Libertarian Commentary #16-10C By Nathan Barton
While it is necessary to “trust but verify” in dealing with people, today people are more and more fearful of others, and take the least excuse to scream wolf. Consider this story from World Net Daily. A business analyst was booted from a UK-Amersterdam EasyJet flight when his seatmate, reading on the man’s smartphone as he typed messages, apparently saw the word “prayer” and reported him to authorities as a possible security threat. The Christian Institute said the christian man, Laolu Opebiyi of London, who was born in Nigeria, was using the WhatsApp program to set up a prayer meeting with friends. “The prayer group was called ‘ISI men,’ a reference to the biblical proverb ‘iron sharpens iron’ (Proverbs 27:17).” (“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”)
The London Guardian reported that last Thursday, Opebiyi, 40, was forced to give up his telephone and his password to authorities, who ordered him off the flight. Multiple things wrong with this, including the seizure of his phone and violation of his privacy, when there was no reason for the airline to question his explanation. And of course, the violation of his privacy by the other passenger. Would the same thing have happened if his birthplace had been Londonderry? Or Cardiff? Or Frankfurt?
Part of the death of civil society is the attitude, “There oughta be a law.” (More on that later.) Here is a recent example. We expect government to waste money, and we know that government is one reason that so much money is wasted in health care. Now comes this report from Daily Policy Digest. Ten Percent of Cancer Drug Spending is Wasted. A study published in the BMJ concludes that $1.8 billion of the $18 billion spent on the 20 most expensive cancer drugs in the U.S. is wasted due to over-sized vials. It is something that is so incredibly common IN PRIVATE BUSINESS. But since most health care costs are paid by third-party insurers or the government, who cares? A few grams here and there add up quickly on very expensive drugs, and no, the drug manufacturers are not the ONLY people to blame for things like this. With too much time in hospital in the past year (for myself and family members), I’ve seen how wasteful it is. Sometimes there is a logical reason, but often no reasonable explanation at all. But the solution is NOT more government regulations, but rather, letting people have more control over their own care, and more responsibility for understanding the real costs and benefits.
Mama’s Note: As a health care professional, I witnessed 30 years of waste and fraud all around me. Not limited to drugs or hospitals, by any means. When people actually pay for what they use, or are financially accountable to those who do pay, it’s amazing how much waste and misuse is avoided. Just for example, Medicare mandated that hospice provide the utterly useless little blue underpads (supposedly waterproof) for patient use in the home. Before that, families had to pay for them and we used very few. Once Medicare required the hospice company to foot the bill, we couldn’t keep enough in stock.
Once upon a time, political enemies showed at least some respect for their opponents and their opponents’ families, setting an example for the “lower classes,” but today, that is too much of a bother. Townhall reports that just as the squatter at 1600 skipped the funeral of Supreme Court Justice Scalia, so he will go to a “community organizing” event in Texas instead of attending Nancy Reagan’s funeral in California. I suppose it is better than showing up and spitting on the grave, but still…
An Israeli has again killed an Arab (Palestinian), it seems. How long will this sort of thing continue? According to Townhall the evil killer was supposedly attacked with a knife by a Palestinian, and grabbed the knife out of his own neck, then stabbed the youth to death. This kind of uncivil response, especially against a despised majority, must be controlled. Fortunately, the US State Department knows how to spin another, similar attack, which according to Islamophobes was carried out by a “Palestinian” whom too many condemn as a terrorist. But the State Department wrote: “The United States condemns in the strongest possible terms today’s outrageous terrorist attacks in Jaffa, Petah Tikvah, and Jerusalem, which tragically claimed the life of U.S. citizen Taylor Allen Force and left many others severely injured. We offer our heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Taylor and all those affected by these senseless attacks, and we wish a speedy recovery for the injured,… As we have said many times, there is absolutely no justification for terrorism. We continue to encourage all parties to take affirmative steps to reduce tensions and restore calm.”
As with non-blacks attacked in ghettos and black youth attacked by police in playgrounds and on the streets, the solution is clear: don’t go there. If Force had not wasted his money going to Israel, if those black kids would just stay in their homes or schools, if those honkies would just stay out of black neighborhood, all these affirmative actions would reduce the tensions, restore calm, and get rid of “justification for terrorism,” and therefore reduce terrorism. The State department mandarins realize that deaths and injuries are NOT the fault of the so-called attacker, but those who have tainted society and taunt those who cannot control their anger and frustration, and the man who was killed (next story).
There is another lesson to be learned from the death of Force – if not two. First, he was (in the eyes of the Islamists) a “Crusader” – a West Pointer and veteran of tours in the Sandbox (Mesopotamia) and Afghanistan; an evil, evil man. Second, seriously, he failed, clearly, to take adequate measures to protect himself against physical attack, which raises questions regarding his training and experience. We can (but usually don’t) learn lessons from how people die.
Once upon a time, people were able to disagree freely and without fear of retribution even on matters of science and morality. Now, of course, if you express a politically incorrect opinion on virtually ANYthing, you can find yourself subject to prosecution by the government. And no, it isn’t limited to just religious matters. CNS News reports that the FedGov Attorney General, Loretta Lynch (what an APT name) says that the Department of Justice has discussed at length whether or not to pursue legal action against the so-called climate change deniers. Presumably this would include not only me and other engineers and scientists who refuse to toe the establishment line, but politicians and media (including serving legislators) who do not bend the knee and offer the pinch of incense to the gods of “science” and their gods and acolytes like Algor.
Sidepanel: Once upon a time, “there oughta be a law” was a comic strip, which lasted until (ironically) 1984, according to Toonpedia [http://www.toonopedia.com/bealaw.htm]. It made fun of people who thought it was government’s place to micromanage and dictate the minutia of life. That, of course, is no longer funny, and the comic today would be considered either lese majeste or even blasphemy against the omnipotent state.