Refusing to fly again until TSA Submission Training is done away with – and not buying cars equipped with Big Brother technology – that’s a good start on the path back to liberty. But if we really want to pick up the pace – and get back to what this country once was, a very long time ago, there’s a play we could make about a year from now that would fundamentally change everything:
Don’t play their game.
Not until, at least, voting isn’t a con – as it is currently and has been for decades.
No, worse than a con.
Voting in the context of our current system is the mechanism by which we enslave ourselves – and this is key – without being conscious of our enslavement.
It is called the illusion of consent.
We – most of us, at any rate – believe that because we are offered the choice between Tweedledee and Tweedledum that the oppression subsequently visited upon us by the state and its agents has been done with our consent, since after all, we got to vote on it first.
It is an absurd proposition when you deconstruct it – as well as when examined in the light of morality. On a purely mechanical level, it’s ridiculous to believe that you or I or any individual has any meaningful say in what is done to us under color of law, on the basis of The Vote. Have you ever written your congresscretin? The form letters one receives in reply, auto-penned signature and all, reveal the weight given your mighty vote… .
Trust me. Every vote does not matter – or even count.
You, and I and everyone else – we’ve all been rendered moot by diffusion. We are as individually unimportant to the system as a worker bee in a hive.
But what really matters is the fundamental immorality of The Vote. Certain things should simply not be on the table. Human rights are not negotiable, but of course, most people no longer have any conception of human rights – or have had their conceptions warped into their opposite. That is, they believe in the right to violate other people’s rights via The Vote. It is ok to steal from your neighbor, for instance, provided it has been duly voted on first. To tell a man with whom he may associate, or buy from and sell to. And so forth.
But, I digress.
The sickness this country suffers from is the false idea that the government operates with the consent of the governed. I don’t know about you, but no agent of the government ever asked whether I consent to anything that has been done to me, or done in my name. If they want my money, they just take my money. My rights – and yours – have been regulated, delimited, conditioned and outright taken away against my expressly stated wishes – and yours too, probably. But we play along, because we have The Vote and because the system has conned us into accepting this absurd notion that it operates with our consent.
Well, what if we withdrew that consent?
What if enough of us simply declined to vote for Tweedledee or Tweedledum?
We are very tellingly encouraged – by both wings of the duopoly that runs this country – to vote. They – Demopublicans and Republicrats alike – urge us via PSAs every election cycle that “It doesn’t matter who you vote for – so long as you vote.”
Is it not interesting that both wings should be so mutually in agreement on this point?
What they want above all is our affirmation of the duopoly’s rule over us, which we freely give them each and every election cycle – thus perpetuating the con.
But we could give the duopoly a Wizard of Oz moment if enough of us just stayed home on election day – especially election day 2012.
Historically, only about half of all eligible voters ever vote in a presidential election anyhow – which means (roughly) about 26-30 percent of the actually-voting 50-ish percent. So, the little known fact of the matter is that El Jefe is (s)elected by, at most, about a quarter of all eligible voters.
We don’t even have “majority rule”!
Now, a goodly portion of the people who do vote are tax-feeders or parasites of one sort or another because, obviously, they have the most at stake. They will continue to participate for the same reason that stray cats will continue to show up when someone puts food out for them. But if, by not voting, the dwindling minority of non-parasites who have voted in the past – often with great enthusiasm in a misguided because within-the-system effort to hold the line (that is, to hold onto whatever remains of their rights and liberties) decided not to play anymore… if they withheld their vote…. the illusion of consensual government would be smashed at one stroke.
The truth would be laid bare. People would know how the system really works – and what it is really based on.
That is, force. The closed fist, the cocked and loaded gun. The truncheon and the Tazer. The prison.
And once that happens, once the cloak of consent is torn away and tyranny becomes obvious and undeniable – then tyranny’s days are numbered.
Remember: The system relies on our tacit consent. Withdraw that consent and the system will be laid bare for what it is.
And then it will not last long.
Throw it in the Woods?
Seems like good news:
NH Judge Upholds Right to Record Police in Public (Thu., Nov. 03, 2011, posted @15:00)
There’s growing pushback on this deal. I think it’s just too obviously hypocritical (and tyrannical) to last… then again, we have the Gate Rapes and “Safety Checks” that most people seem to mind not at all….
I recently wrote an article for the American Daily Herald that in part concerned withdrawing consent to show up the control freaks for the usurping power-grabbers that they are.
If I may quote myself:
“(the concept of withdrawal of consent is) described by the French philosopher Étienne de La Boétie in his work “The Discourse of Voluntary Servitude,” written in 1552 or 1553, of the effect of the body of people nonviolently withdrawing their consent to a tyrant’s rule:
Resolve to serve no more, and you are at once freed. I do not ask that you place hands upon the tyrant to topple him over, but simply that you support him no longer; then you will behold him, like a great Colossus whose pedestal has been pulled away, fall of his own weight and break in pieces.”
I like that guy a lot, and discovered him through a reprinted article by Murray Rothbard on LRC. Even in the sixteenth century the solution to deal with would-be overlords was known.
Gotta like those historians who don’t let guys like Étienne de La Boétie get stuffed down the Memory Hole, huh?
Excellent! I will have to read up on de La Boétie; I hadn’t heard of him before.
Withdrawing consent may be the only practicable solution. It trumps the tyrant by forcing him to bare his fangs, so to speak – erasing all doubt, even among the bluntest of the blunt-skulled, as to the nature of the relationship.
The beauty of it is that no organization, no leader, is needed. Just millions of individuals declaring their sovereignty and refusing to be complicit in their own degradation and enslavement.
I often think how (and have written to the effect that) we could get rid of Submission Training at airports in a matter of weeks if only about 20 percent of the people who currently fly simply withdrew consent and declined to fly again – until Submission Training is done away with. Ditto every other form of oppression we currently live under.
What depresses me is that fewer than 5 percent of the population seems to give a damn.
Ron Paul announced his “Plan to Restore America” this week, and it is available on his website. Among other excellent actions, he states that when he is elected President, he will diband and terminate the TSA.
Nice to see a plan that is supposed to work with in a single term.
People will be able to see if RonP delivers on his goal, before needing to re-elect him to a second term (to continue the plan).
The median salary idea is a nice symbolic gesture.
Another idea morsel to savor; what would the FedGov Combine’s response be to drastically reduced voter turnout? Something crazy low like 5-15 percent decide of the actually-voting 50 percent?! Perhaps for once thoughtfully consider, “Hey, we’ve lost a great amount of consent from the public! Maybe we should acknowledge this loss of legitimacy right quick!” Hell no, they would go about their business of absorbing your liberties for their benefit at your expense like there was nary a hiccup in the freedom-destroying machine. All the more reason you should take advantage of the best option available to you at an individual level: IGNORE THEM!
I think delegitimizing the current system is an essential step toward recovering our liberties. It operates with impunity because it can claim “consent of the governed,” who, after all, voted. But what if, as you say, only 5-15 percent voted? That would rip away the facade of “consent’ and lay bare the truth of the situation – and that would get people mad, which would lead to real change.
Enjoyed this column and only wanted to say I have not voted for years for the very reasons you stated. In fact, my ‘mantra’ goes back decades “What if they held an election and nobody voted?” And sure, I’ve often been berated for being open and honest about my non-voting history…the usual. “You can’t complain then if you don’t vote”, “Vote for the lesser of two evils then” etc. If I voted for the lesser of two evils (always supposing I believed in “evil” to start with) isn’t that still voting for “evil”? I’ve long advocated adding ONE thing to the ballots…”Abstain”. I don’t NOT vote because the weather kept me home, I have to work, my car broke down ad nauseum. I don’t vote because I don’t believe in the system any longer, do not like our politicians or the way (as you say) things are done in my name of which I do not approve, condone or give permission…and I want to mark X in the spot “Abstain” then in a little box alongside voice my reasons why. Not that anybody will care but at least I’d make it known I was there, did not approve and said so.
And one other thing: You’ll feel good – clean – knowing you did not consent. That what is being done is not being done with your approval.
“You can’t complain then if you don’t vote”. If this isn’t the Ultimate Cloverism, it’s in the top three.
The current government in US has become Kabuki Theatre. I don’t believe it can be turned around from within. Voting does not matter.
What I think will happen is that an unelected leader will emerge. It could be the next Thomas Jefferson, or it could be Joseph Stalin. What I do know is that the current game of lying, deciption, corruption, and special intrests, has irrepairibily dammaged our government. We must start anew.
Personally, I see hope – push the people far enough, and they will fight back. What happened in Libya and Egypt is proof of that. Just because tyrants have been around for a long time doesn’t guarantee that they will stick around. I am actively working on Ron Paul’s campaign, and donating whatever I can. I will also vote for him when Virginia’s primaries come around. Find a good third-party candidate and work like hell to get them noticed and elected. So dont buy the nonsense that all is lost – that is what TPTB want you to think. Dont fall for it!
Amen brother! All it takes for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing. Voting may be a scam, the deck may be stacked and we may be fighting with one hand tied behind our backs, but fight on I shall. It would be a real shame to give up a few inches from the finish line and watch another bankster-owned poser stumble past us, because they fooled us into believing we couldn’t win. A bunch of rag-tag colonial militia men couldn’t possibly win against the modern well equipped British army, or so they were told before April 19, 1775. That didn’t stop them from trying anyway and the establishment didn’t fare too well in that contest. It’s that hardheaded spirit, the healthy distrust of government and individual determination that has been the hallmark of true Americans. We may lose, but by God I intend to fight this illegitimate system to the end. Anyone care to join me?
I wouldn’t be surprised if history books published a century or more from now devote an entire chapter to the next four years. We live in interesting times, no? Let’s hope this period won’t come to be characterized as something like, “Americans Blow Their Last Chance” or “America Does Exactly the Opposite of the Right Thing Once Again.”
OK, I’ll withold my vote and my implied consent to the way “leaders” are supposedly “chosen.” Seriously, I will.
But I don’t think that will bring the system crashing down. A sufficient number of sheep…or clovers….or republican/democrat “true believers” will still vote. Enough at least for TPTB to claim “consent.”
There isn’t anything we can “not do” that will fix America’s present problems. Proactive steps will be required.
I am struggling with wether or not to cast a vote for Ron Paul in the primaries. Currently, I am not registered to vote. I make nominal donations to the campaign, but I am not particularly motivated by the whole voting circus. I am sick and tired of my voice being overrun by idiots and psychophants. In addition, while I stand with Ron Paul on 99 percent of the issues, trade is a big 1%. He has great plans to eliminate the FED and enact honest money standards, however, he does not adequately address our hollow industrial base and the lack of jobs in the country. Without a strong middle class that full employment provides, there is no way freedom will be adequately defended against a growing police state. I don’t have a clue of what to do besides run for the hills. We live in a dangerous era.
The police state is largely operated from the executive. Often executive orders. Ron Paul or anyone like him in the presidency could easily roll it back decades in an instant. So much power has been concentrated in the executive that the power to dismantle it all is there too.
As to the the industrial base, that is not any business of the president. The past presidents made it their business which is why it is in the poor state that it is. With monetary reform and closing down the regulatory agencies (under the executive) the industrial base will be able to grow again. The industrial base is in its current state because new can’t come online to replace the old. The government created that condition. So when a major corporation closes down a factory there is no upstart to replace it.
Industry, people making stuff to make money is not something that needs government help. It something that needs government to get out of the way. Government poisons the ground from which it grows. When the poisoning stops, it grows, naturally.
Swamprat: Brent is absolutely right. If you cut or better yet, eliminate the progressive income tax, bring the troops home, reestablish sound money and abolish the unconstitutional alphabet soup agencies, American industry will take off again like there’s no tomorrow. Once that happens, technological advances combined with American productivity (we don’t take anywhere the time off that Europeans take for granted) would put us back in the world’s economic driver’s seat.
It has taken a major effort by our fascist government and their corporate owners to destroy the phenomenal wealth engine that once was America. Entrepreneurs that introduce products the market wants (that means all of us, Swamprat)and organize capital to do so efficiently and competitively are the actual source of wealth. Governments have been proven, since time immemorial, to meddle in our affairs, distort markets, take property, destroy wealth and kill people. What we need is for “our” government to do a helluva lot less than what they’re doing now. Government is the reason the middle class is fading away and our jobs have gone overseas. As Brent so accurately stated; what’s needed is for “government to get out of the way”.
Perhaps if Ron Paul chose a complimentary running mate that 1% of doubt would vanish? People nowadays seem to have forgotten how to be simple, honest, trustworthy, and respectful. Greed, corruption, self-interest, and plain fucking stupidity has replaced it. I like Ron Paul. He seems like a guy I can understand. A leader I can rest assured would do what is right, not what is more profitable for him.
Dr. Pauls message and priciples haven’t changed for thirty years. You’re absolutely right about greed, corruption and self-interest driving the lions share of what’s left of American politics and major corporate management. It has spread like a disease to the point that many people in business now not only accept dishonestly as normal, but even see it as necessary. Speaking the truth, standing on principle and calling out the posers resonates with a lot of us Americans out here in “TV land”. If we could get him to name Walter Williams as his running mate, I don’t see how he could lose.
I like Walter Williams! I will vote for Ron Paul in the primaries. When he doesn’t get the nomination, I hope he’ll be on the ballot as a third party candidate. This will be the LAST time I vote, ever.
Just one more thing….
How could this article not have a reference to “Brewster’s Millions”?
Just for argument’s sake, if Ron Paul was to catch the Republican nomination, wouldn’t it behoove a Libertarian or anyone who supports his ideas, or most of them, to seriously consider voting for him?
As someone who wants to live without a state, who believes the free market can better provide national defense, police, courts, etc., than the state, I argue to myself that if I am confident that someone, in this case, Ron Paul, will get us closer to that goal, why shouldn’t I vote for him? If, by a miracle, he wins it would mean that a lot of people want to head in that direction. Then given this situation (President Paul) it may not be so strange to discuss the pros and cons of a stateless society as it is now; and this discussion would likely be more widespread than just amongst anarchists and minarchists.
Of course I’d support Ron Paul if he by some miracle got the nomination – but we know that’s not going to happen. They won’t allow it to happen.
Eric, I understand how you feel. But the possibility does exist that if we get enough young, aggressive and principled delegates at the RNC, Dr. Paul could get the nomination. Had the Paulians that attended the last caucus elbowed their way past the establishment thugs that were controlling the podium, he may have even won the nomination then. I sincerely hope Dr. Paul’s supporters understand how that works this time around and force their way onto the platform to speak. Regardless, Ron Paul and the Internet have opened the door to political dialogue the establishment and their mainstream pressitutes have avoided for over a hundred years. We may be looking at the perfect storm now. Between our high unemployment rate, high inflation rate, massive foreclosures, the housing market collapse and corporate bailouts (most notably big money transferred to the banksters) there are a lot disillusioned Americans looking for real change.
If enough of us pick up the phone or send an email to the Republican party on Dr. Paul’s behalf, the leadership may not see the light, but they will feel the heat. If each of us can see fit to send Dr. Paul a little money, it will at least put him closer to equal footing with the warfare-welfare state fascist wannabees. If nothing else he keeps issues such as the Federal Reserve, sound money, the American empire and Austrian economic principles on the front burner. Then the posers running against him have to at least mouth the words, do some kind of reform if elected or go home after one term.
As Gerald Celente recently asserted, if Romney, Perry or Bachman get the nomination we get four more years of B.H.O. If Dr. Paul gets the nomination, there’s a strong possibility he would win the popular vote.
It’ll never happen – and if it did happen, Dr. Paul would soon be six feet under. This is why working with the system is futile. The only thing that will work, as I see it, is to delegitimize the system – and start over. And by “start over” I mean no more United States. This forced-together polyglot entity is worse than ungovernable; it is only governable by tyranny. There are just too many Clovers, too many losers, too many stupid and evil people. These creatures don’t want liberty. They don’t want live and let live, free association, voluntarism. The want some type of authoritarian system because it “helps” them – or because it gives them control over others.
Ask yourself: How many people would give up any future claims to Social Security in return for no more “contributions” being required from here on out? Would accept that it is their responsibility to provide for their own retirement?
That no one has any more moral right to vote themselves a material benefit provided by government force than a street thug has a moral right to take your wallet at gunpoint?
Immediate decriminalization of all “vice” – that is, of victimless (so-called) “crime”? And end to the despicable “war” on (some) drugs?
How many support deconstructing the Empire, cutting the “defense” budget (including military bases, all the associated “contracts” and all the associated “business”) by two-thirds or more – and returning to a policy of non-intervention?
How many would be for ending mandatory car insurance?
Agree that health care is not a “right”?
For basing legal sanction (punishment) solely on actual harm done and solely focused on the specific individuals who do actual harm?
That no free citizen should have to ask for government permission to carry a gun if he wishes; and that a person has every moral right to defend himself against any violent assault – including forcible entry into his home or vehicle? That if, in case of a defensive use of a firearm, the law finds him blameless, he should be rendered immune from any civil proceedings?
That people are responsible for the children they beget – including paying for their education – not their neighbors?
Oppose “sobriety checkpoints” and the TSA?
Who would support the idea of abolishing real estate and personal property taxes – and restoring the concept of free (allodial) title?
How many would agree that the “civil rights” act is an abomination to liberty? That people have a right to associate – or not – with whomever they wish, for whatever reason they wish? That a restaurant or business is private property and the owner has every right to sell to or serve – or not – on whatever basis he wishes?
Perhaps 40 years ago – maybe – it would have been possible to salvage things and return to (and retain) a fairly liberty-minded state of affairs. Given the current population, demographics, attitudes and general intelligence level – forget it.
What’s needed is a break-up; a divorce. Let the Clovers and moochers have their USSA. Let those of us who want liberty have liberty.
Well…alrighty then…talk about food for thought. But that’s why I come here. It took me a while to digest this Eric. You, of course, make many valid points; none the least of which is the United States government is too big to succeed. On that I agree with you wholeheartedly. But what to do? I’ve got a great-great grandfather laying in Blandford Cemetery in Petersburg, Virginia. He died with a Yankee Minie’ ball in his leg. He tried to help solve the problem of a feral federal government turned rabid. As we all remember, that effort “went south” in short order. So that rules out secession. Even if they’d won, who’s to say that the CSA wouldn’t be just as corrupt, just as statist and just as oppressive as the USA? The USA started out with true liberty in mind and it didn’t take long for the ambitious and officious among them to muck that up.
Just like you, I’d love to see everyone tune in, turn on to the libertarian / anarcho-capitalist way of thinking and just drop out. But in 2008 about 131,257,328 people turned out to vote in the presidential election (give or take a few dead folks in Chicago). According to Dr. Michael McDonald over at George Mason University the turnout was about 62% of people eligible to vote (that excludes “voting age” ineligible and overseas eligible). So it’s plain to see that everyone isn’t going to drop out and thereby de-legitimize the system. If those of us who understand what’s really going on drop out, that leaves nothing but the deluded and bought & paid for voters. Even if we could get everyone that’s not receiving a government check to drop out, we still lose because you’d only have retirees, welfare recipients and government employees voting. Guess how they’ll vote? Guess who’ll pay?
Let’s look at our present political system like a poker game: It’s fixed, the cards are marked, there are mirrors up around the room and we will be forced at gun point to put a third of our hard earned money in the pot…whether we play or not. Oh we can drop out of the game or never pick up a hand to begin with, but WE WILL ante up. Now there’s always a chance the crooked dealer and some of the cheats and hustlers around the table will slip (God does have a sense of humor) and we win a round. If we win big, we take the pot and control the game for a while. We take down the mirrors, run off some of the hustlers and make everybody use clean cards. Is it perfect? Hell no! We’re still gambling and there’re still a lot of folks at the table we can’t trust. But it would be better than what we have.
IF (and that’s a big IF) we can manage to get Ron Paul nominated, there’s very good chance he’ll get elected and we might just get a new dealer. Then we can worry about cleaning up the game enough to take our winnings and get out. But as things stand now, we are surrounded by armed thugs making damned sure you don’t leave the room without paying dearly (try expatriating with any wealth at all and see how much that costs) before you go. We will first have to get someone in the executive chair that is willing to start dismantling the bureaucracy before we can even consider disgorging ourselves from its voracious gaping maw. If we don’t support him, we are sure to get someone in there we don’t want.
Now let’s say Dr. Paul does get elected; you are quite correct that there would be elements in the welfare / warfare / corporate state that would want him dead (they already do). But I’m a firm believer in Divine protection (if you’d seen the way I rode a street bike in the 80’s and lived through it, you’d know why). Just because the morbidly obese rotting bureaucratic behemoth wants a man dead, doesn’t necessarily ensure that it will happen. A lot of people in the system wanted the Apostle Paul dead too. They couldn’t do it until it was the appointed time. Let me point out that we still remember Paul and what he taught (and he was a first order clover sent out to persecute Christians before he learned the truth). Not too many people can tell you the names of those who wanted him dead though. Dr. Paul’s message is timeless and its time has come. I’m seeing previously dyed in the wool Republicrats, that are older than me (I’m 52), supporting him! Soon dogs and cats will be sleeping together!
Eric, I know good and well that most people won’t agree to give up Socialist Security, disability, welfare, WICS, food stamps (now the EBT card), unemployment or any other “benefit” they receive from the government at our expense. We have huge organizations based on the civil rights act drawing in millions of dollars in donations annually. Allodial title and real estate tax freedom have to be tackled at the state and local level in the face of cries from the teachers union and school boards that you’d be taking away “the children’s” education. We both know congress, the senate, the alphabet soup bureaucracies and the SEIU aren’t going to give an inch of their political and financial ground with massive resistance. Without a man in the White House who will be willing to take hammer, pry bar and axe to the bureaucracy by rescinding bogus executive orders, your dream of a divorce from the system doesn’t stand much of a chance. That’s the reality of it.
I’m with you in letting the parasites have their USSA and we have our liberty and everyone lives happily ever after. But just like a real divorce, that’s not how it would go down. Look at the Confederacy as a case in point. The Federal government was the husband and the Confederacy was the wife in this marriage. The husband was prone to abuse, violence and profligacy to the point of taking his wife’s butter and egg money to keep the party going. Eventually the wife had all the abuse she could stand and tried to take her money, land and possessions and walk away peacefully. That’s when he beat the snot out of her, took everything from her, even her food and clothing and chained her in the basement. He then continued to beat and rape her for several years, all the while claiming to “reconstruct” the marriage. She finally submitted to his terms just to see daylight again. He (the US government) has been swaggering around every since, bragging that he saved the marriage. Care to try another divorce American style?
Ten years ago I was still quite idealistic and really believed the pendulum would swing back to more freedom and less government on its own. Age and wisdom have made me more pragmatic now; the pendulum usually needs a push. If we don’t push it, someone else will and we probably won’t like the direction. If a man had enough money, he could isolate himself off the grid and not pay anything other than property and sales taxes. That’s about as close as we could get to dropping out. Let’s say we got enough people together to start a Galt’s Gulch. We voted (that’s right you’d still have to vote) to do away with property and sales taxes, reestablished allodial title, freedom of association and (near and dear to my heart) unrestricted firearms carry. We traded together and used our own private currency. How long do you think it would take for the busy-bodies, clovers, moochers and especially bureaucrats, to discover our prosperity and come around with men and guns for “their share”? It’s an age old problem and we all know that history repeats itself.
We are living under soft tyranny right now. If we wait the system may collapse on its own just like the USSR did (no Reagan didn’t do it single handedly). If we work at it by doing things like supporting Dr. Paul, we may be able to accelerate the process. Then if we get actively involved at the local and state levels, we may be able to influence the direction of our new decentralized system. That’s where I’ve placed my hope.
I’m gonna address your other (good) points at length later today, but one thing I wanted to respond to right off is that the Confederacy could have won – that is, achieved separation. Possibly even peaceful separation. Its leaders made several major strategic mistakes at key moments, including handing Lincoln the excuse to launch hostilities by firing on Ft. Sumpter. Idiocy. Also, the foolish mistake at first Bull Run to not pursue the Yankees; DC could have been occupied – Lincoln would have been forced to make peace. The North (public opinion) was extremely divided on the notion of a Union at gunpoint. Probably half the people in the North – perhaps more – not only recognized the right of secession but would have been in favor of allowing the Southern states to leave in peace. In 1861, Lincoln was not a popular leader but a weak president who was barely holding onto power after a divided election.
Secession (decentralization, really) can be done. The first attempt (the American colonies secession from the British Empire) proves it can be done. The fact it failed in 1861 does not mean it cannot succeed again.
I couldn’t agree more with your assessment of the Confederate leadership’s failures. They became so obsessed, at times, with state sovereignty that some governors wouldn’t release desperately needed supplies (e.g. boots and uniforms) to the Confederate army. Because, they reasoned, their own militiamen “might” need them later. So supplies that would have helped win the war sat in warehouses while the troops suffered privation; very bad planning.
Yes, failure to pursue and put down the union army at First Manassas was a serious mistake. Had Johnston and Beauregard chased them into D.C. and occupied it, the war would have ended post haste. I believe chivalry and honor had a lot to do with that bad decision (Beauregard having been thoroughly indoctrinated in both as a Southern gentleman). The fact that Southerners did not see the conflict as a civil war, but a defensive war for independence didn’t help; taking enemy territory, even the capital was not an objective at that point. It clearly should have been.
I do have to disagree with you on Fort Sumter though. South Carolina did everything they reasonably could to get the federal tax collectors off their land. They even warned Anderson not to leave Fort Moultrie to occupy Sumter. He did it anyway. Lincoln used the resupply effort to make it appear that South Carolina was the aggressor. The South Carolinians had every right to fire on the Star of the West. If you had armed squatters on your land you wanted off (and you’d even offered to pay them to leave) and they summoned more squatters, with guns and food so they could dig in like a tick, what would you do? Wait until they were thoroughly entrenched, then try to negotiate from a weaker position? The South Carolinians knew better.
There is no question that the Confederacy could and even should have won. But the fact remains that our Southern ancestors did not win. Worse yet neither did the north. No, the federal government won and occupied all the land with their troops. We’ve been under U.S. military jurisdiction ever since. They pretend the U.S.A. is still a Constitutional Republic. We pretend we’re free.
Could secession work at this late stage of the game? Sure it could. But dissolving the U.S. could also very easily create a power vacuum that would invite intervention in regional confederacies from stronger foreign governments that now hold U.S. debt instruments. Right now, the cure might be worse than the disease. After the world’s economy collapses and Leviathan doesn’t have enough money to pay the legions would be a good time to consider it.
The Southern leadership was, indeed, too “gentlemanly” for the South’s own good! Southern generals, for example, never practiced total war – the deliberate targeting of noncombatants for the purpose of instilling terror – as Union generals such as Sherman and Sheridan did as a matter of policy.
I still maintain that, despite all the absolutely correct points you raise in re Sumter, that giving King Abe any pretext at all for being able to claim “they attacked us!” was foolish. Better to hem the Yankees in, or just let them have the damn Fort (for the moment) until it could be repatriated at the peace able….
The Southerners were God’s children, never hurt a fly and raised unicorns. Whatever! In reality, they didn’t have the resources to wage serious war with the North. Maybe if they were more resourced and winning then they too would have engaged in “total war”. Then again Libertarians, like who would like to see a “war” on drugs, don’t seem to understand what war is.
Quite frankly the South had no moral right to win. They would’ve kept slavery going for longer as they put it their Declaration of Indpendence. But by the same token neither the American colonies have a moral right to win over the British. British rule meant White settlers couldn’t just barge into Native Americans’ lands, slavery would have ended in 1830 by law, America could have peacefully become a republic a century later, etc.
Gil, your currency “down under” still has the queen’s likeness on it; so I’m not surprised by your Loyalist / Mercantilist / Tory outlook. You need to do considerably more studying on the issue at hand so you will understand what the moneyed elite in the U.S.A. were up to in the mid 19th century. The importation of African slaves (a trade initiated by your beloved British Empire in “the colonies”) was outlawed here in 1807. Yet the trade lived on as New England smugglers continued the reprehensible practice. Here is a quote from Gail Jarvis who knows considerably more about this than you do:
“Among the other villains were the New England slave traders, financed by New York bankers, who used specially constructed ships to transport slaves from Africa. These Yankee clippers were designed to hold a maximum number of slaves using a minimum amount of space. Viewing replicas of slave ships at the Mystic Seaport Museum in Connecticut will give you an appreciation of Yankee ingenuity.
These ships would depart New England loaded with trinkets, weapons and, of course, rum, which would be traded to tribal chieftains in exchange for the Africans they held as slaves.”
As I recall, Lincoln’s customs inspectors found two ships in Mystic, Connecticut being outfitted for slave smuggling during his reign. That’s a long time after the law went into effect and a bit too far north to blame on the Confederacy don’t cha’ think? Apparently you do not.
The simple fact is the war of federal aggression was fought to secure wealth from and power over the South. The bulk of the federal budget came from the tariffs paid by the southern states Gil. The proceeds of the federal bonds went to the northern wealthy. The tariffs allowed northern industrialists to charge artificially inflated prices for finished goods shipped to the south. Charleston harbor would have become a free port if South Carolina seceded. New York businessmen and wealthy New England Tories would have lost their asses. Yeah Gil, they went to war for the very same slaves they sold in the first place, right.
Only about one in fifteen Confederate soldiers even owned a slave. Most were yeoman farmers that were in direct competition with slave based agriculture. Abolition was in their best interest and there were more abolition societies in the south than in the north before Nat Turner’s rampage. Most southerners went to war because the federal government was stealing from them for the benefit of the wealthy and then sent men with guns onto their land when they objected. Get your facts straight little salamander in training.
Let’s go back and take a long hard look at what your beloved ‘morally principled’ British Empire did to the people of India. How about the opium trade and how that affected the Chinese? Or closer to home for you, what the noble British and their progeny did to the Australian Aborigines. Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.
I will concede that both sides were wrong on some issues and right on others. There are none righteous, no, not one. That fact does not excuse the wholesale bloodletting and total warfare perpetrated by the Union army on the populace of the South. Only idiots and unrepentant apologists for the state can excuse that kind of behavior against civilians. And don’t forget that it didn’t stop with what was done to Southerners either. The very same war criminals set about exterminating the plains Indians after they raped the South. That was done for the benefit of the wealthy cronies of the central government in the railroad industry. Wake up little salamander; dis-Honest Abe was a corporate lawyer for the railroads and as crooked as dog’s hind leg. Truth sucks doesn’t it?
In conclusion, when you think of your beloved empire, monarchy or state, ponder Isaiah 59:3 “For your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies, your tongue hath muttered perverseness. 4: None calleth for justice, nor any pleadeth for truth: they trust in vanity, and speak lies; they conceive mischief, and bring forth iniquity.”
So you spit on the British Empire then spit on the Northern States? Takes your pick! What else? Slave importation was banned so it went underground? Government win, private market failure?
How would the South victory been any different? The winners would have been rich, While slave-owners of notable Wealth just like in the War of Independence. So in both cases of bunch of rich White men get all uppitty that they have to obey and pay taxes to others and war is needed? Most people on the streets and farms would find themselves obey laws and paying taxes to another group of men.
Gee Gil, we don’t know what your profession is, but you make it plain that English isn’t your native language. (1) I have no respect for any empire as they entail the subjugation of mankind under threat of violence. Consequently I have no respect for men who would or do build empires.(2) Decentralization and local control is preferable to large scale government because the level of corruption is limited by the size of the organization. (3)The race of elistist rulers is irrelevant; there are always evil men of every strip that try to take what they want without doing anything to earn it. Using the badge and costume of government sanction doesn’t change the nature of the offense.
Once again you ignore key facts Gil. Mary TODD Lincoln’s family fortune was built on slave based agriculture (she was dis-Honest Abe’s wife Gil). Mr. Lincoln in his own words proved himself a white supremacist. Worse yet, Mr. Lincoln was actively pursuing a policy of “colonization” right up until his death. Mr. Lincoln wanted freed black people sent to Liberia or the Carribean. If he’d had his way many of the folks I grew up with wouldn’t have been here, because their ancestors would have died in Liberia from malaria; the ones that didn’t starve.
How would it have been different if the Confederacy had won? See point (2) above for starters. Many blacks that fought and worked for the Confederacy would have automatically been freed. If Lincoln would have had his way, and preserved the tariff..oops, I mean “the union”…without bloodshed, he would have seen the passage of a Federal constitutional amendment perpetuating slavery, you little salamander you. Never forget: a Missouri court (Southern) held that Dred Scott was a free man, it took the federal courts to overturn that decision and reenslave him. Do your homework and start your brain before engaging your keyboard.
There would have been no “reconstruction”, so a lot of the corruption, theft, murder, rape and lynchings wouldn’t have happened after the war was supposedly “over”. Why? Because young men wearing blue uniforms (who were inclined to want to hurt people and break things based on what they’d been doing for the past few years) wouldn’t have been walking around in someone else’s community with guns. They weren’t there to keep the peace; they were there to make sure land and power was transferred to the northern Republicans and their carpet-bagger cronies without resistance. This skewed the normal socio-political balance and gave rise to many problems that civilized people don’t usually have.
That’s all the time I have to waste on you today. What was it that you do for a living again Gil?
@Boothe on October 12, 2011 at 10:12 pm
Teaching for tolerance has an article (p22-28, Fall 2011) about the causes of the civil war.
The author questions that southern secession was for state’s rights. He argues that there was secession against state’s rights.
Among the sources cited were the Secession documents from the Southern states.
I found it interesting and did look up the CSA constitution.
(Article I section 9)
(Article IV sections 2 & 3)
The CSA constitution has language to uphold slavery.
I do remember from history class: the emancipation proclamation of slaves only applied to slaves in the CSA. It did nothing for slaves in the USA.
@Gil on October 12, 2011 at 3:24 am
Slave importation from outside the USA or CSA was prohibited by the CSA constitution. (A1.S9.1)
Yet you, Boothe (and others) piss on the Northern State every chance you get while supporting the failed Southern secession which would have get the old system going for even longer.
Lincoln was a White supremacist? So was your precious Thomas Jefferson. But then – how many slaves actually did want to go back to Africa? Most of them were still forced immigrants rather than native born. If you found yourself kidnapped and forced to be a slave in South America you’d probably want to go back to the U.S. if you had the chance and wouldn’t mind being dropped off in Canada to find your way home.
Once again you keep attacking the North which tacitly shows you think the South was good. They quite clearly wanted to keep an Old World system going.
What we “piss” on Clover, is the assault on liberty perpetrated by Northern corporatists and their bought and paid-for henchmen, most especially dishonest Abe – who destroyed the old republic using the most vile tactics imaginable. Was the South morally perfect? Of course not. Nothing made by human minds or hands is perfect, morally or otherwise. But the historical fact, Clover, is that the War was about the question of federal authority over the then-sovereign states (which, note carefully, were always referred to as such pre-1861, as in these United States vs. the United States).
Jefferson was far more of a human being than Lincoln, incidentally. Jefferson’s entire life was devoted to the exposition of liberty, of defending the rights of the individual and limiting the power not just of the central authority but of all authority over the individual. He was a genius; a renaissance man of myriad and amazing talents. Lincoln was a shyster lawyer who contributed nothing to the world other than visiting wholesale death and rapine upon his country and a legacy of brutality and oppression that continues to this day.
Mithrandir, you are quite correct about the Emancipation Proclamation. It did not free any slaves in union occupied territory and could not free any slaves in Confederate territory. It was basically a moral propaganda piece to discourage the French and British from running the blockade, lending aid to and trading with the Confederacy.
You will notice that the preample to the Confederate Constitution spells it out: “each State acting in its sovereign and independent character”. And you may also notice how remarkably similar it is to the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights. Basically they were attempting to reclaim the Constitutional Republic of the founding. And yes, a select few were attempting to protect the chattel property that they had paid for and felt entitled too, no matter how wrong it was.
As I pointed out previously they were so sovereign and independent that some of the Confederate states actually hoarded supplies that were desperately needed by the Confederate Army. Independence is good, but not when it defeats your common goal.
The other thing that has been carefully covered up is the fact that between 50,000 to 100,000 blacks either worked for and even enlisted (in integrated units, something the northerners didn’t allow) the Confederate Army. People have forgotten that the CSA was their country too! Although official enlistment wasn’t allowed until 1865, some states accepted blacks in the local militias as early as 1861.
The other inconvenient truth is that there were free black slave owners in the south before the war. Some of whom worked overtime, for gold, bought their own freedom, bought land and bought slaves. Hmmmm.
Massachusetts started slavery in this country and New York has a mass grave site where bodies of young slaves that were literally worked to death have been found. Since the winters were almost as harsh as the northern task masters, the mortality rate of slaves in the north was quite high. Abolition of a system that’s not working for you is quite convenient, is it not?
Besides which, it was easier and cheaper to trick European immigrants into “selling their soul to the company store” at the mines and factories. Then they couldn’t quit and if they were injured, they northern industrialists just cast them off. Yeah, the wealthy New England families really held the moral high ground….
Actually Gil old son….I am a Virginian by birth and a Suthrener by the Grace of God. I make no apology for it either. I also make no excuses for those that would ever claim to “own” their fellow man. And although there were plenty of ambitious people on both sides of the war well versed in turning a profit on the suffering and misfortune of others, the biggest hypocrites were those that used the pretext of abolition to ultimately enslave the entire nation.
Even the noble Ulysses S. Grant owned at least one slave and his father-in-law owned no less than thirty. His wife claimed to own four (although it is doubtful that her father actually gave her title to them). Grant even stated that if he had thought the war to be about slavery, he would have resigned his commission and offered his sword to the other side.
What you and so many of your ilk fail to understand is our plethora of laws in the USSA regulating, licensing, taxing, criminalizing and prohibiting all manner of activities that any reasonable person realizes fail to meet the definition of crime are the result of dis-Honest Abe’s dictatorial precedents. We are all under the yoke and on the plantation now Gil. The Civil War was the turning point for our loss of liberty and Lincoln was the tyrant that steered us onto those rocks.
The slaves weren’t really freed and certainly didn’t receive equal protection under the law. If we’re honest with ourselves, we see that the nation became the plantation where the wealthy banking elite and the military industrial complex bought politicians to live off the labor of the productive. They use the welfare system we pay for to control the votes of the dependent class that are not productive. They use the police state to ensure that we comply with their arbitrary rules and pay tributum or risk being made an example of. And now they use the military to put as many foreign nations as they can on the plantation too. Oh yeah, that smells like liberty to me.
Frankly Gil, if your people “down under” didn’t show obeisance to the British/USSA/NATO/UN war machine and send your sons off to die in unjust wars with the rest of us, you’d suffer the same fate the middle east has; de facto US annexation. Think about that.
No Gil, I do not denigrate the Northern states or their common people. I spent several years traveling all over this beautiful country and met and worked with a lot of very nice people up north. I find fault with those that love power and money so much that they will use any means to enslave, exploit and even murder the rest of us for money and power. I stand for life and liberty. What do you stand for?
Beautifully said, Boothe – post of the day.
Gee, Eric and Boothe, reading the CSA’s constitution is surprisingly similar to the U.S.’s constitution except the right of slave-owning to be explicit. In other words, the CSA like the Union would have empowering rich, White men and would looked a lot like Apartheid South Africa. Yet you all carry as if the CSA would have been Libertopia in practice when it was nothing of the sort.
Were the South morally perfect? Apparently, yes, they were because every action they did was in self-defence against the evil North just as Libertarians are quick to point how evil the Allied powers were in WW1 and WW2.
Clover, in every single instance, you completely ignore the original point or the response made in response to whatever comment you left. It’s an endless train of non sequiturs and emoting; of pointless distractions and evasions. I’m through wasting my time with you. It’s not that we disagree; it’s that you’re not capable of intelligently discussing an issue.
Once again Gil, sadly, you miss the point. No the CSA would not have been a Utopia of any kind. It would have been smaller than the USA and the USA would have been smaller than it is now; therefore incapable of doing as much harm overall. The fact that the Confederacy was to create free ports would have fostered competition, hence improved manufacturing efficiency, productivity and innovation; all things whcih are good for the consumer and the economy in general.
With respect to WW I and II; both were unjust wars. Period. If the US and to a lesser extent Canada had stayed out of the neighbors’ (i.e. European) affairs it would have amounted to nothing more than a typical European brush fire. The Treaty of Versailles would never have been signed, the onerous conditions of the treaty wouldn’t have been imposed on Germany, hyperinflation wouldn’t have hit the Weimar republic and Hitler would have remained an insignificant beer hall loudmouth.
Instead, US intervention led to nothing more than a twenty year armistice and even more unnecessary bloodletting. The next time you see some of your neighbors fighting Gil, go on over and get in the middle of it and straighten them out. Let me know how that works out for you. Same thing for nations.
Never forget that the US and your precious British Empire got in bed with Stalin. That man saw to the slaughter of somewhere between 3 to 5 times as many innocent people as Hitler did. Some great ally, huh Gil? Again, your command of the moral high ground never ceases to amaze…..
I’m realistic too Eric; but Ron Paul is probably the last chance this Republic has before it becomes the Fourth Reich.
Give it your all. You have a strong voice out here, and it’s worth grabbing the wheel of the Titanic in a last-ditch attempt to steer clear of the iceberg.
And so what if he doesn’t get the nomination? He has had a fantastic educational effect; who was talking about ending the Fed six years ago? Keep him up and running to spread the message. Plant the seeds that will sprout after the collapse.
Encourage people to vote for Ron Paul. He’s scaring the hell out of the Elites, and he just might make it. Even my dyed-in-the-wool establishment conservative parents are voting for him.
Don’t underestimate how pissed off establishment Republicans are with their RINO representatives.
I’ve determined (probably like Ron Paul has) that the only thing we can do at this point is try to wake up – and energize – as many like-minded people as possible. I believe there is no hope – none – of reforming the current system. A continental nation-state with an effectively omnipotent central authority is incompatible with liberty. It is not fixable. As individuals, it is impossible even to be “represented” in any meaningful way under such a system – and our rights are always at the mercy of the mob. A confederated republic is probably the only way to diffuse power (control) effectively and protect individual liberty. What’s needed is to deconstruct the current system of national control and unlimited authority.
Agreed. But how are we going to weaken the system sufficiently to take it down unless we do it from the inside. To distill my views on this down to one simple point: we will initially have to use “the system” to dismantle “the system”.
Dr. Paul is a political insider. He’s been in the house three decades. He has name recognition so he has a chance, albeit a slim one. Look as the present system like WTC 7; somebody got inside, did something to cut columns and down she came. It didn’t happen on its own or from the outside and we both know that. Same thing here, we need a man inside who will cut the columns of corruption and that would be Dr. Paul.
Since the majority do not vote. The majority know it is pointless. The government still wants the illusion of consent so it does all the ‘get out the vote’ stuff. But the reality is that even if everyone voted, it’s too late for voting to fix anything. There are more people working for government than there are in productive work. Add to the government workers those who work for companies who get (or dependent upon) government contracts and the productive minority could never hope to win an election.
About the only thing that could work is a general strike. The productive just stop working. The sad thing is that the government has the upper hand there too with so many people out of work who would gladly take the jobs of the strikers. So perhaps the productive should just slowly stop being productive.
I don’t know what else would work. I still vote… as in I go to the voting place, get a ballot, vote no on tax increases, vote for third parties in the few instances I can and it makes sense, and then leave. I abstain from all D vs. R elections. I’ll often still vote in primaries in hopes of eliminating one unsavory person or another. But it’s really all so pointless.
Brent are you sure the great unwashed masses see voting as pointless? I sometimes wonder if it’s that they just don’t care. They’re too busy posting pictures of their last slobbering drunk on Facebook, texting inane messages to people they really don’t like and watching “Dancing with the Stars”. Remind me again why we want flat worms impersonating humans to vote?
Boothe at times I’ve shared your disdain, nay, disgust, for most “other people”. But I’ve come recently to the realization that “other people” may not be able to articulate what’s wrong with the system–but they know it’s wrong.
We mustn’t fall into the Elites’ trap of misanthropy. The psychopathic Elite despise humanity; remember King Phillips’ desire to be reincarnated as a “particularly lethal virus” to wipe out humanity. Or their long history of eugenics, sterilization, and democide. They refer to us as “useless eaters”.
Well fuck the Elite. Eugenics has a miserable history; Einsteins and Picassos keep popping up out of the most unlikely gene pools. Former slaves, once freed, produce stunning prosperity and peace.
So will we.
The “slobbering masses” will wake up right smartly when things turn nasty, and if there’s a seed of people who understand the real problems–fiat money, sociopathic rule, and collectivism–the next turning will be a very good one indeed.
Methylamine, perhaps I should clarify my point a bit. Don’t mistake me for a eugenicist. I guess what concerns me is even when I point out the obvious to many of my fellow countrymen they seem to wake up and understand what the problems are. Twenty-four to forty-eight hours later, after re-exposure to “TeeVee”, they’re asleep again. It’s easier that way.
Most people are not self starters nor are they critical thinkers. You have to WANT to look things up, figure problems out for yourself, make your own decisions and take responsibility for your lot in life. It’s easier to be a drifter than a do-er. I see a lot of people drifting. It doesn’t mean I love them any less, it just means they probably don’t need to be participating in the political process. They will vote in ignorance and often it’s willful ignorance; they really don’t want to know….it’s too much trouble. If they don’t know the issues and the candidates, then they really should stay home.
I’ll guarantee you that many of the “useless eaters” (thanks Mr. Kissinger for telling us who you really are) know something’s wrong. But what they think is wrong is often based on the bovine hyperbole fed to them by MSNBABCBSCNN.Faux.NewsforDummies.TV. One relatively intelligent individual I work with accused me of name calling when I told him this administrations economic policy was Keynesian. He’s a dyed in the wool Demoplican and you’re not going to convince him that WWE wrestling isn’t nearly as rigged as our current system. I hope people like that stay home on election day. I make no apologies for that or for hoping that enough people like us do go vote, decide for the masses and upset the elitists’ apple cart! It can happen.
OK good, we’re cool. I get frustrated by the same phenomenon–wake them for a “nap in reality”, and they’re right back to sleep a week later. My own parents–who were very libertarian in the late 70’s to early 80’s–have taken a great deal of convincing. They WANT to be asleep, because as you say it’s so much more comfortable.
I do think they’ll explore more when things turn nasty, because they’ll HAVE to.
I also think this is why I find more awoken people in the lower-middle and outright poor classes than I do among my upper-middle-class peers; the uppers are still comfortable.
Just wait, kids!
They know that voting has no impact on their lives. They don’t know the why’s or how’s but they know it doesn’t matter. When a certain group is convinced it matters, they vote. Usually they try to vote themselves goodies. Happens every time.
OK, Brent P, I’m just going to “tag in” here on your comment as I am new to the site and have no clue how to “reply to the article itself” so I hope some of you will help me out there. Same for how to “join the conversation.” Mr. Peters invited me to “join the discussion” on 15 SEP and I appreciate that as it is treatment not extended to me by any other of the “Lew Rockwell writers.”
The Peters LRC article today is at least “anti-status quo.” It’s a way to do things differently. It’s against “the system.” Will it work? I doubt it because the first step in “mule training” is to “get the mule’s attention,” the mule being “Joe Sixpak & Jane Doe”. That is, average Joe citizens. I doubt they read Peters or Slavo (SHTFplan) or Rockwell. (Or, Spencer Gantt for that matter.)
I have my own plan (don’t we all?) and it agrees with Eric in a fashion. Simply put, it is to “take over” the House of Representatives via voting (sorry, Eric.) By that I mean to get enough Reps in the House to make “life difficult” for the PRCs who presently “OWN” the system. (See AMAZON for PRC def.)
More available at my website. A “how to” book is available in electronic form on AMAZON for $0.99, and soon to be free on my site in PDF format.
Hope this works, and thanks, Mr. Peters.
Times were better in the Medieval times – it is estimated a peasant had an effectively tax rate of 5%. Not to mention Singapore – it’s not a Democracy and it protects people from others who would vote wealth into their pockets. Then again that’s probably the big reason the Chinese Government is booming there are no elections and the Chinese Government has no incentive to hurt businesses to please the hoi polloi.
You want Medieval Gil? Turn off your air conditioner, get rid of your computer, your electric lights, antibiotics, automobiles and even clothes with zippers, snaps and velcro. Move into a stone hut with now glass windows and a sod roof, heat and cook with wood and enjoy your dirt floor. Those were the “good ol’ days”. You can have ’em.
The fact is, little salamander in training, that you don’t have a Democracy “down under” anymore than we have one here in the “States” or even in Europe. What we have virtually worldwide now are pseudo-democratic fascist oligarchies. The transnational thieves in the banks and major corporations bought and paid for our governments many moons ago. They call the shots and we do the work (if we still have a job). As general rule, when we vote, we get to pick from establishment approved candidate A or B to give us the illusion that we are in control. This is the same illusion you would experience as a slave voting for who your master will be; you still remain enslaved.
It is irrelevant whether or not they vote in China, because fascism retains enough features of a free market so profit supports the system. The system allows the serfs enough comfort that they won’t revolt. Meanwhile the very rich who control the system get even richer with government running interference for them to prevent free market competition. It’s a sweet deal if you’re on the right side of it and don’t have a conscience.
The only two “truly” communist countries left are North Korea and Cuba. Their Utopian standards of living prove how well “pure” Marxism works. Once again Gil: What is your means of financial support? Do you work or are you on the dole?
Aw shucks the Libertarian Hoppe recommends a Monarchy over a Democracy because he reckons a Monarchy has a greater long-term outlook and need a well-running economy as opposed to politicians who have a short-term outlook and prefer floundering economies.
As one of “the dwindling minority of non-parasites who have voted in the past – often with great enthusiasm in a misguided because within-the-system effort to hold the line … [I] decided not to play anymore” in 2008.
Except for occasionally voting *for” cool dudes like Harry Browne, I like many virtually always voted *against* the other (worse) guy. In 2008 I was prepared to trudge to the polling booth to reluctantly vote for McBain. Then he picked Sarah Palin for his veep.
I wanted to grab his collar and yell, “Hey! Stupid Old Person!” Does the phrase “heartbeat away” mean ANYthing to you??? Anything at ALL?”
I believe I still haven’t quite recovered from the image of Sarah Palin sitting at the Prez Desk.
On the other hand, maybe we should just elect her and get it over with, quick and brutal. At least we’d have some laughs on the way down.
So in 2008 I said that’s it, finis, the end, no more. I’m tired of feeling like a clownfish. (Although I’d do a return engagement if Paul gets on.) I’m sad, though. I miss voting, if for no other reason than what it once meant. But I can’t do it anymore, for the reasons Eric lays out in his post.
There were a couple of other points you made, Eric, that I’m not sure I agree with, but this post is long enough. As George M. Cohan said, always leave ’em laughing.
I wish I could ‘not fly’ until the airport Nazis are reigned in.
While my personal travel is on the ground where there is some semblance of a Constitution, this afternoon I’m flying to
Europe as part of my job for the 2nd time this year (who would imagine that a computer geek would need to do that?).
The sad thing is, the public just sucks it up and accepts it, whether unwillingly, or more often, surprisingly willingly. I would have thought the strip searches would have raised an outcry, but the vast majority just submit.
If you must fly, always get there 2 hours early and opt for the grope. Urge them using psychology, to do a thorough search of you and your property every time you pass through.
I generally pick a third party candidate.
If I vote for ‘the lesser of two evils’, it means they got me to do what they wanted.
If I don’t vote, it appears to be the same as apathy.
But if I vote third party, even one that everyone knows won’t win, my vote shows up as one that the Republicrats did not get. It says that the dualopoly has failed to get the vote from this actual voter
Except that accomplishes nothing. The system is deliberately constructed so as to make it almost impossible for third party candidates to even get on the ballot – and if they do, the organs of the system always succeed in trivializing and marginalizing the third party candidate. It amounts to a safety valve that lets people vent their outrage without changing anything about the system.
But if enough people withdrew their consent, the whole rotten edifice would come tumbling down…
True third parties pretty much can’t win. But they can threaten the established parties (Ralph Nader for example, or the Tea Party disrupting the Republican primary machine) and pose the real threat of turning an election.
The party bosses have to worry about them if they start attracting too much attention.
They’re all just like Charlie Borwn – eternally hoping that Lucy won’t pull the football away at the last moment. But of course, she always does…
I said JUST that to an email group I participate in; they’re convinced that Mr. Purty-Hair Perry will be their savior.
I asked them if they think Lucy will let them kick the ball THIS time…no answer.
Interestingly, the group is mostly baby-boomer age and above. Ironically they’re the group with the most invested in the Matrix and the hardest to awaken. They just want to close their eyes, click their heels, and pretend it’s America.
Third party voting is probably the way to break up the current system rather than not voting. There will always be those who are voting for handouts. These people will not stop voting because it IS in there own best interests. As the news has been saying lately half the population do not pay taxes. These people are basically voting themselves other peoples money, so it is NOT in their interest to stop voting. I do agree that if no one voted the system would fail, but I think it is an impossibility to get there because the entitlement recipients will never stop voting.
How could anyone accuse eric of apathy?
Doc, I really don’t think Jay’s statement “If I don’t vote, it appears to be the same as apathy.” was aimed at Eric. Based on what else he wrote, he seems to feel the need to do something: ‘We’re up the creek; we need to paddle’. Not paddling equals drifting. Not voting equals not paddling. I can empathize with him.
I’ve spent my whole adult life fixing things; usually moderately complex control systems in power plants. My basic nature, my heart if you will, informs me that this system can be fixed and I need to do something to that end. My intellect tells me the system is to far gone and as Eric would say, we need to “Throw in the woods” and start over.
As Jay pointed out, every third party candidate I vote for or write in is essentially the same as not voting. But I do have the satisfaction of making them count that vote against the machine. I don’t see how supporting a Libertarian or Constitution party candidate, for example, hurts anything. Then the establishment at least knows some of us are giving them the finger.
We see it as an active way of withdrawing our support, kind of like writing to your congress-critter to call him out on an issue. Will it really make any difference? I don’t know. But if it makes you feel better do it.