Cognitive political biases and dissonance go hand and hand with today’s political scheissgiest, but will it be enough to brand this new republican reality? Watching my blogvesary operate lately, well, think Dunning-Kruger meets the Hulk on Testo-Max. Time and time again, I’ve questioned just where this enduring conservative confidence comes from. If I screwed the prognosticative pooch over 90% of the time, I’d like to think I’d be aware of that fact. On the flip side of this phenomenon, I was always concerned that if our rightwing friends ever did sink their teeth into something semi-legitimate, we would literally never hear the end of it. The liberal media has just breathed new life into Qville.
Enter the Wuhan…
After decades of bang-your-head-against-a-wall debates, I have come to the conclusion my blogvesary and I are simply not playing the same game. This isn’t a chess v checkers thing; I mean this more in the Wittegenstienen sense. We are speaking another language, complete with its own set of assumptions. Whereas I’m playing something more global like What’s It All About, Alfie? with a laugh track, he’s playing What’s That on the Upper Quadrant of Microscope Slide 47-B? While I’m spending Sunday afternoon gazing at the whole La Grande Jatte, he’s staring at one dot in the right corner.
[Missing-the-whole-pointillism joke removed by the Guggenheim.]
This is a symphony vs a note thing. My friend is sometimes good at individual notes, but when you play them back. Yikes …think Down in Joe’s Garage after the flood. My friend doesn’t like my view from 30,000 feet, but, hey, I’m gestalting over here! Today he’s taking his own crack at political patterns, aka he’s entering Zano territory. Hey, you can always borrow my laugh track …you’re gonna need it.
“There is a long and growing list of the scientific community and liberal media lies, Zano! It’s time for you to face factoids!”
Before assessing these theories, let’s compare what’s happened in just the last 10 days (Poke v Zano):
Zano’s view from 30,000 feet:
Yesterday, I came across this recent interview with William Howell, chair of the Department of Political Science at the University of Chicago. He bifurcates Trump’s legacy thusly: “Is it the story of him being a narcissist and a clown – or as an aspiring autocrat who did fundamental and enduring damage to our democracy?”
If you recall, on inauguration day I dubbed Trump, President Ass-clown Hitler. Do you see any correlation between my campaign trail nickname and the above historical autopsy? How about this 2017 article, President Ass-Clown Hitler: How The Ass-Clown Part May Save Us From The Hitler Part. Nothing? I also predicted the rightwing shift to Axis II disorders like narcissism over a decade ago, here, as well as foresaw the coming of a republican president with similar traits, here. This same historian ranks Trump 3rd worst president in history, which is consistent with the Sienna survey which also backs my prediction that if we elect Trump, he will rank bottom tier, possibly last. There are several predictions wrapped in here that, like a good souffle, are all rising nicely.
What Pokey just missed under the microscope:
Judges are trying to release William Barr’s obstruction notes because there is concern he illegally defended the president …again. The Trump inquiry into financial records just shifted to a criminal investigation, and Mitch McConnell is asking for his fellow senators “as a personal favor” to not allow an investigation into the Dimsurrection of 1/6. Do the wrong thing as a personal favor? Fuck you, Mitch.
Here’s what Pokey is still covering:
The “stolen” election, Spygate, Hydroxychloriquine, and the Covid origin mythos. Do you see a magnitude issue here, Poke? Of course, you don’t.
According to Pokey, there’s a seismic political shift that vindicates the right and points to widespread liberal wrongdoing. So I’m comparing all the key player’s scores for his political issues (1, 0, -1), and we’ll be looking at both media groups (R and D), both bloggers (Poke & Zano), and both presidents.
Wuhan, Organic or Artificial?
The Issue: Was Covid a natural virus or did it escape from a lab in Wuhan?
The Mainstream Media (-1): There’s new information here, which is a big part of my friend’s emerging “pattern.” Or, as we will see soon, the only part. The mainstream media has apparently dropped the ball on this story. Jonathon Chait over at NY Magazine called out NPR, The Guardian and the Washington Post for articles that ignored the potential for a lab-release scenario. Did they do this out of fear of WWIII? Did they want to squelch anxiety amidst a pandemic, at least until all the facts were in? Or did they fall for the knee-jerk reaction to pick the opposite of whatever Trump is selling? Hell, that’s my trick, but I didn’t fall for this. The media needs to take a page from Jack Webb, Just the facts, ma’am.
The Rightwing Media (-1): Whatever the left did to shift the discussion toward the “occurring in nature” scenario, Fox & Friends ran in the opposite direction: “Chinese Bioweapon.” As for the rest of Trumpsylvania, from Steve Bannon’s “this was an intentional attack worse than 9/11,” to Rush Limbaugh’s “this is the common cold, folks,” the rightwing media pushed the worst misinformation since—well, since their last theory. They pushed the lab-release scenario like a corner junkie in an effort to distract from Trump’s nonexistent pandemic response. The Black Vague? The debate is still raging in the scientific community, and the investigations have not occurred. Evidence for lab release is slim at best, so Fox is doing the identical thing rightward, minus any of that pesky self-correction.
Pokey’s Theory (0): Pokey’s take seems further off than either media source because he seems to be pushing not only the lab-release scenario but that it was intentional, which is logistic idiocy. What do you think happened, Poke?
I got an idea, fellas, let’s just leave the virus in the alley by the dumpster and back away slowly.
Pokey is in the same sinking ship as Fox. He said at one point, “Everyone who backs ‘natural cause’ is lying!” He is lying to his followers. No investigation and no evidence. The usual. Every superpower on earth is working on bioweapons, ‘accidental’ is a very different problem from ‘intentional’ release. I suppose he’s allowed to jump to conclusions because he has such a great track record. The scientific community is split, the intelligence community is split. When cornered, he shifted from intentional to my view, lab-accident, but how would anyone know this from his inflammatory posts? And he still hasn’t labeled his posts: Damaging to the Public Discourse.
Score (0): He was right about the liberal media ignoring a viable scenario, but his own views are even more stomach-churning. For fairness, let’s call it a wash.
Zano’s Take: I always knew there were two main theories, but based solely on the location of the first outbreak I went, early on, with the accidental lab-release version. Unlike the liberal media, I avoided groupthink and I also admit that it’s just a guess, kids. No agenda here. Whereas my take has always been ‘let’s investigate,’ Pokey’s has always been ‘let’s hyperventilate.’
Score (1): Since I’m always right, let’s just give me the point (pending the investigation).
Trump (-1): Trump’s contributions included lies, misinformation, and culturally insensitive comments. He praised China endlessly in the beginning until, well, Frum takes us through the Trump-Wuhan timeline: It’s no big deal. It’ll go away on its own. Reopen the economy by Easter. Sunlight and cheap antimalarial drugs will cure everything. Don’t blame Trump. Hate China instead.
Biden (1): Looks like Biden is vying for an investigation. Remember, if Trump was in power and liberals demanded an investigation, the king would deem it ‘fake news’ in a royal Tweet and that would be that. As for the overall pandemic wrangling, Biden is sitting at a 64% approval, nearly double Drumpf’s.
Wuhan Origin Mythos Score Chart
|Zano||Pokey||Media Left||Media Right||Trump||Biden (most for Biden are NA)||Big Pharma|
I break Mueller/Spygate down into the following categories (below chart), because these are where the crimes live, well, unless you look at the one low-level agent who doctored something on the Spygate side. Pokey, much like his president, never really acknowledged Russian interference in the 2016 election and, conversely, I never predicted Trump would go down for conspiracy. Despite the second half of the first line of the Mueller Report, Pokey takes no issue with the Trump Administration on these matters. He is very wrong on this one, but ultimately he gets the collusion/conspiracy point, because, right or wrong, Trump never went down for his actions (2nd and related impeachment excluded).
“The fact remains that the Mueller report, and, more recently, the bipartisan Senate Intelligence Committee report, described a pattern of activity that involved hundreds of steps taken by Trump, his campaign team, and his friends and confederates during the 2016 election campaign in which Trump or his associates connected themselves to or benefited from Russian actions. Never has the history of American politics seen such an entanglement. The report describes, in painstaking detail, what happened.” —Paul Rozenzweig
I recommend David Corn and Michael Isikoff’s work on this. Remember, many of these collusion moments were in broad daylight. If you miss the public crimes, Poke, how will you find the secretive ones? So if your new evidence is correct and the DNC server wasn’t hacked by the Russian, so what? We better run out to Sam’s Club, we’re down to only 399 acts of collusion? He was never convicted, so you can strike Crowdstrike. Do we need to hit a thousand acts to reach conspiracy? Did the liberal media intentionally lie about this piece? I know you say, yes, but did they intentionally withhold information from the public? Timelines?
Deep Thought: If collusion never occurred then what was Trump, Barr, Stone and Manfort obstructing?
Zano’s view from 30,000 feet (below categories): 1. Russian crimes, 2. Trump skated on collusion/conspiracy, 3. Obstruction is in the books, and 4. other related financial crimes = evident since Atlantic F-ing city.
Spygate Score Chart:
|Collusion/Conspiracy||0||1||0||0||0 (he deserves a negative, but…)||0|
|Other related financial crimes||1||-1||1||-1||-1||0|
Spygate, the investigation of the investigators, is about ignoring crimes and those criminal elements who remain above the law. My predictions haven’t changed since day one on these matters, but only because they haven’t had to.
Pokey’s take (0): Hydroxychloriquine should have been used and available during the pandemic. Who needs vaccinations when we have unproven supplements? Why is big Pharma ignoring clinical trials? A Lancet article, negative to Hydroxychloriquine, was pulled due to some dicey methodology and the whole thing was politically driven. The entire medical community is ignoring the evidence to embarrass the former president.
Zano’s take: Whereas Pokey’s questions for Big Pharma are legitimate, the use of hydroxychloroquine is still not. This remains untested and unproven medication. The global medical community isn’t trying to embarrass you and the former president. You need no help. Similarly, no one except you and The Donald are suggesting this is some miracle cure that could have made a real pandemic difference. Two studies found no efficacy for its use, and only one study suggests there’s enough observational evidence to move to clinical trials. Since one Lancet study is torn down by fellow scientists—a common as shit occurrence—Hydroxychloriquine should be hailed as some ambrosia deluxe? Maybe it should be added to the nation’s water supply? Much like the rest of your posts, evidence is lacking.
The fact remains, Trump could be charged as a nonphysician backing an unproven medication, and, yesterday, a Tennesee woman is going to jail for her anti-vax antics. Your views are not just damaging to the public discourse, they’re dangerous. Meanwhile, a republican acquaintance of mine passed around information that everyone vaccinated would be dead of organ failure within two years. That would be terrible …leaving only MAGA behind. Reverse rapture?
|Zano||Pokey||Media Left||Media Right||Trump||Biden||Big Pharma|
|1||0||0||-1||-1||0||Vaccinations (+1), blow for the Lancet study = minus (0?). Tough call.|
Stop The Steal!
Winslow wants me to: Wrap this shit up, Zano!
Pokey’s take: Save the Dimsurrectionists! There are important unvetted Youtube videos about voting anomalies in Georgia!
Zano’s take: These voting irregularities were thrown out of 60 some odd courts of law, most with prejudice, yet more insanity is coming soon to a state capitol near you. Maybe we should throw every republican theory out with prejudice.
[Retraction: please remove the word ‘maybe’ from the above sentence.]
Meanwhile, in AZ the “recount” is going as planned as the Sec. of State explained to The Hill, it’s an embarrassment.
|Zano||Pokey||Media Left||Media Right||Trump||Biden||Big Pharma|
Being exceedingly kind to you, Poke, and you’re right, a pattern does emerge. The totals:
|Zano||Pokey||Media Left||Media Right||Trump||Biden||Big Pharma|
Whereas liberal peer review—whether research or journalism-based—tends to work, the conservative side starts off in crazyville and gets consistently kookier over time. How many dozens of judges reviewed your stop-the-steal rhetoric? Out of the guestimated hundreds of Trump collusionary moments, several might be unraveling? …in an investigation wherein Trump was never charged with anything? …the same one wherein he obstructed justice? And, finally, the liberal media clearly favored one of the two main theories involving Covid’s origin. This is your pattern? I can’t list what you’ve gotten wrong in the last year, because Winslow would fire me again, and/or lecture me about server space.
The DNC wasn’t hacked by Russia, so Trump didn’t ask for Russia’s help at a rally? This erases the hundreds of other shady actions, transactions, meetings, attempted transactions, dozens of which were in public? All the info in both the Senate Intelligence report and the Mueller report are now moot? Do the estimated 30,000 Trump lies disappear in a similar manner? With this new information, the worst presidents in our history flip to the top tier in the historic rankings? Trump, Dubya, and Nixon are all in the top 10 now?
It’s like if we found out, centuries later, that in Hamlet Scene V uncle Claudius bought Hamlet a happy meal, so, in your world, the guy didn’t actually kill Hamlet’s father and marry his mother? I removed the ‘Big Mac Attack’ joke myself. Thankfully, there is still a corrective process on the liberal side of journalistic endeavors. Meanwhile, you consistently ignore all of the major issues of our time (disparity, climate change, the industrialized military complex, and the US’s ongoing slippage on the world stage). Supply-chain breakdowns and an ongoing mass extinction—one that may include mankind—are on the Horizon. So tell me again about Burisma…
I’m not saying the liberal media didn’t lie or mislead on Wuhan, but your side is a thousand times worse. I’m not saying Obama never lied about anything, but Trump lied a thousand times more. That’s a big deal because those are big numbers. Maybe you are looking through the wrong end of that microscope of yours.
[‘MAGAfication’ joke taken to …yeah, you get the idea.]
And, remember, Poke, these issues are your babies, not mine …and I still whopped your ass on your own home court. So does that make it 61 losses in court? I’m beginning to see a pattern…
Pokey’s Two Cents (Added on June 3rd):
Patterns of Deception
By examining the official reporting on current events, we can gain insight into how powerful people deceive us. Let’s examine the two biggest events over the last 5 years—“Trump-Russia collusion” and “the origins of Covid.” In 2016 we heard the bold official proclamation—“all intelligence agencies and experts know with confidence that Russia hacked the DNC, and anyone who suggests otherwise is a debunked and treasonous conspiracy theorist who deserves censorship and ridicule.” In 2020 we seek and discover an unreported soft whisper of an official report—“there is no evidence that the DNC was hacked at all, and Seth Rich received payment from WikiLeaks before he was murdered.” In 2020 we heard the bold proclamation of the official report—“Scientists know with confidence that Covid developed naturally from bats and could not have possibly come from a lab, and anyone who suggests otherwise is a debunked conspiracy theorist who deserves censorship and ridicule.” In 2021 we hear a soft whisper of official acknowledgment—“perhaps Covid did come from a lab.” To recognize the deceptive tactics utilized in the official reporting of these two most monumental current events does compel the honest and reasonable citizen to examine the 3rd major event over the last five years—the 2020 election. In 2020 political and election experts announced the official report with bold confidence—“this was the most secure election in American history, and anyone who suggests otherwise is a debunked and treasonous conspiracy theorist who deserves censorship and ridicule.” I wonder what will become of the soft whispered official report of 2022…