Archive for January, 2017
Neoconservatives, the alt-right, and even a lot of libertarians are unable to contain their enthusiasm for Trump’s order to build a wall between Mexico and the United States. Why would these supposedly fiscally conservative individuals cheer on the construction of a multi-billion dollar wall that won’t accomplish anything? Because they are under the mistaken belief that a mass migration of immigrants into the United States will cause a loss of individual liberty. Like the boogeyman, this is an entirely imaginary fear as Dr. Robert Higgs so eloquently explained on Facebook:
After eight years of unexplained absence, neoliberals who are critical of the State have returned. I’m not sure where they were hiding but I’m glad to see that they’re safe and sound. But a lot has change in eight years so I’m sure many of them are out of the loop when it comes to online security. For example, what if you’re a federal employee who was told by your employer to shut up and you wanted to criticize them for it but didn’t want to be fired from your parasitic job? This isn’t as easy as opening a Twitter account and blasting criticisms out 140 characters at a time. Your employer has massive surveillance powers that would allow it to discover who you are and fire you for disobedience. Fortunately, The Grugq has you covered.
The information in his post regarding Twitter is applicable to any activist who is utilizing social media and might raise the ire of the State. I think the most important piece of information in that article though is that you shouldn’t immediately jump in with the sharks:
These are a lot of complicated operational rules and guides you’ll have to follow strictly and with discipline. If you “learn on the job” your mistakes will be linked to the account that you’re trying to protect. It would be best that you go through the steps and practice these rules on a non sensitive account. Make sure you’re comfortable with them, that you know how to use the tools, that you understand what you’re supposed to do and why.
Some underground organisations have something they call “the first and last mistake,” which is when you break a security rule and it leads to discovery and exposure. You’re the resistance, you need to make sure you can use the tools of resistance without mistakes – so practice where it is safe, get the newbie mistakes out of the way, and then implement and operate safely where it matters.
If you’re planning to partake in activism you should do a few trail runs of creating and maintaining pseudonymous social media accounts. Maintaining the discipline necessary to avoid detection is no easy feat. It’s best to screw up when it doesn’t matter than to screw up when you could face real world consequences.
Nathan Poe once commented that, “Without a winking smiley or other blatant display of humor, it is utterly impossible to parody a Creationist in such a way that someone won’t mistake for the genuine article.” From that statement arose Poe’s Law, which states that it’s impossible to tell the difference between somebody holding an extreme position and a parody of somebody holding an extreme position.
For some time I’ve suspected that People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is an elaborate parody of animal rights activists. It seems that the organization has been performing increasingly outlandish stunts and making increasingly absurd demands in the hope that somebody will finally realize that the entire organization is one giant troll:
The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals affiliate in London is asking developers at Games Workshop to ban animal furs from its Warhammer 40,000 board game.
The group spoke out on the issue in a blog post by PETA UK’s digital marketing manager, Dan Howe.
“[N]othing on the bloody battlefields of Warhammer’s conflict-ravaged universe could match the terrible reality that foxes, minks, rabbits, and other living beings experience at the hands of the fur trade,” Mr. Howe wrote.
I’ve never played Warhammer 40,000 but I’ve been down several Wikipedia wormholes about its backstory. Warhammer 40,000 is probably the darkest universe every conceived by man. We’re talking about a universe where hundreds or thousands of people are sacrificed every day to keep a decaying emperor alive because he is the only thing that stands between humanity and forces far worse than hundreds or thousands of humans dying every day. It’s like somebody took a black metal album and turned it into a story for a war game (which is to say it’s pretty fucking awesome). And PETA’s biggest gripe with it is that some characters wear fur.
I’ve said it before and I’ll double down on it now, PETA isn’t actually an animal rights organization. It’s a parody of an animal rights organization that is desperately trying to find an act or demand so outlandish that the world will finally figure it out.
That moment when you realize Trump stole his campaign slogan from the main antagonist of Metal Gear Rising.
The main antagonist, Senator Armstrong, was as ridiculous as the rest of the game, which is why it was a ton of fun:
Remember the good old days when neocons were whispering about armed revolution and neoliberals criticized them for it? Remember the standoff at the Bundy Ranch and the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge occupation where neocons traveled to help with the armed standoff? Remember the neoliberals calling those neocons traitors and wanted the feds to send in the troops to take them all out?
Now the neoliberals are whispering about armed revolution and neocons are criticizing them for it. Last year Time was already trying to start a tax protests. Within the last week we’ve had a Nazi get punched, Madonna talk about blowing up the White House, and a Dallas school teacher shooting an image of Trump with a squirt gun while yelling “Die!” In each one of these cases neoliberals justified these acts and even called for more while neocons labeled the perpetrators traitors and want the feds to throw the book at them.
Those two groups were made for each other. I just wish that they would hurry up and fuck and get it over with.
What’s worse than mob rule? Not a whole lot, which is why I’m pleased to see that the United States has been downgraded from a full democracy to a flawed one:
While U.S. citizens could once claim to be part of the 9% of people in the world governed by a “full democracy,” they are now part of the near 45% who live in a “flawed democracy.”
That’s according to the Economist Intelligence Unit, which downgraded the U.S. in their 2016 Democracy Index published Wednesday. The move puts the U.S. in the same category as Poland, Mongolia, and Italy.
Democracy is touted as an amazing governmental system where the people have a say in how they’re governed. In reality it’s nothing more than mob rule. The plurality of voters get to inflict their will on everybody else. Worse yet, when things inevitably turn to shit the people tend to turn on each other, as we’re seeing here in the United States, instead of the politicians that are doing the actual damage.
Between democracy and monarchy there isn’t a terrible amount of difference. Under both systems the people who compose the State are able to do whatever they please and the people can either take it or revolt. The upside of a monarchy is at least when the people revolt they tend to go after the monarch instead of each other.
Granted, a majority of what Alex Jones says is bullshit but he claims that he’s been offered White House press credentials:
Here’s the deal, I know I get White House credentials, we’ve already been offered them, we’re going to get them, but I’ve just got to spend the money to send somebody there. I want to make sure it’s even worth it. I don’t want to just sit there up there like ‘m in the media, look our people are there.’ People don’t understand this paradigm, we’re devolving in a good way, power from the federal government back to the people, back from the centralized MSM to the people, just like Trump said in his speech.
I couldn’t write comedy of this quality if I had a year to do so!
The fact that an organization like InfoWars has apparently received White House press credentials is hilarious enough. But Alex seems genuinely excited about it! He has finally won the victory over himself. He loves Big Brother.
Remember when neocons were throwing a fit because Obama kept issuing executive orders? I still remember them pointing out that Obama was acting like a king and violating the Constitution by bypassing Congress. Most of them seem to have had a change in heart though because Trump has been issuing executive orders left and right and so far the neocons have been as silent as the anti-war left was during Obama’s reign.
When people ask me why I’m not politically active I note things like this. I try to live a life that is consistent with my principles. But almost everybody that I’ve encountered who is politically active has no principle other than the ends justify the means. Technically that is an ethos but so it national socialism. And like national socialism, the ends justify the means is an ethos that goes nowhere good.
Most of the anti-war left weren’t actually anti-war. They were neoliberals who saw opposing war as a means to get their guy into power so it he could implement their desired policies. Neocons are no different. They advocate small government and governmental checks and balances when doing so advances their cause. When those things interfere with their cause they become arduous supporters of big government and presidential rule by decree.
Since most politically active people in the United States fall into either the neoliberal or neoconservative camps there’s no point in being politically active if you’re actually a principled individual. You’ll be used when you’re convenient and discarded when you’re a hinderance.
Ever since the various governments within the United States declared that it was okay for them to keep secrets the freedom of the press has been eroding. In recent years that steady erosion has turned into a complete collapse. Now we live in a world where journalists face felony charges for covering events:
Four more journalists have been charged with felonies after being arrested while covering the unrest around Donald Trump’s inauguration, meaning that at least six media workers are facing up to 10 years in prison and a $25,000 fine if convicted.
A documentary producer, a photojournalist, a live-streamer and a freelance reporter were each charged with the most serious level of offense under Washington DC’s law against rioting, after being caught up in the police action against demonstrators.
Notice how the journalists are being charged under the rioting laws? If they were being charged for covering the event that would be an overt suppression of the press. As anybody who has lived in this country long enough will tell you, the politicians here prefer covert suppression over overt suppression. Charging the journalists with covering the wrong event would raise a bunch of questions about the First Amendment. But charging them for participating in a riot avoids those questions and gives a reason for the tough on crime crowd to support the suppression.