more than that. It needs to be loud. It needs to be very public. And it needs to be ongoing, year after year. Stop waiting until election years and still hide behind this, "If we just get out the vote..." scam.
 So I'm telling you now: stop asking me for money. I won't waste it anymore. Just stop it. Learn to have a backbone or die, but don't bother me anymore for money. Stop wasting my time. Stop insisting spin our wheels. I'm getting out of the car. Drive over this cliff if you must but stop asking me to provide more fuel for what you're turning into a useless endeavor.
 Must I get a restraining order?

                                                                              -30-
Inspection is a column that has been written by Ken Carman for over 40 years. Inspection is dedicated to looking at odd angles, under all the rocks, and into the unseen cracks and crevasses that constitute the issues and philosophical constructs of our day: places few think, or even dare, to venture.

©Copyright 2017
Ken Carman and Cartenual Productions
all right reserved

Jun. 17th, 2017

07:44 am - Inspection- No High Ground, No Pedestal

An open letter to some, not all, on the right.

 There comes a time when I simply can't put out another we should get along type edition. This is definitely one of those times.
 Immediately after I heard about the shooting at the Republican ball game I checked what various news sources were saying about him, then I went to the Facebook page he was a member of: Terminate the Republican Party. Much has been made of the name, and I must admit: at best a bad choice. But no better than Hillary Clinton is the anti-christ, better than Killing Obama, miles better than Okk/Obama Killing Klub and positively saintly compared to I want to fucking kill cooked Hillary Clinton.
 While these groups are small, want to bet that these pages, or other pages just as bad, were quite active when Obama took office and when the 16 campaign started?
 Let's not start with the number of death threats, Put the White Back in the White House signs, and lynchings via hung effigies.
 Yes, I agree: the national discourse has reached a nasty fever pitch. What I think many people miss is for every nasty right wing comment nasty left wing comments follow. For every cruel left wing meme many far more cruel right wing memes follow. And it should go without saying that discourse of any kind that might inspire violence is no exclusive property of any one side. But if you want to know who might be more prone to the kind of violence that turned that day into a nightmare you merely have to look at who is more gun oriented, more pro-open carry followed by more pro laws that say all you have to do is claim you felt threatened to think you have the right to legally murder someone.
 It's a mindset, folks. And that day only proves it can cross ideological divides like any plague.
  Links to this column, appearing mostly on more leftward pages, have been on pages where Donald Trump is shown blowing his own brains out and far worse. But that doesn't mean I support every idiot who posts, anymore than any of the others tens of thousands of members of Terminate support what James T. Hodgkinson did. But criticism of that type rhetoric is fair, and talking about the horrors it inspires. So shall we review?
 Rush Limbaugh and "Feminazis" and anti-women rhetoric... how many men have felt enabled by his hatred for women who dare to stand up for their rights?
 Remember Bill O'Reilly and "Tiller the Baby Killer?"
 How about the mass murderers at the UU Church in Knoxville or The Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal in Charleston? They admitted to being inspired by extreme right wing rhetoric of national hosts like O'Reilly, Hannity and Limbaugh, as well as on the net.
 Want more recent? How about Jeremy Joseph Christian who stabbed two men after screaming anti-Muslim insults at passengers just last week in Portland, Oregon?
 What Facebook groups was he a member of? Any hate speech there, or potential hate speech? Is every member of these pages responsible? Are righties all to blame, does it show how violent they "all" are?
 You see how absurd this is? But you already knew that. Every time some right wing creep commits one of these acts you revert to your, "But what about individual responsibility?" war cry, and point out the absurdity of blaming everyone in the group. And often that is "absurd," but apparently this "standard" only applies to those you agree with, the "oh, so superior to everyone else" you.
 Problem is: you're both wrong and right. Just like in the baseball game in shootings the individual should be held responsible. But those who spew the nasty rhetoric have some responsibility too: from "pinheads," to celebrating the shooting of Gabrielle Giffords by giving away the kind of gun that shot her; shot by mass murder Jared Lee Loughner, who also had mental problems derived from hate the government rhetoric, to Eric Trump saying Democrats aren't even people. (What are they, cattle for the slaughter, game to be shot?)
 Here is my one and only message here for every pretend Christian, fake conservative, phony patriot yet
anti-government zealot. I hope you are scared. I hope you realize the many years of violent rhetoric, and actions, on the right might just bring about even more terrible blowback and maybe backing off makes sense. But I don't expect that. I expect, like I saw when I looked at posters invading the Terminate the Republican Party page, self righteous nastiness that skips over all the years of violent right wing rhetoric. And even worse rhetoric to spew forth from the already rabid foam coated lips on all sides. You see that is what this kind rhetoric, dehumanizing of the other side, refusal to compromise brings about. This war mentality when it comes to politics only inspires people like Loughner and Hodgkinson. And it has become a plague that may exterminate the very freedoms we claim to treasure.
 Understand this: you have no moral high ground from which to lecture the left from, no saintly pedestal from which to preach. You may claim righteousness but this kind of self righteousness: from either side, is turning this nation into a prison filled with more and more psychopaths egging each other on.

                                           -30-
Inspection is a column that has been written by Ken Carman for over 40 years. Inspection is dedicated to looking at odd angles, under all the rocks, and into the unseen cracks and crevasses that constitute the issues and philosophical constructs of our day: places few think, or even dare, to venture.

©Copyright 2017
Ken Carman and Cartenual Productions
all right reserved

Jun. 9th, 2017

03:13 pm - Inspection- 6 Twit Talking Points

 Twits, by definition are unable to think things through, see beyond their own narrow viewpoint, understand opposite views. Their responses display a twit's natural lack of reasoning and tend to give indication of a knee jerk support/hate mentality.
 There are far more that these. But here are six talking points that might indicate someone is a twit...


1.There's nothing here because the Russians had no effect on the election. They've been doing this for a long time- Yes, and when a bank robber is unsuccessful there's "nothing there" so cops should just let it go. A potential murderer fails in his bloody quest? Forgive and forget. And "this is nothing new?" Oh, that makes it OK? If that robber keeps trying you'd just laugh like you would at the coyote bungling his attempt to get the road runner. After, they certainly would never succeed, despite so many attempts, so doing something about it would be a wasted effort? Oh, and there really is nothing behind the curtain, Dorothy, no matter what you see. Toto's just being a bad dog. Punish him.
  Hence investigating it all is crucial. A decision of guilt comes later.

2. The disaffected lefties who voted third party elected Trump- Utter balderdash. Do you really think any significant number of these folks would ever have voted Hillary? Every election there have been those on the left who vote other because they don't care for the party's candidate. You can't just hand their votes over as if it's some foregone conclusion they would have voted for whom they went out of their way not to vote for. Do you really think many of these folks would ever have voted Hillary? Every election there have been those on the left who vote other because they don't care for the party's candidate. If you ignore the fact that the actual number of those who did this that actually might have voted Clinton are probably small your reasoning is no "reasoning" at all.
 They didn't vote Trump, and their numbers were small in comparison to those who voted for the two major candidates. Every election: lost or won, this happens. That doesn't make them "guilty" of Trump, and do you really think this kind of guilt tripping will help with future elections?

3. Bernie would have won- Be aware this depends on exactly what's claimed beyond that. Replaying history is a tricky; less than predictable, business. There would be variables due to changes made. But many who just assume Bernie would have won without any caveats would be, by definition, a "twit;" especially when out of the other side of their mouth they claim Hillary cheated and it was unfair. So... once Bernie was in the general you assume none of this would have come into play again, Trumpie and his minions would have played fair? It would have replayed exactly as it had under Clinton v. Trump, only with Super Bernie to trounce Trump? You think the Republicans would have been helpless and just laid down in front of the invincible Bernie train, you know the one so "invincible" it couldn't get beyond Hillary? You think gerrymandering, the press puppy dogging Donnie and ignoring Bernie far, far more than they did Hillary, couldn't have had some affect? You think studies that base results on what didn't happen, so therefore don't take any changes into account of strategy, games played, gerrymandering, election fraud etc. prove anything?
 It's common sense: no, not really. There's a good chance Bernie would have lost both the popular vote and the College, if for no other reason than getting far less press than even Clinton got, and at least as much coverage of Trump's every insult laden, Commie-calling, bad mouthing BS spewed throughout the media. Remember most polls were predicting a Clinton victory, just like some polls claimed Bernie would have won. The damn shame is those who claim any of this ignore what's unfair about the system are now reasons we should get together to solve these things, not participate in circular firing squads.

4. Hillary was a terrible candidate- "Terrible candidates" don't get 2.8 million more votes than who they run against. Not the best candidate, or a candidate with problems? I'll go for those. But "terrible?" No.
5. Lock her up/prison/jail chants/demands- You can tell a twit is posting, tweeting or talking when they go straight to this without at least some nod to a trial, a conviction and rule of law. Even suggesting they "should be" is problematic because it still skips over, well: a fair trial, conviction and rule of law. That goes for Hillary, Trump: anyone.
6. "The impeachment clock is ticking!"- All the branches of government are Republican. With little effort to push against election fraud and caging, exactly when do you think the clock might run out? If anything it has stopped. More likely the hands are running backwards and time is running out on representative governance. A slide into permanent one party rule is more likely than impeachment and that one party certainly ain't the Democratic Party. Certainly even less so progressives.

 You may notice I used "might indicate someone is a twit." If the intent in spewing these things is actually, to quote a previous president; "to propel the propaganda," the "twit" label doth not apply. Labels that might apply to Goebbels, Pravda and Guy Montag's job would be more apt.

                                                    -30-
Inspection is a column that has been written by Ken Carman for over 40 years. Inspection is dedicated to looking at odd angles, under all the rocks, and into the unseen cracks and crevasses that constitute the issues and philosophical constructs of our day: places few think, or even dare, to venture.

©Copyright 2017
Ken Carman and Cartenual Productions
all right reserved

Jun. 7th, 2017

02:01 pm - Inspection- Pushing the Envelope Towards Violence

 Our drive back from the Adirondacks is always long, tiresome and tedious. Ohio defines “tedious” through its dominant pattern of interstate scenery: cornfield, cornfield, “Grandpa’s Cheese Barn!” cornfield, cornfield, “YOU’RE GOING TO HELL!” Which seems to invite that short stint before death called sleep driving. We tend to trade driving duties and a chance to sleep back and forth. Hopefully there won’t come a time when we get confused between the two. Inspection
 Occasionally we may stop for a meal or to do the internet. We were almost into Louisville when we stopped at a McD’s. Behind me there were 3 guys discussing politics and Kathy Griffin. What they were saying definitely fit Lost in Space Robot’s fav saying: “Does not compute!”

 ”These %$#@ liberals don’t get it.”
 ”Yeah, all they want to do is raise taxes.”
 ”And this Griffin thing shows how violent they are, how much disrespect they have for the office of the presidency. If anyone on the right dared to do anything like this, boy, would they howl…”

 I am not one to confront people. In fact it was their conversation and therefore none of my business until they got so loud I swear they each had bullhorns. So I started muttering just loud enough they might get the idea in a public place not everyone had to hear their one sided blather. I feel the same when I’ve heard lefties do it.
 I muttered about Ted Nugent’s many “suggestions” like that the Clintons be hanged, or Barack can suck on his machine gun. Eventually they left. I doubt I had anything to do with it, except they seemed to get a little quieter, and that’s all I wanted.
 Nugent declared the machine gun comment was just a metaphor. So lifting up a fake bloody head that kind of looks like the president wasn’t? Metaphor, or not, kind of misses the point here. They were both bad, wrong and a step way too far in pushing the envelope to get attention and press.
 Look, I’m going to make no claims as to which side spouts more violence encouraging “jokes,” or uses such images more; because that dilutes a point I need to make. Besides, I have my opinions, you have yours, and exactly how would we ever do a decent survey on this to prove either is more culpable anyway? Who gets to decide what counts and what doesn’t? The whole discussion breaks down into silly-anity. (Closely related to both insanity and profanity, but mostly just silly.)
  Shouldn’t the object be to get entertainers to stop “going there?”
 I certainly won’t defend a comedian I have found distinctly unfunny long before this incident. Why anyone would think that “funny” I haven’t the faintest. But why anyone would find Nugent’s violent imagery-laced rants against the Clintons and Obama amusing or entertaining? No matter who uses this envelope pushing shtick: it’s wrong and counter productive if the purpose is to humiliate the other side into complying or being quiet. That’s because the real result is usually “game is on,” to use a cliche’, then to push the envelope even more over the edge.
 As with so many situations the left will blame the right, the right will blame the left and both claim the other started it. Apparently a large segment of partisans on all sides never learned to heed the teacher who said…

 ”I don’t care who started it. This will stop.”

 History proves this is a longstanding trend in comedy, and that should be looked at. Why? Because just insulting or suggesting violence against one side or the other only assures it will get worse no matter who apologizes, or not.
 All of this is the obvious result of where humor and entertainment has been going for years.
 Should we start with Don Rickles? Maybe not. Maybe we could go to Eddie Murphy’s obsession in his original act with content that consisted mostly of the F-bomb. But that was just a minor push of the envelope compared to all that would come after that. Insult humor has been with us a long time and, to be honest, I think that’s the lowest form of humor. It takes intelligence to create a good pun despite its low standing. Calling someone a “pus face,” or an idiot, a loser, a pinhead… not so much. Oh, some insults can be creative but they’re also destructive. One of the more mild ones is at a roast, but such “kind” trading of insults is only funny if the target gets the jokes, as Donald Trump himself has shown. Let’s not even start on his obsession with unintentionally increasing Saturday Night Live‘s ratings.
 This trend isn’t just political. At one time Ren and Stimpy and South Park were “edgy.” Now they’re approaching “quaint.” The move has been on to push more and more.
 Yet one must ask: why do humans find hurting people intentionally “funny?” Once, in slapstick, seeming fools hurting themselves was “funny.” But I think this trend toward violence inciting humor may go back to the same reason Nazis found Jew jokes “funny:” feeling superior and justified.
 Perhaps the political grandfathers of this might be The Smothers Brothers? I admit I enjoyed their skits. But even I knew at 15 that the skit that got them kicked off the air was a tad too far: a black and white couple marrying while the white, redneck, preacher pointed a shotgun at the black groom’s head, which also had a noose around it. Even in the 60s not all of the South was like that and many areas, like Nashville, were trying to improve. Yet it also seems quaint compared to some Limbaugh or Saturday Night skits… which seem quaint compared to Griffin and Nugent.
 I believe adding a political dimension to humor based on simple insult, violence-inspiring content, that demeans whole groups making them to blame for all ills, is a very dangerous trend. And I see no end to it because, instead of focusing in on the nature of the “joke” we focus on which side to blame. This raises the bar for the next outrage.
 Blame the left.
 Blame the right.
 But if that’s your only point you’re missing the more important, bigger, less partisan, picture.
 Because we collectively still accept, laugh, and encourage this purely partisan form of hate humor there will be more of it. Violence and hate will follow jacked up to new levels. Those willing to go to the kind of extremes that successfully silences, even exterminates, the others will “win.”
 But, until then, we have bipartisan support for probably only one thing in America: pushing the envelope in different directions politically. If this continues I suspect a severed head and blowing a president into little pieces with a machine gun may soon be viewed as “quaint.”

                                                    -30-
Inspection is a column that has been written by Ken Carman for over 40 years. Inspection is dedicated to looking at odd angles, under all the rocks, and into the unseen cracks and crevasses that constitute the issues and philosophical constructs of our day: places few think, or even dare, to venture.
©Copyright 2017
Ken Carman and Cartenual Productions
all right reserved

Jun. 6th, 2017

02:47 pm - Inspection- Pushing the Envelope Towards Violence

 Our drive back from the Adirondacks is always long, tiresome and tedious. Ohio defines "tedious" through its dominant pattern of interstate scenery: cornfield, cornfield, "Grandpa's Cheese Barn!" cornfield, cornfield, "YOU'RE GOING TO HELL!" Which seems to invite that short stint before death called sleep driving. We tend to trade driving duties and a chance to sleep back and forth. Hopefully there won't come a time when we get confused between the two.
 Occasionally we may stop for a meal or to do the internet. We were almost into Louisville when we stopped at a McD's. Behind me there were 3 guys discussing politics and Kathy Griffin. What they were saying definitely fit Lost in Space Robot's fav saying: "Does not compute!"

 "These %$#@ liberals don't get it."
 "Yeah, all they want to do is raise taxes."
 "And this Griffin thing shows how violent they are, how much disrespect they have for the office of the presidency. If anyone on the right dared to do anything like this, boy, would they howl..."

 I am not one to confront people. In fact it was their conversation and therefore none of my business until they got so loud I swear they each had bullhorns. So I started muttering just loud enough they might get the idea in a public place not everyone had to hear their one sided blather. I feel the same when I've heard lefties do it.
 I muttered about Ted Nugent's many "suggestions" like that the Clintons be hanged, or Barack can suck on his machine gun. Eventually they left. I doubt I had anything to do with it, except they seemed to get a little quieter, and that's all I wanted.
 Nugent declared the machine gun comment was just a metaphor. So lifting up a fake bloody head that kind of looks like the president wasn't? Metaphor, or not, kind of misses the point here. They were both bad, wrong and a step way too far in pushing the envelope to get attention and press.
 Look, I'm going to make no claims as to which side spouts more violence encouraging "jokes," or uses such images more; because that dilutes a point I need to make. Besides, I have my opinions, you have yours, and exactly how would we ever do a decent survey on this to prove either is more culpable anyway? Who gets to decide what counts and what doesn't? The whole discussion breaks down into silly-anity. (Closely related to both insanity and profanity, but mostly just silly.)
  Shouldn't the object be to get entertainers to stop "going there?"
 I certainly won't defend a comedian I have found distinctly unfunny long before this incident. Why anyone would think that "funny" I haven't the faintest. But why anyone would find Nugent's violent imagery-laced rants against the Clintons and Obama amusing or entertaining? No matter who uses this envelope pushing shtick: it's wrong and counter productive if the purpose is to humiliate the other side into complying or being quiet. That's because the real result is usually "game is on," to use a cliche', then to push the envelope even more over the edge.
 As with so many situations the left will blame the right, the right will blame the left and both claim the other started it. Apparently a large segment of partisans on all sides never learned to heed the teacher who said...

 "I don't care who started it. This will stop."

 History proves this is a longstanding trend in comedy, and that should be looked at. Why? Because just insulting or suggesting violence against one side or the other only assures it will get worse no matter who apologizes, or not.
 All of this is the obvious result of where humor and entertainment has been going for years.
 Should we start with Don Rickles? Maybe not. Maybe we could go to Eddie Murphy's obsession in his original act with content that consisted mostly of the F-bomb. But that was just a minor push of the envelope compared to all that would come after that. Insult humor has been with us a long time and, to be honest, I think that's the lowest form of humor. It takes intelligence to create a good pun despite its low standing. Calling someone a "pus face," or an idiot, a loser, a pinhead... not so much. Oh, some insults can be creative but they're also destructive. One of the more mild ones is at a roast, but such "kind" trading of insults is only funny if the target gets the jokes, as Donald Trump himself has shown. Let's not even start on his obsession with unintentionally increasing Saturday Night Live's ratings.
 This trend isn't just political. At one time Ren and Stimpy and South Park were "edgy." Now they're approaching "quaint." The move has been on to push more and more.
 Yet one must ask: why do humans find hurting people intentionally "funny?" Once, in slapstick, seeming fools hurting themselves was "funny." But I think this trend toward violence inciting humor may go back to the same reason Nazis found Jew jokes "funny:" feeling superior and justified.
 Perhaps the political grandfathers of this might be The Smothers Brothers? I admit I enjoyed their skits. But even I knew at 15 that the skit that got them kicked off the air was a tad too far: a black and white couple marrying while the white, redneck, preacher pointed a shotgun at the black groom's head, which also had a noose around it. Even in the 60s not all of the South was like that and many areas, like Nashville, were trying to improve. Yet it also seems quaint compared to some Limbaugh or Saturday Night skits... which seem quaint compared to Griffin and Nugent.
 I believe adding a political dimension to humor based on simple insult, violence-inspiring content, that demeans whole groups making them to blame for all ills, is a very dangerous trend. And I see no end to it because, instead of focusing in on the nature of the "joke," we focus on which side to blame. This raises the bar for the next outrage.
 Blame the left.
 Blame the right.
 But if that's your only point you're missing the more important, bigger, less partisan, picture.
 Because we collectively still accept, laugh, and encourage this purely partisan form of hate humor there will be more of it. Violence and hate will follow jacked up to new levels. Those willing to go to the kind of extremes that successfully silences, even exterminates, the others will "win."
 But, until then, we have bipartisan support for probably only one thing in America: pushing the envelope in different directions politically. If this continues I suspect a severed head and blowing a president into little pieces with a machine gun may soon be viewed as "quaint."

                                                  -30-
Inspection is a column that has been written by Ken Carman for over 40 years. Inspection is dedicated to looking at odd angles, under all the rocks, and into the unseen cracks and crevasses that constitute the issues and philosophical constructs of our day: places few think, or even dare, to venture.

©Copyright 2017
Ken Carman and Cartenual Productions
all right reserved


_______

Jun. 1st, 2017

12:06 pm - Inspection- 55%?

 Channel 5 News here in Nashville reported a few mornings ago that shootings in Nashville are up 55% over last year. Of course, immediately, they had a right wing "think tank" expert on who claimed it was because of drugs. I am assuming they will therefore propose more draconian drug laws that will ("amazing!") result in more drug related crimes. I also assume the resulting rise in stock for Tennessee-based Correction Corporation will make stockholders very happy.
 But the expert's one reason answer was, to quote my father's generation, "poppycock." Drugs have been around Nashville for quite a while and, yes, we have had an influx of a lot of new folks, more crack houses, more and more gang related crime but that would be over many years. No way in hell does that explain a 55% increase in half of one year.
 Gee, I wonder what has changed about society in the past year? I could simply start with the glorification of the bully, the increasing acceptance of violence as a solution and the Stand Your Ground mentality. But let's go elsewhere right now, OK?
 Nashville is in Middle Tennessee: part of the South that was occupied for most of the Civil War by the North. If you think 150 plus years after that no longer matters you understand shew wop about the South. When we moved here in 78 just suggesting changes could get you fired, threatened and, sometimes, killed. "We don't care how you Yankees do it up north," a common refrain: even if you came from another country, or what some here may consider another country: California. The influx of immigrants has agitated this, I'm sure.
 There has always been some of that element here. That can't be the "one reason."
 Due to Nashville's very touristy/music mecca nature aggressive, type A, personalities flock here. They all come with rifles strapped to their guitars: even asking for some exotic diminished chord pulled the trigger. Of course, until recently, the simple country music focus made the more "trah-dash-un-al cown-tree" strummer say, "A demin-ish-ed wha? You damn Idaho Yankees and your..." as they blew the fancy finger picker's picking fingers off. OK, I'm joking. But Nashville does attract type A personalities like a big zapper attracts the wrong kinds of bugs. Still no singular cause of a sudden 55% raise there.
 Immigrants! That's it! Those damn immigrants! But, wait, the influx of Ethiopian, Mexican, Vietnamese... most of these aren't a part of our morning and evening who shot who reports. No, it's the usual: black on black, white on white, some black on white but far more white on black. So that can't be it. Yes this is also a longstanding problem: not something that explains a sudden 55%.
 Maybe it's because too many of us view guns as some great "solution" and treat those who carry like they were perfect shots, are so wise they react faster than those who have the drop on you. Act as if they're wise enough not to leave guns where teens and little kids might shoot themselves and others?
 Nah, also part of nationwide situation over the years, as well as Nashville statistics. Stupid people, or those with issues, getting guns and others getting shot has been part of the news for quite a while, not to mention the nation. I come from a wilderness area and some of us went down a different path when we saw hunters drinking, in bright orange pants and coats, headed down a trail to find their deer.
 Damn it, damn it, damn it! Nothing else that has happened recently seems to explain this radical increase except the rise of the ever angry orange one who has given an even bigger sense of empowerment to those who already liked pushing others, demanding those who they find disagreeable sit down and shut up, insult others to their faces, beat others who won't submit or dare to disagree. He appeals to those who would rather shoot first then claim they felt "threatened."
 Yes, as I stated before: we just had a national election where; despite losing the popular vote by rather substantial numbers for one who "wins" anyway, the bully was celebrated as if he vanquished all instead of squeaked by: everyone should bow to the Donnie deity. Now he is supposedly to be treated like the Emperor with No Clothes while his minions cheer the kind of mentality where if one thinks a reporter is asking too challenging questions there's some unquestionable right to immediately assault them, break their glasses. Makes one a true, patriotic, A-MUR-I-CAN. Or when Kathy Griffin makes distinctly unfunny, inappropriate, beheading joke, that kind of political incorrectness needs to be crushed, but Nugent can make "jokes" that threaten the previous occupant of the White House and that makes him an honored guest at the new White House. Well, after all, he was "Demorat" and... "Shhh! He was Black!" (You know how whacked out the reaction has been when you have to weed through many pages of youtube commentary before I found out what she actually did.)
 As to the real reason for the sudden 55% rise, oh, I admit, I'm kidding... somewhat. Certainly there could be many reasons for this 55%, some I have already mentioned, some I haven't. But a movement coming to power that already felt their fellow Trumpian sycophants should be "entitled:'" to use one of the words they love to toss around, to hunt down a young black boy without identifying themselves then kill him because he defends himself against someone obviously stalking him, already felt "entitled" to take over public property while brandishing weapons, felt entitled to shoot to death a passenger in a car because they had an argument about loud music, well, and Trump cheering this kind of mentality on; all that certainly could part of the reason for a 55% rise in shootings. And explain, like a spreading virus, others might also feel so entitled. This is a true entitlement culture in the worst sense of the word.
 Just celebrating a gun culture isn't really a large part of the problem. People have done that for centuries. People celebrating a culture of entitlement to use violence and guns when they're angry or want enforce their idea of political correctness certainly could be.
 Nashville has just always been a town where such things are amplified by the type of people who come here and were born here, plus our history. But if this "trend" ain't in your hometown yet, don't worry: just consider it a coming attraction.

                                                                    -30-
Inspection is a column that has been written by Ken Carman for over 40 years. Inspection is dedicated to looking at odd angles, under all the rocks, and into the unseen cracks and crevasses, that constitute the issues and philosophical constructs of our day: places few think, or even dare, to venture.

©Copyright 2017
Ken Carman and Cartenual Productions
all right reserved

May. 19th, 2017

02:12 pm - Inspection- DEEP STATE of Denial

 As a former Kucinich supporter: shame on you, Dennis. Your little FOX rant will do little good except provide cover for who may go down in history as the most corrupt, misogynist, racist, traitorous president ever. If you succeed in helping Trump and company mislead the public it could enable far more damage to that much damaged institution. Future presidents may go more into tyrant territory with even more corruption.
 I can only conclude, when it comes to the true nature of Trump, Dennis Kucinich is in a state: one of denial. And how I "love" this esoteric, oh so convenient, concept; "The Deep State."

 Tinfoil hat time! Oggie, boogie, fear, fear, fear, monsters under your bed, ignore the very obvious monsters who did so poorly in an election they had to rely on gaming the Electoral College through massive voter suppression.
 Are there anonymous unelected whistleblowers in gov leaking stuff? Yes, but the key here is, "anonymous." That means it could be anyone and therefore only deserves as much credibility as we wish to give. As far as we know the original source could be some low level employee who wishes to gain attention, or even someone Pence-sively pining for the presidency.
 Simple rule: if the source is anonymous we have choices; believe, check it out, or not. We have another choice: follow the lead intensely, somewhat or ignore it. Then the rule is to give whatever gravitas to it we think it deserves: none, little, to a lot. If the source is what they refer as "Deep State" that doesn't auto negate that source.
 Perhaps the real "deep" evil here is not those who are "ratting," but politicians and partisans eager to accept anything bad about whom they disagree with, or reject anything negative about Trump, Hillary, Bill, Bernie, Obama or Yogi the Bear, whom the cartoon "Deep State" claims is still stealing pic-a-nik baskets.
 A Hanna-Barbera-based joke? Yes. But no Yogi for president, please. We know who the VP would be and we've already had too many... Boo-Boos.
 The deeper evil here is the attempt to silence those who feel need to do what they can. This includes those who feel they would be personally, financially destroyed, as well as those close to them, if they didn't remain anonymous.
 The way to stop those who have evil intent is not to silence both; it's to give less automatic credibility to "anonymous."
 Shall we mention the obvious?
 The former presidential candidate says this goes beyond party. I agree. He says it threatens the nation. I deeply disagree with his conclusion about what actually threatens the nation, and its nature: hyper-partisanship.
 Let's remind ourselves that Trump's problems are far from being even close to all being anonymous. This could become a successful attempt to put all that unravel corruption, high crimes and misdemeanors under the ominous title "Deep State." Let's remind ourselves much of this isn't anonymous. Comey comes to mind. Trump's close associate, perhaps soon to be ex-lover, Putin comes to mind, John McCain too. And let's not forget the self incriminating Trumpster himself. When accusations fly, sometimes Trumpie is like some evil Roger Rabbit who can't resist Shave and a Haircut (Two Bits).
 Framing it all as some Deep State conspiracy provides a singular, therefore bogus, Boogie Man to blame and for Donnie to hide behind. Where does this massive group of traitors meet for tea and crumpets? Do they plot in the tasting room of Traitors R Us Brewery? Poor helpless Donald who has never said or done anything to deserve this! Don't let Deep Boogie crawl out from under some bed and eat a poor defenseless president; pure as driven snow, who only has had well wishes and kisses for all. Like Sergeant Schultz he knows nothing. NOTHING!
 OK, that last may be close to true.
 Let's also remind ourselves there are reasons people choose to be anonymous that have nothing to do with some hypothetical Kaos-like, inner government, block of Deep State villains led by some invisible force. Perhaps led by Mini-Me who stole Harry's invisibility cloak?
 Unfortunately, doing the right thing often has horrendous consequences. Especially these days in cases deemed national security-related. Defendants are not legally allowed to defend their actions, just plead guilty to doing it, or not. Gee, I wonder if any claims of collusion with Putin might be declared a national security-related case?
 Duh.
 Reporting it to their superiors isn't an answer. In many cases it's like asking the true monsters to eat you.
 Could some have bad intent and harbor grudges, resent being low level appointees, have partisan agendas and be willing to say anything? Absolutely, you know, like Linda Tripp?
 The problem is not anonymous; it's hyper-partisanship that has caused this: people seeking any reason, any lie, which serves partisanship and their inability to think things through rationally. That last thing: our collective inability to think things through rationally, is something we desperately need to get back. Hyper-partisanship leads us to believe anything bad about those with whom we disagree and punish anyone who tells us bad things about those we agree with. This is a call to punish the guy in line behind us, as cult enforcers hover nearby, who whispers in our ear, "Um, I think that Favor Aid may have cyanide in it." We can believe, we can check it out or just drink and take our chances.
 "Deep State" is a stupid conspiracy-based talking point meant to encourage silence. Such silence furthers the destruction of our freedoms by those who wish to never, ever be held responsible for their actions or behavior.

                                        -30-
Inspection is a column that has been written by Ken Carman for over 40 years. Inspection is dedicated to looking at odd angles, under all the rocks, and into the unseen cracks and crevasses, that constitute the issues and philosophical constructs of our day: places few think, or even dare, to venture.

©Copyright 2017
Ken Carman and Cartenual Productions
all right reserved

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