Wednesday, February 13, 2013

This, That And A Little Paranoia

Photo From Here

I saw this at Self Contained Living the other day and got a chuckle out of it.:
Oh, side note to the anonymous commenter who doesn't like the fact that I burned the straw- I don't care what you think. The ash from that straw has a huge benefit for the garden and reduces the waste laying around here rotting, stinking and drawing vermin so button your liberal lip, save the planet somewhere else and keep your "greenie" crap for the city folks who might give a shit what you think because they're too ignorant to know anything about growing their own food, keeping the compost pile balanced or keeping the farm clean from bacterias and disease.....
Nothing like a little polite social intercourse via the internet.

And while stumbling around in the blogosphere I found this at Big Ring Circus:
There is still time for me to be a real writer. It might be too late for you to become a trapeze artist, but the circus still comes to town. 
There you go. Proof that it's still possible to find a little inspiration on the internet, as in the above sentence. Probably won't find it here, but it's out there mixed in among the bad Facebook photos and the pornography.

And in the scary news department obtained the old-fashioned way by reading a newspaper, in this case the Wall Street Journal, there's an op-ed piece about the proposed E-Verify law. I find this real scary and I'm only slightly paranoid. Basically the intention of the law is to catch undocumented workers but it would cost small businesses and those of us who pay taxes, enormous sums of money with only limited results - typical big government approach and solution. However, cost issue aside, here's the real kicker:
If the system goes national, it may well mutate into a catch-all method of ascertaining American's identities. A similar fate befell the Social Security number, which was created solely to distribute benefits.
Imagine all the ways government could repurpose an electronic system supposedly capable of verifying our identities. After employment eligibility, airports, voting booths and office buildings might well be next. How long before we will need E-Verify's blessing before attending college, signing up for Internet access or buying a legal firearm?
Even if you don't keep checking the sky for black helicopters, that'll give you something to think about. And when you couple it with this next one, also from the WSJ, you too can start building a bunker:
According to the Justice Department white paper obtained by NBC News, the U.S. can kill a citizen who is "continually planning attacks" for al Qaeda when an "informed, high-ranking" official decides that the target "poses an imminent threat" and capture is "infeasible."
 From the leaked white paper, though, we get the drift: Americans may have constitutional rights, but the realities of war and the right to national self-defense trump individual rights when the executive branch is picking the targets.
So after you get your official E-Verify chip implanted, if some big muckity-muck says you're a threat to national security they can just send the sniper out for you and the show's over. Even if I wasn't a little paranoid, this definitely ain't helping. And apparently, I'm not the only one. I bought some new hiking boots from Cabela's and figured as long as I was ordering, I'd get some .22 shells. I do some plinking and varmit shooting so as long as I had a coupon for cheap shipping, I figured I might as well throw something else on my order. Only problem was, they're all out of .22 shells. So I checked Brownell's and Midway also. Same story. Only thing any of them had was the really high priced target ammo. So I went to the local "we've got a little bit of everything" store and checked there. Same thing. I understand that no-one has any black rifles or .223 ammo. Or any high capacity magazines. Or .45 ACP. Or .308. But .22 long rifle? That's just plain crazy.

We now have law enforcement officials and a few of the states saying they won't enforce proposed federal laws. There are more guns and ammunition in the hands of civilians than in the military. You don't hear about militias anymore but I'm sure those guys are just laying low. Somebody bought all the black rifles, after all. Maybe that's why the push to bring all the troops home - to bring them to bear here at home. Remember Waco? Ruby Ridge? How about Wounded Knee? Or this one, just a couple of weeks ago, where there actually were black helicopters. And this isn't the first event of this type. How about Miami and Minneapolis? Holy Horseshit, Batman! Now I'm starting to scare myself, but as Brother Johnny used to say, "Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they're not out to get you".

I'm going outside - thought I heard a helicopter.


tvi said...




Shop Teacher Bob said...

I'd like to see the article even though I don't need anything else to get me cranked up. Johnny would be rolling over in his grave if he had one - I checked last week, he doesn't. He damn sure was right about us being boned.

tvi said...

hey bob, i sent you that forward, let me know if you get it.

talk to you soon,


Traveling Pirate said...

I read 1984 in 1999 and have been paranoid ever since. Fahrenheit 451 didn't help either.

Those who surrender freedom for security will not have, nor do they deserve, either one.”

― Benjamin Franklin

Shop Teacher Bob said...

TVI: I checked out the link:

I checked out a few other pages there and when I went back to the original page, the pictures were gone - access denied. That's even more scary! What the hell is going on in this country?

Traveling Pirate: 1984 doesn't look like much of a stretch anymore. "Those who don't know their history are doomed to repeat it." I would venture to say that most people know very little about Franklin, Jefferson or the history of the founding of our country. Even if they did, might not be enough to get them to take responsibility for their lives. I predict the government will continue to exercise more direct control over us but will eventually run out of money, then all hell will break loose. I probably won't live long enough to see it, but it's coming.

Rich said...

I'm more Huxley than Orwell when it comes to my paranoia...

“We were keeping our eye on 1984. When the year came and the prophecy didn't, thoughtful Americans sang softly in praise of themselves. The roots of liberal democracy had held. Wherever else the terror had happened, we, at least, had not been visited by Orwellian nightmares.

But we had forgotten that alongside Orwell's dark vision, there was another -- slightly older, slightly less well known, equally chilling: Aldous Huxley's ‘Brave New World’. Contrary to common belief even among the educated, Huxley and Orwell did not prophesy the same thing. Orwell warns that we will be overcome by an externally imposed oppression. But in Huxley's vision, no Big Brother is required to deprive people of their autonomy, maturity and history. As he saw it, people will come to love their oppression, to adore the technologies that undo their capacities to think.

What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one. Orwell feared those who would deprive us of information. Huxley feared those who would give us so much that we would be reduced to passivity and egoism. Orwell feared that the truth would be concealed from us. Huxley feared the truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance. Orwell feared we would become a captive culture. Huxley feared we would become a trivial culture, preoccupied with some equivalent of the feelies, the orgy porgy, and the centrifugal bumblepuppy. As Huxley remarked in ‘Brave New World Revisited’, the civil libertarians and rationalists who are ever on the alert to oppose tyranny "failed to take into account man's almost infinite appetite for distractions." In ‘1984’, Huxley added, people are controlled by inflicting pain. In ‘Brave New World’, they are controlled by inflicting pleasure. In short, Orwell feared that what we hate will ruin us. Huxley feared that what we love will ruin us.

This book is about the possibility that Huxley, not Orwell, was right.

~ Neil Postman, Foreword to ‘Amusing Ourselves to Death’ (1985)

Shop Teacher Bob said...

Rich: I can't remember the last time I thought about Huxley, but you're right, he hit the nail right on the head. If all of this is the fulfilling of his prophecy, pretty much takes it out of the realm of paranoia and puts it square into the realm of reality. I really can't take much comfort in that, however. I should dig up a copy of Amusing Ourselves to Death and reread A Brave New World. Huxley can rest easy here. I still read and I try not to put too much faith in any technology that requires batteries.