This is an opinion column. The thoughts expressed are those of the author.

The Diary of an Intellectual Masochist, Tuesday, September 14, 2021.
Mike Thiac 9/14/2021 6:02 AM

I’ve often described myself as an Intellectual Masochist. I won’t say I draw sexual gratification from my readings and research, but it is somewhat perverted. Consuming this much leftist promulgation is a form of inflicting pain on oneself, but I can’t stop myself. And I’m not sure if the authors knowingly put out lies or are they just so stupid they don’t know better.


I’ve said countless times, after being assimilated into the intelligence racket by the Army in 1987, I’ve had to read the propaganda of my nation’s enemies. PravdaIzvestia, the People’s Daily, and the New York Times. I still subscribe to New York’s largest newspaper, more accurately entitled Pravda on the Hudson (POTH). Reading through POTH (Or it’s sister source of leftist promulgation, Pravda on the Potomac (POTP), sometimes know as the Washington Post), I remind myself, I need to know what the enemy is thinking. 


Reading through these “sources of news” is an experience in gaslighting. Somewhat like slowing down on a street to watch the terrible wreck on the side of the road. You know you shouldn’t, but you can’t help yourself.  Hence the title of my column. 


I understand Foreign Policy is 90% plus leftists who really believe “climate change” is the greatest threat to mankind (excuse, “humankind”) out there. And the greatest threat in the Middle East is not a nuclear armed Iran, but the existence of Israel. But these sources bring some emotional abuse. 


Irritation at their arrogance, as their writings are an insult to my intelligence at best, bold faced lies at their worse. Really, there was Russian “collusion” with the Trump campaign, but you don’t have to know what it is, just believe what we print. And trust us, a kid with a MAGA hat started a disturbance with an American Indian in Washington D.C., not the other way around. What you saw with your lying eyes notwithstanding (Don’t look at that man behind the curtain, paying the kid Nick Sandmann a multi-million dollar settlement for slander).


Then there is their presumption only these selected “news” organizations are the ones to determine what will be reported on, and more importantly, what will not be covered. They say with a straight face “climate change” is the greatest threat to the world, yet don’t raise an eyebrow when many of its televangelists buy mansions that should be under water in a few years, or fly family private jets to accept an award for fighting “climate change.”  


Reading these sources, I recall a cartoon from the 1980s, with the first square showing a factory worker in Moscow reading this morning’s Pravda. The second square shows a Harvard professor reading the same paper. The caption says, “The difference? The man in Moscow knows he’s being lied to.”


I recall this because a recent example of the ridiculous “writing” in POTH was an article “Quiz: If America Had Six Parties, Which Would You Belong To?” And it had a link to complete a survey to judge which party you belong to (More on that in a moment). Well, hate to educate the author, but the United States has more than six political parties. Granted, there are two major parties, but multiple smaller parties: A partial list:


Libertarian Party, which has nominated men and women for the presidency Vince 1972.


Green Party, which has been in existence since 2001.


Constitution Party (Formerly Taxpayer’s Party), organized in 1992.


Socialist Party USA (Descendant from the Socialist Party of America), has been in formal existence since 1978, 


Democratic Socialist of America has been active since 1972, an open supporter of Vermont Senator Bernard Sanders, who twice ran for president as a Democrat.


Reform Party, formed leading up to the 1992 election


Working Families Party, around since the 1930s.


The fact is we will not have more than two major parties for the foreseeable future. One, the Dems and GOP have established bureaucracies for fund raising, campaigning over the entire nation, etc. Two, they are the two parties recognized by the overwhelming majority of both the people and the states as having a legitimate chance of winning. Three, most third parities arise for some particular reason (e.g., the Reform Party was established to bring attention to the deficit), and that issue is absorbed by one of the two major parties. Finally, the huge size of the United States requires funding that is out of reach of minor parties. It’s difficult enough in certain states (e.g., Texas, 268 thousand square miles alone, New York and California with huge advertising cost, etc.), much less than America in general.


But I took the test, I couldn’t help myself. Here are some of the questions to judge what party you belong to. Difficult, to say the least. Questions such as “The meaning of life?”  don’t have yes/no answers, but that is what is asked.


Should same sex marriage be legal? Yes/no?


Well, it already is, thanks to five lawyers in black robes saying same sex “marriage” is in the Constitution, so why ask the question? Thus, there is no “answer” to this question offered. Personally, I thought civil unions offered a reasonable method of handling the issues of recognizing homosexual relationships, children, inheritance, etc. But this was not an issue for a small group of lawyers, but for the 50-state legislature. 


How easy or difficult should it be to immigrate to the United States? Much easier, somewhat easier, no change, somewhat harder, much harder?


That is not the question at this point in our country’s history. We for the most part do not have immigration, but an invasion on our southern border. The question would be better phrased, “How do we improve the security of the United States and better manage immigration?


Is it the responsibility of the federal government to see that everyone has health care coverage?


Pardon me, my migraine is getting worse. The Constitution says nothing about getting any service, it is not required. The federal government is there to handle select functions the states and the people cannot (e.g., defense, foreign policy).


When it comes to really important questions, scientific facts don’t help much? Strongly disagree, somewhat disagree, neutral, somewhat agree, strongly agree.


What important questions? What “facts” are we talking about? The Covid virus? It is not a “fact,” but an opinion, that the vaccines developed are safe for humans. But any inoculation, even ones we’ve had for decades (Mumps, polio) will be disastrous for some people. Full disclosure, I contracted and recovered from Covid in February 2021, and after consulting my physician, I took the two-shot vaccine.


After these and other questions, I was told I was best suited by the “Growth and Opportunity Party,” a subsection of the GOP based on the 2012 election autopsy conducted by then Republican chairman Reince Priebus. The report said the GOP needs to become more like Democrats, just not as bad as they are. With leaders like Jeb!, Chris Christy, and John Kasich, we can appeal to liberals and win that way. Hey, voter, choose us. The Democrats are driving the nation off the cliff in fifth gear. Vote for us, and we’ll do it in first gear. 


I describe my political view as conservative, with some libertarian traits. In no way would I vote for anyone associated with this project. As I said of the 2016 election, “If the RINOs who run the party leadership manage to get another RINO nominated (Jeb!, Kasich), I would either write in a name, or for the first time in my life not vote.”


But again I’m asking myself, “Why did I just give this Manhattan rag paper the clicks?” The article was meaningless, the process flawed, the entire premise without merit. Yet…I’ll will be reading POTH tomorrow. 


I just can’t help myself.   



Michael A. Thiac is a retired Army intelligence officer, with over 23 years experience, including serving in the Republic of Korea, Japan, and the Middle East. He is also a retired police patrol sergeant, with over 22 years’ service, and over ten year’s experience in field training of newly assigned officers. He has been published at The American, and on his personal blog, A Cop’s Watch


Opinions expressed are his alone and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of current or former employers.



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Mike Thiac
Michael A. Thiac is a retired Army intelligence officer, with over 23 years experience, including serving in the Republic of Korea, Japan, and the Middle East. He is also a retired police patrol sergeant, with over 22 years service, and over ten years experience in field training of newly assigned officers. He has been published at The American Thinker,, and on his personal blog, A Cop's Watch. Opinions expressed are his alone and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of current or former employers.

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