What of yourself is yours?

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I am sorry to say, but you have very little that is intrinsically yours. Your time, your talent and your thoughts are pretty much the extent of it. And it is what you DO with that time as well as those talents and thoughts that become everything else that is yours. You usually accomplish this by turning them into money with which you then purchase other things (goods or services).
To what should be a limited extent, living in society requires us to give up some of what is intrinsically ours for an individual and collective benefit. We expect (but have no specific right to) such things as protection – other than self defense (e.g., military, law enforcement, fire protection, etc), education (to a level that is of benefit to society – currently set at the secondary level), clean water, power, etc. Many of these things (depending on where you live) are provided by the State and/or local government. In order to pay for them we must pay taxes.
The question then becomes, how much of ourselves – what is intrinsically ours or what we turn that into – can society demand? To how much does it have the right? Most specifically, to how much does it have ANY right if that demand does not in turn provide direct benefit to us (such as what is listed above).
A professional photographer in NM is told she is breaking the law by not photographing the union of a same-sex couple. She refused to use her time and talent in that manner on religious grounds. She was told that it was discrimination and was compelled to do it. The Supreme Court ruled that Elaine Photography violated New Mexico’s Human Rights Act by refusing to photograph the same-sex ceremony. She was ordered to pay over $7,000 in legal fees.
In 2013 an Oregon baker, Sweet Cakes by Melissa, refused to use his time and talents make a wedding cake for a lesbian couple. Since Aaron Klein, co-owner, declined to provide a cake for a lesbian “wedding” they now face $135,000 in “damages” for the “emotional suffering” of the couple and are under a “gag order” denying them their 1st Amendment right to present their side of the story. The bakery closed its doors in Dec. 2013.
Other cases (and losses) include a Washington state florist and a Colorado cake artist who refused to do work for same-sex couples and a Kentucky T-shirt printer who declined to make shirts promoting a gay pride festival. All being forced by the state to use their time and talent with neither individual or collective benefit.
“Only unjust laws separate what people say from what they believe,” said Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Jordan Lorence.
Writing in Forbes, 8/28/2013, Josh Steimle states:
“If we want a level playing field with fairness and justice for all, let the law focus on crimes of violence, and let individuals use persuasion in all other matters. This means letting people get away with doing wrong, as long as they commit no act of outright aggression. Even if it is wrong for Elaine to discriminate, we must be tolerant of such behavior if we want to live in a free society with a thriving entrepreneurial base. Those who take joy in this case because the law has ruled in their favor may come to regret a future day when that precedent is used to rule against them. The better way is to not give government such power in the first place.”
Bottom line: Individuals should not be compelled to part with what is intrinsically theirs when that parting provides no specific benefit to them or the society in which they live as a WHOLE. And especially when that parting violates their Constitutional rights.
Of course, not to suggest the effects of the issue above are not of great significance, the major overreach of government at this time is the “Affordable Care Act”. The government forcing its citizens to purchase a specific product and at a specific minimum level. And telling the providers of the end-service (e.g., the medical professionals) they must accept payment as dictated by that service – thereby minimizing the value of their time and talents. In addition, it is a disregard for not only what is intrinsically an individuals – using it for something that is no benefit to them individually (since virtually all already had what they wanted/needed) – but, often times, going against their 1st Amendment rights as well as using the fruits of their time and talent solely for the benefit of others.
Keep in mind, from the standpoint of many of the “powers that be” promoting these issues, it is not truly about any individual or even any of these items. It’s about the mindset. The immature, sophomoric way of viewing individuals vs society. This leads to the fallacy of equality. When T. Jefferson stated, “all Men are created equal” he was referring to their intrinsic VALUE – specifically in the “eyes” of our Creator. It should be obvious to even the most casual observer that we are not all equal in every respect. Yet this theory of equality is what leads to Socialism/Liberalism/Progressivism and the eventual downfall of a society (as should be noted from the history of every society of any significance that has tried it).
As well, the underlying reason many (most?) of those that proclaim these positions is to support their own agenda. They won’t admit it, but this is their way of saying “I want to do what I want to do and they rest of you should let me do it.” And those in power continue that statement with “and YOU need to fall in line and do it to.” They just couch it I such a way as to declare they are SO benevolent to others all the while expecting the benefit, if achieved, to eventually get back to them and their issue. If nothing else, eventually society as a whole just becomes liaise faire and let’s anybody do anything. This is a version of Anarchy. Nay, the DEFINITION of Anarchy.
The answer to the question? Apparently even your time and talent are no longer yours. The government can force you to use them as they dictate. Is thought next? King George III is back!

>>> The day is at a close, the night is drawing in and my cigar awaits – ’til next time…

***The New Dark Ages Cometh

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Watched Robin Hood yesterday. The 2010 film starring Russell Crowe.  I was getting ideas for the days that come.

At the beginning of the movie the declaration read: “In times of tyranny and injustice when law oppresses the people, the outlaw takes his place in history.  England at the turn of the 12th Century was such a time.”  The United States at the beginning of the 21st is as well.  Much of the rest of the world is already there.

King John was at the end of the old Dark Ages… we are at the beginning of the new.

King John was an incompetent, lying, coward in well above his head. Ring any bells?  The United States currently has an Executive Branch that reminds me a lot of King John.  Like King John, blaming everything on its predecessor and declaring everything it does is owed them and necessary to fix the problems left by others.  The IRS, NSA, Justice Department, … – are they fixing the problems or causing them.

It is not just the current Executive Branch at the Federal level that gives me pause.  The Legislature as well is taking us down the path of tyranny.  Also cowards, but more are leading than following.  The administration as a whole is a puppet…  a puppet of the forces of the party.  Some of these forces operate within the government and sit in positions of power in the Legislature.  Others run things from the background preferring anonymity and deniability.  But culpable none-the-less – even more so since they are pulling the strings.

As well, let us not leave out the State and local governments.  Not to be outdone, many are jumping on the bandwagon of tyranny and oppression.  Even further restricting the rights of their people and/or stealing their means of support through taxation.

That said, I heard over the past week that the U.S. is becoming a single party system (don’t remember who said it).  Not one in name, but in philosophy.  In action.  The Progressive Party.  Not official.  Doesn’t need to be.  Based on “official” party ideologies alone many of these actions could not be taken.  The House and the Senate should be at odds.  But they are not.  The official parties are separate.  The House “led” by one, the Senate by the other.  The, theoretically, underlying ideologies are separate. The actions of the members are not.  Regardless of the party, they are justifying oppression in the name of progression and diversity.  Each and every action taken of late, regardless of party affiliation is socialist.  From firearms to religious freedom to taxation to illegal immigration and border security to…  I could go on and on.  A few will be discussed below.  Others at a later date.  Regardless, we are a Socialist nation.  Becoming, as they all do, more and more oppressive in the name of “protecting” the people (not to mention ensuring their feelings aren’t hurt).

Of course the protection of the people, as is necessary for tyranny to reign, comes in the form of denying them the means to protect themselves (outlawing firearms), denying them a belief in a higher being – in anything other than the secular ruler – (i.e., religious freedom), and taxing them past the limit of capacity to “provide” for the “needs” of the whole.  To name just of few of the tyrannical acts being perpetrated on the American people of late.

The old saying goes, “If you outlaw guns, only outlaws will have guns” is getting closer and closer to reality.  Every new crime committed with a firearm is being used to outlaw more and more of our right and ability to protect ourselves.  On this subject, I defy anyone to provide concrete, empirical data that supports the idea that taking guns from law abiding people reduces the amount of crime perpetrated by those that use them for evil purposes.  One would think that if such proof existed it would be used to back up the actions taken to deny us guns.  However, the “arguments” used are all based on emotion and sensationalism.  Legitimate study after legitimate study, in this country and around the world, proves just the opposite.  As well, every study conducted on the subject demonstrates that when confronted with a firearm in the hands of their potential victim, the perpetrator flees.  Legitimate studies (I keep using that term to differentiate from those “studies” conducted or charted by anti-gun individuals and organizations – the typical study skewed by the questions and illegitimate statistical “analysis” of the results) have shown far more lives are saved each year in the U.S. by the use of a firearm in defense than taken by those committing crimes.  Every one!  I’m sick and tired of having to hear it.  I’m sick and tired of having to say it.  I’m sick and tired of it being ignored!

The new health care laws are pushing further and further into the area of religious belief and forcing both religious “organizations” and privately owned companies to go against their beliefs to comply with the law.  Our government is placing more and more restrictions on individuals and organizations in the name of socialism.  Not only are they severely restricting what is defined as a “religious” organization in order to force this health care plan (something, by the way, we don’t even need and does not in any way fulfill the illegitimate promises made), but are denying privately owned companies from making their own decisions based on their own moral convictions.  We cannot have individual moral convictions.  We may only believe those things that comply with the socialist ideals of Progression and Diversity.  Anything else in their minds is anarchy!  Heaven forbid we have our own beliefs.  Beliefs that have stood the test of time and more often than not have been of benefit to all.  Oh, sorry… am I allowed to say “Heaven forbid” or might I offend someone?  I’m sure in the times to come, regardless of the fact that people have a choice as to whether or not to read my prose, I will be forbidden from uttering such words.

“More taxes” is the battle cry of the weak.  The battle cry of those that have no clue of the way economics and monetary policy works.  Every time taxes are lowered to a reasonable level (yes, the government DOES need funding for legitimate purposes), the coffers of the government increase.  One would think the liberals would want lower taxes.  It would give them more money to waste.  The problem with that is they don’t want more money to waste.  In reality they are not after our money.  It is just the tool used for control.  They want to control us.  For no other reason are our bank accounts being emptied.  And when they can’t empty them anymore, they borrow from our children and our children’s children.  Those yet to be born are already being controlled.  More and more of our fellow citizens are becoming unemployed.  You would think this a bad thing.  However, to the current tyrannical regime, it is what they want.  If you are unemployed you must seek assistance from somewhere.  Since more and more of your family, friends and neighbors are unemployed or under-employed as well, where does one turn?  More and more are on welfare.  More and more are on in the food stamp program.  More and more are being dragged, sadly even willingly, under the yoke of government programs.

These are of course just a few of the issues being perpetrated upon us.  Add them to those of our own making (or at least the making of our fellow citizens). Those such as the large number of men that are too cowardly to stand up and be fathers – those that think being a man is having the ability to get a girl pregnant.  It is not.  Boys can do that.  Men are those that ensure the legitimacy of their relationship with their women and stick around to take care of her and her child.  How about – two years after the birth of an unplanned child, about one third of mothers living with the father [i.e., unmarried] have ended the relationship, compared to only 7% of married mothers.  Does this matter…  Considering the majority of those end up on welfare and in poverty I would say it does.  The median annual income for female-headed households with children under six years old is roughly one-fourth that of two-parent families.  Enough stats…  MAN UP!  btw:  Congratulations on this Father’s Day to those of you man enough to be heads of your households and provide for and lead your family.

This leads to, but is not the only contributing factor, unwed (especially teen) mothers.  Nearly 40% of all births in the United States were to unmarried women in 2007 (I’m sure there are newer statistics but that makes the point – it is getting consistently worse each year though).  Almost half (48%) of all non-marital first births are to teen parents.

There is much more contributing to our fall into darkness.  I’ve discussed apathy…  We will leave it at those for now.

Robin Hood said, “In tyranny lies only failure. Empower every man and you will gain strength.”  This line fell on the deaf ears of King John.  It would fall on the deaf ears of the powers-that-be of today as well.  They, as he, don’t understand.  They, as he, are too cowardly to share power.

Bottom line of all this:  We still have a chance but I do not see us taking it.  Soon the opportunity will have slipped away.  Nay, be given away by our inaction.  We are heading for the New Dark Ages.  You heard it here first.  I will not accept surprise when it happens.  Be prepared!

I’m not sure yet what form this New Dark Age will take.  I will contemplate this and consider enlightening you in the future (knowledge is after all, power! – well, that and good quality firearms!).  With technology in the picture and more and more being controlled by the government it will be difficult for anyone to combat.  We will not exactly be able to jump on horses, draw our swords and battle the king’s forces (although learn to ride and use a sword so far has been my advice).  In the old Dark Ages little real difference existed between the king and a pauper.  As stated by Robin in the movie, “There is no difference between a knight and any other man aside from what he wears.”  Not so much now.

Have we yet hit the last straw?  No, but we are close.  What can we do?  As stated on the hilt of the sword, “Rise and Rise Again until Lambs Become Lions”.  It will become more difficult but, for those of you that don’t mind a little blood, maybe exciting.  The question for now is, what will you do?

>>> The day is at a close, the night is drawing in and my cigar awaits – ’til next time…