I thought about the writing and you know that , but here it goes anyway my thinking about what was written well it was very good-- yes-- very , very good and

I'm glad that I read that,it had made me smarter and Boy did I need that-. thank you

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Charlie.m, I’m curious, will Morning Shots no longer have a comments section?

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Charlie, thanks for the insights into the slaverly goat rodeo where the goats are riding the congress people. Its not funny anymore. But I hope the bully fever that Trump fomented is breaking.

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Hey Charlie Sykes - Despite describing myself, tongue planted firmly in cheek, as left-of-left-of-center, I having been reading The Bulwark and listening to your superb podcasts every day for many months. The bunch of you are among the smartest and most interesting people on my daily menu of indispensable thinkers. (And in good company with Joyce Vance, Heather Cox Richardson, Steven Beschloss, and others.) In the unlikely event that you actually read this note, and the even lesser likelihood that you have even 10 minutes of spare time, I'd like to recommend that you read (assuming you have not already) the prescient 2005 monograph by Princeton’s recently deceased, eminent philosopher, Harry Frankfurt, "On Bullshit."

Its application to Trump, specifically, and to most who wallow in his wake - notably Gym "Point 'n Shout" Jordan. Gaetz qualifies in a walk as well. I think that it offers a unique and powerful frame through which to describe and understand their malfeasance, not as LIES, but as BULLSHIT, a far more corrosive departure from civilized discourse, and the ultimate threat to the Republic: a culture in which Truth is simply meaningless.

Keep up the good fight!

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Absolutely agree with you about Frankfurt's "On Bullshit," which is brilliant. I read it when it first came out but have thought of it frequently in the past 8 years. "Prescient" sadly is the word for it.

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We can debate whether Israel has the legal or moral authority to devastate Gaza to destroy Hamas, but shouldn't we also debate whether Israel has the legal and moral authority to continue business as usual in the West Bank, where an army has for decades violently subjected a civilian population to evictions, imprisonment and killing? Why does it take a horrific attack by Hamas to bring attention to the plight of Palestinians? Already this year, before the Hamas attack, according to the Washington Post, at least 179 Palestinians in the West Bank had been killed. Given that the US has about 140 times as many people, that would be the equivalent of 25,060 Americans killed. The West Bank occupation has every appearance of a strategy to replace Palestinians with Israeli Jewish settlers, who now number at a minimum 500,000. This is the very sort of relentless repression that breeds hopelessness which then goads angry young men to retaliatory violence, which is both certain and unpredictable. The US, if it is serious about human rights, needs to pressure Israel to finally end the occupation.

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Apologies. The US has about 104 times the West Bank Arab population, so the equivalent number of Americans killed would be 18,616, six World Trade Centers.

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Oct 21, 2023·edited Oct 21, 2023

I wanted to ask if anyone else noticed Chesebro's black eye in the video of his pleading guilty yesterday?

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One of the problems that we have--possibly the central problem that we have (politically and socially/culturally) is that people are looking to WIN arguments.

What do I mean by that?

In many cases, people are not looking to learn or modify what they believe/think/feel, they are looking to impose what they believe/think/feel on others. That imposition might be gentle/socially acceptable or it might be coercive--but the impulse behind it (especially in politics and culture) is to win--and by winning make everyone like you.

That is the goal--to eliminate the Other (or, if they cannot be eliminated, marginalize them).

A binary system simply makes this worse, because it ignores or minimalizes alternative solutions. It is overtly and explicitly adversarial. It is an environment that trends towards what we have now--two sides find it difficult or impossible to compromise (regardless of whether it is one side or both sides that refuse to compromise--it only takes a refusal on the part of one side).

A lot of this goes back to innate characteristics/behaviors.

"Cancel culture" as we currently look at it is one of those binary battlefields--while it isn't (in reality) binary, it is functionally so. The extreme contending factions overpower the conversation.

We see the same thing happening with the GoP in the House--where extremists have overpowered and seized control of the process. The middle has no voice or firmly believes it has no voice (which then deprives them of their voice, because they stop talking).

They have been cancelled--either through frustration or fear or simply because they are not "interesting" or "spicy" enough to attract attention.

Being overtly cancelled provides attention/notoriety--it is actually kind of the opposite of cancellation. Not getting any notice because you are boring, unprofitable, not good for ratings/revenue, don't generate primary turnout; THAT is cancellation.

That is one of the reasons why I don't get too worked up about a lot of these "cancellations."

Ultimately, we need to construct institutions and norms that enable and motivate us to overcome the inherent limitations of our natures. We do not currently have that and actually seem to be heading further and further into a situation that actually makes things worse instead of better.

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Ben may have a problem not understanding or knowing the strategic aims of the Israelis, but I find that to be just fine. If he knows, you can bet that Hamas knows, too, and would prepare accordingly.

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The main purpose of Trump and MAGA is to provide cover for Koch

Industries in their continuing quest to turn the United States government into a

fascist dictatorship. Jim Jordan, Matt Gaetz, and Marjorie Taylor

Greene, all funded by Koch Industries, as well as many other Republican

members of Congress.

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Just a thought. Book bans (organized suppression) of books are/is wrong, this is self evident even with the thin excuse use by the banners of 'protecting the children'. Cancel culture (non-organized) collective informal rejection of individuals or ideas can also be wrong and can happen for good or ill. See Mayer re Franken. 2 things, both can be true.

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TRIAL BY COMBAT: The GOP would be better off selecting a Speaker by duel because a) unlike their current process, duels have RULES and b) the loser can't complain that the process was rigged.

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Perhaps this latest goat rodeo merits a new conjunction: SNAFUBAR.

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We can boil this down to a refusal to consider working with Democrats. This is coupled to a routine of absurd sloganeering about Democrats - as extremists (radicals, socialists or similar).

Maybe it is time for sensible folks like Charlie Sykes to resists and and all bullshit. So when on MSNBC or whatever and you hears someone (like fat Chris Christie) utter lies about Biden - time to yell stop. Time to identify the lies.

This is really serious. At least 40% of voters seem to accept at face value that it is Dems who are destroying America. Well time to reverse this.

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Charlie, I love the footnote! After today, you may need to add hurly burly to the list.

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Charlie asks how the GOP could be worse: easy, had Jim Jordan been elected Speaker.

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As Avalon suggested, you're going to need a bigger Thesaurus for synonyms for 'clusterfuck' to adequately describe the current situation of the GOP House.

Side note for Charlie: instead of signing off your podcast with 'come back tomorrow, and we'll do this all over again'---which, for me at least, strikes a kind of nightmarish, sisyphean-repetition note of terror ("What? Nothing is ever going to improve?!")---why don't you borrow from yourself and sign off with the much more hopeful and comforting 'we'll get through this together'? I know that Saletan is mostly responsible for the ponies, but I'll take every sliver of light I can get.

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