Archive for July, 2014

Thoughts on “Rolling Back the Clock”

Posted in Uncategorized on July 28, 2014 by Political Tragic

A common response to any criticism of Progressive Statism, usually in the service of one or more of the different strains of Marxism (classism, feminism, racism, environmentalism, etc.), is that “We can’t simply roll back the clock on *hot-button-topic* rights!” or “We can’t just go back to the 1950s!”

You don’t wish to be forced to pay for a strong, independent, adult woman’s abortion-inducing drugs? “We can’t roll back the clock on women’s reproductive rights.” Therefore, you must be forced to pay.

You decline to participate in a gay “wedding” by furnishing the flowers, photographing the ceremony, or baking the cake? “We can’t go back to the 1950s on gay rights.” So, the coercive power of the government will force you to do so, or pay ruinous fines.

You question the outrageous economic cost of pie-in-the-sky environmental diktats? “We can’t go back to the days of rivers catching fire!” Electricity rates will necessarily skyrocket.

It may be true that “we can’t go back to the 50s”, but if this kind of attitude isn’t shown the door, discredited, and abandoned, we will in fact go much, MUCH further back than 1950. Statism, whether Progressive or Conservative, whether the dictatorship of the proletariat or the divine rule of kings, leads always backward to the omnipotence of a ruling collective.

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Fiscally Conservative, Socially… Uh… by BILL READER

Posted in Uncategorized on July 18, 2014 by Political Tragic

No, You Aren’t “Socially Liberal” & other crimes against language.

According To Hoyt

Fiscally Conservative, Socially… Uh…

by BILL READER

 

Like every small-L libertarian everywhere, I am perpetually required to explain my beliefs to people who have me confused with one of the wide range of big-L Libertarian ideologies. And it was in one of these endless, unread letters to the internet about the difference between Anarcho-Syndicatilist-Voluntarist-Mocha-Grande-Double-Thunder-Signature-Homestyle-Extra-Crispy Libertarianism and libertarianism as practiced by sane people that I realized the classic representation of a generic libertarian to a person new to the term has changed. Or rather, it should change.

Now, doubtlessly many of you will have been quicker on the uptake on this point, but here is how the average layperson (who even knows what libertarianism is) hears about libertarianism: fiscally conservative, socially liberal. Don’t tell me I’m the only one who’s heard that. Following the new Reason study on millennials, which found a profile somewhat matching that definition, there are…

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The Law of Rules

Posted in Commentary, Current Events with tags , on July 11, 2014 by Political Tragic

The United States government organized by our Constitution is dependent upon many principles, but none in my opinion more important than the principle of the Rule of Law, the idea that laws are things fixed beforehand, to be read and understood by all, and which all are bound to obey. We have the Progressive Movement of the late 1800s & early 1900s and especially the academic President Woodrow Wilson for purposefully undermining the operation of this principle in American politics.

President Wilson and the Progressives were openly hostile to the Constitution and its restrictions on the scope of the federal government, and thanks to his largely successful efforts the presidency and the federal government grew obscenely in bloated authority and behemoth size at a rate which would be decreased only once, and briefly, by President Coolidge, and expanded at an ever increasing rate ever since. Since they had destroyed the Rule of Law, the Progressives put into place their own guiding principle: the Law of Rules.

A massive federal leviathan of agencies, bureaus, commissions, boards, departments, and other extra-constitutional governing bodies that all get to control chunks of Americans’ lives can’t be run according to one short, simple document that anyone can read and understand. To run the lives of millions of people requires millions of laws, laws “so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood.” To give but one prominent but hardly remarkable example:

No one has read these laws, not in their entirety. No one understands them. They were not drawn up, debated, or voted on by the law-making body of the government. (The original 2,000 pages were voted on, but not read nor understood by any of those who voted on them.) They change by month, either by increasing in size, or by certain sections of them being arbitrarily waived at the dipping of a poll number, or the threat of too noticeable an increase in medical “insurance” premiums (again, more on terms in a separate post). Certain people (including many, many groups who agitated for the passage of the original law) are exempt from the burdens of the law, and others are maliciously targeted by provisions set at the discretion of a single person (Secretary, Health and Human Services) who is not elected by the people.

This is the antithesis of the Rule of Law, it is the Law of Rules. The principle of the Law of Rules is best described to the younger generations as the Game of Thrones. Within its scope, anything goes, as long as you have the power–not Constitutionally granted powers, just any power you can manage to grab. You make up the law as you go, because its purpose is to hurt your political opponents in order to gain more power. And in America’s system of government–where the People are sovereign–the ruling elite’s political opponents are, increasingly, the People themselves.

The Forgotten Men II

Posted in Commentary, Current Events with tags on July 9, 2014 by Political Tragic

Because of our concern for the safety and security for women and children, the media’s “if it bleeds, it leads” formula is often modified with “including women and children” if some act of war or violence befalls any group of people that includes among them women and children. We have outsized concern because our children are the future, and women are the bearers of children.

But there is not such concern for the men of society. After all, men only build society with their sweat, protect it with their bodies, and pay for it with their blood. When some calamity befalls men exclusively, suddenly the gender neutral pronouns come out.

Recently, a group of 17 “coal miners” were killed in a blast in west China. Can we assume they were all men because men make up the overwhelming it-ain’t-even-close-to-close majority of coal miners in the world? A better assumption to make is that they were exclusively men because nowhere in the story is the phrase “including women and children”, which would signal the viewers to care about the victims as people rather than a statistic.

The Forgotten Men

Posted in Commentary, Current Events with tags on July 9, 2014 by Political Tragic

Anyone paying mild attention to the news knows about the Nigerian schoolgirls abducted by Boko Haram, and the bluster of Twitter “activism” that followed the story breaking international news. #BringBackOurGirls would eventually culminate in this fascinating display of petulance:

What doesn’t make the headlines or inspire inane Twitter “activism” are the dozens of boys singled out by the terrorist group in previous attacks and burned alive while the girls were allowed to flee. Why did the mass abduction of the girls capture the attention of the sycophantic international drive-by media while the grisly murder of boys did not? What ever happened to “if it bleeds, it leads”? The dismissive counter-argument is that the girls are still alive so there is a chance to save them, hence all of the attention.

That argument fails to explain the lack of interest in the 186 Kurdish school *boys* recently kidnapped by the Islamic terrorist group ISIS in Syria. According to Mustafa Hassan, a boy who managed to escape his terrorist captors, “Ten boys were beaten every day. But most of us were well-behaved, to not get beaten. Some of the boys were crying, some turned yellow with fear. They showed us a documentary film from Iraq: of people being slaughtered.”

These boys are not dead, so there is still a chance they could be saved and brought back to their families. But the West isn’t interested. Why?

“They asked us whether we wanted to join jihadis or not, to join Isis,” Mustafa recalls. “No one did. If the students were loud or chaotic, they were beaten with an electrical cable.”

I think there are several reasons. First is that whatever affects women and girls trumps “if it bleeds, it leads” because humans are more concerned with the safety and security of women and girls; it’s baked into our species to ensure the continuation of our species. Second, due to this preference of concern for women, the West views the tumults and tyrannies of the world primarily through that lens. American Conservatives (more on terms in another post) see Islamic society as one that Oppresses Women, and American Liberals see Islamic society as one that Oppresses Women Because Of Western Intervention, but both agree that Oppressing Women is a big problem in these societies, differing only on opinions of what causes it and what needs to be addressed to make it go away.

Both of these positions are blind to half of the victims, and excuse half of the culprits.

No human society ever in the history of the Earth has existed for the benefit of one sex and one sex only, because both sexes are needed to ensure the continuation of the species. There must be a benefit to both sexes in any arrangement of social affairs for any society to rise above the state of nature. Women in Islamic societies are getting something out of it, they have to be, or that society would not exist. Are women oppressed in Islamic societies? Certainly. But that’s only half of the issue.

The problem of groups like Boko Haram and ISIS isn’t that they oppress women (although they certainly do). The problem is they oppress anyone less religious than them, man and woman alike. Women they abduct, men they simply kill or convert into fellow killers. The kidnapped Kurdish boys are being condemned to death or radicalization, and the West barely even notices, because we are too busy worrying about the Oppressed Women of the Middle East.

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