Friday, August 17, 2018

Your right to yell 'FIRE!' in a theater



In almost any rant calculated to justify any government violation of a natural human right (especially those specifically mentioned in the Bill of Rights; in particular the right to own and to carry weapons) someone will invariably bring up the belief that rights can be limited because “you can’t yell ‘FIRE!’ in a crowded theater”. This belief is based on one Supreme Courtjester's tired old lie, used to justify another lie.

Yes, you actually can yell ‘FIRE!’ in a crowded theater, especially if it's on fire.

The actual historical statement asserts you have no right to falsely yell “FIRE!”, but almost everyone misses that distinction, either through ignorance or by design. And it is still wrong anyway.

It is your absolute human right to say (or write) whatever you want to say. It may not be wise, and in a free society you will be held accountable for any harm you cause by doing so. You have the responsibility to NOT say something untrue which can cause trouble, but no one has the right to silence you.

Most people suffer from a tragic misunderstanding of where rights come from. I’ll give you a hint: they don’t come from government or any of its documents. The Bill of Rights doesn’t create any rights at all. In fact, it doesn’t even apply to you or me at all unless we work for government. And for those to whom it does apply, its entire purpose is to stop them from violating the rights of individuals.

That's right: the Bill of Rights is simply a “government shall not…” list and a warning that government has no "right" (governments can't have rights) to violate natural rights. It makes doing so a crime. Government is thus prohibited from enacting “laws” that violate natural rights by the very document which foolishly created it and "allows" it to exist.

Since the First Amendment places ALL speech beyond government regulation or control (among the various things it prohibits government from doing), it makes no exception for things that can be destructive or stupid.

So, say what you want to say, after you've weighed the consequences and decided whether they are worth it, then face the consequences like a self-owning human being should.

(an update of an old post)
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Thursday, August 16, 2018

The enemies of the people? Yes.



National press and media are complaining today, in a bunch of coordinated editorials, about being thought of (or rather exposed) as the enemies of the people.

Is it a truthful accusation?

Well, here are just a few examples of times they have been the enemies of the people:

  • When they helped Bush 2 promote the "weapons of mass destruction" lie and got a lot of people killed.
  • When they did everything they could to push Hilary Clinton on the v*ters.
  • Every time they use the words "gun violence", "common sense gun laws", "reasonable restrictions", "assault rifle", or any of the other terms which make anti-gun bigotry seem mainstream.
  • When they promote the words of government extremists (Paul Krugman comes immediately to mind) as if they are reasonable people who have something of value to contribute to "public discourse".
  • When they encourage support or pay raises for government employees.
  • Any and every time they push a "tax" increase, for any reason.

  • Every time they breathlessly promote socialized health care or "Universal Basic Income".


And there are so many more.

These are times they did things harmful to life, liberty, and property.

So, yeah. The national press (and similar media) are the enemies of the people. Enemies of individual rights and liberty. Their whining just shows how out of touch they truly are.

But they could change.

If they would start reporting the news, without a political slant, they could stop being the enemy of the people.

If they could leave their wish to enslave us all at home, instead of bringing it to work and putting it in the pages of their papers, they could stop being the enemy of the people.

If they would stop trying so hard to create death and destruction to give their news "color", they could stop being the enemy of the people.

Report what happened, don't analyze it, and leave the editorializing on the opinion page. And STOP being the enemies of the people, and maybe people will stop thinking of you that way.
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Free speech in action



The above comment was posted on the newspaper's FB page in response to my most recent column. The comment was deleted, the commenter banned by the paper, and a screenshot (without the redactions) was forwarded to me.

I say the guy had the right to say what he said, and the newspaper had the right to delete the comment. The actions of neither seem out of line.

I would have been angry had FB chosen to intervene and remove the comment (of which they were not a party) since they supposedly invite the public to use the platform, but no individual has to leave anything that bothers them on their own page or a page they are responsible for. Had he waited to leave the comment on my post on my FB page, I would have left it. I do appreciate the paper's efforts at defending my honor, though. I realize they were also trying to protect their advertisers.

The comment didn't upset me. It was just too far off-base.

Just how far afield is the commenter? Well, I'm not "known", I don't worship (or believe in) anything supernatural, I don't rape or otherwise initiate force, I respect the rights of children just like I do anyone else, I don't have a basement (but I do have a cellar), and if I did have a basement I wouldn't invite a crowd of people into it to watch me do something I consider evil. And if someone did witness me doing such a thing they would have the right-- and the responsibility-- to shoot me in order to stop me.

If a comment were negative and too close for comfort it would probably be a different story. (Occasionally I've had people accuse me of being an anarchist! That just gets a "Yeah. So?" instead of the outrage or denial they had hoped for.)

Personally, I think the commenter was either trying to be funny or was trying to make a point. I was slightly amused by the comment. And, I can see a point to be made with such a comment. More than one, actually.

Yes, speech can offend people (as it did the newspaper) and it can cause harm. Perhaps he was trying to illustrate this point. No one ever said speech doesn't have consequences, nor that you get a free ride just by claiming "free speech". You are responsible for the consequences of what you say or write, whether your words are true or false. If you don't like that, you have the option to keep your thoughts to yourself.

Maybe he was testing my commitment to freedom of speech, even when it targets me. If so, bravo.

Anyway, it was just a little feedback to add to my information stack.
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Wednesday, August 15, 2018

It's time to free all speech again

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for August 15, 2018)




Last week some of the biggest social media corporations colluded to silence a voice they didn't like.

No matter how you feel about Alex Jones and his Infowars media brand, this wasn't good for free speech. It was the escalation of a war which has been building for some time, where voices running counter to the political biases of the dominant social media empires are being silenced...read the rest...

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Tuesday, August 14, 2018

The creepy Obsession



I am against pedophiles. Especially pedophiles who act on it.

I am also against obsessive pedophile hunters and obsessive pedophile punishers.

They like to think of themselves as knights on a Holy Crusade. I see them as the spiritual descendants of Torquemada.

I've come to believe that most people who claim to be hunting or fighting pedophiles are simply hungry for someone it's socially OK to obsessively hate; someone they can safely post revenge porn about. It's their version of Nazi hunting. Most even misdefine "pedophile" and "child" so they'll have more targets available.

It's a witchhunt; one libertarians seem particularly prone to joining. Perhaps they hunger to behave like the statists they see around them-- with revenge and force-- so they've found a target that's socially acceptable to those who reject the initiation of force.

It's somewhat understandable; libertarians are all about defending people, especially those who aren't able to defend themselves. Children are vulnerable. People who prey on them are evil. But there's such a thing as jumping off the deep end and being drowned by your obsession. Yes, even in cases like this. In their zeal, libertarian pedophile obsessives become indistinguishable from the statists. This is wrong even when the cause is right.

And you're not "allowed" to question these self-anointed pedohunters in the slightest.

This makes me suspicious of their actual motives. I'm reminded of the loudly anti-homosexual televangelists. I'd be willing to bet some are more similar to those guys than they'd ever admit. No, not all of them, and probably not even most of them, but some.

Surely I'm not the only person who wonders about this, or who sees their obsession as a bit creepy. But even if I am the only one, I'm OK with that.

I realize that pointing this out will make them claim I'm defending pedophiles-- I'm not. If that's what they get from this they are hallucinating and imagining they can read my mind. They may even claim I am one-- I'm not. But it's their go-to reaction. I've seen it before, more than once.

All because someone dared question their untouchable obsession. To them that's unforgivable.

And this illustrates what I see as wrong with their crusade. It's not reasonable or rational. It's rabid and emotional, and anything is OK as soon as they accuse their target. In their minds, accusation equals guilt. No real proof is needed to convict and execute once the accusation has been leveled. The accusation settles it. "For the CHILDREN!"

I'm not saying there aren't sexual predators out there, because there are, and I know some of them target children. This is wrong. It is archation. No one molests kids by accident. If you do, you intended to. If you don't intend to, you don't do it. (You could still be falsely accused, though.)

When I encounter one of these obsessives, I just quietly back away. I don't support pedophiles, but I don't support their creepy doppelgängers, either. I'll probably regret ever saying anything, but it's been weighing on my mind and needed to be said.
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Monday, August 13, 2018

Not everything is acceptable



I have been told I'm judgmental. Probably so.

And I've never met anyone who wasn't (but I'm not judging). It's not necessarily a bad thing, depending on what you're judging about someone.

I don't judge people for what they wear, the color of their skin, their favorite food, the length of their hair (as long as they aren't sporting a thug rug), their sex lives, their hobbies, or whatever, but I'm convinced it's OK to judge people for archating. In fact, it's probably essential.

If you won't judge those who are molesting others, it seems to me you have no principles at all. Where do you draw the line? Will you stand for anything?
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Sunday, August 12, 2018

Gun safety essential to gun rights

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for July 11, 2018)




Gun rights, like all natural human rights, are a foundation of a functional society. And every right comes with an equally important responsibility. You must handle and use your gun so that you don't harm anyone who doesn't deserve to be harmed.

Gun safety is more than important; it is essential.

Contrary to what some people insist, gun accidents do happen. Once a tiny sliver of wood flaked off the inside of a black powder gun I was using and lodged in a bad spot. As soon as I pulled the hammer back and released it, the gun fired even though nothing was touching the trigger. Because I was following the rules of safe gun handling, the only casualty was my nerves.

However, most so-called gun "accidents" aren't accidents at all, but are negligence; someone not observing the rules of safe gun handling.

Colonel Jeff Cooper standardized and popularized the rules of gun safety, which I'll paraphrase as follows:
Rule 1: All guns are always loaded, even when you're sure they aren't.
Rule 2: Never let the gun point toward anything you're not willing to destroy.
Rule 3: Keep your finger off the trigger and out of the trigger guard until the gun is aimed where you want the bullet to go.
Rule 4: Be sure of your target and what lies behind your target. Don't shoot on a hunch, and don't forget to look beyond the target.

It's also not a good idea to handle a gun when your mind is dulled.

People who hate or fear guns won't change their minds just because you are a safe and responsible gun owner. Those who are undecided about guns can be pushed off the fence onto the anti-gun side by the publicity surrounding tragedies. Don't be the one who gives them a push.

I prefer a universally armed society. Any rules which seek to keep guns out of the "wrong hands" will inevitably do more to keep them out of the right hands, because those "wrong hands" won't follow the rules anyway.

This doesn't mean I trust everyone to be armed. I don't. But I don't trust those who would decide who gets to be armed, and who doesn't, either. I'd rather there be armed bad guys than government employees rationing natural human rights. After all, the good guys vastly outnumber the bad guys, otherwise society would be impossible.

Be responsible. A negligent shot is precious ammunition for the anti-gun activists. Don't give them this coveted gift.

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Nicer than the alternatives



Is it rude to shun someone? To exercise your right of association?

I shun cops and would probably shun politicians if I ever had the opportunity. Especially state-level politicians. I would probably be flexible on more local levels, depending on how enthusiastic a dirtbag they happen to be. I'm willing to chalk up some bad behavior (archation) on their part to ignorance and brainwashing.

But it seems people around me believe it's rude of me to shun cops.

I don't think I'm rude to them-- I simply ignore their existence in "social" situations. Isn't that better than puking at the sight of them? Or making faces? Isn't shunning more polite than flipping them off or shooting them?

It seems so to me. But I could be convinced otherwise.
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Saturday, August 11, 2018

"Think of the CHILDREN!!"



Or the old, disabled, or ill! Those who might be considered, by some, as "unwhole" in some way.

I appreciate when people stand up for the "unwhole"; I'm less than impressed when someone imagines that being "unwhole" bestows or creates extra rights. I'm downright angry when someone insists my (or others') rights don't matter because they might somehow offend the "unwhole".

Certain people bring up the "unwhole" in discussions to try to find a reason to justify archation, such as "taxation" or "laws".

Recently one such winner objected to my dismissal of laws as either unnecessary or harmful because he didn't understand how the "unwhole" could defend themselves without "laws". I wonder how the "unwhole" can defend themselves from "laws".

I understand the desire to protect the "unwhole"; I don't like the tendency to throw everyone else (and their rights) under the bus on behalf of the "unwhole" due to their imagined extra rights.
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Friday, August 10, 2018

Prep fluffing



I should probably be ashamed, but I'm feeling bothered because I haven't had a chance in a long time to actually need to use any of my preps. And I know that's a stupid "problem" to admit to having.

I guess I could sneak out and shut off the electricity and water, but knowing I did that would take the fun out of it.

Lately, I've been feeling really antsy about preps. Feeling I need to do more.

More water, in particular. There are zero surface sources of water around here, so emergency water must be stored -- although I do have filters, too. And I don't have nearly enough water stored (as if "enough" stored water would be possible).

But it's not just water. I've been fussing over all my preps as if I'm getting ready for something that's coming. And, no, I don't believe I'm psychic or anything, so I don't believe anything is imminent.

So I'll just keep doing what I'm doing, and doing more of it, too. Reminding myself that even if TS never HTF, preps are still a smart thing to do, and smooth over all sorts on non-emergencies in the meantime.
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Thursday, August 09, 2018

Giving me what I want



Imagine someone created a government agency with no other function but to hand out (for example) free AR-15s to anyone, just for the asking. I would really love to have an AR-15, but I can't afford one.

So, would I support the existence of this "wonderful" government agency?

Nope. I couldn't support a government agency; even one formed specifically to give me exactly what I want. Even if there were no strings attached, and no hidden agenda or unintended consequences to the recipients.

How can anyone? It's something I just can't wrap my head around.

Even if I believed a "border patrol" or "ICE" were necessary, I would oppose them because they are a government agency. They operate with stolen money-- money taken, at least in part, from people who don't want their "service" and don't want to fund them. That makes their existence unethical regardless of any other consideration. (And there are a lot of other considerations making them bad guys.)
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Wednesday, August 08, 2018

I may not agree with what you say...



... but I'll fight for your right to say it. Because I'm not a loser or a coward.

I've never paid the slightest attention to Alex Jones or INFOWARS. I can't even say if the criticisms I've heard of him are accurate or if they are overblown. And, I don't care the tiniest bit.

I am still opposed to having him silenced-- or even to businesses doing what they have a right to do and kicking him off their platforms.

Yes, I have often said it's not always good or smart to do everything you have a right to do. This is one of those times.

The way this was put into action is a clear case of a real-world conspiracy. Not a "conspiracy theory", but a factual conspiracy. It makes me stand alongside someone I otherwise ignore.

Yet, I can also see how government policies and "laws" empower people to feel safe doing things of this sort, and give them a ready excuse.

With the State's thuggish kidnapping and persecution of Silk Road's supposed creator, Ross Ulbricht, and their recent threat to molest sites such as Craigslist and Backpage which allowed "sex ads", those who let Alex Jones use their sites could claim that they were forced to kick him off for their own safety.

If the State is allowed to kidnap, rob, and otherwise molest someone for running a website that has ads for things political bullies are opinionated against, why wouldn't they do the same to those who allow Alex Jones to use their sites?

I'm not saying it's an ethical justification for kicking him off, just that in this era of government supremacy, it's a reasonable one. Even if the site hosts don't actually believe it.

If your argument against someone's opinions is so weak you feel you have to silence them rather than lay out the facts which prove them wrong, then you are a loser and a coward. I'm looking at YOU, Facebook, YouTube, Apple, Google, and all the others who colluded against freedom of speech. Don't expect my support when your bootlicking fails to keep the wolves at bay and your number comes up.
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3D printed guns might actually help

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for August 8, 2018)




Why all the uproar over 3D printed guns? It has always been fairly easy to make guns at home. Having the computer code available online won't change anything. People enjoy weeping, wailing, and gnashing their teeth over the silliest things...read the rest...

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Tuesday, August 07, 2018

You and your "laws"



If you claim to honor the Constitution, and you want a law enforced that's not allowed by the Constitution (which is therefore not a real law even by your questionable standards) you are mixed up.

If the "law" you want people to be forced at gunpoint to obey is not explicitly allowed by the Constitution, or is prohibited by it, then it can't be a law. Not in America under the current government (regardless of how the humans working in that government feel about it).

That means if you are demanding people be forced to obey these "laws" you are the one promoting lawlessness. Not them.

And not the wholesome kind of lawlessness, either, but the toxic kind. The "forced at gunpoint" part is what gives it away.

If the "law" you want people to be forced at gunpoint to obey violates human rights or liberty in any way, even if specifically permitted by the Constitution, it is a counterfeit "law", and enforcing it is wrong. Even if you agree with it. Even if you like it. Even if you believe it is necessary. Even if you imagine ruin unless it is enforced.

If you have a double-standard, where you oppose counterfeit "laws" which go against what you want, but will happily impose counterfeit "laws" on others which violate them in the same way, you are not on the side of liberty. Or rights, ethics, or principles.

I have no respect for "laws" or for people who want to impose "laws" on others. It's a disgusting thing to see.
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Monday, August 06, 2018

In the wrong hands...



Could "Virtual Reality" be used to make people believe they are fighting in a game when they are actually killing people they wouldn't otherwise want to kill? Maybe even for tricking military employees into murdering friends and family?

I believe it could.

I'm not saying it's that hard to talk people into becoming murder machines now, just that I think this could make things worse-- getting those who wouldn't otherwise be tools of the murderous State to kill wantonly.

That's not an excuse to ban VR, but another good reason to keep it out of government hands. Just like government should never have been allowed to have drones. Or nukes. Or guns. Or pencils. Or oxygen.
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Sunday, August 05, 2018

Put independence back in the day

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for July 4, 2018)




What does Independence Day mean to you? To me, Independence Day has morphed into the most tragic of holidays. Its original meaning has been completely lost; turned on its head. The way it is most commonly celebrated now is like celebrating Christmas with hatred and theft. It has become a shadow of what it should be. Of what it may have been once upon a time.

Instead of being a celebration of American independence, it has been turned into a worship service for the U.S. government-- a government orders of magnitude more thieving and tyrannical than the government which was sent packing after the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

How can this make sense to anyone?

I realize most people don't actually celebrate Independence Day. They enjoy the 4th of July, instead. They wave flags, have picnics and backyard cook-outs and go on vacation. They attend government-sponsored fireworks displays which are choreographed to the sounds of government hymns and other songs of propaganda, all calculated to distract from the real sights and sounds-- and spirit-- of independence. It is all done "legally" with safety, and independence has no place in it.

What does independence mean?

It means being above dependence. It means being responsible for yourself, not being a burden to others, and having the ability and the means to help others when they stumble. It means being prepared in case of emergency or natural disaster. It means governing yourself, as an individual, and leaving others alone to do the same.

Independence is not the same as freedom; freedom often includes irresponsibility and shortsightedness. Independence is liberty-- the freedom to do everything you have a right to do; everything which doesn't violate anyone else's equal and identical rights. It has nothing to do with legality, but everything to do with doing the right thing.

Independence isn't selfishness.  It doesn't mean supporting the political oppression of those you fear or dislike. It doesn't mean "there oughta be a law". It has nothing to do with violating the life, liberty, or property of others for "the common good" or "national interests". It doesn't mean military aggression exported all across the globe. It certainly doesn't involve depending on government to save you or protect you from anything or anyone.

I invite you to think about independence and how you could live more independently in the year to come, and from now on. Make Independence Day mean something real again. Put some independence back into it.

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I know you are, but what am I?



Yes, you are. Responsible, that is. Whether you like it or not. And so am I.

I'm struck by this fact whenever I see something chiding people to "Be responsible".

Maybe a better way it could be phrased is "accept that you are responsible", or "act like you realize you are responsible".

You are responsible. You can try to run from it, you can try to deny it, you can try to explain it away, but you are responsible for everything you do. Accept it and move forward.
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Saturday, August 04, 2018

That time I robbed Billy the Kid


That .45 Long Colt cartridge pictured above is what I "taxed" from him.

Well, maybe I only borrowed it. If he comes and asks for it back I'll happily hand it over. With interest-- I'll toss in a second cartridge of his choice.



I wonder if he appreciates the gifts left for him by admirers. I'm kinda thinking no.
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Friday, August 03, 2018

Don't be mental



Politics is a mental problem. By that I mean it doesn't exist outside the minds of those who believe in it, and it causes problems in the real world.

I think of politics as an attempt to live among people you don't like by forcing your will on them, using the "political method", where someone wins at the expense of someone else, instead of by using the "economic method", where everyone comes out ahead.

The political method is mental; the economic method is mindful.

Politics is done with "laws". There are only two kinds of "laws", the unnecessary and the harmful, and by using politics you are admitting you are willing to kill (usually by proxy) anyone who violates either type of "law". Because all "laws" are ultimately enforced with death.

If that's not evidence of a mental problem, I don't know what would be.
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Thursday, August 02, 2018

False advertising



I saw a car sporting a bumper sticker that said "My son fights for our freedom".

But I'll bet if I asked I'd find out he doesn't really fight cops and politicians at all.
Probably actually works for them, instead; doing the opposite of what the sticker claims.
And does it in exchange for stolen money, to boot.

False advertising at its worst! Some would say there oughta be a law, or something!
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Wednesday, August 01, 2018

Just for fun- Quora



I answer questions on Quora, just for fun. I only answer the stuff that tickles my fancy (do I have a "fancy"? Sounds kinky...) and I don't really take it too seriously.

If you'd like to check out the answers I've written, here's my profile. At least until they ban me. 😇
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New tariffs nothing to cheer about

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for August 1, 2018)




Some American workers are cheering President Trump's new tariffs. They know not what they cheer. Tariffs are as bad for you and me-- economically-- as taxing corporations. It's a great plan-- if your goal is to economically cripple America.

No one who truly understands economics would ever try to make the case otherwise...read the rest...

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Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Hiding in shame?



I've seen statists try to hide behind so many labels-- patriot, Republican, Democrat, Christian, atheist, libertarian, anarchist... just about any label they can use to hide the truth of what they are at their heart. It doesn't even matter that, in the case of "libertarian" and "anarchist", the labels and their statism are at odds.

Now, these statists may also have other beliefs besides their devotion to statism, but those beliefs don't excuse their statism. Nor do they counteract it. Statism is still toxic.

If you believe governing others is a legitimate human endeavor you are a statist. If that's what you honestly believe, why hide it? Hiding it behind other labels, or objecting when someone points out that you are a statist, makes me think you know you're not on the right side. That's on you.

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Monday, July 30, 2018

The most fundamental of flaws



I saw a quote that illustrates something. Something dishonest.

"People who resolve to undermine a nation’s sovereignty by breaking its most fundamental of laws are willing to do virtually anything else to fulfill their desires."

He's speaking-- I say with a sigh and an eye roll-- of "immigrants".

He has a few silly notions which lead him to fatally flawed conclusions.

First, nations can't have sovereignty, only individuals can. It's like pretending governments and nations can have rights, ignoring the fact that rights are only individual. Well, so is sovereignty. Sorry, government supremacists.

Second, what makes him believe anti-migration "laws" are the nation's "most fundamental of laws"? They aren't even constitutional-- if you give any weight to that. They are non-laws, not "fundamental" laws. I tried to find some way to believe he was speaking of other "laws", but he's not. He's speaking of illegal, unconstitutional, unAmerican, unethical, and counterfeit "laws" regulating "immigration" as America's "most fundamental of laws". Where do borderists come up with this stuff?

He goes on, in a part I didn't quote above, to call this "our country", which is right in a way, but not in the way he wishes. It's "ours" as far as we live here, but it's not "ours" in a way which gives us any "authority" to control other people's equal and identical rights. Your property rights end at your property line, and not at the government's political "borders", trampling and crushing all private property in the process. Believing otherwise is just communism wrapped in Holy Pole Quilt, which is all borderism is anyway.
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Sunday, July 29, 2018

Drug prohibition won't end abuse

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for June 27, 2018)




One of the latest excuses for more government interference in your life is the "opioid crisis".

Yes, people abuse drugs, including opioids. This is nothing new; they have done so for centuries.

Abusing drugs is a dumb vice, but drug prohibition is far worse-- it is wrong. Laws and punishment will never end drug abuse. The desire for the feeling drugs create is too much a part of being human. If it's not one drug, it will be another. Sadly, when use of the safer drugs is as illegal as use of the more dangerous ones-- the penalties being similar-- people choose the stronger, more dangerous drug. This is a natural consequence of Cannabis prohibition. Marijuana is not a "gateway drug"; people who are going to use drugs anyway usually also use marijuana, but most marijuana users never use anything stronger.

Those who support anti-drug laws are only looking at one side. They see the harm drugs can cause, but blind themselves to the harm caused by prohibition. The stupid and evil War on Politically Incorrect Drugs destroys even more lives than the drugs.

Cancer patients and other sufferers of chronic pain are also victims of these policies. Does anyone believe their unnecessary suffering is a reasonable price to pay to protect other people from themselves? Any such belief is based on feelings, not reason. Government is not your doctor and shouldn't be influencing medical decisions. Get government out of medicine: demand a separation of medicine and state.

While it's sad to stand aside and watch someone harm themselves, with drugs or anything else, you've got to let people make their own mistakes. Otherwise you are enslaving them as surely as any addiction. Try to talk them out of it; help if they ask you to, but you have no right to force them to live as you believe they should. It's wrong to cause harm with fines or prison, even if you believe you are saving someone from harming themselves or others. It's the difference between seeing someone hit by a car, and intentionally running them down.

You also have the right to protect yourself from those who violate your life, liberty, or property, but this right doesn't include punishing people for things which might happen someday.

This misguided drug war has become an important welfare program for people who can't make it outside government jobs; it won't be allowed to end no matter how many lives it destroys. That's the real crisis.

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They don't want my help



I love to help people.

Unfortunately, a lot of my help is offered to people who don't know they need help. And therefore don't want it. I'm not going to force it on them, because that would only be "helping".

I feel sure that most (marginally ethical) people would be embarrassed if they understood what they are supporting by supporting cops or government, and I want to save them that embarrassment, so I point it out to them. They don't appreciate it.

Turns out they don't care what they are actually supporting as long as they get a pat on the head. As long as it seems like everyone else supports the same thing (which makes me an annoyance in yet another way since I don't). They don't want to learn anything that would suggest they should change anything.

So I end up helping less often than I'd like.
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Saturday, July 28, 2018

Private, to Friday's donor

You've donated 3 times now (if I remember correctly), including the latest one on Friday, but my "thank you" notes always bounce as undeliverable. It always says that email address doesn't exist.

So, on the off chance you see this-- Thank you!

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Truth from liars



Joss Whedon is, politically, a horrible wreck. Just an awful guy. But somehow he managed to put the right words-- words of truth, wisdom, and ethics-- into the mouth of his Malcolm Reynolds character. Words which basically go against everything Whedon personally stands for.

How does someone even manage to do that? I guess it's talent, and I admit he has loads of it.

It's why you should never reject the truth just because a liar happens to have said it, and why you shouldn't accept a lie that comes from someone who usually speaks the truth. Who knows, maybe someday even Maxine Waters might accidentally say something smart.
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Friday, July 27, 2018

Stand your ground, but don't start trouble



There was a recent shooting, which is being promoted as a"stand your ground" incident, in Florida. It has turned into one of those "big things" on the internet, with people picking sides.

In some ways it seems like exactly the sort of thing anti-gun bigots warned would happen-- trigger-happy bullies looking for a fight (because they can and because they feel confident they can win)... and finding one.

To others it seems a clear case of self-defense.

Personally, I'm torn.

Without more information I can't come down definitively on either side. The information it would take to make this clear-cut either way is unlikely to ever find its way to me.
So, let me tell you what I see from both sides.

Yes, it looks like the guy who got shot initiated force-- it seems clear he was the first to touch the other. But to me, it also looks like he was backing away and was no longer a threat when he was shot. "Stand your ground" wouldn't apply if that's the case. But maybe he was just staging for a charge. Or maybe he was de-escalating at the sight of the gun. I don't know. Without knowing what each person was saying it's not possible to know for certain what was going on.

It is known that the shooter first approached and exchanged angry words with the soon-to-be-dead guy's girlfriend. (It is claimed that the shooter has a history of confrontations over handicap parking spaces, but who knows if this is true.) What did he say to the woman, and was he making a credible threat to initiate force? If so, then he's the one who started it, even if he wasn't the first to actually use physical force. You don't have to wait until someone takes a swing at you to rightfully defend yourself if he's telling you he's going to swing at you.

How can you tell if a threat is credible or not?

Some random blowhard on the internet saying he's going to come to your house and kill you, when he doesn't know where you live, is hundreds of miles away, and has no real way to carry through with what he's saying is not making a credible threat.

Someone in your face screaming that he is going to beat you (or your friend) to a bloody pulp is making a credible threat. He is clearly saying he intends to initiate force, and due to his proximity, he is able to carry through immediately. You have the right to believe him and to use force against him in that case, even before he actually touches you. The Zero Archation Principle isn't a suicide pact.

Now, since I wasn't there I don't really know all that went on. Parking in the handicap space was a loser move, not because of the state's permit system, but just for the human decency of healthy, capable people leaving the close spots for those who need them, blue paint or not. Getting bent out of shape because someone parked there without the "required" permit is also a loser move. After those two things, I can't have much sympathy for either combatant, even before admitting I think fighting over such trivial things as a parking space is always a loser move.
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Thursday, July 26, 2018

Letting reality upset me



I shouldn't let myself get upset that there are bad people and injustices. Those things are just part of reality and aren't going to go away just because I don't like them.

On the other hand, I shouldn't pretend they don't exist just so I feel better. Refusing to see reality as it is, or refusing to speak up just because it's not what "polite society" does, isn't healthy. It's not honest.

Turning a blind eye to those things would make me a part of the problem. It takes away any possibility of being part of the solution. If there is a solution.

I will not pretend archators are good people or are doing right. I can't. I would be lying to myself and others, including to the archators. That's doing no one any favors even if it spares "feelings" and makes me a welcome part of society.

Finding a way to recognize the bad stuff without letting it get me down is a balancing act I've not perfected.
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Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Good to treat enemies as humans

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for July 25, 2018)




The political left, and much of the political right, keeps putting me in an uncomfortable position where I almost feel the need to defend President Trump. Almost.

It's not a position I enjoy.

I see no legitimacy in the office of president, nor in any other political office for that matter. I don't care about Donald Trump one way or the other; he's irrelevant to my day-to-day life. But the way the political left overreacts to everything he does goes beyond criticism into delusional territory. Pointing this out is seen as "defending" him. It's really not...read the rest...

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Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Evil in the pew



If you attended a church where an admitted serial killer often showed up, or even attended faithfully, with no intention of ending his murderous hobby and no admission he did anything wrong by murdering, would you speak up?
Would you find the church leadership credible if they didn't point out the guy's evil ways?
Would you continue to attend this church?

How can church attendees sit approvingly, or at least silently, while cops attend? At the very least they should be asking them to repent and police no more.

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Monday, July 23, 2018

Krimes which didn't happen



If you get mugged, your home gets burglarized, or your car is stolen, you would be right to say the Blue Line Gang (the armed government employees often known as "police officers") didn't prevent that krime.

But cop supporters would point out that you can't know how much of something was actually prevented since it didn't happen. Maybe you avoided being robbed multiple times rather than the once, just because cops exist. And they do have a point.

It's impossible to say how much theft doesn't happen because cops exist. It's impossible to say anything meaningful about events which didn't happen. "Alternate history" is "alternate" because it isn't history.

But it is possible to know exactly how much theft is committed openly in order to fund police, and through them just doing their "job" because they don't generally hide it. It's a huge amount of krime caused by cops, but the relative amounts of each type of krime is irrelevant. One doesn't justify the other.

I don't want cops infesting my surroundings no matter how much you feel you need them. I'm perfectly willing to take my chances because the theft that comes with cops being cops is too expensive. They aren't worth it to me.
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Sunday, July 22, 2018

Libertarian criticisms miss mark

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for June 20, 2018)




Recently, I read a rant describing libertarianism in unlibertarian ways. This is normal. I've never seen a criticism of libertarianism which hit the mark. The point is usually that libertarians are selfish and don't care about other people; a claim which only works on those who are in the dark.

It is said we don't care about the poor because the taxes and regulations we're against are for their protection. Yet taxes and regulations hit those hardest who are least able to afford them; much harder than those with a stable of lawyers standing ready.

Detractors say libertarians don't believe in altruism and would destroy the "social safety net". They are mistaken. Altruism never involves robbing some for the benefit of others. The truth is, instead of relying on a safety net bought with the anti-social practice of taxation, libertarians prefer to help people voluntarily. This is true altruism and is safer for everyone than today's system.

Libertarians are scolded for heartlessly refusing to admit the protection government provides society against bad guys. Except when those bad guys are politically connected, hold an office, or run one of the thousands of bureaucratic positions used to rob and control members of society in the name of governing. You can't protect society by sacrificing the individuals who comprise it. I refuse to admit this "protection" for the same reason I refuse to admit the health benefits of cancer.

Libertarians, we are told, should realize not all politicians are out for themselves; some have the best intentions. We shouldn't blame them for using institutionalized theft and coercion to impose their good ideas on others. It's the system's fault... but don't question the system's legitimacy either.

Finally, libertarians "only care about their own freedom", despite the fact I spend more time trying to inspire others to exercise their rightful liberty than I do worrying about my own.

The list goes on, never getting close to the truth. Every criticism is the equivalent of saying how much I dislike people who collect stamps because they sit on a boat baiting hooks all day. It's total nonsense.

Which brings me to the most dishonest anti-libertarian statement of all: "Libertarians believe that the nastiest of men, for the nastiest of motives, will somehow work for the benefit of us all." Replace the word "libertarians" with any other political stance out there-- Democrat, Republican, socialist, whatever-- and I couldn't have summarized the pro-government position any better myself.


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Serving up hot coercion



If you work for the State you are not "serving".
If your "job" comes with a paycheck extorted from people who didn't value your effort enough to pay for it voluntarily, you are not serving.

You don't "serve" in the military, in congress, or "on the bench". You prey on people's life, liberty, and property, but you don't "serve" anyone beyond the political bullies who hold your leash and steal money on your behalf.

If you really wish to serve, provide a service which people will be willing to pay you for. One which they won't have to force their neighbors to chip in for. Be a good guy like Ross Ulbricht, not a bad guy like Donald Trump or Barack Obama.

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Saturday, July 21, 2018

Pigs... in... Space!



Can we engineer liberty in space by designing "just the right kind" of government?
Can we achieve liberty with just the right amount of slavery?
How does anyone imagine that would work?
Why build failure right into your plan from the start?

And yet, that's what some people believe is needed. Government and its "laws". In space. What other types of pollution are needed out there?

Some people are crazy, and not in a good or amusing way.
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Friday, July 20, 2018

Political poisoning



I don't talk "politics" at home much. If at all.

I certainly don't talk about politicians. So it's interesting how my daughter has picked up on the Trump hate from... somewhere. Maybe the Roblox gaming videos she watches on Youtube, I suppose. I can't think of anywhere else.

There might be several reasons for this just showing up now. Her age might be part of it. She wasn't old enough to be aware of what was going on with the rule of Barack the Great. I do know her "teacher" at kinderprison a couple of years ago worked very hard to indoctrinate Hillaryism into the prisoners at her disposal. I did have a little talk with my daughter about evil politicians-- specifically evil politicians I knew a bit better than most-- over that episode.

I have a yardstick that I use-- if someone is having fits about Trump doing something they would have ignored (or even praised) Obama for doing, I see them as a hypocrite in the throes of Trump Derangement Syndrome. And I see this a LOT!

There are no good presidents; no good politicians.

I have no problem with her hating politicians. I see it as the beginning of wisdom. But, in the post-Trump years, if she doesn't express the same feelings for the next Bully in Chief, I'm going to have a sit-down and see why.
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Thursday, July 19, 2018

Encircled, enclosed, and trapped



Someone recently brought up the scenario of being encircled and trapped by other property owners so that you can either not access your surrounded property or you can't escape from it. At least, not without giving in to the other property owner's demands, whatever they may be.

Specifically, his comment was:

...Curious what your current thinking is about the problem of locking people out of their property, or the property to which they are invited, when one or more people acquire all the surrounding property and then deny you ingress or egress. Example: someone acquires the property rights to all the roads surrounding a subdivision of houses or businesses, and then either flatly refuses to allow anyone to cross their property, or charges extortion tolls (say, $100,00 to cross the road -- or demands that you hand over the property you own for $1 in order to leave the trap they've created).
Clearly you have to right to stay alive. Is that aggression if someone locks you into your own property by buying the surrounding property, and thus you have the right to self-defense to use whatever force is necessary to leave it?

Somewhere I have written about this before, but I can't find it now, and my opinions may have changed since the last time I discussed it, anyway. So... time to delve into this again.

As I have come to see, "aggression" isn't the whole picture, which is why I now prefer the concept of archation. Imprisoning someone on their own property is archation. Keeping someone from accessing their own property is archation. Even if they would have to cross your property to use theirs.

If someone bought property with the intention of blocking someone's access to their own property, I definitely see this as blatant premeditated archation.

I firmly believe property rights are essential (but not sufficient). But that doesn't mean you have the right to use your property to injure others who are neither initiating force, nor violating property. Equal and identical rights for all. And simply crossing your property may or may not count as "violating" it, under the circumstances.

As I have opined several times over the years, you don't have the right to enslave someone as a condition of them being on your property, and you don't have the right to use your property as a prison. You have no right to say "Well, you're in my house, so I am within my rights to force you to have sex with me".

Even in cases where you are within your rights, sometimes it's not the right thing to do to exercise your rights in certain ways at particular moments. This would be one example if you were within your rights to imprison them on their property, or keep them off their property.

If I were to arbitrate such a case, both sides being non-archators otherwise, I would decide in favor of the trapped property owner, even if I felt he owed a reasonable* access fee. Any such fee would depend on the impact of his passage and probably on his ability to pay.

If someone is crossing your property to use theirs, they have no right to damage your property as they pass through, be it by taking things, leaving trash, destroying things, or whatever. They have no right to make a nuisance* of themselves, by screaming or otherwise impacting the property they are crossing. Their passage should be as light-footed as possible, and any damage or nuisance would create a debt subject to restitution.

I would expect the encircling property owner to designate the path of least impact, and not make it unreasonably* difficult. If more than one property owner were part of the encirclement, I would probably suggest a path along their property lines so neither would bear the full burden, unless one volunteered a path.

I would probably encourage a permanent easement agreement, maybe through the purchase of a small strip, or just the right of passage along a certain path which is non-revokable.

Of course, there is air travel, tunneling, and Star Trek transporter technology (just kidding) which can be used to reach an agreement for access to encircled property. And possibly things no one has thought of yet.

Sometimes, too, there's just not a good solution that works in the real world to everyone's 100% satisfaction, but I really think this is a solvable problem. Do you have any better ideas?


*Subject to arbitration, if need be.

Here is someone else's take on it.

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Wednesday, July 18, 2018

No virtue in upholding bad laws

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for July 18, 2018)




It's more important to do the right thing than to obey laws, and it's wrong to obey laws which violate life, liberty, or property. Even if you agree with them or believe they are necessary. When the laws are wrong it's your responsibility to break them rather than wait until the law is changed.

All laws are ultimately enforced by the threat of death, so supporting any law is admitting you would be willing to kill people over an opinion...read the rest...

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Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Cops don't stop


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Balance



Between too much chaos and too much order, there's anarchy. Balance.

Between aggression and pacifism, there's self-defense. Balance.

Between a locked-down prison state with militarized "borders" and mass invasion of hordes of handout seekers, there are property rights. Balance.

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Monday, July 16, 2018

Humans and rights



Pointing out that all humans have the exact same-- equal and identical-- rights isn't the same as saying all humans are exactly the same.

I notice "bordertarians" and other borderists making this nonsensical mistake over and over again in a desperate attempt to justify their anti-liberty position.

Rights don't depend on where a person was born, where they stand, or which State claims ownership over them. Rights only depend on their species and on them being alive.

Some cultures are better than others because some cultures (by which I mean the individuals who make up that culture from the "bottom up") "tolerate" liberty and respect rights better than others. This doesn't alter anyone's rights.

Some individuals are better than others because some individuals archate less often, and don't support archators as much as others do (they are more ethical than those who archate and support archation more often).

Some people are smarter than others, and everyone is smarter about some topic than just about anyone else.

Humans hold a variety of beliefs; often contradictory beliefs inside the same brain. It only matters what people do, not why they do it, or what beliefs led them to act. Some beliefs are better than others, and some are outright reprehensible-- those which convince a person it is right to archate being among the nastiest beliefs. Yes, some people believe it is OK to govern others; these people are holding a barbaric primitive belief. Everyone else has the right to defend themselves from the people with this belief if they try to act on it. No one has the right to govern because this is a right which can't exist. If it did it would contradict itself.

Humans come in a variety of sizes, shades, and shapes. This is irrelevant to their rights.

Humans are equal in the rights they have, and in nothing else.

This truth doesn't justify devotion to a theft-funded, anti-property rights, Big Government welfare/warfare program at "the Border". Nor does the intentional and dishonest conflation of political "borders" and private property rights. It's amazing to me how they can turn this around inside their own minds and call a rejection of their favorite type of communism "leftist". How can you twist your mind that much? I have no idea.

If someone who is otherwise libertarian believes something to the contrary, they are mistaken and internally inconsistent on this topic-- perhaps only on this one topic. They might be a fine person otherwise, but on this, they are wrong. And I would be dishonest if I failed to point this out.

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Sunday, July 15, 2018

Discrimination should be left legally alone

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for June 13, 2018)




Who would be desperate enough to eat a cake baked by someone who doesn't want to bake it? Would you want a wedding cake someone was forced to bake-- at gunpoint?

Even if the gun is hidden at first, every law comes down to "do as we say or we'll kill you".

At best, the newlyweds will get a cake they dare not eat.

So why follow this path? Perhaps they claim to only want things to be fair. Guess what-- fairness isn't a feature of the real world. You may as well accept the fact now. What you consider fair, someone else will call unfair. The reverse is also true; what someone else sees as fair you'll believe is unfair. The appearance of fairness depends completely on perspective. Dilbert's Scott Adams goes further, saying fairness is a concept invented so less-than-intelligent people could feel like they are participating in conversations.

Despite my skepticism about fairness, I'm in favor of everyone doing their best to make others feel as though fairness is real. There's really only one way to do this.

Just stay out of the way and let everyone exercise their right to choose who to do business with. Both as a provider and as a customer. Don't infringe anyone's right of association.

It's not only about religion. If you don't like someone's politics, the color of their skin, the way they speak, how they worship, or anything else, you have the right to decline to take their money, or to refuse to spend your money with them. It doesn't depend on the Supreme Court agreeing; this is simply a natural human right.

Someone will always step up to fill a gap if certain businesses choose to turn away customers. Think of all the willing and eager cake shops who never got the chance to show what an excellent cake they would have been happy to provide for the wedding which precipitated the recent cake ruling.

Discrimination goes both ways, and needs to be left legally alone. If bigots are out there, let them openly expose their bigotry. How else can you know who to reward with your business, or who to punish by going elsewhere?

There is one exception, of course: government doesn't get to choose who it serves until people are allowed to stop paying for services they don't want. As long as government exists as a monopoly, it is the only organization which can't exclude anyone for any reason other than non-payment.

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What's hiding beneath?



Statism has a thin, shiny scale of pretty-looking ethics hiding the evil beneath. It's sort of like nail polish on an infected, fungal fingernail.

Some statism shows its concern for the less fortunate while hiding its approval of theft. Other statism shows the world its concern for "family values" while hiding its family-destroying policies from casual view. And, the ethics don't hide just one evil, but a huge library of evils. All excused by the thin superficial layer of goodness.

The nice-looking ethics are good, but they stop short. They don't go far enough and don't redeem the evil that exists right beside them. It doesn't make you a good person to give the shirt off your back to one person while raping and murdering another.

All the aggression and theft is just below the surface, while the pretty, distracting scale of ethics hides it from view. But it only hides the corruption and evil from those who don't want to look.

The ethics embraced by any form of statism are only surface deep, used for less than ethical purposes, but the evil goes all the way to the core.

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Saturday, July 14, 2018

Delusions of "authority"



You know what strikes me as funny, pathetic, and arrogant... all at the same time?

Governments believing they can (or should!) impose "laws" which apply to people in outer space, on asteroids, and on other planets.

That's some serious delusions of grandeur, right there.

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Friday, July 13, 2018

Childish, adult, or mature?



I recently heard someone who was making a distinction between the "childish approach" of the political "left" and the "adult approach" of the political "right". I believe he missed something important. He was so focused on "right" and "left" he forgot to consider right and wrong.

The childish approach: "That's not fair! It's hard. I don't want to do that! I just want to do stuff that I like."

His amoral "adult" approach: "This will hurt right now, but we need to do it anyway for a better long-term result."

The ethical mature approach (which he ignored because it is neither "right" nor "left"):
Don't do the wrong thing, no matter your justification or excuses. The right way might not feel as good. It might not bring the results you want as fast as some other ways. But if you can't get what you want or believe you need without archating, then you're just going to have to live with it. Unless you want to be a monster. You never have the right to archate.

As you can see, many times there are more than two choices (and there may even be more than three). Don't let people fool you into missing the best choice by trying to force you to choose between two contrived choices they prefer you consider.

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