Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Cheapening the Holocaust - Words Matter

The Holocaust.  Those two words still currently have meaning.  The words bring to mind, for most individuals anyway, a horror so grotesque as to defy adequate words.  A picture is worth a thousand words, they say, what about a short video (04:44)?

Marvin Hier, writing in the Los Angeles Times considers the subject of The Holocaust, and thinks that is being cheapened by its utilization in political discourse.  I think he is on the mark.

...There are many injustices and manifestations of evil in our world, even in our own country, the greatest of democracies. Standing up to them is not only our right but our obligation. But that obligation does not include distorting and demeaning the word that has come to stand for the great evil that was the Holocaust.

The Holocaust was a total eclipse of humanity. It was not about going to the back of the line or eating in a different part of the restaurant or being escorted to the border without recourse. The Holocaust had one purpose: the total annihilation and extinction of a race.

Hier’s piece is titled Holocaust: a huge word made small.

Via Peg, at what if?, who notes the following.

The enormity of the crimes of the Holocaust was such that if you were to try to call out 2,000 of the names every day of the 6 million who perished, it would take more than eight years to complete the task. That’s what a holocaust is.

Posted by John Venlet on 06/30 at 11:17 AM
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Facebook Civil Disobedience Discussion

In a post titled “You’d Better Not,”, Billy Beck loops the civil disobedience discussion into Facebook.  I am not a Facebook member, so I am not privy to the discussion taking place, there, but I’ve recently posted on the idea of civil disobedience here, which Billy contributed to here.

Billy’s most recent contribution, “You’d Better Not,” notes the importance of language, words, and ideas.

“If we’re going to talk about it, then let’s get it out straight. I don’t like to fool around with the language.

We’re talking about actual combat. Shooting & shit: people dying badly, wrongly, and early, and their stuff getting blown up.

Now… of course, that’s already happening right now. Just for one example: I don’t know what people under Nixon thought they were paying for when it came to a ‘War on Drugs’, but that’s exactly what it is, and people should be goddamned careful about their metaphors, because they have a special sort of blinding way about them. When the language does not refer directly to extant referents (the objects and concepts in reality around us) then what happens is that thinking is deprived of its necessary and elementary cognitive material. The function of language is to raise concepts to the perceptual level—through words (they are the percepts) and for the purpose of concept transmission—and this means that when the language does not refer to reality, then no concepts are being transmitted, and then all bets are off…

Here is my largest point at the moment, Randell: I see very few people in in this country who know what to fight for, or why. Nevermind how.”

Posted by John Venlet on 06/30 at 08:36 AM
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Elena Kagan - How Low Can She Go?

Malone Vandam on how low Elena Kagan can go.

But looking at and listening to her, I wonder how much worse it could get. Assuming that the Senate would not confirm many of the Leftist lunatics available from various quarters (a risky assumption), I would argue that this woman, pretending to be “in the mainstream,” would go as low as her character would let her and her character suggests a bottomless pit with an awning over it. We’re apparently supposed to be paying attention only to the awning.

She’s mundane enough to pass through her own confirmation process relatively unnoticed, but it’s the element of banality in her that catches my eye and ear. Like the freak who nominated her, I’d bet she’s capable of anything, and I don’t mean on the good side.

Parable any one?

Posted by John Venlet on 06/30 at 07:59 AM
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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Porcfest 2010 - An Optimistic Report on Liberty

Alex R. Knight III attended Porcfest 2010, which was hosted by the Free State Project.  The event was held in Lancaster, New Hampshire, and Knight writes about his experience in a piece at the Center for a Stateless Society.

Knight came away from the event optimistic, which is evidenced by the title to his post on the event, We Can and Will Achieve Liberty: A Review of Porcfest 2010, and the following excerpts.

Another observation was the crowd demographic: At least half of those in attendance were on the younger side – mostly under 30. In many cases, there was little distinction in appearance between Porcfest attendees, and the flower-children who were at Woodstock over 40 years ago. The big difference now, however, are the ideas. And as events like Porcfest grow and grow, that will become increasingly important. Witness that the hippie movement of the 1960s withered because of two cardinal flaws: One, that Marxism is good and moral, and capitalism bad and evil. Two, that it was perfectly okay to use those college degrees they earned in order to get elected into the system of government so as to change it from within. Comforting is the thought that such gross misperceptions will not apply this time around. And the energy and enthusiastic, inquisitive nature of these twenty-somethings is encouraging. My experience showed that they were interested in asking real and relevant questions and getting practical answers in return. Just maybe, this generation is learning, and has something meaningful and rational to say. (bold by ed.)

Here’s Knight on the technology angle and its use as a weapon for liberty.

And the technology, of course, is different. A lot of computer, Internet, and media savvy was in evidence at Porcfest. Far from having to rely only on live speeches, underrground newspapers, and pirate radio stations, we now have through the Computer Revolution a means of communicating with each other and the world such as has never yet been realized in human history. The ramifications of this for the dissolution and collapse of government are staggering. By making ever increasing use of alternative media and its accompanying technology, it is now within the grasp of anarchists to form a significant enough population minority to seriously threaten the continued power of the State. Once the landslide starts, I don’t see much of any lasting effect that can stop it. As Henry David Thoreau said, “When the subject has refused allegiance, and the officer has resigned his office, then the revolution is accomplished.” I am of the opinion that we are, at long last, on that very road. (bold by ed.)

Though I do not necessarily share Knight’s optimism for achieving liberty, since it has been willingly voted and given away since the founding of the United States, it is encouraging to read that there appears to be a spark of liberty being husbanded and fanned in the hopes of creating a blaze of freedom

Posted by John Venlet on 06/29 at 01:47 PM
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McDonald, Poetic License, American Lit 101

Yesterday, SCOTUS decided McDonald et al. v . City of Chicago, Illinois, et al., in favor of McDonald.  This news has swept through the nation, accompanied by congratulations and mourning, depending on an individual’s political view of gun ownership.

I take no pleasure in this news, not because I think gun ownership should be restricted, it should not, but because the Second Amendment has been so obfuscated by the poetic license musings of the ruling class over the years that individuals no longer trust their own knowledge and understanding of the words within the Second Amendment, as presented to them by the founding fathers.

The Second Amendment, runs a total of twenty-seven (27) words, which are as follows.

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.

These twenty-seven (27) words have been mashed, bashed, pureed, and mouthed with a baby’s zeal for a zwieback, resembling not so much a learned discourse of knowledge and wisdom, but a bunch of college freshman in an American Lit 101 class analyzing a Shel Silverstein poem, and not understanding it.

I suppose, if an individual is content to waive their inalienable rights, kneeling as a supplicant before the power of the State, pleading for the right of property ownership, the SCOTUS decision will appear as a victory over the State, but it would be an unprincipled victory, as illustrated in these words from Billy Beck.

I have more principled reasons for my stand on owning firearms, and I don’t care one whit in the world for the Second Amendment. It means nothing to me. My rights have nothing to do with the U.S. Constitution, and when it dawns on people that it has finally been erased—the principal danger of all political premises posed as “social contracts”—my rights will still validly exist, even if I die defending them.  I own firearms because I have a right to private property.  That is the First Thing.

But let’s return to those twenty-seven (27) words of the Second Amendment.  There are three (3) words, only, within the amendment, if individuals believe they are constrained by the State, which actually bear analyzing.  Those words are “keep,” “bear,” and “infringe.”

When the founding fathers wrote The Constitution of the United States, it was written in a language which could be easily understood by the common man.  Meaning, a class of individuals, the majority at the time, with rather rudimentary educations as compared to today.  Thus, the words keep, bear, and infringe, as utilized by the founding fathers, would be understood to mean the following:

Keep:

4 a : to retain in one’s possession or power

b : to refrain from granting, giving, or allowing

c : to have in control

Bear:

— bear arms 1 : to carry or possess arms

Infringe:

1 : to encroach upon in a way that violates law or the rights of another

These three (3) small words were not misunderstood by individuals when The Constitution of the United States was written.  “To keep” meant exactly what is implied, “to retain in one’s possession,” ownership; “to bear” meant exactly what is implied, “to carry or possess;” and “shall not be infringed” meant exactly what is implied, the State shall not violate the right to own or carry arms, yet today these three (3) small words are so misunderstood that Justice Thomas Clarence required fifty-six (56) pages worth of words to support SCOTUS’ decision that individuals do have a right to keep and bear arms in the City of Chicago.

Individuals can slice and dice the Second Amendment all they want, but the fact remains that any law restricting ownership or the carrying of firearms is unconstitutional.  Period.

Posted by John Venlet on 06/29 at 07:31 AM
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Monday, June 28, 2010

Zen Thought of the Day

To depend on others is to be unstable.

The Sutta Nipata

Posted by John Venlet on 06/28 at 08:32 AM
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Barack Hussein Obama - “Educator-in-Chief on Islam”

Rashad Hussain, America’s special envoy to the Organization for the Islamic Conference (OIC), the Saudi-based body formed in 1969 to “protect” Jerusalem from the Israelis, announced a new title this week for President Barack Obama.  According to Hussain, Obama is America’s “Educator-in-Chief on Islam.”

Hussain so designated Obama in a keynote speech Wednesday, June 23, at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

As if the above is not bad enough, Hussain also informs those listening of the following.

...Hussain has now divulged that the U.S. will support the OIC in the latter’s United Nations effort to criminalize “defamation of religion” – widely perceived as a measure to suppress criticism of Muslim practices that violate human rights.  “The OIC and the Obama administration will work together in the UN on the issue of defamation of religion, especially in Europe,” said Hussain.

Isn’t that just special.

Obama’s Islamic Envoy: Obama Is America’s “Educator-in-Chief on Islam”

Via Blazing Cat Fur via Ghost of a Flea.

Posted by John Venlet on 06/28 at 07:55 AM
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Saturday, June 26, 2010

Running Out of Options

“The Endarkenment.”  Aware individuals will recognize what this term means, if you do not, go and run that term through the search feature at Billy Beck’s blog Two—Four, as an educational exercise.

How are freedom loving individuals supposed to break the strangle hold “The Endarkenment” currently has on America and the West?  Many ideas get kicked around.  The Tea Party movement has some traction, but their modus operandi is the vote, and I agree with Billy Beck’s statement “There will be no voting our way out of this,...,” as articulated in this post.

Many other organizations and entities also fall back on and support the vote option, even as the disastrous effects of voting daily layer on additional chains restricting freedom and boldly strike Americans in the face with impunity.  Voting is a failure.  Slaves Cannot Vote Themselves Free.

As anger against the State continues percolating, talk is heard of revolution, a drastic resort to restore freedom indeed, but as American Mercenary (AM) notes in this post, which constructively critcizes this Mike Vanderboegh post, the revolution, well…

The revolution has not come, nor will it.

Within that AM post, coup thoughts are also addressed, and voting is also acknowledged as having brought America to its current predicament.

The present state of the United States has come about by our own choices, we have no one to rebel against. We have no enemy to fight. A Coup will only work if we destroy the rule of law, and if we destroy the rule of law, we will not be the United States.

AM is correct that Americans have brought their travails upon themselves, through the vote, and also recognizes the inherent dangers of counting coup, thus these options hold no real value or reasonability.

AM delves into another vein of thought, or option, to restore freedom, in a post titled Guerilla or Insurgents?,  but this thought, also, AM finds lacking in reality.

I am convinced that we who are prepared are like Don Quixote charging windmills. We fight giants in our mind whilst riding with other fools who support our delusions.

I tend to agree.

What other options are then open to American individuals desiring to restore freedom to America?  Western Rifle Shooters Association points readers to a Restore The Constitution post titled RTC blog’s discussion of vitriolage (acid attack) picked up by Global Guerrilas, which was preceded by a Restore The Constitution post titled The Sulphuric Acid attack – Incidents on the rise worldwide, but not too many in the US.  Acid attacks.  Jesus, I cannot think of a more underhanded option as an alleged vehicle for restoring freedom.

Well, is it “Too Late for a Political Solution?”  Unfortunately, I think it is, as I intimated above.  America, the West, the world, will sink into “The Endarkenment.”  Total and complete Endarkenment will occur slowly, at times, at other times it will accelerate with an uncomprehending speed until complete ruin is brought upon ourselves.

Are there any real options left to freedom loving individuals, then, which could, relatively peacefully, delegitimize the State and unite those who value freedom?  I see only one option, and it is an option articulated by Billy Beck.  It’s Massive, Passive, Civil Disobedience Now, or Armed Civil War.

Massive, passive, civil disobedience; informed withdrawl of support for the State; is possible, though challenging, due to the alleged private sector’s bribed collusion with the State.  But even this option leaves me forlorn, as the majority of individuals, here in America and throughout the world, are ignorantly and blissfully content to allow the final curtain to be drawn on what was previously an enlightened attempt to raise man to a higher plane of freedom.  We’re running out of options.

Posted by John Venlet on 06/26 at 09:41 AM
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Iran, Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the United States Tap Dance

Here’s some interesting news, or rumor.

The Israeli Air Force recently unloaded military equipment at a Saudi Arabia base, a semi-official Iranian news agency claimed Wednesday, while a large American force has massed in Azerbaijan, which is on the northwest border of Iran.

Reports: Israel Air Force (IAF) Landed at Saudi Base, US Troops near Iran Border

Via Fred Lapides’ GoodShit.

Posted by John Venlet on 06/26 at 08:37 AM
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Friday, June 25, 2010

Throwing Spaghetti at the Wall

When Obamacare (DeathCare) was passed, nobody really knew what was in the bill nor what its effects would be as it was implemented.  American individuals expressed concern about this, but Congress, they just rammed the bill through anyway, ignoring Americans’ concerns, steaming full speed ahead into dangerous and uncharted waters.  I guess this is how all legislation will now be enacted.

Here’s Senator Christopher J. Dodd (D-CT) at the who runs GOV website commenting on Congress’ latest attempt to ruin the American economy and America via finanacial reform.

“No one will know until this is actually in place how it works.”

No one will know until this is actually in place how it works.  Judas frickin’ priest with a death ray, is this anyway for a country to be run?

House, Senate leaders finalize details of sweeping financial overhaul

Posted by John Venlet on 06/25 at 08:27 AM
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Don’t Bite Off More Than You Can Chew, Iran

Iran, and its “Wipe Israel off the face of the earth” blustering Ahmadinejad, have been loudly boasting that they will put an end not only to Israel, but the current blockade of the port of Gaza.  Last night, at 6:49 P.M., Fred Lapides posted the following header to a post on this subject.

ME war tensions mount over Gaza-bound “enemy ships.” Hizballah pledges reprisal

Within that post you can read the following.

Ominous clouds gathered over the Mediterranean Thursday, June 24 after Israel announced that ships bound for Gaza would be deemed “enemy vessels” and halted by its navy by whatever means were necessary. Hizballah shot back with a threat of violent retaliation, while Israel’s northern commander warned that the IDF was prepared to deal with threats from Lebanon by “appropriate means.”

With two ships, one Lebanese and one Iranian, already at sea,..

This morning, at 4:59 A.M., Fred posts this header regarding developments on the above news.

Iran blinks

Here’s what can be read from this post.

“The Zionist regime has sent a letter to the U.N. saying that the presence of Iranian and Lebanese ships in the Gaza area will be considered a declaration of war on that regime and it will react to it.” And apparently Iran doesn’t want war — yet.

“Iran will not send aid ship to Gaza,” from CNN, June 24…

Iran will not send a ship carrying humanitarian aid to Gaza as it had planned to do on Thursday, according to a report from the official news agency of Iran.

The Islamic Republic News Agency quoted Hossein Sheikholeslam, secretary-general of the International Conference for the Support of the Palestinian Intifada, as saying: “The Iranian ship carrying humanitarian aid will not go to Gaza.”

IRNA said that Sheikholeslam told reporters in the northern city of Rasht that the ship had originally been scheduled to depart for Gaza on Thursday, but that its departure was postponed until Sunday because of restrictions imposed by Israel.

He added that officials then decided instead to cancel the trip altogether, shipping to Gaza the goods by other means, IRNA said.

Though this Iranian backdown is a good thing, I still think that Iran and Ahmadinejad will bite off more than they can chew in regards to Israel in their hunger to be a power house in the Middle East.

Posted by John Venlet on 06/25 at 08:00 AM
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Stalin Statue Juxtaposition

Gori, Georgia.  Stalin statue torn down in dictator’s hometown

Bedford, Virginia.  Stalin bust in place at D-Day Memorial in Bedford

Bedford Stalin bust previously discussed here.

Posted by John Venlet on 06/25 at 07:29 AM
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Thursday, June 24, 2010

“The What-Abouts” - Poverty Essay

Yesterday, I noted that The Curmudgeon Emeritus was going to be posting a series of essays on “The What-Abouts.”  He did not waste any time.

The first essay is up, The What-Abouts: Poverty, and it is well worth a read, quoting de Tocqueville, criticizing Dickens’ body of work, providing possible metrics to be measured, and indica to ignore.

If America, and Western Civilization as a whole, is to survive, individuals are going to have to harden their hearts, feelings, and start rationally understanding that the what-abouts are straw men erected by the State in order to enslave us all, which can only lead to a complete collapse of civilization as we now know it.

Posted by John Venlet on 06/24 at 03:05 PM
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Nostradomus in the 21st Century - Heed July 8th

Mayberry, at the blog Keep It Simple Survival, links to Urban Survival’s Week of June 24th report with this quote.

“The [panic (visible) in politicians) will escalate over Summer and Fall, and will include some [faux pas (mal mots/bad words)] on the part of a [ranking general] here in the USofA. This will be a very very very important temporal market for the aware observer. Following this [visible] marker of [bad words]. significant [displacements[ can be expected to begin occurring for large parts of the [populace/usofa] due to several manifesting circumstances. If there was ever a need for a ‘bug out bag’, the days following this temporal marker will be it.”

Within that Urban Survival post, you’ll also find a reference and link to the website Half Past Human, which bills itself as follows.

Adventures in Future Viewing

Mayberry then adds this comment of his own.

According to the last report, where this quote came from, July 8 is a major date. Something big will happen thereabouts…

While Urban Survival’s report does note and link to many disparate goings on of which individuals should be aware, some of which could potentially be the gasoline which flares up the fire of events which most individuals would prefer not happen, I am skeptical whenever someone, or something, attempts to assign a specific date, or range of dates, to uncertain future events.

Does this mean I am skeptical of the possibility of major worldwide unrest?  Hardly.  History does provide us with some guidance, and the guidance I perceive from history seems to indicate that major worldwide unrest could manifest itself in our lifetimes.  It’s not time to head for the hills, yet.

Posted by John Venlet on 06/24 at 02:25 PM
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A Shagbark Hickory and Grinding Bureacracy

Most of the trees in my neighborhood leafed early this year.  It was a warm spring.  Because I live in a neighborhood of homes built mostly in the late 1920s and 1930s, the trees; sugar maples, oaks, silver leaf maples, a few surviving Dutch elms, an occasional black walnut, white and Norwegian pines, cottonwoods, amongest others; have stature and they exude a majestic presence.

One tree, seven houses down the street from me, though, a shagbark hickory, appeared as if it had given up its ghost.  It stood amongest its already fully leafed relations like a leper, its leafless branches scratching the sky, and so the city, in its infinite wisdom, marked it with a hot pink stripe round its shaggy bark trunk.  The hot pink stripe denotes the shagbark hickory’s imminent removal by the city, it has been deemed undesirable.

When I first noted the hot pink stripe of death on the trunk of the tree, as I was walking my critter, I was bummed.  Over the past eighteen years I had admired the tree and its prolific output of nuts.  In the Fall, the tree would attact fox and red squirrels from throughout the neighborhood to the feast, and I could hear them squabbling over one nut amongest hundreds from my front porch.  Anyway, upon first noting the hot pink stripe of death on my walk, as I passed under the tree, wondering how the tree could have up and died since presenting its bounty to the squirrels last Fall, I peered up into the tree’s gnarly and apparently lifeless limbs and noted a plethora of tiny buds, and I said to myself, this tree isn’t dead, why has the city marked it for removal?

This all occurred five or six weeks ago, and since that time, the tree has fully leafed and flowered, proving to all its vim and vigor, albeit slowly displayed in comparsion to its neighboring tree relations, and so I figured that the city would grant the tree a reprieve, and ignore its hot pink stripe of death.  Unfortunately, that is not the case.

Last night, as I was walking, I was finally able to speak with the neighbor in front of whose home the shagbark hickory stands.  I asked him what was up with the tree, noting its late leafing out, its current vigor, wondering out loud why in the world the city was going to cut it down.  Here’s what I found out.

The city, at this point, is still determined to cut down this vigorous shagbark hickory, against my neighbor’s wishes, unless the neighbor provides the city with proof that the tree is healthy, as if its now fully leafed out branches are some sort of illusion.  So I asked him, if the city cannot see for themselves that the tree is healthy and vigorous by looking at it in its current state of leafiness, what type of proof is the city requesting before they issue a reprieve?

My neighbor informed me that he is having to pay a tree specialist, from Michigan State University, sixty-five bucks to come out and evaluate the tree’s physical well being.  If the tree passes its physical, my neighbor must then present said certificate of health to the city prior to the city issuing a reprieve from the chain saw.

This is ridiculous, and is just one more piece of evidence of the grinding bureacracy Americans face on a daily basis in order to accomplish the smallest of tasks.  I’m no tree hugger, but I swear if I see the city down the street revving chain saws to wield against this tree, I’m going to hug that damn tree.

Posted by John Venlet on 06/24 at 07:59 AM
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