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Thursday, March 31, 2005

Insurrection

Free speech is one of the freedoms that protects all the others. I am, of course, opposed to regulation of speech, especially the McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform and its precursors. Though the law was innately bad, the practical effects were not too bad... the first year.

Now they want to apply it to individuals. Everyone denies this, and the idea is ludicrous. I thought it was a fringe conspiracy theory at first, and perhaps it is, but progress is still being made toward regulating private speech on the internet.

Since I oppose the law in principle anyway, I'm jumping on the bandwagon of the McCain-Feingold Insurrection.

Following are political statements that blatantly support candidates in specific races. I consider this material support of the candidates. Sue me.

1) Whoever runs against Arlen Specter in the primary in 5 years. If Arlen retires, good.

2) Al Gore for DNC Prez nominee, 2008.

3) Tom Delay for House Rep. Sugarland sucks anyway.

Policy Paper 1 - Abstract

If you haven't noticed, the un-crazy anarchists of the Neolibertarian Network have taken pity on me. That's right: un-crazy anarchists.

Sure, Libertarianism is great in theory, but progress towards that lofty ideal is stalled. Why? Among the several thousand main problems:

*Libertarian Party is coalition between utopians and pot-smoking hippies.

*Bitter divisions between different types of anarchists.

*By the way, Anarchy is not a good way to describe Libertarianism.

*LP candidates consist of self-aggrandising wackos and pot-smoking hippies.

*No practical policy suggestions.

This last is the main problem. Sure, the ultimate goal is some sort of utopian society, but there are cautionary tales from the utopian societies that currently exist. Oh, wait- there are none.

There are disagreements on the ultimate goals, et cetera, but the Neolibertarian ideal, as I see it, solves these problems as follows:

Be realistic.

There can be differing approaches, but here's my preliminimary recommendations.

*Propose small, incremental changes, like the major parties (the ones that get votes).

*Push harder for those issues where there is popular support, like 2nd amendment rights, tax relief, government non-interference in social issues, and deregulation. We'll have to euphemistically call deregulation "reform," which it is.

*People suck. This is why cutting pork does not work. The system has to be adjusted so that the general suckiness of people isn't a factor. Checks and Balances.

*More propaganda. The key to changing society for the better is to actually change society, by education and reason. The ideals of personal freedom and justice for those who take freedom away are not fringe ideas.

*When a pollster calls, say you're going to vote Libertarian, then go vote for a major party. This way, we can have an idea of the real support for third party candidates. If one actually has a chance to win, then vote for them. This recommendation needs to be spread around- it will get people to consider our positions more carefully, it will give us a real picture of the support for 3rd parties, and it will encourage the growth of the movement.

I'll add more as I think of them, but the overall idea is that there is an ideal and reality, and that confusing these two leads to political irrelevance. We should try to bring reality in line with the ideal, but slowly, carefully, and with the willingness to admit when it's not working.

Violence on TV

Here are some helpful guidelines for Effeminist political correctness:

1) Don't project your own idiocy onto your opponents. Assassinate them under cover of darkness, if you must- that's a coherent political statement. Just don't accuse people of holding positions that they have not mentioned. Every moronic (your enemy here) is unique, and should not be stereotyped.

2) There are several thousand traditional racists in the US. Odds are, you are not talking to one. Odds are, when you accuse someone of racism, you are guilty of #1.

3) There are several hundred million sexists in the US. You are one.

4) Being angry is like being drunk. You sound a lot cleverer to yourself than to others.

5) The way people behave, the way they think they behave, and the way they say they behave are unrelated in any way. This includes you.

6) People are not equal. People have equal rights. The tension betweent these statements has caused 60% of the political debates since 1991.

7) There are lies, damn lies, and statistics.

8) Actions speak louder than words. This is because actions have an effect, while words are suitable only for making people like the puppy blender famous.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

The Adventures of Johnny American... Shock and Awe

In a place that seems strange, yet eerily familiar.... In a time not too distant, yet clearly not our own... there lives one young fellow with a destiny. Tune in tonight, and every night, for the incredible adventures of Johnny American.


When last we saw our hero, he and Eliza Jane were caught between the forces of Capitalism on one side and an imminent invasion by the People's Republic on the other. The mysterious Manager of Route 71 has already defeated two of the lesser G-Men, but now they face the one known as... Number One.

(Rumble, rumble, battle theme)
Johnny: It's... enormous.
Eliza: There's no way you can stop that thing!
Manager: Leave this place. You two have lives yet to live, and my bill will be in the mail within two business days.
Johnny: We can't just leave you to face it alone!
Manager: (sigh) Here are the keys to my car. The standard fee applies.
(running footsteps)
Johnny: (fading) So long!
(transition theme, news bulletin SFX)
Shapiro: This is Ryan Shapiro, live from Urbane City. We have word that the ignorant anarchists in the countryside known as the"Free Staters" have launched an unprovoked defense against the enlightened People's Republic. We have reports from embedded journalists, who are within fifteen miles of the actual fighting, that heavy armored divisions are surrounding St. Joan's hospital. Free State shock troops have already covered the tanks with pricey parking tickets, with little success.
Tokenblack: That'll teach the pigs to have private property, eh Ryan?
Shapiro: Well, Jamal, the Free Staters have ordered an army of mercenaries to fight the People's Republic.
Tokenblack: So they need to hold out for seven to fourteen business days?
(laughter, news bulletin SFX)
Eliza: I don't like the sound of that, Johnny. It's war, just a few miles away from our cozy apartment here in Townsburg!
Johnny: Yeah, I hope they blow up St. Hillary's too. What's a five letter word for God?
Eliza: Allah?
Johnny: It stars with a J.
Eliza: Judas? Jonah?
Johnny: Judas fits.
Eliza: Johnny, do you think that King Wilmagne will get involved in the war?
Johnny: I don't pay much attention to politics, honestly.
Eliza: But this affects you.
Johnny: I don't see how.
Eliza: We started the war, yesterday. And if the king gets involved, you might be drafted.
Johnny: Will, sweetie. Will be drafted. "Every male subject oweth his arms to the honor and glory of the King of the Frank." I thought they meant like an organ donor, but it turns out no.
Eliza: I'm scared, Johnny.
Johnny: I'm scared too, but soon I'll be an aristocrat and I can order other people to die for no reason.
Eliza: That's not good.
Johnny: Good, evil, whatever. Hey, whatever happened to that thing you had?
Eliza: What thing?
Johnny: It was a goiter or ulcer or something.
Eliza: The baby???
Johnny: Yeah, that.
Eliza: I hate you!
(silence. loud smack.)
Johnny:
Uh, ow?
Eliza: How can you forget about our baby?
Johnny: I keep telling you, you can't have a baby unless you're married.
Eliza: That's not- it- That's why I asked-
(silence)
Johnny: Are you crying again? This seems awful familiar...
(silence)
Johnny: OH CRAP. I mean, Gosh, Eliza Jane, in the excitement of starting an ideological Armageddon, our wedding slipped my mind!
(sniff, sniif)
Eliza: Does that mean...
Johnny: Just tell me when you want to do it.
(ominous knocking)
Johnny: That sure sounds ominous.
(door opening)
Johnny: You have an ominous knock, buddy. What's that? A royal decree from Wilmagne, King of the Frank?
(door closes. crinkle crinkle)
Johnny: You... have been... see lected... to fight... in the holy crusade against the vile and imperialistic...
Eliza: Oh, no...

Has Johnny been drafted? Will the intricate, entangled alliances of the two sides have any unforseen side effects? What side have the Frank allied with, anyway? These questions, and more, will be answered in the next incredible episode of the Adventures of Johnny American!

Searching Made Unusually Terrifying

This is right up my alley- child pornography. What? No! Geeze. I mean the ethical and technological issues. Just because I'm a libertarian...

Pedophilia is, of course, a problem that any society has to deal with, but porn was made possible by technology. Drawing, writing, photography, videography, and CGI.

The mellifluous Michelle Malkin mentioned the massive amounts of motion picture pornography made popular by p2p. This is a problem, in a way, because any system that can send information can send bad information. Since p2p is so easy and anonymous, and since there are no central servers to be shut down, it is the perfect medium for child porn.

There is theoretically nothing unethical with watching child pornography, although its effects on the psyche are extremely unhealthy. This seems to return us to the question of using the results of a crime for good; should we use the research done by Dr. Mengele and other Nazis? Can someone believe research on embryos is wrong, but still use the fruits of the research? In these cases, the demand for the research, while not wrong in itself, creates a demand for more research. Using tainted research in a way that will encourage more tainted research makes the user an accomplice.

In p2p, does the consumption of pornography encourage its supply? To answer that would require that we understand the motives of the pornographers. Are they exhibitionists? The individuals who make pr0n are not necessarily those who distribute it, but when it is distributed freely, what are the motives of the distributors? Do they want to share and make the world a better place? That seems unlikely.

Regardless of the moral issues evoked by the consumption of child pornography, the production of it is the real concern.

Computer generated images don't use a child at all; The 9th circuit has already found the possession of this type of video to be legal. There is no victim, so there can be no crime. The problem is that soon, technology will make virtual and real images indistinguishable.

My conclusion is that the rampant spread of child pornography via p2p will ultimately be a good thing. This is because the video will be available to law enforcement, and facial recognition technology will also be available. It will be possible to run the video through a database of, say, every American's ID picture.

There is no national ID; there is no database of faces. However, many school age children now have school IDs, and that number will approach 100%. The database is simple, the technology is almost mature. Anyone who produces the video will be caught. The extreme copyright infringement of the p2p world means that all video will eventually end up on the network.

Imagine if image captures of the subjects' faces were run on the nightly news.

This is ManiaC Provost, signing off. Courage.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

By The Way

Iraqthemodel called the events in Lebanon the 'hot babe revolution,' and I think this is one meme that should be spread far and wide, like huckleberry jam. I always felt that 'Cedar Revolution' was manufactured, forced, and irrelevant. It refers to the Bible, for God's sake.

"Hot Babe Revolution" is much better.

EDIT: Wowzers, a triple post! The server has been screwy since last night, so there might be more OOGLEY BOOGLEY odd effects.

Telepundit

The buzz is that a lot of right-wingers are PO'd that the Bushes allowed the judiciary to push them around. I prefer not to back up my assertions with 'references,' but here's one of many.

A lot of people are calling the legislators cowards, et cetera, and this is the final step in disillusionment for some people. Bush can't even stand up to a state judge.

We need to test the winds of reality before we sail off the edge of the world. GWBush doesn't have a big problem with backing down. He may make sacrifices to political necessity, but he generally plans these out ahead of time, rather than reversing position.

Unfathomable as it may seem to some, Bush doesn't want to get involved. He does not think Terri Shiavo is being murdered by her abusive, opportunistic husband. Remember, Bush doesn't watch TV much. He doesn't spend hours reading crummy blogs like this one. To him, this is one case of thousands. It seemed like it needed further review, so he signed a bill to let a Fed judge review the case. Then he put it out of his mind.

Is Bush afraid of the political fallout of overruling some judge in the boonies? Non. He is occupied right now with the wave of revolutions sweeping the ME and Asia. He is lobbying for SS phaseout, I mean reform. He is trying to find a way to pass an overhaul of the tax system next year. He is not reading legal briefs about a woman in a hospice.

Most legislators want this to fade away. A few may agree with the pro-life crowd... but not many.

All Killer, No Filler

This is a theoretical exercise... but of course, the universe we perceive is mostly in our own minds; what facts occasionally make it in are flukes.

If abortion is murder, then the following is true:

Abortion should be stopped by any means possible.

A law protecting it is unjust and should be broken.

Those who perform abortions are murderers; murder is a capital crime, punishable by death; if the state refuses to execute them, it is the responsibility of the individual to do so.

Therefore, if abortion is murder, it is perfectly reasonable to bomb clinics and kill the doctors.

However, such a course of action would be counterproductive. The bomber would probably be arrested; in a capitalistic society such as ours, no demand goes unsupplied, and destroying abortion clinics would not stop a single abortion. The bomber would be thereafter incapable of working to reduce the incidence of abortion.

Since it would be the individual's duty to protect the feti, it would be the individual's duty not to become a vigilante.

Once again, logic leads nowhere.

Monday, March 28, 2005

The Adventures of Johnny American... Inside the Commune

In a place that seems strange, yet eerily familiar.... In a time not too distant, yet clearly not our own... there lives one young fellow with a destiny. Tune in tonight, and every night, for the incredible adventures of Johnny American.

When last we saw our hero, he was in a horrible, terrible predicament- Eliza Jane wanted to get married! Luckily, they had a horrible car wreck which bought Johnny time to think. But we still don't know if our hero survived the accident...

Johnny: Gee wiz, I survived the accident! I am the luckiest man alive!
Eliza: Owwww.
Johnny: That groan of agony didn't even hurt.
Eliza: Help... (cough)
Johnny: Eliza Jane! Are you trapped in the wreckage of my hot rod?
Eliza: No... here... for my... health...
(police siren crescendos, then stops. footsteps on gravel)
Manager: Excuse me, you can't park here.
Johnny: Please, help me get my girl out of the car!
Manager: Very well.
(grunts and shuffling noises)
Eliza: Owie. What happened?
Manager: You're parked in a restricted area, that's what happened.
Johnny: Our- My car wrecked!
Manager: On my road? Well, let's see, there's a wreckage fee of fifty dollars MS, plus a parking fee of 2 dollars per hour, plus a towage fee of thirty dollars plus fifty cents per mile, plus a landscaping fee to be assessed later, plus my time, which has already been two minutes at a dollar for six minutes...
Johnny: Hold on. What gives you the right to charge us for all that?
Manager: Why, I'm the manager of this road.
Johnny: What?
Manager: Son, haven't you ever been in an anarcho-capitalist region?
Johnny: I have a king.
Manager: Well, I suppose I can explain at great length. Basically, there is no law but the natural rights possessed by everyone. Take this inexpensive pamphlet. If you'll let me demonstrate-
Johnny: Aren't you charging me by the hour?
Manager: Yes, of course.
Johnny: Then have the car towed to the address written here, and give us a ride to the nearest hospital.
Manager: I recommend St. Joan's Hospital. I am required to disclose that I am a stockholder.
Johnny: Are there any non-ancharo-captalist hospitals?
Manager: There is one... But I really don't recommend-
Johnny: Take us to it.
Manager: You're the boss. Twenty cents per mile, of course. St. Hillary's it is.
(transition theme)
Johnny: Doctor, why is it taking so long? She didn't look hurt.
Doctor: I don't know. What do I look like, a doctor?
Johnny: Yes. You said you were a doctor.
Doctor: Hmm. Well, I'm afraid we're going to have to amputate.
Johnny: What? Amputate what?
Doctor: Something.
Johnny: But she didn't have anthing wrong that bad!
Doctor: Oh, haha, no, no. You see, we have to do a certain number of amputations a year to keep our Makita budget from being cut. And since we rarely have to do one, your wife gets a special bonus operation!
Johnny: But if you rarely do amputations, why do you need a budget to do them?
Doctor: That's how capitalism works.
Johnny: The nurse said, the nurse said this was a socialist utopia.
Doctor: I see, I see. So now you know the truth. Well, we can't let you live.
Johnny: But... you're a hospital. Isn't your job to-
Doctor: Our job is to make everyone feel better that there's free health care, not to actually deliver free health care.
Johnny: But that makes no sense! Where is she?
Doctor: Well, she's not in that room just around the corner.
(footsteps decrescendo, two pairs of footsteps crescendo.)
Johnny: We're leaving this madhouse, Eliza Jane.
Doctor: How did you find her? You will be flogged by your overseers!
Johnny: What? I'm not a socialist. I am a loyal subject of Wilmagne, King of the Frank.
(All hospital sounds cease. There is a deadly silence.)
Doctor: Who brought you here?
Johnny: Some charo-captalist.
Doctor: Ahhk! The damned libertarians strike again! Seize them!
(unhurried footsteps. a door opens and closes.)
Doctor: Seize them now!
Nurse: Why should I?
Doctor: I will flog you!
Nurse: Let it go, Doctor. Let it go.
G-Man #4: You, nurse. That is pusillanimous conduct in the face of the enemy.
(muffled gunshot, followed by a thud.)
G-Man #3: That was a warning. Don't do it again. Come on, Number 4. We have capitalists to capture.
G-Man #4: Bourgeoise to bust.
G-Man #3: Reactionaries to remand.
G-Man #4: Let's roll.
(transition theme)
Eliza: This is a long walk. Maybe we should call a cab.
Manager: Yes?
Eliza: AHHH! Where did you come from?
Manager: The power of capitalism is quite... powerful.
Johnny: Can we have a ride to Townsburg?
Manager: Certainly. That will be six dollars.
Johnny: Son of a-
(a car stops.)
G-Man #4: For spying against the People's Republic, you will die.
Manager: If you kill them on my road, the charge is seventy dollars MS per corpse.
G-Man #4: You will die as well.
Manager: Fools. Do you dare test the power of a capitalist on his own lease?
G-Man #4: We knew this day would come.
Manager: I see I underestimated you. You are far more thoughtless than I thought.
G-Man #3: Prepare to be euthanized, old man!
(sounds of a scuffle, assorted crashes. a series of gunshots. A low rumble. Laser FX. three explosions. a shower of dirt. a creak. A tree falling. cursing. a clang. a crack. a thud.)
Johnny: That was the most incredible thing I've ever seen!
Manager: Unfortunately I can't charge you.
(a sound of steel on steel and powerful engines begins to crescendo)
Eliza: What is that?
Manager: That... is the one they call... Number One. (tri-tone #2) Today... It is war.

Johnny American and Eliza Jane somehow survived a wreck, universal healthcare, capitalism, and an attack by the secretive secret police. Can they survive the horrors of... Number One? (tri-tone #2) Find out next time, when we bring you the Adventures of Johnny American!

Sunday, March 27, 2005

About the Author

Just for kicks, here are the results from a quiz on religion. Satanism isn't as bad as it sounds; it's more of a philosophy than a religion, and they don't believe in Satan at all. I suppose I scored so highly because individualism is one of its main components. The link to the quiz is below the results.



Christianity


75%

Satanism


58%

Islam


38%

Buddhism


33%

Judaism


25%

Hinduism


17%

atheism


17%

agnosticism


17%

Paganism


4%

Which religion is the right one for you? (new version)
created with QuizFarm.com

Panel Discussion

This partial transcript was recovered from sources inside LWNG news.

Moderator: Good evening, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to Nights at the Round Table. I'm Ted Undie, moderating this third part in a series of dicussions with Friedrich Nietzsche, Adam Smith, Michel d'Montagne (sp?), and Thomas Aquinas. Our topic tonight is libertarianism- its basis and viability. We'll start with Mickey this evening.

Montagne: Je ne parle pas Anglais.

Smith: Jesus H. Christ-

Nietzsche: Fool, God is dead.

Aquinas: That is folly; for as Newton showed, every action has an opposite reaction; and, as God is the prime mover of the universe, for God to have changed would require an equal change in the universe; Thus, as long as the universe exists, God must exist as well.

Nietzsche: You assume too much. You assume that the reactive force is a new force. WRONG LITTLE MAN. Do not assume. Do not ever. The reactive force which killed God is the same force with which he created the spheres.

Montagne: Non!

Moderator: Ok, can we not argue about God tonight. Freddy, didn't you argue last night that God was infinitely loving, a living God, and that every word of the Bible was literal truth.

Nietzsche: Possibly, but that was last night.

Montagne: Ne vous tenez pas sur une colline et ne raillez pas la foudre!!!

Smith: Why is he here, anyway?

Moderator: We always try to include a French viewpoint.

Smith: Why in God's name would you do that?

Nietzche: God is nameless!

Aquinas: That is true, in one sense; to name something is to define it; we can define God only by what we do not know; therefore, to truly name God is impossible.

Nietzsche: That's why I said it. Quit rambling.

Moderator: I thought God's name was Allah.

(the guests stared at Ted Undie for several minutes. commercial break goes here.)

The transcript is illegible past this point, due to charring.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

An Oversight on my part

I noticed Thursday or yesterday that I had- you won't believe this- not read all of the Heinlein books in the local library. Granted, my first priority is to read every Jack Vance that I can find- but Heinlein alternates bizarre and inane pulp fiction with inspired genius.

All of that was to say that I found yet another functioning libertarian society in "Beyond This Horizon." The best part is the division of social classes; either you wear an armband, or you carry a weapon. Duels are commonplace, and naturally, those who wear the armbands are immune and despised. The story is good, and Heinlein's customary free-love fest is more subdued and reminiscent of modern reality that it usually is. The society seems more sexist than usual as well; are these related? An academician would try to answer that question. *coughleftie*

Friday, March 25, 2005

Yeah,

Why do I get all my traffic while boring posts are at the top, and not the hilarious yet inciteful [sic] ones?

Dystopia of the Day

"This is Ryan Shapiro, your man on the scene with LWNG cable news. I'm on the steps of the supreme court building in Washington, D.C., where the Supreme Court has just ruled the Second Amendment to be unconstitutional. Protestors have already caused major congestion on Capitol Hill, and more are coming. This could develop into a real million-gun-nut march."

"Ryan, are there any sane, responsible protestors who support the ruling?"

"Well, Ted, there were, but they were unarmed. In retrospect, they shouldn't have started that brawl with the NRA lobbyists."

"Thank you, Ryan. As most of you at home know, today's finding that the Second Amendment's supposed 'right to keep and bear arms' is unconstitutional is only the final step in the creation of a brave new world without violence or fear. Most guns have already been melted down and distributed to post-modern sculptors. As the country has been "happified," we've seen an incredible upswing in armed robbery, assault, and murder, proving once again that unilateral disarmament is for the best. We go now to Betty, on location at the White House."

"Thanks, Ted. I bet the pre-modernist sculptors are in a tizzy over this one. (haha) I'm here with July Toomey, who is minding the anti-nuclear protest sign that has stood in continuous moral moderation for decades. July, how do you feel about disarmament?"

"Oh my non-denominational God! This is like, a great day for peace, because, without weapons, people won't be able to hurt little children anymore."

"Well said, July, but baseball bats are still legal... for now. It's five till five, eastern time, and the president is about to begin his address on the west lawn... Wait... there's some sort of activity by the gates... A group of men, with what appears to be a "don't tread on me" flag, are rushing the flimsy and ineffective wrought iron gates. Don't worry- the secret service is intercepting them. Everything is under contol, the agents are spraying the men with mace... The men with rifles appear to be laughing, now, Ted. They are beating the secret service with the big ends of their guns... In a stunning development, a group of uniformed criminals have entered the white house, meeting little opposition..."

"Thanks for the filler, Betty, but it's time to go to the president's address. Ryan?"

"I didn't have time to drive over yet, Ted. Someone from the 'Free Texas Militia' has taken my car."

"No problem, Ryan, we'll add snide commentary here in the studio. Just make it back here safely. All right, folks, the speaker is introducing President Nancy...."

"... of the United States of America!"
"... Look at what the first lady is wearing. Tsk, tsk..."

"...and distinguished guests. I'd like to say it is an honor to be president of this great country on such a momentous moment in our history."
"Gee, Ted, the president is a moron."
"That's right, Dan."

"But I can't. Ever since the Supreme Court ruled that it could reject presidential appointments, we have been on a downward slide. A slide into totalitarianism, a slide into amorality and decadence, a slide in fashion sense. What could posses Justice Kimmy to redesign the robes of office to reference Simple Plan?"
"That was a fashion don't, to contrast her fashionable 'do,' wasn't it Ted?"
"Absolutely, Dan. Love those strawberry highlights."

"When I took this oath of office for the first time, six years ago, I swore to defend the constitution of these United States from all enemies, foreign and domestic. I feel that in some ways, I have failed. I have failed the American people, even as the American people have never, ever failed me."
"Partisan politics is sickening, isn't it Dan?"
"Indeed it is, Ted."

"So tonight, I come before you not to offer my support to the unjust tyranny by activist judges, but instead to take a stand. If they want a tyrant, that tyrant will be me."
"What... Uh, Dan..."
"I don't know, Ted."

"I have already declared martial law, and the military seems to be on my side, with all the guns. Paramilitary groups have pledged their support. Oh, and my first decree- you heard me, decree- is to order the deaths of the reporters and others who have accelerated the fall of our once-great country."
"I'm sure he doesn't mean patriotic, responsible jounalists like us, Ted."

"Especially those morons at LWNG news."

NOW,

I didn't mean to pick on the National Organization of Women in the last "Adventures of Johnny American," by the way. Although they never spoke out against Clinton's sexual harassment or the UN's systematic rape of little girls, I've heard rumors that the NOW has a useful function.

I've no doubt, however, that some of the members are also the insane feminazis who would do this. Thanks to the fox- um, to Displacethoughts for first bringing it to my attention. It's been a few days but I was a little peeved and didn't want to comment on it while my personal feeling might've interfered. I also hoped for more information about the case.

What seems to have happened is: A 14 year old girl was "raped." Given what we know about human nature, peer pressure, and the idiocy of youth, it's hard to determine exactly what happened there. The fact that no charges seem to have been filed indicate that aspect of the case is murky.

Then, the mother of the male that impregnated the girl took the girl to an abortion clinic. Right here is where effeminism is particularly outraged. There is a very strong chance that the girl did not make her own decision to kill the fetus. I can say "kill," right? Like you "kill" a wart? I won't have protestors at my doorstep because of my provincialisms?

The mother, the legal guardian of the girl, arrived at the clinic before the procedure was performed. According to Illinois police who arrived later, she had a legal right to see her daughter, but she was instead arrested and evicted by a feminazi. According to Hearsay, a person at the clinic said, "It’s your daughter’s rights, it’s her body. You have no rights.”

Well, in a legal sense that may be true. If not, then someone is going to prison. I question the right of anyone to perform an elective medical procedure on a child who has been kidnapped. "Kidnapped" may be a harsh word. It is a little shorter than, "Taken from school by an unrelated adult on false pretenses and against the will of the parents."

The 'rights' of the girl are another point I find interesting. From what I've seen, children have no legal rights whatsoever, except to live. Except for feti. And except for some babies in intensive care. And I assume that if a child were in a coma, the family could remove its feeding tube despite the lack of informed consent.

I know that minors can have millions in cash and still be unable to open a checking account. Obviously, a bank wouldn't extend credit- but it is actually a state law that no minor can do that. They cannot ride motorcycles without helmets, or drive. I agree with these, with qualifications that do not belong here.

The only legal right a child has is to have an abortion, apparently. Truancy is illegal- but to get an abortion, I guess it's ok. Doesn't this violate equal protection? What if a little boy wants his ears pinned back?

Illinois is in trouble if it's trusting children's medical decisions to be made by interested strangers. Here are some other people who are guilty of criminal neglect.

*"the school had been warned not to release the girl to anyone but her parents or grandfather. The ‘grandmother’ took the girl" - lifesitenews.com . Ok. So if I tell the school that a pedophile specifically threatened to kidnap my (theoretical) daughter, and they should not release her from school, they would just lose that tidbit in a file cabinet somewhere? In such a situation, I would shoot first and ask questions later. Literally. I'm originally from Texas. Be warned. This is definitely worth a firing, but since it is more likely the system that is flawed than the receptionist, the person in charge of the system will have to do. Principal, maybe. Ultimately, a financial judgement against the school district would be more likely. Good thing we have a public school system. Nothing here to be fixed by deregulation... nope, not at all.

* The clinic employee who tried too hard to contemplate the concept of natural rights, mentioned above.

* The mother of the fetus's father. Kidnapping and probably a couple minor frauds.

* The fetus. Oh, wait- we already executed it.

* I cannot cast blame on the parents of the girl, because there are possible scenarios where they are blameless. It seems likely that they could have either kept a closer watch on their daughter, or filed rape charges before the case went 'stale.'

So there you have it. Judge not lest ye be judged, but I would be willing to take a few beatings if justice was served more often.

The Adventures of Johnny American...
Johnny Goes To College

In a place that seems strange, yet eerily familiar.... In a time not too distant, yet clearly not our own... there lives one young fellow with a destiny. Tune in tonight, and every night, for the incredible adventures of Johnny American.

When last we saw our hero, he had just learned that his best girl Eliza Jane was a Progressive. Now, he must deal with the logical consequences of secular humanism- but will Johnny American be up to the challenge? Can he survive in the post-modern future world of the year 2000? We join our hero in his new apartment in Townsburg...

"But would I be a good messiah with my low self esteem?
If I don't believe in myself, would that be blasphemy?
Just sport some crummy holier-than-thou facade,
yeah that's what I would do if I were God."- Bloodhound Gang

Eliza: Johnny, would you turn that racket off, please?
(record player stops)
Eliza: Johnny, do you remember when we "expressed our love" and there was an accident?
Johnny: No. Was that after we had sex?
Eliza: Um, that-
Johnny: Because I don't remember much after that.
Eliza: Johnny, I'm late.
Johnny: For what?
Eliza: Do you take everything literally?
Johnny: My pop was a communist.
Eliza: Uh huh. Let me spell this out. I'm pregnant.
Johnny: Haha, that's ridiculous. We're not married!
(silence)
Johnny: Why are you crying?
(transition theme)
Johnny: I don't understand why we're going to The Academy.
Eliza: You need to find a career, and I need to talk to some women there.
Johnny: Golly, 'liza Jane, you think I'm cut out to be a college man?
Eliza: I was thinking more along the lines of custodian, but... sure, you could be a history professor or something.
Johnny: I've never actually been in Academia. Look, you can see the Ivory Tower!
Eliza: And the ivy gates!
Johnny: Why do the buildings all have glass ceilings?
Guard: Hault, supplicant! No one gets into Academia without the proper password.
Eliza: Johnny's a Native American, and I'm an unwed mother.
Guard: You may pass.
Johnny: You're not a mother, you silly goose. It's only a fetus.
Eliza: That's what I'm here to find out. (tri-tone #2)
(transition theme)
NOW volunteer:
So, as you can see, it is not only your right to murder the helple- (coughing) your right to have happy fairies take the fetus away, it is your duty. Making a baby will only cause more pollution when the baby gets a car.
Johnny: Did you hear that, Eliza Jane? Happy fairies will raise the fetus!
NOW volunteer: Technically, the non-denominational God-concept will raise the fetus. The happy fairies are just the guys who work at Dresden. That's the nearest clinic.
Eliza: And you'll help Johnny get into the women's studies program?
Johnny: Hey!
Eliza: Just kidding, baby.
(transition theme)
(sounds of wind)
Eliza: Where were you?
Johnny: One of the happy fairies took me to dinner. I asked if I could see his magic wand, and he gave me his phone number.
Eliza: Let's just go home.
(car starts)
Johnny: I sure am glad you decided to shack up with me, 'liza Jane. This is gonna be just swell.
Eliza: Well, see, the thing about that is, um.
Johnny: You want to repaint the living room? Me too.
Eliza: No, Johnny. I... I decided to keep the baby.
Johnny: Fetus.
Eliza: That means we will have a child together.
Johnny: I don't really see where you're going with this, Eliza.
Eliza: I want to get married.
Johnny: But... I like you! a whole lot!
Eliza: I WANT TO MARRY YOU, YOU MORON!
Johnny: Whoa, there. Are you having mood swings already?
Eliza: Sorry. What... What do you think?
Johnny: Well, I-
(Screeeeeeeech, Crash!)

It looks as though Johnny American has had a terrible auto accident! Will he survive? Will Eliza Jane? What about Johnny's already sky-high insurance premiums? Join us next time, and every time, for the exciting Adventures of Johnny American!

Thursday, March 24, 2005

How queer. DMN! DMN!

I find the gay marriage debate tiresome. We all know that it will eventually be legal, and we will be empowering a couple percent of the population to do certain things that are never really spelled out. Adopt kids? They can. Live together? They can. The emotional trauma of not being able to marry the person you love is pretty harsh. After all, it's not a real marriage unless some people thousands of miles away say it is. A relationship can't exist without the State.

And The State of Nevada knew that man needed a partner; and so he created him a moderately attractive woman, telling them, "Be fruiful. Go forth and multiply. Fill ye the trailer parks and apartment complexes with thine issue, and their number shall be greater than the grains of sand in Clark County."

As you all know, I'm in favor of the abolition of all marriage in a legal sense, although there are dimensions to this that are problematic. However, since the problems are all caused by the governement and the regulation of marriage in the first place, that is no reason to keep interfering in the institution.

Hey, that's a slogan. Deregulate Marriage Now! DMN sounds too much like "demean," though.

Anyway, my point is that one side keeps using the SSA, "What's next? Polygamy? Legalizing incest?" And the gays come back with, "No, of course not."

First of all, I find it humorous that homosexuals would question the morality of two consenting adults just because they're a little related.

Secondly, polygamy would be the next rational step. Polygamy isn't even immoral, under certain societal conditions. I know I would get hate mail over that, if anyone cared about my opinion, but read the Bible carefully, and then the Quran, and then the Kama Sutra, and try to find a religion that frowns on polygamy. If adultery is legal, than polygamy should be as well.

So really, the slippery slope argument is correct in this case.

"But legalizing all those bad things will legitimize them!"

Only if you belive that the state has moral authority. The larger issue is that we have no reason to illegalize all these things. When in doubt, err on the side of Liberty. Yes, we will one day be destroyed by God for all this sinning, but that's going to happen anyway.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

I fought the law and the law won

David the Physics Guy posted about legislating religion, and since I've been planning on doing the same, I will. After a couple of posts that made passing reference to puritanical moral values, here's one that can be applied to politics.

There are three types of sin: those that hurt others (violations of rights ethics), sins of omission (violations of duty ethics), and arbitrary sins that might hurt the sinner or anger God.

Hurting others is generally illegal, and so it should be. It is the sins of omission that define the boundary between capitalism and socialism, libertarianism and post-liberalism.

As a crazy capitalist, I do not recognize the legal authority of 'duty.' This is because 'duty' cannot be projected onto others. Even though an individual has a duty, society has no way of quantifying that duty, measuring right and wrong, and resolving the moral problem. The only thing society can do is give an individual freedom.

I do not mean society shouldn't define duty for a person; I mean it cannot. It has no ability to see from the individual's perspective. It cannot ever possibly examine all the circumstances of that individual's situation. By forcing someone to fulfill society's conception of duty, society assumes itself to be infallible.

This is an important point to make clear, because this is the crux of the major division in western civilisation. We may not be able to advance until this is resolved. The Left believes we can punish someone for inaction. The Right believes we cannot. All other differences, other than incidental demographic ones, can be traced back to this division.

This means that we can only legislate against those things that hurt other people. Some results:

*Abortion does not hinge on this argument, but on what constitutes a 'person.' So, oddly, religion does not affect the abortion debate in a meaningful way (except to sway some opinions on how to define personhood).

* Gay "marriage" cannot be outlawed, because it hurts no one. Neither can we grant special legal rights to married couples, because in every instance these rights limit the freedom of others or punish unmarried individuals.

* David the Physics Guy said:
"What if most non-Christians want incest to be legal? Or beastiality?..We must use some standard to decide what should be legal and what shouldn't,"

I wasn't aware that those were illegal. They shouldn't be, unless of course the relative is unable to consent. That's on par with punishing suicide.

*Whether anyone has the right to prevent someone else's suicide is a tricky question.

*"Render unto Caesar what is Caesar's." - Jesus of Nazareth (translated from original)

What is Caesar's? The coin, the value it represents, or neither? The Roman patricians gave up the value of the coin when the treasury paid it out. Even following Jesus' advice, that does not necessarily mean we are morally bound to pay taxes.

**********************************

Laws should be based on rationality, not religion. Granted, the word of God is absolute truth and preempts our attempts at logic; however, the word of God must be rational. Therefore, there can be no conflict between a rational, atheistic law and religion. What we often have to deal with is an irrational, atheist law, which is far worse.

Although I support extreme religious practices, self deprivation, celibacy, evangelicism, indoctrination of children, the rights of the fetus, et cetera, most of these should not be legislated.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

The Adventures of Johnny American...
Sock-Hop Mayhem

In a place that seems strange, yet eerily familiar.... In a time not too distant, yet clearly not our own... there lives one young fellow with a destiny. Tune in tonight, and every night, for the incredible adventures of Johnny American.

When last we saw our hero, he had done his civic duty and voted with the mighty and wise Vote-a-tron, and was on his way to pick up his best girl Eliza Jane. Little did the young lovers suspect that on this night, they would encounter- Sock-Hop Mayhem! (tri-tone #2)

Johnny: I sure hope I'm not late. Voting took some time, but it sure was worth it.
(knocking. A door opens)
Johnny: Hello Mr. Borden. Is Eliza Jane here?
Mr. Borden: Who the hell are you?
Johnny: Haha, that's a good one, sir.
(footsteps w/ echo, a record is playing swing music)
Johnny: Hello, Eliza.
Eliza: Word, Johnny.
Johnny: Are you ready for the dance?
Eliza: Just give me a couple minutes to freshen up.
Johnny: What? No. We have no time for your feminine frippery. Come on.
(transition theme, car)
Eliza: Johnny, look out!
Johnny: There are people lying in the street outside the dance hall!
Eliza: Maybe they're dead.
Johnny: I sure hope so. I'll go out and check. Since you're only a woman, wait here where it's safe.
Eliza: That's not-
(car door opens and closes. footsteps on gravel)
Johnny: Excuse me, are you dead?
Body: Yes. We are the victims of the commander-in-thief's illegal war for oil, that has already cost several lives and millions of dollars.
Eliza: But you can talk.
Johnny: I thought I told you to wait in the car.
Body: It's a metaphor, you idiot. Sheesh, you're probably too stupid to vote for Happy Fun Super-Democracy. I bet you picked Moderate Social Democracy, you extremist wacko. Vote for us next time.
Johnny: Uh, can you move?
Body: No, if we move the fascists win. Soon they'll start the draft back up.
Johnny: But that wouldn't apply to you, because you're not in that-
Body: It's nuance, you stupid idiot.
Johnny: But you won't move?
Body: Never. Until it starts to get chilly.
(footsteps, cardoors. Car starts. There are several crunches and screams)
(transition theme. a record is playing swing music)
Johnny: Ok, let me teach you how to dance.
Eliza: I know how to dance, Johnny.
Johnny: Hahahaha, but you're a girl!
Eliza: Johnny, we need to talk.
Johnny: Women.
Eliza: Mm. See, it's the year 2000 now. Society realizes that women and men, while not the same in every way, are equal and deserve to be treated equally. Women are as intelligent as men, and assuming that I can't dance, or I can't risk being spit on by war protestors, is chauvinist. And Johnny, I can't go steady with a chauvinist. It's called progress.
Johnny: I see... is there anything in this "progressive" society that benefits me?
Eliza: Well, we can have lots of deviant sex, even though we're not married.
Johnny: Wowzers! First voting, now sex with a poorly developed minor character. What other wonders does the year 2000 hold?

Indeed. To find out what's in store for Johnny and Eliza Jane, tune in tomorrow, when Ovaltine presents- Johnny American... The Trip to the Clinic. (main theme)

M- M- Memetic, Heretic, Politicised Peripatetic

I find it humorous that the use of the term "meme" to describe an idea that passes from person to person is itself a meme. It's hilarious when you consider that "meme" is usually used to disparage the idea (when used by bloggers), implying that the idea has been accepted and repeated without critical analysis.

Come on...

Hindrocket of Powerline comments on the Republican 'strategy' memo that was supposedly intercepted, and links to the full text. The memo itself is not available, and better men than I are trying to get a copy.

The early reports I read vaguely mentioned that the Terri Schiavo situation would be good politically, get the base excited, et cetera. It didn't seem all that damning. I suppose that if the memo were forged, subtlety would be safer than extravagance. Anyway, for what it's worth, here's my analysis of the writing. The memo is in red.

S. 529, The Incapacitated Person's Legal Protection Act

"109th CONGRESS 1st Session S. 529 To designate a United States Anti-Doping Agency." Doesn't sound like the IPLPA to me. That would be 539.

Teri (sic) Schiavo is subject to an order that her feeding tubes will be disconnected on March 18, 2005 at 1p.m.

How necessary was the date? Did anyone not know the year that this was going to take place? Partially based on other evidence, I think the writing sounds nervous or hasty, and full dates are often used to convey a sense of authority.

The Senate needs to act this week, before the Budget Act is pending business, or Terri's family will not have a remedy in federal court.

True enough, although I thought there was a procedural gimmick that allowed pressing legislation to be skipped ahead. Also, if the senate didn't act, Terri would be dead. This omission could be tact or irony.

This is an important moral issue and the pro-life base will be excited that the Senate is debating this important issue.

Who has been obsessing on every channel and front page since November about the religious vote? The Republicans? The Green Party? Oh, yeah... A pro-life senator would not consider his base in those terms, and an evil killer senator would not push the bill thusly. A machiavellian or weathervane might say this.

This is a great political issue, because Senator Nelson of Florida has already refused to become a cosponsor and this is a tough issue for Democrats.

I suppose. How many people know that Nelson is a Democratic senator from Florida? I also fail to see how that is a boone to the GOP. See below for a possible reason for this reference.

The bill is very limited and defines custody as "those parties authorized or directed by a court order to withdraw or withhold food, fluids, or medical treatment."

There is an exemption for a proceeding "which no party disputes, and the court finds, that the incapacitated person while having capacity, had executed a written advance directive valid under applicably law that clearly authorized the withholding or or (sic) withdrawl (sic) of food and fluids or medical treatment in the applicable circumstances."

"Withdrawl?" That is a blatant pun. Also, they missed the misuse of applicably for applicable. The grammar police are slacking off.

Incapacitated persons are defined as those "presently incapable of making relevant decisions concerning the provision, withholding or withdrawl (sic) of food fluids or medical treatment under applicable state law."

Again with the pun.

This legislation ensures that individuals like Terri Schiavo are guaranteed the same legal protections as convicted murderers like Ted Bundy.

Ted Bundy? That seems incongruous, but he was prosecuted in Florida. This exact comparison was made by US Newswire, and quoted on Free Republic, and referenced by a million other sites, including the Democratic Underground.

The USATODAY has a quote from a GOP FL state senator, Webster: "If the proceedings that led up to the execution of serial-killer Ted Bundy had been handled in the same way, Bundy's conviction would have been overturned."

Perhaps the memo was written by Webster, who 1) made the Bundy comparison, 2) is from the same state as Nelson, named in the memo, 3) sponsored Terri's Law, and 3) is a Floridian, more likely to reference Bundy, a GOP staffer, who was executed in Florida. Be wary of that last link, by the way.

If it is real, I'd nominate Webster as the author. There are too many possibilities to place bets yet.

I don't see anything bad in the memo, by the way- one GOPer trying to persuade the other GOPers to save a life. I do think it's rude to publish memos.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Judicious Reform

No, I don't mean the judges who are even now usurping legislative power and weakening our democracy. I have had a few ideas recently, probably due to protein.

First, we know that the blogosphere, society at large, and many other venues for complaining can be described as networks. Hopefully, the state of the network advances until there is a consensus, as people cross-post, engage in cool ripostes over the water cooler, or holler belligerently over the spilled beer and pretzels at their local saloon. All of these methods of communication, however crude, gradually lead to a consensus opinion, or a few competing ones. This phenomena can be observed in any online bulletin board over a period of months.

There is a large community of court watchers who communicate via online bulletin boards. They are presumably better informed than the rest of us about the legal system, but their massed brainpower is what I want to tap into. It should be possible to mine their discussions and retrieve the consensus opinions and all pertinent facts supporting each. An unbiased observer, or perhaps a judge, could make use of this information to reach a better judgement. The effect is similar to having a larger jury, except that since the court watchers don't get to vote, they are easier to manage.

Some people are launching the perennial complaint about sex offender registration. It occurs to me that we could require all sex offenders to wear a large scarlet letter, which would protect society and offer a deterrent. Primarily, it would cause the criminal to suffer, but that's more of a bonus than a rationale. This, in addition to increased gun ownership, would free the courts from having to deal with a lengthy appeals process, and would rapidly decrease the number of sex offenders.

The local Young Democrats, in a seeming non sequitur, are launching a major campaign against spousal rape. Because that's the big issue in Washington right now, guys. Actually, that is an issue that deserves more attention than it gets, so here's a link. Here's a link which mentions AZ, and probably explains the local YDs' action. Also, I think some local Republican might've cast a vote that was soft on it. I might address this some more in an upcoming post on Effeminism.

While spousal rape should be punished as harshly as that between strangers, even under a system where the same punishments apply, there will be a difference in sentencing because the premeditation, use of a weapon, et cetera will not apply as often. The wife will also, sadly, be less willing to pursue capital punishment.

All that leads up to my last recommendation today: public floggings. Severe ones. It is humane, cost effective, and meets the needs of the legal system. Beating a man nearly to death and leaving him in the stocks to scab would be preferable to jail time, especially for crimes like spousal rape.

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Dystopia of the Day... The Return of the Machine...

When we last left our hero, Johnny American had just turned 21. He has already decided not to become a smelly, marijuana-addicted hippy, and now he gets to vote for the very first time. In the distant future, everyone can choose their own government, using the Vote-a-Tron... Join us now, as we watch Johnny American in the future, in the year 2000...

Johnny: Jiminy, this scientastic machine is complicated. I wonder which actuator to actuate?
Vote-a-tron: There is no need. My scientastic gizmology makes me a thousand times more intelligent than any machine. We can converse, just as you would converse with a chum from school.
Johnny: Wowzers! Can I score some heroine? I'm trying to break my morphine addiction.
Vote-a-tron: That depends. If you choose a government with socialized medicine, then yes.
Johnny: Gee, I better make this decision wisely, like when I decided to drink rich, chocolate Ovaltine, instead of that other chocolate drink.
Vote-a-tron: Ovaltine is an excellent source of vitamins, and with 3 upcs you can get the Secret Decoder Ring.
Johnny: What does that do?
Vote-a-tron: It helps you decipher the spin of politicians.
Johnny: Sounds awful good.
Vote-a-tron: If you choose a democracy, then yes.
Johnny: Hmm. Well, my pop was a communist. I'd like to ask his advice, but he never came home last time he voted.
Vote-a-tron: Umm, yes, how strange. *click* May I suggest Rule by Judicial Fiat?
Johnny: No, thanks. If that happened, why, we'd have abortions, and miscegenenation, and lawyers would own our souls.
Vote-a-tron: Very well. How about a democratic republic?
Johnny: Wasn't that what America used to be?
Vote-a-tron: For about ten minutes.
Johnny: Hmm, but they were overrun by the Soviets. Communism is starting to sound better and better.
Vote-a-tron: Actually, the CCCR was closer to a theocracy than communism.
Johnny: Theo-what?
Vote-a-tron: Nevermind. Why not try Feudalism? You look strong enough to be king one day.
Johnny: But my mother says I'm not to fight in duels-to-the-death to settle minor points of honor in an oppressive and archaic system created by the Franks.
Vote-a-tron: She said that?
Johnny: In those exact words, Vote-a-tron.
Vote-a-tron: Well, then. Let's look at this logically. You are young, ignorant, and parrot the ideology of your parents uncritically. You don't know what you want, but expect me to give it to you. You don't have a single strand of moral fiber or shred of will, and if left to your own devices you would starve to death in your own filth.
Johnny: Can we speed this up, Vote-a-tron? I have to pick up Eliza Jane for the sock-hop in a half an hour.
Vote-a-tron: The evidence suggests you are left-wing cannon fodder. The government you would most likely create on your own is-
Johnny: Just give it to me, I'm running late.
Vote-a-tron: Divine monarchy.
Johnny: Swell! Now, to the dance!
Vote-a-tron: Here's your receipt.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Interesting.

While I was looking up the crazy Nazi guy, I came across this incredibly prescient article that references the tendency of politicians to compare each other to Hitler. It dates from right before the 2000 primaries, and it's funny. Funny haha, not funny like me. (I am not homosexual, I am insane. Just thought I'd clarify that.) Read the article.

Premise

The idea which drives me is that modern philosophy is limited to glib summaries and overviews by English professors; out of this morass comes the occasional real philosopher like Derrida or the crazy Nazi guy, whose ideas of logic and whose premises are so primitive and retarded by their environment that they cannot arrive at meaningful truth.

Also, I am too busy to go get a degree in philosophy, there are no patron nobility to support me, and philosopher is as poor a choice of career as politician.

Truth does not exist in a void, though I will not endeavour to show that in this post; anyone who expects to arrive at truth without empirical evidence, or who tries to govern without ever having been governed, is delusional.

The belief that there is no absolute truth, only disparate, logically self-consistent world views, arose from these delusional philosophers. A 'truth' may be logically consistent, but if explored enough it will eventually describe observeable reality, and if it is not consistent with reality, it is not truth. Eventually, by deduction, it should be possible to discount every supposed 'truth' except the correct one.

Socialism, for example, may be perfectly logical and self consistent, just as Capitalism is, but one of the two conflicts with reality. *coughcommiescough* Socialism doesn't claim to be truth, per se, but a practical application of truth; since socialism does not work, the truth behind it must therefore be flawed.

This does not necessarily disprove relativism, but that will require a lot of writing. It doesn't even disprove the moral basis behind socialism, but rather the practical basis.

- Field Marshal Mathers

Pawn to B3

I've written a couple of chess-related things recently, both mentioning "Russian" grandmaster Garry Kasparov. Well, here's something he wrote, published today. Here's the last paragraph:

"My retirement from chess is not about running for president or any other higher office, although I am not prepared to rule anything out. It is about opposing our authoritarian regime and bringing positive change. There are millions like me in Russia who want a free press, rule of law and fair elections. My new job is to fight for those people and to fight for those things." - Kasparov

Looks like the opening move. Good luck.

Friday, March 18, 2005

Microcosmic

I was reading "The Sources of Soviet Conduct" by George Kennan (1947), and it appears that the type of strategy that would have been effective against the Soviets would be a 'playing against God' strategy. This is the type of strategy employed by chess virtuoso Bobby Fischer. Basically, in this strategy, the assumption is that the opponent (USSR) will always make the best possible move. Under that assumption, the tactician has to make a move that takes that into account, leaving no openings. This is in contrast to the 'know thy enemy' strategy, which is used by another grandmaster, Garry Kasparov. In this type of strategy, you try to understand the weaknesses in your opponent's thinking and exploit those. Faced with an identical tactical situation, the 'know thy enemy' strategy will probably be riskier but potentially more successful than the 'God' strategy.

I thought it was odd that Fischer was an American, using the ideal US strategy, while Kasparov was a Soviet, using the Soviet strategy.

Fischer is now being held by Japan, after a bizarre 30 year sequence of events.
"Throughout the interview, Fischer used words not fit for print while describing the American and Japanese governments." - Manilla Bulletin Online

Kasparov's biggest news in the last ten years has been his competition against Deep Blue, the IBM supercomputer. Kasparov is well known for getting into the minds of his opponents in the 'know thy enemy' strategy, and the last time he accused IBM of having a human assist the computer, claiming he could sense intelligence. I don't have access to a book on AI entitled "Robot" (1999) right now, but what I got from it was that the computing ability of Deep Blue is totally focused on chess; the human brain can concentrate somwhere around 3% of its power on chess, though that figure is imprecise. Because of this, Deep Blue brings to bear roughly as much computing power as the human brain. I haven't read the book in 4 or 5 years, though.

This is The ManiaC, signing out. Courage.

You know,

if there were no welfare, unemployment insurance, or minimum wage, I bet people would become a lot more competent at their jobs. Of course, if there were no unemployment insurance I'm sure State Farm would start selling it. That would be, what's the word, "not a dictatorship." Oh yeah, Liberty.

Lousy florist. Next time I'm down there...

Update: Good florist. Score!!!!!

Thursday, March 17, 2005

There's no sturgeon in AZ- Oh.

I noticed it's possible to read older versions of the WSJ's Political Diary for free, and one from a week ago has a common misconception in it.

"Mr. Carmona's life story would certainly capture the imaginations of many voters, including the 25% of the state's population that is Hispanic." - John Fund

Dr. Carmona is the U.S. Surgeon General, and from a Puerto Rican family, as the article notes. So why the assumption that Arizona's hispanics, primarily of Mexican descent, will identify with him? Politicians and the media commonly paint 'hispanics' as a solid voting block, for some reason, but those from Cuba are very different from those from Mexico, who are different from Columbians. They often have problems understanding each other's language, which is the only thing that ties the 'hispanic' group together. Many second and third generation immigrants are almost completely integrated into the 'white' mainstream.

I'm not sure on this, but I think that the sterotypes of Puerto Ricans by other hispanic groups may be a tad more negative than by the rest of us. Carmona's race may be a negative rather than a positive, though I doubt it will be a factor at all. His story (summarised at that link) is kinda inspiring to anyone, I would think.

sunlight? Come on.

"If I were a young journalist today, figuring out where I should go to make my career, I would go to China.... I think China is the best place in the world to be an American journalist right now. " - Philip Bennett, via the mesmeric Michelle Malkin and plenty of others on this slow newsday.

Bennett is some WA Post reporter who was interviewed by some chinese reporter and spoke from an MSM (left-wing populist) viewpoint. I'm not too worried about it, but Malkin seems to have a problem with that quote. I think she and others have construed it as saying something good about China or bad about censorship in the US, but the key word is "American." Sure, anything you print over there will be censored by the commies, exactly as the interview was. It's a good spot for an American, though, because he will have a lot of immunity- and China doesn't care what we print back in the US. I agree with Bennett- a young reporter should jump at the chance to report from a foreign country that will be so important in the next few years.

This is MC Provost, signing off. Courage.

sunlight is the best disinfectant?

It has become clear, if you follow these things, that Lebanon is the strategic key to all of the surrounding autocratic states. I suppose that should've been clear in 1975, but I wasn't exactly a political junkie back then.

Iran has missles in Lebanon, preventing Israel from attacking Iran (like they attacked Iraqi nuclear facilities) without being struck. Hezbollah has a lot of strength and perhaps its heart in Lebanon, where they almost have a legitimate purpose. Beirut is a playground of the rich and famous, although with all the gunfire it's closer to Tupac and Biggie than Merv Griffin. Syria needs Lebanon to finance its WMD and all the other things governments waste money on.

So why wasn't this obvious before? I'll admit I don't follow the disposition of Iranian ground forces as closely as I should, but it seems like Bush could've invaded Lebanon more easily than Iraq.

Were we victims of our own PR? Did we paint Saddam as the bad guy for so long that we would look weak by invading anyone else?

Not that invasion is the best way to effect change. Free trade can work wonders, except for in Lebanon. When 18% of their population works for McDonald's or WalMart, then we can consider them Westernized. In this case trade is not the problem, but the fact that every other country with a military has occupied Beirut, sometimes simultaneously. Pressuring Syria to exit may have made sense pre-Iraqi Freedom. But would Syria care?

Non, they would laugh. Economic sanctions. Ha ha ha. The shock and awe had an effect.
The internal pressure of democratic protests would not exist without the Iraqi elections.
Hezbollah would be stronger with the Palestinian jihad still in full swing, and Saddam is no longer making martyrdom the fastest way to feed a family.
Iran would be more willing to use its influence/missles if the EU wasn't breathing down its neck about the nuclear program, and the Marines weren't parked next door.

By the way, whose idea was it to send naval infantry to a desert? It makes sense, but it shouldn't.

So Syria is afraid of responding to the protestors, the protestors are fetching rather than revolting, and Iran is busy snookering the countries that believe the Ayatollah cares about air pollution. It's still an Ayatollah, right? Khomenei? I could've sworn he was retired last time I saw him, at a friend's wedding.

Just kidding.

The brides were beautiful.

Bankrupting Syria will be nice, since they have a good portion of Saddam's WMD. (Speculation. The WMD are real, but most is unaccounted for. There are better sources than those, but they are decent.) Protecting Israel from missle attack is nice, but since under current circumstances Iran would only launch after being attacked, it is not vital. Israel doesn't have much need to attack Iran, as long as we can keep them from getting nukyular weapons. Given that the EU is in charge of that, we better secure the missles. I don't especially trust the missles in the heart of Hezbollah's military power, anyway.

What changed? The policy of supporting democracy, for one. Primarily, interfering with Iran would have helped Iraq and vice-versa. Lebanon was thought to be irretrievable by many. Given the circumstances, there had to be a democratic movement, and the CIA isn't quite up to engineering one these days, if ever 'twas.

Bottom Line: The Lebanese democrats are running a bluff that would've been impossible 3 years ago, and it is extremely important that they succeed.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

METO

Considering the Iraq occupation was conceived three years ago, no one could convince Bush to abort it, and elections have been delivered, isn't it a bit late to consider "pulling out" as a method of contraception? Why not "removing Iraq's training wheels?"

Also, we will be establishing a permanent base in Iraq, ala Germany, to maintain troops in the area. (This is not official until Iraq invites us in a year or so.) We will not ever be pulling out. Hopefully, a regional alliance will be exist and have strength enough to open a second front on China when the time comes.

Realpolitik

"The Politico's Code"
I am so sick of hearing about that code!


Never believe your own spin.

Keep your friends close and your lawyers closer.

A penny saved is a penny wasted.

Ideology is greater than expediency; expediency is greater than partisanship; partisanship is greater than ideology.

Regurgitate no talking points but your own.

The only defense is offense; if you defend successfully nine times, on the tenth you will be defeated.

Blessed is the candidate who is slandered, for he will give more interviews.

No fact exists independent of its spin. No two facts with the same spin can coexist.

It is a paradox to believe you are wrong; therefore, you are always right.

Gratitude is the disease of dogs.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

He is so gay

From Andrew Sullivan-

Once you have accepted that there is no moral difference between homosexuality and heterosexuality, the arguments against same-sex marriage collapse.

True. Even if gay marriage hurts society, that's no excuse to ban it. My blogging hurts society more than the average gay marriage. Denying them a certificate won't make them heterosexual.

And since the only coherent moral difference is the likelihood of non-procreative sex, and that is now the norm in traditional heterosexual civil marriage, there is no moral case against allowing gay couples to have civil marriage.

I don't really follow this. Sounds like utilitarianism to me- equating moral good with material good. I suppose if you interpret "be fruitful and multiply" to mean that every individual has a duty to reproduce, and see that as the basis for marriage, then a sterile heterosexual marriage is morally equivalent to a gay marriage. However, that would only mean that both are morally wrong, not that gay marriage suddenly becomes acceptable.

The rest is fear and prejudice and religious conviction. None should have a place as a legal argument in the courts.

I agree with this statement, except for "the rest." He seems to think that morality can be separated from religion. I disagree. What other basis for morality is there?

I consider ethics to be the rules we can derive from our own mind, and morality to be that handed down arbitrarily from God, but I won't try to force my definitions on Sullivan. We also have things that we feel guilty about, which were evolved or ID'd into us. For example, we feel guilty about murder because attacking other humans isn't a good way to stay alive. That gives us three distinct sources for ethics/morality- divinely inspired, survival, and rational. Sullivan discounts religion, which shouldn't be a part of the lawmaking process. If a religion is true, then its legally enforceable parts should be attainable rationally as well. Survival morality is usually not considered except by Burkean conservatives. Even then, it is only considered because it has become part of the tradition.

That leaves us rational ethics. Lockean natural law, ie rights ethics, libertarianism, and some Republican segments, doesn't say anything about gay marriage. It would seem to be against government-sponsored marriage of any kind, which is the position I take. Sullivan seems to be arguing against the utilitarian ethical argument against gay marriage. Utilitarians could claim it's bad for society and should be stopped.

The thing is, marriage is not a right that is given by the government and taken away by the government. The rights that should be protected for gays are not the rights to be 'married,' because that's a personal thing between them, God, and Webster's dictionary. The rights they should have are the rights everyone should have, namely, to give medical decisions over to trusted individuals and to.. well, I'm not sure what married people can do, except adopt a kid. Turns out single people can do that too... What's the debate about? Oh well.

Get the government out of marriage now!

Telemundo

Does anyone else hate children's cartoons? I don't watch them, but I have seen them on occasion. Most notably when I wake up on the floor and Jackie is watching PBS. (This is a seasonal thing, thankfully not this season).

They teach secular humanism. Share. Everyone is the same. Share. I love you, you love me, I love him, he loves that other guy, Jacko loves us all. Share. I mean, I don't love anything except freedom and maybe one person. Guess that's why I'm an anarcho-capitalist.

But geeze, the brainwashing is worse than when I was young and cartoons told me not to waste water. Now they're promoting sexual deviancy and sharing. Sharing is a virtue, NOT a legally enforceable duty. And yes, socialism is much worse than sodomy. Sodomy doesn't hurt anyone, much.

I'm afraid that the next generation will be tame and socialised, and then where will we be?

Monday, March 14, 2005

Dystopia of the Day

After my excessively long post on effeminism, I thought back... to my idea for a social structure that would compliment the natures of males and females more effectively.

First, polygamy would be common. The family unit would resemble a herd of horses, with one alpha male serving the females. The other males either run wild or protect the herd from predators, waiting for their chance to displace the alpha male.

This would be a cause of constant and extreme competition between males, which is great for the economy as well as evolution, depending on the nature of the competition. The males would all have the opportunity to become an alpha male. They would also be better able to concentrate on everything else, with the possibility of copulation removed.

The females would benefit in that they wouldn't have to deal with males as much. The large number of deaths among males would mean that females would form a majority of society and be indispensable in the workplace, ensuring economic equality if not supremacy. As a side benefit, the toilet seat would always be left down.

There would be no shortage of volunteers for military duty, as money and prestige are indispensible and the males in lower lower classs can most easily get these from enlistment. People would be more willing to take risks, as the status quo of "get by and someone will settle for you eventually, then you can have 2.3 kids and a Ford" would no longer exist.

Actually, if we were to follow the horse paradigm, it wouldn't be quite this bad. The best effect of the system, in my self-righteous opinion, is that it would end the excuse of "all the good men are taken" and prevent females from breeding with scum. Anyways,

This is ManiaC Provost, signing out. Courage.