Tuesday Night Open Mic for August 25, 2009

Open Mic 1Well, I have to say that the article on “the Greater Good” yesterday certainly drew some interesting responses. To be honest I found myself sitting and reading the responses from Mathius and Chris, thinking, “This has to be some kind of joke. No person is really this clueless to the moral ramifications of what they are espousing.” I honestly thought they were joking at first in order to get a rise out of folks. It appears that is not the case. So topic number one will be dedicated to some continuation of that topic. I realize of course there will still be discussions continuing on yesterday’s article as well. There is certainly plenty of big news out there to discuss. I want to reiterate what some new readers may not realize. Open Mic is the chance for everyone else to offer topics that they want to discuss. It helps cut down on “hi-jacking” on other days. So if there is something you want to discuss, start a thread and discuss it!

I received this video from someone yesterday. They wanted to have me add it to the comments, but I didn’t see it until the day was almost gone. So I figure I will add it here. It makes a humorous opening statement for the first topic. I won’t identify the sender, as usual. However, if they choose to identify themselves, that is OK. I always try to err on the side of privacy when someone sends something to me. So keep that in mind. If you send me something that you want me to post, make sure you let me know whether you are OK with my putting your name with it or not. If you don’t I will use discretion and choose to not put your name and allow you to claim your submission yourself. At any rate the video shared with me was this one (It will open in a new window if you click the link and take you to youtube to view the video):

What Have We Done?

I do realize that this video is a satire. So if you are offended by it, then perhaps you are taking things a bit too seriously. It sure doesn’t seem that the girl who made the video was all that offended by the parody of welfare queens. But it certainly does speak to the impression that many hold of those who Mathius would give my money to….

Perhaps if there weren’t so many folks that fit this parody, people would not be so against helping those who truly need help. Just a thought. And Mathius…. people like you created the people this woman parodies. Just so you know.

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Comments

  1. USWeapon Topic #1

    The Madness of the Greater Good Conversation From Yesterday

    Where to even begin? Some of the comments from yesterday that simply blew me away…

    Darwinism is great for animals, but if you accept that we should allow the weak to perish, you are tacitly accepting that human life does not have value sufficient to mean that it must be protected. If life is “sacred,” then it must be protected, if not, I get to tear you apart on some different topics. Choose wisely..

    (You should perhaps know my stance before you begin thinking some admission would allow you to tear me apart, something you couldn’t do regardless of my position. In this case you are wrong simply because my position is consistent with my beliefs. So if you would like to give it a shot, please do. I choose social darwinism, and do not hold life to be sacred in the way that you do. Please feel free to attempt to tear me apart. You will find the exercise kind of like blowing out fake candles, you will never get anywhere.)

    My statement that it is evil to allow suffering when you have the power to ameliorate it is there for the sole purpose of offsetting the opinion that it is evil to take what is not “rightfully” yours. I do not, in actuality, consider either to be evil per say.

    (It is never evil for a man to keep what he earns and use it according to what he sees as the right way to use it. I earn my money, you have no right to it at all)

    In fact, the only place your money does no one any good, is when it’s sitting in your back account.

    (Again this is my money, and it was already shown that your argument was faulty as far as it doing no good in my bank account. But regardless, I have earned the money. I put in the hard work to earn an education, get to a level where I make enough. There is no justification you can give for the theft of my money. None. I voluntarily agree with some taxes, although very few. My money is mine, and your car is yours. I drive the same car just about. I drive a G35 S. But you earned it so it is yours. Under your own argument, government has the right to take it from you if it deems it for the greater good)

    As I cannot trust everyone to give willingly, I feel just fine about having the government compel your generosity.

    (Then what you are really saying is that you are just fine with government taking what I earned with my own blood, sweat, and tears. I am struggling to find how you find this to be morally acceptable.)

    Additionally, virtually everything I do with it is taxed to some degree or another. Net net, I keep probably around 55% of what I earn.

    (Think again my friend. After all is said and done, you get to keep about 20% of your earnings.)

    These of course were only the beginning of the conversations. The question that I have to ask both Mathius and all of those who think like them, is at what point do your solutions have anything whatsoever with the concept of freedom?

    If you would not seek true freedom, then how can you even justify the government at all. Since the founders were all about freedom and liberty, I tend to think they would be quite upset with your analysis.

    This should be enough to get the conversation continued today. I look forward to everyone’s thoughts.

    • Good morning all! The video satire USW posted in the main article was sent to him by your’s truly. The sad part is it’s closer to the mindset of what the welfare lifers think, much like birds and a bird feeder. I will follow along at work and post afterwards.

      PEACE!

      G!

      p.s. the video should really be titled “How Obama really got elected” LOL

      • I’m still joking!!

      • Richmond Spitfire says:

        Hi all,

        Posting to get emailed Comments.

        I got that video in email last week! Thought it was hilarious, almost posted it at this site, but then thought that I would be called racist… Thank you G-Man and US Weapon for having more fortitude that I!

        When watching this video, I kept remembering that woman in FL at an Obama Rally who was enraptured over Obama because he was going to pay her mortgage and give her gas! What a joke…this video does indeed epitomize and make fun at the “entitlement” characteristics that some folks have.

        I had to watch the video several times to even make sure that it was a “satire”.

        Best Regards to all,
        RS

      • Better one yet is that ACORN is now trying to infect Canada. They appear shocked at our response as one of those socialist countries many laud as a “functional socialism” with the response to “We deserve a house!” as a big smile and “Get in line.” They don’t appear to realize, they’re not in Kansas any more and that we don’t respond at all to that guilt card they keep on playing in America.

        We get a little tipsy, engage in a little unprotected social interaction and WHAMMO! We end up catching ACORN. Oh well, at least it responds to penicillin… all be it with confusion as its one of those BIG words.

    • USW,

      One of the things that drew me to this site was a complete lack of personal attacks. I do not appreciate being called clueless. I start from a different point, and so draw a different – equally logical – conclusion. If I am clueless to the moral ramifications, so is he:

      “[Taxes are] the price we pay for living in a civilized society.” – Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes

      • I think that there ae only two or three people on this site that agree that SOME taxes are necessary. Most of us would just like those to be in accordance with the US Constitutioon. The 16th amendment is the biggest crime ever foisted on this country.

        • Ray Hawkins says:

          Redleg – I am sorry – your post makes no sense to me:

          “I think that there are only two or three people on this site that agree that SOME taxes are necessary. Most of us would just like those to be in accordance with the US Constitution. The 16th amendment is the biggest crime ever foisted on this country.”

          Even to support the requirements of Article I Section 8 (e.g. “To provide and maintain a Navy”) one must be required to support taxes that service that purpose – I would think that to equal that most ALL people on this site would agree that SOME taxes are Necessary.

          • Sorry, I really should proof read BEFORE I hit that submit button. what I meant was:

            “I think that there are only two or three people on this site that WOULDN’T agree that SOME taxes are necessary. Most of us would just like those to be in accordance with the US Constitution. The 16th amendment is the biggest crime ever foisted on this country.”

          • The Government was supposed to receive tarriffs from commerce. THEY came up with the idea of income and other taxes so they could grow bigger and begin to interfere more and more in our daily lives. FACT. NOT FANTASY.

            • Ray Hawkins says:

              Esom – from Section 8:

              “The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;”

              • Ray:

                Please explain what in your citation of Section 8 is supposed to refute Esom’s claim.

                Or were you citing this in support of his claim?

              • JAC,

                I think his quote was to show that “government” didn’t just come up with the idea of taxes against the will of the founders. The founders put it right there in the Constitution.

                Government just perverted the concept.

                Hope your day is starting out well.

                USW

              • Ray Hawkins says:

                Correct – yes USW, JAC and ESOM

            • Actually it was to push the burden away from the industrial base to the social one. The elective process and its costs made it a certainty that industry would involve itself in politics. It was and still is just good business.

              Taking a million from one place is noticeable where as taking a dollar from a million places is inconsequential. Ah those 10th of a penny round downs… genius.

              • Ah yes my dear northern cousin. That damnable Mr. Hamilton and his friends.

                I not so affectionately referr to him as our Nation’s first fascist.

                Made that statement publicly last fall while standing in front of the Treasurey building. You might say I got a few strange looks from those standing around.

                Good day to you sir.
                JAC

      • Greatergoodcs says:

        Mathius, I got your back, brother. What is clueless here is the proposition that 304,000,000 people can live without a government.

        It’s fantasy.

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          And the idea that 304,000,000 people REQUIRE a government to live is fantasy.

          • Greatergoodcs says:

            Except it’s going on as I type, isn’t it?

            We’re alive (now) in the United States, paying taxes and surviving.

            I hope that helps.

            • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

              True,

              But can you positively demonstrate that in the absence of government we wouldn’t be surviving along just fine?

              Does that help?

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                Once again I’ll try and point it out for you as clearly as possible.

                Your thesis is an impossibility. It isn’t going to happen. You are posing a position that can’t happen; therefore (in your mind) you’re never wrong.

                Back here on mother earth, we roll our eyes (while we survive under a government structure).

                If that doesn’t help, I’m afraid nothing else will.

              • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

                Once again you have evaded the question by asserting that it is an impossibility.

                Please logically demonstrate and prove that it is an impossibility rather than just making an assertion.

              • Black Flag says:

                Greatgoodcs,

                By what RIGHT do you believe taxation is right?

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                AI am the lord thy god …

              • Black Flag says:

                So you believe government is God?

              • Easily pick your portion of the globe under tribal rule. Trying for some “corporate” hand off with private forces in place is ignorant of one shining fact. When Alan’s Security is THE armed force in America and I’ve driven all the others under through aggressive pricing and graft, why would I not in all but name be king? What’s to stop Alan’s Security and the other major corporations from taking over the entire show?

              • Without sovereign immunity and the backing of a government monopoly, your army could be defended against and shot without facing “arrest” and trial for insurrection or some other nonsense.

              • Sad response. Try thinking a bit more on the model you yourself pitched. The mere citizenry will rise up armed? Hell, Glen Beck wouldn’t pitch that. You seem to think in corporate land your “vote” matters but guess again. It’s all for the benefit of the corporate entity and people are regularly fed to it greasing the cogs.

                I understand capitalism and am a very happy beneficiary of the same. I’m contracted to a company that eats other companies and sometimes uber unpleasantly. I don’t like it but I comprehend it. No way you’re in the game responding as you do.

              • Black Flag says:

                Alan,

                Does not the real examples of Iraq and Afghanistan easily demonstrate Kent’s first point?

                His second point is TODAY armed resistance to authority (no matter how tyrannical) is called “insurrection” or “rebellion” or “an act of a traitor”.

                These descriptions impart an illusion that resistance to evil and government is illegitimate

                When legitimacy is removed, one sees resistance as merely self-defence.

        • GG….you have got to read deeper….you are on the surface.

      • Oliver Wendell Holmes was a pinhead. Civilization is what we manage to create in spite of taxes.

        • Greatergoodcs says:

          Pinhead? Shades of Bill (the blow hard) O’Reilly.

          The civilization you’re creating in your mind is one big fantasy.

          • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

            The civilization which you have created in your mind is a fantasy.

            • Greatergoodcs says:

              Except you’re living in it. How cool is that?

              • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

                Yes, and so are you.

                That does not make it any more real.

                The reason that it is a fantasy is that you THINK that it is something which it is not.

                You are convinced that the government has the capability of solving all problems, eliminating all human suffering, and making everyone behave in the way you want them to behave.

                I can postitively demonstrate to you that IN SPITE OF the existence of government, we still have problems, human suffering still exists, and people still don’t always behave in the way you want them to. No matter how strong you make the government, all of these factors will still be the same.

                Would we be demonstrably better of with no government? Not necessarily – it would require a LOT of work, which frankly, most people would currently balk at because they have been taught to believe that there are some things that government is SUPPOSED to DO FOR THEM.

                Would we be demonstrably WORSE OFF without a government? You would say, “Yes, definitely”. I would say “Maybe, but I doubt it.”

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                Nope, I see gov’t as a necessary evil; something to buffer/regulate the masses (which left unchecked, would lead to absolute chaos).

              • Black Flag says:

                Why is evil necessary?

                Do you not believe that you can accomplish the same goal without using evil?

              • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

                There is no such thing as necessary evil.. there is no such thing as the greater good. You will learn this one day 🙂

              • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

                Evil cannot combat evil, only good can do that. Therefore, if government is evil, it is most certainly not necessary.

              • Black Flag says:

                Greatergoodcs

                Government and civilization are at war with each other.

                The former believes it can attack non-violent people.

                The premise of civilization precludes attacking non-violent people.

                Which one do you want – government OR civilization?

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                They are at war with each in your mind. Not mine.

                Your hypothesis (social darwinism) requires absolute chaos (each against all), but, they, knock yourself out.

              • Black Flag says:

                I have not mentioned Darwin at all.

                I have offered the core premise of each entity – which you have not contradicted.

                You are approaching irrationalism.

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        I am merely curious at this point. One great example people always bring up as demonstrating the need for government is roads.

        If you suddenly woke up tomorrow and the government decided that it was now out of the road making and maintaining business, you are saying that you would not be willing to pay for the construction, use and maintenance of a road unless the government forced you to?

        Also, just what does it mean to be civilized? To me, to be civilized means to treat others as I would like to be treated myself. I think that most of us would agree that if someone is not following this rule, then they are behaving in an “uncivilized” way.

        Is government absolutely necessary to ensure that everyone behave with civility? I can demonstrate that in spite of the existence of government, plenty of people behave in an uncililized manner. In addition, I can demonstrate that some people behave in an uncivilized manner BECAUSE OF the existence of government.

        So what, in fact, is civilization? Civilization is the organization of civilized people into a society. Are taxes really needed in order for that to happen?

      • Mathius,

        I apologize for offending you. That wasn’t my intention. I will attempt to refrain from such things in the future. I do create a site where I demand no personal attacks. There is no justification for such from me or anyone else here.

        USW

        • Thank you, USWeapon.

          I do not mind being singled out, however. Please feel free to take me to talk as you see fit.

    • I had an interesting conversation with a good friend of mine about “freedom” the other day and thought I would share some thoughts.

      It is interesting to me that I could not find any examples of true freedom. The best way to explain this is with an example. Say a woman is married and has 2 kids. She has the freedom to choose whether to be a stay at home mom or have a career. Once she makes her choice, she is no longer free! If she goes to work, she can no longer be with her kids. If she stays with her kids, she can no longer have a career! In having freedom, we must necessarily give up freedom.

      Another example is something you hear in the church a lot. If we want to free ourselves from sin, we must become slaves to Christ. If we were to free ourselves from Christ, we would be slaves to sin! (Our course one of those is a good slavery and the other bad, but I digress…)

      In attempting to apply this to our government, I have these thoughts. If we are free to “form” our government (the founders did this, we just vote for reps and maybe some amendments here and there), then we have necessarily given up some of our freedom to the government we are creating. There cannot be true freedom with any form of government. That being said, I think most people (BF excluded 😉 ) are willing to give up some freedom to have protection by their government.

      People are, in general, also willing to give up some of their own possessions (money) in order to run services or build roads or whatnot. I believe there is a moral obligation to use the means we have to help others, but the line of too much to not enough giving is blurred at best. In a philosophy class I once read an article by someone whose name escapes me that claimed we must give until our standard of living would be affected. Now, what does that entail? If I were to give all the money I don’t need to pay the bills, I would be one pink slip away from being the one needing the money! I have to keep some money in the bank to give myself the security I need to operate daily. In my dreams, I would keep only 2 million dollars (this dream of course entails winning the lottery) and give the rest away. I would have all I need to live just from the interest! That being said, that is what I would do and I do not imply that it anyone else MUST do it. Should and must are very different in this case.

      So now I finally come to the point (such verbosity is unlike me). I think everyone should give as much as they feel comfortable giving (apart from the discomfort of parting with something we’ve worked so hard to make), but nowhere in all of this does it say that the government must be the means of doing so. The government is there to do what normal people cannot and I am certainly capable of donating money to a non-profit for helping people with food, school, yes, even health care. The money people make is their property, period. They have full discretion as to its goal.

      Sorry for the length. I look forward to peoples thoughts.

      • Richmond Spitfire says:

        Hi JB,

        I too have a hard time finding examples of “freedom” in my everyday life. There are lots of choices that I can make; but not one single one of those choices are a choice made with total freedome.

        The only place where I think I have “freedom” is in my thinking…but then I have to wonder if I truly have freedom there — in other words, did my education or upbringing indoctrinate me to think a certain way…? I like to think that I have freedom in my own thoughts because I’m questionning, learning and open to others’ opinions.

        Best Regards to all,
        RS

        • YUP

        • You really have quite a bit of freedom. But you have to look to see it, and you then need to act on what you find. Don’t let those who want to control you convince you that you have no freedom. They do not have your interests at heart.

          • Kent, did a little browsing through your links….Presidential Campaign?

            • Yes, presidential campaign. A last ditch effort to do the right thing in the governmentally-approved way. I discovered just how rigged the system really is, and why no real change will never, ever, come through elections or voting. No candidate who could ever represent the “change” espoused by USW (and the even more freedom-oriented people here) will ever even be officially sanctioned to run for a high office.

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          As long as you do not have someone or something else FORCING you to decide one way or another, then you are free.

          Yes, there are consequences of that choice which then require you to make certain sacrifices, but the sacrifices are voluntary on your part, and thus a part of being free.

          If someone or something is forcing you to make one decision rather than another, then it is not really a choice, and the consequences of that non-choice are forced upon you. That is the difference between freedom and “not-freedom”.

          • Richmond Spitfire says:

            Ahhhh Peter,

            There is the crux of my personal problem.

            My ex-husband and the father of my two youngest children does anything and everything possible to make my life miserable. He uses the children to get to me and drags my @ss to Court constantly. I’m going again here in the next couple of months…this is the 3rd time in 5 years….(please note that the “Court” experience when related to children takes approximately 1 year from the time you are served papers until it is final).

            Every good or bad decision, every good or bad action, every good or bad inaction, EVERYTHNG is scrutinized by a litany of paid professionals – Custody Evaluators, Guardian ad Litem, Co-Parenting Facilitators, Psychiatrists (Adult and Child), Lawyers…

            I haven’t felt free for 5 years now…I truly don’t see any freedom for the next 10 years until my youngest attains her maturity.

            I’m hoping that this time the judge will place sanctions on him. My lawyer says it is a 50/50 chance.

            I try so hard to take the high road…it sure is a laborious climb though.

            I’m really at my wits end. EVERYONE tells me that I should simply counter him on his legal battles — that this is the only thing that will stop him…they are probably right, but I am unwilling to sacrifice my children’s happiness just to make life easier on myself. They know him as their father; they know me as their mother — they love and need both of their parents.

            This really isn’t the place to dump this info…but truly, I just don’t know what to do anymore. The fact that I don’t have the very “basic” freedom to be the mother that I was meant to be is very depressing to me.

            RS

        • Murphy's Law says:

          RS,

          Good point about freedom being only in our minds…..then taking it further, wondering “did my education or upbringing indoctrinate me to think a certain way…?” I’ve wrestled with that a LOT……..and I know that I was indoctrinated all my childhood and most of my adult life as well, to think and act certain ways. It’s only in the last few years that I have been able to step back to examine my beliefs and more importantly whether or not they have been based in truth.

          I am now, as you are, questioning, learning and willing to listen to others’ opinions.

          Before, I was chastised for even entertaining thoughts that weren’t in lockstep with certain beliefs. I am SO GLAD I have gotten away from that and do not feel imprisoned in my beliefs anymore. And I have to admit that I allowed it….my “imprisonment” was my own fault.

          The freedom to think and post opinions here is one reason I enjoy this site, and have learned from it.

          JB,

          I must take exception to one thing you said……”I think most people (BF excluded) are willing to give up some freedom to have protection by their government.” BF should not be excluded from that statement. The very fact that he lives in ANY country with an established government shows he IS willing to give up some of his freedoms….because he has and continues to do so. If he truly believed, to the core, what he espouses (we should have no gov’t because it is evil) HE WOULD NOT LIVE HERE. He would take steps to create what he believes is not evil.

          Now perhaps he is planning on doing so, but I’ve never read anything he has written that suggests it.

          How about it, BF? Do you plan on action? BTW, this is a yes or no question. Please do not try to spin anything, or deflect my questions with philosophical questions of your own.

          • When someone insists that “this is a yes or no question” it means they know they are asking a “have you stopped beating your wife?” type of question. They are setting you up.

          • Black Flag says:

            The very fact that he lives in ANY country with an established government shows he IS willing to give up some of his freedoms….because he has and continues to do so.

            When a criminal holds a gun to your head and takes your money, does not make me willingly give up my money.

            You are misusing common understanding and definitions, and thus, coming to very wrong and dangerous conclusions.

            If he truly believed, to the core, what he espouses (we should have no gov’t because it is evil) HE WOULD NOT LIVE HERE. He would take steps to create what he believes is not evil.

            Exactly. I have, often, explained some tactics to extricate one’s self away from the teeth and claws of government.

            Besides, I live where I do because I live. Because it may be a nest of criminals does not require me to leave. How about YOU LEAVE and free the rest of us from your crime?

            It is interesting that those the promote the theft from citizens demand those that oppose such theft abandon their homes….

            Their belief: “If you don’t like us stealing your couch, you can always abandon the house” argument.

            Now perhaps he is planning on doing so, but I’ve never read anything he has written that suggests it.

            Perhaps you are too new. Such conversations occur frequently – stick around.

            However, such conversations will always start with this question:

            “Are you willing to disentangle yourself from government?”

            The implications of that statement are profound.

            How about it, BF? Do you plan on action? BTW, this is a yes or no question. Please do not try to spin anything, or deflect my questions with philosophical questions of your own.

            The answer is NO – because I have acted

            What about you? The choice is slavery or freedom. Which one do you want?

      • “Protection” by government is a myth.

        I am perfectly willing to pay for roads. I would just rather get what I pay for; something that never happens under a monopoly like government. There will come a day when people will be astounded that anyone ever settled for government roads.

        • Greatergoodcs says:

          There will come a day when people will be astounded that anyone ever settled for government roads.

          Yeah, Cormac McCarthy wrote a book about it (The Road) … it’ll require armaggedon.

          • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

            Greatergoodcs,

            Nothing REQUIRES armageddon.

            Quite often, all that is required is for a few people to wake up and realize, “Hey, there has got to be a better way to do this!”

      • JB…do we not have freedom in choice? I can choose to stay home or I can choose to go to work.

        • Yes of course, but my point is that once you make that choice, you are no longer “free.” You have cast you lot and now you must live within the bounds you’ve set (ie. house-life or career-life).

          • JB you are misusing the meaning of freedom, thus creating a circular agrument that ends with “there is no such thing as freedom”

            Freedom is in having the choice. In being free from the use of force by others to compell you to act in a certain way.

            You are mixing up your choices with the concept of freedom that allows you to make the choice.

            Do not fall into the trap of thinking or supporting the notion that our choices or priveledges are our freedoms in and of themselves.

            Make sense?

            • I don’t think I am misusing the term, but merely musing about what freedom really means. In being free to make choices, we are free to enslave ourselves to our own desires. I think what is interesting to me is exactly this paradoxical process.

              I agree with what you said though. Maybe I’m not on the same brain frequency? I must admit I just finished taking a 10 hour qualifying examination for graduate physics…

              • That would explain it. You are overthinking.

                Freedom is hard to grasp but nothing like quarks, nutrinoes, strings and such other mundane things that make up the universe.

                good luck on that test
                JAC

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          Yes, you can choose to stay home or you can choose to go to work. Both of those choices come with consequences.

          You must be willing to accept whatever the consequences are of the choice which you make freely.

          For example, my wife stays home with the kids. We have less money to spend on things that we would like to have, but we do not have to entrust the upbringing of our children to strangers, and we do not have to pay strangers to bring up our kids.

          As a result, we have one television instead of two or three, and we have a 6-year old car and a 14-year old car. We have an apartment instead of a house.

          We live with these consequences as a result of our choice.

          We do not blame our lack of new cars or 3 TVs on someone else or demand that the government provide us with new cars and 3 TVs.

          Please note, I am not saying that my choice is what is best for everyone! My wife could have chosen to go to work, we could have chosen to send our kids to daycare, and we could have chosen to have more things. I am NOT saying that that is a “bad” choice – I am simply saying it has a different set of consequences, and you must accept the different consequences if you take the different choice.

          • I give you props, Pete, for living within your means. I wish more people had the pride and decency to do just that and be happy with it. I sincerely wish you the best!

            I’m just down the road in Bloomington, BTW!

            • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

              I have been there – wonderful town with a beautiful college campus, and some darn good restaurants 🙂

              It is shameful that I have to go to Bloomington to get decent Thai food. There are very few Thai restaurants in Indy, and none of them are as good as the ones in Bloomington 😦

              They aren’t horrible by any means, they just aren’t as good.

    • Hi USW….Howzit goin’? Yesterday’s posts were interesting but, I found most were somewhat lacking in substance. It is one thing espouse philosophy but I do not see anyone offering conclusions or remedies. I read postings that were designed to make people feel ignorant but, in my opinion, were so far from reality that it is scary. Scary to the point that they actually think taking from others by force is realistic and necessary…….until their ox gets gored. One thing that really stood out about this “greater good” crap is that some pick and choose what the greater good is to fit their philosophy, by their design and ignore the rest.

      Hell, everyone on here knows that, in reality, to live in an ordered society, there are taxes for common uses ( police, fire, roads, etc. ). This is reality. BF and his ilk can hope for the Utopian society where everyone will cooperate and build roads simply because it is for the common good and that neighbors will rise up and help when the tragedies strike but that is fantasy in the real world and as travelled as BF and I both are…neither one of us can point to any society that functions in the manner he espouses….including the Netherlands and Finland and Sweden and Denmark. I have been to all as he has. I see people making disparaging remarks that making a profit is greedy and making excess profits is immoral. This is pure bunk and class envy…pure and simple. People work for a company and take a wage and its benefits and then criticize the very thing they are doing. UN-friggin-believable. That satire that you posted is closer to reality that you might want to think. This is the mentality today. It is easy to make generalized statements like, corporations that move to other countries are greedy and exploit the people with lower wages…like we are the ones responsible for that exploitation when those other countries started their own exploitations. Please allow me to use the example of a company that I mentioned earlier named Medtronic. (Look it up). They just moved to Puerto Rico…why? It was not to exploit the labor because they are paying the same labor rates there as here. The reason they moved was business taxes….4% as compared to 38%. When you extrapolate that on 100 million dollars of revenue, that is a lot of money. You want to keep corporations here? Lower taxes and curb spending…there is nothing more to it. I know the President of the Medtronic Division and quite frankly, would do the same. Entitlement programs are a cost that will move companies away. They moved because they will save 30 million on taxes. THAT was the prize. They also moved because of the entitlement mentality that is becoming pervasive in our society and the soon to be “forced” taxes. Vacations, health, holidays are NOT entitlements…they are benefits to be voluntarily given….not taken. That is why in my business, I have opted out of employees to contract labor…. I pay higher percentages but offer no other entitlements. They are free to use what I pay to purchase their own….and I have a waiting list to get in on this basis. Savings. THAT does not make me greedy…it makes me smart. I will pay income taxes, sales tax, property tax just like everyone else, but when you force minimum wages, mandatory wage penalties for opting out of programs, and play the “poor me” card….sorry, it is 24 Carat bullshit. What is astounding, is that there are people that believe that this greater good is really good. I don’t understand. I owe the world nothing. I owe nothing to the society in which I live EXCEPT as I CHOOSE to VOLUNTEER my time and money as I see fit, up to and including military time, which some on this blog feel that it is also a ploy to prey upon unemployed. This is an uninformed line of thought. Those that claim greater good will not give part of their time to the military to preserve their greater good theory. This is hypocrisy at its finest. So, our own stupidity is driving employers away and rightly so…welfare reform, tort reform, and individual responsibility is a good start to bringing them back…until then, we will have to watch for the “brown shirts” because that is what this greater good crap is about. I still believe in using our system and the vote….for now….and will continue to believe that until I find that it is no longer feasible. I will not wax philosophic and hope that things change…I will make change starting at the lowest level and work up…but still withing the system. You will never see me take a stand without a conviction and a remedy. This is where BF and company and I part. I agree with some of what he says but not his approach to remedy. He will never get there by talking….he will get there by doing…and, no, convincing others that he is right in his thinking is not doing anything….it is still talking. Other than that, he is correct in most of his stances…in MY, so far, free opinion.

      Sorry, sir, this was too long.

      • “Utopian society where everyone will cooperate and build roads simply because it is for the common good”

        No, I see a society where people will build roads to make a profit, and if they don’t do a good job, people will be free to use someone else’s road instead.

      • I agree with you on almost, no on everything that you said. The Greater Good crap is just that, crap. What exactly in the hell do people think businesses are in business for? To divide the profits among their employess? Gimme a freakin’ break!!

        Some people yesterday need to pull their idealistic heads out of their asses.

        Don’t get me wrong. It’s good to be idealistic. But it should be leavened with common sense.

        Being in 2 former businesses I can tell you from first hans experience. Some employees wouldn’t be satisfied even if you DID split the profits with them. They would piss and moan then that they were being cheated somehow.

        It’s the insane taking over the Asylum complex.

      • Good Morning Colonel:

        I agree with much of what you write but must take strong exception to this:

        “He will never get there by talking….he will get there by doing…and, no, convincing others that he is right in his thinking is not doing anything….it is still talking. Other than that, he is correct in most of his stances…in MY, so far, free opinion.”

        If you think that teaching and convincing others is not action then explain how a nation of free people somehow along the way became convinced to enslave themselves? It was the people who took the final action but was it not the philosophers and teachers who created the power for that action? Those who discount the power of philosophy and the use of words in this fight will do so at OUR peril.

        I know this is fine tuning to some degree but everyone in this fight does not have to play the same role. We need some who can teach, who can spread the word and convince US that freedom is in fact a better choice. To show the rest of US how it can work. To discount the need for teachers will land us right back here again, perhaps in our lifetime.

        And of course, what is it we are going to teach. What is the word we will spread? If we do not have a well thought out alternative, a plan based on the principles of freedom. Then how can we claim we are trying to restore our liberty. We must be able to show first why it is needed, and then how to do it.

        Otherwise I see the outcome something akin to the end of the movie Lawrence of Arabia. We have won the revolution but no one can get the water to run. To stop the riots, the Govt offers to step in to take back control of the water, and then the sewer, and, and, and……………….

        We should be thankful that there may be enough of our original system in place to allow us to in fact resurrect our country. The one based on liberty. If it were not for our Constitution we would be left with only one choice and it would be very bloody. Whether we really have the power within the system is yet to be seen. But theoretically it is possible and I believe we should try it first. It will be less costly to me personally as I will not have to be constantly buying more lead and powder. Rather spend my money on ink and paper, for now.

        And by the way, the Dr. Pepper raised in your honor Friday evening was most cold and delicious. Not the original you have but good non the less.

        Best Regards
        JAC

        • Ahhh…JAC…I hate it when you make sense…and hate even worse when I have to acknowledge it. Ok…I will stipulate that philosophy and stating same is an action that can, by admission, have people change tactics or ways they do things. I am actually not that far off from you and BF and even Ray….just have a different way of getting there. I am strong on the fact that, like it or not, right now we have a system…flawed as it may be…still a system and I prefer and actually think I will get further if I work for change within the system….so,ok..I will recognize that the power of the persuasion and the power of pen is awesome…but keep your powder dry.

          Thank you for the toast….one back at you as we speak…and this one is made with REAL CANE sugar….ahhhh.

          Have a wonderful day

          D13

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          JAC,

          The one thing that I would caution you about regarding “going back to the Constitution” is that if you are going to do so, you must find a mechanism to ensure that the government IS UNABLE to act outside of the limits set forth by it.

          If you can devise the means to make that happen, I would be more than willing to listen.

          • Peter:

            And you have summarized my personal quest nicely.

            Remember my comments from months ago. For which some of our action types chastized me severely at the time.

            In the end, if we are to succeed, we must amend the Constitution significantly in order to plug the holes that allowed the water to get into the boat in the first place.

            But in order for that to happen, we must have a very large majority of people operating on the same page in terms of the principles that such an effort is based on. The Pragmatic approach will only start the sinking all over again.

            I need you to help, not just listen. I need BF and Kent as well. But then you already knew that.

            • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

              JAC,

              My fear is that rebuilding the boat using any of the same timber may well yeild the same result.

              My hope is that you are on to something, and I will try to provide help where I can 🙂

              The key, as I see it, if your approach is to work, is to ensure that the people always have more power than the government does, and that the local governments have more power than the States which have more power than the Federal. This was (I believe) the original intent.

              Local government would have complete control over local matters. State would have control over matters affecting multiple localities (especially where the multiple localities could not agree among themselves), and Federal would have control over matters affecting multiple States (especially where the multiple States could not agree among themselves).

              That sounded like it would work great, but then you had the Federal government assert that everything affected everything else, and so everything was a Federal matter, and everyone just went, “Oh yeah, it is all inter-related, that makes sense!”

              And then the whole thing started it’s descent down the crapper.

              • One concept I am working on right now is the extent to which our Federal/National rules are used to protect our individual rights against both the states and local govts.

                The founders in reality gave most to the states. That is the only truly redeaming value of the bill of rights. It applied to the States so they couldn’t take those rights away.

                If we give states/people full power other than what the fed has, then we could see different states with different philosophies. Communist states and Black Flag states.

                If we codify all rights at the federal level we will have all VDLG states, but we will have alot of very unhappy lefties to deal with.

                I used to think option 2 was the only moral one, but perhaps we should just cage the Federal beast and let the people decide what they are willing to live with. Of course this will mean some serious migration may have to occur.

                I think civil law is our primary means for clipping the fangs for Fed and State. That puts power in the hands of people. That is the general concept.

        • Well JAC. I was engrossed by his long post that I missed that point. Guess I have to agree with you too.

      • D13: That was very thought-provoking. The entitlement culture wants to sit on their @$$ because the people they continue to elect will keep the freebies coming. The whole business of Obama and his Czars seems to be completely about reparations, whitey pays.

        Sorry, but that’s the way I see it.

    • USW:

      I disagree that Mathius and folks like him are responsible for creating the welfare queens.

      Yesterday it was explained that individuals are not responsible for harm if they did not directly cause that harm. Inaction is not a cause. I submit that neither is support of a system that ultimately depends on the decision of the individual to become entrapped in that system.

      If our logic is good enough for us it is good enough for our colleagues on the left.

      They are guilty of allowing the system to exist, however. They are enablers but they are not the direct cause.

      If we want to assign blame here it is with the philosophy that has led to this mind set and those who perpetuate it without thinking deeply about the consequences. By ignoring the nature of what government is they fool themselves into thinking that something like welfare programs or medical care can be made more “effective” or “efficient”. In the end, power once given to govt will be used to expand govt beyond anything imaginable. Once given it is virtually impossible to get it back.

      That is why we must find private alternatives to these supposed calamities within our society. If we can not find a private solution then we need to focus on local govt solutions. The result will be a stronger society. If for no other reason than our citizens will start interacting with each other instead of a faceless and souless govt.

      To Ray, Todd, Mathius, Oz, Greatergoodcs, et al.; In your defense of govt provided support for the needy you assume that such support REQUIRES govt. Yet we have over 100 years of experience in this country alone where such govt support was not needed. It was not until the Depression that one group of political philosophers got control of the power and implemented such a program. Despite the fact that the destitute were not starving to death. The soup lines were massive but there was soup for the poor. Those citizens who had some gave what they could.

      The great San Francisco earthquake, no govt support for months and then it was minimal compared to what the citizens of the nation provided. I do not have knowledge but guess the same was true of the great Chicago fire.

      More recently, I present Katrina and Rita. The private citizen acted with tremendous generosity and kindness, only to be asked to leave it up to the govt. It was the private churches that were the most effective and efficient in responding to needs with Rita. It was not the Red Cross or Govt.

      We are the solution to our own problems. We do not need a thing called Govt to make it happen. Govt breeds contempt, jealousy, envy, hopelessness, and anger among us. It acts to divide us. It uses your belief in a greater good to destroy our very drive and will. It uses it to destroy us as individuals.

      The greater good must develop from within us and through us, all acting individually. This is how a society developes to become a “society”. It can not be imposed by Govt run by a temporary majority. It evolves from the combined values and actions of its citizens. There seems to be no limit to the compassion of humans when they are empowered to release it. The key to that empowerment is to get Govt out of the compassion business.

      At the most basic level, govt provided welfare is a cop out by those who claim compassion in their name. It is a lazy man’s way out. It can be summed up as: “Let the govt do it, I am too busy.” But we pay a very dear price for this type of mindset. We eventually lose our very humanity because we no longer have to interact with each other at the most basic level. The poor are lost because after all, “out of site is out of mind”.

      I offer you this challenge. You are all very intelligent. I would not call you wise becasue you obviously don’t share my epiphany regarding political philosophy (For those new to the site, I started out on the left left. Others here started out on the right left). I challenge you to put your defense of the status quo aside for awhile and use your intelligence to see if there may be in fact other solutions that do not fit in your box. Do not just assume they won’t work. And please don’t just jump to generalizations to claim failure. You need to really put your gray matter to work and discuss here. Work with us to see if the possible is truly possible.

      And a Hearty Good Morning to All
      JAC

      • Hey JAC…..you even made sense to me today…Wow….how are you?

        • I am well thank you.

          Sometimes it comes out better if I let the brain slow down a little.

          Went to a forum for city council want to be’s last night. That definetly slowed down the old brain. I was damn near asleep by the time it was over. My observation was that it was only the young guys running, left and right, who would give a direct answer to folks. I enjoyed their honesty and thoughtfulness regarding our local issue. The rest should be put out to pasture.

      • JAC,

        Excellent Post this fine AM. I take your criticism to heart, as usual. You are absolutely correct that it was improper of me to lay the blame at the feet of Mathius or those who think like them. It is akin to blaming the actions of a drunk on the wife who merely enables him. And that is not fair, nor is it an accurate placing of causal effect. Thank you for pointing my hypocrisy out.

        I especially want to thank you for the rest of your thoughts, including the challenge for those who disagree with us to leave the ideology aside for a moment and see if there are solutions that we can come up with together. That is, after all, the very reason why I created the site and enforced the respect rule, to allow civil discourse that gets to solutions we can all agree with.

        • Mathius: I’ve been following this blog for about 6 months now. I came here because the people on the Fox blogs were more interested in name-calling and correcting spelling to engage is any meaningful discussion.

          The people here are always respectful, even when we disagree. USW is not here to insult you or try to scare you off. Your comments are always welcome, keep it up.

        • Greatergoodcs says:

          That’s a rather backhanded apology to Mathius, but it’s your toy (this blog).

          The fact is you place yourself in an indefensible position (no gov’t). It can’t and won’t happen and asking me to prove it is as pointless as claiming semantics with the concept of “greater good”.

          So where are the solutions? If your starting point is flawed, I don’t think you can resolve very much.

          • Black Flag says:

            Greatergoodcs

            So where are the solutions? If your starting point is flawed, I don’t think you can resolve very much

            Ah! Now we are getting somewhere!

            If your starting point is flawed, would you agree the conclusion of such ‘starting point’ to be flawed as well?

            So, let’s start with your starting point. Greatergooddcs, as see if it is consistent with your position.

            • Greatergoodcs says:

              I’ll play. Mine requires gov’t to act as a buffer between nation states, a regulator to the general population and sometimes a provider of essential services.

              It might be required to grow proportionate to the society it governs, but that seems feasible enough to me.

              Without a gov’t … you have an awful lot of people wanting what “they” want, perhaps not enough resources to provide it and who gets what is determined by ???

              The mystery of life is your starting point.

              • Black Flag says:

                Greatergoodcs

                I’ll play. Mine requires gov’t to act as a buffer between nation states, a regulator to the general population and sometimes a provider of essential services.

                Sir, you are not starting at the beginning, but at a conclusion.

                You are offering a solution without asking the question.

                Without a gov’t … you have an awful lot of people wanting what “they” want, perhaps not enough resources to provide it and who gets what is determined by ???

                Ok, this is a start.

                Let’s move slowly and achieve mutual clarity of your position.

                Remember, sir, I am not judging your core belief – I cannot judge a person’s believes using my believes as a yard stick! I have no way to prove mine is any better than yours.

                The universe has infinite number of answers to every problem – therefore, you can be ‘right’ and I can be ‘right’ at the same time while solving the problems of humanity.

                However the way I know you are WRONG is if YOU contradict yourself.

                The Universe forbids contradictions – it is the only, true, universal wrong – that is, contradiction.

                So, you’ve identified that there are finite resources (economically, this is called scarcity) and the problem you have offered is:

                1) Man needs resources to live

                2) Resources are scarce and finite

                3) By what means can Man allocate scarce resources to himself, exclusive of all others, for him to live.

                SO far so good?

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                I have a problem with “exclusive of all others”.

              • Black Flag says:

                Greatergoodcs

                I have a problem with “exclusive of all others”.

                Ok, so try to explain to me how we both can eat the same bite of apple?

              • Black Flag says:

                GreaterGoodcs

                Someone, either you or me, must determine HOW a particular piece of property will be used.

                Think of it this way, a wall needs to be painted.

                You want it red.

                I want it black.

                The wall cannot be both red and black at the same time.

                Who decides what color the wall is?

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                We share it, my comrade. Why is that so repuslive to you?

              • Black Flag says:

                Share? The wall can be one color – how does one share?

                Apple: a bite of an apple – how do we share the same bite?

                At some point, exclusive control is required.

          • Again Greatergoodcs,

            You need to better read my position. I am not now, nor have I ever, taken the position of no government. Do not confuse me with some others. BF takes me to task regularly for the fact that I refuse to go to the “no government” position. If you want to take a shot at me, that is fine. But at least find out if the position you are taking a shot at me for is ACTUALLY MY POSITION.

            • Greatergoodcs says:

              Sorry, USWeapon. My assumption is social darwinism requires no gov’t.

              • Funny that the most famous proponents of social darwinism were dicatatorships. Not sure how that squares with “no government”.

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                Are you calling USW a hitlerite? Shame on you.

              • No, not at all! Social Darwinism only requires that we do not overburden the producers to prop up those that have a fatal flaw of not being willing to produce in any way. Notice that I am a big fan of charity and of helping others. But you have to earn that help in some way. Even being a great beggar is a talent that can help someone survive.

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                Charity vs. welfare?

                It would be great if charity could solve the problem, but I don’t think your fellow man (on average) will be willing to help as much as you. What then?

                I am only speaking of helping those who need it through no fault of their own, but would you include in that pool those who lost their jobs and can no longer afford to pay their mortgages/health insurance, etc.?

              • Black Flag says:

                It would be great if charity could solve the problem, but I don’t think your fellow man (on average) will be willing to help as much as you. What then?

                Private donations to charity FAR exceeds government donations.

                Private donations would increase if government removed its competition.

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                I have a hard time believing that. If you’re right, it’s something to consider, no doubt.

              • Black Flag says:

                US Foreign Aid: Private Donations vs Gov Aid
                The U.S. private sector donates to international causes at a level nearly four times the amount spent by the U.S. government on official development assistance (ODA), according to a report about to be published by the Hudson Institute’s Center for Global Prosperity. Called the Index on Global Philanthropy, the report tallies $71 billion in international donations by U.S. private charities, religious organizations, universities, corporations, foundations, and immigrants sending money home for the year of 2004 (the latest year available). That compares to $20 billion in government foreign aid for the same year.

                Garth Heutel

                NBER Working Paper No. 15004
                Issued in May 2009
                NBER Program(s): PE

                —- Abstract —–

                A large literature examines the interaction of private and public funding of public goods and charities, much of it testing if public funding crowds out private funding. This paper makes two contributions to this literature. First, the crowding out effect could also occur in the opposite direction: in response to the level of private contributions, the government may alter its funding. I model how crowding out can manifest in both directions. Second, with asymmetric information about the quality of a public good, one source of funding may act as a signal about that quality and crowd in the other source of funding. I test for crowding out or crowding in either direction using a large panel data set gathered from nonprofit organizations’ tax returns. I find strong evidence that government grants crowd in private donations, consistent with the signaling model. Regression point estimates indicate that private donations crowd out government grants, but they are not statistically significant.

              • Black Flag says:

                “no fault of their own”

                But how do you determine this?

                If I want a job in a jobless town, whose fault is it that I’m unemployed?

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                Let’s attempt to be realistic. Most of the mortgage foreclosures have nothing to do with that scenario (you painted).

              • Black Flag says:

                Sir, it is YOU who created the scenario of “lost job”!

                Are you arguing with yourself?

          • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

            Greatergoodcs,

            You place YOURSELF in the MORALLY INDEFENSIBLE position of supporting an immoral system.

            If you are ok with the fact that the current system is immoral, that is fine, but it does make your position awefully hard to defend.

            You can say, “I support an immoral system because it is necessary and it is what we have”.

            To that I reply, “I support a moral system because it is necessary, and even though it is not what we currently have, that doesn’t mean I cannot advocate for its existence.”

      • I like that. The left are enablers but not the cause. Works for me.

    • Mathius…please explain so I understand. Are you saying we should pay taxes to support the people who are incapable of providing for their needs or are you saying we should pay taxes to support anyone who does not provide for their own needs. There is a difference.
      For instance…my neighbor has a tree on his fence, I take my chain saw and cut up the tree. I then mend the fence and walk off. I have done my choice of helping or ignoring the plight of my neighbor. Now if I choose to not help, does the government have the right to come take me by force, steal my saw and make me take the tree off the fence? The neighbor is more than able to take the tree down himself.
      The government has all kinds of programs in place to help people that need help…these programs are massively abused…and the tax payers are really tired of the abuse of their money.

      • Amazed,

        I think Mathius said pretty clearly that he supports helping those that are incapable of helping themselves, but that he does not support helping those that are unwilling to help themselves.

        Is that accurate Mathius?

        USW

        • Be interested in his reply because I read it differently than you.

          • No. I read him that way also.

          • I feel I have been pretty clear that I support helping those that are incapable of helping themselves, but that I do not support helping those that are unwilling to help themselves.

            • Black Flag says:

              How can you tell the difference, Mat?

            • Then why is our system so overwhelmed? Are all these people on welfare incapable of providing for themselves? Our system is broken…because it has been abused…meaning all other government programs would be abused to….and guess who is paying?

            • It’s a tough distinction to draw, but you like to use slippery slope arguments.

              Just because there is a slippery slope does not mean than you should not try. Even if the result is not perfect, at least it will be better than nothing. And I would err on the side of helping too many, rather than not enough. If someone gets a free ride on my dime, well that is unfortunate, but if someone suffers because they cannot provide for themselves and I did not give enough (read was not compelled to give enough), that is worse still.

              As always, I claim no special knowledge or insight into how this should be best done, only that morally, it is an imperative.

              • A point, Mathius, that I would like you to clarify….I am a dumb ex-soldier, remember.

                Mat says: If someone gets a free ride on my dime, well that is unfortunate, but if someone suffers because they cannot provide for themselves and I did not give enough (read was not compelled to give enough), that is worse still.

                D13 Wonders: Am I understanding you correctly that “compelling” to give is something that you DO NOT support? Or, when you say “Read was compelled not to give enough”…that compelling one to give an arbitrary amount is what you support?

              • I am compelled to give. That I would give anyway is irrelevant. I fully support the compelling, as I’ve stated elsewhere. My statement was to the effect that if I do not give enough, or am not compelled to give enough, that is worse.

                I don’t think you’re dumb, and neither do you.

              • Black Flag says:

                Mathius

                It’s a tough distinction to draw, but you like to use slippery slope arguments.

                Actually, they are called logical conclusions.

                Just because there is a slippery slope does not mean than you should not try. Even if the result is not perfect, at least it will be better than nothing.

                There are MANY THINGS that it is better to do nothing, than something. These things are called “evil actions”.

                And I would err on the side of helping too many, rather than not enough. If someone gets a free ride on my dime, well that is unfortunate, but if someone suffers because they cannot provide for themselves and I did not give enough (read was not compelled to give enough), that is worse still.

                “on your own dime”

                Precisely sir.

                If you create a system that lacks proper financial controls, and you wish to place your funds into such a system, I have no right to tell you different (I may advise you otherwise, but you have the right to ignore me).

                However you have no right to take my money by force and put it into a such a weak system.

                Imagine if I ran a shoddy business with weak financial controls, but forced you to invest in it!

                You’d rage!

                As always, I claim no special knowledge or insight into how this should be best done, only that morally, it is an imperative.

                Such systems like charity work very well.

                Free market charities are driven to provide care to those deserving since these charities must answer to the donors who demand results.

                I donate to charities where I know the funds are uses appropriately.

                By force, seizing my wealth, to place into systems that have no such mechanisms destroys my ability to fund those that do!

              • No Mathius it really is not a slippery slope…think about it this way. The government picks you and 9 others. You are capable of working so therefore you must work and give all you make to the Government. The other 9 you are going to support. You make 1000 per week and give it to the government for the “greater good”. Now the government takes 35% to oversee this program so you and the others are left with 650 to split egually. you take your $65 and go home…you notice that 5 of the people you are supporting are capable of working but don’t, because they have no incentive to work they have exactly the same as you and they sit on their rear and you dig ditches in the hot sun. How long before you scream “no fair”? After all under your plan it is doing as much good as not so it is ok.
                It is not “ok” wouldn’t you be better off if you took the 1000 per week gave the people who really needed it 200 and you kept 200? Lots better than the 65 you were getting! And guess what…the welfare cheaters now have to work or starve and the government is no longer stealing from you.

              • Mathius Said:

                I feel I have been pretty clear that I support helping those that are incapable of helping themselves, but that I do not support helping those that are unwilling to help themselves.

        • But hasn’t history proven that everyone who WANTS to access the system automatically expects the rest of us to assume they CAN’t provide for themselves . . . isn’t that why the system is overwhelmed and broken and why the “Great Society” failed?

          • The system has failed partly because it refuses to EXCLUDE those who refuse to help themselves. Helping those who cannot help their situation is not good enough.

            Almost like “Welfare Queens” are running the system.

            • I find it difficult to understand why those who (like Mathius) agree that we should only “help” those who legitimately can’t “help” themselves would be so staunchly in favor of a government run health care system that in effect says that NONE of us is able to help ourselves . . . not casting any aspersion, I just seriously do not understand the lack of self-reliance . . . and independence (Black Flag, I di not say “freedom.”)

              • Mathius said:

                I feel I have been pretty clear that I support helping those that are incapable of helping themselves, but that I do not support helping those that are unwilling to help themselves.

              • woop.. meant to post that above..

    • Greatergoodcs says:

      (Then what you are really saying is that you are just fine with government taking what I earned with my own blood, sweat, and tears. I am struggling to find how you find this to be morally acceptable.)

      Blood, sweat and tears? Isn’t that a bit dramatic? Most millionaires never shed little blood, sweat or tears. Their children even less … grandchildren and so on.

      While those who service them (and their fortunes) are the ones bleeding, sweating and crying.

      • Black Flag says:

        Greatergoodcs

        So, you do not believe a man has the right to dispose of his assets in a manner of his own choosing?

        • Greatergoodcs says:

          I do not (in most cases). When there is an over abundance of assets, no, they should be shared. He who earned it (and that’s one HUGE assumption) is dead. His children should be provided for, but not gifted all his assets. The wealth needs to be put back into play (for all). If for nothing else, to lower the taxes of those still living.

          • Black Flag says:

            So, if a man cannot determine the assets he owns, he is not really the owner, true?

            • Greatergoodcs says:

              He can determine them while he is alive. Not afterward, nope.

              • Black Flag says:

                So, if a man dies, you want his children ‘taken care of’ – why?

                If all his assets after death are not his, why are you giving (essentially) MY assets away without my permission?

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                Because it would be the most fair to the greater good.

              • Black Flag says:

                Who defines fair?

                What is the greater good?

                Can ANY ACTION be rationalized by the Greater Good creed? What action cannot?

          • The economy is not a zero sum game, nor a pie of finite and never-changing size.

          • Black Flag says:

            Other bizzare misconceptions:
            His children should be provided for, but not gifted all his assets.e who earned it (and that’s one HUGE assumption) is dead. His children should be provided for, but not gifted all his assets.

            Who has the right to ‘determine’ the measure of what it means to be ‘provided for’? How do you determine this? Is everyone exactly the same in this provisioning?

            The wealth needs to be put back into play (for all).

            What concept of ‘wealth’ do you think you hold?

            What do you think ‘wealth’ is and what do you think ‘it’ is doing and for who? Where do you think it is that it is not ‘in play’?

            If for nothing else, to lower the taxes of those still living.

            Thus you subscribe that a man’s property can be taken from him so that YOUR property can be saved?

            • Greatergoodcs says:

              Who has the right to ‘determine’ the measure of what it means to be ‘provided for’? How do you determine this? Is everyone exactly the same in this provisioning?

              A formula to be determined by cost of living, etc.

              What concept of ‘wealth’ do you think you hold?

              No more or less than the next guy (as it should be).

              What do you think ‘wealth’ is and what do you think ‘it’ is doing and for who? Where do you think it is that it is not ‘in play’?

              When one person/conglomerate holds all the assets (earned off the backs of workers with nothing more than a salary in the game), it isn’t in play (for the greater good—your favorite word).

              Thus you subscribe that a man’s property can be taken from him so that YOUR property can be saved?

              A man’s property can be doled out after his death (and his kids/family are provided for with limits) to save EVERYONE’s property.

              • Black Flag says:

                If I wasn’t clear enough,

                “What is your definition of wealth”

                I’m just probing for understanding here.

                So, if a man who is alive gifts all his assets to his kids, then dies, you’re alright with that – correct?

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                It would depend on the cumulative value of his assets. Say, for example, a guy/gal left 2 trillion to his 10 kids … nope, no good. They’d get some measure of his worth not to exceed some percentage of what it takes to live (a national average). The rest goes into the pot.

              • Black Flag says:

                SO, to be clear, once a man dies, whatever assets he had throughout his whole life, regardless if he gifted them or sold them must be seized and given to the government to dispose of.

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                Once again, you got it.

              • Black Flag says:

                So, you would seize everything he sold or gave away in his entire life from their current owners and give it to the government!

              • Black Flag says:

                GreaterGoodcs is a Communist, by definition.

                All property is owned by the community and there exists no private property. All property is ‘on loan’ to whomever the government grants it.

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                GG is closer to a communist than capitalist, that’s for sure.

          • Wow……Zieg Heil !!! BF, there is no sense arguing with this person….good luck but his stance, to me is the most evil stance that I can possibly think of. What is class envy if it is not taking away from children what a deceased parent wants to leave. Just this statement will make me not even listen to his reason any longer and will galvanize that perhaps the hidden agenda of ALL on the left needs to be painted with a broad brush.

            Thank you, GG, for you have made my decision easy. The greater good is actually evil….and just when I was beginning to try to understand the left and their reasons. This statement, alone, is reason enoughh to discount in its entirety, the concept of greater good. Move to Vulcan….therein lies no emotion. Live long and prosper, GG…..off the backs of others.

            Damn

            D13

          • v. Holland says:

            Good grief, if I bought what your selling, I would spend all my money on my rightful heirs before I died and live off the government or my children for my remaining years. The government already double taxes everything we have and then takes inheritance taxes out-and I believe that society does have a moral obligation to it’s citizens

            • Greatergoodcs says:

              You need not purchase what I’m selling … it’s a free country, remember?

              • v. Holland says:

                That is up for debate, which is obvious by the blog we are on-but I would say if you get your way to the degree that you want it-Freedom will be completely gone, at least in any meaningful way.

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                I think we can strike a balance between freedom and government. You don’t believe it. Because of finite resources and over population, my way will have to win out. Gov’t will never decrease in size or power; it can only be regulated (and that’s up to a society to take part).

              • Black Flag says:

                How do you regulate an entity that makes its own rules?

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                You’re talking nonsense, BF. People make up the gov’t via elections. Its their to do with as they please. I would think you’d like that.

              • Black Flag says:

                So NOW you admit that government does whatever it chooses to do, without regulation?

                Are you able to hold any consistency in thinking?

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                This is tiring, BF. A gov’t elected by the people for the people does what it wants (think it through). Unfortunately, this gov’t was formed (and run) by the wealthy for the wealthy. Over time, that stranglehold was strengthened. The last administration tried to loosen all forms of regulation and look what it got us. This administration is no better. Both parties are useless because Old Money controls them. Put Ralph Nader in there and he’ll shake things up (and the people will once again have a voice).

              • Black Flag says:

                See replies below = too squishy

              • v. Holland says:

                No, I don’t think we can strike a balance-but I do believe we need government-it’s just that the weight -should be almost completely tilted to the freedom side-whether or not this is possible we shall see-but your way will tilt the scale all the way to the governments side.

              • Black Flag says:

                Not by your definition, Greatergoodcs.

                You wish to take my property and that of my children by force.

                I’m afraid your definition of freedom is Orwellian.

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                It wouldn’t be by force if it was agreed to via elections. Then, if you didn’t like the turnout (say, if a true socialist society were to take root), you could always take your assets elsewhere, no?

              • Black Flag says:

                Why does a majority make right?

                If the majority said “Death to Left-hand Blondes”, is this right?

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                More nonsense, BF. Has anyone proposed that, death to left handed blondes?

              • Black Flag says:

                Sir, it was you who claimed that the majority is right.

                I am investigating its extent of righteousness.

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                BF, you’re engaged in a silly game of semantics again. I’ve already told you what I propose (several times now). You challenge me to clarify, define, etc. I challenge you. You’re the one proposed something that cannot be (no gov’t) and hasn’t been since the first tribes were formed. Like I said, why not pick up and find yourself a spot on the earth that will permit you to be your own government/King or whatever it is you feel so passionate about. Then you wouldn’t have to worry about others and build yourself a financial empire.

  2. USWeapon Topic #2

    Senator Ted Kennedy Succumbs to Brain Cancer

    Massachusetts Senator Ted Kennedy passed away yesterday from complication from his battle with brain cancer. Whether you liked old Teddy or not, he was an icon in American politics. And from what I can recall at 3:30 am, he was the last of the “Great Kennedy Clan”. There are other Kennedy’s of course, even in the US Congress, but they don’t have the stature of the Kennedy’s we know. John, Bobby, and Ted were all either President, or probably could have been. It was a powerful family, and if you want to look at any family and claim “elitist” and decry the outrage towards those born with a silver spoon (Talking to you on the left), you should begin with your own most powerful Democrats.

    I can’t say he will be missed by all, because certainly there were those that despised him. I did not despise him, but I certainly didn’t like him all that much. None-the-less, I offer my respect to the man and my condolences to his family. He was Teddy Kennedy after all.

    It should be an interesting play as we watch to see how his replacement in the Senate is placed. Massachusetts law says there must be a special election to find a replacement within 5 months. That is what should happen. However, that is not what I think will happen. Reference this article published just a few days prior to his death:

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/08/25/massachusetts-leaders-weigh-ailing-kennedys-request-seat-quickly/

    The long and short of it is that the Democrats in Mass of Two Shits were already aware he was dying and they were attempting to act quickly before he passed away to change Massachusetts law in order to allow the governor to appoint a replacement. That would fall into the lap of Democrat Governor Deval Patrick.

    The interesting thing is that the law was changed in 2004 by Democrats who were in control of both houses strictly as a political move. The governor at the time was Mitt Romney, and Democrats were afraid that he would appoint a Republican so they removed the power he had to do so. Now with the situation in the hands of a Democrat Governor, they want to change the law yet again for their benefit. They aren’t trying to hide it either:

    A legislative committee co-chairman overseeing a bill that would enact the change admitted to the Boston Herald Monday that the move is aimed at keeping a Democrat in the seat.

    To me this is a blatant statement that the government feels they have the right to change the rules in the middle of the game at any point where they feel it will gain them a benefit. And this speaks directly to the claims from many here that there is no hope for asking government to self-regulate. We see here that they will change whatever rule they need to in order to accomplish whatever they want to accomplish, regardless of ethics or morals, or for that matter, the wish of the people.

    This should be a big topic in the coming weeks as the Democrats want to attempt to ram President Obama’s “health care non-reform” through Congress before people have much further opportunity to object as they learn what a farce this bill is. With the bare minimum in ability to override a filibuster, at only 60 votes, they cannot afford to lose a seat to something as silly as letting the people pick their own representation in a vote.

    • I will not respond to Ted Kennedy. He has died and the let the dead rest. He had his detractors…yes. He has his friends…yes. He was a politician. Time marches on. It is that simple and it is the reality.

    • Greatergoodcs says:

      You wrote: “Talking to you on the left)”

      And the Bush boy who ran this country into the ground the last 8 years. What did he do to earn his stripes?

      Have a cup of coffee, brother. Elitism in America started on the right and has expanded to include ivory tower liberals, but don’t kid yourself about the “old money” in America. It’s as conservative as it gets.

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        The error in your thinking is that Bush was on the “right”.

        Bush was very nearly as much of a Statist as Obama, so they are demonstrably on the same side.

      • If you read enough of this site you will see that USW is no fan of Bush.

        • Greatergoodcs says:

          USW is a social darwinist. I got that. It’s something that can’t and won’t happen so it permits USW to critic all that goes on today (in any form of gov’t). The problem is USW offers no genuine solutions to the problem he complains about.

          You’re not going to have a country of 304,000,000 without a government. You’re going to have to pay taxes and you can call it evil until the cows come home, but it is what it is. Why not make the best of the situation rather than back yourselves into a paranoid corner. You’re not going to have a country without a government–fact.

          Nobody is looking to steal from you. If you think taxes are stealing, then stop all the false bravado, form a militia and take your best shot.

          I don’t think you’ll succeed but who knows.

          Condemning the rest of the country that is fine with taxes, et al gets you a blog like this to rant and nothing much else. You’re movement is completely marginalized; a select few who are spitting into the wind. Although I disagree with your position, I commend you for your spirit. Good luck.

          • Solution! Its ok, there won’t be 304,000,000 people much longer, with the swine flu coming it will be the next plague! 60% of the population will die, seems like to me it will be a lot better for the evil republicans to rule the little folk, that is only if we stop the democrats from inacting health care for everyone! Lets all bring guns to town halls and better yet, open carry for everyone everyday. Keep making up things about Obama, I’m calling this one as my idea “he told Baxter to create and spread the swine flu” now do your duty and pass it along!

            sarcasm

          • Ray Hawkins says:

            Well put….

            • How disappointing Ray that you would write “well put” when you are well aware that he did not summarize my positions at all. You may not like my positions, but you damn sure well know that the ones he said were not them.

              • Ray Hawkins says:

                You took me too far – he/she is well put in explaining their position. I’m just watching some of this with humor and hope things calm down a little.

          • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

            Greatergoodcs,

            I would have ABSOLUTELY NO PROBLEM WHATSOEVER WITH TAXES IF:

            A) I wanted what they were selling.

            B) I was provided with a demonstrably good value compared to the price paid.

            C) I was not forced to pay for products/services that I did not want.

            As one fine author once said, “Taxes? Tell me what you are selling and if I like it I might buy it.”

          • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

            But WHY is the vast majority of the country “fine with taxes”. I would submit to you it is because they are taught that there is no other way of accomplishing what the government CLAIMS to accomplish through taxation.

            Also, the government rarely (if ever) accomplishes what it claims to accomplish through taxation. If it did, the economy would never falter, everyone that wanted a job or was able to have a job would have one, medical costs would be reasonable for everyone, and the government would be able to do all of this without deficit spending, because there would be no need to spend more than what it is taking in through taxation.

            • Greatergoodcs says:

              I’ll agree with you that gov’t waste and incompetence is pretty rampant and that they accomplish far too little for what they tax, but left to its own devices, a free market corrupts twice as much and ultimately provides just as little. Man is inherently greedy (my personal belief) and without restrictions runs amok.

              • SO YOU WISH TO GRANT THIS GREEDY RUNS AMOK THING THE MOST DESTRUCTIVE FORCE KNOWN TO HUMANITY?

                THAT WOULD BE THE POWER OF GOVT BY THE WAY.

                I CHALLENGE YOU TO PROVE YOUR CASE REGARDING THE FREE MARKET IN SOME LOGICAL MANNER.

              • Black Flag says:

                Gretergoodcs,

                Now we’re getting somewhere.

                I do not believe greed is a bad thing – but running ‘amok’ certainly holds ‘bad’ connotations.

                So, what do you specific think ‘running amok’ is?

                What is a typical action of ‘running amok’?

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                For example: The “free markets” just destroyed the economy by having ZERO oversight over what banks were doing; lending money to anybody, regardless of whether or not they could pay it back. They extorted the country and were paid off in spades. No regulation led to chaos led to a bailout (a gov’t for big business, by big business).

                Socialism would curb that pretty quick, I think.

              • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

                Greatergoodcs,

                The free market didn’t just ruin the economy, becasue THERE WAS NOT A FREE MARKET, therefore your assertion is total nonsense.

              • It was regulation that FORCED the banks to “lend to anybody, regardless of whether or not they could pay it back”. Nope, no free market there.

          • WOW Greatergoodcs,

            Brother, take a pill and chill for a moment. Take a moment to read some of what I have written beyond the last two days that you have partaken since you found us here. You have totally stepped in it as far as your description of me and what I do here.

            Yes, I do have the ability to criticize all those in government. On both sides of the aisle, they have given me plenty to criticize, my friend. I would think you could see that.

            As for solutions, that has been my mantra. And it is a thing that we have been discussing and attempting to find here since the beginning. Nearly everything that you said about me was well off base. I am NOT one of those who has attempted to say we should have no form of government. I am NOT one of those who has gone with the mantra that all taxes are theft. You read two articles from me and decided you knew enough to summarize my position.

            You are way off and should read a bit more before you attempt to do so again.

            And since I didn’t get to say so yesterday. Welcome to the site. I appreciate you taking the time to discuss and debate here, especially when it is difficult given the stiff opposition you often have faced thus far.

            USW

            • Greatergoodcs says:

              Thanks USW. You’re alright by me. I’m not so sure it’s stiff opposition, though.

              • LOL…

                If you don’t think it is stiff then I submit that you haven’t actually gotten down to REALLY debating a position with some of these folks. I don’t struggle when debating most people, but some of the folks here have put me in my place at times. Ray, BF, JAC, Peter, D13, practically everyone. Lots of opinions and lots of intelligence.

                But I will say, in my opinion, the toughest to debate is BF. He simply doesn’t contradict himself and that makes him tough. But he can be beaten and I don’t think he is correct on ALL of his stances. Good luck as it seems you have taken the challenge to really discuss with him. If you do it honestly and realistically, you will find more of a challenge than I think you originally thought.

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                Fair enough, brother.
                I think I’m screwing up trying to locate the several chats I’m involved in. Is there some way to locate without scrolling?

              • Black Flag says:

                I don’t bother – I copy the comment, and start a new one below most of the time and use email to parse thru.

                The threading is great…to a point.

      • “Have a cup of coffee, brother. Elitism in America started on the right and has expanded to include ivory tower liberals, but don’t kid yourself about the “old money” in America. It’s as conservative as it gets.”
        Yea it wasn’t his money he was spending it was ours….people who actually have money are very good at protecting it conservative only with their money.

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          “Ivory Tower Liberals” are extremely conservative when it comes to their own money.

          They are GREAT at spending it if it belongs to someone else though 🙂

        • Greatergoodcs says:

          at the expense of the rest of us (those who actually do the producing).

          • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

            Your fallacy is that you would produce what you produce without someone else’s creativity and inventiveness.

            If you were the original source of the idea for what you produce, you damn well bet you would want to be paid accordingly too 🙂

            If the person that came up with the idea to produce whatever it is that you produce had never had that idea, you might still have a job, but it wouldn’t be a job producing what you produce now.

            By your argument, the people that drive innovation should not be rewarded accordingly.

      • Oh Greatergoodcs,

        Don’t make the mistake of thinking that I have any issue with you attacking Bush or anyone else on the right. It won’t hurt my feelings. I like them about as much as you do. Bush was an elitist as well. I was merely pointing out the hypocrisy given the high number of comments villifying the the wealthy elite from those on the left, when the wealthy elite are the left as much as the right.

        But don’t make the mistake of claiming the wealthy are conservative. Have you taken a good look at Hollywood lately? Not a lot of conservatives there at all, but plenty of wealthy elite, plenty of folks who get more face time than every politician except the Messiah. The elitism didn’t start on the right, as you attempt to claim. There have always been “old money” folks on both sides of the aisle.

        • I think we need some Czars to do something about overpaid celebrities and athletes.

          On a serious note, what’s up with all these Czars? I don’t remember voting for any of them, and I’m learning that some of them are Communists and Socialists?

          For anyone who has seen the movie “Valkyrie”: I am not a big fan of Tom Cruise, but look at what happened when they tried to take over the Gov’t. There were troops and a lot of pre-planned options to put down the extremists.

          This is the USA, 60 years later. Do you not thing that similar precautions and reactions are planned here as well??

          Another question that’s been bothering me: If HR3200 takes a week to read, how long did it take to write it? How long ago was it written, and by whom? We pay our Royal Family in DC $180,000 a year and they didn’t write it, nor can they read it?

          Sorry to be all over the map but these things have been bugging me.

          • Wasabi:

            It takes, on average, about 1 hour to draft, edit, redraft, final edit and complete 1 page of text.

            I have tracked this over many years of different types of reports. It has served me well in estimating the cost to produce a 300 to 500 page document.

            I understand the draft legislation was double spaced so you can cut the pages in half if that is true.

        • Greatergoodcs says:

          What you call the left, I call center-right. By definition, “old money” could never have been what I call left (socialist) or they wouldn’t have their money.

          You think Hollywood is old money?

          • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

            I guess it depends on how you define “Old Money”

            By your definition if you came into your money in the last 100 years you are likely liberal and if you came into your money more than 100 years ago you are likely conservative? Something like that?

            I picked 100 years as a nice round number… no specific reason.

            • Greatergoodcs says:

              I agree, Pete. 100 yrs is a good reference point. You’re also right regarding old vs. new money and sharing it; neither are likely to do so. Ivory Tower Liberals (Kennedy’s for instance) talk a good game while sending their own to private schools and using their political clout to escape the law time and time again.

              • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

                At least you are sounding (in this post anyway) like you are beginning to understand the hypocrisy of the elite and many of the positions which they claim to hold.

      • Bush is gone…get over it. There is nothing we can do about the past. Let’s look forward and try to figure out what is best moving in that direction. Don’t get me wrong, get over the past, but do not forget the lessons we learned in it…

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      Goodbye Senator Kenedy,

      I did not agree with you on many things, but I can at least hold some respect for you for dedicating your life to causes you believed in.

      You will be made into a martyr for “National Healthcare”, and the only response I have for that is perhaps all Americans should be entitled to the exact same healthcare program you enjoyed as a Senator.

      • Greatergoodcs says:

        I’m as liberal as the day is long but I sure wish Ted Kennedy had to answer for his phone call to his lawyer before the police (or any other form of emergency service) after driving Mary Jo into the water.

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          Yes, that is true. What happened in that whole incident was terrible, and he certainly should have been held to the same standards as others for calling his lawyer and leaving the scene before calling the police.

          I believe that by the current standard this was, at best, involuntary manslaughter.

          However, whatever happened on that night, he managed to escape any meaningful consequences of his actions, and there is certainly nothing we can do about that now.

          If there is a God who does actually judge us by our actions, it is in his hands at this point.

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      Now you’re starting to sound like Bob Cesca – way to crap on the dead guy, his state and its citizens.

      • Murphy's Law says:

        Ray,

        If Sarah Palin died, and you decided to post on this blog concerning her…..what would you say?

        • Greatergoodcs says:

          There goes one hot tomata …. dumb as the day is long, but hot.

        • Ray Hawkins says:

          If she dies now? I would say its a tragedy and terrible for her family. She has something to offer, I just don’t like how she does it because she sells herself and her supporters short.

      • Crap on the dead guy? I paid him respect and saluted his family as the Great Kennedy clan. I said absolutely NOTHING negative about him. I didn’t bring up a single “bad” thing from his past. Not one. I said absolutely nothing that could be described as “crapping on the dead guy”. I had a great deal of respect for Ted Kennedy even though I did not like his political stances at times.

        I then pointed out a very real political play being formed in the state to replace him. This is a political website Ray, in case you missed it. And the story of how he is replaced is an important part of the political landscape. If you want to say someone is crapping on Kennedy, perhaps you should look to the Democrats already out today saying “we need to pass health care reform for Teddy”. Talk about attempting to capitalize on a tragedy. But I guess that goes right along with the “never waste a crisis” mantra.

        I summarily reject what you wrote about me crapping on him as the ramblings of someone who must have been up too late or just finished changing a poopy diaper and wasn’t happy about it.

    • Good riddance, and don’t forget the asbestos undies, Ted.

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        My definition of Elitist:

        One who is willing to tell others how to live but is not willing to live by the standards he has set for others.

    • The Last Brother…..

      Look up delusional in the dictionary and there is a pic of Matthews

      http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2009/08/26/msnbcs_matthews_barack_is_the_last_kennedy_brother.html

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        C’mon Kathy – any time someone like this passes you’re going to get every blowhard out there pontificating and trying to fill the air space with empty platitudes and nonsense. They did the same thing with Michael Jackson, Farrah, Ronald Reagan, and so on. In two weeks you won’t remember or care what Chris Matthews had to say about it.

  3. USWeapon Topic #3

    Senator Flip Flop Vows to Stop VA death counseling pamphlet

    Arlen Specter said he will attempt to offer legislation that would make illegal the use of a end of life counseling pamphlet that the VA currently has revived. According to the Senator, this pamphlet clearly send a message that veterans with severe health problems should “hurry up and die”. You can read the article here:

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/08/25/specter-says-introduce-legislation-ban-veterans-guide-end-life-care/

    I watched the interview with Mrs. Duckworth being asked questions by Chris Wallace the other day. It was fun watching her deny that this is an authorized directive while Wallace repeatedly pointed out that regardless of the words coming out of her mouth, the directive is clearly issued and right there on the VA website for all to see. Regardless of what her eyes could see, she said he was wrong. Amazing how government fools can deny what is plainly in front of their eyes. Brings to mind the phrase, “Who are you going to believe, me or your lying eyes?”

    I find the entire thing interesting in light of the recent debates over whether the passage in HR 3200 can result in “death panels”, as “crazy” Sarah Palin said. Everyone says she is crazy because government would never suggest that people die rather than seek treatment.

    Seems that perhaps they would in fact suggest that very thing. After all, it would serve “the greater good”, right Mathius? If they are willing to treat veterans this way, what do you think they will do to average Americans who have not served the country?

    • bottom line says:

      Press secretary Gibbs said on TV the other day, that he heard BHO say that he intends to push this healthcare reform even if it costs him a second term. This, in my opinion, is an outrage. He(BHO) clearly has ro respect for the will of the people. It is being forced upon us. This turd that calls himself president needs to go…NOW!

      • Too late…BHO has already cost his second term all by himself.

        • bottom line says:

          I agree that he won’t be re-elected. His approval rating is already down to 45%. Unfortunately we’re gonna have to endure hime for a whole 3 1/2 more years…unless he gets impeached.

    • Arlen Spectacle will get a comment. Only one. He, too, is a politician wanting re-election and that is a tragedy. Thas’ all.

      • I have one added thought on the town halls I witnessed.

        Mr. Specter and Mr. McCain are true professionals in their field. They are TRUE consumate POLYTICKSHUNS. They have danced the dance, spinning around and grabing the microphone, to declare their own revalations, all without missing a step.

        The others all look like minor league rookies next to these two.

        • JAC – I keep trying to tell you that this is what happens if you spend too much time in the congress. Are you starting to get it?

          • Then vote for somebody else.

            But don’t tell me I can vote for my guy today and if he sticks to his principles that I can’t vote for him tomorrow.

            It is a contradiction to the term Liberty.

            If you don’t believe the people are capable of choosing they just say so and construct a new model. But don’t tell me I am capable today but I am apparently not capable in the future, as it relates to just that one person.

            JayD, if you fix the REAL problems the whole issue of long term polytickshuns goes away without gimmickry. Who is going to want to spend time in that hell hole in the winter and summer if they can’t get any cookies?

            • I agree. But at this point, I’ll take just about any fix that will improve the situation, even a little. Don’t even see any of these on the horizon.

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      Or maybe just perpetuating and formalizing notions of social darwinism?

      • LOL…HI Ray..howzit going, my friend?

        • Ray Hawkins says:

          hey D13 – work is crazy (botnets), the baby loves to sleep all but never during the day, my PhD studies are up to my ears, and I’m forever challenging my own political positions and thoughts. Just another typical day. How art thou?

          • Everything fine on this end. .50 cal in the gun closet. Horses in the barn, beer in the fridge, fajitas on the grill….birds singing and the sun shining. Busy hiding my assets now that Greatergood cs wants to confiscate them all from my children but that is manageable.

            I am afraid that I painted you with a rather broad brush on a post above from GG….but I will say that all the work you did in trying to convert me has been thrown out now by this GG. I think that GG is the mainstay of the left, so, therefore, it is. All the more reason to now fight this line of thinking.

            I got tickled on the challenges of your own position and I was even beginning to challenge mine…LOL….but not now.

            Have a great day, my friend.

            D13

            But you are still welcome to share the horses and beer and fajitas….better come and get them, tho, before they are confiscated.

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      Another view on the distortions by Full Of Xenophobia News:

      http://mediamatters.org/research/200908240024

    • Kind of like when the Judge says, “The jury will disregard”, even though they have already heard the evidence.

      I have some respect of Ted Kennedy, but he got away with it the same way as OJ: $$$$$$

      Culture of elitism

  4. USWeapon Topic #4

    A different View of Health Care Reform

    I am trying to ensure that I bring in articles from varied sources. As I stated previously, there are plenty of things that can be learned by reading and conversing at the Huffington Post. Occasionally I stumble across something like this article that I think is timely and relevant and accurate.

    The article is from Doctor Andrew Weil, and it discusses the fact that health care reform is a farce given the way that Americans live their lives currently. We don’t live healthy at all as a country. Yet we want no part of reforming our lifestyles to increase the health situation in America. No, instead we want government to step in and force others to pay for our lack of discipline and failure to take care of ourselves. From the article:

    By no stretch of the imagination does mainstream American “health care” move us closer to this vision of robust, resilient health. It is a fiscally unsustainable, technology-centric, symptom-focused disease-management system. Consider that two-thirds of all Americans die from cardiovascular disease, cancer, and diabetes, which are all strongly associated with lifestyle choices. Maintaining and paying for our current system will serve only to continue – if not exacerbate – this trend, and bankrupt the nation in the process.

    Read the rest of the article here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/andrew-weil-md/the-question-no-one-asks_b_268873.html

    It is an interesting twist on the health care debate that I had not thought about before. So what do all of you think? Is it fair to ask so many Americans to sacrifice the parts of the system they are happy with while at the same time doing nothing to promote or require a better lifestyle decision making process? After all, if the government is paying for health care, won’t the next step be to tell us how to live in order to limit the risk to the system of your poor choices?

    And is he right? Will the way things are done here currently bankrupt the country, with the proposed reform hastening the fall?

    • Now “they” are going after overweight people, and an unhealthy lifestyle contributing to more health spending. Maybe the smokers will get a break (for now).

      There is still more progress that needs to be made on Diabetes and cancer research. At least we have Erectile Dysfunction under control!!

      • As long as Jeanine Garofalo keeps speaking in public, ED is still an issue. There are some things they don’t have strong enough medication to treat. Feel sorry for any poor SOB who has had to wake up next to that.

        Garofalo, the anti-Viriaga!

    • USW,

      You know tha twe aren’t responsible for our own actions. How dare you imply otherwise! Seriously, as we keep moving down the road to a complete nanny state, it is inevitable that our diets will be monitored, down to the food we buy. The parody of the pizza order comes to mind.

    • That has actually been my fear from the very beginning of the health care debate

    • That will be what they will go after if Health care is passed. They will start going after anything, in the government health panel’s opinion, which results or could possibly result in bad health.

      Run your life from sun up to sundown and all in between. 24 hour government life control.

    • This is the inevitable end of the health care “overhaul.” If everyone in the country will have unlimited health care, there is no impetus to live a healthy life. Such an overhaul will require a mandate of healthy living if it is to succeed at all. Otherwise care will be rationed because too many people will be sick.

      All the anger about pre-existing conditions seems a bit off to me, now that I’m on the topic. Tell me why a health insurance company should HAVE to cover someone for an affordable price who WILL DEFINITELY require care for a lot more money!?! For example, to get covered for maternity with one company you have to have maternity for 6 months before conception and pay like $200 per month. BIG SURPRISE when you consider a pregnancy will cost AT LEAST $3000 dollars (more if there are complications). Let’s do the math, $200*(6+9)=$3000. Who would have guessed!?! It is a sad situation that people with conditions can’t afford health care. Someone start a non-profit and advertise big time and I GUARANTEE that they will raise more money than the government will spend on these same people!

      • Not a bad point, JB….car insurance is priced on your driving record…at least in Texas it is..you drive badly..you pay more. simple.

        • Yes, but why are we all forced to purchase that insurance?

          • I agree with you. JAC….but since we are…why not make the ones pay that cause the increase?

        • Depends on your credit score, and AARP was even higher that Theresa Heinz Progressive. Maybe the Govt can give everybody car insurance too.

          I have 2 vehicles and pay over $200 a month. If you choose not to keep coverage, please park your car until you can pay for it.

          This is another reason the Trial Lawyers are out there chasing ambulances. I have an idea, let’s punish the people who don’t have insurance.

          Oh, most of these people are Some Victim Group, so let’s give them a pass.

      • Sad thing is what would you do under your system for the people who have lupus? Born with Diabetese? Skin cancer because they work in the sun for a living? Cancer from asbestos? I am afraid a system that makes the sick pay more would be a travesty.

        • They would pay for their own care. When they couldn’t then their family and friends would pitch in. When they couldn’t the charities supported by the rest of us would step in.

          Your fears are no justification for you to use the power of govt to MAKE me pay for their care.

          • I agree JAC….I was answering to the proposion that insurance companies charge more for a person that is sick. Which of course just pushes the cost up above what a person could afford anyway….thereby shoving them over onto the welfare roles. The result being we would end up paying anyway.

            • Yes we would, but in one case it is forced upon us and in the other we do it volutarily.

              Sorry, I apparently misunderstood where you were going.

              The best to you and yours
              JAC

          • Then they can sell everything they own, leave nothing to their children.

        • I do not advocate making sick people pay more. I am simply pointing out the fallacy of expecting insurance companies to charge the same amount for me (a twenty-something in excellent health, no history of illness in the family, etc) as someone who has a genetic disorder. Insurance is a game of probability. That person is much more likely to need pay out. Hence their coverage costs more. It makes plain sense to me. It’s not being mean or anything, it’s just what it would cost.

          Now, I hear you that it’s sad that people with conditions can’t afford coverage, but it would be wrong for them to DEMAND someone else pay for it (which is what will happen if everyone is covered with no pre-existing conditions taken into account). They may ASK for it, but never DEMAND. I would give money to someone who asked me to help them pay for an operation. I do not advocate making the government the go-between.

          • I suely do ot advocate the government in healthcare. But in reality the insurance companies and us are paying for it anyway. that is part of the reason Dr bills and hospital bills are so high.

    • I think a big factor that drives the health care bill myths is the fact that these people already know what current health insurance companies do and it is easy to see the government picking up these practices.

      For example, what would prevent the government from eventually doing this:

      My wife’s insurance company has a voluntary heath examination (that is actually mandatory) that could reduce your premium by $10 a month. The catch is that if you do the health examination and they determine that you or your dependants (that’s right your dependants have to come into your office to get the exam too on the one day of the year they do it, regardless of where they work) have any health problems like being overweight then they have to enter a program to lose weight.

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      Why should we be REQUIRED to “live healthy”? Not that long ago, eggs were thought to be horrible for you, and eggs (especially the yolk) should be eliminated from your diet entirely.

      Now it is recognized that even the yolk contains many beneficial and helpful nutrients, so eating a certain amount of eggs is thought to be just fine.

      Smoking is recognized to cause many deleterious health effects, including cancer. Yet the government refuses to make smoking completely illegal because the get too much money from the tobacco lobbyists and they get too much money from taxing cigarettes.

      How moral is it to pay for someone else’s healthcare by taxing something that you have kept legal even though you know it has the potential to make the user very sick or even kill them? Yeah, that makes sense. (And I AM a smoker by the way….)

      Also, the thing that ALL of these people conveniently ignore is that LIFE HAS A 100% MORTALITY RATE! The ONLY way to guarantee that you are not going to die is TO NOT BE BORN IN THE FIRST PLACE!

      THE LEADING CAUSE OF DEATH IS LIFE!

      If you are 100% guaranteed that no matter what you do you are eventually gonna die, what business is it of the government when you die or in what way that you die?

      Should Ted Kennedy have been denied treatment for his brain cancer because he was 77, it was terminal, and he had already outlived the average life expectancy for a US-born male anyway?

      • All insurance is a gamble. You pay premiums for insurance with the expectation that if you do get sick the insurance will pay for your treatment. Insurance companies are gambling that your not going to get sick very often but collect money monthly to cover you if you do.

        • Black Flag says:

          Kym,

          I feel it is important to understand insurance.

          Insurance is not a ‘gamble’.

          It is a mitigation of risk.

          It is there to mitigate a financial disaster so that such disaster makes it impossible for an individual (or entity) to live.

          It is NOT there to be a piggy bank.

          It is NOT there to provide risk-free living.

          It is NOT there to pay for continuing or recurring risks or mistakes.

          • Black Flag says:

            Arrg…. no editor:

            It is there to mitigate a financial disaster so that IF such disaster makes it impossible for an individual (or entity) to live, it is there to help that person ‘start over’.

          • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

            BF,

            I must disagree with you just a bit here… Insurance IS a gamble, but NOT BY THE BUYER OF THE INSURANCE.

            The SELLER of the insurance is gambling that their price and number of customers will provide them with more money than they pay out in claims.

            They pay actuaries a LOT of money to calculate the odds as accurately as possible so that they price the insurance “correctly”.

            • Black Flag says:

              I not call operating in probabilities that one can control a ‘gamble’ – poker is not gambling whereas roulette is gambling.

              But that may be just my definition.

              • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

                Once again BF we come up against “the common definition” vs. “the good definition”.

                Most people (myself included) would equate poker with gambling since it is done in casinos and in smoke-filled back rooms.

                However, I see your point that if you are any good at it you have a lot of control over the odds and as such it is not really “gambling”

                HOWEVER (yet again with the however.. lol), even though you can better control the odds, the cards may still not fall your way and you still may lose what you were convinced was a winning hand… and if you went all-in on this hand your game would be over.

                Controlling the odds is not the same as controlling the outcome, so I guess in my definition any game where the house controls the odds is gambling at a fool’s game and any game where you control the odds is gambling at a smart-mans game 🙂

              • Oh my dear friend, you never controll ALL of the odds. It is after all a random world on any given day. Odds are nothing at their core but averages.

                Remember the ending of your last trip to Vegas?

                If you don’t think insurance is gambling then why is there an “insurance” bet on a black jack table?

                JAC

              • Black Flag says:

                Oh I do control the odds, I do not control the outcome – even God can’t do that!

                :LoL: Blackjack Insurance – yeah, I think that is were many people get their understanding of the system!

              • Thought you would enjoy that one.

            • That’s how I always looked at insurance Peter…you stated it alot better than I did. Thankies!

      • It’s a total erosion of personal responsibility, Pete. If the government is taking care of health care, they have a reason to force people to be healthy. Instead of having a responsibilty for our own health and lives, people want the government to have it.

        Personally I couldn’t care less how healthy my neighbor is as long as he/she is happy with it. If you are morbidly obese, but don’t care if you die by 50, more power to you friend.

        BTW, my grandfather has been smoking since he was, oh I don’t know, 14. He’s 70 right now and still runs a butcher shop. On his feet all day, probably in better shape than a lot of people half his age.

  5. USWeapon Topic #5

    Jesse Jackson Says Ignoring Africa is a Mistake

    The reverend espouses the claim that the continent of Africa is rich with resources that America will not benefit from if they don’t begin to act quickly. China is already working to gain a stronger foothold in the region. From the article:

    The United States is way behind.

    The African continent will only become more important in the future. The whole world has a stake in what happens there.

    For decades, Africa was little more than a pawn in the Cold War, before that the playing field of competing imperialist nations. Now it is a key geographic territory in the fight against terror after al-Qaida blew up embassies in Somalia and Kenya. The continent’s mineral resources reinforce its strategic importance.

    Africa matters.

    Read the rest of the article here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rev-jesse-jackson/why-africa-matters_b_268912.html

    I can agree with the supposed intent of what Jackson is saying. We would benefit from investing in Africa because their resources will one day prove valuable. I don’t know if that is true or not. But the key is that whatever we do in Africa be done at the request of or with the permission of the sovereign nations that make up the continent.

    Getting involved in Darfur on the other hand would be a mistake, similar to the wars we are already involved in. Doing what we can to tap into the resources that can be offered there seems to make sense. However if getting involved with Africa means using coercive force or playing political games, then I will not support it one single bit.

    • I agree that Africa is a important for several reason. Yes not paying attention to it is going to bite us later. But I also agree that getting involved does not mean getting into every civil war that happens there either. But we do need to active in what is going on there, with the leaders that are trying to make Africa better. Some leaders there are not. We can make some good choices when it comes to that.

    • Yeah, they want us to go into Africa now. In a few we will hear where we are interfering with their government and lives. I think they should be left to infect and/or kill each other off. Sounds cold I know but getting INTO africa will be a lot easier than getting back out of it. We have enough crap that doesn’t concern us we’re paying money for now. Let’s worry about OUR people first.

      NOT THAT THAT’S WHAT WILL HAPPEN OF COURSE.

    • Ahhhh…..so, if I read you correctly….the good reverend is saying…Exploit Africa..everyone else will?

  6. I found this linkain the comments of an American Thinker article. The person posting alleges that Baxter Iternational applied for a patent on the H1N1 vaccine over a month BEFORE the first diagnosed case of flu. Is this what it seems to be, or is there a less sinister reason at play? I hope it isn’t what it seems on the surface but I gotta wonder though…….

    http://appft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PG01&p=1&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsrchnum.html&r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=%2220090060950%22.PGNR.&OS=DN/20090060950&RS=DN/20090060950

  7. bottom line says:

    I don’t trust this Swine flu situation at all. #1-It’s my understanding that some scientists found that there are charactoristics of H1N1 that are consistant with an engineered virus. These charactoristics do occur in nature. They are, however, rare. #2-Baxter sent a shipment of vaccines to eastern Europe with live avian bird flu in them. This doesn’t happen by accident because the protocall for handling these things is VERY strict and precise. Was it extreme neglegence or intentional? Does it matter? Do you trust them? #3-Baxter is being legally protected against liability of the vaccine. #4-They filed a patent for the vaccine before the 1st swine flu case existed. I smell something…do you? Something is rotten.

  8. Funny video- I gave some of my time two summers ago to the a local day center and few hours a week in the evening to the single womens shelter. It was eye opening experience for me. I guess I wasnt sure what I was expecting.
    First with the day center. I would estimate that 30% of the men there are drug abusers and are constantly in and out of the local jail for crimes to get money for those drugs. 15% or so have serious mental issues that are not being addressed in anyway. The rest are the ones that are making me angry. Healthy men with no drug or mental issues hanging in the lounge everyday playing cards. Not looking for work, waiting for the state money. They are offered to do day labor work, most find a excuse not to attend.
    Second the single womens shelter- When I started the shelter was pretty empty, I was informed that it will get fill again when the state money is spent. Sure enough about a week later it was full. Sad part was a elderly women I met, she was 82, worked her whole life, had no pension no family left. Her money SSI would not cover a apartment cost. She spent her days at the library. We found her a place that was shared by other elderly women, nice little house. She cried when she was accepted in. They were all still active and between them they could afford to split the bills. Now there was women whos kids were in the states care, her husband stayed at the mens shelter. When I asked what she did during the day, she and her husband went to the library or anywhere else that was free. No job no desire to work. Most are ladies who jsut go from shelter to shelter. Once they max out their days at one shelter they move to the next and so on. Most are on state income welfare.
    My bother story ( a cop) and CPS had to go and remove three kids from the care of the mother who was neglecting them. When he was reviewing the case with the CPS officer, he was told she gets 2300 a month in money from the state.

    This are the people that are draining our system. They have no desire to work or become active members of society. This is where welfare fails. I believe in a system that helps people when they are hit with hard times. But to support people forever is crazy and dumb.

  9. Ray Hawkins says:

    And you’ve lost your anonymity?

    Listening to Smercomish this morning on the drive in there was discussion regarding the recent blogger anonymity case in NY – this was the Liskula Cohen case (http://www.pcworld.com/article/170436/court_orders_google_to_reveal_blogger_in_defamation_case.html) wherein she was able to compel, via the Court system, a supposed anonymous blogger on Google to reveal her identity due to a defamation case Cohen wanted to bring against her. Salacious details of the case aside – it struck a nerve with me. In this case Cohen had to demonstrate to the Court that she had a case for defamation before an order could be issued to Google requiring them to reveal the ID of the blogger.

    On this blog, and countless others, people often use nicknames or fake names rather than their true identity. Its always gnawed at me a bit. I tend to like to know who I am talking to. Now – many people around here tend to use stories about themselves to make points and thus you kinda get to know them. But that basic identity part – one’s name – is oddly left out of the picture.

    This begs a question:

    1. Why do you not use your name? I have heard people tell me they are afraid of some crazy person stalking them or hunting them down (which rarely/never happens – although I did have a Facebook friend recently delete several threads because he felt threatened by someone), they are blogging when they shouldn’t be (what happened to that bothersome ‘personal responsibility’ thing), they are afraid people will now how they really feel (grow a pair I say), they are concerned that some people will know ‘too much’ about them and that is unsettling (if you knew how different people use a tool like Maltego or gumshoe social engineering you’d probably never blog again), people are concerned that someone may hold something against them – usually a current or future employer (to which I ask – why would you want to work for them anyway?), or there is some cloak of security or ‘coolness’ that comes with having a nickname – “I can be me, or sorta like me, and people will not know me”.

    So what is it? This case shows that link growing stronger that your anonymity is slowing eroding. I wonder why you needed it in the first place?

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      We are the State and WE WANT NAMES! We DEMAND that you forego your right to anonymity if you wish to be anonymous!

      You WILL give your real name NOW!

      LOL

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        Is there a right to anonymity? Or is it a ‘privelege’ you simply lose when you commit a crime?

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          Well, I was attempting be humorous.

          In my opinion, if you look at any blog, message board, responses to articles, etc. there is certainly a long-standing tradition of allowing anyone to use whatever screen-name they like.

          I am sure if the government had their way, you would not only have to use your real name as your screen name, but you would have to register using your social security number so that they would have an easier time tracking your web activity.

    • Recently a popular blogger in my area was laid off from their company after revealing their true identity because they were critical of the local government and their company relies on funding from government.

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        That sucks – would you consider that person an output of social darwinism? Or they just picked the wrong company to work for? If I remember correctly you are from the Pittsburgh area no? (No – I’m not trying to socially engineer you) PA is an ‘at-will’ State – while I am not sure of the benefits/costs of going the CA route for employment law, I’d think it shouldn’t be that easy to terminate someone as such. Something tells me they were looking for a reason to get rid of the person.

        So tell me Naten53 – why not use your real name?

        • Ray, right to work laws should never over step the 1st amendment. In the same token…my right to fire someone for failing to show for work, being lazy ect should not be infringed on either. If the person who was fired was on their own time, on their own computer, voicing their own opinion then their 1st amendment rights have been violated.

          • No they haven’t. The first amendment is a restriction on government not private citizens or companies.

            • Are you saying there is no freedom of speech? or just that only the government can violate freedom of speech?

              • I AM SAYING THAT THE CONSTITUTION ONLY PROTECTS YOUR FREEDOM OF SPEECH FROM THE GOVERNMENT.

                THAT IS WHY BOYCOTTS ARE USED TO STIFLE FREE SPEECH. IT IS A PRIVATE ACTION.

                IT IS ALSO WHY AN EMPLOYER CAN FIRE YOU FOR SPEECH THEY DON’T LIKE.

                BUT AS FOR PRIVATE INTERFERENCE YOU HAVE TO LOOK TO EACH STATE CONSTITUTION AND LAWS. SOME STATES DO PROTECT SPEECH FROM ACTIONS OF OTHER CITIZENS, IN SOME WAY. LABOR LAWS MAY REQUIRE STATEMENTS OF CAUSE AND MAY DISALLOW SPEECH AS A CAUSE.

              • Ok…thanks…missed where you were coming from.

        • Nice try Ray but you know this is not Social Darwinism.

          You asked why people don’t post names. You have an example of where someone lost their means of income for posting their name.

          Your question has been answered.

          • Ray Hawkins says:

            JAC – you’re still on the hook – we don’t know the specifics of the story – maybe the violated company policy?

      • Murphy's Law says:

        A good example of why not to use real names.

        Ray, you have brought this up before……why are you on it again? It’s none of your damn business what my name is. Why do you care? You are obviously proud of using your real name and you seem to want to guilt others into doing the same, by implying they must have some evil reason for not doing so. Oh no!!!! Ray thinks I have something to hide- now I must prove I don’t by using my real name!!!!

        I don’t have anything evil to hide- but I damn sure intend to hide my true identity. I will not make it easier for the wackos or criminals to get to me. But you go ahead and do so if you wish.

        You also contradicted yourself- “I have heard people tell me they are afraid of some crazy person stalking them or hunting them down (which rarely/never happens – although I did have a Facebook friend recently delete several threads because he felt threatened by someone)” If it rarely/never happens, why do we so often read of those who have stalked others through the net?

        Your Facebook friend had heard reports of how many HAVE been stalked online, and was wise to delete the threads. And would be wiser to get off Facebook altogether.

        • Ray Hawkins says:

          Okay Murphy’s Law – you engaged me so lets drop the gloves shall we?

          At the end of the day I don’t give a shit what your name is. It’d be nice to know who I am talking to, but the point I was trying to make is that there is now legal theory creeping into this and I want to understand why people do not use their real names.

          As I offered, I think there may be some legit reasons why people elect to hide their names – I don’t think you have much to fear in the way of whackos but hey – you can be as scared as you want – that is your deal not mine. I try to exercise care on what I post and I also know what I am willing to back up.

          I offered the facebook example as one that is real and I feel bad that my friend felt threatened. Careful on how you assume that every stalking incident is related to blogging – it is usually something far different than that.

          I stipulate that you do have something to hide, I’m curious what or why and not judging if its right or wrong.

          • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

            Ray,

            How does knowing someone’s real name on the internet equate with knowing who you are talking to?

            It matters not what the person’s name is. You know me by what I write here on this page… you do not know me because I choose to give my real name or not.

            On a forum such as this, it is by our ideas that we know each other, not our names.

            If someone else chooses to post under the name Ray Hawkins, I would pretty much immediately recognize it as “not you” just from what they wrote and the way they wrote it.

            The name is largely irrelevant.

            • Murphy's Law says:

              Peter B- what a great point! Slam dunk!

              Ray- you asked for no gloves. OK.

              You continue to pick and choose the words to which you respond. Either that or you didn’t bother to read all of it, or maybe your reading comprehension is not all that great. I’m not saying that to insult you- think it through…..those are all the choices there are when parts of a post are ignored.

              Ray said- “I don’t give a shit what your name is. It’d be nice to know who I am talking to….”

              If you don’t give a s**t what my name is, why do you then contradict that statement by saying you’d like to know to whom you talk? And like PeterB said, you still would know no more than you did before about who I really am.

              Ray said- “I don’t think you have much to fear in the way of whackos”

              Thanks Ray. I feel so much better now that I know that. Sorry for the sarcasm…….oh actually no I’m not. I don’t care that YOU don’t think I have much to fear from wackos. I intend to be careful with my identity.

              Ray said- “Careful on how you assume that every stalking incident is related to blogging – it is usually something far different than that.”

              Look again at my post- I said “If it rarely/never happens, why do we so often read of those who have stalked others through the net?” Through the net, Ray. You are the one making assumptions, and erroneous ones at that.

              Ray said- “I stipulate that you do have something to hide, I’m curious what or why ”

              I clearly stated what I intend to hide and why- my true identity- so why are you still curious?

              “and not judging if its right or wrong.”

              Ray said- “1. Why do you not use your name? I have heard people tell me they are afraid of some crazy person stalking them or hunting them down (which rarely/never happens – although I did have a Facebook friend recently delete several threads because he felt threatened by someone), they are blogging when they shouldn’t be (what happened to that bothersome ‘personal responsibility’ thing), they are afraid people will now how they really feel (grow a pair I say), they are concerned that some people will know ‘too much’ about them and that is unsettling (if you knew how different people use a tool like Maltego or gumshoe social engineering you’d probably never blog again), people are concerned that someone may hold something against them – usually a current or future employer (to which I ask – why would you want to work for them anyway?), or there is some cloak of security or ‘coolness’ that comes with having a nickname – “I can be me, or sorta like me, and people will not know me”.”

              In this paragraph of your original post on the subject today, you stated 6 possible reasons why people might not want to use their real name. All 6 imply some degree of judgment on your part.

              Sorry Ray, I’m calling the BS flag on your whole argument. If you don’t know yet why people use nicknames, read the other posts here.

              • Ray Hawkins says:

                “Peter B- what a great point! Slam dunk!”

                – Not so fast Murphy’s Law – here’s a big meaty paw putting it squarely back in your face…..

                Ray- you asked for no gloves. OK.

                You continue to pick and choose the words to which you respond. Either that or you didn’t bother to read all of it, or maybe your reading comprehension is not all that great. I’m not saying that to insult you- think it through…..those are all the choices there are when parts of a post are ignored.

                Ray said- “I don’t give a shit what your name is. It’d be nice to know who I am talking to….”

                If you don’t give a s**t what my name is, why do you then contradict that statement by saying you’d like to know to whom you talk? And like PeterB said, you still would know no more than you did before about who I really am.

                – As I explained to Peter it is a matter of respect – if you want to hide behind a nickname it is your call – to that I really don’t give a shit. I will not respect you any less, I’ll just make sure my guard is a little more active. I assume, maybe incorrectly, that since you will not use your real name you have something to hide – you assume I mean something bad by that – that is not the case – I am just asking for a little insight.

                Ray said- “I don’t think you have much to fear in the way of whackos”

                Thanks Ray. I feel so much better now that I know that. Sorry for the sarcasm…….oh actually no I’m not. I don’t care that YOU don’t think I have much to fear from wackos. I intend to be careful with my identity.

                – No problem Murphy’s Law. You see – I like to ensure that I am scared of something that is actually a threat. When I get scared or chickenshit over something that is not really a threat then I am wasting energy. Don’t believe everything you hear for a living – if you want to be afraid of something happening to your identity that’s your call – I have to assume that since you are afraid of using your name in a public blogging forum as you think it will likely lead to ID theft that you haven’t bothered to ensure that is really a threat you should be concerned about – but hey – its your call.

                Ray said- “Careful on how you assume that every stalking incident is related to blogging – it is usually something far different than that.”

                Look again at my post- I said “If it rarely/never happens, why do we so often read of those who have stalked others through the net?” Through the net, Ray. You are the one making assumptions, and erroneous ones at that.

                – No sir I am not. I will not fault you for not having awareness with respect to what I do for a living – but that’s okay – my feelings are not hurt. If you think that stalking incidents over the net are in prepnderance related to blogging of political views (and specifically from the right) then you are sadly and aorely mistaken. But that’s okay – as I just covered I know you may not know jack shit on root causes of ID theft so will you also likely not know jack shit about Internet-based crimes, especially stalking. If I have misunderstood what you meant then by all means correct me. Understand that my FT job is spent in Internet security and I spend on average another 3+ hours on the academic side.

                Ray said- “I stipulate that you do have something to hide, I’m curious what or why ”

                I clearly stated what I intend to hide and why- my true identity- so why are you still curious?

                – I am no longer curious – perhaps I didn’t understand why as I am not sure you really understand why you do it either.

                “and not judging if its right or wrong.”

                Ray said- “1. Why do you not use your name? I have heard people tell me they are afraid of some crazy person stalking them or hunting them down (which rarely/never happens – although I did have a Facebook friend recently delete several threads because he felt threatened by someone), they are blogging when they shouldn’t be (what happened to that bothersome ‘personal responsibility’ thing), they are afraid people will now how they really feel (grow a pair I say), they are concerned that some people will know ‘too much’ about them and that is unsettling (if you knew how different people use a tool like Maltego or gumshoe social engineering you’d probably never blog again), people are concerned that someone may hold something against them – usually a current or future employer (to which I ask – why would you want to work for them anyway?), or there is some cloak of security or ‘coolness’ that comes with having a nickname – “I can be me, or sorta like me, and people will not know me”.”

                In this paragraph of your original post on the subject today, you stated 6 possible reasons why people might not want to use their real name. All 6 imply some degree of judgment on your part.

                – Nice try pal – I was braindumping on this as my original musings were very negative and I wanted to back down from that and question my own position. As folks like you are wont to do you’d rather attack my very purpose in inquiry rather than help shape the argument up. You could just as easily have taken a deep breath and said “look pal – there are real, legit reasons why folks like us do this” – I appreciate that Naten or Kent could say here is what could or has happened – I appreciate that and it broadens my view. Attacking me just because I asked the question just narrows my focus on you even more.

                Sorry Ray, I’m calling the BS flag on your whole argument. If you don’t know yet why people use nicknames, read the other posts here.

                – Here ya go Murphy’s Law – here is your flag back – you threw it erroneously and I accept your apology for doing so.

                Cheers and good night.

                😉

            • Ray Hawkins says:

              Its a matter of respect Peter – if you have a reason not tell me your name then so be it – it does not mean I will not offer you a modicum of respect, but my suspicion will be up but a hair. That’s all.

              • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

                Ray,

                I respect you enough to give you my real name.

                I respect most of the others on this site enough to give my real name.

                However, there are new people coming to the site all the time, and there are people reading the site that never respond to any posts.

                I do not have enough information about them to give them my real name.

                Because of that, I use my first name and last initial.

      • I understand a person’s desire for anonymity. Online, I used to only be known as “DullHawk”. I gave that anonymity up when I ran for president. You can’t really do that anonymously.

        Unfortunately, I have been harmed due to giving up my anonymity, so I more fully defend the wish for others to avoid that.

        I made my choice for my own reasons and would never impose that risk on others.

        • Ray Hawkins says:

          Kent – curious how you were harmed. I work for an employer that encourages blogging.

          • It had nothing to do with a job. I had reached an agreement to rent a house from a relative and was less than a week from moving 1500 miles when he discovered my online writings. He called up other relatives and told them I was “unpatriotic” and since I am against “drug” prohibition I might try to start a meth lab in the house. I am not sure if he suspected my atheism, but that would have cemented his position. He said he wanted nothing to do with anyone like me, and would not rent to me under any condition.

            He has the right to choose who to rent to, of course, but a fair amount of money had been spent, and some irreversable actions had been taken. He refused to talk to me in any way or take responsibility for his breaking his word.

            • Murphy's Law says:

              That’s a shame……what an a**hole your relative is. You mentioned that if he had known of your atheism it would have cemented his position. If you don’t mind my asking, to what religion does this relative belong? I haven’t found one yet that preaches being a judgmental jerk. But I have known many judgmental jerks who claim to be religious.

            • Ray Hawkins says:

              Kent – thanks for sharing. I have several relatives that are the polar opposite of me politically – we exchange jabs online but in good nature and good clean fun – one, an Uncle, is as firm in his position as maybe you or BF and I respect him for that. We challenge each other which is good, and last I visited him (I see him maybe once a decade) we shared too many cups of coffee and laughed at it all (with a wink that laughing doesn’t marginalize one or the other).

    • My name has posted here several times when I have forgotten. I use the screen name of my blog site. But just in case anyone thinks I am afraid to use my real name, it is Karl Lindsey and I live in Esom Hill, GA. If someone felt they needed more specifics than that they can go to my site and I will give it to them.

      A lot of folks have screen names for various reasons, including wanting to scream hate in anonymity. I could care less. I will scream hate in complete sunlight! 😀

      (last was a joke)

    • Black Flag says:

      The need for anonymity is vital for freedom. There are those that will use violence on those whose mere ideas threaten that status quo.

      Here’s a tool to help:

      http://www.hotspotshield.com/

    • Ray,

      I can answer only for myself. I don’t know if you recall, but I used to use an avatar that was my face and my name was clearly on the about me page. I have since changed to the flag and removed my name from the “About the author” page.

      What I found was that I was seeing an increasing number of news stories about companies that were firing or punishing employees for the views they have or the things they do publicly ON THEIR OWN TIME. I can not afford to lose my job. Therefore I must ensure that I protect it. I don’t go to great lengths. As anyone who wants to know who I am seems able to find out. But in an age where our employers feel they have the right to dictate what we do when we are not on the clock, I have to at least try to keep them from knowing what I write.

      On the flip side, you know well who I am as we went to school together.

      I, in no way, am ashamed by what I write. I think I am fair in what I present. I don’t think my views are dangerous to people or that I am bigoted in some way. Anonymity is not something that is there to hide behind, it is there to protect me from a society that feels it is OK to ruin someone’s life for having an opinion that differs from the majority. Look at what happened to “Joe the Plumber” or countless others who dared to be “out of line” with what folks were feeling.

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        Interesting points – do you see legal theory going deeper on this?

        The threat of employer action is, I suppose, the primary concern I hear from people. There are two sides to the story which I think is what you are recognizing. Employers are trying to protect their interests but it seems they don’t risk weight these things close enough.

        • Ray, lets chase your legal theory question for a minute.

          First lets take the example given, the man who lost his job for criticizing the govt.

          Without his name no one could tie him to the company. Once exposed, the company now has a concern. It has an employee criticizing a customer. It now must decide wheter to take a chance on the customer caring or not caring. It the customer were a private enterprise we know they would retaliate if possible, by taking business elsewhere. What is interesting here is that they fired him because of their fear the govt would retaliate. The govt is supposed to be above such bulldookey though, right? Yet they feared retaliation.

          In all of this there is only one legal issue I know of. The govt used to be legally prohibited from using such retaliation against companies they contract with. At least the Fed govt was. So there may have been a violation by the Fed govt somewhere that gave the company concern. If not, the guy was victim to paranoia. But still no legal action that I can see.

          Now if the govt was state or local the rules of their conduct may differ from the Fed. so I can’t speak directly. Except that once again the entity that is supposed to be objective, fair and above politics is feared by a contractor.

          The other case you raised is interesting. I do not know the background but it sounds as though there was some pretty compelling stuff for the judge to feel liabelous slander had been committed. But then comes the real legal question in my view. The question that will eventually come up again if we reconstruct our govt based on freedom.

          Why should any judge have the power to compell a third party to give up the name of a second party? I am very concerned that many judges abuse the power of the bench. Yet it is the legal system that we will need to rely on if we are to stop the Beast of Federal Govt from controlling our lives.

          In this case it seems fair and just to me that someone deliberately trying to destroy another’s reputation by spreading deliberate falshoods should have to reveal themselves. I like it that compelling evidence is required first. But….that infernal but, what happens when the judge is not as diligent. Perhaps you get an activist who doesn’t like the attacks either so they order the person exposed. Yet the evidence of slander is weak to none.

          Yes there are some reasons for concern. But it raises another question I have been wondering about.

          Why is it that you must give your real name and other personal information to some provider in order to establish a URL, blog site, or email? The only thing they need is a way to get paid. My conclusion is that the govt is requiring the collection of such information or they are selling it to someone.

          What are your thoughts on this question? Your one of the tech savvy folks here so maybe you know the answer.

          JAC

          • Ray Hawkins says:

            Dammit JAC – you and your long posts – will read more in a.m. – but my initial reaction is that I think it is good that the NY case required a strong demonstration that the plaintiff case had merit. Nothing says that same criteria is followed in all cases though.

            So you know my position – even as an InfoSec guy I am a strong believer in confidentiality and privacy. You should be the determinant of what gets posted publicly. There are risks – and consumers should have the options and tools needed to protect themselves regardless in how real the fear is.

    • Ray

      Why do I not use my name? Freedom of speech is not tied to a compulsion to use it. Silence is sometimes the appropriate answer.

      The internet has Hackers, data miners, that I choose not to gamble with, you may be a computer wiz, I am not. And why do you want to know? Do you work for the government?

      IRS? You guys piss me off. I pay in as instructed, and get hit with a penalty. Change my deductible to zero, overpay, and you hit me with a penalty. I have a bookeeper, use a CPA, and still can’t follow your ever changing rules. But you already have all my personal information.

      FBI? I have a CCW, you guys did a background check, you want more information, come and ask me or get a warrant. Yes I have guns, no I won’t tell you how many or anything about them.

      White House? GO Fish. You want a Tip? Quit screwing up the country, worrying what I am doing, and how to squeeze more money out of me. I may be a right wing extremist, but I’m not single issue, and I have not threatened anyone.

      Homeland Security? Yes, I do business with some countries in the middle east. I have all the records, you, the IRS and FBI come by anytime, doors always open. My attorney and I look forward to the conversation.

      I have shared my personal information with a few here, by my email. I choose not to put it here on a public forum. You choose to, that’s your call.

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        Thanks for sharing LOI – I once worked in gov – but not the Fed level (save some consulting work). I think your risk assessment if off a bit but its your call. I was just curious on your thought process – nothing else.

  10. Ray Hawkins says:

    “CIA memo details procedures for breaking detainees”

    http://www.comcast.net/articles/news-general/20090826/NEWS-US-USA-CIA-INTERROGATIONS/

    Sleep deprivation, “insult slaps,” water dousing and “walling,” or slamming a detainee’s head against a wall, were techniques used by CIA interrogators to break high-value detainees, according to an agency memo.

    The memo, sent to the U.S. Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel on December 30, 2004, was released on Monday under a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed by Amnesty International USA and the American Civil Liberties Union.

    U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder on Monday named a special prosecutor to probe Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) prisoner abuse cases.

    His decision, which promises political headaches for President Barack Obama, came after the Justice Department’s ethics watchdog recommended considering prosecution of CIA employees or contractors for interrogations in Iraq and Afghanistan that went beyond approved limits.

    “The goal of interrogation is to create a state of learned helplessness and dependence conducive to the collection of intelligence,” the memo, outlining procedures for handling captured al Qaeda leaders sent to CIA “black site” prisons, said.

    The document, first reported by The Washington Post, said prior to an interrogation session, detainees may be stripped and held in a “vertical shackling position” to begin sleep deprivation.

    Once the interrogation begins, the “insult slap” on the face may be used when the interrogator needs to immediately correct the detainee, the memo said.

    The document said “walling” was one of the most effective interrogation techniques for wearing down detainees physically.

    “An HVD (high-value detainee) may be walled one time (one impact with the wall) to make a point or 20 to 30 times consecutively when the interrogator requires a more significant response to a question,” the document said.

    Interrogations at CIA prisons occurred in special cells outfitted on one side with a plywood wall to prevent severe head injuries, The Washington Post reported.

    The paper said agency spokesman George Little noted that the interrogation program operated under guidelines approved by top legal officials of the Bush administration.

    “This program, which always constituted a fraction of the CIA’s counterterrorism efforts, is over,” Little was quoted as saying.

    CIA officials have also noted that harsh techniques were reserved for a small group of top-level terrorism suspects believed to be knowledgeable about the September 11, 2001, attacks, the Post said.

    Former U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney criticized Obama’s ability to handle national security after the special prosecutor was appointed.

    Cheney, who has emerged as a vocal defender of Bush administration policies since leaving the White House, said the intelligence obtained from harsh interrogation techniques had saved lives.

    “The people involved deserve our gratitude. They do not deserve to be the targets of political investigations or prosecutions,” he said in a statement.

    – This may goes up a lot of rear ends sideways – but I am glad this ugliness is finally coming out and something is being done to hopefully ensure it never happens again. It is becoming clearer that there were potentially egregious violations of law that occurred with these detainees. My only hope is that resolution is thorough, complete and efficient – those responsible should be punished to the fullest extent permitted under law. And we move on.

    • BO’s popularity going down, bring back Bush. BO “really don’t want to do this” BUT, DOJ (my good friend and pal Holder) feels it necessary.

      This will hurt BO and unfortunately, the US security, more than it will help his flailing numbers.

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        This was Eric Holder, not POTUS. From folks I have talked to in that food chain on the LE side Holder is more autonomous that more recent AGs.

        • I have talked to folks who say that as well Ray. Holder seems to be able to operate on his own agenda more than past AG’s.

          And while I am not a fan of this action, I do agree that the AG should operate independent of the President.

          • Ray Hawkins says:

            What I don’t like is that I am sure there are planned leaks of this stuff – which pisses me off. If we were ‘saved’ by some tactics that may be helpful also since the seal has been broken on this.

          • I disagree with complete independence. Otherwise how can any chief executive even hope to improve or otherwise affect federal govt? They have to be able to set priorities and general mission/objectives.

            Now once a crime is discovered or investigation launched, they must stay out of it.

            I have left a large opening for many to enter. Now lets see if any can find the door.

        • I believe it’s just another distraction.

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      Ray,

      This reply may surprise you.

      If you truly believe that the actions taken by the CIA were immoral and illegal, simply remember that they are a part of your government (regardless of who the President was at the time), and they provide a great example of the way all government acts.

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        Leap in logic Peter – that’s like saying that since Jeremiah Wright spews hate then all clergy spew hate.

        They WERE a part of the government, albeit a very clandestine part. I doubt the Forestry Service is torturing anyone.

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          Ray,

          Yes, perhaps you can accuse me of over-generalizing. Not ALL government agencies engage in torture.

          You can probably even demonstrate that not ALL governments engage in torture. However, a vast majority of governments do.

          • If putting my family in economic jeopardy, creating an atmosphere of guilt, envy and hatred, causing massive anxiety among our citizens is not torture then what the hell is it?

            They take my money without my permission and spend my money on things that do not benefit me in any way, they are guilty of torturing me and my family.

            • Ray Hawkins says:

              Focus on the legal issue JAC – lets not hijack the topic with your emotional response.

        • They have been torturing the small communities of the west for years Ray.

    • I will simply shut up on this issue. To hear my viewpoints will only arouse anger and name calling.

      • Thank you for saying that D13. You probably just saved me from opening up myself to a lot of the same anger and name calling. I will just shut up too.

      • Agreed…. We covered the topic of “torture” a while ago.

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        D13, ESOM, USW – I’d love to hear your opinions but I sense this takes you into uncomfortable places where you find contradictions to your own views on human life (which in turn can/may undermine many of your other positions built on that foundation). Its your choice.

        • Ray,

          I am happy to oblige. What exactly would you like me to offer the opinion on? The issue of whether these things were torture or not? Or whether Holder should be pushing this or not? Or what. I am willing to discuss the issue. If there exist contradictions in my position, I am certainly not afraid to find them. On the contrary, finding and eliminating them is the key to making myself a better person with a better ability to find the best way forward.

          I have to step out for a bit to get some groceries and walk the new puppy. I will certainly address whatever you want to know upon my return.

          USW

          • Ray Hawkins says:

            New puppy? Do tell?

            I guess I am pondering whether you think there is anything new to learn here? Share also if you think Holder should run with this or kill it. I get a little worried the more I learn about what passed as “legal” EIT.

            Thanks,

            Ray

        • Murphy's Law says:

          Ray,

          What exactly have D13, USW, or ESOM said that causes you to “sense this takes you into uncomfortable places where you find contradictions to your own views on human life (which in turn can/may undermine many of your other positions built on that foundation).”?

          What a pompous, arrogant load of BS psychobabble that was on your part. These men have seen reality in ways you and I never have nor ever will. To say they are brave is a gross understatement, but you implied they were somewhat cowardly for not blogging their opinion on this……with all due respect, sir, you are coming across as a blowhard. You know NOTHING about their reasons for not blogging, and your post proves it.

          When I read an outright insult to men who have fought for my freedoms (don’t bother, BF) and have endured things I have never imagined, I just can’t be silent.

          I guess I better take D13’s lead, go get a Dr Pepper and calm down…….

          • Black Flag says:

            When I read an outright insult to men who have fought for my freedoms (don’t bother, BF)

            Repeat standard argument #233 here.

      • Ahhh, Ray, my friend…..I guess that I will have to answer this although it will get little response from me. There are always contradictions in life and decisions. There will be a contradiction in my belief in this particular instance as there are contradictions in everyone’s postings on here. However, since I was not part of the “torture” posts last time, my viewpoint is very simple and it will fly in your face and you will state contradictions to my principles.

        I have no problem slamming prisoners into a wall.
        I have no problem water boarding.
        I have no problem with loud music and Mickey Mouse movies 24/7.
        I have no problem with sleep deprivation.
        I have no problem with threatening death and starvation and no water.
        I have no problem with stripping prisoners of their clothes and therefore their identity.
        I have no problem with drug induced hypnosis.
        I have no problem punishing a prisoner on erroneous information.
        I have no problem threatening a prisoner with a drill bit in his knee cap and showing it to him.

        I would not support pulling teeth or fingernails or bamboo shoots.
        I would not support any sexual abuse of any prisoner. (Nudity is not sexual abuse).
        I would not support the skinning alive of prisoners as I have witnessed abroad and seen the aftermath of these done to our service men.
        I would not support the cutting off of fingers as I have witnessed abroad.
        I would not support the heat transfusion to the eyes as I have witnessed abroad and seen the aftermath of this done to our servicemen.

        I am highly trained in various interrogation techniques that would likely give the ACLU or bleeding hearts a stomach ache.

        If there was an acceptable interrogation technique, that I supported, as stated above, I would use it if it saved ONE American life. I am not a one world person at all and I have no illusions of playing nice. I would gladly water board or slam someone into a wall to save your life. TO ME….I repeat to ME….an American life is worth more to me than any other life out there in a war situation. Call me a hypocrite or contradiction all you want….but until you have played hard ball in the real world…or walked into a village and seen women raped, children dismembered, and the men captured and tortured by means that would make a Billy Goat puke…there is not one of you that can justify your position to me. There are no laws in war….there are no rules…THAT is the reality. And any liberal bullshit about it makes me just like them…is bull shit. And the reality saves lives, no matter how grotesque you think it is and no matter how much philosophy you or others wish to spout. The real world is mean and it is tough and you cannot play nice. There is a quote in a movie by John Wayne….and it is true…. “Out here, the only due process is a bullet.” Be glad that you have not seen it and dealt with it…be very glad for you cannot understand otherwise.

        You cannot win hearts and minds with coveralls and beaches and color tv, and you certainly will not get any information.

        Since I have been privileged at seeing classified information obtained from the recent prisoners, it saved hundreds of lives. The irony of it is, the general public will never know how many because it is classified and I will guarantee you, that the liberal control will not let that information out. However, I have seen it and read it and digested it and I support whatever means it took to get it. IT SAVED AMERICAN LIVES of women, children, and the innocent.

        To prosecute is the height of hypocrisy, sir. Do not prosecute. It is a sham and a distraction.

        I have said enough.

        • Richmond Spitfire says:

          Dear D13, Sir,

          I personally thank you for ensuring the safety of me and mine and you and your’s.

          I imagine that it couldn’t have been pleasant what you’ve seen and what you have (or haven’t) had to do in order to protect us.

          You sir have my very ‘bestest” of regards,
          RS

        • You have stated above all that I would have said, better than I could have said it sir.

          With Respect
          EHG

    • This is so crazy…I would not have wanted to be the Pres., a Rep, or a Senator or in any form of the FBI, CIA after 911. It is real easy to critize and hind sight is 50-50. I can assure you if there was wrong done, the Reps, Senate, all the chiefs and heads of departments knew exactly what was going on. I think this is a witch hunt. I believe these people held in dentention has as many rights as they afforded the people on the planes, in the towers and the Pentagon.
      They gave no rights…..they recieve no rights. It is like…..oh I am going to play like a mad pitbull…but you my friend have to be nice and fair or I will cry foul.

  11. PeterB in Indianapolis says:

    Greatergoodcs made a statement yesteday to the effect that it isn’t HIS government, because HIS government would have completely socialized healthcare.

    My only response to that is anyone who accepts the premise that the government has the legitimate authority to make and enforce law, then it is indeed YOUR government.

  12. Ray Hawkins says:

    At what point do we become de-sensitized to the exploding National Debt? As I read the latest numbers – does anyone else worry that no one sees a difference b/n 1 or 2 or 3 trillion dollars? Yeah – I voted for change – but I also expected to see the fat trimmed. The Democrats have handed the opposition a bigger stick than the “Sarah Palin is a quitter” stick. Like it or not in how blame is assigned in macro-economic issues – they are signing they own “death warrants”.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2009/aug/13/federal-deficit-america-debt

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      Ray,

      Precious few people have any understanding of economics. In addition, absolutely no one has any concept of what 1 Trillion dollars actually is.

      You could spend $100 PER SECOND, and it would take you 2900 years to spend 1 Trillion dollars.

      They are not signing their own death warrants, they are signing bankruptcy papers for every citizen of the country.

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        I meant death warrants by saying they are guaranteeing they will lose midterms and the next general if this isn’t addressed. You won’t need tea parties – because eventually something will “break” and in a very big way.

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          Well, that may be true, but then when the Republicans regain control, the same thing will happen to them.

          Then the Democrats will regain control, and the same thing will happen to them.

          Then the Republicans will regain control and the same thing will happen again.

          And the beat goes on…

          Until the entire system breaks completely.

          • I don’t think so Pete. I’m not saying it wouldn’t go on and on, but I don’t think the government or we as a nation will last 10 more years with a national debt that big.

            That much debt is unsustainable. Unfortunately, to relieve that debt, harder choices will have to be made than ANY fiscal liberal will be willing to make. Hell that’s putting it mildly. This will require major cutbacks PLUS higher taxes.

            Who in Government will be willing to do that?

            • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

              Esom,

              I believe that my attempted point was that I do not feel that anyone in government will be willing to do that in a meaningful enough way to ameliorate the debt significantly.

              If you raised taxes to 100% and cut spending to zero, it would still take over 10 years to pay off the debt and fund all of the unfunded or under-funded government mandates such as Social Security and Medicare.

              If you raised taxes by only 10% and cut spending by only 10%, it would take a ridiculously long time (hundreds of years… thousands?).

              If you raised taxes by more than 10% and cut spending by more than 10%, a revolution would result.

              This is why I agree with BF when he says that an attempt to inflate away the debt or a default by the government are pretty likely. Neither one of those options are going to yield good results either.

        • I personally believe that no one political party should be in control. If there is a Democratic President, there should be a Republican Congress, and visa versa. There has to be some sort of check and balance…IMHO.

        • And then… different crooks. As BF says we only get to choose between the folks that the R/D parties choose.

      • “You could spend $100 PER SECOND, and it would take you 2900 years to spend 1 Trillion dollars.” LOL not if you are the US government the can spend it in 2 seconds with the stroke of a pen.

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          Indeed,

          Which is one of the main reasons that “the common person” has absolutely no concept of it.

    • Yesterday BF had a post (#15) that probably said it best:

      “Big numbers befuddle people.”

      When you at least break it down by family, person it has more of an impact. I heard a clip today, that this estimate was also based on some very unlikely assumptions so the number will probably be even higher. I’ll look for a link.

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        So the assumptions were overly optimistic? Shoot out the link if you find it. Thanks!

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          Ray,

          Major government programs cannot come in at or under their budget. It is a physical impossibilty.

          The government is incapable of correctly calculating its own propensity for waste, corruption, and fraud.

      • I have heard both claims of overly optimistic and overly pessimistic. I sure hope that we can find a way to get this under control, but I hold little hope at this point.

      • It was more than just a general, “government programs cannot come in at or under their budget.” It was assuming some cuts that government would make that were highly unlikely, one being a cut in the amount of food stamps, for example. The stimulus bill incentivized increases in welfare rolls – highly unlikely that food stamp costs will be going down.

        It was actually a live interview and I’m looking for either a transcript or the video.

    • I also hoped after the election that the government would actually change, but did not see it happening. It will never be possible to pay down our debt unless taxes are raised or spending is reduced. But who would ever actually vote for more taxes when all they care about is staying in power. I feel that change is actually hopeless.

      • Naten says “I feel that change is actually hopeless”

        Nice pun on BO’s “Hope ‘n Change”

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        There is always hope.

        As long as there are people around that realize that what the government is doing is completely ridiculous, there is hope.

        If all people were convinced that what the government is doing was totally fine, then I would say it was hopeless.

        What must be recognized as COMPLETELY ridiculous is the desire of the government to continue to spend even more money on more programs when it can already be conclusively demonstrated that the government is absolutely bankrupt.

        • v. Holland says:

          I know that people are probably tired of hearing this but under our current system, which I believe we’re gonna keep-how are you gonna get this message across to your representatives-if you do not vote-Have you noticed that they take polls based on “the most likely to vote” basis. Who do you think the politicians listen too?

          • Black Flag says:

            V.

            Tell me voting made a difference?

            Rep’s or Dem’s – makes no difference at all.

            Neither party ‘ran’ the government for 200 years straight – they traded turns.

            We are here, today, in the midst of total disaster.

            So which one caused it and which one will save us from it?

            Both and neither.

            Save your vote – it will mean more by NOT voting.

            • v. Holland says:

              I just totally disagree-I think the only way to really make a difference is to obtain a huge majority and then tell our representatives what we expect-right now the country is split-at least the voting part of the country-we need the people who aren’t voting but want small government which I believe is a huge majority to vote- it is the only way that the people in government are going to listen-right now they compromise in hopes of getting that vote in the middle. It needs to be shown to them in clear numbers that we want small government-and if we don’t get it-they are out the door.

              • Black Flag says:

                But that is not what I asked, V.

                I asked “When has it made a difference?”

                You cannot point to any example.

                One definition of insanity: Doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different outcome”

                I see your plan as an act of insanity.

                You place your hope on absolute futility. As long as you make this placement – it excludes actions of real causation – in other words, because you believe voting does “something” you will not try something else.

                Hence, the insanity.

              • v. Holland says:

                I’m aware of what you asked but you are talking about how it has been -I am talking about how it should be-When in any recent history has there really been a large majority of the public voting-you think that not voting at all will kill the government-I feel that is impossible because the people who want big government are going to keep voting and the politicians are going to listen to them-The reason that President Obama is in office is partially because people who never voted before came out and voted-believe me I am aware that for my belief to work many people who ususlly don’t vote would have to start voting but I personally believe it would be a lot easier to convince people to vote to make a difference than to convince people on the left not to vote.

              • v. Holland says:

                I haven’t been on this site very long so I don’t really know everyone’s basic feelings about this issue-So please tell me- am I the only one who thinks voting is important?

              • Black Flag says:

                There have been large ‘majorities’ voting – 60-70% turnout if not higher.

                Your “should be” is irrational.

                “What is” should be your reality.

                Voting will not kill government – it will de-legitimize it. Not voting is like pounding on the glass of a fish tank – it will wake up the fish.

              • v. Holland says:

                There has been 60 or 70%- it can’t be has been it needs to be consistent-you yourself pointed out that we keep jumping form Dem. to Rep., that’s because the majority of this country does not vote consistently, anytime something good happens like decreasing welfare, our split voting block votes in the other party and cancels it, because people get complacent. For anything to be sustained it must be consistent and we do not have that consistency in this country. Although, I am more than willing to try something different if I see any possibility that it would work. I just don’t believe the idea of not voting will work-You wrote in your article that voting would work as long as we pick like minded people to run, which I think is a good idea. How does your support for your idea co-exist with your stance on voting in general, with one hopefully the person elected just agrees with small government, in the other they are forced by a majority voice or they don’t get reelected.

              • Black Flag says:

                reply below

              • v. Holland says:

                Your “should be” is irrational.
                “What is” should be your reality.

                My should be is no different than yours-I am looking at how things are and determining from the past and present how I feel it should be. You are looking at how things are and have been and determining how you think things should be- No difference- I was simply pointing out that your questions in this instance didn’t matter because I am basing the situation of what is on the fact that we as a country do not vote consistently-You believe it’s because government is evil.

              • No V, you are not the only one. It’s just that voting is becoming harder and harder when the only choices you are given are both incredibly shitty.

              • No you are absolutely not alone. There are VERY few here who follow BF’s mantra that we should not vote at all.

                Personally I cannot go with not voting unless the number of folks not voting becomes a vast majority of the country, willing to stand up physically when the government gets crazy at the public not recognizing their legitimacy.

              • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

                I have already seen plenty of primary elections in which voter turnout struggles mightily to exceed 10%,
                so I would say 90% not voting in primaries constitutes a vast majority.

              • So do you want your sheeit sandwich on white or rye??

              • v. Holland says:

                I’m gonna assume your a no on the importance of voting. 🙂

          • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

            Ray,

            You believe that if enough people voted that believed the same way that you do that meaningful change would occur.

            You state that a LARGE MAJORITY would be required.

            How are you going to convince a large enough majority? The government is paying an aweful lot of people for their votes (and I don’t just mean the poor). The influential corportations that are enabled by the government have become the government (Bernanke, Geithner, just to cite a few examples), and they are very adept at contributing to “both sides”. Some years they contribute more to one “side” and some years they contribute more to the other “side” but they always make hefty contributions to both.

            So, your task is to convince enough people to free themselves of the influence of the government and of the corporations in order to take back control. Of course, if you manage to do this, you will probably have also managed to convince them that they would be better off without the government and the corporations… 🙂

            Putting Bernanke and Geithner in charge of the Fed and the Treasury is like putting RJReynolds in charge of the FDA. It simply proves that the corporations and the government are inseperable.

            • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

              Wow, I have brain-lock today. Meant to address that to V. Holland… not to Ray 🙂

              Sorry Ray, wasn’t trying to pick on you there or assign someone else’s opinion to you. I apologize.

              • Ray Hawkins says:

                No worries Peter – I just had one of those ‘oh shit’ moments – ‘what did I say now’

                🙂

            • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

              And sorry to V. Holland as well… I wasn’t purposely confusing you with Ray 🙂

              • v. Holland says:

                The majority I am speaking to, either already agree and just aren’t voting because they have decided it isn’t important or they are the people who just don’t vote, I personally believe that most of those people believe in small government-I don’t have the statistics but I believe it was voiced on this blog that this country is center right.-I also believe that most of those people that are controlled by all these organizations already vote. So how am I gonna do it-How are you gonna convince the people who are voting, who are controlled by the government and all these organizations not to vote?

              • v. Holland says:

                Sorry, I really forgot my manners-no apology necessary 🙂

    • Ray,

      A great post! And they want to push Cap & Trade and Healthcare. Are they trying to mortgage the whole country to China?

    • This is something I found myself screaming at the TV over last night. They say our deficit will be 9 TRILLION DOLLARS in the next ten years. The next story is on a new program they are starting. (At this point my ass is parting from the couch)

      I just do not understand how we can be 9 trillion in debt but we are going to spend even more for pure pie in the sky bullshit??????

      When is the insanity going to end? When we collapse from our own crap policies of tax and spend, borrow and spend more?

      The economists must be jumping out of buildings and shooting themselves by now.

    • The horse is long out of the barn on that one Ray.

      We have passed from ten and eleven digit numbers back to one and two digit numbers.

      Heaven forbid the poor soal who is head of govt the day we reduce the debt back to 999 Billion. There will be hell to pay.

  13. Mathius, as promised, an ambush, complete with name calling, you WALNUT!

    I have cut and pasted some of your words here, so some are out of context.

    Mathius said

    Not at all. I shall never repent. From my earliest days as a member of the Washington A**hole Liberal’s New United Teamsters (WALNUT) to my dying day as a member of Crazed American Socialist of the East and West (CASHEW), I shall never repent my leftist nature.

    Cashew just doesn’t have that zing.

    JAC, I feel I have been misunderstood on this point.

    “While it is true that I am an elitist and do not have a huge amount of faith in the average person, my main contention is that the average person does not try hard enough to become acquainted with accurate, complete and diverse facts.”(You were answer about the polite questions at town halls where the elite could not give an answer)

    “People are told that the bill is socialism (and at the same time fascism – which is by definition at the opposite end of the political spectrum),

    (Not true, communism, socialism and fascism are related by the degree of
    increased government control and loss of personal freedom)

    “I think it should be noted, as I pointed out elsewhere today, that socialism and fascism are on opposite ends of the political spectrum. A plan cannot be both.”(A plan could include elements that are facist, socialist, and even free market. Sounds really idiotic and unlikely to work, just like most government programs.)

    What is worse is that it is repeated by figures in authority who know better, but also know that they will not be challenged on the facts. (Sarah Palin, I’m talking about you). Agree, Palin was knowingly spouting off about “Death Panels”. How about Obama & Pelosi, will you hold them to the same standard of accountability? Their talking point is the 46M uninsured, 11M are illegal aliens, not to be covered in this bill. So it’s either 35M, or they do plan to cover the illegal aliens. Their numbers have been refuted by the CBO. Do you choose to BELIEVE Obama knows the math better, and will not increase the decifict further?

    “So all efforts at bipartisanship by the left are met with bad faith by the opposition. The result is a damaged bill which may be worse than no bill at all.”( Where has the bipartisanship efforts been? Pelosi would not allow Republicans to propose any amendments on the stimulus, Obama knew this and did not make any effort to include them (I won).)

    “Insufficient health care is the cause of 62% of bankruptcies in the United States (according to the first site I pulled up on Google, so take that with a grain of salt). When these people declare, the bill goes to you and me. Does it not seem important to address the underlying causes? I make no claim to any special knowledge of how to do this, but at someone is trying to figure it out.”(Obama made a closed door deal with the drug companies, a major cost of health care.(Not very transparent) 11M illegal aliens that use the ER for free health care is not being addressed. And how in the blood ‘ell does requiring insurance address underlying causes?)

    Secondly, let me address your criticism. The average person is not like you. This speaks well for you, but the average person is not interested in reading an entire 1,000+ page bill or simply lacks the time. They are not able to comprehend the legalese involved, and I am not convinced that they could fully understand it with sufficient depth. I would present this as fact, but there is no way to substantiate it. Simply put, I want my country to be run by elitists, not the guy-next-door.(But the elitists are actively mis-leading you. Was the stimulus transparent, and available for public review and comment for five days?)

    Nonetheless, whether or not they are capable, the average citizen does not read the entire bill. They obtain their opinion-forming information from Fox News, CNN and MSNBC, or blogs which conform to their own world view and do not adhere to a strong belief in fact checking. Unless or until they are adequately informed, I do not believe that their opinions need to be followed.(I can agree with your view here, but are you any different? If you believe global warming is caused by mankind, where did your information come from? Fox News, CNN and MSNBC all will mis-lead and distort, as will the NY Times and AP.)

    “I consider myself a liberal and am fully capable of debating with the denizens of this site without calling them (or even necessarily considering them to be) wingnuts.” (Are you a Liberal?)

    Liberalism (from the Latin liberals, suitable for a free man) is the creed that holds that individuals should be free. This belief echoes throughout history, from the revolt of the Roman slave Spartacus to the famous words quoted by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: “Free at last, free at last. Thank God Almighty, we are free at last”.

    The beginning of modern liberal thought is usually credited to John Locke, who wrote, in 1690, “no one ought to harm another in his life, health, liberty, or possessions.”

    Liberalism hold that the only legitimate form of government is one that respects the liberty of its citizens, with open and fair elections, where all citizens have equal rights by law.

    (Is the liberal movement advancing our freedoms? I am to be forced to purchase health insurance, stop smoking(I don’t), don’t say anything Judeo-Christian religious in public like thank God?)

    I did this not as an attack on you or your beliefs, I have found you to be intelligent and thoughtful, but missing something. I suspect you have not yet identified yet where some of your beliefs come from yet. I kinda think you are close to becoming an independent. But that depends on if you examine where your beliefs come from. Which is different than what you think. When you express an opinion, is it from a thought, or based on a belief? And Ray & co., please be welcome to weigh in as well.

    I have thoughts about liberals, that they see the world as they imagine it should be, where a conservative sees it as it is, and hopefully looks at how
    to improve it. I kinda think this guy is singing about a liberal. Any of you spent much time on Venus or Jupiter?

    Now that she’s back in the atmosphere
    With drops of Jupiter in her hair, hey, hey
    She acts like summer and walks like rain
    Reminds me that there’s time to change, hey, hey
    Since the return from her stay on the moon
    She listens like spring and she talks like June, hey, hey

    Tell me did you sail across the sun
    Did you make it to the Milky Way to see the lights all faded
    And that heaven is overrated

    Tell me, did you fall for a shooting star
    One without a permanent scar
    And did you miss me while you were looking for yourself out there

    Now that she’s back from that soul vacation
    Tracing her way through the constellation, hey, hey
    She checks out Mozart while she does tae-bo
    Reminds me that there’s room to grow, hey, hey

    Now that she’s back in the atmosphere
    I’m afraid that she might think of me as plain ol’ Jane
    Told a story about a man who is too afraid to fly so he never did land

    Tell me did the wind sweep you off your feet
    Did you finally get the chance to dance along the light of day
    And head back to the Milky Way
    And tell me, did Venus blow your mind
    Was it everything you wanted to find
    And did you miss me while you were looking for yourself out there

    Can you imagine no love, pride, deep-fried chicken
    Your best friend always sticking up for you
    Even when I know you’re wrong
    Can you imagine no first dance, freeze dried romance five-hour phone conversation
    The best soy latte that you ever had and me

    Tell me did the wind sweep you off your feet
    Did you finally get the chance to dance along the light of day
    And head back toward the Milky Way

    Tell me did you sail across the sun
    Did you make it to the Milky Way to see the lights all faded
    And that heaven is overrated

    Tell me did you fall for a shooting star
    One without a permanent scar
    And did you miss me while you were looking for yourself

    And did you finally get the chance to dance along the light of day
    And did you fall for a shooting star
    Fall for a shooting star
    And are you lonely looking for yourself out there

    Train

    • I find your lack of hypocrisy refreshing. Thank you for applying the same standard to me as you apply to yourself. Though, of course, I would argue that failure to act does, in fact, make one responsible. Odd that you would defend me and I would accuse myself..

      With regard to many questions, I would not defend those on my side who utilize misinformation or deceitful tactics any more than I would those on the right. Simply because I agree with their (overall) goals does not mean that I condone their methods.

      Also, I would consider myself an independent. Though I am a registered Democrat, I do so only to vote in primaries. I vote as I see fit, and have yet to vote straight ticket.

      I am a liberal in the current usage of the term, which is to say progressive, supportive of higher taxes, women’s right, gay rights, social welfare, labor rights, environmental conservation, et cetera.

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        Hmmm.. interesting that conservation is (by definition) conservative, yet we call the people who claim to be in favor of it liberal 🙂

      • Refreshing, that’s me, I’m like Menthos, the fresh maker.

        As for standards, I have spent hours researching AGW, reviewed the voting records of Obama during the state and US senate terms. His speech defending partial birth abortion makes me ill. How can anyone defend that, but be outraged over torturing terrorists? Also checked out McCain and Palin. She re-aligned her position on AGW to
        appease McCain, or you can say she lied. Healthcare, I have attempted to read the house and senate bills, I think they delibertly make these complex to discourage scrunity, and to obscure.

        “I would not defend those on my side who utilize misinformation or deceitful tactics any more than I would those on the right. Simply because I agree with their (overall) goals does not mean that I condone their methods.” But you will continue to support them, knowing they are deliberately mis-leading the un-informed?

        “supportive of:
        social welfare-Do you support resending Clinton’s welfare reform?

        labor rights-Do you support abolishing secret ballots?

        environmental conservation-Do you support forest fires instead of allowing logging?

        Still looking for a good name to call you, Walnut doesn’t do it.
        Venusian? Jupitarian? Shooting Star? Soy latte?

  14. Black Flag says:

    The Socialists Reject Free Choice

    Please understand that I do not dispute their right to invent social combinations, to advertise them, to advocate them, and to try them upon themselves, at their own expense and risk.

    But I do dispute their right to impose these plans upon us by law — by force — and to compel us to pay for them with our taxes.

    I do not insist that the supporters of these various social schools of thought–the Proudhonists, the Cabetists, the Fourierists, the Universitarists, and the Protectionists — renounce their various ideas.

    I insist only that they renounce this one idea that they have in common: They need only to give up the idea of forcing us to acquiesce to their groups and series, their socialized projects, their free- credit banks, their Graeco-Roman concept of morality, and their commercial regulations.

    I ask only that we be permitted to decide upon these plans for ourselves; that we not be forced to accept them, directly or indirectly, if we find them to be contrary to our best interests or repugnant to our consciences.

    But these organizers desire access to the tax funds and to the power of the law in order to carry out their plans.

    In addition to being oppressive and unjust, this desire also implies the fatal supposition that the organizer is infallible and mankind is incompetent.

    But, again, if persons are incompetent to judge for themselves, then why talk about universal suffrage and rights? Why not simply impose your dictatorships?

  15. Ray Hawkins says:

    When a war is not a war……..

    Touched on this before – Iraq and Afgan are NOT wars. War is a legal term – while the Congress may have authorized spend for the engagements these were not declared formally as wars. By calling an engagement a “war” when it is not politicizes it – which often see folks such as USW use to justify a position. Others do this as well from both sides – the war on drugs, the war on poverty, the war on whatever……

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Declaration_of_war_by_the_United_States

    • Black Flag says:

      So what do you call it, Ray? A fist fight?

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        Iraq = invasion/short military action followed by lengthy occupation

        Afghan – invasion/short military action followed by who-knows-what followed by more short term military actions followed by………

        • Black Flag says:

          Your concept of ‘short’ needs to be analyzed.

          War is a reciprocated, armed conflict, between two or more non-congruous entities, aimed at reorganising a subjectively designed, geo-politically desired result.

          • Ray Hawkins says:

            But it was never a war – on that you are wrong

            It was short in that it is recognized as lasting from March 20, 2003 to May 1, 2003. That was the ‘invasion’ or ‘military action’. We have been an occupying force ever since then engaging in periodic skirmishes and conflicts.

            • Black Flag says:

              So you admit it was a “short war”….

              Hard to talk about it without using the word.

              An invasion of a sovereign country with military force is a war.

    • Black Flag says:

      You can wrap an elephant in a blanket and call in “not an elephant” – you fool no one.

      It is a war – the President calls it a war, Congress calls it a war – no one calls it an “engagement”.

      Because Congress did not declare it makes it ILLEGAL.

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        Calling it a war when it is not legally a war enables a slew of rhetoric that otherwise would not be present.

        It is far different to say I oppose an occupation versus saying I oppose the war on terror / war in Iraq / war in Afghanistan

        • Black Flag says:

          So, you don’t want to call it a war because that would make it illegal.

          So, you’ll pick any other term!

          Gasp….

          • Ray Hawkins says:

            From a legal perspective it is anything but a war – if you feel better calling it an illegal war rather than an occupation or Congressionally-funded military campaign then so be it.

            • Black Flag says:

              From the legal perspective, it is an undeclared war and illegal.

              Congress does not have the Constitutional right to fund military campaigns.

              • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

                Well YEAH, but who ever said the government had to actually FOLLOW the Constitution?

                C’mon now! 🙂

    • They called Vietnam a “Police Action” but it lasted 10 years and cost over 58,000 Americans their lives. And my Daddy would tell you that is most certainly WAS a war.

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        Legally Vietnam was not a war. It means something different to refer to “Vietnam War Protesters” (they are somehow un-patriotic or un-American) versus “Invasion Protesters” or “people that oppose unnecessary military action”. It is a linguistics battle long fought for and won by the far right. Kudos – but you’re wrong.

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          Sorry Ray,

          It was a war.

          So was Korea.

          So is Iraq.

          So is Afghanistan.

          You can call it a banana if it makes you feel better though.

          • Black Flag says:

            It appears to me that Ray defines ‘legal’ as what ever government does. If government doesn’t call military invasion (which under international law is an act of war) a war, then to Ray, regardless of norms of definition and international jurisprudence, it is not a war.

            If the USA was not a nuclear/global power, every President from Truman until today would be tried as a war criminal.

    • Ray,

      Your mistake is assuming someone cares either about the “wars” or the deficit. We here all do, may disagree, but we care, nobody else seems to. For some strange reason we were born with enquiring minds as the commercial used to say.

      We all saw the inevitability of the economic collapse. I’m in real estate and saw the bubble ready to burst circa 2001. I was called a fool by those who hadn’t been around for the ’89-’91 Freddie Mac follies. Every year that it went beyond 2001 just magnified the size and scale of the collapse.

      Ever since the Korean “Police Action”,we have gotten away from the nasty term “War”. I think that for our beloved congress, it is the plausible deniability thing. Most of these turkeys voted for Iraq but can honestly say they never voted for a “War”. That of course, is true in the strictist sense of the word. So, technically, they are not liars but you would have had a hard time convincing my dad of that. He was always kind of an actions speak louder than words kind of guy.

      I think that most of the American people have become delusional, believe their own propaganda and have succumbed, due to their lack of historical knowledge to the good old, “Oh, that could never happen here” fallacy.

    • Ray.

      In my opinion you have erred at the begining of your argument by confusing WAR the entity with a “legal declaration of war”.

      War is war period. And both of your examples are war.

      The question of legality arises in whether our troops are “legally” engaged in war. But this legality question only arises from our constitution. As the Wiki article explains, there is unsettled dispute as to what is required in this regard. That is why I have always maintained that the day Congress authorized the Pres. to use our troops on foreign soil they authorized War. In fact you could argue that the day Congress approve a national policy of replacing the leader of another country they in fact declared war on Iraq. Whether there was a “formal declaration” mattters not. They further supported the legal grounds by continuing to fund the war.

      As pointed out in the article, there is nothing that requires a formal “declaration” only that congress is the only one authorized to declare war. If it give the pres authority and then funds it, you would be hard pressed to claim is was not declared.

      So, we are currently engaged in two legal wars I know of, and perhaps many I am not aware of.

      The war on drugs, etc is just political rhetoric. Lets not allow those silly slogans to muddy the water.

  16. I ran across this this morning about how college kids are being “recruited” to push Obamas agenda in local communities. (door to door, phone calls, etc.) And they are getting college credits for it at some universities.

    http://www.wnd.com/?pageId=107357

    Things are getting crazier by the day!

    • Black Flag says:

      Socialist/Fascists have always used the intellectual class as apologists to forward their agenda.

      Since universities rely on government funds, the government uses them to forward government agendas.

      Because the common man feels inferior to the educated class, such actions causes the common man to debate his own moral sense instead of stand strong against the perversity offered by the socialists.

    • Cyndi, very interesting, thanks for sharing. Goes well with Ray’s post.

      “In a new twist to an old refrain among economists, who have long worried about the effects of growing U.S. debt, they say that the huge liabilities the U.S. is taking on to dig its way out of crisis could ultimately undermine faith in the dollar.

      On Tuesday, the Obama administration added fuel to concerns about the dollar, saying the U.S. will run a cumulative budget deficit of $9 trillion over the next 10 years, $2 trillion more than it had previously projected.”

  17. Just A Citizen: “But Kent, you are on the right.”

    Ya think? I oppose the drug war. I oppose keeping military bases in other countries. I think homosexuals have every right to marry each other. I see LEOs as the greatest real threat to freedom. Those are not “right” positions.

    “The urge to defend police for their criminality will always render the rightwing completely unable to understand and defend liberty.” – Anthony Gregory

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      “You have the right not to be killed. Murder is a crime! Unless it is done by a policeman.” – The Clash

    • Black Flag says:

      Given the principle of government—judicial monopoly and the power to taxany notion of restraining government power and safeguarding individual life and property is illusory.

      Under monopolistic auspices, the price of justice and protection will rise and the quality of justice and protection will fall.

      A tax-funded protection agency is a contradiction in terms—an expropriating property protector—and will lead to more taxes and less protection.

      Even if a government limited its activities exclusively to the protection of pre-existing property rights, the further question of how much security to produce would arise.

      Motivated (like everyone else) by self-interest and the disutility of labor, but with the unique power to tax, a government agent’s answer will invariably be the same: to maximize expenditures on protection—and almost all of a nation’s wealth can conceivably be consumed by the cost of protection—and at the same time to minimize the production of protection.

      Moreover, a judicial monopoly will lead to a deterioration in the quality of justice and protection. If one can only appeal to government for justice, justice and protection will be perverted in favor of government, constitutions and supreme courts notwithstanding.

      Constitutions and supreme courts are government constitutions and courts, and whatever limitations to government action they might contain or find is determined by agents of the very institution under consideration.

      Predictably, the definition of property and protection will be altered and the range of jurisdiction expanded to the government’s advantage.

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        Until you can discover the mechanism that will keep small government small, and can provide 100% assurance that this mechanism will work 100% of the time, small government will inevitably grow into big government.

        What mechanism can you devise that will have MORE POWER than the government – for in order to force the government to comply with your wishes to remain small, you must exert a greater force on the government than the government itself posesses.

        According to the Constitution, this power was supposed to rest with the people. If that is the case, one could argue that the people failed.

        What I believe that V. Holland is asserting is that if the people woke up and asserted their power, it would thus force the government to adhere to the Constitution.

        What I believe that BF is asserting is that this is EXTREMELY unlikely, if not downright impossible.

        Is that about right?

        • Black Flag says:

          Peter

          It would thus force the government to adhere to the Constitution.

          What I believe that BF is asserting is that this is EXTREMELY unlikely, if not downright impossible.

          Is that about right?

          Correct, Spaniard!

          How can the People apply force to government that controls the army and police?

          The only assault that can be attempted is an attack on its legitimacy.

          Exposing government to be merely an organized criminal racket changes everything.

          Soldiers tend not to want to die for a bunch of criminal hacks.

          Most policemen join to protect the citizens from criminals.

          In the end, it is a human being that pulls the trigger, and if that human becomes aware of whose behalf he is killing, it may stay that finger.

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      Kent,

      It depends on how you define the spectrum:

      SLAVERY————————————-FREEDOM

      There,

      You are on the far right 🙂

  18. Black Flag says:

    V.Holland</b.

    It matters not who is in power, the results have been the same. You have yet to find one counter example.

    Re-read my article – where do you believe you can apply it?

    It is impossible to be applied at the Federal level.

    It is very improbable it can be applied at the State level.

    It is unlikely to be applied at the Civic level.

    Which level do you think you should try?

    • v. Holland says:

      I haven’t looked for a counter example-because there is not one, just like as far as I know there isn’t a counter example that shows not voting does anything but cause the government to compromise and grow bigger. That doesn’t mean your idea won’t work or people consistently voting won’t work-it shows a difference of opinion-I am actually more than willing to try yours if I was convinced it would work but I have to do what I believe will work. As far as your article I will reread it-from my first reading I assumed you were gonna start with State level and then try to get those people to move into the federal level.

      • v. Holland says:

        By the way, I can hear you and I take your opinions very seriously you really don’t have to put your writing in bold print to make your point. 🙂

      • Black Flag says:

        Yeah, darn lack of editor 🙂

        “I know there isn’t a counter example of … not voting”

        Oh, but sir, there are plenty.

        One of the most powerful tools of opposition movements is to boycott elections. The use of such tactics is to attack the legitimacy of the ruling power.

        • v. Holland says:

          “as far as I know there isn’t a counter example that shows not voting does anything but cause the government to compromise and grow bigger.”

          You will note the “as far as I know” I will search the internet or you could just give some examples 🙂 I am always willing to learn, so I will investigate but even if your way works doesn’t mean mine wouldn’t work better 🙂

        • BF: Did you see my earlier post? I was asking if you prefer white or rye bread for your shit sandwich. Still crap no matter how you slice it. If you vote for the lesser of 2 @$$ holes, we still get an @$$ hole.

  19. Great topics and post all! I’ve been waiting for a open mic night to post this. Oh and Ray? My name is really Willo and my husband’s name is Ray 😉

    Guy goes into a bar, there’s a robot bartender. The robot says, “What will you have?” The guy says, “Martini.” The robot brings back the best martini ever and says to the man, “Whats your IQ?” The guy says, “168”. The robot then proceeds to talk about physics, space exploration and medical technology.

    The guy leaves, but he is curious, so he goes back into the bar. The robot bartender says,”What will you have?” The guy says, “Martini”. Again, the robot makes a great martini, gives it to the man and says, “Whats your IQ?” The guy says, “100.” The robot then starts to talk about Nascar, Budweiser and John Deere tractors.

    The guy leaves, but finds it very interesting, so he thinks he will try it one more time. He goes back into the bar. The robot says, “What will you have?” The guy says, “Martini”, and the robot brings him another great martini. The robot then says, “Whats your IQ?” The guy says, “Uh, about 50.” The robot leans in real close and says, “So, you people still happy you voted for Obama?”
    That about sums it up…

  20. Good morning to all you on the east coast . . . . It is still morning here on the west coast – or in my case “Way Out West” as my grandchildren like to explain our presence to their east cost friends.

    I either have to stay up way late or get up darned early to get into the beginnings of these things here.

    So here is my two cents worth for the day;

    Another Kennedy croaked, only this one should have been in prison for murder for a very long time! I ain’t gonna miss him one bit.

    Those that think that the government has an obligation to feed and house those who are too lazy to care for themselves ARE totally clueless, no matter what they say! I do not see why those of us who have worked our butts off all our lives to care for, feed, clothe, and house our families SHOULD NOT be punished for being successful and nor should we be forced to foot the bill for all those too lazy to do what we have done. If YOU want to pay for them, then you are free to do so on your own volition.

    There. THAT is my not so humble opinion!

    • And as a Post Script – I will leave all that philosophy discussion up to Black Flag as he seems to do that best. As for taxes . . . Well that section said that they should be EQUALLY assessed throughout the land – so taxing those of us that have worked hard and become successful at a much higher rate than anyone else is a violation of the Constitution!

    • Good Morning G.A.. How are you this fine day?

      • Hello Esom,

        Apologize for not getting back on here sooner . . . Had some actual work to do this afternoon before I take my bride out to dinner at the local “greasy spoon”.

        I am just feeling onery as usual. Got to talk to a liberal earlier down at the hardware store . . . Yep, they are clueless! This one blames GWB for all of Obama’s socialistic programs – and that includes Obamacare! Guess he never heard of Billery Klinton!

  21. Mike M. Houston Texas says:

    Wow. Greater good in your argument against social darwinism you made some pretty strong points. In trying to uderstand your theme I believe that you hate nature and all the animals in it. The weak and injured do not survive therefore all animals are bad. Musk ox COULD keep the wolves from the calf but do not therefore musk ox are bad creatures and should not live in your world. The same argument could be made for many other animals as well. I guess your attempting to place human kind above the laws of nature because we can think of more complex concepts. No one is above the laws of nature. Bad strains of DNA do not survive.

    As far as citizens being forced to give therefore it is in the greater good. That is a bad argument. People are not forced to give to the united way, habitat for humanity, the food bank, the blood bank, I could go on ad nauseum. People DO find a way to help each other “for the greater good” and there is ZERO government participation.

    I find it hard to argue with the left until I find out what their salary range is. I have a sister in law who is so far left a new definition is needed. She believes that since I make more money I should pay more taxes. It is always a state of mind with the left “I want what you have, I dont care you busted your @$$ for it, I just want it therefore you should find a way to give it to me.

    In the end it is all about effort. If you are willing to do what it takes to get what you want then you will have it. The problem in our country to do is I dont want to put out any effort but I still want it and there are people with the mindset like yourself that think its a good idea to “HELP” them by helping yourself into my pockets.

    Therein lies the rub. The laws of nature do not fit into the leftist scheme and they get to sleep at night by thinking of those they helped regardless of who the hell they ran over on their way.

    One last musing. I wonder how many roads we would have if “everyone on welfare had to show up and pour concrete each day to get that check”. Wow. Epihany. If they got their fat butts off the couch and had to work for that welfare check then we could also solve some of the obesity problems America has. Additionally this would save 2 billion dollars a year in healthcare as they would be more healthy and we wouldnt need cram down reform. Problem solved.

    • “One last musing. I wonder how many roads we would have if “everyone on welfare had to show up and pour concrete each day to get that check”. Wow. Epihany. If they got their fat butts off the couch and had to work for that welfare check then we could also solve some of the obesity problems America has. Additionally this would save 2 billion dollars a year in healthcare as they would be more healthy and we wouldnt need cram down reform. Problem solved.”

      Nope.

      They are just too lazy to show up for work.

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        A large part of “the general welfare” is the work ethic.

        Sadly for many the work ethic has been lost.

        It may promote YOUR SPECIFIC WELFARE if I feed you even though you do nothing.

        However, my feeding you even though you do nothing HARMS the general welfare by rewarding you for being lazy and expecting those that do work hard to be happy about it.

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        G.A.

        Are you saying that the best way to starve someone on welfare is to hide their foodstamps inside their work boots?

      • But they WILL show up and vote if you give them a pack of smokes.

    • Son, I like your way of thinking!

  22. Ray Hawkins says:

    Black Flag – tsk tsk (again) – I think you mean little “c” – there is a huge difference.

    “GreaterGoodcs is a Communist, by definition.

    All property is owned by the community and there exists no private property. All property is ‘on loan’ to whomever the government grants it.”

    • Black Flag says:

      Ya got me.

      I stand corrected.

      “GreaterGoodcs is a communist, by definition.”

      • In a previous post, GreaterGood CS said to Black Flag:

        “it’s a free country, remember?”

        From the definitions of what he thinks should be the standard for “fair” redistribution, the above quote seems very ironic.

        If GGCS represents the majority opinion, then America already ceases to exist . . .

        And I refuse to believe that . . . yet.

  23. PeterB in Indianapolis says:

    Greatergoodcs admits above that he views government as a “necessary evil”.

    From this I assume that in his view of the universe it is necessary to use evil to combat evil.

    My view of the universe is that you cannot use evil to combat evil, or you become evil – thereby becoming what you hope to defeat. Therefore, in my view of the universe, there can be no such thing as a “necessary evil”.

    Greatergoodcs also makes the assertion that without this “necessary evil” the result would be complete chaos. I am trying to get an answer to the question of why it is necessary to use evil to prevent chaos. I assume that what is going on here is the following rationalization:

    A) People are greedy, and therefore people are basically not “good”

    B) Since people are basically not “good” an entity must exist in order to force them to be “good”

    C) Since the entity that exists to force people to be good is made up of people, it is also not “good”

    D) I cannot find a way out of this maze, so I am going to stop at this point.

    So, where most people are at right now is they are stuck at D.

    My premise STARTS like this:

    A) The majority of people are basically “good”.

    Now all of you get to fill in B, C, D, E, etc. and see if that leads anywhere better than being stuck at D in the first example.

    J.R.R Tolkien believed that only good could defeat evil, but this would come at a great cost.

    Michael Moorcock believed that pure chaos was evil and pure law was also evil, and therefore both must be rejected in favor of freedom, but this would come at a great cost.

    Robert Jordan believed that you could use a good force which had been tainted by evil in order to defeat evil, but you must also find a way to remove the evil taint or you will also become evil or go mad, but this would come at a great cost.

    I enjoy the novels of all 3 of these authors 🙂

    • Hi Peter, Been reading all day. Interesting stuff if I say so myself.

      A: A majority of people are “good”

      B: The good neads to step up and kick evils a$$.

      C: The good then needs to rewrite everything so that evil cannot occur again.

      D: Good prevails, although at a great cost, and we live happily everafter!

      G!

      • Gman….said”B: The good neads to step up and kick evils a$$.

        C: The good then needs to rewrite everything so that evil cannot occur again.

        D: Good prevails, although at a great cost, and we live happily everafter!”
        isn’t that God’s job?

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          Does God really have a job as far as we are concerned here?

          If you believe that there is a God that judges good and evil in the afterlife, then that is fine. However, it provides no real penalty to those that choose to live an evil life WHILE THEY ARE HERE.

          You might assert that no man is absolutely good, and so no man has the right to judge another.

          If that is actually true, I assert that we are screwed.

          No man is perfectly good, but most men are basically good. If the men who are basically good cannot judge when a man is behaving in an evil way and protect himself against it, then Houston, we have a problem.

    • Gee Peter I usually don’t get back in time to play but today I will

      A) People are greedy, and people are basically “good”

      B) Since people are basically “good” an entity is not needed in order to force them to be “good”

      C) Since the entity does not need to exist to force people to be good it requires no authority (the ring of power) over the people and thus it is also “good”

      D) I have found a way out of this maze, so I am going to stop at this point.

  24. Black Flag says:

    For GreaterGoodcs

    “Without calculation, economic activity is impossible. Since under Socialism economic calculation is impossible, under Socialism there can be no economic activity in our sense of the word … All economic change, therefore, would involve operations the value of which could neither be predicted beforehand nor ascertained after they had taken place. Everything would be a leap in the dark. Socialism is the renunciation of rational economy.” — Ludwig von Mises

    The cause of socialism’s irrationality is that even if there existed highly motivated and competent civil servants, they have no rational mechanism to guide their productive efforts and thus any decisions they make are necessarily arbitrary.

    Their position is akin to that of the captain of a ship in the midst of the ocean without a compass. No matter how able he is, any efforts he makes to set the course of his ship are doomed from the outset.

    No Socialist economist has been able to dispute Mises.

    Robert Heilbroner, the multi-millionaire socialist and author of the best-selling history of economic thought, The Worldly Philosophers, wrote a manifesto “Reflections: After Communism,” published by The New Yorker (Sept. 10, 1990).

    In this article, he made an astounding admission.

    He said that Ludwig von Mises had been right in 1920 in his article, “Economic Calculation in the Socialist Commonwealth.”

    Mises argued that without private ownership, central planners could not know what any resource is worth to consumers. With no capital market, the planners would be flying blind.

    Heilbroner said that for 70 years, academic economists had either ignored this article or dismissed it without answering it. Then Heilbroner wrote these words: “Mises was right.”

    This admission was the preliminary section of Heilbroner’s manifesto.

    He was cutting off all hope by socialists that there is a theoretically plausible response to Mises.
    The free market economy will always outproduce a socialist economy. Get used to it, he said.

    Heilbroner did not care that a worldwide government-run economic planning system would not be called called socialism. He just wanted to see the system set up, even if it was inferior to any free market system.

    Heilbroner’s peers got the message.

    If you like poverty, inefficiency, and bureaucratic controls over the economy, and therefore control over your choices, the “social” movement is ideal.

    The rest of us should oppose it.

  25. Black Flag says:

    Greatergoodcs

    BF, you’re engaged in a silly game of semantics again. I’ve already told you what I propose (several times now).

    Sir, I have requested a clarification of your own statement about majority being right. I have asked a question to understand the extent of this righteous. You have consistently refused. I do not know why.

    You challenge me to clarify, define, etc. I challenge you. You’re the one proposed something that cannot be (no gov’t) and hasn’t been since the first tribes were formed.

    You say there ‘cannot be’ and then offer an example of such.

    You know that is a contradiction, right?

    Like I said, why not pick up and find yourself a spot on the earth that will permit you to be your own government/King or whatever it is you feel so passionate about.

    Why should I move? I live here.

    How about this, YOU move! I like that situation much better.

    Then you wouldn’t have to worry about others and build yourself a financial empire.

    Already done.

    • Greatergoodcs says:

      I look forward to sharing in it.

      • Black Flag says:

        Expect disappointment.

        • Greatergoodcs says:

          What happened to all that charity you were quoting before?

          By the way, I found a few sites that dispute your charity numbers.

          • Black Flag says:

            I give to those that are worthy.

            See, made ya look! 😆 Offer your information.

            • Greatergoodcs says:

              Good one, BF.

              But I won’t get involved in a cut and paste contest. Google Government Welfare vs. Charitable contributions. There’s BS on both sides. I happen to believe the one that suggests private contributors would have to donate 10x’s as much as they currently do to catch up.

              • Black Flag says:

                Without offering the articles that interest you, I have no idea which one you have read.

                To discern better/good/bad, it is helpful to know which one you have read and your opinion.

                That is why I offer the articles – it shows I read them.

                Superficial research on a topic is worthless.

              • v. Holland says:

                I don’t know which statistics are right but people have become used to the government taking care of people so they don’t think it’s their responsibility anymore, they think they have done more than their part by paying their taxes but they still give and you say people are selfish-stop the always growing monster if social programs -and I think you would find that people will give-abundantly.

              • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

                Then why is it, Greatergoodcs, that before massive government programs the vast majority of people who were “down on their luck” got the support they needed from friends, family, church, and charity and somehow managed to survive?

                It isn’t like there were millions of people in America that were starving to death prior to the advent of your much-vaunted government programs.

                Plus, in your calculations, you ignore the fact that a neigborhood center can feed 1 person 1 meal for about $1.

                A national charity probably has to spend $5 for that same person to have that same meal.

                A national government probably spends $10 to get that same person that same meal.

                So OF COURSE you would have to donate 10x as much to charity to equal WHAT THE GOVERNMENT SPENDS, because the government spends 10x as much to get equal results.

        • Greatergoodcs says:

          Come on, baby needs a new pair of shoes.

          Seriously, when I say “no gov’t” I’m using your paradigm (you’re the one who doesn’t believe we need one, correct?). If so, that is an impossibility. Governments formed by necessity and however corrupt they’ve become has more to do with who held power first and a class structure than blood, sweat and tears.

          • Black Flag says:

            <bGG

            Come on, baby needs a new pair of shoes.

            Go earn them.

            Seriously, when I say “no gov’t” I’m using your paradigm (you’re the one who doesn’t believe we need one, correct?).

            I have grave doubts that you even understand what government is.

            If so, that is an impossibility. Governments formed by necessity and however corrupt they’ve become has more to do with who held power first and a class structure than blood, sweat and tears.

            I somewhat agree.

            Government exists by violence upon non-violent people. Hence, it is evil.

            • Greatergoodcs says:

              But I want you to gift them to me. Why not?

              I have grave doubts we’re on the same planet.

              Gov’t exists to keep bullies from picking on non-violent people. But you convince yourself otherwise.

              • Then by your very definition, government is a failure, since it attracts bullies in disproportionate numbers who then pick on non-violent people who are “legally” prohibited from defending themselves.

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                Maybe I need to drink something stronger to begin to grasp your logic, because it sure is alluding me.

              • Black Flag says:

                You need to understand logic, GG.

                If A=B and B=C then A=C.

              • Black Flag says:

                But I want you to gift them to me. Why not?

                I do not know you, therefore do not know you worthy enough.

                Up to this moment in time, it is my opinion that you will waste any gift.

                I have grave doubts we’re on the same planet

                I have no doubt. Interplanetary travel is still fiction.

                Gov’t exists to keep bullies from picking on non-violent people

                So if government attacks non-violent people, what do you call them?

  26. Black Flag says:

    Greatergoodcs

    This is tiring, BF.

    Come on, GG! A sign of a great fighter is endurance…. hup hup!

    A gov’t elected by the people for the people does what it wants (think it through).

    Government runs the army and the police. So, how do the people enforce the law on a government? What tool do the people have?

    Unfortunately, this gov’t was formed (and run) by the wealthy for the wealthy. Over time, that stranglehold was strengthened. The last administration tried to loosen all forms of regulation and look what it got us. This administration is no better. Both parties are useless because Old Money controls them. Put Ralph Nader in there and he’ll shake things up (and the people will once again have a voice).

    So the USSR had it right?

    • Greatergoodcs says:

      What does Ralph Nader have to do with the USSR?

      The people’s weapon is their vote … ah, but that upsets you because if you don’t agree with the majority then everyone should suffer (so you can have “your freedom”).

      At some point somebody has to bend a little, brother.

      • Black Flag says:

        Nothing.

        You wanted a government of the people that destroyed the wealthy. Leninists did that very effectively.

        But that upsets you because if you don’t agree with the majority then everyone should suffer (so you can have “your freedom”).

        Again, I ask – what is the extent of righteous in majority vote? If the majority votes to leap of a cliff, why do you believe I should be compelled to do so?

        At some point somebody has to bend a little, brother.

        There is no middle ground between freedom and slavery. I do not bend.

        • Greatergoodcs says:

          Leninists morphed a revolution into a dictatorship (slight difference–but not much of one from what we have here when you think about it).

          You’re trying to get me to compare apples and oranges. Nobody is voting on cliff jumping; they are voting on social order. You have a problem with that but offer no solution (outside of a fantasy about no gov’t).

          You equate paying taxes with slavery. It’s your choice to feel that way (but I think you need therapy).

          • Black Flag says:

            Greatergoodcs

            Leninists morphed a revolution into a dictatorship (slight difference–but not much of one from what we have here when you think about it).

            But that is what you propose, is it not? An elite that dictates upon the masses?

            Nobody is voting on cliff jumping; they are voting on social order. You have a problem with that but offer no solution (outside of a fantasy about no gov’t).

            You claim majority is right. I ask about its extent of righteousness. Your inability to come to any answer or explanation either means:

            1) You have no idea about the subject matter.
            2) The answer you want to give will betray you.

            Ignorance or evil.

            You equate paying taxes with slavery. It’s your choice to feel that way (but I think you need therapy).

            To take by force property from someone is theft. To live off the efforts of another man by force is slavery.

            • Greatergoodcs says:

              Who said anything about an elitist gov’t? YOU.

              Who mentioned “dictates upon the masses”?

              YOU again.

              My inability to answer?

              Ignorance or evil … don’t you have another catch phrase? Your position (that we don’t need gov’ts) couldn’t be more ignorant. I won’t call it evil, though … you obviously know not the subject matter on which you rant.

              You need to step out of the vacuum you’ve enclosed yourself in and take some air.

              • Black Flag says:

                Greatergoodcs

                Who said anything about an elitist gov’t? YOU.

                If you feel my definitions or descriptions are defect or incomplete, you most certainly can interject yours.

                Since you have refrained or refused from doing so, mine will have to suffice.

                My inability to answer? Ignorance or evil … don’t you have another catch phrase? Your position (that we don’t need gov’ts) couldn’t be more ignorant. I won’t call it evil, though … you obviously know not the subject matter on which you rant. You need to step out of the vacuum you’ve enclosed yourself in and take some air.

                Ah, so much emotionalism but still no answer.

                What is the extent of righteousness on majority rule?

            • Greatergoodcs says:

              And to try and reason with you is impossible, but … hup, hup, here I am.

              You’re living by slogans … why not see some of the world rather than prepare for the great gov’t take down of your property. Enjoy yourself a little. You seen awful tense about this stuff.

              • Black Flag says:

                Because, sir, I use reason.

                Irrationalism is rarely effective against me.

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                Sir, your reason exists in the same place as your land of no gov’t (in your mind alone). It is impossible to decipher.

                That said, I sure look forward to those new shoes for baby.

              • Black Flag says:

                Ah, as predicted.

                The Statist surrenders.

                The questions are clear. They remain unanswered.

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                Surrender? Keep dreaming, brother.

                You’re a legend in your own mind.

                I have to go home now. It was another slow day at work. See, the deregulated economy turned disaster turned bailout isn’t working here in NY and I’ll probably lose this job soon (I already lost my weekend gig). Then I’ll come park on your lawn. That okay? I mean, I did work 6 and 7 days a week for the last 3 years. Does that qualify me as a hard working American. Remember, I’m a coward and didn’t serve. I also have voted for both parties and wouldn’t again with a gun to my head. I prefer socialism to total anarchy, but I’d rather have anarchy than the BS I’m being served now (by this government). Still, I prefer socialism.

      • Hi greatergoodcs, Hope todays finds you healthy and happy!

        As far as bending, I believe I have been bent over quite enough. I can no longer accept my earnings supporting the useless. I own MY property, and noone has a right to it, even after I die, that’s my choice.

        Remember, It’s a free country!

        G!

        • Greatergoodcs says:

          The US worker has been bent over pretty good, too … sooner or later he won’t take it anymore and they’ll enjoy YOUR property. Hell, they might even let you use some of it.

          • Funny, I have been what you might call a “US worker” since I have been a “worker” living under the US government, but I have no desire to steal anyone’s property even though I am definately on the low end of the economic strata. My poverty does not justify theft.

          • I am a US worker! I am also a US veteran. I do not own a company, I work at a hospital at an hourly wage, like many US workers who prefer to keep what they earned.

            G!

            • Greatergoodcs says:

              Than I make 3 of us. Should we dance or have a parade?

              You’re both welcome to come share what I have. It isn’t much, but I also earned it (working 7 days a week for a few years until one of my jobs was outsourced–thank you very much free market).

              • To blame the free market for outsourcing of jobs is like blaming sasquatch for killing your chickens.

                Jobs get outsourced because of government interference and regulation. Businesses move to where there is less meddling.

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                You’re seriously delusional.

                They leave so they can save on salaries/benefits. Wake up.

              • v. Holland says:

                In my opinion it’s a domino effect-one leaves for whatever reason, then another is forced to leave to stay competitive.

              • v. Holland says:

                So the reason ends up being survival-So what’s the answer-seems like less taxes would work.

              • Greatergoodcs says:

                Except they don’t “leave” per se. They outsource services here (phone, IT, word processing, lawyers, accountants) because they can pay so much less to someone in Chennai, India than here in the U.S. The American workforce has become expendable and your dopey free market is what permitted it. Look at the bailouts. Company’s received OUR money and weren’t precluded from outsourcing American jobs.

  27. Hey BF, Going to a presentation on health care tonight where your buddy Stossel is the guest speaker. I’ll share the info I get when we do our post on healthcare (which is when USW?)

    • Black Flag says:

      Hmm, my reply didn’t post here?

      Sounds great! Look forward to hearing what he said! (Maybe you will be on TV?)

  28. As far as creating Welfare Queens…that goes back to government, not We the People. I thought the video was funny but it would have been more fair if it wasn’t just one sided (showing a black face oppose to both a white and black face). And as far as government, I think we are very capable as God creatures to run this world without Government but we have been so BW throughout history…that we feel that we must be dependent on them…that we are not capable of doing anything ourselves. If we weren’t so divided by race, I think the sky is the limit if we could ever come together as Americans, as human beings…but that is just my opinion.

    • Nubian, Not so sure we are as divided by race as the media says. I work with many good hard working black people who are just like me, just darker skin. They want to earn a fair wage (and keep what they earn!!!!), raise a family and live the American dream. Those I know feel the same way about our useless government and the mentallity that there money belongs to someone else. If it smells and looks like Bulldookie, it is. I do laugh at those that think they can just take from me, for the “greater good”, which is a fairytale anyway. bad excuses, no understanding of the consequences of their actions, and ultimately, death. Not a bright idea in my book.

      G!

    • v. Holland says:

      I clicked on your name but it says page can’t be found?

    • Nubian,

      Agree, stereotyping, there are more whites on welfare than blacks, at least until Pelosi legalizes the current immigrant population. And yes, the government is deliberately making them dependent.

  29. Black Flag says:

    Greatergoodcs

    :Surrender? Keep dreaming, brother. You’re a legend in your own mind.

    Sir, you do not even understand your own thinking. You are not prepared at all to know my mind.

    I have to go home now. It was another slow day at work.

    Ah, the question remains unanswered.

    See, the deregulated economy turned disaster turned bailout isn’t working here in NY and I’ll probably lose this job soon (I already lost my weekend gig). Then I’ll come park on your lawn. That okay?

    No.

    Go home. You have family who probably still loves you. They may take you in.

    I mean, I did work 6 and 7 days a week for the last 3 years. Does that qualify me as a hard working American.

    3 years digging holes and filling them in is hard work, but essentially has no value.

    Remember, I’m a coward and didn’t serve.

    The two are not correlated.

    Still, I prefer socialism.

    Socialism is economically irrational. It always ends in mass poverty and despotism.

    • Greatergoodcs says:

      poverty and depsotism … once again, like Holland.

      You’re nuts, but convince yourself otherwise.

      • Black Flag says:

        Ah, the ad hominem comes out… the final refuge of the Statists.

        • Greatergoodcs says:

          Sorry if you took it the wrong way. I was being more than kind.

          You live in a very closed world, BF. Good luck fighting off the rest of the world.

          • You really don’t get it.

            Those of us, like BF and myself, who understand and respect freedom don’t need to fight off the rest of the world. That is a statist necessity. We are not frustrated, nor angry. We have no pressing need to make everyone “do it our way”. We are much more relaxed than those who are consumed with controlling the rest of the world.

            • Black Flag says:

              Kent, regarding your article today.

              Did you see my post a while back about freedom of speech being rooted in property rights?

              • I’m not sure. Was it on here?

                By way of coincidence, my article tomorrow (which I have been writing between reading all the responses here) is about private property.

              • Black Flag says:

                I owe Ray a audio of Hans Hoppe who articulates private property, its natural existence, and why it came to exist as a root of all human rights.

                But I will wait for your article to hear your thoughts~!

              • Black Flag says:

                Yes, it was two or three blogs back – I’ll try to locate it.

              • Black Flag says:

                Kent:

                All human rights derive from property rights.

                Human rights, when articulated without property rights turn out to be vague and contradictory, causing Statist to attack such rights as malleable in cases of “public good.”

                For example, the “human right” of free speech.

                Freedom of speech is supposed to mean the right of everyone to say whatever he likes.

                But the question is: Where?

                Where does a man have this right?

                He certainly does not have it on property on which he is trespassing.

                He has this right only either on his own property or on the property of someone who has agreed, as a grant or by contract, to allow him on the premises.

                In fact, then, there is no such thing as a separate “right to free speech”; there is only a man’s property right: the right to do as he wishes with his own or to make voluntary agreements with other property owners.

                So, a person does not have a “right to freedom of speech”; what he does have is the right to rent property like a theater or to own his own property and address the people who are also on the property.

                When we understand this, we now can properly evaluate the case of the yelling of “Fire” in a theater.

                If we ignore property rights when evaluating a “right to free speech”, we end up with a very confusing and weakening of the concept of all (or any) right – for example, as by the claim by Justice Holmes’s that no one has the right to shout “Fire” falsely in a crowded theater, and therefore that the right to freedom of speech cannot be absolute, but must be weakened and tempered by considerations of “public policy.”

                And yet, if we analyze the problem in terms of property rights we will see that no weakening of the absoluteness of rights is necessary.

                For, logically, the shouter is either a patron or the theater owner.

                If he is the theater owner, he is violating the property rights of the patrons in quiet enjoyment of the performance, for which he took their money in the first place.

                If he is another patron, then he is violating both the property right of the patrons to watching the performance and the property right of the owner, for he is violating the terms of his being there.

                For those terms include not violating the owner’s property by disrupting the performance he is putting on.

                In either case, he may be prosecuted as a violator of property rights; therefore, when we concentrate on the property rights involved, we see that the Holmes case implies no need for the law to weaken the absolute nature of rights.

              • BF- So, by his yelling “Fire”, he is liable for harm. Makes sense to me.

          • Black Flag says:

            As with most of your concepts, your concept of insult being kindness is perverse.

            Yes, socialist demand theft, thus perpetuate conflict. A society built on socialism cannot sustain itself, for without property and human rights, the essence of civilization collapses.

            It is so very fortunate that socialism collapses before it can overrun all of civilization – but only barely – and the carnage it leaves behind should warn the next generations of its horror.

            Sadly, humans tend forget their history.

          • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

            Sorry Greatergoodcs,

            It is YOU who live in a very closed world.

            You believe that your world is real.

            You believe that your world is correct.

            You believe that nothing exists outside of the possibilities of your own little world.

            I could say you were nuts… I could say that I was being more than kind by restricting myself to the use of that term, but I will not.

            You believe what you believe, and although BF becomes frustrated with your continued inability to answer direct questions other than by evasion, he simply keeps asking the questions.

            BF believes what he believes, and because you are frustrated with his continued unwillingness to be convinced by your complete lack of logically founded argument, you insult him and call him nuts.

            And yet we are to believe that those who favor strong government are the good and compassionate ones 🙂

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        Sorry Greatergoodcs,

        So far calling BF names has been the best argument that you have made, and that is truly sad.

        Your inability to refute his logic has led you to personal insult.

        And yet you claim that HE is the one who needs to fight off the rest of the world? LOL

  30. Alert in Michigan says:

    This is going to be totally off the topics above, but since it’s “Open Mic” time I’m going to ask anyway. How many of you were/are involved in homeschooling or have kids/grandkids involved? And why was the choice made to homeschool? Any other thoughts? Thanks for your feedback.

    • Black Flag says:

      Yes!

      I am currently a Director and Past President of our local Homeschool Society.

      I vetted my wife before we became a couple with homeschooling. She did not know at the time such an option existed. Her fear was ‘how do I teach highschool’? Of course, our daughter wasn’t born yet, so the question was rather premature 🙂

      Beyond the obvious reasons (if you’ve read anything of mine on this blog), we wanted to remain the primary influence in our child’s life. We refused to assign that influence to strangers.

      She is now approaching Jr. High School age and the fear of ‘teaching High School’ has long been purged from my wife (wife is primary educator). We have found that you teach and learn at the same time. IMmy wife has traveled the learning journey as a peer with our daughter and less as a teacher – child and parent learn together.

      It was always amusing. Every summer my daughter’s school friends ‘got let out on parole’ from school.

      Lil’one would ask “Am I on summer holidays too!?”
      I’d respond: “Yes, sweetie”
      She: “What do I get to do?”
      Me: “Same thing you did yesterday”
      She: “Yahoo!”

      When fall came around and her friends went back to prison,
      she’d ask: “Do I have to start school too?”
      Me: “I guess so”
      She: “What do I have to do?”
      Me: “The same thing you did yesterday!”
      She: “Yahoo!”

      • Alert in Michigan says:

        “She is now approaching Jr. High School age and the fear of ‘teaching High School’ has long been purged from my wife (wife is primary educator). We have found that you teach and learn at the same time. IMmy wife has traveled the learning journey as a peer with our daughter and less as a teacher – child and parent learn together.”

        Thanks for your post, BF. That was really helpful. 🙂

    • It probably doesn’t count, as there is no “schooling”, home or otherwise, since my daughter only turns 2 in a couple of days, but I am teaching her to read. She can read a couple dozen words now. I intend to homeschool or “unschool” her. My older kids went through “public” schools (their mom divorced me! Imagine that!) and I do not wish to repeat that mistake.

      • Black Flag says:

        “School” is old Greek for “leisure”. I hold to that definition. 🙂

        We ‘unschool’ too (by common popular definition of ‘school’). It is very easy and natural!

        There are tons of material on the ‘Net for home ‘teaching’ 🙂

        http://www.khanacademy.org/

        These guys offer free videos on a huge subject list. Later, you can get all the MIT courseware for free from their site. I’m using some of it to brush up on my stats and math.

    • Hi Alert

      We took our oldest son, and our youngest son our of school when they were in the 10th grade. Why, because the teachers they had didn’t seem to be doing a very good job at teaching, they weren’t getting anything out of it.

      The teachers didn’t seem to want to take the time to help them if they had any questions about any of their school work. They weren’t allowed inside the school before the bell rang, and they couldn’t stay after wards to seek any help from the teachers, because they( the teachers) seemed to big a hurry to leave for the day.

      Our son’s got bored, teachers only had them read chapters and do the questions at the end of that chapter. If they had a problem with any of the math, all the teacher would tell was, to figure it out, didn’t matter what kind of math it was either. Some of the teachers just sat there with their feet propped up on the desk reading the newspaper instead of actually teaching anything. The only teachers that taught our youngest son, was his Italian, auto shop, can’t remember the other one. So we took him, and his older brother out. They are 3 years apart, but basically took the same classes.

      Our oldest son got his GED, got a job, and when he was old enough, joined the National Guard, which he is still in. He has been going to several other schools for the Guard so he can go to Warrant Officers School next summer. He plans on staying in until he gets his 20 years in.

      Our youngest son took a correspondence course over the internet from a school in Scranton Penn. Took him about a year, got his diploma sooner than staying in school. When he was 17, he joined the Marine Corps in 2003, with our permission, did 2 tours in Iraq, was stationed at Camp Pendleton, got out of the Marines in 2007. Is now in the National Guard Reserves, so he can go to school, to which they are paying for. He is in his 3rd year of pre-med, one more to go, then full time to medical school. He plans on being an ER doctor. That is what he chose to do with his life.

      They both are glad they joined the military, because of what they offer. Need I say, that his dad and I are very proud of them both for choosing the course they chose.

      Question for you if you don’t mind. Are you thinking of home schooling? Just curious.

      Judy

      • Alert in Michigan says:

        Yes, we are probably going to. About the first of this year I started doing some serious reading online about our political/economic system. Landing here and learning lots + 2 John Stossel books + my/our religious/faith convictions = serious consideration of homeschooling. I’ve recently connected with two moms who have successfully home-schooled their kids. These moms seem “normal” and the kids seem very well educated and well prepared to be adults. I’ve been reading on homeschooling and am really resonating with things I see.

        • When my youngest son was in the big brother big sister program, his little brother did home schooling, but it was from the school he would have gone too. He had a medical reason for not going, but he did really good. He did what he had to do on his own time, and he didn’t have teachers breathing down his neck to make sure he was doing it.

          He would get his assignments on a Friday, do his work the following week, and turn it back in on that Friday. Then the whole process would start all over. He is now in the 9th grade and going to regular school though. He’s been wanting to go to regular school for a while, but when he had that medical problem, he said he felt that he missed a lot. He’s doing really good and he enjoys going to school.

          I heard the only down fall from home schooling is, is that the kids don’t get to hang out with their school friends. They miss having friends, and miss being able to do things together at school. But, I also heard that they do get together like on weekends to be able to have some fun. Could be from the little ones, all the way up to high school.

          If I had to do it all over again, I would have done the home schooling thing myself. I think they do better, more quiet to be able to study, one on one, instead of a teacher who can’t find the time to help any students.

          If you choose to go that way, I want to wish you all the success with your kids. Hope it will turn our good.

          Judy

          • Alert in Michigan says:

            Thanks, Judy. We have a variety of reasons for considering it, not the least being the public school system we are in. More importantly (and proactively) we want them to have a good education – not just an above-the-American-average one. I’m waiting for someone to ask me “what about their socialization?” to which I will probably laugh; my children interact with peers and with adults quite well. They see a variety of people and we are and will be intentional about that portion of their development. But, if my 4 year old can read, why send him to kindergarten so he can learn to stand in line and wait for others? Helpful at the DMV, annoying and discouraging in elementary school, I think. I’m realizing this is the way most of the statesman in history were educated – either through tutors or self study (ie, Abraham Lincoln) – so why can’t it work today? Hmmm…guess I’m starting to develop a soap box here. Anyway, thanks for the encouragement. 🙂

            • Alert.

              I don’t see why it can’t work. What might work for some, may not work for others. All I can say is, give it a try and see how you and your kids like it. Just don’t pull your hair out if on those days, where their heads are up in the clouds.

              Don’t worry about developing a soap box here. I think everybody at one time or another has had one.

            • Black Flag says:

              Thomas Jefferson Education is one formula that is popular with a number of homeschoolers (TJeD)

              The Seven Keys of Great Teaching

              “In TJEd, the “Seven Keys of Great Teaching” are
              Classics, not Textbooks;
              Mentors, not Professors;
              Inspire, not Require;
              Structure Time, not Content;
              Quality, not Conformity;
              Simplicity, not Complexity; and
              You, not Them.

              The system’s creator, Oliver DeMille said, “Education cannot be fixed as long as we believe this basic myth. The myth is that it is possible for one human being to educate another. The fact is the only person who can fix education is the student.”

              • Black Flag says:

                Foundational Phases

                The “Foundational Phases” of TJEd are as follows:

                * Core (birth to 8 years of age): good and bad, true and false, relationships, family values, family routines and responsibilities, learning accountability, and the value and love of work.

                * Love of Learning (about 8 to 12 years of age): encourages family reading of classic literature, project learning, clubs and “Momschools” are among the elements that help inspire the youngster to love learning and to approach a variety of subjects with interest and growing levels of competence and diligence.

                Educational Phases

                The “Educational Phases” are as follows:

                * Scholar (approximately 12 to 18 years of age): adolescent students study long hours and work with a mentor to refine their academic skills—the emphasis placed on cultural literacy and a personalized approach to studies.

                * Depth (approximately 18 to 24 years of age): students submit to a mentor-guided program, whether privately or in a formal college setting or a “mission”.

                Applicational Phases

                The “Applicational Phases” are as follows:

                * Mission (approximately 25 to 45 years of age): the individual continues in self-education as he or she builds family and community through professional vocations, entrepreneurship, social leadership or some other focus.

                * Impact (approximately 45 to 65 years of age, and beyond): the individual asserts leadership on a broader scale as an “elder” in society, acting as a mentor, philosopher, philanthropist, artist, community leader and generational elder in the family.

    • Black Flag says:

      Alert,

      Have USWep forward my email to you. If you have questions about Home Schooling, I can try to point you to some answers.

      Cheers!

  31. New topic, G! posted this late yesterday. Looking back, its seems no one who favors the government taking by force, whatever amount of our income they decide is appropriate, responded at all. Does that tell us something?

    G-Man said
    August 25, 2009 at 3:11 pm

    Just some thoughts, IMHO, there is no such thing as the “greater good”. The term and any use of it is imagined and not real. It is an opinion, unexplainable and therefore completely false in nature.

    A quick poll: How many could survive with a “no-government” society if it were to happen next week? Simple answer of “Can” or “Cannot”.

    I CAN

    G!

    • Black Flag says:

      Me 2!

      But I do not expect a majority can or would be willing to do so. Most people are raised to be dependent on authority, IMO.

    • Would that mean that the definition I gace for “greater good” is irrafutible? (SP) The poll was just for fun!

      G!

      p.s. Loved the jokes!

      • Geez, lets try gave inplace of gace. We need a keyboard control law, they keep mispelling words, LOL

    • I can.

  32. ARE YOU READY

    Three women die together in an accident and go to heaven.

    When they get there, St. Peter says, “We only have one rule here in heaven: don’t step on the ducks!”

    So they enter heaven, and sure enough, there are ducks all over the place. It is almost impossible not to step on a duck, and although they try their best to avoid them, the first woman accidentally steps on one.

    Along comes St. Peter with the ugliest man she ever saw.

    St. Peter chains them together and says, “Your punishment for stepping on a duck is to spend eternity chained to this ugly man!”

    The next day, the second woman steps accidentally on a duck and along comes St. Peter, who doesn’t miss a thing. With him is another extremely ugly man. He chains them together with the same admonishment as for the first woman.

    The third woman has observed all this and, not wanting to be chained for all eternity to an ugly man, is very, VERY careful where she steps.

    She manages to go months without stepping on any ducks, but one day St. Peter comes up to her with the most handsome man she has ever laid eyes on … very tall, long eyelashes, muscular, and thin.

    St. Peter chains them together without saying a word.

    The happy woman says, “I wonder what I did to deserve being chained to you for all of eternity?”

    The guy says, “I don’t know about you, but I stepped on a duck!”

  33. Doctor Dan had slept with one of his patients and felt guilty
    all day long.
    No matter how much he tried to forget about it, he couldn’t.
    The guilt and sense of betrayal was overwhelming.
    But every once in a while he’d hear an internal, reassuring
    voice in his head that said:
    “Dan, don’t cry about it.
    You aren’t the first medical practitioner to sleep with one
    of their patients and you won’t be the last.
    And you’re single.
    Just let it go.”
    But invariably another voice in his head would bring him
    back to reality,
    >
    >
    >
    Whispering…
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    Dan………….
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    Dan…………
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    Dan…………
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    …..you’re a veterinarian.”

  34. > THE AMISH ELEVATOR
    >
    > An Amish boy and his father were in a mall. They were amazed by almost
    > everything they saw, but especially by two shiny, silver walls that
    could
    > move apart and then slide back together again. The boy asked, “What
    is
    > this
    > Father?” The father (never having seen an elevator) responded, “Son,
    I
    > have never seen anything like this in my life, I don’t know what it
    is.”
    > While the boy and his father were watching with amazement, a fat, old
    lady
    > in a wheel chair moved up to the moving walls and pressed a button.
    The
    > walls opened and the lady rolled between them into a small room. The
    walls
    > closed and the boy and his father watched the small circular numbers
    above
    > the walls light up sequentially. They continued to watch until it
    reached
    > the last number and then the numbers began to light in the reverse
    order.
    > Finally the walls opened up again and a gorgeous 24-year-old blonde
    stepped
    > out.
    >
    > The father said quietly to his son…..”Go get your mother.

  35. Black Flag says:

    annonic From yesterday:

    On the other end of the spectrum, we have Black Flag who, in yesterday’s posts blames the Constitution and the Founders for all of our present mess: “The consequence of ‘that document’ is the world you live in today. Therefore, nothing changes,” and who also says that the only acceptable solution (if I understand correctly) is a society with no governing authority . . . at all

    No, no, NO!

    Not ‘blame’ – consequences

    To ‘go back’ to the Constitution changes nothing, since this, today, is its conclusion. Unless, of course, you like spinning endlessly in circles of history….

    A society of “No Rulers” – by what authority does one man have to arbitrarily rule over another?

    Until ‘you’ as a People come to grips with the contradictions that embed your beliefs, tyranny will be always be the consequence.

    • Alert in Michigan says:

      BF – What would you say are your primary influences on your thinking? You evidently have a strong set of core values, carefully thought through, that you then apply to every part of your life. What authors or thinkers or books or …. whatever have been most influential in you coming to your positions on freedom and government?

      • Black Flag says:

        USWep has a suggested reading list above – I’ve posted a couple.

        A bit of my background is in this guest post
        https://standupforamerica.wordpress.com/2009/06/04/building-a-foundation-for-resurrecting-america-part-vi/

        “I am Black Flag”

        My parents have a very moral core – though both through and through Statists, did not impose on me – so I started well morally. They are my hero’s in every sense of the word.

        My father-in-law was ordained as Knight of Obedience and Justice in the Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John, in part for his lifelong charity work for disabled children. He, too, was an amazing man of tremendous character, compassion and charity. I have been very lucky to attract great people around me to help guide me.

        I am an extreme, voracious reader – so I’ve read all the religious texts in great detail, and an incredible number of philosophers work. Jefferson is among my favorite.

        I am a physicist and mathematician by education, but my calling has always been “Problem Solving”, and after I was unable to continue a career in the Air Force (due to an ‘alien’ heart), high technology offered a way for me to express my calling. I become incredibly successful, making my “many dents in the universe” (a quote from Steve Jobs).

        I do most of my ‘problem solving’ in my sleep (Lucid Dreaming) and often my mind would debate inside my head on many moral paradoxes.

        Early in my successful adult life, I came to understand that many of the paradigms I held to be true, were, in fact, contradictions to my moral beliefs.

        I could change who I am and what I represented and align myself to my beliefs or I could continue to rationalize and maintain myself within the paradigms.

        The rest is history…

    • Black Flag, I mean you no harm.

      I am intrigued . . . but I have trouble understanding how any group larger than two, let alone thousands and millions, could exist without some sort of interactive rules or guidelines . . . which I can only describe as “government.”

      History proves IMO that we (people) are not as “good” by nature as has been argued extensively here in the last few days . . . again I think we have proven that we are not “good” . . . and taht lack of goodness, I think, helps me understand your positon that all government is evil.

      So, the dilemma, the lack of “goodness” brings about chaotic anarchy without the presence of some form of rules and guidleines (government) and the lack of “goodness,” if not held in check by the eyes of the people, results in eventual tyranny . . . and we are very close to that. (How else can anyone explain all of Obama’s “czars”?

      I am not trying to debate or refute you at all (as GG has spent volumes doing today, apparently at his employer’s expense), but I am intrigued as to how you would explain what you envision.

      I perceive that Biblical references might make some here cringe, but, nonetheless, during the time of the Judges, “everyone did what was right in his own eyes,” and that season proved in graphic terms what happens when people are free to follow their instincts without restriction.

      And every dictator and despot has in the past, and continues now in the present, to prove that “absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

      I’m not sure that the founders and the documents are necessarily directly responsible for the present “consequences . . .” I think it is rather the apathy (over an extended time) of people like most of us here . . .

      So, my friend, what does a society of thousands and millions look like if it is in the “total freedom” terms that you envision?

      And, if you have already articulated this in previous months and in other posts, I apologize.

      Thank you, Black Flag.

  36. I was at the mall the other day eating at the food court and I noticed an old man watching a teenager sitting next to him.

    The teenager had spiked hair in all different colors: green, red, orange, and blue. The old man kept staring at him.

    The teenager would look and find the old man staring every time.

    When the teenager had enough, he sarcastically asked, “What’s the matter old man, never done anything wild in your life?”

    The old man did not bat an eye in his response, “Got drunk once and had sex with a peacock. I was just wondering if you were my son

  37. Been waiting for Tuesday to post this.

    Many weeks back our local progressives showed up all over town with petitions calling for health care reform. A day or two later the health care bills started getting out to the public and the Dems/Obama kicked up the rhetoric.

    This last week, the progressives were all over town with petitions calling for climate legislation.

    I hear the crocodile coming….tick, tock, tick, tock.

  38. To LOI

    Great jokes, thanks for the laughs.

    Judy

  39. BF, my dear Flag and Kent, perhaps even Peter.

    I have a question. You have often mentioned the fact that corporations are govt sanctioned people or identities. It came up again yesterday.

    So what is the problem with the “corporation” form of business from your perspective?

    Thanks
    JAC

    • Black Flag says:

      Corporation, an ‘artificial person’, is created by writ of government. Imagine – government creating a person out of thin air that has the same rights as you do as a real person. It is used by government theory to ‘prove’ that all rights and person hood comes from writ of government – they prove it when real people accept artificial persons as equals.

      It’s origin was to deflect responsibility (primarily financial) away from ownership. Without responsibility, irresponsibility assumes the vacuum.

      Further, because corporations are wholly beholden to their Creator and God (government), they actively support the continued existence and growth of their God.

      Government and Corporations create a one-two punch front.

      Government provides the “legal” use of armed military force to promote Mercantilism allowing corporations to exploit the new dominated market place (by excluding all competition including and most importantly local competition). The corporation funds government coffers.

      Iraq is an excellent current example, but even bananas have been the cause in the past.

      • Flag, I work for a non-profit hospital. We have CEO and all that BS that goes with it, but I cannot find out who actually owns the company. It is a Catholic based hospital, but is is far more business than religious. How, despite my efforts, can I find the actual owner(s)?

        G!

        • Black Flag says:

          It will be registered with either the State or Federal agencies. Some incorporation document will have a number or the exact incorporation name that you can search.

          If it is a non-profit, it is organized under a different law then normal corporations.

          Usually, non-profits are usually reserved for an organization (like a society) with the members (ie: those that hold memberships) as the owners that provide some sort of benefit to a community or to a group of people in a community , or a charity or religious order. In your case, it is probably the local Diocese.

          Non-profits provide a way for religious/charity orders to earn income that would normally be excluded by their natural line of ‘business’ (ie: doing churchy things and preaching).

          Should a non-profit go bankrupt or be sued, the members are legally protected – that is, they cannot be sued or their assets used to satisfy the judgment against the non-profit.

          • Thanks BF, I’ve searched and searched for actual names, no luck, but I guess thats the way things are nowadays.

            Off subject, kinda worried that some of our folks from the other side, might have some issues with the past. Without naming anyone, I do believe that some may need help to deal with their past, any thoughts on this?

            G!

            • G-Man

              If it is a non profit there are NO owners to find.

              You want to search your Secretary of State for the orignial Articles of Incorporation, the Bylaws (if recorded by the state) and the latest annual report. The latter, which all states I know of requires in some form, lists all the officers and the directors for the organization. That is who really runs the outfit.

              In order to be a nonprofit there can be no owners, except privately held non profits, but in either case no owners.

              The non-profit procedures for incorporating are controlled by the state. The Federal requirements are to qualify for non-profit tax status. NO INCOME TAX on profits. But profits may not be distributed to shareholders, members, officers or directors. But profits are allowed and are not taxed by the Feds if qualified. State rules vary but generally follow the fed’s.

              The Feds and States require the names of directors and officers be in the records so they are available somewhere. Like I said, start with your Sec. of States office and tell them you want the latest annual report and list of directors, and officers for XYZ Corporation which is a non-profit.

              Hope that helps my friend.
              JAC

              • Black Flag says:

                Usually I’m the one with the unstoppable fingers….

                …thanks JAC for filling in ALL the blanks…

                🙂

              • Helps a ton, Thanks a Ton as well!!

                G!

              • One more thing G-man

                Most states I know of require a “registered agent” or something like it.

                This will be the person who recieves all legal notices for the corporation. For example, if the state is after them for something they send the head officer AND the registered agent a copy.

                Lawsuits and other notices should be sent to both. Just in case you want to raise some serious hell with someone.

              • OK two more things.

                The IRS requires the latest tax return be held on file for public inspection. Most states do as well.

                You could ask to see or get a copy of this. It will break down revenues, expenses and identify key officers, directors and others receiving large salaries as well as major donors.

                The price of getting public non-profit status is that the records are public. You may have some problem however in that the Catholic Church is involved. There may be special rules for them. Churches have different rules on reporting, etc so this could affect how the hospital records are handled.

                But at least you know enough now to hurt yourself.
                good hunting
                JAC

            • Black Flag says:

              In what way?

              Legal? Moral? Financial?

          • I am a 5 digit number, read the same forward as backward. My third digit is 5x more than my fifth digit. My fourth digit is 3x greater than my first digit. The sum of my digits is 14. 😉

            • I am a math idiot. I can’t make it come out to fit all your criteria. 😦

            • Richmond Spitfire says:

              Hi CSM:

              I came up with 34043.

              Best Regards,
              RS

              • Richmond Spitfire says:

                Sheesh…I’m looking at my number again and it isn’t making sense to me!

                For pete’s sake…It’s too late and I’m officially on vacation until Monday!!!! Yeah!!!!

                I’m off to Nag’s Head with the Hubby for a nice romantic weekend without the children…

                Since he and I are both computer nuts, we’ll be bringing the laptops with us, so I’ll be seeing you occasionally over the next few days…

                Best Regards to all,
                RS (to Ray, that’s Karyn)

              • Have a great time!

            • I think I have it.

            • I got 13531 but that adds to 13.

            • You are impossible.

            • v. Holland says:

              I too think it is 13631

            • I was checking homework (5th grade) and found that one. I got stuck thinking that the third digit had to be 5, which means that the whole totals to 13. I’m hoping I don’t have a whole year of “Are You Smarter Than A Fifth-Grader?” ahead of me 🙂 Thanks for all the help — we’ll find out later today what the teacher says, but I think Kathy and V have it. US will have to add ‘homework help’ to his blog description now …

              • If my answer is correct, it’s based on 5x MORE vs the 3x GREATER. Not sure the x should be there in the first case though.

              • It’s got to be some tricky word thing. I keyed it in exactly as written, so we will see what we will see….

              • v. Holland says:

                Think of it this way 5x more than 1, so if 5×1=5 and 1×1=1 than 5x more than 1 =6

                At least that was my thinking and I think the x is okay-purposely misleading but technically correct. I really hated this stuff in school, Now I know it was meant to make me think not just to torture me.

  40. This is a great site that you have here. It’s important to have sites like yours that have a strong opinion on one side. I have myself a site where anyone can freely express their opinion on controversial debate topics. I believe that you can provide everyone with some valuable insight on my site.

    Keep up the good work and maybe we can do a link exchange.

    Sincerely,
    Jason

    • Hi Jason and welcome

      This site isn’t just one sided, there are those who have the opposite opinion, as it should be. Makes for some really heated debates, and for some really good conversations.

      Hope to see you around more, and join in.

      Judy

  41. Alert in Michigan says:

    I was recently bemoaning the development of the “political class” and wondering where all the “statesmen” of generations past have gone. Am I off track? Or is our “system” set up in such a way we can’t develop political leaders to look beyond their own noses? (Or backsides.) I assume BF would probably say I’m asking the wrong question – why should there have to be politicians at all if there is no government? – but that’s not the question I’m asking. In our current system, flawed as it may be, could there be a statesman? (or woman)

    • Yes, We are here, but the money isn’t. A Statesman or women are in your own neighborhood, if not in your own house, IT may be you. The problem is that it all comes down to money, not honesty!

      G!

      • Alert in Michigan says:

        “The problem is that it all comes down to money”

        To twist several recent conversations: then, if money was redistributed so that everyone was equally wealthy (or poor), would we all be statesmen? (Don’t worry, I’m kidding.)

        Actually, I know that on a practical level politics is largely about money, but I guess I’m asking a different question – more about the ideas of a statesman vs. the ideas of a politician. For example, The Founding Fathers as Statesmen: (as a group) they knew history, economics, and had studied different types of government. As evidenced by the time they spent debating the documents they created, they were aware of and could argue the pros and cons of positions. They could also see beyond the immediate moment and so things like governmental checks & balances were intended (whether or not that happens) to keep power from being centralized. They weren’t about advancing a party or a career; instead they seemed to be trying to develop a hybrid, of sorts, that would be sustainable. (We could argue the limitations of that hybrid, and we could point out the unsustainability of it in today’s world, but, again, that’s not what I’m asking.)

        It’s the ideas they held that I’m asking about. Can a statesman be elected to office today that has a broader range and understanding of ideas and somehow rise above politics?

        (the more I write the less hopeful I am for this.)

        • I would say “yes” to your question. Only because I think mankind can find a way to get it right, maybe, together, with all the different views, can do just that! Only time and effort will tell.

          Keep this in mind, The Fathers you speak of allowed for what is happening, despite their best efforts, their ideas became flawed and distorted. WE are now smart enough to change that. Question is, how do we get to where we can change it?

          G!

          • Hey G I resent that video to you. See if you got it, and let me know,okay.

            Judy

          • Alert in Michigan says:

            We are smart enough; are we willing to do the hard work to get there? That can be a rhetorical question b/c I expect everyone here would yell “YES” if we each thought we could achieve it.

            So, then to achieve this, does government have to de-centralize? Must the federal gov’t cease to exist? (Just wondering.)

            On a semi-related note, if the federal gov’t completely collapsed, could the 50 states continue as independent nations (like the “former Soviet republics”)? Would that take rewriting of state constitutions? How would that work? (Again, just wondering.)

        • Black Flag says:

          G-Man is right.

          That Statesman is your neighbor or you.

          “All politics is local”.

          (I’ve GOT to finish my next guest post….)

        • At the time of our founding there was a very special thing present we don’t have right now.

          Unity of purpose. A principle, concept or set of the same that everyone holds dear and sacred. The glue that binds.

          Our forfathers had heated debates over how to protect Liberty and what was required. They never discussed such broad concepts as whether socialism or liberty should be the prefered course.

          There are people as you describe, but you do not see them because we are engaged in a more fundamental battle, where statesmanship is not required. In fact it is dangerous. I give you John McCain as an example. Lets work together for a common solution? I think not when my choice is to sacrifice any liberty at all.

          I do think we are lacking in the deep philosophical knowledge in our Federal Representatives. If we were not it wouldn’t be so hard for the majority to express a concise statement on core values. Instead, they are always wandering down the policy wonk path.

          A statesman can be elected, if they stand firmly on the principles of liberty and can articulate them in a way that makes sense. They need to be able to explain how it will work and why it will be better. Yes you can…… sorry, couldn’t resist that one.

          Of course this all depends on where you live. It will be much easier in some places and almost impossible in others.

          Win the battle over the core values first, the rest will come quickly after that.

          Yours in the fight for liberty
          JAC

  42. 5:30 am comes fast around these parts, time for this old man to get some good sleep. I always enjoy everyones comments, even those I may disagree with. We all have a place in history, still trying to find mine, but will someday!

    Sleep well and God bless!

    p.s. My name is Gary, but my friends call me G-Man or G. I wanted Ray to know this, seemed important to him today!

  43. Just got home from a health care reform townhall with an estimated 3000 people in attendance. John Stossel was the guest speaker and then there was a panel made up of a (former) congressman, a small business owner, an insurance guy and a physician in private practice.

    It was a great event and I’ll report more when USW does the health care posting.

    A call out to Ellen and Todd (if you are still lurking…) and any other WI residents. There are two more of these presentations scheduled – one tomorrow in LaCrosse mid-day and then later in the day in the Wausau area. Don’t have the specific times/places but you can get that from the Americans for Prosperity website.

    Note – the former congressman attended because our currently elected Rep. Tammy Baldwin was invited 6 times and never responded. Nice.

  44. Would like to stay and chat with all, but for some reason, my computer is being really slow to post anything. So with that I bid you all a good night.

    Sleep well everybody, and pleasant dreams.

    Judy

  45. Black Flag says:

    anoninnc

    Black Flag, I mean you no harm.

    ..my sword is in its sheath…

    🙂

    I am intrigued . . . but I have trouble understanding how any group larger than two, let alone thousands and millions, could exist without some sort of interactive rules or guidelines . . . which I can only describe as “government.”

    So, let’s not describe it as government.

    Government has a very particular meaning and carries even more connotations.

    Let’s call it “Society”.

    YES! A prosperous society DOES establish a set of MORAL rules to guide its interactions.

    History proves IMO that we (people) are not as “good” by nature as has been argued extensively here in the last few days . . . again I think we have proven that we are not “good” . . . and taht lack of goodness, I think, helps me understand your positon that all government is evil.

    History proves that people ARE good by nature – if we were not, civilization would be impossible.

    Evil is a very easy path. You can use all the strategies that “Good” uses, PLUS you can use all the “Bad” stuff too!

    You can make agreements, trade, and voluntarily interact with others – but evil can ALSO lie, cheat, steal, torture, murder, shoot people in the back, and all that stuff too. Good guys can’t.

    YET, civilization exists.

    THEREFORE, good must be a lot stronger and out number evil.

    But evil does still exist.

    So we need rules so to know and define evil and mitigate its consequences.

    All of this can exist WITHOUT the need to use violence on non-violent people or to impose one’s will upon the innocent.

    One must remember, violence is VERY profitable. It is far easier to steal than to earn. But there is risk – that is, the victim sometimes kills the attacker.

    If violence is profitable AND you can mitigate the risk of dying while using it, you have a PERFECT situation. The best way to mitigate the risk is to create an illusion that those that attack HAVE A RIGHT TO DO SO – legitimacy – to use their violence on innocent people.

    So, we have a choice. Do we chose to organize ourselves on a moral basis and resist evil

    or

    do we legitimize evil, because we fear it.

    I perceive that Biblical references might make some here cringe, but, nonetheless, during the time of the Judges, “everyone did what was right in his own eyes,” and that season proved in graphic terms what happens when people are free to follow their instincts without restriction.

    An age without reason beget an age of reason.

    There are two, non-intersecting paths that derive from NATURAL LAW – “Might is Right” or “Freedom”.

    To be Free, I MUST allow you to be free. What I do to you gives you the right to do to me. If I impose upon you, you have a right to impose upon me, and I lose my freedom.

    If I do not impose, you have no right to impose on me – and we are both free.

    Might is Right is straight forward. The strongest (most violent) wins.

    And every dictator and despot has in the past, and continues now in the present, to prove that “absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

    How many people did Hitler kill? Answ: No one.

    Power of despots and dictators derives from the legitimacy that the people give them.

    The moment they lose that legitimacy, they are merely criminals – and are dealt with (remember Ceauşescu in Romania? He lost legitimacy, and he and his wife were taken out back and shot. Her last words were “We are Romania! What are you can’t do this!!”)

    I’m not sure that the founders and the documents are necessarily directly responsible for the present “consequences . . .”

    Responsible? How could they know? Limited government had never been tried before.

    Jefferson knew that it probably wouldn’t work after Madison got control of the Constitutional Convention. “…replacing a King with one of their own making…”

    But, the contradiction:

    “A government the makes and enforces its own rules upon itself will not be restrained by its rules.”

    I think it is rather the apathy (over an extended time) of people like most of us here . . .

    I find the opposite. Apathy? No. A sense of entitlement? Yes.

    Government runs the schools. The schools teach a doctrine. The people learn the doctrine. Government is the cornerstone of that doctrine.

    Until the People rescue their own children from the State, the State remains the winner.

    But the game is not over…

    So, my friend, what does a society of thousands and millions look like if it is in the “total freedom” terms that you envision?

    Organized under moral, natural LAW, starting with:

    “Do unto others that ye wish done unto you”

    And, if you have already articulated this in previous months and in other posts, I apologize.

    No prob! Every time is an opportunity to rephrase, re-say, explain, and contemplate! We both learn!

    Thank you, Black Flag.

    I hope to dialogue with you some more!

    • Me, too . . . but not much more tonight.

      We are more alike than either of us would probably expect.

      And what you describe will one day exist . . . but it will take supernatural intervention to facilitate a society devoid of evil and one that will totally subscribe to the “do unto others as you would have them do unto you” doctrine.

      But, I too would look forward to living in that society.

      But, until then, what the framers wanted, if under the consistent scrutiny of sn informed and actively involved society, wil come pretty close.

      But, first we have to take it back from those who have succombed to the evil that you describe.

      Can we pick this up again on another day, perhaps the next open-mic?

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        Annoninc,

        Bad people do exist. However, it is not necessary for the bad people to stop existing in order for Black Flag’s society to work.

        It would be a lot EASIER for it to work without bad people existing, but the existence of bad people does not make freedom fail.

    • You know, BF, you are a dreamer . . . However that is not a bad thing as it has been said many times over that the world loves a dreamer . . . 😉

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        G.A.

        Many people thought that the founders of the United States were just dreamers too.

  46. Here is my last salvo for the day . . .

    I have been doing a lot of discussing with a lot of folks I know personally. Have worked with a few of them in the past, and some of their politics just don’t mix with mine. Some are actual relatives of mine, a little distant but relatives just the same.

    This is what I have found out today from those I know personally;

    The Obamatron Sheeple are starting to wake up, slowly yes, but waking up they are. And those who have come fully awake just are not happy campers, not happy campers at all.

    There are some real scary rumblings going on among these folks. They are not happy with their chosen Messiah, they are beginning to realize that he has been lying to them from the very beginning.

    I would not be concerned if they were just talking about impeachment proceedings.

    It seems that impeachment has left their vocabulary.

    These are dyed in the wool Democrats, mostly. With a smattering of an independent or two among them. Most live up in the Pacific Northwest.

    One question I have heard the most recently is; Why hasn’t Obama visited the deep south? They seem to think that if he ever does, our problems just might be solved . . .

    If that doesn’t scare you . . . Then I feel sorry for you, very sorry!

  47. Chris Devine says:

    “Across the nation this summer, unknown numbers of people are hunkering down and arming up for what they believe is an imminent battle for the soul of America. Town halls and tea parties provide just a small glimpse of the rage, fear, and paranoia fomenting on front porches and in Internet chat rooms, in the conservative heartland and beyond. While the details may vary, the visions in such forums share a common theme: In one way or another, a fight to the death is coming, and coming soon.

    These deep-seated fears explain at least some of the vitriol, the violent scuffles, and death threats bubbling up in town hall protests against health care reform. It’s all too easy for certain right-wing activists to accept that the president’s plan will create death panels or mandate taxpayer-funded abortions. Because some of these people don’t just believe that Obama wants to destroy capitalism and kill their granny and their unborn child—they believe he wants to kill them, too.”

    http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2009/08/health-care-reform-reviving-militia-movement

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      Of course,

      Total disagreement with someone ALWAYS AUTOMATICALLY leads to rage, fear, and violence.

      That is why so many on the left attempted to assassinate Bush!

      Oh wait… no one did that.

      This is pure hype and garbage, like 95% of everything else in the media.

    • This was the same crap being pushed in the ’60’s. I remember a SDS / Black Panther supporter in college who pretty much answered everything with a loud “Power to the People!”. I finally got tired of listening to him and remarked, “You don’t want that, if the people had the power, you would be swinging from a lamp post.” Kind of shut him up.

      There is a lot of fear out there on both sides. Will people start shooting? I really don’t think so. The only thing that could kick it off would be some kind of ,martial law directive with an attendant round up of “dissenters”. I don’t think this administration, as dumb and unqualified as they are, is that dumb.

      Remember last year how we were told that V.P. Cheny was engineering a coup and the Bush team would not leave on 20 January. Well. it didn’t happen, never does.

      Nonetheless, believing in the old adage “one who wants peace should prepare for war”, I had an excellent opportunity on vacation in NH last week to pick up fifty rounds of 30.06 AP, just in case.

      Best

      • SK,

        Don’t be so sure that Obama and crew won’t try martial law and round ups. Comparing Cheney and Obama is like comparing apples and vipers. Cheney didn’t associate himself with Marxist thugs, corporate ones maybe, but not a bunch of Leftist radicals. Cheney didn’t have 30+ czars and a compliant Congress doing his bidding. Cheney didn’t have millions of citizens supporting a major power grab.

        When I look at who Obama has associated with in the past and who he is bringing into his administration, I have to wonder if the America I knew is doomed. HOw many will die as a result of what he is doing? I have a lot of suspicion about how exactly Obama got all that money for his campaign. If his supporters are the poor who are just getting by, how did they find all that extra money to donate to his campaign? Behind the scenes, Obama is still consolidating his power.

        I feel like a zebra watching the lions building a huge trap around my herd. Some of the other zebras see it too but, most of the herd refuses to see it. By the time they do, it’ll be too late. It’ll be carnage.

        • Well, if they try it, I am ready and I hope others are too. I don’t like to think about those possibilities but if history teaches us anything it is that nothing “can’t happen here”. I doubt the Neisi in California and the pacific Northwest thought themselves likely to end up in concentration camps on December 6th 1941.

          The rhetoric about Obama’s Civilian Army still upsets me. Where the hell did that conme from anyway?

  48. PeterB in Indianapolis says:

    I find it highly amusing that Greatergoodcs believes that a free market capitalist system ruined the economy and that he believes that BF is from another planet.

    The GOVERNMENT WANTED banks to loan money for homes to people which were highly unlikely to be able to pay it back.

    The CORPORATE BANKS rolled these highly questionable mortgages into complex securities WHICH DID NOT VIOLATE EXISTING GOVERNMENT REGULATIONS.

    Therefore, there was not a free market. In a free market, a bank WILL NOT LOAN MONEY TO SOMEONE IT JUDGES TO BE INCAPABLE OF REPAYMENT. To do so would not be sane. The banks acted INSANE AT THE REQUEST OF GOVERNMENT.

    Now please explain to me what planet YOU are from if you think any of that had ANYTHING to do with free market capitalism?

  49. Mike M. Houston Texas says:

    I like your stamina greater good. Y

    ou missed the mark on why the companies are moving jobs. They are not moving them to countries with less meddling. Follow the money. The govt creates more taxes and more taxes and more taxes. The stock is punished because the margins arent high enough. Now they have a choice but its only one choice. I have to relieve myself of this tax burden because I cant pass along these taxes to consumers who are already paying more taxes themselves. In order to sell my product I must escape the tax burden. I can move a job to India and save the taxes as well as the difference in price for the salary. It all about profit pressure my young friend. While these companies can be greedy beyond belief they are all not stupid. You want the jobs to come back. Lower taxes which lowers margin pressures which creates more profit which create expansion. Key word to take away is expansion. Taxes = restriction.

    Now to fend off your we need taxes for everything. We do not. There were many western towns that had no government. Yeah they collectively paid for a sheriff but there was no set limits on who HAD TO PAY what. I am glad you are willing to share all you have. Please also grant me the courtesy to ONLY SHARE WHAT I WANT. Thats the difference here I feel you believe that simply because you want to share it all that everyone else should as well.

    If you want to live in a socialist country: China, Cuba, Laos, North Korea, and Vietnam should be high on your list of places to live.

    This is my America I will never live in a socialist country and will not let anyone change it into that in my lifetime.

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