Common Sense 309 – A Bodyguard Of Lies

Secrecy, hacking, information leaks, whistle-blowers, foreign-operative propaganda pushers, disinformation, election tampering and the search for any truth in cyberspace occupy Dan's thoughts in this show.

2016, Dan Carlin
Common Sense with Dan Carlin

An automatic speech recognition example from the first 10 minutes of Common Sense 309 by Dan Carlin. Speechmatics was used as speech recognition engine without any keywords or further manual editing.

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[0:00] Today's show is sponsored by Audible. Go to audible podcast dot com forward slash Dan Carlin for a free audio book with a 30 day trial membership.
He's Dan Carlin and this is common sense.

Hillary Clinton

[0:18] I know many of you want me to talk about the election but I have to be honest with you like many of you.
I find the whole thing depressing and everybody gets mad at me as you might expect because I don't pick sides because I don't like any of them which seems to be the majority position for most Americans right now so maybe in that sense I'm just a follower,
but with Hillary Clinton we have the champion of the establishment running.
So everything we talk about when we talk about corruption in government or as she's a neo conservative basically I mean all these things that we have problems with Hillary Clinton is the poster child for those.
So when we talk sometimes and we use that metaphor about the ship of state heading towards an iceberg,
Hillary Clinton is not the person to steer us away from the iceberg she is one of the main types of people in this system who for more than 20 years has been setting the course she steered toward the iceberg.

[1:13] And you watch. There's something about her where she is so suspicious of everything and maybe rightly so she's been hounded by you know opposition since the days when her husband was the governor of Arkansas,
that she has habitually almost Nixonian about things and it will catch up with her and it will catch up with her if she becomes president because the Republicans will investigate her,
for you know 90 percent of stuff that never happened is not real,
and 10 percent of stuff that might be and she's going to act in a way that gets her in trouble.
The political system and the ability to destroy your political opponents through the politics of scandal will work very well on her.
And to believe that that won't happen you would have to believe that the report that the Republican opposition would act differently than they always have and that they already are.
So as the old saying goes if current trends continue and if Hillary Clinton becomes president all those women who are so excited about having the first female president. And I would be excited about that myself actually.
The father of two girls. My girls ask me difficult to answer questions along those lines all the time.
I doubt she's going to be the poster child. You're looking for in the long run.

The Other Guy

[2:22] And then there's the other guy who is who defies description really.

[2:29] And in the last show I think it was so long ago I can't remember a thousand apologies ladies gentlemen.
But the good news is I've been getting a ton done on the history show and so whenever you don't hear me doing some work over here I'm probably doing work over there.
But said some things about Trump in the last show which were totally honest and you know the Trump ites got all angry with me but that's how it's going to be folks.
And the the one critique that's so funny is the one that suggested that because for 25 years I've been saying I want an outsider who is going to come in and upset the system and blah blah blah that I have to be a Trump supporter,
as though it doesn't matter who shows up at your door representing that figure you are pledged to vote for them regardless. Well I'm sorry it didn't work that way.

[3:10] He's one of the strangest candidates I've ever seen.
I don't think I'm out of line here saying the guy is a narcissist. I think that's on display for everyone and I mean on a scale of one to 10.
He's an 11 narcissist because I think a lot of these politicians fall into the narcissism category somewhere on the spectrum and I don't think he's believable and I'm tempted to believe what others have said that maybe he doesn't even look like he really wants the job.
Wouldn't it be the greatest political story in all American history if a guy got this far in the electoral campaign when he really didn't want the job that he ran for subsidiary reasons. I don't know if any of that is true.
But it's interesting to wonder about I happen to believe that Hillary Clinton loses to almost any candidate you could think of if they're not.
I mean Donald Trump is an amazingly polarizing figure in a way.
Like I said I think I think Standard Operating Procedure candidates crush Hillary Clinton because of her unpopularity.
So this is a depressing election for yours truly because I seemingly get what I want and I get it.
Like a weird sort of twisty way.
I think I'm getting that birthday cake and it's loaded with nails nonetheless. So I'm not talking about it because it doesn't matter at this point for me.

[4:26] Neither one of those people are going to solve my problems. Now,
on a different front though there was something interesting going on that I think is worth talking about and it dovetails into what I consider to be the larger issues than who the president of the United States may be.

The Death Of Objective Truth

[4:43] You know next January I guess you could say bottom line it revolves around information or back in my more protest the righteous self-righteous heyday.
I probably would have said instead of information I would have put a spin on it and said truth.

[5:01] When I was about 20 I wrote a piece and it was never published which you know I'm grateful for now but I had talked to I think I called it the death of objective truth and at the time and this was probably 1985 or something.
You know I was talking about how once upon a time there was certain agreed upon facts and upon those facts you could then build an argument.
And when you had an argument with somebody else about you know which way the country should turn to this or that political event you wouldn't be arguing about the base level facts.
There would be an understanding and agreement on that. And you can have the arguments now on the merit of the specific case.
So you're not going back and arguing well I don't even believe that you're right about your basic assumptions.
Well the reason I'm glad that it wasn't published 20 years ago is I think an older wiser or more cynical version of me today realizes that there never was anything like objective truth and that's a 20 year old's fantasy.

[5:59] Nonetheless I do find myself in positions all the time now.
Well for a long time. But but I know many of you are in the same boat I'm not talking to the general public on this show.
We used to have a saying it's a little insulting so I apologize if it was but but very early on one of the slogans we used for the show is that if the show's too smart for you it's not our fault.
And we've never dumbed the showdown for a common denominator.
I figure that it's an unserved audience if you're talking about things reasonably you know at a high level.
And I think we do things at a reasonably high level.
So you folks are not really my target audience when I say that I find sort of a certain jealousy in my mother in law's book clubs because you go to these book clubs and they're popular.

[6:46] Women like these things and especially you know moms and whatnot and joined these book clubs and they'll all decide you know we're going to read this book and then when we finish it we'll all get together over coffee and we'll talk about the book.
And the reason I'm jealous about it is because well they've all read the same book.
Nobody's going to argue about what happened to the main character in all these things you can talk about what you think above and beyond you know the events themselves.
Right we all agree that this happened now what do we think about it.
It's the what do we think about it part. That is the really meaty fruitful part of a political discussion not the arguing over the basic facts.
Back in debating class that was considered a debate technique for the person that couldn't win the argument can't win the argument.
QUESTION The sources divert the entire affair so you're not talking about the thing you can't win you're now talking about where this person got their information from. Right.
We went to the book club meeting and I read this book and you read that one doesn't make for a very interesting conversation about what we thought right.

We Don'T Know The Same Things

[7:47] So I find myself jealous that we all haven't read the same books. Because I'll have discussions with people about things and I can't get to square one because we don't know the same things. If that makes sense.

[8:00] You know you want to explain a certain reality but they don't know about that reality.
And so you find yourself having a discussion about while this happened back here a new Blondell.
In other words you know 10 minutes into it you realize you're not discussing the issue that you wanted to discuss at all.
You're trying to find a meaningful point of agreement at a very earlier level a factual level.
Case in point what we're talking about essentially is information right.
Truth is I would've said that as a 20 year old The reason this is so important is because without it you are not having the right discussion.

Nonsense Discussions

[8:38] I mean in the United States today I venture a guess that we have never ever in our history talked more often with more people involved in the discussion of politics ever,
when we have millions and millions of people who tune in to political radio and tell.
I mean it's huge right. Lots of people talking about it.
But when you look at the discussion so much of it is nonsense and the discussion about the things that aren't really happening or or have no basis are fair.
I mean it's as though the people talking about them were born yesterday and have no sense of what came before.
So you can't even have a conversation because we don't even know the same things.

[9:21] And it's immensely frustrating. And it boils down to,
you know something that we've talked about on this program a lot because you know I'm addicted to trying to find at least what appear to be to me root causes of things which is why I think the show gets boring at times because I think when you factor things down to root causes you end up with,
four to eight root causes and they're the same ones that you could factor almost anything down to one of them as information now.

Free Society

[9:49] In a free society and I say this a lot because folks free societies exist on a spectrum too.
And you can say today we still live in a free society but are we the same number on the dial of a free society as we were 30 or 40 years ago.
If a higher number denotes a more free society more free and open society where the people are more involved in the decision making and the government somehow adopts policies that are somehow connected to what the people want.
I think you could make a case that we were an 8 on a scale of 10.
Back when I was growing up and we're a four now still free societies but we're down four notches.