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From delusional to psychotic

This article was the first we published to GB Mag almost two years ago. I edited it, so the voice of the article is mine, the ideas are JK’s.

The Endangered Species Act requires a certain number of fish, say salmon, to be present in a given waterway to evidence that the species is ok. By ok, I mean to say that the survival of the species is not under threat.

Now under the G.W. Bush Administration’s EPA, rules were adopted that said, well, the ESA doesn’t say how the fish gotta get in the waterways, it only mandates that they be there.

So they started dumping hatchery salmon in to watersheds on the Pacific Coast, and there were so many fish that the requirements of the ESA were easily satisfied. The numbers of hatchery fish in the waters showed that the fish were not endangered.

Now I’m no psychologist. I’m more of a frequent patient, actually, and I’d like to think that qualifies me to discuss mental health. Yes, its a bit perverse…

So never mind the motivations of the politicians, at least for now. They trick and deceive.

Its the people who vote for them that matter to me.

And they’re tricked by this stuff, and delusional about it.

But then, after so many years of this crap and dying waters and dying species, the politician has a problem. Should he continue to dump hatchery fish in to the waterways, if scientists testify that it doesn’t work, to the EPA?

The moment that the choice is made to exclude the evidence of science, on scientific matters, the process has become psychotic.

Before, people may have been happily deluded that the fish were ok. And the important thing, for the delusional folks, was the belief that they were ok. It mattered, and the delusion of abundant hatchery fish takes care of that.

But what happens if the scientists say they are not actually ok?

And back to the politician. He is representing corporate interests. His delusion is that that’s ok, or perhaps that deceiving the public is ok. What does he do when there’s a scientific consensus on an issue, and the public can no longer be deceived?

I got some comments, from email exchanges, about the difference between delusional and psychotic thought processes…

Look at climate change. For forty years, the delusion has been politically sufficient: “we need more study” or some such bs thing.

Now, the approach to deny this is full-on psychotic: we will banish our scientists from the political process. The stuff you found on the new house process laws says just this.

It is the same as “I am not a politician” as your political platform.

And, “no one is a political,” as citizens of a democracy. BS!

“Government IS the problem,” argued by the government.

All this shit is hitting it’s psychotic core.

Psychotic.

-JK

I think the key point you make is the claim, by Joni Ernst, that she is NOT political. And that her supporters are not political.

This claim is false, of course, as she is a U.S. Senator. It is delusional, no?

Where does psychosis come in?

-John.

I also think, according to my definitions of psychotic and delusional, that Ernst is NOT delusional, she is psychotic, and I want to explain this further than my last reply.

See, what I’m getting at is the split from reality. Delusions have some reality in them. Psychosis is more of a denial of reality than a misinterpretation of it. These are my concepts, and open to scrutiny, and others may have more strict definitions, but I think mine is useful in the sense that it boils things down to their simplest distinctions.

This is important because I am claiming that the repression of science which is growing presently is, I believe, psychotic, not delusional. We think it’s delusional, perhaps, but it’s not. It’s psychotic.

This is a significant distinction to me because I want to impress upon people what I feel is the gravity of the situation. I believe we are dangerously close to teetering away from our happy little delusional state which already exists, to the psychotic.

And you don’t return from the psychotic. You end up with a dark ages, for millennia. I see this best in the newest efforts to ignore science, but it’s all over the place. Like with Max’s zombies.

In other words, don’t be lulled into thinking, well hell, Ernst is just delusional. She is psychotic.

She gets votes from people who are delusional, for their neurotic reasons, and from psychotics, for their zombie “reasons.” But this doesn’t really matter.

It’s just that we be awake to recognize psychosis, and how severe it is without minimization or misinterpretation, that matters now.

-JK

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Marketing 101

You can learn a lot from the marketing department.

Look at this item for sale on the Infowars website. It’s the third version of the t-shirt:

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The same marketing people who are selling that, think their customers also need this:

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Perhaps they know something about their customers that I don’t, although I’m not sure it makes sense, rationally, to make a connection between men who’d like to lock up a woman and men who need the super gonzo vitality pills.

But it’s an interesting thought and possibility.

For me, I’d just buy the gonzo vitality pills, without the shirt.

But the marketing department ain’t a room full of dummies, and they think they can sell both the shirt and the gonzo pills to the same dude.

They think they can sell this to that dude too:

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You think the marketing department is right to think they can sell a “Hillary for Prison” shirt to the same white conservative dude, who needs BOTH boner AND brain pills?

Is that the target demographic for the t-shirt?

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Some thoughts on a bad week

In my state, our governor pledged not to raise income taxes on the rich to make up revenue shortfalls. He prefers regressive taxation, like gas taxes, or raiding pensions, including police pensions, btw. Now our governor claims he supports police, while he raids their pensions, and even worse, shifts the burden of raising revenue – the most difficult part of the governor’s job – to our police force. So naturally politicians everywhere rally behind the police, because they’re using the cops to do the most difficult and dangerous job in history: tax collection. Our governor is a pioneer in the abuse of the police force in this manner, an outright fraud. How he was considered a presidential front runner at one time is mind boggling, considering what he’s done as governor. The bridge scandal was the least of it.

Our policemen are good union workers, for the most part, but the municipal court systems in many parts of our country (not just my state), of which police are an integral part, are used to make up revenue shortfalls that should be addressed by elected representatives through tax policy. So the police spend their days in urban communities across the country raising revenue, which puts an inordinate amount of stress on the urban poor. Here they issue alternate side parking tickets, for example, and nobody likes the tax collector, though parking enforcement fines are as significant a source of revenue, in urban neighborhoods, as property taxes. They raise huge money, and they’re totally regressive. They are oppressive and burdensome on the working poor. The complete abdication of the legislative branch, to raise revenue through taxation, is evident in other areas. There are yellow light cameras that cause more accidents than they prevent, but because they raise huge revenue, are everywhere.

Police no longer protect and serve, at least in lower income urban communities – they’re wandering tax collectors with guns, like you’d find in a third world country. And it isn’t an accident, and it isn’t their fault. It’s sad, actually, because poor people worry about routine traffic stops these days, and many feel targeted based on race, and I wonder whether the cops are just so over stressed, doing the work of raising revenue that the politicians won’t do, i.e., the hard work of raising revenue that, in a functioning system, properly results in politicians being held to account, by being voted out of office. But big money has corrupted our politicians, and corporate taxes and personal income taxes are off the table because of it. So, while we’re not paying attention, the politicians have been bought and abdicated their role, as tax collectors, and put that terrible burden on the backs of law enforcement. If we’d just reestablish that it is the legislator’s job to raise revenue, and not the policeman’s, and also take money out of politics, you might see at least some of the stress that’s causing so much harm dissipate…

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DJT

In the 90s, after I graduated college, I took a job at a small brokerage firm on Wall Street because I needed a job. I worked there for 7 months, and hated every minute of it. During my 7 month tenure at the brokerage, however, I met Donald Trump and shook his hand.

During the winter of 1996-1997, Donald Trump went on a promotional tour intended to inspire stock brokers to sell his stock. I’m not sure if he just visited us, or whether he visited brokerages of every size and shape, so long as they would sell his stock like we did. But it’s possible (educated guess, based on the volume of shares involved here) that he visited many brokerages, so I’ll use the expression “brokerage(s)” to indicate my uncertainty in that regard.

So the Donald went on a tour of brokerage firm(s) that were kinda like the one you saw in The Wolf of Wall Street. He made a presentation to a bunch of starving brokers, packed with promises he never kept, but to an audience of salesmen who were hungry to make a dollar during the bull market of the 90s. He made his pitch to teams of hundreds of salesmen, in a high turnover industry, to cover his ass and perpetrate a blatant fraud. His presentation – that I saw – wasn’t in a prospectus. It wasn’t subject to audit by the SEC. It was a presentation he made, off the record, to a bunch of schlock house, starving, amoral and drunken stock brokers.

Again, I don’t know for certain if he toured the circuit of schlock house brokerages other than the one I worked at. But I am willing to speculate that he did just that, and that his bs plans to build glass tunnels under water along the Atlantic City Boardwalk, connecting his new construction projects that would make Atlantic City great again, were fraudulently concocted to cause stock brokers to pump and dump his stock, at 27 bucks a share (it was trading at 27 as of his visit), to unsuspecting clients of our brokerage in the months before he knew that the company would inevitably go bankrupt.

This story is true. The man is a total scam artist and I witnessed it in the 90s.

He presented all kinds of huge construction plans for Atlantic City to us, and he had drawings of all his plans that were pretty exciting to the brokers who wanted to make a commission selling stocks with such exciting stories. Now I left the firm after 7 rotten months, but I kept following the stock, DJT, as he had sold me on the story and I had to watch his plans unfold and for Atlantic City to be, ahem, made great again! But, the story ended with DJT declaring bankruptcy within a few years or so of the Donald’s incredible presentation. None of the things he promised to build, however, were built. (But I’m sure he managed to dump a lot of worthless shares of his company’s stock by using a bunch of dumb brokers and leveraging his celebrity to do it…)

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Trump University

The Donald’s campaign for President is his latest scam.

Before that, it was Trump University. If you look up “Trump University” on Google, you’ll see this:

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You don’t need to be a graduate of the now defunct Trump University to know that Donald J. Trump is a fraud. We know enough about him now to know he is a scammer.

I don’t blame the graduates of Trump’s real estate program, or suggest they should have recognized a fraud back then before falling victim to Trump; but sadly, they learned to spot the fraud at some point after paying $35,000 for a seat in the conference room at a local Holiday Inn or convention center, and are suing the Donald now to get their 35,000 dollars back…

In the video below, the Donald explains the Trump University concept: it’s about success! The same shit you’d learn at America’s best universities, like the Wharton School, but much, much better.

Why is Trump University better than Wharton and Harvard?

Trump’s explanation goes something like this:

The business schools take all of your time. They also take all of your money.

Trump University is better, he says, because it doesn’t take much of your time, although, according to filings in California district court, it still takes all of your money.

He pretty much admits it all in the video…

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Consumerism

JK and I have been talking about the issues below for some time now, and the best ideas are his. The article below is my summary of our discussions…

We live in a culture where the inconvenient truths of science are suppressed if they get in the way of capitalism.

Here’s a quote cribbed from an article covering the reforms proposed by House Republicans, to solve the terrible problem of the EPA “twisting the science” for its anti-capitalist, regulatory purposes:

“EPA has an extensive track record of twisting the science to justify their actions,” and so reform is needed, said Representative Lamar Smith (R–TX), head of the House science committee, in a statement supporting one of the bills.

So Congress passed a rule in 2014, suppressing expert scientific testimony to the EPA, and elevating the testimony of insider, industry lobbyists – to stop science from being twisted.

This is the context in which narratives develop in the United States, that purport to solve the problems of consumption in a capitalist society.

Birds covered in gooey oil after a spill need a bath in soap and water – definitely not government regulation.

The solution?

Dawn liquid detergent. It’s made from petroleum, coincidentally, but buying more of it is the best way that we, the consumers, can help clean up petroleum after a spill…

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Does it make sense that we, the consumers, buy petroleum products (like Dawn), to solve one of the many problems of petroleum mining (oil spills)?

Is an oil spill an opportunity for an effective commercial advertisement for another petroleum product?

Read my post on Rock Snot! and also the comments to that post.

This NPR article is also worth a read…

Click here for NPR story.

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GB Mag future

This is an email that I sent to my friends, the writers and contributors to the ezine…

Guys, I am proud of the latest entries in the blog, and perhaps over the course of a few years now of this ezine, only one theme has developed fully, but it’s made the whole thing worthwhile.

The series of posts that started with Jon’s article on delusional and psychotic thought processes, I think is a worthwhile achievement. It was political in nature, and I made a conscious decision to make it the central organizing idea of the whole damn project. Max helped out early on with it, but he decided to focus more on apolitical writing, and frankly, I think that kind of writing is better in many ways than the overtly political themes that Jon and I pursued thereafter… Subtle themes that are personal in nature take lots of time to develop, but are often more aesthetic as artwork if they aren’t abandoned.

A lot of the ideas in the blog now, in the article on Dawn detergent, Jon and I have been talking about for years. It’s a culmination of lots of discussion, lots of thinking and effort. I actually was Jon’s editor, I think, for the past few years, and did a pretty good job of it.

Max’s blog entries about his dad and family are great and need time and more chapters to develop. I hope to read more Captains Logs in the future, and to understand those themes better, as I am personally deficient in family, and expert at not getting along with people, friends and family, wives of friends, and pissing people off generally.

(My dog digs holes in your lawn while I’m out fishing.)

But Jon’s ideas preoccupied me for nearly two years. I think they’re developed now fairly well.

I take credit as a collaborator and editor.

The latest blog entries are good and justify the preoccupation with the theme of delusional thoughts, and psychotic perversions.

I think the blog is mine, it’s my Beetle University. You are like my hand selected group of adjunct professors, and I am, in fact, the hyperactive, ADHD student…