Thursday, December 30, 2010

Sometimes, There's Hope

I have spent an adult lifetime talking to myself. I listen well. I even comment to myself on my comments, and sometimes I even tell myself I am full of it. I am grateful for my own company because at least I take myself seriously.

I can't say as much about my relatives, friends, and aquaintances. Often I am considered to be the strange one. "Oh, that's just Ron being Ron," they say as they giggle at my convoluted attempts to give them a concise rendition of some obscure aspect of libertarianism. Conversation quickly moves away from the Great Questions of our day and on to sports, or personalities, or music, etc.

Such is life. At times, I get a little down at my inability to engage others in serious and enlightening conversation. How, I ask myself (because I am the only one listening) are the problems of our society, our country, or the world to be dealt with if we fail to discuss them seriously, at some depth, and with some integrity? I have been told, and I have told myself, to not expect much because I am looking for what never will be.

But this year, on Christmas night, I saw something interesting happen. A couple of friends that I generally disagree with on all Great Questions, but whom I genuinely like and respect, were having sport with me over the blurb on the back of "The Creature From Jekyll Island." The blurb was fron Ron Paul, someone my friends have only cursory knowledge of and whom they consider just another Republican. One friend, the wife, read the blurb aloud in a faux dramatic voice as a way of poking at me. I did not take it personally, but I also was not sure how to respond to the sarcasm.

Then inspiration struck. I went to my book pile and found "End the Fed," by Ron Paul. I handed it to the husband, while his wife was still reading the other blurb, back cover first. Then I watched as his face went from neutral to wide eyed surprise and leaning back in his chair as if a force had reached out and pushed him backwards suddenly. He recovered, leaned forward, and showed his wife the front cover.

"Ron Paul, 'End the Fed,'" she said. "So?"

The husband flipped the book around and she read the blurb. She threw herself back in her chair. "No way! No fucking way!"

The blurb as by Arlo Guthrie, one of her counter-culture heros.

"We're taking the book home, and my husband is going to read it!"

My words, no matter how carefully chosen, had been unable to open a serious conversation about free markets or libertarianism for 20 years. Yet a simple sentence by Arlo opened the floodgates of interest and passion.

I trust our next gathering will be interesting.

There can be hope, even twenty years too late.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

A Non-Conspiracy

I found this article on

He presents a world in which mundane forces move the world, not elite evil-doers pulling strings. I believe this to be a great extent...but not exclusively. That there IS an elite group, interconnected and cooperating with each other, who at least attempt to 'rule the world' seems obvious enough. That would include powerful political figures such as the Clintons and the Bushes, Greenspan and Kissinger, as well as unimaginably wealthy men such as the Rockefellers and the Rothschilds, and their friends in the Trilateral Commission, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Bilderberg Group, the G10 and the G20.

Nevertheless, this article reminds me that the world is a complex place that we make sense of when we look backward and impose our understanding of how things work on the assembled facts. We conjure up conpiracies and manipulations that neatly explain everything. Life, being lived forward, does not lend itself easily to manipulation. It is more like the weather: there are many influences, some of which are human, but mostly it's chaos playing itself out.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

The Enemy is Us

The New York Times reported yesterday that government workers have been warned not to read the latest Wikileaks dump of 250,000 diplomatic cables. To read them is to illegally access classified and secret documents.

The Office of Management and Budget warned that the documents must not be viewed by a government employee until they have been officially released by a proper authority. College students are warned not to view or download the documents...if they would like to have a career in government in the future. The Department of Defense stated that an unauthorized viewing of the documents creates a 'security violation.'

Security against....whom? Foreign enemies? No, non-Americans can read them at will without prosecution.

The security risk is that Americans may find out what their government is up to...and do something about it. Hillary Clinton, having been outed as a credit card number thief, is now political toast. The exposed connection between Israeli Mafia, Israeli government officials, and drug dealing in America could turn Americans against their most abusive client state. The world of international relations is being exposed as nothing but a game of childish cliques run by school-yard bullies, hardly worthy of the blood and treasure of innocents everywhere.

Can you imagine the terror Hillary Clinton must feel after spending a lifetime triangulating, positioning, posing, and pandering with the goal of one day becoming the most powerful person on the planet...only to see her life's ambition turning to shit before her eyes? In her view, and in the view of the thousands of other government posers out there, Americans must NOT be allowed to see that under their puffed up self-importantance they are nothing more than shifty-eyed convenience store clerks with an eye for filching credit card numbers. They are not likely to let it happen without a fight. A very dirty fight.

The New York Times article ('Government Workers Ordered Not To Read Cables') is so revealing of the true nature of our government's attitude toward American citizens that it is redundant to put it in plainer terms. But here it is:

We are the enemy. The war is against us. The government is not nearly as worried that foreigners will know about their shennanigans as it is fearful that we will know about them. We must be kept in the dark. We must be controlled. We must not be allowed the truth because we might do something no foreign power could ever do: exact justice.