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Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Branding a Dictatorship

Trump practices these methods of the "Big Lie"

Trump's Five Principles of Autocratization

Further he also practices the 5 principles of Autocratization that propaganda that others have used before him. Amazingly, Steve Schmidt, who I remember shilling for GW Bush years ago when GW was doing some of these things, recognized and had enough with #Trumpenfuhrer's methodology that even he is raising the alarm. His formulation of the 5 Principles of totalitarian propaganda, restated in my own words, is as follows:

  1. He uses Big Lie techniques to incite ferver in his base of fervent followers.
  2. branding scapegoats and rivals as enemies; affixing blame for complex problems to them and them alone.
  3. Further, he gaslights his followers by alleging conspiracies, hidden, nefarious and linked to those scapegoated populations
  4. He spreads a sense of victimization among them.
  5. He asserts the need to exert heretofore unprecedented power to protect his victim fans from those conspiracies and scapegoated populations.

Monday, July 23, 2018

The Right to bear Arms According to Sam Adams

Samuel Adams on 2nd Amendment

Auxiliary and Subordinate Right

This post enlarges points made in:

The Second Amendment is an Auxiliary and Subordinate Right

As I've said elsewhere owning and using weaponry for self defense is an "auxiliary and subordinate" right. Samuel Adams quoted Blackstone and Parliament when he wrote, referring to the Glorious Revolution when English Parliament overthrew the Stuarts:

“At the Revolution, the British Constitution was restored to its original principles, declared in the bill of rights; which was afterwards passed into a law”

Note the wording "restored" and "afterwards passed into a law", is expressing the principle that these human rights existed all the while in their denial, which is the reason that any right to own and use arms other than in the military is actually linked to the 9th and 10th Amendments and the product of hundreds of years of resistance by Citizens against Government Oppression. The right to bear arms is the right to participate in the defense, and by logical extension, the governance of the country.

This was a principle that dated back to "Old England." Samuel Adams in an essay published in the Boston Gazette during the early stages of the rebellion in New England that became our Revolution referred to the right to “have and use” arms as part of a list of "auxiliary and subordinate" rights that only apply;

  • “When actually attacked”

Which are rights that people have auxiliary, to resisting oppression:

  1. “first to the regular administration and free course of justice in the courts of law”
  2. “the right of petitioning the King and parliament”
  3. having and using arms for self-preservation and defense

These are only rights in a context of protecting the primary rights of:

  1. “personal security”
  2. “personal liberty”
  3. “private property”

In Britain, only those with real estate property, "the gentry" were permitted to bear arms in the Militia. The Gentry were afraid of "the rabble" being permitted to bear arms, and as a result, Sam Adams said that:

“having arms for their defense” ... “a public allowance under due restrictions of the natural rights of resistance and self preservation, when the sanction of society and society are found insufficient to restrain the violence of oppression.

This right to bear arms is an auxiliary right necessary to resist "the violence of oppression", not a right of mere disaffection, or to engage in oppression or ethnic cleansing. If there is no oppression and no occupying military, there is no need to possess and sue arms. Hence the word "auxilliary." To the nascent Rebellion, it also was a response to the presence of “Military Troops” due to the fear that;

“Violence is always to be apprehended from Military Troops”

If you talk to any gun nut, they know full well this history, and that the great fear of "Standing Armies" was what drove the founders of this country to create a second Amendment. But they interpret that fear the way Southerners did in the antebellum period before 1865. They saw it as a right for the Free Men (they expanded the franchise from the Gentry) and Gentry to defend their property, which included other people. They didn't see slaves, peasants, indentured servants and the property-less worker, as full equals in society. But their arguments saying "All Mankind" meant that this was a deluded attitude.

On Standing Armies:
Related Posts:
National Emergency Service and The Militia
How the Militia of the Whole Failed in the 19th Century
What Founders Meant by Militia
DC versus Heller wrongly decided
Militia Second Amendmen & Democracy
Select Militia, National Guard and 2nd Amendment
Thoughts on Defending Democracy and Second Amendment
The Palladium of Liberty
The Case for Expanding the National Guard
The Right of the Individual to himself

Saturday, July 21, 2018

The Trouble with "Baumol's Disease"

One con argument against welfare in general and government supplied health care in particular is the notion that healthcare costs can't be controlled because they are labor intensive. This notion reflects the general disrespect for human beings and labor that is behind elitism and the push to replace people with machines in more and more businesses. It sounds plausible from a micro-economics view, but from a macro-economics view it reflects misplaced causality and misidentification of the culprit for cost increases. Especially in healthcare. Actual Labor costs are not the issue with healthcare. Profiteering, speculation, bureaucracy and administrative inflation are.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

The Pirates Dilemma -- Rogue States versus sovereignty

Piracy is as old as the use of the oceans in commerce. A pirate is a thief who operates on the ocean. However, due to the way this world works, a pirate can be a "legitimate businessman" or a "common thief" depending on who they attack and rob, and how they do it. There are some real differences between a pirate and a privateer:

  • Privateers do their thefts "legally"
  • Privateers don't share their loot
  • Privateers often get to hang the pirates and crew-members who cross them.
  • A Country that cannot protect, or control, its pirates is labeled a "Rogue State"
  • Sovereignty requires controlling outlaws and pirates, especially the ones who operate on the margins of the law.

Related Posts:

Many Kinds of Privateering

Monday, July 16, 2018

Undue influence is Tyranny and Corruption

The Supreme court has gone out of its way to weaken:

  • voting rights for immigrants, native americans, former convicts and black people,
  • criminal sanctions on bribery
  • ...and to grant a nonsensical cover of "free speech" to bribes, extortion & corruption.

But no matter their rulings, the issue with corruption is and remains an ethical issue of:

  • Undue Influence
  • Improper Access

So why is that the case? When I started this post I hadn't heard yet Justice Kennedy's announcement that he was retiring in favor of a former Law Clerk, Kavanaugh, and through the influence of his son and Donald Trump. I was going to change this post to talk about it in detail. But in the interest of KISS, I'll finish this one first and put the details somewhere else. I'll come back here and put the references in the post later. The scandal of the Kavanaugh appointment happened, illustrates:

  • How improper access and undue influence work.
  • Why it is often hard to legislate or prevent.
  • Why they are improper, corrupt, corrupting and outrageous
  • Why those who are corrupt usually deny it.

Keeping officials on the "up and up" requires fairly clear ethics rules, with statement both of principle and particular prohibitions. This is because unless prohibited many of these actions seem perfectly legal to the corrupt. After all, negotiating a retirement is something every business does!

Friday, July 13, 2018

The Case for Expanding the National Guard

The Principle behind the Militia is an Involved Citizenry

Expanding the National Guard to deal with Modern Issues

Expanding the role and scope of the National Guard to include health care, emergency response and police training, is in the scope of what the intent of the Militia clauses in Article 2 Section 8 and the Second Amendment would have intended.

This post continues a theme I started long ago, but directly follows my post:

The Palladium of Liberty

The Right to Bear Arms = the right to be armed to be fully participating citizens

It is my contention that the second amendment is not primarily about the right to bear arms, but about the right to participate in self government and in the defense and security of our local areas and of our United States.

It is important to remember that from the beginning of the country, for Democratic Republicans:

“Arms were merely a tool to accomplish the constitutional end.”

The Founders sought in militia a corps of civic mindedness and self reliance, a:

...a band of brothers, and maintain your rights, liberties and independence with your last breath.” [Palladium]

Thus the core of the militia concept and the second amendment is the notion of Virtuous Citizenship! The Second Amendment is about the importance of Arming with the appropriate tools and training needed for citizens to participate in their own governments, self defense, disaster response and emergencies both local and national. That spirit is present in first responders to this day.

Therefore being "Armed" has a broader meaning than merely carrying an AR-15 or a military weapon; it means people being educated, trained, drilled and provisioned with the tools and resources needed to respond flexibly to whatever situation may arise both within or outside our country. Not everyone need bear a musket, but the underlying concept also includes all the tools and resources needed to rescue, repair, restore, and sustain our society. Thus in the modern and broader sense, the "right to bear arms" is the right to opportunity to participate in our Country's welfare and to become fully participating citizens. The "arms" involved include medical supplies, tools, tools and resources needed to keep communications open, power-lines and pipe-lines, all of them, operating, repaired, sustained and restored during emergencies and in preparation for emergencies.

The fact is that all our Police, Firemen, military forces in general, all descend from Militia. Health-care, power distribution and communications emerged within our communities, often tied to the necessities of self defense. When they are of, by and for locals, people feel a sense of both belonging and personal empowerment.

Standing Armies

When police, fire, etc... come “from outside the community” they tend to be “standing armies” When police kill innocent people, it is usually because they feel like they are trying to control people who are alien to them. Police can be local volunteers and professionals or they can be from outside. When from outside they are either acting the role of “Standing Armies” or coming to the aid of locals who needed help. The founders saw standing Armies as an evil. As:

“that potion of idleness and corruptor of morals, a standing army”

The militia were meant to be an antidote to standing armies. A modern national guard can be an antidote to communities that feel oppressed and invaded. The old militia became unworkable as drilling for war became irrelevant to most people's daily lives. The country went to “select militia” they brought in police and firemen, often from outside the communities they were serving. Even so the modern version of a select militia National Guard was meant to be an antidote to Standing Armies. As also was the draft. A select militia makes service mandatory for a limited period. But not everyone is suited to carry a weapon. And there are so many more important services needed to respond to disasters and exigencies than Ar-15s or Military weapons.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

The Dream Voyage

It's not fair of me to keep you here,
when you have worlds to explore,
and an infinity to soar.
I took you on my dory trip,
over a cold gray lake, from my hoary space,
across the lake to places half remembered;
where the high tide covered the lower steps,
and you came with me as I climbed them anyway,...
and my feet never touched the snow.
Oh it's not fair to keep you here,
if you want you should go.
In my dreamland, the waves are small, the water pure.
But it's always half dark, the sun not here,
Weighed by duties, weighed by sin, yes I've missed my mark.
and yet I see where I'm going and where I've been.
I know you see with me.
You may not be able to help me navigate,
but with you by my side I find the way.
Oh, it's not fair to keep you here,
you have eternity to visit, if you want you should go.
Though I know you know I miss you so.
Yet you come with me, I feel your essence,
it resolves as you, when I look,
though it's a mere blind spot too.
I try to hug you, and my hands come free.
Yet I know you remain with me.
We crossed the lake, we came to a place,
where half remembered steps, took us up to the top.
And from the platform, we could see the lake.
Oh half remembered lights;
souls bobbing on the water, or on the shore,
so dark that some bob and some are fixed.
and the wind blows so fresh, it's hard to tell which is which,
the lights are moving, or the wind makes them appear so.
What makes it magic, is that all that is half so,
If there were sunlight, maybe they'd be only birds,
or just the magic of the night.
Here you are beside me, though I know that is impossible to be.
You should be soaring, you should be free.
you should not be bound to me, unless you want to be.
I wake up, and you still haunt my soul,
not with fear or anger,
Just sadness and pain;
the heart hurts, here in it's place again,
I long to soar with thee.
I have to let go, not because I fear thee,
but because I know you are here with me,
and i have things to do before we can be.
So, the dream, it fades, reality returns.
It's summertime, and the lake is far away.
There is a drought, the lake is gone,
and dreams of yesterday, fade like a song,
leaving dust where once there was water,
where the radio is no longer turned on.
and the lake is all dried up.
Yesterday was a rough day,
today will be better.


Christopher Hartly Holte

written July 12 2012

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Hitler the Pirate

“I need not Nationalize Industry, I need only nationalize the industrialists.”

I was looking to verify a quote I'd read and saved a long time ago, where someone in a private conversation recollected that Hitler had said:

“I need not nationalize Industry, I need only nationalize the Industrialists.”

Taking classes

I was at the university. Some punk was crossing the professor. He straitened out the constitutional question the guy was disputing. The guy got physical! The professor flipped him on his back. Class over.
I'd been missing gym class in Ross hall. Anxiously looking for the building. Wake up! Just dreaming. I laugh!
62 years old & still nightmares of college!

Thursday, July 5, 2018

To Forgive the Merely Human

How do we forgive the merely human?
How often do people rise above,
only for a moment, to fall again?
How relevant is a story like Lord Jim,
Or Gunga Din?
Today we mourn what might have been.
If only we weren't all fallible and human
and prone to sin.
Maybe the answer lies
Not only in how a human lives
but also in how we die.
When the fallen are still
Side by side they lie
None greater, nor lesser,
No matter how we dress up the grave with stones.
Inside is an equality of bones.
We can honor their courage
And mourn them still.
We can meditate sadly on their failures
...and still mourn them
They did what they did
For good or ill
And their memory is in the winds
blowing through our minds
Christopher H. Holte, 7/5/2019

Thinking of Ed Schultz and a host of others I have admired at one time. Or not.

Monday, July 2, 2018

The Palladium of Liberty

The founders put the second amendment into the constitution to protect the right of the country and the communities in our country to defend ourselves from threats, and thus to participate in our own government. Indeed they saw the militia as;

“The Palladium of liberty.” [Armed in America]

They saw that maintaining a well regulated militia required:

“habitual exercise” in military training and “manly discipline”

Which they saw as the:

“bulwark of the nation” [ibid page 102]

Only so long as they are correctly:

“Armed and Disciplined”

John Hamilton, for instance, saw the Militia as the ideal alternative to:

“that potion of idleness and corruptor of morals, a standing army