Charlie Hebdo Plus Five Years

It’s been five years since terrorists stormed the offices of Charlie Hebdo and slaughtered twelve people. Here’s a decent timeline of events The attacks seemed to kick off a series of horrific attacks in France, including the Paris and Nice attacks.

Perhaps the bigger takeaway from the attacks was the response of the media. Rather than standing defiantly, the media cowered behind “tolerance.” Which contrasted quite remarkably with their constant assertions of how brave the media was to confront tyrants and those who would darken democracy. The vast majority of the media, much like anti-gun activists (but I repeat myself), are only willing to confront those they know will not actually harm them. When confronted with forces that can and will actually murder members of the media, the majority fold. I don’t blame them. They have loved ones that care about them and don’t want to see the members of the media murdered. I just want them to acknowledge that they are being silent because they are worried about being murdered. Just that statement would be far more effective in highlighting the dangers of terror instead of this current push of tolerance.

The Government Will Lie Us Into War

With all the heightening of tensions in regards to Iran, it’s very important to remember one key fact.

The government has lied to us repeatedly about war.

They did this to us in Vietnam and prolonged the conflict for years.

They did this to us in Afghanistan and prolonged the conflict for years.

Why the fuck should we trust them when it comes to Iran?

They always want us to go to war. They never want to admit when they were wrong. They are willing to kill Americans to not lose face.

Please tell me how in the last twenty years our interventions in Southern Asia have improved the situation?

The Afghanistan Papers

The Washington Post has done some excellent investigative work about how we’ve been lied to for the last three administrations about the progress of the Afghanistan War.

Essentially, we’re not winning. We’re not even holding the line. The Bush, Obama, and Trump administrations were/are aware of that, even while telling the public that things were going great. We are making the same damned mistake that we made in Vietnam – staying in because we would look bad by losing. Worse, we’re killing our soldiers and their people by staying there. Love him or hate him, but John Kerry was right when he asked “How do you ask a man to be the last man to die for a mistake?”

Some are complaining that these revelations haven’t had the impact that the Pentagon Papers had almost fifty years ago. Some of that is the fact that we aren’t the same nation. We know that our leaders lie to us. It also doesn’t help that this landed in the middle of the President Trump Reality Show (Impeachment Season 2).

Friday Quote – Larry Lambert

The problem with socialism is that you can vote your way into it, but you need to shoot your way out of it.

Modern Voting

I was listening to an interview with Stacy Abrams, and it’s interesting to hear the voter issues that progressive side are concerned about. Moreover, the ones the same issues that I agree with.

First and foremost are the voter roll purges. I’m still of the opinion that the only three reasons a person should come off of the voter rolls once they’ve registered is:

  1. The person is deceased.
  2. The person no longer resides in the state.
  3. The person is currently incarcerated.

That’s it. That’s the only reasons a registered voter should be removed.

I’ve also started thinking about what can alleviate the issues that both sides see to combat voter fraud and voter suppression. Part of that is looking at changing how we vote. First, I’m leaning to scrapping voting on a single day to voting for a week. I’m also partial to not being locked in to a specific precinct. However, for these to work, we also need strong voter ID laws. If you want to vote, you need an accepted ID. We have the databases that once the ID is scanned, the proper voter form is produced, and that ID is locked for the election cycle. For absentee, I’m thinking a pre-approval process for a secure website vote.

I know that there has been criticism on the other side for stationing police at voting sites. Honestly, unless we’re going to put citizens militias to guard the precincts, I don’t know how to make sure that voting laws are enforced, particularly those around voter intimidation and voter fraud. Perhaps the rule should be outside police forces are used. For example, Hillsborough County deputies monitor Pinellas county precincts.

Friday Quote – Tom Clancy

What government is good at is collecting taxes, taking away your freedoms, and killing people. It’s not good at much else.

An-Cap Asymptote

It’s been said, that if you get three libertarians in the room, they will immediately begin determining who is the true libertarian. Unfortunately, we’re seeing this play out on the national stage within the Libertarian Party. Particularly between the anarcho-capitalist wing and the left-leaning pragmatist wing.

I have great sympathy for the an-caps. For those who do not live within the libertarian world, anarcho-capitalists base their worldview on the first principles of the non-aggression principle (no one should initiate violence on another, but may use violence in self-defense) and strong property rights. All exchanges and associations should be voluntary, which would inviolate the coercive force of a state.

It’s a great ideal, but an an-cap society will always be an asymptotic ideal. We can strive for it, and get as close as possible, but we will never actually achieve it. At least, not on a national scale. There might be some communities that could, but I doubt anything over a small town. Not in a country of 330 million people. Not with a two-hundred-year history of governments being perceived as neutral or even beneficial.

In the mean time, I think libertarians should strive for that ideal. Remove the coercive force of the state from our lives as much as possible and show people that the world will not come to an end if the state does not provide everything.

Electoral College Reform

No, I’m not for disbanding the electoral college for the popular vote. However, my concern is for states like California, Illinois, Texas – states where members of the minority party have no real voice in the presidential election.

Rather than the current trend of forcing all the states delegates to vote for whichever candidate wins the popular vote, I’m wondering if a better idea is to break up the states’ electors proportionally.

I can see this being done a couple of ways. First, have the proportion of broken out by who wins the counties. This has the advantage of nullifying the power of the cities over the rural, but we get back to the minority parties in the cities being under-represented. Another option would be to break up the electors based on the over vote proportion. This has the reciprocal issues of giving the cities a lot of clout, but better representing minority parties in those densely populated areas.

Neither system is perfect, however I do think either would help better align the spirit and reason of the electoral college with modern demographics.

Friday Quote – H.L. Mencken

I believe that it is better to be free than to be not free, even when the former is dangerous and the latter safe. I believe that the finest qualities of man can flourish only in free air – that progress made under the shadow of the policeman’s club is false progress, and of no permanent value. I believe that any man who takes the liberty of another into his keeping is bound to become a tyrant, and that any man who yields up his liberty, in however slight the measure, is bound to become a slave.

Friday Quote – Thomas Sowell

Many colleges claim that they develop “leaders.” Often, that means turning out graduates who cannot feel fulfilled unless they are telling other people what to do. There are already too may people like that, and they are a menace to everyone else’s freedom.

© 2020 Derek Ward

Theme by Anders NorénUp ↑