How Many REALLY Want Freedom?

I have been thinking a lot lately about the concept of freedom and liberty as it pertains to the discussions that we have here at Stand Up For America. I read the responses that come in to the things that I write. Often I can find plenty of people who are more than willing to agree with me or tell me how wrong I am. But what I have have been attempting to ascertain is the level of commitment that people have to the principles that they espouse on this site. Remember, quite a while ago, I spoke to the idea that some things I would write would be discussions about how things should be while others would be more concerned with dealing with where we really are. Well, what I offer tonight is a bit of a combination of the two. Because in the discussions that we have been having around the way things are, I have begun to feel like the way things should be is not something most are comfortable with.

What I mean to say is this: I have come to fear that the vast majority of Americans do not want to be free in the truest sense of the word. That isn’t to say that they don’t want more freedom than they have. But the concept of freedom as the most diehard believers see it is a concept that many simply are not willing to deal with. And this is not a rant against those on the left who advocate larger government doing more and more while taking more and more freedoms away. This is my opinion about those on both sides who advocate for the rights of the “state” over the rights of the individual in any situation.

It is easy to attack the left on this issue. They work on the false premise of the collective being more important than the individual. What I mean is, it is in their DNA to say freedom but to actually mean freedom so long as it contributes to the “greater good” myth that they have. I have never met a Democrat that truly believed that the liberty of the individual was more important than the collective. I understand that this is a fundamental core belief difference. I don’t “fault” them for this belief. It really isn’t their fault, after all. A traitorous public education system instills the importance of the collective into folks beginning on day one when they are taught that “if you didn’t bring enough for everyone, you can’t have it.”

What many don’t realize, is that it is just as easy to attack the right on this issue. Because in the end, the GOP does the exact same thing as the Democrats, they are just on the other sides of the issues. They believe it is their right to trample the individual liberties so long as they are doing it for “moral reasons”. After all, we can’t let those evil gay folks do something as hideous as declare their love for each other in a church that agrees to marry them. No, Republicans, despite all your rhetoric and claims, you are just as against freedom as the Democrats are. Claiming otherwise means you simply lack the ability to be honest with yourself.

But the question that needs to be answered is this: Why exactly do the two major parties in the United States political game both trample the idea of individual liberty? I mean a vast majority of Americans, if questioned about individual issues, will contradict the idea of individual liberty at some point. The religious right believes in individual liberty as long as you are doing it God’s way. The liberal left believes in individual liberty as long as it doesn’t interfere with what is best for the collective. And both sides throw the phrase around as though they actually support individual liberty! They don’t. Freedom is something that is talked about a lot in America, but true freedom is NOT what the vast majority of Americans want. Why do you think that is? I have a theory, or better put, a belief…..

The vast amount of Americans are scared to death of true freedom.

A Pirate Convention!!!!

From this point on in the article, when I refer to freedom, I am talking about real freedom. The freedom to do whatever you want to do so long as it does not impose on anyone else. The kind of freedom that most in America make fun of as though the idea itself is a crackpot theory believed only by those too stupid to understand a complex modern world.

Freedom is hard. Freedom takes a lot of work. And most important, freedom takes a level of personal responsibility that most Americans are not willing to take, because they are not confident that they can survive in a world where they have to be responsible for their own actions and live with the consequences of them.

Freedom means that you are responsible on your own for finding out what is safe and what is not. It means that you are responsible for the care of your own body. It means that you are responsible for planning to be comfortable when you are no longer able to work. It means that you are responsible for researching a bit the people that you choose to enter into business agreements with. It means that no matter what the action is that you take, there is not a big government watchdog that is sitting out there doing the work for you. Take a look at some of the personal responsibility that is given away even though the alternative is clearly a disaster.

Social Security. The majority of Americans get their panties in a bunch when social security reform is mentioned. Talk about eliminating social security and you will see fainting spells nationwide. In the 2004 Presidential campaign, Bush proposed that we take just 2% of the 14% of our compensation that goes to social security and be personally responsible for investing it. Just 2%. And the American public rejected it. It was too much for Americans to be responsible for that 2%. They would rather that the government continued to collect it and not save a single dime. They would rather continue to give it to the government to spend away on the miniscule chance that they might see some of it again one day when they get old. Freedom was too hard.

Health Care. As we saw lately, many Americans are more that willing to turn their health care over to the federal government despite a government track record of ZERO PERCENT of government programs reducing costs or coming in under budget. Their health care! Put the partisan games away for a minute, is there anyone that actually believes that the government is going to make health care better or cheaper? Yet because they don’t want to have to do the work themselves to make health care better or cheaper, they turn it over to the federal government. Freedom is just too hard.

Government Education. It isn’t “public”, it is government. My number one target for reform in this country. We have allowed the government to raise our children. We have watched as the government education system in the United States has relegated what is supposed to be the land of opportunity into a second rate education haven. Our children cannot do any of the staples at the level of other industrialized countries. And we spend more money per child than just about everyone. Despite private schools doing a better job for less money per student, Americans oppose the idea of privatizing education. The results speak for themselves: Government run education is a massive failure. And people still want government to do it, buying into that false belief that throwing more money at it is the answer. They do so because being responsible for your own child’s education is too much work. Freedom is just too hard.

I can do examples like this all day long. And I encourage others to add more examples to the comments below. Unions negotiating wages, the FCC protecting kids from harmful broadcasting, the FDA approving food and drugs, government regulating business, and countless other examples abound. But for expediency in this article, I think everyone gets the point. In general, Americans don’t want freedom in the truest sense of the word. Americans no longer believe in individual liberty.

19th Century Immigration... Willing to Risk EVERYTHING for a chance at freedom!

Imagine immigrants to this country throughout history. They came here because the very idea of freedom and individual liberty was so appealing that they were willing to risk treacherous ocean crossings and give up everything they had for a mere chance at being truly in control of their own destinies. The founders of this country believed in the idea of freedom and liberty to such an extent that they risked a war with one of the world’s greatest powers to gain it. Many of the patriots that started this country lived, and died, just to give us the chance at liberty that they believed every man was entitled to.

And what do we have today? An America where the people are only interested in which party will make their life easier. Not more free. Easier. How sad is that? Americans want their toughest decision to be who to vote for on American Idol, which fast food joint should I get on the way home, or should I buy a Toyota or a Honda? They want their corporate ventures to be low risk (the only reason that the “corporation” exists is to mitigate risk), their children bussed across town to a “better” public school, and their children to always get a trophy, even for finishing in last place.

Look at the way that those who espouse the ideas of true freedom are debated and dismissed, even on this site. To want a world where one is the only one responsible for their own lives is considered crazy. They are told that they simply don’t understand a complex world. They are told that it cannot work, despite the fact that America grew into the best country in the world with true freedom as its principle, and has been on the decline every year since our liberties began being taken away. The bigger government has gotten, the more our individual liberty has been usurped, and the faster the United States has barreled towards losing its status as the best country in the world.

Really?

The belief that true freedom cannot work, or that individual liberty cannot exist in today’s complex world, is overwhelming. And it is patently false. Those who believe that it cannot work fall into one of two categories. They are either afraid of being responsible for their own lives, or they are too lazy to want to have to do the work that comes with freedom. I know that statement is going to piss a lot of people off, but so be it. It is what I believe. And the unfortunate fact is that the vast majority of Americans fall into one of those two categories.

Freedom is hard. There is no doubt about that simple fact. True liberty and freedom would make our lives far harder to live than they are today. But I guarantee one thing: While our lives would be harder, they would be far more worth living. I may not see true freedom in my lifetime, but just striving for it will make my life better. It is the one thing in this world that should trump every other thing. I know that not everyone believes that. And you are entitled to that belief. But if you don’t believe that individual liberty is the most important thing….. you are simply wrong.

I will continue to push for whatever takes me one step closer to realizing freedom as the universal right that cannot be trumped by anything else. That means that I will support some things that don’t get us 100% of the way there, but move us on that path. Getting there is going to take small steps. Nikita  Khrushchev once said, “We can’t expect the American People to jump from Capitalism to Communism, but we can assist their elected leaders in giving them small doses of Socialism, until they awaken one day to find that they have Communism.” Freedom is much the same way. So I offer the USWeapon converse quote:

We cannot expect that the American people will jump from where we are to true freedom. But we can assist any plan that gives them small doses of liberty, until one day they awaken to find that they are free.

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Comments

  1. Excellent article, USW! I agree 100%

    I’m reminded of a car ride with my good friend from China. An insect was flying around the compartment and finally landed on my window. So I opened the window a bit for the bug to fly out, but thing just plain refused to exit. My friend said to me “There’s much freedom, but its very scary”. Its been five or six years and I still remember that moment. It struck me as being very true for her. What I find scary, is relying on others. That’s something to ponder……

    • Good Morning :)

      Good article USW, should make for some good conversation. I can think of many things that has made our lives less free over the past few decades, and it mostly revolves around Government and their decisions. It seems the only way to be free and work hard at it, one must become a criminal in the eyes of Govt.

      Sad but true.

      Peace!

      G!

    • USW,

      I really liked this article and e-mailed it to a few people. I think you are correct, many don’t want to be free because it requires work. They would rather have the government make hard decisions for them. I also agree with you that the government run education system or indoctrination centers created people who believe this.

      I love your quote at the end. That was a brilliant! One step at a time will get us there. Like you, I never expect to see freedom in my lifetime but I hope that future generations reclaim it. Perhaps the collapse or default of government may help bring it about in some areas.

  2. A Puritan Descendant says:

    Another great article from USW. You are dead on correct, (though I still have a serious mental block with the gay marriage argument). So much of the rest is so true. Sometimes I think your articles are so well written and complete, you leave nothing to be said.

    • A Puritan Descendant says:

      A quick thought before I run off and get some work started…

      Are there not more than one level of “Freedom”… One level would be the True Freedom espoused by Black Flag. Another level would be “Freedom” within our Declaration of Independence and Constitution. Just something to keep in mind when we argue for Freedom and Liberty.

      • I’m pretty sure that absolute freedom is what the Constitution says-it just set up a body to determine when that freedom is being taken away- A body that through the years has made that decision based on societal norms and on political ideology.

      • Sorry, I think I misunderstood your post when I first read it.

  3. I think you are right that the majority of Americans don’t believe in Absolute freedom-I also agree that it is based on fear but I also think that it is a reasonable fear- I don’t believe that it is just a selfish I’m afraid for myself fear-it is a questioning of whether a world of absolute freedom is possible without becoming a heartless, soul less society. But maybe I just watch to much TV to be able to see how a society of true freedom would work. This site has brought me to the point to where I realize that I haven’t actually been preaching freedom all these years-I only thought I was-which I guess is the first step.

    • Actually that isn’t even a completely true statement-I don’t think I was even preaching freedom-I was simply debating one side of an argument.

  4. I would submit that very few have ever even experienced true freedom. That being said, the unknown always harbors a measure of fear. The government teat grows larger every day to accomodate the fearful lemmings. Perhaps if more were to experience true freedom, they would come to realize it is something to be cherished, rather than feared.

  5. I think that freedom is a choice, it always has been. We don’t have to live off the government if we choose not to, but if we do then we have to live by the rules set forth by whatever program we decide to participate in. We can choose not to obey the law and in doing so pay the consequences of that choice. We don’t have to pay taxes, but again if we choose not to then there are consequences. I know there are a lot of people on this site that don’t believe that we should pay taxes but I do. I have no problem paying my taxes because at some point the programs that my taxes pay for may actually benefit me. And if they don’t, that’s fine too. As to education, that too is a choice. If you don’t like Public Education, home school your kids. There are several wonderful programs out there to do it with. The biggest thing to remember about public education is to teach your children at home about personal responisbility. They don’t teach that in the classroom.
    I have a friend who lives out in the country and she is doing everything that she can to not be dependent on anyone but herself. She grows her own vegetables and her own meat. What she doesn’t use she sells or trades. I wish that I had the nerve to live that way. She’s one of the bravest people I know and that is what true freedom is going to need. Bravery. There just aren’t enought like her out there to accomplish that.

    • A Puritan Descendant says:

      I think if one can live without the need of a mailbox they may be very close to being truly free ;-)

      • Kristian says:

        I think that you may be right! I also think that with technology advancing the way that it is, there will no longer be a need for a mailbox sooner than we might think.

  6. Texaschem says:

    Kinda sucks to have to get relevant current events media information about your country from …Russia.

    http://english.pravda.ru/opinion/columnists/13-04-2010/112992-american_recovery-0

    In describing the anti-business agenda of the Obama regime, Stanislav Mishkin, (from Pravda:Russian news and Analysis), pulls no punches as he slams the body of the jobs killing ObamaCare, EPA carbon regulations and tax schemes.

    “The American Marxists already control almost half the automotive industry, are taking over the small financial industries on behalf of their banker owners, are now able to take over the medical and medical services industry and have already started making noises about the aviation industry. This puts them in control of over half the American market.”

    Speaking of the employment picture, Mishkin says.

    “Meanwhile, Americans are now told a schizophrenic message: get used to high unemployment (from a liar regime who swore it would never get that high, just hand us your children’s future) and spend for all you are worth to save yourself from high unemployment…

    [...]

    …there is the mind boggling 21% real unemployment, counting the semi-employed, unemployed and the untouchables who do not really exist, that is people who have run out of unemployment benefits. These are no longer citizens of the American regime, but human garbage to be swept under the rug.”

  7. Texaschem says:

    Causes of the American Civil War:

    1)The economic imbalance and banking practices between the industrial North and agricultural South; 2) The population and therefore, political representation disparity between the North and South; and 3) The debate on states’ rights process.

    Undeniably it seems as if since the Civil War there has been an ongoing centralization of our Federal government that has substantially restricted liberty and freedom in America.

    Odd how history always seems to repeat itself…

  8. Kristan,

    Being ‘free’ does not mean you have to abandon a society and live out in the hills, hunt your own meat, etc.

    It is one way to be free – but one way I don’t particularly enjoy.

    I’m more of the “Do no harm, then do whatever you want” type.
    It is amazing to me how many people are upset by that!

    • You are doing harm. All the time. You can’t help it, you can’t stop it. You can’t even quantify it and often times it is minute. You probably aren’t even aware of it 90% of the time.

      Did you throw away anything that isn’t 100% inert and biodegradable? That’s going to sit in a landfill for decades. Eventually, it will become a toxic ooze that will leak into the water supply.

      Did you sneeze in an elevator? Those germs might give someone the Pirate’s Plague.

      Did you accidentally cut someone off in traffic? They had to slam on the brakes causing the car behind them to hit them.

      Are you using electricity to power your computer? That power comes from power plants that pollute. Possibly a coal plant which stores mass-quantities of fly-ash in unsafe locations that, after a big rain, buried an entire town killing dozens.

      Or do you accept no responsibility for these things because you are unaware of them (car accident) or didn’t mean to do them (sneezing)? Is it ok, because you are just a tiny contributor to the problem (fly ash)? How does one ensure that they “do no harm”?

      Or should we change your mantra to “do as little harm as you can reasonably do when you are aware of doing it and when it is within your conscious control and when it doesn’t affect your lifestyle too severely?”

      Not quite as catchy..

      • Mathius,

        You’re definition of harm is so bizarre as to make the word meaningless.

        You want to make the word “harm” equal to “action”.

        • It essentially is. Any action has the potential to create harm. Because you perform so many actions in a given day, some of them will necessarily cause harm. Inadvertently and probably minor, but it goes on all the time around us. Do you deny it?

          So if you cannot morally cause harm, are you excusing yourself because of scale, intent, or because it is too inconvenient for you to move to a remote region where you will not encounter any living beings?

          • Mathius,

            It essentially is.

            Essentially??!?

            It either does or does not – none of this airy fairy stuff, Mathius!

            Any action has the potential to create harm.

            A rock has a potential of hitting you on your head.

            Potential is meaningless.

            Clear and Present Danger is the measure.

            As I’ve complained already, the definitions you present make the words meaningless.

            Because you perform so many actions in a given day, some of them will necessarily cause harm.

            The onus is on YOU to prove it.

            Inadvertently and probably minor, but it goes on all the time around us. Do you deny it?

            Prove it.

            In all matters of Rightful human interaction, harm must be demonstrated, not fantasized.

            • Flag, no sir.

              The onus is on YOU to prove it. It most certainly is not. If you key my car and I do not know it was you, you are still morally responsible. It matters not one iota whether I can prove that you are responsible in order for you to be morally responsible. Even if you are unaware, you are still responsible.

              IF some of your actions cause harm and
              IF you are responsible for all of your actions
              THEN, you cause harm.

              IF causing harm is immoral and
              IF you cause harm
              THEN, you are immoral.

              Q.E.D.

              In all matters of Rightful human interaction, harm must be demonstrated, not fantasized. What in the world does “Rightful human interaction” mean? Is that just a way of saying that harm has to be proven in order for it to be immoral if it happens during the course of standard interactions?

              • Mathius,

                Sir, the onus is ON YOU to prove harm.

                I cannot prove a negative – you must, therefore, demonstrate the harm FIRST.

                If you key my car and I do not know it was you, you are still morally responsible.

                Knowledge of the person WHO acts does not bear ON THE ACT!

                I see your mind-set. You measure right and wrong, not in the action but by who acts

                If governments act, it is not wrong – no matter what it does.

                The keying of your car IS HARM – we do not doubt that. You can demonstrate it.

                This proves NOTHING about POTENTIAL of harm of me holding a key.

                ted, not fantasized. What in the world does “Rightful human interaction” mean?

                Humans mutually acting in their rights.

              • The onus is not on me to prove that you are immoral. Morality is independent of proof. I am not talking about trying you in court to hold you responsible.

                If you cut me off in traffic and I swerve into a tree, you are responsible, are you not?

                Even if you didn’t look in your mirror and never knew you did it, you would still be morally responsible. No?

                Invariably, some of your actions cause harm. Or do you claim that, somehow, nothing you ever did or will do has caused inadvertent harm?

                So if you caused harm and know you will continue to do so, you are as immoral as the rest of us heathens unless you take action to avoid doing so by becoming a hermit.

              • Mathius,

                The onus is not on me to prove that you are immoral.

                First, morality has no part here – we are talking about actions and rights – not what wine needs to be served with fish….

                You have to prove harm – and has nothing to do with morals

                If you cut me off in traffic and I swerve into a tree, you are responsible, are you not?

                Can you prove harm?

                Yes.

                However, me driving on the other side of the city, and I swerve and you way over here, hit a tree… you cannot prove harm by my action

                Is the difference clear?

                Invariably, some of your actions cause harm.

                Prove it.

                I just swerved – prove that is caused an accident in Paris.

              • I’m not blaming you for an action in Paris. I’m blaming you for an action here. In the car that was in your blind spot.

                You’re very deft at dodging, sir, but do I gather from this argument that unproven harm is not your fault?

              • Mathius,

                I am not dodgeing.

                You stated that I had to prove my potential
                you then supplied an example that showed -not a potential- but actuality.

                You now what this actuality to prove the potential.

              • Mathius

                “Morality is independent of proof.”

                To declare something moral or immoral requires proof.

                It is a human concept that must be linked by logic and reason to its philosophical base. Otherwise you get such declarations as war is peace and theft is charity.

    • Kristian says:

      But BF, that’s exactly the type of freedom that we have now. As long as we don’t harm others, we’re good. I don’t harm others, I don’t impose myself upon others, I live my life and take care of my family. What else does anyone need?

      • Really?

        And if you jay-walk in front of a cop. You aren’t harming anyone – yet, you will be harmed.

        • Buck The Wala says:

          Not in NYC you won’t! Jaywalk with wild abandon!

          Giuliani tried to crack down on this so-called problem – the cops refused to write any citations.

          • Displaced Okie says:

            But the fact remains it is still against the law and they could still enforce it if they wanted.

            • No, they can’t. You don’t see it, but they can’t. The people of the city have declared it acceptable to jay-walk. As such, even when those in power decided to enforce it, they couldn’t. The people, ultimately, are the ones with the power.

              • Displaced Okie says:

                oh they still could, but getting it to stick in court would probably never happen–unless George W. Bush was caught jaywalking… :)

              • He knows better than to show his mug in The City.

              • Mathius,

                So you agree that they have a right to use violence on non-violent people?

              • Buck

                You, too, have avoided this question like the plague.

                I insist on your answer.

                Mathius,

                So you agree that they have a right to use violence on non-violent people?

              • Within certain bounds, yes. (using your definition of force, not necessarily a normal human being’s definition of force)

                But you still haven’t answered my question – I don’t think I’m going to answer any more of yours until you explain the Black Flag method of child punishment (guaranteed 100% force-free!)

              • Mathius,

                So you are a Barbarian – agree that violence on non-violent men is a right.

                As for children, I will speak of mine, personally.

                Neither of her parents have ever used violence on her.

              • Buck The Wala says:

                Sorry BF – didn’t mean to ignore you; been extremely busy today.

                It seems to me that you always go back to this issue of the use of “violence”. Clearly we have different definitions of ‘violence’ in this context so no answer either Mathius or I provide will be sufficient. It is entirely a matter of context.

                Earlier Mathius laid out that argument that he is entirely free (as am I!) because he chooses to live in this society and abide by its rules. It is a choice he freely makes. If Mathius then breaks a law (which he freely chooses to live under), and the government steps in to enforce the law, how can you then consider Mathius ‘non-violent’?

              • USWeapon says:

                Buck,

                The problem, in my opinion, is that you and Mathius choose to set the rules for others to follow as you see fit. What I think that you miss is that many of the rules that you support simply are not within your rights to set for others. If I do whatever I like, and it doesn’t impose on you, there should not be a rule in place in the first place. It is your acceptance of arbitrary rules that causes a problem. Where BF gets antsy is the fact that the rules you shouldn’t be making in the first place are backed up with the threat of violence in some form or fashion.

                I get what you are saying about choosing to live here under these rules. But a slave who chooses to be a slave because it is better than some other alternative in his mind, is still a slave. Choosing to sacrifice freedom is not a choice that makes you free. It is the choice to be not free that you are making. Don’t get the two mixed up.

                Tonight’s article is going to be a follow up to this one so I will be offering the opportunity for more discussion tomorrow after reviewing the comments that were posted today.

                USW

              • Buck The Wala says:

                Exactly correct.

              • Buck,

                So, you agree as long as someone can enforce themselves upon another the use of violence is justified…

                …just to be clear of your position.

            • Displaced,

              What right does anyone have to use violence (enforcement) on non-violent people?

              • Displaced Okie says:

                Oh I am with you on this. I was just pointing out that even though a law is rarely enforced it still restricts your freedom.

          • And I do. Routinely.

            On the flip side, I nearly killed a jay-walker when I was driving around the village on Saturday. I’m really fortunate that I didn’t hit him – he might have dented my car.

            • Buck The Wala says:

              Pretty funny, but only because the same almost happened to me. Mine wasn’t a jaywalker though – he was a jay-biker, the worst kind!

        • Kristian says:

          Common sense would come in to play here. I’m not going to jaywalk in fron of a cop and I’m smart enough to look both ways before I cross the street.

          • Kristan,

            Why do you not jaywalk in front of a cop?

            • Because she has accepted the social contract that she is allowed to use (PUBLIC) roads, but only within certain bounds. By using those, she tacitly agrees to accept society’s judgment of the punishment for incorrect usage.

              I’m in a social contract kind of mood today ;)

              • Mathius,

                Please provide a copy of this social contract for me to read.

              • It’s locked in my safe at home next to my birth certificate and my gold coins. I’ll try to remember to bring a copy for show and tell.

                Did you misplace your copy? You really should be more careful.

                Here’s a primer:

                http://books.google.com/books?id=soH6h3x3-wAC&printsec=frontcover&dq=social+contract&ei=WLrMS530G4rmzATEirWLCw&cd=1#v=onepage&q&f=false

              • Mathius,

                Since you cannot provide any material regarding said contract, such contract does not exist.

                PS: Rousseau argued AGAINST Hobbes’ Social Contract theory!

                LoL

                Quote:Only in civil society, can man be ennobled—through the use of reason

                Rousseau posits that the original, deeply flawed Social Contract (i.e., that of Hobbes), which led to the modern state, was made at the suggestion of the rich and powerful, who tricked the general population into surrendering their liberties to them

              • Mathius….while trying to lay a land mine for the Pirate, steps on it himself…
                ;)

              • Guess I should have been more careful with my links.. oh well..

              • Mathius,

                Hobbes’ Social Contract theory was broadly and resoundingly refuted, even in his time, by the likes of Locke and Rousseau (as you’ve shown in your post)

                In fact, Hobbes was so thoroughly refuted that he never raised his social contract theory again

                However, as he articulated an argument for government – it was seized upon those of government, even if it was flawed.

                Up until that time, the best the “-archy” Statist-types could do was to argue

                …well, God said so … as their rational to rule and enslave other men.

                Hobbes gave them a new reason – no better – but different.

                With no surprise, the Statists marketed Hobbes and ignored the volume of refutations.

              • PS:

                Hobbes was so thoroughly refuted, he didn’t even bother producing any rebuttals.

              • Mathius,

                Re: Links.

                You are doomed if your argument rests on “Social Contract” Theory.

                You will find one – and no more than one – argument for its existence and that is from Hobbes.

                (or others resting on Hobbes – but they will all trace to the same basic root).

                All the rest refute Hobbes.

                Hobbes’ Social Contract theory can only be defended by violence, not by reason.

                Thus Barbarians love Hobbes.

              • Mathius

                You completely distort the meaning of a social contract. Perhaps that is just another result of the Progressive habit of redefining words.

                The social contract does not ALLOW or PROVIDE privileges to the citizens. I do not GET to use the road because I accept the contract. I use the road whether I accept it or not.

                The essence of the contract is that I expect the road to be there when I want to use it and I expect govt to build and maintain the road at the least cost possible.

                The concept exists conceptually even where there is NO government. Before the STATIST’s took charge it was called common law.

              • Kristian says:

                That’s it in a nutshell.

  9. Ellen Spalding says:

    I agree that most Americans dont want to do the harder path on being total free. They scream on mountains saying they want total freedom from the government, but when Social Security, Medicare/Medicad, public education etc is threaten in any form they scream louder. So which road would you like to be one? I laugh when I listen to someone of these people. Freedom is very hard and you have to work hard to get and keep it.

    • Those folks crack me up too.
      :)

    • HUZZAH!

      I do love the people who want an end to taxes, or much lower taxes, but aren’t willing to give up the perks. Well said, missy.

      TANSTAAFL: There Ain’t No Such Thing As A Free Lunch

    • Texaschem says:

      Social Security—I have my own personal retirement plan.

      Medicare/Medicaid—I have private insurance.

      Public Education—My children go to a private school.

      I am a working middleclass white male.I am by no means rich yet I decide what the money I earn is spent upon and prioritize it accordingly.I am in the 53% that DID INDEED have to pay taxes for the other 47% that didn’t so that they could enjoy all the social programs you mentioned though.

    • Social Security taxes are not voluntary. I have been paying into the Program for 35 years. Am I being selfish by expecting a return when I retire? I’ve heard that folks in this country illegally are getting some of these benefits. If that’s true it’s wrong!!!

      It’s not like it was voluntary and we had a choice to pay it.

  10. Freedom is hard and it is scary.

    But not one bit more or less than slavery.

    The People call out to their King – “protect us!”.

    What does the King do?

    Conscripts his slaves to fight the battle.

    The Universe is never fooled. If there is a threat to a person, and the person in their fear defers their freedom to another, that threat does not disappear. They still have to face it.

    Generally in my experience, after working through the reasoning and rationalization of many People, it is not fear (in our common definition that) scares People away from freedom – it is the lack of justifying their evil acts. (Remember my definition of evil: Violence on the Innocent).

    A free man cannot justify his violence on the non-violent as an act of freedom. He is rationally stuck – if he acts with violence on the innocent, he is an evil free man. Fortunately, for 98% of humanity, being evil is psychologically painful.

    However, if he raises a King, now he can point to the King as his excuse of his evil — “That guy over there in the funny hat made me do it!” or “… he said it was OK, so it has to be OK, right?”

    It is the avoidance and deflection of the responsibility of their own actions is what I have found People want. They want the benefits of their actions of evil – the goods they get when they steal them and kill for them – but they desperately do not want to be seen as evil while doing evil.

    So they are willing to be slaves – merely tools – of other men’s evil, sharing the loot and absolved of any responsibility for their crimes against other men.

  11. Ray Hawkins says:

    Odd not to see any of my brethren already in the fray so I guess I’ll step in it first.

    I’d like to first start with your definition of Freedom because this is important enough to do so. Time permitting I’ll address the fallacies in your examples.

    You define true freedom as:

    The freedom to do whatever you want to do so long as it does not impose on anyone else.

    So….

    A few questions…..

    What caveats or qualifiers are necessary to attach to that definition?

    For example – “impose” is a dangerous/tricky word here. Can I define for you what you may feel is in am imposition on you and thereby whether I am free to do so or not? Or must I rely upon you to define what you feel is imposing upon you and therefore what I am or am not free to do? Or, must we collectively determine for an action involving us only as actors is an imposition from one to the other or alternatively what may or may not be an imposition for different actors than the two of us given roughly the same circumstances?

    Another example…..

    When does my freedom start? When I am conceived? When I am born? When I am 18? Or perhaps at varying degrees of freedom based on my age (and other factors) and when someone else determines that absent any negative precursor I am capable of being free? Can freedom be absolute in an organized society? In a family unit?

    Hopefully this gets things started – please show the relativist the error of his ways!

    :-)

    • Am I one of The Brethren? Ooh, goody.

      I actually asked Black Flag that question a while ago and received a humorous response. I asked if he has the right to discipline his child if she misbehaves. He responded that she never misbehaves so it’s not an issue. I wonder though.. what is the serious answer…?

      • Mathius,

        The ol’-save the children fallacy.

        When you become perfectly clear on how freedom works with adults then we can discuss children.

        But as long as you are unclear with adults, you’ll have no clue on how to it works with kids.

        It’s like demanding to know how calculus works, when you are still struggling with division.

        • oops.. just asked you about this below.

          I understand a lot of things, Flag. Simply because I do not agree does not make them beyond my comprehension.

          But it should be a simple enough answer. When my child misbehaves, I _____. If that doesn’t work, I _____. As a last resort, I ______.

          • Mathius,

            You have yet to answer (as you promised) if you are a Barbarian – that is, “Might is Right”.

            Until I know your root principle – offering explanations on my principle is pointless.

            • No, sir, I am not a barbarian. Might does not make right. But where there are blurred lines (though you only see black and black-er, the rest of us see a full spectrum of colors), society must make judgment calls based on the collective averages of our internal calculus. You deny that there are two viable sides to the debate and so see only your way (which you call logic) and the Others (which you call force).

              Now answer the question, sir. Enough stalling.

    • Texaschem says:

      “Liberty consists in the freedom to do everything which injures no one else; hence the exercise of the natural rights of each man has no limits except those which assure to the other members of the society the enjoyment of the same rights. These limits can only be determined by law.” —Thomas Jefferson

      Now then…the ethics and morality of those limits determined by law should have what as a determining factor Ray?

    • Kristian says:

      This is a simple answer Ray but one that I think everyone overlooks when it comes to this question. You use common sense, it’s no more complicated than that. You think about your actions before you take them. You think about the possible effects those actions might have on the people around you. Why does it need to be more difficult than that?

    • Ray

      For example – “impose” is a dangerous/tricky word here. Can I define for you what you may feel is in am imposition on you and thereby whether I am free to do so or not?

      Imposition is a very easy word, Ray.

      “Prevent from acting”

      When does my freedom start? When I am conceived?

      Yes.

      When I am born?

      Sure.

      When I am 18?

      You are merely trying to define “human” by stages of development of human – don’t you find that rather bizarre?

      A stage of human is not human >>

      Can freedom be absolute in an organized society? In a family unit?

      Why do you believe society requires violence on non-violent people? or in a family?

      • Can you offer a serious answer to my question from a while ago?

        If you have children, and they misbehave, are you morally correct in using force* on them? Do you have the right to substitute your superior judgment for theirs when they don’t want to eat their veggies?

        If the answer is no, and they are too young to survive on the their own in the world, do you simply give in and let them do what they want? Is bribery with cookies the only approach? How do you avoid turning your child into a spoiled brat if it is all carrot and no stick?

        *I am not talking about beating them, but picking them up and putting them in time out, or possibly a spanking.

        • Texaschem says:

          Spare the rod spoil the child!

          • There we go!

            But wait.. if a child is a human with full rights, then you cannot hit them except in self-defense..

            Seems we need a loophole here.. any lawyers around?

            • Mathius,

              There is no loophole.

              Please answer my question:

              “Do you have the right to use violence on non-violent people?”

              • Within certain bounds, yes. But not in the ways you’re about to ask about.

                Dread Pirate Mathius: NO! But then, how should I punish my misbehaving children if they won’t listen to reason?

              • Mathius,

                Please explain your exceptions where you believe you can use violence on non-violent people….

        • Mathius,

          Until you understand how adults work you have no idea on how it will apply to children.

          Get the adult scenarios perfectly clear and the kid scenarios will answer themselves.

    • I would say that children are free, but their choices are generally limited because they are dependent on someone else for their survival. When someone else decides when and if you eat, they usually have a lot of control over you. When kids become capable of supporting themselves, they are free from their parents.

    • Ray Hawkins

      Impose: To force oneself, one’s presence or will on another or others without right or invitation.

      There is no judgment involved in determining what is an imposition. If you force your will upon me without my inviting such, you are IMPOSING.

      One can claim imposition where it does not exist I suppose but any rational person would see it as a ruse.

      Such as the claim that by eliminating a totalitarian govt I am IMPOSING freedom upon you. I have the right to be free as do you. Thus I can not impose it upon you. You are free to forfeit your freedom if you choose. But you may not forfeit mine. That is imposing.

      Your RIGHT to be free started when God created the cosmos. But it took man thousands of years to discover it.

  12. Hey, just wanted to mention that I am completely free.

    Yup. Free. 100%.

    Crazy talk, I know. Except for this: I accept my prison. I choose to place myself within the laws of the society in which I live. I accept and willingly pay taxes toward that society and, in doing so, I reap what benefits I do and pay what costs I do. I forfeited my right to drive 100 miles an hour in exchange for the right to drive at the speed limit and paying a fine if caught exceeding it. I forfeited my right to go naked in public, and in exchange, I live in a world where I don’t have to look at Buck walking around naked.

    If society throws me in jail, it will be within the bounds of the contract which I accepted. I accept that we elect individuals to represent us who make law that I will follow, thus I follow the laws of my own free will. That society may punish me is something I have also agreed to. In the days of yore, men would sell themselves into slavery. If they do so of their own free will, is it wrong for the master to whip them?

    But I can leave any time I like. I can break my contract and go live in the hills with Emilius.

    I am free. What about you?

    • Texaschem says:

      “They that give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety… deserve neither safety nor liberty.” —Benjamin Franklin

      • Define essential liberty?

        • Ask Ben…he said it.

          • I would, but I broke the Way Back Machine when I used it the other day.

            I just figured that Tex would know what Ben meant, since he saw fit to deputize him into the debate.

            • And I was so looking forward to Ben’s definition…would be interesting no?

              • I think he’d probably be too startled to explain it clearly. After all, how often does a British phone booth suddenly materialize in your living room? (Especially before the invention of the telephone)

              • Bill and Ted did it. And So-Crates was fine with it!

                Carlin made the movie though.

        • Liberty: the freedom to exercise your rights, which is essential to civilized, human, life. (see my comment below- #14)

    • If that is how you define your freedom that is great. What if others do not define it in that fashion? That gives you the right to impose your belief upon me?

      • Naw.. other things give me that right.. But that’s a whole other can of worms. I hope to be addressing that subject shortly.

    • Buck The Wala says:

      Well put Mathius.

      I’m just going to ignore that naked comment though but thankfully it goes both ways.

      • Unfortunately, it also extends to the people we would like to see wandering around naked. Oh well..

    • Your attitude scares me Matthius-because you seem to so easily and happily give away freedoms,even if you have decided that we must compromise on our laws and legislate morality instead of legislating freedom-do you not think that by making that decision that it is very important to be very careful in deciding that something is worth losing a right over.

    • Mathius

      You ARE NOT free. You choose to live in slavery but you are not really free to leave. That is the charade you have created for yourself and the rest of us.

      Where my dear Matt can one go to be free? The one place founded on that principle is slipping into the ash heap of history.

      What you are is an irrational man because only one who has lost reason would choose to be a slave to his own malaise.

  13. Somwhat off topic, maybe…

    Laying more of the groundwork to criminalize political dissent….the only surprise here is that it the Left this long to make the accusation.

    http://newsbusters.org/blogs/jeff-poor/2010/04/18/time-s-klein-beck-palin-potentially-committing-sedition-against-u-s-gover

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      Thanks for the post Cyndi – I actually (gasp) lean a little more towards the “give me a friggin’ break” on the current climate. I’d much rather see the debate focused on the core of the issues and acted out in a reasoned manner (gee – what the hell am I asking for?). While things such as Sarah Palin asking folks to ‘reload’ may seem incendiary, there is scant evidence to suggest people will wholly act different because of that. It is far more about the left trying now to silence the right/far right because the also refuse to debate the core issues. Its far easier to yell “sedition” than confront the core issues head on.

      • I almost agree with you. I believe the opposition is VERY willing to discuss the issues. They are just demonized or ignored. When Bush was in office, the hatred expressed by the Left was never addressed as sedition, and yet Bush was a ‘tyrant’. I don’t remember much willingness to discuss policies, just accusations of tyranny, war crimes, racism, hatred, etc. It comes as no surprise to me that the Left is behaving in much the same way. Its ll they know.

    • I was watching when this exchange happened. I don’t think we are on the same planet. Either I and many others are just plain stupid or blind or these people are out right frauds as journalists. There seems to be an orchestrated attempt from the left to incite some action from the right that will make these statements true thus rsulting in a backlash against the tea parties.

      • I agree. When you look at some of the goings-on, its very clear that this is orchestrated.

        For those who wonder what goings-on I refer to:
        Czar John Holdren authorizing a plan for UAVs to be integrated into the National Airspace.
        Homeland Security report fingering ‘right-wing radicals’, etc.
        John McCain and Joe Leiberman working on legislation that will effectively allow US citizens the president deems as a threat, to be arrested and held just like terrorists captured on the battlefield, minus their Miranda rights.

  14. “Freedom” means doing what you want to do.

    Freedom is morally neutral; it can be good or it can be bad- depending upon your desires. You have an obligation to not use your freedom to act upon your desires to harm the innocent, and also to accept the responsibility for your actions. You are accountable for everything you do.

    Other people, consequences, responsibility, “laws”, beliefs, reality, and many other things can limit your freedom. Freedom, liberty, and rights are not the same thing but are entangled.

    Some people can be perfectly “free” in prison, while others couldn’t be free in Utopia.

    Not every freedom is within your rights.

    A “right” is something you can do just because you exist. It is not dependent upon anyone’s permission. Anything that you can do without violating the equal rights of another individual is your right to do, no matter how trivial or important.

    Rights do not come from anyone, nor from government, nor from any document. A right can either be respected or it can be violated, but it can not be limited, regulated, licensed, rationed, or otherwise turned into a privilege. A privilege is the opposite of a right.

    Having a right doesn’t mean there will be no consequences for exercising that right. There are always consequences and responsibilities for every action. Just because you have a right to do something does not mean it is the best thing to do right now. Think before you act, or even better, before you need to act.

    Which leads us to liberty.

    “Liberty” is simply the freedom to exercise your rights.

    I would say a majority of people do not want freedom. They have been lied to and brainwashed about it for too long. It is made to seem harder and scarier than it really is. Liberty is the default position, and is natural. It isn’t scary (except to those who want to control and harm you), and it isn’t hard since most of your life is lived in liberty.

    If someone doesn’t want liberty, for whatever reason, I would not “force him to be free”. That doesn’t work. However, for those of us who DO want liberty, it is not an option for anyone else to try to destroy, limit, or deny us our liberty. Personally, I am pretty serious about this point.

    • Texaschem says:

      “Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote!” —Benjamin Franklin

      HAHA Hope Mathius is loving this!

    • Interesting.. I’ll have to mull that over and get back to you.

  15. Mathius,

    No, sir, I am not a barbarian. Might does not make right. But where there are blurred lines (though you only see black and black-er, the rest of us see a full spectrum of colors), society must make judgment calls based on the collective averages of our internal calculus. You deny that there are two viable sides to the debate and so see only your way (which you call logic) and the Others (which you call force).

    Do you believe a man has a right to use violence on non-violent men?

    (PS: I do NOT deny there are two sides of the debate – as I’ve (numerous times) pointed out

    Side One: Government (Barbarians)
    Side Two : Civilization (Freedom)

    They are competing philosophies.

    • Interesting…..

      Mathius, the Conqueror: You deny that there are two viable sides to the debate

      Flag: “I do NOT deny there are two sides of the debate [...] Barbarians[, and][...] Freedom”

      Mathius, the Conqueror: That’s not quite what I said, sir. I said viable

      Flag: Woops.

      • Mathius,

        I read your post and my answer stands.

        It appears you define viable to mean existence of Civilization.

        I say “viable” as in a manner and method of human action.

        I have never contested Barbarianism

        It derives from Natural Law – equal and opposite consequence of the Law of Mutuality.

        Barbarians and Civilization are opposites. Their expression of Mutuality leads in opposite directions.

    • Question BF,

      Does coersion count as force? I think so. As an example, if a man does not pledge his loyalty to the government, and the government witholds health care or food until loyalty is pledged, is that ‘force’ or a form of violence? Not trying to start something, just a question…..

      • Cyndi,

        Why cannot a man get is his food from another man?

        Because, rooted in your scenario, the government has seized all the stores of food and prevented men to freely trade between each other.

        That is where the violence exists.

      • I think all force is coercion, but not all coercion necessarily involves force.

        A lot of coercion uses deceit or manipulation. Some force is justifiable, such as in self defence (it is not “initiated force” in this case), but what I call “coercion” is never justified.

        I don’t include self-defensive actions as coercion (by definition), even if you are able to “talk” a thug out of attacking you. He initiated the force- he is the aggressor- so your actions are strictly self-defense.

        For me, coercion is purely the initiatory act of forcing or causing someone to act in a way that is against their legitimate will.

        Obviously, not a “dictionary definition”, but what I mean when I use the word.

  16. http://www.freedominourtime.blogspot.com/

    D13 and USWep want SUFA to believe that the Army and the Police will not slaughter American citizens.

    http://freedominourtime.blogspot.com/2010/03/greyhound-station-gulag.html

    I do not hold any misconceptions about where the loyalty of the US police and army lays…. and it is not with the People.

    • @ BF on post #16.

      Is this clap trap the best you can do? I would have expected better from you, BF. But it is impossible to reason with one who does not believe in the United States, who thinks that the world’s problems are the result of the United States, that the United States is to blame for all evils in the world…….and then rises and sleeps under its flag. The only misconception you have, sir….is that you are a legend in your own mind…… the United states, despite its faults, is still the best country in the world. You can show me no better…for if you could, by your own definitions, you would be there. Instead, you are here and you deride its citizens, its foundations, and you lay the blame of the world at the feet of the United States. Your only loyalty is to yourself…this is prevalent throughout your writings….you not only attack the government but you attack its citizens.

      You are a fear monger, sir. That article you refer to is nothing but crap. I was there, sir, with a contingent of Army. Where were you? safe and sound in your home? I saw what happened and I spent 7 days in the filth and muck. There were no gulags and Gitmo style incarceration camps anywhere. No one was tied up and tortured. No water boarding, no slivers of bamboo under the finger nails, no body cavity searches….what was there were looters and rip off artists. There was nepotism and theft. There were no secret police forces selling military equipment. I was in every single police, FEMA, and military command post over the period of seven days. Part of my contingent even had a safe site set up 15 miles outside of New Orleans that would house 5,000 with complete medical, food, and sanitation services.

      Were there bandits that freely roamed the cities…yes. Were there bandits that stole police uniforms and masqueraded? Yes. were fire and police shot at…yes. Were the National Guard units sniped at….yes. Were Syrians and Muslims singled out….NO….funny how BF would pick up on this. This article is 90 percent BS….

      No National Guard broke into buildings for their own reasons. Why would you believe this crap?

      I will tell you why…..you were not there and you want to believe that the United States and its people are evil. It is that simple.

      I will dispute the argument you put forth in that the Army and the Police will commit wholesale slaughter. It will not. You believe what you wish but to try to scare people into this belief is wrong….it is immoral.

      • D13,

        But it is impossible to reason with one who does not believe in the United States, who thinks that the world’s problems are the result of the United States,….

        D13 says: blahalbllhallahbllahblahhalbh….

        …but can’t refute 200 million dead.
        …but can’t refute the thousands of years of history of government assaults on its own citizens.
        …but can’t refute the USA own assaults on its own citizens.

        But cries out….”No worries, we wouldn’t dream of shooting you down in the street — even though our own history is full of examples. Those happened “a long time ago” – we’re MUCH nicer now!!….”

        There were no gulags and Gitmo style incarceration camps anywhere. No one was tied up and tortured.

        So you are calling this guy and his story a big lie, right?

        Yes. were fire and police shot at…yes. Were the National Guard units sniped at….yes.

        Ah, NO!

        There is NO verified report of police or guard units under fire

        The case where they shot down CITIZENS because they claimed they were fired on has been thoroughly discredited with the police now under indictment for murder.

        No National Guard broke into buildings for their own reasons. Why would you believe this crap?

        You agree the military is a mindless tool because they have no reason!

        Because they rounded people up at gun point – because THEY WERE TOLD TO.

        They held them like prisoners in a stadium without water or food for days – until they were dying in droves – because THEY WERE TOLD TO.

        And you sit there pretending that when these MINDLESS TOOLS are told to shoot down Americans, you thing -suddenly- they will get a mind?????

        Never. As long as a man is in the military – He is a tool and always will be a tool. A mind need not apply.

  17. BEIRUT — A senior Iranian cleric says women who wear revealing clothing and behave promiscuously are to blame for earthquakes.

    Iran is one of the world’s most earthquake-prone countries, and the cleric’s unusual explanation for why the earth shakes follows a prediction by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad that a quake is certain to hit Tehran and that many of its 12 million inhabitants should relocate.

    “Many women who do not dress modestly … lead young men astray, corrupt their chastity and spread adultery in society, which (consequently) increases earthquakes,” Hojatoleslam Kazem Sedighi was quoted as saying by Iranian media.

    Women in the Islamic Republic are required by law to cover from head to toe, but many, especially the young, ignore some of the more strict codes and wear tight coats and scarves pulled back that show much of the hair.

    “What can we do to avoid being buried under the rubble?” Sedighi asked during a prayer sermon Friday. “There is no other solution but to take refuge in religion and to adapt our lives to Islam’s moral codes.”

    Seismologists have warned for at least two decades that it is likely the sprawling capital will be struck by a catastrophic quake in the near future.

    Some experts have even suggested Iran should move its capital to a less seismically active location. Tehran straddles scores of fault lines, including one more than 50 miles (80 kilometers) long, though it has not suffered a major quake since 1830.

    In 2003, a powerful earthquake hit the southern city of Bam, killing 31,000 people — about a quarter of that city’s population — and destroying its ancient mud-built citadel.

    “A divine authority told me to tell the people to make a general repentance. Why? Because calamities threaten us,” said Sedighi, Tehran’s acting Friday prayer leader.

    Referring to the violence that followed last June’s disputed presidential election, he said, “The political earthquake that occurred was a reaction to some of the actions (that took place). And now, if a natural earthquake hits Tehran, no one will be able to confront such a calamity but God’s power, only God’s power. … So let’s not disappoint God.”

    The Iranian government and its security forces have been locked in a bloody battle with a large opposition movement that accuses Ahmadinejad of winning last year’s vote by fraud.

    Ahmadinejad made his quake prediction two weeks ago but said he could not give an exact date. He acknowledged that he could not order all of Tehran’s 12 million people to evacuate. “But provisions have to be made. … At least 5 million should leave Tehran so it is less crowded,” the president said.

    Minister of Welfare and Social Security Sadeq Mahsooli said prayers and pleas for forgiveness were the best “formulas to repel earthquakes.”

    “We cannot invent a system that prevents earthquakes, but God has created this system and that is to avoid sins, to pray, to seek forgiveness, pay alms and self-sacrifice,” Mahsooli said.

    Ok…memo to DPM: Prepare the invasion of the Fredricks catalogue and the Victoria Secret clandestine mission of indoctrinating Iranian women to wear revealing clothes. Catastrophic earthquakes will hit the region. Start counter offensive of all freedom loving ladies to wear all of the said items and parade around to create aftershocks. Send in Special “blonde” Airborne force of ladies dressed in black high heels, garter belts and fishnet stockings to surround the palace.

    This should prove enough to keep Israel and the rest of the world from having to use military option and all will be happy. The Clerics and AJAD have spoken….the earthquakes are on the way.

    Then resupply the Iranian population with COKE (the drinking type) and the catchy phrase of ” I’d like to teach the world to sing “. War avoided.

    HUAH!!!!

  18. Buck,

    It seems to me that you always go back to this issue of the use of “violence”. Clearly we have different definitions of ‘violence’ in this context so no answer either Mathius or I provide will be sufficient. It is entirely a matter of context.

    I’ll go slow.

    I’m not asking for a definition of violence…..

    I’m asking this simple question:

    Do you have the right to use violence on non-violent men?

    Earlier Mathius laid out that argument that he is entirely free (as am I!) because he chooses to live in this society and abide by its rules.

    I already understand that you two are POSITIVE Freedom definers.

    That DOES not change my question.

    Do you have the right to take another man’s right for your benefit?
    Do you have the right to use violence on non-violent men?

    It is a choice he freely makes.

    I have no questions regarding your choice for yourself
    My question is your choices the impose upon men other than yourself.

    If Mathius then breaks a law (which he freely chooses to live under), and the government steps in to enforce the law, how can you then consider Mathius ‘non-violent’?

    Yours or Mathius’ agreement to live as a slave doesn’t matter one wit to me.

    What matters is that – as far as I can tell – is because you wish to be slaves, you demand everyone else be slaves – because YOU submit, you demand everyone to submit.

    My question is simple:
    Do you believe you have a right to use violence on non-violent men?

    • USWeapon says:

      Yours or Mathius’ agreement to live as a slave doesn’t matter one wit to me.

      What matters is that – as far as I can tell – is because you wish to be slaves, you demand everyone else be slaves – because YOU submit, you demand everyone to submit.

      Very well said.

  19. Good afternoon – or evening in your time zone – USW.

    I have not made any comment on this article until now for one very simple reason . . . I had to actually think about this one since it covered so many different things under one roof.

    First; Homosexual and Lesbian marriage in a church? I do not know of ANY religion that states Homosexuality and Lesbianism is condoned by that religion’s deity. If you do, then please tell me which religious base it is.

    However, if local and state governments, after a vote of the majority approving such things, should find that local judges may perform such ceremonies – so be it. Religions should NEVER be FORCED to alter their base beliefs just for one or more sexually deviant individuals. Equally, the rest of us individuals should NEVER be FORCED to accept what we consider deviant lifestyles – religious or otherwise – just because those who practice those deviant lifestyles want us to.

    Individual responsibility. If we make each and every individual responsible for their own actions, then who is to say what is acceptable and what is not? If we have true liberty and freedom to think and do what ever we may choose to do, then a rapist is not breaking his own law, and nor is a child molester – and in that same light, those of us who would punish a rapist or child molester would be denying that individual his/her right to do what ever they believed in. What you would have then is total chaos and lawlessness because the only law would be the individuals own personal law.

    I know that I pointed out extremes here and I did so just to make my point that total liberty and freedom is just not a doable thing, at least not until Humankind makes that long sought after science fiction pipe dream of all looking out for the other without a selfish or dishonest bone in our bodies.

    On the other hand, should we revert to our Constitutional Republic that I believe our founders designed this country to be, yes that would be VERY doable. Even within our lifetime.

    Step one; Take back the school system and fire teachers who do not teach. Step two; Remove all Progressives from political office and replace them with those who believe in our Constitutional Republic and are dedicated to keeping it that way. This may not sound like much, but it would be a very good beginning.

    I know that we disagree on many things, and I know that we both want the best for our country and the people who make up this country because we have both put our lives at risk for this country and its people, and if necessary we would both very willingly do so again.

    Personally, I thank God for people like you and the folks who inhabit this site because I know that as long as you all continue to exist this country and its people will prevail.

    • G.A

      USWEPs stand, which I agree with, is that as long as what you want to do doesn’t harm another person, that is freedom. Given your examples, we all would agree that a rapists actions would constitute bringing harm upon another- so it is abusing freedom. But that homesexual or lesbian behind there doors, what harm are they causing anyone? What they do behind closed doors is between them and God, not me and them. And yes, I know they are pushing for the right to be considered married, but really, if they can find someone willing to do it, as long as they’re not asking you or me to perform it,it does no harm to anyone, just them exercising their freedom!

      Always a slippery slope- theres all kinds of rights out there- we have to have a live and let live attitude, cause if you try to take away someone elses rights, then it makes it ok for them to try to take away yours!

      • Matt L,

        My stating that religions should not be forced to provide marriage ceremonies for those who practice deviant lifestyles against their deity’s teachings has no reference to what goes on behind closed doors. Forcing others to “accept” deviant lifestyles as “normal” is not exercising freedom, it is only another form of dictatorship in my opinion.

        Humankind will never “Live and let live”, it just is not part of Human Nature and never will be. We Humans will always have to have some sort of basic rules for all society to adhere to and live by. There will always be a need for cops, firefighters, paramedics and rescue squads. Here in Arizona we get an entire years rainfall at one rainy day in some parts. This condition results in some rather fierce flash floods. We have posted signs in areas prone to that phenomenon, yet each and every season the news stories are full of swift water tragedies of people who have lived here all there lives trying to cross roads during a flash flood. One of the nightly news weathermen always closes his weather segment with the words “Watch your kids around water!”, yet we hear of children drowning in backyard pools almost on a nightly basis. Home invasion robberies, convenience store holdups, muggings, scam artists . . . I could go on forever.

        After a while most of us just turn off the news (I guess it is our form of sticking our head in the sand), my wife included, because it is just so depressing. I couldn’t. I was one of those guys out there that responded to all the things that Humans are capable of doing to each other, then looking for the guy who did it. More often than not we caught them. Yet it still goes on as I write this. Prison, death penalty, castration, . . . nothing ends it, they still continue and will continue. Everyone’s idea of total freedom just isn’t possible, no matter how much I hope and pray for it.

        So please do not put me down for disliking those who practice deviant lifestyles. I know that there are a few who do not prey upon the innocent and unsuspecting children of the world, however I do know what the majority of them actually do. And yes, heterosexuals are very much among them when I say deviant I mean all deviants, not just homosexuals and lesbians.

        When you can figure out a way to rid Humankind of this scourge, then maybe, just maybe, we will have even the slightest chance at total freedom. Until then we will need governance and law enforcement.

        • G.A- I’m sorry- I wasn’t trying to put your beliefs down. That particular avenue(the gay and lesbian thing)has been part of discussions with my father-in-law. He feels much like you do on the topic. My only point to my comment is that I feel that yes there has to be laws about activities that cause others harm, we have no business trying to legislate “moral” conduct that doesn’t harm any except themselves. Yes, we will always have the need for police and fire departments etc., but I think we could agree that our country has enough problems in these legal and safety areas, to where we don’t need to try to additionally legislate others activities that do no harm to other people. That’s all I was trying to get across. Sorry if I offended you!

        • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

          Good Post GA, lots of things to think about.

          I am of the “do no harm” school of thought. I completely agree that we will never have a live and let live society and therefore, the issue of doing no harm takes on meanings that were never intended and in an ideal world would not matter.

          Gays decide to marry and are allowed. From this flows “Heather has two mommies” or “Billy has two dads”. I suspect, like it or not, that harm has been done to both Heather and Billy. Wanting or wishing that something be so is quite different than it actually being so. Being a grown up adult is realizing that

          Customs and mores change and then change again. Those that would assume that these things require that a society be more accepting and constantly become more liberal are I think fooling themselves. History teaches that there is an ebb and flow. What is accepted today may not be tomorrow and who is to say what is the direction of “progress”. I would submit that euthanasia and abortion are examples. There are those against both who would say that their elimination would be “progress” in protecting and respecting huuman life and others who would say that more of each would be “progress” in allowing more human freedom. Ultimately, the decision on this will be based on might, might at the ballot box or might in the form of some authoritarian despot.

          I think that the old dictum “be careful what you wish for, you may get it” is appropriate. It is always appropriate.

        • GA- Please understand I am not attacking you, but attitudes like yours are what ends up “gracing us” with the likes of Bush and/or Obama. Until we, as humans, are able to get past primitive superstition we will keep getting more of the same, with its attendant genocides and wars.

          “Forcing others to ‘accept’ deviant lifestyles as ‘normal’ is not exercising freedom, it is only another form of dictatorship in my opinion.”

          No one can force you to “accept” it, but they have a right to not be denied their basic human rights by you or on your behalf just because you consider them “deviant”. This is where the danger of allowing a government to exist comes from. No one has the legitimate authority to enforce their values on another. Just allowing people to exist and live as they wish places no obligations upon you.

          “We Humans will always have to have some sort of basic rules for all society to adhere to and live by”

          Absolutely. And the main rule is “No human being has the right, under ANY circumstances, to initiate force against another human being, nor to advocate or delegate its initiation.” All legitimate rules derive from this, and all evil, tyrannical, perverted counterfeit rules violate this.

          No necessary service has to be provided by government stealing money from people in order to provide it. And no “service” is ever legitimately authorized to violate the rights of any person who is not initiating force, no matter whose sensibilities may be offended. If you want cops, pay for their services and accept responsibility when they harm someone on your behalf. The same goes for those less likely to cause harm such as firefighters and paramedics. If a service is needed and wanted, and theft by government is out of the picture, people will willingly pay for it.

          You say “So please do not put me down for disliking those who practice deviant lifestyles”. No one is putting you down for your opinion, only for using violence to enforce your opinion on people who do not share your perspectives and values. Who decides your definition of “deviant”? No one is saying you must “like” it, just that it is not your business. Any “law” that violates your right of association is wrong, just as any “law” that dictates a person’s private life is wrong. You should be able to discriminate against anyone for any reason you want, or for no reason at all. It is your right to do so. However, others also have the right to point out that you may not be a very nice person for discriminating for ridiculous reasons and then they have the right to refuse to associate with you.

          “When you can figure out a way to rid Humankind of this scourge, then maybe, just maybe, we will have even the slightest chance at total freedom. Until then we will need governance and law enforcement.” Homosexuals, as long as they do not use rape or coercion, are not a scourge. Government and “law enforcement” can never, ever, rise above being a scourge since coercion, up to and including rape (usually imposed through the prison system, but sometimes in other ways, too), is an integral part of “what they do”. To use non-aggressive people who you don’t like to justify violence against us all is wrong. Wrong!

    • G. A. Rowe

      Individual responsibility. If we make each and every individual responsible for their own actions, then who is to say what is acceptable and what is not?

      As I’ve asked Mathius and Buck,

      Do you believe you have the right to use violence on non-violent people?

      Your question is precisely the question you have to ask yourself.

      If you think YOU can tell others how to live while not imposing upon you, OTHERS will tell YOU how to live too!

      Other non-violent people may disgust you, but you probably disgust them too.

      As long as neither tries to force the other to live their way – why do you have a problem?

  20. G.A. said : Personally, I thank God for people like you and the folks who inhabit this site because I know that as long as you all continue to exist this country and its people will prevail.

    G: says: I agree totally! :)

    I could not have wished that I would be apart of a finer group of people, regardless of their views. WE THE PEOPLE will prevail, eventually.

    Peace!

    G!

  21. I do not think most Americans FEAR freedom.

    I think they have no clue what real freedom is.

    They do not know our history or the philosophical reasons that freedom is essential to our pursuit of happiness.

    Modern Americans are the product of over 100 years of acculturation, or habituation if I may borrow from the environmental lingo. Bears who discover garbage as food become “habituated” to people. They lose their fear and bad things result. Americans have suffered the same fate but in a reverse form. We have been told that slavery is freedom and all evidence of freedom has been erased. We have become habituated to the feed trough provided by govt.

    Does this sound familiar? “We need government health care and welfare because poverty is the true destroyer of freedom. We must help others so they can be free.”

    If I have been told my entire life that a grizzly is really a cuddly panda then how am I to know otherwise? Of course once I discover the true nature of the grizzly I will certainly be afraid.

    I am guessing that will be the reaction of most once they discover what freedom is all about. That is if they ever get over their anger once they discover they have been lied to for generations.

    • USWeapon says:

      I disagree JAC. I think that you are correct in some sense of your statement. I do believe that many do not have a true concept of what real freedom is. Because of this, they are very fearful of what they think real freedom is. An education on what true liberty is would surely qualm the fears of many, and I hope that one day we will see those types of epiphanies happening for many people. But for now, that lack of understanding equates to a true fear of freedom based on what they incorrectly believe it will be.

      I completely agree that we have become habituated to the feed trough, although that is a way of phrasing it that may turn many off. I tend to phrase it as we have become far too habituated to the idea that government is going to take care of all the things that are hard so that I won’t have to. It breeds the feeling that this is normal, when it is the antithesis of freedom. It is the result of a hundred years of indoctrination to that belief as you say, however, and it will not be easy to reverse. But if people can be taught to understand what it really is, I agree they will be very angry to have fallen for the trap that is the gigantic federal government game.

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