Wednesday, March 9, 2011

What is in the Water, WI?

I'm watching a live feed from Wisconsin Capitol. People swarmed in, opened winodws and doors, and for some reason, handcuffed other doors closed.

There is a big crowd in there and I guess the police finally decided to not let more in. So they are outside, and inside, chanting, "It's our house, Let us in."

If they all get in there, it would be a serious fire exit threat, and fertile ground for a stampede situation once it got rolling. This could result in some injuries. I'm unclear about why they think that is a useful plan.

They showed them dismantling windows to gain access. I would not want to be in that mob. It seems many that came down to protest are a little nervous now about lines being crossed, but what the heck, everyone else is doing it...

That's why I don't like big crowds all shouting the same thing and venting hatred at whoever. It rarely has the slightest thing to do with the whole truth. (what in politics does) I find it the height of hypocrisy for some of these people to complain that they feel the matter wasn't civilly debated. Shouting down others and mobbing a lawfully assembled body of lawfully elected representatives may be a bit over the line too. I don't know. Of course our elected national officials do illegal things daily. But how unions can play self righteous in the face of that is a mystery. I guess they only disapprove of corruption when they aren't getting a piece of it.

And Nancy Pelosi was upset because people quietly demonstrated when she was passing bills that no one could read or find copies of, and dismissing opposition with the phrase, "We Won the Election!!" Now she's all in solidarinosc with some state's unions just because they are democrats. I guarantee she hasn't read that bill either.

Oh, but Nancy is of the "pass the bill so we can see what's in it" school of lawmaking.

Other than a few who have that look that only grows on the faces of New Jersey and New York guys in the persuasion trade, the crowd appears fairly Wisconsinish, and pretty young. If it were somewhere else, I suspect people would be in big trouble. But as well mannered as people in that state usually are, it would surprise me if someone doesn't get hurt and go home crying.

So, That is Democracy. Yay

It has been said, not just by me, that pure democracy is mob rule. Now we hear that democracy indeed does look like a mob. A chanting in unison mob for the most part.

So, the ticket is to round up a bigger mob than the other guy, then you win. Just have to get the people who don't have other things to do to join your mob before they get scarfed up by competitors. In this way, the homeless and unemployed can run the world. OK. I admit, they may not do any worse than the other people who have assumed that the world needs running, and who have given it their best (or worse) shot.

I'm thinking I disagree with all kinds of things that come out of Sacramento, Washington DC, and elsewhere. If I could get some sizable mobs together we could just take over the legislative buildings through mob bullying tactics. Unfortunately I do not like unions at all. I need other muscle for my project. I'm thinking homeless, illegals, kids, dogs and wilderness dwellers. If I play my cards right they will chant meaningless slogans as directed and never thoroughly question or critique my wishes and plans.

After we take the capitol buildings, let's take the courthouses, too.

Why stop there? Let's take over the big houses those terrible rich own. Hell, let's take Wal-Mart and avail ourselves of cost free shopping.

If you pay it right, this kind of democracy enables a minority formed into a good mob to rule the majority. Noise, numbers and the time to meld into the teeming crowd win the day. Since the majority is spread out and unlikely to be hanging around capitol buildings or even Wal-Mart, a well organized minority can win a coup.

After all, that is what democracy looks like. I've heard it said many times lately, so it must be true.

Ever Notice The LOL Form Of Internet Debate?

There is a class of commenter/blogger which uses the old LOL thing to somehow secure their non-point. You see things like, "Oh, so you think slavery was OK? LOL", in response to something completely unrelated to slavery. Notice they don't address the point or reasonably debunk it. They jump to a conclusion, then add LOL as a form of personal attack.

For some reason when it is used in that way, I want to resort to non-reasoned debate by wishing I could punch them in the nose and steal their wallets. May as well get paid for my trouble, no?

"Oh my god, can you believe that idiot stumbled over the word "philanthropy" is his speech? LOL". Slap slap, punch, punch. Your wallet is now mine!

"LOL. You are just ignorant and probably never had to get your lily white hands(lol) dirty, you racist, sexist, impotent (LOL) moron LOL". That would be a zinger coming from a pudgy white person, male/and/or female, who had never left the university or other insulated job. The Mike Moore thing--a rich fat white guy complaining about rich fat white guys. LOL

Sadly, the net brings these things out in people. There are those who sound tough and violent because they can do it without getting clobbered. That JS guy smotlock was like that. Always talked as if he was cruising through jazz town beating the hell out of anyone who got in his way. It was a persona. Lots of people dug it. I thought the old pushing the envelope for shock value had seen its day long ago, so what he was doing was kind of a copy. That was his right so I never made it a point to rain on the parade. Too easy to get into a stupid battle. I have no use for that. Plenty of angry people who have to be badass online because it doesn't work well in life, and they know they would not last too long toting such open hostility around.

I've definitely noticed the LOL trend since the 2008 election. If you distilled all the debate, I'll bet you'd find the words, "idiot" and "moron" and the suffix, LOL top the list of argument content.

LOL often hits me wrong, that's for sure. Only when it is used to preclude real thought and to shut down the opposition through its implied ridicule. For one thing, I know you are not laughing or even smiling. But I know you wish you had the confidence that your intellect was that far above your opponent to feel a smile. Usually it is a case of thinking you are smart because those from whom you get your opinions tell you they are smart. To question them would risk revealing the truth. LOL*

Now I am not referring to the case in which people throw in an lol to lighten the tone or be sure you know they are expressing friendship and good wishes. That is a different thing altogether. Sometimes the do it to indicate they found something funny that was probably meant to be funny. This is not a context of ridicule and cheap shot.

*that was fake. I am not laughing. I'm thinking I may be thirsty, and should I have some of those peanuts to go with the beverage, or do I need to starve some more and get rid of this belly before it is too late? See. Sometimes there is just no time to LOL in real life.

I Guess Kool Aid Comes in More Than One Flavor

Every now then I can't help it; I comment on a political blog or two. And I catch little bits of video here and there.

Lately, it is a disheartening experience. On one side there is the idea that it is perfectly OK to bully with physical numbers and shout downs. My God, what if the opposition is allowed to speak? They may have some facts to back up a point. Or not.

If you are right and you have the numbers on your side in a town meeting or other forum, why do you feel the need to shout down the speakers with whom you disagree? Is it possible that you got your facts from an agitator's prescribed talking points and haven't studied the matter yourself? Or are you just too weak to resist the bully potential a mob provides?

Then there are those who get very upset at me because I suggest, as always that less government is best. It happens with those who claim to be for lower taxes, less government, etc. However it seems they only apply that to things that fit their personal preferences. If they don't like abortion or marijuana, then by Godtt you are a no good hippie who wants to do away with the second amendment and free enterprise!!

I actually had someone reply about like that when I suggested that the state not involve itself one way or the other in abortion. It matters not what I think of it, I'll never be pregnant. Besides there is a point at which the reasoning behind "protecting the rights of the unborn" opens more of a door toward intrusive authoritarianism which is not what I think is right.

I also pointed out that it is interesting that democrats tend to support freedom of choice in that realm, but in few other areas of life. Most nanny state measures are initiated by democrats. Yet republicans claim to be for individual liberty, etc. but the mainstream of them hold to that anti-abortion zeal. Trust me. In more cases than not, it is probably a good thing that they happen. Sounds cold, elitist and just plain wrong, but for now, that is how it is. And repubs are more likely to get wound up over marijuana legalization, although some of the more notable repubs in history came out for legalizing almost all illegal drugs. Wm F Buckley, for one. I agree. It is a waste fo tax money and an excuse to trash the 4th amendment--unreasonable search and seizure*.

The one who got wound up demonstrated to me how conditioned people are to believe that if you are opposed to one party's agenda on a particular issue then you must wholly embrace all facets of the other party's policies. I only wish it were true. The only reason I care is because I see the degree of freedom we have going down the tubes rapidly. I believe for various reasons my situation makes it more obvious to me than it is to most reasonably secure people, both on government checks and pensions, and in private life.

If only I had never read Brave New World, 1984, and Atlas Shrugged. It is as if they studied those books and decided to use them as a blue print for the evolution of our country for the last fifty years, at least. I think government people secretly take a page a day and see if they can implement it.

I do not find it surprising that the ex NPR guy said that the elite, well educated were too small a percentage of the population. The nasty unwashed masses just don't understand. Of course anyone who is not a well spoken idiot like him is obviously an ignorant, hateful racist. There really is a segment of the population which believes just that. I don't know why they complain--so far they have pretty much been getting their way. It just seems to upset them greatly that anyone disagrees or gets claustrophobic when their authority tightens a little too much.

I'm sure my democrat friends think I am a raving right winger. In some ways I am. And my republican friends fear I may be a granola variety liberal. In some ways I am. I agree with both when it comes to fewer laws and such. Neither party has shown much desire to reverse a self destructive foreign policy, and self destructive domestic policies--particularly in the realm of foolish limits on production and energy. Republicans have advantages at times, but never follow their talk. Democrats seem to believe that government control of all resources and choices is best for everyone. Except when it comes to abortion and gay marriage and things like that.

Republicans are all about individual freedom until it comes to 4th amendment matters. Then, hell, let's create homeland security and get busy. Both parties love that. It is as good a tool to terrorize citizens as the irs.

I'll speak up here. It is unlikely I'll demonstrate unless there are hot chicks who dig old men. I know that most people think it is stupid, boring and useless to think as I do, and even worse to admit to it.

I did not reply to the guy's stupid rant in response to my comment. He obviously has no significant level of reading comprehension or he'd have known it was odd to bring in things like the second amendment when I was talking about abortion and how dumb it is for republicans to bother with the topic. It takes a lot of nerve for a man to think he has a right to be involved in what a woman he doesn't even know does. I would agree that I see no reason to pay for these things with public money in most cases. But I wouldn't pay for much with public money.

That is the trap. If tax money is involved then they can dictate all kinds of regulations. That is why it is best to avoid many forms of aid, or be damned careful what you take. But, like the situation in the Arab world, it will come back to bite later. It was obvious for over 40 years that the policy and practices there would haunt us later. Few, if anyone, listened; "Well, John, you just don't understand. It's complex, blablabla".

So now I guess we pretend the mess is a big surprise like the national debt and all the states going belly up. Arming the enemy does not work in the long run. Stealing from the people does not work in the long run either. They go along because you have huge groups who sell out for crumbs and can't see they are selling out their own chances for doing better. Where are Adam Smith and Milton Friedman when you need them? We still have Thomas Sowell.

*after all the odd rules and such, I decided to keep a handy copy of the Declaration of Independence and Constitution nearby for reference. Personally, I cannot see how it has been interpreted so broadly. I would mostly have amended it to limit government powers even more strictly.

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