Predictions. Feel free to join in.

Romney will crap the GOP bed and give us Pawlenty or Porter or Burl Ives as his veep, and at that point we’ll be so accustomed to the taste of the attendant shit sandwich that we shall merely complain that it wasn’t toasted to our liking, but can we please have another?

It’s been quite a few hours since Obama has shut something down, given something away, or broken some promise. It’s quiet. . . too quiet.  Maybe it’s time for him to create something again– another agency. Yeah, that’s it. I predict another Obama-mandated Agency For The Totally Useless Purpose of Getting Friends’ Kids On the Government Teat.

Or, since the GOP is feeling frisky,  it’s just about time for Obama to unveil the one promise he intends to keep: the Civilian National Security Force. Any.day.now.

Or, since the GOP is feeling frisky, it’s just about time for Romney’s communications director to do something entirely brainless. Again. Oh, nevermind.

What are you seeing in the entrails of our eviscerated Republic, peeps?

*****

American Digest sends a Van der Lanche my way. Thanks, Gerard!

“Next!”

As Craig Ferguson says, it is indeed a great day for America.

I hope the crowds in Times Square were noted by the Islamic Center promoters.

And I’m glad to see the puffed-up pundits on the Right aren’t above celebrating all the years of bribes, payoffs, misdirects, inaccuracies, and outright lies used by our operatives over there.  It’s a good thing they didn’t know about them.

Killing the Presuppositions

First, you have to flush them out of their very comfy hiding places.

Rand’s “self-interested” man: “the concept of man as a heroic being, with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productive achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute.”

Hiding in there is a presupposition of goodness and not evil. How and if that man she describes is Donald Trump?  Let’s make something useful of his example:  I’m amused by the Shrugged crowd that hates on the Donald when he is, to all rights, the very essence of a self-interested man in all his power and productivity.  Even just shuffling money and property rights employs a bunch of people. He lives for himself, and his own moral purposes, surely. He apparently doesn’t need an elite and incisive education or world view in order to be successful in the vision of Rand’s glorious producers.

I wouldn’t trust him as far as I could throw him.

What about a Soros? George Soros has his own moral compass, too. A self-made, self-interested man. Why assume that he is out for anyone other than himself? Well, there’s plenty of folks who thirst for him to be successful in his quest. Think on that.

Because Rand created a morally sterile fiction, it lends itself handily to innate projections of one’s own morality. Lots of really, really great people love Rand’s philosophy, but they are completely unaware of the luxurious cultural morality they are swimming in that assumes a pure atheist must necessarily be the most reasonable, logical, and thus, kind or fair sort of leader. I see nothing in Rand’s writings to suggest this, except its omission as a possibility; the misguided worship of reason and logic can lead to some pretty horrific outcomes for individual lives.

Expediency is the temporal god of Producers. Expedient eggs cracked for  “productive” omelets are not any better off than those in Statist omelets. Trump (as our example) has ruined a lot of lives and left a lot of people holding the bag. Sure, the Statist system granted him that power and I don’t fault his logic and reason in taking full advantage of it. But then, I never invested in him.

You see, the presupposition of the “heroic” is the hope that I or someone I care about will benefit from the effort.

So, in a list of possible candidates for a heroic being that wants my vote of confidence, whom can I trust? And from the oppositional side of such an equation, how can I fault those on the pubic teat for hoping that their own logical, reasonable, self-interested man following his own happiness will include them in it?

Obama’s got a stash is not just a religious article of faith for them, it is the essence of their logic and reason. We watch as those on The Hill reason that, as their constituents spend all that beneficence, they themselves will prosper from it. You cannot fault it in Randian terms since their logic is working toward their own happiness. I fully believe they understand that it can’t last forever, that it is a mad bit of reasoning, but in a sterile moral lab of need and supply, it is a choice to be happy today and who is there to disabuse them of that reasonable and logical choice for today?

On the lower economic scale, how do you teach the Haitian, who for decades has been abused by self-interested players at every level, that the chicken they have been given today can lay eggs for them tomorrow? Today their god is in their stomach. It is a mindset we are rapidly embracing in our own culture. Indeed we’ve not seen planning for the future as a heroic good because our only god has been the Expedient followed closely by the Immediate.

Pleasure and pain must necessarily be the only framework for  the morality of our self-interest.

In fact, you can’t even describe “important” to amoral man for he is the lone judge of that quality. Furthermore, there is no concept of “quality” in the moral vacuum. The hammer and the feather fall at the same speed. “All things being equal” is a cruel fate for the one under the hammer instead of the feather. But maybe that poor schlub needed a good hammering. Maybe it made someone else happy.Maybe it was productive.

Well, where do we stop?

We’ve moved past any coherent dialogue of morality, way out beyond the bonds of meaning into a gibberish of our own making. A tower of Babel.

I really don’t think God had to do much to confound the ancients in their language. Seems like without Him, all the best words and ideas lose all their good sense.

So, this time last year: were you better or worse off than now?

I’d say things are much better this year, but it took a move to a new state to do it. And loads of prayer. And determination. And a sweet deal on a boat. Heh.

However, add up the rising costs of oh, EVERYTHING, and I’m glad enough to have a warm place to sleep and food to eat. We splurged and got basic cable finally, after a year without television. Even at $14/mo. I think it’s a waste.

Oh, and have you SEEN the price of groceries NOW? Yikes!

So, better or worse? There are polls saying that huge numbers of people say “worse” but that those huge numbers are down from last year. I guess that’s my fault. How about you?

So where, exactly, do you think your money is safe?

Don’t shrug off Assange. Not yet. If a man be judged by his followers (a fate I wouldn’t wish on any leader) then Assange appears more and more the anarchist as his devotees attempt to pull down the Internet. They’ve actually declared war on private citizens and leaked large files from Master Card.

There’s so many places the mind races to for contemplation of the aftermath of such breaches of trust within our economic lifeblood that it’s easy to imagine economic meltdown as either a by-product or a desired end. But the Pentagon is already ramping up strategies for dealing with just such a scenario.

Whether collapse comes from our central goverment, or our central banks, or both, the great Tower of Babel is being confounded. The mistrust sown by the confusion of communication is the beginning of tribalization.

It’s probably nothing.

More nothing, as pointed out here. The Stuxnet team was able to procure fake SSL certs:

Imagine if someone was able to steal a genuine SSL/TLS certificate for YOUR online bank from VeriSign or Entrust and set-up a web site that was an exact clone of YOUR online bank. If you accessed the cloned web site — your web browser would NOT alert you to any problems with the fake web site because the site uses a valid certificate — the entire Internet online commerce model is based on this “trust” of Certificate Authorities.

A primer for the Apocalypse.

O.K., now I AM scared.

Holy crap. Not to ruin your Tuesday, but I really want someone to talk me down from this economic reality: who owns your home?

Just Binging up “mortgage mill robo-signatures” will harsh your mellow in a hurry: almost half the mortgages in the U.S. could be rendered null by dint of Fannie and Freddie’s  MERS technology:

MERS was developed in the early 1990s by a number of financial entities, including Bank of America, Countrywide, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac, allegedly to allow consumers to pay less for mortgage loans.  That did not actually happen, but what MERS did allow was the securitization and shuffling around of mortgages behind a veil of anonymity.  The result was not only to cheat local governments out of their recording fees but to defeat the purpose of the recording laws, which was to guarantee purchasers clean title.  Worse, MERS facilitated an explosion of predatory lending in which lenders could not be held to account because they could not be identified, either by the preyed-upon borrowers or by the investors seduced into buying bundles of worthless mortgages.  As alleged in a Nevada class action called Lopez vs. Executive Trustee Services, et al.:

“Before MERS, it would not have been possible for mortgages with no market value . . . to be sold at a profit or collateralized and sold as mortgage-backed securities. Before MERS, it would not have been possible for the Defendant banks and AIG to conceal from government regulators the extent of risk of financial losses those entities faced from the predatory origination of residential loans and the fraudulent re-sale and securitization of those otherwise non-marketable loans. Before MERS, the actual beneficiary of every Deed of Trust on every parcel in the United States and the State of Nevada could be readily ascertained by merely reviewing the public records at the local recorder’s office where documents reflecting any ownership interest in real property are kept. . . .

John Mauldin from Investors Insight prompted Director Blue to give you a shorthand primer for the longer article at his link.

That last link will, with great calmness and clarity, usher in a fright to make you forget every Halloween movie from the last 50 years.

Nationalization of personal property will not be far behind. Obama’s only trying to stave it off until after his re-election.

Remember this?