Monday, April 30, 2018

Preference, prejudice, and problems



I don't think I'm a terribly prejudicial person. Not anymore. I think I've moved beyond that. But I do have preferences, and I do notice problems.

Preference isn't necessarily prejudice.

For example: I prefer girls with dark hair. I am not prejudiced against blondes, and there is no judgment implied. All else being equal, I just like the look of dark hair better. It's not set in stone, though. It's just a trivial preference.

Is it prejudice even if I don't assume hair color makes someone somehow "better"?

Well, what about other things?

Is it prejudice to notice trends?

My neighborhood is probably over 50% Hispanic. I think all the (adult) neighbors I know are fine people-- (not so sure about the people remodeling the house next door). However, the vast majority of the people caught committing crimes (both real and counterfeit) which end up in the news in this area are Hispanic, if you can tell by their names. It isn't prejudiced to notice this, is it?

There may be reasonable explanations for this little statistic that have little or nothing to do with actual archation.

Maybe the local cops are more prone to watch or molest the Hispanic residents. That wouldn't surprise me in the slightest (although I think the police chief in this little town is also Hispanic).

Maybe the local cops are more likely to pursue the "illegal" activities the local Hispanics are more likely to engage in.

Or maybe the Hispanic names in the police report are more likely to catch my attention (although I almost never read it, and I scoff at the fake "crimes" listed when I do).

It may even be something else entirely.

Whatever it means, if anything, it appears that almost no local Hispanics commit "crimes", but almost all the crimes (and "crimes") that end up in the news are committed by Hispanics.

It bothers me to notice this problem. But I do notice. I'm just not quite sure what the problem is that I'm noticing.

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Sunday, April 29, 2018

Keep your nose on your own property

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for March 28, 2018)




Neglecting to understand which things are your business, and which are not, causes many problems.

People spend too much time with their noses in places where they don't belong while ignoring things for which they are responsible.

If there's a guy living in a hole, it is none of your business unless you are the guy in the hole or the owner of the property where the hole was dug. No one else gets to have a say.

It's not your business just because you are law enforcement or a politician who imagines some sort of authority over an area. It's not your business simply because you object to people living in holes. It doesn't justify more laws or more welfare. Don't give government any excuse to be people-botherers.

If the guy in the hole or the property owner wants your help, go ahead. Help with your own time or money, not by deciding other people's money should be confiscated for your good intentions. Not by asking armed government employees to stop people from living in ways you don't like.

Keep your nose on your own property.

Property rights are critical. Even the imaginary problem of immigration could be solved by people minding their own business and respecting property rights. Invite or exclude anyone from your own property for any reason. Recognize that your property rights end at your property lines, and that no one can rightfully control the property of another. Not even if you call yourself a government and pretend your authority extends over other people's property.

Every person is either where they have a right to be, or they are trespassing. Laws don't change this. If someone is where they have a right to be, it's none of your business even if you wish they didn't have a right to be there, or even if you imagine laws can trump property rights. If someone is on property without the explicit permission of the owner he is trespassing and has no right to be there. This doesn't change if he is a government employee going where he wasn't invited.

You are not trespassing if the owner of the property has come to a mutually agreeable arrangement with you, regardless of the government papers which may be lacking. You can't be trespassing if you are on public land.

Respecting property rights, along with knowing what is your business and what isn't, would go a long way toward making society civilized again.

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Standing up for liberty isn't political



Liberty is the "political" sphere's null set. Politics is the active (rather than passive) attempt to violate liberty.

For example:
Humans have always had the natural right to arm themselves. This wasn't even debated; it's just how it is, always has been, and always will be. Nothing can change it.
Then someone decided to use politics to stop people from arming themselves, and punish those who didn't cooperate with this violation.
Some of those who resist being violated use politics in an attempt to fight back, but this is just playing the bullies' game-- by the rules the bullies set up and enforce. It might get you a temporary reprieve, but in the long run, it's a losing strategy.

Standing up for your liberty, by living it, isn't political. But trying to stop people from living their liberty is.

Anti-gun activists and anti-knife activists (or their supporters) are being political.
Gun rights (and knife rights activists)-- especially those simply ignoring the "laws" and doing what they have a natural human right to do-- aren't.

You have no obligation to tolerate those trying to stop you from doing what you have a right to do. You have no obligation to play politics in self-defense. Why march or v*te for your rights? Just exercise them.

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Saturday, April 28, 2018

Cops: good, bad, or something else?



I say cops are bad guys, but that is not a popular observation. Many people desperately want to cling to their belief that cops are good guys. Yeah, it's kind of pathetic, but that's how they are.

But there's a third position which I've seen hinted at that is about halfway between the two views. It deserves consideration.

It seems these people will almost admit that cops are bad guys. Maybe the best way to express it is they see cops as "tough guys" hired by "us" so they can be bad toward (freelance) bad guys on our behalf. Like a big brother who beats up our bully so we don't have to.

At least it's more honest than claiming cops are good guys. That claim is demonstrably absurd. This halfway claim is still a little sad.

It's an admission that the cop supporter isn't responsible or competent enough to handle his own problems. And that he's OK with innocent people getting hurt as long as he "feels safe".

Cops frequently beat up (or shoot, kidnap, or rob) the wrong person. People who weren't actually doing anything to anyone, but just minding their own business in a way someone else might not like. So beating them up is wrong. Killing them for defending themselves-- or trying to escape-- from a cop is murder.

If cops were even slightly on the right side, they would accept their responsibility when they molest the innocent, and they would take the consequences (rather than allowing their "tax" victims to pay for their crimes). Cops don't do this. Cops are nasty.

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Friday, April 27, 2018

Ignorance leads to archation by "law"



In general, the more knowledgeable you are about a given topic, the more you will see the "laws" written concerning that topic as harmful nonsense.

In fact, I think that is how you can tell someone knows a particular subject really well, as opposed to faking it.

This is where most of my youthful statism came from. It was a "government of the gaps". I couldn't see how something might work without "laws", because I didn't really know how it worked at all, so I assumed "laws" were necessary. As those gaps of ignorance closed, I began to realize that holding out for the remaining gaps of was not too bright. It just meant I hadn't learned enough yet.

I see this a lot in statists. So I try to help them understand when I can. Most don't want to.

If you feel "laws" are necessary, light a candle in the dark and learn enough to see they aren't. It's smarter than sitting there in the dark excusing the ignorance.

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Thursday, April 26, 2018

Violence

"Violence"- when I use the word I am referring to the ethically neutral use of physical force.

As opposed to aggression, which is the use of violence against a person who isn't currently violating life, liberty, or property, nor credibly threatening to do so. Aggression is the initiation of force (or the initiation of violence).

Self-defense or defense of property can be violent but isn't aggressive since the other party "started it" by initiating force or violating property rights.

Violence can be good or bad; aggression is something you have no right to commit. Aggression is a facet of archation.

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"Pacifism"



It's strange how people misrepresent the meaning of words when it suits their purpose.

Such as "pacifism". It doesn't mean what some people wish it meant.

It isn't "pacifism" to oppose aggression. You can even oppose aggression violently. In fact, sometimes that's the only way you can oppose it effectively.

I oppose aggression in all its forms. I am not a pacifist. The very thought sickens me. I've known people who said they were pacifists, and if that's what they want I'm not going to insist they change. But pacifism seems like a rejection of responsibility. If you won't fight to protect yourself or others from archation, it seems like you are helping the bad guys.

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Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Praise



I get occasional criticism for the things I write, and sometimes a bit of praise. I actually get more praise, I suspect because the critics don't keep coming back (maybe because I won't endlessly engage dumb or misguided criticism), so the pool of readers kind of selects for those who are more likely to praise.

Praise is probably as "bad" for me as criticism-- or worse. But it sure feels nicer.

Praise just means I said something that someone agrees with. We might both be wrong. And, tomorrow I might say something they hate just as much as they liked what I said today. Praise is fleeting. And it doesn't educate as much as criticism does.

But praise sometimes comes with donations or subscriptions attached; criticism rarely does. So that's a plus for praise.

Either way, I value feedback, whatever its nature. Otherwise it feels like I am talking to myself.

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Monday, April 23, 2018

Complicating life



People make situations-- make life-- more difficult and complicated than necessary by not living by the Zero Archation Principle. And by pretending there's magic in objects.

I'm reminded of this when watching movies or TV shows and the character does something unnecessary and stupid to advance the plot and give the show a reason for being. Yes, I know most shows wouldn't be interesting-- and would end in 3 minutes-- if the characters didn't complicate matters by doing dumb, unnecessary things.

I see people doing the same thing in real life on a daily basis. In real life there's no need to create drama for "ratings"; no need to hurt yourself for the entertainment of others. No need to complicate things so the situation continues to create problems for yourself and others far longer than it should. Do the right thing and move on.

But I guess that's too easy. They choose the difficult path of archation and superstition.

Why do they do this to themselves? I know indoctrination has something to do with it. And probably it's somewhat encoded in our genes. But it seems so silly and self-defeating. Stop doing unnecessary, self-defeating stupid things.

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Sunday, April 22, 2018

Anti-gun laws good for criminals

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for March 21, 2018)




How much do you respect self-destructive people?

Do you honor those who engage in self-harm such as "cutting"? Do you celebrate those who burn up their mind and body by abusing drugs and alcohol? Do you respect those who commit suicide as soon as life doesn't go their way?

Then why praise teenagers (or anyone else) who protest for more anti-gun "laws"? Just because they are "doing something" with conviction? If that's all it takes, young ISIS recruits deserve your respect, too.

I value education, so I encourage kids to walk out of school for any reason. However, if these young activists believe their walkout is a protest for "safety", they are tragically mistaken. When the teachers and administration sponsor the "walkout", it's not a walkout, it's a field trip.

What makes you believe these students have the wisdom to run your life, in spite of ample evidence to the contrary?

Anti-gun "laws" make criminals safer. "Gun free zones" are gun free only until some evil loser decides to go on a killing spree and chooses a target where he knows he'll be free to kill. When that happens there are suddenly too few guns; the only guns present being in the wrong hands. This is mandated by "law". It makes the killer's cruel task easier and deadlier, and doesn't boost the safety of the kids or teachers.

There is a term for people like the anti-gun students: useful idiots. They are very useful to political bullies who prefer unarmed subjects to armed peers. An armed person isn't as easy to control. They may be able to resist if pushed. This is why governments don't like guns they don't control, and always try to turn the right into a privilege-- even while giving lip service to gun rights. If they pretend a right is subject to their laws, limits, and licenses, they can change the way you think about your natural rights. They can change the way you think about the people who want to run your life. These are the people orchestrating the student protests, putting words in the kids' mouths; pulling all the strings.

The young anti-liberty activists believe they are on the right side. Time will tell whether they are on the winning side, but their side isn't the right side. Truth and ethics are against them. Eventually, they'll either realize their mistake, double-down due to cognitive dissonance, or they'll go into politics where truth and ethics are rarely beneficial, anyway.

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Where you are and where you are headed



From my days inside Christianity I know how much people love the Dramatic Conversion Story. So much so that the people who would come tell their Dramatic Conversion Story would emphasize that you didn't need to have this kind of story to share. Your true story is good enough as it is.

Well, you also don't have to have been a raging statist before growing up and accepting your responsibility to reject achation. It matters what you are now and where you are headed, not what you were in the past.

My conversion story isn't that dramatic. Sure, I used to accept a lot of statist nonsense. I thought some "laws" were good and necessary. I thought some cops were probably decent people. I figured licenses and permits had their place, and I wondered whether guns should be more tightly controlled. All that sort of thing.

But I was never really a fan of The State. I always felt it was over-rated, and not quite as represented.

Then I grew up and started seeing that the situation was a lot worse than I had suspected. And it's a process which continues to this day.

So I went from a lukewarm statist to... whatever I am now. Not as dramatic as if I had been an enthusiastic supporter of taxation, laws, and other forms of molestation before I wised up. But, wherever I started, I'm glad I'm where I am now, and I'm glad for the direction I'm headed. Dramatic or not.

And, just like mine, your story is good enough. Just keep moving consistently in the right direction.

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Saturday, April 21, 2018

An atelatheist exposes the religion of statism



Is belief in government-- The State-- a religion?
Of course it is. Let's hear it from one of the true believers himself.

But first-- this has nothing to do with your religion, and it has nothing to do with whether or not you like the implications of anarchy. Those are separate issues completely. Just evaluate this on its merits and don't worry about other things for now.

According to outspoken "atheist" activist AronRa (whose videos on science education and evolution I absolutely love!) a religion is "a faith-based belief system, including the notion that some element of self, be it memories or consciousness ...a soul, perhaps... continues beyond the death of the physical body; transcends and survives that..."

Belief in the State certainly is "faith-based". Statists believe, through faith, that something which has no physical existence and never has, nevertheless exists. No one can point to The State and show it to you.

Yes, belief in the State results in buildings being built, people molested due to "laws", and other physical effects in the real world, but those are no more proof of the existence of the State than churches, inquisitions, martyrs, or charities are proof of the existence of God. People who believe something do things based on that belief. Such is the nature of belief. Beliefs have effects on the behavior of people who believe, even when the belief is in something imaginary.

What about survival beyond death? Statism claims some element of self will continue beyond death if you participate in the system. You can write a constitution or a "law" binding future generations in slavery. You can have a "legacy" that depends on who you were more than what you really did. Thus "Abraham Lincoln saved the Union" as if by magic. Ignore the fact that he started a war that killed multitudes of people, and didn't actually free anyone from slavery, but extended slavery to encompass everyone in his "United States". But you, too, can be a part of this eternity. You are told you must "v*te right", for the children. To give them a world worth living in. In this way you attain some sort of immortality, transcending death with an element of your self. Yes, the law pollution you soil the world with will live beyond your physical existence. That's not a positive thing.

Belief in The State is a belief system. AronRa says a religion is a system of beliefs which has required beliefs and forbidden beliefs. Such as the required belief that the State is necessary? The forbidden belief that "taxation" is theft? The required belief that democracy somehow differs from mob rule/"might makes right"? Yep. Statism is a system of beliefs, including beliefs which are required and beliefs which are forbidden. But so what? If the required beliefs can be shown to be true, and the forbidden beliefs false, then it's just an acceptance of reality. Right? So, how valid are those beliefs?

Let's turn back to AronRa's own words yet again. A religion is "...the idea of having to believe impossible nonsense for no good reason, and all of the absurdities, atrocities and ridiculous barbaric practices that often are associated with that."

Impossible nonsense? What impossible nonsense do statists have to believe in? Well, that could be a very long list!

Perhaps their belief that you can delegate a right you don't have to someone else, and suddenly they have this right which has never existed? That's the very foundation of government belief.

That you can make something right become wrong, or the other way around, just by writing some magic incantations ("law").

Is there "good reason" to believe this impossible nonsense, and if so, does that excuse it? I certainly don't think so. I can't believe it even if I tried. I can find no good reason to believe it, even when faced with the fact that the believers excuse killing those of us who don't believe as they do.

Almost no one would dispute that this belief can result in absurdities (shoelaces are machine guns, the wishes of the majority can override the rights of the minority, theft is ethical if you call it something else, plants can be "wrong" to own or consume, that things can be wrong unless licensed, etc.), atrocities and ridiculous barbaric practices (torture by police and the military, murder in the name of "officer safety", imprisonment, war, pledging allegiance, etc.). Yet statists believe some or all of those... and more. How very religious of them.

They constantly preach that The State can be good, if only the competing religions' believers can be kept from taking control. They want you to be robbed for their religion; to fund the parts of their religion they like. They believe their religion can save the world, fix the climate, make everyone safe, and change reality when reality is unpleasant. I believe the dangers in relying on their god outweigh any possible benefits.

Beyond that, I don't believe anyone has a right to impose their religious beliefs on those who don't share those beliefs, under threat of death-- and this is my biggest issue with statists. Because they evidently and enthusiastically DO believe they have this right.

I believe in one fewer god than most so-called "atheists". Because they aren't atheists, they are atelatheists; almost atheists, except for that one pesky god. They believe in the God of The State, and because of this belief, they honor it. I don't.

Added:
The atelatheists got their feelings hurt over this. "But it's NOT a religion, because..."

Yeah, I know. And Christians are always trying to tell me Christianity isn't a religion, because "religion is man's search for god, while Christianity is God reaching out to man". Nonsense. People always try to find a way their religion is somehow special (or even somehow not a religion).

Then they claim statism can't be a religion, because while the government may be like church, there is nothing in statism that is like a god. So, at best, statism is a religion without a god. (Obviously, they are so very wrong about this, and I can show you why.) But, since I see no evidence anywhere that any religion's god actually exists, they are ALL religions without a god. Including statism. But that excuse doesn't really hold water anyway: refer back to the description of what makes a belief system a religion, in AronRa's own words, above.

Maybe their feelings would be hurt less if I dropped the word "religion" and just let them have their "system of belief". It is a system with many mandatory and prohibited beliefs, centered on the belief that governing others is a legitimate human endeavor. But, then, it may be dishonest to differentiate between a religion and a system of beliefs. The way to have no religion is to have an absence of those beliefs, rather than a different type. So, just as atheism is supposed to be the absence of belief in a god, anarchy is the lack of belief in the "authority" of Rulers. An absence of that system. If you believe in the superstition of "authority", you don't qualify as an atheist. Sorry.

Statism is the world's most popular religion. Even people who claim another religion usually follow statism-- even when it conflicts with the religion they claim to follow. Atelatheists are no different from other believers in that respect.

They are going to believe what they believe, and justify what they want to justify.

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Friday, April 20, 2018

Know your statists



They are all the same, in that they believe governing others to be legitimate, but although I have said a statist is a statist, and "left" and "right" are not relevant, there are times it helps to know how the statist sees itself.

They differ on which superstitions drive them to that belief. If you want to focus on those specific delusions, or want to avoid them in "polite" conversation, it helps to know how they differ.

"Right" statists are dead serious over (their notion of) morality, honor, responsibility, culture-- or more generally what they see as the lack thereof in their enemies.

"Left" statists get weepy over fairness, safety, self-esteem-- or more generally over ways they think their enemies stomp on these "values".

Where they don't differ is that they both believe it's OK to force you to live by what they value, and kill you if you resist. Which is why I say they are all the same-- at least where it matters.

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Thursday, April 19, 2018

Darwin's advice


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#KnifeFree? #Spineless!

A liar doing what he does best


London's pathetic knife prohibition.

First off, "@MayorofLondon" is lying. There are endless very good, legitimate reasons to carry a knife. There are only a couple of reasons to not carry a knife, and they are all sad and pathetic. Such as the fact that a bully has threatened to use violence against you when his henchmen "catch" you with a knife. And he has promised they will catch you. This is a credible threat of archation from him, and I hope he pays the price soon. His victims need to fight back and stop him in a way he understands.

And I hope he loses a lot of henchmen in the process. Only those truly willing to commit boundless evil would enforce this prohibition.

If you think I'm serious about the right to own and to carry guns, you haven't seen anything yet if you threaten to violate my right to own and to carry knives.

Knives are what make us human, technology-wise. To try to stop people from carrying knives is to forbid them from living as humans. A knife ban is even less legitimate than a gun ban, and a gun ban isn't legitimate at all.

A gun is only helpful in extreme, limited situations. But knives are essential many times every day. To pretend that I'm not allowed to have one handy is a declaration of war against me. And I'm dead serious.

If anti-liberty bigots want war, then let them become anti-knife bigots.

I'm infuriated on behalf of the people of London. I wish they cared about their well-being half as much as I do.

I fear the populace of great Britain hasn't got the spine to stand up to this most heinous insult. They've gotten too domesticated and willing to put up with just about any atrocity committed in the name of "safety".

This is where allowing a government to ban guns will lead. People ridicule the notion of the "slippery slope", and pretend it's a logical fallacy. Well, here is an example in real life. It's not a logical fallacy. It's a Law of governance. Australia has been heading down the same suicidal path since their anti-gun travesty.

It would be nice to see this become the straw that broke the camel's back and triggered a tsunami against the anti-liberty bigot who thought he could just impose his will, no matter how horrible it was. I will cheer if this proves to be his end. He deserves it as much as any tyrant or dictator in history. And people complain about Trump... (at least Trump hasn't tried anything quite this insane. Yet.)

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Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Criticism



Do I dislike criticism? That depends whether it is valid criticism. And yes, I'm going to put it to the test.

I dislike dishonest criticism. I dislike dumb criticism, ignorant criticism, and criticism that's "too clever" for its own good. Criticism from people who rely on magic words and belief in the political process. What I really dislike is criticism that misses the mark because the person doesn't know what they are talking about and doesn't bother to get informed before criticizing. If you criticize me in this way, I won't take you seriously.

It's hard work to get informed so you can criticize sensibly. You might even have to read just about everything I've written over 11+ years to criticize credibly, and most don't want to bother.

As an example, someone (who started off by saying he knows I don't like criticism) went into a thing about how the NAP isn't a good moral principle for this or that reason.

He obviously hasn't bothered to get informed of my opinion on the NAP, the ZAP, morals, or principles. Things I write are often heavily hyperlinked for a reason. And those who criticize me based on their belief in some statist superstition aren't going to be taken seriously, either.

I have changed some of my views, opinions, and approaches over the years based on good, informed criticism. Sometimes I'm just flat-out wrong and I can see it when someone points it out. But often the person criticizing doesn't have a clue what they are talking about, and will either get ignored, scolded, or laughed at.

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Monday, April 16, 2018

Atelatheist- incomplete atheist

New word for you to consider-- Atelatheist (atel-atheist)

From atelo- (incomplete, imperfect), and atheist [a- (without) + theos (god)]
Someone who claims to be, or believes themselves to be, an atheist, but who still holds at least one superstitious belief in a godlike thing, religion, or organization. i.e. government.

Examples: almost every outspoken "atheist" in the "public sphere" today.


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It isn't Caesar's money. Taxation is theft.



Tell us therefore, What thinkest thou? Is it lawful to give tribute unto Caesar, or not?
But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said, Why tempt ye me, ye hypocrites?
Shew me the tribute money. And they brought unto him a penny.
And he saith unto them, Whose is this image and superscription? They say unto him, Caesar's. Then saith he unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's; and unto God the things that are God's.
  ~ Matthew 22:17-21 KJV

"Tribute" in this case means a "tax", or the money with which the "tax" is paid.

So, was the money in question Caesar's? Probably not. It would be very unlikely for it to have been.

First of all, government-- "Caesar"-- possesses nothing it didn't either steal or buy with stolen or counterfeited money. Even the money it prints, mints, and programs into existence. The metals, the mints, the printing presses, and the computers were ill-gotten. A thief doesn't own the stolen property he possesses. The money paid to the employees involved in creating the physical and virtual money is in the same category. Does the thief own something he makes from stolen materials with stolen tools? Obviously not, or property rights mean nothing.

The money isn't Caesar's property and isn't owed to him.

Even if the money did originally belong to Caesar, once he trades it for a product or service it is no longer his, no matter whose picture is on it. If I paint a self-portrait and sell it for $10, the portrait no longer belongs to me. I can't just go and take it and holler "Taxed!" and be in the right. It is no longer my property even if my picture is on it.

So, yeah, if you possess something which legitimately belongs to government (or anyone), give it back. It's not yours. Render it unto its rightful owner. But "tax" money isn't government's. "Taxation" is still, and always will be, theft. "Taxation" is never ethical. No "law" can change that.



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Sunday, April 15, 2018

Three topics big deal to libertarians

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for March 14, 2018)




There are three topics which come up frequently in libertarian writings: guns, drugs, and national borders. The reason is those three areas are where the people of America seem willing to let government do the most damage to Rightful Liberty, just to punish other people.

All three are hot buttons for almost everyone, with people on each side screaming at those on the other.

It's why those three topics keep coming up, not because I'm a broken record (does anyone still get the reference?).

None of those issues are legitimately subject to government meddling. No one can have the right or the "authority" to control them. None are listed by the U.S. Constitution as something government is allowed to interfere with, with one specifically placed beyond government's reach; not that government obeys the Constitutional prohibition on gun "laws".

Even if the Constitution permitted government to control guns, drugs, or national borders it still wouldn't be right. No document can create a right or "authority" out of thin air. If you have no authority to do something, you can't delegate that which you don't have to someone else on your behalf. It's simply not possible.

Even if you don't care about those issues, you are being violated in their name.

In particular, drug prohibition is used to trample the liberty of everyone regardless of whether they ever considered using recreational drugs. Prohibition is used to justify making it inconvenient to relieve your own allergies. It is used as justification for punishing medical professionals who care when their patients are suffering needlessly. It is the excuse used to track you, kick in doors in the middle of the night, probe you, and to generally treat you as government property-- which is what government employees believe you are.

The fact is, those topics matter. In everything, regardless of feelings I am always going to come down on the side of individual liberty and human rights; against those who seek to violate and control others.

It should be obvious those aren't the only important issues related to liberty. The right to travel without being stopped and questioned by armed government employees is also critical, as is getting government out of medicine, education, and the economy. The proliferation of licensing, for everything from jobs to driving to self-defense tools, is another major problem.

These issues will continue to be important to those of us who value individual liberty. Respecting liberty will always remain the greatest responsibility.

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Not a fan

...of government.
"Government is a group of people organizing to hire someone to say magic words at religious ceremonies and write on paper what the people who hired them want everyone within a claimed territory is supposed to be and do, then hiring an army of people in funny clothes with weapons to make everyone within said territory obey what the paper says or be punished with up to and including being murdered for noncompliance. 
That is the definition of a terrorist organization or violent gang." ~ Anonymous

When someone is right, they are right.

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Dishonest questions lead to unwanted answers



Recently on Quora, someone asked a dishonest question about whether countries with stronger "gun control laws" had "less shootings".

I pointed out that the question isn't an honest one because an attack on the innocent is wrong, regardless of which tool was used.
Someone replied, accusing me of building a straw man for pointing out the flaw in the original question.

He said I needed to just answer the question as asked, rather than changing the question.

I pointed out that this is like asking him if he has stopped beating his wife yet, and refusing to consider any answer other than a "yes" or a "no". If he points out that he doesn't beat his wife, and never has, is that a "straw man"?

But this is how anti-gun bigots operate. It's how they've fooled people into debating how much slavery is acceptable, rather than rejecting it altogether. It's how they've made up ideas such as "reasonable restrictions", "common sense gun laws", and all the other lies they promote. They aren't honest, and they can only "win" if you agree to play by the rules they set (and change when it suits them). I won't.

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Saturday, April 14, 2018

Guilty statists?



How much guilt does the "average statist" have for their beliefs, and how much slack should we cut them?

I've been having an interesting discussion with Jim Henshaw, the former Chair of the Hawaiian LP, recently of regions closer.

He says I "come across as a bit unforgiving at times". And, I can see that. I'm pretty sure this has caused me to lose followers and financial supporters. So, I asked his advice.

"...it throws me a bit when people label [a standard leftist bleeding heart] as the enemy, or as evil, or whatnot. It doesn't comport with my observed reality that someone can be loving and have wonderful intentions and be, from my standpoint, dead wrong. They're not the enemy, they just haven't had their noses rubbed in the consequences of government coercion enough to overcome the programming and cognitive dissonance."
So, I wondered what level of guilt the teen anti-gun activists have. They aren't lawmakers or enforcers, after all, and many people see them as having "wonderful intentions".

His response:
"I'd say the teen anti-gun activists are arguably almost as culpable as the people making policy, since they are stridently expending enormous energy to try to change public opinion and policy."
In his reply, he expressed that he considered there to be degrees of statist guilt. His rankings of statist actions is:

"...on a scale from making policy, to implementing policy, to huge expenditures on a mass scale urging changes in policy, to making contributions in time or money to statists when asked to do so, to voting, to trying to force one's opinions upon individuals they meet in ordinary life, to volunteering opinions only when asked, to quietly keeping one's thoughts to oneself, to thoughtfully considering the point of view of people urging one not to violate the NAP, to thinking the NAP is morally correct but in the action at hand an exception is warranted, to actually consistently living by the NAP to the best of one's abilities and trying to detect where one has a blind spot about the NAP that needs to be fixed ... to you."
It was funny, because after I sent him the question, I started thinking how I would answer if I had been asked the same, and that's similar to the conclusion I had reached.

Now, I wouldn't place myself at the end like that, even though that's where I strive to be. I have many flaws. But my whole life has been an attempt to think about the "blind spots" I had. And I've found plenty of them over the years. When I find them, I try to get rid of them, and by doing so, I move closer to the "anarchy" part of the map. That has been the one constant.

But, back on topic, he offered:

"I would distinguish between people who are unaware of the immorality of their actions versus people who are aware of the immorality but persist in doing evil acts."

I try to do this. It's why I insist that people aren't evil; actions are. But, of course, people who keep choosing to commit evil are going to appear evil. And once you've pointed out the evil they are supporting, if they refuse to listen, but continue to promote evil, does their opportunity to claim innocence end? I am not certain.

He shared a couple of specific examples from his own life.

Regarding "taxation":

"I've tried time and time again in political discussions with my GF to show that there is no distinction between taxation and theft, and she just keeps saying they just ARE different and then shutting down the topic when I ask in what way are they different. She can't defend it, but the cognitive dissonance has not reached the point where she will change her mind."

And "borders":

"I've gone a bit out of our way to drive her to where she could see the border into Mexico, and she was horrified at the physical evidence that we live in an open air low security prison. I think I also sowed some seeds of doubt when we headed back to Austin, hit an immigration checkpoint around 100 miles from the border, and I pointed out that we got sent to the cursory single question lane to the left, but that anyone looking latino was almost certainly being sent to the much longer and nastier line to the right, that the federal government was stealing her money to implement racist discriminatory treatment, which I think resonated with her since she's black and had ancestors who were owned by plantation owners."

So she's not ready to accept the reality of what she promotes, but she has been exposed to the horrors and did seem to feel something about them. That's a start, at least.

I'm probably always going to seem unforgiving toward statists, or at least toward any of their acts or views that are statist. I'm much "nicer" in person than online. I have to be considering I'm surrounded by statists every day, as you probably are, too. I don't think I'm obligated to excuse statism any more than I'm obligated to look the other way when someone is being bullied any other way, but... maybe I could be nicer to convince them to stop advocating government violence against non-violent people.

And, on any given topic a person can be either in favor of statism or liberty, with the vast majority of us holding an unexamined jumble of such views -- being nicer might help in filling up each person's "Bucket O' Freedom", drop by drop.

On the other hand, some people aren't going to respond to coddling and need a figurative slap in the face to snap them into the reality of what it is they promote. Maybe this blog isn't the place for those who want to be coddled (despite their Bucket O' Freedom being as shot full of holes as a beat-up rusty bucket in the desert that has been used for target practice with an unregistered machine gun).

What do you think?

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Friday, April 13, 2018

Concealed carry or revealed carry?



What part of "concealed" do people not understand?

Seems the first rule of "concealed carry" is that you don't go around yapping that you carry. And yet, I've encountered so many people who do just that. Usually bragging about their "permit" and wanting to show it off. I'm underwhelmed.

If you want to reveal that you carry, then open carry.

Yes, I want everyone, with few exceptions, to own and to carry firearms. I will assume you are doing so because I assume liberty. I'm probably interested in what you carry, how you carry it, how you like both the gun and carry options, and so on. But I'm probably not going to want to hear you talking about it in "mixed company". For your own protection. There might be an anti-gun bigot statist nearby. No need to tip them off.

I used to know a guy who would start talking about the gun in his boot as soon as he'd get drunk. Assuring me that if "anything goes down", he'd have it under control. He showed me his “permit” multiple times, as if it meant anything to me. If anything went down, I'd have been as worried about him as I was about any attackers. Not sure what he thought was going to "go down" at karaoke, anything can happen anywhere, but he believed he was ready for it. I always had my doubts about that.

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Thursday, April 12, 2018

Anti-gun societies are not "civilized"



How many times have you seen the claim that America has more guns (and fewer anti-gun "laws") than other civilized societies in "The West"?

It's a nonsense claim.

Countries with anti-gun "laws" are not civilized. They may be domesticated, or not. But "civilized"? No way!

One non-negotiable mark of a civilized society is that it doesn't interfere with the liberty or rights of those inside it. Anti-gun "laws" do interfere. They treat the residents as bad, stupid, helpless children.

All else being equal, the more anti-gun "laws", the less civilized a society. No matter the claims made about it by its fans.

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Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Patreon problems?

I still haven't gotten paid by Patreon this month. It's never been this late before. I've always had the money by the 6th of the month.
I got charged right on schedule for the people I support. I wonder if they got their money.
I wrote Patreon yesterday, asking if there's a problem, but haven't heard back from them yet (other than the automated reply with links to answers which have nothing to do with my problem).

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The Sound of ... the cage door closing



"The borders have just been closed." ~ Uttered by a nun to the von Trapp family in The Sound of Music

It wasn't said in celebration, but as evidence that the bad guys had done something evil. Something which would put the good guys in greater danger.

This is what borderists refuse to see. Those who "close" borders might fool you into believing it's to your benefit, but it isn't. It is a trap. A cage. Yes, it may keep some of "them" out, but it can also keep you in.

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Monday, April 09, 2018

Backwards values



What do you value more than liberty? "Your" culture? The nation? Safety? "Morality"?

Do you really value those things if you believe they can't hold their own against others living within the things they have a right to do? Living in Rightful Liberty?

It sure doesn't seem like it to me.

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Sunday, April 08, 2018

Any tyranny is too much tyranny

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for March 7, 2018)




How much is enough?

When it turns out stronger anti-drug "laws" don't prevent addiction or tragedies, how much are you willing to expand prohibition? How far are you willing to have armed government employees go-- on your behalf-- to impose your opinions? Would you approve of permanent checkpoints on all roads? Do you favor banning the manufacture of any and all chemicals which could possibly be combined to make substances you are willing to kill people over?

Are you willing to make dying of cancer even more agonizing than it already is, just to make it harder for people to abuse painkillers? What about chronic pain which isn't fatal? Is it just too bad, but worth making people suffer to push your anti-drug agenda? You might as well encourage people to become rattle-shaking witch doctors, chanting over the sick and injured, hoping it helps.

When your current wish list of anti-gun "laws" fails to make Americans safe, what next? Do you demand the government suppress any knowledge or technology which could allow people to invent or build their own guns? Do you send armed government employees door to door searching for guns or gun-making supplies and information, killing all who resist? Welcome to the new stone age, where murder still occurs.

What do you propose when "securing the border" doesn't magically "make America great again"? When crime still runs rampant in the same crime-ridden, socialist cities. When the economy doesn't heal just because you prevent someone from taking a job you don't want, for pay you wouldn't accept? When it turns out border walls and a 100-mile wide "Constitution-Free Zone" all around the edges of America don't make you more prosperous, happy, or safe, what next?

What will you propose when each of your endorsed attacks on liberty only creates more of what you claim to not want? Because this is what will happen if you get your way.

What do you hate or fear so badly that you are willing to destroy society in order to stomp it out? Have you taken into account all the unintended consequences your enforcement fetish will unleash? If not, you aren't being responsible.

It's time to consider just where are you willing to draw the line between tyranny and liberty. How much tyranny will it take to satisfy you?

I already know where my line is. For me, any tyranny is too much. I wish I saw some limit on the amount others are willing to endorse.

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Smart people unwittingly embarrassing themselves



I feel embarrassed for people who assume that governing of others is legitimate and necessary.

They'll be speaking right along, making good sense, and suddenly they slip. They'll say something in support of some theft-funded government program, or democrazy, or some politician. Or even more likely, they'll randomly bash a politician or policy that goes against how they think humans should be managed, robbed, and controlled.

Their credibility takes a hit, and I suddenly feel embarrassed for them. My daughter would call this kind of gaff "cringeworthy".

They don't even realize they goofed. They'll believe they stayed consistent and rational and smart, even while expressing their belief in an ancient superstitious belief in "authority" or government.

If you're trying to impress others by how smart you are, but you don't see that theft is wrong when you like where the stolen money will go, your "argument" falls flat on its face.

Sometimes their lecture or article is otherwise pure gold, but then they feel the need to insert these air pockets of absurdity-- voids of statist "woo"-- which take away from the value of the rest. The rest of what they say might be based on firm facts and evidence, but they sneak the statism in there so it will be mistaken for fact, too. It's not. It's opinion. Very weak and baseless opinion. That's all that excuses statism.

I shouldn't be embarrassed for other people when they say stupid things. But I am. I can't help it. I want to help them stop saying dumb things and embarrassing themselves. But when they refuse to see that what they said is dumb, due to being blinded by their superstition, they won't believe they need to change. It's sad. And painfully embarrassing.

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Saturday, April 07, 2018

"Obey the nice monster, Dear"



"Might makes right" is a mighty powerful belief.

I am reminded of this whenever I point out that a cop ordering you to drop your gun (or whatever he believes might be a gun) is no different than a rapist holding a knife to your throat and telling you to do what he says.

The comments never seem to vary.

I'm told "If you want to be dead, don't obey the cop" or something along those lines. I've never disputed that fact. I am just saying that cops are bad guys, not that they can't kill you.

Where does the hallucination that I ever said otherwise come from?

I suspect it comes from a desperate attempt to see police as legitimate. A way to excuse obeying cops no matter what they demand.

You have every right to kill a cop in self-defense the moment one confronts you. And you WILL DIE if you do so. His gang is big and powerful, and has the delusional support of almost all of your friends and neighbors. Saying "No" to a cop is suicide. Accept it and choose your path with informed awareness.

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Friday, April 06, 2018

"Statistics" are irrelevant

Chart swiped from here


I don't know if the above chart is accurate. It probably is, but the thing is, it doesn't even matter.

Even if anti-gun "laws" would save some lives (without costing other lives) you don't have the right to impose those kind of "laws".

Even if some former slaves die after being freed (and the evidence is pretty clear that a lot of them did die as a direct result of "emancipation") you still have no right to enslave anyone for any reason. Not for their own good, not "for the children", and not because the cotton won't be picked otherwise.

It doesn't matter if you claim their lives matter, so to keep them alive you need to keep them enslaved. Liberty is dangerous, but it is essential anyway.

It's the same with "gun control" [sic]. You simply don't have the right, and if you don't have a right, you can't transfer a right you don't have to someone else on your behalf.

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Thursday, April 05, 2018

Scott Adams on guns



Scott Adams of Dilbert fame wrote a post about the "gun debate" a few days ago. It's worth a read, even if you won't agree with his conclusion. Here's the link to it, if you are interested.

Now I'll point out where he's wrong.

"The persuasion filter sees individuals with different risk profiles favoring policies they feel will keep them safer even if it makes someone else less safe."
Maybe some people do that. Especially the anti-gun bigots. But I don't. The only people truly less safe around guns are those intent on archating. And I don't care about their safety, and I don't believe you should, either. After all, how much do they care about anyone else's safety?

"...no one involved in the gun debate, on either side, is engaged in honest, rational debate."
Yes, one side is. You just want to spin it to be nice to the anti-gun bigots; to not make them feel bad.

"...you see people who are pursuing their own self-interest as they see it at the expense of other people."
At the "expense" of who, exactly? Rapists, politicians, muggers, home invaders, etc.? Since when are you obligated to protect the feelings of those who want to molest you? It is in every decent person's self-interest to encourage gun ownership for everyone. Even if I go crazy and try to kill an innocent person, and they shoot me in self-defense, I completely support their right to do so. Maybe knowing they are armed would help keep me sane, or scare me into not attacking them even if I go nuts.

"...gun ownership is a freedom granted in the Constitution"
Wrong, wrong, wrong. And this is the foundation of just about ALL anti-gun bigotry.

Gun ownership (and the carrying of guns and all other weapons) is not a freedom granted by anything. It is a fundamental human right which predates the first government. It exists now, everywhere, whether the ruling gang of bullies respects the right or not. It will still exist long after the final goverment is forgotten in the mists of time. It would exist if the Constitution had never been written, and will exist if the Second Amendment is abolished. No "laws" can touch the right, although they can give bullies excuses to murder and cage those exercising the right.

"...the unspoken part of those preferences includes the knowledge that some number of innocent people, including children, will die because of current gun laws."
Yes. Gun "laws" kill. The answer isn't more anti-gun "laws", resulting in more innocent deaths. It is more wrong to "do something" that results in innocent deaths, than to fail to do something that might trade some of those lives for others. In other words, it is more wrong to shoot an innocent person than it is to fail to jump into the path of the bullet to save the life.

"We humans can’t say aloud that we prefer our position on guns (either pro or con) even though we know that getting our way will mean certain death to innocent people."
Innocent people will die even if guns had never been invented. More innocents will die if you manage to take guns away from all the good people, leaving them only in the hands of criminals, police, and the military (and all the other government goons who would be exempt from the prohibition). Why make it even harder and less likely that those innocents will have the proper effective tools available for self-defense when they are attacked? That's just evil.

"...we live in a political system that allows (and maybe encourages) people to vote for their self-interest, as they see it, even if the outcome would lead to the death of other citizens."
And this is why rights and liberty are never legitimately up for a v*te. It is wrong to decide against human rights for other people, no matter how many people agree with you.

"...for some types of political decisions, people will die no matter which direction you go. And that means people will vote in a way that makes it less likely they will be the ones dying and more likely it will be some other class of people doing the dying."
I will gladly help people of other "classes" learn to safely handle and use a gun. Again, this is why "politics" is a horrible thing to allow to meddle with a society. To me, there are really only two "classes" of people: those who archate and those who don't. Or maybe it would be better expressed as those who make a habit of archating and those who avoid it. I want all innocent people to prevail against their attackers every time, no matter what their bank account, skin color, ethnicity, place of birth, religion, sex, or orientation. It's not a difficult thing to explain, but apparently it is difficult to accept.

Honest Pro-gun argument: “I realize the right to own guns will result in the death of thousands of innocent people. But owning a gun lowers the risk for my family, in my opinion, because of my specific situation, and so I favor gun rights.”
or…
Honest Anti-gun argument: “I realize that some forms of gun control could result in the deaths of people who would otherwise be able to defend themselves, but I’m okay with that because my family’s risk would be lower if there were fewer guns in circulation.”
Well, I question the use of the word "honest". Why are the words "thousands" and "innocent" omitted from the anti-gun argument? And how would the anti-gun bigot's family be safer? They might feel safer, if they are oblivious. But if they don't archate, the good guys won't be shooting them, and not having a gun won't protect them from the bad guys who will still have guns or another way to impose their will on unarmed victims. The anti-gun argument is based on wishful thinking. A belief in magic. 

I want to do what I can to prevent the deaths of innocent people. Making sure it is easier for them to own and carry a gun is part of that. Making sure they don't feel so hopeless they want to kill themselves is an even bigger part. Getting rid of anti-gun "laws" doesn't result in innocent deaths-- existence results in innocent deaths. 

"I’m pro-gun, with a preference for a national no-buy list."
Who gets to create this list? The bullies of government who want to find any reason they can manufacture to say as many people as possible are prohibited from having a gun? No thanks.

"Private gun owners stand no chance against a professional military"
Tell that to a growing list of private gun owners who have humiliated professional militaries all over the planet. But it sounds right if you don't actually think it through.

I understand Adams wants to look balanced on the issue. But there is no balance to the question of slavery vs liberty. The appearance of balance is a deception.

Added: Please read Jim Henshaw's excellent comment below.

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Tuesday, April 03, 2018

The Denial is strong in this one



In the past I have pondered whether it is ethical to accept "welfare" from government, but I have never doubted that it is dangerous. I have compared it to milking a grizzly bear.

Over on Medium some poor woman said that my characterizing welfare as "the cruelest slavery" is a lie. Her evidence: when her family had their welfare cut off, they went through "hell".

...?

Then she scolded me for my "conservative mindset". Strike TWO!

I should have left her alone, but I pointed out that she only proved my point. Her family went through "hell" when the welfare was cut off precisely because they had been enslaved by it and didn't know how to make it on their own. She'll never admit it; probably not even to herself.

If I were cold, heartless, and didn't care about people, I'd encourage them to become dependent on handouts which can be used to control and manipulate them-- and to punish them when they aren't sufficiently controlled and manipulated.
But I do care, so I warn people instead. Even when they shove their fingers in their ears and scream so they can't hear me.

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Monday, April 02, 2018

So, you don't want a gun...



Here's a shocker: If you don't want a gun, I don't want you to have one. Why would I encourage you to carry something you don't want, and may not want to learn to handle safely? That doesn't help anyone.

If the reason you don't want a gun is based on lies told by anti-gun bigots, I will probably try to set you straight, but if you still don't want a gun after being shown the truth, that's fine with me. Go in peace.

But don't imagine that you not wanting a gun in any way obligates me to not have one. It doesn't.

My gun will never be used to harm you unless you attack me (or someone else) or make a credible threat to do so. In other words, if you don't want me to shoot you, don't archate. Funny thing, though-- I see the advocacy of government violence against gun owners (you might call it "common sense gun laws") as a threat. It might rise to the level of a credible threat to attack me if you're not careful.

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Sunday, April 01, 2018

Common sense gun deregulation needed

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for February 28, 2018)




It's time to take a hard look at America's gun laws. In fact, it's over a century past due. How many more innocent lives will be snuffed out before people demand change? Before they demand politicians stand up and do what's right?

I'm talking about common-sense gun deregulation.

Anti-gun "laws" can't make anyone safer-- except those who prefer victims who can't fight back effectively. Every gun regulation is a violation of the rights to life, liberty, and property. America has compromised its way into this problem.

No one has the right to regulate guns (or other weaponry), nor can anyone invent this right through power or popularity. Attempting to do so anyway is ethically as bad as shooting up crowds.

Put government back in its tiny box through common-sense gun deregulation.

It's time to end background checks and to get over the idea that some people can be prohibited from owning guns.
It's time to abolish every "gun free" zone.
It's time to get rid of "laws" controlling who may carry what weapon, where, and in what way, including licensing schemes. Slaves depend on others for defense; free men and women don't.

It's time to stop pretending anyone has the right to decide what type of gun, which gun accessories, or how many rounds of ammunition someone else needs. It's no one's business unless someone is making a credible threat to harm innocent people.
It's time to stop pretending my rights are up for grabs whenever someone other than me commits an act of evil.

It's time to stop acting like liberty is subject to the opinions of emotionally immature and intellectually deficient protesters.
It's time to stop pretending you want to outlaw guns when you are willing to let the police and military keep theirs. You aren't against guns, you just want government to have them all. How would you enforce any gun ban, if not with guns?

It's time to abolish the BATFE. It's a criminal gang from the ground up and has been from the day it was established. End it, without transferring its "job" to another criminal gang like the FBI.

It's time to encourage everyone to accept their sacred responsibility to be properly armed every day, everywhere they go. It's time to fire and sue any government employee who questions any person for exercising this absolute, universal human right.

Get government out of the scam of making up rules concerning guns. The cost of ignoring this problem one more day is too high.
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Presidential Derangement Syndrome



I didn't v*te for Trump. Or anyone. I got over that tail-chasing spasm a while back, and I refuse to consent to a ruler of any sort. And I'm certainly not going to endorse one!

That being said...

Donald Trump was not the dawn of the corrupt, disgusting president. I get tired of statists of the "left" pretending he was. Their most recent darling, Obama, was just as bad, but he was corrupt and disgusting in ways they liked so they ignored it. And still do.

And, really, every president, congressvermin, mayor (except Mayor Stubbs- RIP), councilcritter, etc. is the same. Corrupt to the core, because corruption is built into the "system" and can't be eliminated without abandoning government (the only sane and ethical choice, really).

I also get tired of statists of the "right" pretending Trump is somehow OK, because he's doing what they want (even as he doesn't, but that's another story).

The statists of the "left" love to moan about how awful it is that anyone could have v*ted for Trump. I agree. I also think it was awful anyone threw their support behind Hillary, Bernie, or whatever else was running for the job. Including Vermin Supreme-- the only honest candidate.

Elitist "leftist" statists love to show how elite and enlightened they are by trashing Trump. Let Trump trash himself; he's doing a good job of that. But admitting you supported one of the other parasites doesn't really show you in a good light. And Trump-bashing, while acting as though someone else would have been preferable, is downright delusional.

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