Who Owns You

The kids have been coming home from elementary school talking about politics, mostly about how awful Donald Trump is. Apparently kids are picking this up from parents and taking the thoughts to school. We’ve had some discussions as a result, mostly involving them and their mother, but it has made me think more about how to introduce them to political philosphy. I’ve been disturbed to see young relatives turn out to be commies/fascists, or at least muddled and confused, when I might have expected them to learn better. The trouble is, that is what is taught at school, and especially at college.

This is not new knowledge or a new conclusion for me, but what it comes down to, and where I’d start with an explanation, is that all politics and related philosophy comes down to the question of who owns you. Who owns your life?

That makes everything one might agree to as an aspect of giving up rights to their life a matter of degree and kind, but to believe that any should be given up puts you on one side, and believing you own yourself and in not giving it up puts you on the other. The rest is shades of greater or lesser evil, at its lightest not apparently evil in the least.

This is a good way to explain property, since it’s an extension of yourself. It’s a good way to explain self-defense, since it’s inherent to being alive. It even gives a basis for explaining how governments arose and were assigned to do certain things for us as a group, and how that could easily lead to a government being “in charge, with force” rather than “charged with force.” Not helped by individuals not always being rational or acting in their own best interests. Not to mention there always being those who see their best interest in a place of power and disregard for the interests of others.

I believe it’s a bad idea to leave kids to pick up on things themselves, especially with those out there whose goal it is to instill wrong. Educational systems run by those who believe you don’t own yourself have been part of a long game to mold people to the desires of those who enjoy power. If you know better, you counteract that.

The Pearl Harbor Switch

This seems about right. I had never thought about the possibility of Afghanistan and Iraq being a way to defuse the Pearl Harbor Switch as it might otherwise have applied to our friends (and Bush friends) the Saudis. And perhaps the Muslim world in general. I remember well all the people calling for us to nuke Mecca. Which would be a Bad Idea if religiocide were not already well in the works. In any event, it’s easy to see how people could perceive us as soft and peaceful to the point of being pushovers, but it takes little perception to realize not to flip the switch.

The Killer Was A Lunatic

These people are pathetic. I can’t imagine anything worse than losing a child that way, but pursuing the suit was willfully stupid. Sales of weapons and ammunition are constitutionally protected, legal businesses. The sellers don’t kill people. The users of the products kill people. And rarely, at that. Better to go after the theater for obstructing the right of people to protect themselves.

They do have one good point. The dollar amount of damages for attorney fees is as absurd as their nuisance suit was in the first place. If the company actually paid that much – or owes that much – in attorney fees and associated court costs, then they should not be able to afford, or justify, turning around and donating that amount to groups like the NRA. Legal costs and legal costs are legal costs. If that’s not what the legal costs were, get real and only charge the silly plaintiffs the true amount. If those were the legal costs, perhaps that’s a law firm that ought to be ashamed of themselves for giving the industry a bad name.

This Is Bad

I have become a fan of Carly, but Fiorina supported an individual mandate in 2013. Not the same mandate. A more sensible mandate. However, it is wrong either way. No matter what the NSA has and allowed Obama to use on Justice Roberts to get a decision that says otherwise, the mandate is unconstitutional.

I’m not convinced this destroys her chances utterly, and it’s going to be hard to do more than modify ObamaCare no matter who wins, but it certainly looks bad. You cannot, by definition, support and defend the Constitution of the United States of America if you support and pursue unconstitutional policies.

The problem may be a corporate background informing her views. The trouble with Republicans is that it’s OK if a corporation does it, the way a Democrat considers it good if the government does it, but then that extends to it being OK if the government does something of benefit to corporation(s). If you see an individual mandate as somehow benefiting business, especially big business, you are more likely to support it as a Republican. No principles need apply.

Perhaps it’s already time to bring back Rick Perry. He has the problem of invoking Jesus, but not to the extent of being a Christian theocrat as some Republicans might be.

Yes Means Yes

When I started seeing “yes means yes” laws mentioned, it seemed funny to me. Why? Because my interpretation of a law of that name was “if someone says yes to sex, it means yes and you can’t go changing your mind later and accusing them of rape.” Because that would be false, whether you are a mattress dragging stunt hound or merely misguided.

Thus I was greatly surprised that it is affirmative consent. That is, absolutely unambiguous yes required each step of the way or it doesn’t count.

None of which changes the problem of his word versus hers, and his word doesn’t really count unless there is concrete evidence. So it really means you need to get consent on paper and/or tape, or to avoid the whole thing entirely, or to stick to partners who are rational humans.

Which would be the case without a law, these days. Especially on college campuses, where the Constitution need not apply.

RICO!? WTF…

So you’ve got this manmade global warming thing that not only hasn’t remotely been proven, but arguably the opposite. At minimum, the “evidence” has been subject to fraud or error. It’s more a money game than anything, for “scientists” pursuing it, and a power game for politicians and organizations pursuing it. Powerful motivators, those. Not like truth and accuracy for their own sake, and the sake of a clear conscience.

Now we have someone proposing to use RICO to bludgeon scientists who disagree! Seriously? Are you sure we aren’t living in a Randian dystopia, complete with a State Science Institute run amok?

Candidate Questions

This is a fun set of questions, taylored for each of the Republican candidates. One question. One followup. Since I haven’t examined every single candidate as closely as someone interested in political blogging could have, I learned a couple things. I agree on many points. This seems to be heavy on losing the religious angle some bring to the table. That’s a Good Thing. Religion should never be a factor in how a candidate or party campaigns or governs.

Bush has no serious chance anyway, but supporting gun control? That’s poison. Even Democrats are best of leaving that alone. It’s at least as much a lost cause as, say, gay marriage. More so, in that it has the Constitution more clearly and explicitly behind it, and the Constitution in that case is simply affirming the government will not interfere with a right that precedes and is not based in government.

I tend to agree on Carson. Why? How will he survive? Perhaps he’d be best off as Carly’s VP.

Speaking of Carly, she’s doing pretty well if the crony question is the worst you can come up with. Valid, perhaps, but a relatively modest concern.

Kasich supported Obamacare? Buh-bye.

Pataki’s question made me laugh my ass off. I won’t spoil it.

I didn’t quite finish a post about immigration I started the other day, but when the questions are about amnesty, I am not as strong in opinion as some. I’ve come around to less open borders as a matter of security, but otherwise I have always been rather more anarcho than libertarian on the topic.

Walker has been a disappointment. He, Perry and Fiorina have been my big three. I get the impression he is more muddled than it might have appeared when he did battle as governor. I was unimpressed by the Canadian border fence thing, and have wondered, since it was Just That Crazy a thing to say, whether it was overblown or taken out of context by the media, or was meant as a joke and taken seriously. My inclination to support him crashed hard with that. But he’d still be vastly better than what we have, than any running or potentially running Democrat or Socialist, and better than most of the Republican field in actual practice.

Huckabee is a joke. Was a joke before. Should even be running now.

Jindal is a technocratic policy wonk who would be adequate to good as President, but can’t get theah from heah. So yes, cabinet for him.

Trump apparently needs more of my attention. People I respect seem to actually support him! I have seen him as the clown car sideshow to entertain us before the real race gets underway. Instead he seems to have become the real race.

Didn’t mean for this to become a commentary on some of the candidates. Definitely go read the link if you haven’t already.