Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Ready for a Happy New Year? Don't bet on it. Question it.

Have you been making plans? Resolutions? Ready to make some big changes? Have those resolutions often worked out according to plan before? No? That's ok, that's the way that works. But wouldn't you rather try something that actually works?

Don't worry, making real changes doesn't take changing everything you do, only understanding better what you thought you already knew.

It's ok, review the past year, definitely. Take stock of things, sure. Go ahead and make plans, that's ok. But keep your money in your own pockets, rather than in the gyms. After all, if you haven't followed through on those New Years Resolutions before, you won't now either, not without making some deeper changes anyway.

And changes like that don't come from a moment's plans, they come from beliefs being more deeply understood and adhered to, inside and out.

Oh, and did any of your resolutions have to do with changing your country? Bad news: resolutions works as well for an entire people as they do for a single person. You do want things to work out more successfully than your last gym membership did, don't you?

Then please don't bother telling everyone what you think - that won't work any better on them, than it did with you telling you what you thought you ought to do with that gym membership. So don't bother trying to appeal to new demographics or resolving to improve your political party's appearances; focus on something less flashy and more substantial.

Work on understanding better what you already think you believe. That will lead you towards making some real meaningful changes, that is if you talk about it with others. With your friends, your neighbors, your co-workers.

But don't tell everyone what you think, or even worse, what they should think. Share with them what you wonder.

If there's one sure thing about the coming new year, if you spend some time thinking about what you assume you already know, you'll find a lot to wonder about. You know, What's Real? What's True? What's Good? The Questions don't change, only the years do. And how the years turn out, depend upon how well we as a people ask, understand and apply them.

Pay attention to those questions, and the other questions they raise. And ask those questions of others. And especially question their (and your) easy answers to them. And ask them if they know why they don't add up... and why it is that it always seems that what doesn't add up, subtracts from your bottom line... and from your liberty to live your own life, and why is it always making it that much more difficult to pursue your happiness?

A deeper understanding of what you think you know, is sure to raise a number of disturbing questions, especially as you see why it is that what is, is not what it should be. Value those questions. Share those questions, far and wide, and work on finding out why not.

It's not enough to say that the unexamined life is not worth living, you've got to ask why. And spend some time putting those questions into action. Or this year, will be no better than the last, and almost certainly worse.

And that won't make anyone happy.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Hoft V: Fighting for our Rights in foul weather and fair

What do you get when you combine 34* temperatures, rain, politicians lies and a hardy few willing to speak up against them? Why... a Tea Party rally, of course!
Band of Brothers: Me, Stacy Washington, Jim Hoft,
Virginia Kruta, Letitia Wong (photo JD Wilson)

The Gateway Pundit Jim Hoft, still recovering from an infection which caused him heart attacks, strokes, as well as the loss of one eye, one knee, and the health insurance policy which has enabled him to survive it, led a hardy band of Tea Partiers willing to brave the elements, in a rally outside Sen. Claire McCaskill's office in St. Louis.

We came with Jim to demand an apology from our senator for the lies which she and President Obama knowingly told, in order to impose their idea of fairness, upon us all.

Stacy Washington spoke as well, driving home the point that no one, no matter how well meaning, can make the best choices for another's life, for the simple fact that they cannot know their their needs, their hopes, preferences, means, desires and those risks they are willing, and unwilling, to take.

Yet proRegressive politicians have the hubris, the unmitigated gall, to believe that they not only can, but should, make the most critical decisions of our lives for us - and lightly brush off the fact that though some peoples lives are upset, harmed or even ended in the process... so be it - omelets require eggs to be broken.

There are however those who are willing to stand against this, no matter the odds, no matter the milquetoast GOP'rs who are willing to accommodate themselves to it, there are still enough of us who are willing to come out in the cold and the rain to fight the good fight. And for those who worry about being in the minority, pardon me, but I can't help thinking of Henry V's St. Crispian's Day Speech, when his comrades worried over being outnumbered in the battle of Agincourt, he chided them, saying that 'The fewer men, the greater share of honour', that,
"...This story shall the good man teach his son; And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by, From this day to the ending of the world, But we in it shall be remembered- We few, we happy few, we band of brothers; For he to-day that sheds his blood with me Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile, This day shall gentle his condition; And gentlemen in England now-a-bed Shall think themselves accurs'd they were not here, And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day. "

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Leftists - so many questions, so little time

I've got some questions for my leftie & moderate friends about this:
"The U.S. Health and Human Services Department reported this week that 364,682 people had signed up for private coverage through the new health insurance marketplaces as of Nov. 30 and an additional 803,077 had been determined eligible for Medicaid."
Less than a million of you have signed up for govt care? Where the hell have you been hiding, and why? Seriously, I want an explanation, because even if we grant the fig leaf of these 'in the shopping cart' sales numbers as actual enrollees, these numbers raise a few questions for me. You see, looking at the numbers of those who voted for Obama and his anti-free choice regulatory state, which was somewhere in the area of a popular vote of 69 million in 2008 and 61,173,739 in 2012, not to mention the enthusiastic supporters who didn't bother to vote, there's a huge number of supporters of 'spreading the wealth around', who don't seem to want anything to do with the ObamaCare flagship for 'spreading the wealth around'.

How do you explain this? Because this explanation, from the AP, doesn't cut it:
"The discrepancy may trace back to the political leanings of their elected leaders.

Newly released federal figures show more people are picking private insurance plans or being routed to Medicaid programs in states with Democratic leaders who have fully embraced the federal health care law than in states where Republican elected officials have derisively rejected what they call "Obamacare.""
Leaving aside the subversive insinuation that it may have more to do with 'elected leaders' than those who elected them, I suspect there are other numbers that play a more significant role in the paltry few who have braved the new world of the ObamaCare website, and placed their 'like' on hold in the govt shopping cart.

Like these numbers:
  1. #1 ‘Lie of the Year’ award given by Politifact to Obama for his oft repeated lie of: "If you like your health-care plan, you can keep it."
  2. Average Deductible for O-Care Bronze Plan is Over $5,000 a Year
  3. The millions of people nationwide who personally discovered the nature of that lie as their own healthcare plans were terminated because of ObamaCare
  4. Washington enrollee's "are dealing with billing issues. Some of them say the website is mistakenly debiting their accounts."
  5. The $400 million dollars spent on the ObamaCare website that doesn't work
So I guess my big question of the moment, to those sixty million people who actually voted for Obama and his regulatory take over of your ability to make your own choices in your own life, aka:ObamaCare, as well as millions more who supported him in spirit... why aren't you signing up for ObamaCare?

Did you really think that 'spreading the wealth around' wouldn't apply to your wealth?

Did you really think that giving govt the power to eliminate the choices of 'the wealthiest 1% of Americans', could be done without eliminating your ability to choose too?

Did you really think that when you cheered for the Obama administration using the power of its regulatory agencies to go around congress, that they wouldn't also use their power to do what they wanted whenever YOU stood in the way of what they wanted to do?

Did the mindless celebrity Obama cheerleaders think that their copyright royalties stood a chance against the admin's desires for more power worldwide? Insider friendly Trade Agreements? Corporate GMO Foods? Too friendly with FatCats?

Here's a truth you aren't going to get around: You can't get something for 'free' without paying for it... but you sure can catch a lot of suckers by promising it.

Some questions worth asking yourself
Here's another question to ask yourselves: If the wealthiest and most powerful 1% of Americans can't count upon The Law defending their property, rights and choices against govt abusing them... what in the hell chance have you got?!

Ok, one other question. If you give people who do not know you, the power to make or overrule every significant decision you make in your life, what are the odds that they are going to make, or rule out, decisions which make the life that your decisions would have made, non-existent?

Or put this way, of all of your closest friends, those who know you best and care about you most, what are the odds you'd like your life, if they made every decision in your life, for your own good, for you?

And you want to give people who don't know you, who don't care about you, power over you, while they are in a struggle for political power?

One question you really ought to be asking, is why your schools don't teach you about the U.S.Constitution and why the Bill of Rights were written to restrict govt power, or if they mentioned it, why they tried to make it appear a tool of oppression, rather than the means to freedom?

Frederick Douglass had a similar question back in 1860, "The Constitution of the United States: Is It Pro-Slavery or Anti-Slavery?" that is just as applicable today:
"...Thus, for instance, the American Government and the American Constitution are spoken of in a manner which would naturally lead the hearer to believe that one is identical with the other; when the truth is, they are distinct in character as is a ship and a compass. The one may point right and the other steer wrong. A chart is one thing, the course of the vessel is another. The Constitution may be right, the Government is wrong. If the Government has been governed by mean, sordid, and wicked passions, it does not follow that the Constitution is mean, sordid, and wicked. What, then, is the question? I will state it. But first let me state what is not the question. It is not whether slavery existed in the United States at the time of the adoption of the Constitution; it is not whether slaveholders took part in the framing of the Constitution; it is not whether those slaveholders, in their hearts, intended to secure certain advantages in that instrument for slavery; it is not whether the American Government has been wielded during seventy-two years in favour of the propagation and permanence of slavery; it is not whether a pro-slavery interpretation has been put upon the Constitution by the American Courts — all these points may be true or they may be false, they may be accepted or they may be rejected, without in any wise affecting the real question in debate. The real and exact question between myself and the class of persons represented by the speech at the City Hall may be fairly stated thus: — 1st, Does the United States Constitution guarantee to any class or description of people in that country the right to enslave, or hold as property, any other class or description of people in that country?..."
Am I trying to say that we face the same conditions that Douglass faced in his day? The barbaric brutality he lived through forbids our equating the two.

But is slavery defined only by the severity of the conditions a slave faces? Or by the choices and decisions about their own lives, that are forbidden to them? Does it matter if they are enslaved for their own good?

Leftists; you have so many questions to ask, and so little time.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Why is our govt doing to us what we encouraged it to feel free to do?

Why is our govt doing this to us?

People across the nation (and the world) have been asking this question, more frequently and more loudly. The answer is, because we have allowed govt to think of itself as something more than power organized for the defense of our property, rights and lives.. It is not. And if it is allowed to stray from that narrow purpose, it cannot help but to spiral downwards into ever greater depredations upon our property, rights and lives.

My friend Patch, from Po'ed Patriot & "The Bell News", wrote a rare and moving post, about his own circumstances, how the expansion of govt has brought turmoil into his and his family's lives. His title, "Obamacare: It May Have Destroyed My Life, But We All Have Lost Our Liberty" encapsulates the nature of our current condition, as the closing paragraph points up:
POSTPONED – Saturday “Wheel In” Protest Postponed Due to Snow
Sen. McCaskill saved by flake - Wheel-In protest postponed to next week due to glowbull warming snowstorm.

"So before you drag out the decorations and throw a pity party for me.. just remember…. even in this nightmare we call an economy it will be far easier for me to replace the things I have lost….. than it will be for all of us to replace the Liberty which was taken from us through Obamacare.

And that my friends.. is the real tragedy to this story…."
Our mutual friend, Jim Hoft of The Gateway Pundit, recently experienced the miracles of modern medicine, and soon afterwards the horrors of modern government. When a persistent 'cold' led to loss of vision in one eye, Jim, taking advantage of his personal insurance plan, went to the hospital and discovered that what he thought was a cold, was actually a deadly infection and he was days away from death. As he describes it:

"The bacteria blinded my left eye, ate a hole through my heart, caused five strokes on both sides of my brain and forced the removal of my prosthetic left knee.

Dr. Lee was the surgeon assigned to perform open heart surgery. What was originally scheduled to last four hours ended up lasting twelve. My heart was severely damaged. Dr. Lee later told me the surgery was one of the most difficult of his career. He also said I only had a few days to live without the surgery.

Thanks to the excellent insurance I carried I was able to receive life-saving medical treatment at St. Louis University."
Truly, Jim experienced the miracles of modern medicine. But that miracle didn't arise only from the medical arts, it owed just as much to the industry which produced the diagnostic machinery, the implements of medical technology, and the financial techniques of the insurance industry (though ever more hamstrung by each  passing administration of the last 50+ years) which made it possible to regularly apply relatively small portions of your wealth on a monthly basis, against future medical needs and disasters.

And even more fundamental to that, what made such miracles possible, was the system of laws designed to uphold and defend the property, rights and lives of the American people, against all enemies, foreign and domestic, and through the liberty which flowed from that - which really means each person being able to act on their own best judgment, to live their own lives and follow their own pursuits, they've enabled, paradoxically to those who haven't attempted to understand it, the most interconnected, wealthy, successful society in history.

But such miracles of modern society are being imperiled by the very thing which originally led the way to their becoming a reality in our time, our government, and specifically ObamaCare has led Jim, and millions of others, to go from experience miracles, to experiencing the horrifying effects of the modern regulatory state.

If you think that's hyperbole, imagine yourself, recently saved in the nick of time, and still heavily dependent upon medical care, and consider Jim's closing comments:
"This week I found out I am going to lose my insurance. The company that carried me is leaving the Missouri market. I will have to find something else.

I am one of the millions who will be looking for new insurance. God willing, I will be able to keep my doctors at St. Louis University. I trust them. They saved my life. Please pray for me and the millions of working Americans who are going through this same ordeal.

Why is our government doing this to us?"
This weekend, Saturday the 11th, from 11:00 am to Noon,
"Jim Hoft, Gateway Pundit, plans Wheel-In Rally at Senator Claire McCaskill’s St. Louis Office- Asks “Why is Our Government Punishing the American People-Give Us Back Our Healthcare!

Saturday December 14, 2013 / 11 AM CT until Noon
– Wheel-In Location:
Senator Claire McCaskill’s St. Louis Office
5850 Delmar Blvd, Ste. A
St. Louis, Missouri 63112
From 11 AM CT to Noon"
It is important to ask this question, 'Why is our government doing this to us?", and it is particularly important to ask it of our representatives.

But it is equally important to remember that our government is doing what it is doing to us, and those potentially dark things that are yet to come, because we, with the best of intentions, we have allowed our collective power, gathered together in the form of our government, to stray from that narrow purpose it was designed to serve; we have allowed us to seduce ourselves into thinking that we could command prosperity, rather than to simply enable it, we've allowed ourselves to think that we could impose (teensie-weensie) evils upon the lives of some of us, for the supposed benefit of others. But though we might fool ourselves into thinking that there would be no penalty for such violations, such actions could not help but spiral downwards into ever greater depredations upon all of our property, rights and lives.

As I was recently reminded, Henry Hazlitt, in "Man vs. The Welfare State", warned us long ago, in discussing that gateway drug of ever greater 'greater goods', the progressive income tax, that whenever a society allows those seemingly 'teensie' evils, when they could still be imagined to be small, to roam free of the iron manacles of the Rule of Law, that:
"The graduated personal income tax should be abandoned in favor of a strictly proportional income tax. The argument against the "progressive" tax rate was conclusively stated as long ago as 1833 by the Scottish economist J. R. McCulloch: "The moment you abandon the cardinal principle of exacting from all individuals the same proportion of their income or of their property, you are at sea without rudder or compass, and there is no amount of injustice and folly you may not commit."
Or in other words, if you allow the power you've organized into a government, for the defense of everyone's property, rights and lives, to stray from that narrow purpose, breaking its bonds through the power of your best wishes, then it cannot help but spiral downwards into ever greater depredations upon the property, rights and lives of everyone of us.

We have got to say "No More!" See you there Saturday.