Friday, August 3, 2012


What are you afraid of? 

For me, it is the thought of my family hungry, cold, sick... eyes haunted with fear and desperation as I am unable to help, unable to protect, to provide, unable to feed them... 

I was an exchange student to Germany, just after the wall came down and right before the Reunification.  I spent two weeks in East Berlin with an East German family of four that lived in a two bedroom apartment, happy for the luxury... a wife and husband who had married because they could share more together, a business arrangement that seemed to have turned into something more... but still far from the world of love that I had come from.  We visited the father's mother during my time there... she lived in a village an hour or so from apartment in Berlin.  It wasn't squalor she lived in; all neat and tidy, but it certainly wasn't anything like what I used to.  Not many electronics at all, but she cooked up a nice meal...

Everything in their life was changing.  You could see the color entering there lives like watching a commercial for the Colorized version of the Wizard of Oz... the shots of it black and white, then the color "Magically" brought in. You look at the black and white shots and then the color shots and you were amazed! What sorcery! I know I watched the color version after the black and white version... Same story... but the colorized version was exciting after watching the old version.  You could see the same thing happening around me... People were travelling... stretching legs long held back by the iron curtain... Stretching their minds... starting to discuss things out in the open that would seen them behind bars.  Some of the young women would even talk about some of the horrors of Soviet Army troops... but still in hushed tones.

They were the survivors of the Cold War.  Many perished before them, but they had held out.  They kept their mouths shut when they needed to.  Studied what they were told to study in school.  Worked at the jobs they were assigned.  They knew what happened to those that didn't.  Google STASI.  I even went to one of their headquarters buildings and was able to see some of the "interesting" areas.    It was amazing to see how bright the future was in their eyes. How horrifying it was to see the past in their hearts and minds.

There is a reason why many revolts start with the Students.  Young, impressionable, full of vitality.  Not bent over with the yoke of true Adulthood, where you take your turn at the wheel, neck bent with the responsibility of providing for yourself and others.  Even more importantly, not responsible(normally) for anybody but yourself.  This freedom is precious, and often taken for granted when you are young(I know I sound like an old codger now).  It gives people a power to try to change the world around them.

Now think of our founders... (yes, you knew I was going to get to them eventually!) Almost all family men.  All with something to lose.  They risked everything.  Their lives... the lives of their wives and children.   Think about that.  Today we are taught that such a belief, such a total belief in anything like that is to be discouraged.  You can't choose for your children, you have to let them decide... Don't defend your beliefs, just go along and get along. 

Where would we be if the founders of our country did that now?

Monday, July 30, 2012


What is a tyranny?  The government, or rule, of a tyrant or absolute ruler(  Many would recognize the word Tyrant in speech and literature.  There are classic examples... Hitler, Pol Pot, Mao...  The concept of a Benevolent Tyrant also exists, Garibaldi in the 19th century is one such.  Little more than two thousand years ago, Tyrant itself was not an evil word; descriptive of a leader given sole power in the midst of an emergency.  But like most of man's institutions, corruption gave history the Leaders who refused to let go of power.  This Tyranny can take many shapes - co-opting, purging, benevolent.  The key to this power has always rested in the hands of those who are subject to its horrific effects. 

Through out the course of history, I doubt that anybody signed up for a tyranny, thinking, hmmm, outright oppression, dependency on the good will of questionable characters, well heck!  Sign me right up!

So since a general ballot with clear desires of a tyrant is right out, How do they achieve power? One of my favorite to study tyrants is Hitler (and this is personal to me - I have germanic blood, I've studied the language and culture some, even spent a year there as an exchange student).  How did Hitler dupe 43.9 percent of the voting population in 1933 to become Chancellor?  How did Hitler institute a single party government over some of the most intelligent people in the world?

Well, let's take a quick look at life in Germany before the election in 1933. 
  • Unemployment in Germany was at 30 percent in 1932 - people were going hungry. Families were going hungry.  Not having a job also presented a strong social stigma in that society, significantly worse than what we commonly see today.
  • Hitler himself was a great orator - many people were simply won over by his speeches..
  • Those speeches that declared enemies to progress - that painted targets on individuals or groups of individuals - Communists and Jews among them.
  • The loss of the war and the warriors in the First World War - Germany has always had a strong Warrior Culture - it's foundation based in the unification of the Imperial Germany goes a long way to show this - and the penalties from the Treaty of Versailles stung this country to its core.
  • There was also large amounts of funding from many sources interested in Hitler taking power.
But the worst thing? Hitler brought in his thugs who shouted down opposition in many cases, to even outright physical suppression of speech.  People were afraid to speak out against Hitler... and even if they did. what could they offer to match the claims that Hitler brought?

Those people that enable the dictator, the key to his power, often had few choices, and only one of them was easy.

So enough history from a non qualified historian(please feel free to challenge if you desire)...  what does that have to do with the Posterity of this country?
  • Remember, the people who founded our country were used to a past of tyrants.  They travelled to the new colonies for freedom from said tyrants.
  • This freedom they sought was not here - only the possibility.  Britain was not keen to lose its money invested here.
  • Our forefathers, who risked everything they had in just boarding a vessel to travel here, to unknown lands, to find a place where they could live in peace, risked everything again to throw off the yoke of their tyranny.

They took the key to tyrannical power away from Britain.  Without their consent, Britain was unable to maintain control of the colonies.  Yes the colonist had help from others, but I believe they would find a way no matter what.

Also a point of interest, the colonies were not 100 percent behind the revolutionaries!! Trouble all around.

These revolutionaries sought to provide a government where the rule of law applied to all.  Where equality of opportunity was key.  These revolutionaries sought to limit the power of the government - in essence they had the keys to their own tyranny, and forsook it for Liberty!

So remember in every political discource, remember to keep the Tyrants Out!
Keep out the people trying to prohibit people from exercising the rights granted to them by the consitution.

Keep out the people trying to grab more power that was intentionaly limited by its founders.

Keep out the people who seek to stir the passions of the people instead of appealing to their logic.

And most importantly, free yourself from the concept of equality of outcomes. 

Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. C. S. Lewis

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Anachronism - My Introduction

I find myself here scratching my head.  Growing up I knew I was different, but it has finally hit me - I am overwhelmed with the delta between myself and society writ large. 
Read this quote: 
“If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquillity of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.”
Samuel Adams
  We are the sons and daughters of this revolution - this man's blood flows through our psyche!

Here's another:

They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.  Memoirs of the life and writings of Benjamin Franklin (1818).

The foundation of our  government was based on liberty.  Was given to us by the sacrifice of hundreds of thousands.  People who laid it all on the line for concepts.  People who not accept the yoke of servitude and subjugation.  People who would die free rather than suffer collar of indenture.

Now look at us.

Seriously.  Do the Old Spice thing.  Look at your country.  Look at your country's founding.  Now back here.  Not the same is it? No huddled masses yearning to breathe free(Emma Lazarus).  We are happier to let somebody else protect us.  We are happier to let someone else educate us.  We entrust our paycheck to be divided up without anything on our part. We beg for somebody to tell us what to eat, what to smoke, what to wear, where to live, how much water can flow through our toilette, what type of lightbulbs to put in our lamps.

While light of liberty starts to flicker.

This blog is my attempt to find where we went wrong, and how to get back to where we need to be. I am no poet, no writer... I am not Samuel Clemens or James Adams... But I love my country, and will fight for her until there is no strength in these fingers to type or breath to scream out my hoarse warnings in the night of collapse.

(you will find many quotes here- I will do my best to attribute them accurately, and also ensure that they are not taken out of context)
(you will find many quotes here because there are so many more that have said what I am feeling, and I detest reinventing the wheel.  Besides these guys are more eloquent than I am)