Uninformed, Misinformed, Brainwashed Statists

If you don’t watch “the news” you might be uninformed; if you watch it you will be misinformed.

“News” is opinion. There’s no such thing as just presenting the facts; there never was. There’s always going to be a slant to it. It’s almost always a statist slant.

If they don’t honestly portray cops as a gang, politicians as thieving thugs, government as religion, “laws” as slavery, they are not telling the truth. They are opinionizing. Lying. Covering up the truth to protect the bad guys.

Any bland “news” story about the “arrest” of a drug dealer, and the drugs, cash, and guns confiscated from him, is a nest of lies– opinions, if I were to be nice about it. It will assume statism. It will assume the legitimacy of prohibition, “taxation”, government police, “gun control” [sic], “laws”, the “justice system”, and a hundred other things which shouldn’t be assumed.

They are selling their opinion to people who mostly agree with them (even when they feel they are on the other side), or who they are trying to fool into agreeing with them. It largely works.

I think that’s why you see “Right” vs “Left” in almost all “news”/opinions. All “news” comes from one side or the other… yet the sides are really the same. They are statist, anti-liberty bigots to the core. So the “news” gets people to arguing over which of those identical twins is correct, when they are both wrong.

Statists live in a statist bubble, even if they sample statist opinions from the “other side”. It’s still only statism.

Libertarians don’t have the option of living in a bubble. We get exposed to the other sides. All other sides. Constantly. Whether we intend to or not. It’s unavoidable. That’s why we are better informed than the uninformed or the misinformed statists. And it’s why the statists try so hard to ridicule our position. They have to, otherwise they might realize they are losers going in circles, chasing hallucinations.

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Past Racism is The Ugly Past

I went through a phase where I was terribly racist. Mostly against “black” people.

It began soon after I moved to Arkansas from Texas. Interestingly enough, my elderly grandmother underwent the same transformation within a few months of also moving from Texas to Arkansas to be closer to us. Before she moved she had scolded me for saying ugly racist things, yet soon after she moved she was saying the same things she had previously objected to me saying.

My racist thoughts and feelings began to fade as soon as I left Arkansas.

Maybe it was a coincidence, or maybe there was a reason the area had that effect on two people who had never thought racist thoughts before. I can’t say.

What I can say, and know, is this: I was wrong. I don’t know a stronger way to say it. It was collectivist and disgusting. Nothing done to me personally can justify it. I should have simply focused my dislike on the individuals who were violating me, not on their “race” and not on individuals I grouped with them who had never done anything to me.

Yet, in the midst of my racism, I had a really good “black” friend. He always called me a “nigger” and I called him a “honkey”– the most common racist slurs used by ignorant people against each group at that place and time. When we were hanging out I would “talk black” and he would “talk white”. We switched roles in every way we could think of. We thought it was hilarious and we laughed hard over it. The other kids ignored us. The teachers were aghast but they didn’t try to stop us. Imagine that happening today– outside of follower-hungry YouTubers and “white” kids who want to emulate rappers, I mean.

I never wore “blackface” or a KKK robe and don’t know of anyone who ever did. I knew a bunch of kids who revered the KKK (at least in theory) and bragged about relatives who belonged to it. But I didn’t speak up against those things because I didn’t care.

I’m ashamed of that now. I’m not that person anymore. I hope I’m a better person than I used to be.

Should I be judged on what I did and thought back then? I hope not. I’m horrified by my past self now and I don’t even like sharing this.

This is all to say I think the current witch-hunt over the politician who is being scolded for a yearbook page, appearing on a page with someone in “blackface” and someone else in a KKK robe, is dumb. That was years ago– he’s not the same person today that he was then.

He’s undoubtedly worse.

Criticize him for the wrong he’s doing NOW. He’s a politician, just like all other politicians– including the politicians of the Congressional Black Caucus. That’s evil. That’s archation. His past is nothing but a distraction from his current krimes.

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“Less Emotional; More Reasoned”

The first time I encountered social psychologist Jonathan Haidt I had a kind of visceral dislike for him. I don’t even know why. However, I have since listened to more of his interviews and lectures and found some pearls there– the instinctive dislike I felt at first has largely faded.

Yes, he is way too enamored of the State (as are so many). He can’t even face the question of whether it is a legitimate human endeavor to govern others. It’s assumed, and he only concerns himself with how it is carried out. That’s a huge strike against him in my book.

Anyway, I was listening to this lecture/interview (from Skeptic.com) with him and got a laugh from this quote:

“Some people are less emotional, more reasoned. We call these people ‘libertarians’. There’s actually data on this– that libertarians are lower on emotion, higher on reasoning ability. They have worse relationships, they care about people less, but they are better able to just reason through a lot of data.”

If I felt any more emotion than I do, I think I would die. To believe I am less emotional than other people scares me. How do other people manage if they feel more emotions than I do? I can’t even imagine the horror!

Beyond that, I care about people a great deal. That’s why I don’t want them robbed, enslaved, molested, murdered, or governed. Isn’t it odd to believe that you “care more” if you’re OK with doing these things to people?

He slipped up on a few other things, not realizing that socialists and communists aren’t anarchists while consistent libertarians are, but I don’t really expect outsiders to get the details correct. All in all, it was an interesting lecture and interview. I found things to agree with and things to roll my eyes over.

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Taking The Bait; Abandoning The High Ground

There is no such thing as an “unethical necessity” or “necessary evil”. It’s an oxymoron.

If something is necessary, it can’t be unethical, and if something is unethical it can’t be a necessity. Maybe you can’t see another way, but it’s there. It is never necessary to rape a baby, in other words.

Those who believe in such fantasies have fallen prey to pragmatism.

Yes, I can understand why they do it. Principles are hard. They may not even be safe to stick with– no one ever said doing the right thing was easy, safe, or would result in instant (or eventual) Utopia. But it’s still the right thing.

For some reason, Trump and “immigration” have fooled more people into abandoning principles– and what’s right— than anything I’ve ever personally witnessed. Maybe other things were stronger archation bait in the past, but that must have been before my time.

This would be scary, except that I understand the concept of winnowing grain; to allow the chaff and harmful debris to fly away with the breeze so it doesn’t end up choking you in your food. So I see this as a way to see who’s on the side of liberty, and who was hanging around while it was convenient and easy. Seeing some of those who have chosen to fly to statism at the earliest provocation has been a huge surprise… and a bitter disappointment… to me.

Someone has to stake out the ethical, principled ground. There are plenty of pragmatists and quislings around; that position is well represented. No more of them are needed.

If you approach every problem from the position that statism is unavoidable (or necessary), you’re going to find statist “solutions” to accommodate your statist objections every time. You’ll be blind to real, lasting voluntary solutions when you assume statism. Thus you’ll justify States and all the horrid things which come along with them– while using the inevitable results of statism to show why “we need statism”. You’ll get angry at anyone who points out that your assumptions are flawed.

And that is the unvarnished reality.

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Scott Adams Doesn’t Understand “Plant Food”

Scott Adams says the observation that “carbon dioxide is plant food” is a terrible argument– an “embarrassing opinion”– for AGCC skepticism.

He’s wrong. Here’s why:

When plants “eat” CO2 they take it out of the air and turn it into plant matter. Even if carbon dioxide raises the climate’s temperature as the AGCC activists claim, once a plant removes it from the air, it isn’t available in the atmosphere to raise the temperature anymore. That’s how “eating” something works. It is removed from availability in one form (in this case, atmospheric gas) and turned into a different form (leaves, wood, flowers, stalks, roots, seeds, fruit, etc.).

And, yes, each individual plant might be able to only use a limited amount of carbon dioxide, but plants reproduce. If you improve their growing conditions with more “food” (and sufficient light), they can reproduce more. If you’ve ever had an aquarium or a pond experience an algae bloom you’ve seen the conditions result in more plantlife. And one of the most effective ways to end the algae bloom is to add other plants which will use up the “plant food” available in the water until it is reduced to a level where it can’t encourage excess plant growth.

But to say that the addition of CO2 will raise the temperature and kill the plants so that they can no longer “eat” the CO2 is overlooking the main effect of plants taking CO2 from the air and using it to make more plant matter. More plants = less CO2 in the atmosphere available to warm the climate.

Now, when those plants rot or burn, that CO2 will be released into the air again. But, more CO2 could result in more plant mass overall, trapping the CO2 in a form which can’t contribute to “climate change” at least for a time. Coal is plant matter, made of atmospheric CO2 removed from the air long ago (~359 to 299 million years ago, in fact) and stored in a fairly stable form. Once that carbon dioxide was in the form of plant matter– living plants or coal– it couldn’t help heat the world until it burned.

Sometimes a person tries so hard to look unbiased and “scientific” that they fall into a reality trap. This seems to be one of those times for Scott Adams.

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“Deep State” Isn’t What You Think

You’ve probably been hearing about the “deep state” recently, with some pundits saying it’s a danger and others saying it doesn’t even exist.

It’s real, but it’s not the conspiracy theory some would have you believe. Its reality shouldn’t be controversial; it’s there for everyone to see and experience.

The “deep state” is, in simple terms, the government bureaucracy. It is all those parts of government that don’t change from one presidential administration to the next.

When presidents change, the new president hires new people to run the various government agencies, but most employees in the massive agency keep their job. The new boss depends on the experience of those who have been in the job through multiple administrations to keep things running.

Since their jobs are safe, they get entrenched, and in some positions, feel invulnerable because of their experience and years in the job. When no one else even understands or knows for sure what they do, how can they be replaced?

Thus, you have a “deep state.”

Some people want to turn this recognition of reality into evidence of paranoia.

Sure, when you involve powerful agencies such as the CIA and FBI, opportunities for abuse are probably irresistible. It’s likely that some will come to see themselves as the real power behind the scenes and see the elected officials as figureheads to be tolerated as long as they don’t upset the status quo too much.

Some of them undoubtedly act on this power.

Scenarios of “deep state” presidential assassinations and other undemocratic schemes are thrilling, but the majority of the damage is done to your liberty by the everyday governing, which goes on openly, in front of microphones and cameras.

The state, both deep and broad, has been tightening the noose around the necks of Americans almost from the beginning.

The state has been preventing the people from choosing to uncouple from an out-of-control federal government since Mr. Lincoln’s war to repeal the Declaration of Independence. It has been violating the Second Amendment since at least 1934. The state keeps the tax records that are used to entrap and enslave the people. It steals, compiles, and stores your private data. All in the name of governing you.

Yet people worry about what the mysterious parts of “deep state” might do to other parts of this enemy organization? This seems like displaced concern to me.

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