Friday, June 28, 2019

SUNLIGHT IS THE BEST DISINFECTANT: Human nature: is it good or is it bad

—Walter de la Mare, who died  in 1956
Without imagination of the one kind or of the other, mortal existence is indeed a dreary and prosaic business... Illumined by the imagination, our life, whatever its defeats — is a never-ending unforeseen strangeness and adventure and mystery.
    Many continue to criticize the reporters who had farewell drinks with outgoing White House press secretary Sarah Sanders. Here’s a good takedown by New York Magazine’s Sarah Jones.

SUNLIGHT IS THE BEST DISINFECTANT: Both as a law student and a guest speaker I felt unwelcome at Yale. Ted Cruz’s investigation can be a step toward increasing true diversity and tolerance.

ANALYSIS: TRUE. Dalai Lama warns that the whole of Europe could become ‘Muslim or African’ if migrants are not returned to their home countries.

More than 100 cops in St. Louis and Philadelphia under investigation for offensive social media posts.”

IF YOU GO CARRYING PICTURES OF CHAIRMAN MAO, YOU AIN’T GONNA MAKE IT WITH ANYONE, ANYHOW: John Lennon’s Son Denounces Political Correctness, Says Leftist Intellectuals Have Become Pathetic.
Dad eventually may have figured that out also, in his last days, before his life was tragically cut short. His personal assistant from 1979 until his death late the following year has said, “John, basically, made it very clear that if he were an American he would vote for Reagan because he was really sour on Jimmy Carter.”
Because of Lennon’s murder, and because so much footage exists of him recording the Imagine album in 1971, his radical chic image has become freeze-dried. But it was simply another phase for Lennon, in-between the psychedelia of the mid-‘60s, the booze-fueled “lost weekend” of the mid-‘70s, his house husband phase raising Sean few years later, and his return to recording near the end of the ‘70s.
As Lennon himself said in one his last interviews, “I dabbled in politics in the late 1960s and 1970s, more out of guilt than anything. Guilt for being rich and guilt thinking that perhaps love and peace isn’t enough and you have to go and get shot or something, or get punched in the face to prove I’m one of the people. I was doing it against my instincts.”

I’m wondering where the stupid idea that people are inherently good got started. Until fairly (in historical terms) recently, everyone understood that the basic rule of human conduct was, as Thucydides put it, “The strong do what they can, the weak suffer what they must.” Was it Rosseau? Marx? And why would anyone believe humans were inherently good when all of human history shows the opposite?

In 1987’s The Closing of the American Mind, Allan Bloom wrote:

A few years ago I chatted with a taxi driver in Atlanta who told me he had just gotten out of prison, where he served time for peddling dope. Happily he had undergone “therapy.” I asked him what kind. He responded, “All kinds— depth-psychology, transactional analysis, but what I liked best was Gestalt.” Some of the German ideas did not even require English words to become the language of the people. What an extraordinary thing it is that high-class talk from what was the peak of Western intellectual life, in Germany, has become as natural as chewing gum on American streets. It indeed had its effect on this taxi driver. He said that he had found his identity and learned to like himself. A generation earlier he would have found God and learned to despise himself as a sinner. The problem lay with his sense of self, not with any original sin or devils in him. We have here the peculiarly American way digesting Continental despair. It is nihilism with a happy ending.

Or as a legendary community organizer said to a Chicago Sun-Times reporter covering religion-themed topics when asked “What is sin?” in 2004,  “Being out of alignment with my values.”

Bribery Division's  latest investigation.

Come inside the heart of Odebrecht – the Brazilian firm caught up in what was described as the “largest foreign bribery case in history.” The firm previously confessed corruption and agreed to pay $2.6 billion in fines to United States, Brazilian and Swiss authorities. (If you’re new to the Odebrecht scandal, this is a great place to start.)

Now, we can reveal Odebrecht’s bribery operation was even bigger than it has publicly admitted. And we have fresh evidence of corruption affecting large-scale projects in the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Panama, Peru and Venezuela.

Together with more than 50 reporters across 10 countries in the Americas we’ve tied more than $230 million in secret payments by Odebrecht to a number of projects across the region.

Leak Exposes Millions of Dollars in New Payments in Odebrecht Cash-for-Contracts Scandal

Odebrecht in the dominican republic

Tyson Fawcett - ATO's Most Important Asset – Data - SlideShare