The Odious Carbuncle Problem

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Imagine someone trying to convince you to do something by arguing that this thing is in your financial interests. They give you a stock tip, for example. You check it out and decide to buy some of the stock. In the following weeks, the stock price collapses, and you lose money. Obviously, you will not be happy, but you are not going to assume the guy who gave you the stock tip wanted to harm you. Unless you bought the stock from him, you will assume he made the same error as you.

Now think about a different scenario in which someone convinces you to do something because it is the right thing to do. In other words, he is not appealing to your desire to make money, but your desire to be viewed as a good person. The deed in this case is donating to some cause. You check it out and donate, but soon learn that it is a fraud and the people involved are swindlers. The person who tricked you into giving money was also in on the scheme.

If we assume the money lost is equal in both cases, you are going to have much stronger feelings toward the second person than the first person. One reason is the assumed intent of the two people. The first guy was trying to help you but was wrong about his stock tip. The second person wanted to rob you. Even if the first guy was reckless in his behavior, he was not trying to harm you, but there is no doubt about the intent of the second guy.

More important, the first person appealed to your greed, while the second person appealed to your morality in order to trick you. We can accept some blame when we let our vices get the better of us, as in the stock tip scenario. You let the idea of free money cloud your judgement. When someone turns your virtue into a vice, by playing on your good intentions in order to harm you, it challenges the idea of right and wrong, which is far worse than simple theft.

This is what comes to mind reading this post in First Things. George Weigel is a well-known neocon and warmonger. The timing of the post is a bit odd, given that we are in the end phase of the war. The time for making the “moral case” for yet another war on the world was a year ago. It suggests the Kagan cult is planning to keep the war on Russia going long after the Ukraine portion is settled. Weigel has been dispatched to turn virtue into vice for the suckers of Conservative Inc.

Twenty years ago, almost to the day, Weigel made the same “moral case” for launching a preemptive war on Iraq. It you read both posts together, it is as if he is working from a template. That is because he does work from a template. When you strip away the moral pretentions, Weigel is not much of a thinker. His act is to play on your Christian duty or maybe your patriotic morality. He is not trying to appeal to your reason with a well thought out argument.

Last year, Eric Sammons at Crisis Magazine dissected the Weigel style. “The Weigel Script includes: (1) a comparison to Nazi Germany; (2) turning foreign leaders into cartoon villains; (3) accepting at face value any and all U.S. intelligence that puts the proposed adversary in the worst light; (4) making non-falsifiable assertions about a dire future if the U.S. doesn’t intervene; and (5) ignoring any potential negative consequences of U.S. intervention.”

You see it in the First Things post. He even adds in the now famous meme associated with the neocons. “For no reason at all” Russia invaded Ukraine. In this case, he surely knows that what he is saying is a lie. Twenty years ago, when he was selling the death of Iraqi children as a cost worth paying to stoke his moral vanity, he could claim ignorance about the lies underneath the claims about Iraq. Lots of people assumed George Bush was sincere about the WMD business.

In the case of the Ukraine war, Weigel knows he is lying, and he probably knows that the readers know he is lying, but he lies anyway. You are not supposed to think about the facts, because it is your moral duty to oppose evil! As long as you accept his claims about Putin being yet another Hitler, the lies do not matter. Like the guy from the second example at the start of this post, Weigel is trying to turn your virtue into a vice, and he is doing it with knowledge of forethought.

The thing is, Weigel is not an exception. Conservative Inc. has always produced odious carbuncles who prey on the decency of normal people. Weigel is getting long in the tooth, so his act has been moved from the main stage. Guys like David French have taken up the mantle of moralizer for the cause. He now claims to be the keeper of the true conservative flame, while he writes about himself at the New York Times, the supposed enemy of conservatism.

All of this brings us to a question. Who is the real enemy? Is it the self-described leftist who maintains an alien moral code? Is it the alleged friend and ally who uses your moral code against you? The former thinks he is right and thinks you would be wise to agree with him. The latter knows you are right but uses that to trick you into going along with what is wrong. The former may support evil things like gender identity, but the latter seeks to make you evil.

What all of this gets to is that before conservatism and its neoconservative core are pushed into the dustbin of history, we need to think about how a new moral order resists this form of trickery. The trouble with conservatism is it never thought much about inoculating itself against these sorts of people and instead just accepted them as a feature, rather than a bug. Whatever replaces conservatism must prevent people like George Weigel from gaining a purchase.

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135 thoughts on “The Odious Carbuncle Problem

  1. Umm, are you implying that Russia’s invasion of the Ukraine in February 2022 was justified at all? Are you one of those smug alt-media types talking scary nonsense about “biolabs”? You know that the civil war in Donbass had been going on for 8 years, and Russia had no qualms about betraying that uprising, right?

    An honest observer would see that Russia is simply given an order to self-destruct, and that botched invasion is a start to splitting the pie. Had it not bee so, Russia could have waited until a Ukrainian offensive, so that the whole world could see the real aggressor.

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  3. Hum, so a guy who’s claim to fame before being appointed Glorious Heroic Leader was playing piano with his penis while, on this side of the pond, Buck Fiden in the 21st century hires the woken and broken making America grate.

    A lot of talk but no walk, plenty of yak but no sack here, there and everywhere. It’s the Jews, it’s the Catholics, it’s the Trobriand Islanders, ain’t me or you of course.

    Excellent post, Zman, but more and more I suspect it’s all pissing into the wind (Not faulting you, Thomas Paine’s Common Sense did create a sea change, where enough good men became willing to risk their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor.).

    Oh well, no matter which way the wind blows, civilization was great while it lasted.

    • Jim in Alaska: “Buck Fiden in the 21st century hires the woken and broken making America grate.”

      Has news of Transabledism yet made its way to the Yukon?

      If not, the “transabled” keyword at Free Republic should get you up to date in an hurry:

      It’s basically doctrinaire Cluster-B Von Munchhausen’s, but it starts getting truly scary when the Cluster-Bs impose it upon minor children, thereby instantiating Von Munchhausen’s by Proxy.

      I’m telling youse peeps, Sigmund Freud invented psychoanalysis precisely so as to lure the crazy shiksa lunatics into confiding in him their moast lurid dreams & horrifying nightmares, thereby giving him the blueprint by which to destroy Western Civilization & Christianity & the White Race.

      It was effectively the inverse of Z’s stock advice gambit: Freud tricked the stock traders into telling him beforehand which were the stocks that would be traded – which would be long’ed and which would be short’ed.

      • It is no coincidence that his nephew, Edward Bernays, invented modern advertising. If you wanted to see one of the main spouts spewing sewage into the river of our culture, just look at advertising.

    • “A lot of talk but no walk, plenty of yak but no sack here”

      Show us how it’s done, Jim.

      I’m sure a few plucky individualists like you, who are not victims of anything, can set things right mighty quick by each putting their foot down and taking action.

      • “ Show us how it’s done, Jim.”

        The reality is that this blog is all talk and you shouldn’t be offended by the truth of people saying that.

        You don’t want to do anything? Fine….I don’t care.

        What bothers me is not the inaction of the cowards.

        Its the constant posing and machismo that this “talking” is more significant than it really is.

        30 years ago Rush Limbaugh’s audience thought they were changing the world by tuning in every day for 3 hours.

        They weren’t changing anything, and this blog has a tiny microscopic splinter of Rush’s audience.

        • Hypothetically, in some non existent civic nationalist paradise in which the election system, voting choices, and legislative process haven’t been rigged and co-opted, a show of the nature of Rush’s is world changing.

          I continue to find it interesting that the old Schoolhouse Rock cartoons went on the air right around the same time that the world they depicted ceased to exist

        • Croton, sounds like yak to me.

          Take action.

          Or you’re no different than those you are criticizing.

      • I am showing, far too many, such as you, just ain’t looking.

        Having replied to your childish comeback at an equally childish level so you can understand, actually I’m not trying to show you, or anyone else, what to do.

        I’m getting through the day living as righteously as I can and feeling free to express my opinions. What you and others do is your own business, not mine.

    • In Z’s defense, he often pushes people to meet with people and form groups/friendships in real life. We’re in the dissident stage, not the rebellion stage.

      Who knows what comes next, but I’d suspect that local groups and organizations will become more important over time. As the federal system gets weaker and less competent, local systems will fill the void. The best that we can do now is start creating those systems.

      It’s unglamorous work, but what needs to be done at this time.

  4. The enemy uses of our moral code against us on all fronts and at every level. Its a very effective tactic. An example at the local level is cities and states who are pushing against pornagraphic homosexual propaganda materials being stocked in the libraries. The enemy frames the removal or banning of those materials as an attack on the 1A and makes comparisons to the Weimar book burnings. This could be a great deep dive topic.

    • Since having free pornography, of all kinds, in copious amounts, beamed into everyone’s mobile device, on demand, was adjudicated to be a 1A issue, it’s hard to see how they will lose on this point

      • They may win in the sense that it can still be created, but it doesn’t mean it’s viewing can’t be restricted. The 1A decisions still allow for time/place/manner restrictions, you still have to be over 18 to hit a strip club, movie ratings still restrict patronage (in theory anyway), etc.

    • Man Dude: The “Weimar book burnings” entailed the destruction of the pornographic and evil books and photos produced by the father of the trannie cult – small hatted Magnus Hirschfield. So the comparison is apt – normal people repelled by the disgusting and abnormal. The actual crime was the initial labeling of notsee book burning as an assault on ‘free speech’ and small-hatted ‘thinkers,’ instead of the push back against depravity that it actually was.

    • I think the easy way to disarm this moral subversion is to show that the arguments are made in bad faith. Say, you’re right, since the 1st amendment is tantamount, we’ll allow these materials in school libraries, as long as you agree to books like Jared Taylor’s If We do nothing along with it. Or even without going to uncle Jared, simply add readings to the curriculum countering prevailing propaganda such as Robert Davis’ book on white slavery in the Arab world from 1500-1800, or biographies on saint MLK given recent declassified FBI document dumps showing his sexual depravity and other often overlooked negative aspects like his plagiarized doctoral thesis to name only a few things. When they balk at such ideas, the mask has slipped, and they show they care nothing for the 1A, but simply use it as a tool in their tool belt to use when the right situation arises.

  5. Weigel’s nonsense wouldn’t be worth the time and effort to rebut, certainly isn’t worth the time spent reading, except that Civnat G. Normiecon seems to love this kind of stuff. Which begs the question, is CGN worth our time and effort? I’m having a hard time answering in the affirmative.

    I wish I could agree with some here that the regime is looking for a way out of what they have gotten into in Ukraine, but even if they were, no such off ramp exists. The only decision for me is to decide from what vantage point I want to sit back and watch the show. Which, unlike the goatherder wars, actually has the potential to be a fateful decision.

  6. “… we need to think about how a new moral order resists this form of trickery.”

    I would suggest, whatever may come in the future, *if* we ever regain the reins of power, that we revamp the school system to concentrate upon Classical Western thought and culture. It was the classical Greeks who developed argument and logic—and logical reasoning is of the essence in your observation and today’s commentary.

    True, not everybody can be taught what is often referred by laymen as “common sense”, but as one with some prior instruction and reading of Greek philosophy, it has proven of great help over the years.

    • “… we need to think about how a new moral order resists this form of trickery.”

      Maybe Islam is the answer. The root cause of all this is the willingness of women to believe in a “cause” and virtue signal. I have kind of reluctantly come to the conclusion that Hitler’s favorite Jew was right.

      “Women, like children, idiots and criminals, should not be allowed to participate in public life.” Otto Weinineger

  7. From the Weigel article: “The aggressor polluted the global information space with a barrage of propaganda and lies, while some in the West, echoing Neville ­Chamberlain, asked why they should be concerned about a ‘quarrel in a far away country, between people of whom we know nothing.’ Now, after a year marked by bestial cruelty on one side and astonishing courage on the other…”

    I see Weigel and self-awareness are not close acquaintances. Accusing your enemy of propaganda in the same paragraph where you present your own propaganda is pretty special.

    • Ideological arguments like his are so tiresome at this point anyway, with the fact that he had to also exhume Hitler shows how threadbare that is even if it wasn’t.

      • Sucks that it works so well on so many.
        Tripe like this bastard spews is like crack to the avarage american.
        Two oceans insulated the US from consequences of war. Sooner or later someone’s going to call our bluff. Get out of cities if you can.

        • It works on so many, but those many are of a particular class/cohort. That cohort is dying out. Unfortunately, the decisions made prior to their vanishing will have undone the empire.

        • The ocean insulation is still there and still just as good as ever (barring nuclear). What has changed is how financially interdependent the GAE is with the rest of the world, and how this impacts the AINO resident’s living standard.

          • miforest, that is being perpetrated by the GAE regime itself…. far as I know there is no natural defense that is stronger than a suicidal regime

          • Miforest, perhaps, but I’ve seen these folk up front and in person when at the border and they don’t look like prime candidates for a fighting force. Indeed, the first batch of such we caught I was told were Guatemalan or Peruvian, I forget. However, what I don’t forget is that the tallest was perhaps 5’4” or so and they were all smallish, light build indio’s. That and given their assumed IQ, I’d not get too nervous about a 5th column of fierce fighters assembling in our midst.

          • No ocean insulation is helping us from the invasion from the south. Same end result.

    • Vox Day is always talking about inversion, that is a perfect example of it. I used to respect Weigel for his biographies of John Paul II but that’s long gone now. He had me fooled, he is just anther evil, bloodthirsty neocon.

      In retrospect during the Cold War our real enemy was the neocons. We should have gotten rid of them and let the USSR fail on its own. JP II spent too much time trying to tharwt Communism, he should have put the Church on a more doctrinely sound basis.

      • Wojtyla was a fervent disciple of the Church-wrecking Vatican II council, there was no way in heaven or hell he was going to put the Church on a more doctrinely sound basis.

    • He couldn’t even make it a paragraph and a half without saying Neville Chamberlain. It is practically indistinguishable from parody.

      • Can’t help thinking, “Does it matter?” The average HS graduate can’t even place the time or belligerents of WWII, much less discuss the esoterica of Chamberlain vs Churchill. Weigal also speaks to a dying audience.

        • At the last college where I taught History classes, a few of us had a bet going, re: the belligerents in WWII: When will you first hear “OMG, those Call of Duty bad guys were really real?

          I had “Fall 2021” in the office pool, but I pulled the pin and retired before I could find out / collect my winnings.

    • You’re little snippet is the only Weigel I’ve ever had the misfortune of reading. I’ll read no more, for he is clearly an idiot of the first water.

  8. “Last year, Eric Sammons at Crisis Magazine dissected the Weigel style.”

    It’s not impossible that I might be able to take a small account of credit for this. Many years ago, when Eric Sammons was just out of grad school and was starting up his career as a Catholic blogger and commentator, I stood up to him concerning some points of Catholic doctrine, after which he threw a hissy fit and threatened to ban me from his blog. But he has since become much more Traditional-minded and now he himself stands up to the the very people he once defended. Did I make an impact on him? I don’t know, but I’m glad I tried and I’m glad to see the turn his life has taken.

    Regarding the idea of inoculating against people like George Weigel, we have to recall that there is no permanent solution to the problem of evil this side of Heaven. There will always be frauds, betrayers, and sons of perdition in the Church; the tare will grow alongside the wheat until the last day. However, I think a very important and oft-neglect starting point to self-awareness must begin with the recognition that moral sentiments are not enough. The vague and flattering notion of being “a good person” can easily be coopted by any number of ends, many of them bad. The idea that you can simply give heed to a feeling because it is “well-intentioned” or “a good feeling” is not a virtue at all. It doesn’t even rise to the level of morality, which requires acting in accordance with reason. Only young children and animals—that is, amoral creatures—act on their feelings without reflection. Grown men are not supposed to do that.

    Thus, the question becomes, “How modern people acquire this childish belief that they didn’t need to reflect upon their own actions?” I think it occurs as part of a general process of outsourcing one’s vital functions to the collective. People do not need to think for themselves if they can simply receive a menu of “approved” moral postures from the state (e.g. affirmative action, civil rights, etc.) and you’ll notice that these are also precisely the issues that the mindless masses are so fanatical about. In return for abandoning self-sovereignty, they are granted in return the affect compensation of moral vanity and the permission to destroy noncompliant targets. It redounds to a quite efficient means of manipulation.

    The same process plays out in other areas of society. Two of the most monstrous pillars of the modern Deep State—viz. the medical establishment and the education establishment, whose mendacity was so evidently on display during the Covid lockdowns—gained their power through individuals outsourcing the provident care of their own health and the raising of their young to these institutions.

    Fighting back begins with self-sovereignty, which, in the nonce, means adopting a stubborn willingness to make due with one’s own homespun efforts even if they are suboptimal. Every bit of power you take back for yourself is one more bit the institutions don’t have, and that is a good and necessary thing.

    • Excellent post. And I will add this. When our very existence is blighted by a suffocating miasma of propaganda and disinformation, we have two choices. Either we can succumb to the pall of lies and nonsense, or we can trust our BS-detector (the intuitive faculty). Now I cannot say how intution relates to reason–that is a weighty topic–but I can say without reservation that giving preference to intution when faced by the welter of deceit that confronts us is the most eminently reasonable thing one can do.

      • Thank you. There were a number of spelling, grammatical, homonym, and eye-skip errors in that post, which comes from me trying to surreptitiously type something at work. Thank you for bearing with me.

      • Jeffrey Zoar: “Since having free pornography, of all kinds, in copious amounts, beamed into everyone’s mobile device, on demand, was adjudicated to be a 1A issue, it’s hard to see how they will lose on this point”

        Jeffrey Zoar: “Weigel’s nonsense wouldn’t be worth the time and effort to rebut, certainly isn’t worth the time spent reading, except that Civnat G. Normiecon seems to love this kind of stuff. Which begs the question, is CGN worth our time and effort? I’m having a hard time answering in the affirmative.”


        Massa Lucifer always knows precisely what to whisper in their ears.


        Ostei Kozelskii: “Either we can succumb to the pall of lies and nonsense, or we can trust our BS-detector (the intuitive faculty). Now I cannot say how intuition relates to reason–that is a weighty topic–but I can say without reservation that giving preference to intuition when faced by the welter of deceit that confronts us is the most eminently reasonable thing one can do.”


        The wolf always attacks the weakest ewes of the herd; he never confronts the Alpha ram with the great big sharp horns.


        If you haven’t seen it yet, then I implore you to read the following article:

        Red Brain, Blue Brain: Evaluative Processes Differ in Democrats and Republicans

        The weak amongst us [with Insula-dominant neuropsychiatric wiring] literally experience the world entirely differently than do the strong among us [with Amygdala-dominant neuropsychiatric wiring].

        And boy, oh boy, oh boy, do the weak among us yearn to hear Massa Lucifer whispering in their ears.

    • moral sentiments are not enough

      This x 1000. Ranks right up there with “Do something” even when you don’t know what to do or if it will even make things worse (gun control being a prime example) and “I’m spiritual but not religious” – wtf does that even mean? All of which are based on emoting without thinking.

      Emotions have their place, but they are like a team of horses and reason is the reins. You need reason to properly direct those emotions.

  9. In five years the U.S. won’t be able to project power past the Gulf of Mexico, so these hired pens will be useless. They’re used to create a baseline of support for the foreign policy agenda. They don’t need 51% of the population, it’s not a real democracy. They don’t even need 30%, they just don’t want support for the foreign policy dropping into the single digits where it should be. It looks bad.

    • Well, if the GAE’s power declines as precipitously as you have projected, we may well live to see the creation of Whisrael, after all. I hope you are right.

    • It’s interesting to me that the bulk of “popular” support for the neocon’s adventures has always been White people in flyover country. This was plainly obvious with the Bushwar phase. Yet, the same interests that plot these overseas wars want to get rid of this demographic as fast as they can.

      It’s probably just hubris. They think they can just ignore what the public wants or somehow turn the brown diverse hordes into tub thumping neocon warmongers like they did with White Christians. All propaganda plays on cultural preconditions though. White Protestants were very carefully indoctrinated for decades into the pro-Israel/pro-intervention camp by ministers we now know were Deep State swampers. Getting a random assortment of Hindus, Confucians, and Latin Catholics to become aggressive “friends of Israel” is going to be impossible. Getting them to volunteer to go die in the sand (or the Ukrainian forest) will be even harder. If they just try to go full authoritarian and institute a draft most of these recent diversities will just get back on the plane and go back to their real home or never come here in the first place.

      There’s a certain Schadenfreude in seeing the inevitable collapse of support for these evil people. At the same time I’m very angry that so many otherwise good natured Whites fell for neocon manipulation and deceptions.

      • It depends on the type of war and its objectives I suppose. Maybe they think drone and robotic tech will be to the point where actual human combatants on our end won’t be that high. I dunno. If the diversity doesn’t fall into the proIsrael trap, then good on them.

    • in five years the CCP will own north america in total and be expecting annual tribute from all the peasants who survived the created chaos of 2020 thru 2025

  10. As I become older and more and more jaded, I become more and more convinced that Schmitt’s friend-enemy distinction is the key. As the saying goes – “The left thinks the right is evil. The right thinks the left is wrong.” Any meaningful right-wing movement has to break this habit and recognize that anyone who doesn’t realize that the left is largely made up of evil people who want to do evil things doesn’t belong in the movement.

    Recognizing this probably doesn’t solve the carbuncle problem entirely, but I think it will smoke a lot of them out. I’m think of the archetypal odious carbuncle – David Frum. What’s he most famous for? “Everyone who doesn’t agree with me on the Iraq war is evil.” These carbuncles certainly have no reservations about calling anyone evil. I’m sure if this Weigel guy would also call anyone who disagreed with him on Russia evil if he were pressed to. At that point, the question is obvious. Why do you claim to be part of a movement that’s made up of a lot – if not a majority – of people you deem evil? Making the O.C.’s declare their intentions in such an obvious way might hasten their waddling back over to their friends on the left.

    • Despite how his name sounds, Weigel is Catholic and was a professor of theology (always a danger sign). The enemy comes in all guises.

      • Lay theologists of the post VII stripe are a bane to faithful Catholics everywhere.

        • “Theologists of the post VII stripe are a bane to faithful Catholics everywhere.”


      • Occasionally, I lament the somewhat inevitable lack of trust between believers and non-believers on our side.

        Then, I look more closely at the believers and observe the old Catholic-Protestant split within them.

        Oh Lord.

        • And don’t forget the yet more long standing anomosity between the Catholics and the Orthodox, predating the Protestant schisms by centuries with actual crusades called against the Orthodox, not to mention the sack of Byzantium. Also the possible indifference to the suffering of the Orthodox under the Muslims. These things are remembered among the Orthodox.

          • The Orthodox and old-school Catholics aren’t all that different, at laity-level, and in theology and practice. I’d say 90% similar if not more, forgetting the historical baggage. Really the biggest difference is in aesthetics and who’s really in charge. (Pope, or Christ?) Protestants are more…out there.

          • Could be called bad faith to paint all Catholics with the sins of the French…

            They sacked Byzantium and also allied with the Ottomans against Europe, including providing harborage to the Ottoman fleet defeated at the battle of Lepanto. They did all they could to promote the growth of Protestantism in the HRE to divide up Europe. Also they literally split the church with the Avignon Papacy .

            France is an atypical Catholic country and has largely been hostile to Christendom for most of its history.

      • Maybe, but maybe it’s just that the Pharisees are inside the gates after all of these years of craven ecumenicism. Jesuits, well, hmm…

        • Obviously there are some Catholics that are righteous and are our guys. I feel pity for them in a way; they are loyal to a faith that is almost comically corrupt and perverted. I am forever curious: why stick with Papism when Orthodoxy is right there. It’s not that different, it’s more beautiful, and the priests look cooler. Take the leap to Orthodoxy, “the one true Catholic an apostolic faith”, brothers!

          Even if /our Catholics/ were able to return the Church to Mel Gibson level, which is practically impossible, it’s still corrupt and perverted, but maybe not comically so.

          Protestantism is a mixed bag. They do have pozzed churches and boomer mega-churches, yes, but they were not largely responsible for white replacement. And they have some good traditionalist sects which can’t be cock-blocked by the Vatican.

          • I am forever curious: why stick with Papism when Orthodoxy is right there.

            Well, there is that whole “Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church” thing. Which, of course makes it crucial to be certain Peter is actually Peter, and not an infiltrator.

          • C matt,

            Well, with Red Frank at the helm, that is THE central problem, innit?

      • I dunno fellas. I am a recent convert; I don’t know much about the various other denominations. I have my hands full with the basics of Bible study. my church is a small non-denominational one out in the country. The order of business is that the bible means what it says, and says what it means – and anything else is BS.

        Surprisingly we’ve repulsed a several incursions by the Usual Suspects. We had a green haired, horse faced lady with a bad haircut try and impose the rainbow on us… and everyone politely refused and shunned her. She got bored and left. Some young ladies got the idea we needed young women at the lectern and that was politely refused too. A gubbimint representative approached our Elders and pointedly told them we would not qualify for summer student subsidies unless we renounced our stand on abortion. She was thanked for her time in letting us know, and told we were not paupers, and didn’t need any gov’t assistance, and that we would continue to view abortion as murder and sin. Thanks anyway. I saw that exchange and just laughed. The bitch looked like she was going to erupt.

        There is nothing special about us. We are just a group of people and we seek our own place with God. Some denominations have reached out wanting us to fall in with them but we refuse them too. And jeez… our numbers are really starting to grow. I think the dissidents are on the same trajecctory.

        Dissidents push the idea of a parallel economy. I wonder if the concept of a parallel faith is possible…?

        • I love your little church! Thanks for describing how you repelled the attacks.

  11. Well, at least we’re not speaking:
    In the next 5 years, we won’t be speaking Chinese.

    Instead, we’ll be speaking Yiddish and Spanish.

      • I’ve never watched the series, but apparently they had to change direction in the second season of The Man in the High Castle because many viewers of the first season were thinking, “You know, this version of America’s not so bad.”

        • I abhor alternate history and “based on historical fact” shows and movies. Why? Because the current viewing audience is so uneducated/miseducated that the presentation is inevitably understood/interpreted as *fact*—the best lies being told between two half truths as they say.

          It’s not what you don’t know, it’s what you think you know that isn’t true.

          • I’ve been hooked on alt-history since I read my first Prince Valiant, where our noble hero meets Vikings, Saxons, Arthurian knights, Ostrogoths, Vandals and Mongols. Superb artwork and still one of the best comic book series out there, marred only by most copies being of deplorable print quality.

          • Yes. It’s absolutely horrendous. Ignorant as all hell and supremely confident.

          • Felix, you are a man of superior intellect and not educated in an American school system. You can indulge yourself in such fantasy without contamination or misguidance. You are in this world, but not of it. 😉

        • The second season was still pretty decent.

          The third season is when things really went off the rails.

        • I remember watching the first season, and when the main girl (attractive, ngl) escaped to the Nazi part of the USA, I thought, “wow, what nice neighborhoods! I bet the school districts are top notch!”

      • “My philological studies have satisfied me that a gifted person ought to learn English (barring spelling and pronouncing) in thirty hours, French in thirty days, and German in thirty years. It seems manifest, then, that the latter tongue ought to be trimmed down and repaired. If it is to remain as it is, it ought to be gently and reverently set aside among the dead languages, for only the dead have time to learn it.
        – “That Awful German Language,” Mark Twain

    • Idiocracy. 2006
      hybrid of hillbilly
      Valley girl, inner city slang & various grunts.
      Update 2023.

  12. All living organisms are subject to infection by pathogens that naturally occur in any environment. It’s been this way for about a billion years and isn’t going to disappear anytime soon. And we are all descended from ancestors that evolved robust defenses against these pathogens and thereby survived to reproduce.

    In the human body, this defense mechanism typically consists of antibodies that circulate in the blood stream and neutralize or expel these harmful pathogens before they do existential damage. This remedy occurs automatically and subliminally; that is, beyond our acute awareness.

    This example is an important and ancient life lesson.

    • It also explains that skin-crawling feeling you get when you hear certain nasal whining voices.

      • And the vocal fry, OMFG.

        Woman, where have all of your auditors gone? Use your diaphragm to support your voice, go forth, and fry no more.

        For the love of God.

  13. My guess is that they will be looking for a truce after a BS Tet offensive they can spin into a glorious victory. Better to be at “peace” while they drag Biden’s carcass over the finish line in the election. Gives them time to re-arm for the big one in 2025.

    Question is, will the Russians play along? Some signs from Medvedev that they may just decide to end Ukraine this year. That would be the smart move.

    • My observation that “the clock is running” again returned to mind. The Russians will be painted in a bad light if there is a truce after a major offensive by the Uke’s—even should the truce (or peace) produce all that the Russians wanted in the first place. Nothing more than a decisive Russian victory (not saying how that might look) will set the GAE and NATO back on it’s feet, or butt. Anything less and this whole conflict will be spun as a GAE/NATO victory.

  14. “Whatever replaces conservatism must prevent people like George Weigel from gaining a purchase.”

    Quite true, but it’s instructive to figure how and why people like Weigel and French, who really just the help, were promoted. Who pulls the strings and why?

    It’s simple, really. Follow the money. Sure, Normie CivNats help support many conservative groups once they get up and running, but who financed those various journals, think tanks, organizations and political groups in their infancy and continue to control who’s hired and fired from them. I think that we know who.

    That’s the fundamental problem with basing your society on ideals such as conservatism rather than on a people. An ideology is always vulnerable to a small group hijacking the chokepoints of access and promotion of the ideology and changing it to suit their needs. Definitions can be changed. Ideals twisted.

    Basing your society first and foremost on a people provide a touchstone that can’t be altered. It also protects against manipulation by foreign groups. You simply don’t allow non-members of your tribe to speak for your tribe or, more importantly, to finance groups that hire tribe members to speak for your tribe.

    It’s very easy for the Japanese to know who is promoting certain groups or ideas in Japan and to shut them down.

    Granted, this isn’t foolproof. David French would be David French whether he was getting paid by the NYT or not. But it makes it far more difficult people like him to rise to prominence.

    If what replace conservatism is just another set of ideals open to anyone and to any interpretation, we’ll simply be back to where we are now in a few generations.

  15. Impromptu Z-poll!

    I made it past “…a year marked by bestial cruelty on one side and astonishing courage on the other”, all the way up to “the Maidan Revolution of Dignity”.

    Should I keep going?
    Am I in danger of breaking out into putting old Barbara Streisand records on the turntable? A little Lee Greenwood as a chaser, maybe?

    • “I made it past…”

      I think if you keep reading, you might find, “in a galaxy far, far away…” in there somewhere.

      Or mebbe “truth, justice and the American way…”

      • Along with something about “I have a dream” and “the arc of history.”

  16. Pingback: The Odious Carbuncle Problem | American Freedom News

  17. Basically everything we were taught growing up as a standard right winger was false. The fake tough guy bravado, supporting foreign wars and select foreign countries, tax cuts & deregulation, “i’m all for immigrants as long as they assimilate”, individualism, anti-identity politics, etc.

    Pretty much every single thing was not only false, but we were maliciously conned into thinking it. Taking our feelings and diverting them to meaningless, safe issues.

    Good local example happened recently: in the safe conservative rural riding of Oxford, Ontario (90%+ white) the Conservative Party disqualified the pro life conservative candidate (who represents the views of most conservatives). Then disqualified all the other white candidates and installed some Indian guy as the nominee, “from” Toronto. The good people of Oxford will be duped yet again and vote for some guy who hates them and shares none of their values, because he has a “C” next to his name.

    GOPe ideology is a complete disaster, driven by naivety from the people and malice from its promoters. Say what you will about white libs, they manage to create white neighborhoods, craft breweries, etc. for themselves. Ending the Con Inc. Scam should probably be one of our top priorities.

    • Yeah, that’s where I am. I bitterly regret being onboard for all the various Middle Eastern adventures up through the Bush era, and even Afghanistan under Obama. I feel like a particularly slow, stupid child.

      Now here I am, sounding like Cindy Sheehan, albeit for entirely different reasons.

      • During the rule of Bush of Arabia, I was working at a big defense contractor. We would routinely take breaks from our goof-off jobs to watch Fox News on 240p web streams on our desktops. The management actually set this up for us and encouraged it so who were we to complain about being paid to watch pixellated TV at work. Anyway, I remember when the Fox Newheads showed us a handful of blurry pixels in Iraq that was supposed to be a “WMD factory” and thus needed to be blown up. I recall glancing at my cube-mate and how we rolled our eyes at each other. That was all we did though. Then it was back to “work”. Most of the smarter people there had at least some sense that we were taking part in bullshit. We knew it was getting people killed too but no one was taking any kind of a stand either. Probably most of us thought that there was at least *some* kernel of reality there though. We had actually watched on those same monitors while the Twin Towers fell and most felt that something needed to be done. I don’t think the depth of rot in the country was as obvious then.

    • “Basically everything we were taught growing up as a standard right winger was false.”

      This is 100% true. What I find fascinating is just what differentiates those that still gulp the lies … and those that ONCE DID but do no more?

      My travels put me in touch with a lot of affluent Normies, doctors, lawyers, private equity types. They, unblinking, swallow all of the BS. To the last drop.

      • A couple of weeks ago, we went to a small country concert of three guys who were popular back in the ‘90’s. One of the songs was a (now) cringey patriotic piece that featured one of the guys waving a flag and most of the audience standing up, shouting USA, USA. The normie mentality is going to be a tough one to overcome.

        • The patriotic fervor that was not so very long ago understandable and even commendable is now pathetic and absurd.

          • The Patriotards have been embarrassing themselves long before 9/11.

            Perfect example: Bruce Springsteen’s “Born in the USA”. A song meant to bash this country, instead taken up by the ‘tards as a patriotic anthem because they couldn’t be bothered to even listen to the lyrics.

          • Garth’s: “Perfect example: Bruce Springsteen’s “Born in the USA”. A song meant to bash this country, instead taken up by the ‘tards as a patriotic anthem because they couldn’t be bothered to even listen to the lyrics.”

            Yeah, but how pissed off Springsteen was that his song was being used patriotically was totally worth the misinterpretation.

            Patriotism may be dead, but Springsteen is still an intolerable douchebag.

      • And yet, the military can’t get anyone to enlist. Fox News has lost half its viewers in a week. That tells you something. Normie knows what he has to say to keep his job and his wife’s friends, but I believe he is waiting for a leader who will tell it straight. A Charles Lindbergh type, to pick a name entirely at random.

        For a while, it looked like Trump might be that guy. He still could be, if he’s willing to tell his daughter to f*ck off.

        It will be interesting to see what Tucker’s next move is.

  18. Let’s try to put all this in perspective.

    Firstly, First Things has a mere 70K Twitter followers. Just by way of quick comparison (and stylistic contrast), Bronze Age Pervert has 120K. I’m reasonably well read on right-leaning stuff (and Catholic too), but I honestly had no idea First Things magazine/journal existed. Zman could be overestimating its overall impact. Zman would probably have 300K+ Twitter followers now had he not been banned a while back.

    Secondly, I do personally know a few of the big donors to First Things as it turns out. They are the standard NYC finance industry, right-leaning very elderly Civnats. They generally mean well. But they are utterly out of touch and haven’t stepped outside Manhattan or Palm Beach in decades.

    Thirdly, the DR vastly underestimates the burning need for moral validation among the very rich. It’s the ultimate luxury good. This explains the gobs of money supporting the “think tank” and magazine/website grifts. In my line of work I’ve met hundreds of these rich folks. I have the most respect for the sanctimony-free rich guys who have big boats, stripper girlfriends and no moral pretensions. The high minded are running the country into the toilet.

    • Maybe unethical, but these magazines can’t cost that much to make. Would be hilarious if someone who knew how to schmooze took millions of money for some online neo-con sludge, while only spending a fraction of the donation and taking the rest to build up a true dissident publication.

      Think of the hilarious 2020 campaign of Bloomberg, where he paid tens of millions for people to go door-to-door only for many of the volunteers taking the money and campaigning for Bernie instead.

    • It isn’t about how many people read First Things, it is about the people who do read it. Big Republican donors who are Catholic read it and some of elected officials they are buying off read it. Commentary magazine hardly has any circulation at all beyond a group of wealthy and well connected Jews. For some reason they still want to read the inane rantings of Jon Podhoretz so the magazine still exists.

      • Maybe. But the big rich Catholic donors I know (admittedly most of them are in Florida) are to the right of Francisco Franco and don’t GAF about George Weigel.

    • Indeed. The target audience is quite small. This deceptive sanctimony is aimed at donors and well-meaning but clueless members of the preferred caste. The referenced Jay Nordlinger in Weigel’s piece also puts on a hand-holding and virtue-signaling minstrel show for the same blue-haired heiresses. The propaganda affirms goodness and keeps the cards and letters rolling in.

    • “…the DR vastly underestimates the burning need for moral validation among the very rich. It’s the ultimate luxury good. This explains the gobs of money supporting the “think tank” and magazine/website grifts.”

      Absolutely. Moral vanity is more poisonous than any material excess. I’d rather be ruled by Tom Vu than Pierre Omidyar any day.

    • “… but I honestly had no idea First Things magazine/journal existed.”

      Same here, never heard of them. And within moments of reading the first, laughable lines of this guy Wee Gal’s screed, a screen popped up ‘thanking me’ and with a hand out for lucre.

    • First Things had some impact in the 80s when Richard John Neuhaus was the editor. He had made a splash with ‘The Naked Public Square,’ but once he was gone, as at NR, the neocon fungus took hold. I stopped looking at FT when Weigel wrote his Iraq War screed, since even then it was obvious that the whole “yellow cake” and “aluminum tubes” thing was a lie, confirmed with W did the White House roast which had him searching under his desk for missing WMDs, har har. It was as disgusting as the Hill & Knowlton PR show before the 1st Iraq War, with the ambassador’s daughter pretending to be a nurse who had seen Kuwaiti infants thrown from incubators by the Hun, I mean by Iraquis.

      The lies never end with that crowd. Weigel may fashion himself a Catholic but he serves not Christ but the father of lies. I suppose we should pray for his soul but I have better causes to pray for.

  19. Correct me if I am wrong, but Weigel sounds awfully…Semitic. Therein lies Rule #1: nothing against Jewish people, but they are forbidden to participate.

    • You’re right that the name sounds . . . Tribe-like. However, if memory serves me correctly, George Weigel is actually Catholic. I know that because my staunchly Catholic mother talks the guy up. And that causes my eyes to roll. Like so many conservatives of her age, my mother has no inkling how wasteful and ridiculous the U.S. war machine is.

  20. Weigel is no doubt an inspiration for conservative grifters and war mongers of all ages.

    Z really would not have to hassle with the subscribe or buy me a coffee money hunt if he only advocated for disastrous wars. Of course, a parallel campaign fighting both climate change and anti Semetism would also help fill the coffers and open up media ops. Being the Dissident Right’s David French would be a smart career move.

    The Dissident Right’s case for war with China would be a winner.

  21. From his pictures Weigel certainly looks like a sanctimonious scumbag and now that I’m in my 60s, I know that a face — unlike that of Dorian Gray — doesn’t lie. Even so, I went and read Weigel’s essay. Amusing to see the patina of learnedness (e.g., references to Kant and Thucydides) assumed to give weight to the naked mendacity. Without any doubt I see another catamite of the neocons and the military contractors.

    • Here’s my Kantian “categorical imperative”: Stop Fu**ing Up!

      But the Weigel types never stop.

    • I came to the conclusion a long time ago that philosophy and ideology are useless. As the famous philosopher Ash once said, “Good? Bad? I’m the one with the gun.”

      • I won’t go so far as to say philosophy is useless. But it can be easily put to nefarious purposes, in particular against those with less intellectual chops.

    • “From his pictures Weigel certainly looks like a sanctimonious scumbag..”

      Gross, you tempted me and I looked up his visage. Femme, soy, doesn’t check his oil, “pays someone else to do that…” I am betting.

      Weak chin. Ugly creature, surely has bad halitosis.

      Just gross.

  22. I would think that the only thing that will finally and irrevocably discredit odious carbuncles, spiteful mutants, and their fellow travelers will be a real foreign war, with real blood spilled. From 1945 to now, Carbuncle Wars have been light on the casualties sustained by the Dirt People, and spread over decades. Even then, Vietnam and Operation Endless Occupation’s death toll created a significant political reaction. Tangling with the Chinese or the Russians would necessarily incur hundreds of thousands of dead Dirt People, sunken ships, and real defeats like 1941/1942. If the casualty counts are anywhere in the ballpark, the Ukes are sustaining WWII level numbers of killed and wounded fighting the Russians, which CivNat G Normiecon absolutely will not accept.
    So what needs to happen? Something like an aircraft carrier or two going down on fire with all hands in the Pacific. Because carbuncles can only fight Forever Wars if the blood cost is not 1941/1945 levels. And fighting a war against Russia or China will absolutely mean that level of death.

    • > Because carbuncles can only fight Forever Wars if the blood cost is not 1941/1945 levels. And fighting a war against Russia or China will absolutely mean that level of death.

      We would be reading “The Conservative/Catholic Case for Nuking Civilians” from these monsters if that ever happened.

      • It’s pretty clear that the Catholic doctrine of Just Wars wouldn’t have supported the Iraq War or this Ukraine War. They go from using the Constitution as toilet paper to using religion.

    • The “discredit” bit is key. Outside of that, the Regime could care less how many Dirts die in its perpetual wars (in fact, if there were no potential repercussions to them, enormous Deplorable causalities would be viewed as a win-win). The brake on the current madness so far has been that the potential of nuclear war would force the Ruling Class to have actual skin in the game, although their mindless robots and human drones have displayed a terrifying disregard as to that reality.

      If this dying Empire ever finds itself in a real, hot war again, it will have been initiated by the other power (unless those mindless robots and human drones somehow get the upper hand). This is best illustrated by the saber rattling with China. The Regime knows a war with the PRC would hurt their personal bottom lines, so they go only so far and then pull back. Being abject idiots, though, they forget China doesn’t always have to dance to the hokey pokey and might bring it. Their investments in Gulfstreams and foreign real estate will be put to the test immediately.

    • Yep
      Harpooning a Carrier or two might do it. The navy better have some tricks up their sleeves because somebody’s been working on doing that for going on eighty years.
      The Argintines did pretty good against the British way back in the Falkland hassel.

      • The US Navy would be more distressed by the loss of a fast attack nuclear submarine than the loss of an aircraft carrier, even if the latter would be more spectacular. The Argentines did fairly well against theBritish, but the Royal Navy and Marines were operating at the end of extremely stretched lines of communication.

  23. Thank you for exposing the vacuity that is George Weigel. His brand of self-congratulatory, self-dealing “Christianity” is execrable and he is a charlatan of the first water. The only other alternative I can possibly conjure is that he is an utter fool, but his credentials disprove any such hypothesis. In his black-and-white view of the world, there can be no room for nuance; everything is all one thing and none of the other, whereas in real life, there are seldom such unalloyed choices. Everything is a balancing act, with both good and bad features. The trick is to get the balance right, then make your decision after weighing both sides of the beam. In the case of Ukraine, our national leadership has made a terrible choice, based on its self-interest rather than any national interest, and appealed to what remains of the country’s “patriotism” as a means to gin up support. There is only so much mileage to be gotten out of the “Putin is Hitler; Zelensky is Churchill” trope. As the days drag on, their cynical, destructive activity becomes more and more obvious, as does the advancing degree of dementia in Joe Biden. Whether this country can survive these assaults is an open question.

    • he is an utter fool, but his credentials disprove any such hypothesis

      Credentials don’t mean shit, especially in a discipline like theology. I have never been steered wrong by my observation, “If someone has a degree in divinity or theology, your heretic meter will soon be on overload.”

      It’s like degrees in “ethics.” There are no greater moral monsters than the people who make up the field of “professional ethicists.”

    • “Putin is Hitler; Zelensky is Churchill” trope.

      Could be a case of the woke being more correct than the mainstream.

  24. I have to admit I was a bit surprised to see that Weigel isn’t a card carrying member of the tribe, but rather some high minded catholic neoclown. I swear, no amount of death, destruction or despair foisted on the world by this (former) country, to “make it safe for democracy”, will sway these moralizing turds. As long as the corrupt government here can save one little speck from the evils of communism or nazis or fascism, it’s all good and our sacred duty… To say I hate these people with a passion is a gross understatement.

    • Follow the smollhat money. FT or Weigel gets smollhat ca$h, I’d bet. Traitors get rewarded.

  25. > A large ­European state mounted a full-scale, full-­spectrum invasion of another large European state.

    Russia has not come close to putting their entire capability into Ukraine.

    > The invaded state posed no threat to the aggressor’s security, only to its leader’s warped ideology. And in another chilling parallel to the mid-1930s, scripts written in that low decade returned with a vengeance: The aggressor polluted the global information space with a barrage of propaganda and lies, while some in the West, echoing Neville ­Chamberlain, asked why they should be concerned about a “quarrel in a far away country, between people of whom we know nothing.”

    Amazing. Every single word in here is a lie. Nice reference to WWII also, the only other war ever fought in history.

    > What Ukraine means for Ukraine is that an impressive process of nation-building, which has accelerated since 2013, must be continued and intensified amid a war for national survival.

    Nation-building is the new euphemism for Color Revolution.

    Can’t even hate-read anymore. First Things has this weird schizophrenia right now where they take a step into bad-thought, then run back to insane twaddle like this.

    • RR Reno the editor was a never trump guy back in 2016. They hate trump, but see their audience following him.

      • Yes, Reno contributed to National Review’s Never Trump issue and then when Trump had the nomination wrapped up acted like he was for him as an agent of sweeping out the establishment.

    • Switch out the first European reference for New World and the second European reference for Middle East, and he’d be right.

    • I’m experiencing the same phenomenon for military-adjacent things among our guys. It’s shone a spotlight on Gell-Mann amnesia here. Russia throws away the VDV and Guards divisions, runs its stockpiles into the ground, exposes its military skills, equipment and industrial base as a farce, and conscripts waves of their sons into disposable conscript battalions herded forward by Muslim commissars for a FSB glowie’s court war, but we still have guys carrying their water because refusing to cheerlead might make the other nation-states look good.

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