It’s Not On You

It’s not on you to save the world. It’s not on you to save everyone.

Or as my husband so eloquently puts it “You can’t hug every cat.” (It’s from a video. It’s also a lesson from our years as fosters. You can’t foster every cat.)

Some of us — and I think we’re probably overrepresented on this blog — realized there was evil in the world and ten seconds later decided it was somehow our fault and it was on us to save the world/mend all pains/heal all wounds.

This cannot be done. Not by any individual, and maybe not even by a lot of us. It’s impossible, and also hubristic.

That evil exists in the world is the result of humans having imperfections — or if you prefer, the Fall — and of the fact we each have free will. You can’t stop pain in other humans, except by making them stop existing. (Which is where every scheme for “heaven on Earth” leads us.

And that’s the grossest evil of all.

To the extent I’m doing better/less crazy than I was in 2020 it’s because I realized/internalized it’s not on me. Living in times of extreme madness doesn’t mean I’m responsible for stopping it/making people see sanity.

I can’t actually “change the world.” The world is big, and I’m only one person.

All I can do is all I can do. I can keep the lamp lit, so others see it. I can keep people from thinking they’re so completely alone.

I can work harder, or more efficiently, make more money, and help support/give work and pay members of our community who are in danger of going under right now. (And so many people are.)

I know that communism CAN’T work here, and I mean it can’t stay on for any given time. Not because we’re special, but because we are those that have enabled communists around the world by feeding them. No one is big enough to feed us. And it’s going to get bad, even here, which means the rest of the world is going to get into outright death and famine.

I can’t do much about that. I know the lights are going to go out for a time. I pray the time is short, but making sure it is so is not on me. I can help as much as I can by exhorting/helping/pushing, but I’m not the ruler of the world. And Americans don’t really have rulers, even if we have idiots who want to rule us.

It’s not on me.

All I can do is all I can do, and I’ll continue doing it. And when the black dog comes around, I’ll just work harder.

If you do likewise, maybe the landing will be soft, the darkness short.

All we can do is all we can do.

And hope and pray the rest goes well.

Be not afraid. In the end, we win, they lose.

In the meantime, just keep swimming.

183 thoughts on “It’s Not On You

  1. 100%

    Hard lesson learned. I feel fortunate that our son believes in the same values as we do. Feel sad for his cousins, they are in for a very, very, rude awaking.

  2. From my novel “The Hordes of Chanakra”:
    “Don’t mind me. We have this argument quite often. Last week it was aninjured sparrow; the week before, an orphaned faun; Kaila has difficulty realizing that she cannot save the entire world from hurt and harm.”
    “And if I cannot defend all the weak and helpless of the world, is that not all the more reason to defend and ait those who do come under my hand?”

    1. “A man was observed walking a beach where starfish had been stranded and were drying. He methodically was picking one at a time up and tossing the starfish into the surf. When told ‘You cannot save all of them.” He replied ‘I can save this one.'”

      Source unknown.

      1. Yep, that’s a good old one.

        A man should always strive to extend his reach, yet not be too disappointed if he fails to do so. I can try to help the person in front me. I can’t do the same to millions scattered all over the world, or throughout time. And while Scripture can be interpreted several different ways over Jesus’s saying the poor will always be with us; it’s also an observation that the number of people in need will always exceed the number we can care for.

        1. “A man’s reach should exceed his grasp, or what’s a heaven for?” Pretty well sums it up…

      2. Interesting to watch the permutations of that story. Originally (or the oldest version I’ve seen) it was a man, then a boy, then a girl. In each case it’s a man who asks the question or makes the statement that you can’t save all of them. Sometimes it’s a question (why do you try) and other variations it’s a statement.

  3. It’s why I only pay cursory attention to the news. Yes, I do need to know about things that are happening. But I can’t spend the energy to obsess about things that are out of my direct control. I need to direct it at my family specifically, and only check in enough to figure out what’s going to hit us directly in times to come for a little bit of planning.

    (I still hate that “prepping” got such a bad rep. It’s just common sense to be prepared for the next time you get sick, or that a storm comes through and wrecks the power lines, or you have to evacuate due to a wildfire, but the popular perception is that all people prep for the apocalypse. Sheesh.)

    1. All the old sayings are ridiculed. It used to be called “saving for a rainy day”. It seems so many people have forgotten that wisdom.

    2. A few years ago I had a FecesBook discussion with a liberal friend of mine where I said, “I don’t trust the government. I’m responsible for me and my family, so I prepare for the various things I can.” I think this was shortly after Trump was elected IIRC. The topic was nominally about firearms and protecting yourself if you feel threatened. But she said she sees me now as some sort of “prepper” peaking out from behind the curtains caressing my guns. The delusional people are whackjobs.

      1. I’d love to see what she’d think of the typical Florida preparations for an imminent hurricane; probably consider everyone rational to be hopelessly paranoid. Typical head-in-sand (or elsewhere) attitude: “If I don’t prepare for it, it won’t happen”.

  4. Exactly Sarah! Something I just repeated to some friends at church last Sunday, “I tell the young people, please don’t try to save the world. Just be the best person you can be, and the world will be a better place.”

  5. Welp, Team HarrisBiden is now openly threatening to use “war powers” to effectively nationalize the petroleum industry:

    Never mind there is no war going on, the production issues are all directly related to Team HarrisBiden doing everything they can to stifle production of petroleum and natural gas, combined with no new refineries built in the last 50 years. This latest is simply part and parcel of the effort to end use of petroleum, through essentially nationalizing the petroleum industry so that government can then directly act to first use it as a partisan political weapon to ration gas to favored groups and to ultimately shut it down entirely, except again of course, for the ruling elite and their favored identify groups. Simply put, Team HarrisBiden and the Democrats are going full Venezuela here.

      1. Atlas will shrug soon enough. A warning for most of us, a playbook for them. Amazing how little wisdom they have. I sometimes sit spellbound by the tales they weave. How is it that any grown ass adult can actually think what they think?

        You are so correct in the cant save everyone aspect, focus on those closest, have a plan and be ready to execute. I am unfortunately less sanguine on any soft landing. Their pride will not allow it. The rapid recovery and minimal time in darkness I do think will be the case as many folks have seen this coming for years and have actually been thinking it through. You have so many times spoken to us about the preparation and I certainly share it with those I know well.

      2. And GRRRR twice over for the Demented Rats exporting as much LNG and refined diesel as they can, while trying to buy oil from our declared enemies, convincing Canada to export to China insread of us, and for increasing the amount of food (corn) wasted for low energy fuel by 50%, while contributing in so many ways to world starvation.
        Which, under the DemonRats usual Washington Monument Defense, both the hardship and the guilt will fall on us as Americans.

        1. She knows. She’s smiling at those who did not listen facing their fate. Remember the litany of those who died on that train?

          1. She is crying for America. TWANLOC do not deserve her attention and will not get it.

    1. Now I wish I’d paid more attention to my dad doing woodwork when I was a kid, because if I had, I could make a mint creating and selling pikes. Y’know, to mount heads on.

      1. You really would have needed to have cut them earlier. They need to season. Still, no time like the present. Ash is best but any straight grain timber would do. Hickory might work a treat, I don’t think it grows in Europe so I don’t think it’s been used.

        Old car leaf springs would make good pike heads.

        1. …or swords. “They shall beat their leaf springs into swords, and their hammers into tomahawks.” 😉

      2. Pikes are easy.
        Mme G. takes a bit more work, but really isn’t finish carpentry.

        1. Welding the cutting edge onto the blade is the only tricky part, the rest is just post and beam.

        2. I saw people having hysterics over “They brought a GALLOWS to the INSURRECTION!” And I was sitting there going “I’m a carpenter’s daughter. That thing would fall apart if you tried to hang a cat on it, and anybody with the know-how to put it together knows exactly that.”

          1. Also the same people having hysterics were the same people bringing guillotines to the homes of politicians they had deemed insufficiently “woke” and are openly calling for assassination of Supreme Court justices and politicians they don’t like.

    2. Whaddya mean there’s no war? The Biden* Regime is at war with the American people!

      There has been a cold war between the Democrats and America for at least 80 years, but they’ve finally come out in the open. They believe they’ve gained the advantage and they’re making the final push to Glorious Victory! Equity Uber Alles!
      When reality doesn’t conform to your theories, it’s not the universe that’s wrong.

      1. Sarah said it succinctly last week on Instapundit. The Democrats are conducting a War on American Prosperity and attacking on every front they can find. We are now being ruled by Caracas on the Potomac with the same goals and methods. And the funny thing is if they succeed the current occupants of that hellhole will be the first to go to the wall and they don’t realize it.

      2. Yeah but to have his war times powers, he has to have the declaration in hand. He’d get it, but then we might really fight back.

        1. Grabbing power and ruling by decree is why Team HarrisBiden has been so eager to have the Russia-Ukraine war expand into attacks on NATO and the USA. They WANT Russia to attack us directly so that they can use it as a pretext to seize power.

    3. This is going to go well (not). The Turnip, the Turnip in Waiting, the Whitehouse staff and all the department heads are on a brain cell sharing plan with the Orange cats (and the cats have clear priority of use of said brain cell). These folks can’t add 2+2 and get a repeatable answer and they’re wading into the equivalent of a 3rd or 4th order non linear differential equation? Fools may rush in where angels fear to tread, but even your garden variety fool would run screaming from this proposition. I can not tell if these people really are this evil/stupid or if RAH’s Puppet Masters is for real. I mean basically plain and simple if you turn off the spigot you get no oil. They slammed the door on that on day one on this 3rd term of the administration. They stated this was policy back in the first 2 terms of this administration and longed romantically for $8/gallon gasoline. As the saying goes, “Whom the gods would destroy they first make mad”. It appears part one of that plan is well under way.

      1. They live in a fantasy world, where there is no human nature and intentions are what matter not consequences.

        1. Well we know which path is paved with good intentions, and the Tranzi/Brahmandarins seem to be hustling down it at a brisk pace.

  6. Time to write that cookbook I was meaning to do for the year 2000. Mike Houst’s “Apocalyptic Cookbook: How to have your Democrat/Socialist Neighbor for Dinner.” Recipes for bad times.

    1. You’re going to have to get used to long cooking times and tolerating really bitter flavors. Also the eco-Karens will yell at you that they should be braised not roasted to limit the use of carbon producing heat sources. A solar furnace would be better yet.

        1. I figured they’d complain while being prepped/cooked. It seems to be that types sole joy in life to tell others what they are doing “wrong”.

    2. Are you sure “To Serve Man” wouldn’t be a better title? Recycling Democrats/Socialists seems like it would be of great service to mankind. ;-p

      1. You’ll be fine. Kuru comes from eating the brains and they don’t have any to worry about.

  7. It might still be asking too much to be realistic, but I want to do well enough prepping and productivity-wise to pull some family and good friends through. A lot of them are idiots, but they’re my idiots, and I don’t want them to be worse off than they have to be.

    1. Of course. And as someone once noted during a Sunday school class I was a part of, that “year’s supply” isn’t just for you and your family. Because most people will want to provide at least minimal assistance for their neighbors in the event of a disaster.

    2. Sometimes you have to be ready to be the Hand of G-d, as it were, when people finally get desperate enough to realize that they need to ask Himself for help.

      You know, since He’s already helped you and you, in gratitude for everything you’ve received, need to pass it on to the next poor sap.

      I at least have to pay it forward because I have been helped by other kind souls.

    3. David the Good. “Grow or Die”. Paperback, Kindle, KULL. Quick, funny, utterly practical. (I don’t know him or get anything from this other than passing on a maybe-useful resource.)

  8. One thing I have noticed about Japanese culture is that they feel little or no obligation to attempt to save / help the out groups. You’ll move heaven and earth for your family, move earth but maybe not heaven for someone in your village, your company, your school, club, society etc, But as the relationship grows fainter so does the effort.

    Which doesn’t mean they try and help complete strangers, but they won’t try as hard. And that can be over-ridden by feelings of hospitality or least once. But there’s also very definitely a desire to only help those who are trying to help themselves. If you need a ride to the addiction clinic they’ll give it to you and quite possibly encourage you to stay on the path etc. If you make no attempt to sober up they’ll leave you to choke in your own vomit the next time.

    For example the Japanese have been (for Japan at least) relatively generous and supportive of Ukraine and I think that a major reason for that is that Ukrainians are fighting back and not just asking the US or EU to fight for them.

    In some ways I think this is a healthy attitude

    1. It is. There is only so much time, money, resource and attention that a person can give in their lifetime. The moral good is to put those things where they will do the most good.

      That means the parasites get helped last, if at all.

      When you have an abundance of resources, you can help them if you so choose. Wealthy societies can afford a certain amount of waste that way. Individuals, too, if they desire. It isn’t the best use of those resources however.

  9. The sun rose, up here atop the world, at 3 this morning. Odds are good it’ll rise again tomorrow.

    My savage teenage granddaughter boards a plane in 4 hours to Greece, to sail in the Aegean for a couple of weeks. Sail, not power boat.

    I’ve 24 rough cut two bys to cobble up a pole barn roof, that’ll keep me busy most of the day.

    T’ain’t much I can do about Buck Fiden, et al, and more importantly, there really not a whole lot they can do about (to) me and mine.

    So! Yep I’ll just keep swimming and if I can make any headway, tread water until the current heads in the right direction.

    Nope, it isn’t all good but the closer to home you look, it really isn’t all that bad either!

  10. I spend a huge part of my time at the self scan area encouraging people and letting them know lots of us are scared, angry, and ready to fight.
    Encouragement and telling people “no, you aren’t crazy” is what I spend most of my time doing.
    That, and fending off the knife-in-the-back attacks from my slacker co-workers. 🙂

    1. I refuse to use the self scan and have stopped shopping at places that require I do so. The big box stores aren’t passing their savings on to me and that was someone’s job. As much as I can, I use local businesses. I can afford it and no Target or Wally World has sponsored the local little league team so f ‘em. Really the only chain we still use routinely is Costco and a lot of that is because I understand and agree with Costco’s business model,

      1. As someone who has worked that station and Roommate has as well – self-scan does still employ people to watch the registers and handle the inevitable machine snafus.

        That said I definitely see your point. I just wish there were less idiots who come into the store and lambast the cashiers of BOTH the regular lines and self-checkout with “I’m not going to do your job for you!” Oy.

        1. About half the people who come through have never used a self scan machine. Not ever. And it’s mostly people in their 50s and below.

          1. Back when one hand pulled the merch into the bagging area while the other hand banged the ten key. I used to watch those ladies with awe and admiration.

        2. My local supermarket uses the self-scans in place of the old Express Lane. There’s nothing stopping a customer from coming through with four dozen items. But it gets increasingly impractical due to the small amount of space once you get more than a dozen or so items. So the Express Lane is gone now. And people with small quantities of stuff to purchase just use the self-scan.

          Makes sense, imo. And it means that the cashiers are still there to help with the “housewife who’s buying the groceries for the next few days” customers.

          1. I am guilty of have more than a few items. I like packing the carry boxes the way I want them packed. OTOH I’m only buying for 3 and not filling a huge basket. I like the way Costco handles their self scan. Our local one has 12 stations, and at least 8 to 12 people manning them. Most the time someone ends up scanning most the stuff anyway because heavy items that are never lifted out of the cart.

      2. Well done, patriot! Given that the CEO of Walmart just bought a football team for $4 billion, the fact that they do nothing but scrape for more profit is all the more reprehensible.
        Everyone hates the self scans.
        We tell them to quit shopping at Walmart so it might change, then they simper and look away because they feel they can’t afford to shop at Albertsons or a local grocery.
        I tell them I shop at either Lakeside (a local grocery down the street) or the Albertsons on Gov’t Street, and they physically shudder, as if it’s so much more expensive it’s on another planet.
        One person’s choice starts the avalanche. Well done.

        1. I shop at Aldi, which has worse selection than the Mart but is a hair lower on price. If there’s any in your area, look ’em up. (Though apparently they vary sharply by location.)

          1. LIDL and Trader Joe’s too. Aldi and LIDL are owned by two German brothers who hate each other, don’t talk, and hold everything in common. Odd. If you know what you’re looking for you can do very well there. It’s actually become middle class posh in the UK because the wine bargains are so good.

            1. I always wondered about Aldi vs. Lidl since they seem so similar. The brother thing makes perfect sense.

              Funny thing about our Aldi here on the redneck side of Charlotte–no, not that redneck side of Charlotte, the other one–is that every now and again you can find some really good high-end stuff at comparatively ridiculous prices. Wine, desserts, stuff like that. Shesellsseashells swears by the place and always has her quarter at the ready to unlock the shopping carts.

              1. The LIDL by me has excellent bread. We lived abroad long enough to get a taste for some things that you can routinely get at LIDL. We don’t go to Aldi that much.

                They’re an interesting story. They started a shop in Cologne after the war and grew from there. They sell oddball things. I’m got a really top quality German made garden spade with T handle that is long enough for me, I’m 6’2”., for like $10.

                German brothers in the same business who hate one another is a thing. The Dassler brothers Adi (ADIDAS) and Rudi (Puma) are another example.

                1. My dad knows a family where a couple brothers ended up as execs in the beverage business – one at Pepsi and the other at Coke. They didn’t hate each other, though.

              2. You live in Charlotte? We lived there for 7 years. Our first house (boy did we take a bath) was on Duncroft Ln, near Eastland Mall. Heck, I worked for a year and a half at World Bazaar on Eastland Mall. Back before it was a shooting gallery.

            2. I let ALL my cavewoman hunter/gatherer instincts run loose in both Aldi and Lidl. It’s oddly satisfying. (I came into the Lidl once with my Aldi bags. The cashier side-eyed me briefly and informed me, “We’re the GOOD brother.”)

              Then there’s the insane bargain grocery about an hour south of me. They’re either a church, a Mafia front, or both. I don’t ask, I just fill my cart and trot home to the pressure canner.

          2. If we don’t have one in CDA there’s probably one in Spokane, a short drive away.
            I’m only buying for one human and two kittens (age 8 and 8 1/2), so Albertsons or a local grocer are really just fine. More expensive on things I don’t typically buy, but competitive on fresh stuff and dairy and meat (which is high everyplace).
            If I had a family I’d probably shop at Super1 for the bulk stuff, then shop around for the BOGOs at Albertsons or Pilgrim’s Market for meat and fish.

            1. Winco is pretty much local (only 5 states! plus Montana, which they have just expanded into. One wonders if they will change their name to “Wincom”), and has reasonable prices. I’m not sure why they wouldn’t shop there, unless it’s farther away than the Walmart.

              (I find Walmart’s current paint scheme depressing, so I don’t go in there if I can avoid it.)

              1. We have Winco right down the street, more or less. And I have no idea why they shop someplace they don’t like when there are several alternatives.
                If you really want to save shop in WA where food is tax free. We tax everything in Idaho.

                1. Winco is inexpensive if you stick to Winco brands. Only save pennies, if that, otherwise. Meat, dairy, and fresh vegs and fruit, really isn’t any less. Winco only takes cash or debit cards, no credit cards. IDK if they still take checks or not. Locally Winco does have self check overseen by 1 per 8 stations, and one supervisor. Winco is employee owned if that matters. We have two in the area now. Second one went in across from Costco, next to Petsmart. I won’t save enough to bother.

                  1. In our area I have used a credit card regularly. They’re cheaper than Walmart by a long shot for meats and such. (though Braums is better than either for milk and sausage). I shop our local for what I can, or sales, but it’s 25% more expensive on basically everything. So I schedule shopping for ‘day we visit grandma ‘ and save a trip that way.

              2. Mostly it’s a successful advertising campaign. People have been hammered with “Walmart is cheaper!” for a very long time, and they’ve internalized it.

                I have taken friends to these other stores, they see the lower prices and assume it’s a fluke, or just one or two items. Sometimes they spend the entire time telling me that WalMart is cheaper and just look past the lower prices.

          3. I’m an Aldi shopper, too, though unfortunately there are a few essential bits of food and other things I can only find at Walmart, which I hate going to on account of being a former employee who got treated like the stuff I used to wipe off toilets there by both managers and customers. I find the quality of produce and taco supplies to be better at Aldi anyway.

        2. $SPOUSE and I have avoided Walmart for years. A weekly shopping trip entails groceries at three-four places in the small city. Bi-Mart (regional club store, $5 lifetime membership) has some stuff, but is really good for doggie treats, soup and some canned goods. The restaurant supply store (now part of U.S. Foods) for much, then the independent and Fred Meyers. Bi-Mart never did self-check, and the independent tried it, but went to a couple of express checkout stations.

          In addition, Costco now twice a year. One is a two-night stay for an annual (currently) eye check, with an overnight stay 6 months later. I might be able to do the latter in one loooong day, but my body is a lot happier if I don’t have to do the 200 mile round trip/shopping without a rest. (Costco was going to expand to Flyover Falls, but the owner of the big window/door company didn’t want to lose employees to them, so he managed to kill the deal. Then he died, and the company almost went under, being bought out. SOB never planned beyond his demise. So, Costco is a trip over the Cascades–2/3rds of that store’s customers are from eastern Oregon and very northern California.)

          1. I may never have to set foot in a Walmart again. I have a second interview today for a mentor/counselor position. 😁

            1. If staying with retail: If there’s a Bi-Mart in your area, it might be worth checking out. They lost the pharmacy business when the small pharms got sqeezed out, but it’s a decent store, and the two examples I’m familiar with seem to have happy employees. (Employee-owned, so that might help.)

              1. Looks like I’ve been rescued from the retail gulag but this is good to know. Thanks.

                  1. Thanks! This time it didn’t pan out, but you never know what tomorrow will bring.

                  1. Well, yes, it was an excellent chance, and I was convinced it was a good move. Until we went on an orientation drive today. Not a good fit, but an interesting morning.
                    Tomorrow may bring more opportunity.

  11. Fauci tested positive for the WuFlu. Symptoms are apparently mild, more’s the pity.

      1. Or if the Vax isn’t a vax. I’m finding it hard not to hope for the grim reaper here. Sometimes being Christian is hard.

        1. Consider that death is an end to mortal suffering, my friend. What comes after is not our business. What can occur in the here and now, with the decline of the power and influence that the creepy, corrupt man had, that’s not insignificant.

          Fauci quite enjoyed being on tv. At least, it appeared so to me. He looked to revel in being the face and voice of “science,” and getting to use that power. He’s not getting so much attention now, is he? I suspect he’ll like it even less should his past misdeeds be seriously investigated and he suffer the consequences thereof.

          But even if that does not come to pass, even if he lives another ten, twenty years, the man has the opportunity to repent his errors and face the man he has become. That can be a very humbling experience.

          I doubt it will happen. But there is always a chance, while still alive, for a man to recognize his errors and work to make what amends he can. I cannot imagine having to live with the knowledge that my words and actions caused so much suffering and death. It is a special kind of hell on Earth to look in the mirror and recognize the monster that you are, I suspect.

          1. My wife likes to say that her greatest hope and her greatest fear is that we all get what we deserve in the end.

        2. It’s a vax for a 3 year old respiratory virus, which is to say it isn’t a vax anymore.

          Which, given that one of the major selling points of mRNA vaccines is that you can design them about as quickly as you can identify the pathogen, really makes me wonder why the hell we’re still using the 3 year old version. Heck, even a Delta variant would be closer to what’s circulating today than what they’re pushing.

          1. Likely because you paid for the 3 year old version and they still have stock left . . .

        3. I’ll do the hoping for both of us. I’ve given up on pretending I’m a good person in that regard.

        4. I’d like a better definition of exactly what his Mild Symptoms are.
          My totally unvaxxed and caught it were, an almost sore throat, not quite sniffles, fever (no cowbell), and really the fever and body pain (that was a bit unusual both in severity and manifestation, but I’ve hurt worse) were the only things to make me think it was something other than a mild cold, or allergies (being February in Michigan was a clue it was not likely an allergy). Hell, whatever they used for Cotton on the swab was one of the worst parts of the ordeal. 0000 Steel Wool would have felt less harsh.
          Here’s to hoping he gets Long Covid (which seems to be psychosomatic)

        5. Fortunately, as a Yid, I don’t have that problem. I eagerly look forward to the obituary of that child abusing, murderous little shit.

            1. Almost forgot about that. I still have no idea what the full story there is – every time I look into it, the rabbit hole gets so crazy it makes Alice’s trip look normal.

  12. Of course there is this counter philosophy:
    “Let not any one pacify his conscience by the delusion that he can do no harm if he takes no part, and forms no opinion. Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends, than that good men should look on and do nothing. He is not a good man who, without a protest, allows wrong to be committed in his name, and with the means which he helps to supply, because he will not trouble himself to use his mind on the subject.”
    Jahn Stuart Mill
    And in the same vein:
    “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”
    Often attributed to Edmund Burke though that is difficult to substantiate.

    1. And this as well:
      “A year from now, ten, they’ll swing back to the belief that they can make people… better. And I do not hold to that. So no more running; I aim to misbehave.” – Malcolm Reynolds

      1. So when do they start swinging AWAY? Because they don’t seem to have figured that part out.

    2. I do not think the suggestion here is or ever was ‘do nothing’. Do what you can do and stress / worry not about things you cannot reach.

  13. if you are not blood, family or close community I’ll leave your problems for you to solve tomorrow… I’ve noticed that NOBODY outside those 3 groups gives a damn what happens to me … just returning the sentiment …

      1. Trust but verify. I still give to charity when I can. Will stop on the road to check and see if a stopped driver is okay, and so on. I help those I know who just need a bit of help to get going. Gave somebody a tank of gas to get home once, stuff like that.

        My trust has been abused and betrayed before. So long as one lends a hand here and there, that will happen. Some places, the help I could give wouldn’t matter worth a damn though. I don’t go flashing cash in the gutter and I don’t pick up random strangers and give them a ride there either.

        But when the local church (which I know hasn’t gone nuts) asks for donations to help the family that got burned out, I’ll drop some canned food and blankets or something by. Because I know they vet their charity cases.

        It is still worthwhile to be charitable. Just have to be smart about it. There are a lot of conmen and women in the world yet. Probably always have been. There’s no virtue in giving money to the addict that will just use it to score another hit.

        1. On that verify bit, I am always taken with that supposedly Christian charity organization soliciting donations with tons of TV ads claiming support is needed for Jewish survivors of the Holocaust. Given that the Holocaust ended in 1945 with the fall of Germany and the end of WWII in Europe just how many of these survivors are there? Even someone born at the very end of the war would now be at least 77 years old, and any adult survivor pushing 100. I am sure a few exist, but highly suspect that such would be cared for by traditional Jewish charities and the state of Israel itself.
          I have noticed that lately this particular organization has started using Jewish refugees from the Ukraine as their new charitable group having apparently realized that donations have fallen off from anyone who has a smattering of historical knowledge and can do simple math.

    1. Have to admit I’m kind of the opposite. I would be more willing to help a complete stranger than someone related to me or in my FTF community. A complete stranger generally hasn’t stabbed me in the back.

      Online community? Definitely would help them first.

      1. Both my older and younger brothers accused me of stealing from Mom’s accounts, and they both tried to get me on the street living in a tent.

        I do not know what I’ll do if either one of them ever asks me for help in any respect. They were allowed to have children where us two girls were not, so they can rely on their spawn for help. Least, that’s the way I feel about it right now.

        1. I have…1.5 relatives that I would be deeply tempted to leave dangling in the wind. The 1 has had multiple opportunities, and the .5 can’t entirely help it.

          1. See? When I ask myself the question in a real way, I know I’ll do what I can for them.
            And it makes me kind of mad 😡 that I can’t be more hard hearted.

          2. We helped my mother after other relatives abused her trust. Now that she’s passed on, I have a very few relatives who I will help, and a larger number of those I can deal with (OTOH, they’re a long distance away, and we haven’t been that close in years). The trust-abusers? Nope. Not gonna.

                  1. Wim Hof method for me. Breathing and cold exposure seem to help. Also, music!

    2. “We can help some. But if we help everyone, we won’t survive to help anyone.” The McKenzies – Dies the Fire (words for that meaning)

  14. The last week, have had a bad sinus infection. 101.7 fever, (not covid, I’ve been tested), nor A or B influenza. During this week of weakness, there have been multiple opportunities that I call divine appointments. Mostly by phone. I have gotten very good at dragging people down interesting rabbit holes using paradox.

    For example, yesterday I finally felt well enough to go to a bank to get a couple of rolls of quarters. When the teller asked how I was, I said joyful, (as I now always answer). She responded how she loved to hear that. Such a simple thing. Yet powerful. A branch I used to go frequently, had a teller who would tell me that she enjoyed seeing me, because seeing me made her think of joy.

    We can’t change the world, but I tell people I have 3 goals:
    That everyone who meets me is made more Joyful.
    That I make people think.
    That i reflect God perfectly to everyone I meet. (this requires polishing)
    All three goals are both impossible and possible, but that defines a good goal.

  15. It’s come to the point where you must parse how you spend your time, wealth, etc. and to do so for the most good that benefits your values, community, family and such. While kicked around a lot on the intertubes there is some wisdom in these rules too:

    In the past I was much more “giving” and willing to offer help – even to those I did not have a connection with but, now I must tend to me and mine while hoping the future will allow me to again be more giving. As for the darkness that is coming… I don’t thing (and truly hope & pray) it will be total. There will be some places where it does go very dark but with that, many places will still have a flicker of light. I hope to be in a place with such flickers and will do all to nurture and sustain those flickers that hold back the full night.

  16. I’m a devoted reader….and I don’t thank you enough for all the help and encouragement you provide your readers….Thanks, Sarah….all the best to you and yours….and thanks to your commenters! They’re great

  17. Keep the lamp lit. Sometimes that’s all I have when I look at the darkness seething out there. You give me enough illumination to roll my sleeves up and get back to work.

  18. Had an insight today, that’s only tangentially related to the subject of today’s post but is probably worth sharing anyway. One reason why “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need” sounds good is because that’s how families should work. In a good family that doesn’t have major dysfunctions, the husband and wife hold all their possessions in common, and give the children what they need. In turn, as the children get older and more able to contribute to the family, they do chores (the nature of which varies widely from family to family, e.g. rural families will have way more types of chores to do than urban families) according to their ability. It’s also not a coincidence that monks call each other “brother” and the abbot “father”*: the monastery is replicating the family model (and was doing so for centuries before Marx ever put pen to page).

    It falls apart, of course, when it’s imposed by force or when the community grows past the point where everybody can know everybody’s business. In a large monastery, a few monks might manage to get away with only pretending to work, but in a small monastery there’s no chance of that not being noticed. And the other thing that’s required for it to work is that the people in charge of resource distribution have to truly care about the well-being of the people under them. That’s the natural state of affairs for parents (again, barring major dysfunction), and in monasteries the abbot genuinely cares because he takes his religious duty seriously (if he’s a genuine believer, of course; I’m sure there have been plenty of examples in history of people faking it to get into positions of relative wealth and power, but I’m taking here about the ways it can work). But it falls apart the minute it’s expanded beyond the family or the religious community, precisely because that’s when you get leaders who don’t actually care about and know every single person in the community. And then resource distribution becomes based not on people’s true needs, but on what the leader thinks (or claims) that they need, which is something entirely different.

    But it’s how families should work, and that’s the outer layer of truth wrapped around the core of lies that makes Marxism palatable to people who haven’t thought deeply enough about it.

    * Usually, the abbot is also a priest. He’s called “father” because that’s the title you give to a priest, not because he’s the abbot. But the analogy still holds, because the person making decisions about resource distribution is the one in the head position, and everyone else

    1. See also the Kibbutzes in Israel. They worked OK initially, but have generall collapsed as the members stopped being true believers who did share and contribute as best they could

      1. Another reason is that kibbutzes were full of smart young people who wanted to learn high school or college subjects, and were refused permission, and assigned slavery-level duties. Which was why a lot of those men and women joined the Israeli Army and then never went back to the kibbutz.

        Apparently you also had the exciting opportunity to live in Israel, speak Hebrew, and not learn a thing about the Bible or being Jewish. Because Socialism was more important. This made it kinda amusing when miracles happened to these kids,and it was another reason they left the kibbutz.

        1. Wow, that’s… you’re living in a state that is hated for all the people BEING JEWISH and being a JEWISH state, but socialisim is more important than what it means to be a Jew? And then a miracle occurs! That sounds like a whole bunch of interesting stories.

          1. IIRC, the kibbutzim were set up by Bundists – essentially secular Jewish commies. Do not get me f-ing started…

    2. This.

      For it to work at all everyone has to have a unified higher purpose that they’re working toward, and it doesn’t scale.

    3. To reference Rocky and Bullwinkle
      “Hey Rocky watch me pull a commune out of my hat”
      “Aw Bullwinkle that trick NEVER works”

      Hey in Acts 2:44-45 Luke records that
      “All who believed were together and held everything in common, 45 and they began selling their property and possessions and distributing the proceeds to everyone, as anyone had need” (NET translation). Later Ananias and Sephira end up in trouble about this. And Paul has to warn in his letters particularly 2 Thessalonians:
      “or even when we were with you, we used to give you this command: “If anyone is not willing to work, neither should he eat.” 11 For we hear that some among you are living an undisciplined life, not doing their own work but meddling in the work of others”

      If that model didn’t work for the those folk it ain’t gonna work for anybody

      1. not doing their own work but meddling in the work of others

        Well that’s government in a nutshell.
        Francisco D’Anconia: “…that in order to produce, you must obtain permission from men who produce nothing.”

      2. One other insight I had a couple years ago was into the Acts 2 situation. Look at what happened earlier in the chapter: the miracle at Pentecost. Thousands of new believers, nearly all of whom came from so far out-of-town that Hebrew (or Aramaic) wasn’t their native language. They had most likely come to Jerusalem for Passover, stayed until Pentecost because that was only seven weeks, and were probably planning to sail home soon after Pentecost. (The text doesn’t say that; that’s my conclusion.) Which means that they had brought enough money with them from home for their daily expenses through Pentecost and maybe a few weeks beyond, depending on how long it would take them to find a ship. (I have no idea if you pre-arranged those things in those days, or just walked down to the docks and started asking captains where they were headed until you found one going in the right direction.)

        But now, suddenly, they’ve just heard about Jesus, and have believed that He was the promised Messiah. This is totally new to them, and they want to learn more, so they want to stay in Jerusalem for several more months, not just the couple more weeks they were planning. Which means they’re about to run out of money. They have plenty of money back home, most likely; you don’t plan a trip across the Mediterranean and back if you’re dirt-poor. But there are no ATMs, no international banking system: they can’t just send a telegraph back home and have someone wire them more cash.

        And so the church in Jerusalem took up the slack. They shared what they had with their new brothers and sisters in Christ, some of them even selling property to do so, permanently impoverishing themselves in the process. Later on, after the new believers had gone home and spread the Gospel around their home towns*, they returned the favor, sending financial aid to Jerusalem after hearing a prophesy from God that a famine was coming soon in Israel.

        But the point is that the “They held all things in common” bit at the end of Acts 2 was a specific response to a specific, temporary need. It was not the model that they believed the whole church should follow at all times. Take care of your fellow Christians who are in need, yes, absolutely. Everyone share a meal together after church, yes. In one of Paul’s letters, he rebukes some rich Christians for going ahead and eating all their own food at the common meal, instead of sharing it with their poorer brothers and sisters who are going hungry because they couldn’t afford to bring as much. But at no point does Paul ever rebuke anybody for not holding all their property in common. That appears nowhere after the first few chapters of Acts: once the new believers from the Pentecost miracle went home, things went back to normal.

        * The result of all of this was that the Gospel spread all over the known world (the Mediterranean and its environs) within just months after Jesus’ crucifixion, in a time with no radio, no TV, no Internet, no mass communications of any kind. The Roman Empire with all its power would have struggled to achieve this, though with their relay systems proving fresh horses to messengers they might have pulled it off. But God did it all by simply giving about 120 people a miraculous gift to speak in other languages, in one specific town on one specific day, and let the rest of the dominoes (which He had carefully set up centuries earlier) fall naturally. The more I think about it, the more impressive it is.

    1. Great article. I’ve always felt they’d self-destruct in the end. My great fear is that they’ll drag the rest us down with them i the process.

  19. Sarah, you have a shout out for John Ringo in Twitter (or as he’s currently known, Great Lord Cthulu, Devourer of Souls).
    It’s in regard to a Princeton professor and self-appointed fact-checker having, ahem, excessively copied from other people’s work in his dissertation.
    Ringo’s quote: “Sarah A. Hoyt’s shocked face was unavailable for comment.”

    1. Sarah Hoyt’s shocked face is a meme at this point. It first started being used by her fellow Instapundit bloggers. And I think I’ve seen it used at least once or twice in blog posts over at Ace’s site.

        1. That and probably saving the sanity of dozens, if not hundreds of people with your blogging here.

          The world may not know, but we do…

    2. Sarah Hoyt’s Shocked Face is struggling to keep up with the idiocy, and losing ground. She can’t be everywhere!
      The government can mandate stupidity, but they can’t make it not be stupid.

  20. I am a Jew. This means that, among other things, I am part of a contract to assist the Lord with תיקון העולם – the repair of the world. This has become the work of Western Civilization. We did not start this work, and we likely will not see the end of it. but we none the less must do our part of it. And if it seems like you are surrounded by those trying to tear it down, remember “Where there are no men, be thou a man.”

  21. Yes, but, the ‘dystopians’ are all around us! The dystopians keep insisting that their fantasy-based world will become our future, i.e., EVs for everyone, masculinity is bad, gender is fluid, E-S-G is rational, the CCP is benevolent, “you will own nothing” and be happy, race-based government is somehow OK, and senile old people are seasoned leaders.

    I have become a non-believer in these people, a dissident! They are deserve to wander in the intellectual desert for 40 years (it will take that long to chasten these SOBs).

    1. IIRC, the 40 years in the desert was to have the old generation (the ones who were of an age to recall the Captivity in Egypt) die off. Unfortunately, I suspect it will take more than 40 years to erase the poisons that have been inserted into the body politic by these poltroons.

  22. Each of us can change the world if only by one random act of kindness or one purposeful act of defiance. I’m from The Free State of Florida and readily speak my mind in public without fear. At the grocery store checkout I talk to the old women not wearing a mask behind me that the masks were useless. And when she agrees with me the idiot ahead of me in line still wearing a mask of compliance begins to feel like a fool! Defy the Tyranny and Stand as free men and women without fear! Courage is Contagious!

    1. Yes, of course. What I’m saying is you can’t change it all at once or make sanity prevail everywhere, no matter how you try. And of course, this is frustrating when people suffer from the illusions of covidiocy.

  23. Free will is far more nuanced than everyone thinks. We may have choices but they are not FREE otherwise Good would not be SOVEREIGN OVER ALL THINGS.

    (The Garden of Eden is a parable about Christ–it is not literal.)

    1. Both of those are matter of great disagreement by actual theologians. Which you probably aren’t, I ain’t, and besides sectarian religious discussion is forbidden in comments.
      Something constructive to add, or just “I don’t like your religious ideas.”
      Yours, btw, leaves you saying G-d plays all parts, and we’re puppets. BAH.

      1. Thanks for the reminder to stay out of religious debate… I may have had a very snarky reply.

        1. Mostly I reminded myself, since I also had a snarky one.
          I do have more annotated Torahs and New Testaments and books of analysis than I care to mention, and the idea G-d is just sock-puppeting us…. yeah no.

Comments are closed.