What Could We Do?

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I’ve had numerous responses to articles I’ve written asking me, “Ok, so what’s the next step?”

I respect your intelligence, so I won’t say … voting.

We have about as much real choice at the ballot box as a condemned prisoner has when offered the option of being gassed – or hung.  It will not matter an iota what front man is (s)elected for the 2012 presidential run. Oh, and that front man will not be Ron Paul – precisely because Ron Paul would not be a front man. I am certain he knows this as well as I do. He is running only because it gives him a podium; helps to spread the word. But Dr. Paul (who unlike the many shysters with mail-order divinity degrees out there actually is a real doctor and so deserves the honorific) knows he’s this era’s Barry Goldwater – and just as likely to be elected president.

In the end, we will get exactly what we’ve been getting for at least the past 147 years: More government-corporate tag teaming. And the ones being tagged will be us.

So, what can we do?

There is still one mechanism with real teeth that we can use to effect real change – if we have the sense to use it:

The market.

More specifically, our preferences (for liberty) as expressed via our actions – our decisions to buy or not – in the marketplace. It is a force with more locked-up potential in it than an electoral juggernaut. A means by which the country could be transformed – peacefully – not in a generation, but in a matter of weeks or months.

Consider two examples I’ve written about recently: GM’s odious OnStar onboard Big Brother – and the similarly loathsome Submission Training travelers must endure at airports. GM  and the insurance cartels and the law enforcement cartels (the same thing, really) want to be able to monitor you at all times and control you, too, via GPS implants in cars that automatically and instantaneously transmit data about your driving habits directly to the “in” box of the enforcement arms of the latter. The TSA wants not “security,” but submission – and not just at airports. Gate rape is just a trial run. Once broadly accepted, count on it being expanded to shopping malls, public buildings, maybe even sidewalks.

The key thing to grasp is that in both cases the tyrants (private and public) rely on our voluntary consent. There is no law – yet– that says we have to purchase a GM vehicle. There is no law – yet – that we have to fly. We still have a real choice. It may not be an easy choice (in the case of flying, which for some people may be the only way to get where they’re going) but the bottom line is we don’t have to take it.

We can say no.

And if we did say no – and by “we” I mean just enough of us to hurt the bastards in the one soft spot they have, their pocketbooks – things would change all right. Can you imagine what the effect on GM would be if its sales suddenly dropped by 20 percent solely because that many otherwise-likely GM buyers decided (and said so, openly) that they were not going to buy a GM vehicle again until GM made OnStar optional – and quit trying to force it on every single person who buys a GM vehicle? How long do you suppose it would take for GM to take OnStar off the roster of standard features? (The same principle could be applied with equal effectiveness to annoying petty tyrannies such as the Seatbelt Fuhrer that many new cars now come with; and to many other things besides.)

Imagine if just 20 percent of prospective air travelers stopped flying – and made it clear that the only reason they decided not to buy a ticket was that they are not willing to play Submission Training at the gate. That they will not buy a ticket again – ever – until little kids and teenage girls and old people and everyone else who hasn’t done a god-damned thing to merit it is left free to board the plane without being made to do more than present their ticket to the gate agent. (Even having to show ID is an outrageous affront to liberty; why is it anyone’s business but yours who you are? As recently the 1980s, we could fly without having to show our government-issued collars – our IDs – to the airline Sicherheitsdeinst. It ought to be that way again.)

If just 20 percent of us did this, the TSA and all the rest of it would be gone by Christmas. Long before the next president is (s)elected.

We could recover our liberty – our dignity as human beings. And the only “vote” involved would be the one we make with our dollars. The election could be held tomorrow, people.

It really is that easy.

So, much as I wish Ron Paul well and would be very pleased if he were to somehow beat the house and get on the ticket over that oleaginous cretin Mitt Romney or that even more dreadful recycled George W. Bush sleazing his way out of Texas, I doubt even that – or his even less likely election as the next president – would materially change anything.

But withdrawing our consent; declining to pay for our own enslavement – now that would accomplish miracles.

If only enough of us would realize it… .

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98 COMMENTS

  1. Unfortunately I think we’ve seen that if we don’t voluntarily by GM cars then the gov will force us to by giving them our tax dollars. GM has even less incentive now to listen to us than it did before, now that they know the gov will bail them out.

    I think the concept is good, but the target is wrong. We need to withhold our money from the gov. Hit them in the pocketbook. If enough people starting refusing to pay taxes at stores for example, then that would hit the stores and the gov in the pocketbook. That would be an interesting experiment.

    Start paying just face value for the good, refusing to pay taxes and walk out the door. You’ve paid for the good, you haven’t stolen it, but just not given your hard earned money to the gov. If the store doesn’t have the courage to stand up to the gov then it’s their loss. But the fact that the gov taxes the store has nothing to do with me.

    • Good luck trying to leave a store without paying the sales tax. Most stores that I am familiar with present a total that includes the sales tax. (ie for a $10 book, they will ask for $10.70 [$10+7% tax])

      I doubt they will willingly give you the item without also collecting the sales tax.

    • I’m afraid Mithrandir is correct Don. Refusing to pay the sales tax on a standard retail purchase will surely get you an appointment with the judge. The moral validity of your argument notwithstanding the legal screwing they will administer. If you object strenuously enough at the time of your arrest, that will net you a wood shampoo or a little electroshock therapy, BYMMV. Let us know how it works out for you. 😉

      Now…what we can do: Buy whatever new items we need, over the Internet. Pay attention to avoid online sellers that have brick and mortar stores in your home state. That way you avoid the sales tax. Some states now are trying to force Amazon’s online affiliates into collecting sales taxes. Amazon has responded by dumping the affiliates thereby stopping that entire revenue stream from ever reaching the state’s economy (Illinois comes to mind). Go Amazon! Other online retailers should follow suit.

      Another thing you can do is shop yard sales, flea markets, swap meets, Craig’s List, eBaY, local auctions and any other venue for used goods. Once again you avoid sales taxes and get great prices (usually). Deal in cash and it’s up to the recipient whether or not they report it (I’m sssuuurrre most folks will). You are thereby starving the beast a little more. Same thing with food; patronize the local farmers’ market, small animal swap meet, Amish farmers / dairymen, roadside produce stands or buy a side of beef from your cattleman neighbor. Pay cash. You’ll find the quality is generally better and the prices are often lower than the big box store.

      If you live in row crop country in Virginia a lot of the farmers get kill permits from the state in the summer to eradicate deer that are destroying their crops (some other states do this to). Befriend a local farmer. Get him to “hire” you (say a dollar a year) to kill the deer for him and take the meat (make sure you get copies of the permits and keep them with you). It’s essentially free (gas and ammo is all) and you acquire the skills of night time dressing and butchering. I did this for five years in Virginia, never bought an ounce of red meat and had more than I could give away.

      If you can’t bring yourself to shoot the “pretty deer”, a lot of farmers drag the carcasses into the woods because they can’t find anyone to take them. Most farmers would be happy for you to come get them and not let the meat go to waste. Check around down at your local feed and seed or farm supply store. Be forewarned, this usually happens at night, in remote rural areas, often late. I’ve stayed up ‘till five in the morning cleaning deer, but it was worth it. Doing this helped make up for the screwing I took on child support and it’s essentially non-taxable income. Plus, doing this saved a lot of soy beans and peanuts for a good friend of mine.

      If you’re handy with a wrench, never buy a car that you can’t save up and pay for with one check, so for most of us that rules out new. This cuts your sales tax, property tax, registration fee (in some states) and even your insurance bill. It not only cuts costs there, but an older slightly faded vehicle doesn’t seem to be as attractive to Officer Friendly as that shiny new Z. Same thing with motorcycles, lawnmowers, tractors, boats, etc. Get creative. Do anything you can to withdraw from the system and stay under the radar. Eventually the system will have to change.

      • Per “under the radar” –

        I decided not to Officially Title my ’74 Kawsaki S1 – the bike I’m restoring. Now, I have a clean signed-over title from the previous owner. I just haven’t gone to the DMV and had it officially transferred into my name. Reason? I’m tired of paying %$#!! fees. Not just for the title, either. Even if I don’t plate the bike, once it’s officially titled, the county will send me a property tax bill. Fuck that – and fuck them. Enough already. Ditto the registration for my other truck. I’ve let it lapse and intend to just drive on and see how long I can get away with it. The sons of bitches wanted another $100 for “renewal.” The total bill to “renew” and “register” and “title” and pay the property tax on my four bikes and two trucks is enormous – even though individually none of these is worth more than about $6,000 or so.

          • Worst case, I get fined. I keep the insurance (the big deal) current… and I am going to look into “Farm Use” tags, which are permanent (like “antique”) tags, so no annual registration fuck-over. And for us, it’s legit. We have 16-plus acres and 26 chickens…. so I can plausibly back it all up.

          • Yessir! By all means use the farm tag route. Anything in their system that can be used to our advantage, should be used. As far as bike the plate goes; we had an elderly gentleman that lived nearby when I was a kid (late ’60s). He was a painter and had three pristine Model A Fords he used as daily drivers. Back then, Virginia license plates changed from black on white to white on black every year. This made it easier for the roving revenue collectors to identify the poor stiffs that weren’t paying protection.

            Apparently one of our illustrious doughnut predators pulled John Henry over because a license plate screw had come out and the plate was ready to fall off. When Officer Friendly informed him that there was a problem with his license plate, John Henry responded, “Ain’t nothing wrong with that plate, I jus’ painted it.” Always best not to say anything to the cop.

            Now I’m not advocating that anyone do anything unlawful…..“illegal” is a different matter altogether.

  2. What could we do? Well said!

    I won’t be traveling to the US again to do business, and…
    …my beef is indeed the TSA.

    Can’t understand why US citizens allow such molesters to operate in public. My friends in TN, OH, and ID do understand.

    Doing business locally henceforth.

    GeorgeM in Oz.

    • Hi George.

      There are a lot of us here that avoid flying as much as possible now. I have trip coming up in February that is around 1,000 miles and I’ll be driving it to avoid the TSA.

      All this security and there is really nothing to show for it. Whoops, actually there is something to show for it! Less personal freedom, liberty, and money for the citizens.

  3. All good points Eric. The word democracy is never mentioned in either the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution. The Founders realized that democracies have a strange tendency to implode. One can not listen to our leaders today, however, without hearing the word mentioned a few dozen time as if it is some sort of panacea for all the world’s problems.
    The idea of American exceptionalism is not all that far removed from the stuff that went on in Germany in the 30s and early 40s minus the race justification. Yes, America did become exceptional largely due to gains made in the nineteenth century with its constitutional money and mostly laissez faire political-economic environment. That is not the same thing as a perpetual blessing from on high because of our “innate goodness” as exceptionalism has come to be understood. We went from an agricultural economy to the world’s leading industrial power and creditor by 1900. Americans today have been taught to attribute all progress to government supervision, intervention, and vast regulatory wisdom. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, we have pretty much depleted all the gains made during the period of greatest economic freedom.

    • It’s ingenious (“democracy”) because it keeps the masses compliant since they believe they “have a say” – that they “can vote.” In a country like the old Soviet Union or any obviously one-party state, even the dumbest people realize they live in an oligarchy. But here in America, they think they are “free” because every so often they get to vote and because there are two parties (though in fact there is really just one party, which maintains its position by making it all-but-impossible for third parties to even get on the ballot beyond the occasional – and irrelevant – local race). It also never occurs to them that if their rights exist solely at the whim of majority rule, then they have no rights. “Democracy” has been aptly described as three wolves and a sheep voting on what’s for dinner. Men such as Jefferson held rights to be inalienable – meaning, not subject to conditions, let alone voting. Your property, your money – yours. Period. Your right to speak, to hold whatever views you wish, to associate (or not) with whomever you please. Absolute.

      But not anymore.

  4. Eric,
    Refusing to fly and refusing to buy GM cars will indeed transform our nation. Doing this will hasten our descent into fascism and impoverishment.

    In the passage of the last round of financial reform legislation (translation – Screw The Citizen Law) there is a provision that grants the Feds power to take over any entity in any industry. When airline travel tanks, the airlines will cry poverty, and government will step in and take them over. Say goodbye to private air travel. Government will have the power to control who travels where. A bureaucrat will decide if you can leave the country and under what circumstances. If you think the TSA is bad, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.

    If no one buys GM cars, government will buy every car they make – with money borrowed by government that we will have to pay back – to “preserve jobs.”

    Doing what you recommend will increase government power over our lives and suck even more wealth from our pockets. Things will get much, much worse before they have any hope at all of getting better.

    We are all screwed.

    K Smith

    • I’m not so sure about this. I think if the reason for the boycott was public the government/industry would have to give. Wouldn’t it? I mean we’re not talking about never flying, or a buying another GM forever, just until they stop infringing on constitutional rights.

      • Dom, although I prefer your proposed outcome I see K’s point. It’s along the lines of what I pointed out before. Boycotts will precipitate more bailouts, which will push the system further into irredeemable debt and eventually the system will collapse. Since I believe organizations actually become too big to succeed as opposed to ‘too big to fail’, I see restucturing as inevitable. Unfortunately the collapse will have leviation thrashing about madly for every last victim and morsel it can grab before it dies. Things will get very interesting before we can get on with the business of decentralization and localized control again. We are following in the statist footsteps of the former Soviet Union (right down to occupying Afghanistan) and we know how that movie turned out……

        • I hear you, but I am just hopeful. I have a daughter in kindergarten. If all I see is a dark future (which I pretty much do) it makes me feel even worse for bringing a kid into this world.

          • Dom, I can empathize more than you know. Keep in mind that even though a hundred may fall to your right and a hundred more to your left, there’s no reason you have to be among them.

            Keep a positive attitude and stay free in your mind. You’re here for a reason (not just to irritate Clovers either). Life is seasonal and so are our cultures. We’ve just forgotten what our ancestors knew; there are four seasons in life and society. We’re headed into social winter right now. So dress warm, carry the means to make fire and don’t fall in the water. What I mean is prepare for the worst and hope for the best.

            Avoid the police as much as possible, but be polite and appear submissive if confronted. Deal in cash as much as possible; just because the corporation you work for is in cahoots with the gubmint doesn’t mean you have pass the burden on to the next guy. Grow a garden, they can’t tax that and you gain another skill (you can even do it 5 gal. buckets on your appartment balcony). Fix everything you can yourself, they can’t tax you on that either.

            Want to leave something for that little girl? Buy physical gold or silver. You don’t have to go out and spend a fortune, but for a few bucks each paycheck you can put away a silver Eagle or Maple Leaf. It takes the physical commodity away from the banksters one ounce at a time and weakens their paper market. You know it will at least be worth face value. That’s more than you can say for stocks and bonds you won’t be investing that money in.

            Life is dangerous and risky even in the best of times. Make a game of it. Acquire skills, spread ideas, show compassion, help the people around you. Everything you do on the individual level takes away the state’s ability to make you and the people you help dependent.

            There are others of us like you out here and the Internet allows us to connect easily. But even if it shuts down tomorrow, we are still here and still on your side. Keep the faith brother, the good guys really do win in the end.

            • Excellent!

              This is pretty much my attitude and approach, too.

              I try to be as self-sufficient as possible; to acquire as many new skills as I can. I really enjoy the country life vs. our old suburban life. I also really like being around people who are more like me in terms of the same things – being self-sufficient and respecting “live and let live.”

              I just finished cutting out an appx. 1 mile walking trail through our woods; the land borders two of our neighbors’ places and I cut access “spur trails” for them and invited them to use the trail (and feel free to hunt on our land) if they want to. I enjoy very much giving people a hand – when it’s done out of freely exercised choice as opposed to flowing from the barrel of a gun (government).

              I try to use what skill I have as a writer to spread the word about liberty – to try to get people thinking along increasingly forgotten lines; to reawaken dormant patterns of thought. Maybe that’s my function in this life and f so, I will do all I can to make the most of it!

          • That’s some pretty solid advice, all of which I already do. Can always do more though. And yes, the corporations I work for are locked in (solely dependent) on the gubmint. One mistake I didn’t make was do the condo/townhouse/apartment thing in the city. Instead, I do a 50 mile commute. I live on top of a mountain and less than a mile from the Shenandoah River. We have an acre of land and my backyard is pretty much a vacant forest (for thousands and thousands of acres). My home sits at the very edge of state maintained roads. 100 yards past my home the road turns to gravel. As far as strategically superior locations/positions go I’m in excellent shape. I literally have the high ground on the high ground.

            I do all my own repairs (home & vehicles), so we save thousands with just that. Wife has a decent garden out back. We just had Joe Dirt come out over the weekend and level off an additional 6,000 square feet or so for more garden area.

            We started collecting silver a while back. You are right on the silver eagles and other rounds being pretty easy/cheap to come by. Wife and I each carry pistols and we keep decent stockpile of pretty much everything we need.

            The both of us each give back as we can. Wife helps older Japanese people in town and I help run an after school martial arts program for youngsters (can’t get my kid interested though).

            I work in corporate America and live a country life.

          • Don’t feel worse, man.

            You did the right thing. There will always be a future – and the more good people (raised right) that exist, the better that future will be.

            The people I feel sorry for are the naive city/suburban types, with limited and pigeonholed (and soon to be irrelevant) “skills” who will be helpless and defenseless, broke, dependent and bewildered when the SHTF.

          • The future’s going to be bright? How so when the State subsidised the ne’er-do-well teenage girls to make babies while the productive people pay all the taxes and have 1 child per couple at most?

            Aw shucks if the State is becoming all-encompassing then they’ll take a leaf out of the Spartans’ playbook and create the Krypteria – kill all those who hold their head too high and risk making trouble.

          • Hey, a good part of my planned survival is to have those people dependent upon my skills! 🙂

            “Who run bartertown?” 🙂

        • Not too long ago Putin warned America not to follow the same path as the former Soviet Union. His words were intended as a wake-up call but I’m afraid that they were mostly wasted on deaf American ears. Yes, Leviathan is thrashing about as what is left of the economy struggles along. It is sometimes said that alcoholics have to hit rock bottom before there is any chance for improvement. Perhaps the same can be said for a people who have lost touch with reality.

          • Doods, I’m watching C-SPAN and it’s showing the President and Vice President up in Arlington, Virginia attending a ceremony. Instead of them putting their right hand over their heart, while standing at attention, Obama has his hand on his lower ribs and Biden rests his hand on his stomach. Fucking shit.. I’m having another beer!

          • Good point Marc, but as some great thinker pointed out: what we learn from history is that we don’t learn from history. There are always those people that believe that they can make a flawed and fraudulent system work because they’re smarter than the Soviets, Germans, Romans, Babylonians, Sumerians or (insert your preferred name here).

            Putin’s warning was ignored for that very reason (not that “Mother Russia” doesn’t still have plenty of problems of her own). So you are correct, rock bottom is where we will start our new life from. But at least we’ll have more say in how things are built. It will be up to our progeny to screw up what we build. 😉

            Dom, the Pres and the Veep are sock puppets! They don’t give a rodent’s rosey red rectum about proper decorum for ceremonies other than the photo op. I’ve read that the Roman senators didn’t really believe in the gods either, but just hit the temples to garner popular support. I’ll bet you’re shocked.

            Once you realize that there’s no real difference between the Demoplicans and the Republicrats, you stop taking any of their posturing and bluster seriously. The only choices we have in the “two party” system are the warfare/welfare state and the welfare/warfare state. I’ll write in Ron Paul on the ballot again this time if he doesn’t get the nomination. Screw em’!

            BTW Dom, grain alcohol is much more efficient and cost effective than beer.

            • The great pagan god of our time is “democracy.” Notice how aggressively worship of the same is pushed. “Democracy” here, ‘democracy” there. It is touted as the finest form of government imaginable. And why? Because it is the most subtly ingenious form of quiet enslavement ever devised. The idiot masses believe they have a choice in what is done to them; that “one man, one vote,” and “majority rule” equals liberty and freedom and the rule of law – when in fact, “democracy” is the mortal enemy of all these things. “democracy” provides the illusion of consent, which is why it’s so superior to overtly one-party or one-man authoritarian systems

          • I think so.

            Most Americans accept the idiot notion of American Exceptionalism. That America – and Americans, too – are spayshull. That historical forces; that the failings of human nature… don’t apply to us. This is the source of the arrogance, the solipsism, the blindness that characterizes the country and its actions today.

            These people are in for a rude awakening.

  5. Eric, You are definitely right when it comes to GM’s Onstar, but only because we have a choice of other car markers who aren’t foisting it upon us. When it comes to the airlines we really have no choice – there is no airline company offering “No TSA”. Similarly there is no way around seatbelts because there is no car brand being made without seatbelts. Also 20% off the airlines probably won’t work because the government is subsidizing them – I’ve read about the government paying some airline to fly some route even when there are NO passengers. This is easily understandable because the government wants the TSA, and the TSA needs the airlines, so it is a symbiotic relationship. As far as voting goes, all we have to do is vote for Ron Paul, and he wins, unless, of course, voting is now so rigged that it doesn’t matter who we vote for. Also if Paul even looks like he might get the nomination they will threaten his family just like they did with Perot.

    • Charlie, don’t forget that the Electoral College actually selects the president, not the popular vote. Of course if the popular vote were overwhelmingly Paulian and the Electoral College went against it, things could get very interesting…..

      • The media would flood the airwaves with “experts” (state sponsored intellectuals) that would tell us that the electoral college serves to prevent a “radical” like Ron Paul from becoming president. That it is for our own good. Blah blah blah blah.

        That is if they just didn’t do like they did with RFK.

        But I doubt it will get that far. The media creates the perception of who the ‘front runners’ are and that Paul ‘can’t win’. Then the rigged voting reinforces that perception so most people don’t question. And unless lots of people question, Paul just doesn’t get the nomination and they have no problem to solve.

  6. You make a very good point. However, you don’t take it quite far enough. If you want to see real change in government, the taxpayers who are salaried should go to their payroll department and change their exemptions to the maximum(perfectly within their purview). If your 20% did this the decrease in monthly revenue(confiscation) would be dramatic enough to send a wake up call to the overlords. Real change, of some kind, would happen very quickly. Take the money away and all hell breaks loose. Just a thought.

    • Fred, right now the IRS is so desperate for money they are going after dual citizens in foreign countries that don’t even know they’re U.S. citizens. So it’s probably not a good time to poke the IRS in it’s soft white underbelly, but YMMV. Look up Peter Eric Hendrickson. He wrote a book called Cracking The Code. I believe Mr. Hendrickson’s assertions about the tax laws are correct (based on my own research as well). I’ve personally gone to the IRS office in Richmond, Virginia and asked them on tape, in front of witnesses to show me the regulations that make me liable for any tax. They couldn’t do it and refused to let me see anyone higher up their chain of command. Hmmmm.

      The fact is, Mr. Hendrickson is sitting in federal prison. Being right did not do him any good. The judge wouldn’t even let the jury see the sections of the tax code Mr. Hendrickson was relying on for his defense. Mr. Hendrickson is not rich and his defenses are limited. The IRS knows this. Peter Eric Hendrickson has been made an example of.

      Mr. Hendrickson does not appear to be guilty of tax evasion, tax fraud, failure to file or anything else. He appears to be guilty of refusing to fill out a 1040 form the way the judge told him to and refusing to sign it. Mr. Hendrickson believes he would be committing perjury if he did the judge’s way. The judge disagrees. It must be pretty important for them to try to coerce him into “volunteering”. Otherwise the Secretary of the Treasury would simply prepare the return for Mr. Hendrickson and assess the tax just as the law allows and seize his assets.

      The Secretary of the Treasury knows better. The Secretary of the Treasury understood that when he was working for the IMF, he was not liable for any tax and did not pay any. Mr. Geithner has never been charged with tax evasion to the best of my knowledge. He is still at large. Hmmm.

      If enough people claim maximum exemptions so that the gubmint feels pain, some of them will be made public examples of in as nasty a way as possible. They’ll be on the evening news and the IRS website. It won’t matter if the IRS is wrong, acts unlawfully and the victim utimately wins on appeal (you won’t see that on the evening news). Everyone else involved will go to HR the next day, change their exemptions back to normal, go home, pull the curtains, watch “Dancing with the Stars” and pray.

      I have ideals, but I am also pragmatic. Destitute and imprisoned martyrs are less effective at spreading ideas and pursuing causes. No matter how high-minded you are, prison sucks. Beware the man who urges action in which he incurs no risk.

      • The IRS is a complete and total fraud. Most everything government in the USA does is a scam. They are crooks. Those in the club are not punished. Americans seem to love punishment based on ‘who’ a person is rather than what they’ve done or failed to do. So people like Timmy G get away with it. Principled resistance lands people in prison.

        But until the majority sees the fraud and gives up this seeing holders of government office as ‘special’, we are stuck. Pay or go to prison. It’s like traffic court, being correct, being legal, is not relevant. Not relevant at all.

        It’s just intimidation. It’s mafia behavior. But getting most of the neighborhood to stand their ground is what’s required and the crooks know that’s very difficult. It’s like an episode of the A-Team where they simply get a group of people to stand up for themselves and drive the criminals away. But how do we get that group to stand up and then hold fast?

        Making an example of ones’ self doesn’t work. The media makes sure he ends up a kook that most people think deserve prison.

        • Brent, the irony of it is that, when confronted, the bastards can’t show you chapter and verse of the law which proves your point about it being a scam. I’ve raised this issue with otherwise intelligent productive people; show me the law. No one seems to be able to do it. What that tells me is that you are right. It’s a huge scam, a fraud, a confidence game.

          Could 100 million plus taxpaying Amerikans be duped into paying a tax they don’t really owe? Well then: Could most of the world be led to believe the earth is flat and is the center of the universe? How about tomatoes are poisonous. Traveling over 70 MPH on a train will suck the breath out of you. More recently, right in rural Virginia, I knew many young women that believed bassinets cause crib death! It’s not what we know that hurts us, it’s what we know that aint so!

          • Indeed. And the worst part (to me) is that the state will basically look at you just like the toothless hillbilly in “Deliverance” and say, “If we want your money, we’ll take your money.” It won;t even play by the rules it sets up itself – because there are no rules, except those it arbitrarily spews forth and decides to enforce, at whim. There is no appeal to “the law” – “the law” is whatever the state says it is.

          • Oh yeash the 16th Amendment wasn’t probably ratified either, right guys? Then again President George Washington forcefully suppressed a tax rebellion. What a traitor to the Revolution!

          • Gil, I probably shouldn’t waste my time, but….properly ratified or not, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Stanton vs. Baltic Mining Co. “the provisions of the 16th Amendment conferred no new power of taxation” (http://laws.lp.findlaw.com/getcase/us/vol/getcase/US/240/103.html).

            The Brushaber vs. Union Pacific case too: “We are of opinion, however, that the confusion is not inherent, but rather arises from the conclusion that the 16th Amendment provides for a hitherto unknown power of taxation; that is, a power to levy an income tax which, although direct, should not be subject to the regulation of apportionment applicable to all other direct taxes. And the far-reaching effect of this erroneous assumption will be made clear….” (http://laws.lp.findlaw.com/getcase/us/vol/getcase/US/240/1.html)

            On George Wahington; yes he marched to suppress the Whiskey Rebellion, which petered out before he got there with his rag-tag “troops” (this was a highly controversial tax and was repealed in 1801, BTW). Washington was just a man, therefore subject to all of the human failings and we are the ones that have made him into a legend.

            Gil are you healthy and normal? Or do you manage to slip out of the home periodically and get on a public computer somewhere before the orderlies find you and put you back on your meds?

            • One of Washington’s errors of judgment (giving him the benefit of the doubt) was his mentoring of Hamilton – an authoritarian thug who (among other things) wanted to hang the whiskey rebellion members after subjecting them to a forced march, etc. Only Washington’s intervention prevented the mass hangings. Aaron Burr did the country a service – just a few years too late.

      • Boothe, amen to all that. I spent weeks researching Hendrickson and others, including Peter Schiff’s father, and came to the same conclusion you did: the income tax is a criminal fraud and no-one owes it.

        Now try taking that to court.

        It’s not a battle worth fighting.

  7. The government has all of us under their control if you think about it.
    Any rule that starts out with the pitch: “It is for your own good.” raises the hairs on my head.
    TSA is for your own good . . . After all, they are protecting us from the 300 terrorists capable of killing us all off, right?
    I suggest dead man switches on all the airlines. Sealed pilot compartments goes a long way to keeping criminals from taking over an airplane. It is also a lot less expensive than maintaining a huge police force at the airports.
    If you think they give a care about you and me think again. They are herding us onto planes that are worse than any passenger train ever thought up. 200 people in a small space with two bathrooms on board and a sign warning you to stay in your seat because of the plane being unstable in the air.
    The Hitler solution comes to mind as well. Go after the terrorist, his family, his priest(leader of any religion involved in terrorism), his real estate(home or homes), and eliminate all of them. It did not really work for Hitler either . . .
    The one that did work is 2,000 years old approximately. The Romans scattered the Jews over the entire empire. They enslaved them. Stole all their goods. They also gave up after a couple of hundred years and made their own version of the Jewish Religion called Christianity. That actually worked. The Roman version set up rules that lasted about 400 years before it fell apart.
    I suggest we form a Moslem religion to take the place of the existing one with rules built in to discourage terrorism anywhere. Then scatter the Moslem priesthood into exile of one kind or another and steal their assets out from under them. The polite word is government confiscation.
    GM cars, Ford cars, Chrysler products, have a well deserved reputation for bad records of repairs. The market place has already told them in no uncertain terms what we think of terminal engineering put forth by these educated idiots. Why does anyone think the other brands are any different?
    They all subscribe to engineering to fail. The latest gigs are unnecessary features that no one wants but you cannot have the car without it.
    Bill Gates of Windows fame thought that one up. You cannot buy a computer without the latest and greatest Windows version built into it.
    The profit is you have to rebuy all your software to work on the new systems.
    Most people haven’t figured out that there are alternatives like Ubuntu and MACs. But be warned, MACs are no better than Windows. Ubuntu has a bad habit of being released full of bugs that only a programmer can eventually fix in time for them to stop supporting a version and getting a whole new set of problems to fix. You eventually need both systems(WINDOWS and UBUNTU) to have a really working system. Ubuntu is a great front system for internet. So far the foreigners have not set up a bunch of weapons against it because it is too small, beneath their radar, MACs had that advantage until recently.
    It is based on an old computer language called UNIX. There are about 6 versions of that language out there. MACs use one. Linux uses another. Most Windows systems are built around something called C Plus Plus. That is why they are so vulnerable.
    Back to the original subject: The marketplace will not work as a solution to TSA. Uncle Sam has deep pockets. Our only hope is his pockets have a hole in it. Uncle Sam is going broke . . .

    • 1) Radical Islam, “the terrrrrrorists” are almost entirely a product of the CIA and MI-6 with the rest coming from US foreign policy and wars. The only reason there are people willing to commit these acts is because someone keeps dropping bombs on their homes and businesses and propping up governments that stifle their economic futures. Stop doing that crap and this “terror threat” will vanish almost overnight.

      2) Bad records for repair? I would say bad perception. Every make has its problems big and small. I hear about Ford’s in the mainstream media. I read about Nissan’s in a corner of an automotive publication. It has to get real bad or be very dramatic for most import makes to have their problems plastered across the mainstream media. Getting a true objective measurement is something different.

      3) The current MacOS is based on an old favorite of my, NeXTSTEP, which takes a fair amount from BSD Unix as I recall. Windows is based on DOS, a single user ‘toy’ OS. That’s why it has problems. Most everything is written in C language including most if not everything on unix and unix-like (linux) systems.

  8. Mr. Peters, this has been precisely my personal tactic since late last year.

    Two illustrations:
    1) Early each year, for the past five, I have accompanied my mother (>90yrs. old) to FL to annually visit her slightly younger brother (RIP Jan. 2011). Once the TSA’s “scan and/or grope” policy went into effect (late 2010), I decided then and there that I would no longer fly (now academic) with her. Why? Because I easily projected that, even if I were to “swallow hard” and allow a TSA perv to grope me, I would “go medieval” on any goon who would grope her. Thus, I would quickly wind up in Gitmo–never to be heard from again–while my mother would end up on a bench in MCO without a clue as to what happened, or what to do about it.
    2) Thus, when my nephew weds his betrothed in Houston next spring (2012), I will drive there. No-brainer decision for me.

    Having paid way more than my dues on many “causes” of the past, I have neither the time nor the energy (at 61) to attempt to rally a critical mass of potential air travelers to join my boycott. (If a critical mass of air travelers fail to similarly “opt out,” I will only say: “I’m not at all surprised.”) However, I have little doubt that, by now, I am on our government’s “no-fly” list. (Or, if not there yet, surely upon intercept of this post.) If so, I will ever wear that designation as a badge of honor.

  9. I don’t quite see how this would rid us of the TSA.

    If the airlines have a serious drop in revenue the federal government could always nationalize the entire industry.

    Also, if enough people avoid the TSA at airports the federals will move it to bus stations, train stations, etc. Next we would have checkpoints in and out of major cities and/or on major highways. Most likely this is coming anyway but the process would be sped up.

    While I agree on a boycott I don’t see it working as hoped.

    • Timothy, as Enjoy Every Sandwich pointed out above boycotting airlines, GM, etc., is a matter of principle as well as a practical measure we take to withdraw our consent. Remember, our system is supposedly based on the “consent of the governed” (okay…okay….for those of you now ROFLYAO, I did say supposedly). If enough people withdraw their support from the centralized system and work toward more local / decentralized control, leviathon will collapse. We just need to avoid its tentacles as it thrashes around on its way down.

      The police state is already moving toward control of all forms of mass transit under the guise of “homeland security”. They have even fielded vans with backscatter x-ray that can see into the vehicles around them on the road and they’ve done this with money we provided. It is inevitable that tyrannts will tighten their grip in an effort to retain their power. Just do anything you can to evade and avoid that grip.

      As the police state grip tightens ever more on the sheeple’s collective throat, they’ll start to resist, evade and avoid too. It’s not that the TSA will necessarily go away from a boycott. But as the centralized system loses more and more bricks from its wall, it will eventually collapse. Then we will have to do more at the local level. That is where we, as individuals, have more of a voice. Watching how and where we spend your money and telling those we withold it from why, is one way we can remove bricks.

      I’ve seen estimates that the Amerikan gray / black market (i.e. non-taxable) is worth as much as one trillion dollars a year. The more participation it gets, the less food goes to leviathon. The more we write and spread the idea of liberty, the more we challenge bureaucrats to show us the law, the more free we become. Because as Butler Shaffer so eloquently pointed out, Freedom exists in your mind. Liberty is the condition that results when free people live together harmoniously. So we can each be free in our own minds, control our own thoughts and actions, associate with like minded people (which we are doing right here, right now) and each of us can kindle a spark of Liberty.

  10. I agree completely, Eric. That’s the path I’ve been following for some time now. And I’ll keep to it regardless of whether it works; I see it as a matter of principle.

    The purists and the anti-libertarians (and you seem to have at least one of the latter here!) will sneer that “…you’re still paying taxes…still driving on the gubmint’s roads…” blahblahblah. That’s true, I am. Although libertarianism is frequently scoffed at as “utopian” in fact it is realistic as well as principled. I don’t have the power to directly change what our government is doing; what I have is the power to control MY behavior and I’m going to do that in accordance with my principles. The statists are just going to have to get over it.

    • I love that statist argument. The state takes a monopoly on something or uses violence or threat there of to steal something, and if someone (who believes in liberty) still uses it or gives up whatever is demanded then somehow that makes him a hypocrite? Believing in liberty doesn’t mean one should be confined to his own land due to a government road monopoly or be imprisoned or shot dead over not paying taxes. I wonder how many of these statists would stand up to a mugger let alone to something as big and unavoidable as government.

      Of course a statist doesn’t often believe the government even uses violence. I’m lost track how many times I’ve tried to get one to understand that ultimately taxes and government monopolies are backed up with violence.

      • Thanks Brent, you make a really good point. I pointed out to someone recently that if you are in combat, your weapon jams and there are serviceable enemy weapons on the ground around you, it can hardly be called hypocritical to pick one up and defend yourself! By the same token, if you are completely surrounded by armed men and they say “hand over your wallet or you’ll die”, the supposedly “principled” man would both die and lose his wallet? That would be stupid. One has to weigh ideals against reality and make wise decisions. Rash idealism has filled many a ditch with bodies.

        My questions to statists that don’t comprehend that government is force are simple: If you refuse to pay the income tax do you think men with guns will come to your house? Of course they answer ‘yes’. So my next question is: If you resist being taken into custody, do you think they will shoot you? They usually catch on pretty quick at that point.

        • I make the same point… but it often doesn’t work. they say you get a letter, and then court, they go through every step and believe “arrest” isn’t an act of violence. I say resist the arrest and then it’s the person deserves it then… ARG! with taxes its even worse.

          I wonder what the alternate universe where neither Lincoln or Wilson were president looks like.

          • Me too. No Wilson (and no Col. House).. perhaps no U.S. entry into WWI and a reasonable, negotiated peace (as a result of military stalemate) between the warring European powers, with America not involved at all. No deliberately tortured Germany as a result – and as a result of that, no Hitler, no Nazi Party – no WW II.

            No Lincoln:

            Peaceful Southern-Northern separation; establishment of the confederacy (note, not the “CSA”). Not a copycat centralized state – either South or North. Just two regional associations of sovereign states. No War of Northern Aggression, no centralized federal state – on either side. Probable eventual rapprochement, but on the mutually understood and explicitly articulated concept of each state’s sovereignty, right to secede and of strictly limited national authority.

            What a nice daydream!

  11. From poster Boothe: “Yeah, go ahead and write; even if it’s hand a written letter (for those of us that still know how) he’ll only see it as representing 100 votes at best. It doesn’t hurt anything to write to them and it may make you feel better to vent.”

    Recently the Alliance for Health staged a national Call-In Day to protest proposed regulation of nutritional supplements by the FDA. (Under the new regs supplements would become impossible or extremely expensive to get, don’t get me started.)

    This was important enough to me to break my rule never to contact Congresscritters, so on the day I heaved a big sigh and put in a call to Mark Warner, one of my Senators. I got a recording inviting me to express my views because they were “extremely important to the Senator”.

    Yeah, I can tell.

    So I said my piece and hung up thinking: There’s five minutes I’ll never get back. Some days later I get an e-mail from him, thanking me for “sharing my concerns about intellectual property”.

    Wait, what?

  12. The problem is not enough people care and even more don’t see a problem – which is why I beat-it the Hell out. I don’t have enough years left to wait for things to get better when better means things have stopped getting worse. Individual freedom and privacy lost will never come back and thinking (hoping) they will is only a dream.
    Boycotting airports may sound good but flying is usually less expensive, less dangerous (regarding being ripped-off by the Highway Revenuers) and takes less time (assuming one is traveling over about 800Km). Thanks to Protectionism Laws, traveling between US cities is impossible without flying on US Airlines. If it were not, one could fly Volaris or Condor in protest since their Countries inspections are more logical and reasonable.
    If you don’t like Communism, don’t buy Cuban cigars.
    If a Country has a General Speed Limit or Traffic Laws which are made and enforced for money, one CAN boycott its auto industry. Since the Isle of Man has no auto industry, don’t purchase vehicles which have not been designed, developed and tested in Germany and are owned by a German Company.

    • I’m assuming from the context that you beat it the hell out to Isle of Man? That was on my escape list too, but I don’t have direct enough British relatives.

  13. Social Security began as a widowers welfare program but was later expanded to include not most workers but the disabled as well. Giving away money is always real popular with the recipients. Cash for clunkers and agricultural subsidies come to mind but the examples are really almost endless. Typically, if the recipient group has not already organized politically to lobby for more of the same they it soon do so while taxpayers, as a rule, rarely organize to oppose spending programs. To poorly paraphrase Milton Friedman, new programs are sold to the public with claims that they will not only provide great societal benefits but only cost a few cents or fractions of a cent out of each tax dollar. Even those taxpayers who are smart enough see through the benefits hogwash will still view the fractions of a cent or dollar costs as not worth the effort to fight. Why bother? In aggregate, however, all spending now consumes more money than can possibly be provided by private sector surplus – something to the tune of 1.6 trillion per year.

  14. Even 1 in 3000 sounds overly optimistic for Amerikans. Those who are not on the receiving end of government spending are now in the minority. Those who are on the receiving end tend to tie their fortunes to the state and have become morally compromised as a result. Neither group is either capable of recognizing the warning signs of tyranny or willing to do anything about it even if they did.

    As far as the TSA goes, a couple of months ago on Ron Paul’s site I suggested taking the Jesse Ventura approach. Choosing not to fly is the most direct and peaceful way to send a message to the airlines. A boycott would be highly inconvenient to say the least but if enough people participated things would quickly change for the better.

    • You’re right Marc, I think the statistic is 54% of Amerikans are getting some kind of government check now. No quicker way to turn citizens into dependents than to buy ’em off outright.

      If our fellow Amerikans that could, would stop discretionary flying the airlines would feel it right away (there are those folks who would lose their job if they refuse to fly, so I do understand they have to get on that plane). It wouldn’t be long before they took back control of the air terminals again by supplying security that didn’t subjugate their customers. But until we are willing make the personal sacrifice of not flying out to see Grandpa and Grandma (or taking a few extra days and driving instead), brace yourself for the vaginal poke and testical squeeze, ’cause nothing’s gonna’ change over at the TSA.

      • Here’s something I’ve thought about – and may write at greater length about: How many people in the Gen X (me) and Gen Y (Dom) groups would be willing to forgo any future SS (or Medicare) benefits as well as renounce any claim to the money already extracted from them, in return for being exempt henceforth from SS and Medicare withholding?

        I would. And I am optimistic enough to think that as many as 30 percent of my ggggggeneration would also agree to such a deal.

        • I sure would forgo SS payments later on. I would still demand that they refund what I have paid in. I don’t think that I will see a dime of SS anyway.

          • I long ago assumed I won’t ever see a dime in “benefits” – and frankly, don’t want them since I am aware that my money was spent long ago and the “benefits” given me (hypothetically) tomorrow come from taxes; that is, from money stolen at gunpoint from others. It’s not my money. It is other people’s money. SS is welfare. There is no owner-contributor “account” where the money extracted from you sits, earning interest. The money taken from you and I was immediately spent to provide “benefits” to current recipients. In other words, a transfer payment… theft. For you to get “benefits” in the future, tomorrow’s workers must be your victims, forced at gunpoint to pay up. No thanks!

            It sucks, but once you’re morally aware of the nature of the system, to accept “benefits” is to partake of theft. And if you knowingly partake of such theft, then you have lost any moral claim to oppose the current system – and not just SS but the whole rotten edifice.

            All the money taken from us is long gone, amigo.

            The fact is, to accept SS money – knowing the truth as outlined above and yet still accepting it – is no different, morally speaking, than the actions of the man who just got robbed by a thug jumping the next guy who comes along to steal his money to make up for what was taken from him… right?

          • Swamprat, I’m a “boomer” and I’m with you; give me back what I’ve paid in to SS and Medicare, go away and leave me alone. Ahhh, if only it were that simple. First of all, my dad paid in to system since the 1940’s, so essentially what I’m doing is covering what they stole from him (only difference is I understand how it really works) until he and my mom pass on.

            I read the supreme court stance on the Socialist Slave system years ago which basically said: there is no “Trust Fund” and it is not insurance, the money is not ear-marked for anything and goes into the general fund, and the kicker; there is no guarantee you will ever receive any benefit for your “contribution”. It’s nothing more than an additional payroll tax masqurading as a social safety net.

            As Bernie Madoff said (and he should know) our government is nothing more than a massive Ponzi scheme. They can’t afford to let anyone that’s still productive drop out of the system; at least not until (they think) they’re ready to deal with the chaos that will follow. We do indeed live in interesting times.

            • I, too, would like to have the SS “contributions” taken from me against my will over the past 20-plus years. However, I also know the money (that is, my money) is long gone – and that the only way the government can pay me (or anyone else) back is by forcing others to “contribute” against their will – and at the expense of their own financial security and that of their own families – and I cannot be involved in that.

              Correct me if I am wrong, but accepting SS on the basis that “they took from me, now I will take from them” is no different than making up for someone robbing you by robbing someone else. In fact, this is probably the most despicable aspect of the SS system; it turns us all into maggots leeching off each other…

              Now, if I could get my hands on my money – the sum taken from me and given to SS recipients (I mean the specific people who received my money) than I’d be happy to see it taken from them and returned to me – its rightful owner!

          • There are two basic views. One is to forgo any payments and the other is that the government isn’t going to stop stealing any time soon so get back what you can.

            I really can’t find argument with either.

    • I agree (unfortunately) with your assessment.

      Still, I decided that I won’t fly again until I can do so without being forced to surrender my dignity as well as my rights. It may just be pissing in the wind, but it makes me feel better, at least.

      • Not flying and not buying does more than make you feel better Eric; it takes money away from corporations that are more interested in the “bottom line” than individual rights. There are several of us here that have taken that stance. Lew Rockwell’s site “drives” (pun fully intended) more people here each day. Some will read these ideas and act on them by contacting the airlines. Some of those will post to other sites, the idea will spread and it will cost the airlines financially. If it spreads enough, their cronies in gubmint will have to do something.

        More loans, bailouts, tax breaks, inflation are more straws on the camel’s back ultimately leading to the present system failing. We all know the present system isn’t sustainable. All we can do is take a pick to our own area of the figurative Berlin wall we call a socio-political system, enourage others to do the same and make sure we are positioned so very little of it falls on us when it does collapse.

  15. Just for fun, I went to GMs website. i told them I was in the market for a new car. I asked them if it was possible to have Onstar deleted form the car, or if it was possible to have the unit removed. i told them that I consider the units an invasion of my privacy, and that i will not purchase a car that has it.

    This might be an exersize or futility on my part. I will forward their reply if they respond.

  16. I suggest that real change might occur when Americans are no longer distracted by “American Idol”, “Dancing with the Stars”, and sorry to say, NFL football (yes, I am a fan), and pay more attention to the thieves & jokers on Capitol Hill, Wall Street, and the Fed. If and when change occurs, it’s likely to come from the 20-somethings, who may not see a positive return on their over-priced & leveraged B.S.’s & B.A.’s. Until that time, I think modest investments in food, water, agricultural land & lead would be prudent investments. Cheers.

    • The obsession with sports (and also vacuous celebrities) infuriates and sickens me – especially because it’s no longer just low-IQ “white trash” that’s obsessed with this crap but almost everyone, including (cough) educated professional people.”The game” is all that matters to these people.”We” won last night …

      I guess it helps them to dissipate their helpless rage and feel manly by proxy….

    • Hey, watch it! I can watch “Dancing With the Stars” and still be pissed off about Bernanke.

      Or at least, I could before I dumped television four years ago.

  17. This falls in with what I’ve been saying for years about protesting CA’s ridiculous car registration costs. I’d like to get a number of people to simply go to the DMV office near them, and hand over their license plates. If one, or ten, or 100 people do this, they’ll likely get nothing but cited, etc. But if 100,000 people did this, the state would have to act, and if it were 10 times that, change would happen overnight.
    Always follow the money- that’s also where it hurts ‘them’, whether business or government.

    • Yes sir! Organization of human beings is extremely difficult.

      Here are two micro examples:
      – Ever try to get the family out of the house at a set time?
      – I’ve been trying to give away FREE bumper stickers on this site for over two months! -not one inquiry

      • Wrong crowd for bumper-stickers Dom. They’re great stickers but I suspect we’re all too car-obsessed to mar our lovelies with a bumper sticker.

        • Ha, you know what! I’ve never put a bumper sticker on anything I’ve owned. That picture to the left on my Yaris is actually a magnet that I put on before I leave and take off when I park. I hear ya..

  18. Dom, somehow Ghandi managed to get 200 million Indians to simply sit down at one time. So we know it can be done. The problem is Amerikans are too comfortable. And sometimes even if people are uncomfortable, they won’t make a move.

    I read an article in which the question was raised “how many good men are there?” The question was posed by a former German POW who was held in a Soviet labor camp where they knew they going to die. There were about 30,000 POW’s and they determined the Soviet guards were poorly trained amateurs that could be taken out by about 200 men and they could all escape. So they started looking for volunteers. How many men do you think volunteered? One man in a hundred? One in a thousand? Wrong! They got 10….only about 1 in 3000 men, who were very likely going to die anyway, had the balls to stand up.

    Granted we’re only talking about not spending money with given companies, certainly not running the risk of taking a bullet….but still….do you think even one in a hundred will take a stand with us? I’ll be curious to see.

    • Your example sums things up pretty well. Just pathetic! I am all for things being right, but have been around long enough and have seen enough to know it never will be.

  19. Dood, what percentage of the population do you think really want all this shit gone? I bet you it’s not even 20%. Think about this. We can’t even get the clovers on the road organized, how would it be possible to organize a boycott. Clovers like things the way they are. Because they are idiots and can’t think for themselves they want us all on the same page. Levels the playing field for them when we’re all treated like idiots equally.

    • The cynical, pessimistic side of me agrees with you – but at the same time, I try to have hope that I am wrong; that there enough people out there who matter to make the difference.

    • I go out of my way to talk to people in all walks of life, and bring up any of the key issues–the Fed, inflation, bailouts, TSA, etc depending on the situation*.

      Lately I have been *astonished* at how many positive responses I get. There are two checkout girls and a guy at the fish counter at my local grocery store who are buying silver to hedge against inflation and understand the basics of how the Fed screws us. At least 80% of people**, including the guy carrying bags of chicken manure at the feed store, hate the TSA and think it’s a sham.

      What really surprises me is it’s the poor and lower-middle class who seem the most “awake”. My neighbors–upper middle class, house values between 500K and 1.5M–are so invested in the system that psychologically it’s impossible for them to climb out of the cave. My coworkers are unusual; software engineers tend heavily toward libertarianism, I think because we conceptualize systems for work and analyze politics through the same lens; libertarianism is the obvious answer. They’re about 70% aware.

      Young people–18-30–are Ron Paul’s (and liberty’s) best demographic. It’s the well-off 50-and-over crowd who cannot break the paradigm because they have too much ego invested in the dream-world, left-right statist system.

      It’s thought that once an idea reaches 10% of the population, it achieves exponential growth and soon dominates. I am hopeful. What distinguishes us with the closest group in history–1930’s Germans–is our tradition of individual liberty, and that spark is not entirely dead yet.

      Here’s hoping we can all huff and puff enough to make that spark ignite the pile!

      * I’m guessing I’m also the brunt of plenty of back-room “Hey that kook was in the store again today!” jokes. But I’ve got thick skin 🙂

      ** That is, victims of my political probing

    • I read somewhere that roughly 48% of the population wanted to stay under the crown at the time of the Americna revolution. People get comfortably invested in a system and don’t want to change a thing. But that didn’t stop the tireless minority from handing the system it’s own ass!

      Ask one of your friends or coworkers to hold up their hand, put your hand against theirs palm to palm and push. Seriously, actually try this. I’d say 99% of the populace will push back. That’s resistance to change and as a specie the vast majority of us are subject to it. But once you make people aware of this trait, you can often get them to listen and even if they don’t agree you’ve planted seeds!

      It’s up to the recipient to see to the germination and cultivation of those seeds. Don’t get discouraged because some seeds land on dry or stoney ground. A few will find fertile soil, sprout and grow so don’t give up. Keep digging ruts in the Clovers’ playing field and tear up the page they want to keep you on Dom, no matter how many times you have to do it.

      As far a that cynical side Eric, that’s born of real life experience and I’ve been told about my sarcastic, cynical side at least once or twice. 😮 The way I see it, if you can’t find something about “the system” to ridicule and disparage, then you’re probably on life support! But pessimism is a different matter; although I take a realistic approach to life (I know Clovers exist and sometimes have to deal with them) I make it a point to try to turn my negative thoughts positive as soon as they surface. I know there are some good folks out there worthy of my time, attention and support. In fact quite a few of them are gathered together right here on this site. Eric, you’ve provided an open forum for those of us who “get it” to spread our ideas. That’s a remarkably optimistic and positive thing to do. Thank you. Noli sinere nothos te opprimere.

    • All Libertarians have to do is find the Libertarian (or the non-Libertarian) gene and release a artificial virus that sterilise the “clovers” and heralds an era where the vast majority want to bring an end to government.

      • No, the sociopath clovers beat us to it. Rockefeller-supported vaccine “research” in the Philippines and elsewhere immunized women against their own beta-hCG, effectively sterilizing them. That’s just one example.

        And again, agent Gil, it’s your type who work through coercion, fraud, and force.

        We’re peaceful. We cooperate. We persuade. We convince.

      • Gil, I heard there’s a brothel in Bangkok that was looking for a man that could hold a half gallon of vinegar and water in his cheeks, spit on demand and hang upside down in the women’s lavatory for hours without having the blood flow affect his brain. I immediately thought of you…..

  20. Americans have already tried to rule against GM and Chrysler through what they thought was a free market.

    Problem is, Eric, GM is no longer a private company. The Feds have shown themselves more than willing to prop up losses in that company with our money.

    I’ve been accused of pessimism on many occasions; unfortunately I think the snowball of totalitarianism has gained too much size and momentum rolling down the hill and nothing short of total collapse is going to rip the wool from the eyes of Americans.

    In the past few months, regarding TSA I’ve been told “who cares if it’ll save your life?” and “oh you’re one of THOSE people.”

    Regarding Ron Paul I’ve been told “yeah he has some good ideas but he’s an idiot because he’d throw the Israelis over the side and we need them because they’re our only friends over there,” and of course the ubiquitous “I like him but he’s unelectable” by at least ten people.

    Regarding social programs such as SS and Medicare “the problem is they’ve expanded it beyond its original scope and too many people are drawing from it. We need to get it back to its original purpose.” Nobody has an answer for what will prevent social programs from moving outside their “original scope” like they did last time.

    But the whopper of the year must be “what we need is another layer of courts above what exists to make sure the government follows the rules and doesn’t step out of line.” This person could not, more accurately simply WOULD NOT explain to me how, for example, if the Obama Justice Dept., which is tasked with upholding federal law, would decide such a thing as white males are not subject to civil rights protections, once again what’s to prevent this brand-new omnipotent and pure branch of judiciary from picking and choosing which laws to uphold based on partisanship and/or ideology?

    And these are ALL people who consider themselves anti-state conservatives and never miss a chance to tell me that it’s MY generation that’s losing this country. That’s hard to stomach because it’s painfully obvious they “lost it” decades before we ever gained the right to vote.

    Most people don’t change their minds. The older they get the less likely this becomes. Sad but true.

  21. My first real job @ 14 working construction on a highway overpass I received my first pay check and I was short a lot of money. I complained to my coworkers who laughed at me. I was really upset. My boss was sympathetic and explained the taxes and social security to me.

    I actually wrote to social security and said I did not want their retirement plan as I would take care of myself. I got a nice letter saying I had no choice. I had recently got my SS number or I guess I should call it my human vin number and it dawned on me my goose was cooked due to this number.

    I quit my job telling my boss I could make more money mowing lawns in four days that working five days and paying all these taxes. My boss said he didn’t blame me. He said my freedom wouldn’t last long and I should enjoy what I had left. He was right.

    • James, I had a similar revelation only it was at 16. SSN actually stands for Socialist Slave Number. Check out the look on Ms. Moneygrubber’s face down at the DMV when you identify it that way. They don’t seem to have much of sense of humour.

    • Reminds me of when I was a kid, they kept telling me I’d be going to school, next year, then next month, next week, tomorrow. Well I went,at the end of the day it hadn’t been so bad and I didn’t see what all the fuss was about. It was only when they told me it was going to be like that for the next twelve years that I lost it.

  22. Eric, when the porno-scanners hit the terminals I wrote to the major airlines and informed them they would not get another dime of my money until the TSA is gone! You’re absolutely right about voting; if it could really change the system it would be illegal. Everyone thought it would be more “democratic” to elect U.S. Senators through the popular vote, so the power of senatorial appointment was taken away from the state legislatures. What this did was effectively dilute the voice of the voters.

    We have more clout with a state congressman or state senator than we ever will with their federal equivalents. Why? Fewer constituents at the state level = a bigger indvidual voice. The average U.S. Congress-critter has over 712,000 constituents, the average senator over 3,000,000. Yeah, go ahead and write; even if it’s hand a written letter (for those of us that still know how) he’ll only see it as representing 100 votes at best. It doesn’t hurt anything to write to them and it may make you feel better to vent. But do the math, then buy a lottery ticket. The odds that things will change for you are about the same in either event.

    Eric’s absolutely right; our power is in our wallets. When people start voting with their money in earnest, the corporate interests stand up and take notice. So let’s all start by just saying no to Government Motors and air travel. If enough of us do it, just a tireless minority (even 5%) things will start to change.

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