Master of Querimonies

Les événements de Octobre

Posted in Forward into the past by Davis X. Machina on October 7, 2011

Watching OWS one is struck with the thought that these will be famous, remembered by generations, pointed to as a watershed. treasured in memory by all who are involved — and accomplish, in practical terms, next to nothing. There’ll be some good movies come out of it, maybe

Faisons la fête comme il est 1968.

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Ipse Dixit

Posted in Forward into the past by Davis X. Machina on July 5, 2011

“Reagan taught us that deficits don’t matter”  Dick Cheney

Ipse dixit:

Ipse dixit is a Latin phrase meaning ‘he himself said it’. The term labels a dogmatic statement asserted but not proved, to be accepted on faith in the speaker.[1] Usually from a person of standing or good reputation, such as Aristotle or even Plato; a dictum. The legal and philosophical principle of “Ipse dixit” involves an unproven assertion, which is claimed to be authoritative because ‘he himself said it.’ It is asserted, but not proved, for example: “His testimony that she was a liar was nothing more than an ipse dixit.“[2] In the Middle Ages, scholars often applied the term to justify arguments if they had been used by Aristotle.[3]

Our new Middle Ages—come for the feudalism, stay for the scholastic theology.

Tenaces antiquorum

Posted in Forward into the past by Davis X. Machina on July 3, 2011

The basic problem with Republicans is, they’re not Republicans, they’re monarchists. They’re interchangeable with the Bourbon faction in early 19th c. France.

The royalist party in a parliament has no real interest in cooperating with the small-r republican parties, in governing. Its sole purpose for being is to hasten the day Restoration.

When the king comes into his own again, ‘politics’ can return to its God-intended form: courtiers jockeying around the Throne for grace and favor and preferment, for pensions and governorships abroad, and royal monopolies. The king is the government—even, or especially, when a feckless king reigns, and the ministers do all the heavy lifting.

Parliament can become again what it was meant to be, a gentleman’s club that bestirs itself occasionally to vote credits for the king’s wars.

The weirdest transformation of political terminology isn’t what’s happened to the word ‘liberal’ since John Stuart Mill—it’s what happened to the word ‘republican’.

Republicans are monarchists.

From California to the New York island….

Posted in Forward into the past by Davis X. Machina on February 27, 2011

…this ain’t your land.

One of the most interesting things about the new, highly mobile, networked America is that you can go from coast hearing the same music, eating the same burgers, using one ATM card, and never have to adjust your prejudices.

Nothing the rednecks up here, 2000 miles from the Rio Grande, love more than talking smack about Messicans. It’s hard to imagine a bar full of locals in Eagle Pass saying dumbass things about Québecois, but I’m sure it could happen.

“Eduard Bernstein, pick up the white courtesy phone.”

Posted in Forward into the past by Davis X. Machina on December 9, 2010

Kevin Drum says of the Democrats: They [the Democrats, ed.] have to figure out a way to build a supermajority coalition for complicated legislation, and that means compromise. And everyone knows this.

Part of that supermajority coalition, if you include actors outside the actual legislature, doesn’t know this, or pretends to not know this. And it has no interest in compromise. It has no interest in ‘a supermajority coalition for complicated legislation’ because it has a profound mistrust that anything good can come from a legislature.

Power corrupts, and the more you exercise it, the more corrupt you become. The only legitimate, uncorrupt stand is to not exercise it.

This leads to adulation of the powerless (Bernie Sanders, Alan Grayson), and ‘Kill-the-Bill’ politics. In progressive circles, marginal status is considered proof of good will. Anybody with efficacy is corrupt, because they have efficacy.

We’re fighting Marx/Kautsky v. Bernstein/Jaurés, all over again.

In the long run, the ‘professional left’ doesn’t trust, maybe doesn’t even believe in, government — sharing that predilection with the teabag right, interestingly enough.