Saturday, May 31, 2014

Take the first step

People are always saying they want to fix this or that, but they are rarely willing to take the first step. If you really love and understand liberty, and you want there to be more of it, and a safer environment in which to live it, then there is a first step: Abolish police- replace them with nothing. Or at least stop thinking of cops as "good" and "necessary", and begin seeing them as the standing army you were warned about, and as the gravest threat to your individual liberty.

Sure, you can exercise your liberty now, with the police/bad guys all around you. There will always be bad guys trying to violate you in one way or another- if you are scared to live in liberty now, you'll probably always find an excuse.

But... cops are "special" in that they are mistaken for "the good guys" by so many of your friends, family, and neighbors. If you fight back when they come to molest you- or worse- most of the people around you will blindly think of you as the problem. Do what you can to solve that mental glitch, and the war will be half won.

Cops are where the boot-heel meets the face. There is no excuse for them. Abolish police and replace them with nothing.

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Thursday, May 29, 2014

What kind are you?

What "kind" of libertarian am I? The "me" kind, I guess.

Thick, thin, brutalist, bleeding heart... I don't try to figure out which I am because I don't care. I don't even bother keeping up with the debates about it. It seems a very silly distraction, and a dangerous way to divide people.

Follow the ZAP, and don't violate private property. Do that and you are a libertarian. Don't do that and you're not.

Beyond that: be nice, but that doesn't make you libertarian or not- it just keeps you from being an insufferable @ss#ole.

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Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Violating individual rights inexcusable

Violating individual rights inexcusable

(My Clovis News Journal column for April 25, 2014.)

I've seen some amusing illustrations going around the internet showing 1920s era prohibition enforcers, or their freelance supporters, smashing barrels of stolen "contraband" alcohol. The photos compare and contrast the earlier alcohol Prohibition with the current drug prohibition. The caption reads "Imagine how silly you'll look in ten years".

Silly, yes, but that's not the worst of it. It's much more serious than that.

In fact, just like the slave traders and those who enforced fugitive slave laws of the 19th century, the current prohibitionists will also eventually look downright evil to practically everyone. It may not be ten years, but it will happen.

Brave drug warriors in the same category as vile human traffickers? How is that possible? Because the "laws" they enforce are no more legitimate than the "laws" that made escaping slavery illegal. You can't excuse a violation of individual rights no matter how many "laws" you pass or how long you get away with enforcing those "laws".

In the name of health and safety, the earlier prohibitionists added poison to alcohol and killed thousands of people; around 50,000 died as a direct result of the government's unpublicized poisoning program. Many more were blinded or paralyzed. Actually, prohibitionists are still poisoning alcohol for the same perverted reason- that's what "denatured" means. Their crusade also created a culture of organized crime, and brought about police corruption that is still pervasive, and getting worse, in America today.

In the name of health and safety the current prohibitionists kill uncountable numbers, enslave many times more than that, and trample the rights and liberty of each and every one of us. Their crusade has fostered gang violence and a culture of police brutality. There is almost no part of the Constitution which hasn't been violated in the name of fighting the War on (Politically Incorrect) Drugs. This war is actually a war on Americans and their Rightful Liberty.

It's disturbing how many believe it's worth it.

When slavery was legal the excuse against abolition was often phrased as "But without slaves how will the cotton be picked?" Today it is "Without drug laws, who will protect society from drug users?" Well, if it is really necessary (which the experience of Portugal shows as a lie), then you'll just have to find a way which doesn't use made up rules which violate the human right of self determination. Prohibition, just like slavery, is an idea whose time has passed.

Why is opposing prohibition so important to me? Because it is the main justification for the police state which endangers liberty today. On a daily basis prohibition may even be worse than the war on terror.
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Statism is all about inconsistency

All forms of statism are based on granting exceptions to some people at some times. They are not consistent.

Murder is wrong...unless you are a cop and can claim you just wanted to make it home at the end of your shift. So, statists grant the murderous cop an exemption while he's "on duty". His victim "deserved" it, you know.

Theft is wrong...unless you call it "taxation" and let some people take what isn't theirs while in the performance of their "job". How else can government afford to keep running (and ruining) our lives?

Kicking in someone's door while they sleep is wrong... unless you are an enforcer looking for scary little plants or chemicals. Or guns. Then, as long as you are doing the home invasion "on the job", you get an exemption for doing wrong- oh, you can't call it "wrong" either. And if the residents of the house manage to blow your worthless brains right back out the door, they get kidnapped and called murderers. So, even the defenders in this case get an exemption, but it's a bad one. They are told they are exempted from Natural Law and that they have no right to defend themselves from aggressors.

Statism is based on illegitimate exemptions, granted- or forced upon- some people in some circumstances. Consistency is statism's silver bullet- something it just can't abide.

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Monday, May 26, 2014

A Government Day message


The foam on the sewage

Sure, I hate all cops, but some I hate more than others.

I hate traffic cops the most because almost every encounter I have ever had with cops involved them. Most cops won't "engage" you unless you call them- or someone else calls them on you. They are fairly easy to avoid in most cases.

Not so with those who prey on travelers.

There are innumerable ways you can attract their unwanted attention. Drive too fast, too slow, or "too cautiously". Don't stop "enough" at stop signs. Have something about your car that gets them excited about robbing you- and then maybe even finding an excuse to murder you while they think up other ways to violate you.

So, while I applaud the deaths of those badgethugs who kick in doors in the middle of the night while looking for "drugs", I am just as happy about the deaths of those who get justice while robbing and molesting travelers. Bad guys need to pay a price for their acts.

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Sunday, May 25, 2014

Extreme? Hardly

It amuses me when liberal/progressives get up in arms over Tea Party folks (whom they often call "Teabaggers"*). They act like those guys are so extreme.

But the truth is they are just barely- almost imperceptibly- "different" than the rest of the mainstream DemoCRAPublicans.

Just imagine if those upset "progressives" discovered the rest of us who are actually "radical" and thought we were a threat. They'd get the vapors, for sure!
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*I don't get this either- why do the liberals use a term associated with homosexual behavior as an insult? Isn't that like claiming there's something wrong with it? It's like me insulting someone by calling them a "Shooter", a "pothead", or, yes, "gay".

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Saturday, May 24, 2014

Helping others

I want to help people. That led to my presidential campaign. It is also part of the reason I eventually rejected politics. It is why I write now. And it is why I live by the ZAP- the best way to help often begins by not making things worse.

I want to be the best I can be. I'll always keep looking for more ways I can help.

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Thursday, May 22, 2014

Bend over and be serviced good and hard

A recent story I read was praising a mother and her daughter for both pursuing "careers" with government; one in the military and the other as a cop. It claimed they had a "legacy of service".

Ha!

A government "job" is not "service"; it is a drain on society. Parasitism.

Want to serve people? Get a real job where people have a choice to use your service, or not, and every cent you are paid is given voluntarily instead of being collected at gunpoint.

It is so tragic that people mistake this kind of thing with "service" and doing good, when it is the polar opposite. I guess government school is succeeding in dumbing people down where they believe this nonsense and stumble over each other in the rush to honor their violators.

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Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Walmart beggars... and me

Is my asking for donations just like someone sitting at an intersection with a "will write for money" sign?

Because, to me, it often feels that way. (Not that I could stop writing anyway.)

Every entrance and exit at the local Walmart is usually occupied by someone holding a sign asking for money. I also know someone who works there who says those same people come in and buy alcoholic beverages as soon as they collect enough- although one guy did buy a sleeping bag once because he said his was stolen.

And one of her co-workers' adult offspring also sit there with their signs. Even though they actually have a home in town, their signs often give the impression they are traveling and ran out of money.

One guy even sits there with a gas can.

You'll see the same person trying different signs on different days; I guess that's "A/B Testing".

As long as they aren't holding a gun (or threatening to do so) against people's heads, I am not too bothered by the begging. Although it would be nice if they were honest about their situations and what they are spending the money on. I actually used to give money to some people like this, even suspecting they would just buy booze- but knowing too many of the behind the scenes stories has made me lose sympathy for the Walmart beggars.

I don't want to be seen as being too much like them, either.

So I try to provide something in exchange for the donations, and I try to not ask unless things get really sticky. This is my job, such as it is. And, if I ever ask and you want to tell me exactly what you think of my request, I don't delete any comments, so everyone could see what you have to say on the matter. I hope it seems like a "fair" deal.

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Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Liberty maximizes prosperity

Liberty maximizes prosperity

(My Clovis News Journal column for April 18, 2014)

Many times over the years I have been asked some variation of the question "I don't understand; what is it you want?"

Well, what is it most humans want?

I think most of us want health, safety, and prosperity- let's call this combination "happiness"- for ourselves and our loved ones. I want the same things! Since there's no disagreement there, what we have is a common goal.

Like most goals, it can probably never be achieved perfectly in every way, but should serve as a North Star to let you know whether you are moving in the right direction or not. The question comes down to "How best to get there?"; which system works best for moving relentlessly toward your goal.

Your choice is between self determination and being controlled by someone else. Can I trust myself and my decisions to get what I want or should I trust someone else's judgment and decisions? It's a matter of "Do It Yourself" or rely on others to do it for you.

Not everyone is an expert chef, yet just about everyone manages their meals just fine, and if you prefer to leave your food preparation to someone else- a professional, perhaps- it is no one's business but your own. However, just because you prefer to hand off your food preparation responsibilities to others doesn't give you any right to demand everyone else follow your example.

The same goes for every other aspect of life.

Liberty- the absolute right to do anything which doesn't violate the life, liberty, or property of anyone else- is the best system ever discovered for allowing each and every individual to maximize his own health, safety, and prosperity. It even leaves enough left over so you can help others who might be having trouble of their own.

I'm sure I'm not the only one who has helped out when I had an abundance and the opportunity presented itself.

But government, that anti-social institution, always gets in the way. It's a vehicle used by those with the most influence to force you to do everything the way they prefer you do it, regardless of your wishes or the more accurate information you may be operating under. It takes away choice and volition and replaces it with fiat.

There are a few people who benefit from this arrangement: those who work for the government and those who are utterly dependent upon it due to refusing to take responsibility for themselves. I don't know about you, but I don't think it's a good idea to let the most dysfunctional people in a society have a say in how I live my life.
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An honest monument to government

So, Oklahoma's "Statehouse" is getting a new Satanic monument.

Seems redundant to me.

A "statehouse" is already a Satanic monument. So is a capitol building, a courthouse, a DMV office, or any other government building. Even a library or a zoo run by government is. And I love libraries and zoos.

But theft isn't ever the right thing to do. Not even if you really, really want something.

Now, I don't really know enough about Satanism to say whether it advocates theft or aggression- I am just playing off the common perceptions here to make a point. And I might be wrong about details of the religion. Government is something we all know advocates theft and aggression, so it may be the only actual evil here, in which case the Satanists should reconsider whether they really want to be associated with such a place.

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Monday, May 19, 2014

Whose news?

The "mainstream media", those outlets that people often look to for "the news", are not telling you the truth. They are telling a skewed version of the truth, which may not be exactly false, but it isn't really true, either.

I know, that's not "news" to you.

Even most of those which allow a lone libertarian (or other) voice of truth only do so to appear "balanced" or "fair". Or as a curiosity. The rest of what they spread is simply government-approved propaganda which various government employees want placed into your mind. It saves them work to allow a government employee to hand them their "news" rather than working for it themselves, or to only think what they are told to think about an issue the State is involved in. If nothing else, options (and opinions) are limited.

So, while they may allow an opinion to be shared that points out government is nothing but theft and aggression, the bulk of their daily message is that government is normal, necessary, and good- as long as it is done right by the "right people" in "the right way". It's the vast majority of what they print and broadcast- government did this, official spokescritter said this, etc.

It's difficult to counter that constant drumbeat.

The "journalists" are propping up the very evil they should be exposing. It's like the exterminator feeding the rats in your house. Possibly for much the same reason.

A free society would not have as much opportunity for the "mainstream media" to feed- things would go too smoothly for their comfort. So, by propping up The State they can be assured of a constant supply of scandal and trouble. The exterminator feeding the rats instead of killing them is protecting his market- just like the "journalist" who keeps preaching subliminal (or open) support for The State.

Plus, most journalists seem to be government extremists, themselves. It's an incestuous relationship, but you and I are the ones getting screwed.

Now, I realize that truth isn't popular. When the majority of people have been trained to clap and perform tricks for The State- and have been made psychologically dependent on its continuation, and sometimes physically dependent on its handouts- they don't want to hear that they are supporting a systemic evil. They want to feel good about themselves. Anything or anyone that exposes them to reality will be hated and vilified.

But truth is needed anyway.

And that's where the internet comes in, to fill the holes. Sure, you have to keep your brain engaged. There is probably even more deceptive content on the internet than on TV, radio, and in newspapers and news magazines. But YOU control what you are exposed to this way. And you can talk back. Please do.

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Sunday, May 18, 2014

Death to cops?

A couple of days ago I got into a discussion with a cop on Facebook. He took it personally that I pointed out that any honest depiction of cops will seem like a "slam" to those who believe there are "good cops".

Among the various comments he made was that I gloat over the deaths of cops who are just trying to make life better and safer by catching people who don't "act as they should". (Yeah, I'll ignore the numerous falsehoods, faulty premises, and outright delusions in that assertion for now.)

It's not just cops.

When I hear of the death of anyone engaged in aggression or theft I count it as a win for each and every individual who makes up society. If a cop can do his "job" without becoming an aggressor or thief I will not gloat if he dies "in the line of duty". If not- good riddance to bad trash.

The problem is that even that cop on Facebook knows that simply isn't possible. He knows he's a bad guy- he just expects others to pretend otherwise and worship him and his "brothers" based upon their imaginary "necessity".

Not gonna happen from this end.

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Saturday, May 17, 2014

Stupidity in the name of religion

Some followers of Islam are stupid because they use their religion as an excuse to stone, kidnap, enslave, or behead someone.

And some followers of Christianity are just as stupid because they use their religion as an excuse to support the State.

Support of the State may be the biggest danger in any religion. In fact, in the long run, that's probably more harmful and has caused more brutal deaths altogether than any other thing done in the name of religion.

Absent the brute force of The State, few religions would have much power to maim and kill and get away with it anymore.

And without being propped up by religious people who believe they are doing the right thing, States would have more trouble pretending to have legitimacy.

It's quite a handy incestuous relationship.

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Thursday, May 15, 2014

Ow, ow, ow!!

The fallen tree just about did me in.

It has been almost a week since I got it all taken care of, but in the process of lifting and loading the big logs I apparently gave myself "tennis elbow". And then the 4 loads of branches I loaded and hauled away the next day just made the problem worse.

So, I am in a lot of pain when I try to straighten my right arm and extend my fingers, or lift anything (even small, lightweight things). Or pretty much use my arm for anything.

Good news for this blog is that typing is about the only thing I can do which is pain-free. But I do have other things I need to do, too. I guess I could use the injury as an excuse to not do them... Ha.

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Unicorn Memorial Day

Oh, wait... that's "Peace Officers Memorial Day".

What a laugh.

If "peace officers" ever existed, they are extinct, and what we are told to honor in their place is dead Law Enforcement Officers, I actually saw a story that said: "Peace Officer Memorial Day: Flags to be lowered to honor Law Enforcement" - that's like proclaiming "Unicorn Memorial Day" and worshiping road-killed possums while hoping no one notices the substitution.

I noticed.

If there were ever "peace officers" they still lived on money stolen at gunpoint from its rightful owner. Not an honorable thing to do. Since all we have now are Law Imposement Officers, I'm certainly not going to mourn when they die while doing their vile "job". Good riddance to bad trash.

And what of all their innocent victims, killed because the cowardly scum can murder with near-impunity? Where's their memorial?

Maybe I'll fly my Time's Up flag extra high today to celebrate all the dead LEOs. And then tomorrow to celebrate dead rapists. And the next day to celebrate dead (freelance) muggers. And the next day to celebrate dead dictators.

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Flags. Everywhere!

Yes, everywhere.

I saw a blurb that listed things about America which those from other parts of the world found very odd, and "flags everywhere" was at the top of the list.

I hadn't really thought about it too much before, but the next time I drove around I counted. Yep. Those things are everywhere.

I guess a lot of people like to celebrate their enslavement and worship the captor.

I know, I know. Supposedly the US flag (which is NOT the "American flag") represents liberty and justice for all. That's a nice dream. Actually I see it more as representing the federal government and all its interests.

Don't believe me?

Refer to the Constitution or (shudders!) the Declaration of Independence, and the feds will consider you a domestic terrorist. Pledge allegiance to their flag and they say nothing- Oh, some of them may look down on the addition of the "under God" part, but on the whole...

Fly the Gadsden flag and they consider you a domestic terrorist. Fly the federal flag and they are fine with it.

If any of them were aware of the Time's Up flag, they would consider you a domestic terrorist for flying one. Their flag? Not a problem.

Now, if you fly the federal flag and do one of the other things mentioned above, flying their flag won't be enough to get you out of trouble, but by itself it is completely government-approved. Think about that for a minute.

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Wednesday, May 14, 2014

The gloves are off in Europe

WARNING: NSFW! Sex and violence galore!

Here is a European ad to "encourage" voting. It's more honest about the violence inherent in the process than most- even if it stops at the voting booth and doesn't show the violence that comes from that.

If you still want to view it, here's the link (I don't wish to embed it here): "Voteman"

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Unintentional statist humor

A while back I received this inquiry from a local political group's "leader":

"Do you know anyone in [Town X] who would carry the petition for Voter ID to the clerk's office to register it on May 1?"

I responded: "Most of the people I know [with regards to this sort of thing] are pretty opposed to politics, so I'm not sure who would take a petition."

The reply: "This isn't exactly politics.. its about voting and using photo ID's to assure that the person voting is the person registered and qualified to vote."

Ummmm....


Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Immigration control breaks the law

Immigration control breaks the law

(My Clovis News Journal column for April 11, 2014.)

End deportation of illegal immigrants?

Government at every level throughout America needs to obey the U.S. Constitution- the highest law of the land- to the letter. All federal, state, and local governments need to tightly control and regulate who is allowed to enter our country, and make sure those allowed in are complying with all the immigration laws the Constitution establishes in order to make sure our borders are secure. Their papers must be in order, or else!

But, there is at least one problem with that.

The Constitution doesn't allow government to regulate or control immigration at all. It spells out how the states may regulate the importation of slaves, and permits government to establish a way for immigrants to become citizens, but that's all it permits with regard to "immigration". And, the only powers the Constitution permits governments to have are those specifically spelled out in its text.

So how can those who cry most loudly for government to obey the Constitution ignore this inconvenient fact?

Honestly, I don't know, but I have some suspicions.

I support those who gathered last Saturday in Clovis and across the nation to protest deportation policies. Since a law which runs counter to the Constitution is not a law at all, and no one is obligated to obey this pretend "law"- according to an earlier Supreme Court ruling- there can be no such thing as an "illegal immigrant" to deport, Constitutionally speaking.

The claim "but they are illegal" is as meaningless as saying it was illegal to be (or harbor) a runaway slave. "What part of 'illegal' don't you understand?" is countered with "What part of 'unconstitutional' don't you understand?" Because, as far as written and enforced laws in America are concerned, nothing can trump the Constitution. Not even if you think it's a good idea, or absolutely "necessary". That's the same excuse dredged up by anti-gun activists.

The only mistake the activists make is asking to be equally violated by "drivers license" requirements, which are also not within any government's authority.

If you are calling for "immigration control" and pushing for deportation, you are advocating breaking the law. You become the "illegal" you rally against. See why I love irony?

When any person attacks an innocent, or violates private property, I support unflinching self defense or full restitution. I don't care where aggressors and thieves were born. Being attacked by someone whose family has lived here for generations is not somehow "better" than falling victim to someone who just arrived from somewhere else. To pretend otherwise shows a willingness to ignore the root and focus on the insignificant pettiness that divides people and empowers the state.


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Request for funds

I am in need of $30 (well, technically, $29) because of an unexpected expense. Unexpected as in I forgot it was coming up and the automatic reminder I thought I had set up didn't remind me.

If anyone is so inclined to chip in, I would appreciate it.

UPDATE: It is taken care of. Thank you very much!

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Your brain- use it or lose it

I just don't get it when people are so determined to stick with "the party line" that they say idiotic things just because "their side" always takes that side.

Liberals against guns is one example, as is conservatives against drugs.

Think for yourself. Weigh the arguments for yourself. Decide for yourself. Stop listening to other people as a shortcut to avoid doing what you should be doing. Stop parroting what "your side" says automatically whenever a topic comes up.

It will make you smarter.

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Monday, May 12, 2014

Yeah, I care

Every time someone is "arrested" on drug charges, my own liberty is violated just a little bit more.

Every time someone is "arrested" on some weapons violation, my own liberty is eroded by a fraction.

Every time someone is "arrested" for "prostitution", gambling, or "tax evasion" my own liberty is being stomped on.

Every time someone is "fined" for some code violation, going faster than some arbitrary speed, for not completely stopping for 4 seconds* at a "STOP" sign, for not licensing their dog, for driving without a "license" or not having the State's tags on their car, for building or remodeling or running a business without a permit, or anything else that doesn't involve aggression or property violations, my own liberty gets chipped away.

And people ask me why I care?

How could I not care?

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*One of my ex-wives was told by a cop who pulled her over that she didn't stop "long enough"- his claim was that she was supposed to stop for at least 4 seconds. Seriously.

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Sunday, May 11, 2014

"Don't vote and the other side wins!"

One of the biggest justifications for voting goes something like this: "The enemies of liberty always vote. If we don't vote, they win!"

Voting, and who wins, only matters if you intend to comply and obey. Their "victory" is empty unless you give it the weight of your consent. Stop it!

But, really, when both "sides" are "the other side"- neither any good for liberty- what benefit is there in voting for someone who is your enemy to a slightly lesser degree? The "other side" wins regardless. "They" always win, no matter which guy gets the office.

The people making that claim always assume one side is less dangerous to liberty than the "other side"- in the liberty-lover sphere, the "less dangerous" side being promoted is usually "conservatives" or Republicans. That hasn't been my experience, and isn't borne out by observation.

If you allow an enemy into your house because you are wrongly told it is either him or some other enemy, who is to blame when your throat is cut in the dead of the night? He is, but you share some blame for being dumb enough to let him in. Be responsible and don't invite either guy into your house. If you do, and it turns out he isn't as wonderful as you had hoped, you have no one to blame but yourself. In fact, if I were prone to thinking like a DemoCRAPublican, I might even say "if you vote, you can't complain".

Yes, some bad guy will win the election whether or not you vote. And he will impose "laws" that will violate your Rightful Liberty a little more than the previous "laws" did. Perhaps he may weaken some bad, liberty-violating "laws", too.

That stuff only matters if you let it.

You have an absolute, fundamental human right to do anything that doesn't violate the other guy's identical right. Do it and stop asking permission and stop voting for the next slave administrator.

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Saturday, May 10, 2014

"They should know better..."

Sometimes I think I'm harder on "conservatives" than I am on "liberals". That may be because I grew up around "conservatives" and I was able to see through the nonsense. I think they should know better, too. But, all too often, they refuse.

I don't really know what goes on in "liberal" social circles and families, so I can't say whether they should know better. I would hope they would be able to. They are human, and possess a physical brain, after all.

But, for all humans, the dangers of holding wrong beliefs have been greatly reduced, which makes it too safe to be stupid. That's not a good thing for the future of civilization- or the species.

But you can't make stupid people reject their stupidity. You can only control yourself. Try to pay attention and avoid being caught up in the stampede into the ravine.

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Thursday, May 08, 2014

Statist attempts to discredit the alternative

I'm sure you've heard some of these:

"Anarchists are 'useful idiots' for totalitarians."
Sure, because statism has been so successful at keeping totalitarians at bay for thousands of years.

"Anarchists are childish."
Because it's not like any backwards tribe 20,000 years ago- or any schoolyard bully today- could have come up with the bright idea of ordering others around and taking their stuff.

"Anarchists just hate everything civilization has given them."
Hmmm. The way I see it I hate The State for interfering and preventing civilization from developing even more good stuff. Society and civilization are held back by the State- every time, everywhere States arise.

If you examine a statist objection to liberty, it always falls apart quickly.

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Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Everything I needed to know about life, I learned from "The Twilight Zone"

Maybe that's because I never went to kindergarten.

But, really, from The Twilight Zone I learned important things such as always have spare glasses.

And: Don't panic- the situation may not be what you believe.

Plus: Fitting in may not be the best thing.

Or: You may be the monster.

And, I also learned many of the characters made their own trouble by looking at things the wrong way. In one episode a guy has made a deal with the Devil to be immortal- and ends up facing life in prison. So he uses the "escape clause" to have a heart attack and die. That was completely pointless. He wanted life and excitement, and there was a perfect opportunity. Why not use his immortality to seek adventure in escape attempts and planning? I know, because that ruined the irony of the situation for "entertainment purposes". But, really...

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Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Costco missed chance for good will

Costco missed chance for good will

(My Clovis News Journal column for April 4, 2014. Here's the background.)

Like just about everyone else around here, I was dismayed to see 58 truckloads- 950,000 jars- of perfectly good Sunland peanut butter, packaged for Costco Wholesale, go into the Clovis landfill. That is a tremendous waste.

Facilitating the sale of the bankrupt Sunland Inc. was one of the justifications given. I'm not aware of all the skulduggery required to "expedite" a bankruptcy sale of this magnitude, but if the "law" makes things like this necessary, the "law" is clearly wrong. How can laws trump common sense and still have any meaning?

There were other excuses given as well. It seems the jars had leaked some peanut oil. Was this the reason the peanut butter was rejected? If so, it seems awfully petty, especially considering the alternatives the company had.

Maybe this oil damaged the labels, and would not have appeared professional. Maybe the Costco decision makers thought the oil meant inadequately sealed jars. Perhaps Costco was worried about liability and didn't trust all the tests which indicated the peanut butter was perfectly safe. Can't a product be donated "as is", with those who accept it doing so at their own risk? I would have eaten it. Well, not all 25 tons.

Costco wouldn't even allow the peanut butter to be repackaged to remove their name from it and then donated.

I really don't know much about Costco, having never been in one. Now I will never again hear the name "Costco" without thinking of this waste.

The peanut butter was Costco's property, to be used- or not- as they wished. However, the company's choice has forever tainted the way I will view them, and if I am ever in a position to do business with Costco, I will remember the peanut butter, and I will most likely not spend my money there.

Sometimes doing something you have every right to do is not the wisest path you can take, for reasons you may not even see at the time.

Costco wasn't obligated to share their property- that would be socialism. However, they missed an opportunity for a windfall of good will and positive publicity, trading it instead for a black eye on their reputation.

If one person in the company was responsible for the decision, then that one person has single-handedly damaged the company's good name and may need to be looking for a new job soon. If the "law" gave him no choice, which seems unlikely since the peanut butter had been cleared for sale, then the law is where the blame lies. Either way, each and every one of us can pay attention to this situation and remember.

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The price of being correct

It's a shame there has to be a price for being right when "the majority" is wrong. But, there is, so...

Since that's the case, I would rather be shunned for being right, than to be accepted for being wrong along with "the majority".

Of course, there are worse things. Worst of all is to be shunned for being wrong when "the crowd" is actually right, and being too stubborn to see it. I've probably been there, too.

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Monday, May 05, 2014

“Liberty Defined: The Future of Freedom”

I admit I haven't watched this video. I may later.

I don't quite believe Ron Paul is the guru of liberty that some seem to see him as, but I do think he's better than just about anyone else who has been a part of Leviathan. How much better could he have been if he had stayed out of that gang and spent his energies in more constructive ways? I don't know, since maybe no one would have ever listened to him in that case.

Still I have often enjoyed what he had to say, even if I rolled my eyes when some statism was clinging to what he said.

Anyway, here's the video: “Liberty Defined: The Future of Freedom”

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Cops, lawyers, and their child porn violations

Cops are not "special"- well, unless you are discussing the fact that a normal (or higher) IQ disqualifies applicants from police "work". Cops were never intended to have "special rights" (if such a thing could even exist)- if a "law" applies to you it also applies identically to a cop.

So, any cop (and by this I mean any enforcer working for government at any level, magically granted the "authority" to kidnap and/or murder people who break the "laws" they are enforcing) who finds and confiscates "child pornography"- as well as the court's prosecutors and judges- is also guilty of looking at and possessing it. And the state's databases which compile "child porn" for "research purposes" or for prosecutorial purposes are gigantic stashes, and everyone who works for them is guilty of possessing and distributing child porn. I don't care how they attempt to justify it, how "necessary" they claim it to be, or what kind of "safeguards" they say are in place.

Now, if a person is convinced they are doing the right thing prosecuting child porn, then they should be willing to pay the penalty that goes along with their "job". If not, they are a hypocrite.

I have a suspicion about people who go into that line of work, though. I suspect most of them are people who are drawn to child pornography and were smart enough to figure out a way to get to look at all they want, "legally". Just like child molesters are drawn to "jobs" like the TSA where they get to molest hundreds of people a day- including children and teens- and anyone who resists or objects can be "smote" with the full power of the federal gooberment.

It's why even this justification for "The State" doesn't wash with me.

And, speaking of child abuse, has anyone else noticed that the people who squawk loudest about this issue are often very enthusiastic advocates of spanking? Just one of those things I notice.

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Sunday, May 04, 2014

My favorite desert hermit

I see nothing wrong with Joel's idea of interior decorating, nor with his laundry. It all looks good to me! What do you think?

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Day by Day- Times up May 4, 2014


(Also, Happy Star Wars Day! May the 4th be with you!)


Thanks, Chris! I think I'd like that girl... LOL

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Is statism an admission of cowardice?

I see statism as an admission of cowardice. The excuse for some form of State (externally imposed government) always revolves around the state's armed goons protecting someone from something. And it's not even always personal. Sometimes it's the justification that "someone" must protect "someone else" from something.

On the home territory that "something" is often "drunk drivers" or "drug abusers". Or child molesters. Or "rich capitalists" and dishonest businesses. Or guns, illness, poverty... the list is endless.

Thinking "globally" that "something" is often "terrorists" or "foreign invaders" who are just waiting for any sign of weakness to come to your home and take over unless the US government keeps a standing military.

I really can't identify too well with either type of fear. It just didn't take root if anyone ever tried to implant it in my head. But, I can't blame people for what they are afraid of, either- it's not a rational decision which they made. I do feel sorry for them.

But, I can't let other people's fears rule my life.

If you are afraid of what would happen under liberty, then no one is forcing you to be free. However, I am under no obligation to pretend your fears are related to reality, either. Nor any obligation to allow you to box me in to make you feel better.

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Saturday, May 03, 2014

Differences of opinion

There are issues that sincere liberty lovers take opposite sides on. The Bundy ranch situation is one. Abortion is another.

Unfortunately I am cursed with the capacity to usually see both sides- and it's not as wonderful as it may sound.

Instead of meaning that half of the people agree with me, it often means that half of the people disagree- and angrily tell me why I am wrong and won't be satisfied until I usher in the subjugation of all humanity. But usually in all "caps"...

Even though I can see both sides, there is usually one side I settle on slightly more than the other for one reason or another. And the people on the other side do their best to shove me completely over the fence.

My suspicion is if there are sincere liberty lovers, who are smart and informed enough to make opposing points on an issue, then there probably is not enough real information to make a "right" choice. In that case, until more information is discovered, we'll just have to disagree. It would be better to concentrate on the things that aren't under dispute, but that doesn't seem to be the human way.

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Thursday, May 01, 2014

State Line Tribune readers...

If you came here looking for the reply I wrote to last week's letter to the editor, that post is found here: link
Thanks.

(This will be pinned to the top of the blog for the next week to give those who come across that note in the paper a chance to find it.)

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Have you visited TOLFA recently?

I haven't posted an encouragement to go through The On Line Freedom Academy in a long time. So, here's a reminder.

It's free. It's free-ing. I think Jim Davies has put together a very useful tool you should consider using (and his books are great, too).

Check it out, if you haven't before. I don't think you'll regret it.

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