Free Markets, Free People

I don’t know what I’m doing here

I’ll level with you: I’m in a pretty negative mood about…well…everything. I’m not talking about big-picture stuff like the direction of the Republic, or the future of the economy. I’m talking about my life. I’ve gotten to the point that literally everything that happens outside the door to my house is a hateful burden. I just don’t seem to have a sense of purpose anymore.

I was looking back at the old QandO archives, and I noticed that, I used to write and post four or five different posts every day. Now, I post my little economic statistics posts, and I’m done. I just get no sense of joy or usefulness in blogging any more. It seems like it just takes up time, but offers no reward. No money, no recognition, nothing that makes blogging about politics worth my time. Sometimes, something especially interesting comes up, so once every other month or so, I write about it here, but that’s because by far the exception, rather than the rule. Blogging about politics just seems like a burden.

It’s all so pointless. We will never convince the majority of people to embrace liberty, instead of looking to government to be Mommy. At least not until government fails so badly that its incompetence is made clearly manifest. And even if that happens, I suspect that the majority of the electorate will look for a man on a white horse, rather than freedom, and the responsibility for their own lives. There’ll always be a cohort that thinks government could do everything for everyone if only the right people were running it. And, it seems, quite a lot of people will listen to them.

Arguing with progressives is pointless, too. It’s like arguing with people in a movie theater who won’t stop texting. It’s a waste of time to say anything to them, because if they had a shred of civility or decency, they wouldn’t be doing it in the first place. If you’re a Progressive, I just assume at this point that you’re too abysmally stupid to waste time with on reason or debate.

We talked about that in the podcast tonight. A podcast that maybe 200 people or so will listen to, despite the fact that it’s one of the oldest political podcasts in existence. I enjoy talking to Bruce and Michael, but, really, it just seems like a vanity exercise. Hardly anyone will listen to it. Is it worth interrupting my Sunday afternoon for 1.5 hours to record and post a podcast that no one cares about? I don’t know.

But really, it all goes much deeper than that. I suspect the root cause of my problem is that my professional life is hateful to me.

I work full-time as a software developer for a defense contractor. I hate it. I hate programming. I never wanted to do it for a living.  I got out of the air force in August, 1993 solely to get into radio. By December, I was the main daytime line producer for a 24-hour business and financial news station in Los Angeles. By April of 1994, I was the on-air anchor for four hours a day. The station management was a bunch of money-losing incompetents, however, and when they sold off 12 hours at night to a company that ran ethnic Chinese programming, I saw the handwriting on the wall. I bailed, and took a job running the training department of a software training and consulting company in Orange County. A year later, I was running the programming department. From there, a series of decisions that made sense at the time led me to the job I have today. I’m a highly-paid senior software developer who hates developing software. I have to think of an excuse every workday to go to work instead of calling in sick.

A few months ago, things seemed to be looking up. We did a bit of a re-org, and someone in each section got promoted to be the lead contractor and liaison with our DoD customer. I was appointed the lead contractor for my department. I was just starting to get into a couple of more interesting things, when, last month, my company hired an outside guy to lead my section, and sent me back to the prgramming ghetto, while all the other guys similarly promoted internally kept their jobs. I was told my technical skills were to valuable to lose to become a manager. So, once again, I’m just a code monkey, with no prospect of moving upwards.

I also have an LLC that does web development, and has kept Chris employed full-time since 2002. We just got a $20,000 contract with a major business to develop a web site. I know exactly what has to be done to do it successfully. I’m going to do it. And I’m going to hate every minute of it.

If I never wrote another line of code again, I wouldn’t miss it. At all. I’d feel nothing but relief.

I enjoy teaching, so the job I have that I really love is being an adjunct professor at a local college. But, of course, there are no full-time academic jobs available—and even if there was, I couldn’t afford to take the massive pay cut that teaching full-time would entail. So, I’m stuck at a job I loathe because I can’t afford to leave it. I still like writing, too, if not about politics. Writing about cars and motorcycles is something that I love doing. I enjoy spending a day or two with a new car or motorcycle and playing with it, and writing it up. But, of course, there’s no money in that either, even for people who do it full-time. Auto journalism is a low-paying career. I do—and have for years, done—photography and videography. I still love that. Occasionally, I get a job to do a photo or video shoot, or video editing job, but not enough to make it pay as a full-time career. I’d love to do radio again, but broadcasting doesn’t really pay the bills, either. It’s not nearly as high-paying a career as people think it is, unless you’re at the top of the profession. And with corporate consolidation, there’s no room for doing anything original anymore. Terrestrial radio is pretty much unlistenable as a result.

In short, everything I love is more or less professionally worthless to me, and the thing I hate—absolutely hate—is what pays the bills. This wasn’t the life a planned, and it’s certainly not the life I wanted. I think the disappointment of that is coloring everything else. I’m trapped in a career I despise, working for people I dislike, and I don’t see any way out. I still have a mortgage, and a family to feed, so I can’t just go off and start over in a new career from scratch.

Chris says most people hate their jobs. Maybe she’s right. Maybe I’m just hitting my mid-life crisis. I just know that I feel trapped and unhappy in my professional life, and I just can’t seem to work up any enthusiasm for a lot of things I used to love doing. I just feel so drained and dissatisfied at the end of the work day, I just want to go home, and watch TV or read, staying up as late as I possibly can, because I know that sleeping will just bring the next workday that much closer.

What I really want to do is sell my house in California, and move back to Texas.  With what we would make on our current house, I could buy a house outright there, and pay off the rest of our debt, besides. That would take a huge amount of financial pressure off me, and maybe give me some space to do more things that I would enjoy as a profession. But, for a variety of reasons I can’t go into right now, that doesn’t appear to be an option.

So I feel trapped in a career that I absolutely loathe, but that I can’t escape. Every workday, I wake up, and the first thought of every single day is that all I want to do is spend the day with Chris, my dogs, my reading, and my writing, and tell the rest of the world to go to hell. Every morning, I know that literally nothing I do at work today will provide me with any positive feeling at all.  I’ll just endure it, as I always do. And if everything goes as well as it possibly can, I’ll just get another chance to endure it tomorrow.

This may not be an entirely healthy attitude.

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44 Responses to I don’t know what I’m doing here

  • I understand. You are not alone. I have actually been in that funk for years now. I have noticed for bloggers tho they seem to snap out of it six or so months out from election, not the run up to the election but an actual election.

    Not sure what I am saying just hang in there unless it starts interfering with you and your family.

  • I used to feel exactly the way you do.  I still blog, but it is less frequent.  I hated my career, but I found that consulting is much more rewarding.  It is still in the subject field that I am not crazy about, but it pays wonderfully and I have complete freedom and control over my life.  If I don’t like the job, I can walk away with no repercussions.  I wish I had started consulting 10 years ago.  In my spare time, I do currency trading, which I really love.  It satisfies the creative and analytical sides of my personality.  It does take years of practice and losing money to master, however.

  • You make excuses to go IN to work?
    I make light of your funk, I am sorry, and I know exactly what you mean.   Dontcha love when management’s thinking is you’re too good to let manage things, but some clown who can marginally code is therefore a BETTER choice for the job?  EDS used to do that all the time – now all that’s left of them is two shrunken and trunkless legs of stone in Hewlett Packard’s lobby…
    and could there be, with odd and unpredictable moments of euphoria, anything MORE boring than coding?
    And this is why the British have that handy set of phrases – Chin up, cheerio, carry on.

  • Relax.  I got laid-off on Wednesday after 18 years.
    Luckly Recovery Summer IV is just around the corner.

  • Make a change. You need to. Your life is at stake. I do not joke.
    There will always be reasons not to, be it money or circumstance. But those aren’t really what is stopping you. I know. I’ve been there.
    Fear is.
    Here’s something to fear: feeling the way you do for the rest of your life.
    I made a drastic change in my career almost 4 years ago, a change that was almost Forrest Gump-like. I stopped using my degree and my training, left the business world and made a really hard right hand turn. I haven’t looked back because it was the best decision I have ever made.
    The Ball and Chain was initially skeptical, for all the right reasons. But even she got on board when she saw how much happier I was, and how much of a weight lifted off of the both of us.
    As an infrequent commenter, and longtime reader, since circa 2005, you are valued here.
    But you need to save your life.

    • What is preventing me from selling the house and moving to Texas has nothing to do with me or my fear at all.  I have no fear. I was born and raised in Houston. To me, it’s going home.

  • Chris is right, to an extent:  everyone hates his job at times.  I love being a programmer, but there are days when I feel like throwing my computer into the dumpster out back, climbing into my car, and driving away.
    You aren’t trapped.  It may feel that way for now, but you aren’t trapped.  If teaching is what you want to do, then do it.  Sell your house in California, move back to Texas, live a quiet life there doing what you love to do.  What you need right now is a plan:  how to you get from where you are now to where you want to be?  Making that plan will help bring back a sense of control for you, so that you no longer feel that you’re trapped by circumstance.
    Keep us posted.

  • You just outlined the plan.  Now execute it.  “Texas wants you, anyway.”  I’m in Houston right now for three weeks — it’s a boom town.  West Texas is booming.  South Texas is booming.  Oil & gas, upstream, midstream, downstream.
    Also, once you get here, do the free-agent, job-of-different-jobs thing till you find something you love.  You’re an extremely smart guy, I have no doubt you could run your own little LLC doing all manner of stuff.  I did, and I’m a moron.  It causes reduced circumstances, but it’s nice to knock off at 5 sometimes, sit on the porch, have a cold one, watch the dog.

  • I feel for you Dale.  I feel at least part of that same thing in my life – I’d bet most men feel that to some degree or other. Make your move as soon as you can – life is too short to be miserable

  • I don’t think you’re alone, Dale.  I feel the whole blog has got the blues…and for good and different reasons respecting all of youze.
    The whole “liberty” side of the political spectrum took a big cosmic hit in 2012, and we are all still dealing with that, of course.
    I did not go to law school until well into my 40s, and I did it because I was either going to become an “in-law” or an “out-law” as the result of some run-ins with relatively powerless regulators that stripped me of my little business, and my happy delusions about being a good, law-abiding, honest citizen, and that being enough.
    I only mention that because “mid-life” crises often occur because by mid-life you have learned some things.  They often are not attributable to some wistful, selfish and pitiful longing for another life, but a rational reaction to the life you’ve experienced.
    So, get the hell out of Dodge!  Staying in what you hate will kill you…and in lots of ways.  Find your joy again!  It really is out there, I promise!
    Oh, and for what it’s worth, many of us here appreciate this blog enormously, and admire you guys.  So there…

  • And because I’m a scion of old Erin and because gallows humor….
    Did anyone, by any chance, notice recently that our President appears to be African American?

    • Why, yes.  And he’s one of the very few that the term “African-American” correctly applies too.
      He’s also a racist.  But, hey…

  • I can tell you enjoy your car reviews.  It comes through in your writing.
    The oft repeated advice above I completely agree with.  If you hate it, you should move on.  Or just move, bringing a fresh perspective that may reinvigorate blogging.  You’re a good writer.  Many of us don’t have that gift.  So long as you enjoy it, find a way to do more of it.  And keep us all posted.  We, the lurking, non-posting readers keep coming back here for a reason, and it’s not for the free stuff giveaways or advertisements…

  • I get in these same sort of places.  Winter makes it worse.  I’m looking to make changes too, eventually.  Who knew that everyone hates working with software?!  Anyway, what really helps me get through the rough spots is daily exercise.  I’m a runner/cyclist with weightlifting on the side.  Doing these things routinely makes massive positive differences in my mental health.  I’m quite happy when I’m working out, even if work and life sucks.  If I’m not working out, forget about it.

  • I thoroughly enjoy your blog. Don’t quit! I, and many others, may not be counted by your software — I use a newsreader (used to be Google Reader, now Feedly) — so I rarely visit your website. So maybe your statistics don’t count people like me. But I do get a whole lot of information and perspective from you. That’s why your blog is one of my starred Must Read blogs. Every day.
    I’m sure others do, too. I know I forward plenty of your blogs to other people, so there’s a secondary readership of which you’re unaware.

  • Ecclesiastes came to my mind as I read this post.  And then burn out.  I get tired of what I do too, and wonder, like the preacher in the Bible, what is the use? If I work hard, trade off my time to play and do what I want for a paycheck, the guy on welfare/disability/ lives just about the same lifestyle without using up time. I am in a lower working class group. But it does matter in the intangible way. I periodically check into your blog, and respect that you are doing what you have to. It used to be an admirable quality, it still is to me. You are the man many more need to be.
    The idea that change is good, works best on a small scale like what you are thinking of doing.  If it doesn’t work, it is your family that is harmed. What is the worse that can happen?  I was thinking of David Stove’s “Columbus Argument” where he says most people are blind to the failures of change.  He said there are more ways to make something worse than better.  I argue with liberals too, and it is exasperating that they tend to focus on the promise of what will be better, and when that fails, go on to believe again in a similar arrangement. It is like arguing with a child. My best friend likes Obama, and Warren Buffett is great, that I should not listen to financial people because they are crooks. I asked her what Buffett did, and she said he made furniture. She is in her 60s. The secretary of the CEO of a mid size company I worked at told me her nephew was stationed in Korea, and I said, oh, South Korea, and she said, no, I think he is in the North. I told her I didn’t think he would be there, and she was surprised there was a North and South, just guessing. She was embarrassed. She also is a liberal voter. She wears her seat belt faithfully, and feels like turning in people she sees without one. She does speed, passed me every day on the way to work, but that is ok, she is wearing her seatbelt.
    That is why it is hard to argue, as David Manet recently said, you cannot have a discussion where you first don’t agree upon the facts.

    • Ecclesiastes came to my mind as I read this post.

      I thought of Tom Sowell’s “Conflict of Visions” and Stephan Hicks “Explaining Postmoderism”.

    • That is why it is hard to argue, as David Manet recently said, you cannot have a discussion where you first don’t agree upon the facts.

      He’s right, but limited.  One can disagree on facts, at first, but be willing to come to a reasonable conclusion.
      The problem, however, is worse in that we have two parties with different realities; one objective, the other subjective. Utterly subjective. The former a result of the Renaissance and the Enlightenment, the other a product of the Medieval mind at best, and the primitive/tribal mind at worst.
      You can’t have a civilized culture living side-by-side with a primitive, tribal one. IT JUST WON’T WORK!! And there’s a reason the Left and the Islamics kiss and cover each others backsides.

  • thank you for posting: you’ve obviously articulated a sentiment many share and have personal empathy with.
    There’s an English novelist by the name of Graham Hurley and one of his main protagonists was a detective by the name of Findlay — over a series of books (all set in the English town of Portsmouth), Hurley used Findlay as a cipher to articulate both the personal and societal malaise your post describes.
    I found it intriguing that the situation was (a) not unique to me and (b) not specific to any one culture, but has a wider etiology.  My personal answer was not that Hurley used for his characters in his novels, but I nevertheless really valued his articulation and the re-assurance that I am not the only one to see things as I do.

  • I get it.  I sold my house and everything I own last year to move onto a sailboat.  You are correct, it’s not about fear but more like inertia.  Make the change, sell and come to Texas.  The economy is insane here right now so no worries about what to do next; someone like you will find or create something that pays what’s left of your bills.  Once that mortgage and other debts are cleared, the freedom of options kicks in and you really start overcoming the inertia and idea begin to flow.

  • It’s all so pointless. We will never convince the majority of people to embrace liberty, instead of looking to government to be Mommy. At least not until government fails so badly that its incompetence is made clearly manifest.

    Those people have a totally different REALITY and live in a different universe. Then, we have a significant portion of the population that is completely ambivalent: as long as the TV works and there’s beer in the fridge, they’re in another world.
    But as you point out, when it utterly fails, THEN the blinders will have to come off, but a “Strong man on a horse” has been popular since man walked upright and rode horses.
    In sum: if you enjoy writing, ignore the crackheads and write so as to tweak your allies. The best debates I’ve had were with people I agreed with at end, but for different reasons coming to those conclusions.

  • I spent 19 years in IT (1979-1998) and it seems no matter what they hire you for, they want “programmers”, and the managers were the ‘Pointy Haired guys’ in the Dilbert cartoons.
    In the late 90’s, companies couldn’t get rid of the old “Grey beards” fast enough ( and since I was pushing 50, I gave it up and started my own company (which ran into the brick wall of the Financial Meltdown of 2008.
    So now I’m retired and pestering young whippersnapper bloggers.

  • Think of it like this Dale, the government of the future Republic of Texas is going to need people who understand what is and isn’t government’s job…..and you can do something you like while you’re waiting 🙂
    Better you and yours than another 3 thousands New Yorkers setting up shop in yet another “CARY” zone (Containment Area for Relocated Yankees) in Plano or Southlake.

  • Dale, I enjoy your blogging.  I especially like the car/bike reviews and even though you bought a Holden I still respect your opinions.
    There is a lot of differing advice been offered and I can’t add to that, just want to wish you all the best.

  • You’ve got this life to live, make it yours.  As for the discussion on freedom, I quoted you and responded in my own blog:

    • “you’ve got this life to live, make it yours”
      Heh, so long as he pays with his labor into whatever intrusive scheme the government would like to fund at his expense, and recognizes that the government grants him his rights, yes?

    • Copy your response here, in this forum, where there are people participating already.
      I’ll be happy to explain all the ways in which you redefine words like “freedom”, change the arguments of your opponents into weak strawmen, and create a false model of reality by forcing it into your ideological left/right spectrum.

      • No Elliot, I really want to leave you guys alone and when I do post avoid the big arguments.  I would point out that you use the term “redefine” as if there were one agreed upon definition and any different ones are redefinitions.  Liberty and freedom have been very contested concepts for hundreds of years.  Moreover, the differences are often due to different understandings of how reality works.  These are key debates in my field of political science, and I can assure you that we’re talking competing understandings, not one “true” definition and other redefinitions.  In fact, the attempt to claim one own’s definition as the only legitimate one and thereby denigrate those who think differently is a fundamentally dishonest form of argumentation.  It’s used by people who are so sure they are right that they feel justified in dismissing as WRONG any other point of view.  I have no intellectual respect for such a position.

        • …the attempt to claim one own’s definition as the only legitimate one….

          Legitimate? As in, legal?
          There are many ways to explain a concept.  There are valid arguments to how best to define a term.  You pretend that I made such an assertion.
          My assertion is that your definitions are flawed (copy your argument here and I’ll explain why) and that it is clear from your behavior that your tactics behind bending definitions is to bend them to your political aims. And, yes, at root the problem is how you fail to get a handle on how reality works. (Here is where you dishonestly suggest that I claim to have perfect knowledge of reality, or that I am stuck in some dogmatic simplistic model. In truth, I make no such claim and I am far more open minded than you, as evidenced with the fact that I have changed my political positions radically over the past three decades, while you seem to be stuck on stupid, repeating the same canned talking points, adding a few that you read or hear now and then. But you’re just a broken record, not a man open to reevaluating his underlying ideological foundation, only to slightly adapting to ways to spin it and repackage it to fool others.)

          I have no intellectual respect for such a position.

          Since that is not my position, your judgment is moot.
          And, the fact that your intellect is unimpressive means that even if you accurately described me, your “intellectual respect” is something I wouldn’t care to have. Knowing you oppose me and put me down gives me comfort that I’m doing something right.

          • The realm of politics and political philosophy does not have single “correct” definitions for terms like freedom, liberty or a host of value related notions.  Perhaps, Elliot, I do under estimate you – but your insults and bombast make it seem to me like you have a ‘true believer’ mentality and think you have the one “true” understanding of how reality works.  As a teacher, one of my main tasks is to get students to understand diverse perspectives of how reality works.  Why people of different views think like they do, noting that in a democratic polity that is the way to get the best decision making.  “Disagreement is good,” because that’s the only way people learn from each other and can examine an issue from a variety of perspectives.  As such, my job in the classroom is to be fair to all perspectives, and help students see the “best case” one can make for various points of view.   Of course, your personal attacks Elliot suggest you’re approaching this from an ad hominem perspective – it’s easier to argue if you dismiss the person and not deal with the arguments.   I also think a lot of different perspectives are rooted in personality differences (there’s a growing field on that which is fascinating).  So it seems that even when I try to discuss, you quickly get personal and strident – so I have to shrug and say, “OK, what’s the point, he’s got his mind made up.”  That’s why I’m not reading Q&O as much or commenting.   Disagreement is good, but at some point it has to be a two way street for it to be useful.

          • …your insults and bombast make it seem to me like you have a ‘true believer’ mentality and think you have the one “true” understanding of how reality works.

            I pre-correct you on this and you still make the same false claim.  I knew what you were going to argue, because you’re a broken record. The guy who writes as Ott Scerb has such an easy job ridiculing you. It’s like Tina Fey doing Sarah Palin on SNL, when she just used Palin’s own words, verbatim.
            You’re that predictable and that lame.

            Why people of different views think like they do….

            Step right up, ladies and gentlemen, watch “The Amazing Erbovich” divine the thoughts of Republicans, conservatives, libertarians, anarcho-capitalists, and all manner of opinions. That’s right, folks, you need not speak with these people, read what they write, or even pay attention to their actions. “The Amazing Erbovich” knows all.
            I’ve read you for years.  You claim to put the “best case” for opposing points of view is a Big Lie. You offer poorly constructed caricatures.
            No matter how many times we correct you, you just repeat the lies.

          • Your response was just more ad hominem, Elliot.  I expected as much.  But I won’t debate you here, I have some provocative posts about government on my blog (and will have more soon) – I welcome you actually putting aside your grudges and personal attacks and actually dealing with issues.  You may be surprised.

          • Scott, you’re a tiresome bore and you never will engage in sincere debate. Many, many years ago, I tried to get you to do so (as did dozens of others). You’re mentally incapable of doing so, hard-wired into narcissism, pathological dishonesty, or some other personality disorder I could care less about.
            Run along and go play with the other commie nitwits.  You can tell each other what those icky libertarians think, and why they think it, and why they are just so mixed up. And, each and every one of you in the circle will strengthen your right hand a bit.

        • The self-parody is strong with this one…

          • Indeed. “I really want to leave you guys alone…which is why I troll every third thread. It’s for your benefit, of course, and not out of some diseased psychology on my part. I decree it!”

          • Fremdschämen

            “It means feeling embarrassed for someone else. But more than that, it means feeling embarrassed for someone else because that someone else doesn’t realize he should be embarrassed.”
            From Jonah Goldberg, and SOOOOO apropos here!

        • liberty and freedom are contested concepts……(have been for hundreds of years)……Uh huh.   sorta like that arbeit macht frei thing I suppose.
          One must, again, pause to wonder if you’re conscious of what you type or if you just string words together that you think sound as though they have some deep and intellectual meaning.  You desperately want to be taken seriously don’t you.

  • Dear Mr. Franks:
    I stumbled upon your blog this morning having rambled away from some of my regular stops. While this is my first time reading your work, your angst about the present state of affairs and the pathological state of what passes today for corporate management is far too well known to me.  I would point out several things that I hope are of use to you:
    The Liberty movement does not need a majority of the populace to understand and agree with our philosophy;  we need an active and vocal minority.  10% would do.  This is still a daunting task, but if we can get 10% of the population to understand and accept our ideas we can commence to reverse the present march toward tyranny.  It took over  a hundred years for us to get into this mess, and the recovery may take years, at best.
    While things look terribly dark just now, it is well to remember that evil is usually stupid, counterproductive and self-destructive.  The Liberty movement simply needs to not lose the war of ideas and to stay in the fight.  If we do that, eventually we win.  ObamaCare may well be the high water mark of the Progressive movement, but even if it is not, it is a step on the road to victory for the Liberty Movement.  It, together with the other outrageous acts of the present illegitimate administration, is a powerful weapon we can use against our enemies.  When the enemy gives you a weapon, use it!
    The fact that your ideas are in the vast minority in southern Kalifornia does not mean that this is so everywhere in these presently united States.  Being surrounded by socialists can be corrosive to your morale;  as others have noted, it is well not to swim in such a moral sewer too long.  Find a better environment!
    Lastly, Southern California is a physical death trap.  Human existence there is dependent upon grid power and importation of water taken from elsewhere.  If the present trends in that State continue then one may expect that those systems will collapse,  If that happens you will not want to be there.
    I therefore hope that you will give serious consideration to relocating.  Do not think of all the obstacles;  think about how to overcome them.

  • “Arguing with progressives is pointless, too.” Articulating ideas and creating a record of such is necessary, but perhaps you’ve reached the point where talking is no longer sufficient.  Perhaps you’ve reached the point where you feel compelled to take action to effect popular, social, and political changes to the narrative and the zeitgeist. Maybe people aren’t paying attention because they’re talked out. Perhaps people need to experience real changes through praxis action. That takes real leadership. Go social-political activist.

    • But he is correct — arguing with Progressives is pointless for anything except entertainment. Dialectic is pointless with Progs because you will never sway them form the ever leftward party line. They are religious followers, and you will not talk them out of their faith. They do not argue to find truth; they argue to proselytize and shore-up their faith. They are witnessing their god-free good-news religion.

      • What you say aligns with my point – Dale has reached the point where he ought to wade into the arena to ACT, because he’s reached the limit of utility of TALK. The Left has been praxis-acting while Dale has been talking, and he’s learned that attempting to convince them is a dead-end. Now, he doesn’t know what to do next. My suggestion is his next step is compete with the Left on the ground by praxis-acting to change the social-political conditions and norms of our society. Instead of just talking about change on this forum, while the Left has been praxis-acting for change, Dale ought to wade into the arena Teddy Roosevelt-style and create the changes. Be the change. Whether they’re convinced or not.