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Monday, August 22, 2016

The Deception Of The Rational

 My Three Nephews, Aydan, Austin, and Aloyius

(pronounced Aloyius as Ah-LOY-shus)

My three nephews stopped by to see my granddaughter, who was now 6 months, 7 days new, Mary Olivia Adenike. They were glad there was an A-name in there. It made them feel that the circle was unbroken.

After a chorus of "goo-goos" and "cutiekins" that would have pressed Handel's Messiah hard for the Oscar for Longest Running Time, the baby became interested in food, so mother and child retired to the lactorium. (I just made that word up... I think. Actually, Seneca probably made it up. Or Cato the Censor, who may have objected to Roman matrons feeding their babies in the forum.)

So we had time to ourselves.
They said "Well, Unkie, quid novi sub sole?"
I mentally choked on "unkie" and said something like "Nihil nisi bonum de mortuis," or other. It was on my mind.

I mentioned that I had not been blogging much lately.
They seemed surprised, saying that they hadn't noticed.
Such is life.

I had not written much because we were in a time when this stuff is current:

How Donald Trump's New Campaign Chief Created an Online Haven for White Nationalists
Breitbart News is "the platform for the alt-right," boasts Stephen Bannon.
Sarah PosnerAug. 22, 2016 6:00 AM
Last week, when Donald Trump tapped the chairman of Breitbart Media to lead his campaign, he wasn't simply turning to a trusted ally and veteran propagandist. By bringing on Stephen Bannon, Trump was signaling a wholehearted embrace of the "alt-right," a once-motley assemblage of anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim, ethno-nationalistic provocateurs who have coalesced behind Trump and curried the GOP nominee's favor on social media...
"We're the platform for the alt-right," Bannon told me proudly when I interviewed him at the Republican National Convention (RNC) in July. Though disavowed by every other major conservative news outlet, the alt-right has been Bannon's target audience ever since he took over Breitbart News from its late founder, Andrew Breitbart, four years ago. Under Bannon's leadership, the site has plunged into the fever swamps of conservatism, cheering white nationalist groups as an "electic mix of renegades," accusing President Barack Obama of importing "more hating Muslims," and waging an incessant war against the purveyors of "political correctness."

"Andrew Breitbart despised racism. Truly despised it," former Breitbart editor-at-large Ben Shapiro wrote last week in Daily Wire, a conservative website. "With Bannon embracing Trump, all that changed. Now Breitbart has become the alt-right go-to website, with [technology editor Milo] Yiannopoulos pushing white ethno-nationalism as a legitimate response to political correctness, and the comment section turning into a cesspool for white supremacist mememakers."

Exactly who and what defines the alt-right is hotly debated in conservative circles, but its proponents—who tend to be young, white, and male—are united in a belief that traditional movement conservatism has failed...

Trump's new campaign chief denies that the alt-right is inherently racist. He describes its ideology as "nationalist," though not necessarily white nationalist. Likening its approach to that of European nationalist parties such as France's National Front, he says: "If you look at the identity movements over there in Europe, I think a lot of [them] are really 'Polish identity' or 'German identity,' not racial identity. It's more identity toward a nation-state or their people as a nation."...

The last paragraph is a debacle. Really, a debacle. It is like a Von Schlieffen plan for the future of Mad Max and Thunderdome.

There is nothing in that article that has the slightest attar of the rational about it. It is a cameo appearance of the coming monster that is our life in the future. I always imagined we would end up like Fahrenheit 451, peacefully memorizing ancient books in the first snows of winter, like shipwrecked Ben Gunn-Swiss Family Robinson, cast off from Techno Paradiso and the Weapon Society and partaking of a Moveable Feast Refugee Camp.


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