Broken Dreams

‘Progressives’, it seems to me, are people who think they can see the future, and know the shape of things to come. They regard themselves as far-sighted. And they all seem to be agreed that the future will be some sort of planned, managed, socialist state. And that it will be “smoke-free”. And that it will be powered by sunshine and wind.

The rest of us are stunted, knuckle-dragging throwbacks, and all too often those worst sort of unenlightened retards: tobacco smokers.

The spherical surface of the Earth seems to be populated by tall, far-sighted progressives – who can see what’s coming over the horizon, just like look-outs posted in the crow’s nest at the top of a ship’s mast – while the short, stunted crewmen on the deck below can barely see over the next wave, never mind the distant horizon.

I have to count myself among the tobacco-smoking retards, I’m afraid. I’ve never had compelling vision of the future. I’ve never been working towards some future utopia. Nor even been trying to avoid some future, global-boiling dystopia.

It is our peculiar misfortune that we are unable to see the future. But that doesn’t stop us trying to predict it. My orbital simulation model of the solar system is a predictive model, based upon our knowledge of the elliptical orbits of the planets around the Sun. I can use it to foresee eclipses and planetary conjunctions. But if we can predict with great accuracy the future positions of the planets, we have no idea when or where the next Chelyabinsk will happen, as some asteroid impacts the surface of the Earth with the power of thousands of atomic bombs – because we don’t know where most of the asteroids are. We only know where some of them are. And we usually only find out when they have just sailed close by us. One of the odd things about the solar system is that what was once seen as the very expression of perfect clockwork predictability is gradually turning into something almost completely unpredictable, as the numbers of bodies in it have multiplied.

The political world is no different. We’re all trying to predict the future there too. Will Marine Le Pen become the next French President? Will the European Union survive its current crisis? Will newly-elected President Donald Trump be toppled, impeached, or assassinated? Last year, Britons were widely expected to vote to remain in the European Union, and there was shock and disbelief when they voted to leave. Also last year, Americans were widely expected to vote Hillary Clinton into office as the next President of the United States, and there was equal (or perhaps even greater) shock and disbelief when they instead voted for Donald Trump. Neither of these things was predicted. Neither was expected. And for many people the mismatch between what was predicted, and what actually happened, resulted in a sort of collective nervous breakdown. It wasn’t supposed to be like this!

It’s not as if I am myself immune from this sort of upset. I did not predict the UK smoking ban of 1 July 2007. I couldn’t even believe it was going to happen even when it was actually happening. The mismatch between this grim new reality and my idea of what congenial English pubs were like, and would always be like, was unbearable – and remains unbearable.

It’s like losing a girlfriend. Yesterday she was on your arm beside you, and today she’s stepping out with some other guy. Why him? Whatever can she possibly see in somebody like him? And you want her back. But eventually, after a while, somehow or other, it ceases to matter any more.

The ‘progressives’, with their carefully constructed fantasy future utopias, are always going to end up being disappointed and heartbroken, when the future doesn’t pan out the way they thought it would, expected it would, knew it would. And when that happens, they are likely to learn that they’re not actually as smart and knowledgeable and insightful as they thought they were. And that they can’t see any further than those dumbass morons down there on the deck  below.

But if none of us can predict the future, and we’re always seeing our expectations dashed, are we very much better at remembering the past? If the look-out in the crow’s nest can’t see very far over the horizon ahead, then he can’t really see much further over the horizon behind. Did the ship dock last week in Tangier, or was it Guadalupe? The ship’s log is said to record its movements, but what if you can’t read the handwriting in it, or understand its French or Latin or Greek? There are whole tracts of human history – anything more than about 5,000 years ago, for example – that we know next to nothing about. Its history has been lost, and its monuments are indecipherable.

Perhaps all we have is Right Now, and maybe a week or two ahead, and a week or two behind. And sometimes maybe just a minute or two ahead, and a minute or two behind. And both past and future have the character of dreams that are continually being shattered.

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About Frank Davis

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26 Responses to Broken Dreams

  1. Rose says:

    With regards to the previous thread.
    From my computers memory regarding Sweden, not even including the word murder.

    SWEDEN ON EDGE: Now MPs DEMAND billion pound investment into police amid growing crisis
    SWEDEN’S Prime Minister was brutalised in Parliament for allowing Sweden to crumble into a lawless state.
    Feb 5, 2017
    http://www.express.co.uk/news/world/763096/Sweden-MPs-demand-billion-pound-investment-police-growing-crisis

    SWEDEN CRUMBLING: Demands for military intervention as thugs turn Malmo into ‘no-go zone’
    Jan 20, 2017
    http://www.express.co.uk/news/world/755997/Sweden-Malmo-military-intervention-no-go-zone-crime-surge

    Sweden pulls up the drawbridge: Refugee magnet installs HEAT SENSORS to keep migrants out
    DESPERATE Swedish police have been forced to install heat sensors on a major border crossing because so many migrants are trying to sneak into the country, Express.co.uk can reveal tonight.
    Apr 16, 2016
    http://www.express.co.uk/news/world/661552/resund-bridge-Sweden-migrants-camera-heat-sensor

    Sweden on the brink? Police force pushed to breaking point by violence amid migrant influx
    SWEDEN is on the brink of becoming a lawless state as the police force is losing the battle against unprecedented levels of crime and violence amid a growing migrant crisis.
    Nov 2, 2016
    http://www.express.co.uk/news/world/727574/Sweden-chaos-Police-pushed-breaking-point-unprecedented-violence-crime

    Liberal Sweden turns on migrants amid unprecedented rise in violence and sex attacks
    THE famously liberal Swedes have turned against migrants after being pushed to breaking point in the struggle to cope with the “totally unprecedented” influx of refugees, a new poll says.
    http://www.express.co.uk/news/world/707617/Sweden-migrants-unprecedented-rise-violence-sex-attacks

    Sweden was overwhelmed by influx of child migrants – we should heed their lesson
    22 October 2016
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/10/22/sweden-was-overwhelmed-by-influx-of-child-migrants–we-should-he/

    Today

    ‘Sweden, who would believe this?’: Trump cites non-existent terror attack
    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/feb/19/sweden-trump-cites-non-existent-terror-attack

    Donald Trump admits his ‘Sweden attack’ comments were based on debunked Fox News report
    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/trump-sweden-happened-last-night-based-on-debunked-fox-news-report-a7589031.html#commentsDiv
    Interesting comments.

    • prog says:

      I think one reason why we’re not seeing major terrorist attacks in Sweden is because the Islamists more or less won the war some years ago and are now calling the shots by invoking political correctness to determine the future of the country, which the ultra progressive lefty idiots designed and are now paying a very heavy price for (and, even more stupidly, are doing barely anything to repair the damage).

      This is long, sad, but worth watching

      • prog says:

        Not the intended video..

        (fingers crossed)

      • Frank Davis says:

        ultra progressive lefty idiots

        I sometimes think the ultra progressive lefty idiots are trying to destroy their own countries.

        • prog says:

          What I find totally incomprehensible is ‘why?’. At least, by supporting and encouraging an evil and generally a non-productive primitive culture based on the personal beliefs of a raving lunatic. I say culture, rather than religion, because genuine religions don’t preach that non-believers are inferior and/or must be eradicated unless they submit.

          Guess it’s the useful idiots idea of modern socialism. Pity normal folk are forced to put up with it and effectively denied a voice, backed up by legislation that prohibits free speech when it doesn’t suit the agenda (whatever that is).

        • nisakiman says:

          Well, that would fit in with the Frankfurt School of thought. Before you can remake a nation the way you want it, you first have to destroy it.

        • Frank Davis says:

          That seems to be the explanation.

          So if you want to destroy some nation, bring in millions of refugees/migrants, particularly ones which have no intention of adopting the customs or beliefs of their new host nation. That way you’ll create no-go areas everywhere, in which the nation’s customs and laws no longer hold. With luck, some of the migrants will also be terrorists who’ll murder lots of the native nationals. For extra spice, make it illegal to report the terrorism, or say who did it.

          I must say I see smoking bans as a way of destroying a culture. Take something that worked very well, and smash it. And don’t replace it with anything else.

        • prog says:

          I know there’s some doubts about Paul Joseph Watson’s tolerance opinion towards smokers, and shame on him for not recognising how people have been duped by the Leftist agenda he so despises but….

        • Frank Davis says:

          I must say I’ve rather gone off him since he said that smokers and fat people should be stigmatised. Other than about that, I agree with him about pretty much everything. But calling for smoker stigmatisation is a deal-breaker, for me at least.

        • prog says:

          Perhaps

          ‘Their task, therefore, was as swiftly as possible to undermine the Judaeo-Christian legacy. To do this they called for the most negative destructive criticism possible of every sphere of life which would be designed to de-stabilize society and bring down what they saw as the ‘oppressive’ order. Their policies, they hoped, would spread like a virus—‘continuing the work of the Western Marxists by other means’ as one of their members noted.”

          They devised strategies by which the destruction of the West could quickly and effectively take place: “To further the advance of their ‘quiet’ cultural revolution – but giving us no ideas about their plans for the future – the School recommended (among other things):

          “1. The creation of racism offences.
          2. Continual change to create confusion.
          3. The teaching of sex and homosexuality to children.
          4. The undermining of schools’ and teachers’ authority.
          5. Huge immigration to destroy identity.
          6. The promotion of excessive drinking.
          7. Emptying of churches.
          8. An unreliable legal system with bias against victims of crime.
          9. Dependency on the state or state benefits.
          10. Control and dumbing down of media.
          11. Encouraging the breakdown of the family.”

          https://billmuehlenberg.com/2009/05/11/the-frankfurt-school-and-the-war-on-the-west/

          Though I’m not sure they envisaged The Caliphate rather than Cultural Maxism as the ultimate Utopia. They wanted to free the West from the stranglehold of established religions Then again, perhaps the chaos created by western interference with the ME (a futile attempt to impose democracy) was all part of the plan.

        • prog says:

          Perhaps he was being ironic, given the reference to fat people.

        • Frank Davis says:

          I suppose that’s possible, given that he does tend to be heavily ironic. He does, after all, have a photo of himself with a cigarette in his mouth on his Facebook page.

    • Harleyrider1978 says:

      Rose it appears trump was right just on the wrong target

      • Rose says:

        Not even that, he just expressed it badly.

        However, the “Swedes” do seem to have been behaving rather oddly of late, which is why I started to take an interest.

        Wave of car burning crimes in Sweden moves to poor Stockholm suburb
        Aug 16, 2016

        “The fires have centred on Stockholm and Malmo – Sweden’s third biggest city, and 2,027 vehicles have been set on fire in total between January and July, according to the Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention.
        In August alone, 48 vehicles were set on fire in Malmo and 60 more in June and July. On Monday, 13 cars were set alight in several different parts of the city.
        http://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-sweden-burningcars-idUKKCN10R1Q8

        Four arrested for car fires in Malmö
        20 September 2016

        “At the weekend by contrast as many as 32 cars were set alight. Police suspect that sudden burst may have been a response to the recent arrests of individuals linked to serious crimes in the city.”
        “We can’t rule out the possibility that this is a reaction to our activities in terms of crime here,” Malmö Police press officer Lars Förstell told TT.
        According to police, the fires do not appear to be directed towards any particular individual, and they suspect that a small group of young men working as lackeys for hardened criminals are behind them.”
        http://www.thelocal.se/20160920/four-arrested-for-malm-car-fires

        SWEDEN BURNING: Stockholm in flames as car fire epidemic rages in ‘no-go’ zone
        SHOCKING footage of cars burning out in Stockholm has emerged as the fire epidemic continues to spread uncontrolled throughout crisis-hit Sweden.
        Nov 30, 2016
        http: //www.express.co.uk/news/world/738151/Sweden-Stockholm-car-fire-epidemic-rage-no-go-zone

        From the side bar of that Swedish paper.

        Minister visits Malmö as shootings continue
        13 February 2017

        ” Interior Minister Anders Ygeman met police and local representatives in Malmö on Monday to discuss strategies to crack down on organized crime in the city.
        “We have to mobilize all resources in our society against these gangs. From the government side we have to tighten punishments, streamline prosecution and have more police officers,” he told broadcaster SVT ahead of the visit.”
        http://www.thelocal.se/20170213/minister-visits-malm-as-shootings-continue

        Donald Trump explains ‘last night in Sweden’ comment
        20 February 2017

        “The comment provoked mockery on social media, as Swedes pointed out that it had been a peaceful Friday in the Nordic nation, using the hashtag LastNightInSweden to make comedy suggestions about what he may have been referring too – including the possibility that someone had opened a can of fermented herring in public.
        On Sunday, the US President finally revealed the source of his comments. And rather than being based on top-secret intelligence that the Swedes weren’t privy to, Trump blamed it all on seeing something on Fox news.”
        http://www.thelocal.se/20170220/donald-trump-explains-last-night-in-sweden-comment

        • waltc says:

          (Patting self on back) Before this is explanation broke, I figured it out because I’d seen the same thing the night (or two) before. A guy who’d done a documentary and/or study on what was happening in Sweden was interviewed on Tucker Carlson’s show and some footage of destructive migrant rioting (not terrorism) was shown. When Carlson asked him if this had turned the average Swede against migration, he said, oddly, no, that the Swedes were so wedded to their progressive ideology that they continued to believe in it and not, to use that phrase, ‘”their lying eyes.” And further that the government, including local police, conspired to bury or lower the crime stats and fudge the source if the crimes.

          (To an extent, that’s not unlike some of what’s happened here. When Bloomberg speculated that the foiled-at-the-last-minute attempted bombing of Times Square might have been executed by a right winger protesting Obamacare. Or when the Fort Hood shootings were merely described as “workplace violence.”)

          In any case, it’s still problematic that Trump would confuse documentary footage of various past incidents– that he’d happened to see on television the night before– with an attack the night before. Sort of like he sees (or maybe reads?) without total comprehension.

        • Rose says:

          I wish he’d at least get someone to check his tweets are coherent before he posts them.
          It’s depressing how often I re-read a comment I’m about to post here and see absolutely nothing wrong with it, until I post it.

        • Harleyrider1978 says:

          Tweets are useless anyway not enuf room to fully extrapolate a point

  2. prog says:

    Anyway, since the topic is broken dreams, anyone remember this gem ( I guess you will N!)

  3. lleweton says:

    ‘The mismatch between this grim new reality and my idea of what congenial English pubs were like, and would always be like, was unbearable – and remains unbearable.’ I agree, but now, being in my eighties Frank, I will say that I did fear it was coming, There had been many straws in this wind over the preceding years, the inch-by-inch restrictions on smoking choice on public transport for instance. Choice is at the heart of this issue. Choice has been denied to individuals. This was what I felt on July 1, 2007. And at that time I had not smoked anything for 10 years. I lament the effect of the total ban on our pubs, when CHOICE could have been easily allowed for in the nation’s pubs, and their congenial traditions could have been protected for the future.

    • Frank Davis says:

      I simply didn’t notice most of the straws. And there were, in retrospect, a lot of them. I did notice some, I suppose. For instance I remember being a bit miffed at the smoking ban on the London Underground that came in sometime during the 70s, but not seriously bothered. And I’ve mentioned the smoking ban in cinemas, which effectively ended my cinema-going days, but I wasn’t seriously bothered by that either. And I even used to laugh about Silk Cut’s way round the tobacco advertising ban. And when the idea of a pub smoking ban was first mooted, I remember thinking, “They’ll never do that!” And even when Parliament voted for it, I still didn’t really believe it would actually happen. It just seemed too unreal.

      • Harleyrider1978 says:

        Frank in 1982 a 50ish woman told me at the base exchange that their after tobacco prohibition again! I didn’t really know what she was talking about til I got stationed at nrmcchax hospital and endured 3 lectures by sg Koop on it!

        We laughed him out the door doctors surgeons etc etc all the while smoking but that lady sure knew what she was talking about down in the backwoods of central floriduh!

  4. Joe L. says:

    Here’s George Carlin’s brilliant take on these self-important busybody progressives from all the way back in 1992. If only he was still alive today…

  5. slugbop007 says:

    Ever watch How the Universe Works? Or any other space documentary from the BBC, Discovery Channel … Love them.

    slugbop007

  6. Rose says:

    SWEDEN RIOT: Police forced to shoot (warning shot)at protestors as violence erupts – yet PM is in denial
    Feb 21, 2017

    “SWEDEN’S capital was plunged into chaos on Monday as police were forced to fire at rioters after a violence erupted in an area described as high risk.”

    “The terrifying scenes took place just hours after the country’s Prime Minister, Stefan Löfven, slammed Donald Trump for claiming Sweden was in crisis as a result of its liberal refugee policy.
    Stockholm police were forced to fire a shot into the rampaging crowd in the hard-hit suburb of Rinkeby, after a mob of around 30 thugs started attacking the officers with rocks.”
    http://www.express.co.uk/news/world/770010/Police-shoot-rioters-violence-erupts-no-go-zone-PM-denies-Sweden-crisis

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