Author Archives: Stuart Richards

About Stuart Richards

Stuart Richards is a 26-year-old land surveyor based out of Portland, OR. He is a left-leaning geolibertarian and (theologically) liberal Christian, and has been blogging on HammerofTruth.com and other libertarian sites since 2004.

Ritual shunning and cults

What is the greatest, most ultimate aim of the libertarian movement? I imagine it means many things to many people, but a single word can sum up all of those disparate ideas: freedom. Freedom of conscience, freedom of action, freedom to agree, freedom to disagree, freedom to think, say or do whatever you please, in any manner you please, so long as you aren’t infringing upon the rights of another.

It happens to be true that I’m a left-libertarian; specifically a geolibertarian. I believe in a fourth natural right, that of an equal share to the common resources that nobody worked to create. I’m sure that is quite a contentious statement; I know that many fervently agree and disagree with it. That’s not the point. Through it, I can accept various actions of the government that imperfectly reflect that fourth right out of the pragmatic conviction that a steady movement towards liberty as I conceive it is better than no forward march at all. Out of these convictions, earnestly held, I at various times supported the Libertarian Party, the Libertarian Reform Caucus, and now the Democratic Freedom Caucus and the President they support, Barack Obama.

I know full well of Obama’s problems. He would not have been my first choice, certainly. But it is my belief, as a libertarian and a pragmatist, that on the whole he has made this country a better place than he found it. I realize full well that that too is a contentious statement, but for just about my entire adult life I have been a part of a political movement that welcomed and embraced contention, as we were all marching towards the same goal – liberty.

What I have seen now is that several friends that I have stuck steadfastly by, even when the rest of the movement had deserted them, are now abandoning me because I do not meet some right-libertarian purity standard. Certainly, that’s their right – freedom means the ability to cut ties with those who you wish to cut ties with, for any reason or for no reason at all. But when some of these people were with me in the Libertarian Reform Caucus, advocating openness and inclusion in our movement politic in the face of dogmatism and absolutism, it does seem a little odd.

It certainly isn’t the first time that the liberty movement has seen such outbursts in what I can only describe as ritual shunning. Ayn Rand’s Objectivist cult, so well satirized in Rothbard’s Mozart Was A Red, operated along the same lines – either agree with the party line or get shown the door.

I always figured that such rigid, unfree thinking was the exclusive province of our opponents. Today, I’ve learned for good that it was not.

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“Oh heh whoops, I guess you didn’t rape anyone after all, Mr. Wikileaks owner… sorry about that.”

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Don’t ask, don’t tell is done with; ruled unconstitutional..

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Get that Good Samaritan shit the fuck outta here

So now it’s illegal to give water to those dying of thirst.

Sometime around 2008, the Department of Dick Moves US Fish and Wildlife Service arrested a pastor that was leaving bottles of water near the Mexican border so that illegal immigrants wouldn’t die in the desert. From Time:

At his trial, Millis admitted he had left water for illegal immigrants to find on their travels, but he insisted that he had not broken the law. “Humanitarian aid,” he contended, “is never a crime.” The magistrate judge disagreed, however, finding Millis guilty and giving him a suspended sentence. On appeal, a federal district court judge affirmed the conviction. Millis appealed again.

For the San Francisco–based U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit — which covers Arizona, California and seven other Western states — it came down to a matter of definitions. Millis was not charged with littering per se. He was accused of disposing of “garbage, refuse sewage, sludge, earth, rocks, and other debris” in a national wildlife refuge. The government claimed that the water bottles Millis left behind for the immigrants were “garbage.”

He ended up winning his second appeal on a technicality, but the courts left it open for him to be successfully fined if he did it again.

Humanitarian aid is not a crime, and the petty bureaucrats in the US Fish and Wildlife Service care more about exercising their little tiny slice of power than saving people’s lives. It’s not even their water, for fuck’s sake. I just… Christ. Fuck them.

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That’s not all, folks.

Update: Upvote this on reddit, post it on facebook. Email or print it for your grandma.

Yeah, the Iraq war’s not over, and the Associated Press is responsibly calling bullshit on the government’s claims that it is:

Many AP staffers are producing content that refers to the situation in Iraq. It might be a local story about Iraq veterans, an international diplomatic story that mentions the Iraqi conflict or coverage on the ground in Iraq itself.

Whatever the subject, we should be correct and consistent in our description of what the situation in Iraq is. This guidance summarizes the situation and suggests wording to use and avoid.

To begin with, combat in Iraq is not over, and we should not uncritically repeat suggestions that it is, even if they come from senior officials.

The American role in the Iraqi civil war isn’t over. We have 4,500 special-operations forces still in the country, able to be summoned for combat assistance at any time by the request of the Iraqi government with the approval of the American government-and it’s pretty much guaranteed that if they ask, we will provide. Furthermore, Iraq depends and will continue to depend on American air power to defend their skies from other nations, and American air power will continue to strike at the insurgents. And, of course, there’s also the legions of mercenaries receiving American pay still operating in the country.

We’re not done, and it’s good to see a mainstream press agency speaking truth to power for once. Barack, this mission isn’t accomplished, get off your aircraft carrier.

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Nebraska flag burning ban overturned

It really took four years for this to happen? I remember this case from back before HoT shut down, that’s how old it is.

Long story short, the cops in Bellevue, NE arrested those GodHatesFags crazies after they burned an American flag at one of their protests. Crazy anti-gay folks get pro-bono representation from the Nebraska ACLU, incidentally headed up by a lesbian (irony which wasn’t lost on anyone in the process), and eventually Nebraska’s attorney general decided not to appeal after this was struck down as a violation of the US Constitution, which everyone knew would happen.

Kind of an expected process, really, but the police are slow learners I guess.

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“Colleagues and acquaintances by the hundreds went on the record to reveal what they knew, for good or ill, about prospective national candidates as diverse as Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Al Gore, and Barack Obama. When it comes to Palin, people button their lips and slink away.”

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Holy shit that’s wrong, lol.

A comedian named Louis C.K. got really drunk a few nights ago and posted some really hilarious tweets about various topics, mainly Sarah Palin. So bad I probably shouldn’t even quote them. But here’s the range of tweets from his drunken night (VERY NSFW):

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9

Remember kids, don’t drink and internet.

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Good news for you geolibertarians out there

The land value tax is in the news over in Britain, where one of the candidates for leadership of the Labour Party has advocated its implementation:

Today I am setting out a plan for a radical reform of the tax system. At its heart is a land value tax (LVT) – an idea so old-Labour it can be traced back to Thomas Paine. But it is also a plan that draws on the best instincts of New Labour.

The LVT, an annual tax on the market rental value of land, would allow for the abolition of stamp duty – a tax on the aspirations of young people to put down roots and get on in life.

Furthermore, it’s not the only incidence of the land value tax being supported by electable British parties: the Liberal Democrats, one of the parties in Britain’s current governing coalition, has a pressure group urging adoption of the land value tax. The UK Green Party, which elected its first MP to Parliament in the last election, also supports a land value tax (PDF).

While the land value tax was originated by America’s classical liberal tradition-the forerunners to modern libertarianism-it seems that we’re falling behind in implementing it. Which is a shame, because of all the things that a government can tax, this might be the only thing that would be justified. Taxing land that nobody made is certainly more just than the government declaring that it has a right to a percentage of your labor. Income taxes, in a real way, are slavery. And sales taxes are no better-they hit the poor disproportionately hard, and constitute the government stealing a little piece of every transaction that you make.

However, we all have equal right to something that none of us made, the land. The land is the common heritage of its people, and the government, acting in its rightful capacity as the representative of the common interest, the rightful administrator of it, the guarantor of the equal distribution of its benefits and the truest collector of its rents.

Furthermore, taxing land values would be the shot in the arm that our economy needs. Forget stimulus packages, deficits, income taxes and the like-research on the topic done in 2000 indicates that those cities and counties that have a land value tax report more construction, economic activity and, above all else, jobs than similar areas without it.

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I am the very model of a modern libertarian

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Hubris Patrol: Glenn Luther Beck, Jr.


Citizens rejoice! I’m inaugurating the first in a semi-regular segment showcasing only the very finest in political arrogance. No second-rate gasbaggery will do for our loyal HoTties, only the best.

And to kick things off, we have a lovely vintage of superdouche for the sampling today. Today, God Himself is smiling on us and giving us Glenn Beck pretending to be Martin Luther King, Jr. You can’t make this shit up, folks.

Yes, that’s right. Glenn Beck is trying to inherit the civil rights movement. Glenn Beck, who wouldn’t know a fascist if it gave him a television show and a paycheck every month, is trying to inherit the legacy of Martin Luther motherfucking King, Jr. Read the following quote after the jump, and keep in mind while reading it that he actually said this. These words were spoken. By him. On national radio. In earnest. Really.

“We are the inheritors and the protectors of the civil rights movement. They are perverting it. We are on the right side of history. We are on the side of individual freedoms and liberties. And damn it, we will reclaim the civil rights moment. We will take that movement, because we were the people that did it in the first place. Whites don’t own Abraham Lincoln. Blacks don’t own Martin Luther King.”

Are you still struggling to accept that that actually happened? Great, me too. But wait! There’s more. Someone who was alive for the real actual March On Washington knows how to use the internets machine to make articles happen, and posted up a real humdinger of one:

Beck, Sarah Palin and others who are summoning people today to join them to restore the honor of America, whether intended or not, are following in the footsteps of Dr. King. He spoke prophetically about their generation. Yes, he had a “Dream” that young Becks and Palins, when they became adults, would join hands not only with members of their “Tea Party,” but, all Americans of goodwill, regardless of their race, color or ethnicity, to restore the honor and values enshrined in our Declaration of Independence and Constitution.

Civil Rights leaders who justifiably stake a “proprietary” claim to the legacy of the March on Washington and Dr. King’s “Dream” 47 years ago should reach out and extend the hand of fellowship to Beck and his followers. Subject to the eventual content of the program planned on that anniversary date, we should, in the tradition and legacy of Dr. King, welcome and extend a hand to all persons who are committed to social justice, equality and restoring the honor of America.

You read that right. A close adviser to Dr. King, who was there at the real March On Washington and helped write the “I Have A Dream” speech, is choosing to dignify this steaming pile with his participation. Somewhere in America right now, someone’s using stimulus funds to see if MLK Jr.’s body spinning in its grave can be used as an alternative energy source. And right here behind my computer screen, I’m wondering if liberals are ever going to get their fucking spine back and tell Beck he can’t steal their heroes.

However, there’s many miles to go before we sleep, and we can’t get caught up in another game of Democrats Do The Darndest Things. So let’s move on to the best part, the video. (Yes, of course there’s a video.) There’s just… I can’t… words. No. Just watch.

Yes friends, we live in a world where that video exists. Somehow. I’m going to see how much gin it takes before I forget that ever happened now. If I survive that, someone let me know how many times Glenn Beck gets hit by lightning today. God bless America.

UPDATE BY STEPHENV: BECKAPALOOZA ALERT! Reddit has formed an ad hoc flashmob, if you are in DC, follow these instructions on meeting place/time and plan of action.

LATER UPDATE BY STEPHENV:
Finished watching the 8/28 Restore Honor speech, I feel like I just witness Glenn Beck ram an airplane into the Constitution. I watched Beck’s heavy fascist breathing towards the masses on Justin.tv (fuck cable TV, it only helps pay idiots like Beck) REPLAY. I have to say that watching Beck woo the crowd with his rudimentary knowledge of mass movements makes me wonder if perhaps he’s truly developed a messianic complex. This guy actually insists that the way back or forward to better times is through God, OKAY but oh no, not your Godnot your church’s God, but HIS PERSONAL VISION OF GOD. He’s asked people to leave their church! And oh my god, he actually said that in 25 years we’ll have a George Washington. Exciting predictions, my man is also a prophet…

So many people are for sure gonna be like now liek: What the fuck will this crazy man say next? Maybe I will listen with my shotgun in one hand and the bible on the other on mah shotgun. But more importantly… how many crazy motherfuckers has he got under his mind spell? And why the fuck does this man cry so much?!

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France ought to be put in time out

France, we need to have a talk about your behavior.

I know that the rest of the countries do tend to pick on you, France. All those jokes about your military might, the “cheese-eating surrender monkeys” meme, making fun of your half-command economy, your language having maybe five letters in it that are supposed to be pronounced… Sure, in public, you laugh along with the rest of us, but deep down we know that they hurt. They’re nasty, cruel jokes and they make you feel bad. And so you lash out, you find some minority without a government to defend them and you pick on them because it makes you feel tough:

President Nicolas Sarkozy, citing concerns about crime, began the crackdown this month on Roma and other itinerant groups known as Gypsies and travellers which has seen police rounding up foreign Roma and tearing down illegal camps. Forty-eight per cent of French people support the government’s campaign, an opinion poll showed on Friday.

Sure, some other Gypsies may have attacked a police station. And even Kristallnacht had a justification when a Jew shot a German ambassador, but you should have remembered that collective punishment was wrong from that time seventy years ago when those German kids did it to you. But not only did you expel thousands of unrelated people from your country for no valid reason, but you threatened them bodily on their way out the door:

“The police told us we could choose between leaving now, on our own accord, or be expelled by force later,” said one young Roma man, who declined to be identified. “So we agreed to leave.”

Well France, you know what you did is wrong. You know that’s not what good states and countries do. So just sit there and think about what you’ve done, because when the European Union gets home then you’ll really be in trouble:

The crackdown has sparked fierce criticism at home and abroad, with French former prime minister Dominique de Villepin saying Sarkozy’s policies had left a “stain of shame” on the French flag and were a “national indignity.”

A United Nations panel this month warned of mounting racism and xenophobia in France, citing the Roma evictions, and the European Union is reviewing whether the crackdown is legal. The Vatican has also criticised it. Human rights body Amnesty International joined the international condemnation on Friday, saying Sarkozy risked fuelling stigmatisation of the minority group.

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Taking back some hasty generalizations

You can gripe about the Obama administration’s not-a-pullout of Iraq, failure to close Gitmo, backing down on wiretapping, rolling over on the Patriot Act like a trained poodle, and generally fucking the Constitution with a Bush mask on. But one area where the administration really, truly gets it is in trying to tackle the bloated defense budget. I was initially wary of Obama’s reappointment of Defense Secretary Robert Gates, a Bush appointee, when it was announced. But honestly, it’s proven to be one of the best picks of his administration, because Gates is the first in what will hopefully be a long line of defense secretaries that will prepare our military for the wars we’re fighting and the wars we’re likely to fight, not some sci-fi jackoff scenario where China goes nuts and launches ze missiles. Or, in less sarcastic terms, spend a smaller amount of total cash on stuff the military actually needs.

Gates pushed back on buying more F-22 fighter jets, and the next target in his sights is the generals. The New York Times reports:

Two weeks ago, Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates announced a sweeping effort to improve efficiency that, among other things, takes aim at the military’s sacrosanct corps of generals and admirals. He ordered his staff to cut at least 50 positions and made clear that he would be happier if they cut more.

“The department must start setting priorities, making real trade-offs and separating appetites from real requirements,” said Mr. Gates, who has made management efficiency his latest personal goal in a tenure that focused first on Iraq, then Afghanistan and later on overhauling the approach to weapons procurement.

Speaking as a military brat here, this is exactly the kind of shit that’s needed to happen for as long as I can remember. The generals are all too often the very epitome of the phrase “absolute power corrupts absolutely” and while I’ve known good generals, I’ve also known, and the bases I’ve lived on have been all too keenly aware of, the bad ones. They’re unstoppable, they’re insufferable and quite frankly they’re unnecessary in many cases.

The American military now has 100 more generals than it did on 9/11, and it can’t really be the case that we need over 900 generals, each costing the nation about $1 million apiece, to prosecute the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as local affairs. We can cut back. Halving the amount of generals would let us buy more and better equipment for the troops on the front lines, spend more money repairing the nation’s infrastructure, or even pay down the debt.

Now, if only Gates would take a poll of servicemen to find out which generals are the worst and most wasteful at their jobs…

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Obtuse right Angles: the Tea Parties will shoot themselves in the foot

I feel the need to comment on the Sharron Angle phenomenon through more than just a link, because it’s really emblematic of the entire Tea Party movement.

In Nevada, we have a fairly unpopular politician in Harry Reid. He was losing badly against two of the three Republican candidates, and in a three-way race his level of support was something around 36%. There’s no good reason for Harry Reid to win this election at all, and any sort of grown-up Republican will be able to put paid to the Obama agenda’s pointman in the Senate.

But wait! A challenger appeared! The Tea Parties managed to get Sharron Angle the GOP nomination out of nowhere, and ever since it looks like Reid’s going to coast to victory. The guy just has to point to her record of statements and positions-from her desire to roll back women’s rights to her opposition to the separation of church and state to even supporting some half-baked Scientology prisoner reform thing-in order to win.

Meanwhile, establishment Republicans are telling her to STFU, and Angle just rebooted her campaign under pressure from them. However, I don’t think there’s any coming back from this. The damage has been done, and Reid is currently leading by anywhere from 1 to 4 points.

The moral of this story is that the media narrative about a Tea Party-led Republican resurgence is all wrong. Tea Parties, when they let themselves loose, will only hurt Republicans. Sure, they’ll be able to knock establishment Republicans out of safe seats in red states and probably win the general elections, but that won’t add any numbers to the GOP superminority. The only time they managed to elect a Republican in a swing or blue state, it was a moderate Republican, they had momentum behind them on an issue with debatable popularity in a state that already had universal healthcare and were campaigning against a terrible Democratic candidate. The public may be supporting a general Republican more than they were a while back, but when they see the specific Tea Party-approved Republicans in their swing state they’re not going to back them.

What does this mean for libertarians? First off, we shouldn’t make the mistake of thinking that our future is bound up with the Tea Parties. Ron Paul’s campaign started off the concept of the tea party, and the initial round of tea parties had libertarian input but at this point I’d say it’s a hijacked, corporatist, racist mess. What bits of libertarianism they might have are lost in the border-closing, gay-hating agenda of the rest of it, and if this is what we want to represent us then one day our grandchildren will talk about libertarians in the same breath as segregationists.

We should instead make common cause with clear-headed Republicans (that is, those few moderates that remain), or in areas where that is impossible, with Democrats. The Libertarian Party’s irrelevant, the tea parties are tainted and at this point the hope for a libertarian future lies with the Republican Liberty Caucus and the Democratic Freedom Caucus.

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Four years later…

When we left you, gentle reader, the Democrats were on the verge of capturing Congress. They ended up doing so with the help of Stan Jones, a Libertarian, taking enough votes away from the Republican nominee for Jon Tester to win the election. And ever since then, well, we find ourselves in different circumstances.

In the interim, lots of us started different sites. I started a blog, Last Free Voice, that I ended up bequeathing to other editors there about two years after HoT went down. The Ron Paul phenomenon happened-and what a phenomenon! And, whether we’re ready for it or not, libertarianism as a political ideology looks like it has a real chance of influencing the government of this country in a way that’s never been true before.

Because of that, I should specify who I am and what I stand for for those who don’t remember. Back on the old HoT, I was part of the Libertarian Reform Caucus, arguing for a broader, more inclusive Libertarian Party. I was a left-libertarian. And if anything, I’ve only become moreso as time’s gone on. I didn’t vote in 2008 but I was glad Obama won. I don’t always agree with what the Democrats are doing, but I appreciate that their solutions, right or wrong, are based on empirical facts while the GOP’s seem to be based on ideology.

If anything, I want libertarianism to be the same way. Our ideology, our movement has always been an intellectual one, an empirical one. It was classical liberals, the original libertarians, that came up with utilitarianism. Reagan only led the “party of ideas” in the 80s because he was using our ideas. But that’s not what I see when I look at parts of the broader movement today. I see a movement hijacked by corporations shouting slogans and commingling with some truly un-libertarian elements in the service of ideologies that have no root in the observable world or reason.

Furthermore, I’m not the only one that feels this way. Left-libertarians have sort of been drowned out by the very noticeable phenomenon that is the tea parties, but there are more than a few of us that feel this way. Those people are libertarians as surely as anyone else claiming the label, and I’d like to represent and expound on their point of view as I write here once more. I’ll try not to bore anyone by wonking out all the time, but I think I can add something to HoT.

Lastly… I’m really, really excited to be back. I’ve missed this place. I even missed the conspiracy theorists. Sup guys. :D

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Pentagon forced to reveal more Abu Ghraib pics

We raped and murdered people at Abu Ghraib.

We didn’t just humiliate them. We didn’t just terrify them.

We raped and killed them.

From AfterDowningStreet.org:

A federal judge ruled today that graphic pictures of detainee abuse at Iraq’s Abu Ghraib prison must be released over government claims that they could damage America’s image. Last year a Republican senator conceded that they contained scenes of “rape and murder” and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld said they included acts that were “blatantly sadistic.”

U.S. District Judge Alvin K. Hellerstein ordered the release of certain pictures in a 50-page decision that said terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan have proven they “do not need pretexts for their barbarism.”

The ACLU has sought the release of 87 photographs and four videotapes taken at the prison as part of an October 2003 lawsuit demanding information on the treatment of detainees in U.S. custody and the transfer of prisoners to countries known to use torture.

Gen. John Abizaid, commander of U.S. Central Command, said Thursday that releasing the photos would hinder his work against terrorism. “When we continue to pick at the wound and show the pictures over and over again it just creates the image–a false image–like this is the sort of stuff that is happening anew, and it’s not,” Abizaid said.

The judge said, however, that “the freedoms that we champion are as important to our success in Iraq and Afghanistan as the guns and missiles with which our troops are armed.”

It’s disgusting that we let these things happen. Hell, it’s worse than disgusting-it’s outrageous. But these motherfuckers will finally get the justice they deserve-the prison time, if not worse (and I pray to God it’s much worse). The victims will get some sort of vindication. And the American public will finally, I pray, mount the ferocious campaign necessary to terminate this murderous enterprise in Iraq once and for all.

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New Jersey court to legislature: No no, gays are actually people

I don’t have terribly fond memories of the Garden State, but I gotta say that this improved my opinion of the place quite a bit.

From CNN:

In a decision likely to stoke the contentious election-year debate over same-sex marriage, the New Jersey Supreme Court has ruled that state lawmakers must provide the rights and benefits of marriage to gay and lesbian couples.

The high court on Wednesday gave legislators six months to either change state marriage laws to include same-sex couples, or come up with another mechanism, such as civil unions, that would provide the same protections and benefits.

The court’s vote was 4-to-3. But the ruling was more strongly in favor of same-sex marriage than that split would indicate. The three dissenting justices argued the court should have extended full marriage rights to homosexuals, without kicking the issue back to legislators.

This is why courts exist: to protect the Constitution and the liberties of America from the perversions of evil men. Perversion is not what goes on behind closed doors between consenting adults, but what goes on behind closed doors between all-too-consenting legislators.

The best part? This is really nationwide:

Opponents of same-sex marriage contend the New Jersey decision could have a national impact because the state imposes no residency requirements for people seeking marriage. In essence, it could open the door for gay and lesbian couples from other states to marry in New Jersey and challenge laws against same-sex marriage in their own states.

Thank you, New Jersey, for standing up for liberty and justice for all.

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Christianity and torture

In a perfect world, I wouldn’t even have to write this post, because our government wouldn’t torture people and religion would have no influence on politics.

But in a world where Bush came to power thanks to “values voters” and proceeded to piss on the Geneva Conventions, it actually does matter to American politics what Christians think about torture.

From the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel:

“Who would Jesus torture?”

The Rev. Neal Jones thinks he knows the answer to the question posted on the bumpers of some passing cars: No one.

He and his parishioners at Columbia’s Unitarian Universalist Fellowship say they are alarmed about the detention, treatment and trial of terrorist suspects and worry that the continuing debate will lower America’s stature in the world.

“To me, it’s our Christian duty to criticize our government when it is going astray,” Jones said. “That is our prophetic duty.”

Although a lot of conservative Christians would hedge at calling the Unitarians “Christian,” politically I’d much rather be lumped in with this guy… especially after what a representative of my own church had to say about the matter:

The Rev. Aris Metrakos, pastor of Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church on Sumter Street in Columbia, said he understands those tactics can be terrifying. “But that is how we extract information from bad people who are trying to destroy the world.”

The former Navy aviator said he believes Christians, who by faith are taught to treat all people with love and dignity, must balance their faith with the reality that America is in a battle with nihilists “who want to destroy civilization.”

“The Orthodox Church view is that the world is a paradoxical place,” Metrakos said. If people don’t believe that, “then they need to go back and listen to the 9/11 (emergency and rescue) tapes.”

This is a ridiculous oversimplification and hardly a dogmatic view of the church; I haven’t seen any church councils say so at least.

At any rate, I know I’m probably preaching to the choir about what Christians ought to be thinking regarding torture; any Libertarian Christians here most likely feel the same way. But nonetheless, more churches need to be addressing the issue, and if they’re not willing to GTFO of politics in the first place, at least need to stand with their actual Lord and Saviour in refusing to harm/torture people.

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Hungary’s government sucks at freedom

You think Bush is bad? Well, what the Christ is the government getting away with over in Budapest?

This is ridiculous:

The Hungarian government sent in the police to forcefully breakup a small, peaceful, and legal demonstration in front of parliament
In what can only be described as a shameful and utter disregard for democracy and human rights, the Hungarian government of former communist Ferenc Gyurcsany sent in the police to forcefully breakup a small, peaceful, and legal demonstration in front of parliament. This, despite earlier promises and guarantees from the authorities that the protesters can stay where they are.

The demonstration in front of parliament has been going on for two months, ever since an audio tape surfaced in where the prime minister admitted to lying to the public “day and night” in order to retain power. Over the weeks, the demonstration has undergone changes; the opposition FIDESZ party had tried to capitalise on the situation and hijack the event, but they eventually withdrew as public attention began to wane.

Government led by a former Communist = bad.

Breaking up a peaceful demonstration = bad.

Having an audio tape surface that clearly demonstrates your halfassed attempt at democracy lying to the public “day and night” in order to keep power = priceless.

Not that I’m a huge fan of the European Union or anything, but Brussels very obviously needs to give these guys a huge smackdown. Maybe make Gyurcsany’s government sit in the same corner that they put Turkey in until it learns its lesson?

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Hyphen-lady has less Republican support than Smither

So I guess the Republicans have given up on their worthless candidate adrift in TX CD-22.

From Bob Smither’s website:

The National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) is essentially writing off its write-in campaign for Texas’ 22nd District. Earlier this week the NRCC, which is the official congressional committee of the national Republican Party, released its “Final Push List” for targeted congressional campaigns in the United States. The list was circulated to Republican congressional officials and lobbyists, urging a last minute push to fund 33 targeted races that are seen as “winnable” by the national Republican Party.

Hyphen-lady doesn’t have jack at this point. Smither? He’s just getting started. Let’s help him become the leading candidate in the polls.

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Crucifying smokers on a cross of stupid

The latest in Omaha’s long string of blathering idiocies has just been passed. Mayor Mike Fahey, after flopping a steamer on city rights, has decided that 911 responders just aren’t busy enough.

From WorldNetDaily:

Omaha’s tough new anti-smoking ordinance banning the practice in nearly all public places comes with an even tougher enforcement policy.

The Nebraska city’s elected leaders and police department are urging residents who see violations to call the 9-1-1 emergency system for an immediate response.

Omaha banned smoking in public Oct. 2. Penalties are $100 for the first offense, $200 for the second and $500 for the third and subsequent infractions.

Teresa Negron, sergeant in charge of public information for the police, explained the department encourages observers of infractions to pick up the phone to report the infraction ““ just like they would for any other crime they observe being committed.

I’m a Nebraskan and as a Nebraskan, I can attest that Omaha is pretty much the worst-run city in America. It was founded over a century ago by crooks, swindlers and cheats and it’s still run by the same. The Democrats are bad and the Republicans are worse; even the foaming-at-the-mouth neocon screwballs would flog Nebraska’s GOP for their idiotarian big government tendencies. The Libertarians? They’re still out of commission, last I heard.

So yeah. You can’t smoke in Omaha or Captain Fahey the Wonder Moron’s emergency responders-cum-unwilling Gestapo will fine you. Reason #5872 for any sane Nebraskan to GTFO of Dodge (Street).

This wouldn’t worry me as much except that at this rate, Wonder Moron will have probably not only annexed Elkhorn, but taken over Lincoln, Grand Island, Kearney, all the way out to the Panhandle (that’s me!). Well honestly, he wouldn’t stop there-he’d probably declare all of Interstate 80 to be the latest extension of Dodge Street and be looking for some way to legally annex the entire state of South Dakota, eminent domain the hell out of the place and turn it into a lake/entertainment complex because a city government cannot actually masturbate.

In case you haven’t been able to pick up on my subtle hints, I really h8 Fahey kthx.

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They really have nothing else to do in Oklahoma, I guess

The latest Republican solution to violence in schools?

Use a book to deflect a bullet!

They really do get this damn stupid, kids. I’m not entirely sure why, but this is what CNN had to say:

A candidate for state superintendent of schools said Thursday he wants thick used textbooks placed under every student’s desk so they can use them for self-defense during school shootings.

“People might think it’s kind of weird, crazy,” said Republican Bill Crozier of Union City, Oklahoma, a teacher and former Air Force security officer. “It is a practical thing; it’s something you can do. It might be a way to deflect those bullets until police go there.”

Crozier and a group of aides produced a 10-minute video Tuesday in which they shoot math, language and telephone books with a variety of weapons, including an AK-47 assault rifle and a 9mm pistol. The rifle bullet penetrated two books, including a calculus textbook, but the pistol bullet was stopped by a single book.

Crozier said the demonstration shows that a student could effectively use a textbook as protection in a school shooting.

Apparently this idea was so fucking retarded that the Democrat in the race, who can usually be relied on for an equally stupid plan, was dumbfounded.

Crozier faces incumbent Sandy Garrett, a Democrat, in the November 7 general election. A spokeswoman for Garrett’s campaign, Kimberly Hawkins Sanders, said Garrett had no comment on Crozier’s idea.

Word has yet to come in whether the Green Party of Oklahoma decried the tree holocaust engendered by the making of those textbooks.

Meanwhile, in the real world, here’s a crazy idea for reducing school shootings: vouchers and repealing mandatory attendance laws? If the moonbats that plan on killing their classmates in the name of the Prince of Darkness or whateverthehell don’t have to be in school, maybe school shootings will go down? Or maybe their parents can put them in a better private school that can slap them around and welcome them back into reality?

I do realize it’s not as brilliant as, say, using your textbook to try to stop a fucking bullet, but hey, maybe we could give it a go anyway?

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Libertarian Brett Blanchfield gets equal time

Score one for the Iowa LP.

Local candidate for Iowa House District 66 Brett Blanchfield was on a radio program on the 18th and got some pretty good coverage. They went into detail on his issues and he gave at least as strong a performance as the rest of the candidates, if not stronger.

There’s not really a soundbite that neatly wraps everything up regarding Blanchfield, so just go read the article at the Des Moines Register.

It’s nice to see multipartisan coverage that actually covers everyone equally. Even when we make it to debates or candidate forums, often the media writeups about it just focus on the major party candidates and then have a token throwaway paragraph or two about those cute Libertarians that got to play politics with the big boys for one day or whateverthefuck.

So kudos to Blanchfield and kudos to the Des Moines Register, and kudos to KWQW and J. Michael McKoy for inviting the Libertarian and giving him equal time.

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