Friction: People who stop in the middle of the road because they just realized they need to turn at the next intersection. Are you the only person in the world and your goals/desires the only thing circulating in your skull? Getting my sexist on (it is indeed a fine line between stupid and clever), it invariably turns out to be a young/middle aged female. Why? Entitlement?  The fact that there are less social consequences for young women in many situations?  Or maybe it’s all confirmation bias, though I try to account for that.

Friction: Red-light running. Technocrats/planners often mistakenly assume people are interchangeable pawns whose behavior is static and can be manipulated (looking at you libertarian nudgers). One manifestation that I noticed recently is in red lights. Proposition – People are running red lights, causing accidents. Solution – Make the duration between turning red in one direction and green in the other, longer and longer. And then LONGER. That way, we’ll never have accidents. Well, my personal observation is, that over time, people have adjusted their estimation of how long into a yellow to “go real fast“; So we have just as much red light running, and people now actually seem to see a newly turned red light as “treat that like you used to treat yellow”. Result – just as much red light running as before. In fact, it looks like more to me and deeper into the next green phase, though maybe I’m just noticing it more since I’m fuming at sitting there for 5 seconds… Did I mention I hate red-light runners (checks anarcho-libertarian creds at the door)?

I believe this sign was meant as a positive…

Friction and Thought: Safety culture. Has “Safety culture” contributed to our overall decline as a culture (assuming you agree there’s been such a decline)? The problem was identified decades ago with the coddling of children and the emergence of the idea of “free range” kids (the simple fact that you need an organized ‘movement’ for free kids is ominous in and of itself). Sheltering ‘children’ from responsibility leads to very fragile adults. Maybe we don’t want 13 year old girls getting married – well, OMWC probably does – but is it really a good idea to keep all children from starting to assume some adult responsibilities? Fragile adults created by over safety-ized children bring “safety culture” to the work place and institutionalize it to the point of condescending absurdity. Like many things, safety culture can identify real issues, but no-one attracted to this sort of activity seems to have any filter or sense of trade-offs. When safety becomes the primary or only metric, every other value – especially freedom – will, by necessity, take a back seat. We need more Calvins.

Thought:  On USA as free vs other countries (Ozy) and whether/how to fight back (trsh). Can we have internalized the idea that we’re are the freest country so deeply that we’ve actually sort of changed the direction of causality subconsciously? We’re free. We’re willing to X. Therefore X is freedom? So we are more free than anyone else, and why would we fight back? We’re free! A somewhat poorly developed thought, I’ll grant.

Thought: Laws don’t protect you. Unless those in positions to enforce and adjudicate said laws understand and respect their basis, they are useless at best and more likely are a net harm since they will be used asymmetrically. Had this thought when reading comments here about election reform/tightening election security. Fighting a rear guard action on ballot security is necessary, but at some level fruitless. It is not the cause, but the symptom. Unfortunately, if I label all the bad things as ‘symptoms’ of an underlying rot (which I seem to more often than not), then there is no solution other than a dedicated and organized effort to ‘march through the institutions’; that’s not a short term solution and we may end up having to suffer through several generations of ‘dystopia’; and be in a situation where said march is enthusiastically crushed by any means by TPTB, rather than celebrated/embraced, or at least tolerated, as the previous one was.

Friction and Thought: When the solution to every problem (or ‘crisis’ if you want to be really effective) is the same, one is justified in wondering if the enactment of the solution is really the ultimate goal, not actually addressing the problem (sorry, CRISIS!).

Thought: Why do left leaning people seem so susceptible to the covid ‘narrative’? One can easily say ‘naive, dumb, authoritarian’; to differing degrees, those may even be true, but it can’t be overwhelmingly why. I think people on the left are more prone to the grand narrative of human action. Everyone wants to see themselves as important and participating in/contributing to the progress of humanity. But most of us do not, except in very small ways. Perhaps those of a more conservative bent, whatever their political stripe, are either through naivety or a deep wisdom, more likely to see doing the best they can within their small domain as what humans do – maybe it will lead to ‘great’ things; probably not, but at least you will have been a positive influence in your circle. Those with a more progressive bent don’t see that as enough. They must be important in a larger sphere. Signing on to crises and ‘doing your part’ satisfies that need to think of yourself as participating in important things; of being important. As humans we are all capable of viciousness – maybe when expressed in the grand narrative scheme, it’s much easier for the viciousness to wear the cloak of righteousness and be justified in the pursuit of ‘important’ goals.

PUPPIES!!!: On a lighter note, I do not FLA, but I always look forward to Sunday afternoon, because dogs is good people.

Dogs is good people.