Safety… Defined For You By Someone Else

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One of the problems with “safety” laws is they amount to someone else’s cost-benefit analysis. Someone else’s favoring of more this vs. less of that. Someone else’ determination that the Pros outweigh the Cons – as they define them.

A good case in point: motorcycle helmet laws.

The practical argument is they reduce head trauma in the event the biker goes down – which is certainly true. This can’t be argued. But there is another side of the coin to consider: Not wearing a helmet may make the biker less likely to go down in the first place – and it’s just as certainly true.

The helmet-less rider can hear what is going on around him. The external world is not muffled by the helmet. This is an inherent safety advantage. For example, the rider will hear a snarling, barking dog about to try to bite his ankle much sooner than he would with a helmet on. Thus, he will be less surprised by said snarling dog – and so, less likely to be startled, lose his balance – and wreck. Just one example. There are many others.

If you don’t ride yourself and doubt that not being able to hear clearly is an issue, try driving your car around with ear plugs in sometime – which by the way is illegal, precisely because it is so unsafe. But apparently, it’s ok to put a biker’s life in jeopardy this way, because of the determination by some other person that wearing a helmet is more safe.

Even more of an advantage is the much wider field of vision that a rider without a helmet enjoys. With a full-face helmet on, the rider’s peripheral vision is significantly limited. You don’t see much to the side unless you turn your head to the side (which means you’re not able to look ahead of you while you’re doing it). But most of the things that result in a rider being killed involve things coming at the motorcycle rider from the side – such as someone in a car running a red light or a car turning into his lane because the bike is in the car driver’s blind spot (or the driver of the car is just oblivious). That extra fraction of a second’s awareness can be the difference between going down and not going down – and between life or death.

The point being, it’s not one-size-fits-all. Almost any “safety” device involves compromising something in return for the (supposed) enhancement – or exposing you to some other risk that didn’t exist previously.

Air bags provide another example.

Yes, they have saved lives – just as helmets have saved lives. But it’s also a fact that air bags have taken lives. Not many, granted – but nonetheless. There is also a very real risk of serious injury – stuff like broken wrists , face burns and detached retinas. It is serious business – and it begs a very serious question:

Why shouldn’t the decision be yours? Is it not your life that hangs in the balance?

It takes a stupendous degree of arrogance – arrogance on a Louis XVII scale  – to assert that one has any business making such a call on behalf of someone else – who is not also a minor child. Are we not grown adults fully capable of weighing costs vs. benefits, pros  vs. cons? What sort of person would interpose himself between another adult and his right as an adult to perform such calculations for himself?

I personally prefer not to infantilize my fellow man – just on principle – much less take on the moral responsibility for events that may happen to him as a result of some decision made by me. I’d need years of therapy if, for example, I was the person responsible for imposing the air bag mandate and discovered later on that some nice old lady (several, actually) had been killed by one of the things – or had her retina detached. The fact that the bags “saved” other lives is beside the point. None of these lives are mine to play with. I don’t see it as my role in life to play God. That sort of attitude requires a degree of narcissism – of undiagnosed  psychopathy – I thankfully don’t possess.

But our rulers possess it in abundance. It is their defining characteristic. They feel no compunction whatever about forcing us to do what they think best. Of expsoing us to risks they deem minimal or acceptable in order to achieve some greater good they consider desirable.  They are not troubled by cost-benefit analysis tabulated in blood and guts… other people’s blood and guts. We are mere widgets on a game board, abstract statistics to be manipulated and experimented upon.

They decree – we obey.

Even if it kills us.



    Might not a child be imprinted with a false feeling of invulnerability that might lead to serious injury at a time s/he was without protection? Just a tongue-in-cheek thought from one who detests psychobabble and those phonies who profit from it.

    My wife’s adorable grandson Nicholas led with his chin when first learning to walk. However, it did not take him very long to learn that breaking his fall with his arms and hands was much less painful. Interestingly, his twin sister Victoria seemed to know what to do at the very outset.

    Today at thirteen, Nicholas is a member of his school football team and Victoria is a cheerleader. They are both beautiful and bright and each is a source of great pleasure to us whenever they visit.

    Nicholas runs like Elroy “Crazylegs” Hirsch and is very difficult to tackle.

    Tinsley Grey Sammons

  2. Ahh…LewRockwell. Over the years I’d sent him some of my best. He never bothered to thank me nor did he ever bother to use any of them.

    I visit every morning. About every third day I come across what I refer to as a “Keeper”. The rest is nothing special and some of it just plain stinks.

    Tinsley Grey Sammons

    • How bout that. I’ve not come across one item there that wasn’t worth something.

      Each to their own, I suppose.

      Not one thought from ya about Thudguard, or Hen and Hen?

      • Not every article that is “worth something” is a Keeper.

        I do believe that I’ve managed to create material worth something and even some Keepers since 1992. But of course it’s Rockwell’s site and he has the Right to do with it what he damned well pleases.

        Tinsley Grey Sammons

        • Were it not for Rockwell I would not be aware of Eric Peters and several other uniquely good thinker/writers.

          Tinsley Grey Sammons

        • Thanks for the kind words, Tinsley!

          Some insight, for what it’s worth: I haven’t read the articles you’ve referenced, just your posts – but based on the quality of your posts I am certain your articles are top drawer. So why hasn’t Lew run them? My suspicion is that he hasn’t actually seen them – or that he does not know you. I’ve been on the other side of the fence, as an editor, and I can tell you from direct personal experience that Lew probably does not even see the majority of submissions. There are just too many; so they get screened by people lower down the totem pole. And what is the basis for screening? In part, it is simply: Who’s this guy? Lew knows me (and his staff knows me) from my days as an editorial writer/columnist for The Washington Times. I’m not a big wheel, but I do have some name recognition. This gets my foot in the door. If my articles are decent, they’re likely to get printed. It’s just easier for me because I’m “inside” now. But when I was just starting out, I got 20 rejection letters (or no letter at all) for every submission that actually got accepted. I’m the same guy – and I was a decent writer then, too. But back then, no one knew me; I had no reputation (good, bad or otherwise) and so I got lost in the shuffle – along with thousands of others. The only reason I am here now is because I’m a persistent SOB and eventually got lucky and got my foot in the door.

          Just in the way of an explanation…

          • Just as Tinsley pointed out, if it weren’t for Lew Rockwell I would probably wouldn’t have discovered your site either Eric. And your observation on persistence is spot on. One does not accomplish much when they give up easily. It has been my experience that many people quit within mere inches or seconds of reaching their goals. Quitting is so easy anyone can do it. It’s hanging in there to the very end standing on principle and pursuing your goals, especially in the face of popular opposition, that earns my respect.

          • Thank you for your input. At age 76 knowing that time is running out for me makes me cranky at times.

            I feel as though I’m behind a twelve foot chain link fence topped with razor wire. I’m watching a deaf child on the other side playing on the tracks, oblivious to the train bearing down on him.

            Why do I bother recording and trying to propagate my conclusions? Damned if I know, frustrated, I’ve tried to give it up many times but something beyond my understanding keeps drawing me back.


          • I have 46 pages of them on DVD. It is impossible to preserve the style via email so I prefer to mail them via USPS.

            Afer nineteen years there is some repetition, but very little fat. As for the repetition, I take advertisers at their word when they claim that it generally takes about five exposures to make a sale.

            Of course my material is free. I merely accept reimbursement for postage and materials. I also grant permission to copy in whole or part as long as credit is given and no changes are made.

            Tinsley Grey Sammons

  3. I don’t know, maybe sometimes, it is ok to argue against the merits of Magic foam hats. Have you seen this on the list of possible, “what’s next”?:

    From, Life in a Bubble

    … Thudguard. This product is the forever helmet for babies that is described as a “½ inch thick impact tested protective foam hat is designed to help absorb and reduce the impact of falls from a child’s own height and lessen the chance of head injury when infants are learning to walk.”

    I could see this as becoming mandatory in some places, eh? Especially in whack-job countries like the UK and in similar states in the unitedstate in daycares or as a requirement when babysitting.

    After a few years of having this product around the adults would be ok with laws requiring them for adults while taking a bath.

    Reminds me of this film I saw once where a guy strapped himself up in traction slings and wore a helmet before taking a bath.

    Because, as we all know, many People die while taking a bath,… and if it saves just one life, and for the children, both young ones and fully grown adult ones, we could start calling the adult children, hens?

    So, What Do You Think of ‘Hen’ and ‘Hen’?

    The world did go mad.
    One by one they regain their senses?
    Everyone sure seems to be taking the long route back.

  4. As head injuries are a leading cause of death, I certainly would agree that anyone in any vehicle should wear them. Ah, but if it would save but one life, as the Clovers will say. But if goofy Stay Alive-Drive 55 campaign saved a lot of lives, why not set our maximum speed limit to 5 (yes five) miles per hour. This too must include bicycles, horses, and of course the ever dangerous dog sleds. It will be a real challenge to make aircraft that will stall at less than 5mph, but we could switch to blimps of course! But of course we must “think of the children”!

    Of course these ideas make as much sense as past Sturgeon (SIC) General Maxine Waters suggested when she looked straight into the camera and said we need to develop safer bullets! I have this picture in my mind of the Marines charging the enemy heavily armed with Nerf Guns. But it might not be a bad idea to equip people like the FDIC SWAT teams as they will do less taxpayer paid damage when they shoot themselves in the foot.

  5. In a rare bit of good news, Michigan recently repealed its mandatory helmet law for riders over the age of 21. I thought this was awesome; my family thinks it’s stupid. Still, it’s a minor bit of good news that will hopefully cheer someone up a tiny bit.

    • Yup – bits and pieces, here and there.

      VA is decently reformed with regard to guns.

      So, there’s hope because it’s not all in one direction.

      • You might like this one.

        The other weekend, my dad and I went out to the local batting cage. On the way out the back door to the cage, my dad asked the kid running the counter if we had to use batting helmets.

        He replied in the negative.

        When my dad inquired as to why (he wasn’t upset, just curious), the kid replied,

        “Cause you’re not fucking 12.”

        • I do!

          But give ’em time… there’s no end to doing right. Some Clover will notice – and screech. That’ll be the end of that. Next time, you’ll be required to wear the helmet.

    • PS: You might point out to your family that eating burgers vs. veggies is also arguably “stupid” in that it may be more “risky.” Do they want laws forcing them to eat their veggies, too? And yes, it is the same. It’s this noxious idea that if a given action can be defined as “risky” (or just “less safe”) then it confers upon the government the right to interfere with that action – even though that action isn’t causing an actual harm to others and may not even be causing any harm to the person involved. Hell, I’ve been driving for 30 years unbuckled – and it hasn’t caused me any harm yet.

      The issue is not my “safety.”

      The issue is my right to be free to make choices about my life free of coercion.

      The only time the law has any legitimate business messing with you or me or anyone else is when we cause a real harm to others. That we might harm ourselves is no one’s business but our own.

      Government is there to maintain the peace (at most) not to be our mommy and daddy.

  6. Love your writing Eric!

    You are spot on re helmet laws and all the do-gooders who think they need to protect me from myself. I learned to ride at 50! Took the MSF classes and learned to ride with a helmet. Since Arizona has no helmet law, I took my chances several times without one. (I always wear ear plugs as I don’t want to damage my hearing.) The more I rode, the more I realized the threat of stupid drivers. I also learned about my limited experience in tight fraction of a second situations. Yep, I decided to wear my helmet—not the State! Yeah, a lot of good this helmet will do me as I fly through the air and crumple on the pavement. All this got me thinking…

    I drive a 2004 Mazdaspeed (MX5body style). Had the top down for the past month or so and it dawned on me that the silliness of helmet laws could actually be expanded! What’s next— mandatory helmets for people in convertibles?

      • Yeah, but if Officer Friendly pulls you over and you’re wearing a full face helmet with a tinted shield in a convertible, I’ll bet you’d be treated as a “domestic terrorist” because you were “masked”.

        • You know, I believe the word “terrorist” was first used during the French Revolution to describe an agent of The State acting in an official capacity.

          And you want to talk Masked Domestic Terrorists? Like members of a SWAT team wearing balaclavas?

    • “What’s next— mandatory helmets for people in convertibles?”

      I don’t know how it breaks down for motorcycling, but for my preferred form of two wheeled transport, bicycling, if I were to wear a helmet bicycling I would also logically should wear one while in a car, truck, bus, climbing stairs, using a ladder, and a bunch of other activities that have a higher risk of head injury than bicycling.

      Sadly it appears that is not presently functioning. But there were tables there that outlined this stuff once upon a time.

  7. Oh, Eric… Your pro-freedom articles are usually great. But I disagree vehemently with this one.

    I’ve ridden with a full-face helmet for 30+ years. Each time I encounter the “helmets limit peripheral vision” argument, I pull on my helmet to see if that’s the case. Nope! First of all, I’m generally looking straight ahead when riding. So I look forward – and I can’t even see the edge of the viewport in my peripheral vision. Next, I swivel my eyes from side to side. OK, I can just see the edge of the viewport, but I can certainly see anything that’s on a vector to cause me hurt. If it were coming up in my blind spot, that’d be different, but not wearing a helmet ain’t gonna help in that case.

    What you say might have been true of the first Bell full-face helmets in the mid-1960s, but not on any helmet I’ve owned since I started riding in the late 1970s.

    Also, sound… I can’t think of a single threat that I could hear, without seeing it first – IF I’m paying proper attention. I ride with a full helmet *and* earplugs. It just hasn’t been an issue – ever. (The earplugs also reduce the fatigue of a long day in the saddle, but that’s a separate topic.)
    Dogs have a pretty predictable arcing intercept attack path and unless they’re stupid little runts (easily run over), they don’t make noise while on their attack run. I see them, but probably wouldn’t hear them unless I was on a bicycle. Deer are a much bigger threat when I’m on the motorcycle, and I’d never hear them either.

    The ONLY valid argument against helmet laws is that it is not the function of government to decide for me. That’s it! Technical arguments simply ensnare you in *their* game; flawed technical arguments mean “game over.”

    • TB,

      Well, I’ve been riding just about as long as you have. The mistake you make is assuming that your experience is identical to that of others. People’s heads are shaped differently; people have different fields of vision. I can certainly vouch for the fact my peripheral vision’s not as good with a helmet on. I’ve also been surprised by a dog – and almost went down because of the filthy bastard.

      The broader point, though, is it’s no one’s business but yours – and mine – to make. For ourselves. So, we agree on that at least!

  8. The helmet and seat belt laws were lobbied for by the insurance companies. The insurance companies were tired of paying out death benefits for some one who’s life could have been saved had they been wearing a helmet or seat belt or not in the bed of a truck, etc. This actually came to bite them in the a** because now, instead of paying out a death benefit and being done with it, they are paying much more for life support, rehabilitation, etc.

    I love blow back when it comes to stuff like this! The insurance companies should have minded their own business.

  9. I wholeheartedly agree. To paraphrase an old quote, We’re in an awkward time when it’s too late to expect the system to fix itself, but it’s too early to shoot the bastards.

    • I see this as a period of awakening-crisis. People are starting to realize why things are going South. But it’s not yet bad enough to do more than take notice, alert others – and get ready.

    • Or,

      We need a frontier in order to preserve freedom, and we’re between them right now. We closed our old one a hundred and twenty years ago, but don’t yet have the technology to get the next one.

  10. This kind of intellectualizing is good so that we may be philosophically grounded in the confidence that our cause is just; however, I’m no nervy bastard and I won’t start it; but I defy anyone to cite even once throughout history when people got their freedom restored without resorting to violence.

    • Probably it will come to that – but we have an obligation to pursue peaceful recourse first. And it won’t do the cause of liberty much good if defensive violence is resorted to prematurely – before enough people have begun to question to legitimacy of the current system.

    • Joe, didn’t Britain abolish its slave trade without bloodshed? I don’t know history too well but I think so. Certainly nothing on the scale of what happened in the US.

      • you’re right, Britain did abolish its slavery but sent its navy out to stop everybody else and ended up bankrupting itself with the biggest empire anyone has ever seen.

  11. Great article Eric. Another point: I read an article years ago about a study of motorcycle accidents. As I recall they determined that while helmets reduced the number of head injuries they did not necessarily reduce the number of fatalities or serious injuries. They just transferred the injury site from the head to the neck.

    • Thanks, Rod –

      I think the key is to not fall into the trap of arguing the merits of helmets (or seat belts or air bags) as such. The issue is: Who has the right to make the choice? You – or someone else, deciding for you and threatening you with violence if you do not abide by what they decide.

      Many people have lost sight of this important point.

      My “safety” is no one’s business except mine – and my family’s, perhaps. It is certainly not the business of random other people (i.e., the government).

    • Ah–Rod don’t fall for a key fallacy the statists have foisted on us.

      That is: the argument between utility and morality.

      The utilitarian argument–held most fondly by chicken-necked little shits like Jeremy Bentham–argues along lines like “most people benefit from airbags in an accident. Statistics show that…”

      The moral argument argues that it violates my rights as a human being to be told at gunpoint to wear a helmet, buy an airbag, don a seatbelt, etc.

      The moral argument is always superior to the utilitarian one.

      And, it’s a hell of a lot easier to argue.

      Instead of having to be a walking Google on every pro-libertarian issue you hold, you can break it down to the moral argument and win every time–at least with rational audiences.

      Take cannabis, for instance. Sure, I can spit out half a dozen studies that show it’s less psychologically harmful long-term than ethanol, that it doesn’t cause lung cancer–in fact, seems to prevent it, etc etc ad exhaustion.

      But isn’t it easier to take the position:
      Is it right to stop someone doing something purely to themselves, at gunpoint? Is it OK to hire thugs to kidnap and cage your fellow man, for ingesting something you don’t like?

      Better yet: ask the anti-cannabis cretin, “Do YOU have the moral fiber to point a gun at your neighbor and cage him for his indulgence?”

      Because done by proxy, or done in person, it’s the same ethical–moral–problem.

      Or you can try to persuade them with a barrage of statistics, utilitarian-style. Never wins…at least not in my experience.

      I do sometimes soften them up after leading with the moral argument, by exposing them to a few of the statistics; but it’s a loser if you lead with the stats.

  12. “Even more of an advantage is the much wider field of vision that a rider without a helmet enjoys. With a full-face helmet on, the rider’s peripheral vision is significantly limited. You don’t see much to the side unless you turn your head to the side (which means you’re not able to look ahead of you while you’re doing it).”

    Eric, my experience with this is very different. Every properly fitting full or 3/4 helmet that I’ve tried allows good peripheral vision to the sides. They feel heavy and they make it more difficult to tell what direction a noise is coming from, but they do not restrict my vision. The most visually restrictive option that I have found is wearing a half helmet or going without a helmet because I cannot find a pair of goggles that allows a full field of view.

    • TOK, I’m inclined to agree. I wore Shoei, Bell and Simpson full face helmets back in the eighties and even “old school” brain buckets like those allowed good peripheral vision. Since my employer now requires us to wear “goggle” style safety glasses (due to particulate injuries, i.e. dust), I have to agree on that point too. As far as the feeling heavy part goes, when I rode all the time my neck was a strong as a bulldog’s.

    • I suppose it’s different for everyone – which is why it ought to be up to each of us to decide for ourselves as opposed to being told what to do by some know-it-all dick!

      • Eric,

        You’ve identified the fundamental flaw in the concept of The Law:

        The attempt to apply a policy of one size and disposition to a population of autonomous, sapient individuals, all of whom possess a different set of physical and psychological specifications; said policy ultimately enforceable only by violence.

        • And that’s why we are all anarchists here, right? We respect the rights of others to have different preferences. 😉

          • mikehell,

            Exactly; The Libertarian’s Code of Law:

            Do not physically harm any person.
            Do not physically damage any person’s property.
            Do not steal any person’s property.

  13. You know the real cause of this problem Eric: It’s the fact that the US graduates 20 times more lawyers than engineers. It’s amazing how many engineers can be tied in knots by just ONE lawyer, these days the ratio is so high an engineer just doesn’t stand a chance.

    Unless we consider adopting force multipliers. I say every Engineer graduated in the US be given a lifetime supply of hand grenades and a license to use them on any lawyer that pisses him off. I expect that will fix things up pretty quick …

    • Good one!

      But of course, the shysters are only possible because of the profusion of maggots out there willing – eager – to use their “services.”

      The American Buysbody: Part grifter, part control freak – part ignorant dickhead.

      That’s the root cause of all our troubles.

        Tinsley Grey Sammons, (1936 –)

        A so-called Alliance for Good Government is rarely very good for the lawfully self-sufficient taxpaying lay folk. I submit that any alliance concerning good government must be an Alliance for LAWFUL Government. And a lawful government must never initiate and support any violation or contravention of the Principles supporting the Declaration of Independence with its Bill of Charges Against the Crown.

        A dedicated Alliance for Lawful Government in every jurisdiction in America could reduce corruption to a manageable trickle and put the United States back on the Philosophical Course chartered by the Founders.

        Lawfully self-sufficient lay folk would be wise to display solidarity in disabusing America of the illegitimate Legal System that has supplanted the legitimate Law of the Land. In spite of their diplomas and credentials, the Officers of the Court, i.e., lawyers, along with Career Office Holders, a disproportionate number of whom are lawyers, know nothing that any literate adult is incapable of knowing. Furthermore, the “equal protection of the laws” clause in the Fourteenth Amendment brooks no exception. And even further, they wield no lawful power not lawfully possessed by every other Citizen.

        Is an Officer of the Court a public sector person or is s/he a private sector person? According to attorney Michael H. Brown, “The law is the weapon, the courtroom the battlefield, the judge your enemy and your lawyer is an enemy spy.” So then, whose side are attorneys really on? I submit that they are on their own side as they profitably cooperate within their de facto Brotherhood of Juris Doctors.

        The Unanimous Declaration became America’s organic law through the action of the Second Continental Congress on July 4, 1776. No Power that violates or contravenes the Principles that inspired that incomparable Action has Lawful Authority.

        Organic Law. The fundamental law, or constitution, of a state or nation, written or unwritten. That law or system of laws or principles which defines and establishes the organization of its government. – Black’s Law Dictionary, Sixth Edition

        Elections alone cannot salvage respect for the American Ideal that is so eloquently expressed in the second paragraph of the Unanimous Declaration. Fortunately, the tools exist for the self-sufficient taxpaying lay folk to take the Law of the Land into their own hands where it lawfully belongs. By so doing they can disabuse America of the illegitimate System of Precedents and Interpretive Violence that continues to wreak havoc with Liberty and Justice. To fix our broken America, a sufficient number of lay folk need only claim their Lawful Power and display solidarity in wielding that power. Should that come to pass, the individuals now doing vile things under the color of laws that are intrinsically criminal will be squirming like fat caterpillars that have fallen into a campfire.

        Edited: May 17, 2011

        Permission granted to copy and distribute provided full credit is given.

      • There’s a supply/demand component though too. With so many lawyers around it’s a lot easier for your average maggot to afford one. They’ve also made it real easy on ambulance chasers to work on contingency fees with all the personal injury law along with the product liability stuff. It’s like millions of thin layers of slime have built up in our legal system over years and now we have this thick crust of hardened case law that’s immobilized the entire society. I can’t even begin to talk about intellectual property law, it’s unbelievable.

        But it’s all for the Children you know? Just that now we’re all Children.

      • Eric says: “But of course, the shysters are only possible because of the profusion of maggots out there willing – eager – to use their “services.”

        Shot all through this thread is the perennial question about the incremental tyranny that is affecting not just North America, but the whole of the West. That question is: “What can we do about it?”

        Eric’s forte is education. That is vital but most who try it, lack Eric’s skill, and find they are speaking to the converted or to the deaf. It is a painfully slow process, and I venture that most of the ‘awakening’ that is occurring is less to do with the educators – magnificent though some of them are – than the hurts and predations that ordinary folk are suffering under their ‘loving’ governments.

        There is one fightback that any person with a modicum of sense can use. Flick the Tyrant’s tools back against it. For instance, regimes are always encouraging us to snitch on our fellows. Whether it is tax avoidance, suspected ‘terrorism,’ drugs, and 101 other ‘crimes.’

        Well, indulge them Guys and Girls. Indulge them!

        Big shysters need medium shysters below them. Medium shysters need petty maggots below them. Sure, the big shysters are hard to snitch on, but their underlings are exposed. Ethics comes into this – never hurt an honest man, but the abusive cop or bureaucrat is fair game, especially if he has declared war on you.

        All is fair in war. A bad cop has siblings, children, parents and friends. That gives you a spread of targets. Do some detective work. It is not hard to find out a great deal about anyone with a few friendly, simple and discreet enquiries. Filter out the decent relatives but, at the very least, his friends are likely be nasty types like him.

        Hit them.

        Anonymous calls to Tax Offices, Drug Squads,etc. There is an appropriately officious ‘enforcement’ agency for any situation – and the after effects, can make a government goon become anti-government very fast. At the very least he becomes paralysed and inefficient.

        The arguments against?
        1. Doing this will give bad people ideas. Such people might use them against the innocent.

        Oh, Boy! Anyone using this argument has been insulated against the real world. So far it is almost entirely ONLY the bad people who have been snitching. Snitching decimated trust within the people in East Germany and the Soviet States. It was DESIGNED to. It hampers opposition. It is still designed to do that by our modern masters. The Government welcomes innocent people being snitched on. Irrational fear stopped those cowed populations from snitching on the low level minions who their masters depended on for enforcement, and who lived side by side with their victims. People turned on their friends and neighbours in an attempt to appease the unappeasable. They should have been snitching on their tormentors.

        2. Ethics. ‘Never bear false witness.’ This is the closest to a valid argument, but we are in a war of survival. Common sense says you do not use such a weapon against some one who has not first shown aggression or malice in the execution of his duties towards the public.
        Snitching Clubs consisting of a handful of good friends are particularly powerful, because: a. They can review the ethics of every case first, b. They have the strength of a team. I have witnessed abusive state initiated court cases dropped because a 5-member team managed to get the State tipped off and fooled into using tax audits and bribe investigation to so terrorise their own kind that the Abuser had to drop the case to concentrate on their own defence. Also, it is astonishing how often a snitch against an abusive official does turn out to uncover real crimes against the State – usually theft of property.
        3. It is just not ‘nice’ to snitch, especially if you are making it up. This is a variation of the ethics argument. It is also true, which is why it so important to ensure that you only target the thugs of the regime. It is often an argument of the lazy and the squeamish, who pretend the affectation of a high morality.
        It is better to discomfit the maggots of the regime now, than be facing them with bullets in a few years Or worse – be on the wrong side of the camp’s high electrified wire fence on rations designed to keep you too weak to resist.
        There are many ways to peacefully fight the voracious regimes dominating our lives and snatching our freedoms. The advantage of playing this particular game is that it is peaceful, it can be customised and, being anonymous, it is completely safe. What is more it works. I am aware of some astonishing results. In a substantial geographic area over an 18-month period a team of only five retirees cleaned house in both national and local governments.

        The snitchers NEVER laid a specific charge. It was always vague and implied. They let the tipped-off bureaucrats feverish minds build their own fantasies. By the third or fourth tip-off the blood hounds were off and running.

        Most exciting is that the State began to suspect that there was an orchestrated campaign, and they even figured out that it stops when the State’s own abuse stops – and it has stopped in that area!. Amusingly, the State has wildly over estimated the participants.

        The Great Obamanation has declared war, Folks, and it ain’t just on foreigners. Snitching and discrediting are tools of the Sate. Turn it around. Every abusive Power Structure needs enforcers. They cannot protect their enforcers. That is their weak point. Hit it – Hard.

    • Dealing with the safety lawyers? Bah. that’s the easy part. Might make the product look stupid or cause the user to remove something but usually it isn’t that bad.

      While I agree the number of lawyers is part of the problem if it wasn’t for government and the fact the general population doesn’t respect engineering and that businesses are run by people who made their way up through finance or some such it wouldn’t matter.

      While I wouldn’t like designing stuff by hand drawing and using slide rules I often wonder what it would have been like to be an engineer from 1900 to 1969. This was when it was respected profession in this country and people understood it was what made wealth. That their increasingly better standard of labor was derived from that creativity.

      Today engineers are considered fungible labor and money is made through financial endeavors. Note I wrote money is made, not wealth. The wealth comes from the products and the engineers (degreed or not) create the products.

      Today it’s all magic. Engineering isn’t respected. People think the work is just magic. They get angry when they do something outside the design parameters for the product they bought and it breaks. They won’t accept price points adjusted for the fed’s inflation.

      Lawyers in private practice are the least of the problems for my profession. The primary one is the corporate structure and how the reward system is set up. Until the way this society operates I don’t think engineering is worth it for a career.

      There’s no good reason to be an engineer in this society with this economy. Why be the host slaving away for the parasite? Creating the wealth that other people get to enjoy for pennies on the dollar of what your creativity is worth?

      This society prefers to reward professional athletes, politicians, and wall streeters. The closest it has come to actually respecting engineering was with regard to Steve Jobs…. but that’s just because he ran the toy factory. None of the deeper understanding that used to exist.

      • Brent,

        Here’s my theory of the cause of the problem you’ve identified.

        The Information Technology guys took high-tech and ruined it.

        Sissified it. Seriously, we need to make technology lustworthy again.

        We should go back to the old Air Force standard of “higher, faster, farther,” when the word “technology” conjured up images of manly researchers and heroic scientists designing rocketships and androids and turbine-powered cars, not nerds-made-good developing facial recognition software and click tracking and airport porno scanners.

        Back when the newer version of a vehicle or a piece of equipment not only performed better than its predecessor, but looked sleeker, too.

        When High Tech meant armor that the Communists couldn’t shoot through, not IRS firewalls that tax-evading hackers can’t burn through.

        Sure, we’ve got great materials science these days, but instead of our best and brightest making the final push toward working fusion reactors, they’re designing personnel databases for HR departments and online advertising that stalks you like a paroled sex offender.

        You can keep your 4G smartphone and your 3D TV, but I want my deep-space battlecruisers and warp engines and laser rifles, dammit!”

        Here’s to hoping Stargate SG-1 is a documentary.

      • Brent, in 1905 engineers made on average $5,000/year, when the average salary was $300/year.

        Or, if you consider gold then was $20.67/ounce, in today’s gold prices the average salary was $24,000, and the engineer’s was $400,000.

        The average dentist then made half that.

        That’s how we got rich in the first place–valuing production over consumption, and paying the producers commensurately.

        • I know. I’ve done that calculation myself a few times as gold price has changed.

          I also calculate roughly how much money I’ve made my employers and how much I’ve added to the world economy. I don’t even get what a rented out slave would keep for what I’ve produced.

          Actually I might have worse deal that the Howard brothers (3 Stooges).

    • Hand grenades are a bit much. Why, just think of the dry cleaning and drywall contractor bills!

      Seriously, I’ve got a better idea.

      How about a law that allows people to ignore lawsuits, or requires that both parties to a suit actually SHOW UP IN COURT before the suit can proceed?

      No show, no suit. Summons converted into an origami boulder and tossed in the round file.

      • Well, I have to credit an old college friend with the hand grenade idea. He proposed that everyone on the planet be issued one hand grenade at birth, along with a license to use it any time he wanted. His theory was that people would be much more polite since you might not always be sure if the other guy still had his grenade.

        He did advance the proposal with a subtle grin…

        I like showing up in court. I expect anyone challenging me to do it, but then they don’t have to these days if they can afford a lawyer. You have a real good point.

  14. ” They tell us, sir, that we are weak; unable to cope with so formidable an adversary. But when shall we be stronger? Will it be the next week, or the next year? Will it be when we are totally disarmed, and when a British guard shall be stationed in every house? Shall we gather strength by irresolution and inaction? Shall we acquire the means of effectual resistance by lying supinely on our backs and hugging the delusive phantom of hope, until our enemies shall have bound us hand and foot?

    If we were base enough to desire it, it is now too late to retire from the contest. There is no retreat but in submission and slavery! Our chains are forged! Their clanking may be heard on the plains of Boston! The war is inevitable–and let it come! I repeat it, sir, let it come.

    It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, Peace, Peace– but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!”

    • Elegant words – no doubt.

      But how do they translate into concrete action for you and I?

      What, exactly, are you willing to do – are you going to do?

      I’ll tell you what I am willing to do – am doing:

      Using this site and my columns to try to help awaken as many people as possible. To help them connect with one another. To get people thinking about the true nature of our system – of using the vote and laws to do violence as opposed to trying to deal with one another on the basis of voluntarism and free exchange.

      It took many years for a critical mass to develop in the colonies in favor of independence. The same will be necessary here – and the process is well under way.

      Don’t use your ammo pointlessly.

      • I gave one example, you ignored it.

        The scenario that happened in the colonies won’t happen here again. Too much to lose for people today, jobs, cars, football, American Idol, unless the few who matter pull together it is hopeless and they will continue to pick us off one at a time….which of course does wonders for convincing thay freedom is a worthy cause to stand by.

        Generations have grown up enslaved from.birth to death. To the great majority, this IS freedom. These people aren’t going to be convinced. They want this life, this American dream. The only hope is those who have eyes to see should come together in physical proximity. There will never be a critical mass, jave you forgotten you live on clover planet? Have you forgotten the kind of people in charge? I understand your fear, I really do. The idea of giving up everything, maybe for no success, really sucks. What is the alternative? How many generations have abdicated thus far? Shall we do the same? Be honest with yourself, that is what really matters, not what you tell me.

        • You make quite a presumption that I am not honest with myself. In fact you have no idea.

          I understand perfectly well what’s at stake. We each have a role to play – and decisions facing us. This web site is a place to discuss such matters. Prudently.

          I won’t have calls to violence. The reason for that ought to be obvious.

          • I did no such thing, I simply stated that you should be.

            And yes, I do know the reason, fear.

            I have made no call to violence, I spoke of defense when inevitably attacked. Sounds like cloverism to suggest that defense of oneself equals violence.

            Of course two state supreme courts have recently stated that a citizen does not have the right to self defense if attacked by police. Seems you are in agreement with them.

            • Ah, no.

              You don’t know me, much less my mind. You can guess what motivates me; you can assume. But you do not know. So please, quit implying otherwise.

              This site is about ideas – in particular, the idea that people can and ought to deal with one another on the basis of free exchange and voluntary cooperation.

              There is a time and place for everything.

          • Spiritsplice: It might do you good to get out of your parents’ basement and realize that other people, wonder of wonders, have already read Ayn Rand without your instruction to do so.

    • Should freedom be our highest value? Based on the writings I see here, I would say the answers is no. The highest value is ethics.
      The conversations here are about finding a commonly held system of living in a mutually tolerant and non-force initiating manner.
      Oftentimes I find myself mistakenly placing freedom as my highest value. I fantasize about an armageddon of looting wherein every federal asset is taken by flash mobs and there’s no federal asset without a private owner anywhere in the country.
      But then what? That’s when ethics come in to play.
      Patrick Henry was a lawyer in the House of Burgesses. The Burgesses are the American parasites that overthrew the British parasites to obtain a monopoly feeding arrangement that still exists today.
      Give me liberty (you scummy peasants) or die trying.
      A benevolent government is a fairytale that never existed. It’s just a bunch of overlords with superior firepower and peasants running away and hiding from the overlords.

  15. This article seems to support much of what eric writes and what many others say here, and it’s not funny at all:

    The Predators of Marengo County

    “… whatever the USA may have been at one time, it has formally degenerated into a reich.

    … “The Humanitarian with the Guillotine” – the kind who routinely do horrible things they believe “to be motivated by high ideals toward virtuous ends.” …”

  16. The foam hats for bicycling are another thing these people keep pushing. Ever had anyone pull up along side you and preach to you about motorcycle helmets? They’ve done it to me for bicycle “helmets”. Magic foam hats really. They pull their 3-4000 lb car a couple inches from me so they can preach their gospel of the magic foam hat.

    • “magic foam hat” – funny.

      As I was reading I thought about bicycle helmets and how it’s the same thing.

      I read somewhere that if a Person wears a helmet while riding a bicycle they are more likely to be hit by a car than if they didn’t wear one.

      Also, I’ve heard it’s possible to deactivate an airbag. I wonder if it’s as simple as pulling a fuse? After looking at the photo of the guy with the smashed up face and thinking of what a torn retina means, it’s all I can think of.

      Does “Officer 82nd Airborne” refer to something specific that I missed along the line? I have an idea what it means, but…

      • Your idea’s probably right, but here’s my explanation.

        The term “Officer 82nd Airborne” refers to the cops who have the high-and-tight haircut, the aviator sunglasses, the scowling expression, the Tough Guy demeanor and generally comport themselves as if they’re in the 82nd Airborne Division.

        Really pathetic, if you ask me. It’s as if the Army told the guy he couldn’t get in for whatever reason and he got all pissed off and decided to overcompensate.

      • Air bags can usually be rendered inoperative by pulling the fuse. However, the “SRS” light will illuminate – and in states that have “safety” inspections, this will cause the car to fail. But if you don’t have to go through the test…. Or, alternatively, plug the fuse back in before you go to get tested.

    • I couldn’t believe it when bicycle helmets first came out. Helmets for bicycles? Really?? And Styrofoam to boot. Magic foam hat – that’s funny. Anybody drink coffee in their car? What do you have that coffee in to keep it hot? A STYROFOAM cup. And they want us to wear one on our heads? That’s what I want to on a hot summer day: Put an over-sized coffee cup on my head and do some vigorous physical activity so I can get heat exhaustion.

      As for the motorcycle helmet – I ride motorcycles – DIRT-bikes to be exact. And I wear a helmet. But it’s MY choice. Whether I’m on the road or on the trail, my choice to NOT wear a helmet does NOT endanger anyone else. I just hate the fact the government thinks we are too stupid to keep ourselves safe.

      • I honestly don’t think it’s because government thinks we’re too stupid. That’s just the window dressing. These things are merely excuses used to justify government interposition between the individual and his freely exercised choice. The object – stated or implicit – is to deny that choice to the individual. Which serves the object of increasing government control over our lives.

        • Yes, you are so right. That window dressing can be very blinding at times. I know you’re right, but look at the first thing I reached out for… “they think we’re stupid.” It’s an ego thing. Nobody likes being called (or considered) stupid. Attack the ego and concerns about freedom are put on the back burner, even if it is only for the moment. Pretty smart move on their part.

        • I agree Eric; I think some of these officious little pricks of mediocre intelligence get off on sending goons with guns out to order their intellectual superiors around. Implying that we’re stupid, as Dottie points out, is designed to evoke an emotional response, rather than risk having us identify the root cause and calling the perpetrators to task. Sometimes it’s the covert unofficial Clovers around you insisting that you submit and obey. Back when I was in my early twenties I rented a beach house on the James River and a tropical storm flooded my yard. I parked my motorcycle up the hill at my grandmother’s house. When the water receded I had my wife drop me off on our way home to pick up my bike. I was going to ride *maybe* two miles sans helmet.

          I kid you not; one of the nosey busy-body neighbors called a deputy at home and had him intercept me. He was a friend of mine and we often rode bikes together so he gave me a verbal warning. But he did make me park my bike and walk home for my helmet because he said if he drove me home or let me finish the ride the unidentified “neighbor” would report him for showing me preferential treatment. Despite my protestations of facing my accuser, he wouldn’t tell who the dirt-bag was either (probably because he knew they’d find some roofing nails in their driveway; I was far less tolerant when I was young). This was little town of 600 people, I wasn’t hurting a soul and I almost always wore a helmet voluntarily. But somebody just couldn’t live and let live. This is another in a long train of abuses in the Communistwealth of Va that led me to move to Missouri.

          • Boothe,

            Your problem illustrates why The State (or The Company) should ignore complaints until their sheer number reaches some critical mass, indicating an actual problem.

            One complaint in a statistical anomaly, and probably the result of a personality conflict between the nameless accuser and his intended target.

            Furthermore, I would submit that a just system would require the complainer to give his name and address, for the purposes of “validating the complaint.”

            To say nothing of the fact that a man has the right to confront his accuser, and the accuser rightly must substantiate his accusations.

  17. Build your Galt’s Gulch or Casey Estancia and all you’ve done is mark a big red X on the map where the state can find you. Remember Waco?

    • Yeah, better to sit back and bitch on the internet about freedom where you are safe, right? If you want freedom you are going to have to fight for it. You aren’t going to get it by avoiding the conflict.

      Maybe if other people would have come to the aid of the Branch Davidians instead of sitting by and watching the Feds murder them, they would have been spared. People were too busy being mesmerized by worlds like “cult” and hating on those who saw things differently. So instead of standing up for what was right, they set a precedent. Now it’s everywhere.

      Maybe you ought to read Patrick Henry’s speech.

      • Goddammit…

        When are people going to realize that the phrase “Hating On” is not proper English?

        In this context, the sentiment is properly rendered as just “Hating.”

      • Spiritspice says: Maybe if other people would have come to the aid of the Branch Davidians instead of sitting by and watching the Feds murder them, they would have been spared. People were too busy being mesmerized by worlds like “cult” and hating on those who saw things differently.

        Ok. Why didn’t spiritspice rescue the Branch Davidians? Certainly such righteous indignation as you possess could have extinguished the tyrannical fires of their attackers. Or were you in swaddling clothes then and only just now learning how to “bitch about freedom on the internet”?

        • Probably because I lived on the west coast rather than in Texas.

          See, I have ideas and potential solutions. You on the other hand are a coward who can’t even “talk” about solutions. That’s how whipped you are. And you are going to die the same way. The way you talk down to younger people (though you have no idea of my age) you must be older. Which means you have spent most of your life watching things continue to worsen, taking no action. We have people like you to thank, people afraid to even think about what needs to be done., for our situation today. Generations of cowards who convinced themselves that it wasn’t that bad, hypocrites who fondled their guns while talking about how the government will have pry their guns “from cold dead hands”.

          • Ok, spirit – let’s stop it with the personal attacks. Not cool here. Neither is advocating or encouraging violence. Fair warning. Keep it civil – and enjoy the back-and-forth. Be constructive. We’re on the same side.

          • Apparently mikehell can be insulting and that is good.with you. How quaint. Reminds me of someone, or something else…

            I am not encouraging starting any violence, but if you think you can respond to violence with anything else? Well, we see how that is working out. If you aren’t willing to fight back when attacked you might as well shut the site down and go on Oprah because we weren’t given this country by people turning their four cheeks and writing more letters about how wrong it was.

            Are we on the same side? I used to think so from reading your articles, them I see your one sided reprimand against me for defending myself (and stated the unpleasant truth). Maybe you need to reread Patrick Henry as well. And maybe one of the few things that hypocrite Chruchill said worth listening to:

            “If you will not fight for the right when you can easily win without bloodshed; if you will not fight when your victory will be sure and not too costly; you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a small chance of survival. There may even be a worse case: you may have to fight when there is no hope of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves.”

            • Spirit,

              One ought to pick one’s battles. And right now, I submit it’s more fruitful to educate and persuade than it is to advocate violence. That’s all. I did not see a post in which Mike called you names. Did I miss that? If I did I apologize and will ask him to dial it back, too.

              The broader point being: Let’s be smart. Frontal attacks/direct confrontation aren’t going to do much more than result in you (or I) being Tazed/shot/imprisoned. Then characterized as “extremists” and dropped down the memory hole. Bide your time. Spread the word. Undermine the system. Weaken it. Strengthen the opposition.

              Ideas have greater power than all the armies of the world.

              We are in the fix we’re in now because of ideas. It’s those ideas we need to challenge. And it’s minds we’ve got to change.

              The rest will follow.

          • I encourage you to get started with your commune asap, spiritspice. Really, I do. Get some like-minded friends, buy some guns, and get it rolling. There is room for all kinds of approaches to quest for liberty. But me? I’m gonna sit back and wait for Eric’s appearance on Oprah. That’ll be a gas!

  18. The Terror State rises using fear and envy…and “legalized” counterfeit money.
    “Safety for the Children” has got to be the main driver that caused Fascist Terror State in Amerika.

    • If I may:

      rule #34: Anyone who invokes The Children or Safety as justification for their new law is admitting that they’re resorting to emotional manipulation because they can’t make a rational argument for their totalitarian intent.

  19. This business of the behavior of modern American police got me thinking…

    American police are very much like Tokugawa Shogunate-era Japanese samurai, in that they have EGO, POWER and WEAPONS, but they have no PURPOSE.

    The samurai were soldiers being used as police, and they resented the hell out of it. They had been raised to seek glory in battle, and the task of riding herd on a restive population of serfs disgusted them, but hey, orders are orders.

    Consequently, they reacted harshly and violently to any perceived “lack of respect” or petty infraction. They were even empowered by The State to murder any peasant who acted ‘disrespectfully’ toward them.

    Just like Officer 82nd Airborne.

    Except he’s NOT a soldier playing cop, but rather the opposite. He may have once been a soldier, but right now is demonstrating why former military personnel should never be given badges.

    Soldiers and police properly have completely different mindsets, and even honorable and decorated military service should be a lifetime bar to employment as a police officer.

    Soldiers are trained to yell and scream, to follow orders immediately and without question, to never contemplate the rightness or wrongness of those orders and ultimately to regard anyone who is not dressed like themselves as the enemy.

    This is not a healthy mindset for police, who are supposed to be peace officers, not an occupying army. Part of the problem with this soldier mindset is that it never completely fades away, “Once a Marine, always a Marine” describing the condition pretty well.

    And speaking of soldiering, I think SWAT teams are actually an end-run around Posse Comitatus, the law that forbids the use of the military in the enforcement of civilian law.

    Think about it.

    American SWAT teams dress like soldiers, are armed with the same weapons as soldiers, use the same tactics as soldiers, wear their hair the same as soldiers and even talk like soldiers.

    But they’re NOT soldiers, they’re police officers.

    And they should act like them. Oh sure, there are violent, heavily-armed criminals out there, but part of the reason they’re violent and heavily-armed is because they think they’ll have to fight the army in order to rob that gas station.

    Besides, dudes holding up 7-11s with assault rifles and gang bangers doing drive-bys with AKs are Hollywood fabrications anyway.

    This one’s gonna get me on a list somewhere…

    • I don’t think it’s only SWAT, it’s the whole practice of staffing the police departments with former military, for the reasons you describe. They bring that mindset with them. Semper Fi, do or die, crush the gooks/ragheads/constitutionalists. They’re unamerican.

      Have you ever picked up the “us vs. them” mentality of our recent veterans, especially from the army and marine corps? They’re trained to believe they’re a cut above the rest of us and look down on the citizenry with utter disdain. Especially if you don’t pay homage to their selfless service in the name of preserving your freedoms. I find it tremendously disturbing that these people are being given the power of a badge.

      • Just because you know how to shoot, how to take orders, how to act in teams and how to stay in shape doesn’t mean you’re qualified to wear a badge.

        Police officers should be among the most contemplative of men, well and always aware of the terrible burden and implications of their power.

        No way in HELL should that power be given to some redneck hothead with a chipped shoulder and a high-and-tight.

        NO WAY.

      • I heard a disturbing interview with the former captain of the USS Cole. Disturbing because of how dedicated he was to protecting “American interests” in the gulf. Spoken just like a politician. I had to turn it off. Very disturbing. But I guess you want to keep the military in full mushroom mode so they don’t start to ask questions. After all, that’s “why we lost Vietnam.” I would imagine that would be very hard to break when going back to society. Made even worse if you are handed a flak jacket and a full-auto weapon.

      • It’s my belief MK-ULTRA never really went away, but rather got perfected on captive and unwittingly willing participants, namely, newly-enlisted military types. It probably also was the catalyst for all the “sudden jihadi syndrome” of a few years back, you know, for example, a random Muslim mowing down a crowd with his big-old SUV.

    • Chris, you just outdid yourself.. This is so good I’d like to re-post it as an official article. May I do so? If you’d like to expand on it a bit and send in a longer version, that’s be even better….

    • I’m a Vet and I know exactly what you mean. It really seemed like the guys that got out and became cops were always the ones that enjoyed barking orders but were also the complete brownosers. The real whooowaaa guys. Believe it or not there are cliques in the military. It’s generally broken up into a few groups those that were whooowaaa were one group. They were total suck ups, bullies and they loved their uniforms. Then there were guys like me. I wouldn’t kiss any @ss, I didn’t care to give anyone an order, let alone make them do pushups, I defintately wasn’t into my fancy dress greens. The guys in the first group get out and become cops or corrections officers stuff like that, they enjoy the power.

      You will respect my authority!!!

      Guys like me get out and end up getting arrest for protesting.

      • Brad,

        Just so you know, the military is the ONLY branch of government I respect, except for the six months I was actually in (PT test failure; I couldn’t run to spec. Did everything else okay, though).

        As far as I’m concerned, the only people who have the right to pull the drill sergeant routine are actual drill sergeants and R. Lee Ermey.

        I didn’t write this piece to take shots at soldiers or Marines. I wanted to point out that police have no business acting like that, and that the military conditioning is so effective that it never really goes away. Hence, lifetime prohibition on wearing a badge.

        Besides, how tough can Officer 82nd Airborne be if he’s taking on unarmed civilians who he knows won’t fight back?

        Just as the turbocharged car that can slaughter every other vehicle at the track that day is often barely audible at idle, so too is the baddest mofo in the bar the quiet guy who’s trying to avoid trouble.

        Steel doesn’t boast of being steel; Steel simply is. What do you suppose the blustery, threatening Officer 82nd Airborne is made of, deep down?

        • I hear you lound and clear. The police shouldn’t be treating us like the enemy and they will if that is how they were trained.

          I’ll pass on a story that makes your last point very clear.

          One of the biggest loud mouths in our unit was this great big SGT, huge guy. Sgt Sims. He was gonna win the war all by himself. The first fire fight he ran for his life. We got back home and he was the same old Bully McBrownose.

          One day he sat down next to me and my buddy Napier at the NCO club. Nape says what’s up Sims. Sims says that’s SGT Sims to you and starts in on him. Nape who was still ticked at him for running away picked up his long neck beer and broke his nose. Sims was layed out on the floor and Nape spits in his face and says “I’ll call you whatever I want.” Nape was all of about 5 foot 7 maybe 140 and quite as a mouse.

          • Absolutely correct.

            The Citizen and the Police Officer are rightly natural allies and friends.

            I’ve run into cops who were calm and soft-spoken, and even though they gave me tickets, I didn’t hold any ill will toward them.

            But then there are the Tough Guys. One of them once pulled me over for an inspection sticker that was 28 months out of date.

            Project car, what can I say?

            Decided to give me a hard time about it.

            I asked him how my lack of an interior was his business and did he know that he was out of his jurisdiction? He said it was the law that I had to get my car inspected, and that his jurisdiction was none of my business.

            So I fire up my faux-Russian accent and say, “Da, comrade Officer, I forget. Car inspection is thing I must do as citizen of free country!”

            Would you believe he still gave me a ticket?

            And after I went out of my way to give him a free political science lesson.

          • spiritsplice,


            But what would you suggest I do?

            Besides, I’m sure the shot to this guy’s ego bugged him for the rest of that day.

            He’s the good guy, you know, and why, to be accused of tyranny and oppression?!

            Why, he’s just following orders!

            Just enforcing the law, don’t you know?

            I’ve found that when you want to insult someone, I mean really sock it to ’em, the absolute best way is to be articulately condescending.

            Lay on the sarcasm and sanctimony with a trowel, but always be polite. Never use profanity, and never threaten.

            Guys like that cop are so used to dealing with screaming, profane, belligerent assholes that their completely adapted to it.

            But if you hit them with articulate, educated condescension, they freeze solid.

            Try it sometime. Use this sort of language:


    • Chris I’ve said exactly the same thing many times, I think you’re spot on the money. In fact the problem is so well known that some small towns have taken to paying for their own police departments so they can make sure they don’t end up with an army patrolling the streets. The problem is it has to be a pretty rich town to avoid the run of the mill city and county LEOs, which typically fit the description you give.

      What happens when 120,000 troops, who’ve spent 10 years violently suppressing civilian insurrection (and make no mistake, that’s what Iraq and Afghanistan were all about) come back to a country that has no employment opportunities? Scares the crap out of me.

      BTW, the Tokugawa Shogunate analysis was very good too. “To Serve and Protect” was a motto that came directly from that source.

      • Scott,

        Thank you.

        Have you noticed that we turned corner when we stopped thinking of cops as “Police Officers” and instead began to call them “Law Enforcement?”

        It’s the difference between “Excuse me sir, I take exception to your activities” and “OH MY GOD, YOU! OH MY GOD!!!”

        Same meaning, colloquially, but technically, big difference.

        By the way, I have an acronym for anyone who wants to use it:

        FLEA – Federal Law Enforcement Agent.

        Japan fascinates me. So does the Soviet Union. I guess I just like studying totalitarian societies. Sort of like how some people like to watch videos of surgery.

        Disgusting, but you can’t look away.

        • Same here. Authoritarians (individuals, nations) are fascinating… in the same way that cancer is fascinating.

          There are several things I have never been able to “get” –

          * Rabid sports worship
          * Fervent religious belief
          * The urge to control other people

          • Yes.

            I used to live in Pittsburgh and believe me, there’s almost no philosophical distance between “Here we go Steelers, here we go!” and “She’s a witch! Burn ‘er!”

  20. Eric – you’re a fool.

    Now that you’ve pointed out the limited peripheral vision and sound attenuating properties of helmets, the state will surely “fix” these inadequacies with fancier (and far more expensive) helmets.

    As you’re well aware, every government intervention leads to more and more interventions.

    Any clover reading your post will surely insist on mandating “smart helmets.” These helmets shall be equipped with 2 peripheral facing cameras and a spilt screen monitor inside the helmet. The lack of sound will be addressed by external microphones, plus speakers and amplification built into the helmet.

    Heck – it an even use really cool HUD projection technology inside the visor.

    So what it costs 10x what a typical helmet costs (or infinitely more than no helmet). You know by now that you can’t put a price on safety.

    What about no “windshield wipers” on the helmet’s visor? I can fix that too!

    Perhaps I should develop such a helmet, patent it, and then lobby for mandating its usage in all 50 states!

    That’s the new American way.

    • I’ll go you one better than that. Why don’t we simply enclose the rider in a metal shell with a 360 degree view. Of course if you do that you’d need ventilation and climate control inside. Oh yeah, then it would be too heavy to push the bike or hold it up, so we’d need four wheels and reverse. I know we’ll call it a Miata! 😀

  21. I wear a half helmet and ear plugs. Without the ear plugs I’m deaf for half the day after a ride. If there where no helmets laws I wouldn’t wear a helmet sometimes. That’s for sure! I’ll always wear ear plugs though!

  22. If you’re going to ride a motorcycle instead of drive a car, you accept certain risks. I thought of getting a bike for years, until I remembered the rather ugly learning curve I went through learning to drive.

    I totaled two cars before I finally figured out that PAYING ATTENTION virtually eliminates my risk of hitting something, or at least of my being the cause of the crash.

    I generally learn by breaking things, and I don’t want to break myself. So I don’t want a bike anymore.

    No law or policy that is enforceable by The State should be based on emotional, subjective and unverifiable nonsense like safety, which everyone has a different opinion about.

    If The State is to be officially concerned with safety, let us define it objectively. And narrowly, from the perspective that giving The State yet another reason to throw its weight around it never a good thing.

    Giving The State opportunities to exercise its power is a very serious thing, and should not be flung about like a monkey with a handful of shit.

    It’s not “safe” out here in the real world. If the whiners can’t handle that, they should go home and crawl under their beds.

    But for God’s sake, don’t give Officer 82nd Airborne ANOTHER excuse pull the trigger.

    He’s got enough already.

    • CHRIS, it may be for your sake, but it certainly isn’t for God’s! Show Him the respect He deserves!!

      Speaking to a lot of you guys: you obviously learned how to think. Why didn’t you learn to talk properly, too? What were you doing…playing hookey from school? I’m sick and tired of having to tolerate illiterate English everywhere I go. The fact that you probably claim that “everybody does it”, which is an out-right lie, doesn’t make it proper. It only shows that too many people have very little regard for showing respect any more. Some of you are probably too young to remember when that was the norm! I’m not. Clean it up or shut it up.

      • Uneva,

        It’s a phrase. Take it easy.

        Read my posts. All of them, if you like. Aside from a few minor spelling mistakes, my command of the language is not in doubt.

        Besides, what are you ranting about anyway?

  23. The first arguement for helments and such has always been that society pays for those who aren’t using them and don’t have insurance, therefore, society should mandate their use. This always seemed stupid to me. My response is always, “well, then let’s not pay”. That’s received with shock. “you heartless bastard!”. Yes..yes I am. I’m willing to pay someone to scrape you ass of the pavement (so I can use the travel lane) but I’m not willing to pay for YOUR foolish decisions. Remove the hospital charity mandate. Make him pay for the service if he can or have him solicit charities to pay for it. If he can’t…get a lein on his assets or refuse future service. I’m ok with that.

    • Exactly.

      Also, note the arbitrary quality of the reasoning: They can force me to wear a helmet because of the purported risk of health care costs I might incur. But what about their diet? Their lack of exercise? Both also incur the risk of costs to “society.”

      It’s infuriating –

      • But what about their diet? Their lack of exercise?

        Fret not, Eric, methinks you don’t have long to wait for this. In fact it seems to already be well in progress.

          • Yup – You will be a weak little plant-eating diabetes bag or else they will bury you alive in a cage. Is it still illegal to fish in Cuba? If the political terrorists catch you fishing they will kill you.

          • I think that there’s a possibility that when the fines for non-compliance with obama’s mandate starts hitting our mailboxes that it could be a watershed event. Lots of people, perhaps hundreds of thousands, will not pay, and if they continue to refuse in large numbers, what’s the state gonna do? FEMA prisons for us all? Maybe, but I really do think obamacare could be a major tactical mistake for the state. It’s hard to see how they can soft-pedal a big, fat fine at the end of the year in the same way that monthly deductions are now considered “normal” by your average working man.

          • I don’t think you’ll have much of a chance to refuse the fine Mike. The way they’ve set this up, if you’re under a certain income level there’s no fine. The only people who get fined for non-compliance are the ones who have jobs and the few retirees that live on investment income. The ones who have jobs almost always have money coming back from the IRS at the end of the year; the fine will be taken out of that money.

            Retirees will have a chance to not pay, but most don’t want any trouble, and more important, almost all of them already have private medical insurance.

            This is aimed directly at middle income taxpayers that don’t have employer sponsored medical insurance. In other words, its an attack on small family businesses.

          • It seems that so many people are poor & destitute these days that they would fall under the low-(no)-income category. Maybe that’s why they don’t seem to know or care. As long as it’s not coming out of their paycheck or bank account, they thing “free is good.”

            I have a relative that has MS & lives in a nursing home. She loves Obama. She’s all for ObamaCare. I understand WHY she has her point of view, although I don’t agree with it. She thinks her situation will never change, but when the gov’t. starts enforcing the fines and companies are forced to provide healthcare or pay a fine, that’s when companies are going to start making cuts. And when those cuts start affecting the nursing homes her situation WILL change. There’s no such thing as “free.”

    • I always thought seat belt laws were enacted just for an excuse to pull over otherwise law abiding motorists.

      Seat belts aren’t required to ride a motorycle and would be foolish if mandated.

      So why do I have to have one for a car or truck?

        • I am so pissed at my Yaris when the damn seat belt chime rings forever! Then the idiot light on the dash never turns off. Drives me absolutely crazy. I wear my seat belt 99.99% of the time too, but I like to take it off a block or two before I stop. We should start a hacks section for disabling stuff like that!

          • I deal with this every week! First thing I do when I get a fresh test car: Pull the belt, buckle it (without me in the seat) then sit down on top of the thing. This clown buckles up for nobody!

          • With a wiring diagram or a little exploration and circuit testing it’s a simple matter to disable these systems by making them think the belts are always buckled. Doing so in borrowed car however is not nice.

            My newer cars don’t chime at me because I usually have the belt on before I start it. When I don’t because I am not going on the road it doesn’t last long so I haven’t ever had to disable a system on a car newer than 1974. But I doubt the principles of operation have changed.

          • I remember hearing somewhere that in Italy when the seatbelt law was first enacted shirts with a diagonal stripe on the front became very popular…

          • If your are driving alone:

            1) put belt over left shoulder.
            (for appearance)

            2) use passenger belt to buckle into driver side. (belt will be silent)

            other option, buy buckle from junk yard to plug in as needed. Those with metal skill can make a buckle to plug in your seat.

          • I used to just drape it over my shoulder and let it hang straight down by the door.

            One day when I was actually wearing the dang thing I got pulled over and the cop said I didn’t have it tight enough against my chest.

            I asked him how it was any different than when I had a thick winter coat on. He didn’t want to hear it.

            I fought it somewhat. My court time was at 8 A.M., when 11 A.M. rolled around and I was still sitting there and a prosecutor offered, I accepted the plea bargain for court costs only,… plus my lost half days wages for being there.

            I should have stuck it out, but I was younger and sick of being around all those cops and lawyers. Gave me the creeps. I was glad to get out of that place.

          • I can’t stand Ford’s autolocks.

            I once asked a dealer Flow Chart Monkey to deactivate them, and he told me that if he did that, he’d have to tell my insurance company that my car was now “unsafe.”

      • nah seatbelt laws are pure gun barrel do-gooderism.
        To pull anyone over anytime they just posted low speed limits. Either you’re technically speeding or driving unusually slow. When that didn’t work well enough they just made so many rules that most people would break at least one. For the rest they just make something up, that is lie.


    In my opinion, the Colonists in 1776 had less cause for revolution than Americans have today. It is an historical fact that those on the side of Independence felt that securing respect for Unalienable Rights merited the use of deadly force if an appeal to Reason failed.

    I certainly agree.

    The systematic violation of the Principles underpinning the Unanimous Declaration justifies the employment of whatever means are necessary for justice to prevail.

    Trespass upon Unalienable Rights is intrinsically criminal and those responsible for systematically doing so should be treated as criminals.

    Informed Americans must abandon their defensive posture. An Individual should never beg for his birthright to Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

    Tinsley Grey Sammons

    • Agree – but we’re outnumbered and outgunned. As an individual, I have zero chance of successfully defending my liberty. If the government wants my money (and my rights) they’ll just take my money (and rights). I can of course resist – but that will lead to a bad result for me.

      So we get back to the main obstacle: How do we fix this?

      • So all this rhetoric against the government yet you’re not willing to die for what you feel are all the liberties that have been taken away from you?

        • Why is it always expected of liberty advocates that they should be willing to die for their liberty? You never hear this addressed to anyone else… like nobody every says “If you want Attention (or Cheetos), you have to be willing to die for it” … really, the death of any liberty advocate reduces the population of liberty advocates and thus makes liberty less attainable. Fighting does not have to imply dying.

          • A very good point.

            The dilemma – for liberty advocates – is that we are constitutionally disinclined to violence. We’d prefer to be left alone – and are eager to leave others alone. This puts us at a big disadvantage vis-a-vis authoritarians, who marinate in violence.

            Probably most people are not naturally authoritarian. They are conditioned to accept it as normal, though – because it is couched in euphemisms such as “progressivism” or “liberalism,” “helping,” “social good” – and so on. They never have to confront the essence of what they advocate. I’m trying to force them to look at the bloody thing it itself: The thugs with costumes and badges and truncheons and guns, who will come and threaten to kill you or me if we do not Submit and Obey (and pay).

            That’s a big first step. Expose the nature of the system. The sociopaths won’t be troubled – but many basically good people will be. And that will mark a turning point.

            We’ve got to keep beavering away….

          • That’s a good question Mr6. The statists always tell us we have to ‘die’ for views or die resisting them yet I don’t see these statists going out and being the muscle for their views themselves.

            They used duped hired help and criminals to do the actual dirty work. Never do they go out shaking down people for their government managed charity or anything else.

        • A laughable post! Commit suicide in the name of liberty. Come on Eric, just do it mang!

          Seriously though, the sad thing is this would be way to easy. Just don’t pay one of your tax bills to the government and wait for the cops to come. Then tell them I ain’t coming out and I have a gun. Then tell them they can’t have your fucking money and you’ll shoot anyone that comes in!

      • Same way it is always fixed, people have to organize and come together in the same local so they can resist. Pick a spot and everybody move there, build an Amish like community, everyone helps each other get by. Then, when they attack, you have the numbers you need. The longer they delay, the stronger we become. If we wait for someone to do it for us….well, we are still waiting aren’t we?

        • Actually a group of people did just this. Then fedgov sent the Bureau of Arson, Treason and Fascism along with their brethren in the Federal Bureau of Incineration down to Waco and made an ash out of the Branch Davidians. That served two purposes: (a) you will not be independent of the system or we’ll make an example of you, and (b) your fellow countrymen are a bunch of chickenshit cowards that will not come to your defense when it happens and will make every excuse imaginable to blame the victims after it’s done. It was test. We failed.

          • Boothe, I actually wept when that siege took place. I remember sitting in my apartment–I was still in school–and crying at the thought of those children burning to death, and nobody there standing up for them.

            We’d planned a roadtrip up there; by the time we were ready to go, they’d launched the final offensive and it was too late.

            I will never hesitate again.

            If a thousand people show up and passively resist, it could forestall another Waco.

            I invite everyone to mentally prepare the same way.

            I also invite everyone to cogitate the next false flag/911 event; be ready to RUN TO the site, not away from it, and gather the evidence.

            If there had been a few of us at Oklahoma City, we could have publicized the unexploded ordinance that was removed shortly afterward.

            • Meth,

              What a great idea! Thank you! I will commit here and now to doing precisely as you suggest, the next time such an event (god forbid) happens.

              This is a fantastic example of something real-world that we can do. Just excellent. Thank you!

      • Have you considered Fully Informed GRAND Juries?

        The so called runaway grand jury* is in fact a self-liberated grand jury capable of returning a True Bill and ordering that an indictment be drawn.

        Over the years I have written extensively on the subject of Liberty, Justice, and GRAND JURY POWER. I share my conclusions freely with all who are interested.

        I am a retired Geezer and no longer financially vulnerable through my job or business. My wonderful wife can retire whenever she wants to so she is no longer vulnerable. I just wish other Geezers were as passionate about Unalienable Rights as I am. Well informed retired persons should welcome a chance to serve on both grand and petit juries.

        Tinsley Grey Sammons
        13519 Chase St.
        Gonzales, LA 7073

        *Get your hands off of me you damned dirty lawyer!

      • I disagree. We are not outnumbered or out gunned. En masse the veterans alone in this country, many who already are gun owners represent a standing militia much greater than what our government could amass. It is true King George did less to the generation of our founding fathers and history clearly shows how that generation responded. On that point the army of King George likewise outnumbered the colonist in the beginning. Also, consider that if a armed revolution actually occurred I am convinced many of the soldiers fighting on the side of the government would defect.

        • The country is benefit corrupted! Even people in my church who well intentioned don’t realize how far they have

          been enslaved to the point of no return. I ask them”Willing to give up your farm subsidies?”Your credit card?”

          “Free public schooling?”Ect.OOOOOHHHHH-NOOOOO!I am Convinced that by some weird anomaly that Ron Paul got elected

          And you some how had a majority of Libertarian Congress,and people had to live a constitional life they would revolt in six

          months! Thanks Eric!!As always for the great articles!!!!

      • Eric, this is why the Founders were adamant that people need to be armed.

        But since our rulers have seen it fit to disarm us or force us to grover for their permission to arm ourselves, then I think the best thing to do is to fight back whenever we are caught disobeying one of their rules. Civil disobedience is a grand old American tradition. Fight in court and if you wind up having to pay a fine pay in pennies In other words, harass the system right back.

        But then there is also the issue that the same system has taken so much of our wealth that we don’t have the time or the money to fight. We have to do it, however. Some how, some way, or else freedom is only a distant memory.

      • 1 guy who attempts to defend his Liberty soon becomes a statistic. . . 10,000,000 doing the same thing have a better chance of success. 100,000,000 are almost guaranteed success.

        We’re not outnumbered – not exactly. There are a *lot* more of us than there are JBTs to oppose us. Outgunned, perhaps – but most JBTs are trained in the “spray and pray” method, where us po’ folk have to make each shot count, for monetary reasons as well as pure common sense.


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