THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 479, August 3, 2008
"If it weren't for those of us who insist on
the perfect, there'd never be any good."
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Fiat, a car maker we in the States haven't seen for many years will introduce a tetra fuel car in the Brazilian market this year that is able to use 3 different fuels:
Gasoline, 192 proof ethanol, blends of gas and ethanol, and natural gas.
Interesting that 192 Proof ethanol is sold at the pumps for about $2 a gallon in Brazil and gasoline is about 5 bucks.
Cars have been running in Brazil on ethanol with 4 percent water for almost 3 decades and experience shows much longer engine life too, since carbon buildup is absent. Methane (NG) is also cheaper than gasoline in most locales round the world.
On the horizon, I heard Lindsey Williams, author of "The Energy Non Crisis" report that Big Oil is about to bring in two huge new Oil fields, One North of Russia and one in Indonesia. Their goal is to flood the market, generate $50 Crude and kill research into alternatives, and cause Pandemonium in the Arab world as they are forced to dump the dollar in a New York minute.
This will be the death blow to the Dollar as Arabs unload their dollar holdings. The far north Russian fields have been reported on CNN recently, We will see if the Indonesian fields come into play. The two together are reported to be as big as Saudi deposits. That would be about 8 to 10 billion barrels a day production. Brazil recently found a huge deposit off shore that is said to rival Saudi holdings as well.
Some say in such a deflating economy, the Banksters will be able to buy back gold for a pittance at some point. I don't know how that would unwind. Energy and Arms stocks would probably take a big hit.
Would such a massive shift push sheep into a N.A.U. holding pen???
I can see Hydraulic Despotism allied with Fiat Banking outliving everything but the cockroach and termite. Countries, Cultures, and Free Will seem to be disposable items yet it takes two to dance and the average person doesn't realize their power.
Too bad people don't insist on multiple energy and financial options. I guess Hank Reardon exists only in fiction.
Stay tuned while You can. Internet 2 isn't quite here... yet.
A Little Thing Called Racism
Some of the essays by AX Perez read much like having my fingernails raked across a chalk board. With the advent of white boards, a simile that may well go the way of all flesh.
In his latest, "Paving Stones" he manages to describe much of the Wilson era "Progressive" movement without once mentioning that the Progressives were racists. Or maybe they aren't teaching that point in the public schools. The thought that Wilson, one of the three worst presidents in American history, segregated the civil service and shepherded in the era of Jim Crow to Washington, DC might not fit very well with Mr. Perez's world view. Then again, he probably loves reading Jack London novels without regard for the terrible racial epithets London used in writing about fights involving black professional boxers.
Two parts of his essay bothered me more than I could stand. Usually, I can just write it off to spawn of the public schools ignorance and get on with my life. But, first he notes, "4 amendments to the Constitution, two of which were good, one was bad, and the fourth so bad it had to be repealed."
Well, let's take a look, shall we? These must be the ones known generally as 16, 17, 18, and 19. I don't even have to look them up. Income tax, direct election of senators, prohibition, and suffrage for women, right?
How are any two of them, taken together "good"? One of them was good, recognising that half the human population are people. Yes, the amendment granting women the opportunity to share in the responsibility by delegating force through voting was unequivocally goodto the extent that any sort of voting is any kind of good.
Direct election of senators nailed another spike through the heart of federalism. You remember federalism? The idea that the division of powers was a worthy goal, that it made sense to have branches of government jealous of the power of the other branches, and the states able to resist the federal tyranny? They probably don't teach it that way in the public schools, though. Clearly, the direct election of senators took the USA Senate from the several states and made it into a mockery of democracy.
The evidence that fraud permeated every election for the senate in the time since is so ubiquitous, I can remember an episode of "Firing Line" in which William F. Buckley ever so dryly chortled that his uncle, who was a sheriff in South Texas, had voted for Johnson for the senate in 1948 and again in 1954, in spite of having died in 1946. Clearly, I do not regard direct election of senators to be any sort of blessing for liberty.
Income tax and prohibition, we can dispense with those, right? They were the bad one and the one that had to be repealed, right? Except that the repeal amendment carried with it national authority to regulate alcohol production, bringing us the A part of the BATFE.
Then he writes, "They created the Federal reserve System to stabilize banking and currency in the US. Necessary? Probably. Constitutional? That's a good question."
How was the feral reserveless system necessary? It was no more necessary than the paper pound or the French assignat. It was no more useful than the Confederate paper money or the Continental. It was useful, to be sure, for banking gangsters, just as the Second Bank of the United States was useful. But necessary? No way.
As for the question of its constitutionality, I wonder if Andrew Jackson's essay explaining his veto of the renewal for the Second Bank of the United States is completely unknown territory for Mr. Perez? Google threw me this link: http://alpha.furman.edu/~benson/docs/ajveto.htm Furman, it turns out, is a private school in South Carolina, so enthusiasts of the Progressives should be comfortable there.
All these complaints against the constitutionality of the Second Bank of the United States apply to the Federal Reserve system. There is no question about the constitutionality of the Federal Reserve, it has none. And it is wrong to imagine that it could have any. Where are the gold and silver coins that are the only lawful tender described in the constitution? Not in the paper money issued by the Federal Reserve.
No doubt in an essay to follow, Perez will do us all a favor by exclaiming on the beauty of our national parks and national forests, and what a great blessing it is to be able to hunt on public lands. I have included a full analysis of how those things are unconstitutional in my quote from Jackson, above, as a bonus.
Finally, he writes, "They never imagined how complex tax, immigration, and gun laws could get." No, they didn't care. They wanted to make things complex so they could keep the poor impoverished and themselves in power. They made gun laws so they could keep blacks from having guns or marrying whites. They made immigration complicated so they could stick it to what Jesse Helms once referred to as "slants, beaners, and niggers."
These were not "Decent men trying to protect the American people's rights" but just an earlier crowd of evil men who wanted power for themselves. It is unbelievably harmful for anyone to be taught that American politicians only recently went over to the dark side.
I suppose next we'll be treated to a lengthy essay extolling the virtues of Lincoln and FDR.
Dear Mr. Davidson,
Sometimes you rake your nails across the chalkboard to get people's attention. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon when you do this that people are too deeply in pain to notice what you were trying to say.
Please note the title of the article in question "Paving Stones", as in "The road to hell..."
My goal in the article was never to praise the Progressives but to point out that their efforts have turned out horribly wrong over the last hundred years plus that their ideas have shaped American policy. By their lights they were acting on good intentions when they did their part in creating the mess we are dealing with now.
Sorry I did not address Woodrow Wilson's racism to a sufficient degree. He is indeed about the worst President we ever had. He was a total racist, as one would expect from a Southern boy who went through Radical Reconstruction and grew up on tales exaggerating its abuses and the part played by Black troops in it. He was also one of the greatest liars and hypocrites ever elected. Promising to end foreign interventionism, he sent in the Marines and Army to interfere with other nation's affairs more either the openly interventionist Theodore Roosevelt and Howard Taft, his two predecessors, combined. This includes getting us into World War I after being elected to office on a specific promise not to do so. He cut out on feminists early in his first term, only to begin pushing women's rights in 1916 when he needed them to march and raise money for his re-election. His rush to sign away American sovereignty to the League of Nations was only the closing episode of an elitist war against the freedom of the American people. The pathetic thing is he thought he was doing good things.
This is what makes the Statists so dangerous, they think they are the good guys. Allow me to repeat myself, they think they are the good guys. They have good intentions. They fail to see that their solutions to the problems will destroy liberty, or even worse, they just don't care, accepting these consequences as acceptable, especially if someone else has to pay the price. A central banking system to them is worth the price of an organization that can manipulate the money supply to control whether Papa Bush or Slick Willie, Baby Bush or John Kerry gets elected President.
Regarding racism, I'm a beaner, spic, greaser, Mex, cholo, pachuco, whatever you want to call me. Listen carefully to the following thought, most bigots (racists, nativists, sexists, class warriors, etc.) think they are defending a God created natural order. They think bigotry is good. Nowadays most people (Especially those in the freedom movement) know better. Back at the beginning of the Twentieth Century people accepted the premises of racism. They were so committed to native born Wap dominance that it was acceptable to keep Black folk ( and Latinos, East Asians, and immigrants in general) in the gutter by having white folk get in there and hold them down (Feel free to look up the source quote.). What most people didn't (and too frequently don't) get is that keeping a Black man in the gutter is a good way to con a White man to join him there.
And they would have defended this as necessary to creating an orderly society, something they perceived as a good thing. They would have expected their listeners to accept their premises and line of reasoning. It's taken centuries for people to recognize that racism is in fact evil and a tool of tyranny. Remember, Huck Finn accepted the idea that he was doing wrong by helping Nigger Jim escape to slavery, a belief by a fictional character that reflected the attitudes of most white Southerners. That he actually perceived Jim as a friend would have offended many, if not most, people who supported the end of slavery. Interracial dating and marriage were still considered immoral late into the Twentieth Century even by many people who marched for desegregation. While I'm not into cultural relativism to the extent of disavowing my own values, neither am I damn fool enough to expect members of a society to recognize the flaws in their societies values without a lot of work showing them why they are wrong.
Regarding the direct election of Senators, yeah I see your point. Considering how corrupt all American politics were at the time the change from crooked senatorial elections by state legislators instead of the general public is not that big a degradation of public honesty.
Federalism (and any structure of government) is only valuable if it helps protect people's rights. Seems to me my rights are in as much danger from a Senator who was put in office by a crooked legislature as by (an admittedly possibly dishonest) election by his state's general populace. Before you throw federalism at me like a mantra consider that means defending states' rights to ban .50 BMG rifles, large capacity magazines, nudie pictures, Wicca, and so on.
Once you accept one Constitutional exception to federalism (extension of the Bill of Rights to bind the States as well as The Federal government ) you have to accept that others can be made.
Let me sum up this response by stating a bit more bluntly the point of my original article: the Progressives ended up doing horrific things from good intentions. Sometimes those intentions were founded on values we now consider false. The result has been a degradation of American liberty. A lot of the work facing the freedom movement is cleaning up the disasters they created.
We are currently having economic, social, military and diplomatic problems. A lot of people, including many calling themselves libertarians, will offer solutions that will end up reducing or threatening our freedom. Many will be guided by a will to power and corruption, an even greater number will be guided by good intentions, even if these intentions are based on ultimately false premises.
We must oppose these people wholeheartedly, because they are on the road to hell and we have no wish to go with them.
Dear Mr. Perez:
Thank you for your response.
I do not rake my nails across the chalkboard. If that is all you have by way of getting attention, may I suggest a course in oratory? You could also try a musical introduction. I recommend the fine musical interlude of "The Three Degrees," in their classic "Nobody Gets to Go the Moon,"the original words having lost something in translation from optimism. Youtube has a nice copy.
I noticed what you were trying to say. I suggest that you try not. Do say, or do not say, there is no value to "trying to say."
Your title was quite obvious, yes, thanks. The point of the path to Hell being paved is it doesn't require the assistance of Progressives.
> My goal in the article was never to praise
But, you did praise them. And, you continue to imagine their intentions to be good.
> By their lights they were acting on good
You are mistaking their stated intentions with their actual intentions. Are you aware of a novelist named Edward Mandell House? Have you read what he wrote?
Here, take a peek:
House was the architect of most of Wilson's policies. House was directly responsible for the Vietnam War, among his many other horrid policies. For the goal of turning the entire world into a bureau and every man, woman, and child into a bureau-rat, House was prepared to shed oceans of blood.
Ascribing benevolent intentions to the Progressives makes you seem to be an apologist for them. Which is why I wanted to point out the extreme racism of these men, who would not have welcomed you into their midst.
Wilson was a terrible president, but I believe by any objective criteria, such as the number of American military deaths, the number of American military casualties, the number of American civilians massacred, the number of foreigners both military and civilian killed or wounded, economic difficulties, and political scandals, the most evil president was FDR, followed closely by Lincoln. I would be delighted to make my calculations the subject of a future article for TLE.
> The pathetic thing is he thought he was doing
I don't believe you have any insight into what he thought, other than the exculpatory crap he turned out in his writings. That even Wilson came to the conclusion later in life that he was horribly misled in signing the Federal Reserve Act illustrates not his good conscience, but his willingness to blame others for his own choices. Bob Barr has recently been a great champion of such excusesclaiming to be misled on the USAPATRIOT act and the Iraq War.
> Allow me to repeat myself, they think they are the
Look, I'm not five years old. I got it the first time. You think the Progressives had good intentions. You can repeat it until the end of time, and I'll still believe that you believe it, and I still won't believe it. The politicians and bureau-rats who followed the Progressive line were evil men and women who wanted power for themselves. They wanted to make their fortunes on the backs of the productive people of this country. Of course their propaganda said otherwise, but so what? I find your willingness to ascribe good intentions to people who have effective propaganda to be tediously naive.
I think it is important to call things by their proper names, and to identify evil when it is identifiable. I think it is wishful thinking of the most ignorant, Polly Anna-ish sort that ascribes good intentions to people who engage in deliberate acts of evil. I would like you to stop being so naive and so hopeful. Clear away the haze of illusion. You've been deceived. Pay attention to the little man behind the curtainhe is not the great and powerful Oz, but he is deceptive, and his purposes are evil.
> They fail to see that their solutions to the
A bit better. The Progressives did not fail to see that their solutions would destroy liberty, they didn't have any use for the general liberty they were destroying. They were brutal statists of the most despicable sort, wanting to centralise as much power as rapidly as possible. And if they wanted someone else to pay the price of their actions, it would be, in their view, the non-white races they held in such contempt.
> Regarding racism, I'm a beaner, spic, greaser, Mex,
I frankly don't wish to call you any of those things. I note with considerable chagrin that the Libertarian Party's candidate for president has recently eulogised Jesse Helms, who used terms like those. It is also noteworthy that the LP's candidate for USA Senate from Kentucky recently used racial epithets in calling for the extermination of the entire Arab population by military action. Sonny Landham, Jesse Helms, and I believe Bob Barr have a great deal in common with the Progressive era racists and statists in that they believe in government action to brutalise one group of people for the imagined benefit of another.
For the record, I don't agree with such views. I am against bigotry, especially where it is applied to things outside the control of the person being discriminated against, such as race, ethnicity, religious heritage, height, age, gender, sexual preference, or shoe size. I am bigoted against statists and against law enforcement officers, because I believe they have chosen poorly, and consistently, to be a part of smashing human faces with their boots. I am exceedingly intolerant of brutality and coercion.
> They think bigotry is good.
Do they? Do you know most racists? I say you do not. I say you don't know what they think, or even whether they think. I think you are trying to make sense of a brutal world by assigning virtues of decency and kindness to people who entirely lack a benevolent bone in their bodies. You want to believe that the Nazi concentration camp guards brutally terrorised and murdered tens of millions of captive Jews, Slavs, Poles, Gypsies, homosexuals, and dissidents because they thought bigotry was good. I want you to understand that those people did those things, and others do similar things, not because they are good, but because they are evil.
> Nowadays most people (Especially those in the
Honestly, I don't think you know most people. I think you are being silly in asserting knowledge of what most people know. Most people don't know anything. Which is why cop shows are so popular.
> Back at the beginning of the Twentieth Century
Very obviously, not everyone did. Men like Booker T. Washington were appalled by the actions of men like Wilson and House.
> And they would have defended this as necessary
No. They would have defended these things as desirable in order to create not just any sort of orderly society, but one with themselves and their kin at the top of the food chain. Which is what I mean when I say that they were evil, and deliberately so. They knew exactly what they were doing.
> It's taken centuries for people to recognize that
For any people, or for most people? Or for people who write propaganda tracts that you read when you were being educated in the public schools?
> Remember, Huck Finn accepted the idea that he was
Huck Finn was certainly confused about the ethics of the situation, given that there were constitutional provisions for the ownership of humans as chattel. One of the points Mark Twain was making in his novel was the classic bildungsroman idea that to grow into a mature person, one has to choose for oneself rather than passively accepting the moral platitudes of self-important elements of society. There is some irony here, for me, that I'm making the same point.
> Interracial dating and marriage were still
I don't have a count of the numbers. I will say that Loving versus Virginia was hailed as a key turning point in the state's quest to license and limit access to marriage. You could look it up. You might also look up desegregation, which you've misspelt.
> While I'm not into cultural relativism to the
My concern is that you are assigning good intentions and pure motivations to people who were entirely corrupt, decadent, immoral, evil, and putrescent, by the standards of their day. You won't believe it.
> at the time the change from crooked senatorial
Here I think you are still missing the point. Having the state legislatures choose senators represents a check against the centralisation of power in the national government. It isn't about public honesty being degradedthus degradationbut about power being divided. The difficulties attendant on further consolidation of power in the national government are obvious and many.
It is also somewhat curious that the several states never challenged the unconstitutionality of any amendment that would deprive states without their consent of their equal suffrage in the senate. But, I think this point speaks to the willingness of those in power in the several states to be a part of consolidating power in the national government. You know, to work greater evil.
> Federalism (and any structure of government) is only
Gosh, yes. And so if we have seen the people lose more of their rights in the time since the structure was perverted by the Progressives, perhaps there is a relationship here to consider. Can you see the possibility that you were wrong in thinking direct election of senators good?
> Seems to me my rights are in as much danger
The point is not now and never was to protect your rights. The point of federalism is to provide checks on consolidated power. Obviously, I don't believe in a republic, or a democracy, or any other form of externally imposed coercive government. My rights are not protected by any form of government except self-government. Thus, I do not consent to be governed.
> Before you throw federalism at me like a mantra
No, it doesn't. You obviously don't understand the constitution. The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, by anyone, at any level, at any time, any where. The protections of free press and freedom of religious expression are guaranteed by the constitutions of the several states, by the national bill of rights, and by the equal protection clause of the so-called fourteenth amendment as it operates.
States have no rights. Read the constitution. Rights are clearly identified with the people. People have rights. The states and the national government have powers, and only such powers as are enumerated, and as are not excluded. All other powers being vested in the people. There are no states rights and there never were. The term states rights is a propaganda piece foisted on the American people by the reconstructionists.
Obviously, the structure of the constitution was inept and inadequate to defend liberty. But, breaking down the structure did a great deal of harm. The progressives <spit> were part of breaking down the structure.
> the point of my original article: the Progressives
I know what you believe. You are a good enough writer to convey your beliefs. You don't have to engage in this inane practice of repeating yourself. Saying it again doesn't make it true.
The point of our disagreement is that you want to believe that the progressives acted from good intentions, because you want to believe that people are all basically good and decent. I'm telling you that the progressives were evil, hateful, power grabbing charlatans who had deception, hatred, animosity, and putrescence in their hearts. I urge you to read some of the incredibly evil things that Jack London, Woodrow Wilson, and Ed House wrote about people of what they regarded as inferior races to get a sense of exactly who they were in the matter.
> A lot of the work facing the freedom movement is
If you are going to pretend to have the capacity to direct the freedom movement's future actions, please make some effort to understand the past.
I don't have to fix the United States government in order to be free. I don't rely on the consent of the majority in order to be free. My freedom is provided by me, for my benefit. It has very little to do with you.
> We are currently having economic, social, military and
Are you? I am not. I have no military, except myself, and I'm experiencing no problems with self-discipline. I have no diplomats, and many people will assure you that I have no diplomacy. And how did your economic and social problems come to have anything to do with me? How did I get involved in this plural pronoun "we"?
> A lot of people, including many calling themselves
I have been reading about Barr and Landham, yes, thanks.
> Many will be guided by a will to power and
Your optimism has blinded you. The souls of the men and women who seek power are much darker than you imagine. Hillary Clinton has the aura of the death camp about her, as L. Neil Smith noted, not because she has the best interests of the nation at heart, but because she is an evil woman who wants to massacre millions to slake her thirst for blood. As long as you tell people that she is a good, decent, honorable woman whose intentions are good, but whose methods are misguided, you are doing your fellow liberty seeking individualists a disservice.
Maybe you haven't been arrested. Maybe you haven't been kicked in the head by cops. Maybe you haven't been through the wringer of the criminal injustice system. I don't know. But you write with a naivete that is much too saccharine for my taste.
> We must oppose these people wholeheartedly, because
We must oppose these people and their actions because they are evil. It is diabolical to suppose that they are good.
Who's next? The Entomologist?
Next you'll probably need to get permission to take pictures of Ur anus. : /
Remember the Republicans' Contract with America (or whatever they called it)? That combined with gun owners' ire over the ugly gun ban is part of why the Democrats lost control of Congress in 1994.
Part of the contract was term limits. I forget specifically what the Republicans promised and it really doesn't matter because the bums weenied out (Big surprise!). Between a system set up to reward seniority and the addictive pleasure of exercising power there will be gelid climates in the infernal regions before they voluntarily leave office.
One of the reasons they made this promise was a belief (correct) that over time keeping power becomes more important than ideals. Compromises get made, first as the price of achieving at least part of the agenda you were elected to carry out. One trade of favors leads to another until finally you make deals to gain and hold power and little things like protecting liberty get forgotten.
Back in the 1970's there was a revolt in the National Rifle Association because the membership felt that the leaders were not doing enough to defend Second Amendment Rights. The NRA become more assertive in defending the right to keep and bear arms and enjoyed some successes. Until The NRA-ILA started becoming part of the DC establishment and became part of the deal and compromise culture of our nation's capital.
The result is that groups like the Gun Owners of America, and Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership and people like the publisher of The Libertarian Enterprise complain that the NRA is making too many compromises and is now a gun control agency, again (note, some of the aforementioned always said the NRA was tied too closely to the government and not militant enough in defending gun rights.
Perhaps the NRA is by its nature too closely tied to the Big G and doomed to be a group that goes along with violations of the Second Amendment. On the other hand maybe it's just time to have another revolt in the National Rifle Association. Many readers of TLE are voting members of the NRA and /or eligible to serve on the Board of Directors.
Just remember to step down before you get corrupted.
I commend this article to anyone who reads TLE:
The Arrogance of Greenspan by Butler Shaffer
"Society has been rendered turbulent by centuries of the Platonic belief that philosopher-kings could render the world a better place."
I don't remember reading a more succinct summation of the rationality of "an-archy", or the chaos produced by government.
Excellent article. The last paragraph deserves to be set in stone.