Archive for the ‘Good and Evil’ Category

Kelly Thomas

It’s been a few days now since the Kelly Thomas murder case concluded with the jury’s acquittal of the two cops charged.  Their justification for this decision comes down to the following:  the cops were simply doing what they were trained to do.

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It is unlikely they were trained to “smash his face to hell” with the end of a Taser as Jay Cicinelli could be heard boasting in the video after the beating.  But more importantly, what kind of fucked up principle is that!?  As long as they are “trained”, beating a mentally disabled homeless man to death is suddenly OK?  Terrorists are trained to kill people – are they justified because of their “training?”  The difference speaks to the state idolatry that had clearly infected the jury:  because the cops were trained by the state, their actions are somehow legitimized.  People usually understand that murder is wrong, but for some reason, when done by a state-sponsored actor it is perceived as OK.  It’s not.

DT

Clearly cops aren’t very intelligent, but this does not mean that they should be treated as mindless drones who are slaves to their programming.  They should be able to understand right from wrong and when they fail to do so, be held accountable.

Beating illustration

To come to their verdict, the jurors would have had to subordinate their own innate knowledge of human decency and morality to the doctrine of the state-uber-alles. I believe that getting people to do this is one of the primary functions of government schools.  Just as military boot camp breaks a person down to then rebuild him as a killer, government schools train students to disregard their own values and instead be obedient servants of the state and to defer unquestioningly to authority.  As long as the murderers were clad in official fashions and wore the appropriate costume jewelry, all is well, nothing to see here.

Pleas

It’s important for people to understand that the job of a jury is not simply to judge whether or not a particular law was broken or if a government official followed procedure, but also to follow their conscience to  judge whether a particular law or procedure is just.  This is one of the most important ways in which the average citizen can have their voices heard – it is called jury nullification.  This jury failed in their duty.

Kelly-Thomas

Contrasts

It is amazing to me that certain otherwise rational adults actually believe that the police are there to protect them and are willing to absolve themselves of any responsibility for the security of themselves or their loved ones.  They maintain this child-like delusion despite numerous court cases establishing that police have no duty to protect individuals.  Besides, when you call the police, you are basically just hoping that the violent thug that comes is less of a problem than the thug you called them to deal with – sometimes, this isn’t the case.   Even if all cops were angels and wanted nothing more than to protect you, what happens when they can’t get there in time or there are none of them to send?

Compare this story:

With this one…

…this one…

…. and this one (911 Audio):

You might be asking yourself, “Why are proponents of civilian disarmament so heartless?  Why do they believe a disarmed populace is the ideal when that invariably means that innocent people are left to the mercy of those stronger than them?”  I have some thoughts of my own, but let me know what yours are in the comments.

Disgusting Hypocrisy

69 children(!) were killed in a SINGLE drone attack in 2006.  The total number of children killed in the CIA’s covert drone war in Pakistan, Yemen, and Somalia since 2004 is  214.  The US has even targeted first-responders who attempted to help the innocent victims!

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Drone attacks and victims.

Recently, three small Afghan children were drone bombed to death while gathering dung for fuel.  Can you even imagine?  You have so little that you have to send your kids out to collect dung for the rest of the family.  Then, some God-damned robot sent by the richest country on Earth takes that away from you!

The hypocrisy of our government in feigning sadness over the loss of innocent life is disgusting enough, but then again, I expect such loathsome behavior from our ruling class.  What’s worse, is the people who look to these vermin for comfort and solutions.  “Solutions” that do not address any root cause, because, of course, no root cause analysis will ever be done that isn’t tainted by political agendas.

 

Pakistani Children

Pakistani children offer condolences to the victims of Newtown, CT

One thing I’m sure of:  Relinquishing our hard-won rights to an organization with, as Scott Horton likes to say, an “Olympic-sized swimming pool” worth of innocent blood on their hands is not the answer.

Crazy

A damning dossier assembled from exhaustive research into the [drone] strikes’ targets sets out in heartbreaking detail the deaths of teachers, students and Pakistani policemen. It also describes how bereaved relatives are forced to gather their loved ones’ dismembered body parts in the aftermath of strikes….

…According to a report last month by academics at Stanford and New York universities, between 2,562 and 3,325 people have been killed since the strikes in Pakistan began in 2004.

The report said of those, up to  881 were civilians, including 176  children. Only 41 people who had  died had been confirmed as ‘high-value’ terrorist targets. (Full Article)

Why doesn’t this bother people?  Seems to me blowing up children should pretty much be universally condemned.  Instead of indicting the person ultimately responsible for war crimes, believe it or not, some Americans are actually trying to get the guy re-elected!  I know, it sounds crazy, but it’s true!  I guess they feel like, “Oh, it really sucks about those little kids, but we need this guy’s help so we can steal from others to fund our wonderful welfare programs.  You know, ’cause we care so much about people!”  OK, I guess that’s a fair trade then.  Carry on.

“…the people who push the buttons to fire the missiles call these strikes “bug-splats”

But jeez man, better be careful.  Those guys over there are all crazy extremists!  For some reason, one or two of them might not appreciate having their little brother blown up by a robot.  They might even hold a grudge and could say and do hurtful things directed at us.  Don’t they know they’re supposed to greet foreign invaders with open arms and treat them as liberators?  Don’t they know they are being bombed for their own good?  Don’t they realize that history began on 9/11?  You see, these types can’t be reasoned with.  They clearly have some sort of blind hatred for us because we’re so good and so free and like reality TV shows.  Crazy.

“I believe very sincerely that the CIA is correct when they teach and talk about blowback. When we went into Iran in 1953 and installed the shah, yes, there was blowback. A reaction to that was the taking of our hostages and that persists. And if we ignore that, we ignore that at our own risk. If we think that we can do what we want around the world and not incite hatred, then we have a problem. They don’t come here to attack us because we’re rich and we’re free. They come and they attack us because we’re over there. I mean, what would we think if we were –if other foreign countries were doing that to us?” – Ron Paul during a 2007 presidential primary debate.

Post 2012 Election Update (11/9/12):

To all the Obama supporters, I’m just going to say this because it needs to be said:  The life of one innocent child, even if they happen to live on the other side of the world, is not worth your stupid Obamacare or whatever other thieving redistributionist reason you had for voting for Obama.  I used to wonder how the German people could allow their Nazi government to kill so many people, I don’t anymore.

Child Killer In Chief

I like to think of my friends and family as decent people who would never knowingly support a mass-murdering criminal like Barack Obama.  I had a family member say to me recently that she could never support Romney because of his offshore bank accounts!  Why, that’s just un-American!  Hmm… Obama has murdered innocent people pretty much every day that he’s been in office, including an innocent 16-year old American boy, but Romney’s offshore account is just beyond the pale.

16-year old Abdulrahman al-Awlaki from Colorado. Murdered by one of Obama’s drones while he was on a Disney-like quest to find his father in Yemen.

Unless people will truly support Obama regardless of what he does – ‘cause he’s just that dreamy – I’m willing to give them the benefit of the doubt.  I suppose it is possible that people genuinely don’t realize the extent of the evil he is guilty of.  Let’s review, shall we? (from Anthony Gregory):

He shoveled money toward corporate America, banks and car manufacturers. He championed the bailouts of the same Wall Street firms his very partisans blamed for the financial collapse. He picked the CEO of General Electric to oversee the unemployment problem. He appointed corporate state regulars for every major role in financial central planning. After guaranteeing a new era of transparency, he conducted all his regulatory business behind a shroud of unprecedented secrecy. He planned his health care scheme, the crown jewel of his domestic agenda, in league with the pharmaceutical and insurance industries.

He continued the war in Iraq, even extending Bush’s schedule with a goal of staying longer than the last administration planned. He tripled the U.S. presence in Afghanistan then took over two years to announce the eventual drawdown to bring it back to only double the Bush presence. He widened the war in Pakistan, launching drone attacks at a dizzying pace. He started a war on false pretenses with Libya, shifting the goal posts and doing it all without Congressional approval. He bombed Yemen and lied about it.

He enthusiastically signed on to warrantless wiretapping, renditioning, the Patriot Act, prison abuse, detention without trial, violations of habeas corpus, and disgustingly invasive airport security measures. He deported immigrants more than Bush did. He increased funding for the drug war in Mexico. He invoked the Espionage Act more than all previous presidents combined, tortured a whistleblower, and claimed the right to unilaterally kill any U.S. citizen on Earth without even a nod from Congress or a shrug from the courts.

If you’re a leftist who’s planning to vote for Obama because you find Romney and his cabal of neocon advisors even more nauseating, a part of me can sympathize with you.  In no way do I want this to come off as an endorsement of Romney.  Hell, he may even be the worst option of the two as he seems much more likely to get the US into a war with Iran with his buddy Netanyahu.  My point is this: don’t accept the murder, the contempt for the bill of rights, the cronyism.  Don’t accept the false dichotomy. You don’t have to choose between two evils – there is a better way

I’ll close with the words of Abdulrahman al-Awlaki’s grandfather as he condemns the president:

“I urge the American people to bring the killers to justice. I urge them to expose the hypocrisy of the 2009 Nobel Prize laureate. To some, he may be that. To me and my family, he is nothing more than a child killer.”

Know Your Enemy

It is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles; if you do not know your enemies but do know yourself, you will win one and lose one; if you do not know your enemies nor yourself, you will be imperiled in every single battle. – Sun Tzu

I decided to take some of Sun Tzu’s advice (or Rage Against the Machine’s if you prefer) and visited the MoveOn.org Facebook page.  It was a painful experience and measurably reduced my optimism for the future.  Once I started reading some of the comments, it didn’t take long to find a lot of hatred directed towards us Liberty types.

Let me try to break this down.  Leftists apparently hate liberty-loving folks because we do not wish to be complicit in their efforts to plunder property in order to execute their ill-conceived schemes.  Libertarians who have studied economics and history realize that these schemes are doomed to fail because the principles on which they are based are faulty and unworkable.  We do not want mistakes that have caused so much suffering in the past to be repeated – for this we are labeled selfish, heartless, or worse.

F.A. Hayek. One of the fathers of Austrian Economics.

The reality is, we don’t ask for anything but to be left the hell alone.  They, in turn, want our property, our obedience, and our lives.  Our resistance to picking up the hammer and sickle on their behalf is, in their eyes, the ultimate sin.  What does this tell you about their character?

Those of us who believe in Liberty and wish to see our fellow man achieve and flourish, unencumbered by a tyrannical state and the people who support it, are the evil ones?  No my friends, your desire to appropriate the property of others with the goal of improving society reveals nothing less than your contempt for economics, history, and human dignity.  Society advances when each actor is free to pursue his own individual interests – not when he is harnessed to your yoke and forced to sow the seeds of his own destruction.

None of this should be taken to imply that I believe Republicans are any better.  I simply find the average Democrat especially noxious simply because they advocate evil but are too ignorant to realize it – on the contrary, they honestly believe that the very things that make them evil are actually virtues.  At least Republicans make little attempt to conceal their corruption – they more or less revel in it.  Just about everyone knows Republicans are creeps, but for some reason, Democrats have been largely successful at marketing themselves as the party that cares.  As usual, facts don’t really matter.  Besides, I think there’s a fairly good chance that the GOP’s days are numbered anyway.  Given Ron Paul’s tremendous success in attracting young people to the cause of Liberty, I think it’s likely that the main rivalry going forward will be Leftists vs. Libertarians.

I created a little flow chart to help you determine if you are an advocate of evil:

Letter to a Political Agnostic

Last week I found myself in a political discussion with an in-law.  I know, bad move, but I honestly didn’t start it!  The next day I received a link to this video from the person I had spoken with:

During our discussion, I felt like I wasn’t given an opportunity to clearly present my position so I wrote the  letter below as a response….

(Spoiler Alert: skip the fourth and fifth bullet points at the end if you haven’t finished reading The Hunger Games trilogy)

Forgive me for sending you so long a letter, which perhaps you did not at all need, but I have long wished to express  my views on this question. I even began a long article about it, but I shall hardly have time to finish it before death comes, and therefore I wished to get at least part of it said. Forgive me if I am in error about anything.

– Leo Tolstoy

There are certain things in life that simply don’t make sense unless you first establish the correct principles or guiding philosophy to explain your observations.  Physics has relativity and Newtonian motion.  As Theodosius Dobzhansky said, “nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution.”  Medicine has the germ theory of disease.  Economics doesn’t make sense unless you understand the framework established by the Austrian School.  By that same token, many of the things politicians do don’t make sense until you start viewing government as a “gang of thieves writ large” (Rothbard).

As I mentioned, my guiding philosophy is the non-aggression axiom, which states that no man or group of men may aggress against the person or property of anyone else except, of course, in self-defense.  As Murray Rothbard explains, the Libertarian political philosophy, which all stems from this statement, is the only one that is consistent:

In current terminology again, the libertarian position on property and economics would be called “extreme right wing.” But the libertarian sees no inconsistency in being “leftist” on some issues and “rightist” on others. On the contrary, he sees his own position as virtually the only consistent one, consistent on behalf of the liberty of every individual.  For how can the leftist be opposed to the violence of war and conscription while at the same time supporting the violence of taxation and government control?  And how can the rightist trumpet his devotion to private property and free enterprise while at the same time favoring war, conscription, and the outlawing of noninvasive activities and practices that he deems immoral?  And how can the rightist favor a free market while seeing nothing amiss in the vast subsidies, distortions, and unproductive inefficiencies involved in the military-industrial complex?

– Murray Rothbard, For a New Liberty

After watching the video you sent, I must admit that I’m somewhat confused.  If you understand what was presented in the video, why was there a disagreement about welfare programs, for example?  The idea that the state can provide security and eliminate risk out of life is, as we agreed, a total fallacy.  The best you can hope to do is to provide a system which enables the maximum opportunities for success.  This has been conclusively proven to be free-market capitalism.

The ideas of socialism/fascism*/collectivism have been widely and thoroughly repudiated. It’s not as though there aren’t enough examples.  Greece is one.  But the world has also had wide-scale, open-air experiments using people of similar education, upbringing, and cultural values called East/West Germany and North/South Korea that demonstrate what scholars such as Ludwig von Mises and F.A. Hayek had been telling us all along – that by necessity, these systems lead to totalitarianism, poverty, and enslavement.  For some reason, the average American believes that to fix our current socialist/fascist* institutions we need more of the same, good and hard.  They believe that somehow we will finally figure out how to accomplish what no other society in the history of civilization has: how to enable everyone to live at everyone else’s expense. (Bastiat)

When we spoke, you were also troubled over Social Security.  Social Security is the very definition of a Ponzi scheme.  What happened to people who were taken in by Bernie Madoff?  They made a bad bet and paid the price.  If someone is betting their retirement on the hope that they will be able to cash out before the scheme implodes, that’s their fault.  Ah, but you say that SS is compulsory, they have no choice – and in doing so, you have just shown why it is immoral and evil.  People who might have otherwise successfully saved or invested the money are at risk of being destitute because the scheme they were forced into, under threat of violence, WILL fail.  At least with Madoff, it was a voluntary transaction.  Oh sure, the government may try to meet their obligations by printing money, but once you go far enough down that road you end up with Weimar Germany or Zimbabwe – plenty of currency that can’t buy anything. (Although, for a variety of reasons this is unlikely to happen, but it’s not impossible.)

A major problem that we have is the ideological inconsistencies of Democrats and Republicans that Rothbard alluded to in the quote above.  Republicans are supposedly for smaller government – although history shows that they have done nothing but expand it greatly – but also want to maintain a belligerent empire.  You can’t have it both ways.  Frankly, arguing about needing more fiscal responsibility and smaller government while supporting an empire and constant war is inconsistent at best and idiotic at worst.  War and militarism are synonymous with a large and tyrannical government.  I have no hope of liberals abandoning their welfare programs – this is how they ensure their constituency.  My only hope is that true conservatives will wake up and realize that you can’t have any of the other things you purport to value while starting wars all over the world.  EVERY empire crumbles – anyone with even a passing knowledge of history knows this.

On the other side, Democrats generally want more welfare programs, and Obama has given it to them while simultaneously expanding the war in Afghanistan, starting another completely illegal one in Libya, and increasing drone strikes in Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen, and Somalia (which have killed far more innocents than combatants creating, according to former General Stanley McChrystal, 10 new enemies for each innocent death).  Leftists like to think of themselves as caring and benevolent people, but let me ask, does this seem like a moral, effective, or even financially viable plan?  It’s easy enough for them to deflect attention away from these unpleasantries, I suppose – all they have to do is buy votes by expanding the welfare state to show just how righteous they are.  At the end of the day, however, their guy is the one that unilaterally decided to execute three American citizens (including a 16 year old) without a trial or even formal charges and maintains a “kill list”, signed the NDAA effectively deleting the 5th amendment, and killed hundreds of innocents via robot.  Besides, it’s considered compassion when you reach into your own pocket to help, not when you reach into someone else’s.  Theft, murder, and cronyism -the hallmarks of both parties.

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Endless expansion of welfare and warfare does not a prosperous country make.   Ironically, if the US wasn’t so busy creating enemies around the globe, there might actually be a chance of paying for some of these domestic programs.  The only reason we have been able to get away with all this for longer than some of the EU countries is that we enjoy the privilege of having the world’s reserve currency and the machine that prints it.  Eventually, that won’t be good enough.

And this brings me to the engine that is driving all of the welfare, warfare, debt, and ultimately the country off a cliff: the Fed.  The Federal Reserve Bank, untethered by a gold standard, is free to create as much currency as they want all so that some politician can start wars, buy votes, redistribute money to favored industries or constituencies, bail-out and/or nationalize “too big to fail” firms, or all of the above.  Since the Fed’s creation in 1913, the dollar has lost over 97% of its value.  The founding fathers knew this would happen and that’s why the Constitution does not allow a central bank.  It’s also why the first two times it was tried it was dissolved.  There are many reasons why you can’t call our current economic system free-market capitalism, but the most important is the Fed’s manipulation of the money supply prevents the rational decision-making required in a free market.  He who controls money controls the economy.

When I said, “either you believe in Liberty and freedom or you don’t,” you said I was making the issue black and white.  I contend that this is not an over simplification.  The moment you accept the principle the that government has rights that we do not have as individuals – to enslave people (and call it conscription), steal from people (and call it taxation or inflation), counterfeit money (and call it monetary policy), murder people (and call it foreign policy) – you can justify virtually any expansion of this power, as we have seen throughout our own history and indeed world history.  Every government wants to become totalitarian – it is in their nature.  The only thing that restrains them is the unwillingness of the people to go along with their power-grabs.  This changes during times of crisis when the people clamor to be led to safety.  As Obama’s former chief of staff Rahm Emanuel famously stated, “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste.”  This is why there is always a war to be fought or bogeymen to hunt.  Freedom and Liberty can only survive with unwavering dedication to their principles.

By the way, what were your takeaways from “The Hunger Games” trilogy?  In my mind, that trilogy is basically an anti-war, anti-government, libertarian manifesto:

  • Kids, without any mutual grudges, are forced to kill one another to effect a consolidation of power within the governing elite – i.e. war.
  • Districts are pitted against one another as a form of the age old imperial tactic of divide and rule – i.e. destabilize the middle east and let the various sects fight it out.
  • When the citizens are allowed to insert additional instances of their name into the tribute lottery in exchange for grain, it is a form of welfare and equates to slavery and death.  Katniss’ self-reliance and resourcefulness means freedom and life.
  • The Capitol and District 13 represent the logical conclusions of right-wing and left-wing ideologies, respectively.
  • Prim’s death was described almost exactly like the US drone strikes on first-responders in Pakistan.

I know by now you are probably thinking, “this guy is crazy.”  To that charge, I answer with a quote from Homer Simpson: “In a world gone mad, only a lunatic is truly insane.”

*When I use the term “Fascism”, it is not hyperbolic.  It’s true that this is typically a term of derision in our lexicon, however, it does represent an actual economic system that describes what we currently have better than anything else.