Blue Union

I hate you when you’re gone, I hate you turn me on,
I hate the way I need you when I don’t know where you are.
I love it even more when I find you on the floor.
I know you think you hate me but I will. Always. Hate. You. More!  
© Sick Puppies - I Hate You

season 3 of voltron

Something that makes me very sad about Keith going to be the Black Lion. It´s that the positions will change. And Allura is going to be the blue lion and lance the red lion. It’s just look at them, lance is very happy with blue 

The best union is that of lance and the Blue Lion, was the one that was given first and was the most natural. He is so happy and protective with his Lion, that it breaks my heart that lance Have to move to the red lion

I understand that is part of the original version, but still feel that there shouldn`t be so many changes, the change of positions should only be between Allura and Keith. And that because it is necessary, I prefer shiro to come back And Allura fight hand to hand (Physically she´s the strongest of all, she heals a complete planet, her essence is connected to the lions and the corrupt wormhole does not affect her, so I need to see her kicking ass of the bad guys more often)

anonymous asked:

Thoughts on Antifa?

Antifa is just the tip of the iceberg.

I first got this question in my inbox shortly after the first Antifa riot on the night of Milo Yiannopoulos’s Berkeley speech, but I’ve been sitting on it for two reasons: one, to take time to formalize my thoughts better, and two, to avoid a “rush to judgement.” You see, it’s not Antifa specifically we must worry about, but rather how the left wing itself reacts to them.

In my multipleresponses to my Friendly Local Antifa, I’ve been very clear that just because extremists exist (and they will always exist -) doesn’t mean that they speak or act for any larger group. To claim they do is a classic fascist tactic, as evidenced by Hitler’s exploitation of the Reichstag fire as a casus belli to round up his Communist political opponents. Letting violent radicals act without serious efforts to stymie or punish them, or even praising and normalizing their motivations while weakly impugning their behavior, is also a classic authoritarian tactic, something the left wing is quick to note in the context of the Ku Klux Klan, but never apply to the likes of the Earth Liberation Front. That’s why I mention “Illinois Nazis” so much - the mere existence of some goose-stepping retards doesn’t even establish them as a threat in and of themselves, much less a movement with actual national political power.

This applies to “Antifa” because what they really are is pro-Communist radicals. It’s curious that reporting on Antifa never, ever seems to mention it, even though ten seconds on Google turns up some damning images pretty fast. These people have never been shy about being Communist radicals, or advertising it to the world. Considered in a vacuum, then, they’re just Illinois Commies brawling with Illinois Nazis. As the Beatles reminded us, just because they carry pictures of Chairman Mao doesn’t mean they’re gonna make it with anyone, anyhow. So I waited, and watched, to see if the larger wave of hysteria, obstructionism and outright violence would abate naturally as people wound down from the heightened passions of the election.

They haven’t. On the 15th of April (two days ago,) yet another wave of mass protests were staged across the country, with the theme being “Trump should release his tax returns.” The closest one to me was only twelve miles distant, in Ann Arbor, MI. Home of the University of Michigan, the city’s small, wealthy, ultra-left and nestled in the middle of a conservative, rural area - and the protest’s highlight speakers (including a few Senators) delivered their speeches on the University’s quad. (This is the exact kind of campus speaking event that Antifa used violence and thuggery to silence at Berkeley when the speaker was conservative.) Obama-appointed government officials have openly defied the lawful orders of the sitting President, and been openly and loudly lauded for it by the left wing. Members of our intelligence agencies have committed actual, unambiguous treason by leaking classified intelligence to a corporate media that writes every article with malice aforethought in a concerted and untiring effort to undermine the legitimacy of the office of the President of the United States. The left has proudly bragged of the multiple municipal governments - you know, cities - swearing to defy Federal law and law enforcement authorities, and some have even called for left-wing enclave California to secede from the Union. They have scrambled to erect every possible barrier to the President’s cabinet nominations, damn the consequences to effective governance, and the unfolding intelligence scandal is revealing how the power of secretive agencies was abused by Obama’s administration to undermine and slander his incoming successor. And of course, there’s the thuggery and violence on the street, waged by the likes of Antifa.

These are the tangible consequences of the left wing’s constant calls for “resistance” to the President - these are not just words, but a national policy that’s been put into action. This isn’t just cute pins to show off to your lit club buddies how “woke” you are - it’s widespread, tangible popular support for the politicians, bureaucrats and businessmen working towards their ends. And though they might call that end “resistance,” they really mean revolution.

Daniel Greenfield of Frontpage Magazine wrote a beautifully succinct summary that you should absolutely read in full, but his most crucial paragraphs were these:

There is no form of legal authority that the left accepts as a permanent institution. It only utilizes forms of authority selectively when it controls them. But when government officials refuse the orders of the duly elected government because their allegiance is to an ideology whose agenda is in conflict with the President and Congress, that’s not activism, protest, politics or civil disobedience; it’s treason.

After losing Congress, the left consolidated its authority in the White House. After losing the White House, the left shifted its center of authority to Federal judges and unelected government officials. Each defeat led the radicalized Democrats to relocate from more democratic to less democratic institutions.

This isn’t just hypocrisy. That’s a common political sin. Hypocrites maneuver within the system. The left has no allegiance to the system. It accepts no laws other than those dictated by its ideology.

Democrats have become radicalized by the left. This doesn’t just mean that they pursue all sorts of bad policies. It means that their first and foremost allegiance is to an ideology, not the Constitution, not our country or our system of government. All of those are only to be used as vehicles for their ideology.

That’s why compromise has become impossible.

The ideological divide in the left wing is nothing new - it started in earnest in 1969, when the socialist-communist bloc of the party first gained real traction versus the “classic” New Deal progressive Democrats. The rift has grown steadily since then, culminating in the last election, when the New Deal Democrats, the blue-collar union voters flipped the “blue wall” of the Rust Belt red for the first time since Reagan. The difference now is that the socialist-communist based branch of the party now control it, definitively. Their ideology and values are completely alien to the founding principles of America, the principles for which its laws were built to enshrine, nurture, and protect. This is why political compromise has grown more and more difficult in America - the common ground between parties simply doesn’t exist, and even if it did, socialist-communist ideology has never been based on the concept of compromise or reconciliation.

Communist ideology is based on revolution - in fact it’s a cornerstone of the ideology. Revolution, by definition, is a complete and utter rejection of the legitimacy of the existing structure of society. The left wing reveals their disdain for our society in everything they say and do - their perennial crusade against every aspect of capitalism, (“Big Whatever,” “Occupy Wall-Street,”) their endless trust in the sanctity and flawlessness of public institutions versus “greedy” private enterprise and, above all, their unceasing devotion to righting the myriad “crimes” of “social injustice.” Hell, with “social injustice” it’s right there in the name. They reject, on every possible level, the most basic building blocks of Western society in general.

The true significance of Antifa is the widespread popular support their thuggery has received from the left wing - it indicates the final abandonment of any pretense to democracy or fair dealing on their part. This is precisely why their language has taken on the tones of revolution and war as of late, dividing the populace into “us” versus “Nazis.” In our secular society, Nazis are tantamount to demons; inhuman, beneath consideration save through a rifle scope. The label’s a simple and effective way to dehumanize people, and that’s the first step in the conditioning required to kill.

It’s already accelerating. After the Berkeley police made a point of confiscating weapons - and anything usable as a weapon - from anyone converging on the park ahead of the latest scuffle in Berkeley, Antifa took to reddit to argue for outright arming themselves with firearms. (Note how California’s ban on open carry, implemented by Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown in 2011 suddenly becomes Reagan’s fault.) And other outlets are calling for leftists to degrade or destroy any government apparatus they do not control.

We have been down this road before, more than once - the spate of anarchist bombings back in 1919, the radical left terrorist bombings by the Weatherman Underground, and many others. But even at the height of anti-war activism in the late 60s and early 70s, things were never this bad. Much of it owes to new media - it’s atrophied the once-ironfast stranglehold the corporate media had on political discourse in this nation, which has pushed the left wing to resort to more brutish tactics to silence their opposition - doxxing, threats, intimidation and, of course, “de-platforming.” New media has also allowed the classic “grassroots” organizational tactics pioneered by Chicago machine politics to go large-scale (moveon.org et al.) The older people, the wiser people, the experienced and the jaded - I’ve talked to them all, and they all agree that it has never been this bad. The battle lines have been clearly drawn and the battles are being waged openly, vigorously and without apology.

Not every Democrat or liberal is a leftist - far, far from it, in fact. But I fear that the Democratic party is far too gone for the sane people to reassert control over it. As Greenfield points out, the left has retreated to “cultural urban and suburban enclaves where it has centralized tremendous amounts of power while disregarding the interests and values of most of the country. If it considers them at all, it is convinced that they will shortly disappear to be replaced by compliant immigrants and college indoctrinated leftists who will form a permanent demographic majority for its agenda. But it couldn’t wait that long because it is animated by the conviction that enforcing its ideas is urgent and inevitable. And so it turned what had been a hidden transition into an open break.” These people, long assured of their intrinsic superiority, are now confident in their eventual supremacy - and thus they are contesting the legitimacy of the President of the United States, and indeed our entire government, directly. We have been down this path before, too - it led to the Civil War.

That phrase - civil war - is the second reason I let this post percolate for so long. I’m naturally antithetical to hysterical “sky is falling” arguments, as they’re invariably full of shit and trying to sway people with fear and emotion, the facts be utterly damned. The current spate of gay, lesbian and transgender people buying guns for self-defense against the imaginary hordes of Right-Wing Gestapo comes as no surprise, because I’ve watched Conservatives panic-buying AR-15s after every shooting on the evening news for eight goddamn years. And for eight years I called them hooting morons because Obama’s desire to “git all yer gunz” far, far outstripped his ability to do so, legally and politically. Political vigilance against gun control is always needed, yes, but people rushing to the stores and stockpiling (then-scarce) ammo in their basement were expecting a ban tomorrow, despite over a decade of Democrats losing ground on the national gun control debate, to say nothing of the Supreme Court rulings upholding - and incorporating - an individual right to keep and bear arms. And the ones I scorned and mocked the most were the ones insisting they might need to use their new rifles in the not-so-distant future; that social unrest and even violence was just around the corner. I held these people to be the right-wing incarnation of the hysterical left-wing ninnies I so loathed and spared not my scorn, because being on my side of the fence didn’t make them any less an idiot.

The day after the Berkeley riot, I decided it was about time I got off my ass and purchased an AR-15.

For the first time in my life, I am truly afraid for my country - and for my friends, my family, and myself.

flickr

Union Canal by David Macdonald
Via Flickr:
I took this shot when out for a wee walk along the Union Canal at Linlithgow in West Lothian ……..

2

The Fifteen Stripe American Flag,

Most Americans know what the stars and stripes of the American flag symbolize.  The stars in the blue union represent the 50 United States, and the 13 stripes represent the 13 American colonies. However, originally the US flag was to have a star and a stripe to represent each state.  In 1791 Vermont joined the US, and in 1792 Kentucky likewise became a state.  Thus with the Flag Act of 1794, the US flag was changed to accommodate Vermont and Kentucky.  Two new stars were added, as were two new stripes, making it the only 15 striped flag of the US.  The 15 stripe flag flew from 1795 until 1818. The most popular 15 stripe flag was the “Star Spangled Banner”, which inspired Francis Scott Key to write a poem of the same name, which later became the national anthem.

With the addition of Indiana, Louisiana, Ohio, Mississippi, and Tennessee to the United States, and the addition of many more states in the foreseeable future, it was quite clear that the current system of flag design was not sustainable.  Naval Capt. Robert Samuel C. Reid suggest that the number of stripes be limited to 13, in order to honor the 13 original colonies which was enacted with the flag act of 1818. If the old system were still used today, this is what the US flag would look like.

Ian Bogost on Why Nothing Works Anymore

He’s right and wrong, at the same time.


Ian Bogost starts with today’s badly-working sensor-driven toilet as an icon for technology’s displacement of more servile, and less autonomous gizmos, and he spins a condemnation of our society from that starting point.

Ian Bogost, Why Nothing Works Anymore

So many ordinary objects and experiences have become technologized—made dependent on computers, sensors, and other apparatuses meant to improve them—that they have also ceased to work in their usual manner. It’s common to think of such defects as matters of bad design. That’s true, in part. But technology is also more precarious than it once was. Unstable, and unpredictable. At least from the perspective of human users. From the vantage point of technology, if it can be said to have a vantage point, it’s evolving separately from human use.

This is just the point of departure. Bogost weaves in the postnormal disconnect for working people’s disenfranchisement as a second element of the disassociation of people by technology. Bogost goes on:

“Precarity” has become a popular way to refer to economic and labor conditions that force people—and particularly low-income service workers—into uncertainty. Temporary labor and flexwork offer examples. That includes hourly service work in which schedules are adjusted ad-hoc and just-in-time, so that workers don’t know when or how often they might be working. For low-wage food service and retail workers, for instance, that uncertainty makes budgeting and time-management difficult. Arranging for transit and childcare is difficult, and even more costly, for people who don’t know when—or if—they’ll be working.

Such conditions are not new. As union-supported blue-collar labor declined in the 20th century, the service economy took over its mantle absent its benefits. But the information economy further accelerated precarity. For one part, it consolidated existing businesses and made efficiency its primary concern. For another, economic downturns like the 2008 global recession facilitated austerity measures both deliberate and accidental. Immaterial labor also rose—everything from the unpaid, unseen work of women in and out of the workplace, to creative work done on-spec or for exposure, to the invisible work everyone does to construct the data infrastructure that technology companies like Google and Facebook sell to advertisers.

But as it has expanded, economic precarity has birthed other forms of instability and unpredictability—among them the dubious utility of ordinary objects and equipment.

He tries to make the connection between the oddball oversensitivity of automatic toilets – that flush unnessarily, wasting water – and the end goal of corporations that deploy these toilets, which is to have fewer employees cleaning the bathrooms. But, he really is arguing that these highly technological gizmos – the self-flushing toilet, Amazon’s online store experience, the vagaries of what shows are available today on Disney, search results on Google – the uncertain nature of how they work becomes internalized:

But why would new technology reduce rather than increase the feeling of precarity? The more technology multiplies, the more it amplifies instability. Things already don’t quite do what they claim. The fixes just make things worse. And so, ordinary devices aren’t likely to feel more workable and functional as technology marches forward. If anything, they are likely to become even less so.


Technology is not an agent, acting like a colony of ants or a class of capitalists.


This is the center of Bogost’s fearful insight: the more technology multiplies, the more it amplifies instability. But his scifi leanings – where he ends up wondering if technology is acting for its own end, evolving independently of us – slides off the rails:

Things already don’t quite do what they claim. The fixes just make things worse. And so, ordinary devices aren’t likely to feel more workable and functional as technology marches forward. If anything, they are likely to become even less so.

Technology’s role has begun to shift, from serving human users to pushing them out of the way so that the technologized world can service its own ends. And so, with increasing frequency, technology will exist not to serve human goals, but to facilitate its own expansion.

I think Bogost starts strong and ends weak in this piece. Technology is not an agent, acting like a colony of ants or a class of capitalists. I think he veers away from pointing a finger at the real culprits behind the dehumanization of technology. He fails to ask the question ‘who benefits?’ The same people who gain and consolidate power through the growing precarity of workers – the 1% and the deep government that serves them – are also served by technology ephemeralizing all work, just like they’ve benefitted from all other workforce reductions, and the zeroing out of the power of counterinstitutions like the unions, and civil and social activism.