Ho la traduzione dei comportamenti,
ad esempio insulti me perché ogni volta che parlo del mio successo,
tu realizzi i tuoi fallimenti
—  Felice Per Me(Fabri Fibra, Nitro).

anonymous asked:

Couldn't Renly/Olenna/Maegery just claim, after they've won and anyone who'd disagree with their justification is dead, that Renly was Roberts rightful heir instead of Stannis because he held storm's end, the family's ancestral seat. Basically claiming the heir apparent is storm's end rather than dragonstone because dragonstone was only targaryen's as their ancestral seat, so a change of dynasty changes the seat or something? That could work as a Casus Belli, so their isnt nothing they can do.

No, they couldn’t do that, because that’s not how casus belli works. Casus belli isn’t just making something up, it’s providing a reason that exists within the moral, cultural, and legal frameworks of a given society.

Take this example, for instance. There’s so many holes in it that it doesn’t make sense. When did Robert decide this? If it was early, around the time Renly was given Storm’s End, why did Robert not announce Storm’s End was the new seat of the heir? Why did Robert not hold a ceremony to formally invest Renly with the status as crown prince? Why did Joffrey keep being referred to as the Crown Prince?  Why did Joffrey, Tommen, and Stannis all get bumped to make way for Renly? Why weren’t these reasons announced? Why did Robert betroth Sansa to Joffrey if he was dynastic dead weight? Why did Robert keep Stannis on the small council if he disinherited him? None of that excuse makes any sense, and no one would believe it if all this evidence “suddenly materializes” as soon as Robert dies.

Thanks for the question, Anon.

SomethingLikeALawyer, Hand of the King

World-building idea to steal:  An inverted ziggurat dungeon marketplace in a platform of rock floating above the city (Ad for “Game’s” store in Casus Belli 1, April 1980)  Game’s Paris location was in the Forum des Halles, the underground mall that inspired the illustration.

I’m currently reading Thud!

There is this talk between Vimes and Vetinari which is FULL of touching moments and ITS JUST SO BEAUTIFUL

“What would you do if I asked you an outright question, Vimes?”
“I’d tell you a downright lie, sir.”
“Then I will not do so,” said Vetinari, smiling faintly.

Then they proceed to communicate through Looks which is
He gave Vetinari a look that said: If you take this any further, I will have to lie.
Vetinari returned one that said: I know.
“You yourself are not too badly injured?” the Patrician said aloud.
“Just a few scratches, sir,” said Vimes.
Vetinari gave him a look that said: Broken ribs, I’m certain of it.
Vimes returned one that said: Nothing.

And then Vetinari throws compliments at him left and right like “Sam Vimes once arrested a dragon. Sam Vimes once arrested two armies to stop a war. Sam Vimes once arrested ME. He is an arresting fellow. Sam Vimes cannot be bribed, cannot be corrupted, he keeps digging until he has the truth!”
Vimes is like ??
And Vetinari: “… that’s what the people out there are saying. This is why you need to find the murderer.”
Like, sure, Havelock.
It just becomes beautifully clear that Vetinari, in a way, ADMIRES Vimes. Definitely respects him.

Made even clearer by the next part:
“But if his death can be turned into a casus belli-” here Lord Vetinari looked at Vimes’s sleepy eyes and went on, “-that is, to a reason for war, then suddenly he is the most important dwarf in the world. When did you last get some proper sleep, Vimes?”
Vimes muttered something about ‘not long ago.’
“Go and have some more. And then find me the murderer. Quickly. Good day to you.”
Vetinari KNOWS Vimes can translate casus belli. But he sees that the man is dead on his feet and TRANSLATES IT out of CONSIDERATION
And then he is worried that he isn’t getting enough SLEEP


Every scene these two have together is BRILLIANT and BEAUTIFUL

(look at me, i typed practically the whole scene here lmfao
But literally all of it is SO! IMPORTANT!
I just need to have it on my blog I NEED EVERYONE TO SEE IT

bigbadbruin343  asked:

Who do you most blame for the outbreak of Robert's Rebellion?

Aerys. When Aerys murdered Rickard, Brandon, Brandon’s entourage, and their fathers, he went far beyond what was permitted by any feudal contract. By demanding that Robert and Eddard be turned over to the pyre, he forced the two to rebel out of self-defense. Jon Arryn would naturally come along, he had just been commanded to violate one of the oldest tenets of law by his king after said king had murdered his heir. By refusing this impossible order, Arryn made himself as much a target as Robert or Eddard. Hoster Tully needed to be persuaded, but I doubt he would have sided with the royalists; he had just had his future son-in-law killed along with two Mallisters, sworn vassals of his, and he could probably fear Aerys’s next stop in his mad paranoia dash would land on Catelyn, Brandon’s fiancee.

Rhaegar is second, but he deserves a lot of blame too. By hiding in Dorne when everything was happening, he failed to take any sort of decisive control of the events that he played a significant part in instigating, and then by declaring that he will fight for the Targaryens, that is a statement saying that he would defend his father’s ability to unilaterally execute his vassals and deny them their right to trial. Even if he didn’t believe that (which Jaime’s last conversation with Rhaegar suggests that he did not), he was still willing to kill Robert over it. For all Robert’s shortcomings, that doesn’t stop him from being in the right. Aerys is after his head, to stop the rebellion is to die.

Thanks for the question, Bruin.

SomethingLikeALawyer, Hand of the King

Casus Belli
Casus Belli

Choir: Europa Universalis, Europa Universalis

Doesn´t he think he needs Casus Belli?
Oh how impolite indeed, no Casus Belli

Russia, Denmark, France -This is a call to arms!
England stood no chance -This is a call to arms!

He messed with the HRE - Casus Belli
Shattered Stability - Casus Belli

Russia, Denmark, France -This is a call to arms!
England stood no chance -This is a call to arms!

But we couldn´t be happier now that he attacked
We have Casus Belli
Casus Belli
Casus Belli
Casus Belli

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 ( 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.

Why we should stop straight-washing Euryalus and Nisus

Hello everyone! For my first post on this blog I am going to write about a matter that I hold dear: Euryalus and Nisus, the two Trojan warriors whose undertaking can be found in the ninth book of Virgil’s Aeneid. I was looking forward to studying this episode in class, but then my teacher came up with a sentence that I really didn’t like: «Please do not consider Euryalus and Nisus as a couple, they are just very good friends». If there is one thing I cannot stand, it’s when teachers do not tell the class how things really are just because they dislike something about it. By doing so, they are spreading misinformation, and I think that’s something that shouldn’t happen in schools. Anyway, I don’t want to argue about teachers’ job (or lack of it), but I want to show you why we really need to stop straight-washing Euryalus and Nisus.

So, first of all, a bit of background

-Trojans and Latins are now alleys. The king Latinus, who had previously promised his daughter to Turnus, prince of Ardea and of the Rutulians, changed his mind and offered Lavinia, such was the girl’s name, to Aeneas in marriage.
-At this sight, Juno, who happens to be the goddess of marriage and queen of the gods, sends down her agent Alecto, one of the three Furies, the one that never rests, to prevent the Trojans from having their way with king Latinus by marriage and cause their downfall through war.
-For doing so, Alecto takes over the body of the queen Amata, whom she persuades to oppose Aeneas’ marriage and whips Turnus to go on war against the Trojans. She then causes a skirmish between the local people of  Latium and a Trojan hunting party led by Ascanius, who kills a white deer. [Casus belli, the event that provokes or is used to justify a war]
-War has begun. In the ninth book, Aeneas is in Pallanteum, where lives and reign Evander, an old king now Aeneas’ alley. Taking advantage of Aeneas’ absence, Turnus attacks the Trojan camp. In accordance to Aeneas’ strict instructions, the Trojans close the gates and decline battle. [This is topic structure in epic poetry: the situation always gets worse when the hero is far from the battle field. For example, in the Iliad this happens with both Achilles and Odysseus.]
-Euryalus and Nisus are two Trojans warriors who are at the gates. Nisus starts thinking about a night foray…

But let’s talk about who Euryalus and Nisus are before we actually get to the story. We can get a first glimpse of them in the fifth book, during the funeral games of Anchises, where Virgil refers to their love as amour pius, a love that shows the pietas which is Aeneas’ main trait, but the events that involve them are in the ninth book.
-Nisus is the son of Hyrtacus -therefore of noble origins- and is described as a formidable warrior, especially with spear and bow and arrow. He had been sent by Ida, the hunters’ mountains, to be comrade of Aeneas, given his amazing skills. When going to the Trojan army, Nisus brought his own comrade, Euryalus, whom he holds really dear.
-Euryalus is so young he hasn’t had his first beard yet. He is described as the most beautiful man in Aeneas’ army. He does not have any experience about war but is determined to fight because he wants to achieve the so-called pulchram mortem, which literally means good, beautiful death and refers to a death that occurs while fighting, one that brings honour upon the dead warrior himself.

They are both very loyal towards each other, but for different reasons, plus they show it in different ways. Nisus cares about Euryalus because the younger boy needs to be protected and guided on his path to adulthood; he shows it when he tries to convince Euryalus not to follow him on the night foray to the enemy camp. On the other hand, Euryalus holds Nisus dear because he sees the man as a life model, someone to look up to; he follows him when he’s called to be part of Aeneas’ men. 

His amour unus est. They were one in love. That’s the very first thing that we learn of Euryalus and Nisus as a couple. Virgil here portraits the Greek model of love between two men, with the typical structure of the erastes (literally “the one that loves”, active, in this case Nisus) and the eromenos (passive, in this case Euryalus). In Roman military, homosexual behaviour among fellow soldiers was strictly prohibited because there was a lot of cultural baggage about it. The Romans had peculiars views upon what makes a free citizen free, and in these views political freedom was tightly linked to physical one, and of course a free citizen wasn’t object to sexual use, because taking part passively to a sexual encounter would mean lose freedom. A Roman man was, however, free to engage in  same sex relationships with a passive partner (slaves, prostitutes, etc) excluded form the protections of citizenship.
In this case, however, Euryalus and Nisus are on the same level. Neither of them is a slave nor a prostitute. They appear exactly as a pair of Greek lovers would’ve. Among the Greek there was indeed a ancient tradition of idealized homosexuality in military setting -The sacred band of Thebes, Achilles and Patroclus… Virgil, by describing their love as pius, makes it honourable and in line with Roman values. Because they are soldiers, their love can be seen especially when they charge together into battle (and that’s the second thing Virgil tells us about them).

Now we are ready to get back to the story.
Euryalus and Nisus are sharing their guard duty on the gate, when Nisus starts talking about a night foray to the Rutulians’ camp; he says that he cannot be quiet any more, but wants to rush into battle or into some great enterprise, so he starts to make up a plan. Euryalus, just like him, is enthusiastic but when he understands that Nisus does not intend to bring him on the mission, he immediately says that he does not intend to abandon him. “I have here a hearth that despises the light, that would gladly spend life to buy the honour you are striving for”.
Nisus replies that he wants Euryalus to live because, if he won’t come back from the foray, the young man can give him a proper burial and avenge him. Plus, he doesn’t want Euryalus’ mother (whose love towards her son was so great that she was the only woman among the Trojans who did not stop in Sicily) to suffer.
But Euryalus clears that he’s determined to follow the other, so Nisus allows him to take the crucial decision. Before they leave, Euryalus wakes sentries to keep guard when they go to the Council to expose their plan. The Council is a gathering of chosen Trojan warriors.
The original plan, Nisus’ one, was to take a message to Aeneas, but now the two propose to set an ambush, kill as many enemies as they can and then come back before dawn. Aletes, a very old man “mature in judgement” approves it, and so does Ascanius (Aeneas’ son), who promises every kind of rewards, Turnus’ horse included.
They set out, enter the Rutulian camp and slaughter the soldiers while they sleep. Nisus eventually realizes that day is due to come, so he looks for Euryalus, who puts on armour he had stolen form the dead (medallions, a gold-studded belt and a helmet with gorgeous plumes). This will be their downfall: 300 soldiers, led by Volcens, spot them because the helmet Euryalus is wearing reflects into the moonlight. They immediately start running, trying to escape through a dense forest nearby. Euryalus is slower than Nisus because he’s carrying all the loot, which slows him down; so Nisus actually gets further. For a moment, only for a moment, he forgets about Euryalus. For Nisus what matters the most is not the mission but the boy himself, so he heads back. He can hear the enemy, and he has a vision: Euryalus surrounded by the Rutulians with no defence. He asks himself what he can do to help him, so he attacks the enemies. Nisus, indeed, is still in the wood, so when he starts to throw spears upon the Rutulians, they can’t understand from where those spears come from. Volcens gets angry and decides to punish Euryalus, whom is his captive. Nisus now, and only now, is described as distraught; the only thing he cares about is saving Euryalus, so he steps out and declare himself as the man who killed all those Rutulians. But Volcens puts Euryalus to the sword. Nisus now starts going mad, the pain is too much and he cannot handle it. All he wants now is to avenge his comrade, so he tries to kill Volcens, but he ends up surrounded by enemies and gets killed shortly after Euryalus dies.
The following day, the Rutulians have Euryalus and Nisus’ heads on two spikes, showing no mercy and no pietas. The Trojans watch afflicted this lugubrious procession. Euryalus’ mother gets to know about her son’s death and starts mourning him in the typical way: she pulls her own hair, she hits herself and cries and weeps loudly.

Virgil here wants to offer his audience an occasion to think about war, love and death. He acknowledges the fact that many deaths occurred while Rome was becoming the powerful city it was when he was writing, but he still wants underline the fact that there is no joy when a war is raging on, not even for the winners: Volcens will die as well.

So, although Euryalus and Nisus are kind of a negative example – they neglect the disciplines and show no respect to the gods-, Virgil wants the audience to focus on the fact that their love was the thing they most valued. Virgil indeed was a follower of the Epicurean philosophy, that celebrates close relationships privately, exalting the feeling itself, one that is based on fides, affection and respect.

“No day shall erase you from the memory of time”.

“It is transparent that the phrase ‘fite me irl’ predates standardized spelling and capitalization conventions, but neither the casus belli nor the identity of Earl has ever been determined.”

anonymous asked:

I completely agree with REnly being a usurping tyrant who is attempting to advance his naked ambition at the cost of the realm as a whole, but I have to wonder if "every secondborn and supernumerary son can simply wage a war to conquer their elder brother’s lordly seat" is really a realistic outcome or just exaggeration, I could hardly imagine Renly and other reigning lords wouldnt put their foot down and team up to stop that sort of thing if it occured, is there any RL examples of this?

I’m sure Renly would prefer that not to happen, as a country racked by instability due to supernumerary son fighting to install themselves as lord of the manor is a much harder place to govern. The problem is, Renly invalidated that with his own ascension, and he never gave any public reason why. When he says, “to the best-suited,” what does he mean by that, because if that’s what determines the criteria, well, where’s the rubric?

It also legitimizes violence as the means, and we saw this throughout history, such as the Gracchi brothers, that it causes nations to fall into despotism. Again, Renly makes no effort to distinguish why it was okay for him to do this. This is why casus belli was so important because without it, it opened up the ruler to both foreign and domestic attacks because, well, if he can do it, why can’t they?

Sounds like a slippery slope argument, you might say. Well, slippery slopes in politics are not quite as fallacious as they are in real life. Giving yourself the power to do something normalizes it as business, and that means it keeps being used. The executive branch of the U.S. has been taking advantage of that for generations.

Thanks for the question, Anon.

SomethingLikeALawyer, Hand of the King


“But the deal with spy stories is that the levels get confused, by design, because that’s what being a spy is: A story that is also a girl telling a story about a girl telling a story. It’s a collapsible wave; you are all these people at once. You are everything you’ve agreed to be, all of the time, even when you are sleeping – even when you are fucking – and that’s how the goods are different from the greats.” –Jacob Clifton

Meta: Mako's Fear of Emasculation

Back when Book 2 was airing, I remember seeing a lot of disapproval with Korra, at least during the first half of the season. Perhaps the pacing did us a disservice. Having a full week to reflect on how “stupid” Korra was for “still” trusting Unalaq in between the first few episodes may have undercut her characterization a bit, and only highlighted her missteps. But it wasn’t her handling of the Civil War plot that drew the most criticism…it was her treatment of Mako and her romantic actions. I was never a shipper back then, nor did I really find Makorra compelling in any respect, so their fights didn’t bother me. But I did think Korra was being a bit overly antagonistic and making some big fuck-ups in general.

Upon rewatch, however, I’m finding myself very much agreeing with Korra, both in her handling of the WT politics and in her relationship with Mako. I’m not saying there weren’t missteps, but given the information Korra had, she made the best choices she could. And yet every step of the way Mako acted as a horribly unsupportive boyfriend.

I made this post expressing my disapproval at Mako’s behavior, because I didn’t remember just how antagonistic he was in their fights. “Remembrances” focused on their issue being their jobs pitted against their relationship, but it was more than that. Mako was outright accusatory and callous towards Korra. And it’s not to say she didn’t throw some personal attacks his way, of course. Korra’s just as responsible for their fighting and overall incompatibility. But given how insulting Mako’s comments were to Korra, the fact that he is the one who dumps her is just flooring. I guess Mako felt like she was making his job harder, but rather than engaging in any kind of constructive conversation or explaining his own viewpoint/feelings, he opted to screech at Korra about how badly she kept messing everything up. Twice.

It wasn’t until 2x06, “The Sting,” that I began thinking about Mako’s actions in the context of a psychological need for Mako to place himself as the protector and to feel useful. Given his background, this makes sense and is sympathetic. He was orphaned at a young age, having nothing and needing to care for Bolin growing up. “Protector” is a natural role to him. But it seems that it’s also something that feeds his ego. Ego isn’t inherently a bad thing, don’t get me wrong. Yet Mako’s treatment of both Korra and Asami, and how it did happen to play out with very gendered dynamics suggests anxiety relating to emasculation.

Keep reading