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AvatarComments by InMD*

On “How to Lose Friends and Influence No One

Conservative activists RINO their leaders. Progressive activists DINO other D voters.

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DeLorean. Probably built by the Kenyan intelligence services. Piloted by crack commandos from Wakanda.

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I pray every day he is disciplined enough to do just that.

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'Inspirational' isn't the word I'd use. But he doesn't scare the normies which can't be underestimated.

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This is a good analysis. Biden has been the biggest threat from the beginning. He's the only candidate who comes off like a normal person. Even if increasingly it's a normal person ready for assisted living.

On “How to Lose Friends and Influence No One

Wait, Biden is also running for all the mayor and county executive seats? Who knew?

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Do whatever will let you do double finger guns at yourself in the mirror when you get home that night.

The only way I'll be able to do that is if I write in Harambe.

On “How to Lose Friends and Influence No One

The internet is the death of nuance, empathy, and grace. There's nothing you can do about people bent on taking that hard a line.

Still, I sympathize. I voted third party last time because of my vow to never vote for a person who voted for the invasion of Iraq. I'm going back on that this election and voting Biden anyway because I'm a totally unprincipled hypocrite. The good news is I am also in a state where my vote does not matter. I'm also pretty sure I'm the only person in my family (other than my wife, who didn't vote at all) who didn't vote Trump in 2016. I guess I should just disown the whole lot of them, not that I see what good that would do for me, my life, or society. Just last Saturday my mother and I yelled at each other about it for 20 minutes then moved on to other things, as adults do.

The only person you control is yourself. It stings to see people you love and respect go off the deep end. All you can do is try to take it in stride and with an open heart. I believe that people who feel they need to cut others out of their lives or threaten to are really stroking some need they have, and that it isn't about the other person/people at all.

On “Biden Picks Kamala Harris

I buy that completely. My issue with leadership isn't that I think there was a conspiracy, just incompetence and way too much willingness to buy their own BS. The latter is why the talk of favorable demographic shifts, permanent majorities, etc. is all so much nonsense. But I guess it's tempting nonsense since the common thread is that it relieves them of having to earn victory in reality as it actually exists. It doesn't mean we're doomed but it does mean we will perpetually punch below our weight and make it harder to win realignment.

It's a different problem than the GOP has, that being that they all know they're full of it and that the base and right wing media has figured it out.

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This is closer to my concern. An enemy like Trump is probably enough to maintain unity in 2020, but the memory won't be so fresh in 4 years and God willing we will be on the other side of the pandemic. My guess is the tensions in the party will only be worse, especially if a Biden presidency is perceived as in the pocket of big tech and high finance.

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That's certainly the case for her. Of course I think the identity-based promise he made to begin with was an unforced error. I don't believe a black candidate is a requirement for getting out the black vote or that it is what caused Biden to do so well with that constituency in the primary (and IIRC Harris was not polling well with them anyway). Even if it is I'd be a bit concerned by the strategy due to the distribution of the black vote in southern states that won't be in play or urban areas of blue states that won't be either.* It's HRC again where we forget the game is winning states not necessarily people.

Anyway as I said above I don't think the election hinges on this at all. So far covid-19, the economy, and not beating ourselves still looks like it can work.

I do think it's a concerning sign that Democratic leadership is still kind of out of touch. Too often I'm reminded of a football team that gets a big lead in the first quarter, plays not to lose instead of running up the score, and loses by a field goal as time runs out.

*Michigan is of course the exception.

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To me the risk in Kamala is that there is a very real chance she will be the primary target of the Trump campaign. He'll say Sleepy Joe will be dead or catatonic by March so a vote for him is a vote for her. How does that play out in the states formerly known as the blue wall? Can someone who has never been tested outside of ultra-safe circumstances handle it? I don't know, and things are dire enough it may not matter anyway.

But if I was to make a case against her that would be it, not a fractured party. I'd have tried to find someone with a 30 letter Scandinavian last name to spend the next 90 days drinking beer and eating cheese curds or whatever people do for fun out there.

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I would bet minimal impact either way. The election will be determined by covid/the economy.

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The safe move is the wrong move. Should've picked a midwesterner, not the lady who couldn't handle Tulsi and has never won a seriously contested election. Dumb choice driven by dumb focus group decision-making. Hopefully it turns out not to matter.

On “Always at the Abyss

It's another wrung on our climb to post-truth society. The police account can't be trusted. But even if they could be proven right by a perfectly placed camera I don't think it would change the response.

On “The Crimson Letter

The core error is the belief that liberal ends can be achieved through reactionary means.

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This is actually the exact tactic that makes debate impossible.

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You made a comment on another of the million posts on this topic that I thought was insightful. I don't have time to hunt it down but I believe the thrust was that the guy with the Hitler picture on his twitter account is probably self-marginalizing for a host of reasons up to and including personal dysfunction. Old school liberalism has won that battle and no one mourns the fact that we no longer need to seriously address the tenets of Adolf Hitler's racial philosophies or give quarter to people making those particular arguments.

The question though is whether we apply the standard for Hitler Twitter Guy to Guy Who Appears To Make 'OK' Sign. There's a whole underlying philosophy here that asserts (and begs the question) that anyone who does not accept the tenets of college style critical theory is the equivalent of Hitler Twitter Guy and can be treated the same. Stating that anyone who has a problem with this is really just sad they can't call black people the n-word or compliment a coworker's breasts anymore seems to miss the point, or at the very least is unresponsive to the actual criticisms. At a most basic level it is an attempt to steal a step and win a cultural victory through institutional coercion rather than through liberal means.

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The change from universities being primarily state funded/public services to a model of federally backed student loans seems like it's probably part of the equation. It makes me wonder if these issues are less pronounced at state schools than small, private ones. The big uproars seem to track mostly back to little liberal arts schools but maybe that's just where the spotlight is.

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It isn't weird to me that kids would demand some ridiculous shit. What's weird to me is that the response is something other than 'college isn't for everyone, do the work or withdraw.' And I was a humanities major, this century too!

On “On Not Wanting to Rest Content

Speaking of self correction a bunch of self-described BLM supporting, progressive business owners have filed a lawsuit against Seattle for being abandoned to the CHOP CHAP.

Young white men wielding guns would harangue customers as well as Mr. Khan, a gay man of Middle Eastern descent who moved here from Texas so he could more comfortably be out. To get into his coffee shop, he sometimes had to seek the permission of self-appointed armed guards to cross a border they had erected.

“They barricaded us all in here,” Mr. Khan said. “And they were sitting in lawn chairs with guns.”

Read the whole article. If this is what people believe is the actual alternative to the police reform is dead.

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I understand that and I'm fully on board with getting away from the occupying army model. What I'm also saying though is that any solution that doesn't account for the groups that do commit violence and disruption to the economic activity that exists in those places is doomed to fail.

I don't think we need guys in combat gear kicking in doors and tossing every kid on the corner or approaching quality of life crimes like it's going to erupt into a gun fight. I do think that if you allow corner stores to be robbed with impunity and open air drug markets to erupt into turf wars calls to return to the old way will become so deafening that we go full circle. Keep in mind many of those communities were fully in favor of cracking down. The growing consensus today that the old approach failed is not set in stone and there's no reason we can't snap right back.

*Comment archive for non-registered commenters assembled by email address as provided.