This week it’s The Haunter of the Dark. This story has a lot in common with Psycho. Just trust me on this one.
Friday, September 30, 2011
Thursday, September 29, 2011
More questions for the Presidential candidates:
- Will you support Congressional action to raise the debt ceiling or will you veto such legislation?
- Is unemployment a problem or is it a symptom of a much larger problem? Explain.
- What are the effects of labor regulations with regard to unemployment?
- What is the difference between the economic systems of capitalism, corporatism, fascism, and Socialism?
- Do treaties signed with foreign nations trump the United States Constitution?
- Are you for limited, constitutional government? Define what limited, constitutional government is to you.
- Given that the Consumer Price Index excludes food and fuel prices, do you believe that it is an accurate measure of price inflation?
- Does the FDA fulfill a necessary role in the market? Explain.
- Does the EPA fulfill a necessary role in the market? Explain.
- What do you believe interstate commerce means?
- Should an amendment be passed to extend Letters of Marque and Reprisal to non-pirate groups?
- Before engaging in a military offensive, should the President require Congressional approval in the form of a formal declaration of war or a Letter of Marque and Reprisal?
- When is the President permitted to engage in aggressive military actions?
- What is the purpose of the ATF?
- There are over 10,000 laws on the Federal books. Do you believe that this is too many, not enough, or just right? Explain.
- Every day there are no-knock SWAT raids on Americans. Do you find these raids to be constitutional? Explain.
- Is the War on Drugs a Constitutional program? Explain.
- Given that the Federal government has over 14 trillion in debt, is the Federal government bankrupt?
- What is your plan for reducing the national debt?
- Should the Federal Reserve keep interest rates low or raise them and why?
- Should private citizens be allowed to create a competing currency with the United States Dollar?
- Will you issue an executive order to undo President Nixon’s “temporary” abandonment of the Gold Standard?
- What will you do to get rid of the various redundant agencies within the Federal government?
- Do you believe that the United States Federal government is in dire need of austerity measures?
- Should all foreign aid be continued, some of it be continued, or all of it eliminated from the Federal budget?
- Should aid to non-profit groups such as Planned Parenthood be continued?
- Should the Federal government be in the business of playing favorites with corporations as they clearly do now?
- What is the best definition of the free-market you can give?
- Does God talk to you?
Well, that was fun. Too bad none of these will ever get asked on a national debate.
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
The Second Set of Books is alive and well in this country and we should always be aware of how they are being used against us to take away our freedoms. I had a small argument with my father earlier this week about this concept concerning the power of the Federal courts and the extent to which they wield it versus what they actually have.
You see, the Federal courts, both Inferior and Supreme, were originally designed to merely interpret the law in a given a circumstance, however in the case of Marbury v. Madison, the courts assumed the role of being the final say on all matters constitutional. In other words, Congress is powerless to counter a ruling handed down by the Supreme Court.
Yet this power does not exist in the United States Constitution. There is no article or amendment to it which states that the Supreme Court or one of the Inferior Courts is the final decider on constitutional interpretations. Still, the Second Set of Books demands that we adhere to these rulings and that Congress should not pass laws contrary to the rulings of the courts.
Except when certain Presidents ignore court rulings. As far as I can tell, only Andrew Jackson and Barack Obama have done so. In Jackson’s case, it was about American Indian relocation. In Obama’s case, it is a Federal judge’s ruling to overturn the Universal Healthcare bill. In both cases, the Presidents involved have effectively nullified another branch of government, although in both cases it was to further tyranny.
The Second Set of Books are the policies and procedures which the government uses in order to implement ideas which are not law. A law is written down and is enforceable. A policy is never written but enforced by the executive branch. Often times, dating back to President Franklin D. Roosevelt, executive orders are used to create the Second Set of Books.
The result? More tyranny and less freedom without even the input of the will of the people through the House of Representatives. Right now, there are over 10,000 Federal laws on the books and probably hundreds of thousands of policies which are not of the official law books. Because there are so many laws, most people do not know when a bureaucrat, uniformed or otherwise, is enforcing a law or merely a policy. There are many people who have spent time in jail over this confusion and ultimately they probably did not have to.
There is no way for a single individual to know every single stated law at the Federal, State, and Local level. Even if the collection of laws were at 1% of what they are now, it may still have been too much. So the best thing you can do in any situation where you are dealing with a bureaucrat, uniformed or otherwise, is to give them the silent treatment. Assert that they have no right to search you without a warrant and no right to take your possessions without one as well. Record such encounters and post it on any video hosting service you can so that it is not lost.
I do not trust other people. Because most people are only looking out for their own self-interest, you cannot expect the bureaucrat to only do what is constitutionally required of them but to do more because, as they will say, it is their job. Despite the fact that government jobs are probably the most secure jobs one could ever have, next to being unemployed, they often worry about their jobs because the higher ups demand that they follow the Second Set of Books rather than what has been written down.
And so we find ourselves in this soft tyranny where the government leaders, some elected and some not, presume that they can control millions of individuals who have their own agendas, lives, and desires. But this seems to be starting to come undone as their economic manipulations have shattered the well-being of millions of people and threaten the well-being of millions more. Yet they continue to trudge on and I will not be surprised if in a few years, our leaders decide to stop hiding their tyranny and come out and say what they are really doing.
Unfortunately, by then it will be too late for anyone to do anything about it.
Monday, September 26, 2011
Sunday, September 25, 2011
"I was shocked because it seemed like one person after another was being brutally tackled, and it wasn't clear why," said Meaghan Linick, 23, from Greenpoint, Brooklyn, who attended the rally. "I was deeply disturbed to see them throw a man [down] and immediately they were pounding on him. Their arms were going back in the air. I couldn't believe how violent five people needed to be against one unarmed man."
The protesters, joined together under the banner of an organization called Occupy Wall Street, have been stationed in Zuccotti Park since last weekend, attempting to draw attention to what they believe is a dysfunctional economic system that unfairly benefits corporations and the mega-rich.-Wall Street protesters cuffed, pepper-sprayed during 'inequality' march
Peaceful protestors are penned in like animals then arrested for not dispersing on Wall Street in New York City. They are using excessive force as well as chemical agents to illegally suppress people's right to protest peacefully. The night before a undercover provocateur was sent in and was trying to start fights with protestors. After he was called out he left and went right to the police line.
Friday, September 23, 2011
Today the video is split into three parts. It is an adaptation of The Shadow Over Innsmouth, one of Lovecraft’s more popular tales:
Bill O’Reilly demonstrates a deliberate attempt to rewrite history:
So it looks like Bill O’Reilly is a moron when it comes to recent history or he is deliberately trying to make us look good. While I do not think that the 9/11 attacks were justified, the Federal government does not have its hands clean when it comes to foreign policy. The fact is, we were occupying Muslim nations before the Iraq or Afghanistan invasions and we were routinely flying over Iraq as part of the UN Resolutions after the first Gulf War. The various trade embargoes imposed on Iraq meant that children were not able to receive medical treatments that would have saved their lives (on a side note, trade embargoes only affect the citizens and strengthen the dictators as it gives them something to rally around). And let us not forget the time when President Bill Clinton bombed Iraq to distract the public of his ongoing oval office blowjob scandal.
And he wonders why Ron Paul will not go on his show….
Thursday, September 22, 2011
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Monday, September 19, 2011
And free TV was paid for with ads like the following (poor Chinese baby!):
Rachel Maddow and her MSNBC guests are scandalized that Rick Perry stuck to his guns that Social Security is a Ponzi scheme during the presidential debate... “This kind of rhetoric will hurt him in the general elections,” they reassured each other. They didn’t flat out say that Perry was wrong, but actually he is. Social Security is not a Ponzi scheme. It is much worse.-Social Security is Not a Ponzi Scheme, Mr. Perry
The accusation that ‘So-and-So is greedy!’ is almost always -- and when the accusation has political ramifications, always -- intended as an attempt to provide moral cover for, and sanctification of, the accuser’s own covetousness.-Greedy!
Here, Bill Bonner asks if "The Great Correction" (and because it is a "correction" not a recession, whatever its nature, people know that there is no recovery, only the government's phony, manipulated "recovery", which is why all talk of a "double dip" sounds crazy to sane, rational people who see through the state's lies; there is just one big "dip", and we're still in it and will remain in it for the foreseeable future) is more than some suppose:
But what if there were more going on than a simple financial correction…even a correction of a 60-year credit expansion?
What if the Great Correction were greater than we thought? More ambitious…more aggressive…and more dangerous?
In the space of the last 500 years the human population grew approximately 1000%. If it were a financial chart, you’d look at it and think — ‘uh oh…it’s a bubble.’
What if we were approaching a correction?
Reuters reports that the population of Japan is falling like a stone. Some 20 million Japanese are expected to disappear in the next 30 years.
Declining, graying populations are not what you need for economic growth. Old people don’t spend much. Dead people spend even less.
As a result, the economy shrivels up like a 90-year-old.
Read more: Dead Men Don't Spend
And Bryan Caplan wrote not long ago about the connection between population and prosperity:
The case against population is simple: Assume a fixed pie of wealth, and do the math. If every person gets an equal slice, more people imply smaller slices. The flaw in this argument is that people are producers as well as consumers. More sophisticated critics of population appeal to the diminishing marginal product of labor. As long as doubling the number of producers less than doubles total production, more people imply smaller slices.
These anti-population arguments have strong intuitive appeal. But they face an awkward fact: During the last two centuries, both population and prosperity exploded. Maybe the world just enjoyed incredibly good luck, but it makes you wonder: Could rising population be a cause of rising prosperity? -Population, Fertility, and Liberty
As for myself, I don't know, but I can't justify the true crime of bringing a new life, unasked, into the world and throwing the inevitable suffering that being alive brings with it, onto another. I'd rather be ethical than ensure I'm going to collect a decent Social Security check in my old age (or have a "prosperous" economy with endless growth). Massive Ponzi schemes (Rick Perry was right) need constant new blood (suckers) to maintain themselves, and I'm not willing to force that evil on anyone. The incredible selfishness of the very idea that we must create new babies to have a "healthy" economy is disgusting, regardless of whether or not a growing population and a growing economy go together like capitalism and the state.
Saturday, September 17, 2011
Friday, September 16, 2011
Right now, I have a fellow church-goer whose husband is in the last stages of Alzheimer's disease. He developed when he was in his 50s, which was unusual and really sad to boot. His wife has been by his side the entire time helping to cope with this problem. In fact, it was not until recently that she tried to send him away to get better care. Right now, though, he is in Hospice care as he is unable to eat or drink. They keep him sedated because he has become violent in these final stages.
Needless to say, it sad to see this man deteriorate as he has. He used to make pancakes for the Christmas morning service and served on Vestry. He was able to do a lot until his Alzheimer’s set in. Then he had to helped with communion as he was not sure what to do himself.
Then yesterday I heard about Pat Robertson’s unchristian comments about divorcing Alzheimer’s afflicted spouses. I just shook my head at the sheer absurdity of the statement. To call such as disease the “walking death” is a little extreme in my opinion. For the most part, this fellow churchgoer was still taking communion up until a month ago. I went to his house to help administer it and he still remembered the Lord’s Prayer. As far as I am concerned, he may have been losing his mind, but he still remembered enough. There was no death in this.
As to the question of divorce, I believe that marriage is sacred and difficult. To literally live with another human being for your entire lifetime is a lot to ask someone. Human beings are naturally prideful and selfish, so even in marital relationships you can see the attitude of “what’s in it for me?” rather than an attitude of “what can I do for you?” Now, I am not saying that for a person to have a set of reasonable expectations from his or her spouse is wrong, but you have to be willing to meet the expectations of your spouse as well.
For those who are married and find a spouse has been afflicted with Alzheimer’s disease, I have my deepest sympathies. It is difficult to deal with someone who probably will forget who you are someday, especially someone who is probably your best friend and someone with whom you have lived with for so long. I cannot imagine having to deal with all the various problems with my wife should she ever come down with that disease or something like it. But I also cannot imagine divorcing her because of it.
This is not to say that the thought would not cross my mind several times. I am sure that I would seek the easy way out. I do believe that there are legitimate reasons for divorce because our hearts are hard. At the same time, I do not believe that divorcing a person who is terminally ill, which you are if you have Alzheimer’s, is one of those legitimate reasons. It is not an act of love, but of pure hedonistic selfishness. And seriously, do you really think you could start a new relationship with someone if they knew that you divorced your terminally ill spouse (Newt Gringrich)?
While I really do not care what people ultimately do in such situations, Christian or otherwise, I do condemn Pat Robertson for his statements largely because he should know better. But I think the years of being famous within many Christian circles has led to a level of pride I hope to never come in contact with. What he said borders on justifying euthanasia and Christians would do well to shake the dust off their feet of him and move on. I personally have never really found any Christian leader to be particularly inspiring myself, rugged individualist that I am, and I recommend that others do likewise.
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
I have seen the idea of Freedom of Speech argued so often that I think it is becoming a danger to our liberty. I know, I just said something that was contradictory, but I have good reasons for making that statement. Let me start out by stating that the First Amendment was targeting Congress by restricting laws they could pass and later on the Fourteenth Amendment made it part of the states, somehow.
This amendment basically stated that people are allowed to speak out against the government without fear of reprisal. By “speech”, the founders clearly meant written words and spoken words. By and large, they did not mean actions against the government, however that meaning has been stretched these days.
The reason that “Freedom of Speech” is more dangerous these days is because it has a broad meaning with no real limitation. For example, making a political donation is considered “speech”. This is utterly ridiculous as that is an action which does not involve words. While I believe that people are free to donate however much they want to candidates, regardless of current Federal law, it is a property right and not a free speech right. I am free to spend my money however I see fit, which is a property right and more akin to free market principles. (Full disclosure: none of my money has ever been sent to any political candidate to date.)
Basically, because we have been arguing freedom of speech in order to gain more freedom while forgetting about property rights, we have negated the crucial right in favor of what amounts to a sexier one. If you are believer in property rights and that what you own is yours, then you should argue that way and not the other.
What about murder? Murder is a violation of property rights (intentionally destroying a human life that you do not own) but it is not a violation of freedom of speech, at least how modern and post-modern civil libertarians define it. You could easily argue that murder is a form of free speech after all.
So when people argue for things like pornography (Full Disclosure: I do not believe in making pornography a crime despite being a Christian) should be allowed because of freedom of speech, I respond by asking, “What are pornographers speaking out against in government?”
The High-Church Statists know all of this and recognize that property rights trump freedom of speech. For example, the FCC is an agency that essentially manages the airwaves, which are currently the private property of the Federal government. Yes, I know that they are referred to as “Public” airwaves, but there is no such thing as public property, only property. The FCC currently imposes fines for indecency, which for now includes nudity and foul language. If the private entertainment companies, such as Viacom or Clear Channel, owned those airwaves, they would be free to put whatever content they wanted in their airwaves. But instead they are owned by the State and so we have this faux debate on foul language on the public airwaves between social conservatives and social liberals.
As far as I am concerned, your freedom of speech ends when it reaches my ears, which are my property. It is a shame that even libertarians fall into this trap and forget about the most fundamental right is not freedom of speech, but the right to their property.
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
Sunday, September 11, 2011
There are certain actions which we are not permitted to do as human beings. While some people are complete pacifists, where any act of violence or force is considered wrong, most people at least follow the non-aggression principle, which states that you may not initiate force against another person. The initiation of force, the threat of such, or fraud upon persons or property, where property is what a person owns, is considered to be a violation. Most reasonable people can agree to this simple principle.
However, the problem is that you will have a small minority of people who have little regard for the property or person of others and instead will commit acts of theft, vandalism, murder, etc. The human being is capable of great evil and great good after all. When this happens, reparations are required of the perpetrator because of the harm caused. We call this concept justice and it is different from revenge where justice is eye for an eye while revenge is head for an eye. In other words, the reparations must fit the crime.
Most people usually allow for a government entity of some kind to be able to apply justice. Basically, in order to enforce reparations, you need to initiate force and usually a government body is set aside for that purpose. The vast soup of political and philosophical ideas mostly agree on having some government force, save for the various anarchist philosophies (each of which have about a dozen adherents as they are more numerous than the more “mainstream” schools of political thought).
What happens, though, when the popular institution of justice decides to overreach? Usually, people bend over and rationalize the overreach as necessary, or worse, blame the victim of the overreach. This happens dozens of times everyday now across the United States where government thugs are permitted to run rampant with the full support of the average citizen. While the apathy is rapidly diminishing, as people are beginning to realize more and more how bad things have gotten, it is still significant among the dumb masses. More people care about football than politics. Normally, this would not bother me actually because if the Statists had no sway over us, than politics would not be that big of a deal.
The fact is, the United States government at all levels (Federal, State, and Local) have systematically violated just about every law they demand we adhere to. When I talk about violations, I do not mean legitimate acts of reparation, but acts of violating the non-aggression principle without regard for reparations. For example, the commonwealth of Virginia, my state of residence, has outlawed gambling. The law itself violates the non-aggression principle as gambling does not and government should not be involved in bad decisions. At the same time, Virginia runs a lottery system, where people can gamble by buying state-issued lottery tickets of various kinds. Meanwhile, detectives in my state are entrapping people for harmless sports bets and sometimes getting them killed (see the tragic case of Dr. Salvatore J. Culosi). This is a grave overreach of government action and gambling should be legalized. Unfortunately, because of the money off of those who are just plain stupid, I doubt there will be any such action any time soon.
There have been other incidents. The shooting death of Oscar Grant, where BART police officer Johannes Mehserle of Oakland shot and killed a young man because he was on his stomach resisting arrest. The fact is, Oscar Grant was not fighting back, he was simply making it difficult to be arrested. But he was lying down, unarmed, and could easily have been handcuffed and taken away. Instead this coward shot him. And what was the punishment for this man? He was convicted of involuntary manslaughter, served two years with time served added into the sentence and is now out of parole. If you watch the various videos, any sane person would have called it murder and Johannes Mehserle should have been still in prison now.
But the rules are different if you are a government worker. This is how you can tell that we are no longer a Republic but a tyranny with most of the political process as being nothing more than a sideshow. The bureaucracy at all levels has gotten so big that it is impossible for 536 elected people and 9 appointed judges to completely and properly oversee it. So instead of the law be applied evenly to everyone regardless of what their standing is, it is applied selectively and only severely to those who exist outside of the “Outer Party”.
If we are to regain our freedom, we must first dismantle the various agencies, rules, and regulations which are designed not to enforce the non-aggression principle, but to protect the interests of those so-called protectors of the American citizenry. Until that happens, there will be no liberty, just power and who has it.
"You will always face suffering, you will always face humiliation, unless you withdraw your troops from Muslim lands." -Muslim protester (9/11 anniversary: Muslim protesters burn US flag outside embassy in London )
Gee, Muslim protester, I thought it was because you hate our freedom (what's left of it after our own government has just about destroyed the last remnants of the Bill of Rights).
I had a brief conversation with a friend of mine yesterday, in anticipation of the 9/11 worship that was already being rolled out by the tediously repetitious media machine all week long. I am swearing off all media today because I cannot stand this endless attention to 9/11 and the persistent glorification of police and fire and EMT, and whatever other state-employed professionals are deemed to be heroes because they represent the state as our rescuer, benefactor, and savior.-
First Responders as Heroes?
But the American-led invasion of Afghanistan that followed 9/11, has claimed thousands more lives in what's now the longest conflict in U.S. history. While the initial aim of the war on terror was to target Al Qaeda, which was blamed for the attack on America, the fight was soon extended to Iraq.
Saturday, September 10, 2011
Personally, I can barely watch the 9/11 "memorial" coverage all over the state-run media. To Hell with the unending media worship of the state (and on the anniversary of Massive State Failure Day)!
Ten years after, what has 9/11 wrought?
Initially, Bush handled it masterfully.
Then, full of hubris, the conquering hero went before the Congress to all but declare war on three "axis of evil" nations -- Iran, Iraq, North Korea -- not one of which had had anything to do with 9/11.
Instantly, Bush split his international and national coalitions. NATO allies Germany and France, who had followed us into Afghanistan, were now "an axis of weasels" to the blustering neoconservatives in Bush's court.
"Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists," brayed Bush -- with the terrorist sympathizers presumably including Pope John Paul II, who opposed an American war on Iraq.
The U.S. arsenal had deterred Stalin and Mao Zedong, but apparently it could not deter such a monster as Saddam. A second 9/11 with nuclear, chemical or biological weapons was something we had to go to war to prevent.
So, with the indispensable support of a Democratic Senate including Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, John Edwards, John Kerry and Harry Reid, we went to war against Iraq.
Friday, September 9, 2011
Thursday, September 8, 2011
Dave Ramsey stiffed his creditors legally, got back on his feet, and is now making a financial killing by selling rotten investment advice to poor people who do not know enough about investing to recognize that he has been faking his non-existent financial expertise for a decade.
Dave Ramsey is not to be trusted.-How Dave Ramsey Made $55 Million by Being Good on Personal Debt, Naive on Business Debt, Lousy on Investing, and a Loudmouth Bully
Wednesday, September 7, 2011
Tuesday, September 6, 2011
Now, true to its past, Detroit is not just fading away gracefully, but noisily sick and dying, expiring as spectacularly as it once lived. Fifty years ago it was the fifth-largest city in the United States, with 1.85 million people. Now it is eleventh, with just over 700,000 people. It is likely to fall further behind as it shrinks, and as more Americans head for the Sun Belt and the flourishing South West, away from this blighted, dingy Rust Belt.
Each year at Halloween more of it is burned down in a mixture of wild destruction and insurance fraud. You can walk right through its majestic downtown in the middle of the morning and meet nobody at all. There is no danger of being mugged, as a mugger in this part of town might have to wait hours for a client.
Most of the great buildings are ghosts: hotels that haven’t seen a guest in years, department stores where the last customer left decades ago, abandoned dentists’ surgeries where the elaborate Forties chairs moulder in echoing solitude. Where there was optimism, there is now nothing but melancholy.
Sometimes the majestic hulks are brought down in giant explosions.
Property crime is double the American average, violent crime triple. The isolated, peeling homes, the flooded roads, the clunky, rusted old cars and the neglected front yards amid trees and groin-high grassland make you think you are in rural Alabama, not in one of the greatest industrial cities that ever existed.-From Motown to Ghost town: How the once mighty Detroit is heading down a long, slow road to ruin
Once upon a time, the police were generally friendly and trustworthy. You actually wanted to know police officers and be friends with them.
But today, police in most areas of the country are deeply feared, and for good reason. They are actually taught to be brutal and authoritarian.
All of this comes from the very top. Prior to 9/11, the Department of Homeland Security, "VIPR teams", the Patriot Act, body scanners, "enhanced pat-downs" and "fusion centers" didn't even exist.
A fundamental shift has taken place in America, and it is almost as if a severe mental illness has infected nearly the entire law enforcement community in this country.
The "big black boot" that was supposedly going to keep us all safe is actually destroying this country and everything that it means to be an American.
-10 Years After 9/11, Is America A Better Place?
Are you a conservative? Do you suffer from Paul Derangement Syndrome or PDS? If you are not sure, here are following list of the symptoms:
- Do often refer to Ron Paul supporters as “Paulbots” or “Ronulons”? Do you refer to Ron Paul himself as “RuPaul”?
- Do you like to say that Ron Paul blames the United States for 9/11, even though he has referred specifically to the foreign policy of the United States government?
- Do you say he is an anarchist because of his associations with Lew Rockwell and because many of his ideas came from Ludwig Von Mises and Murray Rothbard?
- Do you say he is a racist because of the articles published in his name while overlooking that he has admitted his own failure in properly editing the magazines in question?
- Do you constantly say he cannot win despite polling data that tends to argue otherwise?
- Do you state that you will not vote for him, even if that means another four years of President Obama?
- Do you bash his followers and demand that Ron Paul denounce them even though they are spread across the entirety of the Internet?
- Do believe he is out to destroy the Republican party, even though you are disgusted with the current Republican party’s actions with Obamacare and the debt ceiling?
- Do you agree with Ron Paul 90% of the time, but would rather vote for someone who you agree with 75% of the time?
If you are a conservative and suffer from any one of the above symptoms, then you may be a PDS sufferer. Unfortunately, there is no treatment for such a problem, not even a swift kick to the head, as your resentment and hatred runs too deep. The best cure you can hope for is to fake reasonable arguments with Paul supporters online and eventually you may find yourself making well-reasoned arguments against him, rather than knee-jerk, reactionary insults.
PDS is not to be confused with RWDS or Right Wing Derangement Syndrome, which is a common affliction of Left-wing Statists.
Monday, September 5, 2011
It could be I only started noticing more old Beetles than usual on the road because of an article I read. Could be, but I know long before that I'd been wondering why I never saw any at all anymore. Maybe, just maybe, something was stirring amongst the driving public. Volkswagen announced the original Beetle's retirement from production way back in 1977. And in its day, it was quite an innovative vehicle.
The VW Beetle was actually the very first car I have a memory of. My dad had one for two years after I was born, and for years after I believed that the place where you put the gas on cars was under the front hood (the Beetle had a rear engine, of course, so under that hood was storage space, a trunk in the front, and the location of the gas cap). By the way, I mentioned the trend of returning Beetles to my dad the other day, and he went into a semi-rant about how unsafe they are. True, you'd probably be killed in a minor accident while driving or riding in one, but, isn't that choice of risk up to the individual and not the state that is now worshiped in this country like God?
And so, there is a peaceful rebellion of sorts developing. Government can force the automakers to build ever-more-complex, ever-more-expensive new cars that increasingly require 5-6 year mini-mortgages to buy and the ability to pay a $70-per-hour “technician” to service. But government can’t force people to buy these marvels of technology – and tyranny.
We can just say no.
And instead, we can buy cars built in the pre-government era (roughly, before the early 1970s) that are free of the encumbrances – and expense – that has been layered on over the past 40-something years.
The Beetle Mark I’s resurgent popularity tells me that at least some people have figured out that while you can’t fight city hall, you can do an end run around city hall.-Return of the Beetle – Mark I
My girlfriend recently wanted to buy an old Beetle, but it's not something I'd want her to be driving everyday. I do worry about safety, which is my own choice, so I'll no doubt have to eventually make sure she's driving one of those expensive modern cars with 3 thousand airbags.
However, personal transportation and the freedom and economic advantage it brings are vital, and to be honest, I may never be able to afford a brand new car, so I do want the freedom to choose. How about a car company called Simple Autos? It's not legal to open such an enterprise now to build new vehicles, but who says you couldn't "restore" old ones. I don't think you need much left of the original vehicle to do a legal restoration and sell it, and if it could be done cheaply enough, it might be a thriving enterprise. In the meantime, just look for existing ones for sale and save yourself some hard earned dough (I have a friend who never buys a new or evenly slightly used vehicle, he searches for old cars he can get for less than a couple thousand bucks, then drives them till they fall apart).
So, in just the last week, I'm seeing old, original Beetles everywhere. Three at the shopping mall the other day, and several a day on the road while just going about my business. At least I now know there are working ones out there if I ever need to buy one.
Would you drive an old Beetle?
Sunday, September 4, 2011
Saturday, September 3, 2011
“...executives at Starz apparently concluded that they would lose even more money by giving consumers a reason to subscribe to Netflix instead of the cable channel.”
Netflix has taken some heat lately after hiking its prices--
And an analyst on CNN explains--Starz wanted a bigger piece of the pie.
“Earlier this year, Netflix called Starz one of it’s most important deals because it’s one of the few that gives it’s Netflix customers streaming access to relatively recent films, and now that the streaming video service is so popular it’s not much of a surprise Starz wants more money. It’s a tough environment for Netflix right now, the company is facing a subscriber backlash now that it’s raising prices.”-Less Streaming? Netflix Loses Starz
Hey, now I've got a reason to tell Starz to go Hell! "Go to Hell, you assholes!" Boycott Starz ! (I know I ain't ever gonna subscribe to their channels again)
And Sony and Disney (two corporate welfare queens) can go to Hell too!
Friday, September 2, 2011
I’m going to be off the rim of insanity over the long weekend and in preparation, I’m going to post this week’s Lovecraft item early. I thought I would post a link to an online comic adaptation of The Strange High House in the Mist. The Terrible Old Man returns in this story as well, but he seems much nicer:The Strange High House in the Mist, Page 1
Currently, iris scanners are limited to checking the person scanned against a national database of iris scans. This database presumably only contains criminals, children and individuals who may need assistance, like alzheimers patients. The devices are not supposed to be able to capture and store new entries. These self-imposed limitations may only be temporary.
Read the rest: Ignore The Police!
Mark Dice talks about the latest facial recognition technology being rolled out on streets and in stores to keep an eye on everyone.
Dear Skeptical Man,
I've not seen your stuff recent, is that cause you are retired? I do not get it at all. You have a good thing going at the blog and then you say bye? Or actually, you didn't! I'm kinda getting to wondering.
No, and you're not going to see my stuff, ever, you fruit! What do you mean you haven't seen it "recent", you perv! What are you, a peeping Tom's Dick is Harry?
And yes, for your information, I AM retired! I had a blowout on the freeway and was out for a while and had to get all new tires. I'm glad, however, that you are not retired. Hopefully you'll blow one and drive off a cliff, you sicko!
Dear Mr. Skeptical,
Is it safe to drink your own urine?
I would recommend only drinking organic Mr. Skeptical Pure All Natural Urine, available for only $8.99 a gallon.
Why is Nikk Jakson stealing your ideas? What's this "Dear Mr. Nikk" pale imitation of your ideas doing on Sundays? (I've seen it on some Sundays, but I hope to God I never see it again. What garbage!
I Hate Nikk!
Nikk Jakson edits this blog, and in my opinion he does a damn fine job of it!
Why, it's almost as if you assume Nikk has no original ideas of his own, as if you think he must resort to copy and pasting other people's articles becuase he's either too stupid or too lazy to write anything himself, and has to steal all the contents you see at SE. Why, the very notion is outrageous! Please stop hating and look within yourself. You need help!