Friday, December 22, 2017

Trump Bloviates at the League of Nations ... er .. UN

The United Nations voted to condemn the US move of it's embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.  Before the vote Trump threatened to cut off funds to those that voted against us and Ambassador / Thug Nikki Haley said we would be taking names.

The Sopranos act failed to intimidate the nations of the world, although it played well on the Fox Reality TV Show "Star Wars 2: President Tiny Hands vs. The Evil Empire".

United Nations at Geneva - but it WAS originally the Headquarters of League of Nations
For anyone with a sense of history, our disregard for the United Nations will has plenty of historical baselines that are worse.  

But for me, the analogy isn't the UN and actions by Iraq, USSR, Egypt, or even us, but it is the League of Nations.

For those that don't recall history (and hence doomed to repeat it) the League of Nations was an early attempt at a United Nations - that failed because a) USA refused to join (even though it was our President Wilson's idea) and b) slowly became useless as members ignored League findings. (Italics mine)

Up until now, the United States has worked diligently to keep the United Nations functioning and relevant.  In most cases, we tend to follow UN guidelines - and when we lose we all quietly ignore it. We are not alone, but as the world's greatest power (since the founding of the UN), for the USA to submit to it's will in general has kept it going.

Now we were always going to lose this vote on Jerusalem. And we should have ignored it. But instead, we bullied and threatened member states not to vote against us.  Threatening member nations undermines what WE (the US) has strived so hard to build. And for nothing! We all knew we would lose this vote. Rumor has it the bullying actually moved Canada from supporting us to abstaining.

So we not only undermined the United Nations - we were proven pretty damn pathetic at blackmailing them as well.

Good job Brownie.

Monday, December 18, 2017

My Review of Farinelli and the King

Farinelli Charms the King and the Audience

Farinelli and the King, now at the Belasco, is a wonderous play. It is slightly magical, beautiful musically, a little funny and utterly charming without being twee. By way of ingenious use of staging, candlelight and proscenium build out, the Belasco feels intimate, although I would avoid the balcony for this show.
Mark Rylance plays the King of Spain who suffers from delusions and depression. The show opens with Mr. Rylance having a discussion with a goldfish, a moment he can’t distinguish between dream or nightmare. The audience can feel the weight of his position in the soliloquy. As King he is as trapped in his role as the goldfish is trapped in the bowl.
Farinelli (Sam Crane), left, and King Philippe V (Mark Rylance
Mr. Rylance is once again charming in a period role. He can transition from funny to enraged to incompetent in a flash. The Queen (a lovely tempered Melody Grove) wants to help her King recover and keep the monsters, imagined and real, at bay.  The royal court, embodied by Edward Pell as his chief minister – in over the top outfits and wigs, but a measured performance, are ready to force the King to abdicate. The chief minister dispatches the Queen to take over the court.
In London, the Queen hears the Opera star Farinelli, and is convinced that his voice will help to stabilize the King. When Farinelli does arrive and sing, the moment is transformative. Watching the King listen to the music the audience can see the beauty and calmness spread across his face, and the relaxation in his carriage. Farinelli is played by Sam Crane in a touching performance as he grows to love the King and the Queen. Farinelli is sung, marvelously, by Iestyn Davies (or the equally sublime James Hall). During the moments of song, the actor and the singer concurrently playing Farinelli: they dress the same, and Mr. Crane follows the singer’s lead in demeanor and gesture.
Farinelli joins the King and Queen both in court and later when they take up residence outside Madrid. The King is able to recuperate, and Farinelli drops his mask as performer to embrace his full personality. Of course, Kings have responsibilities, and their time away from court must come to an end, but it was a moment that was precious to the three and a joy to watch.
Farinelli and the King feels like a momesnt captured in amber, a bit dreamy and otherworldly in the best possible sense. Director John Dove gives the play room to grow organically from the actors involved. Jonathan Fensom’s designs enhance the feeling of being let in on a small secret performance. I am not an Opera fan, but Mr. Davies’ performance of Handel’s pieces are like small presents from the past to us today.
Farinelli and the King | Playwright: Claire van Kampen| Director: John Dove | Cast: Mark Rylance, Sam Crane, Melody Grove, Huss Garbiya, Colin Hurley, Edward Pell, Iestyn Davies, James Hall

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Republican Tax Bill Takes Care of Children

Who says the Republicans are jerks - not me.  Let's look at children.

The tax bill takes care of children. For families that leave more than $10,000,000.00 (ten million) dollars to their children, the new tax bill removes all inheritance taxes. Before, those poor kids had to pay some percentage of taxes on everything over ten million. Now it is all tax free.
These kids no longer have to worry about someone taxing their inheritance over $10,000,000.00

There is, of course a trade off.  The Children's Health Insurance Program (or CHIP) ran out of money at the end of September. It effects only the children of working parents that make too much money to get any public assistance (like Medicare), but can't afford insurance for their Children. NOW, after this new tax plan - oops - there is no money for losers like working poor. As Orin Hatch said recently (highlights mine):

Of course I do. I don’t think I do everything on my own here. I’ve got to have good Democrat friends to do it. I don’t think you do either. But let me tell you something. We’re going to do CHIP, there’s no question about it in my mind. It has to be done the right way. But we -- the reason CHIP is having trouble is because we don’t have money anymore. We just add more and more spending and more and more spending, and you can look at the rest of the bill for the more and more spending. I happen to think CHIP has done a terrific job for for people who really needed the help. I have taken the position around here my whole Senate service. I believe in helping those who cannot help themselves but would if they could. I have a rough time wanting to spend billions and billions and trillions of dollars to help people who won’t help themselves, won’t lift a finger and expect the federal government to do everything.
Sorry takers - no more gifts to you losers that don't don't lift a finger to work.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

HOw Lucky Was I At Farinelli And The King

Mark Rylance - having a problem with "time"
I went yesterday to see Farinelli and the King with Mark Rylance (who is fantastic in everything I have seen so far!!!).

They tried to recreated, in a way, the candlelit theater in England. So the great majority of the lighting was Candlelight. In building the set, they have to adjust the front of the house a little and my seat ended up being front row center!
The view from my seat!!!! (Taken after the show)
Because of some scenes I was pointed out (as the poacher), danced with the Queen and shook the King's hand (Mr. Rylance!). I was a bit thrilled;  I hadn't expected that seat (I bought it a long time ago and didn't know where it was).

I was right in front of the usher standing in the middle
As for the show. Stupendous. Mark Rylance plays the brain addled King of Spain and Farinelli is the castrate opera star brought in to heal him. Sam Crane was great as Ferinelli, but the true winner was James Hall who sang the part (Mr. Crane plays the role, but when singing occurs, Mr. Hall comes out and belts the Operatic tune).

Mainly lit by candles.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

The President Called Our Senator a Whore - In Case You Missed It

New York Senator Kristen Gillibrand has been out spoken proponent of challenging men who assault women. See was the first Senator to call for John Conyers to resign and for Al Franken to resign (both Democrats, as is Senator Gillibrand.

The other day she called on the President to step down or to face up to the charges against him. Instead he tweeted that she has begging him for donations and would do "anything" for them.

USA Today - as centrist as you can be - did not appreciate it...(link)

As for the President. His Sarah Gobbels-Sanders said that only someone who's mind is in the gutter would think there was anything to the comment.  This about her boss who is on tape about barging backstage during pageants to ogle the girls and bragged about kissing women right away and bragged about being able to " anything, grab them by the pussy..." because he is famous.

And we have our minds in the gutter.

Thank You Alabama

Thank you Alabama for rejecting tribalism for country. A state that gave President Trump a 30 point win just a year ago was always going to be a tough state for a non-Republican to win.

But you voted to elected Doug Jones - a Democrat that believes in a woman's right to choose - over a deeply, deeply flawed Republican candidate. That wasn't easy.

It helps reboot my belief that the people of this country love the country more than Republicans or Democrats.  We are Americans first.

Thank you.

Monday, December 11, 2017

This Happened on the Block of Our Old House - We Are All Fine

This happened near our old house. If you have any questions. We are fine.  It happened in the tunnel from the Port Authority to the Subway, where we have taken almost all of our friends.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

The Non-Profit I Work With

Project 1948 works on inter-generational trauma in Bosnia Herzegovina. I often have a difficult time explaining what they do, or why I care.  This short (13 minute) documentary shows it all.

It's embedded here, or YouTube LINK here.

Saturday, December 09, 2017

Saw Call Me By Your Name

I loved it. Armie was good, but the breakout was Timothee Chalamet.  He was stunning. They are both straight guys, but energy was believeable.  A fair amount of kissing, but not sex shown (so safe for your mom).


And Dad's speech at the end brought me to tears.

Friday, December 08, 2017

The First Vote Presidential Vote I Ever Cast....

John Anderson passed away this week.  For most people he is but a footnote in history. For me, he was the first Presidential vote I ever cast.

"But Scott", I hear you ask, "you hate throwing away your vote.  Why?!"

Well, I lived in California and voted after school and work. By the time I got to the polls - at 5:45 PM PDT, President Carter had already conceded to Ronald Reagan. Nimrod. So my vote wasn't wasted so much as useless before I voted. So I voted my heart.

Why vote at all, you ask. Well, there were down ballot races that were important - and probably changed when Carter conceded too early.

Back to John.  John Anderson was what was, at that time, a liberal Republican. We don't have those anymore. He was socially liberal / libertarian, but financial conservative. California had a shit-load of those until Pete Wilson screwed the pooch with the anti-Hispanic propositions.

Oddly, I was around when the amendment happened to drop the voting age to 18 (if they were old enough to fight in Vietnam, they were old enough to vote - went the saying). And, even odder, it didn't effect me at all. My first presidential election was when I turned 21.  The previous one was when I was 17.

I also remember my first vote period. It was in the 1980 Democratic primary. I selected 5 electors pledged to Jessie Jackson and 3 electors pledged to Jimmy Carter. An elector system that was only used once in California.

Thursday, December 07, 2017

Watching Synergy in Nature Real Time

The twin process of climate change and man encroaching on natural habitats is creating real time changes that people are studying.

In this case, it is the synergy rising between Elk and Magpies. In parts of Alberta (Canada), Elk have taken to staying close to towns and not migrating. Partially due to climate change and partially due to humans settling in areas that elk live in and partially due to wolves that are moving into the territory.

What researchers have found is that Elk in town are braver. "Shy" elk, those that don't like people, still migrate.

But now migrating "shy" elk, at the end of a day, will lay down and "brave" magpies will approach them. The magpies groom the elk by eating ticks that attack the elk. The rise in ticks is due to climate change.

Right now it is the "shy" elk that migrate and need groomers and the "brave" magpies that started approaching them to groom them.

In 50 or 100 years, we may see a species synergy like the honey badger and the bee-catcher in Africa. We are seeing it happen in front of our eyes. Which is a bit magical, even though it is driven by human forced needs.

link to full story.

Bluster that is Relatively Safe

President Trump's statement on Jerusalem is neither shocking nor groundbreaking. The movement of the embassy has been talking point of his backers for a long time.

Sheldon Anderson, a prominent Jewish backer - who has donated billions to various Republicans for years AND who started a newspaper in Israel - has been pushing for this for a long time. For him, it serves as marker that the United States supports Israel over the Palestinians.

For many on the Evangelical right, it serves as the start of the time Second Coming. Sure it will kill hundreds of millions in the middle east, but it saves them. Yay.

For some people in America, with a persistent but low level of anti-Muslim bias, it is a way to poke the Muslim world with very little downside.

For most Americans it is a non-issue. Given everything else going on in the country, this is relatively unimportant to us as an issue.

For the "international community", it makes the US less able to be an independent arbiter of peace in the Middle East. But most foreign actors didn't ever think we independent arbiters before. For some international observers, it makes us subservient to Israel policies - but Americans don't care. We believe about foreigners in general "they hate us anyway - no matter what we do".

We are breaching international norms, and our own stated morality - but welcome to Donald Trump's America kids. Breaching our own morality is what we do now.

Monday, December 04, 2017

Imagine Your Spouse Didn't Get Equal Benefits Becasue They Were Jewish or Black

Let us say that you are working. Your co-worker's husbands got medical and dental insurance via marriage. But you were married to a Jewish Man and he couldn't get those benefits because he was Jewish. Or you were married to a Black man and he couldn't get those benefits because he was black.

Or you were legally married to a man who was the same sex as you, and he wasn't given medical or dental because your are both men or women.

Of those three ideas, guess which one is legal in Texas.

And guess which one the Supreme Court just upheld as legal in the United States. Yep, it is totally legal to give different rights (and always fewer) to people married to same-sex partners as opposed to opposite sex partners. Supreme Court says so...

full story

Again my triggers on GTFOOD (... getting the fuck out of Dodge).

- - - - from Jan 20, 2017 - - - -

So, in reality, these are the triggers I see that would make me want to get the fuck out of Dodge.
1. Right to Marriage is overturned via Supreme Court
2. Serious talk of "postponing the next election" occurs and / or legislation is introduced (my guess is this would occur - IF it occurs - due to a terrorist attack and we should "all come together).
These are general warning signs and hitting a majority of these would tend to have me thinking of leaving:
1. Right to discriminate laws are passed and upheld by the Supreme Court <- DONE 12/4/2017
2. Any registry of Muslims is started up and advertised as a positive
3. Newspapers are successfully shut down for negative press coverage
There you go. That is my list of triggers per last night's discussion.
I feel better for getting these down.


Saturday, December 02, 2017

Sam Underwood at 54 Below

I'm excited. My friend Sam is playing at 54 below. It is the show from the Edinburgh fringe - so it should be fun. Let me know if you're going as I'll be there.

Sam - in show mode, definitely not the glamour shot.

Mascot of December: Ocotillo


This month's mascot is the Ocotillo. It is a gorgeous plant (very like a cactus) but only for a season. In the spring, if there was enough rain, the Ocotillo blooms. But blooms isn't enough of a word. It explodes - turning from a collection of sticks to green and red bonanza.

Mainly around the low desert from Palm Springs - through Anza-Borrego: the heaven of Ocotoillo - down to Baja California. It is gorgeous.

The bloom time varies, so the very best way to see it is to dry CA - 22 from Warner Springs to Borrego Springs in the spring.

You see the road winds down a mountain on the desert side that enables the Ocotillo to bloom at different elevations at different times. So you get your best chance to see a natural bloom somewhere.

Now I hear you say, "WTF, Scott? Why the Ocotillo?" Because it looks dead, but it isn't. It is resilient and will pop back. Hell, at a little nursery in Morongo they had stacks of it that look like firewood. But you plug it in the ground in December. Water it a little and poof - it blooms in March.  March is my birthday month and I am always charmed by their return to life.
Dormant - not dead
Maybe my country will come back to life after the long winter of this soul.

What is Low Desert and High Desert?

I was reading Dwell today and they talked about about a house in the high desert. And I thought, do people know the difference?

Wikipedia gives correct, but dry definition:

A local will give you a more direct answer - depending on where they live. "Over the Cajon Pass", "It's past Yucca Valley" or "Joshua Tree". This refers to the rise you take to get to the high desert from LA (to Vegas) or from Palm Springs / the 10.  You see the the rise from Moronogo Valley (already higher than Palm Springs) up to Yucca Valley below.
Look at the rise up to Yucca Valley in the distance

So what is the real difference?

Ecologically, the High Desert will often fall below freezing in the winter. This requires a different sort of plant that has to endure frost, more rain (so they have to be able to store it - so usually larger plants) and long dry spells. The Joshua Tree is the most recognized of these types of plants.

By contrast the Low Desert will have much higher temperatures in the summer, usually no frost in the winter and longer more severe periods of drought.

Areas of near constant beauty are those places where the mountains drop into the low desert and therefore there is a lot of water. Palm Canyon hikes are gorgeous (the one below is from Anza-Borrego, and there is another in South Palm Springs Canyon).

Socially, traditionally the High Desert dweller is a year-round resident. Often military (there are large military bases in the high desert), often retired, very often retired military. A little cold is more than offset by a much cooler summer (101 F instead of 115 F  or 38C vs 46 C).

By contrast the Low Desert is populated by second homes, snow birds and lots of irrigation. And a lot more rich people.
Condos in Ranco Mirage
Having said all that thought - nothing in the world beats the view of Joshua Tree National Park at sunset....

Friday, December 01, 2017

NOT That Kind of Sanctuary

So our President and, oddly enough, our Attorney General have spoken incorrectly about the verdict in the case of a killing of a San Francisco woman by an illegal alien and the implications.  Let us clear somethings up that President Tiny Hands conduses.

  1. The verdict was not disgraceful (orange arrow). The one charge they didn't get was murder and it was by far the least probably of the charges. The bullet was discharged and then ricochetted from the concrete to strike a woman in the back.  It's hard to show that a single ricichetted bullet was murder  and even harder when the defendant has never been violent ( old felonies were almost all drug charges) and he has an explanation for the gun.  A fantastic background story of the misrepresentation of this case comes from a conservative writer at Red State.
  2. The jury makes it's choice based on evidence presented not on the fact he was a 7 time felon or Mexican or circumcised or you hated him.  That is how trials work in America.
  3. The criminal was NOT EXONERATED (red arrow). He was convicted of a felony gun possession (a California gun control law, FYI!) and other charges.
  4. He is being turned over to Immigration because he has  an outstanding warrant. Warrants are upheld, yes even in "Sanctuary" cities. The only thing sanctuary cities disallow is random immigration checks and then mandatory turn over of alliens to the INS without a warrant (for non-felons). That makes the Police Forces safe for civilians, victims, witnesses or misdemeanor offenders.  
This is NOT how a "Sanctuary City" works...

? Altogether Enchanting ?

I read the Friday Arts Section (II) for fun gallery things to do on the week-end with Eddie. It's hit or miss.

However I saw this today and I thought it anything but, "altogether enchanting" found objects. I did this kind of crap in 6th grade and it was derivative then.

"You know what would make this box of junk look PERFECT? A couple of old coffee cups to juxtapose the snugness of the home versus the oversize confluence of consumerism! (plus I couldn't find small coffee cups.)"

Oh wait, "Tea and sweets are avaiable" well that changes everything. Sign me up!

Oingo Boingo: I'm On The Outside

Obstruction of Justice.... again.

Insert lyrics from "I'm on the Outside" here

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Norwegian Air Responded! Kudos!

Well, it took a little while, but considering it was a full 787 that was cancelled, that is okay.  Thye got back to us in less than 1 month. That is pretty damn good.

Our refund was processed for the nightmare (link) trip.

Norwegian processed this quicker than most any group of airlines I have dealt with. They also wrote me a letter that responded to my complaint and I appreciate that.

I give them great marks for follow up service.

By way of example, Delta hasn't responded to an issue I had with them 3 years ago. And I bring it up every survey.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Something is really wrong with the Tax Bill

There is something inherently wrong with the tax bill that advanced in a way that will ultimately help destroy the country.

Compare this tax bill with Reagan's or Bush 2's bill. In the previous tax bills there were a lot of cuts and tricks to make it all work out (actually Reagan's Tax Bill was Bipartisan and that was back when it was thought "trickle down" might work).

BUT this tax bill was written only by Republicans and specifically hits Democratic voters. (And it was not because "Democrats wouldn't work with Republicans", the process was closed to begin with.) In particular:

- The deduction for pulling out state and local taxes has been removed. The tops users of this deduction are Democratic states (see below) (Only Iowa is a red state in this list).

One might reasonably say that blue states have only themselves to blame, but that isn't entirely true. Blue states tax themselves because the federal government takes from blue states and gives to red states (see chart below). Most of the "net contributors" - that is, we pay more in than we get out. So we have taxed ourselves to pay for missing federal help.

- If the mortgage rate interest is kept in, it will be capped at $500,000. The top 25 housing markets are all in blue states, and the average price in each is over $500,000. (link)

- It raises taxes on college students in general and grad students in particular. Which Republicans say are liberal interests.

I don't think that this type of law is good for the country. Raise or lower taxes on everyone. NEVER in our history has this been done - where taxes increases were targeted towards one party. It is bad for our country. (PS - This isn't me. We file jointly and will do fine  to great under the new plan.)

I think California and other states might pass a law now that the outlays are equal to the percentages paid in when they are in power - and that will be ugly for the top of the list above.

In Case You Lost The News Amoungst President Tiny Hand's Tweets... North Korea Can Now Hit the US Capital

So, while Princess Tiny Hands was retweeting snuff films, calling Obama a Kenyan (yes, still), endorsing a child molester for Senate and saying that the Pussy Tape wasn't him (despite admitting it earlier)... While that entire side show was going on...

North Korea fired a new rocket that can hit Washington DC.

Remember how PTT said North Korea would NEVER be able to do that? 

Remember how PTT said, they would "take care of it"?

Remember how he promised to rain down fire and fury like never before on "Rocket Man"?

They did, we didn't and we haven't.

Princess Tiny Hands Need To Check Snopes

President Tiny Hands was quite busy this morning retweeting out salacious videos purporting to show Islamist Militants attacking people.

Let us not forget this is the President of the United States that has the world's best intelligence at his beck and call - check for f*ck's sake!

Princess Tiny Hands couldn't even be bother to check where the Dutch video was shown to be an act of (horrible) Dutch bullys - not Islamic Militants (link).

Kid's this isn't the way a President Acts! And Sarah Huckabee-Goebbles says the truth is whatever they say it is.

Minnesota v Wisconsin Football

Well, last Saturday we went to the Minnesota v. Wisconsin football game in Minneapolis. It was suppose to be 29 degrees (-2 C), but come game day it was a balmy 40 (+4 C).

Pregame with Faith (a Gopher), Ed (a Badger), myself (Badger in Law) and John (Football Fan and not going to cross his daughter).
We went with my brother-in-law and his friend. It was cool.

Late in the game. Yes, Ed is in the cow hat.

The State of our "National Discussion"

Well team, it has come to this. Presidential Spokesgal Sanders-Huckabee say we are to take Princess Tiny Hand's tweets as Presidential policy... And they Donald tweeted this..

So Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (called "Chuck" by PTH) and House of Representatives MInority Leader Nancy Pelosi responded to Princess Tiny Hand's Presidential policy and said they saw no reason to attend the meeting. They worked with their Congressional counter-parts to address the looming government shut down.

The President, in an act very Presidential, made sure to sit - forlornly - at a table showing that he was the bigger man.  And by "bigger" he means that he should be allowed to bully anyone and get away with it.
It is important to note that neither Senator Schumer and Representative Pelosi shouldn't be needed in any case. The Republicans hold majority in both Houses of Congress and, with Princess Tiny Hands, the Presidency. The government shouldn't be at risk of shut down at all.

By the way, why would he want to create this dust up today. Is there something he wants to distract everyone from???

Oh yeah, this came out yesterday...

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

The New Tax Bill (You Get the Bill, Rich People Get The Break)

The new tax bill under consideration in the Senate is fine news for anyone that makes a lot of money.  It sucks for anyone else. But then, only rich people pay for campaigns - so the donors are getting what they paid for (and they paid for our representatives).

The (non-partisan) Congressional Budget Office - that is the Budget Office that the Congress created and staffed - has the projections below. Negative numbers mean they pay less.  Positive numbers mean they pay more.

But, hell, you can just think of it this way - who does Congress love - rich people. Then you can read the table without too much thinking. (link)

Answer To: How Can People Not Belive Science?

So I am constantly bothered by the problem that many people don't seem to "believe" science.

It might be vaccines, man-made climate change, evolution... whatever; I was at a lose as to how people could not believe. But a book I have been reading has helped.

I am reading the Thomas Friedman (I know, a bit of a blowhard) book "Thank You For Being Late". In it, he explains that the world is changing on 3 axis faster than we humans can keep up. (Technology, Globalization, Social Change)

When you think of huge innovations before - the printing press, the steam engine - they spread slowly across time and geography. Maybe a bit around Western Europe, and then North America or just China - and tens or hundreds of years later they moved on. For example, most of Africa didn't have printing presses before 1900 - 400 + years after they were invented. Indigenous Americans didn't have gunpowder 600 years after it was invented or 150 years after it was used extensively in Europe.

Now, change is occurring very fast. Too fast, in fact, for people to keep up. The relentless march of technology, global markets and social change has people freaked out.

Sure, I don't have a problem with social change (I'm gay and married now, so I like it) - but to understand think back to 2006.

In 2006 there was no: Facebook, iPhone, Smart Phone Aps, Android phones, tablets, Cloud Computing, Streaming Services, Mobile Phones world wide. Back in 2006 mapping 1 (ONE) persons' DNA cost $10Million dollars (now you can do your own for less than $100). Hell we are now gene-splicing fixes into people.

It is impossible to fully understand the sum of information we have now. Maybe in 1900 a single person could be smart enough to understand how "everything" worked. But find me a person today that can: create a mobile phone from scratch, splice a DNA sequencer and set up a multi-national funds transfer system and explain why some people are born gender fluid.  No ONE person can understand, much less do "everything".

And so we reject some of it as wrong.

There are things some people choose not to believe - like science or transgenderism or evolution. But that isn't all that different from what we take on faith. We have to take it on faith that molecular physics, transistors, OLED screens, jet planes, MRI machines and a host of other items will just work.

As Arthur C Clark once said...
And who believes in magic?  It's easier just to pick what you want and want NOT believe in it. I think it is a recipe for disaster for that person and their family, but I now understand it a bit better.