John Locke, Second Treatise of Government, Chapter VII: Of Political or Civil Society; section 92.
The State in its elemental form: The implicit threat behind all government action is made overt in this police officer's personalized headgear....
... and here's the threat made tangible: The caption to this photo helpfully explained, "Anti-war protester learns a lesson about protesting."
For the second time in less than a year, a lethal mass shooting has been carried out by an obscure and probably deranged individual of vaguely right-wing inclinations.
Last Friday (February 27), Dannie R. Baker, a 59-year-old self-described minister who followed a distant and eccentric orbit around Florida's Walton County Republican Party, shot five college-age Chilean students, killing two of them. As is generally the case in tragedies of this kind, the a police tactical unit showed up in time to collect the shooter after his victims were already dead or critically injured.
Agent of "revolution"? Accused murderer Dannie R. Baker.
Crystal Lynn, a neighbor in the apartment complex where Baker lived and the shooting took place, recalled an incident in which Baker approached her "and asked me if I was ready for the revolution to begin and if I had any immigrant [sic] in my house to get them out." The victims of Baker's killing spree had come to the U.S. legally as part of an international exchange program.
The "Reverend" Baker was known to the local Republican leadership, who -- to their credit -- didn't actively seek his company, although he was described as "active" in the 2004 election campaign.
Last year, party officials became concerned about a series of "disturbing" e-mails from Baker and contacted the Sheriff's office to express their concerns.
The atrocity in Florida comes just days after the conviction of James Adkisson for murdering two people and injuring six more in a killing spree at a Knoxville, Tennessee Unitarian Universalist Church last July.
Murder victims: Nicolas Corp, 23 (left) and Racine Balbontin (22).
Like Baker, Adkisson was a middle-aged man of with a murky background on the margins of the Republican-aligned right. Where Baker's "revolutionary" intentions, if any, remain sketchy, Adkisson unflinchingly described his crime as an act of revolutionary suicide terrorism.
In a four-page written harangue left as a kind of suicide note-cum-political manifesto, Baker described his premeditated act as the "symbolic killings" of people connected to the liberal Democrats he passionately hated, and predicted that he would die at the hands of police in his effort to "get the ball rolling" on the supposedly worthy project of annihilating liberals wherever they could be found.
Some left-leaning activists and commentators insist that the actions of Adkisson and Baker are inspired by a tendency they call "eliminationism" -- a desire to exterminate the "other," however that category is defined. That analysis is difficult to dispute, given the way that conservatism in the Age of Limbaugh has curdled into a kind of tribalism seasoned by adolescent resentment and blended with an implacable appetite for power.
The dominant conservative critique of the Obama administration, after all, doesn't focus on its profligacy, foreign adventurism, and insistence on centralizing power at the expense of liberty; in that respect, Obama is just like his predecessor and, in some ways (at least so far), a touch less extreme. No, the critique is simply that Obama and his people are part of "Them," rather than "Us": They belong to the wrong tribe, and are exercising the power we covet.
After all, the GOP-aligned Right didn't erupt in revolutionary outrage when the Bush administration destroyed habeas corpus or created a corporatist economic dictatorship within the Treasury Department, to name just two of its myriad offenses against liberty. However, now that the power-engorged executive branch is controlled by Them, Sean Hannity has started to cultivate sedition and Limbaugh, envisioning the Republican re-conquest of the government, has started to talk about "payback" in terms that bring to mind a Khmer Rouge commissar contemplating a purge.
As somebody who considers the State to be nothing more than a criminal syndicate pursuing a monopoly, I consider sedition to be a fine and noble calling worthy of all decent and Godly people. But statists of the conservative stripe engage in purely situational sedition: They want to undermine our present crop of rulers in order to replace them, not to abolish State impositions on liberty.
That is the thinking behind Hannity's little survey about the preferred mode of insurrection and Limbaugh's crusade to bring down Obama -- to the extent that the term "thinking" describes what goes on behind Hannity's Neanderthal forehead ridge, or the process that leads to the verbal expression of Rush Limbaugh's appetites.
This isn't to say that the left is blameless in all of this. It was the left that not only legitimized but institutionalized the politics of collectivist grievance. Collectivist movements are always eliminationist in potential, and quite often in practice.
Homeland Security in Chile, 1973: Santiago National Stadium serving as an open-air detention camp for political enemies of the new junta.
The biggest difference I can see is that "right-wing"* collectivists prefer to eliminate troublesome people right away (vide the Chilean junta filling Santiago National Stadium with dissidents and other disposable troublemakers following Pinochet's 1973 coup), while left-wingers seek to "re-educate" their victims first before liquidating those deemed incapable of thought reform.
A subsidiary distinction: "Lone wolf"-style political violence is more the style of the pseudo-individualist Right, since the Left prefers a more systematic approach.
It seems likely that we will see other episodes of "lone wolf"-style armed terrorism by people like Adkisson and Baker -- comets dragged out of conservatism's Oort Cloud, or perhaps given a nudge sun-ward by federal agents of mayhem deployed for that purpose.
Given the possibility that people perceived as "liberals" will be targeted for future politically inspired violence -- in addition to the increase in routine criminal violence that will occur as the depression deepens -- a question urges itself upon us: Why aren't liberals (with a few worthy exceptions) reconsidering their opposition to the right to armed self-defense? Why aren't they buying guns, rather than supporting measures intended to take them away from others?
"Eliminationism," as practiced by the Revolutionary Left: Under the direction of a progressive lawyer named Jean-Baptiste Carrier, the revolutionary French Jacobins conducted noyades -- mass drownings of Christian Vendeans deemed ineducable and thus subject to liquidation. Perhaps inspired by the given name of the official who supervised them, these acts of mass murder, which anticipated modern collectivist mass-killings from the Soviet Union to Cambodia, were called "republican baptisms."
I suspect that the answer is this: Just as Left-collectivists prefer institutionalized armed violence through the State to "lone wolf"-style episodes of individual political violence, they believe it would be best for all of us to be disarmed apart from the sanctified agents of State repression, rather than permitting individuals to provide for their own protection.
People of that political persuasion might want to re-examine their premises before the "eliminationist" Right regains power and renders the question moot. But there is a more immediate potential threat that should command the immediate attention of all of us, irrespective of our political viewpoints. It is described by Russian-born, America-educated Dimitri Orlov, one of the wittiest and most capable exponents of what could be called "Collapse Theory."
Orlov spend a great deal of time in the Soviet Union during its painful and tumultuous transition. During the 1990s, he began to see some crucial parallels between the behavior of that crusading socialist superpower just prior to its collapse, and the behavior of our own crusading corporatist superpower on the eve of its own systemic crisis. He was present when the State's administrative system broke down at the same time the country was inundated with waves of demobilized soldiers returning from Afghanistan, or from manning the garrisons of the far-flung Soviet empire.
The collapse of the Regime's financial system will quite probably take down the administrative apparatus as well. We're barely into what will be a very long and deep depression, and already every state government faces an acute fiscal crisis, with most large cities following suit. At some point, imperial ambitions will yield to fiscal reality, and the troops stationed abroad will come home, apart from those likely to be lost should the Regime manage to lose an entire army in the Gulf region.
Police departments, both state and local, will be forced to lay off personnel, and prisons bulging at the seams will start releasing convicts (most likely beginning with those who committed violent crimes against persons and property, rather than the non-violent offenders who could be considered political prisoners rather than actual criminals).
The Business End of the State, Russian Edition: Russia's Omon police force subdues a protester. The Omon forces are similar to American riot police, albeit better educated and less pathologically violent.
The end result, Orlov explains, "will be a country awash with various categories of armed men, most of them unemployed, and many of them borderline psychotic":
"The police in the United States are a troubled group. Many of them lose all touch with people who are not `on the force' and most of them develop an `us-versus-them' mentality. The soldiers returning from a tour of duty often suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder. The paroled prisoners suffer from a variety of psychological ailments as well. All of them will sooner or later realize that their problems are not medical but political. This will make it impossible for society to continue to exercise control over them. All of them will be making good use of their weapons training and other professional skills to acquire whatever they need to survive. And the really important point to remember is that they will do these things whether or not anyone thinks it legal for them to be doing them."
It is important to understand that Orlov's observation is speculative only as it applies to our country; what he describes he has seen in "post-Soviet" Russia.
Even after the State lost its ideological rationale for plunder, the country was still buried beneath armed men who had made a career in extracting wealth at gunpoint. Oddly enough, being clothed in the power of the State and carrying out errands of violence on its behalf didn't purge such men of the "baseness of human nature." And rather than retiring when the Soviet flag was furled, they continued in the same profession as free-lancers until they found employment in the same field under the successor Regime.
The implosion of Washington's imperial State will probably follow a similar trajectory. What rational person of any political persuasion would choose to be disarmed in such circumstances, or any others?
*I'm aware that the political "Right" on a properly defined political spectrum would refer to less government, or even the absence of that institutional affliction. For the purposes of this discussion, I'm using the term "Right" with reference to nationalist and traditionalist tendencies, as opposed to the egalitarian and "progressive" impulses that characterize the "Left." In this model, total government can be imposed by either "progressives" or "reactionaries."
On sale now!
Dum spiro, pugno!
I have no firearms. I have no desire to entangle in the web spun by the State to buy a gun in a store or even from an individual. I have no interest in buying a stolen gun, either. So, does anyone know how do I get a clean gun outside of the State's supervision? Am I cruising for trouble for either or both of us by asking this question on your site? If so, don't run this post.
I don't want the State hammering you for my rants.
Damn, I am getting concerned, here.
mongol Doc Ellis 124
Your writing brings me joy and wisdom. But oh man, did you HAVE to link to that hideously uneducated Democratic Underground discussion? I started reading it, not knowing what I was getting into, and it made me want to puke my pants!
Also, Doc Ellis: What state do you live in? Private transfer of long guns is legal in most states, and private transfer of handguns is legal in about half the states. This is known as the "gun show loophole," and it will be closed under Obama, so you need to move quickly to arrange a private, anonymous, legal purchase of whatever it is you need, either at a gun show from a private seller or through classifieds. Boston T. Party has written some excellent material on this; you can look for his books "Boston's Gun Bible" and "Bulletproof Privacy" on Amazon.
doc, homemade firearms.
Some, but not all, states allow unpapered person-to-person transfers. If you live in such a state, it is perfectly legal to (for example) go to a gun show and buy a firearm from an individual who is not a gun dealer. No paperwork is involved in that situation.
However, not all states allow this. Check your local gun laws to find out what is and is not permissible where you live.
Face to face, intraState transfers of firearms are completely legal under many States.
I can't think of much of a reason to not buy a firearm from an individual you've never met. Just make sure he knows something about what he's selling. Ask some questions about the firearm: questions that only a legit owner of that firearm would know.
For example, people who steal guns generally don't take very good care of their firearms. So ask them how they "wash" the firearm. If they look at you strangely, and say something like, "Well, I clean it with Break-Free CLP," you'll have a good indication that the guy is legit. There are all sorts of other questions you can ask.
Well the one thing most soldiers and and police force personnel are not comfortable with or capable of functioning in( outside of serious levels of comfort accompanying any sojourn) - is the woods. When I say woods - I am not talking about the 30 acre patch behind the house I mean the 3 million acre parcels that you often find in the northern regions of the US.
Having spent my whole life in the woods either via my profession or just for the love of it - I take comfort in this fact. Watching state employed clowns flounder around in this environment always makes for a good laugh. Its like seeing fish out of water.
Thank you. I live in CA.
I could go out of state, I guess.
Your blog has contributed, in a way, to a change in the way I comment on news articles. Whereas before I would get drawn into flame wars (I've been called a "$%^#'ing REPUKE!" a couple times, even though I never endorse Bush or his fellow neo-cons in my arguments)
I visit Raw Story fairly often. I like the layout, and the fact that they are timely when posting current events. Maybe it's the slight leftist wording of their headlines that makes me look at the comment section of their articles as prime recruiting ground for the RPR.
Many times I've noticed, that when trying to make a point regarding the slightly confused, somewhat backwards thinking that goes on in liberal forums, the only response to (what I consider) my common sense, liberty oriented comments are complete degradation of my (and others) ideas and name calling. It's almost as though the liberals HAVE NO INTEREST in any other system or ideology other than their own.
For example, I commented on the Nazi comparison DH Huntley made towards CPAC attendees. I tried explaining that the policies of the Democrats are more similar to National Socialist policies than to the Republicans. Nothing but flames in response.
Reading Pro Liberate has taught me that there are many ways to educate the left, other than name calling, race-baiting, or using divisive issues to categorize someone.
Will, you do a great service to the liberty movement writing this blog, and I hope that as your popularity grows, you retain the integrity, intellectualism, and humor that makes your articles so worth spreading.
There are almost no journalists today that I find inspiring. Where's the HL Mencken of our time? You have filled a space that has been empty for a long time, and I hope that someday soon, you're talent is recognized and your unique elocution of wisdom finds more outlets to enhance the public debate.
You can be sure that there's one guy out here spreading your website far and wide :-)All the best!
Sorry, but you have to purchase guns inside of the state where you live, or have them transferred to you via an FFL which means that there will be a paper trail.
If you live in California, there is no way to purchase a firearm legally without leaving a paper trail.
Doc, move. I am sure I speak for Will as well when I say we would love to have you up here in Idaho.
Will, depressing and apocalyptic as always. I just hope your wrong. I hope we are all wrong.
"Thank you. I live in CA.
I could go out of state, I guess."
You'll catch a felony for doing that if you screw up. You're fine if (obviously) you don't get caught OR if you legally establish a residence in, say, Arizona. Again, Boston's Gun Bible will explain to you what a "residence" is for the purpose of non-interstate gun transfers.
And remember, once you legally purchase a firearm in any state, then regardless of how you legally purchased it, you can go from state to state with it; that's not interstate commerce, it's just your property. So you can go out-of-state in that sense. But why live in California if you're serious about liberty? Dedicated mariners don't live in Kansas!
I saw this article and it reminded me of your post when this crash happened and our air crash discussion.
Now that the facts are in the direction to point blame is clear. The problem with crashes is that until the data is sorted out it is easy to jump on the wrong bandwagon or to kill the wrong person.
It is good to see that the marines are hammering the commander and his three top men rather than just letting it slide.
I would like to make a couple of observations regarding this latest Republican outrage-cum-massacre (let us call it for what it is - during the reign of George W. Caligula, the slightest criticism of his vile corruptions was greeted with shreiks of fury and howls of "Traitor!" from millions of Republican throats.)
(1) Adolf Hitler never personally murdered one sigle Jew.
(2) George Bush, Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Sean Hannity, and Bill O'Reilly never personally murdered a single Unitarian in church, or a single Chilean child.
Nevertheless, there is the guilt of instigation of the borderline psychotics ever lurking just beneath the surface of our sociopathological society, legions of whom find comfort and validation in the bosom of the Republican Party, or, in another time and place, the Nazi Party.
Just as the blood of the Jews was on the hands of Hitler and his "innocent" cabinet (like Adolf Eichmann, who also never personally murdered one single Jew,) and of the Germans who elected him in a landslide, the blood of these victims is on the hands of Bush, Cheney, DeLay, Frist, Limbaugh, Coulter, Hannity, and millions of Republicans just like them.
Next, if one follows the link you provided, one reads this in the news story:
"Chilean journalists say the entire country of Chile is shocked by the student's untimely deaths. Chilean journalist Macarena Retamal says, 'We are a quiet country that's not used to those guys that go there, you know, with a gun and kill children. We don't have that kind of violence.'"
The entire nation of Chile and millions more across South America, and probably millions in Europe as well, (these stories tend to spread,) see the fat, piggish, bearded Baker as the face of a barbaric, cretinous and thuggish America. Get used to it, children, this is how the world sees you. Is it any wonder majorities in every country of the entire world (except Poland and Israel,) saw America as a greater threat to world peace than North Korea or Iran?
A friend who lives in Paris told me that when an American couple sat down in the restaurant they were dining in, two other tables of French diners got up and walked out.
Another friend told me that in parks in Germany, someone was sticking little American flags into piles of dogshit.
Nice. The land of the free and the home of the brave. The shining city on a hill. Oh yeah.
And as for equating the Left and Right, I never heard of a Unitarian gunning down a bunch of Southern Baptists in church. Or a crazed Democrat opening fire on a College Republican meeting. Have you? I thought so. Note also that the police you saw in that photo, guarding dissidents in a stadium in Chile, those were Right-serving police guarding leftists seized and "disappeared" by the right-wing junta of Pinochet, installed by the Republican Nixon, after the CIA and the American ambassador murdered the democratically elected Democratic President of Chile, Allende.
Do not think, children, that today this memory will not again cross the minds of the people of Chile.
No, the GOP is the party of the Elite, the Oligarchs, the Bankers, the Corporations, and their violence-drunk minions of corruption, the Police and the Department of Homeland Security. The Democratic Party is the party of us little worms, the peasants.
For pity's sake already, stop ranting and blathering about Obama as if he is Josef Stalin or Pol Pot come back to life. Get real. This is bullshit. He's doing his level best to rescue us from the cesspit of poverty and violence the Republicans dumped us into, whether you agree with his methods or not. Should I call Ron Paul another fascist Benito Mussolini, just because he happens to be a Republican - probably the only honest one in the entire Grand Old Party? That would make as much sense.
And as for the daily atrocities committed by the police in America, it is just one more symptom of our national sickness - rampant selfishness and addiction to violence. Our economic collapse is also the result of utter selfishness and greed. Everywhere. Three years ago, everyone I know, without exception, was boasting about how much money they had made flipping houses. There were, and still are, even TV programs about flipping houses and getting rich quick.
I stood aside from the Great White Shark Real Estate Feeding Frenzy and did NOT get into that circus. Now, I say, let the greedy assholes lose their houses and the greedy bankers go eat in soup kitchens - they goddamn bloody well deserve it. WTF should I who never made a dime in their scams have to bail them out with my taxes?
Finally, the scenario described by Dmitri Orlov is all too likely, and extremely scary. He is right. It has happened before. This is a quote from Barbara Tuchman's book about the 14th Century, aptly titled, "A Distant Mirror," pages 163-164:
"Outside Paris the breakdown of authority was reaching catastrophe. Its catalyst was the brigandage of military companies spawned by the warfare of the last fifteen years. These were the so-called Free Companies who "wrote sorrow on the bosom of the earth," and were to become the torment of the age....They gathered in groups of twenty to fifty and moved northward....In the year after the truce they swelled, merged, organized, spread, and operated with ever more licence. They imposed ransoms on prosperous villages and burned the poor ones, robbed abbeys and monasteries of their stores and valuables, pillaged peasants' barns, killed and tortured those who hid their goods or resisted ransom, not sparing the clergy or the aged, violated virgins, nuns and mothers...As the addiction took hold, they wantonly burned harvests and farm equipment and cut down trees and vines, destroying what they lived by, in actions that seem inexplicable except as a fever of the time."
The bandit bands grew to be thousands strong, and continued to exist in the forests of Europe for the next 30 years, pillaging, scourging, burning and raping at will, while being hired as mercenaries by various kings and princes in the ongoing wars and conflicts of the time. No army or authority was ever able to dislodge them from the backs of the population, until in time their leaders got old and died off and their members drifted away.
Is this past history also the future we have to look forward to in this country?
Yours in dread,
W.N. Grigg IS today's Christian version of H.L. Mencken.
Join us and become a "Griggorian Groupie"! But you must follow this one single rule. You must believe in individual liberty. JOIN US!
4 March 09
I also would endorse stocking up on suitable firearms and, particularly, ammunition. However, rather than simply hunkering down and awaiting the final shootout when they come to take away your guns, it would be best to try to avert the final shootout.
Please check out the "Campaign for Liberty" from Dr Ron Paul and involve yourselves. If you have the stomach for partisan politics, it would also be recommend that you check out "The Republican Liberty Caucus". You will see many of the same "Campaign for Liberty" folks, the "Paulistas", there. They (we) are working on "gaining influence" in the Republican Party one precinct and one County at a time (and, it may be pointed out, with some success).
Of course, the establishment within the Republican Party pushes back upon occasion("take out the trash", "nutjobs", etc etc); however, that's to be expected and adds to the fun.
I would hardly refer to the Democrats as the "Party of the Little Guy". They love Big Money just as much as do the Establishment Republicans. However, don't take that statement as a blanket condemnation of "Democrats". Quite a few of them "discovered" Dr Ron Paul in the last election season. As they discover that Obama is every bit as much a warmonger and would-be tyrant as was the Shrub, they also might be willing to climb on board the Liberty Campaign.
An Extremely Radical Whig in Chattanooga
Will, I suspected that as soon as I "drove by" and glanced at your headline and after I began reading the meat herein, knew without a doubt, that you were, perhaps inadvertently, supplying bandoleers of ammo for the noisy, but harmless, salvos that would inevitably be emanating from some keyboards.
Alas, predictably, Mr. Gulliver fired off a heavy barrage. I do agree with some of his points, nonetheless. For instance, the greedy rich and poor, bankers and homeowners should sink together. After all, they got in the boat together. And if one cries, "I was deceived! I was baited! I was tempted to chew off more....", ad nauseam, why should they not reap their just reward for it? That's life...sigh. That's why folk should stop and THINK something through long-term before moving forward with anything, especially along a financial precipice burdened with crushing debt.
As for the post, I do agree with most of the key points and core substance of it (I think), but I guess where I clearly part ways with you, Will, is that I've never met a "neutral" or "apolitical" person, ever. For the life of me I can't/don't see as feasible a "neutral," "apolitical" system of liberty and, by extension, a minimalist, non-interventionist government. It's just a contortion of the mind, unfortunately, given the indisputable reality of human nature. Mr. Baker, Mr. Adkisson, and others of their ilk are obvious examples. Ergo, as much as I'd LOVE to be in concert with your thinking, Will, concerning political persuasions/views not tangibly affecting one's view of liberty (or any other concept for that matter) in the abstract, it's pure nonsense. Political - just as philosophical, ideological, and religious - mindsets are goin' to "color" ones views of every aspect of life. If I was a wagerer I'd wager that most, if not all, political views are "tainted" by some aspect of a philosophy, ideology, and religion. And thereby the concept of true liberty will be likewise "tainted."
Seriously, to fantasize a bit, if we could really dispense with government totally - I mean literally dismantle it in toto - I'd be the biggest proponent of ending the War on Drugs, the War on Tobacco, the War on Christianity, the War on Alcohol, and every other makeshift "war" government engages in. Why? Because I know I could control my space/property completely and only tolerate what I deem appropriate without having to muddle through a troublesome gauntlet of government egalitarian/discrimination statutes outlawing most key facets of the freedom of association, among many others. But the "Left" and "Right" strongly oppose THAT kind of true freedom. Lawdy, a true synthesis is achieved, but, of course, only in regards to an expanding state and contraction of true freedoms (i.e. speech, religion).
Anyway, I loathe the "conservative," "liberal," "Right," "Left" "moderate" "extreme" political/ideological/religious labeling paradigm with which to paint folk because those labels are essentially meaningless. The ONLY humanoid labels that matter and possess real substance are "totalitarian," "authoritarian," "statist," "dependency-monger," et al. After all, what the heck does "the Right" really mean? "The Right" of what, exactly? "The Left" of what, exactly? "Moderate," or "in the middle," of what, exactly? I suppose this designation would represent a fence straddler? What is this "fence" dividing, exactly?
I like clear, unambiguous demarcations in the sand. But, that's me. I'm beginning to think too many folk like to fantasize about a world where EVERYBODY loves true LIBERTY and there's no nationalism, no ethnic biases, no racial biases, etc., etc. So much nonsense. The world wasn't made like that. Folk aren't made like that, they don't really think like that. Utopian dreams may soothe a troubled psyche, but are not and will never be the reality. In fact, Europe is actually seeing a resurgence of nationalism and ethnic tensions are on the rise. These tensions have always existed (see above), but are becoming more acute, predictably, by the deteriorating economic situation in many of those countries.
The bottom line: Red totalitarian = Blue totalitarian = Magenta totalitarian = Religious totalitarian = Republican totalitarian = Democratic totalitarian........ad infinitum, ad nauseam. All have an, albeit tentative, love for Leviathan, particularly whenever it is at their respective behest, stomping the head of the opposition explicitly or implicitly by statutes/dictates.
It bears repeating that there's not one completely NEUTRAL soul - in mind, body, or spirit - on this planet. Whether that's considered good, bad, or ugly, or even irrelevant by someone, es macht nichts; it's simply the constitution and makeup of humanoids.
Mr. Gulliver demonstrably illustrates this reality. He is (as we all are) "tainted" and NOT "neutral" concerning his views. Instead of merely berating the demented individuals in question, he plays the "guilt by [perceived] association" game. But, again, we ALL play this game to varying degrees so I'm not slammin' Mr. Gulliver for his diatribe. It was expected, after all; if not he, then someone else would (will still) come along and dutifully fire off their full bandoleer as well.
Mr. Gulliver clearly sees zero difference b/w Hitler, a head of state and dictator who possessed POWER over the commoners to coerce and/or force them to comply with his evil demands, and a spoutmeister such as Hannity or Limbaugh who possesses no Leviathanic POWER over anyone and, ergo, cannot force anyone to do anything. Actually, to be brutally honest, even a Hitler or Stalin possess no REAL power over a given person and cannot truly force him/her to do or comply with any dictate that they don't first acquiesce to do beforehand in their own mind. Now, sure, the temporal consequence for your independent thought(s) and independent action(s) probably will be the loss of your life, as White Rose members Hans Scholl, Sophie Scholl, and Christoph Probst discovered. Nevertheless, I just wanted to be clear on that detail.
And, Mr. Gulliver, I don't think we've seen many elements of "the Left" go psychotic because the country is obviously already long down the path of a perceived "Left" or "progressive" flavor of totalitarianism in culture (pop and otherwise), in schools, in the market, etc., etc. The "Left" or "progressives" had their temper tantrums during the 1960s when the perceived "Right" was thought to control the establishment. Heck, since FDR, we've been well along on the totalitarian superhighway. The dialectic was already in full swing. Hoover/Bush was NOT a non-interventionist, but a Tweedledum, if you will. Likewise, neither was/is Roosevelt/Obama a non-interventionist, but a Tweedledee. Pick any prez in the 20th century, but especially at any time since the Hoover-FDR era, and they appeared publicly to be in opposition on issues, but weren't. They only differed in matters of degree and scope on the myriad totalitarian policy proposals. The same paradigm pertains to Congress, of course. In short, they ALL support ever expanding government and collectivism.
It's a contrived and somewhat controlled cultural/political/ideological/philosophical dialectic in play. The powerful within government and the mind-molders in "mainstream" news media, music, public schools, and Hollyweird all work tirelessly, if not always seamlessly, to keep this dialectic in play. Whereas the people or "the commoners" (as I like to call us) really do differ in their views across the nation, the leaders, nearly ALL of them (except Dr. Paul perhaps), are in bed together engaging in orgies privately while, publicly, they put on the face of "spirited" opposition.
Nevertheless, all that said, WE the PEOPLE put them there. What does that say about us? We just LOVE totalitarian incumbents too!
Thank you for a very insightful column. The forecasted future presented by you, Lemuel and others sounds extremely frightening.
It appears many of the predictions are currently underway. I was appalled by the murders of the innocent Chilean students by that right wing, self annointed minister.
I have no firearms nor do I wish to own one. However, I am fully aware of our current economic crisis and I have read about many early prison release programs currently underway.
What are your suggestions for people like me who believe in Peace, Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness? Is there any hope for us? Or is your crystal ball telling us there is no Hope and if we survive, we are doomed to a violent and dismal future?
There is no hope unless we sign all rights over to mommygov. Both wings of the Republicrat party agree. Mommygov will keep us safe and comfortable. Welfare checks will be dispensed on a most favorite victim status. Those that need jobs to feel complete, mommygov will supply one. Everything for the state nothing outside of the state all hail the state. The only guns available will be for the states drooling bullyboys in xxxxl "tactical" gear.
"...comets dragged out of conservatism's Oort Cloud..."
My new favorite metaphor.
Good points...I don't own a gun, but I don't understand the left's desire to leave themselves defenseless...I don't think Kent State would've happened had the National Guard thought they might get fired back on.
I saw an article while web serfing the other day of a Russian professor saying USA will be balkanized and go through a civil war in two years. I don't want my bookmarks to be 4 columns wide but I should have bookmarked this article. Can't we all just get along? Aren't we all one big classless patriotic family?
Thank you, sincerely, for keeping the discussion on a level of respect.
I think that is what it boils down to - in the frontier days before the State took over the job of keeping "order" between people and their neighbors, down to the minutest details of thought and behavior, people treated each other with considerable respectand courtesy, both in speech and behavior, because if they did not, they never knew if the consequence would be a bullet in the chest. In some ways they were far more civilized than we are.
Can you imagine Howard Stern or Rush Limbaugh or Bill O'Reilly living very long lives in the 1850's? Me neither.
As far as today, I think the best thing we can teach our children is respect, the best way to do so being by our own example, treating our children with respect themselves. I would venture that these nutbars who go around shooting up churches and student parties were belittled and treated with contempt by their fathers, and consequently nurse a deep contempt for their own self-perceived weakness, and a burning rage and desire to get even with the world.
Regarding left and right, you are correct. Roosevelt had every intention of getting us into WWII, despite his campaign assurances to the contrary. Hitler was too smart to be provoked into fighting America - he had deep respect for the British and American people, whom he saw as "superior races like the Germans" - so Roosevelt provoked the Japanese instead, to get us into the war. I believe he knew all about Pearl Harbor several days in advance.
Without going into a long discussion of the subject, I am similarly convinced that the Mossad, who had penetrated the 9-11 terrorrists, had told the Bush Administration and the CIA all about the plot before it happened, including the very flights and timetable of the attacks, and Cheney, Bush, Wolfowitz, etc, chose to do nothing and let it happen. (Motives: Cheney as an oilman wanted an excuse to seize the Iraqi oilfields, and Bush wanted the glory and power of being a wartime President.)
I also think in both instances, Pearl Harbor and 9-11, neither Administration realized how devastating and costly the attack would be.
You are right also, in that money and power trump any partisan affiliation. Even as a Democrat myself, I find the person who thinks the most like me is staunch rightist Pat Buchanan. Had he been running, I would have voted for him over Obama. A Buchanan-Ron Paul ticket is one I do not think could be bettered. But since neither one is a servant of the money elite, I do not think it will ever happen.
Yes, I have certain axes to grind. I am NOT an anti-Semite; I LIKE Jews - they are witty, intelligent, funny, and usually the first to take up the banner for justice. However, in common with Pat Buchanan, I DO object to American Jews considering a foreign country - Israel - as their homeland, and spying on America for Israel, plundering our assets and businesses to fund Israel, and getting our foreign policy embroiled with Israel's problems of stealing a homeland in the Middle East from people already living there.
(Just exactly, of course, as our ancestors did with the Native Americans they found living here. But those were less complicated days - there were fewer humans on the planet and plenty of resources to go around, and weapons technology was about a thousand times less destructive than it is today. We humans today need to evolve pretty quick before we render ourselves extinct.)
You may think I am a rabid Leftist. No - I am a patriot, who wants to see America return to its position of respect, and restrained use of power, among the nations of the world, and I am a pragmatist, one of my favorite authors being Thomas Paine ("These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot...") who wrote the wonderfully entitled essay, "Common Sense."
-- Which is something sorely and disastrously lacking in this country right now.
I also admit that often, I couch my thoughts in inflammatory and excessive language, even to the occasional profanity. That is because the one thing that I see most urgently lacking among the Statist-conditioned masses is concern for their own welfare and lives. After 70 years of the Nursemaid State, there has arisen a deep apathy in America, and an expectancy of sitting back and waitintg for the State to "fix" everything, from the roads to the economy to the weather to earthquakes to heart attcks to cancer.
The American people need a shock to get off their butts and get involved in their own lives. Better a verbal shock than a life-threatening one which may, alas, be already on its way.
Do you get where I am coming from now? I think we are probably not that far apart in our positions, (otherwise we would not both be reading this blog of Mr. Grigg's,) but just in how we express them.
PS: I had another thought -
You know what I think is probably the most pernicious result of the Nursemaid State? It is that not only does the boobeoisie expect the state to control everything from the economy to hurricanes to the mosquitoes to the forest fires, etc etc, ad nauseam, they ALSO expect the state to control HUMAN BEHAVIOR.
AHA!! Why should I even TRY to control my own anger, appetites, lusts and base emotions, when the State will pass laws to control them for me? Let it all hang out, baby, do whatever feels good to you. Why worry? If it's immoral the State will make it illegal, right?
It is the ultimate abdication of conscience and self-control. Self-control and self-respect no longer exist in most of this world. Instead it is State-control and State-respect. All Hail the Nursemaid Mommy-State. For theirs is the Kingdom, the Power, and the Glory, for ever and ever amen.
What a vile and disgusting corruption of the human condition.
Can you imagine Howard Stern or Rush Limbaugh or Bill O'Reilly living very long lives in the 1850's? Me neither.
Hehe, I tend to agree with that assertion. Spoutmeisters of any flavor weren't exactly considered idols in the days of yore as they are in contemporary culture. The ghastly booby and radio, of course, didn't yet exist, which would come to provide ready utensils for helping to corrupt the culture and pleasuring the masses with "bread and circuses."
Very succinct points, Lemuel. I do generally agree and only have a few picks with which to nit.
I would venture that these nutbars who go around shooting up churches and student parties were belittled and treated with contempt by their fathers, and consequently nurse a deep contempt for their own self-perceived weakness, and a burning rage and desire to get even with the world.
Some of those are without any doubt troubled souls, indeed. However, that diagnosis wouldn't explain other numerous examples one could cite, such as 19 well-educated, well-treated and well-heeled Saudis who were living the high-life, yet purposely decided to fly some Flugzeuge into some towers. Or it wouldn't explain why Palestinian Arabs shoot up or bomb shopping malls and pizzerias in Israel. They're all treated well at home, one would presume like any typical family, with the particular cultural attributes in mind, just heavily programmed in hate, of course.
What this kind of pervasive thinking often ignores is the simple concept of evil. What a revelation! ;). It ignores the capacity for anyone to commit vile, evil acts with/without coercion. Again, harking back to a previous thread, most folk erronously think that humans are basically constituted of a "good" nature. That doesn't square with how God sees humanity, otherwise His Son wouldn't have laid His life down for us. I mean, if we're all basically "good" who needs Jesus? Anyway, sorry for the slight Christian tangent there, Mr. Gulliver. But, hopefully the point is clear.
And speaking from another angle. It's amazing to me how your average, run-of-the-mill Ami - even many well-healed and well-traveled ones - likes to think that anytime a guy "magically" (it would superficially seem) and suddenly becomes a bad guy of whatever variety, and that his act(s) must of been the result of living in poverty, or being bullied on the schoolyard as a youngster, and so forth and he simply "snapped." This, in my mind anyway, is a, albeit loose in this instance, form of post hoc ergo propter hoc argumentation. After this [act], therefore because of this [act], rather than an ingrained or institutionalized, long-term, purposely constructed mindset germinated and watered from toddlerhood to adulthood. But, of course, it could be viewed the other way too, where the "this," rather than implying immediate, on-going, or recent acts as a cause as I take many of these contemporary arguments, is instead taken as a long-term, gestating, institutional cause as well. Even so, the problem with this view is that more times than not the simple thought that purposefulness and intention to do the evil are still ignored. As if any human actions and behaviors even require a "cause" in the first place.
Without going into a long discussion of the subject, I am similarly convinced that the Mossad, who had penetrated the 9-11 terrorrists, had told the Bush Administration and the CIA all about the plot before it happened, including the very flights and timetable of the attacks, and Cheney, Bush, Wolfowitz, etc, chose to do nothing and let it happen.
I tend to lean in this direction as well, although I have no proof to substantiate. Also, I must point out that my take differs from most of the 9/11 noise out there. Although, I think one who has foreknowledge of an evil act and does nothing to attempt to counter it is also guilty, I wouldn't assign the same level of guilt as one who actually masterminds it and, as terribly corrupt as I believe our government to be, I do not think the power-mongers have quite stooped to that level, YET anyway. In my view, masterminds of crimes are always the most guilty, followed by in-the-know observers, and LASTLY the actual perpetrators take up the rear.
Even totalitarians are wise enough to take that view. They don't bother wasting resources squashing low-level bees, they seek out the hive and liquidate the queen, then the worker bees wither and die. IOW, they hit the masterminds, movers and shakers, the alpha-personality types of people who can influence great numbers of the commoners in a movement, i.e. freedom movement or what have you.
However, in common with Pat Buchanan, I DO object to American Jews considering a foreign country - Israel - as their homeland, and spying on America for Israel, plundering our assets and businesses to fund Israel.
Yes, I've always had a term for American-born Jews in general [there's that guilt by association again :P]. I've always called them "dime store Jews" mostly in jest, but there's elements of truth in jest or it wouldn't be jest. Money, money, money, by ANY means conceivable is how many, but not all, American-born Jews operate.
However, I do part ways with what I consider a tired canard about Jews "stealing" and kicking the Arabs off the land in 1948. I agree with Joseph Farah on that issue. And he provides references there from the horses' mouths themselves.
I think we are probably not that far apart in our positions, (otherwise we would not both be reading this blog of Mr. Grigg's,) but just in how we express them.
I think you're more right than wrong on that ;). However, I'm not in lockstep agreement with Will on the troubling issues as most of the other posters. I do agree with Will's distaste for the State, but be concentrates on the leaders, agency heads, et al, and in the abstract notions of "the State," but seldom, if ever, talks of how we the people are, sadly, at the heart of the problem of an increasingly metastasizing Leviathan over time, which I, needless to say, believe strongly to be the case.
This is also why I look at some people in liberty and freedom groups and associations have missed the boat. They will fail miserably for a monkey-simple reason: These groups don't take into account the character, integrity, philosophy, and morality of the citizenry. As you yourself alluded to in your next post (3:26PM), The reality is that a depraved, debauched, corrupt, and immoral populace CANNOT BE TRULY FREE simply because it REQUIRES the ability to SELF_GOVERN and exhibit SELF-CONTROL! Why does government play DADDY and MOMMY to so many? BECAUSE THEY HAVE NO SELF_CONTROL!
I've actually heard MANY folk say blithely, "Well of course I won't do it because I fear going to jail!" Seriously, they say this without the slightest thought of its implications. That's a sure sign that that dimwit NEEDS to be controlled (or at least coddled firmly) by SOMEBODY, hence why government becomes - not just their daddy, mind ya, but by the very nature of the beast, EVERYBODY'S daddy.
So it really pains me to say it, but I seriously tend to believe that our society as it's constituted today really lacks the ability to be genuinely FREE and live in genuine LIBERTY.
Unless the populace shapes itself up, these "freedom movements" are a futile attempt and it just ain't gonna happen, no matter how hard these misguided folk try. They labor in vain that do it.
Lastly, a point, perhaps the main point I initially failed to mention about Will's post title and much of what the post content was arguing. I just want to clarify, from the numerous roundabouts I constructed in the previous comment in a half-hearted attempt to "connect-the-dots" and demonstrate why the title "Why Liberals Should Support the Right to Armed Self-Defense" is an oxymoron. In my mind, that's like saying, "Why Atheists Should Want to go Heaven." Most of what I said in the earlier post could be summarized in that statement ;).
I enjoyed the "Truthout" transcription of Orlov's speech. Not the predictions, but his presentation.
I am a bit confused by the concept of a "safety net" as presumably provided by a government--especially a distant one not familiar with the local environs. On a scale larger than a fraction of a percent of the population, its cost and complexity suggests to me that it would be illusory at best. (Especially when this sort of presumptive planning is what causes problems to begin with.)
We are our own safety net.
Doc Ellis: don't discount the generosity of an armed friend and neighbor. If things get bad, I'm sure as heck going to help mine, regardless of whether they prefer the Read Team or the Blue Team.
If things get bad, I'm sure as heck going to help [my neighbor], regardless of whether they prefer the Read Team or the Blue Team.
There is great wisdom in that statement. I recall that when Paris was torn apart by revolutionary violence in 1848, the heroic Frederic Bastiat -- at some considerable personal risk -- spent days and nights ministering to the wounded, with determined indifference to their political loyalties.
I wouldn't put my family at risk in order to help neighbors or strangers. But I do think that Bastiat set a worthy example, showing that there was much more to him than his considerable eloquence.
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