The Millennial Obsession with Harry Potter

It’s a curious case – Millenials, particularly in the “literary” and “writing” (I use those terms as ironically as possible) community are constantly referencing Harry Potter, particularly when it comes to some of the basic parts of the moral play, such as Lord Voldemort, who represents whatever current-year evil they happen to be personally obsessed with (usually just orange man bad). Why? Why so much obsession with a children’s book series, to the point where people put their Hogwarts house in their twitter bio? Yes, you are so Gryffindor, Miss Keyboard Warrior! Here’s my basic explanation: Mythological vacuum Social reinforcement…

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Optimates and the First Order of the Good

I’ve started using the term “Optimate” instead of political labels like “conservative,” “Libertarian,” “Republican,” etc. I’d like to explain a little about why, and just what “Optimate” means to me. Optimates means “The good men” and the Optimate approach is being “for the good.” It is borrowed from late Roman Republic politics and was a political faction that favored doing the “right” things above doing “popular” things (which gave rise to the “Populares” who favored social, military, and political reform). Why not “Conservative”? We already have this term and have had it for some time to represent politics of the…

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The Process of Deplatforming

Having been around, carefully observing the process of “deplatforming” (that is, banning) of so-called “right wing” personalities on social media, I’ve noticed a few patterns. I’ve noticed that the platforms, YouTube in particular, operate in a series of steps, with the final collision of banning across all platforms (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube) happening last. Let’s take a look: Phase 1: Shadowban In this step, the offender is identified either manually (that is, by a person) or through new elements added to the algorithms and filters, and is essentially cut off from the normal organic boosts that a social media account will…

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The Dangers of Social Media in 2020 – what you NEED to know as a creator or a user

Following up on some recent videos and livestreams regarding social media, here is what you NEED to know as either a creator or as just a user (or both) regarding social media platforms in 2020: Terms of Service are a red herring. Each platform represents a technical monopoly with little or no competition The core functionality is severely damaged I’ll expand on these below, but here’s what this basically translates into: There is no behavior pattern that can keep you from getting banned The “alternative” platforms are not alternatives at all The service is set up to NOT give you…

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Don’t Get Me Too’d

It’s inevitable. If your head is sticking up above the crowd, someone is going to want to chop it off – and there have been more rounds of “me too” madness. Keep in mind it doesn’t matter what “side” you are on: The thing is, it’s not just high-profile artists or celebrities that have this happen to them. IT CAN HAPPEN TO YOU, TOO. I’ve had several friends in the teaching profession (which I myself was in for more than 10 years) get accused of misconduct ranging from sexual affairs to “harassment” – and in some of these cases, it…

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Steven Pinker – Immune to Reason

Easy to see Pinker is full of shit once again. People need to work (duh) even if he doesn’t. The idea of an afterlife IMPROVES behavior – both in theory (fear of judgment of the creator) and in practice (Atheists are the biggest mass murderers in history). A life whose value is greater than a dog for reasons of marginal utility is not one that is valued. If you are an object, value of human life is a non-sequitur. First reply: Because they deserve it. What does it mean to make life safer, longer and happier to an atheist like…

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Apolitical™

Sorry, folks, the Apolitical™ brand is just that – a brand. I get it – you don’t like the politics being forced into your favorite franchises at the expense of story, gameplay, aesthetics, and the general effect of the medium itself. I get that female Thor is lame and super-buff She-Hulk is an eyesore. I know that it’s not fun to be lectured about global warming in the middle of a space-opera game, or to be forced to play a game as an uggo who’s bent on killing your favorite franchise characters – and will succeed. I know it’s annoying…

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The Logic (and Strategy) of the Witch Test

If you don’t know about Brian Niemeier’s “Witch Test,” here’s a succinct rundown of it: The response to this is to say: Proclaim that Jesus is the Christ, and God has raised Him from the dead! The resulting discussion can go a number of different ways. It’s called the “Witch Test” because a witch will be unable to proclaim the divinity of Christ. This isn’t to say it always identifies real honest-to-goodness witches, but it is useful. Recently I’ve had some people push back on the use of this, attempting to say it is some sort of logical fallacy. It…

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On Reviews and the Indie Movement – An Optimate Memo

I haven’t done much in the way of book reviews, either here or on my YouTube channel, but I’m reconsidering how I approach this. First, take a look at this blog post by Alexandru Constantin, regarding where he has settled on book reviews: There are few things I want to cover here related to all this, before I get to prescriptions: Tradpub may be a facade, but it is one that normal folks think is real – and perception matters What is the point of a book review? Is there any point to negativity? The “political right” doesn’t think strategically…

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Numbers make people stupid

As soon as you introduce numerical data into an informational vector, you are going to confound people and turn them from rational into irrational. Some people get numbers. Some people understand what math means in a practical sense. For others, statistics turn them into idiots. Ex. 1 – IMPACT Coronavirus is 98% survivable (ignoring distribution). No big deal, right? Why is everyone freaking out? Would you play Russian roulette? The odds of winning are pretty good – 80%! Most people would say no, because they aren’t idiots. How many cylinders would it take for you to gamble? 20? 50? 98%…

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