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Archive for December, 2014

2014 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 930 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 16 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

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Ditto

Ohh, look, some-one else see’s it too.

The lesson I take is that trying to “save” the status-quo will doom us to a death by a thousand cuts. We need to make radical changes.

The status-quo has got to go!

We are in need of serious surgery to cut away the failed systems, and to start again.  Whatever the world needs – it is not any of the present systems or solutions.

From my home page

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(selected quotes – follow the link for the whole article).

The Game Is Rigged: Why Americans Keep Losing To The Police State

Submitted by John Whitehead via The Rutherford Institute,

“The truth is that the State is a conspiracy designed not only to exploit, but above all to corrupt its citizens.”  ~ Leo Tolstoy

My 7-year-old granddaughter has suddenly developed a keen interest in card games: Go Fish, Crazy Eights, Old Maid, Blackjack, and War. We’ve fallen into a set pattern now: every time we play, she deals the cards, and I pretend not to see her stacking the deck in her favor.  And of course, I always lose.

I don’t mind losing to my granddaughter at Old Maid, knowing full well the game is rigged. For now, it’s fun and games, and she’s winning. Where the rub comes in is in knowing that … playing against a stacked deck: you’re always going to lose.

The game is rigged, and “we the people” keep getting dealt the same losing hand. Even so, we stay in the game, against all odds, trusting that our luck will change.

The problem, of course, is that luck will not save us. The people dealing the cards—the politicians, the corporations, the judges, the prosecutors, the police, the bureaucrats, the military, the media, etc. – have only one prevailing concern, and that is to maintain their power and control over the country and us.

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We have relinquished control of our government to overlords who care nothing for our rights, our dignity or our humanity, and now we’re saddled with an authoritarian regime that is deaf to our cries, dumb to our troubles, blind to our needs, and accountable to no one.

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It’s a sorry lesson in how a well-intentioned law or program can be perverted, corrupted and used to advance illegitimate purposes… once you add money and power into the mix, even the most benevolent plans can be put to malevolent purposes.

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we’re long past the point of simple fixes.   The system has grown too large, too corrupt, and too unaccountable.   Stop being manipulated into believing that an election will change anything, and stop playing a rigged game where you’ll always be the loser.   It’s time to change the rules of the game. For that matter, it’s time to change the game.

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RECISION…!!!

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Wall-E is a movie:

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– about a bunch of things…

If you read the reviews, it is about ‘love’… and ‘overcoming adversity’, and ‘conservation and pollution and ecology’…

Well, all sorts of things.

BUT, the ONE thing which it is about that is kinda more important than all of those other imbedded messages – that is completely NOT talked about is – the despotism.

And – protecting your patch.

And by patch, I mean power.

In Wall-E, the basic plot line is that we have a bunch of humans who abandon earth in luxury spaceship, and wander the universe because the ecology of earth has been destroyed and can no longer sustain life – and they are all benignly looked after by their faithful servants (robots).

In theory, robots (Wall-E) have been left behind to clean up the mess, and then when they have finished/succeed, humans will be able to return.

Except – when that actually happens, when a sign that life can exist again is found (by Wall-E) – “the powers that be” decide that they rather prefer the status-quo, don’t want to be made redundant, and don’t want to give up their power.

Hmmmm…  now why does that sound familiar again?

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Which pretty much sums up our whole world really.

Useless oxygen-thieves, who have got every excuse under the sun why they are essential, and irreplaceable have established themselves in positions of power, and now don’t want to give it up.

Regardless of whether their positions and functions are now redundant.

Pretty much, these mini (and not so mini) despots will have to be shot out of power.

Because they sure as hell won’t give it up voluntarily.

Start writing a list of your own, of all they people and positions that should be removed.

It is almost endless.

But here are a few to start with:

  • Education Dept.
  • Health Dept
  • Government
  • Military
  • Police
  • Security services
  • City councils
  • WINZ (social security)
  • Unions
  • United Nations
  • Central Bankers

(and that is just some of the bigger ones)

Which is not to say that some of the functions nominally performed by these organisations and people aren’t necessary – of course they are.

The problem is that the ‘necessary functions’ have become a secondary(at best) consideration, after job and power preservation.

And the more redundant their position becomes, the more desperate and criminal (despotic) their behaviour will be to maintain what’s “theirs”.

Well, no-one likes change do they.

Particularly when there are [their] money and power issues at stake…

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Unknown-1.

I have just finished reading a Book by Max Hastings – “Warriors”.

It is a collection of short biographies of a number of interesting combatants/soldiers/warriors from the last two centuries.

It doesn’t attempt to be too comprehensive, and Max is a good writer, so it is a pretty easy and entertaining read.  You don’t need to be too into war literature to enjoy the book.

But what I found that I really appreciated about how Max presented his subjects, and the whole subject of martial endeavour, was his sympathetic handling of the human condition, and universal truths.

He has a pretty acute insight into our failings – and our sometimes astonishing abilities and achievements.

Yes, it does sometimes read a little like “Boys Own”, but it redeems itself by some very thoughtful reflection too.

I was reminded as I read, of this quote:   “What a piece of work is a man!  How noble in reason, how infinite in faculty!  In form and moving how express and admirable!  In action how like an Angel!  In apprehension how like a god!  The beauty of the world!  The paragon of animals!  And yet… to me, what is this quintessence of dust?”  (~ Shakespeare)

But also of – our feet of clay – our weaknesses and failings.

And how the best of us can be used, abused and degraded, by politics and politicians.

People can do some simply staggering things under the most dire duress.  They can be saviours and hero’s.

But they can at one and the same time be, and end up as, broken and hollow people.

In a way the book is a cautionary tale, on many levels:

– Why it was that the Stasi recruited from the orphanages for instance, was another thought that sprang to mind as I read.

– The sheer savagery and appalling nature of armed conflict, let along the industrialised killing we currently practise.

– Inflicting pain, loss and murder for bankrupt philosophies.

– Become captives of our preconceptions, prejudices, ideologies and ignorance.

– We fight and kill because we want to, it is part of our nature, we have always, and we will do again… inevitably.

– However civilised we may imagine ourselves to be, the ‘Savage’ is never too far below the surface.  That savagery, and war, will revisit our societies in due course.  It is inevitable.  “War is not merely an act of policy but a true political instrument, a continuation of political intercourse carried on with other means” [~ Carl Von Clauswitz].   ‘Force’ is our preferred method of imposing our will and objectives on other people.

This Book touches on all of this, and leave much food for thought at the end.

Recommended.

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Here is a short [edited] quote from a Dmitry Orlov article.

If you simply wander aimlessly through life, then you will still get somewhere…

Statistically, a blind-drunk sailor who walks out of a bar will, on average, while stumbling along to nowhere in particular, cover the distance of √n steps for every n steps he takes. This is known as a random walk, or Brownian motion.  Which is fine for molecules at anything above 0ºK, and perhaps for drunken sailors too…

If [though] you keep your eyes fixed on your goal, and make a concerted effort to make n steps of progress in its direction for every steps you take – then you will quickly happen upon a wall with a gate in it…

And a guard at that gate will demand to see your permit, degree, qualification or certificate before letting you pass through that gate. And the process of you getting that permit, degree, qualification or certificate will end with somebody else telling you what your goal ought to be.

The goal is, universally, to accumulate things: dollars or stripes on your uniform or publications and citations, or earwax. Details don’t matter, but what matters is that these things never have much of anything at all to do with your original goal.

And although many people rationalize that such things are necessities, or means to an end, it is very hard to convince yourself that expending all your energies in lifelong pursuit of earwax so that you can get back to your original goal (what was it again?) is at all reasonable.

These, then, are your two options: march (almost) in place – or accept somebody else’s marching orders; and march off to spend your whole life… collecting earwax.

Or there is a third option…

I recommend reading the full article   (follow the link at the top of the page)

Option 3 rang a lot of bells for me…

I am still trying to decide if that is a good thing.  :-0

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This article gets to its point in a bit of a round-about way.

First, I will start with some selected/edited quotes from a Karl Denninger article:  Just Walk Away

As citizens you have three choices, really, when you get down to it.

  • Do something Illegal in an attempt to reduce or stop it [Govt crimes].  There are a whole host of possible actions you could take, but of course you are probably sacrificing at least your freedom (and quite possibly your life) when undertaking such actions.
  • Do something (or many somethings) that are Legal to make these [Govt] acts less sustainable and/or stop them.  There are things you can do in that vein; one of them is to intentionally reduce your income to a level where you qualify for subsidies and pay few taxes.  You may sacrifice your monetary standard of living by doing this but you gain non-monetary standard of living; you work less and thus have more time to devote to things you enjoy.
  • Consent.  Don’t kid yourself — if you make a maximum effort (or indeed any effort beyond the minimum required to sustain yourself and your family) – and thus fund these [Govt] acts; you have not only consented you are advocating the acts that your money is buying!  

So … on this day you have to choose just as you do each and every day.  You choose every time you awake.  You choose to voluntarily produce economic surplus that you donate to the government.

I know you’ll make excuses today — but that’s exactly what they are: excuses.

If you’re going to choose to fund, consent and approve of the acts of your government – then do it proudly, loudly and with your head held high.

And if not?

Then choose one of the other options — hopefully selected from the legal options available to you — of which there are many.

But before you try to say that you’re not going to choose, and this doesn’t count as approval of the acts of our government, let me point outIf you choose not to decide – you still have made a choice!

Now, while all the above is true [and valid], that is not the point I wanted to make.

But it did lead onto another thought.

Choosing to – Fund, Consent, and Approve – the acts of your government…

The problem here is that it is an “all or nothing” problem.  Whatever Party gets voted into Government, then gets cart-blanche to do what they like.  And in your name.  Whether you voted for them or not.

But what if it wasn’t like that.

What if we had the choice to approve and fund the acts of our government – or not.

And in a direct and meaningful way.

Say that for instance you were still obliged to pay some predetermined amount of your income to the government for the purposes of running the Nation.

BUT…

YOU had the absolute sovereignty over how and where the money you contributed was spent…  [and that was aggregated across the whole community]

Then that could invoke a whole different calculus to everything about our society.

The way I see it, this is by no means an impossible task, albeit it would be complicated and difficult to set up, and institute.

Particularly when it would involve taking the power and money away from vested interests.  But then again – that is the whole point of a REVOLUTION anyway, isn’t it…!!!

So how would it work?

Well, in conception, it is all pretty simple.

The government would NOT be in charge of dividing up the money and spending it where-ever it see fit.

You would do that.

You would still be obliged to contribute, say, 20% of your income.

But just like giving to charities, you decide what organisations, govt depts, or other worthy recipients get your money.

If you don’t want some particular activity or government dept being funded, then don’t pay them to do what you don’t want done.  On a list of potential recipients, you would decide who gets how much, if any, funding from you.

Simple.  Sort of…  The devil is in the details of course.  And it introduces the potential of massive lobbying [advertising, propaganda, and lies] to get funding.   But none of that is unmanageable.  {and we deal with massive commercial advertising all the time already}

Does it simply swap one set of problems for another set?  Probably.

But here is the thing – what gets funded and done – is genuinely consented to.

YOU [us all collectively] have actively consented and paid for it to happen – and next [financial] year, you can withdraw your consent as well.

And then, like any other business, it is subjected to proper and transparent market disciplines – rather than creating massive run-away bureaucracies, and cosy cronyism behind closed-doors…

The whole taxpaying population, individually and collectively, passes judgement and consents.

The traditional primary role and attraction of politics rather goes away – because who is going to want to be in charge of No Money, and No Power…?

Then again it would all have to be done “right”, and there would be a very long learning curve…

I am sure human nature will still find plenty of ways to screw it all up, given half a chance.

But in respect of “First Principles” – then let’s go with the “consent of the governed”  becoming  “the consent of the governors”.

As long as we have to hand our money and authority to others, to decide on our behalf, we WILL be betrayed and abused.

Let’s stop doing that.

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…   to wit  …

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-12-01/politics-explained

20141201_politicis_0 (click to enlarge)

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