Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Some ramblings on the so-called "Civil War"

About 3 or 4 comment boxes worth of a conversation in Facebook. I like to repost them here for posterity's sake:

I'll just have to chime in on the DiLorenzo bandwagon. I was never a big Lincoln fan, and I always like to remind people that the Lincoln memorial's throne is adorned with the fasces, the bundle of sticks wrapped around an axe that is the symbol of Mussolini's Fascist party, which he took from the Roman Republic. Lincoln has been posthumously elevated to godhood by the high priests of the secular religion of the state, and he was no friend to black Americans, free or slave.

He never ever freed a salve in his whole life. That's a myth that's easy to dispel, and he believed the peaceful co-existence of the races was impossible, and that miscegenation would so enervate the nation as to destroy the Union he had worked so hard to preserve (at the expense of the Constitution).

He had many schemes in mind to round up and deport all the black folks to the Carribean, or Africa or wherever they would be accepted, or meet little resistence. He was loathe to let them be free and equal citizens.

The War of Northern Aggression was won by the more ethically deplorable side, which is hard to admit, given the substantial negative moral weight of slavery. And slavery was indeed an integral part of the reasons for the war, though it was not nearly as central to the narrative as the nation's public school teachers would have your children believe.

It was a factor of economic reality in the South, and there was a substantial abolitionist component among the critics of the Confederacy. Political battles were fought in the preceding decades that turned on whether new states admitted to the union would be free or slave.

But that was about money, and power, and international trade, not about the inhumane and barbaric practice of slavery itself. It's worth noting that no other nation, save Haiti, required armed conflict to end the horrible practice of "Negro slavery."

In the conduct of the war, the comportment of the officers, the treatment of prisoners and "Copperheads," and the suspension of civil liberties like Habeus Corpus and a free press, and most importantly, in the tyrannical, illiberal and imperial justification for fighting the war in the first place, Lincoln and the Yankees demonstrated the profoundly depraved nature of their cause. Sherman's march and the wholesale slaughter of civilians and the burning of Atlanta are indefensible war crimes.

And just to bring home the point that the Union was no bastion of racial harmony, I remind you of just one incident where Sherman's troops, on his order, cut loose a pontoon bridge across a raging river, after waiting for as many of the freed slaves who'd been following them as possible to be onboard. Most, not knowing how to swim and burdened with their meager possessions, drowned.

Free people should be free to choose the nature of their government, and the Declaration of Independence makes clear that when tyranny is visited upon us, it is our right, if not a sacred duty, to throw it off.

The states of the Confederacy were being throttled by taxes and tariffs designed to benefit Northern industry at their specific expense, and these were far more burdensome and costly than anything the Crown had imposed on the colonies. They had every right and reason to secede, and up until that time, it was understood that the country was made up of sovereign states voluntarily associated for the common defense and the facilitation of trade. It was Lincoln who created the Federal Imperium, ending the Constitutional Republic founded by Washington, Adams, Jefferson and their peers, and replaced it with a vulgar and brutish facsimile of Caesar's Rome.

I'm personally confident that had the Confederacy seceded peacefully, slavery would have ended very soon thereafter. But Reconstruction and the suffering that always comes to a conquered people after war exacerbated racial tensions for many more decades, giving rise to the KKK and lynch mobs who made their black neighbors easy scapegoats.

Thus end my dissertation... LOL. Sorry about that. Some would call me racist for even writing that, but I am no racist. I oppose slavery of all kinds, not just that predicated on race. That means I necessarily oppose statism, and favor devolution to more local, and smaller units of political power, with the goal being that ultimately, each of us will be governed only by our conscience, and the knowledge that our neighbors stand ready, willing and able to defend their rights.

Labels: , ,

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Facebook Friends

I've "met" some really smart people on Ye Old Facebook (I still have my language set to English:Pirate, that never gets old!) One of them is a guy who calls himself a Thomist, I guess after Thomas Aquinas, and he's asked me to establish my "First Principles," as a means to begin a conversation about ethics. This has arisen from a number of brief and pithy exchanges in the comment section under our Facebook status updates, where people often post links to articles along with their outrage or approval over this or that development in society, and as often as not, the subject is our nation's wise and munificent ruling elite. Naurally, I'm inclined to respond to their Machiavellian machinations with disapprobation and scorn. This guy, Dave, tends to be a lot more amenable to the diktats of the ruling classes, especially when they dovetail with his conservative, religious point of view. Anyway, I took enough time formulating my response to his request that I thought it deserved wider reading, by all 2 or 3 people who might eventually see this blog. To that end, here it is:

First principles? Well, I believe in a radical notion of equality, in the sense that no man is superior to any other (or woman) in terms of authority. So, there can be no legitimate franchise on the use of force to impose one's will on the whole of society, any more than there can be a legitimate use of force to impose your will directly on your neighbor. Scaling up a crime like armed robbery to the level of a town, state or national government does not change it's fundamental criminality, even if you call it "taxation." That a majority of people with those political jurisdictions approve is no justification, since the common turn of the century rural southern practice of lynching was an expression of popular will which would have been overwhelmingly approved had the matter been put to a vote, yet we realize that is violation of the victim's right to life.

So, my first principles are that all humans are equally important as moral agents, and they are responsible for their own actions, all the time, and that the initiation of force is always immoral, force is only justified in defense of one's self or others against whom force has been initiated. And while I believe that the right to life necessarily precedes the right to property, that strong property rights are a necessary and logical corollary to that right to life, though i balk at calling it "self-ownership," because I think the term is awkward and inapt. Selves do the owning, they cannot simultaneously be owned. But the notion bears some useful fruit, nonetheless.

My approach to rights is that they are very useful concepts, and that they are necessary, in some form or another, for any society to function, and that there is an ideal set of them for maximum liberty and economic productivity. Those societies that place higher value on other concepts, like order, or piety or aesthetics, might choose a different slate of rights, which is fine with me, so long as membership is voluntary and one can opt-out if they find the arrangement unsatisfactory.

I prefer the libertarian ethic of self-governance and individual autonomy coupled with the non-aggression principle. Essentially, you may do whatever you like so long as it occurs on your property or property you have permission to use (or where no one has a claim), imposes no real, physical or financial burdens on me, and that it does not involve the initiation of force or fraud. Taking that concept to its logical conclusion, I take a strictly voluntarist position that rejects any authority beyond the individual, but I do see value in communities that share the same basic principles, in recognition of the fact that rights are only reified in the context of human interaction. This reality requires that one find a community of people who will respect and reciprocate the same set of rights they wish to exercise. Or, it would in a truly free society. As it is, these things are decided for us and imposed by force by a government far away.

I don't know if the diatribe above is what you were after, but I hope you can glean from it what you sought to know about my position on ethics. If there's anything you need clarified, please do ask me, I'll do my best to be more concise, but you can plainly see that brevity is not my forté.

Labels: , , , ,

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

In response to a "Progressive"

The best thing about this brief missive from the Phoenix Progressive Examiner was the Gun Porn used to illustrate it. Looks like a compact Sig Sauer, not a bad little weapon. Anyway, I was moved to comment, and as I suspected, I was roundly ignored. So, I reproduce those comments below, for the sake of posterity:

You know, my first job out of college had me making courtroom exhibits for the state attorney's office, and one of the cases I helped with was the Moon Smoke Shop/Famous Sam's/Firefighter's Union hall murder spree that happened 10 years ago in Tucson. Let me tell you, they were gruesome. What these men did was utterly inhuman, and they deserve whatever punishment can be dished out in this life, or the next. But you know what else it was? Illegal. Laws aren't magic. They don't stop criminals, but they do stop decent, law abiding citizens from defending themselves. I've seen what that looks like, and it isn't pretty. So I'm 100% with the AZ GOP in support of ending these foolish prohibitions on the fundamental human right of self-defense.

So, the next time you sit down to write some screed about "common sense" gun control, think back to that pamphlet that Thomas Paine penned, Common Sense. If he had to register his printing press and pass a Crown competency test and promise, upon pain of imprisonment and the confiscation of his property, not to print anything that might upset others, or incite violence, or God forbid, foment a REVOLUTION, we'd be as surveilled and taxed and regulated (even our speech! But I guess you would like to ban Michael Savage from this country, too) as all the other subjects of the U.K are today. But there was, at the time, a widespread respect for the fundamental human right of free expression.

It's a shame you people have stolen the word liberal from the real classical liberals who founded this country with the enlightenment values of maximum personal freedom and a minimal state (and ask Lysander Spooner about how far they fell short) in mind. The only thing you're liberal about is the application of government to any problem you see, which is essentially the use of VIOLENT FORCE to make people behave as you wish. The only "progessive" action I see is the continued progress of government intrusion into every aspect of our lives, backed up, as it always is, by men with guns. So, just come out and "cop" to your love of and infatuation with guns (used aggressively, not as we 2A folks would have it, in defense ourselves and loved ones), those of you on the left, because that's clearly your favorite solution to any problem. Point a gun at whoever is acting up and make them do as we say! No wonder you like those Che Guevera t-shirts so much. That was one of his favorite solutions too, but it usually ended with him pulling the trigger.

Labels: , ,

So, my mom is blogging now...

And I'm not. Yet. And, I have got to fix that. I've been looking for other hobbies to fill my evenings besides watching TV and drinking too much, and while softball and Systema have served me well, I think I should spend more time writing. So, I'll try and get back to this blog and in the interest of widening my audience and attracting readers who's anticipation of my ramblings might guilt me into producing some content, I'll broadcast this blog's 3rd or 4th resurrection via Facebook and my various forum signatures. My more epic exertions will be submitted to Strike-the-root.com and LewRockwell.com for consideration. There is nothing in the universe I would love more than to make a little scratch, let a lone a decent living, as a professional libertarian-anarchist-gun nut curmudgeon. Hey, my mom made $6 through Google AdSense, so why not take a stab at it?


Thursday, June 19, 2008

My other blog

Hope y'all are checking the activity over at Homeopathy Challenge. I am on a mission to prove Homeopathy is pure, unadulterated bunkum. I love that word, "bunkum." Rolls off the tongue, don't it?



Thursday, May 29, 2008

I posted these comments in response to an antiwar.com blog post. I felt like spilling my guts, especially when I saw people going after the author, James Bovard, who's libertarian street cred is very well established. He may be a minarchist, but he's OK in my book, in fact, I'd rather he were president than Ron Paul. I'd wager that many of his critics are freshly minted libertarians, Paulistas eager to defend and promote their man who can be forgiven their ignorance, but I think we have to look very closely at the campaign and how its resources were used, or misused. Anyway, without further ado, my comments...

I feel screwed over, betrayed and sold-out by the Ron Paul campaign. I am a poor guy, with many debts. I work hard, and my money has to go a long way. I am a very principled, anti-government, anti-war person, by most definitions I am an anarcho-capitalist or free-marketeer. I donated money to the RP campaign expecting him to represent my views (for the most part) in the modern political environment, meaning seriously, vigorously, aggressively and with the genuine intent of fucking WINNING!!!! We gave him the money, but he played it like a typical hopeless Libertarian. $30 million is not $500,000. He was not in Badarik or Browne territory. The Ron Paul campaign had way more money than the McCain campaign, throughout 2007. They may still! He had, no, still has the GOD-DAMNED MONEY!!!! Why did he blow it?

I could not possibly give less of a shit about a speaking role at the GOP convention, where he'll be regarded as respectfully and listened to as much as Richard Dawkins or Larry Flint might be. Ron Paul may be the conscience of the Republican party, but they are, as a group, about as conscientious as drunken sailors during Fleet Week. Despite all their religious pretensions, they are all about one thing, Nationalism at any cost. It is idolatry, immoral and anti-Christian (not that I care, being an atheist, but it proves they are liars through and through). The worship of the state, the bloody, rapacious, all consuming state, above all else. If the Ron Paul campaign teaches us anything, it is that principled resistance within the system is utterly useless. Ask the thousands and thousands of veterans' families who have buried their sons and daughters, their fathers and mothers, not from combat, but SUICIDE! These veterans can't live with themselves, and their "leaders" don't care and wont help them. A recent Rolling Stone cartoon nailed it: "When the enemy commits suicide, they're in the middle of a crowd. When our kids do it, they're totally alone." The Bush/McCain GOP gives not one fucking slimy shit for the lives of the Americans they cast into the mouth of Moloch in pursuit of their fevered visions of world wide empire, nor for the money they steal from you and me, money we earn in exchange for our precious lives, time and effort we can never recover, and they see fit to dispose of it merely to line the pockets of their corporate cronies.

Ron Paul's words will surely fall on deaf ears at the convention, and that was not what I gave my hard-earned dollars to him to do. He'll be pissing in the wind. Shouting into a maelstrom. Boinking the dog on company time. Ron Paul is a wanker. A wanker I respect and admire for his convictions and his integrity, but a wanker nonetheless for wasting a lot of hopeful people's time and money. He had tremendous financial resources, a HUGE and fanatical base of volunteers ready to go balls to the wall for him, and he just diddled it away as if he were running for county dogcatcher.

THIRTY MILLION DOLLARS is over 30 Badnariks and Brownes, and the last chance we had of effecting change via the political system. Now the likes of Barr and Gravel are calling themselves "Libertarians."

Join the FSP. Get off the grid. Leave the country. Just don't get fooled again by politics.

And BTW - Bovard is of the highest caliber and integrity, a writer of unassailable character. Do not cast aspersions on him just because he is asking questions and bringing to light things that need to be examined and answered for by Ron Paul, his campaign and the liberty movement.

So there.

Labels: , , , , ,

Thursday, March 20, 2008

I'm baaaaaaaaack

Not that anyone missed me, but I'm going to try once again to get hip to the phenomenon that is blogging. I think some upcoming articles will include "An Open Letter to my Mom (and maybe yours too)" and "Payday Lending Apologia" and then "Why Tom Danehy is a Windbag" (really, douchebag is more like it) for publication here, in the Tucson Citizen and/or AZ Daily Star as well as the local alternative Tucson Weekly where the aforementioned wind/douche-bag is employed. I'm going to build a formidable list of links to blogs I love, and I think I'll start with Authur Silber's "Once Upon a Time", if he'll be so kind as let me link to his blog. Anyway... Hopefully I'll soon have a huge audience that drives millions, er, hundreds (?) ... alright, dozens of Google ad dollars my way.


Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Why I suck...

This is something I've wanted to do for so long...now that I've started, I can't seem to keep up the momentum. Now that I'm 30, I think I'll make a sort of "New Year's Resolution" to blog a little each day, just like I've been practicing guitar. We'll see how it goes, but look forward at least to a complete blog, with all the info filled out and new grahics and design (I'm a fucking graphic and web designer!) if not daily updates. This will fly, I swear it! It may not be the world's most popular blog, but I will write the fucker! Cheers!