Bring On Your Best

At the instigation of Jolie, this is not exactly an open-floor post, but is close to.

She pointed out some things she was doing/we could do to fight back against the idiots in charge, at least insofar as not giving them our money. And asked for ideas.

I’m throwing this open, as well as “How to support our own” without giving a fortune in GiveSendGo, though…. well, it will continue to be a part of my monthly expenditures, as far as I can tell, because the worse things get (and going grocery shopping yesterday scared me, and made me grateful it’s just the two of us, and we’re now 60) the more people we know and love, and the more people on our side will need help. And the less able we’ll be to give it, which also means if we can support them in their endeavors so they don’t need help/as much help, it’s better.

Note that ahah, sure crucifying all the bastages (or putting them up on stakes) or a revolution yes would “surely be fighting back.” But we’re looking for solutions short of and maybe averting that. First because only glowies or idiots plan that kind of thing — or instigate it — in public, and frankly I don’t want to deal with either glowies or idiots. Second because — eyes Kenye West narrowly — if we tip into that, what comes out might call itself “right wing” but will not be the Republic we love or have anything to do with the vision of the founders. So before you think it’s funny, DO NOT POST THAT. It’s not funny and will get me in a snit. And you don’t want me in a snit.

Instead of that, come up with ideas on how we can live as closely as possible adhering to “Not one red penny for the blue” and “Support people who don’t hate us.” AND (very important) how to mitigate the h*ll about to descend on all of us the next few years, particularly for people on our side, who’ve done nothing to deserve this. Yes, the river flood destroys the homes of decent people and b*stards alike. But in this case the b*stards are causing the flood. Let’s build barriers that don’t let the homes of decent people wash away. And no, I’ve got no idea how, but one of you might have.

And while I appreciate — btw — “build alternatives to Amazon” it needs to be more precise than that. One of the things I’d like to do (It needs only getting the person I’ve explained it to to build the site for me, after which TeamHoyt can enter new names) is a website that promotes writers to the right of Lenin. (Without saying that, but it will be at least at a remove run by me, and anyone who wants to associate with us…) By its design, it would be easy to convert into “little stores selling ebooks to the public.” I kind of want to do that with MGC too (I NEED to talk to the website designer, because it would be easier to pay him before end of year) for serialized work.

BUT there should be other models/ideas for that.

I also — note lack of a donation button in top right corner — still need something to replace paypal. For the yearly fundraiser, yes, which I promised my guys I’d do, but also to have the button there, so when I resume serializing and/or doing free shorts on the regular (probably tomorrow, actually) people who come by, are not regular readers, and wish to hit the tip jar can do so. (For that one, I’m almost certainly going to start a permanent GiveSendGo campaign with a ridiculous goal. But I can’t use it for the fundraiser, because they don’t allow the giving of incentives. BTW on that, I AM assembling the USAian collection this weekend. It was delayed by my medicine reaction. ALSO if you want/donated for the personal mentoring, I’ll be in touch with you by end of year. But if you want it earlier, please email one of my emails, and I’ll try to schedule you earlier. Tuckerizations will come too, and those of you who snarkily requested a math death will be in a world of trouble. I’m not sure how, but just you wait.)

ANYWAY — open floor for ideas on how to fight the (ah!) establishment by completely legal means, with our minds, our treasure, and most definitely our sacred honor.


310 thoughts on “Bring On Your Best

  1. I don’t have anything innovative to offer.

    I stopped buying Penzey’s Spices a few years ago, when they started sending out leftist propaganda (what I would now call “woke,” but I didn’t know the word then); now I order from Spice House. I don’t buy Ben and Jerry’s any more, even though I miss Cherry Garcia; they send out propaganda too. I disconnected from PayPal when they announced their policy of stealing money from people with incorrect views. I use DuckDuckGo as my search engine, not Google. I used to fund Wikipedia, but I’ve stopped since they began visibly putting for biased political views. I formerly had a bequest planned to the library at San Diego State University, which was a valuable resource for me when I was writing for Steve Jackson, but when they announced a program of social justice, I took them out of my will, and e-mailed them to say why (and to their credit, they were polite).

    It used to be said that not tolerating racist statements (by which I mean actually racist statement, not “I believe the law should be color blind” or the like) didn’t change people’s racist beliefs. And no doubt that was true. But it did get them to be cautious about expressing them, and produced a society where such statements were increasingly rare. And maybe having some large corporations learn that “get woke, go broke” is serious will produce a comparable change. If they want to be woke privately, that’s between them and their shareholders, but let them learn to keep quiet about it.

    1. DDG has gone the route of censoring and providing “context” to things the left likes to call misinformation. Still better than Scroogle, but not as desirable a choice as it once was. Brave search performs well, respects privacy, and doesn’t seem to do the leftist manipulation thing. As far as I know, anyway. And unlike DDG, they’ve built their own engine instead of using someone else’s.

      1. I got bugged by DDG’s links to MS, and ran into a French search engine, Qwant. They claim no tracking, and it’s (mostly) compatible with Pale Moon (non-woke fork of Firefox without much of the FF gubbage) on Linux.

        The Palemoon/qwant combo dies horribly if I try to get it to display images, though that used to work. OTOH, it’s reasonably good and gets me the answers I want.

      2. Try out of France. They claim to not track you at all and not censor results. A lot shows up that doesn’t make it to G or even DDG. And use a VPN or Tor browser.

    2. You want The Spice House. They ran a promotion at the same time called #nopolitics to give discounts to those fed up with Penzy’s. The guy behind Penzy’s appears to be the gamma brother of the gal who inherited the family business. Everything Penzys you can get better there

    3. I second leaving Penzey’s for The Spice House. They get a lot of customers fleeing Bill Penzey’s politics.

      A better selection than P’s, and they offer spices in flat packs and bulk bags as well as in glass jars — cheaper price, no empty jars to dispose of, easily stored.

  2. First, we need to have a whitelist of businesses that we can patronize with a clear conscience.

    Second, we need a blacklist of businesses NOT to patronize.

    Both lists need to be updated frequently…monthly at a minimum, weekly would be ideal. And I’d take a fairly broad view on the whitelist – people tend to get tied up in Purity Wars.

    Third, I agree with Our Hostess that we need to damp down the “Let’s have a Second Civil War” talk. The first Great Unpleasantness was VERY unpleasant, and that was being fought as a conventional war…a second round would involve intra-neighborhood fighting. Ugly.

    Fourth, get involved in government affairs. Testify before local and state governments. Remember the parents who fought the Loudoun County school board? They won. And are continuing to win. The Plutocrat Wing of the GOP wins because they pay attention in the off-years. Go and do likewise.

    And finally, stop despairing. I’ve seen so much despondency in the last month that I’m getting disgusted. Pick yourselves up, dust yourselves off, reload, and get back into the fight.

  3. Try and support the people we want to win, be in charge, and succeed. I’m going to be resharing a lot of blogs and such on the social media I’m on so that they get more visibility.

    Reboost and repost things that are good. Top Gun:Maverick, for example, is a movie that I’ve lauded to everyone because it is a good movie. It isn’t woke, it’s written well, it’s fun, and you can enjoy it without worrying too much.

    Make it clear, in as many places and ways as possible that the current character assassination of people won’t be accepted-and to vote with our wallets.

    Go secondary-a lot of productions are supported by product placements and background advertising. Buy less from the products beind advertised-and make it clear why.

    Speaking of supporting, God willing, The Winter Solist is getting closer to being done and I’m actually going to do some Real Marketing (TM) for it. Will share more details when I get closer.

        1. I didn’t know that. Feel free to remove my mention of it, then. AlignPay does look like one to investigate further, though.

  4. I’ve started…it’s a slow start, but I have a “friend” who has very vocally criticized our former president, up to and including all the latest talking points about his impending jail sentence (eye roll). Thing is, this “friend” was also the person I relied upon to cut my hair. Long story short, I’ve learned to cut my own hair so I no longer support with my red cents, her blue position. It’s a small step, but one I will continue to build upon. Thank you for your words of encouragement and I’ll continue to seek other civil disobedience avenues as I can!

  5. Develop alternative communication, LoRa, Ham license, develop/join internet mesh nets, shucky darn mimeographed news sheets distributed via snail mail.

    Trade goods for goods. It wouldn’t be legal, for example, to use one ounce silver rounds as a medium of exchange.

    However if, say, you have a generator you don’t need valued at, say, $238.00. I knowing you want silver, could offer to exchange ten silvers rounds (Silver ask price today, right now, right this minute is $23.80 an ounce.) for your generator.

    It is legal to send silver through the mail, by the way.

    This would work quite well for e-book exchanges: “Sarah I’ll trade you a one ounce silver round for e-book copies of your Angels In Hell trilogy.”, “Sure Jim, I’ll attach them to an emai and sent to you as soon as I receive the silver round.”

    However if such trades are given serious consideration, I’s suggest reviewing IRS’s position on bartering.

      1. Imagine your phone can route data through all of the other phones in radio range instead of through the towers.

        Simplistic example, but gets the idea across. It is harder than it looks, but at the same time possible and can be sold as “emergency disaster communications” to get around the regulators.

          1. Well, depending on the radio gear you’re using, it’s…well…easy-ish. To make it simpler/easier, you need to turn around and have someone like myself build out an embedded Linux distribution that can run a Raspberry PI 3 or 4, several other somewhat inexpensive ARM based little maker type computer boards, coupled with a “good” WiFi dongle/add in card, to make a mesh network. The main drawbacks of this all is the range considerations. If you don’t have a bunch of people 100′->100 yds away, WiFi isn’t going to be good for the links for things.

            It’s one of MY pet projects for what I do after hours…and what I do after hours unless it’s Game Porting work, is the same class of stuff I do for the day job.

            1. There’s a reason why I said depends on the radio. It defines the range. If you could get a good data rate over some of the Ham bands on a mode the FCC approved, you could get range from cluster of mesh nodes to another cluster via 2 meter or similar comms.

              All of it’s easy-ish to tie together and link up if you do Linux. That being said, you need this for everyman types. That’s where the small maker type embedded boards come in.

              1. Living up here atop the world I’m looking at/for communication routes to the outside if the fit hits the shan. Meteor burst packet tossing looks interesting; “The most popular mode for amateur radio operations is MSK144, which is implemented in the WSJT-X software.”

            2. Since each computer/phone/whatever in the mesh net transmits and receives to and from the others, the range is theoretically limitless as the signal travels from point A to and through point B a hundred yards away to and through point C another 100 yards away…

              1. The issue there is how many conversations each phone can handle simultaneously, and is the mesh controller smart enough to route only to the node that has capacity.

                1. That, incidentally, is what a “load balancer” does: receive the incoming signal and locate a server in the network with capacity to handle it.

        1. And governments are aware of the possibility… which is why Apple broke their mesh network app in Communist China just before the Chinese government started the latest round of lockdowns.

          “That’s because AirDrop relies on direct connections between phones, forming a local network of devices that don’t need the internet to communicate. People can opt into receiving AirDrops from anyone else with an iPhone nearby.”

          “Hidden in the update was a change that only applies to iPhones sold in mainland China: AirDrop can only be set to receive messages from everyone for 10 minutes, before switching off. There’s no longer a way to keep the “everyone” setting on permanently on Chinese iPhones. The change, first noticed by Chinese readers of 9to5Mac, doesn’t apply anywhere else.”

          1. Note that iOS 16.2 will roll that change out to all users, not just those in the PRC.

            From a strictly-security standpoint, it’s actually a good thing. But I understand how people were using it as an end-run around government censorship.

            1. There’s a reason I’m also working on a Linux based smartphone…along with capabilities that remove some of the need for the phone networks in general.

          2. I saw an update on AirDrop today. (Insty? Not sure.) Apple decided to stop the discrimination against the Chinese…

            by making the 10 minute limit global.

            I have an iPhone, used to run an app for the travel trailer. Apple vs Android; at least I can keep the updates from occurring. Easy when it’s almost never on.

    1. Reading what I wrote above I don’t think I was clear why I feel it’s germane to the discussion. What I’m saying is try to deal with the folks directly and to do so we need develop means of information and goods transfer and exchange.

    2. There’s no law against barter, but in theory you have to report the value as income…Quite a bit of informal barter goes on all the time, like you’ll take my kid to the game and I’ll mow your lawn, and is ignored by all…

      1. My dad, who’s a welder and machinist: “Oh, you need a trailer hitch repaired? Well, I can fix it if you’ll let me borrow your tractor to move these cement slabs.” “Oh, you need some repair work in your pizza kitchen – and maybe some kind of new setup for the buffet table? Sure, I can do that. How many free meals will that amount to?” We once got 300 pounds of prime sirloin tips from a restaurant where they were training a new meat cutter in exchange for a stainless steel backsplash.
        And if anyone needs some kind of service, Dad almost certainly knows someone who can help. He’s got a memory like a sieve, with the personal network of a plumber. Someday I hope to have half his connections.

        1. “But in practice, they’re different”….Yogi Berra
          And in practice, barter is rarely reported….

          1. Which is the UniParty way. They don’t pass laws to do anything about the problem. They just want them on the books so they can selectively enforce them against uppity proles.

    3. “Trade goods for goods. It wouldn’t be legal, for example, to use one ounce silver rounds as a medium of exchange.”

      That depends on whether you’re using blanks or if you’re using US Currency that actually IS that.

      Silver rounds are legal if you’re using the officially minted ones as exchange along with the Gold ones- using the current metal value for the actual exchange.

      1. “Rounds” is a term used to describe silver or gold shaped the same as coinage but not official currency.

        Quoting SD Bullion; “Silver rounds is a term used in the physical precious metal bullion industry to describe silver coin-like oval-shaped pieces which are not formally legal tender issued by a sovereign government mint. Long term silver bullion buyers often prefer to buy Silver Rounds given their typically lower price premiums vs government issued silver coins.”

      1. This will take infrastructure that we don’t currently have. You can get a small site to do e-books for a small community. I know, I’ve got the guts waiting for us to get there with some of the stuff I’m involved with others on. The problem is more of one of scaling it. Amazon has a cloud of servers behind what they call, “load balancers” that spread out the work to hundreds of servers behind a single dispatch address on the ‘net.

        In order to get that sort of thing for books, possibly fulfillment, you’re going to need money to frame out even a P2P based solution into this space for JUST the e-Books. Not a no, but we need to think about this solidly before trying…and have something solid there.

        1. Which is why you would need to have a hosting provider that has those capabilities. Gab may offer that.

  6. “because the worse things get…the more people on our side will need help..”
    Yep…already starting to see this, though not in our immediate family yet, Heaven forfend…This is what it was like at the beginning of the Great Depression…

    1. You’re about to maybe see the GD 2.0 going on there. Maybe worse. I hope for it not happening, but still…the damnfools seem dead set on repeating the mistakes of CW 1.0

  7. As far as alternative to paypal or gofundme options. I still have your PO Box …

    Tell me about grocery run costs going up. I’ve cut way back on purchases. Everything is bought around sales or bulk (ex: $3.99 each if buy 5, blocks of cheddar, with loyalty “card” VS $8.99 sale with loyalty card VS $10.99 each …) provided it is safe to buy in bulk. (When is it not safe? When I’m going to throw away more than I’ll save because it takes too long to use up. Same reason won’t buy certain bulk items at Costco.) Despite this, I’ve been spending enough to get $0.60/gal discount on said affiliation’s fuel at least once a month, for months now. This doesn’t count what is being bought in bulk at Costco (I’ve cut way on Costco runs). Then there is the Petsmart pet food runs (I can get the dog’s food at the local Petmart outlet, usually. Cannot get the cats’ food at Petmart.) I use coupons, but not a fanatic about that (tried that. Sure save money on grocery, but cost fuel in running around. Sure matching from other stores but only if the “same”.)

    Regarding the affiliate we use. Did not know they’d gone so woke until recently via comments here. Sigh. OTOH, for reasons, not the least of which, unless I’m willing to strictly shop the local’s labeled brands (the quality is major subpar), the savings just isn’t there for the fuel cost to get there and back (better now since can fold in with Costco/Petsmart run, but still have to stop at affiliate to pickup missing items). May get there yet.

    The above is just groceries. Not counting fuel, heating, power, and water. All of which has hit major highs. House and vehicle payments are static (static low interest) and not paying enough extra to make cutting back there help.

    Overall. We had our finances dialed in so that we were breakeven with monthly income VS outgo, including eating out (which has been now cut). Might maybe need $500 or so to cover cash pulled (which was transferred over from bank savings, until that needed to be covered. This is excluding months to pay for extras: travel, property taxes, insurance, or extra owed for income taxes, state or federal). Then we’d pull enough to refund savings + taxes owed from IRA’s. Not required distribution, yet (another year for hubby). But old enough to pull without penalty.) Now? We are lucky to only need another $2k – $3k + taxes. Still doesn’t count the extra list. To the point I had to up the main CC limit (I track spending regularly). Note, fixed net income does go up in January 2023. But not enough to meet the shortfall we are currently seeing. Technically we are in the fixed income bracket. SS is increasing, but our pensions sure aren’t. Short of our life savings getting confiscated they can make it sting, but not really hurt for a change. We aren’t fearing being laid off and having to look for work, with little to no cushion, or a cushion but get to watch that drain away because we couldn’t dial in expenses enough (we have been there too often).

    1. Fred’s did a major instore renovation (along with a year-long fix to the roof) that turned the American game show Is it in stock?) to the sequel: Then, where the blazes is it this week?.

      After they finished, we got a postcard: Spend $40 at the store, present the week’s coupon, and get $10 off. An apology without saying “we’re sorry”. That card had 4 coupons. We also needed some non-food items, as well as some stuff we donate.

      After we finished that card, another came out. I was sick last week, so missed one, but we got $70 worth of discounts from the two cards.

      And now we’re back to the normal buying pattern. The big independent has good stuff, though the “house brand” (not really; Essential Everyday) tomato paste seems to dislike both of us… Plan A is to minimize use, plan B entails grinding up dehydrated tomatoes.

      The big ticket I get at Fred’s are the Home Depot gift cards. Having a major project or three in the air means I can keep a steady stream of cards, and it’s a little bit harder for TPTB to trace what I’m doing at HD. Not that interesting to anybody…

      1. Then, where the blazes is it this week?.

        I’ve been known to grumble “Where am I? Costco?” or “Didn’t know I was at Costco!” … Resulting in more of a few chuckles.

        Our local Fred Meyers has had the “new” renovation for awhile now. The biggest irritation that resulted? A lot of what I want is on the top three shelves. I can’t reach the top one (don’t think most can). But what is worse, I can’t reach to the back of the next two shelves down. Barely reach what is on the 2nd self down as it is. If they don’t want me using the stools, they really don’t want me climbing the shelves (not that I can, but I’ve been tempted). You can guess that I am vertically challenged.

          1. There are step stools, but customers are not suppose to use them. As I found out. Me to employee: “Excuse me. Can I borrow you or your step stool?” He helped me get what I needed. And, yes, I too have seen employees use the bottom shelf for a few inches of height boost. My problem is I have to go up to the next higher shelf … That is really, really, not recommended or safe.

        1. If I didn’t climb shelves I’d have to give up grocery stores altogether. Inevitably someone tall comes along to help, but by then I’m already up.

          I prefer to think of myself as concentrated. 😉

          1. I’m five four shrunk from five six, and I’m continuously recruited by very small women to get stuff down for them. It starts with “You’re so tall, would you???” Sigh

            1. I know! Right? I’m 5’4″ too. I don’t know if that is particularly tall or not. Compared to mom, sister, and son, both 5’10”, and hubby 6’2″, I am short. OTOH compared to my sister (5’2″), mom’s sister and BIL (4’11”), either of my grandmothers and a great-uncle (4’6″), … well I am not short. Then there is my BIL and all three of their children shortest is 5’9″. BIL is 6’3″ and their son was taller than I am before he was out of middle school, ending at 6’6″ (does not play college ball of any kind). One of those toddlers where patrons in restaurants were grumbling why didn’t the parents make him act his age. His sisters, being older (not old enough to be his parent), had the unmannerly gall to snap “he is, he’s two” (three, etc.). Young enough to shock others, yet not intimidating like his parents. It was great!

          2. Now that my hair is natural (thanks to the shutdowns) white (gray, black, very light brown, silver) blond-ish, I do not hesitate to ask anyone tall enough to reach what I can’t be it store employee or not. I get a lot of chuckles. Also not shy about requesting help in the parking lot if I don’t just pull the car around. Especially if it is a strapping HS/college being brought by their parent for the same reason. The last is Costco. I can leverage most things onto a cart. Lifting the same item out of a cart into the car might be more of a challenge that I may or may not be willing to meet, depending …

      2. There are some seeming ‘House Brands’ that are not exactly or are sort of. Various stores (in different regions…) combine to get economies of scale and use a Brand (Name) that is not any of the store names. The one example I can think of right off is ‘Top Care’.

        1. Essential Everyday replaced a couple of Pac NW brands. (One was going bankrupt, and the other got clobbered by the Sept ’20 Antifa arson tantrum.) The labels say it’s a brand of Supervalu Inc out of Minnesota. The independent has consumer-sized bits, while the restaurant supply uses a little bit of the EE for things like water in gallon bottles.

          I think the local Fred’s is trying to reserve the top shelves for backstock, with varying degrees of success. I do better for high stuff than bottom shelves, so it averages out. I am not seeing step stools, though. I’m always there on dayshifts.

          Home Depot has those steps along with the direst of dire warnings, but the times I’ve needed something from backstock, they get the big manlift out. OTOH, those steps get moved out of the way a lot…

      3. What’s interesting here is your thought process. You pay for a gift card with either cash or credit card, then use the gift to shop without leaving a trail. Gotcha! That is helpful. Thanks!

  8. I don’t respond to any of the AARP junk mail I get. Made that decision back in the 80’s when AARP came out supporting ‘gun control’. “Welp, I ain’t ever going to give them a red cent.”

    If already a member, consider quitting. When I looked into it, many years ago, the outfit was run by a bunch of 40-something yuppies rather than actual, you know, people of retirement age. I doubt it’s gotten any better since then.

    I already pay everything I can with cash or checks. Credit cards are only for online purchases or if I don’t have enough cash with me.

    1. The Reader looked at AARP as part of his research in the run up to retirement. He decided to stay far far away.

    2. I have never thought of joining AARP. Their primary function seems to be to lobby for government handouts to people in my age range, and I think that whole business is corrupt.

      1. I wonder how ell they’re doing, given they are now marketing themselves as something for all ages. (Or that’s how the ads look to me).

    3. Business reply envelopes require payment by by the originator to USPS when used. It is way more than a stamp.

      An old acquaintance always returned a typed letter ” stop sending me this trash” plus the shredded remains of the junk.

      Once or twice, for particularly noxious senders, they shipping-tape-wrapped the envelope to a brick.

      Not sure that is exactly cricket. But it did seem to cut down on the junk received.

      Same person managed to leave a large fish in an abandoned safe deposit box, back before banks got made to be picky about ID. Definitely not cricket. Dont. But still funny.

      The envelope caper is using their own resources and methods against them. Judo, basicly.

      As to the not a red cent for blue, it only works -well- if we can make them know it is happening. If they don’t know it is happening and why, they won’t change.

      1. I’ve returned their junk in their envelopes. Rather than shred, I just cut out all the bits with identifying information on them. Sometimes I added other junk mail to the envelopes.

        But it was only fun for a short time. When it became more like work, I decided I had better things to do.

        1. There is always the Abbie Hoffman technique from “Steal This Book” . If it has “return postage guaranteed” ANYTHING attached to it must be delivered and the cost is borne by the sender. So just securely tape a brick to it and the sender eats the weight cost AND the hand processing cost, or they did in the 70’s and 80s. Abbie Hoffman was a jerk, but a clever jerk 🙂 .

          1. I once did a job in a place where they had “return postage.” They had someone who filtered out those things and they could get a refund. However, they needed the filterer.

          2. Post Office is allowed to treat such things as ‘non mailable’ and can trash them without concern.

            Besides, what value is it to drop weird things on some minimum wage mail-opener? They work for a mail service; they have no influence over what is sent out.

            1. The effect, because you’re using a postage paid envelope, was to cause the guarantor of the postage paid envelope to have to pay the postage for a heavy object at first class rates. It appears the regulations have changed since the 70’s.

      2. The blue guys seems to be doing fewer postage paid envelopes. I have a small stack of stuff I’ve thought of answering but haven’t opened.
        NOW never wrote me again after I used their reply envelope to tell them I’d take them a lot more seriously if they fought against female genital mutilation and sex trafficking world wide instead of what they see as “oppression,” here.

      3. Envelope, properly sealed with a crapload of cheap as hell fender washers works nearly as well and while not ethical, it’s legal- and they’re not exactly ethical themselves.

    4. AMAC is trying to take AARP’s slot. I have signed up for them. Now I need to see how far their discounts work. AMAC is robustly conservative.

    5. AARP was keen on Obamacare, too. I’ve read that they’re actually an insurance company pretending to be a lobby group…

  9. If it’s local and it’s artsy and it’s SILENT on wokism, it’s hard right. HARD right. The best those guys can get away with is not signaling left.

    If “per city law wear masks” was the sign, and there was no active enforcement, it’s HARD right.

    Think, people. Businesses can only do so much when they never know who wants to play karen, and the regulators are on the karens’ side. Think back over the last couple years. If they did the bare minimum required, they’re on our side.

    Give ’em support and they’ll be loud, when they know it won’t cost them everything.

    1. The dental office people were flabbergasted at the masking requirements (and attempted vax-mandate), but it didn’t take long for creative blindness to take play. When the staff is staring at open mouths (hey were masked; were long before covidiocy), it wasn’t that big of a step to accidentally forget to enforce masking in the lobby.

      Had a similar situation with another doctor, to the point where the not-vax narrative got quietly contradicted. AFAIK, he never got caught…

    2. Speaking of, there’s a yarn shop in Hot Springs, Arkansas. About 6 months old, and since it’s the “only,” independent yarn shop in Hot Springs, it will come up first on search. Small, but good quality and the lady is supporting independent dyers.

  10. Sin taxes net the pigs a good amount of money. Beer brewing is fun and easy. Distilling is more complicated and a bigger initial investment, but still really enjoyable to the right kind of person. Tobacco seed is perfectly legal to buy, the plants are a little tough to start but bulletproof afterwards if you have any smokers in your circle. Reloading will strech you ammo budget without getting some politician’s brain-dead offspring more money to blow on coke and hookers. You can’t sell any of that stuff for a living without the self appointed slavemasters smashing down your door and shooting your dog, but you can share with your friends and family, and reduce in a small way the money the feds have to enjoy parties on Epstein Island 2.0. And of course anything you can grow, make, or build on your own will almost certainly reduce the money some ESG corporation gets in profits.

      1. Nicotine was the first commercial insecticide. Makes the bugs shake themselves to death.

    1. The Reader is interested in home distilling – it’s on the list after ‘study for ham license’.

      1. I’m growing grapevines.
        Um…. I’ll go so far as saying my current location so far mimics the climate of my native land, that the grapes of my childhood grow well here. I’m very pleased.

        1. Well, I know it isn’t California (for which many parts resemble Portugal.) That would be a case of “out of the frying pan and into the volcano.”

          Still love my home state, just wish there were the political will and power to split it three or four ways—and to have the water rights where the water comes from. “No marketable commodities in the northern half” my ASS.

      2. And of course there’s the, “leave it outside in freezing weather and pour off what doesn’t freeze,” method. The other way is better.
        “No, you can use this to make WHISKY? I’m just distilling water for sustainability! And essential oils!”
        Like my beloved’s uncle in WWII, who ran the, “water purification plant,” in the, “munitions storage area,” on some nameless island in the Pacific.

        1. Ahhh Apple Jack!, take cider let go hard (and it will if NOT pasteurized, lots of yeast and related critters on the peel when the apples are crushed to start the fermentation). Take the hard cider and place outside in low (10-20 f) conditions. Once frozen pour off the liquid that remains, voila that liquid is apple jack. Higher alcohol content than hard cider (that tops out at 8% abv even if done intentionally, natural hard cider is likely 2-4 % abv) maybe 10-12% abv? If you distill that you can get a brandy like substance (or you can buy some rather expensive stuff from France Caradoc? ) but there you may run afoul of the BATF if you make too much or try to sell it.

            1. Yep that’s it. Memory is crappy. Never had it, though my understanding is it compares well with good brand or Cognac.

          1. 5 gallons cider, 10 lb sugar, 1 lb raisins, 6 lemons (sliced). Combine. Cover with cheesecloth to partially suppress the fruit flies and stir daily until it stops working. Freeze down as Tregonsee describes.

  11. Thanks for this shot of positivity. I do seem to see the glass as half empty. That said, I always strive to keep moving, doing what I can to make sure that it doesn’t go dry. I enjoy complaining, but that doesn’t mean I won’t put my back to the wheel and push with everyone else. As for ideas… Well, since we can’t attach a ham sandwich to our emails for our hungry compatriots, I have an idea of how to support our creatives and that would have coat tails, I believe, especially for younger people and over the long haul.

    I think there is a huge sinkhole of need for a Conservative, Right Wing, Traditional, non-democrat (as democrat now means socialist/communist) PUBLISHING HOUSE. And I don’t mean strictly Science Fiction. Don’t know why, but most traditional (in their beliefs and values) and conservative authors have been relegated to Sci-fi. As evidence of that, I recall Hans Schantz recent sale for conservative authors. 99.99% of them write scifi exclusively. There was one exception and I bought her book and loved it. The book was The Gentleman Farmers. by Loretta Malakie. I would put it in the Mainstream/Literary category. My hope is that we will see a Conservative Publishing House, akin to the big five or four, whatever it is now, Liberal Publishing Houses. A house that will specialize in Conservative/Traditional fiction in ALL genres. (If someone wants to start something like this and they need acquisition editors, yours truly would be interested.) As someone who has written in most genres (memoir, action, war, historical, social, sci-fi, speculative, mainstream and… ‘aspires’ to literary), I know that, today, it is just about impossible to get a book contract in any genre unless it pushes woke values. As proof, The Gentleman Farmers, Independently published (July 3, 2020), SHOULD HAVE BEEN published by a major house. Twenty or thirty years ago… it would have, and it would have had all the power and reach that a big house can provide. But I’m guessing that the author tried to sell to one of the big ones, but was turned down. I’ve seen the postings of today’s ‘literary agents’ and ‘editors,’ (Whitey Mann… or lady, NEED NOT APPLY). So I am adamant that good work has been rejected because of the new sexual, social, affirmative action policies, not because of merit. How many wonderful young writers will have their dreams squashed in the future because ‘woke’ publishing will not consider their work?

    So, and I know this is a dream, but maybe some day there will be a power press, a Big Conservative Publishing Company (and I don’t mean Regnery or the other publishers of Big Conservative Hardback Preaching to the Choir Polemics costing $29.99 that will not change young minds)… but… a publisher of Culture, that is Fiction, that is novels and short story collections, written by normal, educated, traditional writers in all genres.

    Here is the landing page blurb for such a publisher…

    Reasoned Mind Publishing welcomes all work in all genres by shunned writers. If your work has been rejected by Big NYC Publishing because you are heterosexual, white, or any other race, traditional and/or patriotic, then Reasoned Mind would like to see your work.

    I know… I know… It will never happen. It will never work… Bla, bla, bla…

    But a man can dream, can’t he?

        1. In more ways than one. You know where I work. My project manager was in a meeting relative to the client looking at Amazon Web Services for cloud hosting, and someone else brought up that AWS is building their market share by doing things like offering Siemens 25 million worth of cloud hosting and full support gratis if they’ll move to no one else.

          If enough companies snap at something like that, they may get an effective monopoly downstream.

    1. There is NO need for a publishing house, Carl. I’m sorry. There is maybe that need 30 years ago. But lacking a time machine, I HATE TO TELL YOU there is NOTHING a publishing house can’t do for you that you can’t do for yourself.
      Figure it out.

      1. Thanks for this link. A quick skim was interesting. The Reader has saved it for later.

        1. For the record, Carl, I was slightly disturbed because apparently all my articles on the complete upgefuckedness of trad pub and the distribution thereof have been in vain.

          1. Well, I’m sure I haven’t read all of them. But, from my perspective, what we have now hasn’t worked out for me. I know, it has for others. But there are more people affected than the authors. Anyway, we’ll just have to disagree for now. And I do appreciate you allowing me to share my experience and opinions on your blog.

            1. Honey, I doubt traditional publishing would work for you. It took me ten years of submitting and then FINALLY meeting editors at cons before I started selling.
              It’s got nothing to do with right/left or the quality of the writing. It was, however H*llish to break in. It required CONTACTS.
              Learn how to publicize. There are courses.

              1. Thanks for that. I’m a writer, a decent one, and a poor publicist. Yes. And I suppose if I was really interested in promotion, which is selling, why not sell real estate or Amway? It would probably be more lucrative. I want to go back to one of my points one more time. And this is what I saw in Hans Schantz’ sale. With very few exceptions, all the books that were for sale in his ‘non-woke sale, ‘ were sci-fi/fantasy. What this says to me, is that the Left has successfully walled off conservative books into one genre. I don’t know why ‘conservative stories’ all have to be sci-fi/fantasy. But it does seem to be the case. This is why I highlighted The Gentleman Farmers, because it was one of a few exceptions. It was conservative, but realistic, contemporary, literary. And for that it stood out bigly. And when I saw that (and read it), I wondered, where are all the other conservative books like that? Why, in the ghetto that’s been created for shunned conservative writers, is there evidently only one kind of book available. Yes, I haven’t read most of them, but they all seem to be of a kind.

                (FYI, I did buy ‘Draw One in the Dark,’ and am looking forward to reading it as I haven’t read any of your other work).

                Well, again, I do appreciate the opportunity to disagree. And may your blog live long and prosper. I do enjoy it very much.

                    1. The people who came from nothing to be bestsellers were — whether good or bad writers — AMAZING sales people.
                      I can’t sell anything even at 1/10th the value.

                    2. The Reader once thought he was an engineer, not a salesman. He was disabused of that notion in his 40s by someone 15 years his senior who the Reader respected as an engineer very much. The butt chewing the Reader got one morning over breakfast after complaining about how travel to customer sites to give presentations was taking away from ‘real work’ was pretty spectacular. Carl, you’ve gotten off easy here by comparison.

                    3. “… Carl, you’ve gotten off easy here by comparison.”

                      Well, thanks for that.

                      “Now, Carl, why don’t you just relax and let our opinion in. It’s really easy. Cigarette?

                      No. I don’t smoke. And could you turn down that light? It’s almost blinding me.

                      “Yes, of course.”

                      She turns off the light. All I see is black now…

                      “Just relax and join the hive mind. We love you, really. It’s just that your mind is not right. But, you’ll come along.”

                      “Why do I have to come along? Can’t you just accept the idea that I have a different opinion than you? Can’t we just agree to disagree?”

                      She laughs. Oh, Carl… You have relatives in Cincinnati, isn’t that right?”

                      Clayton here. Did I ever tell you that I was paranoid? No? Well, I am. But, despite that, I’ve enjoyed our conversation today. I think I’ll go now…

          2. Personal finance articles in the newspaper don’t change much because they keep on dinning the same advice into people’s ears and every time, those who have ears listen

            1. And here I thought it was because they always advise you to give up you Starbucks coffee and make it at home, and stuff like that, which the people reading can’t afford to do anyway.

              1. Actually there are people who make six figures and keep on going deeper in debt because they can’t figure out where the money goes.

      2. Don’t know anything about the author or the piece. I’m guessing that he’s a ‘baby boomer’ like myself. Much of what he describes I’ve witnessed, when I was paying attention rather than just having a good time or lost in work.

        One big hole in the multi-century analysis is the willful destruction of the American middle class due to the off-shoring, that is, dismantling and reassembling, of American factories to the far East and other low-wage areas.

        The writer doesn’t seem to be aware of this. The ‘rust belt’ is a monument to the greed of big corporations and their government partners. Essentially, what they did was sacrifice their own country’s middleclass for profit, and create a ‘middle class in other countries, notably China.

        Another thing about this article, to me, is that the writer seems to have a blind spot as to some of the players or forces in ‘fragmentation.’ It reminds me of the movie (never read the book), The Martian. That’s a topic I could spend 1,000 words on. So I’ll just say, that the writer of that ‘story’ ignored a political cultural entity, as if it didn’t exist.
        But getting back to the fragmentation. What to do. Well, if a plane load of people survived a crash and needed to work together to survive, most of them, fragmentation would be a big negative. Those who sublimated their ‘individuality’ and worked with others would survive, but the ‘individuals,’ would starve or be killed by the bad guys. So, there’s a big price to pay for rampant individualism.

        Just thought of another big void in this article. We’re all familiar with ‘rags to riches back to rags.’ The sons of millionaires frittering away the wealth their hard-working parents gave them till they have noting. Then there’s the truism, ‘hard times produce strong men; good times produce weak men’ (or populations). The point. Pendulum. Or, to get more scientific, cycles. Everything in the world goes through cycles. We’re in the downward arc of the cycle, it would seem. We will reach bottom and then begin to rise. To what, who can say.
        When the great struggle between China and the West is done, who, which culture/race will dominate? And how long will that world domination last before the table are eventually turned ?

        So, we had lots of fragmentation in America and it doesn’t seem to have ‘raised all boats.’ To tie that back to my point about the need for an alternative Publishing House for the ‘disappeared conservative or traditional authors,’ I don’t think that the fragmentation in the ‘book publishing’ biz has been all that good for ‘culture, story.’ I know some of the resultant fragments in the scribbling class have done very well. They tend to be, in my opinion, more talented on the marketing and self-promotion side of the scribbler scale. While the quiet, reclusive, dare I say, more visionary scribblers are the forest not seen because of the trees. So, the take over of Mega-Publishing Corporations by ‘woke’ folk is dismissed as a nothing by some, who are, let’s say, more entrepreneurial, it is disastrous for others. And, I have discovered that while the Left is lock-step when it comes to what should and should not be published and promoted, the Right is completely fragmented. After ten or so years of reaching out to ‘the Right,’ for help in fighting ‘the culture war,’ I have learned that the Right (and yes, that includes many creatives) operates on the principle of ‘every man or woman for his/herself.’ I don’t believe that in the long run, this is a winning strategy.

        Well, I’ll just leave it there.

        Thanks for sharing the article.

        1. One big hole in the multi-century analysis is the willful destruction of the American middle class due to the off-shoring

          Something which was an economic phenomena. And also in no way undermines the overall point.

        2. To tie that back to my point about the need for an alternative Publishing House for the ‘disappeared conservative or traditional authors,’ I don’t think that the fragmentation in the ‘book publishing’ biz has been all that good for ‘culture, story.’

          Which was the entire point of my link. Trying to show from a different angle that you have your head stuck in a obsolete mass production / gatekeeper model that was the original cause of the problems in the first place.

          1. “.. obsolete mass production / gatekeeper model that was the original cause of the problems in the first place.” Not sure that the ‘obsolete mass production/gatekeeper model’ is such a bad thing when you are in a war. We’re talking war, as in culture war.’ The Left has been winning the culture war. Because, in my opinion, our side only give lip service to Breitbart’s maxim that ‘politics is downstream from culture.’ In any war, kinetic, political, cultural, the side that is fragmented will lose. This is my point.

            Anyway, I have made my points as clearly as I can. I don’t see any point in arguing back and forth.

            1. Every. Single. Time. we have tried this plan of “let’s build a giant org to fight our battles” it is a colossal failure because the organization is by definition an easy capture point and ends up stabbing us in the back.

              On the other side of the coin EVERY victory we have had in the last 40 years has been through decentralized means, usually through better decentralized communications.

              The history of the culture war says you don’t have a clue what you are talking about. Which matches up with your demands for a right-wing buggy whip manufacturer while everyone else is busy tinkering with their horseless carriages.

            2. allow me to rephrase your last sentence…

              “Anyway, I stated my opinion, and I can’t be bothered to listen to yours.”

                  1. Dude; everyone here has been on the short end of a many-vs-one fight and held their own. If you can’t handle that, what are you doing on the internet?

                    1. Not a dude, but what you don’t seem to understand, is that I have listened to the other opinions. But… I don’t agree with them. I don’t understand, why you don’t understand why it’s OKAY to disagree. A discussion does not mean that it must end in agreement, that one side must triumph. Okay ? It’s simple. I have my opinion and you have yours. Let’s just agree to disagree. Like they did in the good old days.

                    2. When my kids say “two and two makes five,” I tell them “No, that makes four.”

                      The truth of that statement isn’t changed by someone saying that one and two makes four.

                    3. …. No, your argument was fallacious nonsense. That is what “it” was.

                      You attempted to argue that a statement was false because someone else stated the same in an entirely different context.

                      Answers are not forever wrong or forever right, they are right or wrong depending on the question they are answering.

                    4. Perhaps, if you don’t want to look foolish, you should consider what kind of nonsense argument you are making.

                      You attempted to make a gottcha! argument, and now you are attempting emotional manipulation that would make my 11 year old daughter blush.

                    5. That’s what my writer friends, democrats all, tell me when I say that the election was stolen.

                      But that isn’t what is happening here. (To be clear: IMO) You just compared poison oak to apples.

                      What the others are trying to tell you is they get it. That they pivoted because they experienced the same. How they pivoted and why. They are only trying to help.

                  2. Carl,
                    we’re not trying to pile on. I haven’t blocked you. That’s cancelling.
                    We’re trying to make you understand that what you seem to hanker for (and BOY do I sympathize) has never existed.
                    I ALSO suck at selling.
                    Fortunately with indie, if you put books out regularly, after a while people find one and then the others — it’s called the Long Tail — I’ve just started doing it once a month, and most of them are reissues, but my income has increased 10x. It was almost nothing before. 1.5x now, just looked.
                    You want to sell one book, you have to write more.
                    Again, that was also true in traditional publishing. no house invests on just one book. They might have, maybe, in like the 30s, but I don’t know. I know not since I’ve been watching.
                    We’re trying to explain. You can continue hankering for the impossible, or you can figure out what to do and do it. Hankering for the impossible is less work, but after a while we’ll stop answering, because we can’t help you.

                    1. “We’re trying to make you understand” Sure you don’t mean ‘We’re trying to make you agree?’ 😉

                      “You want to sell one book, you have to write more… ”

                      Ever read one of my books? I’ve written ten (I know you’ve written double or more than that), and they’re all available on AMZ and the other e-tailers. They’re all quite different. If you like historicals, you might enjoy my book, White Seed: The Untold Story of the Lost Colony of Roanoke. I’m currently working on a book, a ‘family saga,’ that I consider ready to be published, but I’m trying to find a commercial house and I’m still messing around with it.

                      Anyway, you’re idea about re-issuing books is interesting. I would like to hear more about that. If you have a book published, why would you want to re-issue it? I’d be interested in hearing that.

                    2. Okay. I’m getting so old that I forgot that I wrote/published 12 books, not 10. And I too had to ask for a reversion of rights for four of my books, three published by Putnam/Berkley, one by Thomas Dunne Books. I then republished them on Amazon around 2009. Then I went straight to ‘Indie’ after that. Well, I’ll let you get some sleep now. I do wish you would read one of my books. I intend to read one of yours.

                      Good night.
            3. You are making one, fundamental issue about ‘our side’. Culture isn’t a monolithic organization. It’s Joe Blow who’s raising his kids in Small town somewhere and that network, that intersects with Sally Smith who’s married to his brother’s cousin two town’s over, and they get together a couple times a year, and she calls him when she has questions because he knows some stuff about military and she’s hearing weird things. And the network spreads.

              It’s Bob’s Bakery (no, not that bob. The other bob. No… the other. The one with a bakery not the jester’s outfit or the abacus.) which has an on going feud with that fancy blinking bookstore run by a bunch of hippies (whether they are or not) that are cutting in on his pastry business… but when his ovens blew they let him use theirs, and when their awning collapsed he was there with a hammer.

              It’s half brothers Troy and Marty, that have never gotten along, but Troy’ll be damned if he lets the local rustling ring use HIS land to go after his brother’s cows.

              Its the tens of thousands of little connections people make day in and day out. It’s not “publishing companies” though they’ve been convincing people that THEY are culture for decades. Looks like you swallowed it hook, line, and sinker. It bleeds into the business. The internet lets those connections build a little farther afield. Someone takes out Bob’s Bakery, and people band together. The toughs try and come back and do it again, and Joe from Joe’s garage is there. Hippy Mike (who isn’t a hippy just has an unhealthy fondness for bookstores and bellbottoms) is across the street with a shot gun.

              THIS is the kind of stuff we’re trying to build. THIS is what works. Yeah Bob’s Bakery may go down permanently, but Bob and his family will find avenues for help, avenues built by the connections. Not avenues built by Small Town Inc. (Small Town Inc usually gets taken over by Big Town Bakery who were the one sending folk after Bob in the first place.) They can’t take over Bob and Joe and Mike and Suzzy who runs the day care, and… the list goes on. Our STRENGTH is they can’t get us all. (And we’re armed to the teeth.)

              Yes, we need to build things like distribution platforms, but you know what? Those have come and go since the advent of the written word. (the coliseum was an entertainment distribution platform, it’s building materials have been redistributed a lot! Entertainment went on.)

  12. It’s become very real for me.
    Someone recently punched two bullet holes through my mailbox.
    And they didn’t particularly care where they went after sailing through it.

    1. Are you and yours uninjured? (Physically. I suspect you’re hopping mad, and I more than suspect ‘Okay’ is not currently on the table.)

      1. Nope. We’re fine. Wife’s a bit unsettled. I’m more annoyed that my nice, comfortable semi-rural retirement home isn’t any different than Chicago than anything else. And it effectively sealed the decision on whether to CCW or not. Also sealed the decision on whether or not I will comply with any attempt to ban any class of weapons from here on out.

        1. Glad you guys are alright. many hugs to the both of you I definitely understand the unsettled. And it is always better to be able to shoot back!

        2. And it effectively sealed the decision on whether to CCW or not.

          At the risk of being excessively snarky, sounds like this event was a good thing then.

          (says the guy who waited until the last minute of his personal deadline to start carrying)

          1. Interesting. The Reader struggles with making CCW a habit. He acquired the tools, did training and maintains practice, but just can’t consistently make it part of his leave the house routine yet. Part of it is an unwillingness to believe in the need despite the evidence.

            1. Ditto.

              We should especially when we travel away from home. But often we can’t. Take our next planned trip. We are taking in US national parks, again. Oh, if it was just those we would (legal to carry, not legal to live fire not matter what. Would we if we had to? Yes. But getting off point.) But we plan on crossing into Canada. Carrying a firearm across the border is definitely a huge no-no. There are certain circumstances when firearms can cross the border, but we won’t qualify.

                  1. As the article states. That will stop TPTB how? Not like what the First Nations opinion matters to them, despite what comes out of TPTB mouths. Article does state that there is at least one political body that isn’t going along with the proposal, for all the good anyone thinks it will do.

                    1. Well, it kind of puts the lie to “respecting indigenous peoples”. And of course, treaties are a different relationship. And I suspect that Vladimir Poutine might experience interesting enforcement issues.

                    2. Well, it kind of puts the lie to “respecting indigenous peoples”. And of course, treaties are a different relationship.

                      Yes. 100% to both.

                      And I suspect that Vladimir Poutine might experience interesting enforcement issues.

                      Agree. The indigenous peoples can put the statement/resolution out. I mean. Their attitude has to be: “Wait! What? They are going to ignore us again? Why that never happens! Except the days that end in ‘Y’ ….” or shorter “What are they going to do? Cancel us? … Oh. Wait….”

                      That doesn’t count everyone else who are quickly arranging more canoe accidents. Plus teach the ones who didn’t have to have canoe accidents on the handgun bans/turn-in, how to do so safely.

                    3. And there’s always “Amos Moses, tundra edition.”

                      “Now, the Sheriff caught wind that Amos
                      was in the swamp trappin’ alligator skin,
                      So he snuck in the swamp gonna get the boy,
                      But he never come out again…..

                      Weeellll I wonder where Louisiana sheriff went to?
                      You can shore get lost in Louisiana bayou…..”

        3. Glad to hear that you’re ok. Could it be Deer hunting season? Many hunters in the Northeast have NO fricking idea how far a rifle bullet will go and take no care to make sure they are properly backstopped. Although TWO holes seems to negate that as that kind of hunter would be lucky to hit a 60’s Chrysler Imperial twice let alone a US #2 rural mailbox.

          1. Oh, there is NO question. Two rounds were fired from a vehicle stopped in front of the mailbox, with slightly differing trajectories suggesting it moved a couple inches between shots. Nothing else was hit. No other boxes on the road were hit, so this is highly unlikely to be kids randomly shooting. Rounds were about .22 cal. Probably not .223/5.56 rounds as they began mushrooming as soon as they punched through the front door. Back of the box holes were bigger, and not clean.

            I’ve a multiple election season candidate for select board, a known conservative, and outspoken about many local issues: from town spending and regulations, to analysis and publication of probable drunk driving based on alcoholic beverage containers picked up each month on our road. Even my state rep who lives next door was flabbergasted that someone would do that. On the other hand, this also could be a false flag operation by DoJ or FBI agents as they are NOT my friends, and certainly no friends of my extended family. David Wheeler is my wife’s cousin, and has an entire room filled with evidence on the Winter Hill Mob, and a plethora of FBI misdeeds.

            1. It is, sadly, a pretty normal “idiot kid of various ages” thing.

              Most common during hunting season, Alcohol Was LIkely Involved type situation, they also think hitting the deer in the deer crossing signs is hilarious. (And frequently have bad aim.)

        4. A good friend of mine was murdered in his house a couple of weeks ago. Killer was a fugitive who had already ditched two cars while fleeing an earlier attempted murder. The killer knew my friend collected cars and guns. I live in a rural area where things like this can happen and nobody would know for a while because we’re pretty isolated. So carrying at all times is the only way to be safe. If my friend had been armed, the other guy would have been dead today.

      1. I guess the mailbox makes some sense. Can’t really do a drive by shooting of my house because I’m at the end of a 1600 foot driveway; and by the time they tried to turn around, I’d have at least 30 rounds of 5.56 through their vehicle.

        1. “Bumpkin shoots roadside object” is a very old game.

          Childhood friend lost their box repeatedly to drive-by batting. They added mass and the next batter was de-vehicled. End of inning.

          My high school in bumpkinland lost its flimsy wood front sign, repeatedly, to ramming by hickuptruck.

          In the dead of night, overnight, it was rebuilt, magnificently. Beautiful work.

          Sort of an “I double dog dare you.” Well, one snow-day, some dog dared.

          The wood pillars concealed I-beams set in concrete and there was a similar center “support” post. It would have stopped a tank.

          It was epic.

          1. I saw an account online of a family that had built a yuge snowman in their front yard, like 12 feet tall, and a picture of the snowman with a set of tire tracks leading up to it.

            Seems some moron in a jacked-up truck decided to smash their snowman — unaware that it had been built over a massive tree stump.

            Snowman 1, moron 0. 😀

          2. Not a new story. Very common rural story. Either a bat or shooting roadside set mail boxes. The group locking mail boxes or heavy duty locking individual mail boxes, not only prevent theft, but also tend to stop this type of activity. Generally it is bored teens. But it can be targeted too. That is what is scary about it.

            Non commercial self-help-revenge setups (in concrete/steel bases, ricochet), I have seen debates arguing of “justifiable” to arguing opening up for “consequences due to the revenge nature” of the setup. Opinions but the debate was there.

            Note. This is why my grandparents had a post office box for their rural property. So do my aunt, and cousins in Pleasant Hill area, who all have farms.

            1. Normal box inside of one of those huge boxes, space filled with cement, yes.

              Argument I heard to counter that was “what if someone hits it on accident.”

              …was pointed out that the objector’s cast iron pipe box was actually worse, since it was on a wood post, not a cement one….

              1. Far as I’m concerned: “You were committing a crime. Whatever happened to you was your own damn fault.”

                Like the burglar that fell through a skylight while trying to rob a restaurant, then sued the restaurant for damages. Any sane and reasonable judge would throw the case out of court.

                And if anybody else got hurt as a result, that’s the miscreant’s fault too.

                1. Absolutely.

                  Sometimes I suspect the “oh, don’t do that!” responses were because folks were 99% sure that their kids were the ones doing it, and if you hit a cement filled mail box on a cement post with a bat, they might hurt themselves.

                  1. “They might hurt themselves”

                    … I suppose “good” isn’t really the answer that one who objects on such grounds is looking for.

            2. I have seen debates arguing of “justifiable” to arguing opening up for “consequences due to the revenge nature” of the setup. Opinions but the debate was there.

              That’s easy: don’t play stupid games and you won’t have to FAFO.

              1. That argument was made back.

                Did it stop the “poor perpetrator as just kids being kids” arguers whiners? (FIFMS) Of coarse not.

                  1. My response is “Whatevv” … Please note. This response is more irritating from an elder than a pre-teen, or teen. We know how to make it more irritating (decades of experience).

                1. Counter response. “What trap? I just want it to stay fixed/quit falling down.” After all it is about motive.

            3. Sorry dude, but they stop being teens or children when they take a car and a gun. That’s part of what’s wrong with your (and a whole bunch of other people’s) mental map.

              1. True. It is stupidity of unimaginable degrees just on the merits.

                Especially since you posted more information hours (by time stamp) after my generic “heard of this happening” post. Which FYI, would not have posted, with that information. Being targeted for intimidating deadly threat puts it in a whole different category.

                Sorry you and your family are going through this.

                1. Well, you know what our hostess and others on the blog have said about heating up and escalation by the party of insanity. Part and parcel of the whole. Just happens to be my turn.

      2. Mumble years ago, a friend was on the board of a rod & gun club with a range in the Santa Cruz mountains above San Jose. The mail box was a favorite target of the pot growers, so eventually, they made a custom box out of steel plate. Handgun rounds splashed off, while the occasional rifle round made a divot.

        This was rural by Santa Clara county standards, so no luck in finding any perps.

    2. I know these feels, Mike. I’m not coy about my state of residence to be cute. Stuff before we left Colorado impelled a hurried move. And we haven’t returned to visit despite all our friends there, and missing the state itself horribly.

  13. OK, I like a lot of the ideas here, and I read this blog daily. For once I might have something to contribute.😀

    Many tradesmen have more business than they can handle, at least where I live. Plumbers, electricians, etc., turn away work every day. So why not turn away the business of the woke? Sorry, no time to fix democrat pipes, or Karen’s power… That can be done easily and will hurt them more than not purchasing a product. Thank you.

    1. It’d have to be done quietly and carefully, so you don’t see a Masterpiece Cake Shop type issue. OTOH, many tradesmen are notorious for not returning phone calls when they’re busy, so there’s wiggle room.

  14. Ditch AARP – replace with AMAC
    Use Patriot Mobile (uses T-Mobile or AT&T towers) or Ting (Uses T-Mobile or Verizon towers) instead of Verizon or T-Mobile.

  15. Eh.
    I’m Odd, with a limited budget and a reach that’s almost nonexistent.
    So most of the stuff I do falls more under “self care” than “effective”.
    (Heck, I don’t even have the option of going to a grocery store that isn’t some degree of woke. )

    I’ve got the refrain from Deor’s Lament on the back of my car. (In Old English, because of course.)

    I’ve got a “Tiberius Gracchus for Consul” sign in my front yard. (And a Gadsden hanging in my window.)

    I’ve got a Ca Ira ringtone, pegged at max volume.

    I refuse to wear the face diaper or get the jab.

    For a while, I posted “mene, mene, tekel, upharsin“ signage around the area. (And the Resident’s campaign promises about the petroleum industry on gas pumps).

    I’ve posted limericks about the current Resident (plus fam) and Vice Resident on public bulletin boards.

    I’ve got some songs (mostly half-written) that I couldn’t resist jotting down. But the state of music copyright law is such that everything not a direct parody, is potentially a financially ruinous violation. I haven’t been eager to stick my &);:& in that particular pencil sharper.

    But productive and effective?
    Not so much.

    1. I have got to print out some “mene, mene, tekel, upharsin” stickers! You might be having more impact than you know. A sign her and a sign there and suddenly a million people are asking “who is Tiberius Gracchus”?

      1. In general we shouldn’t have too much problems with Persians, although the current Iran is a royal pain in the lower extremities 🙂 .

  16. For authors you like, for the love of Zeus please leave a book review! It doesn’t have to be a critical essay, but something more than a star rating, and preferably a few more words than “this was great!” or “This sucked!” Just tell the truth about what you liked or didn’t.

    If you’re feeling generous, include a line at the end saying the review is released under the Creative Commons Zero license, which will effectively put your review into the public domain, so the author knows he can use it in promotion without any worries. And maybe copy that review and share it on GoodReads and your usual social media and/or blogs.

    1. This.

      Reviews are critical for visibility — and for indie authors, it’s often like pulling teeth to get that first dozen, or twenty, or whatever the threshold is to start getting listed among “you might also like” suggestions.

    2. Didn’t know that about “this review is released under the Creative Commons zero licence”. That’s really good to know.

  17. And while I appreciate — btw — “build alternatives to Amazon” it needs to be more precise than that.

    This, in a nutshell, is EXACTLY what hurts a lot of “plans.”

    It needs to be more precise than that.

    So, you identify the problem– “Republicans are not representing my views.”

    Ok, now narrow it down; is it that they don’t always win? Is it that they usually lose? (Can you document that? Define “lose”.) Is it that they are quoted saying stuff you disagree with? Did they actually say it, and how common is that; do they follow that quote? Are they someone you can vote for or against?

    Trying to fix the wrong problem does you no good!

    1. At issue, is that we want the Republican Party to reduce the amount of power and money the federal government claims.

      While the professional members of the Republican Party are part of the federal government, and very much want to keep their power, money, and perks.

      After they’re elected, they can do what they want, and we have no recourse until they’re next up for the election. (And with widespread institutional voter fraud, they don’t even need to fear that. There’s a bloody reason the Republican establishment fights as hard against cleaning the voter rolls and eliminating fraud as the Democrats do.)

      Take my Senator. (Please. And don’t bring him back!) Within a couple weeks of winning his reelection, he supported weaponizing the IRS against religious non-profits they don’t endorse the whole LGB BS. And preened about it. Knowing that there was nothing we could do about it.

      Tar, feathers, and a rail are parts of the traditional cure for such, but anyone trying to effect that at present would be condemned as a domestic terrorist, and the full weight and power of the federal government would stomp a mudhole in his backside. At best.

      1. ….

        Did you read what I actually wrote, or just feel the need to go off on a subject near and dear to your heart?

        Because what you just did is not just painting with a broad brush, but using a super-wide roller, or possibly a paint spraying system.

        Worse, it involves flat out falsehoods, such as this:

        There’s a bloody reason the Republican establishment fights as hard against cleaning the voter rolls and eliminating fraud as the Democrats do.

        If you’re so all fired determined to roll over and scream about how they’re all equally SOBs, please, get out of the way of the people trying to identify useful steps, possibly while you go and try to get yourself elected, since you claim to believe LITERALLY EVERY OTHER PERSON IN OFFICE is just equally horrible.

        1. Cranky today?

          I obviously read what you posted, and noted the perverse incentives that exist.
          You don’t have to like them.
          I sure don’t.
          But wishing them away doesn’t help.

          Reality is the acid test.
          Rose-colored glasses don’t survive it.
          I’m not blackpilled. The battle is worth fighting. And I’ve been doing so for over thirty years.
          But we do need a bloody miracle to win.
          So. . .
          The fact remains that Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Arizona, etc. had grassroots efforts to purge their rolls, which were thwarted with the help of the respective state Republican parties.

          A great many Republican states outsource to ERIC to maintain their voter rolls, even though ERIC is closely tied to the Democratic Party and left-wing activists, and has demonstrably not performed the job it was supposed to.
          And yet, few states are reconsidering this.
          Even though their voters are screaming bloody murder about it.

          Or should we just do demonstrations?
          In 2016, someone with the unlikely name of Major Apple claimed my home as their address. I haven’t taken in boarders. They requested, received, and cast an absentee ballot. The local party, and the state elected officials do not care.
          At best, they just want me (and many like me) to shut up.
          In the meantime, we use electronic voting with no paper trail, no signature matching, a month’s worth of early voting, and almost no limitation on absentee voting. This is a heated topic of discussion.
          That the state, and the dominant state Republican Party has no interest in listening to.

          Do you really believe that Brad Little got 60+% of the primary vote in Idaho after being a power tripping fascist?
          (Or that Mike Simpson is inexplicably popular, when most people are rather vocal about their intense dislike for him.)

          Do you really believe that six years ago, a majority of Alaska voters wrote in Lisa Murkowski to win the Senate seat after she lost the primary?

          1. Cranky today?

            Wow, at least your reading comprehension extends to being able to identify when someone objects to you pretending to respond, and instead going into doom lecture mode.

            :Golf clap:

            Of course, you didn’t manage to carry through the rest of it, and your supposed support doesn’t manage to support your original statement, but baby steps.

  18. During the Prague Spring, Alexander Dubcek said “If you’re not against us, you’re with us” as a way of encouraging the silent majority to support his changes to the Czech government. That is how I view things now.

    Holly said above: Think, people. Businesses can only do so much when they never know who wants to play karen, and the regulators are on the karens’ side. Think back over the last couple years. If they did the bare minimum required, they’re on our side.

    That’s it exactly. The woke businesses are loud and proud of their wokeness. They’re fairly easy to spot and bypass. Just don’t forget to patronize the quiet businesses – they’re on our side.

  19. Hello Sarah – I have only recently found your blog and this is my first contribution.

    The 50 people who posted ahead of me seem to be focused on operational ways to avoid “feeding the beast” and become a “gray man”. That’s good.

    By way of background, I was a technology planner for an international pharma company and took an early severence to retire in 2004 and “go Galt”.

    Over the last 18 years I have focused on tactics and strategy that could be employed by people who are committed to restoration of the ideal that Thomas Jefferson referred to as “Rightful Liberty”.

    I’ve presented the findings of my research at several Patriot Conventions in North Carolina but have been disappointed by the lack of engagement in what I believe are two simple but highly important initiatives. Use whatever makes sense to you.

    Tactics: interrupt the cash-flow of the legislative state. The following are excerpts from an essay I wrote in 2019 titled “Fatal Conceit”.

    “Let us clearly identify the enemy. The enemy is any attack on private wealth and private property. As I indicated previously, neither the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, nor the Bill of Rights speak to any protection for private wealth and private property. You cannot run there for help.”

    “What useful direction can be given to Patriots faced with thieving governments and freeloading neighbors, who steal and consume our surplus? The simple choice appears to be binary: cut the head off the snake, or remove the tip of the spear.

    “I don’t recommend an attempt to remove the head of the snake. The engine of evil will remain in place, operating on inertia, until the next bureaucrat is selected to run the machine.

    “I favor an uncoordinated effort to remove the tip of the spear. Direct your individual ingenuity and energy into disrupting, at a local level, the theft of wealth by your various governments and their engines of re-distribution. The question is how?

    “This can take many forms dependent upon your courage and risk tolerance. Disrupt local town and city council discussions on topics of taxation and benefits. If you have the technical skills, disrupt local processes and systems of tax collection, disbursement, and the downward flow of funds from FedGov to local agencies. If you have the fortitude, infiltrate the agencies and conduct subtle sabotage from within. Finally, disrupt the personal lives of the employees who work in the agencies that run these functions.

    “Be creative in your escalation, but stay focused. The objective is to convince government managers and employees, at the operational level, to reconsider the morality of their chosen profession. Motivate them to seek honest employment in the private sector. If you are successful there will be consequences. Governments have agents with guns who will be directed to stop you, cage you, or worse. ”

    Strategy: a return to common law is a necessary prerequisite to re-establish a culture of liberty. The following are excerpts from a presentation I made in Murphy, NC in 2018.

    “The rule of law has failed. the Bill of Rights was designed to prohibit forever two of the favorite crimes of all known governments: the seizure of private property without adequate compensation and the invasion of the citizen’s liberty without justifiable cause.”

    “Liberty and Common Law are complementary aspects of a functional society.”

    At Liberty Under Common Law crimes are only actions that are moral wrongs, not just behavior deemed undesirable by those in social power. Common-law evolved
    to protect men’s estates and their right to earn a living.

    “Liberty is achieved through compliance with common law, not outside it or despite it.”

    “At Liberty Under Common Law … no legislator, bureaucrat, officer of the court or member of a police force would agree or permit such action. Only a minimal tolerance exists for individual action to address injustice.”

    “Legislation consists of “a written body of rules of binding legal force prescribed, recognized, and enforced by a controlling authority. Keyword: “Controlling Authority”
    a State operated monopoly prohibited to the individual.”

    “Common-law does not presume to hold any authority or power over individuals when they conduct their daily business in a peaceful manner. So how do we make a return to Common Law happen ?”

    “Live As An Example To Others. A clue on how to act is in that same quote about moral responsibility: “… no matter what rules surround me If I find them too obnoxious I break them” (Heinlein) With thoughtful disobedience, let others observe Chaos does not happen because people violate written or positive law.

    “By thoughtful actions guided by the Maxims of Common Law, let others conclude Chaos only happens when people violate natural law. ( Robert Hart ). Thoughtful self-determination, with limited or no obedience to central authority, will not lead to ‘chaos’.

    “A good starting “position” for a life of liberty is Voluntaryism. Proposition: all human interaction should be directly consensual.”

    I hope this ragged cut-and-paste is coherent enough for you to glean some benefit.

    A blessed Christmas season to all. Hans

    1. “As I indicated previously, neither the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, nor the Bill of Rights speak to any protection for private wealth and private property. You cannot run there for help.””

      Sir, are you unaware of the 4th and 5th Amendments? Both of them speak directly to this. They may not be followed, but the blueprint is there.

        1. Hello Sarah – I’m not certain I understand what you meant by “THIS”, but since it is in response to snelson134 I will infer it means agreement with his challenge.

          I would be pleased if you (addressing all three replies) could show me how to apply the 3rd, 4th, and/or 5th Amendments to nullify (1) the perpetual rent-seeking behavior called property tax, (2) the government endorsed theft called income tax, (3) all other forms of tax to which I have not personally agreed via a formal written consent, (4) all forms of purposeful monetary debasement that chronically steal value from my savings. Need I continue?

          The Third Amendment prevents government from forcing homeowners to allow soldiers to use their homes. It does not prevent the government from levying a tax on an asset that I own free and clear of all debtors.

          The Fourth Amendment bars the government from unreasonable search and seizure. It does nothing to prevent theft via asset forfeiture statutes created by positive legislation.

          The Fifth Amendment provides several protections for people accused of crimes. I am not convicted of any crimes in common-law or positive legislation. I have yet to observe a “legal taking” (example: eminent domain) which resulted in “just compensation” in the eyes of the original property owner.

          I believe you (again, all respondents) have focused on “the sacred parchment” and neglected to explore my answer to Sarahs’ request for ideas … the tactics of interrupting cash-flow of the legislative state and the strategy of a return to common-law as a prerequisite for liberty.

          Common-law embraces the Lockean negative rights of individuals, whereas the positive-legislation of the state creates all the false obligations that the state uses to enable transfer payments from producers to looters (A.Rand terminology).

          Cheers, Hans

          1. The proscription of the 3rd Amendment against quartering soldiers in a private home is a direct protection of private property from government overreach.

            The Fourth reads: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
            “Effects” includes wealth and property. Yes, the 16th Amendment made federal income tax on wages permanent, but that does not cover accumulated wealth. All those were added by Congress and can be changed by law.

            The relevant bit in the 5th Amendment is: …nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation. The government has to ask and pay for your property.

            All three of those amendments speak to the sanctity of private property from government overreach and seizure. In response to your comment about negative rights as discussed by Locke, the US Constitution does not have negative rights (defined as if it isn’t prohibited, it’s allowed). Our rights are understood in the Constitution to be positive rights… we have them by virtue of being born human and the government can neither grant nor remove those rights. Trample on them, yes. But that’s quite different.
            The British common law does indeed have negative rights, which they moved to rectify in 2000 or so by creating a positive bill of rights when conservative MPs realized that the rights of the British citizens were being eroded by a Labour majority parliament and had been for years.

            So, yes. There are several protections of private wealth and property built into the Constitution.

            1. Dear Prof. Ornery – I believe you have actually proved a few of my points.

              “All those were added by Congress and can be changed by law.” Precisely … we have no inherent protection from government encroachment on our lives, liberty and property.

              “Accumulated wealth” is siphoned silently away (stolen) by inflation which is a consequence of Federal Reserve monetary policy and deficit financing.

              “Positive rights” are created and withdrawn by government legislation at whim, and are more precisely known as Privileges. Natural rights (Lockes negative rights) are unalienable and adhere to the individual as a consequence “of being born human”.

              Folks, it appears you (the responders) have not yet come to understand that the corruption, as Sarah stated “the b*stards that are causing the flood”, is the very government structures that you defend in your challenge of my original contribution above.

              To truly implement “not one red penny for the blue” requires that you break the cycle of government theft and transfer payments … to live in Rightful Liberty requires you to break the worship of, and obedience to, statute, regulation and ordinance.

              I’ve obviously come to play in the wrong sand-box. I shall make a graceful exit.

              1. No, positive rights are not granted by the government… they are recognized by government.

                And, laws can be changed. That does not mean the Constitution offers no protections. Like I said, rights can and are trampled. But we have to fight to remind government that those rights are ours and not theirs. So, we turn to the Constitution which they swore to uphold, to remind them of the existence of those rights.

                  1. I was wondering if Hans is American too. Either not an American or a very poorly educated one.

                    Sure the Constitution can be changed. But it takes 2/3 of a quorum (> 50% of sitting members) of Congress, 2/3 Senate, the President, and 2/3 of the states ratifying the constitutional change by passing it in their senates and congress, as well as signed by their governor.

                    Sure. The legislative body and president, especially the zombie in chief via executive orders, tramples citizen rights, or try to. That is what the Supreme Court is for.

                    Perfect? No. There are people involved. Name another system that is better. There isn’t one.

                    1. I originally typed 2/3 (3/4?). Then I googled it. Multiple sources says 2/3 or 66% of a quorum, at least of total sitting Congress. So then did a dive on what constitutes a quorum.

                      Quorum typically is 51% of sitting members. But any sitting congress can define that at anytime under the current definition of a Quorum. Once changed it stays that way until a current definition of quorum of members changes it again. Right now that is 51% of congress present. So 2/3 of congressional minimum quorum 51% present. Senate does not have that requirement, so presume (do not know) that it really takes 2/3 of all members of the Senate. If 66% of the members not present, then no vote. Please note 2/3+ of sitting senate members + 2/3+ of sitting congress members is essentially a veto proof vote, doesn’t matter if President signs it or not. But 66%+ of the Senate, and 66%+ of congressional quorum is not veto proof and requires the Presidential signature too. What the saving grace for constitutional changes is the 2/3 of the states ratifying the change + SCOTUSA.

                      Can mistakes be made? People in charge. Of coarse. Does not mean the framework is broken. Just means the people in charge are … I will let people fill in this for themselves.

                      Again. Not a lawyer, constitutional or otherwise. This is just what I remembered from HS civics (which was, 50+ years, a LONG time ago) and googled to verify. Might have touched on it briefly on the civics citizenship (nation) merit badge but even that is a couple of decades old now.

                    2. He puts me in mind of some of the fringe Libertarians / sovereign citizens types I’ve encountered.

                  2. Seems sort of Germanic to me. If you’re lurking, Hans, that does NOT mean, “Nazi,” and is not meant as a slur, only as a “current,” cultural description.

                  3. Sarah – I tried hard to resist your “bait”, but I must address your slur and Prof. Ornery’s errors with which you seem to agree.

                    (1) I am second generation American, born to immigrant families from Switzerland, Germany, and Scotland. I embrace the ideals of Thomas Jefferson and other founder of this great country. I despise the way this country was transformed, Reconstructed, into a nation of collectivists who all seem to want to live at the expense of everyone else.

                    (2) Prof. Ornery and you are in error regarding your understanding of Rights and Privileges. Please read the following essay by Tibor Machen at the Foundation for Economic Education:

                    (3) I was disappointed to receive the ad-hominem assumption that I must be uneducated or have a poor knowledge of American history and Law. All of you have browsers open through which honest inquiry into non-liberal websites could easily verify the truth of my statements.

                    (4) I visited here and commented at your invitation. I received a less than civil welcome. Not one of you indicated that you had read the essay or watched the video that I had linked in my original contribution. You did not address the content, only attacked the messenger.

                    You remind me of those about whom Ronald Regan spoke in 1964, in his speech titled “A Time For Choosing”: “The trouble with our (your name here) friends is not that they are ignorant; it’s just that they know so much that isn’t true.”

                    I am no longer monitoring this thread and have dropped the RSS feed from my reader.

                    Have a blessed Christmas

                    1. First of all, no one was “baiting” you. We were responding to your arguments. I looked through Machen’s essay, and I disagree with him (us political scientists do that – PhD, Political Science here). You have no grounds on which to get condescending and presuming to teach me my academic discipline. The construction of rights as the Founders outlined in the U.S. Constitution is for limited government. The government does not provide rights (positive), nor does it remove them. It’s job is to recognize rights and not violate or trample them.

                      Back to your argument over definitions: In general political scientists (as opposed to economists like Machen) take “negative rights” to mean those not explicitly outlined, but rather assumed from an absence of discussion. Thus, the common law rights that you mentioned earlier. Common law and tradition means “that’s what we’ve always done” until we don’t. Our founders, recognizing that flaw in the British lack of constitution, decided to construct a constitution that clearly outlined the limits of government. Where do those limits begin? At the exact point any law conflicts with the natural, or positive rights of life, liberty, and (as originally written) the pursuit of wealth and/or happiness.

                      The Bill of Rights, insisted upon by the Anti-Federalists (who were afraid of the negative rights supported by the Federalists), specifically states where those limits on government action may be found. The Supreme Court, through the application of those amendments to cases they’ve heard, have pointed out areas not explicitly stated, and then expounded on those areas. For example… there is NO SPECIFIC RIGHT TO PRIVACY in the Constitution. It is found under the penumbra of 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th. Government action to curb speech, for example, is a violation of citizen privacy because it goes to thoughts. The limits on government are positive rights. The government may not go there.

                      Of course, the government can and does trample rights all the damn time. It’s our job to remember where they can and can’t go and tell them. The US Constitution is one of the most flexible and freeing documents compared to every other constitution (and believe me, I’ve read a LOT of constitutions). The constitution is not the problem. The human beings currently holding political office and holding jobs in the bureaucracy are the problem.

                    2. (4) I visited here and commented at your invitation. I received a less than civil welcome. Not one of you indicated that you had read the essay or watched the video that I had linked in my original contribution. You did not address the content, only attacked the messenger.

                      Translation: “I wandered in and vomited pages worth of BS into the comments the first time I showed up and didn’t like being called on it”.

                1. I’m a bit late in this, but I think I see a problem in terminology. A “negative right” is usually defined as a right to be free of coercion in what one does, while a “positive right” is the right to require someone else to do something for one’s benefit. (The terms “liberty” or “freedom” are often used instead of “right”.) The “natural rights” of Locke (and of the Declaration of Independence) are usually considered in the “negative” category.

                  In other words, the usual distinctions between “positive” and “negative” (IIRC, first defined by Berlin) are that negative rights are rights of non-interference by others, while positive rights are rights imposed or obligated of others.

                  (Since these definitions of “negative” and “positive” are somewhat arbitrary, there is no reason in theory why they could not be reversed. But since they’re pretty well established, I think that we should stick with convention. )

                  Both Locke and Jefferson then state that the purpose of a government is to protect the negative, natural, rights. Government does not provide or establish these rights: their purpose is to recognize and protect them.

                  You probably can see where conflicts and disagreements arise. For government to function to protect one right (say, the right not to be assaulted), then it requires funding (imposing a financial obligation or tax), and it may need to reduce the assailant’s freedom of action or liberty.

                  1. Yeah, he claims that we fail to see “the very government structures we defend are corrupted.” Since we’re defending the constitution, I have to think he views the constitution as corrupted… I don’t really have a response to that.

                    1. I’ll agree that it has been corrupted.

                      Have you tried to buy an autosear recently?

                      And that would be why we are busy working to decorrupt the country.

                    2. An emergency escape clause only to be used in the most dire circumstances.

                      Different situation than “oh, you proposed a law that is blatantly in violation of the constitution, and then in the court case we conclusively proved from your internal memos that that was intentional. Do you have any preference for the kind of rope used?”.

                    3. You’re mistaking the blueprint for the building, just like Hans is. The Constitution remains the same blueprint, including the procedures for changing it.

                      The governmental structures that were supposed to be built based on it have evolved into a sprawling termite riddled mess fit only to be demolished so the site will be clear for rebuilding according to that blueprint.

                  2. He reads like someone I met elsewhere. Said item wants folks like us to help man the barricades and tear it all down so a vaguely alluded “freer” something replaces it. Something that never contradicts Trotski. Hmmm.

                    The “Anarchy Macht Frei” crowd is also amusing, especially when the “obey us or else” is explicit.

                1. The Constitution has been corrupted. Primarily by the amendments authorizing the income tax and the direct election of senators.

                  1. I’d argue those corrupted the government, not the Constitution. The Constitution was used as a tool to transfer power to the federal government and the states allowed it to happen. First in a long line of states abrogating power because they got lazy and greedy.

                  2. That’s a matter of definition and/or opinion. The Constitution was not, and cannot be, corrupted by any legally-passed amendment (we’ll leave the matter of “legally-passed” WRT the 16th to be argued over interminably elsewhere), although I’d argue that the documented intent of the Founders was corrupted by modification via amendment in at least the two cases you note.

  20. Don’t forget to keep charity local and careful. One great thing that a local foundation does it is collect lists of small-town groups in need and and offer matching assistance once a year. I learned about a lot of very good, very local organizations that I now help when I can. Volunteer Fire Departments, food aid that doesn’t bow to the USDA, small-town reading programs and after-school tutoring, that sort of thing.

    1. Look up the JustServe app. They have listings of needs for charities, service projects, etc., and you can narrow your range to, say, ‘within 5 miles’. Our congregation just did a service project weaving mats from used, clean grocery bags to give to our local warming stations for the unfortunately rising number of homeless people in our mid-sized town.

  21. So I’ve got a list of web sites I’ve been looking at for ideas on security and communication. With that I will list them here and you too can check them out. I hope it will help generate additional ideas and references. I don’t actually “recommend” anything but want to help exploration.

    Please post if there is something that should be eliminated as you may very well know more about some of the above than I do at my current point of research. Thanks!

  22. “First because only glowies or idiots plan that kind of thing — or instigate it — in public, and frankly I don’t want to deal with either glowies or idiots.”

    Anyone feeling froggy that isn’t a glowie, should watch a few hours of what has transpired in the Donbas this over the last decade or read “Hotel Rwanda”. Strong stomach required.
    (enough said on that matter, I have nightmares every week.)

    As for practical matters, for those interested in getting into ham radio, don’t sweat the tests and think you have to have a EE both getting a radio. Use one of the test prep apps, cram, get at least your Technician and General passed, then work on the practical knowledge. There’s enough free practical training for newbies on YouTube and elsewhere online.

  23. GAB Claims to be building a parallel economy, so that might be a place to look.
    I don’t know who runs Stripe, but that might be a possibility.

    One thing I learned from doing Faire for years is that you can’t only sell to the people who work for you, (it was like a mining town, “here is your pay, and oh! There are these cool collectible coins, and the masked ball tickets you can get at a discount, and this other thing over here, that I’m letting you have cheap. Oh, I guess you can just hand me back the pay check.”). So, you have to get outsiders to buy/barter your things, too.

    Same thing going on in an art education forum I’m in. He is trying to sell to the outside crowd, but right now it’s only supported by the people who belong to the forum..And they are running out of money, too. There are only so many courses you can take.

    1. Not Gab. Andrew Torba, the CEO, has beclowned himself too thoroughly and too sanctimoniously for me, at least, ever to put any financial trust in anything related to him.

      Also, it’s a “free speech platform” that bans porn, sniffing that “you can find that stuff anywhere on the internet”. AFAIC, you are either free speech, or you are not. Gab is not. They briefly had my interest with the attempt to let you comment on any page on the internet, censorship free. Then they “fixed” that and it disappeared.

      1. Thanks for the clarifying. I just get emails from them, so didn’t know for sure. And, yeah, Torba is a bit strange.

      2. As for free speech at Gab, my observation is you will absolutely find plethora of stuff that will offend you.

        Just don’t go to Gab to get your smut if it’s that important to you. And you probably need to avoid Twitter too from now that they currently seem to be interested in protecting children and adults from sexual exploitation.

        Permitting “porn” on a large web service causes all sorts of logistical/moderation/legal issues. Plus it chases away the majority of the audience that has morals and just wants to communicate or call each other “Nazis” or “Lizard People”.

        In other words, get someone else to make your “free speech” cake. Statistics show you have 50% of the internet traffic with to get your “freak on”.

        1. Just don’t go to Gab to get your smut if it’s that important to you.

          You miss my point. Free speech is free speech. The moment you make an exception for something you find distasteful, then you open yourself up to further exceptions . You either support free speech, or you do not. Torba does not, as the litmus test of porn demonstrates.

          But, hey, you got to make a sneering argumentum ad hominem. So you’ve got that going for you. You hero.

          1. Twitter is stopping exploitation, not policing if there’s bare skin. (And they won’t be perfect, but I get that. Like, you know, coordinating murder should be excluded.)
            However Torba is all “ALL THE NAZIS should talk” (most of them not American, btw) But DECENCY!
            Well, you can have neither or both.

  24. Build ground-up stuff.
    Get a few neighbors to shovel snow for the old guy or the young mother who’s sick.
    Organize a “train the kids” in auto repair at your church. The youth group should be doing something besides games.
    Get involved in tutoring through your church (not sure I’d advise it through the school) So long as you’re not offering credit to compete, you could probably teach some of the non-lab stuff, quicker and better.
    Teach home brewing (some churches may not approve), canning, gardening–dual use technologies. They’re nice for crafts/having it taste my way, and also for surviving on the cheap.
    It’s hard to get adults to look away from the circuses we’re provided (even harder with the kids), so leverage those times they _do
    look away.

    Granted, these don’t retrieve the education industry, though we might help begin a parallel system. (Might have to start with us adults!) They don’t get rid of the corruption (“An honest Chicago politician is one that stays bought.”). But if they help build some friendships and trust, they can help us live.

    I doubt that you’ll change many hostile hearts, but if you can make the friendly ones friendlier and more self/community reliant…

    1. This x3! I was lucky enough to have most of these things happen, at my church youth group meetings and at home, during my growing-up years. And now I’m passing it on by teaching other people my age how to garden/can/preserve, while my brother teaches people to weld and machine (including his wife, actually) and build cool things.
      I aim, not for independence, but for interdependence.

  25. The only real way to save Conservatism, or simple common sense is to point out we are not who they say we are. Their straw man for us is 1 in a 1,000,000 in our total population. That’s way they censored us on social media, so they could convince others who know no better we are monsters. It’s easy to vote against a monster, not so easy to vote against a guy or people who agree with you about 90% of the time. Talk to people, talk about things that makes them uncomfortable enough to open their eyes. You’ll never reach the religious communists, or the religious climate nuts its their religion and they are as fanatical as the Spanish Inquisition.

      1. Well, my grandaddy preferred to use words and reins to guide his mules.

        However, first he had to get it’s attention….. 😎

  26. I’m seeing one or two reports every week on Yahoo! about people in their 30s and 40s just suddenly dropping dead. The latest one is a sports announcer.

    How many of them had the not-a-vaxx shots? Boosters? That information is not to be found. Nor are there any follow-ups about cause of death.

    1. That’s starting to change.

      “Schwab et al reported on deaths after vaccination with detailed autopsies in Heidelberg, Germany.[i] Of 35 fatalities within 20 days of injection, 10 were ruled out as clearly not due to the vaccine (eg drug overdose). The remaining 25 (71%) had final diagnoses consistent with a vaccine injury syndrome including myocardial infarction, worsening heart failure, vascular aneurysm, pulmonary embolism, fatal stroke, and vaccine-induced thrombotic thrombocytopenia. Interestingly, 5 cases had acute myocarditis as the cause of death with the histopathology in the heart muscle showing patchy inflammation very similar to what was seen in the deltoid muscle were the mRNA vaccine was injected.”

    2. Latest one I saw dropped dead in Qatar while covering the World Cup. He had, if I read right, also just written an article deploring the, “Oh, another one of our migrant servants was just killed doing our work, oh well, there’s more where he came from,” attitude he was seeing. So a slight suggestion this was very convenient for the government of Qatar. OTOH, my first thought was, “I wonder if he’d been vaccinated for covid,” too.

  27. Victory in this case means, among other things, activating and alerting the normally disengaged. People like the lady who runs Libs of Tiktok are doing yeoman’s work on this. If you ever have a chance, give a lefty a platform, step back, and signal boost as much as possible.

  28. Use your religion, philosophy, wisdom, etc. even in the small things. Do you pray/meditate/hope, for example, for light traffic, a good parking space, and an audience receptive to the “USAian” message wherever you go? How about your words, facial expressions, and other behavior when things go sideways?

    We’re evangelists, whether explicitly or not. And we should try NOT to look like the kind of people who kidnap children or bomb ice cream parlors. Because we don’t. We love America. And ice cream.

  29. Throwing this out, hoping to support the ongoing group debate.
    Each of us has an individual risk/reward threshold, and a one-size-fits-all method to aim small, hit small won’t get a lot of traction. Gladly, I am not seeing that in most of the earlier comments.
    A bit of black humour from the Soviet Union was the not-really-a-joke “They pretend to pay us; we pretend to work”. I think we can update this to current conditions as “They pretend to care about us; we pretend to obey”. I propose that the first step each of us should do (many, but not all, of readers here likely already have) is individually decide what laws, regulations, directives, exhortations, and social expectations we will quietly ignore, which we will actively thwart, and what we can grit our teeth and live with (at least in public). I suggest that the best way to do this is to write (pen and paper, nothing electronic) these first two lists down. I am a firm believer in the benefit of writing something to cement it into our heads; the act of slowing down and physically recording anything gives our brains time to sort out exactly what it was we have decided.
    The result of doing this will be to help choose how we, individually, will act going forward. Having a written copy of how we decided to act in earlier times, we can purposefully adjust as conditions change. Once you’ve done that for yourself, the next step would be to get others on your ‘trusted people’ list to do the same. Grow a group of like-minded people, and you’ve created resiliency for the future.

  30. It’s not new or revolutionary (no pun intended), but the strategy of exposing and mocking the wokists has been one of the more successful tactics of the past few years. They can’t stand public scrutiny and they really can’t stand mockery. Continue to point and make duck noises.

  31. Big Brother and his Party have come very close to achieving the total control described in “1984” but they aren’t there yet. I think a big part of the solution is to develop alternative economic and governing structures outside the web of .gov control, primarily at the local level. The homestead movement is building robust local networks of food production and barter, and permaculture gardening is a low-effort way to increase self-sufficiency. We have converted most of our lawns into gardens; this is something nearly everyone can do to become less reliant on the industrial food chain.

    1. I don’t think they’re as all-powerful as either the conspiracy theorists or they themselves believe. They aren’t the Illuminati: they’re Illuminati wannabees. And you know what? World domination is a lot easier to say than it would be to ever do. And they aren’t anywhere near as close as they think.

    2. Eh, that kind of control doesn’t work. Notice how in 1984 they can ignore the proles, and so reserve the surveillance for the Party. Even there, they are uncommonly good. In reality, there would be a lot more slipping through the cracks, and the fear of surveillance would do a lot more of the work, and the fact, less.

  32. “And you don’t want me in a snit.”

    Oh, I dunno. Snit hats seem all the rage – pink color and funny protrusions optional. And in a 70’s retro-outfit, might look good in double-snit.

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