09
Aug 14

Libertarians, Ayn Rand, Ron Paul, and the Blinding Glow of Freedom

To Rand Paul/Ron paulians/AynRandians, libertarianism means they can do whatever they damn please, and that is the ultimate good. However they have to rationalize the social viability of complete freedom from oversight so they invoke the invisible hand of the market and lawsuits to correct abuses.

“Do you believe in freedom or not?” they ask. But really, it’s about the libertarian desire to be unimpeded whatever impulse arises. With the more up to date, hipsterish, formerly lefty libertarians– it may *start* with a not-unreasonable “I should be able to do anything I want with drugs” (for example), but they misuse the just cause of decriminalization of pot to lunge into: hence, libertarianism is good. With the Cliven Bundys it’s “I don’t want to pay taxes”, so libertarianism is good…or Sovereign exceptionalism is good. With some, “I don’t want to pay parking tickets or traffic tickets” so libertarianism is good. And everything else is just an elaborate if, ultimately, feeble system of rationale.

There is a kind of glow of the glories of freedom on libertarianism, that gives it a superficial “rightness”. Freedom, yes, is indeed good–and its goodness is a sort of social camouflage for libertarians. It’s as if the shine of freedom gets in their eyes, so they see nothing else. But simply trumpeting the genuine goodness of freedom ignores the abuse of freedom. For example, it ignores the fact that the former head of NAMBLA–an organization favoring adult sex with small boys–proudly declared himself a libertarian…and obviously he chose libertarianism because he can use it to justify child molestation. “Don’t impose your fascist rules against buggering children on me!”

If freedom should be inviolable, then I should be able to freely drive my car down the sidewalk right over crowds of people. “Oh yes–but they could sue you,” say libertarians. However, lawsuits won’t bring those people back–and anyway isn’t the lawsuit itself an imposition on my freedom?


06
Aug 14

The President of Everywhere?

As people become more and more vague about how the world works, as they succumb to entertainment hypnosis and social media fugue, they lose touch with basic tenets of the world’s social organization. They seem to forget such fundamentals as borders between countries and the restraints those borders imply.

It becomes clear that many Americans imagine that President Obama is in charge of Syria, is somehow President of Israel, can control the ancient Islamic rivalries in Iraq, can–should he choose–control what the Ukraine and Russia do, doesn’t have to answer to Congress, and can, through American presidential power, somehow force Iran not to make nuclear weapons. No President so far has been able to broker a satisfying deal between Israel and Palestine–but somehow Pres Obama is responsible for Israel over reaching in Gaza.

Oh and it’s probably his fault when Malaysia loses a plane, too. They seem to think he’s President of the world. So when things go awry in the world, it’s his fault and hence he had bad foreign policy. Thus his foreign policy must rate disapproval in polls.


04
Aug 14

Worry about THE ILLUMINATI? I say–HURRAY for the Illuminati!

Researching an article about conspiracy theorists, I looked up the history of the Illuminati. I was startled when I realized that the Illuminati were actually the Good Guys… Well–I had known this at some time but forgotten it–the general smoky blurriness generated by modern conspiracy theories about the Illuminati infected my perspective on them. I didn’t believe what I heard said about them, contemporaneously, but it tinged my recollections of their history. So several sources report as wikipedia does: the Illuminati were a force for GOOD. Read as follows: “The Illuminati … refers to the Bavarian Illuminati, an Enlightenment-era secret society founded on May 1, 1776. The society’s goals were to oppose superstition, prejudice, religious influence over public life and abuses of state power, and to support women’s education and gender equality. The Illuminati—along with other secret societies—were outlawed by the Bavarian ruler, Charles Theodore, with the encouragement of the Roman Catholic Church, and were permanently disbanded in 1785.[1] In the several years following, the group was vilified by conservative and religious critics…”

There you have it. They were opposed to superstition and prejudice and theocratic control; they were opposed to monarchy and tyranny; they supported gender equality. Monarchies and the Church hated them…which is a recommendation in itself. Somehow they’ve become all mixed in with anti-semitic paranoia, notions of mind control, secret puppeteering of the world…but in fact *everything* they wanted was GOOD. If they ARE puppeting the world, to those ends–opposing superstition, opposing abuses of state power, supporting women’s right–then I say let them have at it. I just wish they were MORE influential.


29
Jul 14

The Paranoia Hucksters

It’s hard to see where it will end. Here’s one example. A highly dishonest anti-govt hysterical website called USPatriot just put out yet another claim that “Obamacare” will put “chips” in “All Americans” by the year 2017. Claimed it was reported on NBC. NBC did not report this. It’s a lie.

There are countless sites like this and what their followers don’t realize is that they’re being *exploited for money*. If you put up a big headline that says “Obama plans to Turn Americans Into Zombies with Chemtrails”, say, it’ll be shared a zillion times, mostly by people who gaspingly react in a kneejerk way–sometimes by people who think it’s ironically funny. Either response gives the site lots of “hits”, lots of likes, a higher rating on Google. This in turn allows the site hucksters to sell ADVERTISING at high rates–or to sell the website itself after it gets enough following. For big money. Perhaps the same thing happens with some of the more crazed “left wing” (pseudo left, really) sites.

The New World Order fantasy, the “govt is herding us all into FEMA camps this year for extermination” babble, the “We’re Sovereign Citizens Who Wouldn’t Know the Actual Constitution If It Bit Us In the Ass” crowd–they believe all this stuff because it’s *stimulating*, it makes them excited, it makes them feel special. But they’re special suckers.

They’re being used so other people can make money.

This faked up verbal-meth for hicks is designed to be jolting to get quick and dirty attention. It doesn’t have to be believable, because site followers don’t actually think about it, they just react. And it’s in a familiar pattern of disinformation, spread by the Timothy McVeigh spawn, the David Koresh sheep, that has been shown to work.

Paranoia works. So they use it again and again and again…and there are countless sites of this kind. Paranoic social lies are viruses, of a kind; paranoic social lies are poison memes. And what is the long term effect? How many confrontations in Nevada over someone’s imaginary “grazing rights”? How many “Oklahoma City bombings”? How many attempted Presidential assassinations?

How many children, raised by these people–to live in fear?


28
Jul 14

Sometimes …CHILDREN DIE as GAMERS GAME

LOVECHILD…is a new documentary, airing tonight on HBO. It is frightening. We need to TAME technology. This true story has always disturbed me partly because it seems to be a clear indication that instances of people losing themselves in digital pseudo-realities (and soon more sophisticated virtual “realities”) is likely to become an ongoing, powerful phenomenon, to the detriment of children, family, the player, society. “The film examines the real-life story of a South Korean couple who, in 2010, would regularly leave their three-month-old daughter at home unattended to play a popular online game. Addicted to their virtual lives, the couple neglected their infant daughter to the point where the baby died from malnutrition. What’s even more shocking, the parents were taking care of a virtual child in their internet fantasy game, while their real child was essentially dying from starvation.”

See the trailer: http://themoviebox.net/5151

And it happens in Australia…and right here in the USA too: http://www.mamamia.com.au/news/there-is-no-second-life-because-these-children-are-dead/


28
Jul 14

Could we just BUY OUT Climate Change?

There should be a list, and we should go down it, worst to least offenders–and the worst climate change offender worldwide is probably COAL. And the only reasonably rapid way to get rid of the coal industry in the USA is to buy it out. (We could try to outlaw it, sure–but that won’t happen. Political realities). It might be possible to spend billions, federal money, here in the USA for starters, buying out coal companies. Simultaneously we’d subsidize the switch-over at utilities buying coal for power, change them over to, for example, natural gas burning for now, till we can get solar and other sustainable sources in place. (You don’t have to use fracking to get natural gas.) The billions we spend doing this can be used to provide fresh starts for coal industry workers, as well as providing enough profit motive to get control of coal…and shut it down.

I theorize that we’ll save trillions–because if we can mitigate anthropogenic climate change significantly we won’t have to deal with all the incredible costs that will arise from it. If we set an example in this country, it may propel imitation in places like China


26
Jul 14

I saw THE DRONE, the DRONE saw ME

This morning I watched a DRONE over the park near us. And it watched me!

But no, this was not a police drone–they’re still in the experimental stages. No this was someone’s hobby drone. A young Hispanic couple were playing with it in the park–he had ordered it from China, off the internet. I said, “I’m amazed it works, then.” But it does. It’s about the size of an extra-large-pizza pie plate, maybe a little bigger, with four rotors…and a camera on the bottom. As the girl controlled it with a fairly large remote control box, her friend watched its camera feed on his phone. He showed it to me–I could see myself from the sky! This model won’t be very secretive–it’s got lights on it, reflectors and, more important, it’s loud: it sounds *exactly* like a very large hive of really pissed off bees. He said it technically has a fifty mile range for control–but it only has 20 minutes of charge in its battery and its top speed is ten mph. It’s little more than a toy. But it’s a drone because you could use it to spy on your neighbors, say, if you were so inclined. You can send it some distance away–and see what it sees…

Larger, more efficient models will be used by law enforcement–already have been tested in the field on a lawbreaker in Texas–and are being tried out for use in fire fighting surveillance, search and rescue, and the like. Paranoids will be shooting at the things. Even this variety–this did NOT look like a toy. It would freak some people the hell out. And as it has lights on it, fly this internet-ordered model at night and: instant UFO report!

You could put a small tape recorder on it that made eerie sounds or said cryptic things.

Of course you know that drones will be used by criminals–they’ll be used by drug dealers to watch for cops. They’ll be used by transnational gangs to see if border patrol is coming.

Amazingly, Amazon.com is STILL talking about using drones for package delivery. They’re trying to get permission to try it. Now THAT is stupid. Look, how many packages would that be? How many drones? How many moving parts? How many chimneys and phone poles and power lines? How many malfunctions? How many crashes into windshields and house windows? That’s just not going to be practical, you damn fools.

But drones, in more rational applications, and some shady ones, are here to stay, so get used to it.


23
Jul 14

What Obama Should Do About Israel and Palestine–But Probably Can’t

I suspect that Pres Obama wishes he could call for sanctions–on Israel.

While I’m sure that Pres Obama is sincere about supporting Israel’s security–especially in light of genocide-advocating anti-Israel remarks on the part of the former leader of Iran and others in the middle east–I also suspect that Pres Obama, Sec. Kerry, and other powerful individuals in the Democratic party, would like to be able to cut off financial aid to Israel until it stops building settlements, and pulls back on some settlements.

President Obama knows that much of the situation could be defused if Israel would stop its expansion via settlements. If it would pick a border and stay behind it–and if they would stop the draconian restrictions on movements of Palestinians–that is, if Israel were to make significant concessions, the Palestinian state and other Muslim states could then put pressure on Hamas to back off. But the President cannot sanction or withdraw aid from Israel, even were he to have the clear cut authority to do so.

He can’t do it politically–or so he believes and he may be right. The President now does not have to worry about re-election but he does have to worry about the election of Democrats to the House and Senate in upcoming elections. He is a primary symbol of the Democratic party and support for Israel is widely backed by the American people, not only by Jews but by a great many Christians. He might be in violation of a treaty, too, were he to do it.

But really–it’s what needs doing. The President and Congress should find the will to sanction Israel, to say “you made your point, enough is enough” regarding Gaza; to say, “Cease expanding Israel.” To say, “Ease Restrictions. Do these things or we will stop aid, and we will call for economic sanctions against Israel.”

Israel must cease the current aggression, must concede some land, must compromise–or else the wound that is Israeli/Palestinian problem will never heal.


18
Jul 14

Why PRIVATIZATION of Public Services …FAILS, Time and Again

To look for the real core reason privatization of a public service tends to fail…look at the priorities. In a public service, a public water company, a prison, employees are told their priority is getting the job done for the public. That’s their reason for being there. They’re held to a standard. You can point to bureaucracies where the employees weren’t held to a standard, where it failed–but in general the public system works, people want to keep their jobs so they provide the service for the public. But in PRIVATIZED services employees are clear that the priority is PROFITS, and they are pushed into finding a way to INCREASE profits and that is the main priority. They aren’t required to do the job effectively–they are required to do the job PROFITABLY. So there’s motivation to cut corners.

There’s no long standing culture, either, of effectiveness in the privatized service. They bring to it nothing but “fast, cheap, profitable”.

In addition, a profit-motive based outfit will hire under qualified people because they can be paid less. And that has consequences.

Examples at Commondreams

A CLEAR Example of this at a prison’s privatized system for feeding inmates.


17
Jul 14

Cryptic material removed from the appendices of SILICON EMBRACE – my novel Re-edited for the new edition

• • •

APPENDIX E

There are no Zetans. I’m not saying there are no extraterrestrials; there just might be a few saucer-pilots checking us out.
There are no “gray alien” abductions. There are no implants. Unless these events are staged by—as some have suggested—government intelligence services.
I have seen the enemy and he is us.
• • •
In real life, and not just in this book, American intelligence services had—and some say, still have—a Black Project devoted to mind control, to some extent using mass media, called MK Ultra. This program experimented with direct control of human behavior through the transmission of microwave impulses (every paranoid schizophrenic’s fantasy), through the (much documented) use of LSD and other drugs on unwitting, non-voluntary subjects, and, some claim, through such devices as the Warren Commission, which “investigated” the assassination of John F. Kennedy, and the subsequent selling of the commission’s “Oswald was a lone nut” conclusion to the public by means of a pliable media.

There are also numerous rumors—some of which have percolated into mass media via The X-Files television series—that MK Ultra was involved in creating the “alien abduction” stories, in fabricating the tales of UFO abductions to cover up other nefarious intelligence activities, or, as yet another rumor goes, as a test of mind control methodology.
After all, if you can make someone believe they’ve been abducted by creatures from outer space, alien beings who’ve poked probes into their asses and stolen some of their “time,” you can make them believe anything.
Researcher and writer Jacques Vallée reported that an investigation into an apparent UFO abduction in France turned up evidence that the whole thing had been staged by human beings: a man was drugged and then found himself swallowed up in a luminous fog. He woke up days later with a vague memory of alien abduction. Certain agents of French Intelligence admitted to Vallée, in Paris, that they had staged this entire event as an experiment in mind control.
There are indications that a “UFO close encounter” at an American air base in England, widely reported in the press, may have been staged by American military Intelligence. The medium here is the Staged Event. It is theatre disguised as reality—and the theatre extends even into the news media reporting the Staged Event. The same may apply to the notorious “alien autopsy” film which is likely a fabrication involving certain notorious crop-circle hoaxers collaborating with an American CIA agent—perhaps working for MK Ultra—with some arcane mind control agenda.

The USSR, during a time when the SALT treaty was newly in force, reported a rash of UFO sightings in Siberia. Their media interviewed bemused country folk who spoke in awed tones of the strange lights in the sky. Post-USSR revelations of KGB documents revealed that the “lights” were in fact night time missile tests carried out by the Soviets under the camouflage of a “rash of ‘flying saucer’ sightings,” in order to avoid exposing their violation of the SALT treaty. The KGB, too, is the likely source of the notorious UMMO letters supposedly from “extraterrestrials” circulated a few years back.
Rael. Solar Temple. Look for cults to arise who use UFO imagery to seduce the lost and rootless into their agendas. Trust in God but tie your camel down.

• • •

APPENDIX F

Something more about Anatole.
Anatole, very tired, came home from his work at the school, and wrote a letter to Farraday’s son Jason, before going for his walk on the beach. There was a long PS. The PS was longer than the letter:

PS: Jason, you asked about Soul Making, as your father called it, and you asked about the Meta. That term, Soul Making, is a bit deceptive, though there’s a sense in which it is literally true. I refer you to the list of books I gave you last time, including the Moses Maimonides and the Boris Mouravieff, and the Gospel of Thomas (the Gnostic version of the gospels, from the Nag Hammadhi Library). Eg, from the Gospel According to Thomas: “…These are the secret words which the Living Jesus spoke arid Didymos Judas Thomas wrote: And He said: Whoever finds the explanation of these words will not taste death. Jesus said; Let him who seeks, not cease seeking until he finds, and when he finds/he will be troubled, and when he has been troubled, he will marvel, and he will reign over the All. Jesus said: If those who lead you say to you: ‘See, the Kingdom is in Heaven’, then the birds of the Heavens will precede you. If they say to you: ‘It is in the sea’, then the fish will precede you. But the Kingdom is within you and it is without you. If you will know yourselves, then you will be known, and you will know that you are the sons of the Living Father. But if you do not know yourselves then you are in poverty and you are poverty.”
This “knowing yourself” is not so easy. There is a story (several extant versions) of a Zen monk who went to his Master and said, “Master I want to be like you, and soon. How will this be accomplished?” And the Master said, “It can be accomplished like this: go for just seven days watching everything you do and everything you feel, and do not let your attention lapse at all for those seven days.” The Monk said: “Piece of cake!” He went and tried to do this, and after just a few minutes found he was thinking, instead, of dinner and ceasing to be vigilant within himself. He tried again and again but could not be completely vigilant for more than a few minutes at a time. And he had been asked to be vigilant continually for seven days! So he returned to his Master and said, “It is too difficult to learn to do this in seven days—can you give me more time?” The Master said, “Yes. Take seventy years.”
The time of the gifts given by the Meta is past. The Meta have removed to their own vibratory home-base, as it were. We can go to them, and they can give us, through that Higher thing, a sort of help, but they—and Ceph, who is with them now—can no longer come here and take us into their substance as they did with Lila and me, and as Ceph did, after his transfiguration, and offer an immediate exposure to the energies of transformation.
Now they have moved up, beyond our immediate reach, and they call to us and we must strive to rise to them; strive to burn with a consciousness that is like a fire in wood, and release the sparks that rise: that slow burning, that slow striving, that is how the process works. And even that which they gave us, in those days, is not permanent. It is an open window but it is not an open door. Lila is now, once more, in Tibet, working to open that door (my work with children keeps me here this time). Even Enlightenment, you see, can be trod down under the usual identification with life. So we have to work. And work and work, second by second, year after year, with the methods given to us by the various traditions which are at root one tradition; we have to walk the Way ourselves, step by trudging step. We cannot be carried.
• • •
Having written this, Anatole Osterberg, aka Anatole Sullivan, went for his walk on the beach, near his house.
…Dusk on the sea. Fine energies moved in keenly attenuated waves through the hard and soft places of the world. Anatole felt the gentle tug of apocalypse,of mass epiphany, another cycle of change coming.
He smiled wearily and shrugged.
He was more interested in this moment on the beach on San Francisco Bay. There were machinations in the sea. Walking near the lacy fringe of the water, Anatole could see machinery just under the surface. DuChamp’s pistons and vents and, vaster than that, a subaquatic architecture of chrome, made of vast pipe organ arrays locked into chromium dynamos, like some flooded Fritz Lang set (remembering the Fritz Lang videos cinema-obsessed Quinn had lent him); part of it moving in machine-precise patterns, part of it stationary as a mountain of iron. Inflexible laws improbably seen in the purely chaotic. Machines of the sea. Impossible, paradoxical, and glisteningly evident.
An orbital shuttle rising from the Zetan airbase thudded through the sound barrier; the only sound the nullgrav vehicle made. Several small children in cutoffs were thrashing through the surf, playing Good Zetan and Bad Zetan, and they waded right through his visioned machinery, up to their knees in steel, and yet Anatole knew it was there, knew he was not hallucinating. A vision is not a hallucination. A vision is a disclosure.
Why the sea? he wondered. What inexorable function is prefigured here?
Breeze-blown sidewinders of sand skirled the beach, struck at his ankles, between his socks and cuffs, with a pleasant grainy stinging; the sky roiled with sullen power, and at the horizon small angels in dull neon were strung like children’s paper dolls, refolding into crystalline orbs.
Gazing at the horizon, Anatole thought of time and loss… magic and loss… and of course thought of Lila. The separation from her hurt like a son of a bitch.
Looking at this suffering as a thing-in-itself, Anatole thought of the place at the cusp of Being, just beneath the Absolute, at the juncture of the Pleroma: the place where plus and minus meet; where positive and negative, active and passive neutralize; where two needles meet point to point, their infinitely sharp points exactly poised one on the other; the needles (widening past the junctured points to infinitely expanding cones) turning each in the direction opposite the other.
And pinned between these infinitely sharp points is consciousness, present tense: the first circle of consciousness, the stone dropped in the pond. Between these point-on-point spikes is crucified this: the unspeakable suffering of God.
The unspeakable suffering of God.
And radiating from this suffering: The ineffable mercy of God.
He felt Lila, nearby. Close: Only on the other side of the planet. Close as a heartbeat.

End of Appendices