The American Left’s Descent into Gestapo Tactics - Politicrossing
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The American Left’s Descent into Gestapo Tactics

The Left is already asserting itself in highly un-American ways.

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For having the temerity and legal right to challenge the election of Joe Biden on the senate floor, on behalf of major concerns of his constituents, Senator Josh Hawley’s book with Simon & Schuster was canceled. The book was slated for publication this spring. Simon & Schuster said: “After witnessing the disturbing, deadly insurrection that took place on Wednesday in Washington, D.C., Simon & Schuster has decided to cancel publication of Senator Josh Hawley’s forthcoming Book, the Tyranny of Big Tech.”

“We did not come to this decision lightly. As a publisher it will always be our mission to amplify a variety of voices and viewpoints: At the same time we take seriously our larger public responsibility as citizens, and cannot support Senator Hawley after his role in what became a dangerous threat to our democracy and freedom.”

Senator Hawley responded, “Simon & Schuster is canceling my contract because I was representing my constituents, leading a debate on the Senate floor on voter integrity, which they have now decided to redefine as sedition.” He then said, “See you in court.”

Silencing the Right

The Left’s attempt to squelch views by anyone deemed to be a Republican or conservative is picking up steam. Randall Lane, the chief content officer of Forbes Media and editor of Forbes Magazine, which most people don’t realize was sold by the Forbes Family years ago, has called for destroying the careers of anyone who work for Trump, particularly his press secretaries including Sean Spicer, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, and Kayleigh McEnany.

“Let it be known to the business world: Hire any of Trump’s fellow fabulists above, and Forbes will assume that everything your company or firm talks about is a lie,” Lane wrote. “We’re going to scrutinize, double-check, investigate with the same skepticism we’d approach a Trump tweet. Want to ensure the world’s biggest business media brand approaches you as a potential funnel of disinformation? Then hire away.”

Can you imagine the unmitigated gall of a major business magazine editor, once considered “a capitalist tool,” seeking to diminish the livelihood, reputation, and indeed quality of life of those who served in the administration of our 45th president?

Wait, There’s More

If only the blatant social, civic, and financial attempts at ostracism we’re confined to American publishers. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, perhaps the least intelligent person ever elected twice to congress, has repeatedly called for the re-education, reprogramming, or indoctrination of anyone who voted for Trump. She is joined by legions of others calling for the same.

To get this straight, that means 75 to 80 million people, in her view, require some kind of intervention for the deep and desperate crime of having voted Republican. Log on to any alternative news site today – not the mainstream press – including Politicrossing, Townhall, Rantingly, The Liberty Daily, Whatfinger News, Red State, and so on, and each day you will see articles of those on the left calling for drastic measures to silence those on the right.

Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, supposedly a moderate, has openly called for removing both Senators Josh Hawley and Ted Cruz Manchin via the 14th Amendment, over their objections to Electoral College votes. Where was Sen. Manchin in November, 2017 when Nancy Pelosi did exactly the same thing?

Ideological Litmus Tests

On the heels of the Left’s attempt to squelch the freedom of speech and livelihood of those on the Right comes perhaps the most egregious development thus far. National Guard troops assembled in Washington, D.C. to insure domestic tranquility during the transfer of power on January 20th are now looked upon by the Left in a new light. They want to know who voted for Trump, versus who voted for Biden, and send the Trump voters to far ends, away from Biden.

This ideological litmus test is much more than the start of a slippery slope, it virtually guarantees that the nation will be fractured, and in record time.

Suppose that hereafter, within the professions, you must declare whether or not you voted for Trump. No more buying real estate using a broker who leans right. Don’t even consider getting insurance from an agent who voted for Trump. What about your doctor? Can he or she be trusted if a GOP member? Do you want to retain an attorney who voted for Republicans?

As absurd as this seems, major voices on the Left prefer this path. NBA basketball players have complained to the press that they don’t want to play for a team whose owner is a Republican.

Disaster on the Horizon

Where will all this lead? Your guess is as good as mine. Perhaps, more reasoned voices will prevail, and point out the absurdity of asking people for their “official papers,” much like was done throughout Europe in the lead up to and during World War II.

However, at the rate that the Left is already asserting itself in highly un-American ways, acting like the East German Stasi, and usurping the U.S. Constitution, there’s no real reason to hold out hope.

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Jeff Davidson is the world's only holder of the title "The Work-Life Balance Expert®" as awarded by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. He is the premier thought leader on work-life balance, integration, and harmony. Jeff speaks to organizations that seek to enhance their overall productivity by improving the effectiveness of their people. He is the author of Breathing Space, Simpler Living, Dial it Down, and Everyday Project Management. Visit www.BreathingSpace.com for more information on Jeff's keynote speeches and seminars, including: Managing the Pace with Grace® * Achieving Work-Life Balance™ * Managing Information and Communication Overload®



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William Randolph Hearst: His Role is in American Progressivism

The origins of today’s Leftist, slanted news can be traced in part to William Randolph Hearst

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The origins of today’s Leftist, slanted news can be traced in part to William Randolph Hearst. Here are notes and excerpts from William Randolph Hearst: His Role is in American Progressivism, by Roy Everett Littlefield, published by University Press of America, in 1960.

▪ Historians and journalists alike [remember, this is only up until to 1959], have been harsh on Hearst’s sensationalism. One wrote that his papers were inferior to others because he had a disregard for the truth. The purpose of a Hearst newspaper was to “splash sensation” that would “paralyze” the public.

▪ A critic wrote, “in the strict sense, the Hearst papers aren’t newspapers at all. They were printed entertainment and excitement.”

▪ Another critic said: “because Hearst fabricated news stories, his newspapers were as sensational, flamboyant, and irresponsible as any major newspaper ever published in America.”

▪ A fourth critic charged that Hearst, because of his lack of sincerity and intellectual honesty, did more to degrade the entire American press than anyone else in history.

Yellow Journalism

Yellow journalism refers to that which is based upon sensationalism and crude exaggeration.

▪ One of Hearst’s closest advisors and friends for 39 years relished the role of yellow journalist by saying, “I am the yellowist journalist in the world.” He explained how he had artists make his type the largest and blackest of all newspapers. One time he printed, “WAR, SURE”, causing news boys to put the Journal on top of the pack and all the other papers on the bottom, which became the habit of news boys.

▪ Like Joseph Pulitzer, Hearst used large headlines and numerous illustrations to reach immigrants who were barely literate.

▪ The Hearst technique, common to all his papers, centered on getting the visual attention of the public. Hearst explained that the typical reader should be able to review the headline of a newspaper and get a reasonably clear and complete idea of the news of the day. The headline also served as an advertisement of the newspaper. Hearst employed wider columns, larger print, and darker type.

Keep It Simple, Stupid

One of Hearst’s key editors told his reporters, “There is no need ever to use a word of more than three syllables in a newspaper. Remember that a newspaper is mostly read by very busy people, or by very tired people, or by very uneducated people, none of whom are going to hunt up a dictionary to find out what you mean.”

▪ Hearst appealed to the lower classes’ baser instincts, and his sensationalistic journalism had its most spectacular hour in the times that led to the Spanish American War. From the start, Hearst and Pulitzer advocated every means possible to aid the rebels in the Spanish American War. Hearst used his newspaper as a vehicle to foment public sentiment for the war, and in this respect, single-handedly played one of the biggest roles in getting America into the war.

▪ A guiding Hearst principle: “Never forget that if you don’t hit a newspaper reader between the eyes with your first sentence, there is no reason to write a second.”

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Making Smarter Decisions

How to make smarter decisions when you don’t have all the facts (which is nearly all the time)

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Annie Duke, a professional gambler, has written an intriguing book,  Thinking in Bets: Making Smarter Decisions When You Don’t Have All The Facts. The text is great; I took a lot of notes and saved many excerpts:

Life choices we make are bets on a specific path, as distinct from a range of potential alternative futures. Job and relocation decisions are bets. Sales negotiations and contracts are bets. Buying a house is a bet. Ordering the chicken instead of the steak is a bet. Everything is a bet.

Ask someone, “Want to bet?” when they claim something to be true. It puts them in a different place than when they simply state what they believed to be true. Thinking in Bets can help us reshape our approach to the world, and improve all aspects of decision-making in our lives.

Overview

We humans are disastrously biased in our decision making. We fool ourselves into believing our beliefs whether they are worthy of our trust of not. Our biases systematically impede our decision-making.

Most people don’t actually think through their beliefs. They hear something from a source they hold in high esteem and then maintain that belief. Recognize when you’re in an “echo-chamber” where only viewpoints you’re currently comfortable with are expressed.

We are quick to form beliefs, tend towards absolutes (this is right, that is wrong), and indulge in “motivated reasoning,” seeking out confirmation while ignoring contradictory evidence. Believing is easy; we are wired to believe

Our beliefs impact how we view the world, then how we act, and how we plan for the future. We are loath to update our beliefs, especially when a change would be a challenge to our self-narrative. Our decision-making is only as good as the accuracy of our beliefs, which are hopelessly biased and often wrong.

Because our beliefs are based on past experiences and inputs, it is wise to be purposeful about the inputs and experiences that we have going forward as that will guide our future selves.

“Resulting”

We judge decisions based on how they turn out, known as “resulting,” in which we believe results indicate the quality of our decision: If we succeeded it was a good decision, but if we failed, it was a bad decision.

We guard our self-image via “self-serving bias,” which distorts our view of the world: We take credit for all good outcomes and blame bad luck for all bad outcomes, even when the truth is often shaded in grey.

Resulting ignores the role of luck. When a desired outcome doesn’t occur, it does not always mean it was a poor choice. It could have been bad luck. This insight moves us away from right-wrong thinking, and towards a probabilistic approach to interpreting outcomes, like betting in poker.

So, assess decisions on the basis of how they were made, not how they turned out You can win with a poor decision and lose with a good one. In the long run, it’s the decision-making process that counts.

Stop thinking in certainties and recognize probabilities, and avoid imagining situations as either-or. Most things lie along continuums.

Taking Action

Embrace uncertainty, by thinking in bets. Calibrate your confidence on a more granular level. Rather than say, “I know X with 100% certainty,” express a lesser confidence of, say, 65%. Calibrating preserves our self-narrative if we happen to be wrong, and it also makes us more credible.

Assess outcomes after the fact, through “outcome fielding.” Was an outcome driven by luck or skill, and in what combination? After winning a high profile tournament, for example, a poker player was focused not on basking in glory, but on de-constructing his play, and what he could have done better.

Practice tough love in the service of “truth-seeking.” No whining about how bad luck hurt us. No patting ourselves on the backs. Truth-seeking requires a special kind of contract with yourself.

Listen to arguments from all sides to get a clearer picture of the truth. Observe the world around you and learn from the choices that other people make by observing.

Create a group of individuals who can provide us with feedback on our weaknesses and blind spots. Focus on accuracy, accountability, and openness to diverse views. Court dissent and differing points of view, and take responsibility even when doing so is painful.

Strength in the Moment

We tend to act based on how we are affected right now, rather than how we will feel later. When we reach for that doughnut, rather than for a healthy apple, we’re doing so at the expense of our future self. Employ the 10-10-10 process: what are the consequences of each of my options in 10 minutes? 10 months? 10 years?

Finally, exercise caution after a streak of positive or negative outcomes to avoid becoming emotionally charged in a way that prevents us from thinking clearly.

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