Guest Commentary – Controlling the Rudder

For tonight’s guest commentary, we have one that is short and to the point. But that doesn’t mean that it isn’t relevant and worthy of some discussion. Tonight we get a little bit of commentary from Kent McManigal. Many of you know Kent from his postings in the discussions here. What I always value from Kent is that he has thought through what he posts, the thoughts are not “reactionary.” And while his views differ from many of the people on the site, they always have relevance to the topics he weighs in on. I respect Kent’s drive towards a world “without rulers, but not without rules.” I have had the good fortune of reading Kent’s thoughts for a couple of years now and have come to trust and respect his opinions on liberty. Kent does quite a bit of writing on his own, and you can go over and view his articles at the Albuquerque-Libertarian-Examiner . I can only tell you that you will enjoy Kent’s insight and his straightforward approach to both liberty and dispelling the myth of “Authority” wherever he finds it. I can tell you that I intend to run articles from Kent on a fairly regular basis, as I think that each of us discussing his thoughts on liberty is a key part of the learning that I have always envisioned on this site.

I would be remiss if I failed to also mention Kent’s books. He has three that I am aware of. They are “Kent’s Liberty Primer” , “Tao Liberty Ching” , and “Indy-Pindy, The Liberty Mouse”. The primer is a quick introduction to the concepts around liberty and is a fairly quick read (I read it in two nights, and I read it slowly to soak it in). The Tao is equally brief and is a collection of poems to light the path to liberty. Indy-Pindy is a great 38 page illustrated kids book that chronicles a mouse striking out on his own. Each of these three books is a good read and I recommend them all. They are also all three very inexpensive. You can order them by clicking on the following links.

Kent’s Liberty Primer
Indy-Pindy, the Liberty Mouse
Tao Liberty Ching

Some of you will find Kent’s messages a bit disturbing. This is primarily because he has taken his thinking to a different place than most. He is completely comfortable without the security blanket of government providing anything for him. He pulls no punches and is one of those rare folks who live exactly the way he recommends others live. Those on the left and right of the American political spectrum will find Kent to be a friend, but not a supporter. I can do no better to describe Kent than his own website, DullHawk, does for me: MountainMan, primitive survivalist, anarchist, “Hooligan libertarian”, former presidential candidate, opinionated writer of blogs and letters-to-editors, gun lover, UFO loving skeptic, animal lover, karaoke singer, and all-around character. For some of you, it will matter to you that Kent is also a big fan of what I consider the best television show ever created, Joss Whedon’s “Firefly” (Cancelled after only 14 episodes). Additionally, that “Time’s Up” flag that is getting so popular these days is actually Kent’s creation!

And now back to our topic. Kent offered up the following piece he wrote about trying to control the rudder on a train. You will recognize this concept as one that Black Flag is keen on presenting: voting on our electoral process is not what we think it is. The analogy fits quite well. The two parties have us fighting over who controls the reigns of government. Each side believes that their side is better at handling that rudder and controlling the reigns of government. What we fail to realize is that no matter who ends up winning that battle, the train is still heading in the same direction….. right down the tracks. The rudder doesn’t matter.

This ties directly to my common statement that Washington DC is merely one team wearing two different color shirts. They are both taking us the same direction. They simply do it in two different ways that are remarkably similar when you get right down to it. There as been a surge over the last two years of folks who are more interested in changing the direction of the train than deciding to control the rudder. Overall the sentiment does not seem to be that we should completely change directions and head in reverse, but instead that we should apply the brakes and slow down our rapid barreling towards the ravine.

While slowing down is not quite where I am looking to go, I appreciate that slowing down is far better than speeding up. Therefore I have taken Kent’s approach and decided to help slow the train. Once we get to the point where it is slow enough that most people are happy, I will part ways with them philosophically and continue to look for a way to stop and reverse the train until we get to a world with liberty and freedom at its core. I have yet to get to the point where I believe that a world with NO government will work, which means that at some point, both BF and Kent will part ways with me philosophically as well. But I appreciate having them help me get where I am going, and I won’t impede them when they continue on without me. I’ll be in that village with JAC and a few others, and we will simply jaunt over to BF and Kent’s camp for grog at our whim.

Fighting to Control the Train’s Rudder
by Kent McManigal

Electoral politics is like fighting over who gets to hold the rudder of the train. The people who want to control the rudder, or who vigorously support the candidate they want controlling the rudder, are misguided at best.

If you are ever on a train which has a rudder you can be certain it is merely a distraction from the real business of running the train. Possibly for the purpose of keeping the well-meaning but ignorant “citizens” busy and out of the way. The fact is that the real focus needs to be on who built the tracks, where those tracks are leading, and who’s at the throttle. But those things are not ever up for a vote. This is not an oversight, but is by design.

Bureaucrats, many politicians, favored corporations, and certain powerful insiders are happy that so many are fighting for control of the rudder. It ensures that no real change will ever take place to threaten the status quo.

So don’t worry about the rudder, but don’t condemn those who wish to hold it for the feeling of control it gives them. If possible point out the truth about the rudder but don’t be surprised when people accuse you of not caring that the train is headed for a ravine because you don’t share their concern for the rudder. It is a delusion that is deeply seated in a great many people and a lot of effort is expended keeping that delusion in place.

Comments

  1. 8)

  2. Okay, I give KUDO’s to both USW and Kent for liking the same show I thought was one of the greats that Hollywood missed entirely – Firefly. We all most likely liked it for the same reason . . . it just made perfect sense.

    Now about the “Train Rudder” . . . I kind of think that most of those who support and participate in the tea party movement do not believe that this train has a rudder at all. I think that they want to move this train to another track that is headed away from the ravine. However, I just do not foresee a world without some sort of governance. Why? I think that mankind is not a free animal, that we are more like the domesticated animal, free but with someone to keep us within the basic parameters we all need.

    I know. Not a very good analogy. But that is the best I can come up with at this early hour and these roasting temps. (whoever invented the evaporative cooler was a complete genius!)

    (120F and rising – 10% humidity)

    • I think, for me, that man is free but needs rules. The thing about rules is that they are pointless without an enforcement mechanism. This is what I see as the need for government. It is not rulers, but enforcement of rules.

      • I need no one to enforce the rules against me, and I take it as a personal assault when they enforce rules that shouldn’t exist against me. You know, those counterfeit “laws” that attempt to regulate or control anything other than actual aggression, theft, or fraud (and trespassing).

        You are responsible for enforcing the real rules. On yourself, and anywhere you see them being violated to the detriment of others.

        It simply doesn’t work to have an elite charged with the task. History has proven this over and over again for at least 5 or 6 thousand years. This elite will always make new counterfeit rules that benefit them and their “authority” in some way.

        • No, you do not. I have no worries about you following the rules. I DO have concerns about others following the rules. The actions of individuals in government itself proves that many people will not respect the rules, or will attempt to change those rules to fit their own agenda. This is the source of those counterfeit laws.

          I agree that an “elite” is not qualified to MAKE rules. Enforcement on the other hand often requires a specialist. Not everyone is an effective investigator. The results of individual investigation may be inadequate, or worse, inaccurate. This also applies to use of force. I have no doubt you can enforce the rules on someone who is in breach. I do have doubts about my 89 year old grandmother effectively enforcing such rules on any but herself. She lives over an hour from me, so my assistance is limited. A policeman, on the other hand, can be there in a few minutes of a 911 call. Is it possible for a private industry to provide similar assistance? Sure, but the fact remains that something is involved outside of just personal capability. In your philosophy, you have to allow for those less independent and self-sufficient than yourself, or you have to fully embrace a survival of the fittest mentality.

          • Unfortunately, the reality is that those allowed to “enforce” the rules, make the rules. They choose which one to enforce, against whom, and when.

            In another state I was warned (threatened, really) by the sheriff that if I set foot out my door with a gun, he would arrest me. This was in an “open carry” state where no permit was “needed” to carry a gun openly. The state law on open carry prohibits local “laws” that are more restrictive than the state law. I have no “legal disabilities” that would prevent me from legally carrying. Yet, the sheriff was willing to break the law in order to enforce the law as he saw fit.

            I defeat the “survival of the fittest mentality” by choosing to step in if I see someone being attacked or abused.

            I am a safer rescuer to respond to a situation than a cop, as I won’t shoot or Taser the person who needs my help just because they fail to obey my orders. Cops may not always make the situation worse by showing up, but the risk is too great anymore to take that chance.

            • You may be a safer responder, but I know a lot of other private citizens who would be worse than most cops. Just saying, I am not sure that the issues you have with would be eliminated by removing a government sponsored enforcement arm. It may just be frying pan and fire.

      • anoninnc says:

        Thank you, Jon.

        A wise man once said, “A river without banks is a swamp.”

        • Anon,

          A river with banks is an ocean.

          You want merely small river constrained and full of erosion.

          I’d prefer the vast ocean of opportunity that freedom provides.

          • anoninnc says:

            WEll, my well-learned and brilliant friend, you are making invalid assumptions about me and my “wants” . . .

            How is it that you think you are justified in automatically assuming that:

            “You want merely a small river constrained and full of erosion.”

            Not true. At all.

          • Actually, a river without banks IS a swamp or a flood. This is a geographic fact.

            Many people like rivers, they flow and are clean due to their motion (versus the swamp).

            Many do not like oceans, they drown in them without good swimming skills (which can be learned, but are not natural/instinctive), or tools such as boats (requiring a certain amount of assets at one’s disposal).

            In a free market, would not the choice of a small river be acceptable? What makes your ocean option “better” for any but yourself?

    • I would have more respect for the Tea Party folks if they weren’t agitating for more of the same. Not “more of the same” as Obama is doing now, but “more of the same” that made Obama possible (or inevitable). Invariably, when I look at the politicians endorsed by them, I see the exact same “thinking” that has led us to this point. You may despise Obama, but Bush made Obama possible. As Clinton made Bush possible, and on down the line.

      You can’t give “your guy” a tool to use against people you dislike or fear and then act surprised when the next president uses that tool against you.

      The only governance that will ever work, or ever has worked, comes from inside yourself. Self-government works while externally-imposed government sometimes gives the illusion of working unless you look too closely.

      I don’t do things that are wrong (not often, anyway), but I break “laws” from sun up to sun down. Some of them I am aware of and most of them I am not. And I don’t lose any sleep over it. But this is where “government” leads, every time it is tried.

      • Kent

        I concur with your first paragraph.

      • I am only guessing here, but I think that there has never been a time in all of Human History where there hasn’t been government in one form or another – and for those who are religious I say that even in the time of Adam and Eve there was a government, His name was God.

        I think it might have started with the family unit(alpha male as government), then as families began gathering together it became a tribal government, and as tribes began gathering together it became city governments, and then cities began forming into states and states into countries. I do not believe that mankind will ever be able to survive without some sort of group governance – For the simple reason that we must band together for our mutual protection from one another. families banded together for protection from individuals or other families, tribes for protection from other tribes, and so on up the line. We Humans will not have a single “one world” type of government until we are forced to band together for our own protection by some planetary threat from some other planetary group of humans or humanoids or something like that. It is just simply Human nature to group together for mutual protection from predators without and predators within. That is our sole reason for mutual governance, wether you like it or not. We will always be that way, at least until we Humans go through some sort of genetic upheaval that will alter our basic Human Natures.

        Just my two-cents worth.

        • I sorta agree while completely disagreeing. 😉

          If it is not imposed, from outside, on people who would otherwise refuse, it is not the “government” I speak of. A family’s “alpha male” isn’t “government” unless he is abusive, lazy, lives off the labor of his family, and demands respect he doesn’t deserve.

  3. Posting for comments, but will add more later. Kent, short and to the point 🙂 but very correct in the meaning! More to come later.

    G!

  4. We need to slow the train down first or it will go off the ravine. Hard to turn it around when it lays broken and busted at the bottom of the ravine. I suppose some would be lucky enough to crawl from the train and start over but allowing it to go over that ravine is a little too extreme for me.

    • You are not allowed anywhere near the brakes. You aren’t even allowed to know the brakes exist or where they might be.

      I don’t need to train in order to live. I jumped clear.

      • Kent

        You may not need it, BF may not, I may not, and others as well.

        But REALITY must come to bare here. There are well over 200 million in this country who do need it.

        Furthermore, I wouldn’t want them showing up in my country hoping to “sustain” or to “govern” themselves.

        The question should not be whether a train is needed but what TYPE of train. The massive diesel powered monstrosity that we have, an old steam engine with wooden cars, or perhaps a small train powered by handcars.

        • Agreed, except I do not mind persons from other countries being here and self-governing providing their self-governance still follows the law of the land (presuming the law of the land was to protect freedom, not the BS we have now as “law of the land”).

        • The others don’t need the train either, they have just been fooled into thinking they do. They have been told over and over that they aren’t capable of running their own lives. But they are. For most of the things they do, they do not seek governmental advice or permission. It’s a simple matter to extend that self-responsibility to the rest of their lives.

          • I see the rain as the society, or societal construct/organization. The driver is the government, and the track is the cultural/societal philosophy. In that case, a great many people do need the train, they do not operate well as a singular entity. They may be able to learn it, but many never will. Humanity is not a self-sifficient species as a general rule. We are a group species, our use of language and cooperation is more important to our survival than individual ingenuity.

            What they do not need is an engineer to run the train for them, and they should have the option of choosing the tracks they run on.

      • You haven’t jumped clear of anything-you are still a part of this country and you are still effected by the rules that govern it, you benefit from the good and are adversely affected by the bad. You may have distanced yourself a little but jumped clear-I don’t think so. As far as the break-I know where it is-it’s in the hands of the people-the problem-too many people stopped using it.

        • SP-brake not break

        • “Jumping clear” is more of an attitude than anything else. Yes, I still live surrounded by government and it’s supporters, but I don’t let them upset me or run my life as much as they wish. I’m sure there are also freelance criminal gangs and freelance organized crime syndicates around me too. I can either wring my hands and fret about what they might do to me, or what orders they expect me to follow, or I can just live and deal with thugs as they arise.

          The brakes you seem to be speaking of are a collective brake system, and only work if you can get a majority of “voters” to help you apply them. How is that working out? I think it is Utopian to believe that you will ever get it to really slow or stop the train, even if it is theoretically possible. It just isn’t built into the system the way you have been led to believe it is.

          Like I say, I will never stop you from trying, and I really do hope you succeed. I might even vote at some time in the future if it looks like there is a chance of it working to actually STOP the train, but in the meantime I’ve got better things to do and other directions to attack the problem from that work better for me and make me happier.

          • No offense, but lots of people have better things to do-I for a long time had better things to do-that’s why we are where we are-I don’t delude myself that just voting will change anything-it’s the combination of getting the people who actually believe in freedom to rise up and fight the system through actions such as running people who agree with us, voicing our disagreement and then putting power behind that voice by voting. Yes it will be a slow and painful procedure but it has to start somewhere. I respect your viewpoints and I credit you with fighting in your own way but it still takes actions within the system to make any changes, even if they are small changes-you can change a lot of peoples minds by teaching but it still takes actual actions to effect the governmental power. Talking alone will not do it.

            • I like guns. I am a (disgruntled) life member of the NRA. Yet, I see gun owners, including NRA members, constantly cancelling each other’s votes because they each think “this politician” is better on this or that issue, or they think that this time there is a bigger issue for the future of America than being a “single issue” voter and only caring about guns. Or they value their guns, but are also scared of having their “Social Security” or farm subsidies cut. Never will you convince a majority of voters who are on “your side” that one particular candidate is the clear-cut best choice on all issues. And the politicians know this and count on it.

  5. Kent, as always, I like the way you explain things, and I like the fact that you hold no anger or contempt for those who do not “get it”, it makes your points more credible and easier to listen to because you do not put others on the defensive.

    USW and Kent, I too am a fervent fan of Firefly, I still have the firefly quotes app running on my facebook….

    USW, I too will likely be in your camp, a defender of Kent and BF’s right and philosophy to have their camp set up deeper in the liberty wilderness than our own, but not joining it. Atho who knows, if I saw their camp often enough and liked it, I might decide to stay in it…

    Kent, I suppose I always felt that the rudder represented the two main parties, but that the vote was more like the things that could be done by the passengers. A vote does not change the track construction, but it can pull the emergency break or, if enough join together, take over the engine and pull the engineer off the throttle and put the sucker in reverse. It just means voting for something not marked on the rudder.

    I guess I also feel like those who do not vote are simply jumping off the train, a risky thing in and of itself, but also one that means they are of no help the those still on the train. I have reached the point where I would rather see someone not vote than vote for right rudder or left rudder. If you are not for breaking the status quo then at least dont fight me by voting for it.

    Perhaps my idea of taking over the engine room is more of a revolution than a vote. Hard to say. I am not ready to stop voting, but I have not voted for the status quo in over a decade…

    • If you can ever get ahold of the brakes so you can stop the train while a new set of tracks, leading to where I want to go is built, I’ll get back on the train. I see staying on the train as a lot riskier than jumping off. I might get hurt or killed by jumping, but if you don’t stop the train before the ravine, what do you think the chances of surviving the crash are? Are you sure you will know exactly where the edge of the ravine is, and recognize your last chance to jump if you fail to stop it? The windows are painted over, and there is an awful lot of smoke and cinders blocking your view even if you manage to open a window to take a peek.

      Too often revolutions only result in starting the train rolling again after the smoke clears with new people at the controls, but no real change.

      I am trying to show people that other tracks do exist. They may be roads and footpaths rather than rails. Why should we all be riding the same doomed train anyway? I sure would hate to feel the need to go along with everyone else to my death and destruction.

      • I guess I want to stay on the train till the last second in hopes of saving the innocents riding on it, especially those who would not be able to make or survive a jump from it.

        • Common Man says:

          Joh;

          Everyone is their own being. We can attempt to help, educate and assist those that are blinded, but in the end it is their individual decision that determines their fate.

          I embrace those I have placed in the “inner-circle” taking time each day to help them see the light, but in the end I am only responsible for ensuring I am off the train should they decide to ride it out.

          The good news is that we are all off the train.

          CM

          • I do not stay on the train helping out of some sick sense of duty, nor do I think that others do not have the right to abandon ship. I stay because of my personal code of conduct, and I will treat those who abandon ship according to that same code. They will be lovers anf freedom and friends, but will be held to the same standard, I may not feel the same sense of desire to help those who have no concern for helping others. Then again I may for other reasons. Who knows. I will not go down with the ship, but I may stay on longer than most because I know I can swim hard enough to escape the vortex and tread water in the cold for longer than most.

            AS for us all being off, that remains to be seen. I think many who think they are off the train are still on it, they are just in a position to see what is going on.

            • All the metaphorical speak can become confusing- but here goes one can prepare for the possible crash and one can get off the train but one cannot leave the station and one is going to get hit by flying debris when the train crashes into the station. So unless you are willing to burn down the station, you might as well stay on the train and try to keep it from crashing.

        • That’s a noble sentiment as long as you don’t insist that everyone else do the same.

          • I would have no right to do so, indeed, if I understand rights at all, then I must understand there is no right to force such a moral concept.

            Freedom demands no requirement to care for any but one’s self. Society demands at least some care for others as part of the cooperative nature of society and relationships. Therefore to have a functioning and civilized free society, there must be no requirement to care for others, but a moral code among a majority to do so voluntarily.

  6. This whole idea of not voting can only be supported if you start with the assumption, or conclusion, that ANY government is corrupt. If you accept some form of government, then how would you propose selecting those to establish laws, enforce those laws and administer the bureaucracy?

    Voting is the key to “peaceful” change and what makes a “civilized” society with a government possible. We condemn voting as a waste of time and thus the problem. In doing so we fail to look for the underlying cause.

    Well the parties, or someone else, pick the people we choose from. Well then,ask yourself how does that happen. What could be changed to stop “them” from picking who we get to vote for as our representatives. While I have not accepted the GOOOH effort completely, at least the guy who developed it recognized the underlying problem and has attempted to address it. Rather than just sitting there and crying about how voting will change nothing.

    In a democratic and free society, voting is NOT a waste of time. If it has become a waste then it is nobody’s fault but our own.

    Yes, powerful people now control the mechanism. We let them have control because they promised us great things, and free cookies. Because we were complacent the struggle to regain control will be that much harder and prolonged. But it is a most noble task, if you wish to live in a civilized and free society.

    If you crave your Liberty, you must fight to keep it. You must dedicate your life to that cause. Nothing less will do.

    Happy Friday to All
    JAC

    • I have some experience with the Federal Election Commission. They will NEVER allow a person to be elected, or even run a “real campaign”, who would make a substantive difference and actually threaten the status quo. It was a disappointing wake-up call for me, but I accept the reality and it made me realize that to keep hoping for voting to work was wishful thinking with no basis in reality.

      If you crave your Liberty, you must fight to keep it. You must dedicate your life to that cause. Nothing less will do.

      Absolutely right.

      • “If you crave your Liberty, you must fight to keep it. You must dedicate your life to that cause. Nothing less will do.”

        Absolutely right.

        This I will give you, Kent, you are fighting for your liberty and for that you have my respect-I however do not always agree with your methods, 🙂 but hey. hopefully we will both always be able to speak our minds.

        • Yet, I see no indication he would shake up the status quo in any way. He is an unknown, but it appears from the article that he still subscribes to the same statism that got “us” into this mess.

          It is good to see a candidate scare “The Party”, though. 🙂

      • NEVER is a very, very, very long time.

        I once said I would NEVER venture east of Denver again. In the last year and a half I have been to Washington D.C. and drove to Michigan and back.

        I once said I would NEVER go to Los Angeles again. Forty years later I returned, twice, to watch my daughter dance and take the family to Disney Land.

        I once said I would NEVER waste my time on philosophy or get involved in politics. Heh, heh, heh!!!!!

        • ALWAYS remember NERVER to use the words ALWAYS and NEVER!!

          • NEVER…not NERVER!

          • Common Man says:

            Agreed! It is interesting that in my household living with a women that I deeply love, would do anything for, is my best friend and an all round great person, those two words used by either of us results in a heated argument

            The good news is that the last 29 years together have taught us to curb the use of NEVER and ALWAYS, and on the rare occasion that we let them slip out we are quick to appologise

            Bad words, very bad words!

            CM

            • I have been married for 41 years to a woman that I told that I would NEVER begrudge her her religion. She is a very religious woman and I am not a religious man (that does not mean that I do not believe in God).

              I also told her that I would NEVER get into her purse for ANY reason, and I haven’t.

              I also told her that I would NEVER stop communicating (vs just talking) with her, and I haven’t.

              All that was before the honeymoon started . . . . . and it hasn’t ended yet, nor are there any plans for it to end (the honeymoon or the marriage).

              🙂

              • Common Man says:

                GA;

                Congrads on the wonderful 41 years. God, I hope that I have that much time with my bride.

                CM

        • You drove to Michigan and didn’t stop by my house? JAC!!!! BAD JAC

          • Anita

            That was before I knew you. Probably went right by and didn’t even know it.

            If you followed my trip you might remember I lost my wallet the first day out. I had planned to stop and visit several SUFA folks on my return. But without ID and credit card I opted for the most expedient return possible. And I had to adhere to the speed limits all the way. And that my dear is a very long way. 🙂

            Very good chance I may be returning next summer. And then we will sit on your porch next to that lake and solve the worlds problems.

            JAC

        • “Never” is the only time to eat cyanide or belly-flop into molten lava. Unless you are prepared for the inevitable result. 😉

      • The FEC be damned, they have a lot of control, but they cannot block everything. There is a point where a real block would become obvious enough that they could not do it without enciting open revolt.

        • Common Man says:

          Jon;

          It sounds as if your are claiming that they government could not get away with anything without causing an absolute citizen revolt?

          – Healthcare Bill
          – Secure Borders
          – Increased taxes
          – Stimulus Bill
          – Wall Street reform
          – etc
          – etc

          I could go on, but maybe you feel rigging the ballots is more severe?

          CM

          • Not the government, the FEC. Think of when Perot ran. If they had blocked votes making people think he had only gotten 5% of the vote, enough people would have caught on to know that something was amiss. Ballot rigging can be more severe, if the right media is used.

            I am also saying that your examples of government action that did not incite revolt are part of the reason further actions like that will incite one. Also, it is easy to make a koolaid that will convince most people those other things are good. Justifying ballot rigging is a little tougher.

            • Common Man says:

              Joh;

              You and I think a great deal alike 95% of the time, and you have an excellent understanding or what is going on around us, however I think you are looking at this voting thing with rose covered glasses.

              Given everything that the government has done, and we as a people have allowed, over the last several years, (most of which violates all or most of our rights) how can you make a statement like this?

              The government continues to attempt and/or succeed in breaking laws and violating human rights every day, but there is no revolt. At least not one that leads to an uprising.

              How would you know need to justify ballot rigging if no one knows the ballot’s were rigged.

              I am afraid you give to much credit to the FEC; especially since they are part of a corrupt government.

              CM

              • You may be right, my eternally springing hope has rose-clouded my glasses before. I will mull this over. AS it stands, I still hold the vote as a viable tool. It may be a more damaged tool than I think, but a tool it remains. It is not the sole path or solution, but even a bent wrench can be used for some things, and it beats making no effort at all on that particular bolt holding the wall up that blocks our freedom.

              • You keep those glasses on-the FEC can be changed-look at the Tea Party-they are choosing their own people to run and they are getting them on the ballot-it is when people give up and just accept defeat that we are truly defeated.

    • Agree JAC,

      Change has to come either from within, or from the outside. The third option is to stand aside and let the thieves have their way.

    • This whole idea of not voting can only be supported if you start with the assumption, or conclusion, that ANY government is corrupt.

      Until I see some proof that this isn’t the case, I think it is a very, very safe assumption. I think it is an inherent part of externally-imposed government.

      Look at this from a little different angle, using one of my favorite things. Sex is neutral, neither inherently good or bad. Voluntarily-engaged in sex is good (for the individuals involved). Rape is bad. Coercion is the key that makes the difference. Self-government, normally called “self control”, is good, but externally-imposed government (what most people mean when they say the word “government”) is not good and can not be good because it is always imposed on people. You may not feel it is imposed on you as long as things are going your way, but as soon as it starts going the other way your situation becomes apparent.

  7. I gotta run. The zoo awaits and my daughter is not patient and the day isn’t gonna get any cooler.
    I’ll be back in a few hours.

  8. Kent, great analogy, might sound better if put to music.

    Wrong way on a one-way track

    Runaway Train
    Soul Asylum

    Call you up in the middle of the night
    Like a firefly without a light
    You were there like a blowtorch burning
    I was a key that could use a little turning

    So tired that I couldn’t even sleep
    So many secrets I couldn’t keep
    I promised myself I wouldn’t weep
    One more promise I couldn’t keep

    It seems no one can help me now,
    I’m in too deep; there’s no way out
    This time I have really led myself astray

    Runaway train, never going back
    Wrong way on a one-way track
    Seems like I should be getting somewhere
    Somehow I’m neither here nor there

    Can you help me remember how to smile?
    Make it somehow all seem worthwhile
    How on earth did I get so jaded?
    Life’s mystery seems so faded

    I can go where no one else can go
    I know what no one else knows
    Here I am just a-drownin’ in the rain
    With a ticket for a runaway train

    And everything seems cut and dried,
    Day and night, earth and sky,
    Somehow I just don’t believe it

    Runaway train, never going back
    Wrong way on a one-way track
    Seems like I should be getting somewhere
    Somehow I’m neither here nor there

    Bought a ticket for a runaway train
    Like a madman laughing at the rain
    A little out of touch, a little insane
    It’s just easier than dealing with the pain

    Runaway train, never going back
    Wrong way on a one-way track
    Seems like I should be getting somewhere
    Somehow I’m neither here nor there

    Runaway train, never coming back
    Runaway train, tearing up the track
    Runaway train, burning in my veins
    I run away but it always seems the same

  9. Common Man says:

    Jon/JAC;

    A year ago I would have argued / heatedly discussed that voting was ‘the’ tool needed to realign our government. Given the current regiem, their plan to collapse the system, their reasons for doing so, their ‘middle-finger’ response to those that oppose it and the governmental precidents that have been set over the last 100 years that got us to this point, I have concluded that the traditional voting process is a total waste of time.

    As it has been discussed many times on this site, voting (validation) for a predetermined outcome (republican or democrat) is an act that only furthers the cause of those bent on destroying our liberties and freedoms.

    Notice I said “traditional voting process”, not just voting. I now only cast a vote for those individuals I determine will uphold the Condtitution/Bill of Rights; that may be one vote or 3. And those votes are for local individuals that I, and those locals like me, can influence. But voting is not where it begins or stops, it is only a single process in the effort to awaken and re-educate those standing around on the train that it is about to crash into a ravine.

    Each of us, to the best of our abilities, needs to take action towards stopping the train, or helping as many individuals as we can, realize we need to get off the train. At present I encourage people to jump, because even if I am wrong about the train crashing, their only issue is a medium or long walk.

    This means each person must take personal responsibility to educate themselves about our history, government process, freedom, liberties and rights, oppose violations of them and hold representatives accountable. And the latter is easier to do at the local level. Wasting time at the national level is just that.

    Pulling the republican or democratic lever is no different than asking the IRS to audit your last 5 returns because you don’t think you paid your fair share; you are going to shell out more cash. Casting a vote for those who are part of the problem only serves to exacerbate the problem.

    I now believe we are too far gone and there is not enough time to slow or stop the train; rudder or otherwise. We need to individually circle the wagons, prepare for the crash and the rebuilding that comes afterwards.

    Common Man’s basic steps to survival

    – Pay off all debt and incure no other monitarily or otherwise
    – Grow as much of your own food as possible. If you have the means buy a couple of beef critters, I suggest at least one of each sex.
    – Learn to hunt and fish, success in both will help you maintain a great source of protein.
    – Educate your children and grandchildren
    – Get your money out of the market
    – Put as much money as you can aside in a ‘safe’, preferably one that cannot be picked up and carried away. Gold is probably a good thing to have as well.
    – Invest in accurate, high quality weapons, learn to use them correctly and store up ample ammunition. (It would also be wise to learn how to re-load and store up ample re-loading supplies. It might be a great commodity to use for trade)
    – Help your inner circle loved ones to do the same.
    – Buy an alternative fuel generator, a windmill and/or install solar panels as alternative. An exterior wood burner for your home is also a great idea.

    I pray that none of the above is required, but if it is you will be prepared and far better off than those left on the train.

    BTW: Kent, I have a friend that manufactures and sells magnets (18 x 12) for your car/truck customized to say whatever someone wants. As long as you are ok with it I am going to have him make me one like your “Times Up” flag. Are you OK with that?

    CM

    • You may be right that it is too late. I am more inclined to think there is still time to stop before the ravine, but the stop will have to be so severe as to be painful and damaging to the passengers. That makes it a harder sell.

      As for circling the wagons, I agree that needs to be part of this. Your list is good, tho for some it is hard to accomplish if means are limited.

      – Pay off all debt and incure no other monitarily or otherwise
      ME – Almost there, not financing anything new, close to eliminating past debts.

      – Grow as much of your own food as possible. If you have the means buy a couple of beef critters, I suggest at least one of each sex.
      ME – I have the skills for this, but no property. I know those who do tho, and have spent time working those lands alongside them.

      – Learn to hunt and fish, success in both will help you maintain a great source of protein.
      ME – check.

      – Educate your children and grandchildren
      ME – have none, but do so with as many others as possible.

      – Get your money out of the market
      ME – have none.

      – Put as much money as you can aside in a ‘safe’, preferably one that cannot be picked up and carried away. Gold is probably a good thing to have as well.
      Me – Recommend gold and other hard assets for at least part of the money. Cash, being fiat currency, could evaporate fast.

      – Invest in accurate, high quality weapons, learn to use them correctly and store up ample ammunition. (It would also be wise to learn how to re-load and store up ample re-loading supplies. It might be a great commodity to use for trade)
      ME – Working on that, have high quality blades, working on projectile weapons. I recommend, in addition to supplies of ammo, that you choose weapons that are popular, especially with your enemy. Military and police commonly used rounds like .223, .45, .308, etc. are good choices so that you can resupply from an enemy depot (or body) when you run out.

      – Help your inner circle loved ones to do the same.
      ME – Check

      – Buy an alternative fuel generator, a windmill and/or install solar panels as alternative. An exterior wood burner for your home is also a great idea.
      ME – Working on this, looking at solar and generator power for the mobile life, attached to the van and trailer, will be able to operate off grid and fully mobile when modifications are complete.

      • Common Man says:

        Jon;

        I want to add one more suggestion for weapons purchase: “10-point crossbow” – get one! You don’t need a permit, you don’t have to register it and it is far more deadly (one shot) than any firearm you can buy. I now have one after having shot my brother-in-laws…WOW!!!!. It sends the arrow at 335 FPS and as quiet as a wisper. We were shooting it at his house at a “Block” and at 40 yards the arrow passed clean through and 20 yards further. We moved the “block” out to 53 yards and the arrow buried itself to the nock point. Out of the box these crossbows come sighted in dead nuts at 20 yards and most of them have multiple crosshairs. Deer, elk, moose won’t even no they were hit at 20-40 yards. No shock and you can watch them drop 30-40 yards away. They are not cheap, but well worth the investment.

        CM

        • Yea, I am actually probably going to get a crossbow before I get a rifle. I have always liked them, and I can concur with your results on power and silence. My ideal projectile arsenal (for me, not necessarily to arm others) would include:

          1) A crossbow and or compound bow
          2) A good .308 bolt action with a powerful scope for long range.
          3) A glock .45
          4) Either a second glock .45 or a 9mm concealable as a backup/conceal carry
          5) A .223 midrange, something like an AR-15, but not likely that model, it is a little overpriced versus some equivalent units
          6) A 12ga. with a duckbill choke and a removable plug (to allow more than 3 rounds)

          But I have not been researching that stuff much lately, so it is subject to change. Still working on blades for now, not a lot of use or storage area for projective weapons at the moment…

          • Bama Dad says:

            Jon I would recommend a .243 over a .223 for a mid range weapon. You can load a 55 grain bullet and have a great varmint load, then load a 95 grain bullet and have a good deer load. A .308 is a must have weapon. I also would recommend a .17hmr for a small game weapon to have in your survival arsenal. Also a must is reloading gear and supplies.

            • SK Trynosky Sr says:

              Don’t forget a regular .22 long rifle. Ammo will always be available and cheap. Have many pictures of my uncle Mike taking down deer with his pump .22 during the depression when he had to feed the family and that was a .22 long only. Shot placement gentlemen, shot placement.

              If the excrement hits the fan, how long before .243 disappears from the shelves or for that matter, any components for it?

              • Bama dad says:

                I rely on no store selves for my replacement ammo; I reload and have plenty of components on hand. I also have a .22 but it is a .22 mag.

              • Reloading is a big key, of course, but it is yet another thing that requires a home base to do. My concern is resupply in the field, which is why I choose to pick weapons that my enemy will likely have the ammo for.

            • I grew up with a .243 and have alwasy liked the .17. the only reason I do not list them is that they are not common rounds. I chose the .223 for availablity.

              Sk, I completely spaced, I meant to include a .22 rifle of some sort. Very cheap and available ammo, and it is permitted for hunting even in “no rifle” counties. And you can find one that is VERY lightweight. Good for living off the land if a situation calls for it. If I am alone and running, it will bring down as large a game as I should be after anyway. Deer and larger prey are too big to take full advantge of without a base camp as a lone person.

        • Bama Dad says:

          Hey Common Man how is the garden going? We are about to wrap up here with our summer garden. We have canned about 175 quarts of vegetables so far. Got the fall peas up and they are looking good, we have been busy this year putting up everything we could get our hands on. That is a good survival list you posted above.

        • …quiet as a wisper.

          The crossbow may be quiet, but your target will scream like a banshee if you don’t hit the exact right spot. 😉

          On that note, have you read The Black Arrow: A Tale of the Resistance by Vin Suprynowicz? It’s a lot more violent than I generally like, but still pretty good.

    • CM

      Voting is nothing but pulling the handle on the machine. If pulling the handle does not work, do you blame the handle?

      Or do you fix the machine?

      Find out why voting doesn’t work. Then attack each and every barrier you find.

      And by the way, the elected ass clowns (man ya gotta love that term) have not been giving us “all” the finger.

      We keep forgetting that about half the country wants the free cookies.

      • I was watching a news program last night and a representative of that half of the country actually said-that the reason the tea party is racist is because they are calling for a return to State Rights. Per this man, State Rights is evil and it is the cause of very bad things like slavery. I guess I am naive-I knew they wanted free stuff for the greater good, I knew they didn’t like capitalism, I knew some simply don’t believe in freedom but I didn’t understand that they were specifically against State Rights as a part of the separation of powers. Do democrats in general believe that state rights and capitalism are bad or is this just the extremes who are currently running our country.

        • VH.
          I have said it before, and I will say it again. What that idiot needs to realize is that slavery has existed throughout history. Every civilization has practiced it.

          Yes. In this modern age, or for that matter, any age, it is an evil practice. No person should be a slave to another. That does not mean it did not take place, nor that it does not take place even now. And people who think it doesn’t are just naive.

          How does someone who is supposed to be educated come up with the idea that if States were to reassert their rights that would make them racist? Because they are fools and only trying to keep the status quo. They are willing to say anything to stop this from happening because they know a lot of people believe that because the media is holding a mic in front of their face, they must be telling the truth.

          • SK Trynosky Sr says:

            It’s funny how they can pick and choose. I wonder if Massachusetts and its governor would have been considered racist back in the 1860’s when they raised the 54th Massachusetts Infantry under state authority only. Or to bring it at least into the 20th century, when New York raised the 15th Harlem Foot in 1917 (later the 369th Infantry), who went to war in France under the flag of NY because Black Jack didn’t want them in his National Army.

            There ought to be a basic American History test before you can run for office. Most Canadian pols seem to know more about American History than our own do.

        • V.H.

          We need to be careful about assuming that those who appear before the cameras and in print ACTUALLY represent anything but a minority.

          Just as the lefty needs to be cautious in assuming some clap trap represents the entire tea party movement.

          They fear DECENTRALIZATION because it flies in the face of their underlying philosophy of “Society Rules” over the “Individual”. You can’t sacrifice you and me unless you Centralize the Power.

          They also are linking the “States Rights” issue with the “Civil War”. Because the Tea Party and others have said the Civil War was about more than slavery, they must now link the two in their attacks.

          Superficial and idiotic. That is what they are.

          Per your comment above about taking action from within the system:

          Yes, “action” is the key. It doesn’t matter as much whether it is from within or without, as long as it is ACTION.

          Humans require ACTION to survive and evolve. Sitting still will do nothing but turn you into bear food in the long run.

          • I wasn’t assuming-I was just making a point of pointing out what some believe and that they are the ones out there speaking for Democrats and in my opinion controlling what is happening in our government right now. This is what actually drives me crazy-I don’t believe that the majority of Americans or the majority of democrats believe what is being spouted by these taking heads. Yet, they are still getting away with all this ^&#@(*.

            • I really meant talking heads but I think I prefer taking heads 🙂 🙂

            • They haven’t gotten away with it quite yet VH.

              My state insurance commisioner refused to implement Obamacare on the citizens of GA. Most of those running for his office are running on the same platform. He is running for Governor on the pledge to reduce the size of the state govt and do away with the state income tax.

              He also wants to pass a law the same as AZ. Several other states are doing THAT also.

              So there are some out there who are refusing to just lay down and let the progressives have their way.

              It remains to be seen whether or not they are successful.

      • Common Man says:

        Jac;

        I have in the last 18 months gone from pulling the republican handle to only pulling the toggle for those particular individuals I personaly believe to be true at heart. There are none at the national level that warrant this effort. Mike Rogers who is my congressman is worthy, and I have a couple that I support at the local level. That is it. Everyone else is a slug.

        Hope you are well sir, enjoying peace, a young scotch from time to time and all the freedom you are entitled too.

        Picking up the 9-point mount from last season from the Taxidermist tomorrow, trying to figure out where to hang it. Most likely next to the bear.

  10. Common Man says:

    Kent;

    Just in case you didn’t read my post I have a friend that makes sign magnets for cars/trucks. I have asked him to make me one like your “Times up” flag. Any problem with that?

    CM

    • Common Man- That would be fine with me. Send me a pic of it when it’s done, just because I like to see all the different ways the flag is being used.

    • SK Trynosky Sr says:

      Can we let Kent copyright the thing? Or will that just screw up everything?

      • I’m not a big believer in copyrights, or “intellectual property”. I just appreciate people asking permission to use the design.

      • SK,

        I had to smile.

        You are asking a man -who argues that no man can own another man, including his mind and brain- to agree to a government writ which will prevent a man from using his brain!

        I expected Kent to not copyright is design – however, I’m also sure he would be ok with any donations as appreciation of his design.

        • SK Trynosky Sr says:

          I am a great believer in using the system to subvert the system whenever possible. I think I learned this from the Communists. From your perspective, I can see where you would disagree. It would fall somewhere along the line of polluting the principle. My involvement in government work for 21 years allowed me the opportunity to subvert nicely.

          It is a hard call. I can only assure you, heh, heh that my motives are pure and after we take back the country, I will fade off into the sunset condemning my own misdeeds.

          The David Crockett quote, “Be sure you are right and then go ahead”, are words that I have lived by but let me tell you that “are right” thing is a real bitch to wrap your head around and causes no end of headaches along the way.

          • SK.

            I don’t find it hard to find out what is “right”.

            First, I measure by action on the condition of imposition – do I impose upon another?

            If the answer is Yes, I don’t do it.

            If the answer is No, then I know my action is not wrong

            If I continue, I measure my action by if it gains for me or loses for me.

            • SK Trynosky Sr says:

              Nicely said, I think I will quote you.

              Will go back to my Crockett bio’s and see if in fact he acted in that manner.

        • SK Trynosky Sr says:

          You have caused me to think again, damn you, you black hearted scoundrel! What happens if I invent a better mousetrap. Can I protect it? Don’t I need government to protect it? Can I make money on it without the Chinese making knock offs? Was eating lunch the other day in Brooklyn when the elderly Chinese lady approached me and offered me bootleg copies of movies that just opened the week before at $ 5.00 per. What should be done?

          What about that guy that invented the intermittent wind shield wiper or the fellow that first invented the plastic, funnel included, oil can? Both of these gents were ripped off but ultimately won redress through the flawed system.

          • Yea, I still beleive in copyrights and patents. I certainly believe in choosing whether to utilize them tho. I used to have a video company, our content was not licensed, our goal was to gain viewership and make money on advertising (we never made it that far). Still, it was our option. Linus, the inventor of linux, chose not to patent his operating system, and made it open source. He wants for nothing, and has made no enemies, unlike Microsoft. I support Microsoft’s right charge what they want for their stuff and license it as they see fit. They could not do this without patents and copyrights.

            Copyrights and part of the free market, part of contracts. Any fans of Rand know that she, too, supported the idea of owning intellectual property. One of the biggest points she made in Atlas Shrugged was that the mind of man is his, and that the means of production should not be taken by others without the permission of the maker or a transaction to gain said permission. I am not sure I want a free market without copyrights. What is my motivation to invent? IF I have plenty to invest or trustworthy investors, then I am ok, but what if I do not? What keeps a rich man from taking my idea and mass producing it and advertising it and making tons on it, and shutting me out of my own market?

            • Jon

              I support Microsoft’s right charge what they want for their stuff and license it as they see fit. They could not do this without patents and copyrights.

              I support Microsoft’s right to charge whatever price they wish on their product.

              I support Microsoft’s right to make contracts as they see fit.

              They can do all of that without patents and copyrights.

              Copyrights and part of the free market, part of contracts

              .

              Copyrights are NOT at all – even a half-an-atom-worth, part of the Free Market. They are a creation of government writ and require government force on non-violent men to enforce that writ, thus completely opposite to FREE and VOLUNTARY exchange.

              A contract exists by Mutual Agreement between the parties.

              A Copyright is a UNILATERAL WRIT by one party and enforced by government. Again it is OPPOSITE to the basics of a Contract

              Any fans of Rand know that she, too, supported the idea of owning intellectual property.

              One of the reasons I am not a Randian is because she held many contradictions to her professed philosophy, and this is one of them.

              Either a man owns himself or he does not.

              Intellectual Property is what is in my brain and it is mine, not yours to use.

              What you have in YOUR brain is yours to use, and not mine.

              To believe that what I have in my brain is now owned by you is utterly bizarre.

              I am not sure I want a free market without copyrights.

              Have no fear.

              The moment you advocate copyrights, you do not have a free market.

              What is my motivation to invent?

              Ask all the great inventors of the ages and they will say “To do improve the existence of mankind”.

              Many got rich because people wanted to buy the goods from the man who invented it.

              Because anyone else could produce the goods too, he could produce the goods cheaper – because he invented it! Few could compete with his knowledge of manufacture and design, so they didn’t.

              But once inventors bought into the lie of government, inventors sold their soul for pennies. Now, inventors are afraid of the market – that they can’t compete selling their own goods! The brain mush-muddle is amazing to watch!

              IF I have plenty to invest or trustworthy investors, then I am ok, but what if I do not? What keeps a rich man from taking my idea and mass producing it and advertising it and making tons on it, and shutting me out of my own market?

              Nothing! Except I’d bet YOU ARE SMARTER THEN HE IS about your own invention!

              You can sell “Original Inventor product” and he can’t.

              “Buy the best, buy the Original”!

              Seems to work today, no? IBM sells billions of desktop computers, don’t they? Nokia sells billions of phones, don’t they?

              So why are YOU AFRAID? If the Free Market already shows how easy it is to sell your invention, why do you need violence on non-violent men to do it?

              • I will have to noodle that for a bit. I can think of a lot of examples where this would cause problems and potentially slow innovation. On the other hand, I see your point about a market being free or not. I do not agree at this point. Like I said, gotta noodle this one, my position has not been challenged on this before.

          • SK,

            You have caused me to think again, damn you, you black hearted scoundrel

            That is, truly, my job.

            What happens if I invent a better mousetrap. Can I protect it?

            You bet! You take the device you created, and put it away safely. You can etch in a serial number on yours so you can tell yours from mine.

            Don’t I need government to protect it?

            Nope. The mouse trap you made with your own hands can be protected from my theft by your own hands.

            But I don’t have to steal yours, I can make my own by following your design.

            That way, you get to keep yours and I can make mine and enjoy it too!

            Can I make money on it without the Chinese making knock offs?

            Sure! You can sell better quality and/or cheaper price then the knock offs!

            Why do you think “knock offs” exists?

            (1) The “original” copy is priced too high for what it can do. The original manufacturer is ripping off the consumer, and the Chinese moved in to offer the same thing at a more fair price to the consumer. Good for them, because the CONSUMER is King, not the inventor or the manufacturer in a Free Market!

            (2) The Chinese quality is lower than the original. This gives the poor access to the same basic goods as available to the rich minus as small drop in quality. But at least the poorer consumers still get to act like a King in the market place and enjoy essentially the same goods as the rich. Without the Chinese, the poor would only get to look at the goods, and never own something close to it.

            Was eating lunch the other day in Brooklyn when the elderly Chinese lady approached me and offered me bootleg copies of movies that just opened the week before at $ 5.00 per. What should be done?

            Buy me a copy too!

            What about that guy that invented the intermittent wind shield wiper or the fellow that first invented the plastic, funnel included, oil can? Both of these gents were ripped off but ultimately won redress through the flawed system.

            The Free Market system makes the CONSUMER king of the market place.

            You cannot have a Free Market system if you make the INVENTOR the king of the market place

            To make the Inventor the king of the market, you will need to use massive violence on the consumers to force the consumers to buy from the inventor, and no one else.

            This will create monopolies (government force creates monopolies) and the market place will suffer all the perversions that monopolies create: artificially high prices, a drop in quality, scarcity, and a massive transfer of wealth into the hands of a very few “elite” who are aligned to the inventors and the government.

            The inventor of the wipers was not “ripped off”. He demanded ownership of another man’s brain to the degree that other man was not allowed to use his own ability and intelligence to create a product from his own hands.

            If you want a Free Market, you cannot have “Copyright” or “Patents”, etc.

            If you want a Cartel systems and Cronyism Market place, you can have Copyright or Patents etc.

            Either the Consumer is King or the Inventor is King. Both cannot be King at the same time.

            • SK Trynosky Sr says:

              I think back to the concept of dumping. While I admit that there were innovations in the motorcycle world brought about by the Japanese entry into the market in the 1960’s, There also was the issue of dumping.

              Let us suppose that Harley Davidson was ready to meet the new challenge from Japan and produce cheaper, smaller commuting bikes instead of their traditional hog. Could they, a relatively small American Company, acting independently compete against Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki backed to the hilt by the Japanese Government.

              I think that it was fairly obvious then that their bikes as well as their electronics were sold at or below cost in a brazen attempt to successfully drive competitors out of the marketplace. As soon as this was accomplished the price of the product rose to reflect its actual cost plus profit. There seem to be no cheap Honda’s anymore, nor Toyotas for that matter.

              Above, and as always, you reflect on doing no harm or not imposing on others. Buying a knock off of a film or CD or using my mousetrap plan would seem to me to be akin to theft. I’d like to take a vote on that as a matter of fact. In my prior analogy about the intermittent windshield wiper, a very large corporation took the idea from a very small inventor, ran with it and CHARGED A PREMIUM FOR IT IN THEIR VEHICLES. How is that not theft nor doing no harm?

              Lets also remember that many knock-offs imported from overseas come with fake labels. There is a deliberate attempt to fool the consumer in many cases. When the product fails, the consumer blames the manufacturer whose name is on the product not the counterfeiter. His name is dragged in the mud, harm is done and his livelihood is threatened. I know that I am not going to get a Rolex watch on a street corner for $ 10.00 but many of those fakes have found their way into regular commerce.

              • Lets also remember that many knock-offs imported from overseas come with fake labels.

                That is fraud, which I think we can all agree is a form of harm.

              • Hmm,

                It is fraud, and it is immoral, but harm? I don’t think so.

                If you buy something from someone you do not know or trust, why are you surprised that the goods maybe fake?

                The choice of purchase is yours and yours alone to make. No one has a gun to your head.

                It is your decision, thus your own level of investigation and research – including the honor of the person doing the selling.

              • Below

              • SK Trynosky Sr

                There also was the issue of dumping

                I think that it was fairly obvious then that their bikes as well as their electronics were sold at or below cost in a brazen attempt to successfully drive competitors out of the marketplace. .

                Yahoo! And let it happen every day!

                SK, you go to the store, and you see your favorite drink on sale for 50% off.

                Do you say to yourself “those darn guys, they are trying to drive out competitors”
                or do you say “Yahoo! I’m buying 4x as much!”

                If the Japanese people are willing to subsidize you, why are you arguing with them??

                If you came to me and said, “BF, I’ll pay you to buy my product”, (and I liked your product) I’d say “Gimme Gimme Gimme!!”

                If someone is giving up their wealth to you, you’d be foolish to say no.

                As soon as this was accomplished the price of the product rose to reflect its actual cost plus profit. There seem to be no cheap Honda’s anymore, nor Toyotas for that matter.

                Never happens that way – ever (except if government forces it).

                Harley is still around, so is BMW, the Italian bikes, the Germans, etc.

                If a business needs to sell below cost to attract customers, they will attract the customers that will buy at the low price.

                This is a truth, because these customers did not buy at the higher price.

                As soon as the price goes up, these people do not buy.

                The other competitors simply withdraw from the market place and save their capital. When the prices go up again, the re-enter the market and continue right on.

                In all cases, the under cutter is the big loser and the consumer is the big winner.

                Further, why do you give a rat’s butt about Harley or Toyota?

                You should be concerned about you! If you get a product that is so undervalued to you, you should CHEER!

                Don’t worry about the supplier, that’s his job is to worry about himself. In a free market, you are King – take the goods, and smile!

                Dumping is a political issue. It is a group of suppliers who can’t compete, and demand government interfere with you, the consumer to force you to buy their product instead of another product that obviously has better value for you, the consumer

                For you to champion your own loss by supporting anti-“dumping” laws is bizarre to me.

                Above, and as always, you reflect on doing no harm or not imposing on others. Buying a knock off of a film or CD or using my mousetrap plan would seem to me to be akin to theft.

                SK, explain what they steal?

                Did they sneak into the warehouse and steal those CD’s?

                Or did they make the copies themselves?

                Are you claiming the knowledge in my head is yours, just because it is in your head too?

                I’d like to take a vote on that as a matter of fact. In my prior analogy about the intermittent windshield wiper, a very large corporation took the idea from a very small inventor, ran with it and CHARGED A PREMIUM FOR IT IN THEIR VEHICLES. How is that not theft nor doing no harm?

                What did they steal? Did they kill someone stealing something? Did they beat the blazes out the guy with thugs?

                Your definition of “harm” is specious. (Superficially plausible, but actually wrong: “a specious argument”.2. Misleading in appearance)

                Lets also remember that many knock-offs imported from overseas come with fake labels.

                So?

                There is a deliberate attempt to fool the consumer in many cases.

                So? You want to be protected from your own stupidity.

                If you do not know who you are buying from, whose fault is that?

                When the product fails, the consumer blames the manufacturer whose name is on the product not the counterfeiter. His name is dragged in the mud, harm is done and his livelihood is threatened.

                No, its not.

                They say “We didn’t make it, you were stupid to buy it from an unauthorized dealer (that is why they create AUTHORIZED DEALERS) and its all your fault that you were stupid. Hope you learned your lesson”

                I know that I am not going to get a Rolex watch on a street corner for $ 10.00 but many of those fakes have found their way into regular commerce.

                …bought by stupid people who are lazy. They want to be protected from their own greed and stupidity. Sorry, nope. The Universe doesn’t work that way.

          • What about the guy who invented the wheel or the one who first discovered how to make fire without finding a naturally occurring one to light his fire? “Intellectual property” is a pretty new concept, and one I don’t see lasting too far into the future. Don’t hang on to the anomaly too tightly.

            I have a couple of pirated DVDs. When I bought them (on eBay, years ago) I thought I was buying a “real” copy. The quality is poor and I much prefer the real “official” copies. Still, you get what you pay for- and few are willing to pay for more than they actually get.

  11. Kent,

    Couple thoughts. If your presidential run would have been successful you would have then been an “elite”.

    Assume you were successful…What are you gonna do with the radicals like LaRaza or the folks demanding shari law, or the Black Panthers, etc, etc..?

    Off to the lake. Have a nice weekend everyone.. Stay Cool !!!!!

    • If you have ever read of my plans for my presidency, you would see that it was my intention to eliminate the position as fast as I could; putting myself out of a job. Mostly I campaigned on a promise to dismantle the federal government, from the inside, as fast as I could before I got assassinated. Also to pardon as many people as possible for violating counterfeit “laws”, and use the tool of Executive Orders to end as many federal agencies, programs, and policies as I could, before banning executive orders with an executive order. I had also declared I would not accept the salary that went with the position.

      I’m not delusional enough to think I would ever get elected to anything, but my campaign opened a lot of doors and got the message of Liberty out there in some small way. In that I feel it was a success.

    • As far as the radicals wanting to take over government and “the law” to impose their own illegitimate rules on the rest of us- if you get rid of the tool (externally-imposed government), what will they co-opt? If you get rid of the “laws” which criminalize self-defense and the best tools for self defense how many of these aggressors will survive long enough to impose their twisted desires on the rest of us?

  12. I just got done voting yesterday fot our Governor. Don’t know how much good it does, but I have to vote. That’s my admittedly small voice in Government, and I have to do so.

    I have huge respect for both Kent and BF’s point of view concerning our Govt. I may not always agree, but I can always at least see their point.

    To me, life without ANY Govt would be a disaster. Someone out there is ALWAYS going to want to be the boss. Be it Dictator, Despot, Social or Republican Govt., somebody ain’t gonna be content with just being an Indian, dey gots to be de Chief!

    I don’t like it. I don’t approve. But that’s the fact.

    The biggest problem I see with it also, is that someone not only wants to be the boss, but somehow they can come up with an army to back up their claim. And isn’t it a shame that there are that many fools willing to back an even bigger moron to grab and enforce power over the rest of us?

    Of course, it’s even easier to do so if they disarm us first! Because if we are all armed, most are going to hesitate to try to enforce their will when their personal hide is at risk. The only thing is, their are a lot of morons out their unlike most on this site who would actually welcome someone taking charge over them, no matter what kind of Government it was. Especially if the person in question had a trough full of goodies to offer. But freebies or not, especially in the cities, most don’t think they could survive without govt, and most of those are right! They have been at the Govt titty too long to live on their own.

    I personally would welcome having Govt out of my life. I just don’t see it happening. In fact, in the furure, I see MORE Govt, not less.

    • Someone out there is ALWAYS going to want to be the boss. Be it Dictator, Despot, Social or Republican Govt., somebody ain’t gonna be content with just being an Indian, dey gots to be de Chief!

      Right. There will always be bad guys. It’s just suicidal to allow those sick puppies to pretend they have a “right” to be boss. But if you eliminate the illusion of legitimacy, get rid of the “office” or position they seek, then anyone they try to boss around can ignore them and shoot them if they keep pushing.

      • And indeed you are right Kent. But that is the sticking point right there. How many are willing to shoot if they keep pushing?

        Most of us here undoubtedly. But think of those liberal, crying towel idiots out there. Most of them won’t, and those are just the ones the Warlord/Dictators are counting on.

        • I think mostly what keeps people from shooting now is the perception that the “bosses” are legitimate. After all, look how many people shoot other bad guys who break into their homes, yet allow cops to do the same thing without really fighting back. The ones who do fight back are usually unaware that the bad guys kicking in the door have badges until the shooting is over.

          Or the people who will shoot a freelance thug who attempts a carjacking or a kidnapping, but they cooperate with “officially sanctioned” thugs committing the exact same act.

          If a goon moved into your town and declared himself Ruler, do you think people would obey him, or would some responsible person with sniper skills take him out the first time he stood behind a podium to address his new subjects? What if he is paying some ethically-deficient locals to provide armed security? And what’s the real difference between that scenario and what we have now?

          • Common Man says:

            You know I have some friends that are law enforcment representatives, however should they call on me for a professional reason they already know they will be dealt with according to my Constitutional rights. No warrant no entry.

            Despite a relationship I do not trust those’friends’ to put friendship over profession; and I would not allow them to be placed into a circumstance that would force them to choose.

            Shooting a bad guy – no issue, just put the lazer beem where you want the bullet to go and squeeze the trigger.

            CM

    • I think we need two countries. Maybe even three. One for sure with the Progressive, all things to all people. Another with the, what are we JAC? The Very Damn Little Government Crowd? And maybe a third for BF and Kent’s people. Or perhaps they could live in the VDLG Nation, as long as we allow them their own space, which I don’t see a problem with.

      • If there was a revolution, we would likely split into at least 4 or five anyway. I see a revolution starting over a state cessesion or nullification issue, not a grass roots nationwide move. We just have to pick one and make sure it becomes a VDLG state.

        • Which is why I support all the state secession movements, even if I don’t expect them to get anywhere. Anything that annoys the federal gov amuses me, and I like seeing governments at odds with one another. It keeps them busy and lets the rest of us get away with more.

          • You know Kent, I believe that might be a good strategy. Give the Feds so much to keep track of, that they can’t focus on just one.

            I don’t know whether or not the Nation splitting would be a good thing, but I don’t know how much longer I can stand the direction we are headed in either.

  13. Kent makes a very valid point in his train analogy … but … a government free society is as likely to happen as is a pure marxist state. In the meantime what we have, no matter which side of the tracks you’re on, is exactly what Kent suggests (a system by which the status quo doesn’t move but a few degrees one way or the other (and always back and forth).

    If we could start over, I might be inclined toward a strict Libertarian form of government. We can’t start over and thus we have to deal with the mess we have now. Small steps … vote anything BUT either major party and it’s a step in the right direction (no matter which side of the political aisle you’re on). Voting for either Dems and Reps is spitting into a hurricane; nothing more, nothing less.

    I remain torn between the two worlds; I’m inherently liberal, yet absolutely agree that government (at least ours during my adult lifetime) is too corrupt to trust. I see no difference between Bush and Obama (other than rhetorical clap trap).

    Whatever we do, we need to 1st) change U.S. citizenship law (no more born here qualifies), 2nd) secure borders and seriously limit those we can begin to afford to support and then worry about how it’s going to be done (but that’s where I turn a bit more liberal) …

    Have a good weekend. Now that this world cup nonsense is over, we can get back to some serious footall … Bills win at least 5 games this year. Any takers?

    • Charlie,

      A “government free” society cannot happen – there will always be men who will use violence on non-violent people.

      What can happen is that these men – whether they claim “government” or are merely the raw criminals they really are – we’ll call them exactly that – murderous thieving criminals, and instead of obeying them we will resist their evil.

      That’s all it takes – simply not obeying.

      • BF, I would agree except for one point, as regrettable as it is.

        It takes simply not obeying, and having the firepower to enforce your not obeying.

        • Indeed, it is this “not obeying” that represents the dangerous aspect of the leap from the train. Not all will survive it. Even if all could survive it, not all will have the courage to make such a leap, because “not obeying” is, in the end, neither simple nor without potential consequence. I may have rose-colored glasses towards the vote, but sometimes I think you have it towards non-compliance and ignoring the system.

        • Firepower is good, but avoiding the need to use it is much better. Ignoring the bullies is more powerful than shooting them. They actually like it when you shoot at them (maybe not “them” individually, but at someone in their gang), because then they have an excuse to shoot back. And their gang is bigger than your immediately available gang. But, they are still nothing more than a gang of bullies with silly uniforms and titles.

          Ignoring them, without gaining their attention, is the worst thing you can do, from their perspective. That’s why they try to bully you into showing yourself and making a scene. By passing more and more “laws” and imposing on more and more of your life. They want you to crack so they can get you into “the criminal justice system”. (Or kill you) Then they can destroy you, after making you look bad to the sheeple, as a warning to others.

          I do not obey a lot of “laws”- I do obey the ones that I don’t feel like dying over. There are some “laws” that I would rather die than obey, and so far it has not come down to that. Choose your battles and know where your line in the sand lies.

          • In the sense of the Govt we have now, firpower is only a metaphor for having the strength of position to disobey. For example, it would not much matter if I tried to resist or not, I do not have the strength or power to get my message out there and make a difference. Be a Martyer.

            In the sense of a Warlord in a world after the collapse of all civilization, (Mad Max type)of course I am talking about actual firepower and the will to blow somebody’s brains out to enforce my right to disobey. 🙂

  14. I am going off topic for just a sec.

    Slavery. What a detestable practice it is. I’m pretty damn sure we can ALL agree with that. But, I am so sick and tired of hearing how my South, the South, I will add, that I NEVER knew, nor even my Great Grandaddy knew, practiced Slavery.

    Yes they did. And yes, predjudice and bigotry has taken place, NOT ONLY IN THE SOUTH BY A DAMN SIGHT, ever since. And let’s not forget that this race baiting, bigotry, and predjudice is not just taking place among the white folk either! Oh HELL naw!! It takes place in EVERY corner of the globe, by EVERY race. There will ALWAYS be bigots in the world. ALWAYS.

    Blacks are not the only race to be enslaved. That is also something ALL races have in common. They have all been slaves at one time in their history. The South of my ancestors was only AMERICA’S last slaveholders.

    And not only were America’s black population’s ancestor’s slaves, but in most cases, they were sold into slavery in AFRICA by their fellow AFRICANS from different tribes.

    SO. We’re all agreed that black’s were once slaves, and some idiots today are still bigots. Be they Black, White, Latino, or Chinese. Or any other race. In My Humble Opinion, GET OVER IT!!!!!!!!!!!!! The South of slavery was 150 years ago. I have never, nor would I, own Slaves. I also am NOT Predjudice against anyone EXCEPT those folks who are predjudice against me and mine. And even that is only to the extent of saying that you had best stay your bigoted ass away from my family! I don’t like bigots, no matter why or what color.

    So all I can say to the race baiters and the bigots out there is this. SHUT THE HELL UP!! All you do is make the issue of race stay in the public spotlight. And while I know that is your intention, you had best not expect me to apologize or give credence to your poor plight.

    Life is what you make of it. That is true no matter what race you are or what society you come from.

    End of Esom’s Rant on Racism.

    • None of my ancestors, as far as I know, ever owned any slaves. They were all too poor. They were probably more likely to have been slaves (or at least indentured servants) had they not moved beyond “civilization”.

      Yet, the abolitionists stopped before their task was complete: slavery still continues in America today. Right out in the open.

      A free man owns his body, his life, and the products of his labor. A slave does not, but is told what to do with his body and life, and is forced to hand over a portion of the products of his labor. He may be “permitted” to keep some, so he doesn’t die and “cheat” the master out of a productive slave.

      How much of the products of your labor does your master require you to hand over? How much of your life does he dictate, and how often does he tell you what you are permitted to do with your body?

      • Unfortunately, after doing my family Geneology, I discovered that some of my ancestors did own slaves. One in particular in North Carolina owned almost 400 slaves.

        But those were my Ancestors. Not me. That was the times they lived in. Not now.

        I am by cracky not responsible for my ancestors nor do I owe anyone who has never been a slave reparations because my ancestors MAY have owned theirs. I don’t owe them a thing. Not even an apology, much less money.

        But you are technically right Ken. My Federal slave master takes way too much from me already. I find myself VERY unwilling to give them more.

        • SK Trynosky Sr says:

          Some day Esom, in the not too distant future, the human genome (sp.) project will be complete. At that point, we will all find out just how inter related we are as a species. I think that will be very interesting.

          My ancestors seem to be Rusyns from Galacia. This area, where modern Russia, Poland and the Ukraine join together which is also not too far from Slovakia and Hungary is a real mish-mash. I have these high cheekbones and deep set eyes. I also, in my youth had a pronounced red streak in my beard. Just where in the hell did that all come from?

          So, my friend, you are absolutely right. In the not too distant past, we were all related to slaves or something damned close.

          Knowing many Jews and Israelis who range from light skinned, blue eyed blonds to almost black, I was surprised many years ago to find out that your Jewishness comes from your Mom’s side. When I inquired why from a knowledgeable Jewish friend, he said that you may not always know who the daddy is but you always know who the mom is. I assume he was referring to the rape and pillage thing that occurs so often in history when governments changed. So, one day, we will all be able to sing “It’s a small world after all” with utter seriousness.

          Knowing bit more about history than POTUS (rocket scientist that he is), I got a real kick out of his bow to the King of the Saudi’s. This is the man who represents all those who enslaved perhaps POTUS ancestors , unless of course they were themselves slave dealers but certainly the ancestors of Mrs. POTUS.

          • Agreed. I believe eventually, probably long after we are gone, there will be no “races”. We will eventually be mostly the same color, probably a light brown or tan. And you won’t be able to tell a person’s homeland from their name either. For instance, a George Yamamoto may be from Georgia, and have red hair and blue eyes. 🙂

            If anyone here reads scifi like I do, most authors seem to believe the same thing, from their writings. And we see more race mixing every day.

            I don’t say that it is wrong, just that it is the way it is. It is life.

            • My biological responses don’t seem to notice “race”. A gorgeous girl is a gorgeous girl. Bring on the mixing! 😉

              • Lol, There are things we disagree on, this one is not even close to being one of them. Race is NOT part of most men’s sex drive, and in some cases the tendency is to prefer mixing. 🙂

  15. V.H.

    You can never lose a right until you are dead. Not by refusing to vote, or by losing a vote. No matter what violations of that right may be committed. No matter what the “law” may be, your rights still exist just the same.

    Your liberty (the freedom to exercise your rights) can be destroyed, though.

    We have almost no freedom to exercise our absolute human right to own and to carry guns anymore. Too many people have accepted the lie of the Rulers that they have the authority to place “reasonable limits” on our rights. They do not. You have an absolute right to own and carry a machine gun in Time’s Square, if you want, but you have no right to point it at anyone who is not attacking someone in some way. What would happen if you exercised that right? You would be killed. Voting hasn’t succeeded in protecting your freedom to exercise your right to own and to carry a gun very well.

    • It is easy to point out the problems much harder to determine what would have been.

      • If no one had ever been given the tool of externally-imposed government, with which to violate our rights while being beyond reach of “legal” self defense, how could our liberties have been systematically whittled away?

        I’m not saying the situation couldn’t be worse; obviously it could. Just look at the UK or Australia. But why do people permit this violation to continue? Because we have been tricked into thinking “the system” is sacred and we must go along with violations if we are on the losing side of a vote. That’s silly. A majority has no more authority to violate the rights of a lone man than he has to violate the rights of the majority. Rights are not up for a vote or majority opinion. And they are not subject to “laws” imposed by Rulers.

        • I agree with you that if one has government it is a danger to freedom.But I cannot go back and change that which has happened though the years. I must deal with what is, now, not what “might” have been better. I use might because I can see what has become of our society because of the power of government growing which I lay at the shoulders of the people for forgetting that what we were founded on could be lost. But I can visualize what total lack of government could birth and I have little confidence that what I see as a possibility would be good either. But I’m a realist so I see the possibility of becoming a government free society very doubtful unless our country truly falls and if that happens I will have much more vital things to concern myself with, so I am concentrating on trying to slow down the craziness and to turn back towards more freedom. The philosophical points are interesting and they are a wonderful tool to teach how and why we are losing our freedoms but even if everyone agreed with them it would take time to change.

          • …it would take time to change

            That is true if you try to change all of society at once, but that isn’t really necessary. You only need to change yourself from inside. That might not be instantaneous, but it can happen pretty dang quick when those scales fall off of your eyes. It is also the most effective change you can make. In fact, it is the only thing you can truly change.

      • exactly V, one could theorize that without government at all we would have been overrun, or would have collapsed into a feudal society. That might not be the case, but there is a lot about where we are that was made possible by the groundwork laid by the founders and our early experiments with freedom and society. We might have been ok without it, it is all theory. We might never have rached a point where BF or Kent existed, or we might be in a spot where their thinking was the majority and theories like Marxism would be scoffed at as laughable children’s ideas.

        • …theories like Marxism would be scoffed at as laughable children’s ideas

          Already do that myself. It would be funnier if its proponents didn’t claim the authority to kill those who disagree… but that’s the case with all forms of authoritarianism, isn’t it.

  16. I have to go for the night. For USW, and especially for Kent. You have given me a lot to think on. Very good topic and very thought provoking. Thank you.

  17. Today, the most evil weapon in history, conceived by evil government, and then used on innocent people, was born 60 years ago today.

  18. Hi, Kent..you and I have not talked as far as I know. USW, you, and everyone on here are just about all saying the same thing. A lot of “don’t tread on me” … I will not obey this law or that, free societies, governments that are bad ( I do not know a good one )…evil system…inflicting violence on the non violent..protect your own..etc.

    Great points and great speech-a-fy-in’. Now, everyone has identified all the problems and where the bad boys are and will be…so what now? There are those that do not vote. It is stated that ” a vote for a republican or democrat is still a bad vote for government.” ok…agreed. What now? It has been stated that a “no” vote is a vote of no confidence and a persons individual choice and right of protest. Ok…agreed. What now? Do we keep writing on blogs? Do we keep orating eloquent speeches? Do we keep waxing philosophical? What now?

    Armed insurrection? Civil War? I doubt that because the very people on here that are being philosophical, etc…are the same ones that hate war (and the military) anywhere and that would include insurrection and civil war….or it should lest they be hypocrites. What now? There is a lot of complaining and very little action other than ideas and suggestions and “I wish it were’s”…so What now?

    First you say, that you do not obey some laws because they are stupid, or words to that effect but then you obey the laws that won’t get you into trouble. Is that not hypocritical? If you hate this system so much, then why do you pick and choose which laws to obey and then which ones to disobey based upon the effect on you..(please, none of this I am a free man to choose which law I obey…it is still hypocrisy, is it not? To complain about the system and that we should all fight it and then obey the very laws that the system invents…is this not hypocrisy? Obey none of them or obey all of them is consistent, is it not?

    I do not like our current system and the way it is going right now. I do not like the crooks in Washington and the theft of my hard earned money. I do not like the open borders, high taxes, being the world’s policeman, etc….BUT..that is the reality of it.

    We have a broken government. It has a procedure. It has a system…albeit a crappy one. But it is in place. I have not seen or I missed it, one suggestion as to how to change it…I hear a lot of…we should do this and do that but who is going to do it? In the meantime, we still have the taxes, the government, the crooks, the illegals, the criminals. We still have to put food on the table and water in the jug and gas in our car and electricity for our computers..

    So, do we keep complaining and sit back and do nothing? Or do we try to change the system within and using the system. You, Kent, make very good points…but if you and I went out in my neighborhood right now….tonight….and raised these issues and told everyone to grab their musket and quit paying taxes, quit voting, quit obeying laws, quit supporting your candidates………when the morning sun comes up…we will still be the only two people out there if not in jail for disturbing the peace.

    So………………………………JAC< CM< USW<CHARLIE< JON KENT….go ahead it is open season on Col. D13 for his rant.

    • Calling on DPM for some fire support.

    • I am working on that one D13.

      I am still one willing to work within the system we have, using the model of the founders. I am willing to take up arms for freedom, but not yet. Part of why I cannot do it yet is that we have not even come close to exhausting the tools we have at our disposal.

      The founders petitioned Britain for greivances, they used every means they had within the legal system of the day to have their rights recognized, they even were willing to settle for less than freedom if they had to. When they built our system, they built in certain things to make it possible for the people to have a greater voice.

      For me the next steps are:
      1) Continue voting third party. A vote to break the status quo of the two main parties is good. Sort of like Kent’s thing about supporting cessation movements, even if they get nowhere it is good harrassment and mihgt just send a good message.
      2) Continue blogging and educating and influencing people, the more we have on our side the better. Also, the more we develop a position that welcomes all the more support we can gain. Even if we do not have support, it helps to know where we stand and what we stand for.
      3) Petition the government for a redress of greivances. I have a list of 43 and am developing a petition site as we speak. I hope to have it up in a month or so.
      4) For those who dare, stop paying taxes on anything you can. Sales tax is hard to avoid, income tax is easier. I get as much under the radar as I can.
      5) Prepare for collapse or war, one or the other or both is coming if we do not succeed in stopping the train. This last one will not fix the problem, it just makes sure we live to fix another day.

      • Thank you, Jon. You listed things that you are doing. I say….go for it. I am doing my things as well….within the system.

        • And I have no problems with the things you are doing, or that Kent is doing, just as you do not. Steps 1 thru 3 are within the system as well, and are taking advantage of freedoms that do actually remain. I have not totally given up hope that our system can be recovered, even with an economic collapse, but I am beginning to prepare for the contingency that it doesnt.

          You and I disagree on borders still, but I understand where you are coming from, and it was mostly your perspective that openned my eyes to the violence that is occurring there, leading me to support putting troops on the border to defend the lives and property of people on the border. I will be doing a follow-up piece to my first article on immigration on my blog with my new perspective, even tho the final result in my thinking is similar.

    • What now? Do we keep writing on blogs? Do we keep orating eloquent speeches? Do we keep waxing philosophical? What now?

      All of that and more.

      …the same ones that hate war (and the military) anywhere…

      I don’t necessarily hate the military, since the militia is necessary to keep tyranny at bay. But the government-paid and -controlled military is a threat to America and to my individual liberty.

      War is always bad, but when you are attacked, it is sometimes better than just lying down and taking it. Don’t start a war, and don’t invade other people’s territory (which is “starting a war”), but if people come to your home looking to enslave or kill you you have an absolute right to kill them instead.

      First you say, that you do not obey some laws because they are stupid, or words to that effect but then you obey the laws that won’t get you into trouble.

      No, I obey “laws” if they don’t force me to violate my principles and if they don’t inconvenience me too greatly. I DISobey the ones that won’t get me into trouble. Sometimes. Actually, I disobey a lot of them that could get me in a lot of trouble, I just don’t flaunt it.

      …then why do you pick and choose which laws to obey and then which ones to disobey based upon the effect on you…

      Because I am not suicidal and I choose my battles. I have no desire to be a martyr. I am fully aware I live in a society which is under a group of aggressors who call themselves “government”. That means I am not as free as I’d like. No matter whether government exists or not, there will always be bad guys trying to boss others around. Smart people who want to survive will learn to exercise their rights in such a way as to not get too much notice from those bad guys, or their lackies. If I say I love chocolate cake, but I refuse to eat chocolate cake laced with rat poison when it is offered to me, does that make me a hypocrite? If so, I will let you show me how to not be a hypocrite under the same conditions. And I will say a nice poem in your memory.

      Obey none of them or obey all of them is consistent, is it not?

      Absolutely not. There are some laws that are right, such as laws against theft, rape, kidnapping, murder, etc. Obey them because they happen to be right, not because they are laws.

      We have a broken government. It has a procedure….I have not seen or I missed it, one suggestion as to how to change it.

      Why do you assume it has to be changed? If your car falls off a cliff, and in the process gets a flat tire, it is a waste of time to change the tire. If you survived the crash, walk away from the wreckage and stop having an emotional attachment to it. Just go about your life “put[ting] food on the table and water in the jug and gas in our car and electricity for our computers.” None of those thing require a government. Not one. And move beyond your hatred of “the illegals”, since you are also one whether you like it or not. You have just broken different counterfeit “laws” than those you resent.

      So, do we keep complaining and sit back and do nothing?

      If you see what I am doing as “complaining”, then I have failed. I am trying to educate and show people a better way that actually works. I know it works. It doesn’t hurt me any if no one else comes with me, but it makes me sad to see people running in circles and thinking they are really doing something. As I have said many times, I think there is a value in people working toward liberty in any way they enjoy, even if they are trying something that has never worked. It keeps government distracted somewhat. And, as long as you are pulling in my direction, toward more liberty and away from more powerful (or encompassing) government, I’ll not try to stop you. Just don’t try to stop me when you have “enough liberty” for you.

      …if you and I went out in my neighborhood right now….tonight….and raised these issues and told everyone to grab their musket and quit paying taxes, quit voting, quit obeying laws, quit supporting your candidates………when the morning sun comes up…we will still be the only two people out there if not in jail for disturbing the peace.

      Because they are not ready yet. It’s like trying to teach trigonometry to chimps. You must focus on an audience that is ready to learn, is willing to listen, and can actually think about the concepts after the computer is hibernating and beyond my feeble attempts to communicate what I know. That’s why I still visit SUFA. If I feel like wasting my time, I have other ways of doing that. I have never felt this place is a waste of time. 🙂

      • Kent….I understand perfectly where you are coming from…I really do get it. Do not misunderstand me. I am a 40 year military man….but one main thing….I was reserve for 30 of those forty years. I have owned and do own business’ and used to employ hundreds. I now hire independent contractors and have gone away from the employment sector. I hire and have hired ONLY legal citizens because to hire an illegal citizen is not what I believe I am supposed to do. You have no right to tell me otherwise as I have no right to impinge upon you. My ten years active service taught me some things and in my 30 years, I got to see and play on both sides of the fence. I like to think that this gives me a little greater perspective. I like to think that, since my family is very wealthy and I did not have to go in the military at all, that this gives me a greater perspective. I could easily be a trust fund baby and have chosen not to do this. I have made my own way….opened up by an obviously great education when I was younger. So, I like to think that I have perspective where others do not. This does NOT make me a messiah. One messiah in the White House is one too many.

        Ok, I can buy your theory of trying to change the world or even this country. You are entitled to that. I have read your blog and this one (personally, I think the SUFA has the best quality of total responders) but the only thing that you have said about changing things is……educate. Ok…this I can get my thinking around. Educate away….and if your opinion is that educating one person at a time in your thought process is the way to go…so be it.

        But I caution this… we already have a “new face” in the white house and a “new direction” in Congress. Neither is working and it is the system that is broken. Your analogy of the car off the cliff and just walking away from the wreckage is not consistent…..in MY opinion. (I am entitled to my opinion in your world, I hope).

        I have seen many on this site and others cherry pick history and then blame the world’s ills on the United States. I have endured the ridicule of a very small minority saying that my military service as part of a professional military, both active and reserve, has been the problem and that I am something despicable….when the despicable ones are the gnat bites and wasp stings of society that rise and fall under the freedoms that we provide and then question how it is provided….to coin a phrase from a movie. This is also ok. I just simply laugh and go on.

        But ridicule for the sake of ridicule is pointless. Rebel rousing for the sake of rebel rousing is pointless. If you wish to educate in what you believe and if you believe that your way is best…COOL A MUNDO. Go for it for it is your opinion.

        Kent says, ” as long as you are pulling in my direction, toward more liberty and away from more powerful (or encompassing) government, I’ll not try to stop you. Just don’t try to stop me when you have “enough liberty” for you.”

        Great words and a great statement. I would replace one word….that word is the “my” direction….how about in the direction of liberty…we already have a “my” in Washington…the world is full of the “my’s” But you must do one thing….you must do as you ask….you must not try to stop others either.

        Ok, you choose your battles….you are playing the system yourself. You do not wish to be a martyr…one question…Why not? I can tell you why…you do not want to give up your life for what you believe. I have almost done that for what I believe. I am just glad that I could run or duck a little better and shoot straighter.

        I have endured some on this site that say that the US is the hegemony expert and that the troubles of the world all revolve around the United States. This is pure bunk and most people know it. Some call the military murderers because they follow their government and do not over throw it. You ask me to get over my hatred of illegals….when I have never uttered one word of hatred towards them. If I do not like something, why is my THINKING hatred? If I am training cattle ranchers how to protect their private property, why is that hatred? A trespasser is a trespasser..it matters not if they have clothes and food or an UZI…they are still trespassers as I believe there is no degree. If I do not like my tax dollars supporting illegal immigrants in schools, health care, etc…why is that hatred?

        This country, like it or not, allows you and I to get on this blog and start others and write articles because of liberties….there are not enough, mind you, but they are there.

        I believe in this country. I believe in this system. I believe in most of its people. I am not brainwashed because I do not think like you..( I actually do subscribe to most of what you say, I just believe there is a different way to approach it )….

        I prefer to change the system that we have…not walk away from it and hope it fails and then be there to pick up the pieces. To me, that makes one no different than the power mongers that are out there now.

        However, thank you, sir, for your input and espousing your way of belief. I think that we are both working for the same end….just different paths.

        • Your right, we still have the liberty to fight for our rights and we best use them in whatever ways we can and that includes voting to keep them and hopefully recover those we have lost.

        • I hire and have hired ONLY legal citizens because to hire an illegal citizen is not what I believe I am supposed to do.”

          Right. And no one has a “right” or the authority to tell you that you must hire “blacks” or Jehovah’s Witnesses or women or gays…. That is your right. I may find your reasoning without basis, but you are entitled to it for whatever reason. And I support your right to discriminate against anyone for any reason and the right of others to discriminate against you for any reason, as well.

          …we already have a “new face” in the white house and a “new direction” in Congress. Neither is working and it is the system that is broken.

          But this is exactly what I am talking about. Putting new scoundrels in place of the old scoundrels is not “change” and is not a “new direction” at all. It is more of the same. Exactly the same. Since you recognize, by your own words, that it is the system that is broken doesn’t it seem a little odd to keep thinking that the broken system contains the solution?

          …that word is the “my” direction….how about in the direction of liberty…

          “my” as in: it is the direction I choose to travel, not “my” denoting ownership. I do not “own” the direction; I choose it. It can be yours, too, just as completely as it is mine.

          You do not wish to be a martyr…one question…Why not? I can tell you why…you do not want to give up your life for what you believe.

          Of course; but only to a point. You ignore the rest of what I say. I may be required to give up my life for what I believe some day. Only a fool would rush in to a fatal situation when it isn’t necessary right now.

          A trespasser is a trespasser..it matters not if they have clothes and food or an UZI…they are still trespassers as I believe there is no degree.

          So, you are training them how to recognize and repel census workers and DEA agents and lost preppy caucasian hikers as well. Right?

          If I do not like my tax dollars supporting illegal immigrants in schools, health care, etc…why is that hatred?

          It isn’t as long as you recognize that all welfare is exactly the same. It doesn’t matter who the stolen property is given to nearly as much as it matters that the theft occurred in the first place. Public schools (financed by a ransom on people’s homes), Medicare, farm subsidies, Social(ist In)Security, government employees’ paychecks- all are financed with money stolen, by threat of force up to and including death, from the people who created and earned that wealth, and handed to others. Wrong is wrong even if you personally approve or benefit from it.

          I believe in this country.

          This country is America. It is not the same as “The United States”, which is the government currently occupying America. I believe in this country too, and I recognize that the greatest threat to this country is, and always has been, the United States.

          I believe in this system.

          I thought you said you know the system is broken?

          I prefer to change the system that we have…not walk away from it and hope it fails and then be there to pick up the pieces.

          If you believe in the system, why change it? I am not hoping it fails. I simply see that it will fail. By insisting on doing the same thing that keeps failing the failure is assured. Denial does no one any good. You can prepare for the failure now, while there’s time, or you can let it catch you and those you care about by surprise. I’d rather help people avoid tragedy when the failure comes.

          You seem to have a bit of a chip on your shoulder. I don’t automatically condemn everyone who has been in the military. I think some are very good people. Maybe things that other people have said here before have really gotten to you. Maybe you feel more guilt over things you have done than you want to admit. I don’t know. But I wasn’t trying to put you down for what you believe. I feel you are trying to cause conflict where none existed.

          • Kent says: So, you are training them how to recognize and repel census workers and DEA agents and lost preppy caucasian hikers as well. Right?

            D13 responds: You know better than that, sir. Census workers and DEA agents use the front door and do not climb nor cut fences. There are no preppy hikers that get lost on 50,000 acres of ranch land on the Texas border. However, if a DEA agent shows up on my property without notification in a fenced in back yard in the middle of the night, he will find out how good a shot I am.

            Kent says: But this is exactly what I am talking about. Putting new scoundrels in place of the old scoundrels is not “change” and is not a “new direction” at all. It is more of the same. Exactly the same. Since you recognize, by your own words, that it is the system that is broken doesn’t it seem a little odd to keep thinking that the broken system contains the solution?

            D13 responds: Yes sir, you are right but I think you missed my point. My point is to get the people elected that think like you or I do. That does not a scoundrel make.

            Kent says: You seem to have a bit of a chip on your shoulder. I don’t automatically condemn everyone who has been in the military. I think some are very good people. Maybe things that other people have said here before have really gotten to you. Maybe you feel more guilt over things you have done than you want to admit. I don’t know. But I wasn’t trying to put you down for what you believe. I feel you are trying to cause conflict where none existed.

            D13 says: I did not perceive any direct condemnation from you at all. I do perceive (and still do) that the military (the personnel) get the blame where non exists. There should actually be no condemnation of the military itself for simply carrying out the whims and directions of the civilian authority over it. I have absolutely no guilt whatsoever associated with anything that I have done while conducting my duties in the military. If you believe that the military should revolt because it does not like the political winds..hen you are wrong. We still have an obligation. We do not have the right to determine if the political strategy of our civilian authority is right or wrong and act accordingly. We only have the responsibility to not carry out illegal orders…..not political reasoning.

            I do carry a chip on my shoulder when the military as an establishment is attacked. I do not carry that same chip when the military is used as an extension.

            • Census workers and DEA agents use the front door and do not climb nor cut fences.

              A trespasser is someone on your property without your express permission. The cutting of fences is destruction of property added to the trespassing, not a condition that makes an intruder into a trespasser.

              My point is to get the people elected that think like you or I do.

              FEC will not allow it. They protect the status quo from any actual change that would threaten the accumulated power of government. I know no one believes me about this, but it is completely true.

              We only have the responsibility to not carry out illegal orders…

              I guess my idea of “illegal orders” is a little more specific. I am not a “Constitutionalist” by any means, but I understand that the US Constitution is “The Law” as far as the US government is concerned. For an action to be “legal” for the government to do, it must be explicitly spelled out as a Constitutional power of the government. Acts that are not authorized, but that the Constitution does not explicitly forbid are still not “legal”. I see almost nothing that the US government does today, with or without the military, that qualifies as “legal” under the Constitution. Of course, the US government equivocates about that, looking for all kinds of flimsy justifications and “general welfare” excuses, but they are lying for a unified purpose: to gain more power and authority in spite of the clear limits they were required, by contract, to live under.

        • I posted a reply, but Ooops, too many links so it is languishing in moderationland (if it didn’t get lost, that is). I should have learned by now not to do that.

          If it doesn’t show up in the next day or two, I’ll try it again, since I did save it.

    • D13

      Good morning Colonel, well I guess it is afternoon at your place.

      I am curious as to why you think some here have made personal attacks on you or the military relative to the military’s involvement overseas?

      It seems to me that there have been times the rhetoric gets a little hot when BF is trying to make a point about the USA causing problems around the globe but I don’t see it as personal attacks. More about how the Government has used the military for purposes beyond “self defense”. I learned this axiom many, many years ago. War is not the breakdown of politics (which was taught in shools), War is the extension of politics.

      As for me, I think our “tinkering” around the world has been a mixed bag since it began. Sometimes the reasons are well intentioned and others are down right nefarious, but hidden to us. I think the results are sometimes good and sometimes bad, for the others. The goals and objectives have changed over time ranging from expression of empire (manifest destiny gone global–Teddy R.) to defense of the USA and our friends (WWII and Cold War). There has been a “Corporatist” tint to some and pure politics in others.

      But in the end, with the exception of WWII, it seems to me they have ALL been bad for the USA itself. Primarily in loss of treasure and life but also in the loss of our collective principles. Could the Neo-Cons have ever come to power without the “interventions” and long history of military action that preceded them? I don’t know, but it all seems connected to me.

      Personally, and I think you know this of me, it is all spilt milk, water under the bridge. What is done is done. What matters to me is where do we go from here. And quite frankly I think we have only two choices. We either return to the concepts expressed by T. Jefferson or we follow T. Roosevelt and W. Wilson. This “half pregnant” concept of the neo-cons and globalists will bleed us to death slowly. Generation after generation.

      I will respond to your larger questions of “what next” with a new post below. But I wanted to clear up this anxiety you seem to feel that some are attacking the military in general and you in particular. I sincerely hope you don’t feel that I have done that in my commentary. I assure you it is the farthest thing from my intentions.

      Stay cool my Texas friend.
      JAC

      • Hmmmm…it is possible that I have perceived a personal attack as the military has been called murderers several times on here. I do take exception to that. I take that exception because it is easy to look at an abbreviated and edited film clip and draw a parallel to it. So, yes sir, I take exception to the use of murderer, rapist, etc as a general rule of military.

        I do not disagree with the fact that the use of the military is an extension of politics. Of course it is. That is the way of civilian rule…politics.

        No one on here has specifically attacked me on here at all. Even the spirited discussions with BF I have not taken as attack upon myself. But, I do feel that the military has been singled out as a pariah as a whole and not as an extension of political whim.

        You have not done so, my friend.

        • D13

          Let me offer this on the “murder” accusation.

          I know BF has used that one and I think I understand what is happening.

          He is coming from a purist philosophy and definitions point of view.

          In other words, killing another human can result from:

          a. Accident, as in killing someone unintentionally.
          b. Self defense, as in killing someone who attacks you.
          c. Murder, as in killing someone who did not attack you. Obviously there is pre-meditaded and others, which I don’t pretend to understand.

          Now you and I recognize another called WAR, which includes self-defense and accident. But the category WAR is used to justify accident or one of the non-intentional murders where as those same acts would not be tolerated under the category PEACE TIME.

          I think you will agree it is a bizarre situation with respect to humanity. Killing is illegal and bad, until WAR is declared.

          Anyway, so the army winds up killing civilians or some other folks who are not directly shooting at them or did not attack anyone. In the strictest sense this is murder. But what is ignored by the purist in claiming such is the “justification” we humans have created when “war” is involved. In a sense, it is part of our common law. In the latter case it becomes an accident or “collateral damage”.

          I don’t think the accusation is that our soldiers deliberately hunt down and kill innocent people. It is that our GOVT, by using our military,and our military, by following the orders, is killing innocent people and in the “strictest definition sense”, that amounts to murder.

          Of course the other thing ignored by throwing that title around is that innocents are killed in even the supposed “righteous” wars. So how can you conduct a war without murder, using the purist definitions?

          They construct the perfect Catch 22, because you can’t wage war and kill only those who shoot at you first.

          Of course there always is the bigger question we never want to address, because it would remove our bogey man we call a “terrorist”. Is the general population truly innocent if their govt initiates violence against another? Yes, we as humans have constructed these “civilized” rules of war to protect the “civilians”. But why? Didn’t they make the war possible by their inaction to stop the bad govt? Didn’t they work in the factories making the weapons used against us? Don’t they house and harbor those who are actually shooting at us?

          Sometimes I wonder if humankind’s attempts to prevent TOTAL WAR are not in fact responsible for the endless wars. Perhaps if it was absolutely horrific to ALL involved, there would be far less of it.

          As I have said before. Not all countries who occupied Afghanistan have failed. But the two who succeeded would not be treated well by the Geneva Conventions.

          I know it doesn’t make the accusations more palatable. Especially for those of us of Viet Nam age. But I hope this at least gives you some idea of what is going on. Those who wish to use the claim should probably explain it themselves beyond my tired ramblings.

          I had a friend once, who I spent hours drinking and fishing with. One night at the bar he admitted to partaking of the anti Viet Nam protests and verbal assaults on the returning troops. I asked him how he now felt about that. He said it was a wonderful and energizing experience.

          When he picked himself off the floor, I explained that he was no longer welcome within 10 feet of my personal space. I have not spent time with him since, these past 25 years.

          I did not spend time in the jungles but had friends who did. What was done to our returning troops, and the memories of those who didn’t, still sickens me and brings back a sense of sadness and anger I can not extinguish.

          Sorry, but your comment this morning got the old fires burning again and felt I just needed to share my thoughts.

          Time to get the Barby heated up. Dead pig meat over mesquite tonight.

          JAC

          • Thanks, JAC and well said.

            Here is the other thing that is bothering me today…. Remember the 60’s and 70’s and the social upheaval. The Ozzie and Harriet and the Donna Reed and the Norman Rockwell scenarios were thrown out for the radical movement and the social agenda. Some good and some bad. I feel the same emotions today that I felt then. This country is polarized beyond belief and it is this new progressive movement that has brought those feelings back. Racism is NOT a factor as it was in the 60’s but it is being brought back. There is no one born in the 60’s that can claim we have racism today…they have no concept OTHER than what is read and what our “so called” academia is teaching. These are the feelings coming back. Want to talk PTSD…it is here and I really had let go of it at one time. It is not the war and dreams bringing back these thoughts….it is this “Progressive” movement that is bringing the old emotions of the 60’s and 70’s back. No respect for anybody, no respect for any type of authority, spitting on and burning flags, trying to politically correct and getting away from the America that I knew to this KUMBAYA bullshit of today. Certainly, we are not perfect. I get that and agree with that and I guess that the freedoms that we still have allow this type of thing to happen again….but I cannot get my arms and hands around this “everyhone is going to be made equal” crap and tghe stifling of incentives and leadership.

            Texas dropped into that but is bouncing back a little. We are fiercly independent but we did not watch the back door as we should have. We have academia coming in and teaching that the Constitution is bad and that the declaration of Independence should not be in the text books and that Chavez and Che and Castro are to be considered great when they are bigger and more ruthless murderers than anything we have ever done. I am getting tired of it and it is splitting this country apart and I am sure that is by design.

            JAC says: ” Didn’t they make the war possible by their inaction to stop the bad govt?”

            D13 says: You bet. It is not the governments fault. WE let that government in. WE could have stopped it and I REFUSE……REFUSE….to believe that we cannot stop it now. We can. But, will we? I hope that there is a silent majority out there. I am doing my part.

            Anyway, I hope that you are doing well and your family is well.

            D13

            • D13

              Good morning sir.

              I too have been feeling those things. It seems that the radicals of the 60’s didn’t learn a damn thing and are just trying to reignite everything. You’ll love this one.

              I saw comments by several lefties on HuffPo the other day as to why we need to reinstate the Draft. Not because our military is understaffed and overworked. Not because all Americans should share in the burden. But because ONLY with a draft can we get enough Americans pissed off about these wars to force the politicians to withdraw our troops.

              But I also notice that those who call themselves “right” took lessons and are applying some of the same strategies. Thus we start to feel the country is split and at each others throat.

              Now for some good thoughts. I don’t think this country is really as split as we think at times. Most folks are all messed up in their thinking because nobody talks straight. The economic situation may take care of that. Avg American understands you can’t run massive debt forever.

              I think when you are involved with this stuff what you see everyday are the 20% on each side who are hard core, yelling at each other. We forget there is another 60% going about their business and shaking their head from time to time. And many of the 60% are waking up and looking for answers. And I believe the more they understand the angrier they will get and the more changes we will see.

              You asked for answers on what to do the other day. I gave a big picture planning answer. But here is something specific that needs to be done ASAP.

              We need to rest control of the “Tea Party” movement from the hands of the “establishment politician and political operatives”. On one hand we have “Conservative Republicans” in charge and on the other we have “Militia/Libertarians and Conspiracy Folks”.

              They can keep the name, but we need to get the People back on track.

              We also need to get control of one of the major parties. It would seem the Republicans are our best chance but that means pushing the neo cons and the hard right out. One wants global intervention and the other rationalizes it with patriotic slogans without question.

              In short, don’t despair. A little frustration from time to time but don’t despair. I see some rough times ahead but I also see good times after that.

              Happy Sunday
              JAC

    • Colonel Sir, I don’t know the answers to your questions and will not sit here and pretend that I do.

      What, after all, ARE we doing, other than sitting and blogging, pissin’ and a moanin’ about the way things are?

      Some of us are out there doing things to try to make a difference. Some are running for office. Some are going to Tea Party rallys or organizing them, like my cousins wife. Some are trying other ways to PEACEFULLY make changes to our system in some way.

      Then there are some like me. I used to be one of the above people. When I first came to USW’s blog, I felt like I had found an Oasis for peaceful conversation. A place to get my frustrations out with like minded people like I was, and like I still am. I was at the time trying to make some small difference, even though I had no power, no money, and no audible voice. I went to Tea Parties. I stood on street corners with signs to protest ObamaCare. Even in my admittedly small way, I tries to do what I could to stop the madness that is enveloping my Nation.

      But after a while I began to see that Obama and Congress, hell, our whole damn Government could care less what “We The People” think oe waht WE want. They aren’t listening to us. They are ignoring us and doing as they damn well please.

      Oh, there are a few in office who do, but they are like a fart in whirlwind too. And if Government isn’t willing to pay attention to members of their own, why would they be worried about the people’s concerns?

      I will admit to a hell of a lot of frustration and anger. Although I could no longer blog at work, I still could at home. But I thought, what’s the freakin’ use? I stopped, and still do not do MY blog anymore. I stopped coming here. My anger began to build and build against the big Govenment monster who continues to grow bigger every day, and suck up more and more of my money. And wait until 2011, when all those tax cuts expire, and all those new taxes they have passed begin to take effect. Mine and other’s anger will swell even more. Even a lot of those who LOVE Obama and the Congressional ASS CLOWNS (thanks JAC) will begin to see the monster they spawned then.

      So what exactly DO we do about it? Civil War? Lord, I hope not. Because this one would make the last one look like a heated argument among family. I have Obama supporters among my OWN family, and I imagine other families do too. Would they be willing to fight each other? Well ask yourself this. Were the families in 1860 willing to fight each other over their beliefs?

      The problems then weren’t much different from the ones we face now. Instead of State’s Rights, we now face, well hell, the problem of States Rights! We also face the matter of just how much power the Federal Government has to impose taxes and regulations on us that are Unconstitutional. And they are doing so by the simple method of telling us the Constitution says what we say it says, not what it REALLY says. We have our Federal Government displaying their gross ineptitude and stupidity on the world stage, and a President who acts as if he is ashamed of and despises his own Nation!

      SO! What’s next; and where will it end up? Will we still have one Nation, under God, when it’s over? One Nation, under Tyranny? Or several Nations? I can say one thing for sure, if nothing else. The time of our Nation to 2012 is going to be a rough ride. For ALL of us.

      • Esom- “What, after all, ARE we doing, other than sitting and blogging, pissin’ and a moanin’ about the way things are?

        Educating. It’s the only thing that can really make a lasting difference. If we started a shooting war, without a clearly defined goal, from the rubble would rise exactly what we fought against. It happened with the American Revolution and it happened with the “Civil War” of the 1860s. Without a firm foundation it will always be the same.

        Yes, I point out what is wrong with “the way things are”, which some might call “pissin’ and a moanin’”, but I don’t stop at that. I offer solutions that respect the liberty and the identical rights of everyone else. Whether others listen or not is another matter.

        I am in the process of writing another book. This one specifically dealing with liberty-respecting answers to problems in the world that people might wonder about. Not “the only possible way”, but at least one way it could be done.

        Maybe it isn’t enough, but it is one peaceable thing I can add to the balance on the liberty side.

        • Kent. This missive, or rant really, is not directed specifically at you, nor anyone here neccessarily.

          Notice that in the next paragraph I said, “Some of us are out there doing things to try to make a difference. Some are running for office. Some are going to Tea Party rallys or organizing them, like my cousins wife. Some are trying other ways to PEACEFULLY make changes to our system in some way.”

          My overgrown rant was venting frustration about the fact that, no matter WHAT we do, our Government continues to do as it pleases. My wonder is how long will the people allow this? And how do we STOP it?

          As far as that goes, exactly what will replace it if it were to be overthrown?

          My anger and frustration completely shut me down for a while. In my mind, what was the use? They were gonna do what they wanted to anyway! But after a while I realized that my frustration with the way things are could not be allowed to stop me from doing my best in my small way to change the staus quo.

          So I have begun to re-engage again. I still am not going to start my blog back, but that is because I have too many irons in the fire to do the proper research write a knowledgeable piece. Besides, I had much rather enjoy the discussions on this and other sites, including yours. I never post comments on other sites but I like to read others. I got into some trouble for using my email address on this one so I don’t do it anymore, and it’s the only one I have.

          So don’t think that I in any way am discouraging you or anyone else, including me, from “pissin’ and moanin’. 😀

          • I wasn’t taking it personally. In fact, I think you are being too hard on yourself.

            Sometimes people wonder why I don’t get angry at how the government is growing, or the direction it is going. It’s because I don’t expect a criminal organization to act like anything other than what it is. I will continue to carve out whatever liberty I can where I live instead of waiting for “a perfect world”. It might be nicer to live in Libertopia, but it is certainly interesting to be an alien in this society-gone-mad. I don’t take it personally when more “laws” are piled on top of the unscalable mountain of “laws” that already exist. I know I’m an outlaw; more “laws” won’t make me more of an outlaw than I already am. I do use the geometric progression of “laws” to point out to people who think they are “law-abiding” that they are only fooling themselves.

            …exactly what will replace it if it were to be overthrown?

            More of the same, no doubt. Which is why I think it’s better to withdraw support and let it collapse upon itself from it’s own weight.

      • Hey, ESOM……thanks. I feel your pain.

        • Colonel, I have some questions that I feel you would be especially qualified to answer.

          My Daddy was in Vietnam. I was small but can still remember what this country was like then. Idiots in the streets, raising hell about the war. Spitting on returning servicemen coming back and calling them babykillers. Mothers pulling their children away from uniformed men like they were trash to be avoided (like in ‘We Were Soldiers’). The White House micromanaging the war and putting ridiculous engagement rules on the troops and generally screwing the whole thing up.

          Now for my questions.

          Doesn’t that remind you of now? Like say in Afganistan? Maybe not so much the riducule of the servicemen, but most assuredly the last part.

          And isn’t it odd that all the protesters and moron college students from the Vietnam era are the ones in charge of our Government now?

          I mean while my Daddy was in Vietnam doing his duty and risking his life, others were using their collge deferments and outright draft dodging to today take over the Government?

          And isn’t it odd that those same people who were protesting and spitting and calling my daddy a baby killer are now the same ones or kids of the theirs protesting and saying that it’s a woman’s choice whether or not she can murder her unborn baby to avoid the ‘inconvenience’ of raising a child? (I don’t know your opinion of Abortion, but I guess now you know mine)

          Isn’t it strange how all those events and, let’s just say ‘people’ from the 60’s and early 70’s are coming back to haunt us now?

  19. Cyndi P says:
    • Good morning, Cyndi…..believe it not. There is no military buildup with roadblocks and papers in Texas….and highly placed sources that I have in Louisiana also say the same…

      But, remember, I am past military and cannot be trusted.

  20. I am a fan of Kent’s writing and regularly feature him on my own website. I totally agree with this article’s premise and the entire idea that governments need not exist.

    For a good example of how society without government works, read Robert Heinlein’s The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. That should sum it up for you.

    Society can make rules without needing “government” to do it for them. Our own idea of Common Law and of Parliamentary-style government and debate comes from the Norse Thing and Althing. These were relatively loose governments in which society’s rules were enforced through a tradition of family (clan) interaction and self-governance. It wasn’t perfect, but it was at least as good as our own questionable governmental processes.

    Just because they didn’t write it all down and use flowery lawyer talk to make it sound important doesn’t mean it wasn’t as good. I respect the framers of the U.S. Constitution, but I respect the anti-federalists and the writers of the Declaration of Independence much more.

    • Hi Aaron….is there such a place?

    • SK Trynosky Sr says:

      Aaron,

      Yes but, at the end of the book, Manny was contemplating a move because the place was getting too civilized. The same went for Lazarus Long, over and over again in “Time Enough for Love.” I think Bob Heinlein realized just how flawed we all are. Only “Starship Troopers” seemed to set up a society where you couldn’t tinker with the basics. For that, he was labeled fascist. Troopers seemed to have a society where you were “forced” to always act responsibily and that, on my part is a very poor description. The societies created by Heinlein deserve to have the best minds in the country, (I deliberately exclude the world because they really did nothing for freedom before the US came along) come together for a week long (at least) summit and debate them.

      Humans just can’t seem to leave it alone. They always want to “improve” it. See my occasional rants on the educational system for examples. Still don’t know what Junior High/ Middle School is for or why.

  21. My advice for the day-Dance -V out-be back later

    • There ya go again V! A nice welcome home for me! This song I’ve heard before 🙂

  22. D13

    It seems the heat wave has gotten to you Colonel. Or perhaps the current national political situation. Or both.

    We need to look at the BIG picture. That is the larger strategic picture, both in terms of where it is leading and where we would like it to go.

    First, is to develop a solid picture of what we want. In my old world we sometimes called this the Desired Future Condition. This is where I see the “philosophical” waxing and waning that many get frustrated with here. When I first came to SUFA I warned and urged everyone that we needed to develop a “desired outcome” that was based on sound philosophical principles. I tried to show, as have others, that our current problems stem from a rotten philosophy.

    At its core, this is a war over WHICH philosophical system we are going to live under in the future. It is philosophy at its root, stem, and crown. All the fields are engaged and must be linked together in a system without contradictions; Metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, politics, and law.

    All of the arguments, discussion and revelations made here at SUFA will have to be replayed again, a thousand times over, as part of the education and training of our friends, family and fellow citizens. So every moment spent here should be viewed as training yourself for those encounters and “teachable moments” you will have in your daily life.

    Second, is to identify the existing condition. We called this a Situation Assessment. What is the current situation and what is the expected outcome of NO ACTION. This includes a very hard look at the barriers to change.

    Much of the discussion at SUFA seem to center on this general area. What do we have and where is it going. Can it be changed or is it hopeless, etc, etc.

    Third, is the PLAN. This includes the hard analysis comparing desired with existing and the alternatives available or needed. From this comes a complete PLAN, including strategic and tactical goals and objectives.

    Fourth, is of course Execution. This includes the feedback loops needed to Adjust, Adapt, and Improvise.

    Now, in the Plan part we KNOW that education is critical. A war over philosophy can not be won at the point of a gun, not in the LONG TERM. This is a multi-generational War. Obviously, I have developed a General picture of what I think our Desired Condition should be, at least the philosophical system. The details of the political and legal are yet to be completed, and may also take decades.

    My spending time at SUFA is in fact part of my “personal” action plan. As is the time I spend at HuffPo and other sites. It is my effort at the “education” goal. Both to educate others and to become more educated myself. And then to work with those who want to continue in this battle to develop the “Desired Future Condition”.

    Now that is a very generalized summary. Right now I am personally struggling with trying to determine what the future looks like with the current situation. I think this is critical to deciding what our PLAN looks like in the short to mid term. For example, is it going to collapse in the next 10 years regardless of who is in charge? Or will it continue to just be “sick”? Will the path really change if the party in charge changes or will it basically remain the same? Would it be easier to let the Progressives unseat the Fascists and then upend the Progressives ourselves, or would it be easier to take them both on at once?

    I think you get the idea. The answers and the time frames have a tremendous influence on our choices.

    I have been operating under the assumption that “gridlock” is our friend and that the Progressives or Socialists would be harder to beat. Thus I have urged others to look at the upcoming elections (2010 and 2012) as nothing more than delaying actions. Slowing the P’s and S’s by electing Elephants, while we rebuild for the greater war ahead.

    But I am not positive this is the best approach. It largely centers on who is easier to remove from power in the end. If some type of serious economic collapse is coming, we might be better off preparing for that event. Or maybe we should plan for both so that Adapt, Improvise and Adjust is a little easier should A turn to B while we are fighting A.

    Meanwhile, we should work our backsides off to get anyone elected who shares most of our core principles. They are currently motivated and we don’t want that fire to die. Such as the Crazy Lady from Nevada.

    We also need to work with Tea Party folks to distance the movement from the “establishment”. Unless of course we view the Tea Party as a distraction in itself. My concern is the loss of motivation when the whole thing gets crushed by the “establishment” this fall and again in two years.

    OK, I am starting to ramble so will take a break. Meanwhile fire back with your thoughts.

    JAC

    • Not much to fire back at…..you and I are in the same boat….just stated differently.

      By the way, it is not hot yet…hell, it is only July. I don’t take my sweater off until August.

      Now as to the current political situation……one word…….arrrggghh! and that is frustrating. What is more important, I cannot find anybody that voted for Obama…..someone put him there but all of a sudden they have become scarce.

      I do have my razor out for the military and if the statements stay in the realm of being used as an extension of political whim…ok. I spent 40 years in it and in several countries. I came home to cries of baby killer and rapist after Vietnam…I take exception to that and offended that it is taken out on the individuals who simply do their job. I also hold in very low esteem…(somewhere around snake piss in a wagon rut) those people that openly suggest that the individuals revolt and desert from the military because it is bad. It is not bad….but the politicians that use it are bad.

      Make sense? I may not be. I admit to having my hackles a little up today. IED’s are being deployed on the border…Nuevo Laredo is an armed camp where the cartels have blocked off streets to battle the police and Americans on the border are being told to “stay indoors”. This is bull shit and when Kent tries to use misdirection in the training of ranchers to defend their land suggesting that we will shoot DEA and Census takers and preppy lost hikers is an insult to my intelligence. It is so easy to criticize that which they do not know.

      Ahhhhh,,,I need to take a chill pill today, I guess. Going to my DP and a bag o’ chips.

      • D13

        When working in the high Sierra Mtns of California we had to watch out for one of the Pot Growers favorite IED’s. Rattlesnakes tied to shrubs and small trees. Rattles cut off so there would be no sound. There were all the other usual devices from pits to shotgun shells but it was those damn silent rattlers that really go to me.

        I would have killed me one of those hippies if I had ever caught them.

        I watched some video yesterday of illegals scaling our FENCE where it has been constructed. Great Govt design. We put freaking hand and foot holds on their side. Just freakin great.

        And all of this is going on while some “blogosphere reporters” issue a report “proving” that violent crimes have decreased in the border states the past 5 years. This of course is proof that the AZ law is completely unjustified. Arrrgh, is right.

        Gin and tonic time now. Need to cool off the inside.

        Best to you and your family.

        JAC

        • Ain’t it just wonderful!! 👿

          We live in a Country where the Southern Border is so porous a freakin’ ARMY could cross undetected. Complete with fence with convenient handholds built right in, because otherwise some poor illegal might injure themselves illegally climbing it and sue US for hurting themselves.

          We have a Federal Government that REFUSES to enforce their OWN Immigration Laws, and will sue any State which tries to enforce their Law. And let’s not forget sues them for trying to pass their own law.

          Our Federal Government is also trying to allow the “11 or 12 million” illegals to have a “pathway to citizenship” instead of tossing their ass back across to their OWN Country.

          We have Gangs, Drug Dealers, and various other scumbags crossing and commiting crimes in OUR Country and we have no recourse such as crossing the Border and kicking the aforementioned Assclowns asses with extreme predjudice.

          The damn border is like a freakin’ war zone almost as bad as Afganistan and our Government pretends that it’s all skipping through the tulips.

          Well Dang if I don’t think I’ll join you D13 sir, and go get me a tall glass of sweet tea and some tater chips! 😉

  23. Hey Gang: Cheers to you and yours as I wish you some cool breezes for this weekend. A couple of issues come to my mind every time the notion of voting comes up and the way Obama feels about the practice itself. Of the first part we’ve all heard the clichés of “…if you didn’t vote…then you have no say…” B.S. Have you ever really ever really thought about your ballot and what it may or may not go through once it leaves your hands? In this age of technology and information sharing what assurances do we have that our vote is even counted? Anymore it looks as though voting is a pacifier for the masses to ‘feel better’ like they had something to do with the outcome of an election. Again, B.S.

    As I mentioned I have a difficult problem with Obama, precisely, the way he perceives and/or assumes that public opinion means nothing. And in the case of Universal Health Carehe more than aptly demonstrated this posture. Whilst clearly not having the congressional support albeit that is predicated upon public opinion, he nonetheless, chose to ignore the 80 percent plus of people who thought it was rubbish and through the Congressional Bag of Tricks (bribery, fraud, sweetheart deals, earmarks, etc.,) still managed to get this system passed.

    And in all of the melee of dust and ruble this clown offers, “…that is what elections are for…” implying that in the event that I F/U you’ll have your chances to get another administration in here that will please you. So now…what does that have to say about immigration reform; moreover, his respect for humankind?

    jps

  24. Well Red is a irregular poster at SUFA, but represents a Socialist/Marxist viewpoint.

    I’m re-posting my question to him here, and I encourage others to think about them and try to answer too.

    Well Red,

    To test your economic theory of labor, please explain this scenario:

    Men pay me $1,000 an hour for my knowledge. I go to their place of work, and tell them what to do, they do it, and they pay me $1,000 an hour for my time at their place of work.

    Question (1): Why do they do that?
    Question (2): Why do they pay so much?

    Continuing;

    I know that you would never pay me $1,000 an hour. In fact, you probably would never pay me even $1 for what I do.

    Question (3): Why do you do NOT pay me even $1 where other men would pay be $1,000?

    Continuing;

    In fact, 99.999% of the people on Earth would never considering paying me anything for what I do, not even $1.

    Yet, out of the 00.001% of the people, most of them would pay me $1,000/hr (or even more – my best rate was $12,500/hr).

    Question (4): By casual observation, you could generalize and say: “No one in the world would pay me $1,000/hr” and you’d -generally- be correct. But why is that not perfectly correct? Why are there people who would pay that, do pay that, and are incredibly happy to pay that -so much so, they continue ask for me back, over and over again?

    Continuing:
    The guy who mows my lawn earns $10/hr. I would not pay him $1000 to mow my lawn. He works physically very hard, and after 4 hrs., I pay him $40.

    You would probably pay him $10, too – and probably not $1000.


    Question (5): Why do I only pay him $10, and not $1000?
    Question (6): Why does almost everyone only pay him $10, and no one pay him $1,000/hr?

    Continuing:
    There are probably 10,000 times more people in the world that would pay him to work for them, then people who would pay me to work for them. Indeed, he is about 1 million times more likely to work for you then I would work for you.

    This is about the same for everyone – he is far more likely to work for almost anyone by a factor of a million then me work for those same people.


    Question (7): Given that he can work for almost everyone, and I will not, why do I earn 100x more than he for the same hour of work?

    I’m interested in your coherent explanation for this economic situation.

  25. BF- I do think fraud causes harm. No one is holding a gun to your head, but they are deceiving you into a trade you would not otherwise enter with them, and you are getting “cheated”.

    “Harm” isn’t necessarily all “force”. There is financial harm, too. Theft is a form of financial harm, and fraud is another. Destruction of your property would be another.

    For more see: http://tinyurl.com/yhccrdq http://tinyurl.com/yffzv6e
    and http://tinyurl.com/ylgxgs6 (I’ll see if doing it this way avoids moderation difficulties)

    • Kent

      – I do think fraud causes harm. No one is holding a gun to your head, but they are deceiving you into a trade you would not otherwise enter with them, and you are getting “cheated”.

      As I said above, the fault is yours for entering into a trade with an immoral person.

      What were you thinking???

      If you deal with bad people, were you expecting to get a good deal?

      I bet you thought the deal was so good, you’d take the risk of dealing with a bad person …. thinking you got the best on him. The price was too good, the product too nice – but the guy was scum.

      You discounted ‘the scum’ and seized the deal.

      Opps, the scum was smarter than you, and you paid dearly for your greed.

      I say “Bet you learned a lesson, right!”

      ….

      Oh? You didn’t know he was scum?

      So now you want to plead ignorance.

      So whose fault is that?

      You didn’t call the BBB.
      Whose fault is that?

      You didn’t ask for references.
      Whose fault is that?

      You didn’t check the guy out first and just jumped into the deal because….oh, because it was too good to let it slip by.

      The price was too good, the product too nice and you thought you had the best of it.

      Poor sucker you thought – I don’t have to do my homework – the deal is too good! It takes time to do my diligence and he may leave town tomorrow before I can close this super-great deal!

      Oops, you learned he was scum and smarter than you. He read you like a Bible and knew you’d sucker in a deal “that was too good to be true”, and you paid dearly for your greed.

      I say “Bet you learned a lesson, right!”

      ////

      He did not attack you.

      He did not force you to accept the deal.

      He did not hold a gun to your head.

      He does not have to do YOUR work FOR YOU. His job is to look after him, and he expected you to do the same for you. He did his job, and you didn’t.

      For that, you want to beat him up. You want to beat him up because YOU FAILED to do your job.

      *blink*

      • For that, you want to beat him up. You want to beat him up because YOU FAILED to do your job.

        Nope. I don’t want to use force against him, nor send others to use force on my behalf. What I do want to do is to shun him and tell everyone of my experience so it will not happen to them. Initiated force can (and in many cases, should) be countered with force. Other forms of wrong have their own appropriate reactions.

        • Kent,

          Whew! I was getting worried there for a minute!

          I completely agree.

          I would shun him, and not do any business with him – ever – and let my friends and neighbors know what he did so that they can be warned and do what they think is best for themselves.

          He wouldn’t last a month.

          ….

          But that’s my side-point.

          People complain about getting “ripped off” but once you investigate a bit, it is either:

          (1) They were greedy. Some “bad guy” was selling 50″ LCD HDTV system for $200 bucks out of the back of his van. The deal was hot! They knew “something was up” -the guy is a crook – but they didn’t care – $200 bucks for $2500 TV! DEAL!

          And then find out its broken. And the repair bill is …. $1500 bucks.

          Then they complain and yell bloody murder…. I just shake my head….

          (2) Some stranger shows them HDTV in the back of a van. They haven’t ever seen this guy. He has some sob story …like he is a business man, and some kook put a lawsuit on him, and forced him into bankruptcy. He saved a bunch of his inventory so to have something to pay his rent and feed his kids. You’d be helping him out by spending $200 buying the TV.

          Poor smuck, they think – he got taken in a lawsuit and now… I’m gonna take him too! “Misery loves repetition” is the motto!

          They get home, and its broken….. then the complain …I just shake my head…

          • And these are the only two types of occasions of people being ripped off?

            It is something they could have prevented were it not for their greed.

            Those who “ripped them off” were greedy too. They committed fraud. Why are they blameless?

  26. BF,

    Hmm,

    It is fraud, and it is immoral, but harm? I don’t think so.

    *blink*

    You just got through telling me in another post about how important reputation is to a business, a big speech about the BBB, and all that. A company that pretends to be “the original” and is a substandard product or service WILL affect that reputation. How the heck is that no harm in your view?

    If you buy something from someone you do not know or trust, why are you surprised that the goods maybe fake?

    The choice of purchase is yours and yours alone to make. No one has a gun to your head.

    It is your decision, thus your own level of investigation and research – including the honor of the person doing the selling.

    You are talking about the consumer again, and how it is up to the consumer to make sure they are buying a quality product or deal with the consequences. First of all, it was said that some knockoffs have found their way into normal commerce, its not all $10 rolexes in a guy on the corner’s trenchcoat. So maybe it WAS a trusted source, or appeared to be.

    Secondly, we are talking about the harm to a seller. I know you think consumer is king, but the seller can be harmed and defrauded as well, especially by a competitor.

    • As for the idea of theft of ideas. If I make a mousetrap and you copy it, there is not a lot of harm. If I spend my lifetime developing this mousetrap to market it to the world because I know it is better and there is a demand, but I spend most of my resources developing it, then you come along and take the idea and put your resources into manufacturing and marketting, then you get the benefit and I get nothing, and I lose everything. Is this not harm? Is it not theft?

      I did not give you permission to use my design, especially not to sell it. I spent my whole fortune making it, and then I have just enought to start marketting and making them, and they are starting to sell, and I can build up my marketting and manufacturing and expand, and I make my fortune back and customers benefit. Only that does not happen because you bought one of my units and, having not spent YOUR fortune developing it, you just reverse engineer it and put all your money into large scale production and marketting, getting massive market share because you had the resources to mass produce and can therefore sell it cheaper, and you have an exact copy of the original, so you can make it just as good. You make a fortune on my effort and my resources. I lose everything and you make millions. That is the risk I have to take? That is pretty rough. That would explain why inventors are afraid of the market.

      • Jon

        As for the idea of theft of ideas. If I make a mousetrap and you copy it, there is not a lot of harm. If I spend my lifetime developing this mousetrap to market it to the world because I know it is better and there is a demand, but I spend most of my resources developing it, then you come along and take the idea and put your resources into manufacturing and marketting, then you get the benefit and I get nothing, and I lose everything. Is this not harm? Is it not theft?

        Your definition of harm and theft is specious.

        I did not take what you made.

        I did not beat you up to take your idea.

        I learned by my own effort and made it myself from what I learned.

        It is your decision to invest as you see fit into your own self. I don’t care one way or another. It is not my concern.

        If you make irrational investments that is, spend more money then you can earn, that is your fault, not mine.

        I did not give you permission to use my design, especially not to sell it.

        I do not need your permission to use my knowledge.

        I spent my whole fortune making it

        ,

        *shrug* I don’t care if you are a bad investor.

        and then I have just enought to start marketting and making them, and they are starting to sell, and I can build up my marketting and manufacturing and expand, and I make my fortune back and customers benefit.

        *shrug* I don’t care what you needed to spend or what you needed to do to earn your money.

        I care if the product benefits ME. If it does, I buy, if it does not I don’t buy regardless of how hard you worked to make it

        Only that does not happen because you bought one of my units

        You sold it to me because you saw value in our trade.

        After the trade, you are now complaining.

        I am deaf to that complaint because you have no right to interfere with me. You got paid.

        and, having not spent YOUR fortune developing it, you just reverse engineer it and put all your money into large scale production and marketting, getting massive market share because you had the resources to mass produce and can therefore sell it cheaper, and you have an exact copy of the original, so you can make it just as good. You make a fortune on my effort

        No, I make a fortune on my effort. I built the factory, I hired the people to make it and sell it – not you. You didn’t.

        If I am able to make your product cheaper than you, that is my right and genius.

        If you are selling your product at too high a price, it is my right to sell it at less than your price

        You want to rip off the consumer and I am there to prevent that.

        and my resources. I lose everything and you make millions.

        Why can’t you build the product as cheap or cheaper than I? You thought it up!

        You are confused between sunk costs and ROI.

        Sunk costs are costs that cannot be recovered. Like eating the food you bought is an example of sunk costs. If you need the money that you just spent on food and you just ate the food, you are not -ever- able to recover the food to get the money back. That money (and food) is gone …. sunk!

        All your development is sunk costs. What you are trying to do is use violence on me to recover what you “ate” and “sunk”. That is an act of evil.

        You can earn your living just fine building the product, just like me.

        If I can earn a living doing that (as you’ve claimed) – SO CAN YOU – so how is it you go “bankrupt” then???

        You go bankrupt because you cannot sell your own product. So now you want to stop me from doing that without me paying you for your own weakness.

        Not going to happen.

        That is pretty rough. That would explain why inventors are afraid of the market.

        Nope, they are afraid because of myths and lies.

        The man who invented the incline plane wasn’t afraid, nor was the man who invented the pully, wheel barrel, printing press, ink pen, distillation, telescopes, etc.

        The wool is pulled over your eyes by government muck. The government has made you afraid of something that simply is not a risk.

        If you invent something, you are FIRST TO MARKET – this is the #1 sweet spot that every producer wishes to get. You got it. AND YOU ARE AFRAID OF IT! Bizarre.

        • So, I must sell something with a contract on the sale, that you cannot take the product and make one identical, and sell it as your own for x period of time. That would be the only way to protect my so-called “sunk” investment. They were an investment made based on the ability to sell a certain number. If you violate the terms of the sales agreement, then you are in violation of contract, you did not pay for the rights to the idea, you paid for the product. IF you wish to be able to reverse engineer and sell something, my price to you will be different. It would essentially be a private patent, a contract of usage for sale. A licensing, if you will.

          Your inability to understand why and inventor could not make something as cheap as a capitalist shows a lack of understanding of what capital resources can do, or a lack of realization of the variety of skills involved in a given business. First to market only applies to the market you are first to. By inventing a product, if I do not sell it with a licensing contract or a patent, I am first to market in the world. IF, however, one of my first customers buys my item, reverse engineers it, and puts it in production, and markets it to people who have not yet seen or heard of my product due to my lack of resources to advertise globally, then YOU are first to that market. Being the inventor does not garauntee that I am first to market, it only garauntees I am first to the market I am selling to, first to the market that is aware of me. I am not afraid of being first to market, I am afraid of NOT being first to market because you copied my work. Thus, I patent it, or, I license the use of the product so that you are allowed to use my product and to own it, but not to copy it. You did not pay for the right to copy it, you paid for a different transactional agreement. IF you were to purchase under such an arrangement and you still copied my design, then that is indeed theft, as well is should be, because you are in violation of the terms of the transaction.

          • Jon,

            So, I must sell something with a contract on the sale, that you cannot take the product and make one identical, and sell it as your own for x period of time. That would be the only way to protect my so-called “sunk” investment.

            Nope, wouldn’t protect it at all. The only way you could protect your super-cool product is not to sell it.

            I ignore your contract – what are you going to do?

            I didn’t put a gun to your head, I didn’t beat you up – yet, you believe you can put a gun to my head and beat me up because I lied????

            They were an investment made based on the ability to sell a certain number.

            Bad decision making, I’d say. You have no expectation of even selling one.

            If you violate the terms of the sales agreement, then you are in violation of contract, you did not pay for the rights to the idea, you paid for the product.

            I got the product.

            I used MY BRAIN and figured out how it worked.

            I made my own version.

            I sell my version, you sell your version. Let’s see who can sell the best.

            IF you wish to be able to reverse engineer and sell something, my price to you will be different.

            Why would it be different? What extra value do I see in paying you more for the same product that my neighbor buys from you but cheaper?

            Fine, I’ll wander over to my neighbor and figure out how your doohickie works. Brains are wonderful thing, and they are capable of learning no matter who owns the goods.

            IF, however, one of my first customers buys my item, reverse engineers it, and puts it in production, and markets it to people who have not yet seen or heard of my product due to my lack of resources to advertise globally, then YOU are first to that market.

            So let me get your argument straight here.

            You are first to market.

            I have to buy your product (I doubt I’m the first purchase, so time has passed), reverse engineer it (takes time), remake my own (takes time), build a factory (takes time), set up marketing (takes time)…. while you are …what? sitting around playing thumbsies with yourself??

            So, I am smart and leap to a different market –

            So, you are saying you are too slow/ignorant to learn which market is the most lucrative and start there?

            So you are smart and did start at the “lowest hanging fruit” market- so now your complaint is that I’m stealing ….the grunge market – the market that would never buy your product at your price anyway!

            You went for the high price/high return market – which is what you should do – leaving me the low price/low return market….and you’re jealous!! :blink:

            • I engage in a transaction with you and you agree to the price and the terms and you think violating those terms is not theft? You agreed to a price AND a set of terms. If you do not like the terms, you do not buy it, or you negotiate a price that is agreeable to me to accept your terms.

              So you lie to me, you trick me, and I have no recourse? What is different about this than me going on your property when you are not there and taking everything from you? I did not engage in violence, so what is the problem? Guess you were stupid to leave your stuff unattended.

              Or, you give me money to manage in an investment market, and I tell you it is going well, but I lied, I went and bought a yacht with it. Guess you should not have trusted me.

              Or, you me operate on you to fix a heart murmur. I happen to have seen your blog and have a personal vendetta against you. I make it appear that I operated, when in fact I did nothing, I did not change your heart at all. You die of a heart attack. Guess you should have put me through a better round of 20 questions to make sure I have no alterior motives.

              Fraud, non-violent theft, cheating, lying, breach of contract, etc. are all harmful, and they are all factors that screw with a free market. Force is required to help stop the perpetration harm on the innocent. Sure, buyer beware is a necessary thing in a truly free market, but the “blame” for all of those things I listed and the things you listed lies on the perpetrator of evil, the thief. The person who got fooled is not the cause. To say that is to put the blame physical harm on the victim for not protetcting themselves effectively.

              Friggin’ ridiculous.

        • BF

          “All your development is sunk costs. What you are trying to do is use violence on me to recover what you “ate” and “sunk”. That is an act of evil.”

          It is you who is rationalizing theft of the research and development paid by Jon.

          R&D are not sunk costs. They are investments. They do not become sunk costs until the product fails or is abandoned, or other investment options become available. Nobody dumps money into R&D without calculating the potential return on that investment.

          The concept of “sunk costs” deals with making choices between different future investment options. It does not apply to a single investment decision made in the past while that option has yet to reach maturity.

          • JAC,

            No, it is you who has a confusion of definition.

            What is in my mind is mine, not his nor yours.

            I can use what is in my mind anyway to benefit me – since it is in MY MIND.

            You wish to attack me for using my mind. That is evil.

            R&D are sunk costs. They are expenditures that have no expectation of return. That is why it is called Research not Investing.

            Because you play “funny” with accounting does not change their facts.

            For your own personal reasons, you want to apply future profit to past expenditures *shrug* – I will tell you that will cause you to make horrific financial decisions in the future, including abandoning profitable enterprises!

            People DO spend money in Research so to find something that then they invest in to make money.

            Discovering oil is worthless. Important, but worthless – investing in that discovery creates a product to sell – that is investing, not the research figuring out what to do with the muck.

            • It might be your mind but it is my idea.

              Just because you can imitate my product, like a chimp who imitates words, doesn’t mean it is a product of your mind.

              You are not using the concept of sunk costs correctly. Pure and simple.

              People spend money on R&D because they hope to get a greater return than they would otherwise get by spending that money on something else. Or in the personal inventors case, it is a return on time expended.

              This is the problem with most micro-economic theories and procedures. This idea that the past should be ignored. If you keep ignoring the past you will not make the best decisions in the future.

              Since my methods have served me quite well I think I will stick with them. I use both analysis in weighing any decision.

              I find your claim that nobody spends on R&D with any hope of a return as quite hilarious. Yes it is designed to make a product to sell. A product that will provide a greater return than spending that money on some other “investment”.

    • Jon Smith,

      You just got through telling me in another post about how important reputation is to a business, a big speech about the BBB, and all that. A company that pretends to be “the original” and is a substandard product or service WILL affect that reputation. How the heck is that no harm in your view?

      Of course it doesn’t!!

      You pretending to be me does not make you me!

      I do not “trust” the BBB logo on a business automatically.

      I call BBB to see if they are registered. I confirm the address and the particulars. If they are the same on the BBB record, then I am confident they are the right guys.

      But even if they are not, it is my fault – not BBB or the real companies – it is me who did not fully complete the due diligence!

      If other people are incomplete or lazy, and then complain about the original company or the fraudster, they are the irrational ones!

      You are talking about the consumer again, and how it is up to the consumer to make sure they are buying a quality product or deal with the consequences.

      Because it is their money!!!

      They have the most desired good that everyone else wants. When I say everyone, I mean including immoral men.

      If you are so callous and lazy protecting your most valued good – gawd, man! Is nothing worth protecting then?

      It is completely up to you to decide when to trade or not, thus it is completely your onus to make sure the trade is what you want to trade for!!

      First of all, it was said that some knockoffs have found their way into normal commerce, its not all $10 rolexes in a guy on the corner’s trenchcoat. So maybe it WAS a trusted source, or appeared to be.

      I don’t care who failed along the way, the fact is if I bought a Fake, its my fault.

      Secondly, we are talking about the harm to a seller. I know you think consumer is king, but the seller can be harmed and defrauded as well, especially by a competitor.

      I do not concern myself with the seller whatsoever. It’s not my job to worry about you or about him. My job is to worry about me.

      He entered the arrangements he makes voluntarily, like me. Thus, he makes his own choices, not mine – nor do I make his choices.

      • So a bunch of stupid/lazy consumers can damage my business. It is not my fault they bought knock-offs, nor is it possible for me to make them do the due dilligence before they complain or blame me for a bad product that I did not make. It is not up to me to make sure they check up on the BBB before trusting them. I get that you make good and informed decisions, and that is great. Many people do not. Word of mouth, according to you, is the most powerful marketting. If that word of mouth and reputation is not based on reality, it does not diminish the power of it.

        So, since I cannot make the customer do what they should do, nor should be able to, I either have no recourse, or I go after the fradulent company that claimed to be representing my company. That is fraud, it is false advertising, and it is harm to my business. It does not matter that the “blame” falls to the customer, the harm still remains. As far as I am concerned, the fraud was committed by the so-called competitor, and they are the one operating outside of the “rules”. If, however, there is no one to blow the whistle because customers are not paying attention, or because there is no media attention, then the only recourse I have is legal.

        It is your fault you bought a fake. It is also your fault if you blame it on the original manufacturer. It is your fault if you drag their name through the mud. It is your fault if you are part and party to a market action that bankrupts that company in response to bad quality products that were made and sold BY SOMEONE ELSE and falsely labelled. The company making the fakes gets away with it and the company that made good products is destroyed. WTF? IT DOES NOT MATTER WHOSE FAULT IT IS. What matters is that it is fraud. There are rules against fraud. Lies are bad. Just ask “the Universe”.

        I am willing to worry about the seller. If he is doing things properly but another seller is damaging him via fraud, I am not going to just “not buy the other seller’s stuff”. I am going to go after the fraudulent seller as quickly as possible in order to minimize the damage to the good seller.

        • Jon

          So a bunch of stupid/lazy consumers can damage my business.

          You mean they burnt it down?

          You mean they broke in and stole all your good?

          If this is not what you mean, then I don’t understand your definition of “damage”.

          If a man is lying about you, why do you care? He is either right or he is wrong.

          If he is right he is not lying.

          If he is wrong, everyone will know he is a liar.

          The Universe works itself out pretty well.

          It is not my fault they bought knock-offs, nor is it possible for me to make them do the due dilligence before they complain or blame me for a bad product that I did not make.

          (1) They did not buy from you.
          (2) They complain about you because you did not sell them anything.
          (3) The rest of society watches this bizarre display and concludes “These people are really stupid”.

          Your reputation is solid.

          There may be doubt, but doubt never, never, never is removed.

          You could be the best today and a scum tomorrow – the past does not equal the future – so I must be on guard today even though you have been honorable yesterday

          So, doubt is never removed – and the liars do not impact this.

          So, doubt temporarily increases until it is dispelled by you saying “They did not buy my product” – then your future customers (because that is all you care about, right!) will be satisfied.

          This is how it works today, how it worked yesterday, and how it will work tomorrow too.

          No violence required.

          It is not up to me to make sure they check up on the BBB before trusting them.

          BINGO! you do not need to protect people from their own stupidity (unless you think you can profit from it, such as the founders of BBB believed)

          I get that you make good and informed decisions, and that is great. Many people do not.

          …and I couldn’t care less if they do or do not.
          The non-violent decisions of other people are not my concern -EVER-

          Word of mouth, according to you, is the most powerful marketting.

          Yep.

          If that word of mouth and reputation is not based on reality, it does not diminish the power of it.

          Correct.

          Lies are not real. Thus, at most create a very temporary and irrelevant situation – and at best improve your reputation.

          If I say Jon is scum, and people believe me, yet you continue to act honorably, shortly people come to realize that I am the scum and they wronged YOU.

          They then tend to magnify the reversal – they will apply far harsher retribution on me in comparison to the minor loss of reputation you suffered and will apply far greater accolades on you in difference to that minor loss.

          There is nothing more honorable than a man who maintains his honor even as others attempt to discredit him. In the end, he is hailed as a hero and an example for all men to follow while the other guy typically finds himself hanging from lamp posts.

          So, since I cannot make the customer do what they should do, nor should be able to, I either have no recourse,

          Correct.

          Your only recourse is to maintain your honor and tell the truth.

          The truth will set you free!

          It is your fault

          It is your money.

          It was your decision.

          It is not my money.

          It was not my decision.

          It is your fault, not mine. Period.

          I am willing to worry about the seller.

          Then you fail to worry about yourself.

          If he is doing things properly but another seller is damaging him via fraud, I am not going to just “not buy the other seller’s stuff”. I am going to go after the fraudulent seller as quickly as possible in order to minimize the damage to the good seller.

          Go right ahead and print advertisements recommending the seller.

          Go right ahead and organize a public march in his favor.

          Good for you. He might even give you a discount on your next purchase if you do this.

  27. MorningStar says:

    Well, I ‘crave my liberty’ & freedom did not come freely…..thousands have died so we can be here today, but the battle is never over.

    I would suggest everyone just read that new book out that’s about Americans who stand up, in a small town, to tyranny & ends up starting the 2nd American Revolution.

    Hey, the same issues are there…i.e. high taxes, contintual foreign wars, bureaucrats crossing the land to harass the people.

    It’s a great read cause it could us & our home town one day taking a stand to defend our freedoms. Power to the People!!
    http://www.booksbyoliver.com

  28. JAC,

    It might be your mind but it is my idea.

    ..and at the same time, I own it too, because it is in my head.

    You can use what is in your mind as you see fit – and I will use my mind as I see fit.

    Just because you can imitate my product, like a chimp who imitates words, doesn’t mean it is a product of your mind.

    *blink*

    My hands work because my brain makes them work. My hand are not attached to your brain. You do not make my hands work.

    The outcome of my hands working is mine, not yours.

    You are not using the concept of sunk costs correctly. Pure and simple.

    Actually, I believe I am using them correctly and you are not.

    In USWep’s reading list, there are a series of books I posted. Two of them are called the “Race” and the “Goal”. I urge everyone to read them.

    People spend money on R&D because they hope to get a greater return than they would otherwise get by spending that money on something else. Or in the personal inventors case, it is a return on time expended.

    I am no judge of why people spend money. I expect they do spend money on R&D to catch an “outlier” – a unique discovery.

    But the test, JAC.

    If I invest in a factory, and I fail – the factory still exists. This is an investment – an economic good that is used to provide an economic gain. It can be turned over to someone else and they can use it to try again or try something different.

    If I spend money on R&D and I fail – what still exists? Nothing. The money is sunk – gone – consumed – will not make money in the future no matter what.

    If you are lucky enough to get a discovery then you invest in factories to manufacture your item

    This is the problem with most micro-economic theories and procedures. This idea that the past should be ignored. If you keep ignoring the past you will not make the best decisions in the future.

    Dissimilar concepts.

    The past is used to learn – it is not there to be a justification for demands for non-existent profit.

    As I said before, many who follow your argument end up closing profitable businesses because they believe they have to add to the costing the “sunk costs” of R&D.

    You can see these types of people everywhere where a business closes, is taken over by someone else, and they continue the business and make profit.

    If the later guy can do that, what happened to the former guy?

    Answer: His accountant screwed him up by allocating an artificial cost into his product for sunk costs. Even though he could manufacture the product at a profit, he ended up selling the product at too high a price so to account for sunk costs.

    The later guy had no such issues. He muddled along quite nicely.

    I find your claim that nobody spends on R&D with any hope of a return as quite hilarious.

    No, I did not say that.

    I said “without expectation”. They may “hope”.

    Anyone who spends money on R&D is fully aware they will likely lose it all. They “hope” they won’t but any money in R&D is written off, and anyone spending it this way knows that.

    I know of an investment group that spends wildly in R&D – but their time preference if very low. You get the money and if in a year or so, you can’t show anything – they move on and let you rot.

    They go through, probably, 75 such situations before one catches. Then they fund that one like crazy, investing time, human resources, etc to make it go.

    At no time do they burden this one “outlier” with the costs of the 75 failed other ones.

    What they have found is that they make more then enough money selling the company off to other investors at high P/E ratios – they are not there to earn from the profit, they earn buy selling to other people who are more patient to wait for their profit.

    • Not everyone invents or operates R&D according to your model, certainly not according to your investor group’s model. I know people who have an idea they believe will work. They believe there is a market for it, that the idea is great, and they are passionate about it. They have limited resources, but they put the time and effort and what resources they have into it. Maybe they finish their idea, maybe they don’t, but there is definately an expectation of success, or they would not pursue it so fiercely.

      A person like that, who devoted years of research and countless failures and finally discovers the secret to make the idea work is the inventor. Your “mental ownership” of such a thing is, indeed, chimplike by comparison. You have no concept of what went into it, you are stealing, unless the person desires to share it with you and cares not for the business side of it.

      Innovation is essential to business survival. R&D is essential to healthy business operation. It is an investment. It is not just money thrown in a hole hoping an anomaly will spring up. R&D is not the lottery. It may not be classified as a typical investment, but it is also not a typical “sunk cost”. Find a new term.

      Invention is a lot of work, it deserves respect.

      Theft is evil. Operating outside of the terms of a transaction it theft. Therefore it is evil.

  29. SK Trynosky Sr says:

    You prepare for the worst, you buy the non-hybrid seeds, you plant them, you cultivate them, they grow. You go to town, I come along and see all these nice vegetables which you have not yet harvested, I take them. You did not pick them, you did not safeguard them in any way. You did not execute a contract with me because I am an itinerant scoundrel. I perform no violence on you or anyone else because I wait until you are gone before I pick your vegetables but remember, even though they were ripe, you did not pick them. I am smart and bright enough to take advantage of your work and effort that you have not taken advantage of.

    So, what’s the difference?

    • One difference that I can see is that in this case, trespassing has been added to theft.

      Other than that, I’ve pretty much said my piece about “Intellectual property”, fraud, theft, and aggression.

  30. SK Trynosky Sr says:

    Actually Kent, just trying to get Flag’s take on that.

    Seems to me that the concept of Private property, like intellectual property is in doubt with Flag. Since in the “ideal world” government does not exist,who is there to say who owns what, whose deed is valid. If I have a better competing use for a piece of land you are on, maybe I should take it. Even better, if you live in NYC but own a piece of Pennsylvania that you only use on summer weekends, and I want to farm or log it, according to Flag, shouldn’t I have the right to do that?

    I never intended to get this thing going this way but it has raised some interesting questions. I appreciate your input above.

    • SK,

      Seems to me that the concept of Private property, like intellectual property is in doubt with Flag.

      Not one bit.

      Property exists because the its use or determination of use can only be done by one person at a time.

      The land I stand on cannot be stood upon by you at the same time.

      Only one of us can stand “here”. The resolution of who gets to stand “here” is accomplished either by:

      (1) Force.
      (2) Right.

      Private property RIGHTS exists so that FORCE is unnecessary to determine use of that property.

      Intellectual Knowledge does not require this, thus it cannot be defined as property.

      You can hold an particle of knowledge at the same time I hold that particle of knowledge.

      You knowing how to build a mousetrap does not at all interfere with me knowing how to build a mousetrap.

      There is no conflict – both (in fact, infinite) number of people can hold the same knowledge without interfering with anyone else.

      The attempt to define knowledge as property is fallacious, and another attempt at “Revolution within the Form” – redefining a term to be opposite of the original intent of the definition.

    • S.K.

      Government does not CREATE rights – nor determine rights.

      • Mr. Flag:

        If the government does not create rights – or determine those rights, please if possible, explain how in the First Amendment that the religion clause even got there.

        I stand firm with this posture: If the government has nothing to do with rights, why the need for legislative branches; moreover, why the need for judicial review?

        I loath the Fourteenth Amendment; it is a catch-all for whatever the first constitution didn’t cover, moreover, if we add in the guilt of repression/opression and the notion of over 600,000 lives I believe that one is only kidding themselves if one perceives that government cannot create a right. For intellectual purposes, if possible explain to me or this forum what the hell is USA v Arizona about?

        • Jon-Paul,

          If the government does not create rights – or determine those rights, please if possible, explain how in the First Amendment that the religion clause even got there.

          It got there because a bunch of old men wrote it there.

          Because a bunch of fellows say something is a right or say something is not a right does not make something a right or something not a right.

          The religion clause was articulated because those men at that time, coming only a few short decades from a devastating religious persecution and wars were fearful of the same occurrence in America.

          Whether religion is a right or not was immaterial.

          I stand firm with this posture: If the government has nothing to do with rights, why the need for legislative branches; moreover, why the need for judicial review?

          I agree.

          if one perceives that government cannot create a right.

          It can create government privileges such as voting for government.

          Voting is not a human right – it is a government “right”, ie: privilege.

          For intellectual purposes, if possible explain to me or this forum what the hell is USA v Arizona about?

          It is a dispute of who enforces whose law.

        • Maybe something I have written about rights will help: The nature of ‘rights’- Do you have ‘Second Amendment rights’?

  31. SK Trynosky Sr says:

    It does not seem to follow to me. If you are there, I cannot stand on your spot. If you are in New York, and I am on that disputed piece of unoccupied property in Pennsylvania, I am there and you are not. If you are not wise enough to harvest your crop when it should be harvested (according to me and my expertise as a master farmer), then I am and will harvest your crop for me which of course makes it my crop.

    If government does not determine rights in the physical sense, recorded deeds etc. then my “right” is as good as yours, perhaps better. In private real estate contracts such as mortgages, is there not a clause that prohibits you, the borrower from “wasting” the property by not maintaining it? In lieu of there being a contract between us, I act to use the asset that you have not.

    The operant word in the intellectual property rights issue is “can”. Yes, you can hold the same particle of knowledge at the same time I do, but do you? If you do not and my actions gave you the opportunity to mimic my mousetrap, not make a better more improved one than mine, then I think you a thief.

    • SK,

      It does not seem to follow to me. If you are there, I cannot stand on your spot.

      Reread my post, SK, and think some more. You’re being trifling.

      Yes, you can hold the same particle of knowledge at the same time I do, but do you?

      If I do not, what is your complaint then???

      If I do, so what? You still have your mind too!!

      If you do not and my actions gave you the opportunity to mimic my mousetrap, not make a better more improved one than mine, then I think you a thief.

      I did not steal the mousetrap you built. You can hold it in your hands.

      When another man says “Show me the mousetrap he stole” you cannot, you still have it in your hands – so How can it be stolen

      When another man says “Show me your mousetrap..”, I lift up mine in my hands and lo! your mousetrap is in your hands and mine is my hands!

      So how can yours be “stolen” if you still have it????

      Bizarre, sir, bizarre.

  32. What already? Some folks have not been over to my blog, The Thinker in particular to an article that deals with personal responsibility. Moreover, if one were to go into the search category – there are several other articles that ask what indeed has happened to personal responsibility.

    With the greatest of respect to BF as much as the rhetoric sounds good, the simple fact of the matter is that both parties were at the very least negligent inasmuch as they did not file any documentation of support. It doesn’t take much to ask an attorney to draw up a “Memorandum of Record’ or place a free listing in a local paper to announce the “non-specifics” of what any inventor wants to do. It’s that easy.

    Now I’ve sat on several multi-national boards; moreover, international boards of directors, collectively with auditors from the Big Four with the topic of “intellectual property” and its intended value. The important notion behind this strategy is that it better be correct. What I mean is that if someone claims intellectual property they really should be [here comes an analogy] ready to face Michael Dell, Steve Jobs, and Bill Gates or their duly chosen thousands of experts in any courtroom and in anyplace in the world.

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