Monday, May 26, 2008

Honoring our Warriors

On this Memorial Day, I honor our warriors - those who volunteer themselves for the military of the United States of America.

I heard Obama and others speak today and the word that struck my ear was SACRIFICE. I hate that word. I consider it one of the REALLY HIDEOUS words of English. Politicians always talk about the sacrifice - what a man must endure and give up to be in the military. How disgusting - since it has nothing to do with why they are there and what they seek for themselves.

A man who honors his deepest values by fighting for his country is not a man who sacrifices. He loves more strongly and values more acutely than a lot of us. He is a man who chooses to be called by a profound value and puts his life on the line in its name.

Any man up to something must rank his values and choose the more important ones over the less important ones. And everything sought costs something. But this is the opposite of sacrifice. There are people sitting on their couches at this moment who ARE the sacrificers. They were called, knew they would love nothing more than to be a warrior and didn't do it - for any number of reasons. Choosing a lesser value over a greater value is to sacrifice.

Screw that. I honor our warriors like this:

Thank you, our warriors of this great country, for valuing our country and the values for which she was created. Thank you for protecting her and those values. Most of us are grateful beyond our ability to respond as they are our values too. And thank you, the parents and families of our warriors, living and fallen. To have produced a child or married a man or woman who values deeply and is willing to mean what he says is itself extraordinary. If your son, daughter, husband or wife has fallen in their quest, it is even more poignant. To be so alive in that oh-so-purposeful moment and stopped in his love and ours, stops everything mid-inhale.

So here we are. Words fail us, but we know. And because we know, we honor you.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Teenage Employment

On July 24th, 2007, the minimum wage increased from $5.15, where it had been since 1997, to $5.85. This year on July 24th, it increases again to $6.55. Next year on July 24th it will increase again to $7.25. Economists have long noticed that when the minimum wage rises, the marginal jobs are no longer offered. It is the teenagers that take the brunt of this change.

Two things of note. (1) The New York Times article below writes of teenagers having trouble finding a job. It speculates several reasons blaming it mostly on a declining economy in general. It NEVER mentions the issue of the rising minimum wage as the cause. There is something hugely missing in the New York Times business writer's economic education and experience that this is not in the article. (2) Because the government forces business to pay a mimimum wage, it says, "I know better than you are able to decide for yourself." There is ALWAYS a consequence to forcing someone, that isn't a child or a criminal, to do what you want rather than letting the person work it out and choose on his own. This is precisely how the US Government, at this crucial point when a young person is getting into the habit of working, causes poverty, waywardness resulting in crime and disdain for the law, resignation, resort to harmful substances, etc. The Government says, "Because we know what is best, we know that you are better off WITHOUT a job than with one." Then, it wants to fix that problem, so it forces something else - it forces "Peter to pay for Paul while Paul sits on his ass," or it starts a job-finding program or a make work program or something. You can be sure of two things: (1) The economy and business will be to blame and (2) the government will have to regulate people's choices MORE in order to fix the problem. The spotlight never, ever falls on the REAL CULPRIT - actually, the REAL CRIMINAL - the initiator of force by the government itself in the peaceful activites of men!!!! That is the essence of a criminal. The government is no exception.

This century is the century for the freedom of our most abused civil right - the right to one's life. We demand by right the complete and total right to our own life which includes the right to make our own economic decisions rather than pick up the crumbs after you, the government, have told us how it has to go. In other words (repeat this out loud in front of a mirror until it is natural for you): "I demand the freedom which is rightfully mine to use my mind and my property, including my body, in the planning and carrying out of my economic life."

You heard it here. SCB


Toughest Summer Job This Year Is Finding One


Published: May 25, 2008

TULSA, Okla. — School is out, and Aaron Stallings, his junior year of high school behind him, wanders the air-conditioned cocoon of the Woodland Hills Mall in search of a job.

Mr. Stallings, 18, says he has been looking for three months, burning gasoline to get to the mall, then filling out applications at stores selling skateboard T-shirts, beach sandals and baseball caps. He likes the idea of working amid the goods he covets. But so far, no offers.

“I’m going to go to Iraq and get a job,” he says acidly. “I hear they’ve got cheap gas.” He grins. “I’m just playing. But I’ve been all over, and nobody’s hiring. They just say, ‘We’ll call you tomorrow.’ And no one ever calls back.”

As the forces of economic downturn ripple widely across the United States, the job market of 2008 is shaping up as the weakest in more than half a century for teenagers looking for summer work, according to labor economists, government data and companies that hire young people.

This deterioration is jeopardizing what many experts consider a crucial beginning stage of working life, one that gives young people experience and confidence along with pocket money.

Little more than one-third of the 16- to 19-year-olds in the United States are likely to be employed this summer, the smallest share since the government began tracking teenage work in 1948, according to a research paper published by the Center for Labor Market Studies at Northeastern University in Boston. That is a sharp drop from the 45 percent level of teenage employment reached in 2000.

The rates among minority young people have been particularly low, with only 21 percent of African-Americans and 31 percent of Hispanics from the ages of 16 to 19 employed last summer, according to the Labor Department.

Retailers, a major source of summer jobs, are grappling with a loss of American spending power, causing some to pull back in hiring. Restaurants, also big employers of teenagers, are adding jobs at a slower pace than in previous summers, said Hudson Riehle, senior vice president for research at the National Restaurant Association in Washington.

As older people stay in the work force longer and as experienced workers lose jobs at factories and offices, settling for lower-paying work in restaurants and retail, some teenagers are being squeezed out.

“When you go into a recession, kids always get hit the hardest,” said Andrew Sum, an economist at the Center for Labor Market Studies who led the study on the summer job market. “Kids always go to the back of the hiring queue. Now, they find themselves with a lot of other people in line ahead of them.”

At the lower end of the market, adult Mexican immigrants, in particular, pose competition for jobs traditionally filled by younger Americans, like those at fast food chains.

“Spanish-speaking team members in our stores have increased the age a little bit,” said Andy Lorenzen, senior manager for human resources at Chick-fil-A, a national chain of chicken restaurants based in Atlanta, where 70 percent of the work force is 14 to 19 years old. Adult workers “have lost jobs in this economic downturn and begun to seek employment in our stores.”

Employment among American teenagers has been sliding continuously for the last decade and, with a few ups and downs, dropping steadily since the late 1970s, when nearly half of all 16- to 19-year-olds had summer jobs.

Economists debate the cause of this precipitous decline in teenage employment. Many contend that the drop is largely a favorable trend, reflecting a rising percentage of teenagers completing high school and going on to college, with some enrolling in summer academic programs, leaving less time for work.

“The key factor is the attraction of attending college and enjoying the increasing wage premium that accompanies this,” said John H. Pencavel, a labor economist at Stanford University.

In wealthier households, many have come to see summer work as a waste of time that could be spent gaining an edge in the competition for entry to elite colleges.

“Kids from higher-income households just aren’t going into the labor market,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s “They’re looking for things to put on résumés, and working at Dairy Queen or Wal-Mart just isn’t going to help you get into Wake Forest or Stanford. And they just don’t need the cash.”

But others, like Professor Sum, contend that plenty of teenagers want to work but face increasing difficulties landing jobs. From early 2001 to the middle of 2007, the number of Americans employed outside the military grew more than 8.3 million, according to the Labor Department, yet employment among teenagers fell more than 1.2 million.

In the New York metropolitan area, an index by shows a modest increase in the sorts of jobs typically filled by teenagers in the summer.

Still, with the economy gripped by what many experts believe is a recession, opportunities are growing leaner for teenagers in most of the country.

Even in parts of the country where there are jobs, some teenagers are having trouble finding them.

Tulsa, a town on the banks of the Arkansas River that swelled into a city amid an oil boom early last century, seems at first an easy place to find work. This metropolitan area of 900,000 people never saw the increase in housing prices and subsequent collapse that leveled economies elsewhere. While energy prices are reaching records and the oil patch is buzzing with activity, Tulsa’s unemployment rate was a mere 3.3 percent in March, compared with the national rate of 5.1 percent that month. Skip to next paragraph

Here, the force of Hispanic immigration is being reversed: A bill aimed at cracking down on illegal immigrants passed by the state legislature late last year has prompted thousands of them to leave town.

So along the broad suburban avenues in the southern part of town — ribbons of black pavement lined with ice cream shops, burger stands and barbecue joints — managers are having a hard time finding workers.

“Pretty much everybody is hiring,” said Andy Irick, director of operations for Sonic, a restaurant chain based in Oklahoma, complete with blaring music and servers on roller skates. “If you walk in and you’re clean cut and presentable, you’re going to get a job.”

While summer jobs may be abundant in some industries, opportunities tend to divide along traditional fault lines like race, the connections offered by one’s parents and — not least — whether one has a car in this sprawling city of scant public transportation.

More than 15 percent of the city’s population is African-American, according to the 2000 census. Black people are largely clustered in the older, northern part of town, on weather-beaten roads largely devoid of shopping and places to work. The suburban strip malls to the south are miles away.

At a state-financed program that helps lower-income young people find jobs, Arbor Education and Training, some have quit coming to the center because gas prices are too high, and some have lost jobs because they could not get to work, said the program’s director of operations, Jacky Noden.

Meanwhile, at a job skills class at Booker T. Washington High School, considered Tulsa’s most prestigious public campus, six graduating seniors, all bound for college and all possessing cars, already had jobs for the summer.

Greg Robinson, 18, cast his job as an instructor at a golf course as a perfect chance to network. “Golf is the sport of business.”

Shakhura Henderson, 18, saw her job as an assistant in an optometrist’s office as a beachhead in a growing area of the American economy. She and the other students stammered in veritable horror when asked if they would consider working in fast food.

“I don’t see myself saying, ‘Hey, sir, may I take your order,’ ” Ms. Henderson said. “I don’t see any growth in it.”

Claire Tolson, 17, a student at another selective school, Thomas A. Edison Preparatory, said she planned to spend the summer as a hostess at the Local Table, a restaurant specializing in produce from around the area, earning $8 an hour, plus tips.

Tall, blond and poised, and looking ahead to a career in engineering, Ms. Tolson has two friends working at the restaurant already. One of their parents knows the owner, she said.

“I don’t think it’s too hard to find a job,” she said.

But Ms. Tolson’s classmate, Wesley Childers, has no such connections, relying instead on newspaper classified advertisements for his job search. He wants a job so he can save money to buy a car next year, but his lack of a vehicle presents something of a Catch-22.

“Employers want you to have reliable transportation,” he said.

Mr. Childers wears a pressed blue suit and shiny black loafers to job interviews. He has applied to McDonald’s and to Target, the discount department store, among other places.

“I haven’t heard anything back,” he said. “There’s so many other kids, and there’s also so many other people who are unemployed. It’s getting frustrating.”

At Will Rogers High School in a heavily Hispanic part of town, a 15-year-old sophomore named José, who has lived here since he was 2 years old but lacks legal immigration papers, worried that he would not find a job. He would happily work in fast food, he said, but word is that more places are checking papers.

“It limits your choices,” he said. “A lot of people are afraid.”

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Whoops! The Mask of Liberalism Slipped

Maxine Waters is now in the motivational territory of Hugo Chavez, Fidel Castro, Vladimir Lenin, Joseph Stalin, Robert Mugabe, Pol Pot, Mao and any other petty dictator that I've missed, including your wife, husband, boss or children if they slap you around. They love forcing people. They love having the invincible upper hand. They live for it and become it as the sin qua non of dominance. Thank God she didn't have a gun right there, although I would have loved seeing a more graphic demonstration of this principle lest anyone missed it.

Isn't Maxine a sweet thing? That, my friend, is the face of evil. Take a good look. Whenever there is no shortage of the natural resource, oil, and the oilmen want nothing more than to produce it for the use of people; and you have a government which has regulated its production out of existence and then blames it on the oilman, you are seeing an injustice so huge that it is incomprehensible by its sheer defiance of reality. Maxine has found the ultimate way of not being responsible and thereby loses access to her humanity, namely her hold on reality. That is known by another name - monster.

In that moment, she was the killer in "No Country for Old Men" except she was not as cold and ruthless. NOT YET. She was, though, the Caesar who loved seeing the gladiators eaten by the lion. The source of this is one thing - hatred for the aspirations, achievements and knowledge of reality of individual human beings. (I would bet she likes the collective words: people, American people, humanity, the public.) And don't fool yourself by thinking that she was that only in that moment. For Maxine, this is a basic premise. (Ditto Hillary: "I am going to take those profits", i.e., I am going to enslave you to my will, justified, of course, by the "public good.")

Atlas Shrugged dramatizes what the government counts on as their policies remove creativity and motivation (all individual) from American life: "You will think of something, Mr. Rearden." In other words, we won't let you create but, of course, we know you will. The Government didn't have the last word in the novel and since Rand showed the world the lie their pretensions rely on, they don't have it now. In the novel, the businessmen withdrew their creativity, their productivity and their spreading their ability to know reality. They shrugged.

If you notice, the CEO of Shell said, in so many words, "The Government's policies are harming the American people." This is a great thing to say because it neutralizes the politicians where they live. They justify their anti-man use of force by the "good they are doing for the American people."

Although the businessman made progress here, it is not the final moral mountain to climb to secure our and his freedom. The justification that what you do is "good for people or contributes to people" is not the point. Why? Because human life does not fundamentally depend on this fact. What it does depend on is your knowledge of reality and your ability to produce the values on which your life depends. People find other people of enormous value for all kinds of reasons, so that is not the issue nor the problem. Essentially man's mind must be free from the forced interference of other men. Why? Because an individual's mind does not work by force. No one can force a man to think. Force, when it comes to creation of values is impotent which is why Maxine Waters would be immensely laughable if it weren't for the fact that a seriously increasing number of people agree with her.

"I ORDER you to create a symphony! If you don't, I will fine you or throw you in prison. If you make me look bad before the public, I may kill you!" This sounds frightfully like that institution we gave up once - at the end of the Civil War.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Amazing Grace

This morning I was watching the movie, Amazing Grace. About a third of the way through, the protagonist sings Amazing Grace. I have heard this song many times, but until this morning, it never had personal meaning for me.

During the past almost 3 years now, I have been struggling with the issue of identity - who I am and who I say I am. This struggle has not been easy as I've been bitter and I've been, although knowing that I love people, not existentially present to love for them. I knew I was bound in some way that I held my values/beliefs and in so doing, I was granted no grace. The things that I have tried before petered out. I was set on the rough seas of the soul, pissed that they were rough - refusing to accept the anger, the hatred and the upset.

At some point I got that I was bitter. I had gotten hints of that but had refused to accept it. Bitterness has always meant not just a little failure, but a huge failure in the striving for something really important. Could it be that my whole life was in the toilet? The thought was not entertainable!

I gratuitously read a review of a story that used the phrase, "when his life didn't work out as he had hoped, he was plunged into bitterness." Ah-hah! That phrase in black and white made the bitterness real. Within a couple hours, I came to accept myself as I was - bitter.

Although the waves on the sea were still big, they were no longer angry. I looked at them more closely and pondered how they worked. I began to postulate cause and effect. "When I accepted this, these results followed." This was the form of my working hypothesis. In my conversations, I would speak these statements: "Because of x, y." I would get agreement from people or not. Either way, I questioned more. I tried out many hypotheses and usually made people or belief systems or courses, accompanied by lots of anger, the cause of my plight. I did it around people who held various aspects of these causes valuable so they would react and give me something to work with.

The linchpin of this whole enterprise, the two premises I was unwilling to give up, was that there is no split between mind and body and that my mind is capable of grasping and making sense of reality. If you do something that is not consistent with your nature as a human being, then you will pay a price in both your consciousness and your body for attempting to manifest values which negate each other. Thus I began to look carefully at the values I pursued and whether they were consistent with each other and whether they corresponded to reality. I began to think that as long as I was so angry, I was placing the primary cause out there when it might be an inappropriate, some-way-inconsistent value that I was pursuing.

One value that I had pursued for many years in the form of courses at Landmark Education was coming to know myself, and consequently people in general. How do I and they really operate? Because this was an important value, I began to realize that there was some part of myself that I was giving up on because I wanted people in my life. I had come to the place where I was taking courses for no reason other than having people in my life to play and grow with. It advanced to the point where I neglected my career to play with these people. What happened and how did this work? That was a mystery worth solving.

Needless to say, the anger and battling with myself and others was the way to learn how this contradiction worked. So, I accepted that I was that way. So what if my friends left me. And, they did. They couldn't handle what my personality and behavior had become. Ironically, the more I accepted myself in this manner, the more fun I began to have. A new energy was coming into my life.

About a month ago I listened to a recorded lecture delivered by Ayn Rand in the mid-60s at the Ford Hall Forum in Boston. She told the story of a brilliant and talented person devoid of motivation to do anything. He was "dead in the water," so to speak. Then I got an email story about a little boy who lost his mom when he was in the first grade. He was so distraught that he no longer cared about school, where he had previously excelled. Finally several years later when a teacher discovered what had happened and granted him some space, he told her of his loss. With that came acceptance and he again excelled.

In both cases, we are talking about soul problems. I have friends who think soul is a bad word to use because it implies the idea that whatever it is extends beyond this life and this body. What baloney. Like every other profound emotion and mental state, be it sacred, worship or whatever, it has been taken over by religion to the point that people do not realize that these are all deeply held human values and emotional responses which exist in response to the real world and prior to a particular story on which to hang them such as a religious worldview.

So, let me state here what I mean. The soul is one's life force, it is the energy that you have to live your life. It is comprised of your ideals and values and whether you triumphed or failed, specifically who you were in the matter of your life and whether you went for it or sold out. If you have stood for your self and acted consistent with your values and reality, then that will register in your soul as energy and an opening to the future. If, on the other hand, you sold out and gave up on an important value, that will register as a loss of energy and a shutting down of your future. The soul is the record book within your consciousness of what you have done to yourself - consciously or unconsciously, knowingly or unknowingly. We all are men of self-made soul because one's soul is unique and only available to the individual. In matters of the soul we are not anti-social, but un-social. The soul is a completely private domain.

Hearing these stories of souls off the track, I realized that the soul is individual, unique and private. It is shown to the world through our being, but no one controls it except us. Man's rational faculty, his reason, is his means of survival. It is through his reason that he gains knowledge, makes choices and experiences happiness. When we take hold of the controls of our souls ourselves - the levers, dials and steering wheel - and apply the universal laws which apply to us because we are a particular kind of entity, namely human, then we build our soul and reap the rewards. If we do not, we get what we get and put up with the results, which can never be happy and will result in a rough and angry sea, if not resignation and death.

In my wanting to have human beings in my life as an end in itself rather than have particular human beings who are an expression of my values and a response to my values, I never discovered that my soul was individual and mine. I left the piloting of my soul to wherever that value took me...I became its slave and lost my power.

Epihany! The seas calmed but ironically there was a new fierce means of power. How is this possible? The resurgence of the life force energy propelled my ship and it no longer depended on the wind.

Now, this is real grace - Amazing Grace!!!

"Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me....
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind, but now, I see."

Friday, May 16, 2008

The Gay Marriage Fight

What have gays been fighting for in the gay marriage issue?

An adult in the United States has the right to draw up a contract with another person regarding the use of his assets. In other words, an adult in the US has the right of contract. Thus, any two people can create a contract whereby their assets will be joined and they can be seen as a unit in their dealings with the world. That's what marriage in practical terms boils down to, isn't it? What's the problem?

The problem is, I think, that the gay marriage issue is a forced method of getting people to accept the existence of homosexuality and the right of a homosexual to be himself. The primary thrust, I think, of the gay marriage issue is OTHERS' acceptance.

Nowadays everything is political. If we can get other people to accept us, then we can accept ourselves. Now, this is a line of baloney that, if believed, will ruin your whole life. It is the reversal of cause and effect.

A secondary issue may be revenge. You notice that the gays who are interviewed after the announcement of legalized gay marriage always talk about love and this kind of thing. First of all lets get one thing straight: Homosexuality is not about love anymore than heterosexuality is about love. Since the partners of a gay marriage could have created a contract between themselves without the sanction of the state, to bring this issue up like it means something makes me think that they don't like all of that "non-love" that went before and that gay marriage will fix. Of course, it won't.

It doesn't make sense to me to take something so individual and so private as one's deeply personal values involved in romantic love and sexuality and blast it to the four winds of the public unless you want to use it for something other than what it is. And, this is why I cannot take political gays seriously on this matter.

How would I have handled this whole affair, so to speak? I would have made friends with straight people so that they can see that some gays, at least, are regular people. Secondly, I would have gotten married via contract. Thirdly, I would not give a damn if my marriage is widely accepted in the world since I have a right to take any action that does not infringe on another person, can have a religious or civil ceremony and celebration of it, and, above all, since the great gift of being gay is that one has to be an individual to enjoy his life.

This last is the real gift. Anything that sets one on a course of his uniqueness sets the stage for a really strong self-esteem, if he knows himself and what he wants from life. Many mainstream people do not get this opportunity. They suffer in the herd. A gay person or black person or any minority member who is not readily mainstream has the wonderful opportunity of showing us what a gift a unique human being can be. I say "Go for it" rather than pack yourself into some sub-herd seeking a safety that doesn't exist.

Viva la Individual and Viva la Individual Rights!

PS: After I published this, I heard the issue being discussed on a talk radio show - Neal Boortz, to be exact. One man called in and didn't want the word marriage attached to two men or two women creating a legal bond. I couldn't see that he had anything that identified his claim other than he holds marriage between a man and a woman as sacred and that calling a legal union of two men or two women defiles the way he holds it.

I can see his point although he didn't make his point. A man and a woman can create new life and it is this possibility that gives the union a sacredness beyond that of a gay relationship. New life is a wonder, a being of nothing but possibility.

On the other hand, two women cannot yet do this although they may be able to in the future, and two men will never be able to do it. This creates a different relationship to life than that of a heterosexual marriage.

The other point was a simple one. One of the gay partners goes to the hospital and he ends up needing an adult to make some decisions. When his partner shows up to do that, the hospital denies him that role since he is not family. Although this may have been able to be handled in advance, the presence of a gay union law would take care of these situations that one may have forgotten to itemize in a legal contract. Thus it is easier to carry out partnership roles that each of the partners would want carried out.

I stick to my main point and inside that ground of being for a valid gay partnership, I add the two above points. SCB

Thursday, May 15, 2008

It IS Appeasement to Talk to Terrorist Sponsors

President Bush is catching Holy Hell for saying that it is appeasement to talk to sponsors of terrorism. He went on to say that history has completely discredited this means of dealing with enemies.

I agree 500% with what he said. It is appeasement.

Appeasement is making concessions to an aggressor or potential aggressor in order to preserve peace. (Oxford Shorter Dictionary, 2002) How is talking to an enemy, a government that openly advocates the destruction of the United States appeasement?

The issue here is the Law of the Excluded Middle. The Law of Excluded Middle is this: When you have identified an A then everthing other than A is non-A. On the basis of that you can draw conclusions and achieve or cause an A. If, on the other hand, you see the world as A and B with a host of shades of grey in between then you are unable to draw conclusions and know what to do in order to achieve a particular result or condition of life.

If you want to achieve a condition of life, lets say a condition of PEACE, you have to grasp that there is PEACE, the existence of the condition, and non-PEACE, the non-existence of the condition. Therefore if you want the condition PEACE, any diminution of PEACE is non-PEACE although it may be small skirmishes and not all out war.

(For the purpose of clarification of this point, let's say that we want some middle grey point between A and B. If we can get clear what that point is and of what it consists, then everything that is off that point is not that whether it be darker or lighter.)

So, the first point to achieving PEACE is get evidence that the enemy is willing to achieve peace. This is not merely a statement that they are willing to achieve peace. This is a demonstration with results that they are willing to achieve peace. If they are attacking us or our allies, then there is no reason for us to assume that they want to achieve peace. Sitting down with them grants them all of their premises and we give up ours. In other words, they are attacking us or our allies and then we go to them and negotiate a peace. Except from that position, there is no reason to negotiate. There is plenty of incentive for them to extort from us however. Witness North Korea.

(A bully such as Iran or North Korea bully their people to the point that they don't produce very much. The country needs money so it becomes bellicose and then extorts money from those around them, saying they will not attack them. It is that extorted money that keeps their game going.

The United States clearly would be appeasing Hamas or Iran if it were to sit down and talk. Iran right now is attacking the United States across the Iraq/Iran border. Hamas has attacked Israel after they withdrew from Gaza in order to give them what they wanted. Needless to say these countries are totally "FULL OF IT!"

Now is it possible to see how much a traitor Obama is setting himself up to be by suggesting this? He will be Bush who has done this with North Korea. Wouldn't he be horrified to learn that he had morphed in Bush!! Ohmygod!

Terrorists and sponsors of terrorism believe that force is the effective means of getting what they want. The use it first on their people and then on their neighboring countries. There will never be peace so long as they believe this.

The traditional means, and insofar as I can see the only means, of putting an end to a country's belief in the use of force in order to get what it wants is to show them that the means they have selected will destroy them. Thus overwhelming force followed by the separation of the state from religion, or a doctrine functioning as a religion (Marxism is the primary one), is the basis on which to set up a peaceful country. This worked in Japan and Germany. The places where we have not done this have remained a problem. We allowed Russia to collapse on its own and we didn't set it up to be a success. Consequently, it has been looking for its reason to exist ever since. Cuba was a problem until Russia collapsed and it no longer was rich enough to do anything. Chavez is now trying to buy friends around him so that he can amass an axis that is strong enough to force people, including the USA, under his heel.

If you look at the diagram above, you see that it doesn't help the cause of peace to get on the non-A side of the graph. Once you do, which means the distinction is lost, you cross into an anti-life, anti-human situation and begin the process of slowly descending down the slope.

A country that violates the rights of its citizens and does not protect rights and voluntary actions is actually an outlaw country. It is not a legitimate government as it enslaves its people. Any country that overthrows such a government actually acts on behalf of the people of that country. All people possess inalienable individual rights. There are many letter of thanks from the Japanese to the US for dropping the atom bomb. The United States restored the inalienable rights of the Japanese people once it caused the unconditional surrender of its rogue, criminal government.

Peace follows an action which destroys the validity of a government using force on its people and other countries so long as the aftermath's purpose is to set up the institutions which protect the individual rights of the people. This is the road to peace. Believe it or not, it will never come from selling flowers in airports.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

The Collective and Man's Progress

"The Collective has contributed nothing to Man's progress - save the impediments. The history of mankind's benefactors is the history of martyrs. Most of them were fought, opposed and ridiculed for years before they won their battle."

The Individualist Manifesto, a obscure article of Ayn Rand's published in 1941.

The Domain of Happiness

"A man's happiness is not anti-social, but un-social; it is a private domain which society has no right to touch. A general happiness cannot be created out of general suffering and self-sacrifice. The only happy society is a society of happy Individuals."

The Individualist Manifesto, a obscure article of Ayn Rand's published in 1941.

Not from Service

"Not a single great genius has ever been actuated by the motive of 'service.' Not one of them was moved by a selfless devotion to his fellow-men. Every genius is motivated by a profoundly selfish devotion to his own convictions, to the integrity of his own thought, to his own truth."

The Individualist Manifesto, a obscure article of Ayn Rand's published in 1941.