The Hard “Nope”

It was a post at Bookroom Room that led me to jump aboard this particular train of thought – that most of us have certain concepts embedded in us so firmly that absolutely nothing will ever get us to violate them. As Bookworm put it, “Because as I’ve contended for years, every person has one absolute truth. It’s the one thing they know to their bones is true and the world must align with that truth … For my mother, who would have been a fashionista if she’d had the money, style and beauty were her truths. She sucked up all the lies about Barack and Michelle Obama until the media talking heads said that Michelle was the most beautiful, stylish first lady ever, above and beyond even Jackie Kennedy. That ran headlong into Mom’s truth and, after that, she never again believed what the media had to say about the Obamas.”

It’s a concept worth considering – our own truths, which we will stubbornly hold on to, refusing any threats or blandishments. It varies from person to person, of course. Some have only small and irrelevant truths, which are never seriously threatened, and there are those who have no real truths at all, save perhaps self-aggrandizement – but even so, for some keeping to their truth is a hard struggle, deciding to hold to that truth against everything – especially if they have status or a living to make, in denying that truth.

Sam Houston, as governor of Texas on the eve of the Civil War, refused to take an oath of allegiance to the Confederacy, required by a newly-passed law upon secession from the United States. Twice elected president of an independent Texas, and the general who had secured freedom from the Centralist dictator, Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna nearly fifteen years before, Houston had labored mightily to secure annexation of Texas to the US. Secession from the Union must have nearly broken the old man’s heart. Most accounts have it that he paced the floor of his office for an entire night, considering whether he would take the oath … or not. He did not; he resigned all office and retired to his home in Huntsville, where he died several years later. When all was said and done, Houston was a believer in the Union, and devoted to Texas. When it came to secession and swearing an oath of fealty to the Confederates – a hard “nope” for the hero of San Jacinto.

My own personal biggest hard “nope” has to do with so-called anthropogenic global warming/global cooling/climate change concept alleged to be caused by human activity and industry. I don’t care how much the autistic Swedish teenager scowls at us all, or Al Gore flies from his many lavish mansions, to one important conference after another, to lecture us all about our carbon footprint. Earth’s temperatures and conditions have swung wildly over millennia, without any help from human beings at all. Canada and the north-central US were once covered by a mile of ice. The Sahara desert was once a grassland interspersed with marshes, rivers and lakes. In Roman times, it was temperate enough in England to grow wine grapes, while around 1000 AD it was warm enough for subsistence farming in Greenland … and then the climate turned colder all across Europe, until the River Thames froze solid enough between the 14th and 18th centuries to host so-called Frost Fairs on the solid ice. Avenues of shops opened on the ice, racing events, puppet shows and all manner of entertainments took place. The massive explosion of an Indonesian volcano in early 1815, on the other hand, led to a so-called year without summer in the northern hemisphere in 1816. The climate of earth has changed drastically, without any human input over conditions – even before humans existed, so what the heck have gas stoves or gasoline engines – or even coal-fired power plants have to do with it?

I’ve got another couple of hard “nopes” – but anthropogenic climate change is just the main one at present. What are some other personal hard “nopes” among you all? Discuss as you wish.

34 thoughts on “The Hard “Nope””

  1. It’s an interesting way of looking at things, and I think, one that should be seriously considered by those that are in the business of political persuasion.

    My list of “nopes” includes suppression of free speech and hostility toward prosperity.

  2. The conflation of CFC’s with the “ozone hole” is yet another way that the collectivist/statist/authoritarians have managed to exercise power, control , and profit from fear-mongering.

    Remember all that nonsense? The fact that DuPont’s patents were expiring, and that they won subsidies from the US government to build their new refrigerant manufacturing facilities had nothing to do with it, of course. Banning non-toxic, non-explosive R-12 and R-22 because of the effect their release into the atmosphere had was abject nonsense from the start. A single volcanic eruption (Pinatubo was in that era, if I recall correctly) injects orders of more magnitude of chlorine compounds directly into the stratosphere than humanity has ever produced in its existence on planet Earth.

    Remember also that these horrific effects could not be abated for at least 50 to 75 years, and humanity and all plant and animal life was doomed, DOOMED, I tell you, unless we banned those refrigerants immediately. And so we had the Montreal Protocols, and the elimination of CFC’s and HCFC’s from use. That this incidentally killed millions of people through lack of refrigeration was a mere side effect.

    The last time I saw a measurement of the “ozone hole” (basically just the South Polar Vortex) it was so small they could barely measure it, broke into two halves, and disappeared. Gee, that was in 2004. So much for the minimum time frame for effect. Or just possibly it might have been, could have been, just maybe, that they only had a decade-and-a-half (starting in 1975) of satellite observation of the “hole” to begin with? Nah, why deal with actual data; it’s so much more fun to panic people.

    And what did they substitute with? R-134A, which is toxic, flammable, explosive, and carcinogenic. One of the first applications in a commercial use was for crane cabs in a foundry in the Netherlands; the leakage resulted in cancers in every single one of the crane operators. They tested on US Air Force pilots, some of the most fit people in the world, and actually killed one (his heart stopped, and he had to be resuscitated) with stupidly low concentrations. R-12 and R-22 you can safely breath until it simply displaces too much oxygen.

    I’ve doubted every single government-driven panic since. The entire glueball-wormening thing is only one of them.

  3. Wife was born and raised in an early-stages Women Lib household. It was that movement’s anti-child attitudes that caused her to turn away from them. She thought children were an important part of a society.

  4. The 2020 election.

    Before that I figured US elections didn’t have enough fraud to change the results in most states and certainly not enough to change the result of the presidential election.

    Oops, my bad. I should have known better, especially noticing that every time I happened to read a story about fraud at any site that allowed comments people would chime in with their own personal examples.

    Anyway, I’m now pretty sure the entire American regime is a sham and a lie, going back many years.

  5. Some people (like Lomberg) think that man does have an effect that is causing warming but puts ii in such a large context that we see that his truth has the same result as, say, Koonin’s, that there are too many vatiables and too short a time to be all that sure of anything. Either way, those who oppose them have embraced a sham, house of cards, apocalyptic nutzoid world. The difficulty that comes form the waste from batteries and the unexpected consequences of dead birds and large landfills also makes that not make sense. Yes, the current administration spouts nonsense, unfortunately they spend real money.

    Anything that diminishes man (punishes free speech, bureaucratizes and disproportions free markets, limits our thinking) has got to be bad. Man is, well, maybe not good, but a good – human capital or blessed with a unique soul and spirit or just the object of others’ love and creator of love itself – and anyone who denies that we are worth listening to, talking to, nurturing, educating, protecting, well that person has screwed priorities.

    But I guess my truth is – the universality of human nature, the divinity of the individual, and, with these goes, of course, our tendency to be tempted as well. I don’t trust man to be pure, good maybe, but not pure.Of course, my other perspective is that unions are almost always destructive. That is probably less reasoned opinion than prejudice.

  6. I had to think really hard about this.

    My hard nopes are mostly *procedural*, not substantive. I will never claim to agree to something just to fit into a group. You (or at least I) can feel it on the back of my neck when this is about to happen. It’s a warning sign, and I won’t tread down that path.

    Another procedural “nope”: I also almost never give in to ultimatums. I’ve chosen the side I otherwise DO NOT prefer before, just because I won’t be bullied like that. That goes for blackmail, too. You wanna tell me secret? F*** you. I’ll scream it to the world before I pay one cent.

  7. Ah yes, the 2020 election. Not so much that I am certain it was thrown, though I think it probably was. It’s that people who insist that anyone who questions the outcome must be not merely wrong but obviously wrong and undeserving of serious consideration, are behaving completely unreasonably no matter their backgrounds or credentials or popularity or wealth or reputations.

  8. My hard “nope” is, ironically, when someone else gives a hard “nope” out of a purely and blindly closed mind — an absolute refusal to listen to the opposing argument, especially when it’s out of nothing but blind fear or arrogance.

    At one point I tried to explain to my wife why I’d been convinced that all the measures taken to stave off COVID were both pointless and unnecessary, and I outright asked her, “Would you like to see all the articles, and analyses, and charts I’ve read showing how little actual danger there is to healthy people in our age range? Do you actually have any idea what the chances of asymptomatic transmission are, or how little masks do to stop it, if anything–?” and was met with a flat, almost shouted, “Steve, I don’t wanna get COVID!” And hearing that I just knew I was dealing with someone who was simply refusing to think and listen, and I knew there was no point in further discussing the matter. At all.

    Now as it happens I have a neurotic phobia myself, so I know how hard it is to think and act rationally when in the grip of overwhelming fear, and I can’t blame her for trusting the people who were telling her to be afraid. So I try very hard not to hold that against her. But it is still the most painful recent example of that difficulty in my life.

  9. The biggest “Nope” for a lot of men comes when they are told that they if they won’t date (and presumably screw and marry) grievously mutilated, mentally-ill men, and pretend that they are in every way equivalent to a woman, they will be cast out as a “transphobe”. My son and his friends have altogether quit using the dating apps that enforce such lunacy, which is all to the good for many additional reasons.

    People are willing to abide seriously deranged and dysfunctional behavior in others if it doesn’t affect them personally, but I don’t know how anyone ever got the notion that shrieking Twitter mobs could override many millions of years of evolutionary pressure to reproduce successfully.

  10. A really old book of great, some would say divine, advice tells us that perfect love casts out fear. If you know whom you have believed, and are persuaded that He is able, to keep that which you’ve committed unto him against that day, no reason to hold on to this life with a death grip, yes?

  11. Perhaps I’m just cynical but given that I see.Man as a fallen creature and that the divide between good and evil lies.not between people.or.nations but in the inhuman heart I’m not too horrified about the corruption and hubris Determined, angered with a slow burn yes, but not an emotional full hard no

    However with the US women’s Olympic soccer team kneeling during the national anthem? There is my hard no.

    Don’t get me wrong, this is the sweet land of liberty so if you want be a professional athlete fueled by blood soaked Nike money kneeling during an NFL game or someone with daddy issues writing a factually challenged book stating the true founding of the Republic was rooted in slavery, or you just want to burn the flag go ahead. I wish you a long and peaceful life but if we’re at the bar together I’m going to ask for separate checks.

    However if you are of a national team you are by definition representing the nation, as evidenced by the “USA” and the flag on your jersey. However Meg Rapione and the others decide to declare the nation they represent as illegitimate by kneeling during one of our major symbols, the national anthem. The old mantra “my country right or wrong” doesn’t mean you agree with everything or even most things going on but you are still proud to be an American.

    This isn’t about an athlete kneeling during a league game and the Olympic team is not just some sort of all star team you have a right to. . Rapione and the others want it both ways, to have the prestige of the international stage but to denounce the country that put them in that place. If they had real guts they would protest by refusing their spots on the team

    If you kneel during the.anthem when representing the nation I hope you lose every game and that History will spit on you for your selfishness and hypocrisy

  12. I’m with you on the global warming hoax. As far as I am concerned, it is the only issue in politics today anywhere in the world and I judge every side issue through the lens of the global warming sceptic.

    I consider myself a libertarian, but align with conservatives because they tend to reject the global warming hoax. Strange bedfellows indeed, but I can live with it because I feel strongly enough about the one issue.

    Yes, I feel strongly about the prostitution of data to push one issue, the complete abandonment of the scientific method, the weak-as-piss (wasp) performance of pollies who think they can gain advantage by kowtowing to the prevailing winds of opinion, the moronic press repetition of moronic talking points supporting the orthodoxy…, all those irritations, but the central issue rules my attitudes to almost everything.

    Electric cars, deindustrialisation, unreliable intermittent power generation, the surrender to China and third world politics, the empowerment of putin by wasp Europollies, the destruction of free mobility, they are all functions of the global warming hoax.

    When the history of this time is written, everything bad that has happened will be put down to the global warming hoax, and future generations will ask – WHY?.

  13. My hard “Nope” is advocacy (also known as narrative) journalism taking over objective reporting in corporate media.

    I was a 3rd generation owner/publisher/janitor (heh) of a small weekly newspaper for 30+ years. While small (we were one of the best in our state), me myself and I (owner/publisher/janitor) had enough cred to be placed on several media centric statewide boards and a featured columnist for our state’s print media in-house magazine for years.

    I warned clear back in the early 90s about the danger of advocacy journalism infecting our flagship media behemoths. If you look at all the cray cray stuff happening today (including most of the hard “Nopes” mentioned here), advocacy journalism has had a hand in promoting ‘em.

    Really pisses me off.

  14. A great and thought provoking piece. For me the parallel issue is, do/should/must you publicly proclaim your ‘nope’, ‘anthroglobalwarming is bull’ for instance and suffer immolation in social, familial, and business spheres or do you keep your mouth shut. The latter has always struck me as cowardice while the former just feels like it is pointless and wasteful.

  15. First and foundational nope ” I’m from the government and I’m here to help you “. That gets a KMALMHBABO .

  16. My hard nope is dehumanizing other people. I internalized “made in God’s image” at an early age.

  17. That any time someone says “the science is settled” they do not want to have their ideas challenged, as they know they wont stand up.

    The hard nope is taking anything they say as fact.

  18. Mine is more of a hard “Yes”.
    I hold firmly to a set of beliefs that are my core. Reason and Scripture.
    We can debate doctrine all day long and I will respect you (assuming you don’t violate the “Reason” part). But you will never convince me to abandon Scripture and certain clear doctrines that come from it. And if you argue without resort to a clear logic I will reject your arguments out of hand.

    Falling somewhere across those two bits is that human nature is sinful and fairly set in stone (as a general application). Anything that has to assume there is no such thing as “human nature” or that it can be changed via regulation and education is a “Hard Nope” from me – because you’re violating both of the above.

  19. My hard NOPE is lies. If I know, and have read and studied enough to have a reasonable belief I’m right about something being a lie, I won’t believe it. If something is important enough, I won’t lie about it. But sometimes, I’m willing to shut up about it. My sister believes in global warming; I disbelieve. We both know this, and have agreed not to plague each other about it. But there are some things that are plainly (to me) opinion. There, I simply try not to be dogmatic.

  20. I have two “Nopes.” One is global warming and gnome pretty well states my reasons. The other is the current trope of “systemic racism” as the cause of all woe. This was not much of a problem until Obama. His election should have been proof that racism was fatally weak but he used his “bully pulpit” to revive it as a political tool.

    Like Thomas Sowell, “I am so old that I remember when most racists were white.”

  21. Hard nope on calling a person them or they. It isn’t that I don’t care about their preferred pronouns, my brain just can’t handle the singular/plural violation.

  22. Wow! Sgt. Mom, you really have hit a nerve with this one.

    Remember Daniel Patrick Moynihan and “Defining Deviancy Down”? Of course, there would not be a place for Moynihan in today’s Democrat mafia, and probably not in the Republicrats either.

    There was a time when a President taking sexual advantage of a young female employee in the sacred Oval Office would have been a very Hard No indeed — immediate resignation against a blaze of righteous disapproval. But that was then, and this is now.

    Perhaps the clearest example of the softening of former Hard Noes is homosexuality. That used to be a jailable offence — check out Oscar Wilde. Then it softened to being toleration of what individuals chose to do in the privacy of their own homes. Now we are expected to admire — even worship — those who practice homosexuality.

    And what about the former Hard No against illegitimate births. There even was a contemptuous name “bastard” for those unfortunates born outside wedlock. Now we subsidize unmarried young women who get pregnant — and penalize through the tax code those who get married.

    We are far down the slippery slope. Today’s Hard Noes will melt, until Biden*’s war against first Russia and now China goes nuclear, and Western Civ gets a very hard & painful reset.

  23. 1) “x% of scientists agree…”

    SCIENCE isn’t done by consensus, POLITICS is.

    SCIENCE is one guy with the stones to stand up and say: “Everyone else is wrong, and here is why…”

    2) Anything ‘Politically Correct’

    The reason it’s ‘Politically’ Correct, is because it isn’t ACTUALLY correct.

  24. My hard nope is accepting responsibility or blame for anything I haven’t done. It doesn’t matter if I look like those that did it. Nor is it my fault if you believe I’ve benefitted because they did it. I’ll allow an exception for receiving property I know to be stolen (which I haven’t).

  25. I’ll have to go with the denial of biological reality. While I agree with other statements here regarding the Climate Change panic, political correctness and supporting those that would denigrate our country (even though they wear the jersey), I believe that calling a 6’2″, 230lb “penised individual” a woman has got to be the most asinine, Clown World, mind numbing dumb-assery I have ever heard.
    I read a story about a year ago where to lesbians in the UK decided to spice up their relationship by adding another lesbian to have a threesome. Turns out that the third “lesbian” was actually a man that decided that he was a woman. The party that wanted to invite this new individual into play time was shocked and appalled when their partner indicated they did not want to have sexual relations with a person with a penis. I mean, what are the odds that a lesbian does not want a penis, despite it being attached to a “woman”. Words escape me to describe the level of stupidity and absolute depravity that our society has been driven to. SMH!

  26. I’ve thought about this more and something more to the point: The 1st amendment has so permeated my value sysem, that anyone who condemns another’s argument in either a personal or emotional way (we’re all human and so some of someone’s argument might be that) and then moves on to ban, censor, or in some way “otherize” their opponent has clearly got a weak argument. This leads me to doubt the seriousness of climate arguments. And of course I’ve stopped assuming that academics are of much use as experts (If it wasn’t clear before, the whole Covid arguments demonstrate that the ability to hand out grants is likely to undermine the honesty of both grant givers and grant receivers.) I’m sure there are others but when an academic in good standing told me she really disliked Rand Paul and I said, well, he can push libertarianism pretty far, but I mostly agreed with him, she replied she didn’t trust his curly hair, all she could think of was pulling that middle curl on his forehead. I didn’t exactly have a counter argument for that – not want to.

  27. WRT climate change, Ginny mentioned Steve Koonin. His book on the subject, “Unsettled,” is an excellent read. As he points out, a computer code that could accurately predict climate change would require literally millions of degrees of freedom and data that, in many cases, simply does not exist. The codes we have now require a lot of approximations and assumptions based on very sparse data and couldn’t “settle” anything. Significantly increasing the greenhouse gases in the atmosphere will certainly have some effect, but the idea that existing codes are capable of accurately predicting the change in average temperature to a degree or two a hundred years out is nonsense.

    I’m also a hard “Nope” when it comes to antisemitism, and the fact that it isn’t going away but is getting worse should make it clear why the existence of the state of Israel is necessary.

    I award additional “Nopes” to transgenderism, veganism, anti-natalism, blank slatism, and virtually every other woke dogma.

    My less popular “Nopes” include belief in any sort of God, gods, or related spiritual entities. I find it so embarrassing that so many of our species believe such stuff that I am keeping a paper bag handy to put over my head if aliens ever arrive and find out about it.

    Similarly, I react with a hard “Nope” to the notions most of my co-humans have about morality.

  28. One Hard “Nope” for me is when dealing with the matter of race, specifically those who outright REJECT the notion that there can be biologically based statistical differences across genetically related populations (i.e. “races) in intelligence. Mind you, I’m not talking about the people who don’t think such differences exist, I’m talking about the people who think such differences CAN NOT exist.

    It is as irrational as the belief that EVERY member of Race X MUST be smarter/dumber than EVERY member of Race M.

    The brain, which is where our intelligence resides, is just as much a product of our diet, environmental stressors and yes, genetics, as the rest of our body. We KNOW this, Down’s Syndrome and many other “genetic disorders” clearly demonstrate it. Yet, even though the genetic commonalities that distinguish what we call “race” can affect skin color, hair color and shape, eye color, bone density, facial structure, body morphology, disease resistance, somehow, undoubtedly by some permutations of penumbras, the BRAIN is utterly beyond such genetic influence.

    Oddly, Sickle Cell Anemia was my introduction to this “nope”.

    Another “nope” came with evolution, or more accurately, the teaching of evolution in primary schools. Put simply, it has no more place in there than does the Koran. Why? Because the Theory of Evolution has ZERO practical value outside of the biological sciences, and even within the biological sciences its value is minimal. (It’s handy for building categories). The Theory of Evolution has far less practical value than even simple algebra. And yet, tremendous resources are devoted to teaching it to children. Seriously, WHAT can you do with the ToE? Can you build a better bridge? Perhaps make a better salad? Raise tastier beef? If one is a surgeon, does familiarity with the ToE make ANY difference in the operating room? Hell, teaching kids self-esteem is of more value than teaching evolution.

    BUT, it is a HELLUVA powerful tool for advancing and enforcing a worldview. It is the Modern Creation Myth, backed up with the full power of scientism. And you run a very real risk of being unpersoned, of being cast out (especially if one is in the sciences) if you fail to chant the mantra.

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