Monday, May 31, 2021

Solutions are not on the agenda

I was reading a couple of opinion columns in our little weekly local paper-- the one that's not online, where I used to write my Liberty Lines columns on occasion.

The two remaining opinion columnists are solidly "conservative".

Reading their columns, you'd think the only real problem with America is that "liberals" exist.

They are quick to list their gripes, and blame them all on "liberal" politicians (or those they've influenced). It all because "we" aren't tough enough on "crime". They can't see that "their side" is just as bad for liberty.

They beat around the bush when discussing their problems with government, but they avoid the core issues and avoid mentioning anything like an actual solution beyond more government violence. Why? Because you can't solve problems caused by too much politics by bringing in more politics. Especially not with more authoritarian politics. And they apparently love politics as long as "their side" has the upper hand. They don't want to stop using the political means against others. Solving problems is less important.

So they'll never do anything other than carefully avoid a solution to the things they complain about. And continue to hallucinate that it's only "liberals" making the mess. If only everyone would lick the boots of the police and the military, enforce all the right "laws", go to the right kind of church, never use any intoxicants that are "illegal", etc., America would be all better again. A nice, quiet, police state where they get the kind of government over others that they like, while their enemies plot how to turn it against them in the future.

They plow around the stump in their field, even as it grows larger, because to get rid of it entirely would take away their option to use it against someone else, later. And sticking it to the "liberals" is more important to them than is living in liberty.


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Sunday, May 30, 2021

Saying "you're free because you're allowed to..." defeats your argument that freedom exists.

Liberty under attack

I'm not a gun blogger. I'm a liberty blogger. But I tend to focus on whatever is most under attack at the moment. Very often, that's gun owners and their guns. And that's the case right now, too.

Years ago I saw L. Neil Smith call the issue of "guns" an X-ray into a politician's mind. You can tell how much it (the proper pronoun for a politician) respects all your rights by how much it (the politician in question) respects your right to own and to carry weapons. I've never seen that fall too far from the truth.

Even "pro-gun" politicians are universally against getting government completely out of your holster, and they are all in favor of violating other natural human rights, too. Absolute scum.

I wish a day would come when I didn't feel the need to ever blog about guns again. A day when no one was out there scheming against this natural human right. If this happened, I'll bet your other rights would be a lot safer, too.


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Saturday, May 29, 2021

Computer problems damage my calm

I'm in a horrible mood today.

My computer developed a near-fatal problem overnight. It says it can't find a "wireless device" anymore. I am writing this sitting in the hall, connected to an ethernet cable-- completely blocking the hall so no one larger than a cat can pass unless I get out of the way. This isn't going to work for anyone-- except the cats.

I may try to find longer ethernet cables, or connectors so I can make a cable long enough to at least get out of the hall. 

I can post in a limited way from my phone. 

Until/unless I can get this solved, I may be mostly limited to posting "Blips".

This is going to be a huge problem for writing my columns.

If anyone wants to chip in so I can afford more options to fix this, I'd appreciate it (my birthday is coming up in a few weeks, so you could just call it a birthday gift). If not, that's fine. I'll survive.

UPDATE: Thanks for the help. I am up and "running" again. (And thanks to scheduling posts ahead, I didn't even miss one this morning!)


Homelessness and responsibility

Whenever I go to Albuquerque for a rare visit I see more homeless people than I've ever seen anywhere else. I'm sure there are worse places, but I haven't seen any in my limited experience.

I looked for a photograph to show what I saw at Albuquerque's Coronado Park and vicinity since I forgot to take one myself, but all of them looked a lot less horrible than what I witnessed this time. Does this mean it's getting worse? So I used a picture I took of the best thing to see in ABQ.

My feelings on homelessness are mixed.

I was homeless for a short time nearly 20 years ago. Instead of hanging out in a city park looking for handouts and doing drugs, I lived out of my car, in the woods, visiting a small town park daily for tap water and an electrical outlet. Wilderness survival skills are great, even when you aren't exactly in the wilderness, but staying "acceptable" for polite society sometimes requires a little more. If I'd been anywhere near a part of the world I cared to stay in, I probably wouldn't have bothered making the effort to stay "civilized" but would have just walked off with what I could carry.

I'm not sure if I was trespassing while homeless-- I didn't cross any fences nor did I see any signs, but I may have been. Either way, I took great care to not make a mess or damage the property-- or to even leave any sign I had ever been there when I left. Then, as soon as I could (I had a job the whole time) I got myself out of the worst of that situation. Almost an "out of the frying pan, into the fire" situation, but here I am.

So I do have empathy for the homeless.

I can't imagine choosing to stay in a city once you become homeless. But then, I'm not a city person. I suppose those who are can't imagine abandoning that familiar landscape for the woods.

The homeless situation in Albuquerque is a whole other mess. And, yes, "mess" is literally what I mean. The way most of them behave, you can tell addiction or other types of mental illness are a major part of the problem, not just a lack of a job or a house. 

I saw very few women among the homeless in ABQ. That might mean they gathered elsewhere, or dressed to blend in with the men, or were inside their makeshift shelters and tents. But maybe women have more opportunities for getting help, or are more likely to accept help than are men. Or maybe I just wasn't observant enough to see the women right in front of me.

This time, none of them approached me to ask for handouts. That was different. They also seemed to be more contained at the park than in previous visits-- whether by their own choice or some other factor. 

As long as they aren't trespassing or damaging private property, nor aggressively demanding handouts or robbing others, I don't have an issue with leaving them alone to live as they prefer. Even in a city park.

But the mess they create doesn't stay put, and a chainlink fence doesn't solve it. I hate the litter and filth that I see the homeless in ABQ causing. They sure don't seem to mind making the world filthier for the rest of us. I can't even begin to understand this.

Litter is a private property violation, no matter who does it or where. It doesn't stay put but blows in the wind. You can't litter without violating the rights of others. No matter who you are. 

There's nothing about being homeless that requires you to be irresponsible; to litter and mess up things. But, among these ABQ homeless, I don't see responsible behavior. I see lots of irresponsible behavior. Of course, as with everyone, the bad ones get all the attention... if there are any good ones in the background. Maybe the responsible ones are all out in the woods.


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Friday, May 28, 2021

Cowardly, violent anti-gun bigots don't realize that the right to own and to carry weapons of war (actual weapons of war, not just the AR15s they lie about) will still exist with or without the 2nd Amendment. Nothing can change that.

Craft Holster Breathable Belly Band review

Recently my friends at 
Craft Holsters sent me another holster to review. This one is their Breathable Belly Band. Actually, they sent me two of them: one of their old style which they have discontinued, and the new version which replaced it.

I put both to the test to compare them. This review took longer than usual to conduct, and is longer to read, since there were two holsters.

Some background: I used to wear a belly band all the time. For years. Of course, back then I was carrying guns not well-suited to carrying, so that was where my only problems lay. No more of that! I remember now what I liked so much about belly bands, even under less than optimal circumstances.

First, here's the older version (which has been discontinued).

Belly band holsters obviously aren't as pretty as the fine leather holsters Craft Holsters has sent me. But they aren't meant to be. Functional is good, too.

I got the medium length, and it is 3.5" wide. Besides the gun pocket, it has two magazine pockets and a hook & loop-closure ("velcro") pocket on the back for hidden money or papers. If you need to get into that pocket during the day, you might want a trusted friend to access it for you. (Years ago, I traveled around for 6 months or so and kept thousands of dollars in such a pocket on a belly band-- but one that didn't seem as secure, so I loosely stitched it shut every morning if I needed to get money out-- and only transferred to my wallet what I thought I would need that day. So it's not really necessary to get into it during the day except in an emergency.)

This belly band fit me really well, and retained my Sig Sauer P365 perfectly-- at least when I wore it right. It has an elastic band with a tab to hold the firearm in place. It worked as designed. It does seem to be breathable-- I didn't get the slightest bit extra sweaty under it. This is a big improvement over the old styles I've tried over the years that felt a little like wrapping a strip of blanket around your belly. You can actually see through the band at the lighter stripes in the pictures; that's where air can circulate. 

As with all belly bands, it takes a bit of trial and error to get the holster positioned correctly. If you don't, it can be less comfortable and less secure. One day near the beginning of my test I had it positioned so poorly my pistol fell out. Twice! At least I was able to keep it from falling out of my vest (and wasn't around nosey people anyway), but it was a warning to pay more attention to how the band was positioned. I never had any issue with losing the gun after that one day.

The one and only issue I continued to have was that the odd-shaped P365 magazines kept working their way out of their pockets. P365 magazines are pretty slick and tapered a lot near the feed lips, making the whole thing nearly wedge-shaped. (A less-refined person might compare the magazine shape to a turd.) Putting them upside down into the magazine pockets meant they were always wanting to "squirt" out over time as I moved. These are the only magazines I have with this shape, and I don't think others would have the same problem. (I tested a Ruger P95 DC magazine, which has a similar but less pronounced shape, and it didn't try to fall out.) I found a "velcro" strap with a snap in a drawer and I installed it on the belly band (and only carried one spare mag thereafter) and I had no more trouble at all. You can see what I did below.

I wore this belly band holster for nearly a month and loved it more every day. I almost didn't want to put it away to try the other one. But I made a deal, so...

I switched over to try the new style Breathable Belly Band. 

This one is significantly wider than the other-- 4.75"-- which I've found is usually better for comfort than narrower bands. This one is comfortable, but not noticeably more comfortable than the 3.5" band. Maybe after a certain width, additional width doesn't make much difference.

On the new style, the elastic loop pistol retention has been replaced with a "velcro" elastic strap. It feels much more secure, but it is also a bit harder to draw from. The strap can be stretched over the back of the pistol fairly easily (replacing the pistol into the pocket while wearing the belly band is a different story on both styles-- you've got to take a little care to do so correctly). One thing is for sure: this one isn't going to let the pistol fall out even if the belly band isn't positioned well!

Instead of the money pocket, the new version has a pouch which has a hook & loop strap closure. I'm guessing this is to hold a wallet, as well as whatever else you think of. It's not on the back, but on the left front, which makes it easier to access. I tucked the strap inside when not in use. One of the magazine pockets is beside it, on the left side of your body,, more toward the front/center. 

This belly band is almost covered with pockets, from end to end. Only lacking them on one end and where the logo patch is positioned. I kind of like that versatility.

I still had issues with the P365 magazines wanting to work up and out of the magazine pockets in this belly band, too. It didn't seem quite as bad as with the older style band because you can seat them a little deeper (due to the extra width), but it's still not something you want to happen. I tried the Ruger P95 DC magazine again, carrying it all day, with no problems. I switched to the P365 magazine and it fell out within 30 minutes-- different shape; different result. Exactly how the band is worn does make a difference; how high and exactly which position. But it's really hard to replicate exactly from one time to the next. I just don't think P365 mags are going to stay in place without something over the top holding them in. I can fix that. 

And I did. With velcro straps again. No snaps this time, I just stitched the end of the hook side inside the magazine pocket and stitched a little rectangle of the loop side on the front of the belly band and didn't have any more issues. I fixed two magazine pockets this way and carried two spare magazines with no problems from that point on. I only had white velcro so it's not as attractive-looking, so I won't be sharing pictures of that modification.

Closing thoughts-- Both were really good (other than the magazine problem) and comfortable. It is easy to adjust them to find your sweet spot. They were breathable as advertised and didn't give me any problems, even during some long walks/hikes.

If you like belly bands-- and why wouldn't you?-- I think you'll like the Breathable Belly Band holsters from Craft Holsters.

I'm going to have a hard time deciding which type of holster to use as my daily wear now. It's a good "problem" to have. Options are good, and good options are even better.

Thanks again, Craft Holsters!


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Thursday, May 27, 2021

Missed my chance, and I'm not even sad

I spent last weekend in Albuquerque with the extended family. I'll have more to say about that in days to come.

While I was there someone in the family saw on social media (or the "news") that the city was having a "gun buyback" [sic]. To "fight crime". LOL. Idiots.


My first thought was that if I had known, I have a completely inoperable and irreparable single-shot (well, technically, zero-shot) derringer that I could have brought with me to trade for some money (I'd obviously want to find out whether the money was stolen or donated before doing the trade). I didn't have it with me, though. 

Then I discovered they weren't even "buying", the guns, but only trading a gift card for them. Forget that! I'd rather keep my useless piece of wood and metal. At least it's cute.

(And if I'd had the money to offer people for their unloved guns-- offering actual cash rather than a gift card-- I could have done that, instead. That would have been even better.)


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Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Is it surprising that a mass murderer like Chip"man" would project his own failures onto other people? Most people aren't as evil as he proved himself to be. When I have a gun in my hand I don't wantonly murder women and children. Or even help carry out the murders. Don't even want to,
All countries, being political, are vile. That being said... Taiwan is a country. Equal to and exactly as legitimate (or not) as China. Never apologize for telling the truth.

Any time I hear of another mass shooting, my first thought is something along the lines of "Did a gun-free zone just kill again?" And, usually, that is exactly what turns out to have happened.
Yeah, I know-- the evil loser who pulled the trigger has ultimate responsibility, but that doesn't absolve those who literally handed him the opportunity and gave him a pool of potential victims to murder at his leisure by forbidding guns in some space.

If you believe the problem with police killings is that the dead person "resisted arrest" you are unqualified to ever sit on the jury of a rape trial. You're too biased in favor of the aggressor.

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

The idea vs the reality

Many times I come up with an idea of something to make, and often I can't get it out of my mind until I make it or at least give it my best shot. It might be a jacket, a knife, a model, a painting, or something else. I'll plan it all out and figure out exactly what I want before I start making it.

What I end up with is rarely as good as what I originally thought of, but usually, it's still pretty good. Often I've even made certain improvements over my original idea. But some features always end up being slightly beyond my ability or the capabilities of the material I am working in. You don't really know this until you try.

My first idea for the project was somewhat Utopian, and maybe not entirely realistic, but I'm not too disappointed by what I ended up with. It's better than nothing, especially if my original idea got me to push the boundaries of what I thought was possible.

The same is true of liberty.

You might as well plan out what you really want, then start working toward that. No, you'll never get Utopia because that's just not an option. But without that Utopian roadmap, you'll never get anywhere worthwhile. You'll never push the boundaries beyond what other people say is realistic-- which is never quite true anyway. Most people are scared of anything beyond the status quo unless it is based on their own idea.


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Monday, May 24, 2021

Crypto is a shark trying to shake off the remoras or a dog trying to shake off its fleas. Don't be a remora or a flea.

There really aren't many unique questions related to human behavior. That's why there aren't many unique answers to what people should do in such-and-such situations. "You always have the same solution to everything!" Yeah, because you really can approach every question by simply respecting liberty and rejecting coercion, theft, and aggression. Some people believe this is a problem, but that's their problem.

There are rules which good people follow so they don't violate others.
There are rules which bad people impose and follow so they can violate others "legally".
I hate it when anyone follows the second kind of rule. I respect the disobedient among us who ignore and willfully break such rules.

By any other name...

Non-consensual bodily penetration. It seems people were against such a thing, once upon a time.

But in recent years the thugs of the state have claimed it is necessary for "public safety". Either to penetrate your body to steal something from you or to occupy your body with something you'd rather not host. This makes it worse than a mere stabbing, since it either intentionally steals something or intentionally leaves something behind, inside you.

How did it become "normal" to support or advocate non-consensual bodily penetration?


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Sunday, May 23, 2021

Time to right marijuana wrongs

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for April 28, 2021)

Once the marijuana rules have changed, everyone with marijuana charges on their record should get a clean slate. At least where marijuana is concerned. Then they need to be paid the restitution they are owed by those who harmed them.

People arrested or fined for a crime which is no longer a crime deserve a break. Those who were jailed over marijuana were wronged. Those who were fined need to be repaid the money which was taken under phony pretexts. All for a "crime" which, finally, after nearly one hundred years of false claims and shoddy justifications, is recognized as not actually wrong.

Would you still consider runaway slaves criminals, with a record, after slavery was abolished? False claims and shoddy justification were used to excuse that evil institution, too.

What you ingest has never been government's business. Pretending it is doesn't make it so. Punishing people for ignoring the arbitrary wishes of politicians is wrong. Those who do wrong-- even if someone else has told them to do it-- owe restitution to their victims. "I was only following orders" has never excused such behavior.

Something can't be wrong one day and not wrong the next, or OK one day and illegal the next; based only on the opinions of smug politicians. Situations like this are why I have no respect for legislation. This exposes the absurdity of the whole system.

It seems silly to keep punishing people for past marijuana offenses, which is what is happening if those offenses stay on their record.

Even if the arrested individuals did something which will still be technically illegal under the new rules, it's long past time to let prohibition go. It's no more sensible than the witch trials of the 1690s or the alcohol prohibition of the 1920s. Everyone who once "waged war on weed" looks as bad as those who came before them, and in the future may even look worse.

If you're going to insist on having police and government courts they need to focus only on those acts where someone's life, liberty, or property has been harmed. Beyond this is where any legitimacy ends. It's not a fuzzy gray area; it ends hard at that line. If they violate anyone's life, liberty, or property in the course of doing their jobs, they've become what they claim to be fighting. Prohibition is one example of them having done exactly this.

It's time to make it right.

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The consistency of liberty

Liberty is completely consistent. But those who decide to reject it won't see the consistency because they don't understand what they are seeing.

Years ago a good friend of mine made the argument that gravity isn't consistent. She said gravity works on Earth but not in space. She also claimed that airplanes are defying gravity when they fly. She thought this showed that gravity doesn't always work.

She was no dummy-- very smart and in her mid-80s.

I tried to explain that gravity is consistent everywhere (even though its strength varies from place to place in the Universe due to the uneven distribution of matter), but due to different conditions, it looks different in space than it does on Earth. 

I tried to explain that "zero gravity" in orbit is just the result of falling around the planet. A "downward" falling path that misses the ground and keeps going around. Orbiting wouldn't be possible without gravity. (Deep space would be a different situation.)

I tried to explain that without gravity, airplanes couldn't fly the way they do. Gravity holds the air to the planet so they can use it for lift and thrust.

She wouldn't have any of it. To her, it looked different under those different conditions and she didn't understand the physics behind it, so that was the end of it. Gravity was inconsistent and unreliable, in her view.

Those who don't (or won't) understand liberty are much the same. They see different situations, and imagine that it looks like liberty is different in those situations-- that it doesn't work in every circumstance. But that's only because they don't understand what they are looking at.

Is it possible to explain it to them? Maybe not, but it works the same regardless of whether they accept and understand it or not.


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Saturday, May 22, 2021

Government doesn't unify people, it divides them

I wonder why so many people seem to be under the impression that political government unifies people. The opposite seems to be the case, and it seems obvious to me.

When I see people suggesting a global government, the excuse they often use is that it would "unite humanity". Well, it would give us a common enemy, but I don't think that's the idea they are pushing.

Political government divides. Whether it is two opposing governments dividing the people living under each, or one government dividing the people it seeks to rule. In the second case it makes me feel at odds with others who want to use that government to violate me in various ways. If I were political, it would make me believe I need to use that government against them in defense.

I can govern myself just fine. I don't feel the need to govern you. If this is a problem which needs to be solved by imposing the same political government on us both, I guess I'm on the wrong side.


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Friday, May 21, 2021

Anarchist government?

In one of my recent "Blips" I wrote:

Is anarchy "a system"?
It comes down to what someone means by "system".
If "system" means a general way to do things, sure.
But if they mean an institution with someone "in charge" who imposes their will, no.
Same word, used in different ways, depending on the motives of the user.

It's the same way the word "authority" is used to mean two different concepts: a political bully or an expert.

A government-supremacist was whining that anarchy isn't a system of government-- and that's apparently all he cares about. That's the objection he kept harping on. It's why he kept claiming that others were describing anarchy as though it were a system while at the same time indicating that it wasn't a system of government. It was a distinction he couldn't grasp for some reason.

So, yes, anarchy can be used as a system. It can show you a path to successful consensual interaction with others.

No, anarchy isn't a system of government, but there is one system of government which is consistent with anarchy: You govern yourself and no one else. It's the only legitimate form of government, being removed from politics.

Anarchy, as a system, means as long as I follow it I am not going to try to rule anyone, nor will I accept anyone's attempt to rule me. It means I alone am responsible for my actions. It means I will respect the life, liberty, and property of others.

But there is no room in there for me to claim anarchy while trying to govern you. This use is outside of the "system" of anarchy. Completely. It's as far from anarchy as slavery is from liberty.


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Thursday, May 20, 2021

I'm not a fan of face masks as a way to fight viral disease, but if a business requires them, it's not usually a line in the sand for me.
I'm not a fan of Covid-19 vaccines or experimental gene therapies, but if a private business or a corporation (which is government) says "no unvaccinated person may enter", I'll shun them and take my business elsewhere. Yes, I think they are being foolish, but I have no control (with a mask or otherwise) over whether a virus will be released from my body if it were to be present in me, so it is their business, even if their fear is silly and hysterical.

Like a cool drink of water in the hot desert

Yesterday someone wrote and told me a little story of a recent experience of theirs that my writing may have-- in a general way-- played a small part in. You don't even know how happy this sort of thing makes me. Even if I'm vastly overestimating the part my writing played in what happened, it is a great feeling.

I've gotten similar notes from people several times over the years and it never gets old.

If anything I write gives you ideas for standing up for liberty, I'm more successful than I ever dreamed I could be-- whether I'm financially successful or not. Honestly, if I had to choose between monetary success and inspiring others, I'd choose inspiring others nearly every time. (Only having second thoughts about this choice when I'm in a bad financial situation.) Which is why I am where I am.

I get the same kind of rush when people write to gush over my Time's Up flag design-- or even buy one or more. It's a validation that I never really expected.

But I am grateful and I thank all of you.

I'll keep on keeping on as long as I feel I am contributing something. Hopefully, it's not an empty feeling.


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Wednesday, May 19, 2021

I don't care what the CDC says even when they say something I like. They lost all credibility with me decades ago and they aren't going to get it back.

No matter what else happens in my life, no one can take away that I "celebrated" the roll-over from the year 1999 to 2000 sitting at a campfire in the snow, down by the river, in my buckskins, firing off a blank shot from my Hawken at midnight-ish (judging by the other celebratory noise drifting up from town). I wish I had more ideas as good as that one. It felt like pure liberty.

Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Is anarchy "a system"?
It comes down to what someone means by "system".
If "system" means a general way to do things, sure.
But if they mean an institution with someone "in charge" who imposes their will, no.
Same word, used in different ways, depending on the motives of the user.

Antisocial diseases

It is so puzzling to see people praising politicians. No matter how bad they are, they all have a big cheering section that won't stop. And won't stop v*ting for them.

People fall all over themselves to praise Bidump (either incarnation) in ways that make absolutely no sense to me. They ignore his flaws, or downplay them, and praise his political actions. Political actions... crimes. And they praise them.


It's as bewildering as the people who can't let go of politicians after they are out of office-- they hate them and are still so obsessed with them that they can't get on with their lives just because that presidency happened. Someone has to pay!

Imagine if people were still looking for ways to punish Obama supporters. (If they are, I haven't seen it.)

Some people care way too much about the politicians who infest civilization. Politicians are a disease. Treat them as such. Cure the sickness and move on.


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Monday, May 17, 2021

Twitter feed: "Scientists and public health experts say that vaccines are safe for most people"

Me: Yeah... and so is COVID-19

I had a strange TSHTF dream last night-- or a dream about the beginning of TSHTF-- and it wasn't even a little scary or unsettling. I was just approaching it like "Well, this is what I need to be doing next..." It was very interesting and detailed. I would have liked seeing how it turned out.

Good outlaws are good people

Whenever I see any mention of new legislation that is being plotted, my only thought is that whatever they do, I'm done complying. And I have this thought a lot these days.

Sure, if the legislation respects liberty a trifle more, that's good. But if it doesn't, which is generally the case... well, I'm OK with being an outlaw. Aren't you?

The origin of the word "outlaw" is said to have meant the person so labeled was declared to be "outside the protection of the law". I'm assuming they meant "legislation" (or those who enforce it) rather than "law", since no human can decide another is beyond the law.

How long has it been since you felt legislation protected you in any way? I can't remember the last time I felt that was the case, if ever. I may have always felt I was "outside the protection of the law" and it doesn't bother me even a little.


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Sunday, May 16, 2021

Government owes business an apology

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for April 21, 2021)

After this past year, government owes business an apology.

Not just empty words, but a meaningful apology. An immediate suspension of all taxation on any economic activity whatsoever and a suspension of all business regulations would be a good start.

If you imagine I just said businesses should be free to poison or maim customers, you're hallucinating. I never said any such thing. If you harm someone (including harming them with government actions)-- on purpose or accidentally-- you owe them restitution. Responsibility doesn't hinge on government regulations but on the market. In fact, government is more likely to pretend such a reckless business only needs to pay a fine to set things right rather than make things right with the individuals who were harmed.

What about the taxes? Only someone completely ignorant of business economics could imagine businesses ever pay any taxes. They don't. They can't. Just like every other business expense, all business taxes must be passed along to the customer-- which is you and me, in case you aren't clear. I can't afford to have the businesses I patronize keep paying for government I neither want nor need. Can you?

This hands-off policy should continue as long as government insists there's a pandemic and won't allow life to get back to normal because of it. At a minimum. Better yet, it should be permanent.

I'm calling for a separation of economy and state.

Anyone should be able to start any business they want without asking government permission. No licenses or permits, no fees, no bribes, no zoning, no taxes, no handouts. If people don't want the business to survive they won't spend their money there and without any government handouts to keep them going, this would be the end of it.

I'm not claiming this would solve everything.

It may be too little, too late for some business owners. Their livelihood was destroyed by government's Covid-19 overreach and their spirit has been crushed. Along with their finances. This would still be the best chance of making things right with them. Maybe it would give some of them a way to start over.

I would love to see every empty storefront filled. Can you even imagine the improvement to your quality of life this would bring? It could be done, but government has to stop preventing it.

Government owes us this much at least. It would be better than a measly stimulus check.


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"Conservatives" ("right-statists") who imagine they are substantively different from left-statists are deluding themselves. Are you letting them fool you, too? Statism-- all statism-- is toxic and unethical. It doesn't matter much how it is imposed. It will only get worse over time.

Storm's a-comin'

As I write this post I am under a severe thunderstorm warning. If I step outside I can see dark, ominous clouds towering in the southwest.

There are reports of hail and high winds hitting the closest town in that direction.

I've put buckets over the tender garden plants (that also got pelted with pea-sized+ hail yesterday). I brought in all the plants on the back deck. I've moved the food for the stray cats under the front porch overhang and made sure the vehicles are under the carport the best I can manage. 

The clouds are now close enough I no longer see the tops. The sky is getting darker. I hear the thunder.

It may, as these things often do, somehow miss me. There's a mysterious weather-blocking force around this small area-- storms usually split and go on either side while missing us completely. But I am not going to depend on that happening.

In the same way, I see dark storm clouds of authoritarianism on the horizon. I'm preparing however I can, with the knowledge that it may a false alarm. I'd rather be ready for a storm that fizzles than be caught off-guard just because I believe it won't happen here.


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Saturday, May 15, 2021

When people fight and die for liberty, who do you think they fight? It isn't muggers, deer, or rapists-- that's for sure.

Government rules can never remove or alter the human responsibility to own and to carry weapons.

Political government is never really held accountable because it has fooled people into believing only it is allowed to hold itself accountable. There's no situation in which that can work. If you or I try to hold government or its employees accountable we would be called "terrorists" or "assassins". This is why a free society, unmolested by political government, would be superior. If anyone acted like government acts today, you and I could hold them accountable and no one (other than the guilty) would bat an eye.

Rulers need to get out of our faces

How nice of the rulers to finally allow at least the fully vaccinated people to go maskless.

I'm going to continue to do so regardless of their wishes. As I have been doing all along.

Yes, I usually wear a mask (unless I forget) inside businesses which request/require it, since viruses (if I were infected) wouldn't stay inside my body, but would leak out onto other people's property, therefore being someone else's business. Not that I believe a mask would make that much difference, but if someone is that scared of it... whatever. If I know I'm sick, I'll probably stay home and not rely on a mask, anyway. It has never been important enough for me to make it my line in the sand.

But I have never worn one outdoors, or on my own property, nor inside my car. I certainly didn't wait for permission that still hasn't come for those like me who aren't vaccinated.

Do I think it is smart to require a mask? Nope. Do I think masks work? Don't know and don't care. It's the wrong question. The right question is "Who has the right to force anyone to wear a mask?" and the correct answer to that is "Not politicians!"

Do I like wearing a mask? Well, maybe a little-- sometimes. I confess I like the whole outlaw vibe I feel behind a mask or a bandana-- not enough to wear one when it isn't required by a business, but if they want to help thwart facial recognition software, I'm OK with that.

Any politician who imagines I am waiting for their permission to do anything is going to be very disappointed, because I'm not. Not on the issue of masks or anything else. 


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Friday, May 14, 2021

Once someone is trapped into seeing everything through a statist/government-supremacist lens, it's difficult-- if not impossible-- for them to free their mind to see it in any other way. I'm sure you've encountered these brain-damaged individuals. Instead of anger or frustration, feel pity.

I guess if you surrender your kids to kinderprison-- government indoctrination centers or "public" [sic] schools-- you shouldn't be too surprised when they are taught false things like statism and Critical Race Conspiracy Theory.

Do masks work? That's the wrong question, but...
Do bandaids work against mosquito bites? Sure. A mosquito is unable to bite you where the bandaid is.
Does this mean you should wear a bandaid to reduce your risk of mosquito bites and mosquito-borne disease? Or dozens of bandaids? Biden and Fauci would apparently say Yes.

New candidate for Statist of the Year

It's almost as though statists have a force field that prevents information from getting through.

On Twitter, a statist was arguing against anarchy. One topic he kept obsessively "circling back" to was that without the state, children would have no one to protect them.

Person after person chimed in to say they, personally, would step in to protect a child who was being victimized--even under the current "system" where doing so brings the risk of "legal" punishment. Even asking this guy whether he would just sit by and let children be victimized without stepping in (which he kept ignoring).

And yet, every other tweet this same guy would come back with "So you're admitting there would be no protection for children". Literally the opposite of what was being said repeatedly.

Is he just stupid or can he not read words that refute his twisted worldview? Your guess is as good as mine. 


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Thursday, May 13, 2021

The ATF (BATFEces) are some of the most disgustingly horrible and crooked government goons ever created. Anywhere on the planet at any time in history. Truly reprehensible vermin. I used to have a friend who had an uncle or something who worked for them, and I told her as much (No, this didn't end our friendship, I moved away). Joining that gang is more unforgivable than becoming a Blue Line Gangster (which is unforgivable enough).

 A couple of months ago I saw news items about how much energy Bitcoin mining took, and how much heat it produced. 

I thought to myself "Someone is trying to destroy Bitcoin". Now it looks like I was right.

Regardless, I've done what I wanted with Bitcoin, so whatever happens, happens. I'm happy.

How not to get a broken finger

Last week I was at the outdoor (but semi-enclosed) garden center of a chain hardware store on the New Mexico side of my territory. I wasn't masked, and wasn't even thinking about it. By now, even the silly Branch Covidians have largely admitted that masks are pointless outdoors. Still, there were masks on some faces.

Then, as I stood in the checkout line, an older guy walking past, wearing a mask, poked his finger at me and asked my daughter where my mask was. He seemed to be good-natured about it-- he winked as he said it-- but I'm not thrilled about being approached that way, or poked at (he didn't touch me).

I said "We're outdoors" and he gave a bit of a nod and went on his way.

I'm not sure what reaction he was looking for. Did he expect me to apologize and mask up? Or was he pointing out that I'm a free thinker who doesn't follow the crowd? I couldn't even tell for sure whether he was disapproving or approving.

As in every encounter of this sort, I have to wonder if he recognized me from my newspaper column picture. It happens a lot, but he made no reference to it.

Whatever his intention, I don't recommend following his example with random people in public. Other people might not be as calm as I am. If you don't want your finger broken, don't go poking it at random strangers. This is how you get your finger broken.


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Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Tools don't have rights

When speaking of gun-owners' rights, sometimes the phrase "gun rights" is used. But guns don't have rights; people do.

This is important because of another thing that is often said. People frequently discuss whether or not government has a right to do this or that. No, it doesn't. Ever.

Government has no rights. Government can't have rights, and nothing can make it possible for governments to have rights. 

Rights are a feature of individual humans; not of tools. Nor of a collective. 

Political governments are tools created by humans-- built of a collective of humans-- for a purpose. Chairs are tools created by humans-- built of various materials-- for a purpose. Chairs aren't usually imagined to have rights, but somehow governments are

Governments can no more have rights than chairs can have rights. And no one can have the right to use a tool they possess-- a gun, a government, or a chair-- to violate the life, liberty, or property of another.

Each individual comprising government has rights equal and identical to the rights had by every other individual human-- no more, no less. New rights aren't created by grouping lots of people together. Just like no rights are created by making a tool. You still have the right to use the tool you made or traded for-- in non-political ways-- but the tool itself has no rights at all. Whether it is a gun, a chair, or a government. So, "does government have a right to...?" No, it doesn't. It can't.

A slightly better question would be "Do I have a right to use government to...?" Substitute "a gun" for "government" and ask again and you'll probably have your answer.


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Monday, May 10, 2021

Problem handled-- without gangs

An acquaintance recently had a problem with an eBay package. 

It was one of those UPS shipments that gets handed over to the USPS for final delivery. 

The UPS tracking number didn't show any problems during shipment, but when it was handed over to the post office in the Big City, someone put the new USPS tracking number on the package along with someone else's name and PO box number. (Does UPS make the new label or does the USPS? Seeing as how the label has the new USPS tracking number, I doubt UPS prints those-- but I don't know.) She knew nothing of any of this and kept watching for the delivery.

Saturday, the tracking said the package had been delivered the day before, but my acquaintance hadn't gotten it.

The post office here is closed on Saturdays, but she went and knocked on the door and they answered. She asked for her package but was told there was no package. Checking the tracking number showed it had been picked up by someone with a completely different box number. They said they'd look into it on Monday, but maybe that person would realize the mistake and return the package.

Not being content to let things sit for two days on a package worth over $100, she used the box number given by the post office and an internet search gave her a name and address. A further Facebook search showed the person had one mutual friend, Contact was made. (A lesson about the privacy-killing internet.)

The person with the package said yes, she had picked up a package, but her name was on it, so it was hers. She denied it contained what my acquaintance had ordered, but cautiously avoided saying anything incriminating about it. She even supplied a photo of the label with the tracking number; her name and box number included.  She ended by saying "Good luck finding your package".

Monday the post office said the package was in the other person's name, so that was the end of it.

My acquaintance notified eBay that she hadn't received the package, but they quickly denied the claim, saying the tracking number showed it had been delivered.

This is where I came in. She wanted to turn matters over to the police-- I said that since the other person's name and box number were on the package, that would probably be pointless (and I always try to discourage involving the Blue Line Gang anyway). So she gave me a chance to handle it and I wrote her appeal for her. 

I looked over every document and message back and forth. I gave eBay every bit of information available, including the name and address of the person who had picked up the package, saying that they were unknown to the purchaser and refused to return the package, saying that since her name was on it, it was hers. I offered to send photographic evidence if they'd tell me where to send it.

This made eBay relent and refund her money. I count this as a double win. My acquaintance got her money back and I found out where a person I probably shouldn't trust lives. I just hope the eBay seller didn't get charged unless the mistake was somehow theirs.

Is this how things might work in a free society where calling the cops isn't an option? Seems like it could be.


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Sunday, May 09, 2021

Gun control [sic] based on lies

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for April 14, 2021)

If you have a better idea, share it and convince people it's a good idea. If you can't convince them with the truth, that should be the end of it.

If you can't let it go, and decide to force everyone to go along with you, you'll use politics to make them do something you couldn't talk them into doing. In other words, you'll cheat.

There are different ways this can be done. You can let Congress make up new legislation, but this is hard and takes a long time. These days a president will often just declare "It is so" and skip all the constitutional safeguards, which-- truthfully-- don't often protect your rights from government anyway.

Presidents like this method because it gives them the power to impose their will unilaterally. There used to be a word for political rulers who did this, but it seems to have been removed from public conversation since January.

Executive orders, and their pale cousins-- executive actions-- are how recent presidents have managed to violate the natural human right to own and to carry weapons without bothering to go through the (still crooked and unconstitutional) legislative steps.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (which should be the name of a convenience store, not a government office) uses a similar trick.

The Second Amendment makes it a crime for government to make up any rules about weapons. Since courts are controlled by government, they usually allow this crime to go unchecked. It doesn't excuse the criminal act of "gun control" when courts allow it to happen.

Congress, the president, bureaucrats, judges, and all other political people are forbidden to violate any of our natural human rights. They do it anyway, and they get away with it almost every time. They cheat and lie until they get what they want, and most of the public is OK with it. People get scared and don't understand the issue because of the lies told by the national media corporations and politicians.

All "gun control" is based on lies. It doesn't make anyone safer. It isn't the government's job to tell you what you are allowed to own or how and where you can carry it. There is no authority for government to require background checks or permits or licenses. Those who do it anyway are cheating. They are cheating you out of your rightful liberty. Why put up with it?

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Calling things what they aren't-- "Constitutional carry"

Texas politicians are debating "Constitutional Carry". Except, that's not really what they're debating.

Constitutional Carry would involve removing every single legislative impediment to, and unequivocally recognizing and supporting the exercise of, the fundamental natural human right to carry weapons, in line with what the Second Amendment of the US Constitution requires of them. 

That's not what they are proposing.

Instead of finally "getting right with the law" and ending a century and a half of criminal behavior, they are simply removing some of the counterfeit roadblocks. They'll be violating the law slightly less than before, but still violating it in huge ways.

If there are any exceptions or restrictions, they aren't doing what the US Constitution requires of them. It's better than before, but it most certainly isn't Constitutional.

You could argue that while it isn't in line with the US Constitution, it instead follows the rights violations "allowed" under the Texas Constitution. The Texas Constitution says: 

Sec. 23. RIGHT TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS. Every citizen shall have the right to keep and bear arms in the lawful defense of himself or the State; but the Legislature shall have power, by law, to regulate the wearing of arms, with a view to prevent crime.

So, the state allows itself to violate natural human rights illegitimately, and this is what this "Constitutional Carry" legislation does. This is no different than the state saying slavery is legal-- it's as unethical as anything can be.

As I said, it's probably better than before, and I hope it passes. But it's still a big old statist rights violation. Just criminals continuing to be criminals, but being slightly "nicer" about it than before.


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Saturday, May 08, 2021

Be considerate-- Prep

Do you want to be considerate of others? Then you need to be a prepper.

Prepping is most considerate. 

In the early days of the panic-demic, do you know who wasn't out there competing for the rare roll of toilet paper? Preppers. 

Who wasn't fighting with karens in the grocery store aisles for a can of corn or a bag of dried beans? Preppers.

Prep now so you won't be a burden on society-- on your friends and neighbors-- later. Prep so you leave more goods on the shelf for others. Prep so you aren't adding extra demand and pushing prices higher than they'd otherwise go.  Prep so you can watch the collapse in relative comfort.


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Friday, May 07, 2021

You have to pick one or the other

I saw a quote by a right-statist who said "conservatives" want "secure borders and small government". That's so cute, it's hilarious. You can have one or the other, but not both at the same time on the same tax farm.

It's like those left statists who want to get rid of guns with anti-gun legislation and want government-- the same government they admit is a gang of thugs (depending on who they believe is "in charge")-- to enforce "gun control" [sic]... with guns and violence. And they hallucinate that this will save lives! The idiocy is astounding!

Politics makes people stupid and makes them agitate for things that are contradictory; for things that can not coexist.


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Thursday, May 06, 2021

How much risk is too much?

The amount of risk I'm willing to take depends on how bad the alternative is. And it's completely subjective.

If the danger (or pain) is great enough, I'm willing to do extreme things-- even really risky things-- to alleviate it. It's pure desperation.

If a fireball is chasing me down a hallway I might be willing to jump through a window, not knowing what's on the other side.

Similarly, I would be willing to try experimental mRNA treatment for something like cancer, but not for an over-hyped cold. The risk/reward in the Covid-19 situation is completely upside-down in my subjective opinion.


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Tuesday, May 04, 2021

Skewed, self-selected data

Back in February, I had a routine annual medical check-up. During the course of the questioning, I was asked if I was interested in getting the Covid-19 vaccine. I said I wasn't. 

The doctor asked, "Do you mind telling me why?" My answer was that I just wasn't worried about Covid-- everyone around me has already had it and it wasn't that bad for any of them. 

His response: "Well, my experience has been different. I've seen lots of bad outcomes."

I'm sure he has. Think about it. 

Who is going to come to the hospital emergency room? Those who aren't having problems, or those who are? Which group of people is more likely to have a bad outcome? His data is self-selecting. It's going to give him a skewed view of reality. 

I know someone else who worked in a nursing home during the first several months of the panic-demic, She also is convinced this virus is a really big deal-- and in her limited sphere, it probably was. But that's not representative of the world at large.

Of course, neither is my experience. But it is still my excuse for not being interested in a vaccine experimental gene therapy that won't prevent the disease it is being advertised for fighting, won't prevent those infected from transmitting the virus, and won't confer herd immunity (according to its advocates)-- so getting it won't eliminate antisocial social distancing or masks. Remind me again... what is the point of a vaccination that won't do any of the things normal vaccines are expected to do?

Other people have other reasons, both for getting the vaccine and for refusing to do so. I'm fine with that. I'm not anti-vaccine, but I am anti-mandatory vaccine.


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Monday, May 03, 2021

What are your chances?

I don't have any statistics to prove it, but I'd bet most people have a greater chance of being killed by cops than by freelance thugs-- as long as you do your best to avoid sketchy people, places, or activities.

What do you think?


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Sunday, May 02, 2021

NM fumbled on legal marijuana

(My Eastern New Mexico News column for April 7, 2021)

Leave it to government to fumble a chance to do the right thing.

New Mexico has finally decided to legalize Cannabis. This could have been a win for liberty, but they did it wrong. Instead of letting the market handle it, as they should have, they wanted to get their fingers in as deep as possible.

It's good when a government backs off on violating natural human rights, but the state never had the right to criminalize or control Cannabis to begin with. Neither did the federal government, since no constitutional amendment was ever ratified to give them this power.

Cannabis should only be as controlled as parsley; neither should be controlled at all. Plants-- and who grows, sells, possesses, or consumes them-- are not government's business. Quality issues and fraud are the business of the market, and that's where this should be handled.

This change is driven by a hunger for more money rather than any new respect for human rights. Greedy governments get excited over any new source of money. Taxing Cannabis, or anything else, is wrong because taxation is always theft. I don't want Cannabis taxes to help pay for more government-- we already have far more government than any civilized society would put up with.

Like other states which legalized marijuana, New Mexico's government is sneaky. They legalized the plant while setting so many traps with new rules that the chances of committing a crime under the new system will increase. Marijuana will be "legal"-- if you dot all the "i"s, cross all the "t"s, jump through every arbitrary hoop, and hold your mouth just right while hopping on one foot.

In other states where similar plans have been put in place, people have noticed it was less legally risky to use Cannabis before it was legalized, regulated, and taxed.

On the prohibitionist side, there's the fear of more impaired drivers on the road. A reasonable fear, but unnecessary.

If you harm someone's person or property in an accident it doesn't matter if it was because you were drunk or stoned, sleepy, texting, or speeding to the scene of an accident. The responsibility is still completely yours. No regulation is needed to make you extra responsible.

I wish, instead of finding new ways to have more control, government could keep its hands off our lives for a change. This was a chance to lead the way, and it was squandered on politics.


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The evil stupidity of government "authority"

Politics makes people stupid. Government "jobs" that come with any "authority" will make them evil.

An early event that drove this home to me was when I was attending a mountainman rendezvous in the Rocky Mountains years ago. It had been a dry year, so the forest was under a burn ban. No fires for cooking, warmth, blacksmithing, or anything. 

Now, I understand the danger of fire in a tinder-dry forest. I understand that some people are irresponsible with fire (and everything else). I am not opposed to reminding people of dangers inherent in such situations, even though I don't support edicts and mandates.

But, a few days before the rendezvous began it started to rain. And rain and rain. Like it couldn't stop.

The Forest Circus goons invaded our camp, wading through standing water and mud in their uniforms, to remind us that the burn ban was still in effect.  Threatening "legal" action if anyone dared light a fire.

There was no way to start a forest fire under those conditions without a nuclear bomb. Only the best woodsman would have been able to make a campfire anyway. It was the first (and only) time I ever actually slept in standing water. Thank goodness for wool blankets!

A few days later the goons relented a little, allowing the blacksmith to light his forge for a certain number of hours per day, and allowing some cooking fires, but for me, it was too late. My wife-at-the-time demanded we leave.

A little bit of imaginary "authority" ruined rendezvous that year for me and for a lot of others; more than any amount of rain could have done. Political stupidity plus political "authority" equals government evil.

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