Sunday, January 16, 2011

Second Amendment Remedies

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.   Second Amendment 

This nation's founding father's were wise, but they weren't clairvoyant. A "well regulated Militia" in 1787, had more to do with keeping the old musket cleaned in case the Minutemen needed reassembly, than an individuals right to possess more firepower than a standing army. The framers' intention was to assure the rural populace that, in league with a regulated militia, they had the power to beat back an insurrection or invasion by force of arms. Not even Ben Franklin, however, could have foreseen a semi-automatic assault rifle in every closet, or statewide militia organizations that serve more to intimidate citizens than protect them. Certainly, the founders did not wish for a paranoid "Wild West" mentality to grip the entire country with regular occurrences of indiscriminate gun violence and murder. Yet, the Second Amendment has become the Rosetta Stone for conservatives, untouchable to modern interpretation, exploited by the NRA, and used as a shield for the explosion of gun sales during the past two years of the Obama presidency.

That's why the obscene violence visited upon the citizens of Tucson in recent days was a shock, but not a surprise. This country has become so accustomed to spree killings, the only news value is the body count, or, as in Arizona, the prominence of the victims. The documented mental condition of the Tuscon shooter demonstrated that lethal weapons are as easy to obtain as a Happy Meal, and if one Walmart won't sell you enough ammunition to fight off an army of Huns, just drive over to the next one and load up. We lurch from Columbine, to Virginia Tech, to Tucson without batting an eye, because the battle for reasonable gun regulation has been forfeited in the face of the firearms lobby. The National Rifle Association, by heavily "contributing" to the campaigns of sympathetic state and local officials, has successfully initiated a stealth campaign to eliminate any restrictions on where a gun can be taken. Consequently, the guy sitting next to you at Happy Hour, or in the public library, could be concealing a firearm. And there was hardly a scintilla of public debate before these insane notions were codified into law.

It can be expected for a goober like Texas Rep. Louis Gohmert to advocate carrying a weapon into a legislative chamber like the House of Representatives, but when Congressman Steve "Quick Draw" Cohen announces he'll start packing heat, it's a cause for concern. Not because Cohen is a bad shot or a pacifist with an occasional temper, but because we have come to this as a society. Who could blame Cohen after a major party's senatorial candidate suggests "second amendment remedies" to reign in government and some zipperhead in dysfunctional Arizona declares open-season on congressmen and their constituents? At Rep. Cohen's own Town Hall meeting during the Tea Party's "Summer of Hate," a few local zealots chose to wear holstered weapons like trendy fashion accessories and suddenly, there's a rash of nationwide amateur constitutionalists strapping on sidearms at public events as some sort of political statement. The romanticized gun culture reinforces their fantasies of repelling a home invasion or taking up arms against a tyrannical government and the Glock has become the most coveted household possession since the Salad Shooter.

The debate over regulating the sale of guns is over. The remaining question is how to keep weapons out of the hands of homicidal lunatics. For all the conservatives have done to champion gun rights, they certainly have liberal attitudes about who can obtain them. The GOP brags of being the party of  "God, guns, and guts," only lately, it's other people's guts that are involved. One of the questions in a recent forum for candidates for Chairman of the Republican National Committee was, "How many guns do you own?" The greater the number of firearms claimed, the louder the applause from the audience. One candidate bragged of owning every manner of weapon except a surface-to-air missile. In this case, Michael Steele got out-gunned, while the Republican Party is just a few warlords short of resembling Afghanistan..

Politicians and pundits are quick to assign blame, but who can say what motivates these murderous freaks? A brutal popular culture that glorifies violence has surely contributed to our annual national gun carnage, but Canada has as many guns per capita as the U.S., and they watch the same movies and listen to the same music as we do. If their country-wide gun murders in a year equate to Chicago's in a month, it must be an issue of mental health, and we seem to be in the middle of a national nervous breakdown. Our political discourse may be vulgar and ballistic, but the Tucson shooter seems just another in an endless parade of the viciously insane. John Hinckley shot Ronald Reagan to impress Jodie Foster. Squeaky Fromme took a shot at Gerald Ford in order to be incarcerated with Charlie and the Mansons. These potential assassins cared      more about fame than politics, yet they were able to wipe the drool off their chins just long enough to purchase a firearm. Who doesn't believe that another incident like the massacre in Tucson isn't looming somewhere already? This country's deranged individual arms race has made us one nation under the gun, and the casual, vending-machine nature of weapons sales has turned us into the land of the free to carry, and the home of the artificially brave. I don't think this is what the framers intended. 

84 comments:

Anonymous said...

Agreed on all accounts except the hatin' on "disfuntional Arizona". Not totally necessary to throw that in when talking about one insane individual. As you stated and are well aware, there are nutjobs all over this country. And if I'm not mistaken, some crazy person with a gun could be sitting next to you at a bar in Tennessee doing shots, further imparing his already irrational judgement, while legally packin' heat.

Gregg Grinspan said...

Rationality does exist. It's not something that is up for question. Yes, it is wrong to kick a baby off of a ten story building. Yes, it is right to stop your car at a stop sign when there is traffic speeding by in front of you from both directions at 80mph. See how easy this is?

It is wrong for anyone outside of the military to own a tool that issues bullets more than one at a time. The studies have been in for decades....the first people hurt when trying to protect themselves with guns when their house has been entered are the home owners. No number of anecdotes about how ole Lucy shure showed em the other night obfuscates the actual raw unadulterated data.

Carrying concealed weapons is ok in Afghanistan. Not in the USA. Never ok.

NRA tribal leaders should move on out to the hills and hang with their brethren near the Hindu Kush.

The Watcher said...

Freedom entails some collateral damage simply because some will misuse their freedom. Liberals tend to want to deny all of the citizenry certain rights because a few loons make bad choices. Their solution is to make all pay for the misdeeds of the few. This thinking is the inevitable result of collectivism. If even one person is unhappy about some type of behavior, then forbid all to engage in that behavior. It is the sure road to totalitarianism. If it is not guns, it will be something else. It is all related to their vain attempt to create their vision of Utopia. To them, individual freedom is an impediment that must be squelched each time it seems to produce a problem. "The herd will always choose that which is contrary to our vision, so the herd must be grabbed by the nape of the neck and forced to do the 'right' thing. They are all stupid and the proof is that they disagree with us". They are planning right now to eliminate all points of view that are contrary to their own from the airwaves...to hell with letting the free market determine the issue. Every liberal broadcast dies from lack of support, so they must use coercion to suppress dissenting view points. They can't compete in the market place of ideas. If they could, liberals would take all of our guns, melt them down, and make a statue of their leader Karl Marx to place in the midst of the Capitol. I noticed that Sputnik invokes the name of the Founding Fathers. How ironic that he should do so after he has already revealed his disdain for them in other commentaries. More liberal duplicity and hypocrisy.

Anonymous said...

Ah, Gregg. Ever the voice of snobbish, superior elitism. You trash people who think differently and refer to them as toothless hicks who should 'hang out with their brethren near the Hindu Kush'. You are revealing yourself to be this blog's meglomaniac. Why not refer to yourself as the "All-Knowing One"? I once thought that you were something of a poet. I am beginning now to see evidences of the tyranny of elitism in your personality. I almost vomited when you smugly spoke of rationality as though it is somehting foreign to the masses and then said condescendingly, "See how easy it is?" I thought that Sputnik was at least inclined to champion the common man, but I have to doubt that seeing as how you are one of his closest friends. Someone needs to grab you by the nape of the neck and drag you to some humility.

performs said...

Brilliant! “...romanticized gun culture reinforces their fantasies...” “A brutal popular culture that glorifies violence...” Bring this sensibility to what I see as the difference between Canada’s attitude toward fellow citizens versus that of the USA and indeed the result is much more gun violence and killing. In Canada, citizens generally hold a more trusting, and generous attitude toward one another. Canadians interviewed in the documentary, Bowling for Columbine, express this attitude as does the happiness they derive from offering basic health and healing services to each other. This is quite different from the stoked rivalries, cutthroat competition, rugged individualism, political warfare, and “family values” (my family matters--yours, not so much) that we experience in 4MERICA.

Kundalini Genie said...

Sputnik, you seem to find that the apex of Sarah Palin's repulsiveness is that she would shoot an animal for meat. I hope that you are a vegetarian lest you reveal even more of your hypocrisy. If not, then you simply prefer for others to do your dirty work for you. Actually, I could never shoot a creature because that is the way that my heart works. But, I live in a rural area where hunting and fishing are deeply ingrained into the culture. Though I don't hunt or fish, I would never look down my nose at those who think and behave differently. You are an egalitarian aren't you? This area is one of the retreats for the old 'back to the land' hippies. These are peolple who chose back in the 70's to leave urban areas and to return to a pre-industrial way of life. I respect their convictions, because it is a life of hard work and poverty. They have stuck with it where most of their type found the work and poverty unbearable and so moved back to the relative ease of city life. I know some personally. One couple lives without electricity and running water. The husband is a carpenter and they supplement their diet with animals that they kill. Does that repulse you? I'll bet that Gregg scorns them as part of the mindless, irrational, stupid herd that he loathes. Another couple left the hippie school bus that they used to live in back in the 70's in their front yard as a monument to where they came from. These people are the real deal when it comes to the original ideals of the hippie culture. I am afraid that their values no longer coincide with yours. Who is the sell-out? I feel sure that Gregg would vomit if he were to lay eyes on their stupid asses. They are all heavily armed, largely because they have learned not to trust the government. So, they aren't completey stupid. They hunt, fish, and work the Earth with their hands. They live and let live. They are tolerant and inclusive...much more so than some of the folks on this blog who pretend to embody counter-cultural values. They show up your hypocrisy rather vividly. They would probably vomit if they were to read some of the elitist froth that spews from Gregg's superior mouth. But they would gladly extend him the right to be as he is.

Anonymous said...

Performs, if you loathe America so much why not move to Canada? It doesn't make sense for you to live in such a brutish country when there is a much more kind and gentle country sozo near by. Why suffer in the land of barbarians?

Anonymous said...

Man, am I glad to find this island of sanity. I have been trying to get the public driving of cars banned for years, because cars are actually deadly missiles and have no place in private hands. Only government and military officials should be allowed to drive motorized vehicles on public roadways. The average yahoo is incapable of handling them wisely and hence should be forced not to drive. Can I get an amen to this proposal? Will you people help me to interject some sanity in this regard? We will all live in deadly peril as long as the common man is afforded the right to drive motorized vehicles and the imbeciles who make the laws can't seem to see this. Only stupid people would disagree with this proposal.

Vlad The Impaler said...

Anon (2:48 pm), you are on the right track, but you too fall far short of what is required. Not only do guns and motorized vehicles kill people, but the list of dangerous things that should be banned is more extensive. Knives and all other sharp objects should be banned, also rope which can strangle, plastic bags which can smother, baseball bats and large rocks which can crush, fists which can strike, all poisons including household items like bleach, the list of dangerous materials which can kill goes on and on. Open your eyes man. Actually, and this is the bottom line, it is the freedom possessed by the common, unthinking, stupid man that is the real danger. If we had any sense, only those who are smart, like Gregg, should be free. We should engineer a social order for the common man that is the equivalent of a boot stamping on a human face forever. This is all that the common people deserve and it will prevent them from causing problems for those of us who have some sense. Will you join my movement? Address your correspondence to 'Vlad'...I live in the seventh of the concentric rings of hell'.

performs said...

...."Ye have heard that it has been said, "Thou shall love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy." But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them that despitefully use you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven."

Certainly these are great words, words lifted to cosmic proportions. And over the centuries, many persons have argued that this is an extremely difficult command. Many would go so far as to say that it just isn't possible to move out into the actual practice of this glorious command. They would go on to say that this is just additional proof that Jesus was an impractical idealist who never quite came down to earth. So the arguments abound. But far from being an impractical idealist, Jesus has become the practical realist. The words of this text glitter in our eyes with a new urgency. Far from being the pious injunction of a utopian dreamer, this command is an absolute necessity for the survival of our civilization. Yes, it is love that will save our world and our civilization, love even for enemies.

Now let me hasten to say that Jesus was very serious when he gave this command; he wasn't playing. He realized that it's hard to love your enemies. He realized that it's difficult to love those persons who seek to defeat you, those persons who say evil things about you. He realized that it was painfully hard, pressingly hard. But he wasn't playing....

1957 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

http://www.writespirit.net/inspirational_talks/political/martin_luther_king_talks/loving_your_enemies/view

Mike Licht said...

Louis Gohmert is right, Washington's Capitol Hill is dangerous. Those people in Tucson were killed outside a Safeway supermarket, and there's one of those on Kentucky Avenue, a mere 14 blocks from the Capitol.

See http://bit.ly/gOiEPp

Gregg Grinspan said...

Ok, now. Wait a minute, there. Somebody calling me a hubris? Did I hear correctly? Well, by God, I'm loadin up right now. Got my bazooka and my F16 and I'm gonna show you and yo momma just what you stepped in this time, shorty.

Seriously, do you remember after Virginia Tech, some person (I'm trying not to say total idiot) in the Congress of the United States suggested that all college students should be allowed to carry concealed weapons at school? Do all of you boys and girls remember when you were in college? Were there times that you or your friends went off the deep end just a bit? Got drunk? A lot? Got real stoned? A lot? Got paranoid? Ever? Us and our friends with concealed weapons when we were in college? Would there be grandchildren who would never be born because their grandmommies and daddies would have been blown to smithereens? Well, yes indeedie. I believe that would be true.

So, cars are dangerous. Yep. But we don't conceal the red lights, now do we? Let's get real.

I'm not talking about freedom of the individual here and most of you know it. If I am condescending I am sorry now but not when it comes out of my fingertips because I can't stand the ignorance of a false stand. It is false for an intelligent person to say that it is ok for anyone just because he/she is an American citizen to put others in mortal danger by carrying a weapon of mass destruction. That's what a semi automatic is, right?

How is that ever justified?

The Constitution is a wonderful thing. And Antonin Scalia is a fine fellow. But, if Scalia had been around over 200 years ago there would have been no Bill of Rights. He'd have said, "nope. This here is what the document says for all time until the world is burnt by the exploding supernova of our sun 8 billion years from now."

And the second amendment needs some work. Needs a bit of a trim. Sort of like the Negroes counting as 3/5s of a person. Needs some work.

Nice talking to you.

Williford The Wise said...

This all just goes to show you that indoctrinated minds are insulated and closed to facts and reason. It causes the indoctrinatee to deny plain reality whenever it conflicts with that with which he has been indoctrinated, no matter his apparent intelligence. Communicating with such people is about as efficacious as barking at the moon. Two conflicting wavelengths when intersecting always produce patterns of interference, aka, discord.

Alan said...

Second Amendment remedies are simple. Our Constitution has provisions for that. All you have to do is pass an amendment. If the citizens of the US agree no problem, but it would be the citizens who make the decision. The last time we passed an amendment that took away freedoms it was a big mistake. Prohibition also caused a huge increase in Gun Violence. I don’t think you could buy a Tommy Gun at the local gun store, but that did not stop Machine Gun Kelley (Memphis Reference) from acquiring one. Freedoms have consequences. The alterative is much worse. We are the freest country in the world. One of the consequences of this we are also one of the most violent countries in the world. This is part of the cost of being free. If you want to move to Singapore you will find the type of society that you seek, just don’t get caught chewing gum. BTW I don't own a gun and never will, my choice!

Sputnik57 said...

To Anon and Vlad- let's take that auto analogy a bit further. Before you can drive a car, you must be licensed, which requires passing a course. To even buy a car requires a license to drive it.
Any fool with cash can buy a gun, and if they're a bit deranged and want to avoid the paperwork, you can go to a gun show. All the unregistered guns illustrate a huge, criminal black market in weapons.
I never disparaged anyone hunting for food. I don't deceive myself about where the hamburger comes from. But Sarah Palin's TV motivation was the thrill of the kill. I'm sure see can see Kroger's from her house.
Gregg told me not to defend him. However, you should know that if he gets a little heated or passionate about this subject, it's because while the rest of us see the victims of gun violence on the news, Dr. Gregg sees them in the emergency room. This isn't abstract to him. He's the guy that's digging into soft tissue to remove the bullet that is putting someones life at risk. That might upset me a little bit as well.
I had attempted to say that the issue is no longer gun ownership, but one of mental health. You wouldn't allow an insane person to drive a car, would you?

Anonymous said...

I think that all you fuckers who are against any form of gun control should be shot!

z

(just kidding for you morons who don't understand sarcasm)... you should just be left alone in a dark room with your big guns!

Father Farken said...

Sputnik! Once again you have presented a most thought provoking essay... but I wonder if the framers were able to see farther into the future than you give them credit when they wrote "the right of the people to keep & bear Arms, shall not be infringed." That's why I am proposing the Redistribution of Arms! Socialized pistols! Obama Care! Obama Guns! Why should a particular politial mindset have all the ammunition! That's right! I said it! A pistol for every American with the words YES WE CAN engraved on the side of the barrel. This was a tough decision since I have never owned a gun though I am pretty good with a pea shooter. One time I took a train to Newark from Morristown NJ and a big arse bully started hatin' on an innocent passenger till I blew a pea right up the consciousness of his left nostil! He fell to the floor crying like a baby.

At Soup Kitchens I have seen all sorts of give aways... Bibles! Rosaries!Trojans.'How bout Guns!
My weapon of choice? A folding chair I bought @ a Memphis garage sale. It was once used by Sputnik Monroe on the noggen of me good friend Billy Wicks. No that is not fake blood! It hangs on my rifle rack on the back of me truck!

When we get our government pistol I think I amgoing to beat it into a beautiful plowshare! The Peace of the Lord! Happy MLK Day! FFF

The Watcher said...

Alan, as always you do the best job of plainly explaining issues within a constitutional context and cutting to the chase. Your erudition and rationality are beautiful things to behold. Please keep it up, I always learn from you. I tend to use hyperbole and sarcasm to make points, but your way is much more effective. However, I am afraid that since East is East and West is West, the twain shall never meet. No presentation of facts and no amount of rationality will penetrate the indoctrinated mind. The leftist indoctrinatees will only learn when the mask is removed from the despots (or, Despot) whom they unwittingly serve, but then it will be too late. Think of the surprise of the well-meaning German citizenry when to their horror they realized that they were serving a Satanic monster. Only the next unveiling will be much, much worse, because it will be global in scope. Please keep interjecting your sanity into this leftist disinformation fest.

Anonymous said...

Sput, your analogy busting-rhetoric still misses the mark. Though hyperbole was used to make a point, there is still a shred of truth to it. Licensing doesn't stop criminals or the insane from purchasing weapons. All they have to do is buy from the black market which always evolves when freedoms are suppressed. A maniac who wants to cause mass destruction with a car wouldn't need to pass a test and become licensed. He would just steal a car and drive it into a crowd and kill dozens of people. Bottom line, we are dealing with a people problem, not a gun problem. Guns don't kill, people do and people are quite imaginative when it comes to killing. Watch some forensic shows. Ban guns and every criminal in the country will still manage to be armed to the teeth. It is just the law-abiding citizens who will be disarmed and they will be sitting ducks for the bad gays. There is a correlation between gun ownership and crime. The worst crime areas are those that have the most draconian gun laws. By way of illustration, (this actually happened) someone who had a gun-hating neighbor put a sign in his yard that said that he was armed to the teeth, but that his next door neighbor wasn't. Whose home do you think that the bad guys invaded? Open your mind and then open your eyes to the real world. Forget about your ridiculous leftist fantasies. They never, ever work except to de-construct what the ages have built up. Man is or should be free, because God is free. That is said in so many words in the Declaration which I know that you despise...it's about the 'pursuit of happiness thing', which is what freedom is all about. Leftists hate freedom, because a free people interfere with their atheistic, socialistic, and totalitarian plans for humanity. Why serve such masters?

performs said...

Anon 12:29, God is free in one respect but, also, heavily burdened by this Creation He had the whim to set in motion. Man is not free but a slave. Mostly we have man attempting to gain power and control over the world as he imagines it is, in order to acquire a semblance of freedom. This is a greater burden than any fruit he could procure through his efforts.
It is wiser, I have found, to admit you are a slave of your unique set of desires, fears, delusions, and addictions. You can work at trying to free yourself from some of these, and you can also search for a master who knows the way to strip you of these.
Guns in themselves are not the problem, but people fascinated by them, who find them to be a glamourous source of power and control, or who imagine they automatically make them safe are the problem. Maybe large corporations or media are not problems in themselves, but put into the hands of a mildly selfish person or one lacking integrity, and suddenly there arise many problems.
Take advantage of the most precious freedom you will ever have, the freedom to choose to be the slave of your desires or the slave of your highest principles, your aspirations to know Truth, to the Golden Rule, etc., with or without a gun.

Anonymous said...

We will never be able to regulate our way into security. The capacity for human evil is much vaster than our puny regulations and it will always find a way around them. All the thousands upon thousands of pages of regulations that the government produces every year merely restrict freedom and are a burden to business, employment,and every other facet of our lives. The regulations industry just gives bureaucrats something to do.

Anonymous said...

This is for Father Farken. I assume that you are Roman Catholic. If so, I know that you are aware of the fact that the Catholic Church realized the danger that Marxism posed to Christianity and the entire free world many years ago. I recently discovered a fascinating book on the subject that was written in 1884. It was written by Monsignor George E. Dillon DD., I believe at the behest of the Pope at that time. It is entitled 'The War of Anti-Christ With The Church and Christian Civilization'. The man must have been divinely blessed, because he did such a masterful job of exposing the hidden dangers of Marxism along with a fascinating expose of its history. I found it entralling.

Anonymous said...

For Mike, years ago when I lived on the Hill, our Safeway was on 7th Street. That's a mere seven blocks from the Capitol. For one of the Anons, I believe Fr. Farkin is Jewish; but I'm not totally sure about that. Regarding weapons, what about the man in Louisiana who was assaulted by a woman wielding a turkey baster? I suspect it was a Cajun Injector, but the media did not mention the weapon by name. Danger lurks everywhere. Sometimes the paranoid are correct. Finally, as much as I wish guns were banned through the country, I know it will never happen.

performs said...

Rules and regulations can play a useful role in any society. They certainly were an important component when I was raising my son and daughter. Having rules sets a tone, makes an impression. Because they are breakable does not invalidate their usefulness. The rules could not control them but they did help to teach them.
Rules restrict freedom, which when that freedom seeks to do rotten or foolish actions, can be a good thing. Like a religion, rules can point the way, establish a sensibility or conscientiousness, help one discover what is behind the making of the rule.
Like guns, rules are not the problem. Follow them, break them, or change them

Anonymous said...

Uh, Performs, I was not promulgating anarchy. Of course rules and regulations are needed. I was speaking of the futile effort to legislate morality through regulations which have about as much effect on crime as trying to put out a forest fire with your hands. Only the good guys care anything about following rules. The criminals are only interested in how they can circumvent them. Sorry to have confused you.

Anonymous said...

Anon 4:33 pm, I assume that you are aware of Mike's tongue-in-cheek humor in regard to the Safeway store situation...right? And, yes, turkey basters should definitely be outlawed. They are am obvious menace to society in spite of the fact that they can be used as sex toys.

Anonymous said...

It occured to me recently that if it weren't for all of the double standards of the left they would have no standards at all. This is amply illustrated constantly throughout the state run media. What you have without the right is all that is left.

performs said...

In the “good ol’ days” the criminals were content to be known as lawbreakers. They exercised their power by paying off law enforcers who were willing to accept the bribes they offered. Now, those who follow the new gospel and find it okay to exploit, dominate, oppress, or rob from their brothers, also wish to have their “success” be honored. They have resorted to threatening and bribing the lawmakers.
I have done nothing dishonorable, they think; I have not broken any rules or regulations they proudly admonish their critics. Making investments in changing the laws, buying the services of professional lobbyists, are simply savvy business decisions. Wink, Wink.
Welcome to the culture of corruption. Scamerica is open for business.
And, no, I don’t hate America, I just long to do what I can to help us rid ourselves of the cowardice, ignorance, and the lying that plagues us.

Concerned said...

Performs, I really believe that it is time for you to take your meds. You seem to be able to slip away from your attendants long enough to submit a post on this blog, but how do you manage to get out of your straightjacket?

Father Farken said...

Peforms is not crazy! A fool for Christ,Yes! But not crazy! His post1/16 @ 4:56PM is a call to follow the values & attitudes of our saving Lord. The call is much needed.

To whom it may concern... bagels & Manichezitz for Eucharist does not make me a Jew! However if we believe that Rabi Jesus is the Torah personified! I pick up my cross & I surender all! Now can we dance? The Peace of the Lord! FFF

cousin Brad said...

I happened to watch Bowling for Columbine for the first time today. Moore's underlying question was: Why do we Americans have the highest citizen, gun related death toll of any other country, by far? Other countries have violent crimes. Other countries have easy access to guns. Why, seemingly only here, do we witness such an endless list of gun related mass tragedies?

The Watcher said...

Wikileaks recently revealed the criminal nature of the Tunisian government which precipitated the current riots. The US has been supporting their tyrannical dictator who is now in exile. It is becoming increasingly apparent that the American government has been usurped by evil-doers and it is now and has been a criminal enterprise for many years now. Again I say, the hippies knew this over 40 years ago. How come so many of them are now in cahoots with the very criminals that they once tried to expose?

Anonymous said...

Cousin Brad, the short answer is that America has a larger criminal culture. A better question may be why do we have such a large criminal culture. This question should really test the wisdom and veracity of those who attempt to answer it. And don't put forth the phoney-baloney that it is because of income dispartiies. We have always had income disparities. If poverty caused crime, the Poor Claires and the Franciscans would have become a criminal gangs long ago.

Zarathustra said...

Anon 9:27 pm, this may corroborate your contention. I personally knew a black street thug long ago. He and a friend of his committed an armed robbery and they were both apprehended and jailed. The guy that I knew was released on some obscure technicality. His buddy did 30 years of hard time. He attributed the fact that he was released, even though he was guilty, to an act of God. He made a complete change in his life and eventually became a priest. That was about 40 yeras ago and he is still a priest to this day. Crime is a choice.

The Watcher said...

One key socialist goal is to eliminate all risk from human existence. This ties directly in to the current commentary on guns. As a socialist mentality overtakes America it has begun to be implemented into our laws. This is causing American society to radically morph from a commonwealth of responsible, self-reliant souls into an asylum for incompetent, irresponsible, dangerous morons who expect someone to protect them from their own imprudent stupidity. This explains much of the impetus for the current trend toward hysterical gun control measures whenever a random individual misuses them. This same mindset explains much that motivates our enabling government. This is why your new hammer may have a label warning you not to comb your hair with it, or your new chain saw may have a label warning you not to attempt to clean your teeth with it. All of this type of socialist nonesense is infantilizing the average American and changing him into a mindless, irresponsible sheep that relies upon government shepherds to see to their every need. This also explains the bailout phenomenon...let's ban all failure. Of course as the incompetents are protected from themselves, it only breeds more incompetence. All of this ultimately results in a passive form of national slavery. This is F.A. Hyek's 'Road To Serfdom' fleshed out. A nation of mindless, dependent sheep...a dream come true for those who like to screw sheep.

Anonymous said...

Apparently, the mind-numbed, socialism-loving sheep are not aware that the only way that you can eliminate all risk is to eliminate all freedom. Those in the government who love to screw sheep know this, though, and they are busily passing legislation to incrementally bring full-blown socialism to America and the rest of the world. I hope that the sheep don't mind an endless orgy at their expense after the global socialist sheep pen has been constructed. Their little booties may get painfully raw as they are endlessly gang-banged by an endless stream of government elitist bureaucrats stuffing endless regulations down their collective throats. Look at everyday life for the average Chinese worker. The Chinese have to build nets around the top of the high-rises that they pack them into like so many sardines to keep them from committing suicide. Ah, life will be wonderful in the coming socialist 'Utopia' that they have planned for us. And, just think...there will be no guns.

The Watcher said...

A hundred years ago, the preponderance of the American ciizenry didn't recognize the beginnings of socialism in this country when it came during the presidency of Woodrow Wilson (the Fed, progressive income tax, etc.) and under FDR (the New Deal). A former Democrat governor of New York named Alfred E. Smith was initially a supporter of FDR and then became aware of the Marxist influences which surrounded FDR and really became alarmed at the New Deal. He gave a speech on Jan. 25,1936, entitled 'The Betrayal of the Democratic Party' which was a futile attempt to warn the American public that the Democrats were being high-jacked by socialists. This speech can still be found on the Internet. However, the masses had already been allured by the deceit of socialism, being cared for by an all-encompassing government. The masses also didn't know, and this is true even today, that becoming a little bit socialistic is like becoming a little bit pregnant. Both situations are geared to go to full term once the process is started. What we are witnessing today in the political arena is an attempt to abort socialism, but it is too late. The pregnacy is coming to full term and the baby WILL be born...short of some miracle that will cause it to be still born. Vigilance has always been the price of freedom. The sleepy-headed sheep are in deep do-do now. Like in most instances, you don't miss your water till your well runs dry. Freedom is a precious commodity, but the sheep prefer what has been billed by the socialists as security and freedom from risk. The safety net will become a noose. It is Devil's bargain (literally) and the sheep are going to find out soon enough. But, the wonderful thing about a full-blown socialist society is that there will be no guns...but, with that comes no freedom. I would prefer freedom and guns.

The Watcher said...

I can hear some of you saying that socialism isn't as bad as I have portrayed. But, you have to realize that socialism hasn't come to full fruition yet, and may not for another hundred years or so. You are merely seeing it in infant form and do not realize that when the appaently harmless infant is full-grown it will become a Stalin or a Hitler or worse. By way of illustration, let's visualize a Venus Fly Trap. All that the unsuspecting insect knows is that the free nectar is very good. After a while, he may attempt to back up a little, but realizes that there are guard hairs behind him which prevent him from doing so. He can only move forward as he eagerly laps up the free nectar (one government program after another). At some point, though, he drops over a precipice and lands in a vat of acidic digestive juice. This is a good portrayal of those who have been duped by socialism. It is all good till you go over the precipice and then it is too late. If only we could interview the tens of millions who have been murdered by this diabolical scam in the past. Up till today, the socialist experiment has only been tried in limited areas around the Earth. Very soon it will be global and there will be no way out. Hell will have come to Earth. The nice guys won't be able to protect you.

performs said...

So, Watcher and, let me guess, your cohort, Anon, would like to see the “infant” that is socialism killed. Why? Because you (still guessing) and presumably others of this nightmarish thinking, believe the adult is destined to become an uncontrollable tyrant. Wake up, socialism is not a fire-breathing dragon, it is a socioeconomic attitude and tool for cooperation. A democratic government of, for and by the people, if we can hold on to it, can choose to employ it as is practical for the common good. Just as we can employ capitalism and other isms.
May I request that you take your intelligent and energetic, yet currently delusional, minds, allow them to recognize the elephant in the room, and help put it back where it belongs? Nurture the sweet infant, socialism, so that it may “grow up” to be an appreciated, selfless server.
I am one seeks, at this time, to bring socialism into use for even more things than are being talked about by liberal politicians. I embrace risk. A world without risk is a delusion, an impossibility and a bore.

Anonymous said...

In his book "1984", Oson Welles depicted the final fruit of socialism as a boot stamping on a human face forever. Looks like we have a lot to look forward to.

Anonymous said...

Performs, the socialist big wigs depend upon those who have been deceived by them to further their goals. They call those people useful idiots. Bear in mind, I don't refer to the garden variety, deceived, small-fry socialists as being evil...just the big ones at the top of the pyramid of tyranny. Socialism is a scam to destroy the middle class of the free world to further enrich the oligarchs. One problem that is difficult to overcome by mere words is the naivete that many people have in regard to unregenerate human nature. There is a deep, dark tendency toward control in many and this tendency to control can manifest itself in horrific ways. Do you know ANYTHING about history? You apparently don't, so put on your beanie and keep skating. But, please try to watch out for telephone poles, as you have a tendency get distracted by rainbows, unicorns, and imaginary benign socialists.

Anonymous said...

One more thing. There is another problem with human nature. It has a strong tendency to take the broad, easy path that leads to destruction. In the end, this is why socialism will win the battle. That is an admission of defeat. I just have a hard tome going down to defeat quietly. But, the basic reason for the defeat is deeply ingrained in human nature and words can only do so much. By the nature of things, it is only a minority who have the ears to hear and the strnegth of spirit to try to rise up and resist. I am just glad that I am old enough to not have to see the coming carnage and suffering. Too bad for the young. I try not to discuss these issues in their presence.

The Watcher said...

Rep. Steven Cohen, Sput's hero, called for more civility in political discourse after the Tucson disaster, and then proceeded, like the world class hypocrite that he is, to say that Republicans use the same tactics that the Nazis used to murder the Jews during WWII. He is such a wonderful role model for civil political discourse. How anyone can tolerate such a base politician is beyond belief. But, I guess that he is an appropriate poster boy for the political philosophy of this blog.

performs said...

I have no clue what Anon means by “socialism.” Please fill in the cavernous blanks of just how “socialism” is going to destroy the middle class. I see this being accomplished handily by the use of free market preaching neoliberalism, by employing of the shock doctrine, union busting, job-exporting cutthroat capitalism, empire-building, government purchasing, warmongering, crony want-to-beism, the deluded masses who allow the corporate bought mass media to do their thinking for them, and money worshipers who have allowed their integrity to slip away.

http://www.kunstler.com/blog/2011/01/the-great-okay-ness.html

Father Farken said...

Francis of Assisi sez..."No one is to be called an enemy, all are benefactors, & no one does you harm. You have no enemy except yourself." The Peace of the Lord! FFF

Anonymous said...

Would St. Francis say that about Hitler?

Anonymous said...

Socialism is set against the bourgeoisie. A dictionary definition of bourgeoisie is 'the social class between the very wealthy and the working class, or proletariat, also called the middle class'. This class mainly consists of employers and the educated. The Oligarchs conspire to eliminate the middle class, because this class consists of those whom they perceive as a threat and stand in the way of their world rule. There is a brand of socialism called national socialism or fascism which is a union of big business and big government. This cabal seeks to eliminate the small businessman (middle class) in order to establish a monopoly. Once accomplished this government/business union would exercise control over the population. This may be the source of your ravings about the money-grubbing corporate world. You can find all of this out for yourself. I told you once before that I can't educate you on this blog.

The Watcher said...

The various 'isms', Marxism, socialism, statism, Communism, fascism, etc., can be confusing. They all vary from one another in technical detail. But, they all have certain traits in common. Amongst these are a tendency toward top to bottom micro-management of the citizenry, a command and control economy (as opposed to a free market economy which is essential for the maintenance of individual freedom), diminishment of individual freedom and private property, the diminishing of individual rights (currently in America this is in regard to the first and second amendmants to the Constitution) and placing the collective above the individual. Taken together, they are all anti-freedom, and seek to institute a form of human slavery as opposed to human freedom all in the name of some utopian ideal. In America, the appropriation of private property began in earnest in 1913 with the progressive income tax. Some people don't realize that an individual's money is his private property. As of now, it takes the average person till late May to pay off his taxes. Do you think that our collectivist government is going to stop confiscating money through taxeation till July or September? No, this trend will continue till they have it all...right up until Dec.31. They are even talking about confiscating retirement accounts. Inroads are now being made to confiscate private property in the form of land and houses through a misuse of eminent domain and through draconian environmentalism, which has become a front for world Communism. Just ask Gorbachev or his lackey Al Gore. Individaul freedom is being diminished by the day through an avelanch of governmental regulations. All of this and more will ultimately strip us of our individual freedom and wealth regardless of the 'ism'. And our sleeping citizenry continues to walk into the trap. And, believe me it will not be a Kumbaya world that is being created. That b.s. is for the unicorn chasers.

performs said...

THE ART OF HAPPINESS
ANONYMOUS
part 1

There was never a time when so much official effort was being expended to produce happiness and probably never a time when so little attention was paid by the individual to creating the personal qualities that make for it. What one misses most today is the evidence of widespread personal determination to develop a character that will in itself, given any reasonable odds, make for happiness. Our whole emphasis is on the reform of living conditions, of increased wages, of controls on the economic structure--the government approach--and so little on man improving himself.
The ingredients of happiness are simple that they can be counted on one hand. Happiness comes from within, and rests most securely on simple goodness and clear conscience. Religion may not be essential to it, but no one is known to have gained it without a philosophy resting on ethical principles. Selfishness is its enemy; to make another happy is to be happy one’s self. It is quiet, seldom found for long in crowds, most easily won in moments of solitude and reflection. It cannot be bought; indeed money has very little to do with it.
No one is happy unless he is reasonably well satisfied with himself, so that the quest for tranquility must of necessity begin with self-examination. We shall not often be content with what we discover in this scrutiny. There is much to do, and so little done. Upon this searching self-analysis, however, depends the discovery of those qualities that make each man unique, and whose development alone can bring satisfaction.

performs said...

part 2

THE ART OF HAPPINESS
ANONYMOUS

Of all those who have tried, down the ages, to outline a program for happiness, few have succeeded so well as William Henry Channing, chaplain of the House of Representatives in the middle of the last century:
“To live content with small means; to seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion; to be worthy, not respectable, and wealthy, not rich; to study hard, think quietly, talk gently, act frankly; to listen to the stars and birds, to babes and sages, with open heart; to bear all cheerfully, to do all bravely, await occasions, hurry never; in a word to let the spiritual, unbidden and unconscious, grow up through the common.”
It will be noted that no government can do this for you; you must do it for yourself.

The Watcher said...

Wow! 100% in agreement here. I thought that you were a collectivist. I owe you my most profound apology. Couldn't have said it better. Believe it or not, one of my philosophical heroes is H.D. Thoreau, who advocated that each man should be an inner cosmonaut and find his fullfilment from within. When asked why he didn't more aggressively help the poor, he responded that when he offered to show the poor how they might live as well he lived, they weren't interested. That says volumes in a very few words. I have pursued a life of simple living and high thinking all of my adult life. That is why I was fortunate enough to retire...frugality. I had to be, because I was a simple teacher...started out at $650 a month with a master's degree. My greatest heresy is that I value individual freedom (on every level as long as it does no harm to anyone else) and private property (I don't like to share my toothbrush), but then so did Thoreau. He was no collectivist...to say the least.

performs said...

“My greatest heresy is that I value individual freedom (on every level as long as it does no harm to anyone else) and private property (I don't like to share my toothbrush)...”
I was happy to read, Watcher, that you appreciate the ideas in the Art of Happiness essay. I would like to address your “heresy,” as there always exist some hidden conflicts as regards individual freedoms. To resolve these inherent conflicts that self-interest is bound to create, societies have established ethical codes, rules, laws, regulations, etc. Members agree to be dutiful, doing their best to abide by these restrictions to their personal freedom, that include the influence of personal weaknesses, for the sake of the common good. Accepting and freely carrying out one’s responsibilities is a key to real freedom and happiness.
The Indian poet, Rabindranath Tagore said (from memory): I slept and dreamt that life was joy. I awoke to find that life was duty. I acted on this duty and found that duty was joy.
In regards to your toothbrush, I would guess if their were someone that sincerely wanted to and needed to share your toothbrush, you would be happy to share it with that individual.

The Watcher said...

Performs, to each his own. You are happy with your values and I am happy with mine. We can all live together in peace as long as you don't attempt to coerce your values on me. You can be in my dream if you choose to be, otherwise you may remain in your own. Fair enough? The problem with most collectivists is that they usually attempt to coerce others into comforming with their values. In the extreme, they murder those who refuse to conform to their dictates. History is full of stories of the atrocities of collectivists. To them, one size MUST fit all. That is where I draw the line. A non-coercive collectivist is a contradiction in terms. It is impossible to create a collective in a free society. It is like herding cats. It can only be done through force which usually begins with superfluous regulations. These condition people to stronger measures. At some point, nudge, comes to push which then becomes shove, and in the end it can turn really ugly. I don't like to be coerced. Coercion is for cattle. But, I can live with non-coercive collectivists if they exist. Are you a non-coercive collectivist? That would mean that your collectivism only exists in your mind and in the minds of like-minded others. When you start to implement your collectivist vision by forcing others into it is where the trouble starts. Comprende?

performs said...

Here is a project whose studies both balances and brings understanding to some of the cynical attitudes prevalent today.
http://heroicimagination.org/

Zarathustra said...

Tribal or collectivist thinking tends to be anti-exceptionalist and for that reason it is anti-evolution. For someone to become exceptional and to distinguish himself from the herd takes individual motivation and effort. He must leave herd thinking behind to accomplish this. The herd frowns upon this and exerts pressure to dissuade this type of behavior. If one is allowed to become exceptional either educationally or financially, he has begun the process of creating class-consciousness which is anti-herd or anti-collectivist. All must be equal cries the bovine mentality. It is unfair to the herd to become more or to acquire more than others. Until the advent of capitalism, there was serfdom throughout the world in one form or another. A few very wealthy elites lorded over the members of the herd which lived in abject poverty. Capitalism changed all of this and allowed for a middle class of relative wealth to evolve out of poverty. Capitalism derives from two rights, the right to individual liberty and the right to private property. Herd mentality loathes such rights for the simple reason that it allows some members of the herd to rise above the others, and for this reason tribalism or collectivism is anti-evolution...born of a regressive mentality which foredooms the herd to perpetual slavery and poverty in the end. But, if that is what you folks want that is what you will get. Let the devolution begin. Why not begin wearing bones in your noses and donning grass skirts to prepare for your future? But, that might be deemed to be an unfair head start on the rest of the herd. Everyone will want to devolve together in some sort of command and control manner. You MUST march in lock step, because the collective must behave as one.

The Watcher said...

That makes sense. It explains why Obama is so eager to apologize for American exceptionalism to the leaders of other governments. He doesn't want his dictatorial, socialist homies to think that he supports American uppidty-ness. How dare we rise above the international herd by using our freedom to become exceptional. For this we must re-double our efforts to demonstrate politically correct bovine consciousness. We must grovel and repent to the other socialist governments for daring to step out of line. And, after Obama wrecks our economy we will all live in poverty like everyone else in the world. What an admirable collectivist goal. And, just think of how eco-friendly we will be when we return to hunting and gathering tribal living. We will just have to go through that tacky de-population thing to get there. But, it will be worth it to finally live in a classless and socially just society. Everyone will be indistinguishable from everyone else in their abject poverty. It will be a thing of beauty to progressive eyes. They will have finally transformed life back into the primordial slime from which it arose. But, everything will be fair and equal.

Anonymous said...

After America falls, who will the collectivists bleed for money? Most of them hate to do actual work. Maybe they are all hoping to be members of the elite class who will lord it over the masses some day. But, they are wrong about that. The rulership will be reserved for the Oligarchs. They will just be a part of what will be the really, really cheap global labor pool some day. Think about what a world without a middle class would look like. How about a global Zimbabwe.

Anonymous said...

You people make Obama out to be so bad. At least he doesn't get blow jobs in the Oral Office from girls young enough to be his daughters like Bill Clinton used to. I mean, think about how presidential it is to give a young girl facials after being blown under the desk upon which the nation's business is conducted. For all we know the Founding Fathers may have been proud of such a stud. And, Clinton had the gall to screw Gennifer Flowers in the washroom of the Arkansas governor's mansion during official state functions. Obama may be a socialist, or perhaps a fascist, but at least he isn't a pervy sexual predator. Give him some credit. At least he didn't leave a trail of sexually abused women behind him. I am still trying to figure out why Clinton is such an icon to the Democrats. Aren't people known by the company that they keep?

Anonymous said...

Speaking of being known by the company that we keep, how about the close relationship of Obama to Bill Ayers and Bernadette Dohrn? Back in the 70's, Ayers and Dohrn used to sponsor drug-fueled sex orgies to demonstrate their loathing for middle class values. This is elaborately described in one of David Horowitz's books. He was well acquainted with them back then. Then there was the bombing thing. These are friends that DeSade would covet and they are icons of the Democrat Party. Then, there was Faye Stender, the liberal lawyer for the Black Panthers back in the 60's who out of compassion performed sex acts upon them while giving them legal council (and nooky, bj's, etc.) in prison. Liberals surround themselves with such interesting and immoral people.

The Watcher said...

You forgot to mention a group of radical socialists known as the Mother Fuckers. These people demanded that everything should be free. Once they crashed a concert in the Fillmore East and they all pissed on the floor there to protest the fact that Bill Graham was charging money for the concerts. I wonder if any of these people are in the Obama administration today, because they share his political philosophy.

Anonymous said...

Obama is going to try to talk the American people into continuing the Ponzi scheme of governmental spending and borrowing and debt accumulation ad infinitum. His big economic development plan will be to 'invest' (read rat-hole) more taxpayer money into fundamentally worthless government programs while allowing the private sector to die on the vine. Why doesn't he just announce that the USA has been fundamenatally transformed into the USSA (United Socialist States of Amrica). Forget the bullshit and just announce that we are under Marxist rule, so that we can begin getting used to not having a future. At least we could respect his honesty if he were to do that.

Zarathustra said...

Simply stated the American experiment is...can the individual rule himself, or must he be micromanaged from above by a tyrannical central government? In other words herded like cattle by elite governmental 'ranchers'. In the final analysis, it is the individual or the herd. Collectivism undermines a man's will to rule himself and to make his own life through the application of his own efforts, because the knowledge that he can depend upon the largesse of the herd undermines the will to be self-sufficient. As this tendency plays out, innovation and effort weaken and the collective becomes increasingly impoverished. This is also known as the 'tragedy of the commons'. It looks like the bovine mentality of the herd is winning the battle, mainly because the mass of men tend to choose the easy way. To bad for the individuals that comprise the herd. They will awaken someday to the fact that the illusory and objectively non-existant herd is just a mental construct. The individual is more 'real' than the herd and is the ultimate source of all productivity. Weaken the individuals that make up the herd and the herd itself becomes weakened. Collectivism is the sure road to serfdom. Being a serf will be a drag. Wait and see.

performs said...

Brother Z, your simply stated take on the American experiment offers black or white thinking in the extreme. To what purpose? I see life offering both opportunities for individual expressions and sharing, while at the same time a sense of duty toward one’s fellows and his environment. The commons are not a tragedy unless one lacks gratitude and habitually shirks one’s worldly responsibilities. Think of the word, citizenship. We are all in the same boat which requires us to work together. No man is an island.
From Laurence J. Peter: “Man orders his affairs in hierarchies....schools...businesses...government...military, fraternal orders, social welfare, sports, and the Mafia are all structured as hierarchies.
“Each hierarchy consists of an arrangement of ranks, grades, or classes to which the individual may be assigned. If he is competent he may contribute to the positive achievement of mankind. Promotion up the ladder may remove him from his level of competence and place him at his level of incompetence...habitually bumbling the job, frustrating his coworkers, and eroding the efficiency of the organization.”
It is important to understand this if one desires to make a worthwhile contribution and encourage others to do the same.

Zarathustra said...

In terms of principle, I stand behind what I said about the American experiment. You obviously know nothing about the concept of the tragedy of the commons. It is an inevitability of collectivism. Look at the average government housing project. Much of Soviet Russia looked like a vast housing project. The masses had constant shortages of goods while the governing elite lived like kings. This is what happens when there is no middle class. We are not all in the same boat. That sentiment is the very epitome of bovine thinking. I reside in a boat of like-thinking people and our boat is going to do its best to sink the boat that you and the other collectivists occupy. We are going to return to a life of self-reliance and individual responsibilty or we are all going to wind up living like serfs...guaranteed. The rigid hierarchy which you depict is the very essence of totalitarian thinking. In sum, we have nothing further to discuss. There is an uncrossable divide between a die- hard collectivist such as your self and a die-hard individualist. History bears out the ultimate fate of collectivism. It is all that existed till the American experiment in individual freedom and private property and if the experiment fails we will go right back to a life of governmental tyranny and serfdom. History bears this out. There is a deep tendency in man to control others and this is what is being played out in the larger world. Quit chasing unicorns.

Anonymous said...

You have to have some sympathy for Obama. Can you imagine being a radical, far-left ideologue who is now forced to pretend that he is a conservative? The Nov. elections have forced him into this charade. I'll bet that everytime he has to talk like a conservative in order to try to trick the Independents into voting for him in 2012, he has to rush to a toilet to puke. The same must go for his far-left base. You know that they cringe now that he has to come across as a Constitution-revering, pro-business Republican. But, if he can fool enough people over the next two years and get re-elected, he and his radical henchmen can really double down on their efforts to destroy America.

The Watcher said...

Obama is crowing about his administration's 'new' thrust to create jobs. I assume that he means private sector jobs as opposed to wasteful government paper-shuffling jobs which is all that his administration has done till this point. But, didn't he promise millions of shovel-ready jobs when he pushed his extravagant stimulus down our throats? Of course, we know now that much of that money was used to pay off those that he was beholden to. Parenthetically, did you know that the Fed is missing a couple of trillion dollars that they can't seem to account for? Hmmmm. Obama has been promising job growth ever since he assumed office. Does he really think that anyone will believe him now? His dilemma is that he is beholden to his radical, globalist base to destroy the private sector, but in order to get re-elected he has to bull shit the American people for two more years about growing the private sector. That is a 'rock and a hard place' scenario if there ever was one. This is going to challenge his world-class lying and spinning abilities. If he can pull this off, America will have to be terminally stupid...literally.

Zarathustra said...

I forgot to say in the previous post that I speak in terms of principles, of trends, and ultimately of eschatological issues. I am not saying that my dire predictions of the collectivist state will manifest next year, or in the next decade. It may take the next one hundred years to come to fulfillment. What I do know is that naivete in regard to collectivism has historically costs millions of lives throughout the world. But, these depredations have hereto fore been local in nature. What would have happened if there were no America to stop murderous tyrants like Lenin, Stalin, Hitler, or Mao? The current danger is that the collectivist state may become global. When a tyrant comes to power then, who can stop him if all power is globally centralized? The end of collectivism is neither freedom nor prosperity. In the end, eschatologically, it is servitude, poverty, and tyrannical injustice. The human rights situation in China may prevail throughout the Earth and may become considerably worse, if that can be imagined. Someday, the midnight knock on the door may come to your house. You won't be seen again, but your neighbors will all know what happened to you. And, there will be NO recourse. Most people do not know the whole progressive agenda. In the world that they want to create everyone will have the basic necessities of life and they will have a job. What most folks don't know is that if job performance is not up to par or when you become too old to perform, the consequences will be either the gulag or execution. It will be a scientific dictatorship and all will be managed with scientific precision. And, that includes the population...who will live and who will die. It will be much like the way that an efficient farm is run, only the people will be the animals. Have you read '1984'? That was a watered down glimpse of what the collectivists have in store for us. The end will be the equivalent of a boot stamping a human face forever. That is Orson Welles depiction and he was a collectivist. Collectivism will bring hell to Earth in the end. Don't believe what the unicorns whisper in your ear.

performs said...

from a Tennessee letter-to-editor writer:
A study released by Programs on International Policy Attitudes at the University of Maryland found Fox News viewers were, in the words of Mark Howard, “significantly more misinformed than consumers of other news sources.” The study found greater exposure to Fox News increased viewers’ misinformation. So, as Mr. Howard noted. “The more Fox you watch, the less you know.”

Anonymous said...

Hmmmm, I wonder what Alan's thoughts in regard to the collectivist issue are. He usually is quite level-headed and knowledgable. I'll bet that Cousin Cliff could say some interesting things in regard to this issue as well. Everyone else on this blog appears to be in the tank for collectivism.

Zarathustra said...

Performs, what do you expect from the state run educational establishment? The government, the educational establishment, and the media are all on the same page. All Fox News gets me to do is to study history, government, economics, and political philosophy. I am not a zombie who sits in front of the TV and says, 'Wewy and twuwy' everytime a commentator says something. I am sceptical of most every news source. The news has been compromised at least since J.P. Morgan bought up about 30 major newspapers back in the 30's to begin a campaign of propaganda. I read lots of books. One of the problems in this country is that too many people uncritically believe the bullshit that is manufactured by the state. There is quite a difference between 'real' history and 'received' history. Received history is the bullshit that most folks get in school. Most of it is a waste of time and has a definite liberal bias. I grew up amongst liberals, but broke from them (like David Horowitz) about 25 years ago. I know the nature of the beast about which I speak. When I look back on my liberal days, I get the feeling that one might get after they step in fresh dog shit barefooted. I could say the same thing in a more erudite fashion, but that expression is pretty apropos and can be understood by the dimmest of bulbs. The fact that you would believe and quote from such a source tells me a lot about you. You are apparently a state educated person as demonstrated by your uncritical gullibilty. There are other studies that say the polar opposite. Screw the studies. Find things out for yourself, but I would stay away from liberal sources. The use of the lie is VERY big in their arsenal. Just ask Karl Marx. Only I believe that he called it misinformation.

performs said...

“I know the nature of the beast about which I speak.” Z, I do not find that to be so. For one thing you, state things about me that are clearly presumption on your part. They are what you wish to believe to in order to maintain your illusion of certainty. This is a common habit. You are intelligent no doubt but, it seems to me that you have established a filter that only permits your reasoning mind to reach the same, endlessly repeated conclusion: collectivism has no redeeming feature and is the worst thing since stepping in fresh dog shit.
My experience with collectives amounts to hearing about and buying from a few successful business collectives in the area where I live. The members seem happy and may remain a member for a period or freely drop out whenever circumstances suggests it. I think collectives can have a role in society but certainly not as the only instrument for group activity. The Lord loves variety.
I am much more keen on seeing that cooperation is more highly valued than is competition. I also wish to promote the importance of selflessness over selfishness. If a collective or a private for-profit entity stands for these values I support them, if not I am critical and avoid them.

Zarathustra said...

Wow! There is such a thing as a parallel universe.

performs said...

One more perplexing thing, Brother Z. It rather amazes me that you and a ridiculous number of others seem compelled to warn about the possibility that an authority figure may enjoin us to do something uncomfortable, inconvenient, or that just rubs the wrong way, BUT you seem to have little concern that people who run or manage hugely powerful business entities and buy governments are, as I write, fouling the air, water, soil, food, and the minds of non discerning, fellow citizens. Speaking of other realities, these priorities seem foolish. Limited, individual freedom is simply an expression wanting. And, yes, more than one unicorn has suggested this to me.

Alan said...

The vast majority of Liberals have nothing but good intentions. The same goes for Conservatives. It should just be a difference of which you think is the best way to help the most people. Liberals tend to think it is the job of Government, Conservatives think it is the individual. America was founded by people trying to get away from an authority telling them what to do and how to think. Our population has swollen with immigrants seeking the same thing. It has worked to such a degree that we are the strongest and most prosperous nation ever to exist. There are extremist on both sides. I am not talking about the Anarchist, Communist, White Supremacists & ect. ect. ect. I am referring to people in power on both sides that are using this war between Right & Left to their own benefit. It is no different than the rulers that keep the populous controlled through the Arab Israeli conflict. As long as we fight and belittle each other we keep our eyes off of them.

performs said...

At the time of the Cuban missle crisis there were some American and Soviet delegates meeting to discuss possible trade between the two countries. When news of the missile crisis hit, there was tremendous tension and the room fell silent. Finally, one of the Soviet delegates stood up and proposed that they take turns telling jokes. He volunteered to
start. “What’s the difference between capitalism and communism?”

“In capitalism, man exploits man. In communism, it’s the other way around.”

Anonymous said...

Great political humor, Performs. That is a good one. However, in regard to capitalism I don't see how the creation of wealth is such a bad thing. Capitalism is just an engine for producing wealth. Capitalism creates wealth whereas socialism is parasitic and only consumes it. That is why socialism fails in the end, because it eventually runs out of other people's money to spend. The wealth that socialists confiscate is generated through capitalism. After capitalism is destroyed, where are they going to get their wealth? I participated in a capitalist society and don't feel exploited at all. Most of those who feel 'exploited' are those who never took advantages of the opportunities that capitalism affords. I can just hear someone saying,'Boo hoo, I feel exploited by my high standard of living. Will someone please relieve me of all of this wealth that I have accumulated under the oppression of capitalism?'

The Watcher said...

It is interesting to listen to the vitriol that is directed against Glenn Beck. Anyone who actually watches his show knows that 90% of what he does is to teach the history that has been left out of textbooks. He constantly tells listeners not to take his word for anything and to read for themselves. He even shows the books from which he gets his information. No one has ever refuted the substance of what he teaches, because they can't. They may disagree with the substance of what he teaches, but facts are facts. The rest of the time he contrasts the orignal vision of the Founding Fathers and the principles held in America's founding documents with the Marxist/progressive agenda. Those who oppose him are mainly the Marxist/progressives who see that he is making it harder for them to implement their agenda. That is understandable. The basic issue is a conflict of visions for America. The 'fundamental transformation' of America that the progressives are pushing for is the implementation of more redistribution of wealth and less constitutionally restrained government. In fact, they loathe the US Constitution. They see it as a hindrance to their agenda. In a word, their vision is basically socialistic. Why do the progressives hide in the shadows? Why can't they muster the courage and integrity to just come out and tell everyone what their agenda is rather than to resort to calling those who hold a different vision of America names and to villify them? Why not just come out and say that they don't agree with the founding principles of this country and that they aim to change it. Why make all the ludicrous claims that the Tea Partyers are dangerous when they are simply those who want to turn back the tide of socialism and big government and to return to the original vision of America and to constitutional government. Why the charade. Is it because the progressive agenda can't stand the light of day? Is it because of the push back that their agenda will receive when enough Americans can see what they are up to? I believe that that is so. If their agenda is so noble why not articulate it plainly so that the issues can be dabated in the light of day. But, that would be about as effective as a fox explaining to the chickens his 'noble' plans to devour them. The chickens may fight back and the fox doesn't want that. More and more Americans are becoming aware of the fox in their midst. This is the real reason for their enmity against Beck and Fox News. It is threatening the further implementaion of their agenda. For evidence, look at the the results of November's election. And they are terrified of what may happen in 2012.

performs said...

Yes, Glenn Beck devotee’s are right, private capitalists do create wealth--private wealth. This is accomplished by the sweating of others and the ruination of our natural environment, so they may feed their delicate, delusional bubble-egos. Yes, it is a fact that there are many more billionaires and millionaires than ever before, wasting their tainted money as they damned well please. This is their game, their restless pursuit of happiness, their gospel of never quite satisfied self-interest.
And how are they getting away with this shit? They have been investing for years in the media outlets, the think tanks, the talking and writing heads, who espouse in their twisted, lying, yet convincing ways what persuades their fellow citizens to cheer them on while they rip them off. Somehow, identifying with the “successful” robber barons becomes more of a priority to the masses than does protecting against this enormous heist taking place. Glenn Beck and the others earn their millions being an integral part of the creation of Scamerica, because they are able to convince others to go along with a fantasy to which they identify. When the masses begin to wake up to this in greater numbers, first, they will feel shame at how they had been fooled. But then the shame will turn into anger and revolution. This process will take some period of time, but it will be more a matter of the individual and collective suffering resulting from the ignorance, arrogance, incompetence, and greed that energizes it.
No one is to blame, it is simply time for Creator to dispense His wake up call. Extra potent lessons of life are required, but mercifully are backed by infinite, eternal Love and Grace to help each absorb what they are able.

Zarathustra said...

Performs, you are ranting about the global Oligarchs and in that regard you are absolutely correct. However, I fear that you are painting with an overly broad brush. Most people who are pro-capitalism are merely pro-freddom and pro-private property. The means of production dictates how free a society will be. 90% of pro-capitalist people care nothing for excessive wealth. They just want to be free of a tyrannical government and free to plan there own lives rather than having the government plan it for them. Government is raw force and if this raw force is not diluted by a system of checks and balances, this raw force will be used against the people. This has always been the case historically and this is why the Constitution was created...to keep government off of the people's backs. But, the progressives have successfully circumvented the Constitution. We are edging toward tyranny. It is just a matter of time. You people will awaken one day to find that you have been deceived. It will be too late then and there will be no way out. One more thing...how have you been oppressed by a capitalist system? Does freedom oppress you? Please tell me the story of your personal experiences of oppression. Does it oppress you to have to chart your own course in life? Does it oppress you that you must become educated and develop a marketable skill? Would you rather that others do this for you? I am just trying to make some sense out of your silly, Marxist, revolutionary rant. I am afraid that your emotions have clouded your rational faculties.

The Watcher said...

Let's get back to the original subject of this commentary. The Second Amendment was written to serve two functions. First, it allows citizens to protect themselves from criminals when the government is unable to protect them, such as during a home invasion or a rape. Secondly, it allows the individuals to protect themselves from a government that has become tyrannical. "Tyranny thrives best where government need not fear the wrath of an armed people". Not a single incident of genocide in the 20th century was inflicted upon an armed population. In this case, the Second Amendment is a provision to forestall doomsday for a given nation or group of poeple. The pre-Nazi Jews in Germany could not have conceived what would eventuate. Unfortunately for them, after WWI the pacifist and idealistic liberals of the Weimar Republic in Germany decided to disarm their citizens in order to diminish the liklihood of the misuse of weapons. Unfortunately, this made it easier for the Nazis to rise to power over a defenseless nation. After the Nazis took over, the Jews specifically were forbidden to own guns. During the Kristallnact, the Jews were defenseless and had to depend on the government for protection. Unfortunatetly for them, Goering responded that "the police protect whomever comes into Germany legitmately, but not Jewish usurers". If the Jews had been able to defend themselves the Holocaust may have been less severe. This is just a case in point. There are countless stories of how unarmed individuals have been ravaged by criminals. Think of Dr. William Petit's family that was slaughtered in Connecticut. In the part of the country in which I live everyone is armed, but that is mainly for hunting. A correlative benefit is that the crime rate here is very, very low. The criminals are not completely stupid. They go elsewhere to perform their depredations...like Memphis.

Anonymous said...

Performs, you obviously have been reading the Marxist, revolutionary rantings of the 60's. You are behind the times. Modern day socialists have adopted the more pacifistic, progressive Fabian or Gramscian variant of Marxism. It is much more subtle and insidious. For this reason, it is more effective and dangerous. Their agenda is much less 'in your face' than the older style of Marxism. It is implemented in very tiny, barely noticeable increments so as to slip by the public's awareness. Sort of like very slowly boiling a frog. Before he knows it, he is cooked. Your revolutionary rantings are blowing their cover. If they could, they would pull you aside and re-tool your thinking so that you can become a more intelligent and effective subversive. Get with the program. Why do I know more about your own agenda and how best to implement it than you do?

Anonymous said...

Most people of a socialist bent fall into two broad categories. One type has a lust to control others. The other type has a subconscious desire and need to be controlled. This type of person finds freedom itself to be oppressive. They project their fear and loathing of freedom onto capitalism which is the ultimate source of this freedom which they see as oppressive. This type would much rather be told what to do than to have to direct their lives for themselves. They tend to be passive and dependent. The end game is Elitist control freaks lording it over a nation of freedom-phobic, dependent sheep who look to the Elite to fulfill their every need. Ah! Paradise at last. Unfortunately for the sheep, the real end game will be a boot stomping upon their faces forever. The Elites will turn out to be not so nice after all...after they consolidate their power and have the sheep irrevocably under their thumb. Too bad that freedom for the masses is a failed experiment. You either govern yourself or others will govern you. The latter is the easier, but ultimately more painful path.

The Watcher said...

I don't want to rehash the abortion argument, but I would like to kick the philosophical ball down the road a bit in order to make a larger point. There is a Princeton professor who wants legislation that would decree that one is not a person till he reaches the age of rationality. In other words, he is a proponent of infanticide. He places this at the age of two. As you see, he is a good progressive. Can you imagine a parent who is tired of the burden of parenting taking his two year old to the Government Extermination Facility? I use that term, because the term abortion clinic would then be too restrictive and would have to be made more inclusive. Also, the term would be apropos when the progressives determine that those of a differing political persuasion, or of a different religion, or ethnicity are not quite fully human. Do you think that this is hyperbole? Are you aware that radical New Agers see the 'divisive' religions, namely Judaism and Christianity, as being a hindrance to human evolution? They want to eliminate all of these people so as to facilitate human evolution. Their rationale is that these people are evolutionarliy defective and that after they are dispatched (murdered) to the 'other side' the Ascended Masters whom they believe to be directing humanity's evolution will re-tool them into right-thinking collectivists who can then reincarnate and join the collectivist parade into the pit of hell. I am not joking. You can read the works of Madame Blavatsky or Annie Besant and see for yourselves. Hitler was one of their devotees. That makes me feel secure knowing that our future is in the hands of wise, well-meaning, and compassionate progressives like Hitler. The spirit of Hitler is very much alive and well on planet Earth just waiting to spring on the foolish sheep when the time is right. No wonder the progressives want to disarm us. Forewarned is forearmed.

Anonymous said...

As a former hippie, at some point I became somewhat disillusioned at liberal hypocrisy. At first I was smitten with their posture of inclusiveness, tolerance, and love for all. Eventually though, I became aware that this was only for those who thought and acted like them. In the old days, all you needed to be accepted into hippie culture was to wear long hair, wear funny clothes, and do drugs. Those who didn't choose this lifestyle were called 'straights' and were to be scorned. But, what about all of the inclusivity, tolerance, and love? I learned that this was reserved only for those who went along with their program. It even extends to their notions of freedom. You should only be free to follow their dictates. This is still true today. Most hippies grew up to become today's progressives. They are all about inclusivity and things like freedom of speech, etc. except for those who disagree with them. Then, censorship is in order. They are having fits trying to determine how they can re-tool the First Amendment so as to quiet their political opposition. Their position is that you can only be in their dream if you march in lock step with them. It is that, or else. This is why they are sometimes called coercive utopians. Hypocrisy is an inadequate term. How about fascistic hypocrisy?