Lots of interesting stuff in the blogosphere during the past week.
Ace Of Spades linked to an article about a Republican pollster who has very gloomy and dismal views about the US electorate and its passion for government handouts.
Sarah Hoyt responded, discussing the pollster's fears and reactions to them, and pointed out that the solution is in our hands - no-one else's.
Yes, us hard core liberty lovers are a minority, but we are a minority that is armed, and dangerous, and by this I don’t mean physically. We are people who read, who talk, who work for what we want. And because liberty is as essential to us as the air we breathe, we fight with the despair of cornered beasts.
Is it enough? Are we enough?
I don’t know. Less than us was enough before. It did for the British, and it lit a great light of freedom.
Cry no more. Stop lamenting and put your shoulder to the wheel.
Our ancestors might have lived in caves and eaten acorns. We, thank the Lord, hope to be spared having to do that. The culture is what you make it. You’re part of it, not a passive observer.
Now stop lamenting and work.
Amen, Sarah! Preach it!
She has another excellent article in which she linked to a discussion about a radical feminist's perspective on sex and relationships, and concluded: "When a significant portion of the population gets this far away from reality and CAN live, our society is so wealthy that most of us can afford to be like Henry VIII completely divorced from reality."
Rev. Paul has three articles in which he examines the crisis in our nation from a religious and spiritual perspective. If you're neither, you probably won't enjoy them; but for those of us who profess Christian faith, they offer much food for thought. You'll find them here:
Western Rifle Shooters Association reminds us that Matt Bracken is offering two more free give-away days for his novels, on 15th and 16th January. I personally don't like the books much; but I'll be the first to admit that he appears prescient, in that many of the scenarios he portrayed fictionally have come to pass since publication. For that reason alone, I think they're worthwhile reading. Details here.
Fellow blogger PDB also writes professionally at Gun Up, an online magazine for shooters. He's written three very useful articles on the care, feeding and maintenance of the AR-15 rifle. You'll find them here:
Karl Denninger notes an unholy alliance between a bank, a state police force and federal agencies to monitor protesters. He points out:
Now there's nothing here that indicates that either Bank of America or the various government agencies involved did anything other than use publicly visible data in these processes. Maybe they did and maybe they didn't, but the evidence for that (which would implicate a possible violation of the law) is missing in the article. In fact, one of the references here is to Bank of America having a team that specifically looks through public information such as social media.
That's not against the law.
But it is, to many people, distasteful.
So how do you stop it, since you can't sue or prosecute.....
I wonder if turning the tables on both the government agencies and Bank of America would finally convince some of these people that this kind of crap is a bad idea?
Perhaps if, for example, concerned citizens were to make a point of photographing (with GPS coordinates attached from their phones, of course) cops, bank employees (including executives of course) and anyone affiliated with (that is, traveling with) either and started crowdsourcing a public database of all that information that could be easily searched and overlaid on, oh, Google Earth? KML database integration for the win!
Now I'm not suggesting that anyone's privacy be violated. After all, these folks -- both cops and private industry -- have made the quite-cogent (and legally-defensible) claim that you have no right of privacy when traveling on a public road, walking on a public street, or otherwise out and about where anyone who wishes to can see you.
Well that may be just fine, but that sauce tastes really good on both goose and gander.
There's more at the link, with more suggestions for an activist response to this Big Brother-ish intrusion. Worthwhile reading. I wonder what would happen if we applied those same measures to the NSA bureaucrats, administrators and staff who've ridden roughshod over our constitution . . . ?
'Historian', blogging at 'Views From Liberty Hollow', takes a rather more extreme position than myself on the extent to which the constitution has been degraded and disregarded by the federal government, and on how to correct the problem. Nevertheless, I find it interesting to read his perspective on the situation (one that's shared by more than a few of those whom I describe as 'radical patriots'). You'll find his three articles here:
Recommended reading. His thesis calls to mind the perspective of Daniel Greenfield, who blogs at 'Sultan Knish'. In June 2012 he stated flatly that 'There Ain't No More Middle-Ground'. I suspect he'd probably agree with many of Historian's views.
Aesop, in his second blog 'Shepherd Of The Gurneys', describes New Years Eve in the emergency room of a hospital. It's bloody, violent and alarming . . . and very true. I know - I've been in ER's at times like that. If you're not squeamish, I highly recommend his article.
Warren Meyer celebrates the closing of his business in Ventura County, California.
Normally, the closure of a business operation or division is not grounds for a celebration, but in this case I am going to make an exception. At midnight on December 31, I not only drank a toast to the new year, but also to finally getting all my business operations out of Ventura County, California.
Never have I operated in a more difficult environment. Ventura County combines a difficult government environment with a difficult employee base with a difficult customer base.
There's more at the link.
His story and the endemic corruption he encountered were chronicled in a different form by Silicon Graybeard, who writes that the 'Corruptocracy of California is Corrupt'. Go read the whole thing. After doing so, you'll never want to settle or work in California again!
The good people at Dark Roasted Blend have compiled a list of their 'Greatest Hits' articles for 2013. Highly recommended reading and viewing. They always come up with very interesting stuff (which, of course, is why they've been in my sidebar since I started blogging back in January 2008).
Marko Kloos fisks a very left-wing socialist rant about the US economy, and gives it "two out of five Che's".
Weaponsman brings us '3 Video Lessons from Arab Insurgencies'.
WARNING: The videos show people in the act of being killed, through mistakes made by themselves or by others. They are NOT for the squeamish!
Nevertheless, I include his article in this roundup because it illustrates the ineptitude typical of many so-called 'liberation movements' or 'freedom fighters' all over the world. I ran into more than a few of the type during my years in Africa. They were usually more of a danger to their own side than they were to the enemy. (That's one reason I'm still alive.)
Finally, Rev. Donald Sensing reminds us that the 'War on the poor continues hammer and tongs'. He points out that the answer to poverty isn't government handouts: it's jobs. Word.
That's all from the blogosphere this week. More soon!