Thursday, December 31, 2020

What is to be done?


Steve Biddle, in one of the comments to my Christmas Day post, “An Epidemic of Politics” agreed with the need to resist evil, but asked  how older, infirm, or otherwise unfit persons ought to go about it. “And I ask in all seriousness: What are we to do?” I was going to post a reply to that question, but quickly realized that the subject was far too involved to cover in a comment, and was worthy of a broader response.  Steve, here is at least the beginning of an answer to your question.

'Chto délat'?' - 'What to do' or 'What is to be done' is famously known as the title of one of Vladimir Illich Lenin' pamphlets extolling the virtues of Marxism and how to establish Socialism in Russia. I knew it was published in the early 1900s but what I did not recall until I looked into it again was that it was inspired by a novel by Chernyshevsky in 1863 written while he was imprisoned in Saint Petersburg. Those interested may find more information in Wikipedia-  

It would appear that Liberty loving folk here in these united States are awakening to the idea that their freedoms may indeed be gone if THEY do not do something about it. Most folks, having never considered the subject, are reasonably enough at a loss for how to proceed. One of the reasons that I am a student of history is that while technology changes, human nature does not. It is always worth examining the strategy and tactics of the enemy for useful means and methods, and while I revile the result, one has to regard Lenin's approach as successful, especially since the American Left has emulated it so closely. What did Lenin say should be done?

What Lenin advocated was that there ought to be theoretical, political and economic education system supported and carried out by a political party to provide motivation for the man in the street. What this approach did in essence was to separate the direct action elements from the political elements, and provided a support structure for those folks actively involved in physical confrontation. It also provided a level of deniability to separate the folks who did the talking and educating from the folks that carried out the riots, bombings, sabotage, assassinations and other physical activities. The consciousness raising and propagandizing of the political wing allows persuasion of the undecided,  gradually moving the moderates toward the extremes, and provides a recruiting ground for those willing and capable of direct action. We see this pattern carried out by the Left repeatedly, with a political front organization supporting a violent direct action wing. We see it repeated because it often works. One example is the IRA.

The Irish Republican Army, a Marxist organization, had no more than 300 active members involved in direct action for most of its existence, yet it was able to hold the British Empire at bay and ultimately win a victory. It was able to do that despite constant betrayals by splinter groups and factions, and penetration by British spies because it had Sein Fein as the support/political wing, providing money, food, safe houses, and other support for their fighters, and propagandizing the British ceaselessly. Sein Fein was, (and remains!) a classic Leninist theoretical, political and economic education and support organization.

Similar groups exist within Islamist culture; there are numerous educational and relief organizations believed to be fronts for direct action jihadis. Germany's National Socialist Worker's Party followed a similar approach, with the SA as the tip of the spear (at least until the Nazi party took power, at which point they became a threat!) We see this model in use here in these presently united States today, with the Democratic Party and its allies in the media and technology groups acting as political and indoctrination front groups, and BLM and Antifa, among others, acting as the direct action arms. They are organized, they have abundant funding from corporate appeasers and traitorous billionaires, and they are dedicated to the destruction of America the Free. It is clear that the Left has organized and coordinated their activity; the recent massive election fraud is the result of a coordinated attempt to subvert and overthrow the Constitutional order, which has been under attack for over a century.

Rage is the appropriate emotional response, but rage, by itself, is insufficient. Liberty loving folks are late to the party and we are fragmented, divided and under ongoing assault. So, assuming Biden is illegitimately installed in what will once again be the Spite House, what are we to do about it?

Make our weakness our strength. A grass roots resistance movement numbering in the millions, composed of tens of thousands of small independent cells cannot be effectively infiltrated. Hidden in the body of the American people it cannot be overtly crushed militarily. And with somewhere between 600 million and a billion small arms, with over a million unlicensed machine guns, it cannot be disarmed. Unless we consent.

The road to a successful resistance movement is a journey, and each individual in it has to walk that road at their own pace. The key is starting the journey, establishing the habit of independent thought and action as you take each step. Some may move faster than others and are willing and able to go farther in their journey, but that does not matter as much as your commitment to Liberty.

First, establish your own ideological foundation. Ask yourself, and be sure that you understand the answer to the question, “What is the primary function of government?" If, like me, you believe that the primary function of government is to protect life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, then you are a friend of Liberty. Satisfy yourself and understand the reasons why you believe that the present actions of the Left are INTOLERABLE. Not just evil, but not to be tolerated under any circumstance. Withdraw your consent from what would be an illegitimate government. Once you have established that in your mind, then take the next step.

The Left want you alone and isolated; this is why the Left is trying to outlaw any sort of congregation under the fiction of infection prevention. Even outdoor activity, which carries a very low risk of CCP virus infection, is under attack. Effective resistance starts with associating with other people, so do not let yourself be isolated. Talk to your local acquaintances at church or other social events. Make a holiday cake or pie for your neighbors and engage them. Sound out your bowling buddies or sewing circle friends about what is happening. Restaurants and bars are good places to congregate when possible; if indoor activity is “not on” then set up outdoor events.

Call your friends and acquaintances, and set up some sort of outdoor activity- a nature walk, a cookout, a trip to the range. When you have those meetings, walk the parking area and look for bumper stickers with pro-liberty messages or promoting pro-liberty political candidates, and ask about why they have that sticker. One of the clubs I belong to has a weekly outdoor get-together at a local park. Don't let yourself be isolated! Reach out and make connections; you can use the fact that the government is trying to isolate you as the entry wedge for a larger discussion about individual freedom. Make it your goal to have at least one event every week, even if it is just a few people. Every meeting of liberty minded folks is, by itself, an act of resistance, for it offers the opportunity of meeting and learning about liberty minded folks. Then take the next step.

From these contacts, build your own 'Committee of Correspondence.' These are acquaintances who have a clear interest in promoting Liberty. Make it your goal to add at least one person per month to your group (which does not even have to have a name.) Encourage your committee to make their opinions known; letters to the editor, comments on Liberty loving blogs and websites, attending local political meetings. (town meetings, county board meetings.) The Sons of Liberty were known to paste up political pronouncements on various local public walls, the Colonial equivalent of graffiti. Signs and billboards with pro-liberty messages are in order. “Stop the Steal!” A public lecture and discussion group is in order, if you can swing it. Invite friendly local leaders to the discussion. Then take the next step.

It is well to keep in mind that any active resistance group requires tremendous logistical support. Modern militaries require at least 10 support personnel for every 1 person in the field, and they rely on government support for their material; taxes pay for fuel, food, ammunition, transportation, lodging, equipment, and all of the myriad of things one needs to deploy an effective military. The support folks are just there to distribute all the stuff that government taxes have bought. Insurgent groups have none of that support. Any effective resistance movement must have a deep base of support for everything needed to fight in the field; the 300 active IRA had tens of thousands of supporters in Ireland, and had millions of dollars, plus small arms and ammunition coming to the movement largely from contributions from the USA. (Reference this song:  Each of these Armalight rifles came from the US. ) Encourage each member of your group to store food, clothing and other essentials. Such stores are the backbone of active resistance. Then take the next step.

Identify members of your group with useful skills, assets and the willingness to use them to support the fight for freedom. Folks with shooting, gunsmithing and reloading experience are obvious candidates, and equally obvious targets for the Left; some help in diversifying the flow of arms and ammunition is worth consideration. Communications is another obvious need; amateur radio operators or CB operators are useful both for providing communications to the Resistance and in providing signal intelligence. These are all obvious items to consider, but there is much more to be considered under “logistics.” Any experienced combat veteran will tell you that the ability to rest, recuperate and re-equip in a secure comfortable location with good food after combat operations is essential. Being able to provide and move needed supplies from secure storage to the people who will use them likewise. Who can do these things?

That old widow in your sewing group who knows how to make and repair clothing, and has a three bedroom house, with room for “an out of town cousin.” The retired transportation specialist who drives professionally knows how to get anything from one place to another. The amateur carpenter can make hidey holes for those needing to conceal politically incorrect items ranging from arms and ammunition to pamplets and leaflets. The local shoe repair place can mend worn boots for freedom loving feet. The Polish grandfather who makes the best potato salad and sauerkraut, or the farmer who raises chickens, goats and beef cattle. The list is almost endless, but there is one other specialist I will make a point of considering.

Socialist regimes often try to restrict movement of their subjects; historically they've done this with various sorts of physical documents, and the historic answer was forgery, developed to a high art, and to some extent still of use.  These days the up-to-date Communist uses tracking and identification with electronic devices, like your smart phone. The Chinese government does exactly that, and monitors every text, email and telephone message for “incorrect thought.” Who helped them do this? Why, various US tech companies, like Google. Just as IBM enabled the Nazi government to identify the Jews in Germany by applying their data processing technologies to German census data, which the Germans were promised would be confidential, so Google has helped the Communist Chinese to identify their dissidents. Any bets on whether Google would be unwilling to do that here in these presently united States? Resistance groups will need a specialist to spoof and confound these tracking technologies.

A step you can take any time is to learn something new and useful, and teach what you know to the other members of your group. First aid, orienteering, shooting, communications, reloading, growing food, cooking food, camping securely are all obvious topics but there are others. Field repair of clothes, shoes and gear. Combat skills. The list is endless; I consider any day I haven't learned something new to be a wasted day. Now here is another step; it should probably be one of your first, but it will be a hard one for most people.

With the exception of people who run extreme triathlons and engage in other extreme athletics, most people in these united States can benefit from physical exercise, and most people in these united States avoid it like the plague. To paraphrase Michael Z Williamson, “Combat does not determine who is right. Combat determines who is left.” Physical fitness is the foundation for becoming combat ready, regardless of your age. Keep in mind that during the final days of the Third Reich, an improvised German unit comprised of old gamekeepers and hunters ruined several units of elite British troops. One surmises that these old Germans, while not able to perform as they could when young, were likely in very good condition for their age. With that and their hunting skills, they devastated their opponents. Whatever your age, spend an hour every day on improving your physical fitness, both strength and cardio. Any exercise is better than no exercise, and walking is a good start. Get exercise! Then once you have exercise established as a habit, take another step.

We've talked about the need for the Freedom Forces to have a robust logistical infrastructure, but we must also consider attriting the Left's infrastructure. One way to do this is to shun them. Have nothing to do with a Leftist; refuse them service if you can. If forced to, give crappy service in the guise of stupidity or incompetence. If you are a barista, put salt in their coffee instead of sugar, or put too much sugar in.  Never give them what they want. Overcharge them. Give them the two day old pastries or the moldy ones with the mold scraped off, especially if they are taking it “to go”. If you get a complaint, take refuge in the rhetoric of the Left, accusing them of ageism or sexism, or racism if you are a person of color. If you are involved in online sales and can identify your customer as a leftist, send them the wrong stuff; my wife ordered gloves and got a bunch of food containers, purely by accident. This was amusing, but imagine a Leftist receiving a copy of Trump's "Great Again" instead of the Lenin's "State and Revolution." Confusion in medical records is always interesting if it is possible to do without being traced. The point is, make their interactions with Americans as unpleasant as possible, and never relent. Be innovative and creative. Take another step.

If and when you are ready to take the risk, there are all sorts of other monkeywrenching that you can do. People spend most of their time at home, at work and in their cars; if you know what a communist's activity schedule is there are a myriad of possibilities for the devious and creative that are hugely annoying but stop short of doing physical harm to anybody. I could go on for hours on how *I* might take take such a step, but that is not the point.  

 Each of you, gentle readers, must take your own steps in the direction your best individual judgement tells you best suits you.  The forgoing are just a few suggested steps each of you, O gentle Reader, can take on the journey to becoming an effective member of the Resistance to Tyranny. They are not the only ones, by any means, nor do they have to be taken in any particular order, except for the first. Once you have taken that step, never give up. Never, ever, EVER give up. Keep making new steps. Be uncompromising. Be relentless. Be as brave as you can be.

Most important of all, be DANGEROUS. Remember, the Left have asked for what is coming. Make sure that they get it in fullest measure, and beware of the sin of mercy.  "Mercy to the guilty is cruelty to the innocent." 

With regard to all who seek the Light,


A Year For Realism

     Not long ago, I wrote a trio of short fiction pieces about a politician in a fictional country who bucked his nation’s establishment to do what he believed to be in the best interests of all. I issued them as a small collection that you can download for free. Ever since, Gentle Readers have written to me to plead for a full-length novel based on those short tales.

     And yes, I’ve started one. It will take a while to complete, as I have to complete an appropriate setting and backstory for it. Nevertheless, have faith: it will arrive sooner or later, always assuming that the Destroyer of Delights and the Sunderer of Societies doesn’t manage to get past the dogs, the spike strips on the driveway, and the claymores on the front lawn.

     But today, as I peer back at 2020 through jaundiced eyes, I realized that a bit of what I’ve already written in that tale is essential for the year to come. Here it is.

     Whiteman rose from his seat on the stage as his name was announced. He nodded to the coordinator and moved to the lectern with a confident stride, as if it was an event he’d anticipated with pleasure. He laid his note cards before him, reviewed them quickly, and presented a solemn visage to the audience that filled the district’s public hall.
     “Neighbors,” he said, and winced as acoustic feedback followed the word with a piercing shriek. He reached for the gain control and halved the setting.
     “Forgive me for that, neighbors. I didn’t expect it any more than you. And may it be the last time anything I say or do should displease you.
     “Few of you know me, which is as it should be. Too many of Neastra’s politicians are well known, public men of long standing. Why is that a bad thing, you may ask? It is bad because a long career in politics causes a man to focus ever more narrowly of his own interests. He takes less and less interest in the rights, needs, interests, and prerogatives of those he purports to serve. Our current Member, Gregory Howland, has represented us for twenty-four years. During his tenure in office, nothing of any substance has changed, other than for the worse.
     “I cannot promise you anything. Not jobs, nor improved commerce, nor lowered utility bills, nor reduced local taxes, nor more peace and order in the streets. I will not promise what I cannot be certain I can deliver. The one thing I am certain I can deliver is a fresh voice in Parliament...if you, my neighbors, will consent to send me there.
     “If you will do so, I will strive to my utmost to bring you what I believe will serve the interests, not only of Querendon, but of Neastra as a whole. I will seek to build relations with other Members of minds like to mine. I will endeavor to forge coalitions of Members who believe as I do, that we may work to a common end.
     “Here is what I believe.
     “I believe that the norms of public conduct our forefathers honored must be reinstituted and enforced by law.
     “I believe that legal immigration to this island must be so controlled as to bring net benefits to our commerce and social life.
     “I believe that illegal entry to the nation can and must be halted, and that with the willing cooperation of our Navy, the pride of all the oceans of the world, Neastra has the power to do so.
     “I believe that aggressive creeds, creeds that claim to be above the law, have no place in a nation that values peace and genuine tolerance, and I will work to prevent any further access to this island by allegiants to those creeds.
     “I believe that regulations on commerce must be reduced to the maximum possible extent.
     “I believe that intrusions into the private affairs of private citizens, whether by government or by non-governmental organizations, must be halted, and that non-governmental organizations must no longer be granted the authority of the law.
     “I believe that the value of the aureal can be stabilized, that taxes can be reduced, and that the budget can be balanced.
     “I believe that all those things are possible. Yet I cannot promise you any of them. What I can do is what I have done today: to offer you my services as your Member, and if elected to pursue those ends with all my power.”
     He glanced at his watch, swept up his note cards, and smiled for the first time.
     “I have been allotted thirty minutes for this presentation,” he said. “Twenty-four minutes remain. If you have questions for me, ask them now, and I will answer them as best I can.”
     The questions began. Whiteman answered them. He described himself, his education, and his business. He was candid about his wealth and entirely unashamed of it, but agreed that he would transfer control of it to a blind trust should he be elected. He named his wife, but said nothing more about her. When asked whether he would employ her in his campaign, he replied firmly in the negative. When asked about his children, he demurred; they had requested privacy, and he had promised it to them.
     At last there came the questions he had anticipated from the start. A beefy man, by his looks a longshoreman or in some comparably physical occupation, stood and said, “What’s your party?”
     “The Realism Party,” Whiteman replied.
     “Never heard of it,” the questioner said.
     “No reason you should have,” Whiteman said. “I filed its existence at the council offices, along with my candidacy, this very morning. As of today I am its one and only member and its sole candidate for any public office.” He grinned. “I doubt the national press has taken note of it yet.”
     Several audience members chuckled.
     “Well!” The questioner smirked. “What makes you think can get you elected Member from Querendon?”
     Whiteman nodded. His gentle smile was undisturbed.
     “I believe I can be elected Member from Querendon,” he said in a perfectly unstressed tone, “because I am running for that position against Gregory Howland.”
     Whiteman let it go on for perhaps twenty seconds before he raised a hand for peace. The audience subsided.
     “As I stand here, I have never broken a promise to you. Having not promised you anything but my best effort, I can be confident of maintaining that record. I shall not recount Member Howland’s many promises. You can recall them yourselves. If so, I exhort you to compare those promises to the achievements that followed.” He panned the crowd, smiling thinly. “I believe the comparison will suffice to carry me to Parliament as your Member.”
     Three months and one day later, on Tuesday, November 9, to the surprise of many including the aforementioned Gregory Howland, it did.

     Realism, colloquially speaking, is the attitude that puts facts ahead of opinions and theories. It reposes its trust in facts, and disdains to follow nostrums that fail to account for them. When confronted by demands for the unearned, the impractical, or the absurd, it bellows No! and returns its attention to the facts and what they portend.

     The core of a realistic approach to governance is a simple recognition:

If the end in view is righteous,
Righteous means can get you there.
An unrighteous end cannot be attained by any means.

     It is within our power to make the Year of Our Lord 2021 a year for realism. Like any good engineer, I’ve compiled the requirements for the project as prerequisite to its inception. Here they are:

  1. Trust no politician, nor any politician’s promises.
  2. Conform to the moral laws codified in the Decalogue.
  3. Demand nothing of others that is outside those moral laws.

     (What’s that you say? You’re not a Christian nor a Jew? You’re not religious at all? I don’t give a shit. Either conform to the moral laws as codified in Commandments Six through Ten in the King James list, or begone and don’t return. As for politicians, they’ll promise you anything and everything in exchange for power over you. They’ve done so since the Greeks first experimented with democracy. At this point we should know better than to listen.)

     The moral laws are among the natural laws God has written into the fabric of existence. They cannot be broken without severe, often ruinous consequences. When a nation attempts to set them aside through political action, it seeks its own destruction. We should all know that by now, but...well, hearken to Sir Thomas Carlyle:

     Nevertheless, in the inexplicable universal votings and debatings of these Ages, an idea or rather a dumb presumption to the contrary has gone idly abroad, and at this day, over extensive tracts of the world, poor human beings are to be found, whose practical belief it is that if we "vote" this or that, so this or that will thenceforth be. Practically men have come to imagine that the Laws of this Universe, like the laws of constitutional countries, are decided by voting. It is an idle fancy. The Laws of this Universe, of which if the Laws of England are not an exact transcript, they should passionately study to become, are fixed by the everlasting congruity of things, and are not fixable or changeable by voting!

     And thereafter, to the great Herbert Spencer:

     I asked one of the members of Parliament whether a majority the House could legitimize murder. He said no. I asked him whether it could sanctify robbery. He thought not. But I could not make him see that if murder and robbery are intrinsically wrong, and not to be made right by the decisions of statesmen, then similarly all actions must be either right or wrong, apart from the authority of the law; and that if the right and wrong the law are not in harmony with this intrinsic right and wrong, the law itself is criminal.

     And beware.

     I could go on, but among my resolutions for the coming year is to be a bit less wordy. Please, Gentle Readers: reflect on the above. Think about the implications. Think about what you would gain – or lose – were we to forge a Realism Movement founded on the ideas I’ve expressed. Think also about where we might find a John Whiteman or a Stephen Graham Sumner to carry our standard. (Don’t look at me.)

     Then choose a side. For the only middle ground will be no-man’s-land.

     Happy New Year.

Words to live by.

Our competitors are serious. They don’t let low-IQ people immigrate. They don’t rewrite their history or demonize their founders. They don’t coddle people who hate them. If anybody ever talked about building something based on afrofuturism, they’d put him in the nut house.
"The Taboo That Could Break America, Part III." By Jared Taylor, The Unz Review, 11/25/20.

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Day 365

     That’s today, Gentle Reader: the 30th day of December in this Year of Our Lord 2020 – and who’d like to bet that the Redeemer wouldn’t want his name attached to a year this bad? For all we know, He might be litigating the matter as we speak. But I digress.

     At the end of today we’ll have lived through a conventional calendar year. But 2020 is / was a “leap year,” in which a day is added to the calendar to correct for “sidereal drift:” the slow but steady separation of the calendar date from the sidereal reality. For the period of the Earth’s revolution around the Sun isn’t 365 days exactly; it’s about 365.24 days. That, as Pope Gregory XIII determined in 1582, means we need a “leap day” in our calendars to keep roughly in step with our planet’s position relative to the Sun. Otherwise, the seasons would slowly drift away from the meteorological conditions we expect from them.

     Think that’s unimportant? Umberto Eco would disagree. He founded a magnificent conspiracy novel on the ten day “October leap” – from 4 October 1582 directly to 15 October 1582 – that Pope Gregory decreed to get Christendom in step with the new calendar. (The book takes patience and endurance to read, but it rewards those qualities handsomely at the conclusion.) And yes, further minute adjustments must be made to bring our calendars as close as possible to the sidereal reality: the omission of leap day in years divisible by 100, except for those that are also divisible by 400. But that’s technicata of little interest to the typical Gentle Reader.

     Anyway, you’ve suffered through 365 days of this awful, horrible, no good, rotten, very bad year. You’re entitled to a little relief from its many trying vicissitudes. Herewith, the best your Curmudgeon can do at this early hour.

1. Errare Humanum Est.

     Some years ago, a midwestern newspaper editor became so disgusted with the frequency of errors in his publication that he resolved to produce a single article that would be printed completely free of errors. So he sat down and wrote an article about – you guessed it! – the problem of eliminating errors from published material.

     The article came to about 600 words, which he proofread several times, each time seining out one or more typos. He then handed it to his wife, who found several more errors. Not to be thwarted in his quest for perfection, he brought the article to an assistant editor, who found three more errors. Finally, the three of them agreed that the article was error-free, and the editor sent it to the printer for inclusion in the next edition.

     The paper was produced in a three-column format, which was popular at the time. So the printers’ editor formatted the article into three columns of roughly 200 words each, and sent the result to the linotypists.

     When the article appeared in the next day’s paper, it developed that linotypists had “pasted up” the article’s third 200-word segment between the first and second ones. Other than that...!

     True story, friends.

2. What’s In a Name?

     One day in the Fifties, a strikingly handsome young man walked into the office of a Hollywood Agent with his resume and portfolio in hand. The agent reviewed the young man's slim resume and small portfolio with the care that was deserving of this fine young specimen.

     "You have obvious good looks and the excellent demeanor of an actor. Tell me, have you had any roles that I might be aware of?"

     "Other than the requisite high school and college plays, no sir," said the handsome young man.

     "I dare say I know the reason why, with a name like yours," said the agent.


     "Your name. Penis Van Lesbian. That's not a name that will go far in Hollywood. I'd love to represent you, but you'll have to change your name."

     "Sir," the handsome young man protested. "The Van Lesbian name was my father's, my grandfather's and his father's name. We have carried this name for generations and I will not change it for Hollywood or any other reason."

     "Young man, if you won't change your name, I cannot represent you."

     "Then I bid you farewell, for my name will not change." With that, Penis Van Lesbian left the agent's office, never to return.

     Five Years Later... The Hollywood agent returned to his office after lunch with some Producers and shuffled through his mail. It was mostly junk mail, trade journals and the like. There was one letter. He opened the envelope and removed the letter. As he unfolded the fine linen paper, a check dropped from the folds and onto his desk. It was for fifty thousand dollars! He read the letter:

Dear Sir:

     Several years ago, I entered your office determined to become an actor. You refused to represent me unless I changed my name. I objected, saying that my name had been carried for generations, and left your office. However, upon leaving, I chanced to reconsider my hastiness and, after considerable reflection, I decided to heed your advice and endeavored to change my name. Now I am a famous actor with many roles and am known to millions worldwide. Having achieved this fame and fortune, it is often that I think back to my meeting with you and your insistence that I change my name. I owe you a debt of gratitude, so please accept this check with my humble thanks, for it was your wise counsel which has brought me such wealth and fame.

Very Sincerely Yours,
Dick Van Dyke

     Not a true story, friends.

3. The Prime Directive.

     Many years ago – I forget exactly how many – someone who thinks far too much of my brilliance asked me how one goes about having an affair “safely.” She was much younger than I, and therefore not well acquainted with the disillusionments and betrayals that so-called “casual” sex can occasion. But she had her eye on a married man – no, not myself – and apparently he was in accord with her hormones and intentions.

     I tried to counsel her against her intended course, but her gonads were aflame and could not be denied. So, after a day’s thought, I came up with the following, which I emailed to her (from an anonymous account created on a library computer):

     The solution, if you’re unconcerned about your prospects in the afterlife and believe that your marriage can withstand an outside involvement, is obeying the Prime Directive of Adultery:

  • If you’re married, he must be married as well.
  • If you have a middle-class income and existence, then so must he.
  • If you have children, he must have children — preferably the same number and about the same ages.
  • If you must travel a considerable distance to your trysts, then he should have to do the same.

     …and so on. Adultery’s potential consequences for the two of you should be well matched. Any kind of asymmetry represents both a source of stress on the affair and a potential lever for one of you to use against the other.

     Never, ever assume that something that begins with wine and roses can’t possibly devolve to pistols at dawn. Always equalize the risks!

     (This is not an endorsement of adultery, which remains forbidden by the Sixth Commandment and is still against the law in many jurisdictions. Neither is it an offer to commit adultery, which can only be done by formal prospectus. Adultery’s risks include legal, spiritual, physiological, and emotional consequences, not all of which are completely understood. Side effects include increased expenses on clothes, shoes, and perfume, frequent trips to the salon, aggressive dieting, cosmetic surgery, and excessive gazing into the mirror. Past performance is no guarantee of future performance. No spouses were harmed in the making of this feature. We are an Equal Opportunity Employer.)

     I never heard from her thereafter, so I can’t say how well she followed my rather tongue-in-cheek advice.

     That’s all for today, I think. There’s a fair amount of foofaurauw taking place at the Fortress just now, so expect me back tomorrow at the soonest. Until then, try to stay upbeat and enjoy Day 365 as much as possible. Remember Rachman’s Maxim:

“Everything is darkest just before it turns pitch black.”


The insufferable arrogance of "The Great Reset."

Following close on the heels of those who decided (1) the West needed to be flooded with supremacist Muslims, voodoo worshippers, and assorted other unassimalables, and (2) the industrial base of the United States just had to be relocated to the shores of a communist dictatorship there is now "The Great Reset" pushed by Klaus Schwab, head of the World Economic Forum, with a personal following numberswise somewhere in the neighborhood of the Chinese national ping pong team.

We need to revisit the expression, "You may not be interested in war but war is interested in you." Sometimes attributed to Trotsky it's insightful no matter who came up with it, capturing as it does how complete strangers can decide all by their lonesome to involve you in the unspeakable. Not that war's that unspeakable in the minds of posh people these days, but that's another story.

Anyway, here we have the poshest of all the posh people deciding that you are on the order of a piss ant and that you can be dispossessed, your life turned upside down, a workable economic systems trashed, elections turned into a charade, and the entire world placed under totalitarian control because . . . because "we" need to reach a state of "net zero." I mean, who would dig in his or her heels about "climate change," "diversity," or nation-destroying covid-19 hysteria and lies unless he or she were a moronic bitter clinger perversely averse to worshipping George Soros and his private army of AntiFa and prosecutor filth.

The arrogance part about all this is where I see these powdered saints scheming to stand astride the world, hurl thunderbolts, and remake it all according to some inspired thinktankery and orb gazing when they've done all in their power to wreck the existing perfectly workable economic and social system. Procrustus call your office. Or is it Icarus? Every existing metric you can think of has defaulted to depravity, lunacy, or tragedy under their watch as power has been centralized, the people silenced, disenfranchised and propagandized, plutocracy celebrated, and pointless wars transformed into an amusing pastime. With that track record these swine show up saying they have A Plan and trust us to get it right. Uneffing believable.

A choice take on this from SkyNews:

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Pleasures Of The Tormentor

     Just a quickie today, as I have a great deal to do and very little time in which to do it. First, read this story. Reflect in particular upon the perverse pleasure Jim Galligan got from ruining a young girl’s college prospects...possibly for good. It’s a case study in self-preening assumptions of moral superiority.

     Galligan is not unique; far from it. There are endless Galligans out there, willing to destroy anyone and anything they can tar with even the palest, least plausible smear. Doing harm to others makes them feel good about themselves. It reinforces that assumption of moral superiority. One of the key questions of our time is how to defeat them. There are only two ways:

  1. Punish them and those who kowtow to them;
  2. Laugh at them and go unconcernedly about your business.

     Nothing else has worked to date. As this is a component in my public order tirade, I exhort my Gentle Readers to ponder it in the light of the observations in that piece.

     But second and arguably even more important, the enveloping problem is one of encroaching linguistic appropriation and censorship. The only way to defeat that is to defy it utterly and stand your ground.

     It speaks volumes to me that Andrea Widburg, the author of the piece linked above, was unwilling to type nigger explicitly in her American Thinker essay. Perhaps she genuinely believes it’s unacceptably offensive. Or perhaps she’s shy about using a “banned” word. In either case, it constitutes a moral default, and here is the reason:

Negroes use nigger frequently among themselves.

     Note that I refuse to call them “African Americans,” just as I refuse to call Amerinds “Native Americans.” They’re Negroes, have been since anthropologists first studied racial classifications and distinctions, and Negroes they will remain. Moreover, this mick-wop honky doesn’t concede anyone the power to ban or “privatize” a word. Neither does my kike wife.

     Do as your conscience directs, always, but please, for the sake of freedom, give at least some thought to the issues here. As for Jim Galligan, he deserves to be tarred, feathered, and ridden out of the country on a rail, and I hope someone geographically well placed for the task will see to it. If he doesn’t like my saying that, he can feel free to call me whatever he likes!

Monday, December 28, 2020

Pet Peeves Dept.

     Yes, I have a few. I’m sure you do, too. Most of them have to do with behaviors that I find irritating – and that, too, is probably the same for you. And I’ll bet you that among the things that chafes you most is when someone tries to defend a behavior that you find offensive or discommoding.

     The thing is, that happens a lot. Over my 68 years it’s rendered me ever less tolerant of a considerable range of human self-indulgences. And yes, I’m sure that I have eccentricities that bother others quite as much as anything they do might bother me. But I’m the one writing this BLEEP!ing column, so it’s my turn to vent.

     I’ve written about the preciousness of time, and more than once at that. My consciousness of that preciousness, and of the uncertainty of the future, have led me to treat time – mine, yours, and everyone else’s – with immense seriousness. One consequence is that I am never, ever late for an appointment.

     A lot of people take others’ time lightly. They feel free to be late if it suits them – and they take it ill if they’re criticized for their tardiness. I’ve known a few such persons, and over time I’ve shed all involvement with them. That includes practitioners of many professions and trades. They charge for their time; why should I allow them to treat my time as of no value?

     Yet the great majority of them have striven to excuse themselves for their profligacy with my time. Some have even asserted it as their privilege, owing to their personal importance or involvements. It baffles them when I refuse to “see their point.”

     This morning, my gaze landed upon this article:

     Confession: I am a late person. At least, one in recovery. In fact, I’ve repeatedly, and embarrassingly, missed the deadline for this article. I’d love to pretend this is some journalistic form of ‘method’ acting. It is not.

     I know I’m not alone. We all know that person: there’s the child minder who is always late, the colleague who misses every deadline, even if just by a few hours, the friend you must tell to arrive 30 minutes earlier than she needs to for your lunch reservation.

     There are few habits as infuriating as someone making us wait. But, despite what may be running through your mind as you’re kept waiting again, it’s unlikely your friends and colleagues are just being selfish. A look into the psychology of lateness offers a glimpse into a mind that that may be malfunctioning. But there’s also more than one fix. [Emphasis added by FWP.]

     “It’s unlikely your friends and colleagues are just being selfish.” What rescues that statement from complete damnation is the word just. They most certainly are behaving selfishly. It’s “just” that they have reasons. If you’d only listen to them, you’d immediately understand why your time and convenience must be sacrificed on the altar of their arrogance, priorities, or phobias.


     The modern era has enshrined a few attitudes that I can’t fathom. One is the general conviction that you must never criticize a man to his face. You must never take exception to someone else’s behavior, no matter how it impacts you. One of the consequences is that bad, antisocial behavior never receives the negative feedback that would curb it.

     Herewith, a vignette I’ve related before:

     On the way back from another errand I’d stopped at a local shopping center for something or other. As I parked I spied a knot of teenagers congregated in front of the strip mall. One of them was eating handfuls of something from a plastic bag. As I debarked he dropped the empty bag on the sidewalk, though there was a garbage can less than six feet away.

     Being a terrible martinet and a scold of the first water, I said nothing. I merely walked up to the young litterer, stooped, grabbed his trash and stuffed it into the garbage can with emphasis, glaring at him all the while. Now, I’m not large – about 5’7”, 160 lb. – and this young ruffian towered over me. But his face turned as white as if I’d leveled a gun at him.

     “I was going to do that,” he stammered.

     I shook my head and entered the store. The clerk, who had witnessed the event, said plaintively that what I had done was “very brave.”

     Why did she say that? What I did wasn’t brave at all. The kid couldn’t have hurt me, though he didn’t know that. What he did know was what he saw: I had asserted a rule of public order that he knew about but had casually flouted. Perhaps no one in his experience had ever done such a thing. That someone had dared to assert that rule visibly struck terror into him.

     Now, I’m not particularly imposing. I wasn’t carrying a weapon. I didn’t have a squad of law enforcers at my back. And I did hesitate briefly before doing what I did. What I’d really like to know is whether anyone else in that kid’s previous life had ever hauled him up short for a similar offense against public order. Was I the first? It struck me as incredible then, and it still does.

     Public order is founded upon a set of expectations about individuals’ behavior. Individuals who disregard those expectations – who fail to treat them as rules – offend against public order and contribute to its demise. The only thing that preserves public order against such degradations is the high probability of an undesirable consequence.

     It’s that way with littering. It’s that way with lateness. It’s that way with pain-threshold volumes of ugly “music” imposed upon businesses and passers-by. It’s that way with sidewalk-obstructing vendors and street performers and encampments of bums homeless. And I think we all know it, in our hearts. What troubles me is how utterly unwilling we are – individually and as a society – to act on it.

     I don’t intend to condemn the article I cited in the opening section. Laura Clarke does make several good points. However, it’s the correctives she advocates that deserve the most attention. They come down to this:

  • Set boundaries and make them known.
  • Impose consequences for their violation.

     To do that, we must be willing to punish: an even more terrifying threshold to cross than to offer criticism. The modern anathematization of all forms of negative feedback has rendered us all but paralyzed in the face of even the most outrageous behavior. Some of that is simple timidity; some is the wish that “someone else” would handle it. In either case, it constitutes a passive kind of reinforcement for selfish, self-indulgent behavior and the tears it leaves in the public order.

     Just a Curmudgeonly thought as we hurtle toward 2021.

The Most Terrifying Prediction Of 2020

     Remnants of the covid class war will touch every domain of life for decades. Officials have suggested that social distancing will need to continue even after mandatory vaccinations. Masks have become a potent symbol of both physical purity and mutual mistrust. Our fantasy of a sanitized and deathless society has created a world where the home is a prison and friends and family are a health hazard. In this world children are told they are killing their grandparents simply by existing. Right now we are still at the beginning of sweeping changes that may include social credit, immunity passports, a rent-only economy, AI and robotics expansion, financialization of natural resources, increased mass surveillance, the Uberization of everything, and rolling lockdowns for climate change or the flu. We have a limited window of time to reclaim the things that make life worth living: family, community, cultural heritage, the social sphere, public institutions, common spaces, and free movement. That window may be closing quickly, but it is not fully closed yet.

     — Alex Gutentag —

     Please read the whole article. Believe me, it’s worth your time.

     Ponder this: The Communist tyrannies of the Twentieth Century used their subjects’ fear of one another to control them and ensure their continued power. At any time, deliberately or otherwise, your neighbor might make a remark that would bring the KGB to your doorstep. The aspiring tyrants of our time learned from those Communists. They too use our fear of one another to control us: your fear that your neighbor might...give you a bad cold!

     No wonder it’s so hard to write satire these days.

Socialism 101.

"The problem is a lot of grown-up Americans still think like a 7-year-old. Except they don’t think Santa Clause lives up in the North Pole. They think he lives in Washington D.C.”
~ Peter Schiff (emphasis removed).

Sunday, December 27, 2020

Pearls of expression.

Isn’t it amazing how both parties in office can unite against President Trump, but they can never unite to help the America people?
Matt Couch tweet.


     “This is the weapon of a Jedi Knight. Not as clumsy or random as a blaster; an elegant weapon for a more civilized age. For over a thousand generations, the Jedi Knights were the guardians of peace and justice in the Old Republic. Before the dark times...before the Empire.” – Alec Guinness as Obi-Wan Kenobi in Star Wars, Episode IV: A New Hope

     By and large, the Star Wars movies are unsubtle. They’re mostly exercises in special effects, with a little dialogue woven in to make it seem as if they tell a story more involved than just “Get ‘em!” But in the snippet of dialogue above, George Lucas does something every fiction writer must know how to do.

     With only a few words, Lucas evokes in the viewer’s mind a picture of the times before the Galactic Empire and the ongoing rebellion. (Granted, Guinness’s excellent delivery helped to paint that picture.) He doesn’t have to say much – and it’s to Lucas’s credit that he refrains from saying more than necessary. That’s how a skilled writer gives his reader a taste of the backstory.

     Evocation of this sort can also be used to point the reader toward the future, though that’s called foreshadowing and usually points toward events that will be part of the story being written. In either usage, the writer’s aim is to broaden his fictional landscape without actually painting in the regions along the margins. The practice serves the reader by stimulating his imagination, making him a co-creator of his entertainment. It serves the writer by allowing him to concentrate the much greater portion of his efforts on the events in story-present.

     Evocation – hinting – is an important skill. Ask any sixteen-year-old girl whose heart is set on getting that one special boy to ask her to the dance.

     Evocative writing is especially important to the short-story writer...and here we come to what has it in my thoughts today.

     I turn out the occasional short story, as readers of Liberty’s Torch are surely aware. Rather frequently, a reader will suggest that I complete the story: i.e., to fill in the events before and / or after what I actually depicted. Some will ask, in effect, “Where’s the rest of it?” as if it had been scissored out of a more extensive narrative.

     Such responses occasionally give me some agita. Should I write more about this? Does it deserve to become a full-length novel? What is there that I get that my readers don’t? And yes, on occasion I’ve been moved to take a short tale – “Sweet Things” is the most recent case – and expand it to a greater length. So I understand and, sometimes at least, sympathize sufficiently with my readers’ desire to “see the rest of it” to actually write “the rest of it.”

     But at least as often, I decide to “leave it where it lies.” That was the case with “The Fearless Man,” which came into being entirely because of the JPG I posted at the end. Most of my short pieces are unlikely ever to be extended. What causes a story to be of one or the other sort is hard to say, but I think that whether I can sense that I got the reader to imagine the backstory is a major part of it.

     Of only one thing am I perfectly sure: a reader’s expressed desire to “see the rest of it” is a high compliment. It means I wrote evocatively enough to rev up his imagination, and it pleased him enough that he wants to see how accurate his imaginings are. It warms me greatly, as the short tales I produce and post here are usually meant as relief valves for me, to deflect me from thinking about my current hopeless novel-under-development.

     And it’s all about hinting: alluding evocatively to a tale you’ve deliberately left untold, such that the reader will “write it in his head.” Any sixteen-year-old girl will tell you!

The Pussification of the American Male

Not because he treats women with respect, although he might.

Not because he looks for peaceful solutions, and resists fighting. Many men do, without looking like a wimp.

It's because he hasn't had those life experiences that make a man. Some guys get it from having survived a war. Some have had childhoods that would have broken a lesser man. Whatever the origin, they were tested by life, and passed that trial.

Some guys project that "don't mess with me, or you will regret it" vibe. They don't have to be big guys, or even win those fights. They just have some confidence that you will regret starting anything. They will last long enough to put some hurt on you.

Those guys with the chiselled bodies don't impress me. Those are 'show muscles'. And, those are the ones that are shown in most modern movies. They are 'roid-assisted' muscles, not functional ones.

Saturday, December 26, 2020

Toward The End Of A Difficult Year

     This will be brief...I think. With Christmas Day behind us, a single week remains in which to assess this Year of Our Lord 2020, to try to make some sense of it, and to think about how we might improve the “sequel.”

     Most of my drivel here at Liberty’s Torch is about politics, public policy, and the perversities of government. I doubt that will disappear completely from my oeuvre, though I do intend to try to broaden my offerings in 2021. Politics has become too depressing for a regular diet of op-ed. New topics are needed. Maybe I’ll produce a few essays on currency manipulation or strategic weapons, wait, what am I thinking? Bad commentator! No Nesselrode pie! I’ll have to give the matter some time to percolate.

     Of course, the “big stories” are already known to everyone who takes even a passing interest in affairs. There’s no need for me, or anyone else, to enumerate them for you. But there are innumerable little stories that have been neglected because of the “big” ones. Indeed, we’re surrounded by them. And I shall tell you a terrible thing, an open secret that you might have pondered in years past:

The first job of the media is to get you to ignore those little stories, and to give the whole of your attention to the stories they select and trumpet.

     This is thought-fodder that hasn’t been adequately addressed here or elsewhere. There’s a dynamic behind it that “should” be “obvious,” and so (for a change) I shall refrain from making it explicit. But I’ll point you toward one of the things it’s savaged – and not by coincidence:

     These Americans are the most peculiar people in the world. You'll not believe it when I tell you how they behave. In a local community in their country, a citizen may conceive of some need [that] is not being met. What does he do? He goes across the street and discusses it with his neighbor. Then what happens? A committee begins functioning on behalf of that need. All of this is done by private citizens on their own initiative. The health of a democratic society may be measured by the quality of functions performed by private citizens. [Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America, 1831.]

     What’s this? There’s a need that’s not being met? Quelle horreur! Surely the government must act at once! Private citizens are far too consumed with their own affairs to attend to such a “need!” – Today’s America (and to be fair, also every other country in the world).

     That’s the contemporary attitude, Gentle Reader – and it stems from the media’s relentless portrayals of every “need” as this huge, overbearing, terrifying thing that would make Godzilla run screaming for his mommy. But in pre-Civil War America, ordinary citizens saw to such “needs” according to their own priorities, abilities, and resources. De Tocqueville, a visitor from over-governed Europe, was stunned by our forebears’ readiness to act on their own initiative, without invoking the political sphere.

     There are many components to the thing, but two stand out above the rest: the vulgarized concept of “need” and the collaboration between the media and our native class of thieves, swindlers, fraudsters, and power-mongers politicians and their hangers-on.

     It’s when a “need” is seen as a critical, overwhelming thing that one’s personal abilities and resources could never address that those who desire power over us are best pleased. And yes, it also sells column-inches and commercial slots.

     Among my resolutions for the New Year, I’ve resolved to try (at least) not to belabor the overwhelmingly obvious for my Gentle Readers. You’re bright folks who don’t need to be beaten about the head and shoulders with stuff you can easily see and comprehend for yourselves. However, as it is still 2020 as I write this, I’ll allow myself a soupcon of Overwhelming Obviousness and leave it for you to ponder:

Every “big need” is composed of many “little needs.”

     Private action is inherently preferable to political action, again for reasons too “obvious” to explain...not that I haven’t done exactly that hundreds or thousands of times to date. If you want to keep government at bay – and great God in heaven, how obvious is the desirability of that! – you must be willing to take a personal hand in meeting the needs you perceive:

Feed the hungry.
Give drink to the thirsty.
Clothe the naked.
Shelter the homeless.
Comfort the sick and the afflicted.
Visit the imprisoned.
Bury the dead and pray for their souls.

     Those seven items are what Catholics call the corporal works of mercy. They are the only true needs, and they are not inherently “big.” If your district has some number of impoverished, or homeless, or sick persons who lack loving relatives, you can assist in meeting their needs. Moreover, you won’t be alone in doing so, for as soon as others notice what you’re doing, they’ll join you, if only to quiet their consciences.

     The hour is late when it comes to the confinement of governments to their proper sphere. We may have waited too long, allowed things to go too far. Yet there is still hope. And yes, your contributions are tax-deductible...for the present, at least. But don’t succumb to the lure of “checkbook charity.” The record of large “charitable organizations” at actually doing charitable work is exceedingly poor, marred by a great deal of corruption and waste. Roll up your sleeves and get involved in the gritty work.

     The United States has never been more than about 10% distant from a condition in which there are no involuntarily hungry, naked, or homeless persons. If the 90% of us who “have it good” were each to put four hours per week into charitable activity, that fraction would drop dramatically...if not all the way to zero. And governments would have no rationale for meddling in what’s properly the domain of the good man with an operating conscience.

     More anon.

Friday, December 25, 2020

An Epidemic of Politics

 As we confront the ongoing train-wreck that is the US response to the Chinese Communist Party viral epidemic, while there are still some things we do not know, there are some things that are known about this ongoing biological epidemic.

1) Many of the folks that get this bug have few or no symptoms and do not require treatment;

2) Of those that do show symptoms, many do not require hospitalization;

3) In my area, under current treatment protocols, about 10% of those hospitalized die as a result, up from around 6% in March and April.

4) More people overall are reportedly dying recently as a result of this epidemic.

5) This virus is highly mutable and continues to evolve, and that there are over a thousand known active clades with new ones arising in every person infected. So far, most such mutations are not significantly more virulent.

6) It is possible for some people to get this virus more than once, sometimes sequentially, and that these 'repeat' infections get more serious at each repetition. 

7) That age is not the sole determinor of who gets this bug;  young adults and even children can get cases with clinical symptoms, and the young and very young who do are at increased risk of downstream side effects that are not well understood.

We still don't know what the 'real' case fatality rate is, since the testing situation, almost a year into this pandemic, is still deeply flawed.  There are rapid tests, some of which test for *any* coronavirus and thus have lots of false positives, others of which assert that they test for the CCP virus only.  These are known to be less accurate than PCR, and are known for both false positives and false negatives.  Finally we have PCR testing which when properly sampled and properly handled in the lab is about 80-90% accurate, but which has been monkeyed with by use of excessive numbers of cycles resulting in false positives, apparently in a politically motivated effort to drive up case count.

If that isn't enough, poor PCR sampling due to inexperienced or weary staff is still causing false negatives.  It is easy to *say* that the swab needs to be pushed as far up the nasal cavity as the nurse can get it, but it is painful for the patients, who tend to resist, and after endless 12 hour shifts working in full PPE, it is easy to botch the sampling.  We also have some politically motivated underreporting *and* overreporting of fatalities.  So, we don't have any objective way to know with certainty within any reasonable margin (say 5 to 10%) of how many people are actually infected, or what percentage of those died as a result. These data have been deliberately manipulated to the point that nobody knows what is real.

We do know that the death rate for hospitalized people has increased, in some areas by about 2/3 from April, from around 6% to 10%, and we are told that the lethality of this CCP virus has not increased.  So what has changed since March?

We know that there are two clinically effective treatments that are now actively discouraged by the medical establishment here in the USA in favor of Remdesivir;  synthetic quinine (Hydroxychloroquine or HCQ) in combination with zinc and antibiotics, and Ivermectin.  Both of these drugs have long records of safe use prior to this pandemic, and both have shown clinical effect against the CCP virus, especially as prophylactic treatment.  Yet both of these treatments are being discriminated against here in the US despite multiple trials showing good results. In other countries, they work fine, but according to the establishment here in these united States, they're dangerous.

Both HCQ and Ivermectin are cheap, too, while remdesivir costs over $3000 per treatment course and some studies show remdesivir to be less effective.  My cynical side says that the threat of HCQ and Ivermectin is more to corporate profits and government budgets and less to patients.  The rise in hospitalized patient deaths suggests that US patients are being put at risk at least in part to drive corporate profits. There is likely also a political aspect to this, one which may dwarf the economic driver.

 We know that smoothed 7 day daily deaths reported for this outbreak are higher now than the peak in Mid April, ~2600 as of 12/24/2020 compared to ~2200.  See link here-   and while this number is probably not the real number, I am not aware of any large change in the method of death classifications since April, unlike the so-called 'case count' number, as noted above, which is largely unreliable. If we assume that the increase in average daily deaths is not being manipulated, then the question is, are we seeing a rise in deaths as a result in increased infections, or are we seeing a rise in deaths from a political denial of effective treatment? Or some combination of both?

Then we come to the various experimental vaccines now being fielded after a very short trial period under emergency release protocols.  It is evident from the suppression of effective treatment that the Left, in concert with the US medical establishment, is NOT putting patient safety first, but has other goals in mind. Given the willingness of the US medical establishment to prevent the use of two known safe and effective treatments, effective both for propylaxis and for early clinical treatment, in favour of an evidently less effective and much more expensive treatment, I am sceptical about ALL of the US medical establishment's statements regarding any of these experimental vaccine's safety or effectiveness.  Given the rash of side effects already demonstrated, about 3% of which are severe, I am entirely unwilling to be a guinea pig to test these new vaccines.  

Qui Bono? Who benefits from these actions? 

 Well, the most obvious benefit is financial; both the company producing Remdesivir and the companies billing for it extract financial benefit;  Gilead's most recent financials show an $18 billion net profit on revenues of $32 billion. The medical establishment is unlikely to see any budget cuts, and the IRS certainly welcomes the over $3 billion in taxes Gilead will pay. More to the point, there is political benefit to the Left in scaring Joe Normal away from using inexpensive treatments to prevent this disease and into accepting more government largesse and more social restrictions, as well.  While $1 billion is a lot of money to Joe Normal, it is trivial next to Federal expenditures this year;  I suspect the political impact of these drug restrictions is a greater motivation.

As regards vaccines, that is a bit more obscure, at least to me at present. It would be far cheaper, easier and safer to simply distribute HCQ as a prophylaxis and treat symptomatic patients with either HCQ or Ivermectin, at which point the biological epidemic would be over in a month, but the US is not doing that. Using vaccination as a mechanism for social control is certainly a possibility;  we've imported Chinese Communist controls on social media, and a Chinese communist virus, so it would not be surprising for some to try to push Chinese Communist 'social passports' as well.  It may be unduly cynical of me to suspect that this push to vaccinate people immediately preceding and during the holidays is deliberate.  

The cynic in me says, "What a perfect opportunity to push vaccination!  Exaggerate the case count, scare everyone you can, lock people back down for a second time during the season when most Americans get together with family, and then give them an 'out' with a vaccine!  They'll go for it like a trout for a grasshopper!"  Similar to the Arab attacks on Israel during Yom Kippur, the Left may be pushing vaccines during Christmas with the thought that Christians may be less attentive during the holidays.  There is also the possibility that the failure of the present administration's vaccine push may be used as a weapon against the Right, or for some other purpose.  We shall have to wait and see.

To sum up based upon the facts available to me, here are my conclusions:

  • That there is in fact an ongoing biological pandemic;
  • That the data related to this pandemic are unreliable;
  • This virus is a nasty bug that has the potential to cause serious illness and death, as I have seen repeatedly for the last year.  For political reasons, however, the extent of and threat to most people from this virus has been and is being grossly exaggerated, primarily by the Left; 
  • In parallel to the exaggeration of the threat, for political and corporatist reasons, known good treatment regimens are being suppressed and less effective ones substituted;
  • There are significant numbers of short term known side effects from the new experimental vaccines, which are being pushed for political reasons not justified by the present situation;
  • Neither the Federal nor many State governments have the interest of individual Americans in mind when making policy decisions, and they cannot be trusted to fulfill their core function, to protect individual rights.

In short, not only is there a biological epidemic, created by Communist China and released upon the world, but the biological epidemic is being dwarfed by an epidemic of politics, by an evolving pandemic of medical tyranny unmatched in American history.  This political pandemic clearly has been and is being used to aid the ongoing election theft and coup against the legitimately elected president of these presently united States, Donald Trump.

There are treatments for the CCP virus, which thrives in dry cold darkness and dies quickly in sunlight. The treatment for this political pandemic is similar; expose the actors, shine the light of Truth on the political cockroaches who spread it, and above all, RESIST. Resistance is the only effective treatment for tyranny.

With regard to all who seek the Light,


As We Head Towards Home...

 ...and begin preparing for the New year, we need to loo back, and reflect on the changes needed in the new year.

  1. Trump seems to have made one significant change - Ivanka and her husband, Jared, have returned to NYC. I'm not complete sure whether Jared was more self-serving than incompetent, but his influence (led by Trump's fondness for his daughter) led to some mis-steps in his first term. He had his uses - the Israeli-Arab agreements would likely not have been as successful without him. But, I always thought he had his eye on what would profit HIM, rather than the Trump administration policies. And, Ivanka's semi-Wokeness was a major hindrance to administration effectiveness.
  2. Trump has narrowed his inner circle. Good. I've always thought those staff members were an empire-building bunch, and, with a smaller circle, there is less leakage.
  3. The Deep State is tottering. Trump has issued orders making their continued status less unassailable, and flat-out removed some of the more obstructionist elements, both in the administrative side, and in the military component. Frankly, a LOT of excess bloat in the officer ranks needs to be RIF'd. The ones left need to be too busy to cause trouble.
  4. Right now, I'm cautiously hopeful that there WILL be a second term. That's the time when the Deep State should be sheared - reduce ALL bureaucracy by at least 25-30% imediately. Freeze all raises and pension increases - and NO bonuses or ability to inflate the last year's salary by accrued sick/vacation days.
  5. Suspend ALL COLAs for ALL pensioners/SS recipients (yes, that will hit me, too). Set the rule - as long as unemployment is over a certain percentage, NO COLA. And, government employment (or that supplemented by government money) does NOT count as a reduction. Private employment is the goal.
  6. Anyone on government assistance for more than 2 years needs to be brought in, and evaluated to see why:
    1. Do they have some legitimate reason for that assistance (personal disability, or that of a family member sufficient to justify their not working)?
    2. Have they complied with all conditions?
    3. Have them been working under the table?
    4. Do they really need assistance, or would just health care subsidy to the family suffice? A lot of people fall into that category.
    5. Are they basically a basket case of addiction or mental illness - or both? Don't leave them in a situation that is not improving their long-term status. That's cruel. Get them help, if necessary in long-term care (allowing someone to bounce in and out of treatment is not a kindness).
  7. We need to stop using COLA as a one-way rachet. If the cost of living is lower, the recipients need to lose that portion of the benefit.
  8. EVERYBODY needs to pay income tax. NO ONE should be exempt, even if it's as little as 1% of their income. Everyone needs to have skin in the game. And, that means that NO ONE should be getting back more than they paid in. It's time to retire the income credit provisions, that give people money they didn't earn. It's a cheap excuse for bypassing welfare restrictions.
  1. Organize/clean/get my home and life under control. No more procrastination; no more excuses.
  2. Stop making excuses for not following a decent diet. For not exercising.
  3. Dedicate at least 1 hour a day to clearing out the paper mess in my life. Use the scanner to digitize, and - if necessary - pay for one of those services that organize receipts and papers.
  4. Plant that garden this year - ON TIME (as a Yankee, I'm notorious for waiting until too late to get started - for me, it's not really time to start putting the seeds into the pots until nearly Easter). And, set up a watering system (I know I will be traveling/too busy to do it by hand most of the time).
Life creeps up on you. We all put off tackling the big jobs, those tedious tasks that would improve our lives, but that are boring. But, sooner or later, we all have to either make those changes, or wish we had.


     [I wrote this many years ago, and from Christmas to Christmas I’ve posted it, here at Liberty’s Torch or at Eternity Road of fond memory. It remains my favorite Christmas tale – after the one in the Gospel According to Luke, of course! -- FWP]

     Census has always been an irritant. There are many -- I am one -- who feel it to be intrusive, however necessary it might be. And the costs, both to the government and to the individuals it enumerates, should not be discounted.
     I have the trust of certain highly placed persons. Because of my reputation for thoroughness and integrity, at the outset of the last two censuses, the tetrarch has assigned me the supervision of a district. I took advantage of this to tell him of the grumblings the census causes. On the first occasion he assured me that the complaints I heard were the braying of asses, nothing more. Census had never caused a revolt and would cause none. This last time he was slower to respond.
     On my way back to Jerusalem with my tallies, I decided to take lodging at a country inn rather than travel through the night. The proprietors knew me from previous encounters. Well that it was so, for there was only one room left and a goodly throng clamoring for it. I tried to be unobtrusive about securing it for myself, but a few noticed and protested as vigorously as their fatigue would allow. To avert the disturbance, I slipped out of the common room as quickly and quietly as I could. When I'd divested myself of my bags, I descended the back stairs to wander the hills until my mind had quieted enough to allow me to sleep.
     A census marshal has absolute authority over the procedures to be used in his district. Knowing the popular sentiment, I took the inconveniences upon myself. I went from town to town, consulting with local magistrates and figures of prominence, and took the count without requiring anything of the people save their names.
     The local officials were always glad to see me go. What would be required of them and their neighbors afterward, of course, was money. Census is always about money: how many folk there are, and how prosperous, and what levy can be exacted of them without provoking an insurrection.
     By the size and surliness of the throng on the roads that day, and at the inn, I knew I was passing through a district whose marshal was not so kindly disposed. As the law permitted, he'd ordered the people to come to him. He'd imposed enormous discomfort upon every man of that region, rather than burden himself with the dust and expense of my sort of circuit.
     It was not a happy place.
     In passing through a crowd, I am forever speculating. Which among these, I ask myself, is known to his neighbors as a person of substance? Which is reviled for his indulgences, or held in contempt for his dissolution? Which among them is known outside his village, and why? Which of them will become known? Which of them, by dint of deeds mighty or monstrous, will climb to stand on the shoulders of history? Which will change our world?
     Usually it's a way of passing the dreary times, no more.
     The day had provided me with copious fodder. There was an old man in a dirty samite robe, stooped nearly double from years of toil, who leaned so heavily upon his staff as he walked that I feared it might break beneath him. Yet when his wife addressed him in a manner he disapproved, he straightened like a spring suddenly unbound and struck her across the face with that same staff, to send her to the ground bleeding and blubbering. There was a merchant, a large, solid man in a rich cloak of gabardine, who intervened uninvited in a loud dispute between a traveler and a street peddler, to counsel them to moderation. They turned their wrath from one another to him, hurling the foulest of epithets into his face until he left them to resume their profitless quarrel. There was a tall youth of perhaps twenty, with a face of chiselled perfection and a body like unto the Greeks' statues of their gods. He strode smiling through the world as if he owned everything in it, and all marveled at his beauty as he passed. Yet when a raddled old harlot beckoned to him in terms too vulgar even to think them onto this page, he did not respond with derision or scorn. He stopped and went to her, spoke to her softly, pressed a coin into her hand, and passed on.
     Of which of these would I hear again? Any? None?
     Even if it should happen, I would not know. I did not know their names. My acquaintance with names was a professional one, confined to the tallies I carried in my saddlebags.
     The Sun had dropped below the horizon, and the hills were growing cold. The traffic on the road to the city had dwindled to nothing. Outside the inn, the stragglers for whom there was no accommodation crouched and huddled against its southern wall, making what provisions they could for a night of unplanned exposure. In the near distance a shepherd surrendered his staff to his son and trudged back to his hovel for an evening meal.
     Movers? Shakers? Doers of mighty deeds? Icons of superlative virtue or courage?
     Not likely.
     Even those acclaimed as such by the world often struck me as persons elevated to their stations by blind chance, rather than merit. One night, deep in his cups, a patrician of my acquaintance admitted as much to me. He called his chamberlain a more able man by far. In a better world, he allowed, their positions would have been reversed. I agreed, though I forebore to say so.
     I passed no judgments. I was no mover nor shaker. I was a functionary, an industrious keeper of tablets with a gift for inspiring confidence in those of higher station, nothing more. No deed of mine would disturb the world's slumbers. My name would not be recorded in an annal of greatness nor praised from a tall tower.
     There was some comfort in it.
     The night grew cold. The clouds receded from the southern sky, and the stars brought their pale glory to that humblest of places. I headed back to the inn, with no thoughts but of a mug of mead and an early bed.
     A faint commotion arose as I passed the stables. The doors were closed, of course, but human sounds issued from within. I stopped and laid my ear against the wind-worn wood. A woman was panting with increasing urgency. A male voice murmured repeated exhortations to courage.
     It climaxed with a great cry, followed by a lesser one: the unmistakable wail of a newborn child. The tallies for that district would be augmented by one.
     One what? Shepherd? Peddler? Laborer? Surely not a rich merchant, whose hands would flow with gold and whose path would be strewn with obsequies lifelong. Surely not a prince of the realm, whose stern gaze and unblinking eye would strike fear into lesser men and command them to instant obedience. Not a mover nor a shaker. Such were not born in stables.
     I swung back the stable door and slipped inside. No one noticed.
     There were only the three: man, woman, and child. A single frail candle burned against the back wall of the stable, casting their silhouettes at me like inverted shadows. The woman had wrapped the baby in a loose cocoon of white muslin, leaving only its head exposed, and was laying it in the feed-trough that stood between the rows of stalls. She straightened, stepped back, and wordlessly collapsed into the man's arms.
     Around the little tableau, the horses were silent.
     I stepped forward, started to address the couple, and stopped. He cradled her in his lap, his arms tight about her, his face ablaze with uxorious devotion. Her eyes, large and luminous, were fixed upon her new child.
     It took all my strength to produce a voice. "Do you... require anything?"
     Her gaze remained locked upon her child. He assessed me with a glance and nodded with a certainty I could not help but envy.
     "Some water, perhaps."
     I nodded and started for the inn, but something held me. I bent to the feed-trough, pulled the muslin back from the tiny face and looked into it, not knowing why or what I hoped to see.
     The baby's eyes were open.
     The eyes of the newborn are never open.
     They were large, and dark, yet filled with the light of a million stars, and more knowledge than I had seen in the eyes of any man, high or low. They held recognition and regal acceptance.
     I know you for what you are, that infant gaze said. Without knowing, you have sought me, and now I have come for you, and for all those like you. The humble and the just. Though you know not my name, though it be the least of the tallies for this census, and not even one of yours, when you hear it you will know it at once. On a day not far off I shall summon you, and instruct you in the ways of truth and righteousness, and together we will awaken this weary world to a dawn of hope.
     The eyes closed. I stood and backed away.
     "I'll fetch water," I whispered. Neither husband nor wife stirred. I slipped out of the stable and closed the door behind me.
     The common room of the inn was crowded and painfully noisy. There were far too many folk there for its size. Servants moved quickly through the room with mugs, plates and coarse blankets, stumbling here and there, receiving muttered thanks or none at all. I stood at the arch to the kitchen and waited to be noticed.
     "Is there water?"
     A young girl turned away from the pot she was stirring and looked up at a portly man tending a large oven. He nodded. She filled an ewer from a dip well and presented it to me in both hands. I took it and thanked her.
     "There's a couple in the stables..."
     The man nodded. "We know."
     "She's given birth."
     "Is she well? And her baby?"
     "I think so."
     He took a loaf from a high shelf and brought it to me. "We haven't much left. The first harvest won't be soon enough for me. But we do what we can, as little as that may be."
     I smiled. "It will serve."
     He nodded and returned to his labors.
     The family in the stable was as I had left it. The child was asleep. The man accepted the bread and water with grave thanks. He was dividing it with his wife as I left them.
     We all do what we can. For some that is more than for others, but no effort is to be shirked. I was far from my place of resource, but that did not excuse me from my portion.
     What of the child in the manger? What would his portion be?
     I had met a great one at last. A king of kings, one whose proper place would be at the head of every table.
     I hoped I might live to see him rise to his estate, but if I did not, it would be of little moment. I had seen him enter the world. That would be enough.
     Jerusalem was a day's ride away. The next day I delivered the census rolls, and remarked again to the tetrarch how noisome and costly the census had proved, not for myself but for the least among his subjects. He thanked me with his usual courtesy, well beyond that owed to a lowly recordsmith, and bade me return to my usual duties. But each day since then I have remembered the child, and wondered what his name, the name I would know as I heard it, would prove to be.


     [Copyright (C) 2000 by Francis W. Porretto. All Rights Reserved Worldwide]