Thursday, July 10, 2014

NSA HAS Been Snooping on Muslims, and Others

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5GlMMv0bOAQ As I've posted before on this blog, the U.S. surveillance state has been targeting persons due to their political views. I had at the time felt that the only persons who'd have cause to be concerned would be those whose ideology is either notably left, or right of center. As Noam Chomsky put it, "The Smart way to keep people passive, and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum." http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/15454-the-smart-way-to-keep-people-passive-and-obedient-is But now it turns out that the federal secret police has been focusing upon people's religious views as well, even those whom are members of the two major political parties of Democrats, and Republicans, such as the two attorneys in the above referenced news segment. The very repression that those such as my maternal grandmother, may she rest in peace, feared was transpiring under the Clinton administration has since come to fruition during the two subsequent administrations of George W. Bush, and Barack H. Obama Jr. I'm concerned though that a plurality of the American people will remain complacent in the face of such encroachment upon our civil rights, and liberties, as they do not relate to the particular people reported to have been affected by such actions. They might not feel that the established political power will turn there hostile sights upon them. All that I have to post in response to such apathy is this quote by Pastor Niemoller http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/18468-first-they-came-for-the-communists-and-i-did-not.


Thursday, March 13, 2014

Libertarians Dispute the Root Causes of the Civil War

I just recently became aware of Jon Stewart's comedic commentary upon the remarks of right-libertarian pundit Andrew Napalitano's remarks on the U.S. Civil War, and Pres. Abraham Lincoln's role in it. http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/mon-february-24-2014/denunciation-proclamation I , especially from my perspective as a left-libertarian commentator, take a more nuanced view of the impetus of the war between the states. First off, I primarily agree with the remarks made in this article. http://philmagness.com/?p=589, namely this part, "As noted, these are views that enlist fundamentally ideological considerations of the sort that tends to exert a distortive effect upon the processes of historical inquiry. Finding neither particularly adequate, and both prone to one-dimensional and hyperbolic editorializing at the expense of historical complexity, I’ll offer the following two concurrent ground rules for any libertarian wishing to enter a Civil War discussion:
  1. One needn’t be for the Union to be against slavery.
  2. One needn’t be for the Confederacy to object to the North’s prosecution of the war.
As a further general observation, let it be noted that when libertarians say something stupid about the Civil War it usually stems from accepting only one of these ground rules and neglecting the other." For example the noted abolitionist, Lysander Spooner, a figure widely claimed by the right, and left libertarians alike, was supportive of the supposed right of the southern states to secede. http://lysanderspooner.org/node/44 And Abraham Lincoln himself proclaimed this, "If I could save the Union without freeing any slave, I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves, I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone, I would also do that. What I do about slavery and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union; and what I forbear, I forbear because I do not believe it would help to save the Union.” -http://www.abrahamlincolnonline.org/lincoln/speeches/greeley.htm So why so I believe the various southern states voted to secede from the Union? Bluntly put, because their leaders were a bunch of stupid sensationalists. Look, similarly to today, the conservatives of the time had been making out the Republican presidential candidates, first Fremont, and then Lincoln, out to be radical extremists. Look at these two historic political cartoons, and see for yourself. On Fremont http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2003656588/ , and on Lincoln  http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2003674590/. Both were portrayed as favoring socialism, just as our current president, Barack Obama is made out to, by conservative rightists of today. So in my view, the south's struggle for separation from the federal government was an over reaction to what they thought was going to be an extreme social change, in which not only would their supposedly be the abolition of chattel slavery, but of wage slavery as well, And any other explanation, whether it pertain to slavery, or tariffs, falls short of standards of authentic historical validity. I understand how people will want to try to ennoble the conflict as either being about the freedom of slaves, from a unionist standpoint, or the rights of states, from a confederate bias, but really the war was in reality simply a tragic mistake.  P.S.In the interests of full personal disclosure, in case any of you were wondering, I am the descendent of Civil War veterans, whom all fought on the federal side. Most notably this man http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=20459968. So I might be expected to hold a pro-northern bias, at least subconsciously, as due to the south's decision in favor of rebellion, I was at risk of never having been born, if my ancestors hadn't survived it. So my sentiments might be seen as being emotional, and not merely rational.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Proposed Bill Intended to Define, and Condone Corporal Punishment of Children Dies in Commitee

http://www.kansascity.com/2014/02/19/4834744/kansas-spanking-bill-will-not.html As John Stewart mentioned on his show http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/21/jon-stewart-kansas-corporal-punishment_n_4830881.html , Kansas legislator, Gail Finney, proposed a bill to legally indicate what corporal punishment, as contrasted with supposed physical abuse, is about. Now some might wonder what's wrong with that. Well I assert that, in all fairness, no one of any age, sex, or position should ever be subject to acts of aggression. I mean strict fundamentalist Muslims might insist that they would never abuse their wives, merely correct them with corporal punishment, as a last resort. And they likewise have preconditions as to how one is to properly discipline wives, and children. http://www.islamweb.net/emainpage/index.php?page=articles&id=158765 , https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ChnpaMK1oLQ , https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bIwdb3lFEUE.Incidentaly, when I told my mother of this, that according to Islamic principles, a man is not to beat his wife as he would a donkey http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/damianthompson/3683071/Lessons_in_how_to_beat_your_wife/ , and that the best of men are those whom behave best to their wives http://muslim-responses.com/Womens_Honarable_Position_/Womens_Honarable_Position_ , her response to me was /"oh thanks"/. So if a woman is not willing that even her husband have such authority over her, to inflict pain upon her, even in a most mild fashion, why should children, who are all the more so vulnerable, be treated any different, if not worse? If we are to permit children to be hurt in this manner, then in order to be consistent, we must also allow husbands the perogative to likewise strike his wife. I feel that a persons supposed freedom of religion, such as with the tradition of corporal punishment of delinquent subjects in a patriarch's family, must be countered by the recognized individual right to freedom from fear, in a modern, free, civil society. And anyway, even with Christianity, the scriptures counter balance the prescription of flogging http://www.openbible.info/topics/spanking_children, and even stoning http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Deuteronomy+21%3A18-21&version=KJV, of children , are counteracted by these verses http://www.hiddenhurt.co.uk/bible_verses.html , http://www.holybible.com/resources/living_learning/fall_1999/provoke_not_children.htm. And God requires not only that we do justly, but also that we love mercy, and walk humbly with God. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Micah+6:8&version=KJV And one is not humble if one exalts oneself over another, and not loving mercy if one is brutal towards one's family. And not only is this the opinion of myself, but also that of learned rabbis http://www.unhinderedliving.com/discipline.html , http://www.reformjudaism.org/practice/ask-rabbi/does-judaism-advise-spanking-disobedient-child , http://www.thejewishweek.com/features/hammerman_ethics/sparing_rod. Plus, in addition, a number of christian figures have also come out to discourage the spanking of children http://www.christianpost.com/news/pcusa-passes-resolution-against-spanking-children-77776/ , http://childrenshealthcare.org/?page_id=146, http://www.stophitting.com/index.php?page=unitedmethodist And lastly, from a historical standpoint, through out history children have had possession of deadly weapons. http://www.lordsandladies.org/knighthood-training.htm , http://scriptamus.wordpress.com/2009/11/02/child-soldiers-are-unfortunately-nothing-new/. So the "rod of correction" was counterbalanced by the dagger of protection. A father could beat his son's butt, but the son could react by then spilling his father's guts.So the before referenced verse about not provoking children to wrath was not merely a nice piece of advice, but rather a fair warning. Now of days though, typically children only train with styrofoam versions of weapons, such as with Nerf products. So there is no longer a level ground between the capabilities of violence between adults and minors. And, being that my blog is written from the standpoint of philosophical anarchism, I contend that if a fully free society does not decide to intervene in cases of men striking their dependents, it should also not do anything against children whom fight back against such severe heavy handed oppression. And, in addition to seemingly authorizing the use of force against sons, the Book of Proverbs also authorizes it against anyone more generally, regardless of age. http://biblehub.com/parallel/proverbs/19-29.htm So all in all, I state that the only time one should ever use violence is in response to belligerence. And even then, only in proportionate amount of force. This is in accordance with both the nonaggression principle http://www.5stepstoanarchy.com/what-is-the-non-aggression-principle/ , and just war criteria http://www.iep.utm.edu/justwar/ .

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Ohio State Sen. Capri Cafaro Proposes Official Oversight of Would Be Homeschoolers

http://www.tribtoday.com/page/content.detail/id/597010.html I'm not sure what to make of this proposed legislation. I have mixed feelings. On one hand home education should not be allowed to be used as a smoke screen for abuse, and/or other potential crimes. Besides this case, as well as this other even more notorious case http://www.thenation.com/article/nightmare-christianity#, there is also the perceived risk of some homeschoolers turning into terrorists. Case in point http://www.globaljihad.net/view_page.asp?id=226. But as Home Education Magazine points out, http://unschooling.com/homeeducationmagazine/child-abuse-under-the-magnifying-glass-is-there-room-for-growth-for-all-of-us/. And I do not think that homeschool families should be singled out for undue scrutiny. I tend to feel that this is more of an example of a government official wanting to at least seem as if she's trying to do something about this problem. But I rather doubt that in practice it can be all that effective. Especially with the Children's protective services being so overwhelmed and underfunded. Like, if they failed to be able to keep this teen boy safe, after concerns were reported, how does State Senator Cafaro expect that social workers will be able to keep up with all of the parents who request permission to homeschool? Also, a number of homeschooling parents have this sense of entitlement, in that they think of home education as being a divine right, rather than a priviledge granted by the state. So they will be liable to just not notify the state of their activities, and homeschool underground. But as I referred to above, there is a problem of various cults whom educate, more like indoctrinate really, their children at home. Incidently, not only Christians, but also Muslims are engaging in home education http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/feb/21/muslim-families-turn-to-home-schooling/?page=all. And while I'd like to think that many, if not most of these families are peaceful, and law abiding, would it come as a surprise if the political powers that be might feel inclined to want to keep tabs on such people? But I am not convinced that this approach would be all that effective. Plus I feel that if the state, in the interest of child welfare, and public safety, were to thusly intrude upon homeschooler families, they should also conduct investigations into all other familes as well. Only some might think that would be an invasion of privacy. But my point is just that homeschoolers should not be singled out, and unduly impeded by bureaucracy. The problem is not so much that of home schools, but rather cult schools. Yet, in spite of what some people seem to think, homeschoolers are not by and large as socially isolated as Sen. Cafaro seems to think they might tend to be. I mean it's not likely that there will be a case altogether like the plot of "Thr3e", which is both a psychological thriller novel, and film, by Ted Dekker http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thr3e_%28film%29 If state involvement is to be deemed to be necessary, I feel that it should simply consist of evaluation, and medical examination, such as it is in Pennsylvania. http://www.education.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/overview_of_homeschooling/20312 , http://home.comcast.net/~askpauline/hs/homeschoolmedical.html As both medical personel, and licensed teachers, as evaluators are required to be, are required by law to report indications of abuse, and/or neglect. And, this has actually worked to stop child abuse. For example, in this one case I know of, there was a Schwartzentruber Amish girl whom was severely mistreated by her family. And, a nurse whom examined her helped her to get away from her adverse circumstances, as related in the last story in this article http://legalaffairs.org/issues/January-February-2005/feature_labi_janfeb05.msp And I don't think you can get more social isolation than the Schwartzentruber Amish. So in my opinion, while the education, health, and well being of children is an important public concern, intrusive government involvement is not called for..

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Proposed County Charter Would Create a Corporative State

So I just received in the mail, a copy of a proposed county charter, which you can read here, http://newashtabula.wordpress.com/ashctycharter/. I am personally opposed to this planned change in government. With it's administrator, and economic developement commission, I feel that it will mean the rise of creeping, cryptic, social fascism. This would obliviate the difference between the public, and private sectors, and create a corporative state, with crony state capitalism. The tax payers will then have to foot the bill for business expenses, which would only serve to favor special interests, rather than simply the general welfare. I do not feel that economic developement planning by itself can effectively better the standard of living, and/or bring about financial prosperity. After all both Stalin, with his five year plans http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five-Year_Plans_for_the_National_Economy_of_the_Soviet_Union, or Mao, with his "great leap forward" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Leap_Forward, were able to completely,effectively manage the resources, and businesses, of the nation. So I feel that most ideally, the socio-economic system should be made up of co-operation between voluntary associations, instead od governmental regimentation, and patronage. Corporatism is most unamerican, and many persons fought, and died to combat it. But as many voters are ignorant of political science, I fear that this ballot proposal might very well pass. For the majority of the people would not recognize fascism if it bit them on their collective rear, and if it were to return under another name, they will tend to be taken in by such a social movement, and will come to support it. But, as for me, I favor a co-operative commonwealth libertarian munincipality, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libertarian_municipalism, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Co-operative_Commonwealth_(society)#Co-operative_commonwealth. But, at any rate, it should by rights be the people as a whole whom shall be entrusted with determining the type of social system we all have. And we shall receive the regime we most deserve, for better or worse.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Americans Accross the Political Divide Oppose Military Action in Syria

And in case anyone reading my blog secretly feels I might be a kook, for having doubts as to the justification, and even the motivation, of the proposed air strikes against Syria, I'm not alone in this regard. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/06/us/proudly-patriotic-but-skeptical-on-syria-attack.html Plus, for what it's worth, and if anyone cares, Fmr. Gov. Mike Huckabee stated that he wondered if this might be like the film "Wag The Dog", in which an American president launches a war under false pretenses, in order to divert adverse attention from domestic problems. http://video.foxnews.com/v/2654379993001/syrian-conflict-threatening-the-us-economy/ I've heard it said, by those on the left, that Obama's administration is as if it were another term of George W. Bush. But I think that it's more like a remake of Clinton's, when we got embroiled in various military interventions, such as in Somalia, and Afghanistan. I remember, I was around back then. And I do not feel that it made America more secure from terrorist attacks, as evidenced by 9-11-01. I'm just glad that it's Democrat in office, as president, so that the Republicans, both elected officials, and registered rank and file members, will tend to more so have the strength of their convictions, in opposing government excesses, just as I remember it being when Clinton was in office, as opposed to Bush 2. But I also think that all those whom believe in the value of voting should come apart from the two major parties, which are disgraced by both incompetence, and injustice. I feel that all good charectered Democrats should join the Green Party, and that all well intentioned Republicans should go over to the Libertarian Party. Only then will I expect we will be able to enjoy a new birth of freedom, and peace.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Plot Allegedly Uncovered Concerning a False Flag Operation in Syria

It now appears that the Obama Administration has been implicated in a conspiracy, in cahoots with radical islamists, such as Al Qaeda, which largely make up the so called Free Syrian Army, to launch chemical weapons, and then blame it on the regime of Bashir Assad. If this account is true, then it would parralel the attack on Poland, commited by Germany, under the authority of Adolf Hitler. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Himmler As you should be able to see, from the link I provided, what is alleged has eery similarities with what the Obama administration supposedly is up to, in inciting the U.S. military to intervene in the ongoing civil war in Syria. I trust that in time the truth of the matter, whatever it might be, will be revealed. But at any rate, I do not feel that it is called for American forces to enter into this foreign military affair. Not only are none of the combatants altogether justified in their respective actions, with Assad acting as a sponsor of, and conduit for Iranian supplies to, Hezbollah, and the Free Syrian Army made up of radical islamists, who've commited attrocities themselves, but also Turkey, amongst other Middle Eastern nations, have already sided with the FSA rebels, and France plans on following suit. The only side within Syria that I feel support for is the National Coordination Committee for Democratic Change http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Coordination_Committee_for_Democratic_Change. I've never felt more ashamed of my country.