Walls, Liberty and Trust- A Blast From The Past From October 2015

Walls, Liberty and Trust- A Blast From The Past From October 2015

When I was a kid in the village, I could tell what the oldest walls around fields or houses were.

You see, in the sixties the new, nice houses being built, would have very short walls.  Maybe four feet.  Walls more for decoration than for anything else.

This didn’t mean there was no theft, of course.  I mean, the smart woman brought in the wash from the line at night, and henhouses and rabbit hutches had as good a locking mechanism as a house’s.  Sometimes someone got over the little walls and took all your just-grown lemons, or whatever else.  That wasn’t unusual.  BUT no one would get over the walls and kill you and your entire family in your sleep, and the stories I heard from my grandmother about second-story men who engaged in home invasion were just that — stories that were safely in the past (to be fair, I think most of them were from her mother’s or grandmother’s time) and not at all scary, because they could never happen to us.

But the REALLY old houses in the village, the ones that probably dated back to the eighteenth century, not only had eight foot walls around them, but the walls were topped with bits of broken bottles so anyone trying to scale them would hurt himself badly.

More interestingly, the old fields (the village had clearly expanded greatly in the nineteenth and early twentieth century, mostly with migrants from the mountains, like my grandmother’s family) which again, I’d estimate had been farmed since about the eighteenth century, not only had the eight or ten foot tall walls topped with broken glass, but also gates at least as high and — importantly — faced with smooth sheets of metal in the front, so you couldn’t get a foothold to climb.

This makes sense in retrospect.  In that time it made sense only in light of grandma’s stories of bandits, but I’ve now read a lot about the Napoleonic wars.  I didn’t realize how devastating they’d been to people in Portugal.  Oh, sure, you heard stories like the boat bridge, which sank under the weight of people escaping Napoleon, and that’s one thing — the kind of tales that exist here about the civil war, say.

But then I read some memoirs of the peninsular war from British soldiers, and hey, well…  Stuff like all the cows in the country (even work oxen) being eaten, or stuff like the troops scouring entire regions for anything edible.  It appears neither the French nor the British were well provisioned as we think of it in the 21st century.  To an extent troops were expected to live off the land.  But Portugal was very close to the bone, and …  well, I now know why the broken bottles on top of very tall walls.  I suspect it was the only thing protecting one’s vineyards or fruit trees, very often.  It also explained why most of those were along the old Roman roads, still in use when I was a kid (of course.)  Because further in, in fields amid woods or whatever, there would often be no walls at all, or just bits of broken, knee-high wall (and sometimes just boundary stones written in Latin).  Apparently further in where invaders or counter invaders (sometimes I understand it was hard to tell the difference for peasants on the ground) didn’t reach, or were afraid to go lest they be ambushed, the local trust amid families that had been there forever, (and most of those family were old local families, at the time) kept the walls low.

Then came the nineteenth century, more prosperous, but still not great, and amid civil war and revolution and counter revolution, the walls were a little lower, and the gates might be wrought iron, and you could climb them.  But still, to get to grandma’s back patio where the door was open all day, you had to go past two gates, one of which had a lock (though I never saw it locked.)  And even though the big kitchen window gave out on the side patio, past a set of gates, grandma would put a big board into the frame at night, to block off anyone who might break the window and try to get in.

By the time my parents built their house in sixty eight, it had four foot tall walls and gates the same height, more of a symbolic barrier than a real one.  Of course all the windows had roll-down shutters of the kind here associated with store fronts.

Then the security measures started increasing.  First there was a gate between the garage and the house, locking, and keeping away anyone who might think to surprise us in the back patio.  (Which happened a couple of times before that, and could have got ugly if dad hadn’t been able to stop any intruder.)

And then… well, every time I go back, the walls have climbed a bit more, and are now slick marble-panels on the outside, and the gates are smooth and locking.  I’m half afraid next time I go back there will be broken glass (or more aesthetic spikes) atop the walls.  The last time there were bars in the windows, behind the shutters.

I honestly don’t know if crime is that bad, or if it’s a matter of my parents getting older and less able to defend themselves, plus living in a neighborhood where more people are older and less alert, so the neighbors hearing a disturbance won’t save you.  And also, of course, such neighborhoods attract bad elements as they tend to be easy prey.

But I do know that when I first came to the states it utterly blew my mind that people had decorations in their front yard, with not even a symbolic gate to protect them and NO ONE STOLE THEM.

In Portugal someone would steal these things even if they had no use at all for them.  By leaving them outside, you’re inviting someone to take them.

This morning we bought pumpkins (at last) to carve, and noted the vast bins of pumpkins outside the store, the trust it implies in people taking them inside to pay.

Someone here said something about Arab countries being full of people who want freedom/the blessings of liberty.

I believe them.  Portugal is too.  Many people will express disgust with the Shenanigans of governance, with corrupt authorities, with the general anything goes atmosphere, and will make comments about how much better it would be if–

But what you have to understand is that these people don’t know anything more about America than a cat knows of a king.  They will admire the results of American can-do and entrepreneurship, then commiserate with me when unemployment leaves us without health insurance, and tell me how much better they have it because the government takes care of them; they will talk about how it would be great to have honest policemen, but will expect to get out of a minor fine with a minor bribe; they will decry nepotism but be quite happy when their godfather gets them a job or a good deal on something.

In Arab countries (and in some regions in Portugal) this would extend to things like “there ought to be a law keeping these shameless women from going around in short skirts/short sleeves/etc.”

It’s easy to want liberty in the abstract, but in societies where individual rights, including the individual right to property are not a gut-level belief, it’s almost impossible to implement it.  You need to have citizens who have a minimum of trust among themselves, who view others’ property as sacred, who view others’ rights as inviolable to be able to have people truly govern themselves, without its rapidly devolving to the stuff of nightmares.

As our kids have been taught for the last forty years that the collective is more important, that those willing to hold on to their property or the fruits of their labors are greedy, and that (as Bernie supporters keep saying) one must care for “the people’ in great unwashed collective form, we are at risk of losing the ability to have that mutual trust and respect which is essential to self governance, too.

Cultures change very slowly, and it seems more so when it’s in the direction of liberty and trust.

One of the great flaws in classical SF was the assumption that the whole world could become a sort of extended America without those prerequisites.

It was a beautiful dream, but it’s not how things work.

And when the west welcomes large groups of immigrants who don’t understand the rule of law or the meaning of civic trust, it becomes very hard to keep self-government going.

It is essential immigrants assimilate or leave.  Oh, not in things like food and modes of dress.  That is not important.  But the assimilation of the principles of trust and individual rights?  That is essential.

Teach your children well, and explain to those who would be like us what it actually entails.

98 thoughts on “Walls, Liberty and Trust- A Blast From The Past From October 2015

  1. Trust is one of the most often missed treasures that outsiders covet, all unknowing. And trust, you must understand, is a very unnatural thing.

    By that I mean trust of outsiders. Of course you trust your immediate family. Sort of, even when you absolutely hate them for some reason or other. They are family. You know them.

    You were there when they were born, or they for you. You know that they always forget to replace the toilet paper, or they leave the dishes until the very last second, or they cannot be bothered to clean until threatened with their very lives… But you know them and you trust them to have your back.

    Against the outside world, that is. Any man with little brothers knows what crazy little goblins they can be. They can be your worst enemy right up until a stranger threatens you.

    Then they have your back.

    Me against my brother. Me and my brother against my cousin. All of us against the world.

    That circle of trust is damned small, folks. And it exists in most places in the world. That kind of trust is natural.

    It’s in the animal world. We didn’t come up with this on our own- pack animals, like dogs, especially have it. Strange dog wanders in? Could be lunch. Lone wolves tend to die off pretty quick without the support of the pack. Little human tribes were like this uncountable decades and centuries. Uncountable, because we have no records other than their bones and a few surviving tools found in peat bogs and caves below the glacier line.

    The American level of high trust in absolute strangers is EXTREMELY unnatural. It must be taught, by word and deed. It must be inculcated in children from a very young age, or painfully taught later on in life. We are NOT NORMAL. And that is a very, very good thing. For us.

    Civilization will be forever threatened by ignorant barbarians for the glittering treasures and wealth it creates. Material wealth is easy to see. Gold is shiny. Nice cars are awesome. Big houses with big yards, the works.

    But you have to be crazy to get them. A particular kind of crazy that involves trust, work ethic, rule of law, and more. So much more. That’s why it has to be taught, or learned. It’s not normal or natural at all. It doesn’t just spring forth, this sort of wealth and easy living, ex nihilo.

    Teach your children well. Teach them to be strong, good, wise, and capable. Civilize them. Civilize yourself (note, this might require a partner). And take not the counsel of craven fear. Analyze what fear tells you, and extract what actionable knowledge can be gained.

    Because, bad as things may seem now, they can get much, much worse. And they may well be that way for a while yet. Do what you can to secure yourself and your family now, make what plans and preparations seem right you. Better to have made those plans before you need them, and if you don’t? Still good to have the skills, and good to teach the lessons to your kids.

    1. Trust is one of the most often missed treasures that outsiders covet, all unknowing. And trust, you must understand, is a very unnatural thing.

      :pained flinch:

      Some of them want it because that’s really easy hunting.


      1. There are those in our own culture that do that, too. Well, not fully enculturated I’d say. Just raised around it. They tend to acquire criminal records rapidly.

        That is why it is a good thing that our culture also raises sheepdogs, to keep the trust going strong. Trust but verify, as they say. It’s why I say raise your children to become not just good, but strong.

        Strength is the first virtue. Without it, no others are truly possible. It takes strength and confidence to risk kindness, charity, and the kinds of inherent vulnerability that exist within the other virtues.

        If you’ve helped someone, that means you are strong. Strong enough to do so. It’s not just violence and thuggery that requires strength, and strength is not merely physical. But you have to have it to do anything of worth, to be someone of worth.

        1. That is why it is a good thing that our culture also raises sheepdogs, to keep the trust going strong.

          And why one needs to give a REALLY HAIRY EYEBALL when someone tries to short-circuit that.

    2. “Teach your children well. Teach them to be strong, good, wise, and capable. ”

      Teach them that “if it’s not yours you don’t touch it.”

      That is the entirety of “Americans can leave stuff in their yards with no protective measures.”

      “It’s not yours, don’t touch it”

    3. A while back, we had to shift to a low-trust scenario at Day Job. No one was happy. When we returned to a high-trust scenario, everyone worked their rumps off to ensure that Low Trust did not resume. It was interesting to observe, not so fun to have to manage.

      1. Yep. BTDT, my own self, once or twice. Nobody who is used to high trust enjoys having to endure low trust, I imagine. But it makes you appreciate it more, once you know (or at least perceive) the alternative.

    4. ” Civilize yourself (note, this might require a partner).”

      Been there; done that. If it weren’t for the civilizing influence of my wife I really don’t know where I’d have endedf up, so I thank her and love her for it.

    1. My good neighbor made a really good fence when our mutual fence line gave up the ghost.

      Funniest part was him claiming he didn’t know what he was doing, because he’d never built a fence before. This fence is nicer than most of the “professional” ones around.

  2. Honorable hostess, I am so glad that you raised this subject again, because it gives me the perfect opening to lay more work on you! …. I just read your story “The Big Ship and the Wise Old Owl” from the 2012 Baen collection Going Interstellar, and LOVED what you did, both with the concept of creating cultural traditions to preserve essential information, and with the (too rarely considered) likelihood of selfish elites betraying the trust placed in them. But at such short length, such huge topics simply couldn’t get the in-depth exploration they deserved, and the setting seemed potentially very rich. Would you consider working it out to novel length (as if you didn’t already have too many projects on line)? Just asking. I mean, it was a really good story, just not nearly long enough ….

  3. The Scots have a phrase that ought to be self-explanatory, “The ball is up on the slates.”

    That was the basis of some of my earliest lessons about property. Parents lectured me (and enforced it with corporal punishment, if disobeyed), that I was NEVER to set foot on a neighbor’s property. If our property — ball, frisbee, whatever — found its way onto a neighbor’s yard or roof, we had permission to walk UP THE FRONT WALK ONLY to knock on the door and ASK for permission to retrieve it. AND TO ACCEPT THE VERDICT, no matter what.

    Said lesson was very strict and firmly enforced.

    First lesson in civic virtue, I’d warrant.

  4. This gets at why nations have not just the right but the responsibility to exercise prudential control of immigration. “Diversity” and high trust don’t go together. That’s not to say that a healthy society wants uniformity with no new inputs. That would be stifling. But taking care about the numbers of immigrants and what they’re bringing with them is elementary stewardship of what makes a society viable.

    Of course, the Left and the oligarchs (but I repeat myself) don’t want high trust societies. High trust societies don’t need enough government. They want a sand heap of dislocated human granules which the powerful can mold into whatever shapes they choose.

    1. The US can tolerate diversity of ALL but culture. As it should be. So it is culture our current asses are destroying.
      And I agree on limited immigration. LIMITED and with a requirement to fit in. Or as Dave Freer and I say “Fit In or F*ck Off.” FIFO.

      1. Absolutely this. The idiot leftist view of culture is exceedingly simple. Accent, clothing, food, and holidays. If you have a funny accent, the men wear dresses and funny hats, you have tasty foreign food, and celebrate different holidays, you’re being diverse!

        Nevermind that the accent comes from a different language with different base assumptions and opinions baked right in. Nevermind that the culture that shaped those clothes and that food is different enough to be outright hostile to your own. Nevermind that the religion that spawned those holidays could be as murderous and inimical as anything.

        Lefties do NOT get the cultural differences. Not even the ones with the Brits, let alone Mexicans, Africans, Middle Easterns, and any of the Europeans. Their view of culture is so shallow as to be two dimensional, and that edge will give you a wicked cut if you’re not careful.

        The reason for the accent, clothing, food, and holidays? Was because those immigrants worked to FIT IN. They became culturally American. So they could have the big front yard with decorations in it that nobody stole, fat little babies, and wealth beyond the wildest dreams of their parents.

        FIFO works. It is the adult level enculturation that keeps us civilized.

        1. This. If we want your food, we’ll buy and translate your cookbooks. If we want your clothes, we’ll copy the patterns (ex: USA Kilts).

          American cultural stability is EXTREMELY fragile. Wave 5 immigration nearly shattered it, and it took decades of focused effort to retain a semblance of unity.

          And we’ve been neglecting the preventive maintenance.

        2. “Lefties do NOT get the cultural differences. Not even the ones with the Brits, let alone Mexicans, Africans, Middle Easterns, and any of the Europeans.”

          And Europe, the Middle East and Africa each are comprised of multiple, often wildly different, cultures; saying “African culture”, “Middle Eastern culture” or “European culture” is as blind to differences, many times severe differences, as saying “Human culture”. Even British culture and Mexican culture are far from homogeneous. To be fair, the US is much the same, but our cultures have an underlying compatibility not shared with many (most?) others.

          (Not a flame, just an observation; we all tend to oversimplify. 🙂 )

          1. It was rather deliberate, because going into the differences between cultures, subcultures, tribes, factions, and overcultures within those groups is something I can do at least to some extent… But it’d break the comment character limit, and once I’m in that rabbit hole I tend to go deep.

            Characterizing it as “Europe,” “Africa,” etc was kinda me poking at the lefty glossing over of cultural differences, too. ;p My humor tends to be more than a bit off the beaten path though. Good observation, in any case.

            1. Thanks. I assumed that you, not being an idiot, knew all that; my idea was to emphasize it for everyone who understood it, at the same time pointing out that Lefties almost certainly do think that there are European, Mexican, et. al. cultures, and that they’re essentially identical to each other.

      2. VERY limited. If you take a look at American history since 1607, there’s a 60-year cycle. Thirty years of high immigration, followed by thirty years of low immigration. Wave 6 SHOULD have been ended around 1990…but the valve was welded open. Over the last fifty years, the United States has taken in about 50 million legal immigrants, and another 25 million illegals.

        We need a long immigration holiday, with a further limit on the number of immigrants from any one country.

  5. My visual rule of thumb for evaluating a neighborhood in an unfamiliar town is the SOPI: Stuff On Porches Index. If there’s a lot of stuff left out without security precautions, the neighborhood is pretty safe. If porches and yards are bare, don’t linger.

    1. I used to use “Cars worked on in the driveway” as an evaluator for house hunting. A neighborhood hit my Run-Away flag when I saw an abandoned V8 on the street. Not the car, the engine. OTOH, that neighborhood got a major upgrade when the Chinese community figured that the school district (at that time, 1990s) was actually good.

      1. The irony in that last statement is that in East Asia, the Chinese generally have a reputation for poor behavior. The immigrants that we get in the US, though, appear to generally be better behaved.

    2. Major red flags for neigborhoods:

      Concertina wire, anywhere.

      Second+ floor windows are barred.

      Porch contents: old indoor furniture, cord and a half of poorly stacked wood, ratty satellite dish.

      Partially stripped cars.

      Numerous plastic bags blown into fencing and hedges.

      Pawn shop nearby

      Daily labor firm nearby.

      Elaborate graffiti in an incomprehensible font, that isn’t just foreign.

      Weird concentration of pedestrians to one particular door or vehicle.

      Younger/preteen kids obviously playing “scout the adults” in a competent persistent manner.

      Folks keep staring at you like you have three heads.

      1. “If you own a home that is mobile and 14 cars that aren’t…”
        “If you mow your lawn and find a car, you might be a redneck.” – Jeff Foxworthy

        1. The Bubba Rules:

          If you know somebody named Bubba, you might be a Redneck.
          If you’re related to somebody named Bubba, you’re probably a Redneck.
          If your name is Bubba…

            1. I would add, names with excessively creative spellings (i.e. “Jaxon,” “Kyrielle,” “Chelcie”…) and apostrophes (“Rae’Lynn” etc…). Places with more than one boarded up business or home per block, places with excessive trash on the street that looks not to have been cleaned up in over a week, places with groups in obvious gang colors.

              Cleaning up such places is not as simple as it first looks. Well, not unless you start isolating it a putting the pain to the worst offenders in a systematic and rapid manner. To include the members of officialdom that passively allowed the situation to worsen.

          1. I’m not quite, though looking south from the shop/barn might be an argument for “is too”. I won’t talk about the inside of the shop/barn. Nope. Not gonna. 🙂

    3. Could also call it the Stuff In Carports Index. The neighborhood where I live, just about every house has an open carport (not mine, I have a garage). And a surprisingly large number of them have tools and garage-type items of various sorts that just sit there on hooks and shelves, in full public view.

      I’m pretty sure they don’t put anything irreplaceable or super expensive out there, but the fact that people keep storing stuff out there says a lot about the town and the neighborhood.

  6. “It appears neither the French nor the British were well provisioned as we think of it in the 21st century.”

    I can’t speak for the British. But this was intentional on the part of the French. Keeping a large body of men properly provisioned takes a lot of resources. And Napoleon always fought his battles on the soil of other countries. So his troops were expected to keep themselves fed by plundering the locals, who were never French. It worked well, too, right up until he was forced to retreat from Moscow over the exact same path that his men had used to reach it…

        1. It was a bit of both. The Russians deliberately made sure there was as little to loot as possible. The French, therefore, started ranging farther afield for supplies. There wasn’t really much ‘farther afield’ from their path that they could range on the way back without getting into more miles and miles of miles and miles than they could cope with in winter. And they’d already looted everything that was left to be looted.

          1. Well, the winter was on the way back, when they were already passing over the land that they’d stripped bare (after the Russians had burned it, as noted). The big battle of the campaign, Borodino, was in September. Napoleon occupied Moscow shortly afterwards, and then stayed there until October, waiting in vain for a response from Tsar Alexander that never came.

            Some odds and ends…

            1.) The Grand Armee didn’t march completely without supplies. There were supply wagons, but those were unsuited to the “roads” in Russia, which were of much poorer quality than those found in the rest of Europe. So even the supplies that Napoleon brought with his army were unable to keep pace.
            2.) Russia had a much lower population density than the rest of Europe, though Napoleon likely didn’t realize this before the invasion. So foraging would have been worse in any case as the farms were much more spread out. Simultaneously, the Grand Armee for this campaign was one of the largest armies that Napoleon ever assembled. I’m sure you can see the problem here…
            3.) The Russians, who were retreating directly in front of the French, took what they could before the French arrived. As a result, the French were able to forage even less than they would have otherwise been able to get.
            4.) Napoleon tried to take a different route back from Moscow specifically to avoid the foraging problem, but Russian General Kutozov was able to force Napoleon back onto the same route that the Grand Armee had used to reach Moscow.
            5.) Napoleon’s biggest problem was likely that a Napoleonic army was simply incapable of occupying Russia. It was just too geographically big in an era in which horseback riders and carrier pigeons were the height of rapid communications. Simultaneous successful marches on both Moscow and St. Petersburg might have caused Tsar Alexander to agree to peace terms, but would have risked having one of those armies defeated by the combined Russian army. But without that, a Russian capitulation simply wasn’t going to happen. Napoleon never understood this until it was too late.

            While the German army in World War 2 didn’t use foraging to keep its army supplied (though troops often did anyway), it otherwise experienced the same problems.

            1. The Russians have a history of difficulty feeding themselves ( especially in 20th century). Adding an invading army does not increase available calories.

                1. Regular famines were a “thing” almost everywhere in the world for most of history. Russia wa sjust a bit…ummm…retarded. But Marxism certainly didn’t help.

    1. Napoleon’s jump from a small professional army to a large conscript army is part of the issue. A small army could forage (usually) without denuding the area. The 10-20x size conscript army could not, it was like a horde of locusts stripping the area it was in as well as much of the surrounding countryside. It is also detrimental for a variety of reasons, your army has to move SLOWLY so it can get enough food to keep moving. The general foraging also encourages looting and rape (already common but now taken to new levels) which also affects troop discipline and turns the locals into much more vigorous enemies/partisans. Napoleon did encourage some innovation especially in respect to canning food and carrying enough to at least march at a decent rate for a longer period, but the logistics of keeping 10s of thousands of men and and animals fed and armed in the early 19th century was a challenge. Even by the US Civil war the addition of rail improves things greatly but ultimately you run too far ahead of the supply heads (or somebody gets clever and cuts them) and things get dicey fast

  7. Locally. It isn’t that some areas haven’t had thefts over the 60+ years we have lived in the area (move into Eugene/Springfield area when I was 4. Moved into home mom & dad built in 63, where mom still lives. Moved back to area, after leaving for college, in ’85.) But the last 2 years has been epic. Leaving anything movable in the front yard, leaving any mail, out going or not, in mail boxes, is an invitation for unauthorized removal of objects and mail. Neighbor mail boxes have been hit. We haven’t. Gee I wonder what happened two years ago? Oh. Wait …

    1. The mailbox bandit may have found a large snake in our mailbox.


      He opened it from his car. Where else would a snake go?

      Or so I heard, while out of town, with delivery on hold.

    2. When we moved to $TINY_TOWN in the early aughts, we were told that valuables needed to be secured, but things like wheelbarrows and shovels were safe, because “shovels mean work”. That changed when the usual suspects figured they could sell the tools. Our town got a reputation for drug dealing, though the worst violence was a town or two over.

      The worst of the drugs went away after a large drug bust, including the grown son of a sketchy neighbor. The neighbors are still around, but no retail activity is going on there.

      One nearby house was a rental, with the agency doing an inept job of picking tenants. Maybe 40% were OK, while the others were “acquainted” with state and local authorities. The last group didn’t believe in paying to get rid of garbage, so they left it in the garage. Code Enforcement and Child Protective Services encouraged them to clean up or get out. They did the latter, and the house finally(!) sold to a nice couple who have done wonders with the place. (Still a lot to do; part of the house was a cabin, circa 1920.)

      We’re doing an impromptu neighborhood watch. If things get sporty, it’ll get more organized.

      We never used roadside mailboxes, and bailed from the local substation due to problem workers in other businesses in that building. Costs a bit for a private mail box, but the advantages outweigh the costs.

      1. Childhood neighborhood pedoperv got run off one night by an improv squad of father-riflemen.

        I assume he survived, as movers came for his stuff.

        Watch for much more of this in cities, and much bloodier outcomes, as the Marxists continue deliberate destruction of law enforcement.

      2. Back when, I returned to the post office job (feeling better now, thanks) and Procedure had changed. The Inspection Service had investigated some thefts… and caught the Postmaster’s son stealing. No further details came to me, alas. So not sure if ‘slap on wrist’ or “throw the book at” happened.

      3. Grandma & Grandpa at their rural property west of Drain Oregon never had a roadside mailbox. Neither do the neighbors. Used to get the Sunday Oregonian. But not mail. They went to the post office (box) for their mail. Never knew their physical address.

  8. So last year I listened to the Bible in a Year podcast with Fr. Mike Schmitz.

    The thing about going through the whole bible with expert commentary that would make it valuable even for unbelievers is that you get to see how the Judeo-Christian civilization developed from a single family band where eye for an eye and tooth for a tooth was revolutionary. (Before then it was hurt me, I kill you and yours.) Onward toward honoring even extended family to Ten Concrete Rules you must never break when dealing with God and others and then to Treat your Neighbor as yourself with your neighbor being everyone who isn’t you, culminating in Love One Another as I Have Loved You, Even Unto Death – with the admonition to go forth and teach this to all nations.

    After 2000 years or so of practice, this resulted in the most Christian of all Nations forming the most high trust of all nations with people from around the world who wanted to live like this working together to achieve it.

    Other civilizations have been around as long, or longer, but none are based on the idea Love One Another means including the entire planet.

    This is what they are trying to destroy, by destroying the family, promoting race baiting, and encouraging envy between the classes.

    I hope we win. And I believe we shall.

    1. Leftists have never been able to envision second order problems, let alone tertiary. They think that if they destroy this thing and we can gain power by taking it over. And they might be able to do that. Unfortunately, when they do that they also destroy other things that depended on this thing being there to support it. And then a bunch of other things crumble away because they’re no longer supported either.

      Leftists seem to think conservatives hate change because they (conservatives) hate other people. I think it would be more accurate to say conservatives are slow to change because they know so many things are interconnected, and aren’t sure that making change #1 will result in a net positive once change #1A, 1B, 1C…2A, 2B, 2C…(X-1)A, (X-1B), (X-1)C take place.

      1. They are untroubled that they destroy. Rather, they embrace it. They have the delusion that Marxism only springs forth from the ashes andc rubble of the former state.

        They -want- the destruction, of every single thing. Some may be idiots who do not understand The Plan. The ones running it are counting on apocalypse.

        And they are just getting started. Don’t misunderstand their evil nor underestimate their insanity.

        By their works will you know them.

        1. Yes, they don’t understand second order effects, let alone third or fourth order. They think they can waltz in and take control once something is destroyed.

          1. “So, just upgrade the system. Run a few wires, add a few new boxes, and it’s done.”

            “Sure. You ever try to run wire through a cement Brutalist building? Will your boxes talk with Z, M, and L?”

            “Doesn’t matter. It’ll work this time!”

            1. “This time for sure!”
              “But that trick never works.”

              [Aside: Used to work with a guy who used ‘This time for sure’. Later, $HOUSEMATE worked with him… and discovered that while he had adopted the line, he did NOT know its origin!]

              1. I’m glad I finished that glass of water before reading that, or I’d have to haul a spare keyboard out.

                In the waning days of VHS, I got a couple of tapes of Rocky and Bullwinkle compilations. One had the Ruby Yacht story arc. Good times.

                1. Just FYI, the entire series is available on DVD. The interesting thing is that it’s $41 on DVD, but only $13 on Blu-Ray.

                  1. The Blu-Ray player is sitting in the shop, waiting for the TV (HDMI 1.0, circa 2011) to die. Some marketing/standards genius decided that HDMI 2.0 was so cool that it didn’t need to be compatible with older devices that run 1.0.

                    So, we have a legacy DVD player and Blu-Ray can suck it.

                    1. Re: HDMI compatibility…I was unaware of that. I have devices dating from around 2007 to last year, and they all seem to play together just fine; specifically, the main TV, a 2007 Samsung DLP, works fine with the modded (converted to region-free) Samsung Blu-Ray player I got 2 years ago when the Oppo finally crashed for good. I admit, however, that I never checked the versions; I assumed (yeah, I know…) that like USB they’d be back-compatible.

                    2. The compatibility break in the HDMI standard occurred at version 1.4 for some unknown reason. Most modern HDMI devices are backward compatible to that point. Virtually nothing new is compatible with HDMI 1.0 – 1.3.

                    3. OK, I’m a bit confused. My DLP Samsung TV was bought in 2007, 2 years before V1.4 was released, so it’s 1.1-1.3. My newest Samsung Blu-Ray player was bought in 2017 (I was a bit off on my previous estimate), and is therefore probably 2.0, but should be at least 1.4. And they play together via HDMI just fine. Maybe I’m “just lucky”, and have one of the few newer units that is back-compatible, or maybe Samsung was still using v1.3, 11 years after v1.4 was released, but vast experience tells me my luck generally runs the other way… 😉

                      Not a big deal, since all is working, but ???

                    4. Yeah, the Vizio TV (manual says 2009, purchased 1/2011) is V1.3. Apparrently, LG thought “everybody knew” about the conflict, and/or the assumption is that 10 year old TVs don’t get used any more. Wrong on both points, and I had to do a fair amout of digging to figure it out.

                      Possibility for some HDMI equipment is that the box queries the other end and shifts to the compatible protocol if necessary. What we bought was low end, and it wouldn’t likely have been worth it to build such a feature in the player.

                      Bob C. you got lucky and maybe a really good player.

                    5. Lucky? You’re probably right; it just goes against my experience to be lucky.

                      But I’ll take it, since I really can’t afford a new TV or player at the moment; ammo and component prices are so high… 🙂

                    6. Component prices aren’t bad here, though that’s because there’s nothing that I need is actually in stock!!!!. Doesn’t matter the list price when quantity is zero. Sigh.

                      Thank you, I feel better now.

                    7. Glad to help. 🙂

                      Yeah, supplies here are a bit spotty, too; I have most of what I need, but I’ve been trying to get LR primers (preferably CCI, but any will do) and Hodgdon Trail Boss since sometime in 2021. ;-(

                      But… $40-50/lb for IMR powders?!? $10/hundred for primers?!!? Sheesh…

            2. I have literally done that thing. And it was literally a sht show from end to end. Don’t ask how it was made to work. Just know it worked. So long as *nothing was effing touched.

              Very glad that it is now Someone Else’s Problem.

  9. The barbarians have been at the gates before and ultimately it didn’t work out for them.

    I don’t think this particular bunch of barbarians will fare any better. Looking at how they are running things into the ground it’s clear they have zero idea how to “run a railroad” so to speak. They’re big talkers but can’t actually do squat.

    Since they can’t actually even run a well oiled machine they have no hope of bringing anything at all back from the ashes.

    1. They don’t care, so long as they wind up squatting on top of the ashes, and everybody else is even worse off than they are. They will undergo privation, if they can make you even more miserable.

      In other news, the Democrats are busily decriminalizing crime. When vandalism, looting, arson and murder are no longer crimes, that does wonders for reducing the crime rate.

      On the other hand, posting mean tweets is a crime. Making fun of Queen Hillary is a crime. Listening to a speech by the President of the United States is a crime.
      When police arrest violent criminals to protect innocent people, they are Jackbooted Fascist Stormtroopers.

      When police arrest innocent people at the behest of corrupt politicians, they are National Heroes.

    2. Depending on where you were when the barbarians came through, it varied from “Yes, I miss the exotic stuff too, but that’s just how things are now” to “Yearrrrg—!” I’d prefer to avoid both ends of that spectrum, thanks. So we have to stop the barbarians.

  10. Today’s headline:

    Marina Yankina, head of finance for the Western Military District, was found on a St. Petersburg sidewalk after falling from the 16th floor.

    “Russia’s Investigative Committee is looking into the circumstances of the deadly plunge, with their preliminary conclusion being suicide.”

    So, the defenestrations have begun?
    Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!!

      1. It seems like a steady stream.

        FWIW, I’m noticing a distinct shortage of Western TPTB who’ve died of Suddenly. Kind of makes me wish I still smoked a pipe. Three-pipe problem, perhaps.

        1. Russian? Check out the history of Arkancide; makes the current Russians look like pikers. As Josef said of Adolph, “Amateur!”.

  11. Reblogged this on Calculus of Decay and commented:

    High trust societies ruined by the policies of our kosher dildo-sanitiser sponsored leadership…the migrants were let in, by aforementioned oven-tier leadership…

  12. The Reader’s major exposure to another culture was living in Southern Spain for 18 months in the 60’s. It was a very low trust culture. The best example was visible on all the houses. Virtually everything there was constructed of cheap brick and cheaper cement (the Reader saw some structures crumble within 6 months of construction). Almost all the houses had a small courtyard. The top of the exterior wall or walls of those courtyards, without exception, were lined with broken glass. The construction included embedding an assortment of glass jars and bottles in the cement during construction and then breaking them after the cement set. It was a bit of a shock for a kid who had been growing up where doors weren’t locked and keys were left in cars overnight.

    1. I spent a summer in Marseilles in ’56, and many of the older houses had walls topped with broken glass, including the one owned by one of my uncles, and the villa in Cannes owned by another uncle. I was only 11, so it didn’t evoke much of a reaction from me; it’s “just how it is”.

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