existential threat – Will To Exist http://willtoexist.com/ Fri, 01 Apr 2022 14:35:46 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://willtoexist.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/icon-6-120x120.png existential threat – Will To Exist http://willtoexist.com/ 32 32 Why our hearts are with Ukraine | human interest https://willtoexist.com/why-our-hearts-are-with-ukraine-human-interest/ Sun, 06 Mar 2022 01:00:00 +0000 https://willtoexist.com/why-our-hearts-are-with-ukraine-human-interest/ The war in Ukraine dominated the news in America and broke our collective hearts. Driven by images of women and children boarding trains to escape bombardment, we imagine our mothers and sisters; in the faces of young men and women taking up arms to defend their homeland, we see our sons and daughters. Why did […]]]>

The war in Ukraine dominated the news in America and broke our collective hearts.

Driven by images of women and children boarding trains to escape bombardment, we imagine our mothers and sisters; in the faces of young men and women taking up arms to defend their homeland, we see our sons and daughters.

Why did the Russian invasion of neighboring Ukraine so deeply affect so many of us?

Some — including television reporters — have suggested our hearts are with Ukrainians because they “look like us” — an implication that seems to exclude African, Asian and Latin Americans.






A woman and a little girl react as they cannot immediately board a train bound for Poland on Friday at the main train station in Lviv, Ukraine.




It’s more complex than that, says Tim Horgan, executive director of the New Hampshire Global Affairs Council.

Part of that has to do with our history of Cold War conflict with the former Soviet Union, he said.

And part of that may be the connection that many Americans feel with Europe.

“Europe feels closer than, say, the military junta taking control of Myanmar,” he said. “More people have visited Europe than maybe some of the regions where these conflicts are happening, and so it feels more real.”

Then there are the historical links to the world wars, he continued.

“We haven’t seen a major country invade a European country since World War II, so I think there’s a lot of fear around World War III,” he said.

“You don’t see a lot of countries invading each other and trying to decapitate their government,” he said. “What you see most are civil wars or repressions by authoritarians.”

The fact that the media has had wide access to what is happening in Ukraine also makes it more immediate, Horgan said.

“It’s so unfair”

Eva Castillo, director of the Manchester-based New Hampshire Alliance for Immigrants and Refugees, said the Russian invasion of Ukraine is “such a tragedy and it’s so unfair.”

“I cried several times while watching television,” she said.

Part of that is down to the courage and tenacity of the Ukrainian people to resist the Russian invaders, Castillo said. “These are people who are not even trained. It’s like a David versus Goliath,” she said.

“It’s so sad to see how they face this giant who could really step on them and crush them, but they’re holding their own and they’ve decided to stay behind and defend their nation, which is such a beautiful thing to do,” Castillo says.

The Association of Arab and Middle East Journalists (AMEJA) recently condemned the way some correspondents have reported on the war in Ukraine, appearing to elevate the tragedy and its victims above those in other places, such as the Middle East or Africa.







Dartmouth College students rally in support of Ukraine

Dartmouth College students recently held a rally in support of the Ukrainian people in the face of a devastating Russian invasion.




“AMEJA stands in full solidarity with all civilians under military assault in any part of the world, and we deplore the difference in media coverage of people in one country versus another,” the organization said in a statement. a statement.

Yet there is an uncomfortable truth that many Americans have been affected by the crisis because they are connected to Ukrainians.

“They see themselves reflected, so it hits them hard,” Castillo said. “I think it has a lot to do with it, subconsciously or consciously. I think it’s mostly unconscious.

Last week, Castillo was attending an Interfaith Network meeting in Washington, DC, where it was part of the conversation.

“We were talking about how paradoxical it is that the United States has responded with such force and compassion – and rightly so – but at the same time there are so many comparable issues elsewhere that haven’t really sparked the same reaction,” she said.

What we have in common

The sense that the Ukrainian people are like us goes beyond race, said James McKim Jr., president of the Manchester chapter of the NAACP.

The Russian attacks shown on television took place in modern urban areas that have the same kind of amenities that we are used to in our own country, he said.

“The thought that people who are in a society like ours might face this existential threat from a neighboring country, that’s compelling,” he said.

Yuliya Komska, associate professor of German studies at Dartmouth College, agreed that’s part of why we can’t look away. “A country that did nothing was attacked by the third largest army in the world,” she said.

The idea that Ukrainians are engaged in a just “fight for freedom” resonates with many Americans, she said. “Ukrainians speak very good English and made their opinions heard everywhere very quickly, so there is no doubt,” she said.

There may be generational differences in how Americans view the war in Ukraine.

McKim of the NAACP said young people may not have the same sense of the history of the former Soviet Union and the Cold War with Russia, “but older people remember it. “, did he declare.

Indeed, for those who remember hiding under their school desks during Cold War exercises, Putin’s “nuclear saber sound” was unsettling, said Horgan of the World Affairs Council. “That, I’m sure, for people who lived through the Cuban Missile Crisis, really brings up a lot of scary memories.”

Komska has relatives in Russia and Ukraine. An American citizen, she came here from Lviv, in western Ukraine, to which many refugees have fled. Her parents, who live in Germany, have not been in contact with relatives in Russia because of the war, she said.

For many Americans, what’s happening in Ukraine tapped into old fears about communism or anarchism associated with Russia and the Soviet Union long before the Cold War, Komska said.

But she said: “Part of the problem is that Americans only look at Ukraine when it is in flames.

“I find that really disturbing,” she said. “If Americans paid attention to countries that need help and help and support in peace, or when people are just starting to protest for something worth changing, that would be ideal. “, she said. “Before they start to burn.”







Pro-Ukrainian demonstration in Concord

New Hampshire residents gathered at the State House in Concord last week to support Ukraine and condemn the Russian invasion.



How far will Putin go

A critical question, Horgan said, is whether Putin will stop at Ukraine’s borders. “He showed since 2008 with his invasion of Georgia that he was interested in expanding the territory under the control of the Russian Federation, and he said that the fall of the Soviet Union was the biggest catastrophe that the 20th century has ever known,” he said. . “And so you can see how there is a real concern that it won’t stop with Ukraine unless the West responds strongly.”

Horgan was recently invited by the Strafford County Regional Planning Commission to speak about what the Russian sanctions will mean for the local economy. It is an indication of how a distant international conflict has spilled over to local concerns.

The price of natural gas, oil and wheat will likely rise due to war and global sanctions other nations are imposing on Russia, Horgan said. “These are globalized systems, these are globalized economies,” he said.

“We are always going to be affected by the actions Russia takes because they are blowing up ports, blowing up port cities, blowing up roads, blowing up bridges. You just won’t be able to physically get these products to market, and that will affect everything. »

The war has already damaged Russia, Horgan said.

“It’s already a bit of this quagmire,” he said. “Even if they manage to take over the whole country and install their own pro-Russian government, isn’t their military might in question a bit now?

“Everyone thought it would be over in two days, and here we are on day 8 and they’ve taken a city,” he said last week. “To me, it shows the weakness of the Russian military, of the Russian state, that they were apparently so scared of Ukraine that they felt they had to take this step.”

Komska also thinks Putin miscalculated. “He entered Ukraine to protect what he calls the Russian world,” she said.

However, “they don’t want his help; they don’t need his help. And at the same time, he is compromising and endangering the people of his own country and he is going to cause them enormous economic damage in the long and short term.







REFUGEES IN HUNGARY

On Friday, Ukrainians fleeing Russia’s invasion of their country wait at a train station in Zahony, Hungary. Humanitarian organizations estimate that a million Ukrainians have left the country since the beginning of the Russian invasion.




How can we help you

So what can Americans who care about Ukraine do?

For starters, it’s important to follow war stories, Horgan said. After that he said, “You can then take the next step and go to the leadership of your Congress and say, ‘That’s the action I want the United States to take on this,’ whatever that action is.”

Komska said those who want to help the Ukrainian people can do so through organizations such as razonforukraine.org and the Institute of International Education (www.iie.org).

Castillo, who has worked with immigrants and refugees for many years, urged those concerned to seek out reputable charities and donate to help refugees fleeing Ukraine. “They’re going to need clothes, food and shelter,” she said.

But those needs will go beyond material goods, she said. “You leave your family and you also leave your social capital,” she said. “You’re nobody in a new place and you have to start from minus zero.”

Castillo said she was encouraged by the response she saw in New Hampshire, the prayer vigils and demonstrations of support.

“It feels so good to me that in the midst of all these divisions that we have as a nation, people have found a common bond to provide support, from a distance perhaps, to these people who are going through such an ordeal. tough times,” she said.

“It gives me hope to see that we can connect with another community, regardless of the differences.”

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MOONFALL, a gloriously stupid waste of a film that really hits the mark https://willtoexist.com/moonfall-a-gloriously-stupid-waste-of-a-film-that-really-hits-the-mark/ Thu, 03 Feb 2022 20:35:01 +0000 https://willtoexist.com/moonfall-a-gloriously-stupid-waste-of-a-film-that-really-hits-the-mark/ Sometimes when I go to the movies, I just want to see stuff explode really good. At Roland Emmerich moon fall, many and many things do just that, and it’s rather glorious, but it’s also largely incomprehensible garbage on such a large scale that it’s almost awe-inspiring in its abject disregard for and rejection of […]]]>

Sometimes when I go to the movies, I just want to see stuff explode really good. At Roland Emmerich moon fall, many and many things do just that, and it’s rather glorious, but it’s also largely incomprehensible garbage on such a large scale that it’s almost awe-inspiring in its abject disregard for and rejection of logic and craftsmanship. But damn, who am I kidding, I don’t care how bad a movie is, you tell me the moon is about to crash into the earth and I’m in it.

A pre-credits flashback introduces us to stranded astronaut Brian Harper (Patrick Wilson) and his navigator Jocinda Fowler (Halle Berry) in the midst of a heartbreaking space disaster. While on a moonwalk with a fellow astronaut, Harper sees something attack their ship, sending her fellow astronaut hurtling through the depths of space, destined for a cold, lonely death. Shattered by the loss and psychologically scarred by what he has seen, Harper retires from life as an astronaut, turning into a recluse. Fowl, on the other hand, rises through the NASA ranks ignoring his past, but the two are destined to meet again.

One day, out of the blue, the moon begins to drastically alter its orbit, spiraling into a cataclysmic collision with Earth. In three weeks. Who are you gonna call?

I’ll give you a guess.

It’s a setup we’ve all seen a million times before. An existential threat arises, and only a ragtag group of losers/has-beens/nobodies can save the world. We know Harper and Fowler, but the wildcard is KC Houseman (John Bradley), a conspiracy nut who thinks there’s something more to this sudden calamity, and it has something to do with megastructures – I swear, if you made a drinking game on how many times that nonsense word is said in moon fallyou would be dead in an hour.

Which makes moon fall different is that he is bravely and brazenly ridiculous at every available opportunity. Whenever a logical or sensible decision could be made, moon fall says, “Aim for that, make it dumber!”, and we, as a movie-going audience, are all the better for it. It’s an absolute mess that wouldn’t stand up to more than a moment’s scrutiny, but I’d be damned if I wasn’t glued to my seat wondering where this apocalyptic clusterfuck was going next.

Emmerich makes a kind of film, this one. His previous directorial adventuresIndependence Day and Two days later, took similar global threats and turned them into rousing celebrations of humanity’s superiority over all possible enemies, whether extraterrestrial or natural in origin. In moon fallit sort of does both, adopting tropes largely coined by ’70s disaster kingpin Irwin Allen (Poseidon’s Adventure, the swarm, The infernal tower) and giving them a modern, larger-than-life update. Corrupt government officials seeking to bomb the moon? To verify. A fractured family looking to reunite? To verify. An ordinary asshole who knows more than the experts? To verify. It’s all there, predictable and unpredictable and this is perhaps his most ambitious storyline yet.

moon fall is a logically bad movie, but it’s too sure of itself to be charming. The second half reveals the true nature of the moon – which I won’t spoil because I want you to have this joy for yourself – is so crazy and convoluted and illogical that I couldn’t help but blurt out a chuckle when it happened. I seriously wanted to give the screen a big thumbs up and say, “Hats off to you, movie, you really did it this time.”

At two o’clock, the film is split very distinctly down the middle into two very different halves. The first is the build-up to Harper, Fowler, and Houseman’s attempt to save the world. It’s a lot of bureaucracy, showmanship that the world is in shambles after only weeks of knowing of his impending demise, a bit of character work and a lot of pseudoscientific piffle that will likely send Neil DeGrasse Tyson to the front seat of his van to film an angry reaction on TikTok before he could say “megastructureist” (Drink!).

However, when that second half arrives, the moon fall the beat really drops, and it drops hard. Not only do the heroic trio pilot a half-crappy, barely operational, decommissioned space shuttle emblazoned with the graffiti tagline “Fuck the Moon,” but we also get some of the most visually confusing CG action sequences I’ve ever attempted. wrap my head around. It’s like a live-action version of the Lord & Miller Lego movies, with a Will Arnett look-alike in Wilson, it’s like Emmerich saw the main building sequences in The Lego Movie and thought, “I can do that, but dumber”, and he wildly succeeds.

The film claims to have big philosophical and topical concerns to go along with its ‘splosions’, but it’s all a lie. moon fall is the very definition of emphasis; extremely convoluted, noisy as hell, and completely devoid of any real meaning, and that’s fine with me. This is by far the most absurd movie I’ve seen in a long time, and I saw a man strap a queen bee to his testicles in Fooled forever just the night before.

moon fall is certainly not a guaranteed crowd pleaser, for all the joy I derive from its belligerence towards logic, I am well aware that I am only a small subset of the action fanbase of science fiction. It’s too long, most of the dialogue is hot garbage, and the storytelling and pacing are all over the place; in short, it’s a disaster. But for some reason, Wilson, Berry, and Houseman go all in on this bullshit, and despite its flaws, I still love it. God help me, I love moon fall.

moon fall

Writers)
  • Spenser–Cohen
  • Roland Emmerich
  • Harald Kloser
To throw
  • Halle Berry
  • Patrick Wilson
  • John Bradley

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American idealism did not cause the Ukrainian crisis https://willtoexist.com/american-idealism-did-not-cause-the-ukrainian-crisis/ Mon, 24 Jan 2022 08:00:00 +0000 https://willtoexist.com/american-idealism-did-not-cause-the-ukrainian-crisis/ In his latest article, FP columnist Stephen Walt traces the roots of the Russian-Ukrainian crisis to a single cause: American arrogance. The conflict would not have occurred, he wrote, “if the United States and its European allies had not succumbed to hubris, wishful thinking, and liberal idealism.” By overplaying its game, the United States has […]]]>

In his latest article, FP columnist Stephen Walt traces the roots of the Russian-Ukrainian crisis to a single cause: American arrogance. The conflict would not have occurred, he wrote, “if the United States and its European allies had not succumbed to hubris, wishful thinking, and liberal idealism.” By overplaying its game, the United States has now placed Russia in a position where it has no choice but to defend its interests.

Realists are sometimes criticized for ignoring the agency of weaker states, but Walt takes the argument to its absurd conclusion by denying the agency of everyone but American policymakers. It is American officials who make the choices that matter – the wrong ones – while the rest of the world, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, merely enacts the eternal laws of history.

This is not just an academic dispute over isms. It’s about how Russia and the United States got into this situation and how to fix it. During the Cold War, debates raged over who was to blame for sparking the conflict between the superpowers. To simplify a complex set of arguments, the responses fell into three categories: traditionalists, who blamed the Soviet Union; the revisionists, who blamed the United States; and the post-revisionists, who blamed not the actions of any one party in particular, but the uncertainty and mutual suspicion created by the anarchy of international politics.

In his latest article, FP columnist Stephen Walt traces the roots of the Russian-Ukrainian crisis to a single cause: American arrogance. The conflict would not have occurred, he wrote, “if the United States and its European allies had not succumbed to hubris, wishful thinking, and liberal idealism.” By overplaying its game, the United States has now placed Russia in a position where it has no choice but to defend its interests.

Realists are sometimes criticized for ignoring the agency of weaker states, but Walt takes the argument to its absurd conclusion by denying the agency of everyone but American policymakers. It is American officials who make the choices that matter – the wrong ones – while the rest of the world, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, merely enacts the eternal laws of history.

This is not just an academic dispute over isms. It’s about how Russia and the United States got into this situation and how to fix it. During the Cold War, debates raged over who was to blame for sparking the conflict between the superpowers. To simplify a complex set of arguments, the responses fell into three categories: traditionalists, who blamed the Soviet Union; the revisionists, who blamed the United States; and the post-revisionists, who blamed not the actions of any one party in particular, but the uncertainty and mutual suspicion created by the anarchy of international politics.

Policymakers are now resurrecting those debates, but instead of asking who started the Cold War, the question has become who reignited it. Walt takes the equivalent of the revisionist side – America did it, period. It makes sense as a counter-argument to the conventional wisdom of Washington – that Putin did it, period. This view—while refusing to treat the United States as anything other than a force for good—has contributed to foreign policy mistakes in Afghanistan and Iraq, so it’s understandable that Walt takes issue with it. It would be nice to have more voices within the foreign policy establishment doing the same. But by blaming a state, Walt deprived his argument of the strategic context that the realists themselves are rightly fond of pointing out.

As a result, focusing on the United States not only ignores the role played by others, but contradicts Walt’s own theory. Realists argue that regional powers always seek primacy in their neighborhood. By this logic, a recovering Russia would seek to restore regional hegemony regardless of US actions. Western accommodation would have only speeded up the process. It is inconsistent for Walt to claim that liberal illusions caused the Russian crisis while asserting that regional powers naturally seek to control their neighborhood. Rising tensions would be expected unless Washington abandons interest in the region.

This inconsistency extends to the explanation of Putin’s motives. A key realistic principle is that states should not go to war unless it serves their national interests. This is why realists have admirably opposed American adventurism in Vietnam, Iraq and elsewhere, noting that none of these places have ever posed a threat to the United States. If you want to invade, you better have a good reason.

But such high standards for triggering conflict disappear when applied to other regimes. According to the realists, what national interest is Putin serving by intensifying this crisis? What is the existential threat he faces that justifies war and tens of thousands of casualties? Even if NATO is a concern, it is difficult to portray it credibly as an immediate danger, especially since Russia’s concerns focus on an expansion that has not happened and does not seem likely to occur. If you argue that Putin is merely reacting to Western pressure and that his reaction is understandable and expected, you are also arguing that his decision to go to war is justified on realistic grounds. Which is, sorry to say, a questionable way to explain a war of choice, fabricated and continued for unknown reasons.

A better realistic story might look like this. Great powers always seek to establish regional primacy, be it the United States or anyone else. When the Soviet Union collapsed, its successor state lost its regional primacy and the West was able to take hold. The United States sought a global sphere of influence and called it the liberal order. But it was unsustainable, and now Russia is trying to regain its regional primacy. History suggests that trying to stop this process can lead to conflict, especially between great powers. Russia cares more about primacy in its immediate region than the United States, and it will fight for it. The West should therefore not intervene.

Instead, Walt blames liberal American policymakers for a resurgence of Russian regional primacy, which his own theory predicts should happen. And the American behavior he denounces – the ruthless expansion into the sphere of influence of a former rival – is actually more in line with the tenets of offensive realism than the liberal internationalism he condemns.

A parallel to Russian foreign policy that realists may find useful is Russian, and then Soviet, foreign policy in the faltering years of 1917-1924. Around this time, a sudden collapse and loss of regional primacy created new states along the imperial periphery of Russia. As in 1991, Western observers misinterpreted the movements emerging from this imperial collapse as democratic revolutions rather than national liberation movements. The result in 1917 and 1991 was high hopes placed in the new democracies, followed by swift disappointment. And in both cases, as the center rebounded, Russia increasingly sought to reclaim its regional sphere of influence by bringing new states back into its fold, by force if necessary.

Are the regional spheres of influence that marked Russia’s recovery after 1917 and much of Europe’s history still necessary to maintain peace between the great powers? This is the question, often unacknowledged, that lurks in many debates about US foreign policy toward Russia and China.

Note the uncomfortable trade-offs involved here. To treat spheres of influence as inevitable or conducive to peace is to condone what the great powers do there. This has already been the case for the United States, which has had a free hand to influence or overthrow regimes without provoking great power conflict. But the same is not true for Russia. So the morally honest position of Walt’s opponents, the warmongering anti-Russians who dominate Washington, is to say, “I am willing to risk great power conflict, even devastating war, because oppression is inexcusable and the aggression must be deterred.

Likewise, the morally honest position for a realist like Walt is to say, “I am willing to risk the conquest and oppression of small states because war between great powers is worse and brings much more suffering.” It’s not a statement that everyone will agree with, but it’s a more defensible claim than pointing fingers.

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WARHUNT, the horror of the world war seriously undermined by the budget https://willtoexist.com/warhunt-the-horror-of-the-world-war-seriously-undermined-by-the-budget/ Fri, 21 Jan 2022 14:02:09 +0000 https://willtoexist.com/warhunt-the-horror-of-the-world-war-seriously-undermined-by-the-budget/ It’s hard, if not impossible, to go wrong by mixing Nazis and Zombies (even better, Nazi Zombies). Alas, the co-writer/director of Mauro Borrelli’s WWII horror film, war hunt, dashed those expectations early on, instead going in a different, far less satisfying direction. It’s not out of habit of a good setup or premise (men on […]]]>

It’s hard, if not impossible, to go wrong by mixing Nazis and Zombies (even better, Nazi Zombies).

Alas, the co-writer/director of Mauro Borrelli’s WWII horror film, war hunt, dashed those expectations early on, instead going in a different, far less satisfying direction. It’s not out of habit of a good setup or premise (men on a mission, dropped behind enemy lines in Germany’s Black Forest), but as with everything in or out of film, it’s still about execution .

And with a budget somewhere between bass and mic, war hunt disappoints whenever the story turns in the general direction of a long set or action scene. Even the promise of viscera or gore repeatedly fails, a combination of said budget and a seeming lack of nerve on the part of Borrelli and co.

Despite an almost tiny budget, Warhunt certainly does not betray a lack of ambition. From the first moments, an army transport plane mingling with an unseen, possibly supernatural force, resulting in a crash somewhere in Germany, Borrelli wants to get big and expansive, but obviously can’t.

This plane, however, plays a pivotal role in Warhunt’s story: led by a Mickey Rourke who chews a cigar, wears an eyepatch, and carries a cane in cartoon mode as an officer with a name of family, “Johnson”, but no first name. first, a search and rescue team sets out to find the downed plane, any survivors (if any), and most importantly, the super secret contents of a suitcase that an occupant of said downed plane was bringing back to the Army HQ (or somewhere).

Johnson details the singular name of Walsh (Jackson Rathbone, The Last Airbender, The Twilight Saga), a scruffy special-ops guy with no wallet, to the team, presumably to ensure that the anonymous soldiers sent on a search-and-rescue mission get their hands on the contents of the suitcase and do something with them. Unsurprisingly, squad leader Sergeant Becker (Robert Knepper) initially rejects Walsh’s participation in the mission, but as Johnson outclasses him, he does what any non-commissioned officer in his position would do and s hire to avoid being court-martialed (or worse).

With the rescue mission set, the team ventures into seemingly unguarded enemy territory via a few inflatable boats, landing somewhere downriver without incident. Moments after landing, however, they encounter many German soldiers for the first time, executed, hung upside down and bloodless. That’s enough to shake the men under Becker’s uneasy command. An encounter with German survivors, however, lets the Americans stumble upon a man and a shocked German prisoner (Rihards Lepers), who whispers about something dark, ancient, and supernatural haunting the forest.

To say more about the existential threat facing American soldiers would probably be to spoil one of the war hunt better ideas, but once revealed, it sends war hunt in semi-unexpected territory (without Nazi zombies, alas), but as with almost everything about war hunt, Borrelli and his collaborators fail to properly capitalize on the horror-themed ideas it introduces. It doesn’t help that apart from Becker and Walsh, Borrelli doesn’t bother to present the team in any meaningful way. When individual team members begin to fall victim to whatever inhabits the forest, it’s hard to tell who’s missing, who’s dead, and if we should care in any way. especially since the end of the game contains almost no surprises.

As Johnson relaxes at Army HQ looking at maps, books and dropping exhibit shards on his staff, it’s up to the tightly injured Becker and frowning Walsh to figure out what’s going on, why this is happening and how to stop it from happening before everyone loses their lives (or worse). It’s slow work, especially at first, but once the team’s non-German enemies finally show up, war hunt picks up considerably.

Forcing the audience/viewers to sit for the better part of 45 minutes before anything substantial or significant happens is a big ask, though. Perhaps too much to ask, but for anyone with Herculean patience who decides to stick around beyond the first hour, the final twenty minutes offer more than a few rewards, up to and including a picture-filled climax. memorably gruesome and horribly gripping.

war hunt is available on various video-on-demand platforms starting today (Friday, January 21).

war hunt

Writers)
  • Mauro Borelli
  • Reggie Keyohara III
  • Scott Svatos
To throw
  • mickey rourke
  • jackson rathbone
  • Robert Knepper

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If America doesn’t protect Ukraine, then America will… die? https://willtoexist.com/if-america-doesnt-protect-ukraine-then-america-will-die/ Mon, 10 Jan 2022 11:02:42 +0000 https://willtoexist.com/if-america-doesnt-protect-ukraine-then-america-will-die/ But David T. Pyne, deputy director of domestic operations for a private organization called the National and Homeland Security Electromagnetic Pulse Task Force, impressively tops them all: “The United States very likely faces the most dangerous threat to its existence in its history right now,” he said. News week last month. If the United States […]]]>

But David T. Pyne, deputy director of domestic operations for a private organization called the National and Homeland Security Electromagnetic Pulse Task Force, impressively tops them all: “The United States very likely faces the most dangerous threat to its existence in its history right now,” he said. News week last month. If the United States does not play its cards right, he added, we could see “the outbreak of a major war with Russia and China, which could cause an existential threat to the American homeland, which could end our nation and kill tens of millions.” Americans.

How is Ukraine, so is America?


Ukraine follows a long line of remote places that are considered strongholds on which global security depends. Other entries include Vietnam, Cuba, Berlin, Central America, Iraq (in 1990 and in 2002) and Cuba again. Russia and China would have been bolstered by last year’s pullout in Afghanistan. Is Ukraine another example of hawks exaggerating the threat posed by a distant conflict, or could an invasion there actually lead to a chain reaction of similar interventions around the world?

Political scientists and historians sometimes speak of “waves”, where ideas or social or political phenomena cross borders. Eric Hobsbawm coined the phrase “the age of revolution” to describe the political upheavals in North America and Europe from the late 18th to mid-19th centuries, including the “revolutionary wave of 1830”. Samuel Huntington popularized the concept of democratic waves, spurts of expansion in the number of democratic states. David Rapoport has suggested that terrorism moved in similar waves, beginning with anarchists in the 1880s and leading to religious terrorism today.

But the idea that a threatening development in one country can cause parallel events in other countries has a different pedigree in Washington. Even more famously, it served as the basis for the domino theory, which held that, as Dwight Eisenhower explained in 1954 of communism in Indochina, “You have a row of dominoes set up, you knock the first one down, and what will happen at the last is the certainty that it will pass very quickly.

Eisenhower’s theory was notable for its inflexibility – note its certainty that a Communist regime rising to power in one country would precipitate identical events nearby. It was assumed that neighboring countries had no contrary traditions, interests, culture or institutions to resist communism. This assumption led the United States to spend an estimated $738 billion (in 2011 dollars) and cause the deaths of millions of Vietnamese to preserve an anti-communist regime in South Vietnam. But when North Vietnam eventually invaded the South in 1975 and the country became a Marxist state, it had far less impact than American policymakers had anticipated. More broadly, by employing the domino theory, American leaders had acted as if Southeast Asia was composed of vital dominoes during the Cold War. And yet, Vietnam is still ruled by a communist government, while the Soviet Union is long gone.

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One year after the Capitol uprising, the threat comes from inside the building | Michael C. Dorf | Verdict https://willtoexist.com/one-year-after-the-capitol-uprising-the-threat-comes-from-inside-the-building-michael-c-dorf-verdict/ Wed, 05 Jan 2022 10:01:45 +0000 https://willtoexist.com/one-year-after-the-capitol-uprising-the-threat-comes-from-inside-the-building-michael-c-dorf-verdict/ [ad_1] The first anniversary of the January 6 Capitol uprising naturally inspired many reflections on the meaning and consequences of that fateful day. But neither can be fully known yet. It all depends on what comes next. The 1993 World Trade Center (WTC) bombing killed six and injured over a thousand, but on its first […]]]>


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The first anniversary of the January 6 Capitol uprising naturally inspired many reflections on the meaning and consequences of that fateful day. But neither can be fully known yet. It all depends on what comes next. The 1993 World Trade Center (WTC) bombing killed six and injured over a thousand, but on its first anniversary, the event was mostly seen as a one-time event. It was only after the September 11, 2001 attacks that the 1993 explosion was understood as a deadly warning and ignored.

Will history repeat itself and intensify when it comes to the assault on American democracy? The WTC attacks are instructive. Even knowing that the jihadists were targeting the WTC, US counterterrorism officials missed signs that the next attack would use hijacked planes rather than a truck bomb. Likewise, the next assault on American democracy could use a different weapon and come from a different direction. Next time, the attack could come from inside the Capitol and other institutions of American democracy.

Politics in political violence

During the Senate trial for the second impeachment of former President Donald Trump, his defense team argued that he did not incite the Capitol uprising because the language he used to urge his Supporters to “fight” their perceived enemies was simply rhetoric, no different from similar terms used by Democratic politicians in support of protesters against racial injustice and police misconduct at rallies throughout 2020.

The claim is absolutely not convincing. As long-standing case law makes clear, whether an actor commits the crime of incitement depends not only on the particular words used, but also on the context. In none of the examples identified by Trump’s lawyers could one plausibly interpret the speaker’s words as promoting actual violence. On the other hand, Trump urged supporters at January 6 rally to “fight like hell” and “go down to the Capitol”, where he knew there was a “wild manifestation” going on that he himself had encouraged.

Moreover, even though Trump’s January 6, 2021 speech did not satisfy the Supreme Court Brandenburg test for criminal charges, article of impeachmentTrump’s charge of “inciting insurgency” referred to Trump’s broader conduct aimed at undermining the outcome of free and fair elections. Because the commission of a crime is neither a necessary nor a sufficient condition for an impeachment conviction, it is entirely possible that Trump may have a good defense against a narrow charge of incitement to crime, even if his actions allowed the Senate to convict him on the basis of the impeachment article passed by the House.

Ultimately, of course, more than enough Republican senators feared a backlash from Trump and his supporters to escape conviction. Citing the historically dubious claim that a former public servant is not liable to a conviction by indictment, even senators like Mitch McConnell, who condemned Trump’s behavior, voted to acquit him.

Where does that leave things? Visible crackpots like the “QAnon Shaman” will go to jail. The Department of Justice (DOJ) has accepted guilty pleas from more than 150 of the more than 700 other rioters he has charged, including a member of the Proud Boys whose cooperation can help secure convictions against some of the insurgency’s other most violent participants. It is even possible that criminal charges may be laid against former government officials and / or current members of Congress who organized or facilitated the insurgency. And, of course, the Special House Committee, undeterred by the obstruction of Steve Bannon, Mark Meadows and other Trump followers, may uncover further evidence of complicity at the highest levels.

Yet while the DOJ and the House Select Committee rightly pursue these various forms of accountability, we must not lose sight of the highest stakes. The Capitol uprising was a tragedy for the police and others injured and killed, their families and the many people, including members of Congress, who suffered intense psychological trauma. But in that regard, it was not much different from other horrific acts of violence in a country where around 20,000 people are murdered each year.

For direct victims, lethal violence is lethal violence. From a societal perspective, however, Politics violence is different. The organized Black Lives Matter (BLM) protests in 2020 were extremely peaceful. What we saw of breaking the law was generally the work of opportunistic looters. I don’t wish to downplay the detrimental effect of such conduct, but Trump apologists’ comparison of breaches of the BLM protests and the Capitol insurgency ignores the fact that the former included virtually no violence. political, with the exception of a few independent marginal anarchists.

Despite a common translation error of the Prussian general and strategist Carl von Clausewitz, war is not politics by other means. The violence of war and violence in the broad sense can be aimed at the acquisition of political power, but in a democracy political violence is an oxymoron. To practice democratic politics is to accept a common set of ground rules for the peaceful resolution of political differences. When the loser of an election uses violence to try to change the outcome, democratic politics stops working.

Fire next time

Preventing an exact repeat of January 6, 2021 should be relatively straightforward. Track investigation, crowd control, physical barriers and a massive security presence can ensure that a crowd does not storm the Capitol again. But just as counterterrorism officials who had the experience of a bomb planted inside the WTC failed to prevent hijacked planes from attacking from outside the buildings, so in 2025, too narrow a focus on preventing rioters from breaching the Capitol’s external defenses risks overlooking the threat within our supposedly democratic institutions.

We learned last year that some of Trump’s more extreme stalwarts in Congress, such as Lauren Boebert, Paul Gosar, Marjorie Taylor Greene, and Jim Jordan, may have been actively involved in the insurgency. But we already knew that Republican members of Congress were keen to overthrow American democracy even before the physical attack.

Two days before last year’s uprising, Verdict published a column that I wrote titled The challenges of January 6. In it, I have mainly focused on the peaceful means by which many Republicans have sought to overthrow American democracy. I was also worried that “Trump’s brown shirts [might] answer his call and light the capital ”if his authoritarian allies in Congress fail to block the certification of the State Electoral College votes that Trump falsely claimed to have been stolen from him. I predicted that the following years would see a battle for the soul of the GOP, pitting social and economic conservatives against outright authoritarians.

This battle is increasingly one-sided, with the authoritarians winning. Indeed, even on January 6 itself, 139 members of the Republican Chamber and eight Republican senators– people whose lives were in danger hours earlier because of a crowd inspired by Trump’s big lie – voted to overturn the election result on the basis of that same lie. While Trump never or even sometimes Trump but not when he attacks democracy, Republicans retire or face major challenges from Trump-backed fire-eaters, the ranks of authoritarians are swelling. If the GOP takes control of one or both houses of Congress in the midterm elections later this year, it will likely use its power to shut down inquiries and, assuming it retains power in 2024, could give effect to a second edition of the Big Lie of January 6, 2025.

Indeed, even without control over Congress, there is a growing existential threat to American democracy, as the number of Trumparatchiks in state legislatures and in positions responsible for administering elections increases. Consider an aphorism worthy of three Gifts. In the original 1971 Godfather film, Don Corleone says “a lawyer with a briefcase can steal over a hundred gunmen”. In his 1989 song Give me what you got, former Eagle Don Henley changed “lawyer” to “man”. The Third Don, former President Trump, seems to have adapted the lesson as follows: A state legislature without a commitment to democracy can steal an election more effectively than a mob armed with stolen flag poles, fire extinguishers and police shields.

The efforts of the DOJ and the House Select Committee to hold the planners and perpetrators of the Capitol Hill insurgency accountable are essential to the preservation of American democracy, but they are not enough for the task. The willingness to resort to political violence is a terrible symptom. Trumpist authoritarianism is the underlying disease.

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The lessons ‘Moby-Dick’ has for a warming world with rising waters https://willtoexist.com/the-lessons-moby-dick-has-for-a-warming-world-with-rising-waters/ Mon, 27 Dec 2021 08:00:00 +0000 https://willtoexist.com/the-lessons-moby-dick-has-for-a-warming-world-with-rising-waters/ (The Conversation) – Like an environmental historian and 19th century scholar, I spend a lot of time thinking about how the past can help us deal with our current crises, especially climate change. And there’s a lot of help to be found in the 1800s, from appreciation of savagery in Henry David Thoreau’s famous “Walden”, […]]]>

(The Conversation) – Like an environmental historian and 19th century scholar, I spend a lot of time thinking about how the past can help us deal with our current crises, especially climate change.

And there’s a lot of help to be found in the 1800s, from appreciation of savagery in Henry David Thoreau’s famous “Walden”, to the rise of ecology, the science of interdependence. “We can all be entangled together,” scribbled Charles Darwin in his notebook.

But my nomination for the most useful climate handbook ever written might come as a surprise: “Moby-Dick.”

Herman Melville’s epic novel about life aboard a wayward whaler, published 170 years ago this month, doesn’t have a reputation for being particularly pragmatic, unless you’re looking for advice on clean the bridges or hunt the creatures of the deep. And no, I’m not suggesting
that we return to burn cum oil.

What makes “Moby-Dick” especially relevant right now is that it offers a wave of solidarity and perseverance. These are qualities that societies may need to acquire as we face the overwhelming threat of climate change. The novel doesn’t have a simple moral, but it does remind readers that we can at least support each other, even when the water is swirling around us.

Existentialists at sea

Climate change affects time scales and planetary systems that humans are not wired to understand. But at the same time, it can be seen as another challenge that we set ourselves because of the failings of society.

It is perhaps more useful, then, to think of climate change not as a whole new “existential threat”, but as the kind of secular crisis that is tailor-made for existentialism – a philosophy, as the scholar Walter Kaufmann said, it is “fear, despair, death and fearlessness”. The basic idea is to recognize how treacherous and unknowable your path is, then move on anyway.

“Moby-Dick” is clearly an existentialist text, although it was published nearly a century before the term was coined. One of the founders of modern existentialism, Nobel laureate Albert Camus, explicitly acknowledged Melville as an intellectual ancestor. And two of the main characters in “Moby-Dick” are near-perfect existentialists: the narrator, Ishmael, and his friend, Queequeg, a harpooner from the fictional island of Kokovoko.

From the start of his story, Ishmael clearly expresses his obsession with the horror of the human condition. He is bitterly depressed, angry, even suicidal: “It’s a wet and drizzly November in my soul”, he says on the front page, and he finds himself “stopping in front of the coffin warehouses”. He hates the way modern New Yorkers seem to spend their days “tied to counters, nailed to benches, clinging to desks.” He only thinks of going to sea.

Of course, it doesn’t take long for him to have a near-death experience in open water. He and a few crewmates get kicked out of their small boat in the middle of a squall after failing to catch the whale they were looking for. Queequeg signals with their one faint lantern, “desperately holding hope in the midst of despair”.

Immediately after their rescue, Ishmael interrogates the more experienced members of the crew and, confirming that this sort of thing happens all the time, goes below decks to “write a draft of my will”, with Queequeg as his witness. “The whole universe” looks like “a vast farce” at his expense, but he finds himself able to smile at absurdity: a collected dive into death and destruction.

Whaling was fraught with dangers for whales and whalers.
From ‘Incidents of a Whaling Voyage,’ by Francis Allyn Olmsted.

No man is an island

Again and again, “Moby-Dick” forces readers to confront despair. But that doesn’t make it a dark or chilling read – partly because Melville himself is such an engaging companion, and much of the book imparts a powerful sense of camaraderie.

Literary criticism Geoffrey Sanborn writes that Melville meant for “Moby-Dick” “to make your mind a more interesting and pleasant place”.

“It’s about the effort,” he writes, “…to feel, in the deepest recesses of your consciousness, at least temporarily not alone.”

When Ishmael stops at the whaler’s chapel before his fateful voyage, “each silent worshiper seemed deliberately seated apart from the other, as if each silent grief was insular and incommunicable”. But once aboard his ship, he finds all of the crew members suddenly “welded into one”, thanks to their common sense of purpose and awareness of the dangers ahead. And he sees the same kind of unity in the “extensive herds” of sperm whales, as if “many nations among them had sworn a solemn league and covenant of mutual assistance and protection”.

It is the sense of interdependence that human nations need today. When I picked up ‘Moby-Dick’ earlier this month, I almost immediately thought of the climate change negotiations in Glasgow – and the tiny island of Queequeg. I could easily imagine the harpooner as an eloquent representative of a nation threatened with being swallowed up by rising waters.

“It’s a mutualized world, by shares, in all meridians”, Ishmael imagines Queequeg saying at one point in the novel. “We cannibals must help these Christians.” It’s a startling line, underscoring Melville’s suggestion that Queequeg, whom many characters dismiss as a “heathen”, is actually the most ethical character in the book.

But in Glasgow, it seems, recognition by wealthy nations of the need for mutual aid below. Although their disproportionate greenhouse gas emissions are largely to blame for the disproportionate suffering of the poorest countries, their funding for developing countries to weather the storm falls far short of what is needed – and ultimately it could come down to everyone.

Queequeg’s interdependent relationship with Ishmael is at the very center of “Moby-Dick”. Their destinies are linked; Queequeg is Ishmael’s “inseparable twin brother”. In one scene, the harpooner hangs above the water, tied by a rope to Ishmael, so that “if poor Queequeg sank never to rise again”, our narrator would also fall into the sea.

At the end of the novel, all the whalers except Ishmael sink and never come back up. The narrator is saved by a coffin that Queequeg had carved for himself and then given to the first mate to replace a lost lifeline. Much of “Moby-Dick” will always remain murky, but that symbolism is clear: pondering death and preparing for the worst are age-old survival strategies.

Queequeg’s culture has led him to face the harshest realities of life. As Ishmael admiringly notes, the harpooner had “no civilized hypocrisy or tasteless deceit”, no tendency to denial. He had taken great pleasure in sculpting his coffin, and when he lay down in it to check the fit, while suffering from a life-threatening fever, he showed a “perfectly composed face”. “It’ll be fine,” he muttered; “It’s easy.”

Queequeg’s existentialist determination in the face of fear, his willingness to sacrifice, his benevolent foresight made all the difference. And maybe that could be a source of inspiration. The key to tackling climate change will not be an abstract injunction to save the planet; it will be about recognizing interdependence and commonalities and accepting responsibility. It will be about returning the favor to Queequeg.

(Aaron Sachs, Professor of History and American Studies, Cornell University. The views expressed in this commentary do not necessarily reflect those of Religion News Service.)

The conversation

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Niccolò Machiavelli was the philosopher of leftist populism https://willtoexist.com/niccolo-machiavelli-was-the-philosopher-of-leftist-populism/ Thu, 02 Dec 2021 19:14:51 +0000 https://willtoexist.com/niccolo-machiavelli-was-the-philosopher-of-leftist-populism/ [ad_1] JM I am indeed a defender of populism, of leftist populism. The difference between left and right populism is simple. Progressive populism is a chauvinistic majority movement that challenges the unfair advantages enjoyed by a wealthy and powerful elite minority. Right-wing populism, on the contrary, is a predominantly chauvinistic movement that challenges the imaginary […]]]>


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JM

I am indeed a defender of populism, of leftist populism. The difference between left and right populism is simple. Progressive populism is a chauvinistic majority movement that challenges the unfair advantages enjoyed by a wealthy and powerful elite minority. Right-wing populism, on the contrary, is a predominantly chauvinistic movement that challenges the imaginary privileges enjoyed by vulnerable immigrants or religious and ethnic minorities. I think Machiavelli’s writings anticipate left-wing populism because it encourages plebeians to challenge the elites and demand from them an ever greater share of economic and political power.

Machiavelli quite convincingly demonstrates that popular governments are the constant targets of (although he did not use the term) “vast right-wing conspiracies” – anytime, anywhere, anytime. From this perspective, plutocratically generated systemic corruption is simply a constant existential threat to any civic regime that is not already a naked oligarchy. The only way to stop or roll back this corruption is for the common people to mobilize and use whatever leverage at their disposal – military service or labor force, for example – to obtain concessions from elites who would prefer s ‘expand rather than relinquish their disproportionate authority.

Of course, the old republics analyzed by Machiavelli never had to deal with “right-wing populism”. The socio-economic elites of these republics could invoke patriotism or anti-tyranny to thwart reformist demands on the part of the demos or the the plebs; That is, they could prioritize the need for war against hostile foreign enemies or invoke the danger of populist leaders accumulating royal power while defending the plight of the lower classes.

The Roman Senate masterfully exercised both strategies, frequently diverting plebeians from tumulus at home to wage war abroad, and often gets away with killing popular champions, from Marcus Manlius Capitolinus to the Gracchi brothers, as “budding tyrants.” But such oligarchs have never been able to fully mobilize large segments of the people in a sustained movement against popular reforms and popular reformers. They eventually had to resort to violent repression to do so, as evidenced by Sylla’s tyranny.

On the other hand, contemporary right-wing populists have a powerful weapon to wield against center-left parties and popular left-wing movements: namely, the accusation of disloyalty or national treason. Because modern democrats and socialists are motivated by the universalist principles of the Enlightenment, they are perpetually liable to accuse of not really devoting themselves to the well-being of the “people” in their own country. They are all too easily accused of ultimately caring for “humanity” (for people around the world) or subordinate national minorities. Hence the effectiveness of right-wing populists in defaming center-left politicians and left-wing populists as treacherous “globalists” or as anti-majority adherents of “identity politics”.

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Finding Common Ground: Can a Third Way Save Us? | Opinion https://willtoexist.com/finding-common-ground-can-a-third-way-save-us-opinion/ Tue, 30 Nov 2021 22:31:00 +0000 https://willtoexist.com/finding-common-ground-can-a-third-way-save-us-opinion/ [ad_1] Our two-party system is not working and is quickly collapsing beyond repair. Most importantly, our people are beyond polarized dislike and headed for a possibly violent ‘debrief’ that is being built over the past 30 years. How did we get to this low point? How did we gut what was left of American exceptionalism, […]]]>


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Our two-party system is not working and is quickly collapsing beyond repair. Most importantly, our people are beyond polarized dislike and headed for a possibly violent ‘debrief’ that is being built over the past 30 years.

How did we get to this low point? How did we gut what was left of American exceptionalism, leaving an empty shell of who we once were? How did parties come to field so few candidates to rational moderate voters? How did so many adults become radicalized violent enemies of the opposition?

At the head of a party is a 78-year-old, sometimes coherent and mentally inept Liberal Democrat, a political hacker with 50 years of experience in the federal government who has apparently retained little knowledge or useful skills in governance. . He is assisted by a progressive “awakened” vice president with all the charm, consideration and warmth of the California Condor.

The other side is under the thumb of a 75-year-old amoral ignorant and malicious narcissist who spits hatred and encourages violence. Those who support him because they “like a lot of his policies” remind me of those who supported or tolerated fascism before WWII for bringing pride back to Germany and restoring some semblance of order. Trump’s evil runs deep among his 40 million voting supporters and others. He is an existential threat to the Constitution, American democracy, and world peace. To deny this is to drink your one-sided bossy Kool Aid. He ignores reality. Agreements made with the devil or a cruel tyrant end up in disaster. Ask the German people.

Clinton was a pragmatic centrist who followed Bush 41, another moderate who fell into the broad middle where most Americans were comfortable after World War II. Nixon was also a centrist, able to negotiate, confer, and compromise with Democrats and even Communist China. Today, either party has little interest in communicating honestly and seeking compromise. Doing so invites you to be treated as a traitor and to see your life threatened. Before Clinton, there were fundamental polarizing dynamics that play a big part in the great decoupling we are seeing today. Among them: the assassinations of JFK, MLK and RFK – 1963 and 1968; assassination attempts against Reagan and Ford – 1975 and 1981; Johnson’s Big Society Programs – 1963 – 1968; The Vietnam War, revolutionary left-wing violence – mid-1960s – 1975; the civil rights movement – mainly the 1960s; Nixon’s Silent Majority – 1968; Roe vs. Wade – 1973; Urban riots in dozens of cities – mainly from 1964 to 1968; Falwell and Robertson found the Christian Coalition – 1977; Affirmative action and other leveling programs – started in 1969.

New religious, class, racial and political movements have paved the way for an explosive growth of extremist ideologies and adherents. With Clinton came impeachment and the generation of multiple conspiracy theories linking the Clintons to murders, drug trafficking and criminal cover-ups. Clinton has been called an illegitimate president, allowing his extremist opposition to define him and his fellow Democrats as immoral usurpers of power, anti-freedom socialists and baby killers. The opposition turned into hatred and moral condemnation.

At the center of this new form of vehement morally sanctioned opposition was Rush Limbaugh and the blueprint he provided for right-wing talk radio to thrive and broadcast new forms of ideological warfare, disinformation, and infotainment. At its peak, Limbaugh reached 15.5 million weekly listeners. It was a gospel of unfettered capitalism, of the moral superiority of a forgotten America “hovered over”, the condemnation of an overambitious federal government, the personal responsibility of the poor, and the superiority of traditional Christian “Western values”. The subtext was conspiracy theories mixed with ridicule for minority concerns and a bit of proven American racism. The silent majority found redemption and the assertion that they were the elect and began to become a hostile, vengeful force. The internet and social media have expanded this echo chamber into gathering places for resentful and feeble-minded travel companions. Confirmation bias was now everywhere and exploited by all media.

In the years that followed, new dynamics and movements eroded the community and consensus required by democracy. Factors of left polarization include: affirmative action moving first towards “equality”, then “fairness” and rejection of meritocracy; calls for redress for past racial injustices; play the endless “racism card” recklessly and intentionally to seize power; mock the religious and cultural values ​​of Central America; extremely conflicting academic ideas and fantasies; push identity politics in a way that encourages any “minority”, regardless of size, to randomly accuse the majority of a hateful “ism” or to threaten the safe space it needs to function; suppress freedom of speech, especially conservative speeches, ideas and discussions in colleges and universities; allow each “victim” of the “oppressive majority” a preponderant place at the table and the presumption that their status as victim should not be called into question; ANTIFA and other violent socialist and anarchist organizations; many more examples of progressive extremism.

Examples of growing right-wing extremism include: paramilitary militias, Sovereign Citizens’ movement, neo-Nazis, white nationalism, anti-Semitism, skinheads, all engaged in violent resolution of disagreements and to varying degrees overthrowing the government federal; the paranoia of the Second Amendment; Qanon and other groups focused on conspiracy beliefs; Cultist, unconditional support for Trump throughout the Republican Party; Christian political action groups and ministries that fund a far-right agenda based on their moral superiority over the immoral left that want to cancel Christmas while savoring their freedom to choose infanticide as part of the right to choose a woman’s ; most members of the Republican caucus in the House of Representatives; Evangelical Christianity which often includes a mixture of racism, earthly thought, tribalism, intolerance, apocalyptic fixations and encouragement of righteous violence when applied to wicked sinners, primarily Democrats; a refusal to accept that many Americans have historically been hurt or worse by the white Christian majority; in search of a theocracy which integrates Church and State.

I see little hope. A viable third-party movement would take a decade or more to develop, and financial interests will not easily let go of the status quo. We are where we are because of who we are. Our polarized elected officials represent and reflect us to a large extent. Today there are fewer and fewer places for the moderate, reasonable and thoughtful citizen. We exist but if we don’t find a third option in search of common ground, we are on the verge of collapse. I am a Republican on hold. Wait for the party to completely reject Trumpism. Good luck with that.

In the meantime, never forget that Trumpism is a force of evil and seeks to destroy democracy. Uncle Joe may procrastinate, babble, live in a liberal fantasy world, and advance policies you hate, but any real damage he can do is tiny and easily reversible from what a rampaging vindictive tyrant with no respect for the democracy or decency will do if he returns to power. Just ask the German people.

Trump is so dangerous that he is only an option for authoritarian, undemocratic, cult-loving Americans. Do not let his pathology spread.

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“The Lawyer You Know” Peter Tragos talks about the Satoshi case in Florida with Kurt Wuckert Jr of CoinGeek. https://willtoexist.com/the-lawyer-you-know-peter-tragos-talks-about-the-satoshi-case-in-florida-with-kurt-wuckert-jr-of-coingeek/ Wed, 24 Nov 2021 08:00:00 +0000 https://willtoexist.com/the-lawyer-you-know-peter-tragos-talks-about-the-satoshi-case-in-florida-with-kurt-wuckert-jr-of-coingeek/ [ad_1] The Kleiman v Wright trial is now nearing its conclusion. It’s been an interesting and insightful journey so far, and from the start Florida-based attorney Peter Tragos has shared his thoughts on how things are going. The self-proclaimed digital currency and blockchain novice shared weekly updates summarizing the discussions. This week, he was joined […]]]>


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The Kleiman v Wright trial is now nearing its conclusion. It’s been an interesting and insightful journey so far, and from the start Florida-based attorney Peter Tragos has shared his thoughts on how things are going.

The self-proclaimed digital currency and blockchain novice shared weekly updates summarizing the discussions. This week, he was joined by Kurt Wuckert Jr. of CoinGeek for a live discussion on Week 3.

The origins of digital money systems and Satoshi Nakamoto

After briefly introducing Kurt Wuckert Jr. to his audience, Peter Tragos invited him to explain a bit about the history of Bitcoin. While maintaining that he knows little about it, this was an opportunity for Tragos and his audience to hear about the history of Bitcoin from an expert in the field.

Kurt rightly pointed out that digital money systems date back to the 1970s. There have been many attempts to create them before, but none succeeded or lasted long until Bitcoin.

Going straight into the story, Kurt explained how there are a lot of theories about who Satoshi Nakamoto might be right off the bat. He explained how, in 2015, Wired and Gizmodo both doxxed Dr. Craig Wright as Satoshi Nakamoto. They also mentioned Dave Kleiman, sowing the seeds for the ongoing Kleiman v Wright trial.

Briefly covering the Bitcoin Civil War, Kurt informed Tragos that the community largely dismissed Dr. Wright as a fraudster because they didn’t like what he had to say. Being a big blocker who believes Bitcoin moves endlessly on the chain, many crypto-anarchists who hijacked Bitcoin in the beginning couldn’t accept Dr Wright as Satoshi Nakamoto.

What does the Kleiman vs. Wright case mean for Bitcoin?

Asking how the plaintiffs plan to raise if they win and how it would even be possible, Kurt told Tragos about some of the nuances of the case. Stakes :

  • The $ 65 billion worth of Bitcoin and IP.
  • What have the plaintiffs seen to prompt them to spend tens of millions on legal fees and years of time?
  • Is Dr. Wright really Satoshi Nakamoto, and what evidence does he have if so?

There is no doubt that the case will have massive implications for Bitcoin. Either Dr. Wright is its creator, in which case he is the greatest authority on Bitcoin, or he is not, which would mean the end of the road for this narrative.

The collection and the keys are not an identity

Insisting on how the plaintiffs plan to collect, Tragos said he was not sure the U.S. legal system is sophisticated enough to handle this. If Dr. Wright doesn’t want to pay in the end, how would the courts do it?

At this point, Kurt explained Dr. Wright’s long-standing position that you don’t need keys to move Bitcoin and that miners can be required by law to update the ledger. Bitcoin is subject to the law and does not exist outside of it, Kurt explained, and the idea that laws do not apply on Bitcoin is a myth.

Of course, Kurt pointed out that there could be a chain break with some miners refusing to comply. However, if that happens, they will eventually realize that they are exploiting the minority channel and losing money, and they will come back. This is how Bitcoin was designed to work, he informed Tragos, and regulated entities will follow the law.

Tragos then asked Kurt if the assets could be frozen by governments. “I don’t see why not,” Kurt replied, pointing out that governments have brought down Liberty Reserve and other supposedly decentralized systems.

What are the sides of Bitcoin? Civil war

Tragos asked Kurt to further explain the sides of Bitcoin. He mentioned that he was accused of bias by one party and that the other thanked him for his impartiality, which baffled him. He later said he was shocked at the intensity of tribalism in Bitcoin.

Briefly covering the Bitcoin civil war between small blockers and big blockers, Kurt explained the history of the fight for Bitcoin and how one party wants to limit Bitcoin to a block size of 1MB and chain it. Rather, the other wants to set him free and follow Satoshi’s original vision for unlimited scaling and a global economic tool and computing system.

“Our goal in BSV, in short, is to replace the Internet with Bitcoin“said Wuckert.

Explaining how Bitcoin made micropayments possible and how many original features were removed, Kurt explained how the story went from Bitcoin as a peer-to-peer payment system whether it is an investment asset. Highlighting the irony of this fraud case when Bitcoin was designed to be an anti-fraud tool, Kurt explained to Tragos how it might work to make cases like this much easier to resolve in the future.

Refocus on the case– do the complainants have any evidence?

Tragos asked Kurt if he had seen anything that would suggest that Ira Kleiman had a case, and Kurt said no, although he admitted his bias in favor of Dr. Wright.

While Kurt may indeed be biased, an objective analysis of the situation reveals that this claim is true. Oddly, the plaintiffs appear to have spent the first two weeks using emails as evidence before pointing out that they could be forged, thus undermining their own body of evidence for a Kleiman and Wright partnership.

Kurt went on to explain how the defense had so far demonstrated that there had been no partnership. He pointed out that all circumstantial evidence arose after Dave Kleiman’s death and that Dave’s close friend in Florida had sworn under oath that he couldn’t code and didn’t even mention Bitcoin in the last few years of his life.

Tragos, as a professional lawyer, stressed that he did not believe sympathy would win out for the complainant. He said that in his experience, juries do not look fondly on absent and contentious brothers.

While Dave Kleiman’s will names Ira as the sole beneficiary, Kurt pointed out that the evidence showed the relationship between the two was one of estrangement. Ira Kleiman was absent in the last days of his brother’s life, and Dr. Wright didn’t even know he existed despite a close friendship with Dave.

Is Dr Craig Wright Really Satoshi?

Towards the end of the one-on-one portion of the discussion, Tragos bluntly asked Kurt if he believed Dr. Wright to be Satoshi.

Emphasizing that he was initially not sure what role Dave Kleiman would play, Kurt told Tragos he thinks it is far more likely than not that Dr. Wright is Satoshi Nakamoto.

Why is that ? For Kurt, it boils down to the fact that Dr Wright knows things about Bitcoin that only Satoshi could know and the coding style of Bitcoin, which is an academic and old-fashioned style rather than that of a coder. commercial. Dr. Wright fits this profile perfectly.

Asking why the debate is so heated in Bitcoin over whether or not Dr. Wright is Satoshi, Tragos explained how baffled he was with some of the answers in his videos. Kurt tells him that he thinks Dr. Wright is an existential threat to the wealth of many who have become “really wealthy by accident,” hence the intensity of the campaign against him.

Summary

It was another informative and revealing video from Peter Tragos this week, and we look forward to it covering week four. This week is expected to be the most revealing of all, with Dr Wright once again taking the helm to be directly examined by the defense.

Will we know for sure that Dr. Wright is Satoshi by the end of this week? Stay tuned for real-time coverage.

CoinGeek features Kurt Wuckert Jr. in recap coverage that will air live daily at 6:30 p.m. EST on our Youtube channel.

Check out all of CoinGeek’s special reports on the Kleiman vs. Wright YouTube Playlist.

New to Bitcoin? Discover CoinGeek Bitcoin for beginners section, the ultimate resource guide to learning more about Bitcoin — as originally envisioned by Satoshi Nakamoto — and blockchain.

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