Friday, August 31, 2012

“That’s Why I Don’t Wade Anymore”

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“I got her to the surface next to the boat and Mike had her head in the net when, without any warning, all hell broke loose,” Derrough said. “In the wash, I saw the huge body of a shark with its jaws around the redfish.

“In an instant, the shark was gone and so was half of the redfish. It happened so fast. It was a bull shark.

What was left of the redfish weighed 20 pounds, 7 ounces. And Derrough was sick.

“That’s why I don’t wade anymore,” Derrough said emphatically,...

Image and quote source, linked via Moldy Chum.

Posted by John Venlet on 08/31 at 08:18 AM
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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Grandpa’s Little Girl

Grandpa’s little girl is in town and having a few pics taken.  My favorite, so far.

Posted by John Venlet on 08/28 at 09:49 AM
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Note to Mitt Romney

Calling Mitt Romney.  Don’t worry about losing. Worry about winning.

In response to this.

Posted by John Venlet on 08/28 at 08:41 AM
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Thursday, August 23, 2012

Ruby Ridge - Forgiveness Means Freedom But Does Not Mean Forget

This morning, InstaPundit linked to a piece written by the senior editor of Reason magazine, Jesse Walker on the events at Ruby Ridge, which occurred twenty (20) years ago this week.

Walker’s article, which is titled Ruby Ridge Is History, But the Mindset That Led to Ruby Ridge Is Thriving, is meant to remind readers that the government’s attitude, in regards to the Weavers and their ideas on freedom, has not changed in the past 20 years, and in fact, the government’s attitude regarding individuals who desire to live in liberty has become even more paranoid, just look at the militarization of your local police department, or the federal government’s increasing surveillance of society at large.

While I’m pleased that Walker points out the government’s continued and increasing paranoia in regards to freedom loving individuals, and reminds readers of the government’s egregious behavior against the Weaver family, Walker does a disservice to all individuals who desire to live in liberty in his piece by referrring to such individuals as “marginal groups” holding “fringy views.”

But on to the subject of forgiveness.  Reading Walker’s piece this morning recalled to my mind a recent article on Sara Weaver, which I’ve been thinking on this week, which is headlined 20 years after Ruby Ridge, there’s forgiveness.

In that story on Sara Weaver, we learn that though she has not forgotten the events at Ruby Ridge, she has forgiven those responsible.

“I went 10 years without understanding how to heal” until becoming a born-again Christian, she said. “All bitterness and anger had to go,” she said. “I forgave those that pulled the trigger.”

I’d say that Sara Weaver is even more free now than she was in the past, and her stating so exhibits a power which cannot be chained.

Sara’s words also reminded me of another story where forgiveness results in individual freedom and strength, put down by Ernest Gordon in his book detailing his experiences as a Japanese held POW titled Through the Valley of the Kwai: From Death-Camp Despair to Spiritual Triumph, which also was made into a movie in 2001 titled To End All Wars (available on NetFlix) and which I think is well worth delving into.

Forgiveness means freedom, but does not mean forget.

Posted by John Venlet on 08/23 at 09:31 AM
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My Mom’s Coffee Urn Story

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That’s my Mum, Edna, in the above picture, posing with a coffee urn which has been in her home since, well since before I was even born.  I can recall that urn being an item of interest to most of her 8 kids as we grew up.  We’d fiddle with the spigot, tilt back the lid and peer inside looking for who knows what, or pretend to pour ourselves a drink.  Come to find out, that urn has a bit more history than I realized, and Mum has shared its history in an Mlive.com series called “Most Prized Possesions”.  You can read my Mom’s most prized possession story here.

Image obtained from linked story and photo was taken by Cory Morse of Mlive.com.

Posted by John Venlet on 08/23 at 08:44 AM
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Good Will and Character Values - What Do YOU Consciously Choose?

Character values.  This somewhat unsatisfactory term designates the experience of a good will, the conscious choice of what is believed right and best.  The word moral is avoided because the moral life is not merely the good will, but actual organization of the whole experience of value by the will.  Thus morality is the experience of the whole table of values, while character values refer exclusively to the act of choosing...A good character is indeed a jewel that shines by its own light and is respected by every rational mind; but it is not the only higher value.  Yet it is so necessary that without the control by good will all the other values soon become disorganized, incoherent, and self destructive. (bold by ed.)

Edgar Sheffield Brightman, A Philosophy of Religion, Prentice-Hall, Inc., New York, Eighth Printing…September 1950, pgs. 97-98

Posted by John Venlet on 08/23 at 08:30 AM
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Saturday, August 18, 2012

Whiling

Just whiling away the days, at the moment, catching a few fish, enjoying some good beers and cigars, and generally ignoring the goings on in the world.  I’ll be back; in a while.

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Posted by John Venlet on 08/18 at 11:19 AM
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Monday, August 13, 2012

The Power of No Makes You Invincible

Claire Wolfe reminds her readers that today is John Galt Day, but more importantly, in a post Claire titled Mythperceptions and a vision of freedom, Claire points out the fallacy of the state’s alleged grip on power with these words.

Government is so powerful it’ll stop us. (It’ll disarm us, cut off our ‘Net access, round us all up and put us in camps, etc.)...

...we’ll see how “powerful” government is.

All you have to do is look at the drug war, a battle the fedgov’s been waging since 1937, and that’s been all-out for decades. Yeah, it’s damaged millions of lives. Yeah, it’s killed people. Yeah, yeah, yeah, to all the bad things.

And you can still get damn near any drug you want in any place you go looking for it. More potent and cheaper than ever.

Some “power.” That’s the all-mighty force you’re so afraid of?

Claire ends that post with these words.

Quit making excuses. Get out and do some freedom.

The simplest way to get out and do some freedom as an individual, per Claire’s suggestion, is to just say no to the state, though this is not without risk in today’s world of wrong address no knock raids, dead dogs, and U.S. military planning for deployment on American soil against Americans.  Just say no, as suggested by a letter writer to John C. Wright, which he posted under the heading Resisting the Big Brother.

Look, folks, it’s really quite simple. Just say “no”. Whenever they tell you to do something you cannot do just look them in the eye and say “no”...

...The power of No makes you invincible.

Posted by John Venlet on 08/13 at 11:54 AM
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Antonin Kalina and Kinderblock 66

As the memory of World War II fades into history, and the numbers of World War II veterans continue to decline, the evils perpetrated during that war also become more obscure, so I find it heartening when a story comes to us from this time which reminds us that there were and are good men willing to battle evil, then, and also now, because we need reminding.

Antonin Kalina is just such a good man, The man who saved 900 Jewish boys INSIDE a death camp.  Antonin’s story is related to us through the reminisces of several of the boys Antonin saved, and is now preserved for us in a recently released film Kinderblock 66.

God bless him.

Via Fred Lapides.

Posted by John Venlet on 08/13 at 09:37 AM
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Will It Go Round In Circles?

Cruising around the internet this morning, I came upon a small bit of the UK Independence Party‘s creed at Theo Spark’s place, which reads as follows.

We believe in the minimum necessary government which defends individual freedom, supports those in real need, takes as little of our money as possible and doesn’t interfere in our lives.

Rico, whom Theo obtained the creed from, asks the following question and comments on that little portion of UK Independence Party creed as follows.

WHY is the UKIP creed NOT everyone’s?
- The Tea Party is very close to this, and the Republicrats had better wake up and smell the coffee!

Rico’s observation regarding the Republicrats, and their inability to smell the coffee burning, reminds me of the phrase Republicans, They Thirst for Death., which I first ran across in 2008, and this brings us full circle to the news of Paul Ryan being selected as Mitt Romney‘s VP pick.

Of all the punditry I’ve read regarding Ryan being Romney’s VP pick, Tam, at View From The Porch, summed up the ramifications of Romney’s VP pick most succinctly in a post tilted The problem in a nutshell…

While the press paints him as some maverick Ebenezer Scrooge for the budgetary Band-Aid he proposed slapping on our sucking fiscal chest wound, in reality, Ryan’s toes are firmly on the party line: he voted for Medicare Part D, TARP, auto industry bailouts, and the rest of the whole free-spending financial firehose that’s tried to float the ship of state on a fresh tide of fiat currency.

Or, in other words, Romney’s selection of Ryan as his VP pick is simply a continuation of going around in circles, unless the Republicans, and those who pull the levers which elevate them into office, actually take a principled stand against overreaching government power and strip down The Leviathan and return it to its proper place as a servant, rather than a master.

If Leviathan is not returned to its proper place, if the individuals who make up the United States of America do not accept individual responsibility for their lives, the election of Romney and Ryan will make no difference in the current state of American affairs.  It will be a song with no melody, a story with no moral, a dance with no steps.

Will it go round in circles?

Posted by John Venlet on 08/13 at 08:21 AM
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Thursday, August 09, 2012

You Are John Galt

A recent American Thinker piece, written by Gene Schwimmer, asked the question, Where is John Galt?

The question is answered by Brian Wilson in a piece posted at LewRockwell.com titled THERE IS John Galt!

You are your own John Galt. You may speak for yourself at any time – and should. You may chose to warn, advise, cajole those around you – or not.  You can “Go Galt” – or not. You may choose to “lead, follow or get out of the way”. Rand said the Individual is “the smallest minority on earth.” It is safe to say Sam Adams never read Atlas Shrugged, yet he infamously said: “It does not take a majority to prevail but rather an irate, tireless minority, who keep setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men.” Strangely enough, anthropologist Margaret Mead may have been channeling some Sam Adams when she wrote: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”

There’s the John Galt you’ve been waiting for: it’s you. The “smallest minority”, the “irate, tireless minority,” the smallest “group” of committed citizens is you. Freedom and Liberty cannot exist without Individual Responsibility. You are an Individual. Get off your ass and set some brushfires.

Via Claire Wolfe.

Posted by John Venlet on 08/09 at 08:16 AM
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Friday, August 03, 2012

Fear the People

Drudge often juxtaposes news stories humorously.  This morning is not an exception to this observation, as Drudge links to a story out of San Francisco with a headline reading Homeless Man Found With Cache of Weapons, Ammo and List of Politicians’ Names….

Immediately underneath that headline, Drudge links to another news item with a headline reading Congress concerned about people following their campaigns…

Both news stories contain the usual mainstream media hyperbole, and are hardly worth reading, with the exception of noting that Congress should fear the people, as the following quote, incorrectly attributed to Thomas Jefferson exemplifies.

“When the people fear the government, that’s tyranny; when the government fears the people, that’s freedom.”

Posted by John Venlet on 08/03 at 08:37 AM
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Thursday, August 02, 2012

Lightning Strike

I do not know what the lightning bolt which struck the poplar tree twenty (20) feet from my trailer looked like, blasting the top twenty-five (25) feet of the tree right off, hurling sharply jagged pieces up to one hundred (100) feet away, and scattering the ground around the tree generously with jagged edged pieces from the size of a toothpick, to spears four feet long, but these pics of some of those pieces give some hint to the lightning bolt’s destructive power, and possibly its form.

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Posted by John Venlet on 08/02 at 02:50 PM
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