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  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 28 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    Drawing this distinction between "leader" and "master" is a good idea I think. Yes, this dislike of "leaders" boils down to a conditioned response, as the Ministry of Propaganda tries to turn all masters into "leaders". Unfortunately even dictionary definitions repeat this equating of leader with master. I am less sure of the notion that we are slaves. Not only are there important differences between our condition and that of real slaves, it also makes the job of freeing people more difficult, I think. Call them slaves, and they are unlikely to pay attention to you.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Actually, I did not want to get into a discussion over whether (Gg)od exists or not. My article was directed at those who already don't think so. "Belief in God is irrational, and belief in government is irrational. Religion and government share that same flaw: each has an irrational underlying premise." And that is entirely irrelevant. I don't care if people believe things that aren't so. I'm sure I have some of those myself. I only care if they harm me. People who are religious do not harm me per se. There is no profit in making the effort convincing them they are wrong. People who "believe the government religion" do harm me. There is profit in turning them into nonbelievers. However even then, you want to find the most effective way to do it. Look in Dale Carnegie's book "How to Win Friends & Influence People". The man wrote the Bible, so to speak, on effective human interaction. Nowhere in that book will you find him advocating ridicule. Bottom line, leave religious people alone, except for believers in the government religion; and with those use your most persuasive tactics. Try not to multiply your enemies for no good reason. When the revolution comes, we will need all the support we can find.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Good word, "presumptuous". presumptuous adjective▸showing too much confidence and not enough respect ~ Macmillan Dictionary
  • BrianDrake's picture
    BrianDrake 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    "I have a hard time seeing how we can say [founding their lives on a rational premise is] important in the one case without being important also in the other. " Though I can sympathize with this feeling, I don't think it conveys a very clear understanding of human beings. Those who do not believe in the legitimacy of the state are a minority in the world. Since you and I are in agreement that the "belief in government" is illogical (I'm trying to avoid "irrational" since I prefer Mises' definition of "rational" - choosing means to accomplish ends - which is not the same as "illogical", and is indeed something all humans are, regardless of how logical they are), would you then conclude that the vast majority of people are completely illogical? Well when it comes to the issue of the state, yes. The vast majority are illogical. But does that necessarily mean they are illogical in every other area of their life? Most scientists are statists, yet they demonstrate a high degree of logical thinking in their field of expertise. Most engineers are statists, yet they must make logical decisions in order for their engineering tasks to succeed. I've yet to observe the trend that 100% of mathematicians are anarchists. It actually seems illogical itself to think that if someone is illogical in one area of their worldview, that they are necessarily illogical in all other areas. Unfortunately, humans that I've observed just don't seem to demonstrate a perfect level of congruity. Does that mean that congruity is not attainable or not desirable? No. But I've yet to meet the person who has truly attained it. So in contrast to you Jim, I have a hard time seeing how it follows that someone who holds an illogical belief on one topic cannot be persuaded logically in another topic.
  • Allen's picture
    Allen 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Hello. This is my first post here at STR. I've been reading and taking in the "feel" of the site before I made any comments. The "prime mover" argument was made by Aristotle to explain *motion*, definitely *not* "creation" and/or "the cause of all things." Aristotle explicitly argued that matter was eternal , that is, un-created (Physics 1:9). Later, Christians cherry-picked Aristotle (of course, after first denouncing all "pagan" philosophers) and attempted to color over his "prime mover" by naming it "the first cause." Anyway, a "first cause" isn't at all rational. "Cause" is a *concept,* not a thing/object. No "cause" exists. It is a name we give *after* we perceive the "effect" (another concept) of things on other things (including ourselves). Motion is an activity of things/objects within the space between other objects. A concept cannot "create" anything. To say that a "Creator creates" isn't saying anything at all, no more than "The first cause, causes." The notion that life requires a creator is a leap of faith, not a rational statement. So, are you presupposing, then, the creator was not living? Or non-existent? Is the "creator" a thing or a concept? And what do you mean by "accidental?" In using this term, are you presupposing what we call "natura/physis" (another concept) won't allow for a myriad of variations without some intelligent mind to direct the course within it? -Joy!
  • tzo's picture
    tzo 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Okay, this just came out. I think it kind of gets across how I feel about all this, but I may change my mind by tomorrow. :> We humans seem to have this strong need to have answers. Many times, just having any answer is satisfactory and better than going without. Here's a fact: No one is ever going to be able to explain how the universe got here and what happens to a human being after he dies. No answers, sorry. Science is the ability to predict the future in a controlled environment based on the body of accumulated knowledge. It is assumed correct until it is proven wrong. Science is nothing more than our best guess as to how things work based on what we know. Since we never can know everything, there is always a chance we are incorrect. Science is not infallible by any measure. So now on to rationality. What do we know, and what can we infer from what we know? Well, the universe is here. Where did it come from? Science has a few theories, but what can we really know about what happened a few billion years ago? I mean know for sure. Just about zero. Yes, I know there are many famous theories that account for the creation of the universe right on down to the first nanoseconds after the big bang. I would contend that this is more of an "I have an answer, which makes me feel much better than not having an answer" answer. How far removed from faith—that thing that people who believe in an intelligent creator are criticized for by rationalists—is the assertion that we know with great certainty what happened a few billion years ago to create the universe? Now right here science is beginning to look a bit like yet another synonym for faith. There seems to be no rational reason to believe that there is something after death, as the consciousness of each of us seems to be tied directly to the body, and so when the body dies, the "me" part dissolves as well. Now imagine this state of nothingness, and the brain cannot handle it. The concept of us being here for a fleeting instant and then being nothing for eternity does not compute. If you say it does, you haven't really meditated on eternity and nothingness. So there you are: At this point any answer feels a whole lot better than that uncomfortable mystery that you don't want to get too close to, too often. On the flipside, eternal life seems pretty terrifying as well. Maybe terrifying isn't the right word, because eternal life just does not really process well in the human brain. Now maybe it's just my defective brain that can't deal with it, but I suspect it is a common design limitation we all share. So there seems to be no "reasonable" answers to these big questions. Based on my observations (I have less than 50 years in a universe that is a few billion years old and my observations are worth what, exactly?) I would tend to not believe in Creators and such supernatural stuff because I haven't directly experienced them as I have, say, a car. Or maybe I have, and that's what life is. There will never be an answer, and all possibilities are open. I agree that organized religion is like organized government, and is generally a man-made con game wherein some profess to know what everyone else doesn't. Rationality says that no one can know about certain things, and so if someone professes to be an expert in the unknowable and surrounds himself with rules and privilege, you can bet it's a scam. But to ridicule people because they feel there is some sort of intelligent creator or that there may be life after death has little to do with rationality, IMO. It actually seems rather presumptuous, now that I have reached the end of this little rant.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Hi Jim, I apologize for butting in, but... THE only idea man can affix to the name of God, is that of a first cause, the cause of all things. And, incomprehensibly difficult as it is for a man to conceive what a first cause is, he arrives at the belief of it, from the tenfold greater difficulty of disbelieving it. It is difficult beyond description to conceive that space can have no end; but it is more difficult to conceive an end. It is difficult beyond the power of man to conceive an eternal duration of what we call time; but it is more impossible to conceive a time when there shall be no time. In like manner of reasoning, everything we behold carries in itself the internal evidence that it did not make itself. Every man is an evidence to himself, that he did not make himself; neither could his father make himself, nor his grandfather, nor any of his race; neither could any tree, plant, or animal make itself; and it is the conviction arising from this evidence, that carries us on, as it were, by necessity, to the belief of a first cause eternally existing, of a nature totally different to any material existence we know of, and by the power of which all things exist; and this first cause, man calls God." ~ Excerpted from The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine When forming your rational belief, Jim Davies, that life, in all its myriad variations, "accidentally" created itself, what premise(s) do you start from?
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Hi Scott. Belief that the universe was created by a God is indeed massively irrational; it conflicts with reason from A to Z. However, I say that with a particular image of what you might mean by "God", so I may be premature in offering that reply. Therefore let me ask you to define the term "God" before continuing by giving examples of what I have in mind. PS: One other question, if I may: when forming your opinion that a creator exists, what premise(s) do you start from?
  • Scott Lazarowitz's picture
    Scott Lazarowitz 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Jim, how is belief in God irrational? And by God, I refer to a "Creator." Do we lack "proof" of God or Creator? Just look at us! Look at life in and of itself as proof! It is very rational to believe that life including animal life was created by a being or beings of superior intelligence. It is difficult for me to believe that the complexities that make up what we view as "life" (such as how our heart is structured and the way it works with arteries and the circulatory system, and how complex the optic nerve is and the way it works with the brain, and the entire reproductive process as well) could possibly have come about as a result of "random matter and particles spontaneously coming together" and forming themselves just by coincidence. Given the extreme odds against such an occurrence, you would have to believe all that as a matter of faith. And that, to me, is irrational.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Belief in God is irrational, and belief in government is irrational. Religion and government share that same flaw: each has an irrational underlying premise. Our #1 task is therefore to persuade folk of the importance of founding their lives on a rational premise, and I have a hard time seeing how we can say that's important in the one case without being important also in the other. If ridicule can help accomplish that, let's use it. If some other way proves more effective, fine. But I'd not want to underestimate the power of humor.
  • Scott Lazarowitz's picture
    Scott Lazarowitz 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    I don't know about "dehumanizing" the government elites as they seem to dehumanize us. Many of them are just sadists and psychopaths, which are "human" characteristics, albeit very bad ones. But we do need to continue to expose them and their crimes against us, from our local neanderthal Nazi cops to our elite Supreme Court Justices such as Elena Caveman.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 4 years 28 weeks ago Web link Jad Davis
    Mainstream media then: Sheehan is a brave and patriotic Gold Star Mother who is useful to have as a Bush stalker and whose bona fides are beyond reproach. Now? Bush is gone and Obama is the one prosecuting these wars and Sheehan's services as peace activist are no longer needed and she' a flaky kook tax resister to boot. Oceana has always been at war with Eastasia.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Just noticed this is from 'way back in December, but after a long week of trucking coast to coast I saw a comment and read your essay without checking the date of the post. I like your thrust on this, Paul. As I've stated previously, I have family I love dearly who are highly involved with the Ron Paul "movement", and it is a good lesson for me in just what you are saying here: I don't know it all, and it is important I support and respect those I love without necessarily jumping on their band wagon. You made one statement: I have read several times that people in America in the 1750s and 1760s considered themselves Englishmen and wanted desperately to be accepted by English society. How did this feeling morph into its complete opposite by so many people, in just 20 years, leading to successful armed rebellion? I think it was a shift in worldview. There can be huge, almost impossible-seeming changes to worldviews in a short period of time. I'm not sure the number or percentage of those disloyal to King George was all that great even when the "revolution" began. I suspect many "historians" wanted it to appear that way (that's how "history" comes about), but I think most were still loyal to England and weren't that het-up over getting into a brawl with the red coats. It seems Washington had to virtually enslave numbers of individuals and force them into his fighting forces at the outset of the violence. The analogy would be us today: you and I and our friends here on STR as compared to our peers "out there in radio land". In the eyes of many of them we belong in the "hate-America-first" camp. With the advent of the Ron Paul movement (many of whose members will be with us some day soon) that percentage may be changing. But we are definitely in the minority now. And you are correct: people like us need to find a balance in our interchange with them and not pull the "superior knowledge" gambit on them. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Hein
    You've outlined the genius of state, Paul: pillage by use of psychology. Look at it this way: we have to deal with two distinct types of thieves and robbers in our daily lives: government confiscators and non-government confiscators. State media types are using the term "sector": "the private sector" and "the public sector" -- but that's all a bunch of obfuscation and one dimension of the psychology that produces the genius of "pillage legitimacy". You described it well in your essay, Paul: the mass of "the people" ooh and aah and talk about it for years when they are "provided" tours of state opulence. People who take guided tours of those joints never in a hundred years connect the abundance of palaces and state buildings and mansions with the thievery that is euphemized as "taxation". Non-government thieves and robbers take your stuff and leave you alone. Government thieves and robbers confiscate your stuff and later put it on display for you so you can tell your grandkids about how you got to "tour" this or that capitol "oval office" and perhaps took pictures or bought souvenirs. The psychology of state is indeed an act of genius. You and your family are perhaps the only individuals on your block who see through the ruse. Disseminate your knowledge. Carefully and discreetly. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 4 years 28 weeks ago Web link Westernerd
    Thanks for the link, Robert. I used to subscribe to Whiskey & Gunpowder, along with The Daily Reckoning, etc., and found I was wasting the whole day reading them. I'm often am tempted to get their daily emails back primarily because they post lots of good articles such as this one. I was once diagnosed "pathological nonconformist" by a judge (as he sentenced me to 30 days in jail, the rascal). He later became my close friend until he died some years ago. I've had to shed many of those psychopathic pathogens in my old age, but if "extremist" is the worst creeps of state can come up with in which to label me, I'll take it as a compliment. Sam
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Hein
    Take care, Paul, when next you visit the UNITED STATES. Its PRESIDENT, (with his new powers), might just spot you and say "off with his head!"
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Hein
    Take care, Paul, when next you visit England. Her Majesty might just spot you and say "off with his head!" Your remarks come at a good moment. This year is the 50th of her reign, and there are some good things one can find to say about that. She did not set out to become Queen; her uncle quit so as to marry an American divorcee, thrusting her very shy father on to the throne where he did a creditable job as a national figurehead and morale booster during WW-II (into which, of course, the UK should never have entered, but that's another story. Monarchs nowadays don't rule, they reign.) He died young, from stress and smoking, so Elizabeth took on the job. I reserve judgment on her grandsons, but otherwise she is the only member of her family for whom I have any respect. The Royal finances are not simple. There is huge wealth (land, palaces) attached to the monarchy, though not to the person. The population is taxed to provide stipends to members of the family, but those are, like the US President's, not way out of line. In return, they do a large amount of work as national ambassadors and, again, as figureheads. I have no doubt that the British economy comes out well ahead from tourism revenues minus those Royal expenses, and the palaces form the #1 staple in terms of tourist magnets - as Windsor did in your case. A case could also be made that the Queen has held together the Commonwealth, which approximates to a free trade area, by building relationships over a very long term. So it's not quite fair or true to say that the Royals are parasites. They earn their keep, in PR alone. Finally I'm gullible enough to believe that by her weekly interviews with the Prime Minister, she has exercised moderation on some of their wilder plans. That relationship is subtle, and on occasion the influence flows the other way; those interested should watch the movie "The Queen" that documents how she and Tony Blair interacted during the week following Diana's death. So much for the positive. The negative aspect of monarchy - and it is decisive, we fully agree - is that the figurehead serves to validate the government she nominally "owns", as in "my government" and "the Queen's Ministers." My blog at http://www.theanarchistalternative.info/zgb/10A076.htm explores the issue a little and concludes: "The monarchy all-but ensures that, however unpopular a particular administration may deservedly become, the institution of government itself will survive." So: guilty, as charged.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 28 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    Subplotsville, I respectfully disagree. If someone thought to be a leader turns to the use of force, he is no longer a leader but a master; an analogy might be that a leader prepares a path, as JGVibes wrote, which followers voluntarily follow. Force involves connection; he pulls with a rope (or a chain!) or pushes, from behind. I wonder also whether you might reconsider the words "real world political." If a relationship is political, it necessarily involves force; that's what politics is about. Masters are chosen by a majority (in theory) who then impose their wishes upon society. Now, is that the "real" world? It is, yes, the actual one now prevailing, but surely "real" has something to do with what human being truly are, in our basic nature. And that basic nature begins with self-ownership. (Try denying that, without assuming it implicitly in the first place.) Self-ownership means that each decides for himself how to arrange his own life, and therefore being forced to do otherwise - politics - is not "real" in that sense. The political arena is the UNreal state in which we find ourselves; an unfettered market, alone, is the real world.
  • Subplotsville's picture
    Subplotsville 4 years 28 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    Your essay has a few interesting ideas. However, many leaders do, in fact, use force. Effective leadership in many real world political situations requires maintaining the rule of law, which in turn inevitably requires force. And it seems an odd use of language to refer to the prosecution of criminals as intimidation.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Hein
    Absolutely, ReverendDraco; we must remember to separate the "image and superscription" (fiction), which are the CAESAR's, from the silver (nonfiction). What the CAESAR ends up with when we do this, is nothing, nothing but thin air. The same thing is true of the "prince and the pauper"; when we separate the fiction from the nonfiction, we end up with nothing but a man.
  • rita's picture
    rita 4 years 28 weeks ago Web link Guest
    And how will they know how much pot you have, unless they kick in your door and take it? This bill solves nothing.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Hein
    "But millions of Americans do government’s bidding day after day, even though they find it odious, or simply aggravating, with no sign of a gun or truncheon. They not only obey, but expect others to do likewise. So while force is the rulers’ ultimate weapon, they get what they want by other means 99% of the time. And that means is psychology." ~ Paul Hein And, there it is. I gave this a "Must read!", ten-star rating.
  • ReverendDraco's picture
    ReverendDraco 4 years 28 weeks ago Page Paul Hein
    Caesar has nothing which wasn't first stolen from the person who produced it. So, by all means, render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's. . . and keep rendering it until Caesar is living in a tent along a creek somewhere - just like a quarter of US Veterans are. . .
  • GeoffreyTransom's picture
    GeoffreyTransom 4 years 29 weeks ago Page Douglas Herman
    Dude, in your photo you totally look like Owen Wilson. And let's be frank: Sibel Edmonds is several degrees of hawt ABOVE "attractive". She could totally play Anna - the Queen V in the new version of 'V' (the same woman who played the wife in the recent Claire Danes vehicle). But here's the thing: Sibel Edmonds, for all her hotness, WAS A FED. And she was a Fed for a long-ass time. She got that old-time libertarianist religion after they burned her, and had she not been disgruntled in her work there's decent chance she would now be a senior cog in the tyranny machine. I cop a bit of flak in anarchist/voluntaryist circles for being too harsh on our new comrades-in-arms, especially given that I was formerly a .mil psychopath and then a .gov intel hack. (I'm not quite as hot as Sibel... there, I said it). My counter-argument is that I was not a True Believer at any time - that is clear from my disciplinary record - and that as a result I would never have contributed my genuine best efforts to the furtherance of tyranny. Examples abound: e.g., if I had been in Bradass87's seat I would have been calling fire missions on buildings I knew were empty; I know three former .mil intel guys who were encouraged to DoR after being [probably rightly] suspected of doing precisely that. That's why I say it has to be borne in mind that these people were *happy* being servants of the powerful - at non-trivial level - until they became disgruntled. They joined at a significantly higher pay grade than a recruit grunt, and as such had to jump through a lot more ideological hoops in order to 'join up'. Then they got the shits with their lack of progress. It's not clear to me that this type of person is a genuinely reliable asset to 'our' cause - they left being a tyrant's minion because they didn't get their due, not because they ceased to believe in their mission.
  • John deLaubenfels's picture
    John deLaubenfels 4 years 29 weeks ago Page Douglas Herman
    Inspiring words!
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 4 years 29 weeks ago Page Douglas Herman
    Well said, Douglas.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 29 weeks ago Web link Jad Davis
    The breach in our defenses, said Frank Chodorov[1], is in Article VI of the Constitution, which provides that "...all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding. So much for the Tenth Amendment. Secretary of State John Foster Dulles stated that "The treaty power is an extraordinary power, liable to abuse," and warned that "Treaties can take powers away from the Congress and give them to the President. They can take powers from the states and give them to the federal government or to some international body and they can cut across the rights given to the people by their Constitutional Bill of Rights." This is precisely why "the Eisenhower Administration, and particularly the U.S. State Department, went all out to defeat the Bricker Amendment, which sought to greatly limit that power. "Introduced into the Senate in February, 1952, as Senate Joint Resolution 130, the "Bricker Amendment" to the Constitution read as follows: Section 1. A provision of a treaty which conflicts with this Constitution shall not be of any force or effect. Section 2. A treaty shall become effective as internal law in the United States only through legislation which would be valid in the absence of treaty. Section 3. Congress shall have power to regulate all executive and other agreements with any foreign power or international organization. All such agreements shall be subject to the limitations imposed on treaties by this article. Section 4. The congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation." No one listened then, and my guess is that no one will listen now. _______________________________________________________________________________ [1] Frank Chodorov was an American member of the Old Right, a group of libertarian thinkers who were non-interventionist in foreign policy and opposed both the American entry into World War II and the New Deal.
  • rita's picture
    rita 4 years 29 weeks ago Web link painkilleraz
    Priceless. Maybe the next one will crash into a school bus, or a nursing home, or someone's backyard barbeque.
  • Guest's picture
    jaffa (not verified) 4 years 29 weeks ago Web link Westernerd
    Driveway safety is comprised of two categories. Preventing your child from being run over as a car is backing out of the driveway. The other is preventing your child from running out into the street while playing in the yard with a driveway safety net. We will now cover each topic individually. Thanks. Regards, cell phone directory
  • Guest's picture
    jaffa (not verified) 4 years 29 weeks ago
    Guest Editor
    Story strike
    The assumption by the governing power of a quasi fatherly relation to the people, involving strict and intimate supervision of their business and social concerns, upon the theory that they are incapable of managing their own affairs. Thanks. Regards, phone number lookup
  • David Calderwood's picture
    David Calderwood 4 years 29 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    Suverans2, while I would love to claim that bit of wisdom as my own invention, ancient Roman historian Sallust must get the credit. I'm sure he would be no more bothered by your use of it than he is when I do it.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 29 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    Will do, and thanks.
  • DennisLeeWilson's picture
    DennisLeeWilson 4 years 29 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    Once you have arrived at the point of declaring yourself sovereign, you might consider TACTICS by which you conduct yourself when you realize that you are surrounded by a very large, thuggish organization. To avoid being kidnapped and thrown in jail--or worse--consider some of the points I made in my own article on Individual Sovereignty at this link...: http://tinyurl.com/Individual-Sovereignty Dennis
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 29 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    "Everything that the government does is an attack on people who don’t belong to that organization." ~ JGVibes "Citizens" do belong to that organization, JGVibes. As our friend, tzo, pointed out in his treatise, A Theory of Natural Hierarchy and Government; "All governments must have citizens in order to exist". "Citizens" are members of a political community who, in their associated capacity, have established or submitted themselves to the dominion of a government for the promotion of their general welfare and the protection of their individual as well as their collective rights". Herriott v. City of Seattle, 81 Wash.2d 48, 500 P.2d. 101, 109. ~ Black's Law Dictionary, Sixth Edition (c.1991), page 244 Dominion is defined, in that same dictionary, as "perfect control in right of ownership". From this we can see that if you "are a member of a political community who, in their associated capacity, have...submitted themselves to the dominion of a government", "you are [in fact] essentially their property". So, what's the answer? Well, here is what tzo suggested. "If one calls himself a citizen, then he is actively choosing to participate in the government organization. If one does not wish to participate, he can simply stop calling himself a citizen. There is no paperwork to fill out. One can just walk away, and fix the thought within his mind that he is no longer participating in the imaginary hierarchical organization that is called government, and just like that, he is out. It is, after all, his innate human right to rule over everything within the lower realm of imaginary creations.   Isn't it amazing just how powerful we are as sovereign human beings?" I would add to that, only, "he can simply stop calling himself a citizen, and neither apply for, nor accept, any member-only benefits and privileges".
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 29 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    G'day JGVibes, "...both sides have completely different ideas of what the word “government” actually means, making it very difficult to find common ground." ~ JGVibes As with so many words, JGVibes. Let me give you an example. You wrote: "If someone has the right to initiate the use of force on you if you disobey them, you are essentially their property." ~ JGVibes That is correct, but in your above statement there is another word, the key word, which too many people have "completely different ideas" of the meaning of; that word is "right[1]", i.e. "just claim". What is the only lawful, (as opposed to legal[1]), source from whence a government can get a "just claim" to "initiate the use of force on you if you disobey them"? There is only one, my friend, and when we discover it, we can truly "strike" at the "root" of the problem, though most of us will likely choose not to. ______________________________________________________ [1] right NOUN: ...7. A just or legal claim or title. ~ American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language Notwithstanding that this dictionary shows eight definitions for the word "right" when used as a noun, number seven is the correct one when we are discussing "having a right" to a thing, tangible or intangible. [2] "...discover not just that there is a difference between the lawful and the legal, but also the distinctive characteristic or principle of law ("freedom among equals") and of justice ("to treat others as one's likes")." ~ Excerpted from The Lawful and the legal by Frank Van Dun, Ph.D., Dr.Jur. - Senior lecturer Philosophy of Law
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 4 years 29 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    "...I am no longer defiant of human authority because I realize it is nothing but a hoax. Voluntaryism is good. Love your enemies. It befuddles them!..." http://www.voluntaryist.com/howibecame/windingroad.html JGVibes: "...It is not a new thing for people to confuse government with culture..." Your comment, JG, is personified by Merle Haggard's (look at the comments under the video): "...When you're runnin' down My Country, hoss, you're walkin' on the fightin' side of me!..." I have a book, David (several renditions of the Book, in fact) that illustrates your lament, "...is it not necessary to seek an answer to why people throughout most of history have preferred existence within a political system of one sort or another..." The problem, however, with bringing that Book into any libertarian discussion is the proverbial brick wall so many libertarian types throw up against listening further. S/he's absolutely certain, I think, that the speaker is about to toss a wad of religious nonsense into the discussion since the book is Hebrew and a favorite among religionists, who claim to be using it as a backbone for their hogwash. But the book is testimony of the history about one family who were offered a genuine anarchist way of life, but who rejected it in favor of political authority. Ask any religionist and s/he will absolutely deny that the Book has anything to do with anarchy. Then ask any "anarchist" (who will even be willing to discuss the topic) and s/he will insist the same. It's a conundrum, I'll admit. But not unsolvable. Be free. Keep hammering. Good essay, JGVibes! Sam.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 29 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    G'day David Calderwood, Interesting; I was just, yesterday and today, revisiting The Politics of Obedience: The Discourse of Voluntary Servitude by Étienne de la Boétie. Man, did you hit the nail square on the head with this, "most men don't desire liberty, most only wish for a just master." May I quote you?
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 29 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    And, hello to you too, Chris Dates, Let this quote from The Age of Reason be my answer your last question. THE only idea man can affix to the name of God, is that of a first cause, the cause of all things. And, incomprehensibly difficult as it is for a man to conceive what a first cause is, he arrives at the belief of it, from the tenfold greater difficulty of disbelieving it. That aside, I am of the opinion that one can 'believe' in the "natural law of the human world", as Dr. Frank Van Dun calls it, in his short treatise entitled Natural Law, without a belief in "The Creator". “Ius Naturale” is the law applicable to men in a state of nature. It precedes religions and kings both in time and in authority. “Ius Naturale” does not derive directly from the will of God. As Hugo Grotius pointed out in the early seventeenth century, even if there was no God, or if God was unreasonable or evil, natural law would still have moral force, and men would still spontaneously back it with physical force. ~ Excerpted from Natural Law and Natural Rights by James A. Donald Peace and well-being to you and yours.
  • David Calderwood's picture
    David Calderwood 4 years 29 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    I like your highlighting of the obvious Truth, that those who volunteer to man the levers of coercive state power are no better (and actually, arguably worse) than the rest of us, so it is irrational to think an agency of coercion will produce salutary outcomes (salutary, that is, for anyone other than those wielding the whips). Your column is thus a restatement of the irrational premises that underlay politics. We cannot, in my opinion, restate this often enough. It is one of the pillars of anti-political anarchism, I think. Given the obviousness of this, is it not necessary to seek an answer to why people throughout most of history have preferred existence within a political system of one sort or another, especially in light of Boetie's "Discourses on Voluntary Servitude?" I think this area, suffused with discussions of biology, neurology, and human social behavior is a line of inquiry that merits considerable debate. Sadly, the path that debate takes tends to lead to the valley of cynicism and revulsion at the intellect and insight of the common man, and a nod toward Sallust's observation that most men don't desire liberty, most only wish for a just master.
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 29 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Hello Suverans2, I believe in what you call the Natural Law, because I believe in The Creator. I believe in the laws of logic and of thought, I believe in the law of non-contradiction, and the law of the excluded middle. I believe in the laws of mathematics, and the laws of mass/energy. If there is a Natural Law, then it stands to reason that there is a Natural Law maker. I believe that The Creator has written the moral law on the hearts and minds of all men, and that I why I claim it is universal; it is true for all humans at all times. What Paul is talking about is the classic is/ought situation. He is explaining what IS, not what OUGHT to be. I claim what I believe ought to be, by my belief in The Creator, but unlike many other humans who claim to believe in The Creator, I will never force the "ought" upon you. The Creator does not force me to do what I ought to do, so I would never try and usurp His wisdom, and force His creation to do what I think they ought to do. The rule of Man is hell. Eventually you will have to beg the natural law back to the Natural Law giver. Do you believe in The Creator, Suverans2?
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 29 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    G'day Chris Dates, That the "natural law [of the human world]" is universal is not a new concept. 4. By the term civil law is also understood the particular law of each people, opposed to natural law, or the law of nations, which are common to all. Just. Inst. l. 1, t. 1, Sec. 1, 2; Ersk. Pr. L. Scot. B. 1, t. 1, s. 4. ~ Bouvier's 1856 Law Dictionary Taken out of context, strictly for the purpose of clarity, "...natural law...[is] common to all".
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 29 weeks ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    "To deny a person’s right to sell the food one produces defies all common sense." ~ Michael McCarty [Emphasis added] No, not really, Michael. PERSON. ...In law, man and person are not exactly synonymous terms. Any human being is a man, whether he be a member of society [a state or a body politic] or not, whatever may be the rank he holds, or whatever may be his age, sex, &c. A person is a man considered according to the rank he holds in society [a state or a body politic], with all the rights to which the place he holds entitles him, and the duties which it imposes. 1 Bouv. Inst. n. 137. ~ Bouvier's 1856 Law Dictionary [Emphasis and bracketed information added]
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 29 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Some food 4 thought. Hi David Calderwood, Thanks for your clarification of the word Utopia. "...if I were king (or fit the definition of a god)." You may find this interesting, one of Noah Webster's (c.1828) definitions for the word GOD is, "3. A prince; a ruler; a magistrate or judge...", which, perhaps, explains why Roderick wrote the following. ″…in modern society, with its religious, ethnic, and cultural diversity, it would be much harder for any single group to demand allegiance — except for the state, which remains the one universally accepted god.″ ~ Roderick T. Long, Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill I used it in the sense that while I may think I know HOW all people should live, that knowledge is meaningful only in determining my actions, not those of others. Exactly! "We must be the change we wish to see in the world." ~ Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi I am non-religious, or so I think, but it is my understanding that during the Temptation of Christ it was Satan who offered Christ all the kingdoms of Earth, as they were all his to offer. From this I find it rather ironic (love that word today) that any self-described Christians are politically active. Good point. I have pointed out here, at STR, that JESUS' response to his adversary (satan) did NOT indicate that they weren't his to give, but rather a refusal to bow down to him for all that power and wealth. Most of us bow down for a helluva lot less than that, and claim we have no choice. Most Christians claim that JESUS is their KING, and that Barrack Hussein Obama is their PRESIDENT, when their BIBLE tells them unequivocally that no man can serve two masters. (Mat. 6:24) MAG'ISTRATE, n. [L. magistratus, from magister, master; magis, major, and ster, Teutonic steora, a director; steoran, to steer; the principal director.] A public civil officer, invested with the executive government of some branch of it. In this sense, a king is the highest or first magistrate, as is the President of the United States. ~ Webster's 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language This informs me that the real, main religion of most humans is politics, AKA the worship of concentrations of power. Paradoxically then, all politics is of Satan...a view I believe comports with reality in all ways I observe. Politics (as I define it) equals evil. The Ibriy [Hebrew] word satan equals adversary; opponent; accuser, so, yes, you are correct, it is the men and women who choose the "political means" (forcible appropriation of the labor of others) over the "economic means" (one’s own labor) who are mankind's greatest adversaries, opponents, and accusers. As you know, it is not what people SAY that informs us of their real thoughts. It is what they DO that reveals what really animates them. I find it endlessly entertaining to watch people DO what directly opposes what they SAY. Agreed! "What you do speaks so loud I cannot hear what you say". ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson It is my studied opinion that we give our consent to be governed by what we do; notwithstanding (in spite of) what we say. As a person, of course, it is also a lifelong task to try to minimize this pervasive hypocrisy to the best of my limited ability. Just doing the best I can.... First, did you know, Homo vocabulum est naturae; persona juris civilis. Man (homo) is a term of nature; person (persona) of civil law. ~ Black's Law Dictionary, Sixth Edition (c.1991), page 736 Second, that is all that any of us can do...the best of our limited ability. Best wishes. Best wishes to you and yours as well, and welcome.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 29 weeks ago Page David Calderwood
    It's a photo of one of David's sand sculptures. Go to his profile to see it larger.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 29 weeks ago Page David Calderwood
    Welcome David, very nice job. I like especially "At its heart, the current system rests on the normalization of theft throughout Western Civilization." Can't quite make out the pic beneath your sig, though. Is it by Rodin?
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 29 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Thank you for the thoughtful reply, David Calderwood. And, best wishes to you as well.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 4 years 29 weeks ago Web link Guest
    This book is available as a free pdf download from the FreeKeene.com website here if you want to read it.
  • David Calderwood's picture
    David Calderwood 4 years 29 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Hi Suverans2, Just to clarify, I was using the word Utopia ironically, in the sense that no such place can exist on Earth, even if I were king (or fit the definition of a god). I used it in the sense that while I may think I know HOW all people should live, that knowledge is meaningful only in determining my actions, not those of others. I am non-religious, or so I think, but it is my understanding that during the Temptation of Christ it was Satan who offered Christ all the kingdoms of Earth, as they were all his to offer. From this I find it rather ironic (love that word today) that any self-described Christians are politically active. This informs me that the real, main religion of most humans is politics, AKA the worship of concentrations of power. Paradoxically then, all politics is of Satan...a view I believe comports with reality in all ways I observe. Politics (as I define it) equals evil. As you know, it is not what people SAY that informs us of their real thoughts. It is what they DO that reveals what really animates them. I find it endlessly entertaining to watch people DO what directly opposes what they SAY. As a person, of course, it is also a lifelong task to try to minimize this pervasive hypocrisy to the best of my limited ability. Just doing the best I can.... Best wishes.
  • David Calderwood's picture
    David Calderwood 4 years 29 weeks ago Page David Calderwood
    I agree with your comment, of course. We are clearly a society in decline, and only the "finger-in-the-dyke" of some innovators plus the illusion of vast debt assumption disguises this fact from the perception of most people. A theme I'm likely to visit in columns I submit here will be speculation on the path the future may take as people conditioned to obedience, steeped in the mythology of American Exceptionalism, slam face-first in the reality that underlies our current illusion of debt-based prosperity. I think the zombie genre of literature is so apt that I'm working on a second novel that uses a somewhat different take on the genre as a central plot device.
  • David Calderwood's picture
    David Calderwood 4 years 29 weeks ago Page Jim Davies
    I do wonder about my fellow travelers who seem unbothered by the TSA (or the IRS). Have they no modesty? Does it not bother them to be pushed, pulled, groped, bullied, etc.? It surely does bother me. My last business trip required a flight from Chicago to San Diego and I opted out of the nudie scan both ways. On the return trip I got the feel-up as part of a training exercise. It was so thorough I can honestly say I've had less thorough massages. Obedience to authority. "They" are able to get it by placing a "normed" lifestyle on the other side of their little gauntlet. If we want to blend in, be like our neighbors, nestle in the safety of the herd, we have no choice but to bend to the will of those who arrogate power. Human beings are curious creatures, are we not?