Friday, July 30, 2010

Even if a Sex crazed Poodle Wants to Run With the Dogs..

Well, he has gotta piss with the pack. And when the pack is a group of ruthless, power mad, bad men hell bent on world domination, you better hope you can keep up. When you become a liability to the pack, you are own your own. Such is the lesson Al Gore maybe is learning in recent weeks? Tip: if you are a two bit political figure with fading looks, limited intelligence and really, really limited likability factor, perhaps retiring and taking up an adjunct professor gig would have been a better long term plan. Sales pitch man for a really iffy, junk science based scam to pilfer a huge chunk of western wealth that is apt to be exposed is probably not a safe long term plan.

Two more massage therapists have come forward to expose Al's propensity for chakra healing, standing naked in their presence and asking for "additional services". It seems these latest requests were a little more clear than asking for simple chakra releasing. You have to admit, the unravelling of Al Gore is a little suspect.

I have to question the clarity of thought of the person who first said, "We need a pitch man, any ideas? How about failed presidential candidate and clear lunatic Al Gore?" Perhaps there were reasons we can only suspect. He was probably easily malleable, just corruptible enough and he did seem to have some sort of passion for this sort of anti-progress environmentalism. Having written a book on the topic in 1992, Earth in the Balance: Ecology and the Human Spirit, he had just enough knowledge on the subject to seem somewhat convincing and trainable in the newer areas of the sciences based on mankind destroying the earth.

And it worked for a while. He made a movie, people went and saw it and went to hear him speak. He won some awards. The fact that he was amassing wealth like a prohibition liquor distiller still didn't seem to dissuade most. He was jetting around the world, leaving a carbon wasteland in his tracks and still the awards and accolades kept coming. Last we knew, he was allegedly reaching billionaire status.

Then it all came tumbling down. Leaked emails from the East Anglia University revealed it was all based on faulty and manipulated data. Then emails surfaced showing cover ups were institutionalized to suppress these facts. Climate Gate, though never covered by the old media, put Al Gore's circus side show in jeopardy. He was being met with ridicule and taunts in airports in city after city. For a brief time, he was not making public appearances.

Here we are a few short months later and Chakra Gate emerges. Coincidence? We can only surmise. While I don't doubt he may have engaged in this behavior, you do have to question the timing.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Ultimate Game

The Ultimate Game is a study performed in the 1970s by Werner Guth. The premise is of the game is simple. There are two players. Player One is given a sum of money and told he must give Player Two an open amount. Player Two can either keep the money and both players keep their sum or reject the offer and both players walk away with nothing.

Ofcourse, the only motivation for Player Two to reject the offer is to punish Player One. It is also in Player Two's best interest to accept whatever sum is offered him, knowing he will receive nothing if he does not. Surprisingly, most offers resulted in about half of them money with cooperation and mutual benefit being the outcome.

Now, what gets really interesting and should help you destroy any argument any Marxist can muster is the results where the game was played with fifteen varying tribal societies. The societies that were most closed off, less engaged in trade and more advanced economic systems were the least generous and rational about the outcome.

Machiguerna (slash and burn) farmers from the Amazon averaged just 15% give away. And nearly all would be recipients rejected the offer.1

Players most integrated in modern markets such as the Orma Nomads from Kenya or the Achuar subsistence gardeners of Ecuador offered up nearly half, similar to their western counter parts.

What can we take from this game? That self interest raises all boats. Trade and commerce based on mutual self interest results in more generosity and the more people have access to these ideas and their results, the more people will prosper and work in cooperation. Self interest was the motivating force in the cases were the people gave more, not altruism.

1. Matt Ridley, The Rational Optimist-How Prosperity Evolves (New York: Harper Collins, 2010) 87-88

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Did You Receive Your Donated Polish Blanket in the 1970s?

I had a political conversation that other day with someone who seemed to think that the youth of this country seemed inclined toward Marxist ideas because they see their own parents unfulfilled by materialism and the chase of material pursuits. I begged to differ. The problem, I explained back, was that we had a youth that knew nothing else. They have only a perspective of relative affluence (typically, the wealthier the more attracted to these ideas the youth can be). It is an issue of perspective. I explained most of the world would sever a limb to come to the this country and "not be satisfied" with all we have.

It's easy to it on your western engineered computer in your ergonomically correct chair with your $5 organic Chai tea in your $45 Abercrombie shorts and fantasize about a Gilligan's Island existence because you have to go to work on Monday morning. There is a reason why a young girl from the Chinese countryside will take a job in a sneaker factory working fourteen hour days and sleeping on a cot in a room with a dozen other Chinese girls working the same job. The fact we are so wealthy we 'measure consumer confidence' while a hundred nations still measure water production, food, and other neccessities is mind boggling when you think about it.

Forget freedom for an instant, assuming we have a contingent of people who have little concern or understanding of freedom. From a purely material perspective, how do you make people understand what it would be like once you cross that line? How do you teach those lessons without all of us having to endure the lessons and hardships in real time that would be the most effective teachers and leave the strongest impressions?

Listening to Alex of the Hyphenated American Blog Link being interviewed on the Jimmy Z show it became obvious to me that we have a valuable resource of American citizens who carry with them the experience and stories of life behind the Iron Curtain and other various utopias around the world. Most of them do not have blogs or the compulsion to tell their stories but as they age we run the risk of losing these stories and real world testimony.

I urge these people to tell their stories. They do not need to be harrowing tales of the Solzhenitsyn variety, sometimes it is the simple stories of day to day life that are the most striking. I have good friends who are immigrants from Poland. They are of the age to remember it all and they are the biggest advocates of freedom one could meet.

A story, Garajnia, the wife of the couple, told one year over Christmas dinner sticks with me. She spoke of the "blanket drives" they were forced to partake in. Polish families were forced to donate blankets for the "poor and disadvantaged" children left on the cold streets the in oppressive capitalist United States.

"Imagine" she said, "here we were, not a pot to piss in, giving away our blankets. Blankets that we often needed. Because, you know, consumer goods were not easy to come by, even if you could afford them."

"Did you believe any of it?", I asked "Did you know we had so much and that it was a complete lie?"

"Yes, we knew, she said but we went along with it anyway. What else could we do?"

People like this are a valuable resource and an underutilized tool in our toolbox. If you know someone like this, urge them to tell their stories, especially to our youth. If you are one of these people, spread the word. Write, lecture, preach and educate. Time is short and patriots are few.

Friday, July 2, 2010

The Most Efficient Destroying Machine

Economic warfare. By far. It has historically been the most effective tool of the tyrant. A type of warfare that has typically been waged against a perceived enemy ginned up by the state. This manufactured hatred gives the state the green light to squash the "enemy" as the protected and threatened segment of the population feels almost obligated to allow it to occur because after all it is in their or the country's defense.

We need to only look back as far as Stalin's war on the kulaks. Kulaks were the higher income earners of the peasant farmers who, many times, had land holdings. They resided in the Ukraine which was the "bread basket" on the former Soviet Union. Because they held land and were independent economically they were not easy converts to the forced collectivization and seizure of their property. Their independence and rebellion was a thorn in Stalin's side and it had to be crushed.

Crushing them was a multifaceted plan. First, they needed to be perceived as the enemy. It is interesting to note that the peasant populations of Russia had little to no ideas of the kulaks as a class until Communist propagandists began the program of implementing the idea into the heads of the people. Ofcourse what was considered a kulak was a moving goal post and could change at the whim of the power holders. Hiring labor, owning any amount of land deemed "abnormally" high at any given time, commercial farming and money lending were just a few of the revolving door of offenses to have one deemed an enemy of the people and a kulak.

Step one, define the enemy. Complete. Fairly easy to do when rousing the common human emotions of envy and greed.

By 1928, the Soviet Union was experiencing food shortages. The solution by 1929 was forced collectivization of the farms. In very short, the land and animal holders rebelled and the state squashed the rebellion. Purge after purge was introduced. The death count has never been able to be calculated. However, the resulting famine and horror undoubtedly led to hundreds of thousands of deaths, as many imprisoned and forcibly relocated and millions of ruined lives as well as a culture and way of life destroyed.

This was economic warfare and famine used to decimate political enemies. People who stood in the way of "hope and change". This is a very abbreviated account and entire books have been written about this engineered famine but the formula is the same the world over. Case in point, the communist regime, Khmer Rouge, in Cambodia who engineered a class of people known as the "New People". Again, a changing cast of characters consisting of sometimes city inhabitants, educated people, businessmen or anyone with foreign contacts. The same formula was used in Mao's China.

It is extremely important to educate ourselves and others about the tactics used by the left historically and to look around us today and look how those very same tactics are being used today. There is nothing new under the sun. The left may be relentless in their pursuits but they can never be accused of being creative or original. They aren't hauling people off to the gulags because they do not have to, the resistance isn't there. But, they are focusing in on and isolating their enemies. And economic warfare is being fully implemented to break the backs of these enemies. The economy isn't recovering, because it isn't supposed to. It might be hard to wrap your head around but if you believe in the individual, have anything to lose and honor American principles and traditions -- you are in the crosshairs.