… on our knees before our “betters”

Municipal and county officials are often incredibly arrogant. For every customer service representative or equipment operator or even police officer who is friendly, helpful, courteous and encouraging? There seem to be two or three who are arrogant, condescending, sniffing out any sign of disobedience, independence, lack of total submission, “bad attitude” or hesitation. And most of these seem to be senior appointees, civil servants, or even elected officials. Often with a string of initials after their names, often starting with “C” for “Certified” this or that. Certified planners, certified building officials, certified municipal clerk, certified financial officer, and more. How they preen over their qualifications, their appointments, and their power!

Dare suggest that there may have been a mistake, may have been a confusing communication, or may have been a new (and always more harsh) interpretation of some code provision, city ordinance, county policy letter or poster? Oh dear, you are indeed something that you can tell they found on the bottom of their boot that they need to scrap off. And punish for not dodging out of the way of their tread.

But as over the top municipal officials may be, from lowly dog-catcher or sewer inspector to the City Administrator or Manager (who really rules the place, not the mayor and elected council)?

Judges are worse.

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Shots fired! Why we don’t need to panic

The app “NextDoor” is growing in popularity as a way of encouraging contact and making good neighbors.  But sometimes what is reported and discussed takes my breath away.

A very recent example took place in and around Rapid City, South Dakota. Someone on the west side of the City heard gunfire. (Rapid, with about 80,000 people, is about half IN the foothills of the Black Hills and half OUTside the Black Hills on the edge of the “sea of grass” that is the Great Plains. The shots came from the mountain’s side of town.)

Of course, people panicked on social media. And no doubt, many called the cops or the Sheriff or the Forest Service (USFS)

There seem to be numerous misunderstandings. Let us look at a few.

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… Condemned to repeat it – the sad case of Massachusetts

The quote “Those who forget history are condemned to repeat it” is attributed to the American philosopher George Santayana and it can be accurately quoted as “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it” as stated in his work, The Life of Reason: Reason in Common Sense. 

As reported in the Lakota Times, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts continues to destroy its history and deny its founding principles. Thus ensuring that their history and the reason the State exists WILL be forgotten AND that the people of Massachusetts and their descendants will indeed be doomed to repeat it.

See the source image
Central Element of the “Sigillum Reipublicæ Massachusettensis”.

We are talking about the Coat-of-Arms of the Commonwealth, NOT the “Seal” as the LT article reports. Yes, there is a distinction. The Seal uses as its central element the Coat of Arms of Massachusetts. An official emblem of the State, the Coat of Arms was adopted by the Legislature in 1775, and then reaffirmed by Governor John Hancock and his Council on December 13, 1780. Yes, the same John Hancock whose bold signature is at the bottom of the American Declaration of Independence.

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Crumbling and collapsing

The recent tragic collapse of the apartment tower in Florida reminds us that life is fleeting and man’s creations are generally pretty-short-lived.

But the physical collapse and the death toll (expected to be near 200, I understand) is really minor, tragic as it is.

Societal collapse is far more insidious and dangerous, and in the long run, has a far higher death toll. It isn’t just the “autonomous zones” and protests/riots in places like Portland, Seattle, and elsewhere.

See the source image

Consider this story (a couple of weeks ago) from the Police Tribune, discussing how at least two major retail chains in California’s Bay Area (San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose) are giving up in the face of uncontrolled crime. Particularly in the moral and societal cesspool called San Francisco.

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Not-so-new feudalism

Although not so precisely stated, the fundamental principle of feudalism as practiced in the Dark Ages in much of Europe – and in Japan – is pretty well understood. “You swear to follow, obey, and be a loyal supporter to me, and I and my superiors will protect you and your family and followers from anyone else who would kill, rape, rob, enslave, or otherwise attack you.”

It was the foundation of those societies way back in the 7th and 13th Centuries, and as late as the 19th Century in some places. Even today we can see traces of it in the societies, the cultures, of Latin America and other countries.

Of course, like any other governmental or societal system, feudalism decayed. Note the “anyone else” in the definition: the feudal overlord more and more exempted himself (or herself: women were also in power even then, at least some of the time). He could kill, rape, rob, etc. his own vassals often with near impunity. Especially the villeins nearly at the bottom of the social order. (Outright slaves were the bottom.)

Supposedly we here in the Fifty States – and supposedly the “developed world” – have abandoned and rejected that concept of life and society. Feudalism is deemed incompatible with liberty, human freedom, and such well-worshipped if flawed concepts as democracy and fair play. And indeed, a foundation of supposed white supremacy.

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Second class citizens

“Some animals are more equal than others.”

A fact of life, not just George Orwell’s fiction (and “how-to manual”) 1984.

Which is why I perked up at the Police Tribune article. An nazgul appeals panel decided 2 to 1 that the federal law prohibiting 18-21 year olds from legally buying handguns was unconstitutional. The law, they wrote, made either the Second Amendment a second-class part of the Constitution, or made those people second-class citizens.

Eugene Volokh over at Reason has a very good analysis; definitely worth reading and pondering. He quotes the dissenting opinion. (I summarize that as “Congress decided to do this a long time ago and so we shouldn’t mess with something that works.” Except, of course, it DOESN’T work.)

(Not that ANY weapons laws work. As we at TPOL have said time and again.)

Still, it was a pleasant surprise, after all these years, that SOME nazgul, government paycheck and all, agreed that Federal laws do this to 18-20 year old folks. Mama and I and many others have denounced this fairly often.

But this law is FAR from the only way that people that age are treated like dirt. So much for our supposed “equality before the law.” One of many areas in which our vision of liberty (and justice) has not been met – and has even LOST ground.

Let us look at just three other examples. First, though, a bit of background, if you don’t mind.

Once upon a time, there WAS no set “adult” age, no “age of majority.” The Constitution DID NOT specify a voting age even for FEDERAL elections. The States were not GRANTED the power to establish qualifications for voters. No, the Constitution ensured that States, as sovereign entities, RETAINED their power to establish qualifications. The older age for voting (21 or even older) was based on the idea that you needed experience as an adult before you could be trusted with the vote. Or so the States reasoned. And established.

That power eroded over the period from 1864 to 1971, as the Constitution was amended and as Congress took more power from the States. (The Constitution take NOT away the power of States or the People of those States to decide who was an adult, fully-functional citizen. At least not until various amendments were passed.)

People became “adults” (and therefore fully responsible for their actions and able to make decisions on their own legally) gradually, in ways that varied from State to State. Yes, most States (but NOT, for example, Wyoming) did not “give” the vote to women. But at the same time, women had/kept the power, often years younger than men, to decide to marry. You might have to get parental permission at different ages in different States to buy and sell things, to go to school (or not) and so forth. Remnants of that situation remain today.

But somehow (I am not sure of the process), the idea developed and was enshrined in State law, then Federal law, that you really became an “adult” – that is, a full-fledged citizen – at 21. Even then it was not uniform from State to State. Even before the 26th Amendment was added in 1971 (allowing me, among others, to register Libertarian in 1973), many States DID allow 18-year-olds to vote. The Amendment was the result of almost 30 years of fussing, after FDR added to his other crimes against humanity by drafting 18 year old men in 1942.

But as usual, governments messed it all up.

So, here are three other ways that people less than 21 years old are treated as second-class citizens. Besides being able to buy handguns.

First, in buying – and drinking – alcohol (and in many states, to buy and consume cannabis products). As with handguns, there is a supposed “compelling interest” reason for this: a lot of 18-20 year olds were getting killed and crippled (or killing and crippling others) by driving under the influence. One big reason was variations in drinking age from State to State. (Example: Colorado prohibited drinking of anything but 3.2% beer under age 21, but Wyoming allowed drinking anything at age 18. So lots of DUI/DWI accidents happened on I-25, US-287 and US-85 between the college towns of Greeley and Fort Collins, Colorado, and the booze stores in Cheyenne and Laramie.) So the Feds used the purse strings to force the States to all go to 21.

Second, and MUCH more recent and more blatant, in 2019 the US raised the age for buying tobacco products to age 21 from age 18. The Donald SIGNED that piece of nonsense.

Third, except in Alaska (intrastate only, not international driving to Canada or Russia), FedGov law requires that you be 21 to have a Commercial Drivers License. That CDL is required to drive larger vehicles: dump trucks, semi-tractor/trailers, school buses, and such. Again, the argument is that driving is a privilege and safety is the reason. But it means that government stupidity wins again: getting out of high school at eighteen you have to do something else for three years before you can drive a big rig (and they are willing to pay the insurance for an under-25 driver, to boot). So fewer and fewer people each year decide to drive trucks.

And of course, the entire reason for lowering the voting age, and de facto the age of adulthood, from 21 to 18 remains: you can enlist and you MUST sign up for the draft (if you are male) at age 18. As an MP, flight crew, tank crew, etc., you can have and carry a handgun issued to you by your wonderful government. But you can’t legally have a handgun off-duty because you are not “mature” enough.

This is all based on the idea that although we can trust 18-20 year old people to VOTE for the parasites and thugs and their ilk, we cannot trust them to make decisions for themselves, on their own.

Stupid, no?

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Cuba Libre!

(Yes, I know it is a cocktail. But before it was a drink, it was a cry for freedom of Cuba from the Spanish Empire, way back in the mid-1800s.)

For virtually my entire life, the wonderful people of Cuba have suffered under the disgusting and insane tyranny brought to them by a mediocre college baseball player and a fat Red Army kommissar. Oh, and the stupidity and hypocrisy of DC.

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Doomed? American cities (2nd try!)

Note: For some reason the WordPress editor has totally glitched and the first attempt, published at noon today (12JUL21) was totally botched up. So here is another try.

Readers of this commentary know we here at TPOL are NOT lovers of urban areas.

But as time goes on, our distaste for the places and their “culture” and “society” and especially government grows by leaps and bounds.

Consider San Francisco.

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We have met the enemy…

And it is NOT us, as Pogo so famously quipped decades ago.

It is a cabal that has decided that 18 months of the Pandemic Panic is NOT enough.

So one member of that cabal is ramping up the fearmongering once again. “We’re all gonna die!” “Your elders and your children will die!” “The hospitals will be overrun!”

Consider some recent headlines.

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Commentary on the news – a quick look at a collapsing civilization

In this Year of our Lord 2021, a year in which godliness continues to be at a premium, the news is filled with reports of chaos, depravity, and a general breakdown of society – all strong indications of a soon-to-come total collapse of Western Civilization, including especially American civilization here in the Fifty States and thousands of enclaves around the planet.

This commentary looks at just a few examples in recent news stories. I do not promise the accuracy of any of these stories or the veracity of their sources.

Glorifying criminals not heroes

Lets start with a relatively minor incident in blood-soaked Chicago. Fourth of July weekend was a nasty one, with many shot, some killed, and other sorts of violence “not worth reporting” by the mainstream media.

One story encourages reading: as reported in Smart News, a “Chicago concealed carry holder shoots gunman who killed 1, injured 2 others, police say” After shooting and killing a wo man and shooting two others because one of them (the dead woman, perhaps) complained that he was shooting his pistol in the air, a bystander with a concealed pistol stepped forward and shot the murderer three times: arms and torso, ending the rampage. But the Smart News story doesn’t have a picture of the 49-year-old CCW hero, or any information about him. Rather, we have TWO photos of the gunman who killed one and wounded at least two. He appears to be a pretty standard, cookie-cutter gangsta type thug. Smart News was apparently reposting a Fox News story. So it appears that Fox is in essence glorifying the murdering thug, ignoring the man who saved lives.

Am I being too harsh? Interpreting this wrongly? This seems to be a common situation in mainstream media: giving fame to the killers and ignoring those who help. But maybe Fox has some good motive? Protecting the responding man from revenge by the murderer or his family?

Only 40% responsible for pulling the trigger

Next story: Anyone remember the Sutherland Springs murder spree at the First Baptist Church in that Texas town in 2017? 26 dead and 22 wounded before two local heroes intervened and stopped the killing? According to The Texas Tribune, a Federal Judge has found the US Air Force 60% responsible for the killings and shootings: the USAF murdered 16 people and wounded 14 people in a church building. The actual gunman (dead minutes later, fortunately, at his own hand) was ONLY responsible for 10 dead and 8 wounded.

The “logic” (a sick excuse, in my opinion) of the nazgul in this case? The USAF was to blame for MOST of the deaths because when the actual murderer was convicted of family violence and booted out with a bad conduct discharge, the USAF failed to report this to the database maintained by the FedGov under the Brady Act. Obviously, if the killer’s name HAD been in the database, he could NOT have had the Ruger AR-556 used, because no one would have sold it to him!

Stupidity, naivety, or malice on the part of the judge? Who knows, but just one more example of recent stupid decisions by judges regardless of politics, experience, or appointment.

(Please note: I am NOT saying that the USAF or the FedGov does not have SOME responsibility or liability for failing to obey their own (usually worthless and stupid) law. I realize there are technicalities regarding restitution and related matters. But the ONLY person responsible for murdering 26 people and wounded 22 others is the man pulling the trigger: not his former military service, not bureaucrats, not the gun shop, or “society.” Morally responsible.

Is there blame to assess on others? Absolutely. Starting with the idiot politicians and hoplophobes and hoploclasts who claim that just passing a law is enough to stop crime. Continuing with a society who does not consider violence against spouses and your own children to be a capital crime, not just punished with a BCD, but with a parade open-square formation and dancing the Danny Deever. And honestly, with a congregational leadership who does not consider “caring for the flock” to include provision for physical defense of the assembly.

California War on Some Drugs II

On to a third: Again, Smart News reposted this story. $1.19 billion worth of marijuana was seized in California.” Oh, wait, I thought that cannabis was LEGAL in California? So people think, but in reality ONLY cannabis that is “lawfully” grown, sold with the proper permits and licenses, and on which all bribes (license and permit fees and above all TAXES) are properly paid.

Free market? Drug legalization? Don’t make me laugh. The failure of the war on some drugs is… unsurprisingly, FAILING.

The numbers are staggering. 16 tons of pot – wet, I assume, not cured or dried. 22 felony arrests, 108 misdemeanor arrests, and 16 “water theft” arrests (whatever those are). 375,000 plants, 65 vehicles, $28,000 (reported at least), and 180 animals. Animals? The largest pot bust in California history,

Why? Because California didn’t really legalize cannabis: instead they tried to in essence enslave people by taxing and regulating the entire supply chain. And people are by and large NOT playing the game: illegal sales of marijuana is apparently far larger than the legal market. And black markets attract gangsters – including the cartels. Who are, in the words of California law enforcement, the bogymen. In fact, a mayor is terrorizing Californians: “This is the cartels. We are very very close to driving down the freeway and seeing bodies hanging from the underpasses. That is what is coming.”

So?

Look, we know that societies and civilizations can exist which are irrational, illogical, and frankly, insane. But societies which started out sane and rational (or mostly so) which go mad, are deadly and short-lived. The solution? Liberty and freedom. Both in increasingly short supply in our 2021 world.

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