Saturday, March 6, 2010
This comes from enter stage right by way of curmudgeonly skeptical and is well worth the read. Mr. J. J. Jackson has a firm grip on reality. It is offered with our endorsement and we recommend your careful reading. Thank you, Mr. J.J. Jackson.
By J.J. Jackson
Web posted April 6, 2009
This article is directed at those in the conservative movement who find my existence grotesque. You know who you are. You are the people that do not know how to get from point A to point B without being led around by the nose. You are the people who might be able to recite Jefferson, Madison, Washington and other founding fathers but cannot understand what you are quoting and the meaning of those words. You are the people that want to stop one step short, take options off the table and who think that when push comes to shove, there is still always more talking that can be done. These words I am about to write come forth because of an email exchange I had with a friend of mine who is a retired Marine and also made necessary because of wishy washy comments I have heard coming as of late from some on the right who think that I am far too radical, being too realistic, too rational in reviewing historic facts and in the process offending their sensibilities which have been generated by false beliefs.
Last week my Marine Corps. buddy and I were discussing the current state of America and the exchange eventually led into what the options for the nation were moving forward. He, like myself, has become very concerned about the direction this great nation is heading and he foresees America as quickly becoming far too weak to correct its course. He asked me straight, "What do you think needs to be done?" I responded, without even a second thought, that I thought there were three options that faced us; convert the hearts of Americans to embrace liberty through proselytizing on its virtues and retake our government through peaceful means, acquiesce to the current majority and join them in socialist misery or, lastly and ultimately, have an armed revolution that would either allow those of us that believe in liberty to part ways and divide the nation or that would retake the entire nation. I added that I did not believe that those who are currently destroying America would let us leave willingly and without a fight making that last option inevitable should they not be converted and considering that many Americans would never chose to join them willingly and would need to forcibly defend their right to cease being part of yet another failed socialist non-utopia utopia.
He then responded with what was obvious surprise, but relieved surprise, that I even mentioned that last course as an option. I made sure that he understood that it was not my favored option and that I certainly believed that we had not come to such a point in this nation yet even if I did fervently believe that we were rapidly approaching it. But he was still none-the-less very happy to hear someone else say what he told me he was also thinking might be a necessary path to walk. Talking about this further it became clear that he had been scorned by some of his other friends, so-called conservatives, for bringing up such an option when he and they had a similar conversation last month. They had scolded him for even mentioning such a thing. Revolution? Violence? How utterly droll! The problem was that they misconstrued his statement of such as a possibility as his endorsement of such an option even, according to him, after he made it clear that he certainly did not want it to come to that.
I can relate to all this because I get the same sort of response when I tell people that an armed revolution in America may be coming our way. Whether we want it or not is a moot point. If we do not correct ourselves and right this sinking ship it may become the only tenable option left to those that seek liberty for themselves and their fellow man. A few weeks ago I wrote an article titled, "This Power Keg Has Long Sought A Spark," in which I discussed how America just needs a single event to set us off into what was not at all a thinly veiled reference to civil war where citizens would no longer take governmental abuses of power and begin to fight back violently. Most of you that read my weekly articles cannot imagine the amount of visceral hate mail that I received from so-called conservatives for even broaching the topic.
I was called everything from a, "dangerous radical," to a, "trigger happy lunatic whose blood lust for innocent life was insatiable." And that was just for putting forth a lesson on how Americans have long looked the other way as the federal government has overstepped its bounds and trampled the rights of citizens in exceedingly violent manners. Shattering urban legends and popular myths about what actually happened leading up to and during events like the raid on the Branch Davidians in Waco to Ruby Ridge was also not taken at all well by those with their blinders on. And remember, these were the responses from people that called themselves conservatives! You can imagine what the responses were from the lefties that stumbled blindly upon my article with their guard down.
So believe me, I can relate to my retired Marine Corps. friend. When I shared with him some of this, his next sentence to me in the conversation was a reworking of some lines from the movie, "A Few Good Men." It was something that I had not thought of. He said, "Believe it or not, and not to sound cliché, they don't want the truth because deep down in places they don't talk about at parties, those people that claim to be conservative and who attack you don’t know what to do when liberty is under attack and they want you guarding the wall. They need you on that wall. They need you rattling the cages, sounding the horn and standing that post with a pistol on your hip and a rifle within reach reminding the tyrant class that if they push too far there are patriots who will rise up against them using more than just words."
At first I cringed at being compared to the maniacal Colonel Jessup who in the movie used much of his speech about walls and the need for them to be guarded to justify in his own mind how he had not been complicit in the murder of a young Marine and then the conspiracy and cover-up of such an act. But I quickly realized that this part of the speech is right even if the whole of it was meant to be self-serving. Those that react so viscerally to the truth seem to forget that from time to time, as Jefferson once said, "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." They either have no idea what must at times occur for their own rights to continue on or are simply unwilling to accept such costs.
Any talk of taking to the streets and any warning that blood may be required to be spilled in the defense of liberty causes them to wince and turn up their noses in either pretend or real anger at anyone that even says that such actions may be necessary. Not that they are necessary mind you; just the insinuation that that they may become necessary. Perhaps they agree to allow the people to take to the streets but remove from the table any acceptance of further action and wring their hands at the very thought that some citizens may decide that a line in the sand has been crossed while the wishy washy continue to think more talking is needed. Those that do so in pretend anger do so because they know the truth and that history has shown us this truth over and over again. But they and their circle of friends have chosen to simply ignore it. Those that do so in real anger do so because they think that they are smart enough to never have to resort to such, as they see them, barbaric actions. To do so would cause them to have to break a nail or mess up their finely quaffed hair and offend their metro-sexual facade.
But when push comes to shove both of you sorts, I firmly believe, want me on this wall banging the pots and pans and shouting from atop it as the hordes from without are assaulting it with weapons of ever increasing power. For you do love liberty. Yes you do, even if you are not willing to say so and perhaps even do what is necessary to defend it from time to time when your back is against the wall and the hordes are rushing at you with their own weapons drawn. You are like leaches and leaches are often content to let the host do all the work while they draw off their own sustenance from it. They, like you, remain unaware of trouble until the host has been killed and the blood stops flowing. You may not listen to me as you sit around the table at the local tavern sipping your wine and pontificating about how strong the wall is and how it can never be breached. But you do so while ignoring that at the table next to you sits a group of the enemy who have already breached the defenses and who plot your demise openly and loudly. But once those men plotting your demise finish their planning and begin to strike you will cry out for those of us on the wall to come save you without fail.
The thought of blood may be grotesque to you. The mere thought of me speaking of it perhaps at some point being necessary may cause you to wretch and require the fainting couch to be fetched for you to fall upon. But as long as the enemy believes that the option for revolution and a violent defense by the people of their liberties is off the table, they will run roughshod over all who stand in their way. Yes, even you as you try to talk to them and make agreements and capitulations. It is not you that will say when that one spark hits the powder, causes this nation to explode and the citizens to do what is necessary. It is not you that keeps the enemy from complete control and who keep the wall from crumbling entirely. It is not you who will make the hordes think twice about how far and how fast to advance. But it can be you who will make them think that we no longer guard the walls and give them too much comfort, even when we are still guarding vigilantly, and encourage them to make their final move.
And to tell the truth, there may not be enough of us guardians upon the wall any more to stop them. So rest well under the blanket of the very freedom I and others provide by keeping the hordes second guessing whether it is finally safe to begin their final assault. For tonight may be your last night underneath that blanket if you continue to undermine the guards.
J.J. Jackson is a libertarian conservative author from Pittsburgh, PA who has been writing and promoting individual liberty since 1993 and is President of Land of the Free Studios, Inc. He is the lead editor contributor to American Conservative Daily and also the founder of SignalCongress.com . He is the owner of The Right Things - Conservative T-shirts & Gifts. His weekly commentary along with exclusives not available anywhere else can be found at http://www.libertyreborn.com/.
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 8:55 AM
Recently, we have been amazed at the ineptitude of those in government and other large organizations for their math skills. I fully realize that there is a challenge inherent in handling sums which heretofore have only existed when computing the number of angels stacked on the head of a pin. Apparently, the United States Travel Association does not have a computer capable of entering twelve digits.
They recently reported that our numbers of visitors had declined since 2000 by some 2.4 million. They then estimated the financial loss from that shortfall at $509,000,000,000.00.
That’s a pretty hefty chunk of change, especially when you compute the per capita amount of the loss: $212,083.33 each. Let’s see, that comes to $424,166.66 per couple or $848,333.32 for a family of four. It is the best argument I have ever heard for leaving your mother-in-law at home.
Not to worry though, they have a sure-fire solution. It is their intention to charge $10.00 a head at the point of entry to offset the loss. Just exactly who would be the beneficiary of this boon was not mentioned. Let’s see now; $10 times 50.5 million in record setting 2008 would have produced 505 million and would have made a dent of 0.0992% in the reported losses. It just goes to show that a sawbuck doesn’t go as far as it used to.
In a nation of reported unemployment of 10%, and more likely 15% plus, this purported revenue generator of .0992% seems unworthy of any particular excitement. More important, the foreign travelers actually decreased by a mere 4.8%. Las Vegas fared worse than that at the hands of Obama running off at the mouth about parsimonious travel. Sources also reported that out of the $505 million collected, a mere $100 million would go to the travel agency.
Interviews from foreign agencies promoting US travel have reported the downturn is partially caused by fear of overbearing officials and inconvenience in air travel. What is remarkable is that the 2008 figures were an all time high after the world became convinced that the US is not a death trap in spite of 9/11 fears. It is possible that in the absence of a “cowboy” in the White House, they foresee terrors to come with an administration totally concerned about advancing a socialist agenda instead of “minding the store.”
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 6:54 AM
Thursday, March 4, 2010
Grabby Guts was a popular expression back in the misty distant prehistoric times when I was a mere whelp. My mom (a divorcee—oh the shame!) and I lived in a small college town in prewar (WWII) Iowa as she sought her degree. As a second grader at the campus school, I didn’t know exactly how low we were on the totem pole of life. I had good friends, a nearby creek and a bike so I thought we were close to the top. I mindlessly ignored the late thirties depression which had devastated the country. Thanks, FDR!
I became fascinated with a fiery redhead in my class and was convinced that we were to become “the new great thing.” Early on, her family invited me to dinner, and with my mother’s permission, Iaccepted. Mom was socially conscious and scrubbed me, put on my best, and schooled me in social skills for the encounter. After all, Dr. R__ was head of the English Department and a minor god in the panoply of campus deities. Her concerns and mine were both allayed when early on at dinner he inquired if I wished more bread. Upon my positive reply he raised the plate, inserted his thumb between the top two slices and with a deft move, ala Frisbee, tossed the top slice my way. I was impressed.
Later we retired to a designated play area and I enjoyed the fascination of a different toy box. Catherine had some great things but mostly “girl” stuff. The notable exception was a foot-long version of a wonderfully made truck. Back then, it was made of steel and the chrome wheels were just that—chrome! It had real rubber tires, actual glass in the windows and the dump mechanism worked beautifully. I was smitten with it and claimed it as my own for the visit.
My fixation on the truck apparently irritated her and in the ensuing melee, she seized it and whacked me over the head with it. Being a sturdy article, it suffered no damage but produced a bloody wound on my noggin. I was stunned but in later life, realized what a comprehensive learning experience it had been. Ever after I became more attentive to others and less distracted by “shiny” things. My mother was not pleased to see me return form the occasion covered in blood.
So what brought this to mind? Somehow, I saw a relationship to a wonderful map on the net this morning. It depicted the holdings of the federal government in the fifty states of land dedicated for one reason or another to that central authority and not the states in which they are located.
This rough representation indicates the relationship of the federal holdings as a percentage of the total acreage. Throughout my life, I have been four wheeling, camping and exploring large portions of these areas. By far the greatest share of federal land is located in the youngest states in the west but no state is exempt. Even tiny Rhode Island has federal reserves. So, you may ask: “what’s the beef?”
There are several problems here. The first has to do with stewardship and the devotion which Americans have toward private ownership and respect for property. Acquiring any portion of this land for private transfer is extremely difficult. Grazing leases and other dedications are possible but difficult to manage. Extraction of natural resources is next to impossible. Famously, Clinton turned a huge chunk of south central Utah into the Grande Staircase Nat’l Mon. to avert oil exploration in that petroleum rich area--all with the stroke of a pen. Do not for a minute believe that all of our dedicated National Seashore areas are a result of the public’s love for the junction between the sand and the sea. Many exist for the same reason as the Grande Staircase.
The state highest in federal holdings is Alaska with 68%. In second place is Nevada at 64.5%. In both states there is infrastructure which needs to be maintained with no hope for a tax base to support it. Without the profitable result of private enterprise to enhance the taxable revenue stream, they trade pretty for penury. In Colorado (36.6%) the mountains are dotted with evidence of mineral exploration which predates statehood. In the mountainous western half of the state, we find the preponderance of the public holdings.
A device frequently used by the feds is to checkerboard large areas in 640 acre (1 square mile) chunks thus hampering large scale development of contiguous grazing lands for cattle. How do you graze four or five hundred head on a square mile of land which will only support 20 critters without access to adjacent equivalent plots? This device not only hampers best use but also increases the actual affect of federal control.
Current conversation in state houses across the west is turning toward the possibility of the use of eminent domain to reclaim these areas to better serve their people. As it currently stands, the operative attitude of the federal government is that of the dog in the manger who doesn’t want the oats but doesn’t want the horse to eat either. Somehow, it is all reminiscent of “Miss Grabby Guts” who didn’t want to play with the truck but didn’t want anyone else to enjoy it.
If you’re bored in a tavern in Chugwater, Wyoming, Ely, Nevada, or Vaughan, New Mexico bring up federal land use and procedures in the conversation. Do stand back though and be careful of the abusive language and flying beer bottles.
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 11:26 AM
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
There is much that is not quite as it should be in this world but that is no reason to become blasé and disregard the obvious do-it-yourself remedies. Due to an accident of a family member, we had a break in our income and I spent some time thinking about what else could possibly happen to inconvenience our otherwise sublime existence. For your benefit, I shall share a few of the thoughts I had in that regard.
Squealing brakes, streaky windshield wipers, missing or damaged lights, and balding tires are typical of the 1000 and 1 things which can go awry on your car. On a bright sunny day, cruising down the interstate at the posted speed, you will probably not get into much trouble. However, when the sun goes down and a light mist begins to fall you are suddenly driving a death trap. When the roadway grief comes, and it will, you will simmediately regret not having seen to the repair of these critical items. If, on the other hand, you are a natural born thrill seeker with no regard for others on the road, go ahead and die your own way.
Strange odors in normal places are an intentional tipoff to danger, and your nose is God’s way of preparing you to detect the situation in advance. Suppliers intentionally provide an easily identifiable odor with various gasses to keep you alert for leaks. Don’t say “what’s that stink” and go your merry way. Depending on what’s on fire, the smell of smoke is easily noticed and needs to be isolated before going on with your business. Again, follow your nose; the best early warning system ever created. If you like the excitements provided by a fleet of emergency vehicles with flashing lights, or especially enjoy huge explosions, then ignore the warning.
Persistent unusual pain in any part of your body, minor wounds which won’t heal, or loss or impairment of any motor function are more likely symptomatic of further medical problems down the road. Most of these are treatable if they are tended while they are minor. I once had a small cut on my face which bled uninterrupted and the final bill to heal the problem was over $118,000.00. Had I seen to it sooner, I might have avoided that crippling expense or at least part of it. Don’t believe what you hear about our “sorry” medical services. We have the best health care in the world even if your insurance coverage isn’t the greatest. Despite what you may have heard, the hospital in your town will do their best to heal you; whether or no.
Recently there has been an uptick in assaults on personal security. If you live in an area which tolerates it, you can follow our family’s lead and burn your critical trash. We have dedicated trash containers for anything from financial institutions or has identifying numbers or codes. I also recommend a shredder. Further, we find the mail-box full of specious and suspicious offers to refinance debt, use consultants, beat the IRS, and every other sort of financial scam. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably isn’t. The lure of “something for nothing” is quite prevalent and seem to spawn these creeps.
As I got older, I found I didn’t raise my feet as high as I used to. Another discovery is that the other common faculties have diminished over time as well. As a result, I consciously try to emulate that which was habitual in my youth and enjoyed a measure of success in that effort. Before I became aware of it, I was tripping over raised nail heads on the back deck and the victim of a house full of animal toys which are scattered in unlikely places. Rather than concede defeat to advancing years, I have belatedly taken heed of my father’s favorite saying: “structure follow function.” As I return my pace to a normal condition I find it takes a bit more effort but restores a level of safety which I had lost. Incidentally, this is a condition which besets people in nearly every age bracket over thirty. When you are in your late seventies, it’s just harder to overcome—but not impossible. It’s bad enough being a doddering old fool but I don’t have to look like one.
So far we have dealt with the physical ramifications of “Things you shouldn’t ignore.” If we include these last two we should be safer and better prepared for the future. First, when the preacher speaks: I listen. I put aside that which has concerned me during the week and apply what I hear from him to my life in the future. I really needn’t worry about the past because repentance has settled those issues. Whoever is in the pulpit routinely offers an improved path for my future.
It is not a time to review the past, make secular plans, worry about what’s for Sunday dinner, note various apparel in the congregation, observe perceived slights from members or others during the past week, or harbor resentment about the choice of hymns. It is a time to pay attention to the flow of the pastor's well-prepared remarks and take heed for my spiritual condition. As a result, one can leave with the feeling that this messenger is called by God to remind me of my weakness and give me strength for the future.
Second, we should not ignore what our governmental leaders have to say. Their communication should be duly noted and filed for future reference. They will routinely offer hints of their attitudes and integrity which will be necessary at our next opportunity to make a choice. Their activity must be weighed against the history and intentions of those who founded our great land. If they are in concert with those principles we must then do everything which we are able to forward their plans and support them in their efforts.
If they do not have that sense of history, and many don’t, we must righteously oppose them within the framework of our talents and resources. Too many listen half-heartedly and pass it off as political theater and don’t recognize the threat to the republic. Our circumstance as citizens has provided a life of ease with little strife and we have ignored the necessity to remain alert to those who lead. This is sloth which we can no longer afford. The barbarians are figuratively at the gates. We must rise from our leisure and pay strict attention to each of our representatives or be ready to pay the price of inattention.
Briefly we have looked at some threats which are very serious in nature. We must be aware that the last two are by far the greatest. Each has a very long lasting affect on our well being.
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 10:15 AM
Monday, March 1, 2010
Is their any common activity which has provoked so many lame excuses as failure to attend weekly church services? The time devoted to worship once a week, including drive time, for the average American is about 1.785% of the 168 hours in that time period. Lee Parsons devoted his remarks to that subject on Sunday and questioned our commitment to Christ whenever we become diverted from that effort. Granted, mere attendance is no guarantee of salvation but it is indeed, a mighty step in the right direction.
Speaking of time, Granny got the change in shift which she wanted. Now, rather than working from 11p to 7a, she has her preference which is the 2 to 11 evening duty. It came at a serious cost since her employer makes all changes as the calendar turns. She reported at 10p on the 28th, worked until 7a and returns at 2p for the commencement of the change on the 1st. It brings a whole new meaning to the expression “sleep fast.”
Al Gore, Apples “bad seed”
In a meeting of Apple shareholder’s, Shelton Ehrlich sought to ban the re-election of Al Gore to the board of directors. Mr. Ehrlich’s statement follows:
“I stand in opposition to the re-election of Al Gore to Apple’s board. He has become a laughing stock. The Himalayan glaciers are not melting, the seas are not rising and the medieval warm period has returned. If his advice to Apple is as bad as his position on the environment he should not be on Apple’s board.”
It is difficult to disagree with Mr. Ehrlich. Having a serial liar on the board cannot be healthy for any company. One might have thought that in the face of absolutely damning evidence, Mr. Gore might have beaten a discrete retreat from the public view and enjoyed his ill-gotten gains. Instead, in yesterday’s New York Times opinion pages he continued with the farce.
One can only pray that one day, we may note us finally rid of this pestilence. I don’t see it happening soon—they re-elected him any way.
We see the words in the above sub-head on just about every circumstance of bad weather, infrastructure breakdown, or business interruption which occurs. What sort of management tolerates the presence of “non-essential employees” on the payroll? Who are these people who draw pay, take up space, are part of the staff but are not needed during a snow storm?
Most recently, in Washington, D.C., we hear that all “non-essential employees” were sent home or need not report for duty during this week’s inclement weather. What must it do to one’s self-esteem to be sent to the warmth of one’s home and hearth having been described as such? As he looks at the accumulating snowfall on the ledge outside his window must he not realize that he is there in his comfortable home because of his sheer unimportance to his employer? This could easily prey on one’s psyche after a while.
On the other hand, if you are forced to continue with your duties in spite of increasing inconvenience caused by the storm might you not feel an overwhelming sense of superiority knowing you are indeed, essential? Fortunately, when I worked for the FBI nearly six decades ago, we were never forced to confront the issue head on. During my tenure, it never did snow to any measurable degree nor did the sky fall in any other circumstance.
It is interesting to note that the noble members of the armed forces who guard the Tomb of the Unknown at Arlington are on rare occasion offered the opportunity to renege on their duty of perpetual guard for their fallen comrade. To my knowledge, none have ever accepted the offer and continue to “walk their post in a military manner.” They consider their duty to him (her?) the ultimate in essential employment.
When snow is measured in feet and not inches, one might think they would jump at the chance to retreat to the comfort of their shelter. One would be wrong. They uniformly turn down the offer and continue their relentless vigil. It is their choice and they realize the seriousness of their charge. Today’s sergeant (E-5) has a base pay of $2250 monthly plus allowances so they don’t do it for the money. Most have not even acquired that rank.
At every level of responsibility, the civilian employees are shamed by the comparison.
The Health Care summit came and went and the results are now in—nothing changed. The White House and the Democrats are still advancing socialized medicine and threatening reconciliation. The Republicans are still claiming to occupy the Philippines by defending Bataan and Corregidor. (Ed: Early in 1942, those were the last outposts in the archipelago to fall.) Both sides will suffer horrible losses as a result.
Although hard to believe, the Democrat Party—read that deluded Marxists—is prepared to lose their statistical advantage in the legislature in exchange for the foot in the door provided by the health care initiative. To gain this critical point in their agenda they are willing to be reduced to obscurity in exchange. Socialized medicine is simply one more brick in the wall which separates the people from their government. Add this to banking, industry, czar placement, cap and trade, and favoritism to government at every level and the collective goals are at hand for a diminished government of the law and the people.
The Republican Party, perpetually adrift in a sea of their own self-interest, foolishly envisions a take-over of both houses and an easy road to the presidency in 2012. They continue to tolerate the Tea Party movement by patting it on the head and through condescending acknowledgement of their popular appeal. They fail to understand that that movement is (!) the voice of the people which they are sworn to protect. As they inventory the prospects to run against Obama in 2012 they find a level of tarnish on each and every individual.
As the criticisms mount they find themselves the party of “too.” Too much faith (Romney and Huckabee), too much populism (Palin), too much kookiness (Paul), too much “ivory tower” (Gingrich), too many closet skeletons (no names here to help the other side), too much competence (Cheney), too much youth (Ryan, R-WI), too much black (Keyes), and on and on goes the list. Whoever gets the job will have to be a giant in his own right; to be otherwise, will assure defeat. The toughest part will be to recognize the Tea Party for the force it has become and enlist them in the effort to take back the government.
It is distasteful to admit that there are Americans who would willfully attempt to change our form of government and exchange it for one which has oppressed its citizens. Unless we can come to grips with that fact we will see little progress in Washington, D.C.
The only things which disturbed the robins in the front yard this week were the grazing deer which browsed the stubby grass. Both the robins and the deer are less skittish and tolerate an old man burning a stump. I am grateful they allow me to enter their world. Oh yes, they flee at any untoward sound but for the most part are pacific.
The days are gradually warming and we have fewer freezing nights. The crocus bed near the road is now up about six inches. Today I prune the grapes and retie them to the deck and hope for the best. We are now becoming impatient for spring and restoring the property from the ravages of ice and snow. All in all, it’s not been too daunting and the warming of the bones is welcome.
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 11:30 AM