Archive for the ‘mini-manifesto’ Category

dear misanthrope

I forgot to mention, in this blog’s heyday, that if everyone who thinks the earth is overpopulated would off themselves, it would help.

Thanks.

(w/ thanks to Dan Collins over at Protein Wisdom for reminding me to say this)

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Shattering and Binding

Two days. Forty-eight hours it’s taken me to articulate my reaction to Obama’s election. So many calls for conservatives to be adults, to put country first, to look at the bright side.

Wordless rage. Obama won through deception, dishonesty, and with the full-knowing falseness of the media and academy. Much of the journalistic and intellectual realms have betrayed America. They know what they have done; they know they hid inconvenient truths and propagated harmful lies.

Why should I stand up and be a good citizen? I will only be destroyed, my voice ripped out, my character fed into the industrial shredder should I dare speak out for my beliefs. Why should I continue to guard and feed those who have slammed the picks and axes of irrational hatreds between my shoulder blades? Please explain how Obama was duly elected in the midst of possibly hundreds of millions in illegal campaign cash, voter fraud, the dumping of military ballots, and so many other attacks on election integrity? Please explain how an America who was intentionally blinded to the truth about her candidates made a legitimate choice of leader?

Again I had to ask: Why should I stand up and be a good citizen when America has so grandly rewarded being a bad one?

I was trying to study, deciding my own victory lay in what I could achieve, what I could do. I am becoming part of the academy, and just like the Left took it, I will be part of the next revolution. I had to stop to sift through events and bodies of sense. I wandered into the next room where CNN was showing reactions to the election.

There was singing and dancing in Harlem, a sea of black faces in bright garb, drums, and joyous voices. A black man was front and center saying he could now tell his children they really could be anything. A black woman said “Obama isn’t just a black president, he’s the president of whites and everyone.” The scene shifted to champaign corks popping in France, to the people of the city of Obama, Japan, singing their silly “Obama” song.

Confucians believe that ceremony is an inherent part of being human. Rituals mean something, symbols carry power, and acting in accordance with those ceremonies brings us into harmony with those meanings, that power. Ritual allows that power to use us for righteousness and us to use it for strength and direction.

The elation on the faces of my fellow Americans, my brothers and sisters who have for so long been estranged in spirit from this country I love, brought salt water to my face. I think Michelle Obama was wrong for never being proud of her country before her husband was raised up before it, but I understand, and I can’t hold that against her. I hope all these people, from Harlem to Paris to Obama City, have felt the power and meaning of the rituals we are enacting. I hope their joy brings their spirits into harmony with ours, because we need that. It is most difficult to fight a brutal enemy while divided from those who are your family.

In Classical meanings, the meanings of function and reason, America lost this election. In Romantic meanings, the meanings of symbol and ritual, America won.

As my heart has wandered these brick canyons and alternate realities of the academy, it had no choice but to align with the force field of Love. Not some dewy-eyed emotionalism that weakens knees and spine, no, not that hippy toke trip. Rather, Love as the righteous and terrible twin of Hate: unifying love for the One who Drew us all in breath and dirt, compassionate love for the good-hearted soil of humanity, proud love for my nation — the tribe of the free, sensuous love for this glorious Created world in which we are all given merely a few brief moments to shudder in Awe at the Divine incarnate, and violent love for all-consuming combat against Evil and its demon horde of injustices. This is why I must be a good citizen, not only now, but until my last breath, until I can no longer wear the armor and swing the sword and shout the battle cry of freedom.

*

a few notes while fishin’

There seems to be a consensus that McCain has already lost. Non-Obama pundits are planning what-next scenarios, and all of it sounds ugly. [See update below.]

Dr. Helen asks, “Is it time to go John Galt?”

Do you ever wonder after dealing with all that is going on with the economy and the upcoming election if it’s getting to be time to “go John Galt”? For those of you who have never read Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, the basic theme is that John Galt and his allies take actions that include withdrawing their talents, “stopping the motor of the world,” and leading the “strikers” (those who refuse to be exploited) against the “looters” (the exploiters, backed by the government).

Vodkapundit talks about “fighting words.”

If (when?) Obama is elected, by my estimation there’s an at least even chance that the newly-reconstructed FCC will reverse course and attempt to apply the New Fairness Doctrine to blogs.

If (when?) it happens, I’ll break that law. I will break it with all due malice and in full knowledge of the possible consequences. I’ll shout “Fire Obama!” in a crowded theater. And then, for the first time ever, I’ll ask for reader donations. Because I’ll going to need them, lots of them, to pay for the lawyers.

Primordial Slack declares “Obama will not be my President” and links a number of others with similar views.

I join VodkaPundit, DailyPundit, GuyK, Dogette, and a host of others who will, at the last, refuse to sit idly by while Freedom erodes.

Put my name on your list, Communist Nanny-Staters, it’s not too early.

Obama will not be my President. Nor will Hillary “for the common good” Clinton. Nor will anyone of any skin color or sex that embraces the deconstruction of Capitalism and Freedom as their political platform.

What’s up? What did I miss while reading dusty old documents? The blogosphere isn’t connecting with middle America and the Big Bad Media message is getting through? Duh. I don’t know the number of times I’ve read someone going on about how the MSM has dug its own grave, how it knows it won’t have any influence in the future so it’s squandering it all now to get Obama elected. Nonsense. They still buy ink (and pixels and airwaves) by the barrel*, and they still control what most of middle America reads, sees, and hears.

So what to do? Get in on it. “What?” you ask. Get in on it. We have to become the MSM, get in on the ground floor as reporters, work our way up. Get in on the fight, people. Cyberspace is important ground, but it’s not the main battlefield, it’s only one hill from which we can observe and call in artillery. We have to get down in the mud and the blood, get real ink, real video, real news all over us, and push back on the main field of battle. Win there, or lose.

Where else? Where are the other battles? Worried about all the big-government politicians? Worried about the lefty academy? Two more big battlefields. Stop whining, sign your name on the line, get elected and start leading or get a Ph.D. and start teaching.

That’s exactly how the left got where it is today, and that’s the only way that ground can be retaken.

Back to the ol’ fishin’ hole for me.

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*Sorry for the mixed metaphor, but the alliteration should please you. Oh, sorry. I left my alliteration in the worm bucket when I came up the hill to write.

Update: The post hasn’t even been up for 10 minutes and Dana H. takes me to task in the comments over claiming the Dr. Helen post was part of the “McCain’s lost” movement. And rightly so, in all likelihood. Maybe it’s a broader, “Well, we’ve lost” attitude that I’m sensing, in the big, “our movement” way.

Update 2: Grim has picked up on the apocalyptic language as well.

There is a remarkable amount of ‘end times’ language surrounding the Obama candidacy, and as we’ve discussed, some of it is really his own fault. Obama is a scion of the Alinsky movement, and Saul Alinsky did dedicate his book on “community organizing” to Lucifer.

I hope Jim Webb is right, and I’m wrong: and it is comforting to find that there are people I respect who are Obama supporters. I know I can put some faith in them, even if I have none in the man himself. Jim Webb is out there, Phil Carter of Intel Dump, retired General Zinni — these are people I respect, whether or not we always agree and even when we rarely do. That’s comforting.

stained glass

It’s a beautiful morning and I will be walking out into it in a moment. On such a chill morning, it is good to remember, to keep certain things in mind, where the cutting autumn air lends clarity and perspective to one’s thoughts.

Alan Jackson: Where Were You

The Anchoress: Remembrance and Prayers

James Lileks: “When I was a kid, I was terrified of the End of the World …”

Grim: Enid & Geraint, a poem

It is also good to forget grief when we can, for our lives are short enough and one day in the not too distant future, if we are lucky, we will be the ones mourned. When we ourselves pass, we hope the grieving of those we love will be short, that our memories bring rather joy and strength into their lives, that our ghosts do not haunt but help.

I believe this is what the souls of those whom Charon has carried over demand from us: joy and strength, ferocity and patience. I believe it is right and proper to celebrate those who have died, those who were killed, in whatever joyous way we can find: to carry in our hearts a spark of the eternal life of heroes who perished in the full bloom of courage, to dance with abandon with those we love while we cherish the men and women and children left among us on that bitter day, to celebrate the bonds we and they share with those beyond, to drink dark brew around a fire or a table and tell the stories that make us laugh, to pick up our tools and work with all our might at whatever our hands have found to do.

This kind of memory is like a tall, stained glass window in a cathedral, the pieces painstakingly cut to fit, joined by molten metal, and fearfully crafted. It focuses the glory of the sun into an awe-full story that demands from us everything we are for the brief span of an arc of burning light.

This is the day that the Lord has made, and it is right to rejoice and be glad in it. It is right, though our smiles may be grim or faint or fierce. It is proper, today, as it is every day we have, to call out the names of the dead and love being alive, being faithful, being victorious. The darkness is always on its way.

the war on drugs

In response to this post on a no-knock gone wrong: Live hand grenades — best self-defense weapon EVER for protection from drug dealers AND police entry teams. After Claymore mines, but those are a bit much for home defense. Of course, that depends on where your home is.

On the WOD. Clearly it’s gone WAY too far, including no-knock and property seizure. I think we should apply the alcohol rule to drug legalization: If it’s no more harmful than alcohol, legalize it. There do need to be case-by-case provisions. E.g., you can’t get a contact buzz from sitting next to someone drinking whiskey, but you can from someone smoking cannabis, so laws need to take things like that into account. I also think, at least initially, only domestically produced recreational drugs should be legal; we need to cut the money going to criminal and terrorist organizations.

However.

The failure of the WOD to eliminate illegal drug use in America means . . . What? We should legalize murder? I mean, laws against murder have failed for millenia; when do we give up and say, ya know, it’s cool?

Tax it big time! Yeah! Oh, so these people who are happy to support murderous drug dealers, terrorists, and drug lords who destabilize weak nations, just to have a little fun on Saturday night, are now going to become good little citizens and pay really high taxes to get their kicks? No. Really high taxes are just going to result in the continuing criminal trade in drugs.

Lastly, these people are financing murder and mayhem here at home, FARC et al abroad, and heroin buyers specifically are very possibly supporting the Taliban in their drive to kill American soldiers and return Afghanistan to a state of wretched tyranny. And, they are doing this for FUN, not for any greater principle or for FREEDOM!!!!!! They are vermin. Destroy their lives. Throw them in small cages and let them rot.

Or, consider it treason in a time of war and off ‘em. If you’re sending cash to the Taliban, or to FARC, or to any number of other criminal / terrorist organizations that buys their bullets and bombs with drug money, you are as much a traitor as if you were buying war bonds from Hitler in 1944.

Naturally, due process should be observed, dogs should not be shot senselessly, and people who are addicted should be treated, not hung. And for the rest of us, grenades. I’m telling you, a live grenade on the floor is a great and immediate disincentive to shoot dogs, harass old men in underwear, etc. It also gives the missus an excuse to redecorate.*

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*If you’re married. Hmm, maybe my reliance on hand grenades as a form of self-defense is why I’m still single . . . Nah, that’s silly. Women love a man in hand grenades, right? Right?

American (In)Justice System

My main contention is that the American justice system has become a form of tyranny.

This post could easily become a long, long essay, so I will simply outline my argument. Future posts will deal with some specifics, including a few ideas for how to repair the system. I am not a lawyer, nor do I play one on TV, so I fully recognize some of my arguments may be naive; I post this as a challenge, as an example of the frustrations of an American citizen, and welcome anyone more knowledgeable to correct me if I am wrong.

1. The system exacts a toll from every citizen, not for their good, but for the good of legal professionals (lawyers, judges, police of various kinds, etc.). No matter who else wins or loses, the legal professions always win, always gain power, always gain wealth. The fear of the legal system itself works in favor of the legal professions and hurts everyone else. This seems to me a form of extortion. Legal professionals themselves are often immune from prosecution, either by law or by practice.

2. The system is essentially impossible to change from within. Within the federal government there is a separation of powers between the judicial, legislative, and executive. However, the legal profession has subverted this separation. Two of the three branches are controlled by members of one social group: lawyers. These individuals cannot be counted on to change a system they’ve been indoctrinated in, that has provided them with prestige and wealth, and that continues to affirm their career decisions. We recognize this in other cases: We would not let any other group police itself, but rather the legal professions police all other groups, and themselves. There are times, e.g. during the Clinton administration, when lawyers control all three branches of government. Repeatedly we see that legal judgments never go against the legal profession. In order to make changes, it would be necessary to appeal to legal professionals to change their own profitable, prestigious system. I consider it essentially impossible.

3. The law itself is often contradictory and therefore essentially arbitrary. There is no difference between a tyrant who rules by whim and a massive system of contradictory laws that are impossible to wholly understand. For that matter, there is no difference between an arbitrary tyrant and a single law that the person it applies to cannot understand. Legalese is the enemy of the average citizen in a very real, and sometimes lethal, way. The power of judges is likewise arbitrary; every judge is a tyrant in his or her own courtroom, some benign, some not. In the case of truly tyrannical judges, the press and lawyers are well-advised not to publicize this fact if they may end up in that judge’s courtroom in any capacity whatsoever.

Example 1: I know of a case in which an elderly woman was ordered to appear before a judge at a certain time. She arrived in plenty of time, but mistook the courtroom and went to the wrong one. Realizing her mistake, she found the right courtroom and entered a few minutes late. The judge ruled her in contempt of court and she spent the night in jail. After her release, she contacted the press and a small story appeared. The judge then called her attorney demanding to know why he had advised her to go to the press. The elderly woman had no other recourse, the attorney needed to keep good relations with the judge, and nothing came of this.

Example 2: I know of another case in which a judge ordered a Department of Human Services caseworker to find a foster home for a child by midnight on a certain day. The caseworker failed and was jailed for contempt for several days. Upon being released, the caseworker quit DHS, leaving the section assigned responsibility for finding foster homes for abused children short one worker until a new one could be hired and trained.

There is a great deal more to write, but this will suffice as an introduction to the topic. In summary, the American legal system is essentially arbitrary, impossible to change, and extorts resources from the citizenry for the benefit of a small, powerful elite. It is a form of tyranny.

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Postscript: This post has been a long time coming. It is coincidentally on the same theme as Grim’s recent post, The Trust Issue, which references this article about Americans prosecuted by the US for violating Honduran laws that had been repealed before the Americans “broke” them. (Grim h/ts Southern Appeal, a blogging lawyer.)

The inspiration for this post came from Grim’s blog as well. In a post I can no longer find because I can’t find a link to his archives, if he has them, there was a discussion of Crito, which relates Socrates decision to die as sentenced by law instead of run off to a safe city. I had invited someone at Grim’s to write an opposing piece, which I would be happy to post here if I could remember the gentleman’s name and contact him.

Finally, there is probably someone who has done this better, but this will do for me. I’d be happy to get links to any posts on similar or contrary themes.

Update, 2008 June 21: Grim links an excellent post from his archives that should be read as background philosophy for this post. The comments are excellent and should be read as well.

Also, I will be collecting other related links here.

man and boy

After becoming a man, after the blood and bones and endless nights of rush and fade and fatality and being razor-edged ragged alive there is still something the man needs. The anger and sadness will always be there, and the hope if he doesn’t give it up or sell it out.

But there is still something else. It is looking back, once out of the zone, and knowing that he was always a boy, that he still is, even as a man — becoming a man doesn’t take the boy away, it only adds to him.

patriotism is the highest form of dissent

along with things like courage, service in the armed forces, unabashed masculinity, and belief in honor and duty.

I find LT G’s story of wearing his Guinness socks to his commissioning a little too precious. Oh, he’s brave enough to stare death in the face, but for some reason feels he must demonstrate his rebellion against authority or his frail little identity might be crushed. How precious. Is mandatory rebellion meaningful, or merely a conceit?

LT G is the embodiment of transgression in the post-modern world; he is patriotic, courageous, skilled in the use of arms, and honorable. What socks have to do with it I can’t begin to fathom, but we all have our little conceits and idiosyncrasies. And, he’s cav; what do you expect? At least they’re Guinness socks. That shows character.

Socialism is the opiate of the capitalist intellectual elite

Socialism is the opiate of the capitalist intellectual elite. It is a myth that confirms his belief that only he and those like him hold the secret to a better society, if only society would listen. It is a myth that pumps hot air into his ego to make up for the fact that he produces nothing, that is, it is a myth that encloses his head like a bag and hides the abyss he has embraced from his own sight.

These socialist intellectuals have never cared for the worker; they have almost never been producers, except of words and ideas: conceptual bags. When they have arisen from the working class, it has often been as a rejection of it, an escape from a life they are unsuited for, and their zeal for the bag of the intellectual elite is that of a convert. The vast majority cannot relate to the worker. They hold the worker’s certainties, family, flag, and faith, in sometimes ill-disguised, sometimes open, contempt. Their ideals, and their policies, when they convince politicians to implement them and when society’s storytellers embody them in novel and on screen, result in the destruction of the working class by amputating its soul, crushing its dignity, and most of all, by disabling intimacy and caging each worker in an individual emotional prison isolated from family and true friends.

Socialism is romantic, socialism is teenage rebellion writ large, socialism is magical thinking on its grandest scale.