Yeah, he was a socialist.

cropped-libertyI give up trying to convince people that most of the various -isms are divisive bunk, and that, really, the spectrum of -isms from authoritarianism to libertarianism boil down to a very simple principle: primacy of the state, versus primacy of the individual.

But let us at the very least put to rest the idea that Nazis weren’t socialists.

Here is a ten-year-old article, which is, I think, just about the correct distance from the present to be more clearly separated from today’s tribal hysteria and concomitant “Democratic Socialism” blindness.

The core argument is that Hitler called himself a socialist of a sort derived from Marx, and that his deviation from the USSR’s variety of socialism (“Jewish Marxism” in Hitler’s words) was in two key forks that made it, in Hitler’s opinion (as well as that of Mussolini, who wrote much on the subject) more workable.

  1. National Socialism relied on geography and race to avoid the needlessly divisive self-destructive civil war as the Russians had suffered. Hitler felt that Germans shouldn’t fight Germans, so he elevated race above pure socialist dogma in an effort to unite more to his general cause. In Hitler’s words, “…find and travel the road from individualism to socialism without revolution.
  2. Recognizing private property rights is necessary to economic success and social unity. In Hitler’s own words (not from the article), “Socialism is the science of dealing with the common weal. Communism is not Socialism. Marxism is not Socialism. …Socialism, unlike Marxism, does not repudiate private property. Unlike Marxism, it involves no negation of personality, and unlike Marxism, it is patriotic.

I can understand some confusion, as Hitler had over the years said many things that could, in isolation, fuel the notion that he was anti-Marx; certainly he was anti- “Jewish Marxism.”

But I believe that’s only when viewing Hitler through a partisan lens. Because he made it abundantly clear in his own words that he was a socialist.

In a critique of Mussolini’s newly-coined “fascism,” Hitler wrote of his own economic plan, “Point No. 13 in that program demands the nationalization of all public companies, in other words socialization, or what is known here as socialism.”

To more or less summarize my argument, as well as that in the article and referenced book, I’ll end with Hitler’s own words, and let you think on where we are today, and why so many Americans admired the man back in the day:

The Germany of today is a National Socialist State.  The ideology that dominates us is in diametrical contradiction to that of Soviet Russia.  National Socialism is a doctrine that has reference exclusively to the German people.  Bolshevism lays stress on international mission.  We National Socialists believe a man can, in the long run, be happy only among his own people.  We are convinced the happiness and achievements of Europe are indissolubly tied up with the continuation of the system of independent and free national States. Bolshevism preaches the establishment of a world empire…

 

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A “hearing” without ears

Post mortem on the Pro Tempore hearing

OK, so “hearing” is the wrong word, because they voted to not hear me at all.

I gave them written copies of the 10-point argument below, but they were handed back, saying it would be “inappropriate” for them to read it.  Of course, the State’s attorney did hand me nine-thousand pages of their arguments*…about why I should shut up and go away, as it turned out.

After spending ten minutes going over the rules (including how I’d get ten minutes to make my case) and other niceties of procedure, the State moved to dismiss the complaint on the grounds that whatever I’d have to say should’ve been said in July, and they’re sure that what I’d say would be the same as what was already said anyway…AndyTriesAgain

…Even though I wasn’t there in July, and it wasn’t the same argument.  And I was there to represent another person’s CAN-1 challenge (Ben Tackitt) who couldn’t make it to this hearing.

You see, the state arranges these meetings at inconvenient times in places with exotically expensive parking for a reason

And so, the State (everyone of authority in the hearing was paid as an administrative judge working as an agent/employee of Connie Lawson with a built-in and unconstitutional conflict of interest…whatta surprise) voted to reject CAUSE NUMBER 2018-124.  They wouldn’t give me even my ten minutes.  Not even two.

Even as they tried to shush me, I asked, “Does this exhaust my administrative remedy?

If they answered no, then I should’ve been allowed to speak.  If they answered yes, then it’d be clear that I’ve got a court case with no administrative remedy (helping me ascend to that diaphanous, magical and nearly unattainable quality of “standing” before the court).

So attorney Brad King told them not to answer me.

I was railroaded.  Again.

I really didn’t expect better.  I mean, how weird would be for the state’s cronies to vote against themselves?

HeroIt’s voters who’re supposed to vote against such corruption and entrenchment of power.  If I’ve done anything at all with my efforts over the decades, I have proven (over and over and over and…) that I can’t fly onto the scene with my ray-gun and save the day, dang it.

I’d like to, of course.  But I can’t.  It takes numbers.

My hope all along was that ordinary folks would hear about this case, and DO SOMETHING about it!

PoliticsMonsterThat’s my hope (not my expectation…but I do hope).

This cause was only one example of the continuous expansion of political powers and reduction of citizen powers and rights by unconstitutional legislation, and evermore-damaging constitutional amendments, which have spawned a culture of political cronyism that foils the purpose of term limits, democratic elections, and constitutional rule of law. 

cropped-youSo I’m posting this for you, in the hopes that you’ll read it, agree that injustice is being done, and tell others about it.

Of course I hope you’ll do even more than that (write letters to the editor, call-in to radio shows, start a lawsuit, organize protest marches, foment revolution…).  But even if telling others is all you do, I’d be delighted, and grateful.

Anyway, here’s pretty much what I would’ve said today, if given the chance; it’s what I tried to hand them on paper at the hearing.  But none of this was heard, or read:

  1. Article I, Section 25 of the Indiana Constitution makes plain that there is no legal state authority except by specific provision in the constitution. Indiana Code does not create authority; all legal authority rests only upon the Indiana Constitution. All officeholders are required by oath of office to uphold this fundamental rule of law.  The state’s case rests entirely upon Indiana Code which contradicts and violates the state constitution.

  2. As of today, there are only two constitutionally clear ways to empower a Secretary of State; election by the voters of the state (Article 6, Section 1), and by gubernatorial appointment (Article 5 Section 18).

  3. Constitutional provisions in Article 5, Section 18 and Article 15, Section 3 ensure that no Indiana office is left vacated, yet make no special or extra-ordinary definition of pro tempore.  The specific constitutional authority to issue writs of election was repealed in 1984 (Article 5, Section 19), making it less constitutionally clear when, how, and by whom, special elections are to be called.  But the definition of pro tempore has always been known to be transitory and provisional.

  4. The original 1851 Article 6, Section 1 of the Indiana Constitution mandated: “There shall be elected, by the voters of the State, a Secretary, and Auditor and a Treasurer of State, who shall, severally, hold their offices for two years. They shall perform such duties as may be enjoined by law; and no person shall be eligible to either (sic) of said offices, more than four years in any period of six years.”  The original wording makes evident the erosion of constitutional protections as demonstrated by the doubling of term limits in 1970.  Article 2 Section 11, unchanged from 1851, made more sense in the context of short term limits: “… an appointment pro tempore shall not be reckoned a part of that term.”  Lawson’s first term as SOS was longer than the 1851 full term of elected office, and was over half the entire 1851 term limit.

  5. On February 4, 2012, former Secretary of State Charlie White was removed from office, and Jerold A. Bonnet was made the temporary, interim, pro tempore Secretary of State of Indiana.  This appointment was unquestionably pro tempore because there was a legal challenge to White’s 2010 ballot eligibility, throwing into question how the SOS office would be filled, though by original constitutional design and one judge’s ruling, either Democrat Vop Osili should have confirmed, or been a special election should have been called.

  6. On March 16, 2012, Mitch Daniels named Connie Lawson the new Secretary of State. There was no contingency or compromise to this appointment. Connie Lawson’s unconditional replacement of Charlie White and Jerold Bonnet was not pro tempore by any definition of pro tempore (proxy, locum tenens or conditional officeholder – e.g., the President pro tempore of the Senate, who stands-in for the Lt. Governor’s role as President of the Senate, or Judge Pro Tem who stands in for another judge). Jerold A. Bonnet was unquestionably the only pro tempore Secretary of State.

  7. The intent of the term limitation, even as of 1970, was to limit the power and electoral advantage of incumbency, limit the entrenchment of factions, and inhibit politics as a lifetime career.

  8. The purpose of democratic elections is to both thwart crony entrenchment, and to give equal opportunity for all people, without any special classes of citizen powers, privileges or immunities, an equal chance to serve their society.

  9. Precedent” is not law.  Only legislators can make law.  While this is most plainly stated in the federal constitution, the state constitution follows the same form of separation of powers.  And Article I, Section 25 of the Indiana Constitution does indeed forbid law by precedent, as it is rule-making without constitutional provision, process or authority.

  10. SUMMARY: Connie Lawson’s first term of office was not pro tempore.  And as per arguments previously submitted for Indiana Election Commission CAUSE NUMBER 2018-12, she is not eligible for election to a term of office she cannot lawfully complete.  At best, Lawson’s candidacy strains electoral propriety, and taints the credibility of Indiana’s chief election officer.  But more seriously, to allow this candidacy to go forward presents an abuse of public trust, as well as an egregious violation of Indiana’s governing authority – the Indiana Constitution.

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So, what comes next?

Plan B

Will the GOP get away with this obvious scheme to simply appoint cronies who can then run in the next election with all the advantages of incumbency?  Are they going to kick out Curtis Hill so they can appoint a more insider-friendly replacement?  Is this whole democratic process and term-limits thing kaput?

Well, that’s up to you.

 

 

 

 

*Lawyers like to intimidate people with piles of paper and ink.  In fact it came up in the hearing how much time and money in billable hours were wasted on my futile attempts at justice.

By any name, it kills

First, here are the classical definitions of socialism:

  1. Government (not “communal”) control of property, and ownership of the means of production.
  2. Some definitions include the elimination of private property, but this overlaps with communism, and somewhat contradicts Marx’s definitions.
  3. In Marxist theory, an intermediary/transitional form of government between capitalism and communism distinguished by unequal distribution of property and income. “Corresponding to this is also a political transition period in which the state can be nothing but the revolutionary dictatorship of the proletariat.” – Karl Marx

Socialism

Now, the use and meaning of the word “socialism” has changed a LOT recently.  So I’ll contrast it to communism, as defined by Marx:

  1. The state is eliminated (true anarchy) and all property and means of production is owned equally by the people as a collective.
  2. No private property. “The theory of Communism may be summed up in one sentence: Abolish all private property.” – Karl Marx
  3. Distribution of goods and services by: “From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs.” – Karl Marx

People can of course believe whatever they want.

If they want to call themselves socialist and then redefine socialism to be something they like better than the old definition…well, who am I to argue?

Words change all the time. The English language hardly resembles what it did before the Vikings and French and Shakespeare started messing with it.

But let’s not fool ourselves with our words, either.

Words are extremely powerful.  It’s by words, and the actions we apply to words, that we turn corporate abstractions like “tribe,” “gang,” “army” and “nation” into deadly forces of oppression, slavery, genocide and war.

I know a lot of decent, well-meaning, well-educated and very intelligent socialists. They all perform the same, subtle linguistic/mental alchemy:

They trans-substantiate politicians into “The People,” and are, really, advocating communism.Atheists

In other words, today’s socialists dismiss the inevitably violent and impoverishing despotism of an almighty government, and transmogrify the realities of authoritarianism into the dreams of a Marxian Kumbaya.

Now, to a degree and in a way, we all do that, and it’s not all bad.

All government is by consent of the governed. Politicians, elites and even the legions of bureaucrats all put-together, are vastly outnumbered by the people who in one way or another consent to be ruled. So even the most oppressive tyrants reflect The People’s willingness to submit, if nothing else.

We’re tribal, pack animals, and we tend to Follow The Alpha. But even the most well-armed and entrenched ruler can be thrown down when the actual human populace (and not an abstraction like “The People”) get mad enough to finally act.

So it’s true, though we act like it’s not: ALL government is by consent of the governed.  ALL government is a reflection of the people.  It is the collective’s avatar.

But socialists aren’t thinking of We The People as a republic with representative politicians. Even more strangely, when they’re asking politicians to take over every aspect of life, they’re imagining this will lead to freedom, not being subjugated by an authoritarian despot.

I really do understand this. It sounds great. In fact I used to do this mental trick on myself, and I fell for a good bit of Marx and Engel’s rhetoric:

If you’re unhappy with the way things are in general, or the way your life is working in specific, doesn’t this sound appealing? “We call communism the real movement which abolishes the present state of things. …Both for the production on a mass scale of this communist consciousness, and … the alteration of men on a mass scale is, necessary, … a revolution; this revolution is necessary, therefore, not only because the ruling class cannot be overthrown in any other way, but also because the class overthrowing it can only in a revolution succeed in ridding itself of all the muck of ages and become fitted to found society anew.” – Karl Marx

And how about this one: “Let the ruling classes tremble at a communist revolution. The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win. Workingmen of all countries, unite!” – Karl Marx

And this one from Marx is absolutely true: “A nation cannot become free and at the same time continue to oppress other nations.

I’m not sure why “socialists” don’t just come out and say it; again, here’s Karl Marx: “It is high time that Communists should openly, in the face of the whole world, publish their views, their aims, their tendencies, and meet this nursery tale of the Specter of Communism with a Manifesto of the party itself.

But let’s consider the label “Democratic Socialist” (which is itself very Marxian: “Democracy is the road to socialism”).

A few hours ago I read a rose-colored “Democratic Socialism” article that said “Socialism can be defined as ‘a system of social organization in which private property and the distribution of income are subject to social control.’

OK, fine. But what the heck is “social control” if we don’t have it already?

What doesn’t our government control right now, today? Are socialists somehow saying that our government is not the social organization of our society?

You can argue all you want about the benefits of income redistribution and that mysterious ether “social justice.”

But if you’re using “social control” of property and income as the definition of socialism, then we’ve already got it, and socialists should be delighted.NoGun

But they’re not, are they?

So, what do they really want?

Well, actually, I think most want, in a broad sense, what I want.

  1. They may be angry at people, and even violent toward their political foes; but all the “socialists” I know say they want peace. World peace. As in, quit bombing people. That’s a fine wish. I’d be happy to work with them on this.
  2. They want prosperity, however they define it. I may strongly disagree with their ideas on economics, but our goals are the same. People should prosper.
  3. They know our current social order is corrupt, and want that to go away. Me too! Oh man do I agree with them on that.
  4. They want something like “fair.” OK, they do tend to categorize people and have special classes of rights and privileges for special people, and I hate that. But they still have a sense that things aren’t fair now, and that something has to be done. I’m cool with that.
  5. While I think they’re calling oppression down on their own heads, they think they’re working toward freedom…personal freedom. I’m totally for that goal.

So, my problem with socialists isn’t their goals; it’s their chosen plan to attain their goals. I don’t think they’re thinking straight about their “social control” versus authoritarian corruption, poverty and violence. I think they’re grabbing onto the same, ancient snake-oil political promises and imagining that they’re the newest Get Rich Quick scheme.

lucy-charlie-brown-footballWe’ve done this before. We’ve done it to death. We keep believing the promises of dreams and ending up with the nightmares of yet another despot.

I know the arguments about western intervention in socialist nations like North Korea, Venezuela, Cuba and other descendants of the Russian revolutions of 1917. They have some merit. Our Presidents T. Roosevelt and W. Wilson did tremendous damage to the world in making war into a grand adventure of Empire instead of self-defense only.

But the arguments that socialism quickly tears itself to bits are much stronger, in my opinion.

Strong enough, I think, that the real peace, freedom and prosperity lovers among us should keep offering a much, much better way for a better life, and try to convince our fellows that what didn’t ever work as advertised before…still won’t work.

Fearing our own shadow

The Land of The Free has been surrendering freedom hand-over-fist because the Home of The Brave is scared of its own shadow.  Almost literally, its own shadow.

wwii-rubbleWe’ve for generations been the arms dealer and political destabilizer to the world.  Our CIA and armed forces have interfered with elections and even violently taken down one dictator to prop up another for over seventy years.

Our government has lied about its wars, warmongering, entangling alliances and foreign interventions for much longer than that.  Our CIA and NSA have been spying on the whole world, including every person within our own borders, as well as prying into foreign elections (and our own) for long enough that it’s disingenuous to complain about foreign spies and foreign interference in elections…unless we claim we’re the only ones who’re supposed to do all that.

To everybody.

All the time.12362834_10153703528535280_3712867037536160998_o

We are the most heavily-armed, most globally nannying and bullying, domestically intrusive, imprisoning and militarized nation of all time.

It is our own shadows that both terrify and genuinely threaten us now, and, surprisingly, in the past, too.

You think our soldiers are fighting for freedom?  Which freedom?  How many freedoms must we lose to get that elusive freedom we’re fighting for?  At what financial/future security cost?  At what moral/social spiritual cost?

We have literally reordered and molded our society’s defense/military, monetary and legal and political structure to our collective trembling nerves.   Why?

While nobody ever says it exactly like this, the predominating justification for the USA’s violent, costly Fear-Aggression Syndrome is:

lucy-charlie-brown-footballOur past screw-ups necessitate today’s screw-ups.

Rational people can look at the USA’s past mistakes reasonably.  Our government made horrible, murderous, costly mistakes when it was far smaller, less powerful, less secretive, less snooping, and vastly less heavily-armed and militarized both globally, and domestically, than today.  But ironically, the closer we get to the present, the more wrong we call right, and the more we justify today’s wrong by yesterday’s wrong.

We all know that slavery and native genocide was bad.  Only the more educated among us know that the wars against Mexico and Spain were motivated by greed and desire for empire, and had nothing whatsoever to do with protecting American liberties and land.  But very few consider how Teddy Roosevelt stimulated the Empire of Japan and the USA helped create the Soviet Union, however, so we tend to think of WWII as a wholly Good War, where the USA wore white and saved the world for liberty and justice for all.

Bellamy2The point is that, the closer we get to the present, the more our views of USA government become disconnected from reality.
Even after we learned that the Vietnam War was justified on, at best, a screwup, we tend to think of USA government as a benevolent god of peace and love, incapable of wrongdoing (though we keep seeing new wrongdoing every day).

This is a freakishly weird phenomenon.  But it’s also the nature of tribalism and idolatry.  We love our team, and we hate the other guys.  We can’t see the wrong in our idols, teams, champions and leaders, but we know that the other peoples’ idols, teams, champions and leaders are pure evil.Testing football helmets, 1912

And it’s also just human: People of the past were THEM.  People of today are US.  We can easily admit that our ancestors did horrible, stupid things; but we sure don’t want to admit that, today, right now, WE are screwing up.  We’re blind to our own errors.

In other words, we see the past more clearly than the present.  And we see other sinners more clearly than we see ourselves.

So, as a result, we exemplify, even if unintentionally, the exact opposite of The Golden Rule.

This is self-immolation.  We have so many impending disasters of fiscal, social, monetary and military nature, that we desperately need an epiphany and revolution of heart and mind.

You can’t be the Land of The Free if you’re not the Home of The Brave.  But no nation can survive at all with this kind of stupid.

Just Say No to war with Iran

Freedom, IN – It’s a quote attributed to pretty much everybody, that “the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” The saying is more true and applicable to USA foreign policy than to anything else.

None of our foreign aggressions worked as promised, or even as we’ve been told. Yet we’ve had scarcely a year’s peace since the War to End All War.

And we’ve been getting worse, not better, at finagling foreigners into serving us and our Saudi allies. Does anyone doubt that our interventions in Libya and Syria have been disastrous? Have we really fixed anything in Somalia, Yemen or Pakistan? When will we be done with Iraq? Afghanistan is the USA’s longest war, ever…and we’re losing. What’s the plan? What’s the goal?

We’re sure not fighting for freedom.  Not anybody’s freedom.  And we’re sure not making friends when we blow up their children.

A leaked May 17 memo reveals that the USA government once again intends to replay the same failed script; this time against Iran (again).

The key directive sent to Rex Tillerson is “…that the U.S. should use human rights as a club against its adversaries, like Iran, China and North Korea, while giving a pass to repressive allies like the Philippines, Egypt and Saudi Arabia.”

Let’s think like a human, and not a politician, for a moment.

What actual human beings on the planet would not hate us for our arrogant, armed and deadly games and manipulations? Why wouldn’t we be creating more enemies than friends with such obvious duplicity? Does anybody on this planet think they’re the ones who’re wrong, and deserve death?

Is the Golden Rule really so bad?

I’m no pacifist. I believe in security through strength. And I understand the theory of “Humanitarian Intervention” (though that’s been irrelevant lately, and it certainly doesn’t work in practice!).

But we’re acting like stupid teenage “swatting” and “knockout game” thugs; not at all like rational adult humans. We’re acting as though we can use killing force against others with impunity, when in fact, we’ve been hurting ourselves as much as anybody else.

This is insanity. We’ve got seven “whack-a-mole” wars going on now, and we’re losing our wealth, security, and of course, freedom as a very direct result.

Our armies are protecting the petrodollar and drug trade, not anything We The People should value.

I propose we just say stop the madness, and give Peace, Prosperity, Security and Freedom a chance.

Liberty or Bust!

Andy Horning

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It’s time to talk about our spies

…It’s time to talk about our spies!!!

Freedom, IN – ♬♪ They see you when you’re sleeping, they know when you’re awake; they know when you’ve been bad or good, so be good for goodness sake! ♩♫

Our US Congress is trying to give its cronies a Christmas present – re-authorization and more funding for the unconstitutional mass surveillance programs we were once told didn’t exist.

I say it’s time for what some might call a “courtesy flush.” The corruption and destruction and stench of our lawless, secretive societal saboteurs has grown too great.

Thomas Jefferson wrote “…that knolege is power, and that ignorance is weakness.”

So let’s stop being ignorant about who’s got the real power here, and what they’re doing with it.

The FBI was, from its start in 1935, corrupt, snooping, deceitful, and deadly.  It took some brave thieves to reveal some of the agency’s crimes.  Truman regretted creating the CIA, and Kennedy said he would “splinter the CIA into a thousand pieces and scatter it to the winds” (right before he was assassinated).  The CIA developed the first spying engine of the NSA; and we know that agency has been anti-constitutionally spying on all of us, and have repeatedly lied about it.

Now, just think about the power of unlimited, unregulated spying, lying, and political immunity, mixed with armed force and the ability to make opposing voices go silent.

Imagine you had the power to find out everything about people, convincingly make up what you don’t find, or make even powerful people, maybe even in our own country, die…without facing any consequences.

What government on the planet wouldn’t abuse that power? We have good reason to believe that a government that performed medical experiments on school kids, doesn’t even resist abusing it.

Could such knowledge and power actually control our elected politicians?
This is what people are talking about with the term, “deep state.”

So-called “federal” agencies’ famous rivalries, withholding of data, rejection of congressional oversight, their anti-constitutional actions against citizens, media and foreign governments, and their trampling of local law enforcement really do make them more enemy than friend.

I propose we abolish the FBI and CIA, and give their money back to the states and people. I would reinforce the constitution’s already clear ban on domestic spying, deception and subterfuge, and leave all domestic law enforcement to more local, appropriate units of government, and already-constitutionally authorized courts.

I propose that the US Congress directly manage our foreign spy operations under specific congressional warrants and limitations, including the Geneva Conventions.

“… we want no Gestapo or secret police. The FBI is tending in that direction. They are dabbling in sex-life scandals and plain blackmail. J. Edgar Hoover would give his right eye to take over, and all congressmen and senators are afraid of him.” — Harry S. Truman

Liberty or Bust!

Andy Horning

Freedom, Indiana

Eight Steps to Success

Here’s how we turn from fatal social disease, toward Peace, prosperity, Security and Freedom in eight steps:

  1. End the cronyism/corruption culture.
  2. Stand down our military-industrial complex and global imperialism, and replace it with strong, constitutional national defense.
  3. Monetary/banking reform.  Click the link for details.
  4. Term Limits. Let’s face it; voters haven’t been doing their part.  But much of that problem is the huge advantage of incumbency.  I understand term limits won’t happen until after voters make better choices.  But still, we need term limits shorter than human life expectancy…
  5. Rule of Law. This would cut a lot of stuff from what we’re calling “government” today. You may not like some of the cuts; but I’m certain you’d like the end result.
  6. No more loaded bills. One subject at a time, and no earmarks/pork.
  7. End special classes, special deals for special people – equality for all at long last.
  8. Sunset provision/amendment to refine and reduce the number of laws so that our rules are:
    1. Few enough to actually know
    2. Simple enough to actually obey
    3. Important enough to enforce without exceptions or special classes

To summarize, I want to cut the cost, intrusiveness, abusiveness and ineffectiveness of our central government by actually cutting powers, programs, agencies…and people, from that government. I mean to establish a truly federal (instead of our increasingly unitary) government as defined by the authorizing compact.

Too stupid to know we’re being stupid?

Socialism

I’m pretty sure that my wisest, most clear-headed moments have been when I fully, accountably realized that I was being an idiot.

And I think the wisest of those moments resulted from somebody else pointing out to me that I was being an idiot…and I listened.

There is that saying, “A wise man learns more from a fool than a fool learns from a wise man.

OK, so I hope the preceding was a sufficiently humble preface, since I’m about to call hundreds of millions of people idiots.

You see, having been to innumerable political forums where politicians outnumber regular folk; having participated in scores of public debates; having authored hundreds of articles published in major media and reading the angry retorts; having stood at the center of hundreds of protesters with a megaphone in my hand; having been to hundreds of public meetings where policy is purchased; being fairly well-acquainted with the best political minds in at least Indiana; and having warned everybody I know about our current national predicament when there was still time to fix it; I feel unusually well-qualified to make the following statement:

We The People, that arbitrary, abstract and problematic mob called a “nation,” in the Year of Our Lord 2017, are at least acting like idiots.

Unite the Right rally violence

I’ll support that statement in four ways:

Number 1. Our society’s deceptive use of language, and level of conversation, has plummeted to embarrassing depths.Pride

Here is a small excerpt from the “Federalist Papers” number 10, written by James Madison and published November 29, 1787:

A zeal for different opinions concerning religion, concerning government, and many other points, as well of speculation as of practice; an attachment to different leaders ambitiously contending for preeminence and power; or to persons of other descriptions whose fortunes have been interesting to the human passions, have, in turn, divided mankind into parties, inflamed them with mutual animosity, and rendered them much more disposed to vex and oppress each other than to co-operate for their common good. So strong is this propensity of mankind to fall into mutual animosities, that where no substantial occasion presents itself, the most frivolous and fanciful distinctions have been sufficient to kindle their unfriendly passions and excite their most violent conflicts. But the most common and durable source of factions has been the various and unequal distribution of property. Those who hold and those who are without property have ever formed distinct interests in society. Those who are creditors, and those who are debtors, fall under a like discrimination. A landed interest, a manufacturing interest, a mercantile interest, a moneyed interest, with many lesser interests, grow up of necessity in civilized nations, and divide them into different classes, actuated by different sentiments and views. The regulation of these various and interfering interests forms the principal task of modern legislation, and involves the spirit of party and faction in the necessary and ordinary operations of the government.  

…The inference to which we are brought is, that the CAUSES of faction cannot be removed, and that relief is only to be sought in the means of controlling its EFFECTS.”

Now, who in public life today thinks and talks like that?

Here, by way of comparison, is some of our current President’s writing (unedited and in full):

Written by Donald Trump on May 8 2013: “Sorry losers and haters, but my I.Q. is one of the highest -and you all know it! Please don’t feel so stupid or insecure,it’s not your fault

And another, perhaps more famous writing by the same person 31 May, 2017 said, in its entirety and verbatim, “Despite the constant negative press covfefe

 

Number 2. We know everything about stupid stuff, and nothing about important stuff.

Allen IversonHow much do I need to elaborate here? How many men can quote baseball stats back to ‘ought-five, yet can’t name our Vice President? How many women read thousand-page romance novels hours on end, and say they “don’t have time” to read the US Constitution (it takes about an hour)? Our kids lack basic life skills even after spending a quarter of their lifespan in classrooms.

 

Number 3. We’d never hire anybody else the way we hire politicians.

Let’s say you need to hire a janitor. But instead of reading applications, calling people in for interviews and checking references, you just sit back and see who puts up the best yard signs, billboards and TV ads. You’re not looking for qualifications in the conventional sense. No; you’re looking for the best odd$; you’re looking for who’$ got $upport.KeatingFive

“Give me the keys to your building and relax,” says one candidate, “I’m the Janitor You Can Trust!” Another candidate has run a great ground game, handing out literature and freebies to your other employees, with the slogan “Make Janitorial Services Great Again!”

There are lots of other candidates, of course; but all your interest goes to only the two Major Janitorial Candidates. The media tell you that you’d be a fool to waste your choice on other candidates, no matter their superior qualities and actual qualifications, because the Major Janitorial Candidates are…well…they’re Major.  (oh, and they also contribute a large percentage of the media’s ad revenue)

When everything else these days can be “nonbinary,” only your choice of candidates must be from only the two given to you by who exactly?

Interestingly, you never ask where all the money comes from for the expensive campaign materials and professional managers. If you exercised any curiosity at all, you’d realize that the people spending millions of dollars to get a job that pays a salary pittance have other reasons to get access to your building and all that’s inside.

We don’t think about anything else the way we think about politics. I only wish I had as much faith in my “religion” as people have in their political idols. I only wish I could be so lackadaisical in my daily life as we are with the power of money, police, prisons, spies and war.

 

Number 4. We have collectively and intentionally rejected that functional system of moral civil behaviors called “culture.”

CultureNo, what we call “multiculturalism” isn’t a culture – it’s divisiveness in the pretense of enlightenment. A functional culture doesn’t require an official, uniform religion, style of speech, dress, food or customs. But it does require some basic commonality and uniformity in rules of behavior, consequences, methods of conflict resolution, and, most importantly, letting people pass on the left instead of parking your big fat black Cadillac Escalade with Hillary bumper stickers in the left lane matching speed with the blue Prius in the right lane going east on Hwy 46 toward Bloomington …for example.

Now, I’ve for decades fought our corrupt political scheme; which is based entirely upon Special Deals for Special People. But that corruption is just a reflection of our corrupt civilian culture.

Instead of looking for common ground, we’ve obsessively divided ourselves into opposing factions of LGBT versus straight, socialist versus fascist (as if either’s any !@#$ good at all), male versus female, poor versus middle class, and…more than at any time since I was just a kid…black versus white.

Antifa Portland
Why?

Do we not all want peace, prosperity, freedom and maybe a little love? Do we really LIKE the violent, hateful posture we’ve instead chosen?

Maybe we do prefer hate. I was recently told that because I’m a white Protestant male (a “WASP;” the West’s most reviled, and even self-loathing, minority), I should not even be allowed to speak. Seriously.

 

So, you may think I’m about to propose a solution. Sadly, no. There is no solution to idiocy other than humility, and its beloved companion, accountability. But that is a rare and precious thing. It hardly ever happens in significant numbers.

America, as a culture, needs to realize that it’s being an idiot, and snap out of it.

But what are the odds of that actually happening?

I of course hope We The People will have a collective epiphany, and back away from the self-obsessed, hateful, prideful, self-destructive madness we’ve chosen, and plot a new course that in some way incorporates at least a little peace, prosperity, and (is it too much to ask?) freedom.

My hopes have alway exceeded my expectations.

Sigh…

Droning Muslims, and the Golden Rule

If all humans lived by the Golden Rule, there’d be nothing like what we call, “civil government.”

We have kings and bureaucrats and jails and armies for two main reasons:
1. Because some percentage of us behave badly.
2. Because we think that politics will somehow fix that.
Gun

Of course, there is not now, nor was there ever, a government that operated on the Golden Rule.  Governments are always, to some degree, corrupt. And that is because people (including politicians, of course) misbehave, all power is inherently for sale, and government is nothing but delegated violence.  

It’s force.  It’s the threat and use of violence, imprisonment, fines and death. That’s why a small corrupt government is much, much better than a big corrupt government.

charlie-brown-footballYou’d think that since human governments have a 100% failure rate, we’d have learned this by now. But we humans are a surprisingly dumb species. We tend to self-destruct in ways that make great movies, but bad reality.

So, let’s consider our current situation with the Islam that we long ago militarized for our own purposesmonetized for our own purposes, gave good cause to unite where before it kept itself divided against itself, and now consider our enemy.

Wait… Before that… let me interject one more line of thought:
The only people who ever threatened to kill me, personally, were USA Americans (no, not Mexicans, not even Canadians).  One was a black man who claimed I shouldn’t live in a black neighborhood.  But several were red-blooded Tea Party folk who said I should burn in hell for running against their Republican Savior.

The only people who tell me what I can do, can’t do and must do are USA citizens.   It’s my fellows who take away my dwindling freedoms, take my money, tell me what I can do with what little I can keep, and make sure that I know that whatever it is I think I own (including my life), will be taken away if I don’t follow their rules.

It’s my fellow Americans who divide us into three classes for the purposes of rights, privileges, electoral access, and in courts:

1. Rich People,

2. Democrat/Republicans and their cronies,

3. All the rest of us poor suckers who believe their promises and keep reelecting the people of classes 1 and 2. 

And it’s been only my fellow Americans who’ve lied and lied and lied to me about why we’ve been at war forever

With_Lawrence_in_ArabiaOK, so, back to Muslims, the North Koreans, Russians, or whoever our rabid Fear-Aggression Syndrome makes us see as the enemy du jour:
They think they’re right, too, you know. They’re convinced that their corrupt, self-destructing political scheme is right, and we’re the bad guys. And they’re not living by the Golden Rule any better than we are.
Are they our enemy?

Sure they are.
Who isn’t?
Just as hammer sees everything as a nail, a government, or by extension to the root…a human, sees everything outside its limits of power as a threat.

Even within our borders we make enemies of white men, Jews, gays, Democrats, Republicans…or people who aren’t gay Jewish white Democrats or Republicans. We’ve been dividing and subdividing against ourselves for so long that we feel we must tighten the cliques in order to defend them against all outsiders.
Right?

But this is why we suffer discord, fear, and violence.
We have politics because of our discord, fear and violence. 

And governments thrive and depend upon discord, fear and violence. Governments tend to stimulate and amplify that discord, fear and violence because that means more power and money for the individual politicians and cronies who comprise governments…

But hasn’t our own government, our own society, become a vastly greater threat to our personal freedom, health, security and prosperity? Shouldn’t we address this before we go picking fights with others?

Here’s what I recommend:
The Golden Rule.
TheEnemyExemplify the peace, freedom, prosperity and security that’d flow from better behavior – both personally, and then reflected in our governance (our government is, after all, just our reflection, our avatar, our sins amplified).

To whatever degree we do The Golden Rule, our debts, intrusions, deceits and aggressions would diminish, and everything else would get…better.  Other people would see that what we’re doing is working, and maybe try to emulate that to some degree.

Would that be so bad?
I’m not saying that we don’t have to go blow up half the world. Maybe we do. Maybe we’ve been equipping, funding, training and motivating enemies so well and for so long that now we really do have to unleash all the hell we’ve been summoning before it eats us up first.

Maybe.

But how about we try to do at least a little of what we say we’re all about, first?

Money, Politics, and Central Banks

Politicians have robbed us for generations

Freedom, IN – I have proposed a three-step plan to fix most of our worst problems by federal legislation.  In many previous releases I detailed plans for fixing the corruption we call “the Two Party System.” That was Step #1.

Step #2 is to fix our twisted-hybrid political/private crony financial system.

Money itself, as a fiduciary currency/unit of trade, can be a wonderful thing.  When scrupulously maintained as trustworthy, it facilitates honest trade, and practically guarantees peace.

Unfortunately, we’ve not had such money since 1913, though it’s still required by our state and federal constitutions.

Why?  Because the most effective way to hide the true costs of war, tax the public without their knowledge, enrich elites, and covertly monetize the massive debts incurred by impossible political promises and a military empire and industry, is to replace naturally limited money with cheap currency*, and then devalue it by making gobs of it.

There’s a long, repetitious history of this.  In every case, from ancient Egypt to today’s Venezuela, devaluing currency represents a slide to catastrophe.

In theory, fiat currency could work fine.  But every case involving humans, the short-term political gain of devaluation outweighs the catastrophic long term costs to the society.

There are no exceptions; “fiat currency” always fails.  And it’s always by the same stupid pattern.

Politicians spend money they expect future generations to pay, so they have to find a way to devalue/inflate the supply of currency, and then point fingers of blame everywhere but at themselves when it all collapses.

The United States of America has occupied the catbird seat of fiat currencies since WWII, when our lend/lease arms trading sucked up 2/3rds of the global reserve currency.  We immediately started spending down on that when we joined the war, and through subsequent never-ending consequences of the world wars.  We spent all that gold long ago, and between the end of the Breton-Woods Agreement in ’71 and the petrodollar scheme in ’72/’73, we found a new way to further devalue what had become truly fiat currency.

But that is ending shortly, as our dollar is based purely on trust, and violence; and the world is both losing trust in us, and sick of our endless Petrodollar Wars.  We have been deceived right up to the brink of collapse, and we’re past due for some radical action.

So:

  1. Audit the Fed.  We are past-broke, and it’s time to go through an orderly and just restructuring of debts, nullifications, and dismantlings.
  2. Replace the current Federal Reserve System with a truly private banking system that is not only subject to audits, reporting and SOP as with other incorporated institutions, but also has NO power to monetize political debts or create currency.
  3. All money/currency authority and accountability shall be in the US Congress as per Article I Section 8:5 of the Constitution for the United States of America, so that politicians will be held accountable for greed, shortsightedness, and trans-generational theft.
  4. However, people must be free to use whatever form of money or currency suits their needs.  “Cryptocurrency,” foreign coins, even conch shells or knotted strings are not the government’s business.  Our government’s only legitimate role in interpersonal transactions is when there is force or fraud involved.

In other words, I propose we stop lying, stealing, making promises we can’t keep, and clean our accounts for the promotion of peace, prosperity, security …and freedom.

Liberty or Bust!

Andrew Horning

*One could debate the meaning of the words and concepts “money” and “currency” forever.  But for the purposes here, currency is an “official” (mandated or agreed upon) trade instrument that has no intrinsic value.  Money is a pretty abstract concept, since value is still applied by humans, but it’s generally a scarce/limited/difficult-to-reproduce thing that therefore has by itself been granted some relative value (gold, silver, rare shells, libertarians).