Tag Archive | Syria

Addiction to Power

One of the more bizarre aspects of the United States’ attack against Syria is the fact that no one bombed us when we killed 230 civilians, a showcase of moral hypocrisy rooted firmly in the idea that might is right. We know that “coalition forces,” meaning the United States for all intents and purposes, killed 230 civilians in a single airstrike, and we know that the death toll doesn’t stop there: more than a thousand civilians were killed in Iraq and Syria by the United States through the month of March.

Here, a lot of significance is placed on the method of death, as though death by suffocation in toxic gas is inherently worse than death by conflagration. The reality is that I sincerely doubt that the dead people would agree–by almost all accounts, burns are worse than suffocation, being overwhelmingly more painful and causing deaths nightmarishly horrific. This isn’t to say that death by sarin gas is good–it certainly isn’t. However, it is the height of arbitrary moral hypocrisy that we proclaim civilian deaths in one type of attack as indisputably more evil than civilian deaths in another type of attack. This is all the more curious since a number of American bombs are explicitly designed to create vacuum pressure by consuming all nearby air–these were used to “great” effect in Operation Iraqi Freedom to suffocate Iraqi forces deeply entrenched in tunnels. Even with bombs not specifically designed to have this effect, death by smoke inhalation (surely a “death by chemical attack”) and heat suffocation (heat being a chemical product of fire, and all) are real threats.

Yet no one took it upon themselves to fire 59 Tomahawk missiles at the United States for its wanton and careless murders of civilians throughout the Middle East. In Iraq alone, we have killed more than one hundred thousand civilians. Ignoring all of that, though, as recently as last month we killed more than a thousand in reckless drone strikes–more than ten times the number for which we’ve so gleefully punished Assad for allegedly having killed.

In a certain sense, we have to cling to the ridiculous idea that death by chemical agent is somehow worse than death by combustion agent, because, while we’re frivolously dropping combustion agents all across the world, and unleashed billions of tons of napalm in Korea and Vietnam, we’ve refrained, for the most part, from using what most people would call “chemical weapon strikes.” It’s rather inconsequential, though. Whatever doublethinking mental gymnastics we have to use in order to convince ourselves that what we are doing is okay, but what others are doing is not okay, we will successfully perform. If it wasn’t “Chemical attacks are a special kind of evil” it would be some other excuse.

The idea that someone probably should have fired 590 Tomahawk missiles at the United States (if 100 civilian deaths = 59 Tomahawk missiles, then 1,000 civilian deaths = 590 Tomahawk missiles) is met by two problems. Only the first of these is the moral problem, and the inability of Americans to grasp the idea that if it’s not okay for Assad to kill a hundred civilians, then it’s not okay for the United States to do it. This is rooted more in “Us and Them” than it is the addiction to power–whatever factors are involved, they cannot possibly be completely congruent between Our actions and Their actions, and any one of those factors will be seized as an excuse for why our actions were, like totes 4 real, not that bad. I think by the time we have people honestly arguing with a straight face that it’s better to be exploded into ludicrous gibs than it is to be suffocated by poisonous gas, we can say definitively that any differentiating variable between two actions will be latched onto and given moral significance aimed at justifying one while condemning the other.

The second problem the idea confronts is that it’s positively laughable: there isn’t anyone who could fire 590 Tomahawk missiles at the United States, at least not with impunity. It’s arguable, because of the Strategic Missile Defense System*, whether anyone could strike the United States, but only a few nations in the world even have the technological capabilities of doing it, and most of those are some sort of ally.

I’ve always found Christianity curious, particularly the Old Testament, because it contains some truly horrific acts attributed to its deity. Yet the very idea that, based on literal interpretations of the Old Testament, the Old Testament god is as guilty of mass murder as anyone, and should be punished accordingly, is met with sneering dismissal. “He who has the gold makes the rules,” quipped the genie at the beginning of Disney’s Aladdin. Today, of course, it’s “Whoever can’t be defeated makes the rules,” and that’s the same idea on display with the top-down Biblical morality and deity exemptions here. Typically, Yahweh can’t be punished for doing something wrong, because the fact that Yahweh did it in the first place means that Yahweh wasn’t wrong. Whatever Yahweh does is right, because he’s the one with the power, and therefore the one who determines what is wrong and what is right.

The United States has now sent carrier groups to the Korean Peninsula in a show of force against North Korea and in an attempt to dissuade Kim Jong Un from testing any nuclear weapons. How very curious. We have nuclear weapons. Of course, it’s true that we no longer test our nuclear weapons, but that’s only because we no longer need to–we’ve left the testing phase and remain the only nation in the world to have used them against people. It’s rather like how we condemn developing nations for high, Industrial Era level Carbon emissions–now that we’ve progressed beyond that and no longer really need to burn a bunch of coal, we sneer down our noses and condemn those who haven’t left that phase.

It’s really just a way of forcefully preventing their technological ascension, isn’t it? It’s a way of putting so many roadblocks in their way that they can never catch up to us. Meanwhile, we couldn’t have been condemned for the insane degrees of pollution of developing America because we were at the forefront of development, and no one knew when Ford invented the automobile that we were inadvertently pumping massive amounts of carcinogens into the atmosphere. And there’s nothing they can do tell us to fuck off and mind our own business, because we’re Yahweh. We have the gold; we have the power. We make the rules.

And the idea that anyone can challenge our rules is almost as laughable as the idea of shouting to an omnipotent deity that it did something morally wrong.

“The world’s only superpower,” people like saying, an idea that I’m delving into considerably in this week’s upcoming podcast. It’s absurd. We’re not the world’s only superpower, and we haven’t been since the 90s–we’re simply the only one of the world’s superpowers that uses that power without restraint in an attempt to dictate over the entire globe. It is still true that we’re the reigning champ and that we stand a good distance above everyone else along the world’s totem pole, but the notion that we’re on a special totem pole all by ourselves… It’s not only wrong, but I have to question the mentality of the people who think that and yet still advocate military action against other countries like Syria and Iraq. Isn’t that like arguing that Mike Tyson should beat an amateur high school boxer to death?

No one, not even China, questions the United States’ right to put a bunch of warships in the Korean Peninsula while making threats against a nation that hasn’t attacked anyone in at least 60 years. What if, right now, warships from nations throughout the world, orchestrated by the United Nations, were rallying off the coast of California and Virginia, threatening to “cut off the head” of the United States if we didn’t cease launching missiles at other nations? Such a strange world we live in. Merely from the threat that he might do it, and even though he hasn’t done it, we’re doing exactly that to Kim Jong Un and North Korea. Yet we, the same people doing this, bristle and become furious at the idea that the United Nations would dare coordinate an effort among the world’s nations to do the same to us.

But I suspect we’re on the brink of collapse. Donald Trump’s attack against Syria–failed though it was, by all accounts, since that airstrip was sending Assad’s forces into the air less than 24 hours later, and reportedly only about 35 of them hit the target (maybe we do need to do some further testing…)–has bolstered his confidence. It’s like the first time I smoked marijuana. Well, the second time, actually–the first time, I got so sick from friends shoving sweet food down my throat (an expectation that I played along with, “having the munches” even when I didn’t, because I was a stupid kid), that there was no enjoyment from it. There was about a 4 year gap between the first and second time anyway, and I’d spent most of my life hearing about how horrible marijuana was, how devastating it could be, how dangerous it was, and why no one should ever, ever do it. I successfully resisted peer pressure for years, and then gave in, for no reason in particular.

“Hey, that’s pretty good!” I thought.

Undoubtedly, Trump feels the same, now that he’s nodded and pressed a button, which immediately led to a missile strike against another nation. I have no doubt that the power rush, the adrenaline, of it was orgasmic. He probably had the best sex of his life just a few hours after giving the command, and I’m not trying to be grotesque or anything–I’m being sincere. Murderers notoriously get off by murdering people. And what we’re talking about here goes well beyond murder, and is simultaneously socially acceptable. No one will condemn Trump at a dinner party for being a mass murdering lunatic who fucks his wife after killing people.

I think that Trump is probably not reckless enough to really do anything rash, because the possible consequences are so high. I’m not suggesting that Trump will, chasing after that dragon, fire missiles at China if the Chinese President even squints at him funny. But not only is it in Trump’s blood now (and has been for a few months), but his use of force against Assad instantly earned him the respect of people who have been criticizing him for a year. You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.

I’ve seen people suggest that if we attack North Korea, China won’t move to stop us. While the Chinese people are sick of Kim Jong Un’s antics and exerting pressure on the Chinese government to get Kim under control, that will change the moment we attack North Korea, because such an act will be taken as a direct challenge to China’s sovereignty and regional authority. Imagine how we would respond if Russia invaded Puerto Rico. If we attack North Korea, we will find ourselves at war with China. We might be able to get away with assassinating Kim Jong Un, but that isn’t the way the United States does things. Presumably.

I’m more concerned with the possibility of finding ourselves bogged down in a war against Syria, Russia, China, North Korea, Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and other countries that we’ve either directly attacked, are presently at war with, or are likely to end up at war with them the moment one of the other two world superpowers has had enough of our bullshit. I honestly don’t think that Putin is going to let us have Syria and Assad, and that situation has the terrifying capacity to develop into a direct war between the United States and Russia. We’re already at war with them, for fuck’s sake–that’s what it’s called when one nation allies with another and supplies them with jets, bombs, AA guns, and other shit against another nation. It’s why claims of U.S. neutrality during World War 2 are such bullshit–everyone knows we weren’t neutral. We simply weren’t active combatants.

Anyway, that’s a rather long list of countries to be at war with, and the only one that doesn’t unequivocally belong on that list is China. We are still at war with North Korea, though we do have an armistice with them. We’re at war with Pakistan. That’s what it’s called when you drop bombs on them, and we dropped bombs on them last year.

Courtesy of http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-president-barack-obama-bomb-map-drone-wars-strikes-20000-pakistan-middle-east-afghanistan-a7534851.html

What an astounding coincidence that those happen to be the exact countries from which we don’t want to accept refugees! Amazing! What are the odds of that? What are the odds that these countries with refugees we don’t want to accept because they run a relatively high risk of wanting to kill us happen to correspond perfectly to the countries we’ve been dropping bombs in? If it was actually a coincidence, the odds would be extremely low. No one in Vegas would take that bet. But it’s not a coincidence, of course. We might as well have Americans saying, “You see these countries we dropped bombs in last year? Yeah, those are the ones we don’t want to accept refugees from.”

I don’t think China will allow us to attack North Korea.

If that statement caused you to bristle, please understand that your belief in American dominance and rightness in global hegemony is the problem.

I intended to call attention to the remarkable similarity between this and the idea that we must have a government that is ultimately in charge, because the same thread runs through both. We need police, we need judges, and we need laws–we need someone at the top who cannot be challenged, goes the argument. So yes, the global chaos we see today is again a direct result of statism. People say that we need some domestic authority figure, and they say that we need some international authority figure. This is why it’s okay for the police to tackle and beat the hell out of someone for jaywalking, and this is why it’s okay for the United States to launch missiles into a sovereign nation.

Because “authority.”

 

* I know that this was leaked as a failure, but seeing as we’ve since blown up a satellite in orbit from Earth (which operates on exactly the same principle) and apply the same principles in unarmored assault vehicles that utilize moving guns and camera coverage to shoot incoming bullets out of the way, no one should still believe the idea that we failed to do this. Why else would we have surrounded Russia with missile batteries? Hell, the official reason given is that we intend to shoot Russian missiles out of the sky!

Neo-Cons Didn’t Corrupt Trump

I must confess that I’m pleased to see the general condemnation from Trump supporters of the attack against Syria, motivated primarily by incredulity over the absurd claim that Assad, to better fight a war that he’d nearly won, saw fit to do something that would certainly drag the West into the war and thereby assure his defeat. The whole thing stinks, for several reasons. I suppose first among those is that Assad surrendered all of his chemical weapons to Russia, as overseen by the United States and United Nations. This would mean that any chemical weapons since constructed couldn’t have been made by Assad’s forces, who were being monitored by the UN as part of the agreement that John Kerry accidentally forged with Assad.

It’s also alarming that we, the United States, killed 230 civilians, and no one retaliated against us for the atrocity. We escaped unpunished, and that we murdered 230 civilians is an undisputed fact. Meanwhile, Assad allegedly kills about a hundred civilians, and we hypocritically take it upon ourselves to punish him, thereby handing an endangered city directly over to Isis.

It should be a cause for concern that McCain, Hillary, CNN, NBC, and others who have long demonized Trump are applauding his actions. If McCain gives you the thumbs up, then you’re doing it wrong.

Now Rex Tillerson has openly stated that our goal for Syria is regime change.

I never expected better of Trump, but, for unknown reasons, a lot of people did. We knew that Hillary would put us on this path, and I’ll admit that Trump was a bit of a wild card–based on what he said, I don’t blame the people who fell for his seeming policy of non-interventionism at least in Syria, but he backpedaled, lied, and contradicted himself so much during his campaign that anyone who took anything he said seriously might be a little touched in the head.

Yet here we are, preparing to go down exactly the same road that Hillary would have led us down, although we might have gotten here a few weeks sooner under President Hillary Clinton. It’s hard to say, honestly. Trump hasn’t even been President for three months, and he’s already getting us into a war to topple a Middle Eastern regime. One would expect the tragedy that is the current situation in Iraq and Afghanistan would have taught us better, but we seem to have a remarkable inability to admit when we’re wrong. As long as we can’t admit that we screwed up, we can’t learn from the screw-up.

The similarities between Syria and Iraq are too much to ignore, especially given that ISIS stands for Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. This is an organization that first appeared in 1999 in Iraq, but was unable to generate any momentum, especially with the world’s most famous terrorist bin Laden being part of Al Queda. A competing terrorist group just wasn’t going to get much coverage, as Boko Haram learned a few years ago, around the time that Al Queda fell. Remember them? They were going to replace Al Queda in the west’s zeitgeist of organized terror perpetrated by the government against its own citizens, but they failed to inspire us to give a shit.

It’s no coincidence that the vacuum of power we created when we deposed Saddam Hussein and then vacated the region allowed Isis to come forward and fight against the western-friendly government we had installed. When rebels began fighting against Assad in Syria, we “humanitarians” that we are took it upon ourselves to arm the rebels and help them, while Russia and Putin attempted to crush the rebellion. It’s probable that if we hadn’t gotten involved–much as we had during the Iran-Contra affair–then Russia wouldn’t have gotten involved.

Anyway, this new vacuum of power allowed ISIL–Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant–to spill over into Syria, at which point its name was changed, although “Levant” was always a reference to eastern portions of Syria, if my memory serves me correctly. I do have a good memory, but it’s honestly hard to keep track of all this shit that we’ve done and caused.

Suddenly that civil war between Assad and governmental forces with Russia’s backing against rebel forces with our backing had a new combatant, which had grown powerful in the chaotic Iraq and seized the confusion in Syria to establish footholds there.

It’s comforting, for what little it is worth, to see Trump supporters criticizing Trump for his actions, and Infowars has finally taken Trump’s dick out of their mouths long enough to criticize the attack against Syria for playing right into Isis’s hands by further destabilizing the region, weakening Assad, and allowing them to take more territory. They rightly point out that it’s absolutely absurd to think that Assad–who publicly surrendered his chemical weapons while the entire world was watching–would have used chemical weapons in a war that he had all but won, considering that he knew the reaction it would have and considering that even Putin, gremlin though he is made out to be, condemns the use of chemical weapons against civilians.

However, these people contend that Trump has been “corrupted” by the Neo-Cons in his cabinet.

The cabinet that Trump himself appointed.

It’s an argument that is truly facepalm worthy. Trump appointed the very Neo-Cons who are now supposedly corrupting him. This means he wanted them to be where they are, and he wanted them to influence him. People he personally selected are advising him. It’s not like he inherited his advisors and cabinet from Obama and George W. Bush. It’s not like the cabinet came with the job, and he was totally unable to remove the CFR members and Goldman-Sachs executives. Quite the opposite–those people left with Obama, and the entire idea of “draining the swamp” was that Trump would refrain from bringing a bunch of CFR globalists, Goldman-Sachs executives, and neo-cons back into power. Yet instead of draining the swamp, Trump brought those people right back in and gave them jobs.

He didn’t get corrupted by them. He brought them in to advise him, and they gave him the advice that he clearly wanted and expected from them when he appointed them. It’s not like he appointed Ron Paul as his Defense Secretary, and Ron was assassinated with Trump receiving a letter that read in letters cut out from newspapers and magazines, “The next will die, too, unless it’s one of Cheney’s friends.”

It’s like if I went out with a bunch of friends to get ecstasy and have a good time, and someone said that those friends “corrupted me” when I was caught buying MDMA. It’s a blatant denial of responsibility. Trump chose those people, knowing who they were and what they represented. They didn’t corrupt him. They did exactly what he knew they would do when he chose them.

Trump wasn’t corrupted by the Neo-Cons in his staff. He wasn’t corrupted by the Deep State. He wasn’t unduly influenced by the CFR globalists in his cabinet. He hand-selected those people. Trump is to blame for this. He picked those advisors and cabinet members. He appointed these people.

So now Trump supporters have this idea of their savior being corrupted against his will and cajoled into taking actions that he doesn’t want to take by evil, corrupting Neo-Cons. It would be funny if this wasn’t what they evidently think. The swamp didn’t corrupt Trump while he was desperately trying to drain it. Trump dived headlong into the swamp the first chance he got, and that was his choice. He’s not the non-interventionist that people think he is, and he’s not the anti-establishment president that people think he is. He fooled such people, and it’s time they admitted that.

Stop making excuses for him. He marketed himself as a quasi-sorta-but-not-really-non-interventionist, although he did say some things that did lean a little bit in that direction, and he marketed himself as an outsider, someone who would fight the system and drain the swamp. Continuing to deny the fact that he lied to you and played you is not going to avoid war with Syria. He’s not being manipulated and [neo]conned by his cabinet. He’s doing exactly what he wants to do, and following the advice of people he appointed to give him exactly the advice they gave him.

Refugees & Insanity

Some time ago, I did a podcast where I drew a parallel between the state and its solutions, and a family member’s insistence that I could fix damage done to my hair by shampoo with leave-in conditioner. Though that podcast is now gone, because I’ve let my podcasts lapse intentionally, I want to talk about the “refugee crisis” and the obvious fact that if the United States wasn’t going around creating refugees, then we wouldn’t even be discussing what we need to do about those refugees.

Before I get into that, I’ve already addressed the Syrian Refugee problem, because I was asked on one of my Youtube videos how liberty addresses it. There’s no music or anything annoying like that (other than me–lol) in this video, and I’ll summarize it below.

Handling Syrian Refugees

Basically, “the government” shouldn’t be providing food, shelter, clothing, and medical care to anyone, whether they are American citizens, immigrants, or refugees. This isn’t a job for the American Government to do; it’s a job for American citizens. If you want to open up your home to refugees, pay their way into the country, and then provide them with food and shelter, then that’s your right. If you own an apartment complex and want to provide free housing to these refugees, that is your right. You do not have the right to take money out of my purse and use it to appease your conscience.

It’s actually rather simple, isn’t it? We’ve just gotten so confused about the role of government and its place in American society that the simple question of “Okay, smart ass, how does ‘liberty’ address the refugee crisis?” seems like a Checkmate Question, when it’s actually addressed rather easily.

It would, of course, be your responsibility, before paying for someone to enter the country and providing for them, to verify that they weren’t psychotic criminals. If this person that you brought into the country and have been supporting goes on to commit a crime, then you obviously bear some responsibility for that. It is your job to properly vet people before you take them in and begin supporting them; if that person goes on to murder people, then you helped make that happen and will have to be brought on trial. In such an event, you should be able to show that you did everything reasonable to verify the person wasn’t a lunatic.

We Have Refugees; Now What?

This is the question that Americans are asking themselves. What do we do about the refugees?

Allow me to tentatively offer the suggestion that we…

Stop making refugees.

It was rather jarring to see the list of 7 countries from whom we would not take refugees–the Trumpster’s now-legendary Travel Ban–because it was basically a “list of countries we’ve recently been at war with or have campaigned hard to start a war with.” In fact, the list is so transparently what-I-just-quoted that I am now, from memory, going to address all seven of them, though I’ve only twice even seen the list.

Libya. I vividly recall in winter of 2011 or 2012 that Obama was considering implementing a No Fly Zone over Libya, and I remember telling people that it was a precursor to war, and that we would inevitably have boots on the ground. The United States is simply involved in too many wars and foreign countries for me to remember everything, but we did destabilize the region, remove Gadhafi, and generally cause a disaster.

Iraq. Derp.

Iran. Remember the Wile E. Coyote cartoon bomb that Netanyahu showed before the United Nations, warning that Iran was going to have nuclear weapon capabilities? This beating of the war drums with Iran has been going on since I delivered pizzas, so it began at least around 2005, and it’s only paused for a few months here and there. Otherwise, it’s been a steady stream of how we need to invade this stable Middle Eastern country that hasn’t initiated a war since the 18th century.

Syria. Herpa derpa derpa derp.

Yemen. My expertise on the Yemen affair is limited, and other people in the liberty movement have followed it much more closely than I have. If I recall correctly, we are basically doing in Yemen the same thing we did in Syria, allying with what amounts to an invasion force to overthrow the Kurds…? I think. Something like that. Regardless of the specifics, we shouldn’t be doing it.

Here I had to google the other 2. I want to add Afghanistan, but that only gives me one more anyway. If I spent an hour or so thinking about it, I’m sure I could think of them, but in the interest of doing things today and being honest, I simply looked it up.

Somalia. Oh, yeah. Can’t believe I forgot this one. This fell apart in 1991, when I was in kindergarten, so I don’t know the details. I would look them up, but it’s not terribly important at the moment.

Sudan. This situation is largely the fault of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, though how much of that information is reliable and how much isn’t is unknown. However, there is a money trail that shows the Clintons routinely backed warlords fighting for control of the country, thereby exacerbating the problem.

These seven of the countries from which we will not accept refugees are the seven countries we’ve spent the last decade making refugees in. It’s like if I decided to burn down seven streets in my neighborhood, and then proclaimed that I would not take in any homeless people from those seven streets.

But instead of, I don’t know, ceasing to make refugees in these countries, we instead seem to find the better solution to be telling these people in countries that we’ve decimated that we’re not going to bear any of the consequences for how we sank their countries into civil wars and depressions that are unlikely to end for decades to come.

Shampoo & Leave-In Conditioner

Before getting my haircut a few months ago, it was prudent to use some hardcore dry scalp shampoo. I’ve tried everything, from OTC stuff to prescription shampoo that cost $45 a bottle. Nothing has worked. Head & Shoulders worked once, for one single, glorious day, but never worked again. It’s usually not noticeable or a problem, but when I go to get my hair cut, it is.

It fried my hair. To avoid a long and unnecessary tangent, I don’t generally use shampoos or conditioners in my hair. People say this means my hair is dirty. That’s stupid. Putting a bunch of chemicals in your hair is what makes it dirty. Using H2O to clean your hair is what makes it clean. The entire point of Pantene Pro-V shampoo and conditioners is to leave chemicals in your hair, coating your hair with chemicals that make it sleek, shiny, bouncy, or whatever. By what definition is coating your hair in chemicals cleaning it?

Anyway, when I remarked about this to my grandmother and proclaimed that I was never going to use it again, she brought me a bottle of Leave-In conditioner and suggested that I use it. That was, as she said, the ideal solution. To repair the damage that the first set of chemicals does to my hair, I need to use a second set of chemicals. I was shocked by the insanity of it, because the obvious solution is obvious: stop using the first set of chemicals.

Yet this is what we come to over and over in American Society. The government does something and it screws things up. So rather than telling the government to stop screwing things up, we let it do some other thing that is supposed to fix the screw up from the first thing. This, of course, invariably involves another screw up, meaning that they have to do a third thing to fix the screw up from the second thing.

I’m sure we’ve all seen the skits where someone just trying to help makes a bad situation worse. I can’t think of a specific example, but let’s say that you asked me to fix an electrical short in your house. Oops! I screwed up and burned your house down. That’s okay, because I’m going to rebuild your house. While rebuilding your house, I manage to accidentally shoot you in the knee with a nail gun. Oops! That’s okay, I’m going to take a pair of pliers and remove the nail from your knee. Oops! I crippled you for life.

At some point, isn’t it prudent to tell me, in the above scenario, to go away? This is what our government does. This is the government’s modus operandi, and it has been doing it for well over a century, and the issue became much worse than ever during FDR’s New Deal. It screws up everything that it tries to do, and then, when it attempts to fix the first screw up, it always manages to screw up again. Bless its heart for its effort, I guess, but at some point we have to stop letting the clumsy idiot try to fix the short in the wiring.

It’s not helping, and it always takes a bad situation and makes it worse.

Bullshit Collection Part 2: Obama’s Veto Overruled By Congress

Some time ago, a bill swept through Congress with surprising agreement, allowing Americans to sue foreign governments for sponsoring terrorist activity against Americans. President Obama vetoed the bill, saying that he feared it would set a dangerous precedent and would give foreign citizens the idea that they could sue the American Government. This is a bit difficult to parse, but bear with me, because…

That means that Obama knows that the shit that we’re getting up to throughout the world is wrong, and he knows that citizens of foreign governments would have legitimate grievances with the United States. We could start with how we bombed a wedding in Afghanistan, I suppose, if we wanted to give an example.

The concern that I’ve had has nothing to do with Saudi Arabia per se or my sympathy for 9/11 families, it has to do with me not wanting a situation in which we’re suddenly exposed to liabilities for all the work that we’re doing all around the world, and suddenly finding ourselves subject to the private lawsuits in courts where we don’t even know exactly whether they’re on the up and up, in some cases.

Yes, President Obama. That stuff you said. That’s the point.

“…exposed to liabilities for all the work that we’re doing all around the world…”

Yes, Mr. Obama. That’s exactly right.

Lots of people have come forward to agree with Obama and to point out how terrible it would be if we set up a system that allowed those smelly brown people to hit back against us. I mean, it’s common knowledge that they can’t hit against us directly–did you even see Operation Desert Storm? If anything is clear is that the countries in which “we’re doing all the work” have no recourse to stop us or to make us pay. Their bombs are crushed by our bombs; their aircraft massacred by ours.

We can impose No Fly Zones, grounding all of their aircraft, from halfway around the world with very little effort. They cannot fight us directly. This, of course, causes them to turn to “terrorism” in the same way that American colonists once turned to “terrorism” against the British. Does the Boston Tea Party ring a bell? How about the tactics of the American revolutionaries? The British fought war stupidly. They stood in a row, shot, and ducked to reload while the person behind them shot. They continued along like that–almost literal “ducks in a row.”

We couldn’t have defeated the British by playing by their rules, and they hated us for it. They called us cowards, cheaters, dishonorable. “You can’t do that!” they said. “You have to stand here, in front of us, as we take turns shooting at each other until someone wins!”

And we said, “Um, no. We’re not doing that. That’s dumb.”

So we shot from the trees. We didn’t form neat ranks and files. We hid in the hay bells, we hid in the trees and among the trees, we surrounded their forces, we shot from the sides, from the backs. And we won. Yet throughout all of that, we were not just terrorists; we were dishonorable terrorists, using despicable tactics because we couldn’t take them in a “fair fight.”

We face the same thing today–people all around the world who simply cannot go toe-to-toe with our military in the way that the American revolutionaries could not have gone toe-to-toe with the British army. For fuck’s sake, we didn’t even have a Navy, and the British Empire had the most powerful Navy in the world. Think about that when you think of places like Yemen and Syria, where our military is consistently “the most powerful in the world,” and theirs is… not anywhere close to that. They cannot take their fourteen F15 jets [numbers I’ve made up] and throw them at our nine gazillion F650 jets.

So they resort to sniping us from the trees, breaking our “rules of civilized war” in the process, fighting us in the only way that they can because going toe-to-toe with us simply isn’t an option–it’s suicide. We scream that it’s dishonorable, that it’s despicable, and that it’s terrorism. And maybe it is, if we could look back with the clarity of hindsight and say that the price of their freedom was bought with the lives of too many women and children, but we have no right to make such a determination in the first place. We are not the world’s police force, and neither are we the world’s judge.

I am continually baffled by the average American's lack of self-awareness.

I am continually baffled by the average American’s lack of self-awareness.

Nothing stops it, sir. That’s the point.

That’s precisely the point.

Anyone who wants to can attempt to sue the U.S. government for terrorism. This doesn’t mean anything. It only means something if a court of law–an impartial one, if we can find extraterrestrials from the Andromeda Galaxy who are anarchists and therefore can view this whole fucking mess objectively and are willing to preside over the case–finds for the plaintiff. Let the people of Iraq sue the American Government for terrorism. Let a court of law determine who is right.

A fair and objective court of law would find for the plaintiff. In Iraq, the United States is wholesale guilty of terrorism. Afghanistan, too, and likely at least a dozen others. Hell, the United States government is guilty of terrorism against the American people. Does this mean that we can sue the American government for terrorism? Because it should mean that.

Jonathon Horn knows, though–just look at what he said. He knows that the stuff the U.S. gets up to in other countries, whether he is okay with it or not, could be called terrorism rightly. If he didn’t think that, then he wouldn’t care whether foreign people sue the U.S. government, because the case would just be thrown out. So he knows. Let’s not just overlook that! It’s critical. He knows that the stuff that the American government does can, in at least a certain light, be rightly considered terrorism.

YES, FFS, THAT IS THE POINT

YES, FFS, THAT IS THE POINT

Germany has no case against the United States and absolutely could not sue us for terrorism. Our interactions with Germany have firmly fallen under the “acts of war” category, and so did the nuclear weapons. Terrorism =/= war. I firmly hate war, but we can’t pretend like an undeclared attack against a helpless nation who can’t fight back is remotely the same as allying with the British Empire to invade Nazi Europe, or that dropping twothose, not “that”–nuclear weapons on Japan is the same as hijacking planes and crashing them into buildings as a declaration of war.

China has no case against the United States, either. We saved their asses in World War 2. Your history sucks, Matt. Please go back to high school. Japan was slaughtering the Chinese, raping them, brutalizing them, torturing them, and China didn’t have much of a military to stand against it. China is the reason that the Allies won World War 2. Hitler was counting on Japan to help him attack the Soviets, coming from the east while Germany came from the west, and Japan instead focused its efforts on China, which proved a bit too big for them to just conquer simply. They weren’t stressing the Soviets, and that allows the Soviets to focus their efforts on the western border, where they lost more lives than anyone else in World War 2, and took the brunt of Nazi Germany’s attack. Then Japan attacked Pearl Harbor, we hit the Pacific Theater, and started advancing toward Japan. Every single island was a grueling battle of immeasurable death, because the Japanese refused to surrender any territory, forcing us to fight for every inch of land that we took. An attack on mainland Japan would have caused extraordinary death. The atomic bombs were a quick solution to a long, deadly problem.

How easily people forget.

The Soviet Union was our ally during World War 2, and so was China. We’ve yet to do anything worth suing over to either China or Russia. We’re about to do some fucked up shit to Russia, but we haven’t yet. China’s gripes could stem from Korea and Vietnam, but we were only in those places as part of a “UN Peacekeeping Effort,” which was a euphemism for “We’ve got military industrial complexes in several of the world’s largest countries that need to continue destroying resources and sharpening their weapons so, lulz, sorry people of Korea and Vietnam.” If anyone can be sued for those fiascos, it’s the United Nations–everyone. And China has no authority to sue on their behalf, because China every bit played a part in creating that mess.

Man, your history leaves a lot to be desired.

Iraq certainly would have a legitimate case. Iran… not so much. There was the virus we infected their centrifuges with–I don’t remember now what it was called–and it caused them to burn through machines at their nuclear refinement facilities, but that can’t be definitively pinned on the United States. We’d blame Israel, Israel would blame the United States; no one could trace the thing back to its source. Hell, didn’t we just give them a few hundred billion dollars? What are they going to sue us for? Giving them money?

I imagine your ignorant ass meant Syria.

Let’s think about Syria for a moment.

We have an established government led by Assad and backed by Russia. Then we have rebels. It started with a series of peaceful protests, Assad said “lol, not in my country” and started killing people and cracking down on protest. Then this happened:

syria

Then we slipped the guy a bunch of weapons and told him to use them to fight off the guards. They did so. This chaos and power struggle caused ISIS, who was already growing and taking territory in Iraq, where we had also left a power vacuum, to sweep into Syria and start claiming territory there, too. Syria absolutely has a case against the United States government. They stoked the fires of instability, provided arms to the rebels, helped create a power struggle, and the resultant mess is what we see today. Now, instead of working with Assad and Syria to restore stability to the country that we helped shatter, we’re only interested in digging the hole deeper, hoping that, maybe, we can dig deep enough and come out on the other side of the planet, standing on our heads.

simply-wrongI find myself becoming leery of people with four-letter names. lol

Alex is simply wrong. We can prove that Saudi Arabia funded 9/11. We can also prove that a Pakistani general gave Mohammed Atta one hundred thousand dollars while Atta was here and training for the 9/11 attack, though “truthers” have made it impossible for me to find this information not on a blogspot site. In fact, it’s actually kinda alarming how the top Google results go to a blog which cites another blog which cites another blog. I actually do have an actual print publication I could go to if I wanted to source the information, but it’s in the trunk of my car, it’s cold outside, and it’s, as the 9/11 Commission Report said, “of little practical significance.”

Oh.

I should have read your comment in full. You are a truther. That’s okay. So am I, and I think it’s sad that “truther” has become an insult. Yes, insult me because I want to know the truth, because I know that things don’t just happily break physical laws, because I know that a building couldn’t have fallen at freefall speeds, and because I remember that THREE TOWERS went down that day, one of which WASN’T EVEN HIT BY A GODDAMNED PLANE.

All three towers went down exactly the same way. One wasn’t even hit by a plane. And I’m the whackjob for wanting answers? You people going “Meh, that’s nothing worth discussing” are the lunatics! I don’t believe anything about 9/11, except that the 9/11 Commission was a provably biased one with ties to the Bush and Bin Laden families, and that the report–which I have actually taken the time to read–makes wonderful fairy tale reading, but is nothing more than that. You expect me to believe that this fire that magically melted steel allowed one of the terrorist’s passports to be found unscathed at 9/11? People, c’mon. That’s clearly planted evidence. How stupid can you be? It melted steel, but left paper undamaged?

Ugh. I’m getting a headache just thinking about it.

I don’t believe the government orchestrated 9/11. The most I will say is that the evidence suggests–like Cheney’s order for NORAD to stand down and the fact that we otherwise have 100% success intercepting aircraft, yet spectacularly failed repeatedly that day–that some powerful elements within the U.S. Government either knew about and allowed the 9/11 attack, or directly orchestrated it. That’s as far as I’ll go, because that’s as far as the evidence supports. Short of a revolution wherein we ransack all the classified documents and un-redact them, we’ll never be able to say more than that.

We’re not over there looting resources, though. You fail at contemporary events. The price of oil is low because the United States has started fracking like crazy, which allows us to get to oil that we couldn’t otherwise get to. We are the reason the price of oil plunged. It was only after the 2003 invasion of Iraq that the price of oil began skyrocketing. I remember paying $4.35/gallon. Now it’s half that. You bloody fool. If we were looting their oil, then the reverse would have happened: the price of oil would have gone down after 2003, and then back up more recently.

It wasn’t about oil, though. You’re too short-sighted. It was about the destruction of resources. Sparring, if you will. Competition fosters growth, improvement, and efficiency. If we want the most powerful military in the world, then what do we need? War. “War is the health of the state,” they say, and that’s certainly true here. We need our military to fight. Necessity is the mother of invention. We need the need to cause us to develop new, better rockets, new , better “defense” wink-wink systems. The military industrial complex cannot just build a bunch of tanks and then go, “Well, that was fun, and we made lots of money.”

No.

It has to then destroy those tanks so that it has a reason to invent new, better tanks. It needs to evaluate those tanks’ weaknesses and improve them. What better way to do all of this than to attack a country that couldn’t possibly pose any real threat to us? That’s all this is: sparring. And we’re massacring people’s lives while we do it. It should come as no surprise to you that immediately after one conflict ends, we find ourselves bogged down in another. That has been the case for decades. Why? What is to be gained? Efficiency, improvement, and growth, because war is competition of our killing machines against theirs.

This isn’t an answer in and of itself, though. Why do we want to make our killing machines better, more efficient, stronger, and faster? What is the purpose? What is the purpose of sparring against so many lightweight athletes?

Russia.

And now the moment has come, as it was always destined to. We’ve improved to ridiculous degrees. We now have fully automated killing machines. Do you really think that we would have military drones capable of dropping smart bombs on an area half a square mile from the comfort of a base in Nevada if we hadn’t had Korea, Afghanistan, Bosnia, Kuwait, Iraq, Libya, and Syria?

Where do you think the Nazis went after World War 2?

Only nineteen people were found guilty at Nuremberg.

And even discounting the Nazi thing as a minor one–which it is, realistically–it doesn’t matter. We made our intentions clear in the 50s that we would fight whenever, wherever. Why did we do that? Because there was the Soviet Union, the only nation in the world still capable of going toe-to-toe with us. That made them Public Enemy Number One, a mentality that, clearly, never went away.

We continued sharpening our swords and using all of these sparring matches to find ways to improve our attacks, strategies, technologies, methodologies, and tactics. The Russians… didn’t. The Soviet Union collapsed and set them back; they are only recently beginning to stretch back out, with action in Ukraine, Georgia, and Syria.

It is the intention of the United States Military Industrial Complex–a phrase I don’t particularly care for, because I don’t have much patience for conspiracy theories, but we are where we are…–to take out Russia now, before they’ve had a decade to spar with other nations and improve their own capabilities. The plan is to hit them now, before they can have sparring training. This will set them back another few decades, and will leave us with no one in the world who can challenge us as we terrorize smaller nations that couldn’t possibly hope to stand against us. We’ll continue competing and improving through the competition, while Russia will be set back more decades.

And then we will reign, the uncontested champion of the world.

This must be stopped.

Do not allow Hillary to win the election.

Final Debate Review: You’re Breaking My Heart, America

Well, the debates are finally over. Thankfully, they saved the best for last. This started out as a really good debate–it was an actual debate, and the moderator was fantastic, interrupting both candidates equally and encouraging dialogue and genuine conversation. It was one of the best presidential debates that I’ve ever seen, until about halfway through. Trump couldn’t resist opening his mouth to say “Wrong” over and over, and Hillary simply refused to shut up. The moderators should have the authority to cut the candidate’s microphone if they don’t shut up. There were numerous times when Hillary behaved like a child this time, refusing to stop talking even though the moderator just repeatedly asked her to stop.

I didn’t get to finish the debate. I had it paused with about fifteen minutes left, and they ended the live stream. Apparently, this meant I could no longer watch what my browser had already cached. Anyway, here are my notes, some brief and some long, about how the debate went.

“What kind of country are we going to be?” Hillary asks. She’s exactly right. The question this election is between globalism, imperialism, and world domination, or “something else.” I don’t know what you want that “something else” to be, but it doesn’t matter if Gary Johnson gets 30 Electoral College votes, Jill Stein gets 16, and Castle gets 9. It only matters if someone hits 270. I don’t care who you vote for. Except I really do beg you. I implore you–I am begging and pleading with you–do not vote for the warmongering, bloodthirsty Hillary Clinton. Yes, vote for Trump over her.

Between the two, I would take Trump any day of the week. I don’t know how badly Trump will fuck things up, but I am absolutely confident that he would not start World War 3. Conversely, I am reasonably certain that Hillary not only could start World War 3, but legitimately intends to. A lot of people have noticed this, and I am not alone in it. Regardless of what you think of him–and this is the first time I’ve ever seen any of his work–Stefan Molyneaux has compiled quite a collection of evidence supporting this idea; it’s pretty clear that Hillary wants Russia.

Please do the world the favor of watching the first half of that video before you vote. This is an enormous prospect, not something to roll your eyes at. We’ve all heard Hillary speaking about the Russians. “They’ve launched cyber attacks…” “We will punish them…” “We need leverage over them…” “We will retaliate with our military…” “Putin himself is doing this…” She hasn’t been subtle in any sense. If we elect Hillary and this war erupts, you cannot say that you didn’t see it coming. The writing is on the wall. All you have to do is look at it. With something as huge as war with Russia appearing to be on the line, we have to seriously consider things.

Deny Hillary 270 by voting for anyone else. Literally anyone else. Vote for Marilyn fucking Manson if you want, I don’t care. Just don’t vote for Hillary. She cannot win because I vote for Daryl Perry. She can only win because people voted for her. So don’t vote for her. Bam. Done. Easy-peasy.

“Do the founding fathers’ words mean what they say…?” lol. Loaded question much?

“Dark, unaccountable money coming into our election system…” From Hillary, that is fucking classic.

Trump’s question about the Supreme Court became an attack on Hillary about her deplorable comment? What the actual fuck? He did finally get to it and say it had to be interpreted in the spirit of what the founders meant, rattled on about the Second Amendment. The Second Amendment is mostly useless to us today, as I wrote in The Power Gap, which you can buy there–none of the money goes to me, fyi. If you wanna throw money at me, throw it at the Foundation for Rational Economic Education or the Mises Institute. Anyway, our shotguns, pistols, and rifles won’t mean a fucking thing against the drones, cluster bombs, and scorpion missiles that our military has. The Second Amendment has long been gutted completely; it does nothing to help us defend ourselves from the state.

Okay, I see now. Trump does talk like a kid. Lots of small words, it is kinda off-putting.

Hillary says she respects the Second Amendment and gun ownership. “Can be and must be reasonable regulation.” No amount of regulation is reasonable. Regulation, by its very nature, is unreasonable. Outlawing guns will prevent gun-related deaths just like outlawing heroin prevented heroin-related deaths.

Fox is actually creating and fostering a dialogue. Holy shit! This is a debate! This is what we should have had the other two times! This is fantastic. Why can Fox do this, but CNN can’t? Fox, you truly deserve a shout-out for this.

Trump, “I am pro-life…” At the moment, are you really? Trump is saying that yes, he wants to see Roe v Wade overturned, and to let it be sent back to the states. It’s already mostly handled by the states, isn’t it? I had a family member who I had to drive to Arkansas because she couldn’t get an abortion here in Mississippi after the 4th week. Are people really trying to outlaw first month abortions?

I’m not getting along well lately with pro-life libertarians, because they’re so smug and sanctimonious when they decry abortion as a violation of the NAP, and thus unequivocally wrong. Um… So we’re just going to ignore the violation of the NAP against the woman as you force her to donate her body to someone else? My point has long been that there’s no longer any way to come out on the side of the NAP regarding abortion. It exists now, and there’s no way to resolve it. It’s the murkiest of murky murkiness. The Pro-Life people aren’t wrong to say that it’s a violation of the NAP, but being Pro-Life is also a violation of the NAP, just in a different way. So it comes down to being a question of whose rights you want to violate: the fetus’s or the woman’s. The pro-choice position is pro-choice: an individual should have the right to make that choice for themselves. That’s the best we can do definitively.

I’m pro-choice. This does not mean pro-abortion. This means that I’m against forcing a woman to donate her literal flesh for the benefit of someone else. I’m also against killing people. This is irreconcilable. Thus, I’m pro-choice: you make your decision. It’s merely a question of how you want to violate the NAP: with violence or with force.

Hillary is for late term, partial birth abortions? I’ll have to look into it, because I don’t know enough about it, but I doubt that’s acceptable in the mainstream.

Everything bad is “…a disaster” if you ask Trump. I found myself removing “It’s a disaster” from something that I wrote recently, because I heard it in Trump’s voice as I wrote it.

No, we don’t need strong borders. If you want gun control, you have to have strong borders. If you want the drug war, you have to have strong borders. We don’t want either of these things. It would be, as Trump likes to say, “a disaster.” Trump knows it, too. There’s a reason he mentions drug control and the border. I like how he just stops and says, “Now. I want to build a wall.”

Trump makes an emotional appeal to fear of drugs and crime. Hillary makes an emotional appeal to compassion about breaking up families. Neither of them are able to provide an actually rational answer. They both simply appeal to emotions. Different emotions, but it’s still an emotional appeal.

How does Hillary stand there nodding as Trump says that her husband signed NAFTA, “the worst trade deal in the history of mankind?”

We need those undocumented immigrants to take lower wages, out of the way of the Minimum Wage laws.

Fox is gonna blast her on those leaks! Awesome.

Oh. No they’re not.

“My dream is open markets and open borders…” “I was talking about energy.” Um… What?

I knew it was coming. “You mentioned Wikileaks. THE RUSSIANS!”

She even said “It came from Putin himself.” Jesus fucking Christ, the fearmongering. Why are people letting her deflect like this? There is not a shred of evidence supporting the notion that the Russians are behind this shit. Stop blaming them, or put up the evidence. This is blatant and obvious deflection. Anyone with a brain can see that. This is why I said that we needed McAfee. Assuming we’d nominated McAfee and assuming he’d magically reached 15%, I believe he’s one of few people capable of nailing down slippery Hillary.

“The Russians have engaged in espionage against the United States of America… You’re going to let him break up NATO… You continue to get help from him…” Goddamn, people, this is so bad. “Seventeen intelligence agencies have concluded these cyber attacks come from the highest levels of the Kremlin and they are designed to influence the elections…”

There is literally no evidence to support that!

The moderators need to start cutting off people’s mics.

Japan and Korea already have nukes, Hillary.

“Our country cannot afford to defend Saudi Arabia, Germany, Japan, South Korea…” said Trump. Exactly, so we shouldn’t try. Or, if we’re going to be mercenaries, then yes, we have to charge for it.

If we’re going to be mercenaries for the rest of the world, then Trump isn’t wrong—they should pay. That’s actually not a bad position. We’re the world’s most powerful military by a huge margin and could charge top dollar as a mercenary force. I hate that idea, and don’t think we should be doing it. It’s a better idea than doing it for free in the name of “freedom.” Let the rebel forces raise the money and hire us as mercenaries, or get out of the mess.

“Growing the economy…” I’m so sick of hearing that. “Employment programs…” No. “Fight climate change…” No. “Help small businesses…” No. “Raise the national minimum wage…” ABSOLUTELY NOT. “Education that goes through college…” No. “Real apprenticeships…” Not the government’s responsibility. “We’re going to go where the money is…” Yes, and that’s why it’s not in the United States. “Rich and corporations will pay higher taxes…” Yes, and that’s why they’ll leave the United States.

Why are the candidates even talking about taxes? There’s literally nothing they can say about taxes that we can believe by any stretch of the imagination. Candidates always lie about taxes.

This moderator is funny. I like him. “Thank you, sir.”

Hillary really just blamed shit on Bush again. It’s been eight fucking years. Seriously, it’s pathetic to blame Bush in 2016.

Hillary! What the actual fuck? Your tax plan is not “bottom-up!” It’s still top-down, for fuck’s sake. The government is still the top.

The only way that we can compete with China and India’s 8% growths is by abolishing the Minimum Wage. There is literally no other way.

Trump said, “And they actually fact checked it and said I was right.” The way he stated this was freaking priceless. Like it was a rare thing that someone fact-checked him and found out that he told the truth because people usually fact-check him and find out that he’s pulling shit out of his ass…

Oh wait.

So Hillary called TPP “the gold standard in trade deals” without reading over the full thing? Are you serious? Because that’s what she just said. “I said it was the ‘gold standard’ until I read the full version.” So she would have signed this deal without fully reading it? Are you fucking kidding me? It’s bullshit anyway, and we all know it. Goddamnit, we all know it. They’ll modify the TPP very slightly, and Hillary will sign it.

This narrative about being kissed without consent needs to be dropped NOW. How stupid and insane have we gotten? When was the last time  you were out on a date and the guy said, “I had a really good time. May I kiss you?” Fuck that noise. You know that never fucking happened. I actually do have a history of asking a girl’s permission before kissing her, and when I was younger, I’d even ask permission before holding their hands. I know first-hand that it’s extraordinarily rare. I’d go as far as saying that if you’re not one of my exes, then the odds are that you’ve never had someone ask your permission to kiss you.

The point is “Kissed without my consent” is a trumped up charge and is absolute bullshit.

Holy shit. That’s actually true. People at the DNC really did pay people to go riot at Trump rallies. I’ve not watched the video yet, but this should be the top story everywhere. The Democrat Party needs to be thoroughly rejected over this. It is hopelessly corrupt. Any political party that would promote violence at an opponent’s rally has no business in the United States. Disband it immediately.

“He’s called a number of women disgusting…” Hillary. Really? How many times have you called him disgusting? So it’s okay to call a man disgusting, but not a woman?

“He never apologizes for anything…” But he does, though. He apologized for the remarks in the 2005 video. So… that’s a lie, and I suspect you know that’s a lie. He also apologized for the remarks about McCAin.

Hillary, no liberal has any right to accuse anyone of being divisive.

Hillary, the people of Haiti hate you and the Clinton Foundation.

Trump does say anything is rigged when he loses. He’s a sore loser. “I didn’t win an Emmy. It’s rigged. I’m not winning the Primary. It’s rigged.”

However, the DNC showed that “the establishment” is absolutely willing to rig things in Hillary’s favor. We don’t know how far up this goes, but we do know that the FBI director was unwilling to prosecute Hillary because she is Hillary Clinton.

I’d take someone blaming a rigged system over someone blaming the Russians and trying to start a war. As far as mindsets go, one is way more dangerous than the other.

Oh, good. Permanent stationing of troops in Iraq to fill in the power vacuum and keep Isis from rising again. Great. Wonderful. Perfect.

I can’t believe that I just listened to the Democratic presidential candidate advocating military action. What the fuck happened to this country? Didn’t the Democrats used to be anti-war? What happened to that? Oh, that’s right. They weren’t anti-war. They’re anti-Republican, and they just used “anti-war” as a way of going after Republicans.

I’m suddenly reminded of the South Park episode where the town splits itself in two over war, and it clearly characterized the town’s anti-war people as Democrats. Man, was that episode way off. Democrats don’t give a shit about war. They love war as much as Republicans do. Democrats just dislike Republicans. This is really, really bad.

America, we have to stop this. Stop it. Please. Just stop it.

Stop killing people.

I don’t fucking care what your reasons are. Stop killing people.

Just stop it.

Hillary: “…an intelligence surge that protects us here at home.” Combined with her beating of the war drums aimed at Syria, I have to say… that scares me. I see bad things coming down the future. The rise of an American Gestapo. Thoughtcrime—thoughtcrime is already becoming a thing, and, yep, it’s the faux progressivists and their “micro-aggressions” who are creating it. I can’t believe this is happening. This absolutely must be stopped.

We must say it loudly, clearly, and unambiguously. “We will support no more war.”

All American soldiers should be returned to U.S. soil. No if’s, and’s, or but’s.

“If you’re too dangerous to fly, you’re too dangerous to buy a gun…” Fuck, man. The writing is on the wall. It’s all right there. Just combine everything we know. Trump isn’t the next Hitler.

Hillary is.

“…to gain some leverage over the Russian government…

Hillary is so goddamned dangerous.

I had to pause the video and reboot my brain when Hillary began criticizing Trump for lying. Really, Hillary? You’re both liars. Between the two of you, I think Trump is probably more honest than you, but of course he’s a liar.

“They’re digging underground…”

Damn, that sounds familiar.

“Aleppo has fallen. What do you need, a signed document?”

That shit’s funny, man. I can’t believe a U.S. presidential candidate just tossed out sarcasm like that in a debate.

“if she did nothing [in Syria], we’d be in much better shape.”

I really wish Trump would stick to non-interventionism. He’d be a passable candidate if he did. But he doesn’t. I’m not convinced that he’s speaking generally, or if he’s talking from hindsight. I think he’s talking from hindsight. Maybe not. I mean, the lessons aren’t hard to learn. Anyone who has been paying attention must surely know that our stupid military adventures are stupid and damaging to our own long-term interests.

Clinton wants a No Fly Zone in Syria.

Serious question.

By what right do we impose a No Fly Zone on a country? Can you imagine if Canada said, “We’re going to impose a No Fly Zone on the United States”? We’d immediately shout back, “Who the hell do you think you are? We’ll shoot your planes out of the sky if you try it.”

So it’s about arrogance and entitlement. We’re just like “Who cares? We’re big and powerful, so we can impose a No Fly Zone any-fucking-where we want.” People… You’re really breaking my heart, America. I can’t believe that we have become so arrogant, so entitled, so aggressive, so bloodthirsty, so vile, so petty, and so disgusting that we think we have any right whatsoever to impose a No Fly Zone on another country.

And we just… take it for granted. We don’t even stop to ask, “Wait. We don’t have any authority over Syria. What the actual fuck? A No Fly Zone? That’s an act of war. Are we declaring war on Syria? No! Because declaring war is so passé. Instead, we’re just going to commit acts of war on a country we’re not at war with, which I’m pretty sure is a violation of the Geneva Convention.”

America: proof that even a country founded by people who explicitly spoke out against military intervention and entangling alliances can become a bloodthirsty imperialist war machine.

We’re All Dumber After the Debate Last Night

While watching the baboon and bimbo dance around the arena flinging feces at each other, several times throughout the performance I found myself thinking about that oft-quote line from the film Billy Madison, after a series of tasteful, intellegent-sounding montage clips.

To be honest, the entire debate wasn’t that bad, but most of it was. And, before I continue, I want to say–can we stop talking about who “won” the debate? These aren’t that kind of debate. I would love nothing more than for these to be that type of debate, but these aren’t debates in that sense. Hillary supporters will say that Hillary won, Trump supporters will say that Trump won, and independents will say that everyone, especially the American people, lost. No one won, though, because these kinds of debates don’t have winners. Neither candidate is trying to win a discussion, and no official judge is keeping tally of whose answer to a question stands strongest.

I suppose, technically speaking, we won’t know who won the debates until Election Day.

Anyway, I jotted down some notes while I watched Trump and Hillary do… whatever it is that last night’s televised performance can be called… and I’m going to clean them up a bit, expand them, and post them. There is a lot of ground to cover, so I’ll try to keep it short. If anything isn’t clear, feel free to comment or send me an email. If necessary, I’ll write a follow-up post about specific topics.

This is largely copied and pasted from a Word document.I type 110 WAM, so that’s not as big a deal as you might think.

Trump started out well, floundered a bit. It was actually genius how Trump began talking with such a somber, measured tone. It smacked of humility. Oh, no, don’t get me wrong; I sincerely doubt the released Grab ‘Em By the Pussy video humbled Trump, but he knew that he had to come out and pretend to be humbled. As a result, it took him a while to fall into stride. He pulled it off well until Hillary went into Attack Mode, which caused his Humble Appearance to conflict with his Typical Demeanor, and the result was that he floundered. As he pulled away more and more of the somber measurement, he started falling into the rhythm of things.

NBC was transparent as hell in their favoritism of Hillary. Hillary was allowed to go on past the two minutes without a warning until after she’d gone over by a bit, while they were always quick to cut off Trump. Additionally, at the very beginning, this scene happened:

Trump answered a question.

Hillary responded.

Moderator asked Hillary a question.

Hillary answered.

The moderator attempted to go straight onto the next question. Trump asked, “What, I don’t get to reply to her, but she can reply to me?” He’s not wrong, and the moderator had clearly skipped over him intentionally–even if it was a mistake. When she acquiesced that Trump could reply, she said, “But keep it brief, because we have to move on,” and then she interrupted Trump somewhere around 30 seconds later. It was blatant favoritism, and it was on a disgusting scale.

The crowd has cheered him twice and boo’d Hillary once, has otherwise been silent.

Hillary walked right into it and said, “Well, it’s a good thing you’re not in charge of the law in this country.”

Right on cue, Trump said, “Because you’d be in jail.”

Cheers and applause. Really sick burn. Jaw-dropping burn, in fact.

Great entertainment–really, it is, but it’s also nothing more than “Trump is the devil.” “Hillary is the devil.” They’re just going back and forth slinging shit at each other.

Trump straight up called Hillary the devil, too. “I’m stunned Sanders would then sign on with the devil…”

He’s grilling Hillary about deleting 30k emails and telling her she should be ashamed of herself. NBC is really bad about interrupting Trump and not Hillary, though. This debate is childish. It’s supremely childish. These people are trying to lead the country. And they are both being so childish it’s ridiculous. It’s disgusting, in fact. Goddamn.

Hillary just spouted 4 things that I know to be untrue. She’s talking about those of “us” with work-provided health insurance, and NONE of the shit she said applies there. She’s talking about employer-provided health insurance and saying things about independent insurance while claiming it’s about employer-provided. That may not make sense. It’s true, though. “Moving on from b, regarding a, x is true and z is true,” but x and y only apply to b anyway.

The debate is at least back on track, and is, temporarily, no longer childish. Interestingly, even Bill Clinton speaks out against the ACA.

“Medicare does a great job.” — Hillary Clinton, 10/9/2016

lolwut

Why do people so consistently miss the insurance part of health insurance? This is going to get its own post, but the brief idea is this: Start using your auto insurance for every little thing related to your car. Use your auto insurance to fix a flat tire, have your oil changed, etc., and let me know how long it takes you to completely break the system. Now mix in the government making it illegal for auto insurance companies to raise your rates, even if you use it on frivolous things. Now allow the government to mandate conversations between the mechanics and the insurance companies, so they can work out how best to rip you off. Now let that play out for a few decades, with mechanics charging you for a bunch of shit you don’t need–because you have insurance, it doesn’t cost you anything–and let the costs be passed onto the people out there who don’t use insurance frivolously. Then let that play out for a few more decades. Let me know how utterly broken the system is.

Trump is arguing competition will fix the insurance rates issue, while the moderator Anderson Cooper insists a government mandate is necessary. Trump is right about this, but he’s not putting it well. Competition is what is needed, not a mandate. “When you get rid of state lines, you’ll have competition.” He spoke about how the current system gives companies monopolies in specific states, and he’s… right.

Anderson tried to interrupt Trump several times, saying, “BUT WILL YOU HAVE A MANDATE?!” This deserves its own article, because it’s such an interesting showcase of how fascism and interventionism have conquered the United States. It is absolutely unfathomable to Cooper that a government mandate isn’t necessary, and Cooper is incapable of imagining any other way that the problem could be solved. Through this discussion, you can see the smug Hillary smirking about how the stupid capitalist thinks competition will fix it and that we don’t need the government mandating everything. This is why Cooper attempted to interrupt Trump at least three times, and why Trump continued to insist–clumsily–that competition would fix it.

I would gladly sell my soul for an emergency meeting of the RNC, with Ron Paul stepping forward to say, “I’ll replace him.”

Ron Paul would have hit the questions about the mandate out of the park. That notion that we need the government to protect us from ourselves, Ron Paul has ripped to shreds in a number of debates, often getting roaring applause and agreeing laughter from the audience. Trump attempted to give a Ron Paul answer, but he wasn’t anywhere near thorough enough, and he’s no Ron Paul. Trump has a weird nationalist streak that just isn’t compatible with libertarianism–Trump brazenly speaks of protectionism and tariffs to protect American businesses, at the same time that he says competition will only benefit us. So, to Trump, competition will benefit us… until it doesn’t?

Trump may actually do coke. There’s no way he still has a cold.

“There’s been a lot of dark, divisive things said about Muslims,” Hillary said. Yeah, because Muslims have done a lot of dark, divisive things.

Hillary and Trump gave the same goddamned answer about immigration and Islamophobia–seriously, the same answer, but they worded it differently. “Violent jihadist terrorist,” Hillary says. “Raidcal Islamic terrorist,” Trump says. That’s the exact political correctness that is the issue. Jihadist = Muslim, wtf? That’s the funny thing about religion. The Jihadists, as Hillary calls them, insist that non-Jihadists aren’t true Muslims, just like the Westboro Baptist Church insists that no pro-choice person can be a true Christian.

“It’s not a Muslim ban anymore. It’s called ‘extreme vetting,'” says Trump, pulling the same euphemistic political correctness bullshit he’s spent a year criticizing people for. So… it’s still a Muslim ban, and still based on their religion and nation of origin, but we’re not going to call it a Muslim Ban any longer. Got it. No, thanks, that is perfectly clear. Thanks for clearing it up.

“…Because of RUSSIAN aggression.” Hillary put a lot of obvious emphasis on that. Seriously, it was transparent. And it was right after she talked about the “4 year old boy bombed by Russian jets…” Then she said, “…Because of Russian aggression…” and, no shit, actually put a lot of really suspicious emphasis on it.

“The Kremlin–meaning Putin and the Russian government–are directing the hacks of American government to influence the election… The Russians hack information and then put it it out… The Russians are using Wikileaks.” Hillary, again. “They’re doing it to influence the election for Donald Trump.” Probably because Hillary clearly wants war with them???? You think????? “… Donald Trump should release his tax returns!”

She couldn’t be more obvious in how she wants war with Russia and is hoping for Cold War fear to propel her into the presidency. We don’t need war with Russia, man.

“What would you do to ensure the 1% pay ‘their fair share’ in taxes?” asked an audience guy. ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING?! They are paying MILLIONS and hundreds of millions in taxes while the 99% are paying in a thousand or two. Fair share?

This is an idea that seriously pisses me off, because it showcases entitlement through and through. People focus on percentages, when percentages are irrelevant. Hey, Mr. Audience Man, let’s talk about the fact that you only paid $900 in taxes, but this 1%er paid $450,000. You’re about $449,100 behind him. What are you going to do to pay your fair share? Or do you think it’s fair that the billionaire pays $450k for something that you only pay $900 for?

This is a mentality created by our love for unapportioned taxes. With directly apportioned taxes, that guy’s bullshit, thieving, entitled mentality would not be able to stand, because it would be readily obvious that Billionaire B paid $12,000 to the city for its apportioned taxes to build some schools, while Mr. Audience Man paid only $90. Because you’re a jackass if you think that Billionaire B is using like 1200% the amount of schools that Mr. Audience Man is using, we can easily surmise that they use the schools in roughly the same way. So Billionaire B is literally paying a shitload more for the service than Mr. Audience Man is paying, and Mr. Audience Man wants to talk about how Billionaire B isn’t paying his fair share? Are you kidding me?

“We’ve gotta go where the money is,” Hillary said about taxing the wealthy. Good plan. That way, we can ensure that the wealthy leave with all their money. “I want to invest in you, I want to invest in hard-working families.”

Well… I don’t. I don’t want the government investing in me. I want my employer to invest in me, not random people I’ve never met. I want companies to invest in their employees, not have the government do it. I want employers throughout the country to be free to invest in their employees, by paying them a wage, by sending them to training seminars, by helping them pay for college–you know, as many corporations do today. Imagine, if we got the government out of the way, how much more effective their investment might be.

Cooper: “Did you use the one billion dollar loss to avoid paying income tax?”

Trump: Absolutely, I do.”

lol. Wow. Motherfucker is straight up about it, and goddamn that has to be admired. “Hell yeah, I exploited those loopholes. She put them there. I want to close them.” It’s hard to believe the latter, but the rest is indisputable, so that has to lend him credibility. I don’t believe it, but it is likelier Trump would close them than Hillary would. But it’s far more likelier that no one would. And I don’t really care anyway. If Trump can keep the money he earned, good for him. The idea that the government should take it from him and give it to other people is gross.

“The situation in Syria is catastrophic,” said Hillary. She presumably muttered, with a wink, “I made sure of it.”

“The Russians are not going to come to the negotiation table for a diplomatic resolution unless there is some leverage over them… I want to emphasize here that what is at stake here is the ambitiousness and aggressiveness of Russia… The war crimes committed by the Russians in Syria…”

“The ambitiousness and aggressiveness of Russia…”

russia-wants-war-us-bases-sarcastic-mapYou can’t make this shit up, man. When that image first began circulating the Internet, we all smirked at it knowingly, but we doubted that the United States would ever seriously have that policy. Yet we didn’t encircle Russia with missile silos to just not use them. It appears that we let this shit happen stupidly. Nervously, and, yes, we did discuss it, but we didn’t try to stop it while it was building up. As we put missile silos in Turkey, Ukraine, India, Afghanistan, and Japan, all of them pointed at Russia, we didn’t really do enough to speak out against it. And now there is every indication that Hillary wants to use all that military in a war with Russia.

It’s amazing. At this point, I’m praying that everyone else has noticed and is rejecting it.

Pence beats the drums of war, too, and perhaps speaks even more bluntly about how he would go to war with Russia. People, we are brazenly talking about going to war with Russia. Russia! This isn’t one of those laughable Middle Eastern countries who we can beat up with one hand tied behind our back. This is Russia. Russia has nuclear weapons. I don’t think anyone will ever again use nukes, but they have them. They have a bad ass military, a bad ass air force.

The only reason we allow these wars throughout the world to continue is that bombs aren’t falling on American cities. If they were, we’d have fixed our fucked up foreign policy long ago. But it’s not our hospitals that have 4 year old children being blown apart in. It’s those “icky brown people’s” hospitals, so fuck them, right?

If you allow a war with Russia, the bombs will fall on American cities. I’ve little doubt that we’d ultimately win that war because of our obscene technological edge, but it would be a horrific bloodbath, and there would be no real winner. Make no mistake: This is a strategic ploy to ensure United States domination of the globe. There are only two countries who even conceivably could stop American domination of the planet at this point: Russia and China. If one of them falls, then it will be centuries before anyone manages to take down the United States. It may become impossible.

We are facing Orwell’s 1984 in some ways, but with a few critical differences. Oceania is called NATO, and has an undisputed champ: the United States. Eurasia never came forward because of the collapse of the Soviet Union. Eastasia is working on coming forward now. Already, we have a military edge over Russia and China–an extreme one that would mean certain victory over either one, if it came to that. They could absolutely hit us back, but modern wars are all about who has the best technology. And ours is… ours is remarkable. We spend more on our military than the rest of the world combined. Just process that.

In 1984, the only thing that kept any of the three from dominating was that there were two enemies, and they were constantly going back and forth with who they were and weren’t at war with. If Oceania and Eastasia threw everything at each other, one or both would be vulnerable and conquered by Eurasia. For longterm global supremacy, one of the two enemies had to be taken out.

What we are seeing is that Oceania is already on top with a huge headstart. Taking down Eastasia or Eurasia now would establish a lead so sufficient that we’d never have to worry about them again. Once upon a time, the Soviet Union and United States were neck and neck with their technology and military capabilities. Then the Soviet Union collapsed, and Russia was gone for a while. When they returned, we had already established a monumental lead. And, because technological growth is clearly exponential, our lead steadily grows. Taking them out now will put us so far ahead that they’d never have a chance of catching up.

It would also allow us permanent superiority over Eastasia, because Eastasia is also playing catch-up. Because both Eastasia and Eurasia are already far behind, it would take both of them to stand up against Oceania. If one of them is knocked down and set even further back, then it will become impossible–at least for a very, very long time–for anyone to stand against Oceania.

This is why we cannot allow a war with Russia. Russia and China are an essential counterbalance to American global domination. While we could certainly defeat either one–perhaps China more easily than Russia–if war with one meant war with both, then the United States wouldn’t be able to do it alone. We’d have to drag the EU in, and the EU would come in. And then we’d have World War 3.

Fucking god.

No.

Just say “No” to war with Russia, for fuck’s sake.

I do not want World War 3. I do not want war with Russia at all. I don’t want war with China, either. I don’t want the United States to be the uncontested King of the Globe. I don’t want any of that.

Is that our choice? Trump, who presumably represents friendship with Russia, or Hillary, who clearly represents war with Russia?

I’m voting for Darryl Perry. Perry will not give us war with Russia.

“[Pence] and I haven’t spoken, and I disagree,” Trump said about how Pence said we needed to use the military against Russia.

WHY IS NO ONE TALKING ABOUT THIS?!

We are right on the edge of starting a goddamned war with Russia.

“I would consider arming the Kurds,” Hillary said.

An American presidential candidate just straight up said she’d arm rebels in another country. Once upon a time, you had Ollie North and the Iran-Contra shit. Now you have “Yeah, I would arm the Kurds.” Goddamn, dude. Trump is only barely better, but he is at least better.

Audience guy: “Would you be devoted to all the people?”

There’s only one possible answer to that. “No. I would get people out of your way so that you can be devoted to yourself.”

Hillary used her “Say one nice thing about the other candidate” answer to launch into a self-engrandizing statement. Trump simply used his to pay a compliment, after thanking Hillary for her weak one about his kids. He said that Hillary is a fighter and hard worker. Hillary talked about how great she is. And Trump is the egotitical one?

Trump just says the same few things over and over; he doesn’t have any solutions. “We’ll go after Isis, close the border, and make great deals.” Okay, and? While I think the President should just sit around and veto every piece of legislation that gets sent to him, that doesn’t change how most people think, and most people expect the president to do stuff. Trump isn’t offering any answers, though. He just keeps throwing out those three things like they’re a panacea for any problem we have to deal with.

The presidential debates have become exactly like junk food. It’s really great eating them, but there’s no nutritional value and afterward you feel dead inside.

Wow. I’m Defending Gary Johnson…

Americans demand the absurd and the impossible.

Says the anarchist who has spent months criticizing Gary Johnson, right? Oh, don’t worry. I’m going to continue doing so, but that isn’t what I’m getting at. My demands are reasonable, I would argue: I want a Libertarian presidential candidate to actually be a libertarian. What I’m seeing from Americans, however, is entirely unreasonable: they want candidates who have all the answers.

In fact, Americans absolutely hate it if a presidential candidate reveals that they don’t know everything. Realistically, even the most uninformed American has to accept the reality that too much bullshit happens on a daily basis for anyone to keep track of. However, that’s not the way this works. Politicians are supposed to know everything and are supposed to have all the answers, and if they show for even a second that they don’t, then it is taken as a weakness.

Gary Johnson Stuns Morning Joe Panel With a Blank Stare: ‘What Is Aleppo?’

Already, Johnson is being criticized for this. I’m all for criticizing Gary Johnson–when he deserves it. But here you’re going to criticize a man for not knowing everything? What are you going to do about the situation in the South China Sea? What are you going to do about the situation in Mecca, and what the Saudis have said about Indians? These sort of questions cut both ways.

“But we should expect a presidential candidate to know everything that is relevant!” some might argue.

And that’s true, to a degree, but do you have any idea how much shit happens that is considered relevant?

It’s not about Aleppo, though people are gearing up to make out like they know what Aleppo is, and that they’ve always known what Aleppo is.

brace

These people don’t care about Aleppo. Until this morning, I didn’t know what Aleppo was, and when I saw the word I assumed it was some kind of medication. I’m not ashamed of that. Why should I be? You can’t expect people to know everything, presidential candidate or otherwise. Do you have any idea how much information is being shoved at Gary Johnson on a constant basis? He’s not Bruce Wayne.

It’s simply about the fact that Gary Johnson admitted that he didn’t know.

That was the point at which a politician should have deflected and gone off into a completely different answer–you know, how all the other politicians do. When asked a question they don’t have the answer to, Rule 1 for politicians is to bring up something else, “related” or “unrelated” is irrelevant. A politician in Johnson’s position should have brought up the drug war, police violence, or just about anything.

But he didn’t.

He admitted that he didn’t know something.

That, to Americans, is the utmost of heresies.

A century of statism, interventionism, and fascism have left us under the impression that the state has all the answers, and that delusion can only be maintained if we are allowed to labor under the belief that politicians are different from us, better than us, above us. If they admit they don’t know something, these representatives of the all-knowing state, then they are admitting that the state is fallible, that the state might make a mistake.

And that, to Americans, is heresy.

The same thing happened when Donald Trump humbly said that no one should listen to him about Brexit, because he didn’t know enough about it. Americans don’t care what your answer is. Just pretend to have an answer for them. Just pretend that you know. No matter how unrelated to the question your answer is, just never say that you don’t know something. Donald Trump, crowned by the media for some reason as the king of egotism, admitted to not knowing something, and people flipped out.

Now they’re doing it again.

Because the state has all the answers, we’ve been told. The state can solve every problem. The government knows everything, is never wrong, and can do anything. It is infallible and perfect.

And how can the state be infallible and perfect if the politicians that represent the state don’t know something?

A politician saying that he doesn’t know something makes us see right through the cracks in the absurd notion that the state knows everything and has all the answers, and that’s something that we can no longer handle. We have come to rely on that insane delusion–it is the pacifier we suck on as the world falls apart.

“How can the state be perfect and infallible if its representative is not?” is a question the average American simply can’t handle after decades of fascism and promises that the state can fix everything. To the average American, this was outright heresy against the cult of the state, forcing them for just a moment to see that the emperor isn’t wearing any clothes, and that’s something they aren’t able to do right now.

It’s revealing that we only half-heartedly attack politicians for going off on unrelated tangents when asked simple questions (something libertarian candidates do not do–seriously, have you not watched the Stossel Debate? Libertarian candidates answer the questions they’re asked.). “Hillary was asked about Bengazi, why the fuck is she talking about Trump’s statements about the Khan family?” we ask, but we don’t hold it against Hillary. In fact, we expect that sort of behavior.

We love that sort of behavior, even as we pretend to condemn it, because that is the sort of thing that allows our delusion that the state is omniscient and omnipotent to persist. If Hillary said, “I don’t know. I’m just a human being, after all. I guess I fucked up,” then that would decimate her chances of winning the election. But launching into a refrain against Trump? That won’t hurt her at all. Just ponder that for a moment. It is clear why this is the case. In fact, I’ve said it several times:

Because it is heresy to reveal that the state is not omniscient and omnipotent.

In the cult of the state, it is heresy to suggest that the state is fallible, imperfect, or not omniscient.

How Does Liberty Handle the Syrian Refugee Crisis?

Two people are dragging a large, heavy box by chains. One person wants to go northeast; the other wants to go northwest. They each agree to just do their own thing, to not impede the other, and to walk the direction they each have chosen. So the first person walks northeast, the second walks northwest, and the box is dragged northward.

That is the essence of liberty.

Did either person get to drag the box in the direction they wanted to go?

No, but each person was allowed to walk in the direction they wanted, and that is what matters. They do not have the right to drag the box the direction they wanted to go, because the box did not belong to one person alone.

That is a follow-up to my video about Gary Johnson:

Discussing the 2016 Election

I’m going to share some emails between myself and a few other people. I’m not going to identify the other people, but my remarks will be italicized.

=================================================================

the only value in discussing the election now is in asking “what does this say about this?” There’s a reason otherwise meaningless and inconsequential information is referred to as “academic.” Conversations about such things are little vehicles for knowledge, perspective, wisdom, and such. The vast majority of things that occur at places like universities are indeed academic. All that brain exercise is largely entertainment for the participants. You and I enjoy considering things like this, but in fact anything/everything – or nothing – can happen between now and November. Right now it’s simply brain food. The information doesn’t exist that would enable someone to “predict” the election.

Trump is just a symptom…an indicator…a “barometer,” so to speak. It enrages me that the Left is so afraid of change, but that, too, is a massive indicator. More and more, the shift is toward looking to the government as the solution to problems. That’s horrifying. And the Left just wants more and more of it. There can never be too much for them. It’s the projection of the ego, and it’s as “natural” as can be. Humans are lost, desperately searching for SOMETHING to “make everything ok.” Nobody really grows up. We’re just old children. We are so emotionally weak it’s astonishing.
What I can’t reconcile is the basic Left impulse. Is it lack of confidence that humans can take care of it themselves? Does it emanate from a sense of fear, that left to their own devices humans are self-destructive? Isn’t the irony absolutely breathtaking? I mean, really. Isn’t the fundamental tenet of marxism that humans are basically good? How does that ethos co-exist with a paternalistic view of government?
And, of course, I realize that the “left” in America bears little resemblance to Marxism. But I’m thinking of the basic motivations, the issues on which peoples’ worldviews and thus decisions turn? Am I fighting a straw man?
You know, THAT right there distinguishes a real thinker from the “rest.” Seriously. Consider how attractive and nature the strawman impulse really is. My strawman tends to be of two types: the liberal intellectual who hates all things uneducated, religious, “redneck.” He sees bias and racism everywhere. He feels himself completely qualified and justified spouting his “progressive” views everywhere. He thinks he pities those who come from “challenged” backgrounds. He is not proud of his ancestors. He feels no patriotism, nationalism….not even sure what “pride” is. Yet he completely understands “black pride” and he feels a sense of righteousness in their anger. He “understands” them.
My other strawman is the person the educated liberal doesn’t know exists. This person doesn’t work and doesn’t want to. This person lives among a culture than devours the system that devours them. She knows every trick in the book – how to qualify for all the programs that enable one to live and build a large family of dependents, without working a job. She has 8 kids by 3 different fathers. She’s not qualified to work, and she likely suffers from several physical and/or mental disabilities, any of which can be used to further her cause. Her interest in government (politics) is 100% limited to how it serves her specific purpose.
I know individuals who fit both those profiles. But do they exist like that at large? Or am i fighting stawmen just like everyone else, and therefore I’m missing the real points, overlooking the real issues?
Are Hillary and Trump simply dogs and ponies, trotted out every 4 years to occupy our attention, while the REAL business of running the world goes right on? Are we eating the diversion hook, line, and sinker? Does it matter? I mean, really?

You’d have to look to Mussolini, not Marx, to understand the left in America, and it was your email that just made me realize this. The left simply wants more power. That’s all leaders on the left want. I know that sounds like a strawman, but Mussolini and Hitler also sound like strawmen, don’t they? There’s no chance that Sanders genuinely believes the bullshit that comes out of his mouth, but that’s how the left functions. What an interesting thing, considering neurology. Anyway, they simply take an emotion and add “The government should put a stop to this!” to it. But this isn’t a policy. It’s an emotion that could lead to a policy. Instead, the left takes their solution of having the government brute force it, and associates it directly with that emotion. “No one who works 40 hours a week should live in poverty! So we must raise the minimum wage!” and they never realize how divorced from each other those two statements are. Wanting workers to make more money becomes associated with raising the minimum wage, to the extent that liberals think you can’t be for higher wages if you don’t support an increased minimum wage. “You don’t want to raise the MW? So you’re okay with families living in poverty?”

The statement “No, I’m not. But I also know that the MW is the reason that many people live in poverty, and that raising it will only ensure that ‘the percentage of people who live in poverty’ will only increase.” falls on deaf ears. They literally can’t understand it, because they’ve tied their emotion to their solution.

Leaders on the left did this intentionally, framing themselves as the only possible solution, such that anyone who didn’t support those solutions therefore lacked those emotions: sympathy, namely, often blown up to ridiculously selfless levels. Of course, everything about it is egotistical. The mask of selflessness is absolutely something that they take pride in. So they have pride, I think, and they know what it is–they just take pride in the fact that they don’t take pride. It comes back to that thread we’ve discussed often: trying to abolish the ego is, itself, an act of ego.

The masses are merely tools for this. I was stunned a few years ago when a recently graduated friend informed me of what her student council defined as “leadership.” It was, more or less, “the ability to influence people to support your ideas.” It’s a sort of ultra-cynicism that views people as pawns to be moved around on a chessboard, and those people have taken over the country. Hillary’s snide smirk says it all. And I suspect that Trump actually is somewhat better, because he knows that his business empire is built on the backs of thousands of other people. Yes, he deserves his wealth, but he is not the sole person earning it, and he surely knows that. That’s where the left’s ideology completely breaks down: we don’t need megacorporations and mega-banks, but they absolutely need us.

We don’t need Wal-Mart. Not really. We do right now, because so many of the government’s laws assist Wal-Mart by preventing places like Dollar General from truly rising to that level. We need Microsoft because Intellectual Property prevents Android from making a competitive PC version. Everyone wants what they’re accustomed to, and there is nothing that stagnates competition quite like intellectual property. If Android could throw a start button and windows into their OS and slap it on PC, they’d finish off Microsoft. We both know that a competitor should have risen with Windows 8 and pushed Microsoft out of the market. But they didn’t. Why not? The pieces are all in place: we have new operating systems that work better, are cleaner and more efficient, and we have companies with the money to do it. But it didn’t happen. The Windows 10 debacle is just a new step in Microsoft’s fuck ups, yet they still reign supreme in the PC market. Why? Intellectual property.

So the government has, one by one, fabricated these conditions where we can’t solve our problems ourselves. We can’t solve the problem of Wal-Mart’s reliance upon child labor and Microsoft’s bullshit shenanigans by switching to competitors because there are no competitors, and there are no competitors because the state’s laws prevent competition. And they do this in the misguided idea of “leveling the playing field,” forgetting, apparently, that the universe isn’t fair and that we can’t use laws to make it fair without violating rights. My cover of Metallica’s Call of Ktulu is likely to land me in very hot water at some point in the future, but I will never take it down. It’s more than 10% different from Metallica’s, and it’s obvious that I used their version as a springboard to add my own ideas to it, but it won’t matter. In every sense, I violated their intellectual property. But what is that, really? It is their ownership of me. I picked up my guitar, used my computer, my drumsets, my time and my energy, and I recorded a song. Everything that I used was 100% mine, even the cassette tape that I listened to as a teenager that contained Metallica’s song.

Intellectual property was the mechanism by which we had our property rights stolen from us, usurped by corporations.

All of this probably seems unrelated, but I don’t think anything is really more important. If we are allowed to own things and put our resources to use, then there is no limit to what we can accomplish. But we’re not allowed to own things. We’re allowed to lease things. There’s a reason all this shit we’re buying comes with gargantuan Terms of Use and license agreements. What kind of shit is that? I bought this software, Microsoft. It’s mine now. Not yours. If you weren’t prepared to surrender ownership of this copy of the software, then you shouldn’t have fucking sold it to me.

More to the point, I recently realized the same thing that you just said, except I don’t think it’s really just a strawman. The only people who are socialists are the people who don’t have, and this is the reason that socialism failed to compete with private property when the hippie communes rose in the 60s and 70s–they couldn’t attract engineers, doctors, physicists, etc. Socialism is for the unskilled and lazy. No one who has their effort rewarded would ever choose to enter into a system where their effort would not be rewarded. Such a system is only attractive to people who are not being rewarded. And while that characterization could actually describe me, I’m smart enough to see the inherent flaw–one day, my various efforts will be rewarded, and, even if not, my own interests simply don’t outweigh the interests of society. Sure, I could benefit from socialism, but the rest of society would stagnate. I guess it’s kinda like my refusal to condemn discrimination and make it illegal. Sure, I’d benefit, but what about other people? Surely they deserve freedom, too?

Socialism is too easy to pick apart for that one fundamentalism reason, and I can’t take any “intellectual” socialists seriously. I think they’re propaganda tools, though they probably believe the bullshit they say. I can understand that, as Matt Slick undoubtedly believes his TAG is sound, but it obviously isn’t.

Mussolini said about democracy that it looks beautiful in theory, but that it’s a disaster in practice, or something to that effect.

Isn’t that pretty much exactly what we’ve been hearing about Trump’s nomination and the Brexit vote?

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i’ve been saying for months what continues to be evident, perhaps obvious: Trump is destroying the GOP. I think I said “he’s killed the GOP and something will take it’s place.” I’ve equated it with the death of the Whig Party, which basically ended with and because of slavery, when rifts among Whigs because too deep and wide for any kind of national cooperation to survive. The modern equivalent just might be immigration, although there certainly are many issues that will contribute. The bottom line is a 2 party system in a place as diverse as America is a goddamn travesty. It almost insures nothing of consequence will get done, because even the most liberal party democrat favors what can only be regarded as status quo. That’s why Trump scares them so badly.

I don’t think it’s possible Trump can win, because I don’t believe anyone can win without a party machine. There’s just too much infrastructure. Elections in America aren’t like class president or the homecoming queen. These are some of the largest, most broadly-cooperative networks on the planet – literally. The democratic party in the US can mobilize more resources in a shorter amount of time than the vast majority of countries in the world.
I’m starting to think this may have all been a prank. I’m starting to think Trump has played one big joke…or pulled off the greatest con job in history.

I think Trump and the GOP are the least of the problems these days. Websites being off from free speech in favor of “protected groups” is the biggest problem. Milo knew it was only a matter of time before he was banned. AIU and TNB also know it. And while this makes them retarded for sticking their hands in the oven when they know it’s going to burn them, the obvious divisiveness of having protected groups is something that can’t easily be undone, not when “but look what happened in the past” remains an acceptable argument. Once it’s a given that the idea of reparations is stupid, we might be able to move forward.

I decided a few days ago that I simply have to stop fighting on a few fronts. That won’t be easy, because every part of me wants to weigh in, but I have to be more focused and concentrated in a few areas. My target audience is minuscule.

I’ve stopped predictions about the election. I think Trump can win, but I don’t see how, not without appealing to moral outrage. We bombed Libya a few days ago.

Libya.

A country that we’re not at war with.

We killed 28 civilians in Syria last week. We killed 100,000 in Iraq. Hilary bears a lot of responsibility for all of this, and she’d definitely continue it.

There’s another way this could go, though: the libertarian party replaces the GOP. It’s not an accident that we have two Republican governors as our nominee, and that I’ve written extensively about why there’s nothing libertarian about Johnson. They’re not angling to promote libertarian ideas. They’re aiming to sacrifice those and become a new liberty-leaning GOP. And it looks like they might be successful. If Romney and Bush endorse Johnson, then libertarian principles will die, and Hillary will certainly be victorious.

Sometimes I think about the reality that one of these two is going to be president. That’s horrifying. Only 9% of Americans picked them. If that’s not an argument for anarchy, then I don’t know what is. 91% of the country had nothing to do with this.

this is what’s horrifying: “banned.”

No doubt. The sentiment that people deserve safe spaces and deserve to be protected is growing, not dying. The reality, though we don’t want to accept it, is that creating online profiles immediately exposes someone and violates their own safe space. This is what happened with the Khan family.

Man, I’ve made some people angry on Quora! Never have I had an answer get this much attention from babies with no comprehension of what I said.

I’ve since stopped arguing the thread. Once I meet someone who drags the topic toward freedom of the press and the Constitution who insists he’s staying on topic, I know to wash my hands of it.

Khan and the dems expected that they couldn’t be criticized because “muh son died, yo”. The bias in questions about it that I’ve been asked to answer… I’ve only answered one more, and only then to call attention to the bias in the question: “Why did Trump criticize the parents of a fallen soldier” or something like that. My first line was “Is this question for real?”

But yeah, it was. My point remains perfectly valid: if I have a child who dies as a soldier, could I then say “Long live David Duke” and no one would be allowed to criticize me?

“But that’s fucked up to say, so yeah, you’d be criticized.”

Great, so we’ve accepted that your indignation isn’t with the fact that Trump “criticized the parents of a fallen soldier,” but that he did so when they were expressing opinions you don’t disagree with. So what we have is you using these people to voice your opinion and wanting them to be inundated against criticism because “muh son died” is a credential if the person agrees with you.

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both you and I are pretty analytical. we see things and then we look for their causes and explanations. with that in mind, here’s why clinton will win, and likely pretty solidly:

the single biggest point of confusion for me when I was in sales was how amazingly difficult it was to get customers to change from their current provider (interesting term, given the topic) to a new one, *even though they detested their current provider*. During the sales process (primaries), the emotion was fervent. “Oh my, yes, your option does look great…that’s MUCH better than we’re getting now….wow, I LIKE what you’re saying!”
Then, after all the dogs and ponies have been trotted out, and it was time to put a piece of paper in front of the customer, and it was time for them to put a signature on that line……..they just couldn’t do it.
I saw this over and over and over and over and over, until I accepted it as a fundamental of human behavior: Unless there is a clear and decisive benefit to switching, people will stay with something they know is bad rather than change to something new. This tendency is ALWAYS exaggerated when the NEW thing is in the least bit associated with risk. Humans as a group have a genetic aversion to RISK. A bad sure thing is often preferred over a possibly-good-but-risky alternative.
And the Dems know this. They have always been better at understanding and taking advantage of human psychology. Hell, their entire existence, their raison d’etre, is THAT – emotion, appealing to fear. The irony is that’s what liberals THINK is going on with Trump, and, surely, there is an element of that in ANY and EVERY campaign – me, good. him, bad. BUT, this election is turning on it more than any other we’ve ever seen.
When it comes down to it, Trump is just too risky for Americans. The voters will decide – in the end – that we’ve likely seen Hillary’s worst, and “it ain’t SO bad” (humans are the best rationalizers the universe ever created).
Trump’s a master salesperson, promoter, marketer. He really is. That’s what he does. It’s why he’s a billionaire. But this is one deal he won’t be able to close.

I don’t agree. For most independents, that could certainly be true, but here’s a few details that I would add. The biggest spoiler of independents is Gary Johnson, and he’s drawing primarily from Hillary. So is Jill Stein, who I rather like (just can’t stand her policies), though she’s also proving a safe place for many Sanders supporters.

If we had a different libertarian candidate, things could be different. McAfee would be trolling what little remained of the defeated GOP and Democratic party by now (bit of an exaggeration), because there’s such a seismic shift away from systemic corruption, from both sides of the aisle, and McAfee couldn’t have been accused of that. But without more major endorsements, Johnson just isn’t going to achieve anything, and many republicans are placing loyalty to the party above dislike for Trump, and so they see people like Romney as traitors.

More importantly, has Hilary EVER been in the public eye for any length of time without her approval rating plummeting? Nope. Every time she appears, we remember how much we can’t stand this bitch, and we marvel at the fact that she hasn’t fucked off yet. Unless Assange is an idiot (and he’s proven that he isn’t), he’s got enough material to throw a new controversy at Hillary regularly through to election day. As soon as one dies down, he throws out another. Each time, Hillary’s numbers go down just a bit more. As long as he’s telling the truth about how much content he has (and he’s never lied about this sort of thing before, and I’ve been following wikileaks since the Iraq diplomacy cables), Hillary is done. There’s just too much dirt, and recent leaks have revealed homophobia, racism, and all kinds of shit from top democrats. The left-wing media just is ignoring it, but social media is NOT.

i would need to see the demographics. perhaps social media has more of an impact than i appreciate. i still see a GOP that looks a lot like my grandparents, and they got their news from cbs, nbc, and abc. We know what their “news” looks like.

You’ll hear hard-core numbers people say elections are simple numbers – numbers that can be forecast. thus, elections contain no real surprises. I’ve seen the electoral college forecast over and over, and trump has a problem because the GOP has a problem. No republican is going to change the fact that Dems start with about 247 electoral votes, the GOP about 200. Trump can’t lose either Florida or Ohio. He must have them both. Could the Hispanic vote in Florida mean the difference? Could the Hispanic/Latino vote in general mean the difference? North Carolina is up in the air, as always, and its hispanic population has grown (where hasn’t it grown?) steadily since 2000.
do people vote for party or for people? I could make a case either way. You seem to be focusing on the impetus created by dislike for Hillary personally. will that cause people to stay home or vote differently?
Republicans have struggled with all minority groups, but especially the ever-growing Hispanic segment. Trump kicked that into mega-overdrive. It could be the difference, IMO. Interestingly, hispanics are not especially-motivated voters. Their turnout is less than other groups. But fear is a fantastic motivator – perhaps the best. And what do immigrants fear above ALL THINGS? Immigration “reform,” read: deportation. Talk of walls and shit certainly crystallized a segment of trump’s base, but likely didn’t bring him many new voters. But it absolutely, unequivocally cost him any/all chance of substantially improving the GOP’s standing with latinos.

wow. I came across this comment in a discussion regarding voter segments, demographics, specifically trump’s problem with Latinos. it made an immediate impact:

It is hard to imagine a white woman doing worse than a black man among white voters.
No, it’s not. And THAT may very well be the difference.
The context was comparing possible red/blue state alignment in 2016 with the election of 2008. the author suggests that because Obama won with only 37% of the white male vote, the outlook is good for Hillary. Only, he’s wrong. The average white American male likely MUCH prefers Obama to Hillary.

Just consider the fact that Sanders went even with Hillary while the media mostly ignored him. Or Ron Paul doing so well when the media COMPLETELY ignored him. And insulted him. In fact, the attached is one of my favorite images of the week.

If you’ve never seen Mike Judge’s Office Space, I really think you’d appreciate it. Lumberg… Man.

Johnson climbed to 10% from 5% riding on social media.

Research shows that a person hearing an idea three times from the same person has the same effect as hearing the idea from three different people. It also shows that we assess popularity based on our familiarity. It’s why fans of obscure anime shows think their pet is popular when it obviously isn’t. One of the greatest challenges as a modern human is learning of these psychological vulnerabilities and using that conscious awareness to defend it against them. It’s why I talk of the Dunning-Kruger Effect so often. That, and, once you learn of it, you’ll seriously see it everywhere.

In fact, this election is a wonderful example. The average American has no idea what would be good for the economy, health industry, diplomatic interests, terrorism, whatever. And that’s so obvious that no one will dispute the statement. Everyone knows that the average person knows nothing about any of these things, and everyone accepts that truth.

“Except me, of course. *My* ideas would CLEARLY be best.”

Last night I argued with a guy who called Trump a fascist. When I told him what a fascist is (someone who wants business to merge with the state while the state is revered as supreme), and pointed out that this obviously describes Hillary and Sanders (particularly Sanders) far more than Trump, he said something like “Well, Trump is a pumpkin and racist tyrant.”

The irony of insulting someone based on their skin color while calling them racist was too much for me to take.

He proceeded to talk about how Trump is a fascist, but using different words. Authoritarian, Nazi, etc. None of which are synonyms, of course, but my point is that he didn’t alter his worldview to accommodate the new information. He proceeded as though his position was just as valid as mine.

I helped put Obama into office (delusionally, I mean, since the popular vote doesn’t matter).

But she’s wrong, and I guarantee she’s not white. The average white person voted for Obama BECAUSE he was black, and it was that white guilt in action. Hillary doesn’t have that advantage.

Love Office Space. Gary Cole deserves an oscar for that performance. OMG he captured every sales manager in american business history. 

this is a quote from Michael Moore:
listen to Hillary and you behold our very first female president, someone the world respects, someone who is whip-smart and cares about kids, who will continue the Obama legacy
“…someone the world respects….” 
when someone with his visibility is THAT delusional, what are the chances of sanity ever prevailing. I mean, really…..
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Well, that hit 4300 words, so that’s probably enough.

Gary Johnson Has Made Us All Heretics

I’ve made no secret of the fact that I strongly dislike Gary Johnson and strongly disapprove of the “Libertarian” Party’s choice to nominate him (again) for President, just as I strongly disapprove of the direction that the libertarian party has taken in recent years. It is increasingly the party of classical liberals and liberty-leaning Republicans, and I know a lot of “libertarians” who support Rand Paul and wanted him to be Gary Johnson’s Vice President.

bill weld

I mean… What do you even say? What do you even say to people who claim to be libertarians without knowing the first thing about libertarianism?

Libertarianism: What is it?

Libertarianism is the political ideology that liberty is the best method of solving almost all problems, and that force, violence, and coercion are only acceptable to defend liberty and as a response to force, violence, and coercion. Force, violence, and coercion are the only way that rights can be violated; in fact, force, violence, and coercion instantly and by definition violate the rights of the person who is a victim of force, violence, and coercion. Libertarianism is the ideology that the state should exist only to protect liberty, and should only use force, violence, and coercion to protect liberty. I go one step further and am an anarchist, because I don’t believe that the state can protect liberty, and I hold that its very existence is counter to liberty. Anarchism aside, there is no ambiguity in this platform, and a libertarian’s position on any given matter should be easy to guess.

Does the issue utilize force, violence, and/or coercion?

If yes, then the libertarian rejects it. If no, then the libertarian doesn’t give a shit about it.

It’s really that simple.

There’s no room for disagreement on this matter or that issue, because force, violence, and coercion (collectively: aggression) can always be demonstrated, and must always be rejected. In fact, to even join the Libertarian Party, one is required to sign what is basically the Non-Aggression Pact:

I hereby certify that I do not believe in or advocate the initiation of force as a means of achieving political or social goals.

Recent years have seen an influx of disaffected Republicans and liberty-leaning conservatives who do not understand that the Libertarian Party is built from principles, not ideas, and there is a difference. The Republican Party is a party of ideas, a party where issues and solutions can be discussed, suggested, picked apart, accepted, and rejected. The Democrat Party is a party of ideas, where issues and solutions can be discussed, suggested, picked apart, accepted, and rejected. But the Libertarian Party is a party of principles, and those principles are set in stone. They are not up for discussion, and they cannot be put up for discussion without violating the very core of the libertarian party: that force, violence, and coercion are not acceptable.

Take the question of marijuana, for example. Should it be illegal, should it be legal? Some people within the Libertarian Party would discuss this and have a debate about it, and that’s nonsense, because the question has already failed at the first hurdle. Does possession or usage of marijuana entail force, violence, and coercion? No. Everything else is completely irrelevant, and the government has no right to weigh in on the subject. Prostitution is another area that “libertarians” are debating. Should it be legal? Should it be illegal? Should it be legal, but regulated? Again, this is a discussion that is not warranted under libertarian principles, as prostitution (when taken out of the black market, obviously) does not involve force, violence, or coercion, and the state therefore has no right to weigh in on it.

Gary Johnson is against the notion of religious freedom and wholly rejects the idea that businesses should be allowed to discriminate on religious grounds. Gary Johnson fails to realize that saying “I don’t want to do business with you or people like you” in no way, shape, or form involves aggression, and thus the government has no right to weigh in on the matter. This is just one of many areas where Gary Johnson abides libertarian principles until they’re no longer convenient and easy, at which point he rejects them in favor of his own ideas. Because he thinks discrimination is really, really, really wrong, he is okay with the government legislating against it, even though it involves no violation of anyone’s rights, and thus he has his own morality that guides him in deciding when to apply libertarian principles and when not to.

In effect, Gary Johnson wants to legislate his morality. Unless he doesn’t care about the behavior, in which case, “No, he’s a libertarian.” But if he dislikes the behavior, then he’s every bit as authoritarian as the people who banned sodomy.

Johnson’s pledge would be:

I hereby certify that I do not believe in or advocate the initiation of force as a means of achieving political or social goals… as long as the goal isn’t “to end discrimination.”

Ron Paul

I have to blame Ron Paul for all the “new” libertarians who don’t know the first thing about libertarianism, though that isn’t Ron Paul’s fault. These people were brought into the folds of liberty by Ron Paul (as was I), but they stopped with Ron Paul and assumed that he was Mr. Libertarian. They may not have ever even read any of Ron’s books. They certainly never read Mises, Rothbard, Nock, or Hayek. Their understanding of libertarianism comes from Ron Paul, and so that’s what they think a libertarian is.

Ron himself would tell you that he’s a classical liberal, though, and he explicitly wrote that in Liberty Defined. There’s a reason that Ron Paul only ran for President as a Libertarian once, and that was nearly three decades ago. I’m not knocking the guy–no one loves Ron Paul as much as I do. He was the guy who introduced me to liberty, after all. I’d also vote for Ron Paul in a heartbeat, even though I disagree with him on a few things just as much as I agree with Johnson. There are more areas where I disagree with Johnson, and…

That should be a pretty big indicator of how bad Gary Johnson is. Republican Ron Paul is more libertarian than the current Libertarian Party Presidential candidate. Worse still, Gary Johnson is only marginally more of a libertarian than Rand Paul. Rand Paul. The guy who slightly leans toward liberty but is otherwise a Republican to the core. Does anyone out there really think that Rand Paul is a libertarian? Does anyone out there who knows what libertarianism is really think that Rand Paul is a libertarian?

I just answered my own question, didn’t I?

The more people understand liberty and libertarianism, the more glaringly obvious it is that neither Rand Paul nor Gary Johnson deserve the label. Ron Paul deserves the label far more than either of these two, and Ron Paul refused to accept the label. Granted, he has become more libertarian since his retirement, and he has always been a champion of liberty and libertarianism. The same cannot be said of Johnson and Rand.

But Johnson is Bringing In New People!

Yeah, and I addressed that in my podcast.

The problem is that these “new people” brought in by Johnson who think that libertarian means “fiscally conservative, socially liberal” not only outnumber us (obviously) but also pick the presidential nominee. Do you see the problem? Johnson brings in people like him who have no idea what a libertarian even is, and they nominate more people like Johnson. When people like me point out that there’s nothing libertarian about any of these people, we’re told to shut up, that we don’t know what we’re talking about, that we just don’t want the party to be successful, that we need to fall in line, and that they are what a “true libertarian” looks like, while we’re just spiteful.

Johnson literally stole the Libertarian Party right out from under us, and these endorsements he is getting by big-name Republicans is not going to help matters, and neither is the influx of more disaffected Republicans who hate Donald Trump. I think it’s great that the party is growing. But as it grows, the education must also grow, or the LP will just become the GOP. It’s already happening, after all. Look at our presidential nominee and the endorsements he is getting. With libertarian principles slain on the altar of mass appeal, what, exactly, distinguishes the Libertarian Party from a party of unhappy liberty-leaning Republicans?

Nothing.

These people must be made to understand that they have no idea what they’re talking about, and that Gary Johnson is not Mr. Libertarian. They don’t have time to read Anatomy of the State, End the Fed, Human Action, The Road to Serfdom, On Intellectual Property, and whatever else? Fine. That means it’s our job to educate them. And I don’t think any of us mind that.

The problem is that they aren’t willing to listen, because they think they know what libertarian means, and it means “fiscally conservative, socially liberal.” They think it means “Basically like Ron Paul” and “Basically like Gary Johnson” and our bemused head-shaking does nothing to reach them.

So what, in a sentence, is my issue with Gary Johnson?

Gary Johnson has made me a heretic to my own party.

And let’s not even get into the fact that he claims to be a champion of the Fourth Amendment, and wants to let in Syrian refugees–except that he wants to spy on them and monitor them based on their religious beliefs and their nation of origin, even though he has no probable cause or justification or warrant! How can this guy claim to be a defender of the Fourth Amendment?

“I defend the Fourth Amendment sometimes,” is what you mean to say, Johnson. “As long as you’re not a Muslim from Syria.”

That’s the exact mentality that gave us the Patriot Act! And you dare claim to be a libertarian? This is exactly the sort of “I’m a libertarian… unless I’m not” crap that Johnson is notorious for. One either supports the Fourth Amendment or one doesn’t. Gary Johnson wants to have it both ways. Either people have the right to privacy without being spied upon by the government until they’ve demonstrated probable cause and the state has gotten a warrant, or people don’t have that right. Gary Johnson, however, would say “People have that right, unless I think they shouldn’t.” That is not a libertarian position. And, again, by what hidden criteria does he use to determine when people should be protected by the Bill of Rights and when they shouldn’t be?

That is how badly statism has conquered the world. Even the Libertarian Party’s presidential candidate uses a non-principled metric to determine who gets rights and who doesn’t.

Libertarians, I implore you: kick Gary Johnson and his ilk from the party. If he was willing to learn, that would be one thing. But he has demonstrated that he is not. He has had this glaring contradiction (“I believe in the Fourth Amendment, unless you’re a Muslim refugee from Syria”) brought to his attention, and he waves it away. He knows that he is not following libertarian principles. Why are we still discussing this “fiscally conservative, socially liberal” clown? Kick him from the party and nominate an actual libertarian. Kick Austin Petersen while you’re at it, because he openly says that the Non-Aggression Pact is stupid. That’s the VERY BASIS of the party!

What is going on? Kick these people out until they’re willing to follow the principles. The GOP and Democratic Party are what happens when you let people in who don’t give a duck-squatting shit about the principles.