Monday, November 11, 2019

Internet update.

I was misled about when the internet would be hooked up at the house. They are now saying the 20th.

I'll try to take my laptop to my parents' house to use their WiFi so I can start posting again before then.

I'm pretty unhappy with the situation, but it's not the fault of the internet provider.


Sunday, November 10, 2019

You get the political circus you voted on

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for October 9, 2019)

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, children of all ages, and all the rest of you, too! Welcome to the Big Top. Yes, that's right: the Impeachment Circus, with its dancing elephants and prancing donkeys, is coming to town.

It has been announced amid much fanfare. The flyers have been tacked to telephone poles all over America and I think I hear the parade of animals coming up the street. Grab your manure shovels from the tool shed and be ready to start scooping.

If only it were this exciting or momentous. I'm already bored with it and it hasn't even started. It has become a tedious political ritual.

These days the show promises to kick off once per administration or so, but it usually gets canceled for lack of interest. This time it seems it will actually happen.

It would save a lot of time and strife if impeachment proceedings were automatically begun upon each new president's oath-of-office. This way the opposition party could skip the saber-rattling theatrics and just get on with collecting the president's offenses as they find (or imagine) them.

Or they could if the theatrics weren't the whole point. They are performing tricks for their voters. It's a shame it still works.

Every president does something-- and usually many things-- the political opposition feels deserve impeachment. So they keep testing the waters, trying to gauge how much support for impeachment they could get from the rest of the congressvermin in their own party and from their supporters in the population.

Unfortunately, before they get so caught up in impeachment fever, they normally manage to pass some new legislation. I'm firmly against this development. Seeing as how there are only two kinds of legislation-- the unnecessary and the harmful-- I would rather they spend their time trying to politically crucify the president they hate. It's a much less harmful way to earn political points. Better to sacrifice every president than the people's lives, liberty, and property.

Since it's a political circus, I'm inclined to say "Not my circus; not my monkeys", but I know a lot of people are very attached to this circus and to its monkeys-- or elephants and donkeys as the case may be-- claiming them as their own.

I hope you enjoy the show. As long as you keep buying tickets-- by casting votes-- you'll keep getting the government you deserve. It's what you voted for no matter who you voted for.

Thank you for helping support

Friday, November 08, 2019

Internet soonish?

I've been told the internet will be hooked up sometime Monday. I'm hoping!

This is getting old.


Thursday, November 07, 2019

Get paid to live (and die) a video game

Sometimes I'll run into a quote that's so off-base I just can't let it go. This was one of those.

"...why would any white male with a brain join the military of a country that has abandoned his interest and is operating against him? Why would he join a military of a country that the Democratic Party prevents from defending its own borders?" ~ Paul Craig Roberts

Why would anyone with a brain, of any color, of any sex, join any government military? For the opportunity to be paid in stolen money while acting out video games, of course.

Few, if any, "troops" think beyond that. There's no deep philosophical reasoning there. There's no political agenda beyond the ingrained "America! Rah rah!" brainwashed into them through years of pledging allegiance to Holy Pole Quilt. You'll find Right-Statists and Left-Statist among the troops,
but all are statists to some degree.

All militaries are operating against your interests. As are all "countries".

When he says "country" he's talking about government. Not a particular area of the globe, nor the population which calls that area 'home', but the government infesting that area to the detriment of the population. When he speaks of that country's "borders" he's talking about government's truce-lines with competing governments-- implemented so the respective governments know who they can rob and molest without the other government fighting them over it.

And he pretends it would be noble to become a hired gun for that government. Statist through and through.

Joining a government military only helps that government. It doesn't benefit "the people". It doesn't "defend freedom"-- it helps government crush it. Don't join government in its fight against liberty.

Writing to promote liberty is my job.
I hope I add something you find valuable enough to support. If so...
YOU get to decide if I get paid.

Wednesday, November 06, 2019

Take the time to pick up trash

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for November 6, 2019)

I'm always in favor of cleaning up litter, so Clovis' semi-annual Trek for Trash last weekend seems like a good idea. A useful task made into a party. An even better idea is to not wait until someone organizes a special event, but to pick up any trash you run across as you go about your daily travels. You can make the world a little cleaner every day.

Decent, responsible people don't litter, and they make sure their trash can't accidentally escape into the wild to violate other people's property rights. I realize the wind around here does a good share of the littering, scattering anything which isn't tied down, but knowing this, responsible people won't leave anything loose for the wind to the rest...

Thank you for helping support

Tuesday, November 05, 2019

Genius politicians

I heard someone refer to a person I don't like-- a politician-- as a "genius". At first, I scoffed. Then I thought about it. Yes, it's possible.

Someone can be a genius for good, they can be a neutral genius, or they could have a genius for evil. An evil genius-- the basis for lots of old mad scientist movies. Fun in fiction; not so fun in reality.

Genius doesn't necessarily mean your brain is being used in good ways, just that it is a lot more powerful-- better organized than most peoples' brains.

To be a political genius is not a good thing. It's like a genius for breaking into houses. So to call a politician a genius isn't a compliment.

Writing to promote liberty is my job.
I hope I add something you find valuable enough to support. If so...
YOU get to decide if I get paid.

Monday, November 04, 2019


Just a heads-up:
"We" are switching internet providers, looking for something more affordable. Unfortunately, I think the previous provider will be disconnected sometime today, but there's no definite schedule (not even a hint) for the replacement to be hooked up, and it sounds like it's going to be quite a project.

So, if I go missing for a few days don't worry too much. I have some posts scheduled to post automatically-- for a few days, anyway.

Writing to promote liberty is my job.
I hope I add something you find valuable enough to support. If so...
YOU get to decide if I get paid.

I don't need that!

Do I need a gang of flawed, greedy, selfish, aggressive thieves to protect me from flawed, greedy, selfish, or aggressive people, some of whom are thieves?

Does that make sense to you? It makes no sense to me.

But it apparently makes sense to most people.

Writing to promote liberty is my job.
I hope I add something you find valuable enough to support. If so...
YOU get to decide if I get paid.

Sunday, November 03, 2019

My first car was an electric one

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for October 2, 2019)

You may find it hard to believe, but my first car was an electric car. Nothing so fancy as a Tesla, though. It was a 1975 Sebring-Vanguard Citicar. That's us in the photograph, in the spring of 1980, looking nerdy.

At school and around the neighborhood my car was known as "The Nuke".

Why such an odd nickname? Because it sported a bumper sticker which said something to the effect of "One nuke plant saves enough oil for X-thousand cars"; I don't remember the exact wording or specific number.

Maybe it seems strange for someone who would put up with the inconveniences of a 1970s electric car, partly for environmental reasons, to also be promoting nuclear energy.

I've been mostly pro-nuclear since I was a teenager. It seems better to me than the other realistic alternatives. My biggest objection stems from being against government subsidies for nuclear energy, as I am for anything. To be viable in the long term, nuclear energy needs to sustain itself without the millstone of "government assistance" around its neck.

I'm also concerned about how the waste materials are dealt with, but I think it's a solvable problem. The federal government has threatened, for decades, to use nearby Deaf Smith county as a nuclear dump because of it's low population density, remoteness, and geological stability. I'm ambivalent about this idea, especially because I'm not sure it's a good idea to store nuclear waste so far from the source-- which means it has to be shipped across the country-- or to store it over America's most important aquifer. Science, rather than politics, should be used to decide.

I'm also in favor of wind and solar power; I have solar panels for charging my phone and rechargeable batteries. There's a place for it all, including coal and petroleum.

There's no energy source which is without environmental impact. Waste and toxins are produced in manufacturing solar panels and wind generators, plus the huge amounts of land such things typically use. These also share the problem with nuclear energy of government subsidies holding them down.

Even if society returned to pre-industrial levels (something I'd accept better than most), we'd be cutting down forests and burning wood and coal. Without killing off most of the people on Earth-- something I'm against-- there is no better way yet discovered to reduce environmental impact than to use more nuclear energy. I just wish it could be done wisely-- leaving government and politicians out of the discussion.

Thank you for helping support

Making fires with antiques

When I was a teen, my paternal grandmother gave me an old glass paperweight. She told me it had been in the family (at that time) for around 100 years.

Today it found a new use: firestarter.

I've been talking about firemaking to someone on Steemit who mentioned trying to use broken glass and it got me to thinking. I think it would be really hard to get a focal point from a piece of broken glass, but...

The paperweight seemed like a good potential lens. I have heard of crystal balls on display in store windows causing fires, I'll bet the glass paperweight could do that, too.

Being roughly spherical, the focal length is very short. It actually started burning the tinder just sitting there beside it. You can see the focal point in the top picture-- the tinder was smoking at that point, but you can't really see it in the photo.

I let it burn for a while, and kept adding more tinder dust. Finally, I blew on it and saw that the ember was pretty large, so I put the paperweight safely in the shade, added more tinder, and blew it into flame. That's the bottom picture, but the flames are not visible. Oh well.

I also used it to light some charcloth, and it did so instantly.

Since the photos don't show the process very well I decided to make a video:


Writing to promote liberty is my job.
I hope I add something you find valuable enough to support. If so...
YOU get to decide if I get paid.

Saturday, November 02, 2019

"Thoughts and prayers"

Left-Statists go crazy when any non-Left-Statist offers "thoughts and prayers" after a tragedy or a horrific crime-- particularly after a mass shooting. Yes, I realize "thoughts and prayers" seems empty and doesn't fix anything (but after the event, nothing can).

So what do Left-Statists offer instead of "thoughts and prayers"? Outage and "laws", of course.

And they pretend this is somehow better.

Your "thoughts" don't help the situation. And I don't believe prayers actually do anything physical. But both let me know that someone cares and has me in mind. That's not a bad thing.

On the other hand, outrage not only doesn't help, it can lead to harm. Especially if that outrage is expressed by violating natural human rights with some counterfeit "laws". I understand feeling outrage; I feel it, too. But I don't allow my outrage to justify violating you just to feel I have done "something".

"Do something" is worse than doing nothing if the "something" you do is wrong. Legislation is always wrong.

My own approach is to NOT commit horrors and to commit myself to not standing by if some loser tries to commit a gross violation in my presence. That seems a healthier way to handle such matters, but then I'm not a statist.

Yet still-- Give me "thoughts and prayers" over outrage and "laws" any day!

Writing to promote liberty is my job.
I hope I add something you find valuable enough to support. If so...
YOU get to decide if I get paid.

Friday, November 01, 2019

Making people... better

Capt. Malcolm "Mal" Reynolds (Serenity): This report is maybe twelve years old. Parliament buried it, and it stayed buried 'til River dug it up. This is what they feared she knew. And they were right to fear, 'cause there's a universe of folk that are gonna know it too. They're gonna see it. Somebody has to speak for these people. You all got on this boat for different reasons, but you all come to the same place. So now I'm asking more of you than I have before. Maybe all. 'Cause as sure as I know anything I know this: They will try again. Maybe on another world, maybe on this very ground, swept clean. A year from now, ten, they'll swing back to the belief that they can make people... better. And I do not hold to that. So no more running. I aim to misbehave.
Removing people's tools of defense (self- and other) doesn't make them better people. It doesn't make for a better world. Not on any world.

It makes them dependent, scared, weak, and less safe.

You may believe your society, with more anti-gun "laws", means it is more advanced; better. You'd be wrong.

Yes, statists believe they can ban guns and make people better, or at least make society better. And safer. It's a religious belief on their part. They'll pursue it until they can't anymore. They will try again. Over and over, anywhere they get the chance. Believing they are somehow making people... better. I do not hold to that.

I aim to misbehave.

Writing to promote liberty is my job.
I hope I add something you find valuable enough to support. If so...
YOU get to decide if I get paid.