Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Just Following Orders Is Exculpatory in the Military

I had a long conversation with a Vietnam vet over the courser of a few days with a fellow who was a cruise ship dance facilitator.  In essence his job was to dance with widows who paid tens of thousands to go on cruises.

He was in the Americal Division under Lt. Calley and lied about his ability to type 120 words a minute so he could get transferred out.  It was clear this group was bent on atrocities, and he could not be a part of that.  He got out participating in the massacre, but has had a hard time holding serious work since then.

One Colin Powell helped keep it secret for a while, but eventually the word got out for one righteous soldier in all of the massacre at My Lai:

Movement from the ditch indicated to Thompson that there were still people alive in there. Thompson landed his helicopter and dismounted. David Mitchell, a sergeant and squad leader in 1st Platoon, C Company, walked over to him. When asked by Thompson whether any help could be provided to the people in the ditch, the sergeant replied that the only way to help them was to put them out of their misery. Second LieutenantWilliam Calley (commanding officer of the 1st Platoon, C Company) then came up, and the two had the following conversation:[7]
Thompson: What's going on here, Lieutenant?
Calley: This is my business.
Thompson: What is this? Who are these people?
Calley: Just following orders.
Thompson: Orders? Whose orders?
Calley: Just following...
Thompson: But, these are human beings, unarmed civilians, sir.
Calley: Look Thompson, this is my show. I'm in charge here. It ain't your concern.
Thompson: Yeah, great job.
Calley: You better get back in that chopper and mind your own business.
Thompson: You ain't heard the last of this!
Thompson took off again, and Andreotta reported that Mitchell was now executing the people in the ditch. Furious, Thompson flew over the northeast corner of the village and spotted a group of about ten civilians, including children, running toward a homemade bomb shelter. Pursuing them were soldiers from the 2nd Platoon, C Company. Realizing that the soldiers intended to murder the Vietnamese, Thompson landed his aircraft between them and the villagers. Thompson turned to Colburn and Andreotta and told them that if the Americans began shooting at the villagers or him, they should fire their M60 machine guns at the Americans:[8] "Y'all cover me! If these bastards open up on me or these people, you open up on them. Promise me!" He then dismounted to confront the 2nd Platoon's leader, Stephen Brooks. Thompson told him he wanted help getting the peasants out of the bunker:[8]

Only Calley was prosecuted, and then pardoned by Nixon, the Quaker.  Since no officer was tried and convicted of this widespread pattern of murder, it goes on to this day.  And what goes around, comes around.

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Sunday, April 28, 2013

Asking Why is Conscientious Objection

Mistakes were made, time to move on...

Chris Matthews  asks why we should ask why?

MATTHEWS: Why is that important? Why is that important to -- is that important to prosecuting? I mean, what difference does it make why they did it if they did it? I'm being tough here. But I don't know whether, when you look at all this evidence --

Hillary Clinton asks why we should ask why?

Sandy Hook we are not allowed to know why.

Aurora we are not allowed to know why.

Columbine we are not allowed to know why.

9-11,  the second, so many people asked why they offered an explanation: they hate us for our freedom.

9-11 the first Arab counterattack, may have been a fast and furious, but the perps were motivated by ridding their Holy Lands from USA occupation.

To ask why is an act of conscientious objection.

Ron Unz thinks we are getting past being bamboozled.

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Friday, April 26, 2013

Please School the President

"Why did young men who grew up and studied here as part of our communities and our country resort to such violence? How did they plan and carry out these attacks?" Obama added.
Well, a natural question if you did not grow up here and go to school here.

People who are raised here are taught to solve problems with violence.  When they find the problem is the American system, they want to do as they were taught.

Happily we have such a terrible educational system that most ticked off people do not learn that lesson right either.

We need to teach violence is never the answer.  Hard to do when we constantly praise state violence.

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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Lawlessness - Boston 2013

This is a crime.  (Scroll down.) Why is it not prosecuted?


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Saturday, April 20, 2013

Human Sacrifice

There is a theme in the Bible that God frowns on human sacrifice.  People killing people is not to be countenanced, especially when down "for one's god."  We have the very strange story of Abraham first commanded to sacrifice Isaac, and then not.  This throws into confusion where Israel was commanded to kill Canaanites, but did haphazardly.

As it has been noted, God wants obedience more than sacrifice.

As a Catholic of the Roman rite, I get disoriented when I see the left wing "peace and justice" Catholics tolerate abortion (infant sacrifice) and right wing "pro-life" Catholics celebrate killing people brown and darker overseas.  It seems the contemporary Catholic is very much into human sacrifice one way or another.  And reflect, all human sacrifice is about making life better for the ones doing the killing.  The essential argument of both sides is by these killings our lives are better.  Killing some people is "the price we pay" for our civilization.  (I've had people actually say that to me.)

Here is a sold out Catholic men's conference.  Who is the big draw?

Charlie Aeschliman is a former Navy S.E.A.L. and trick basketball handling champion... but that is far from all he is about! Contrasting Catholicism with his experience as a Navy S.E.A.L., Charlie highlights the awesome arsenal the Church provides to successfully engage in spiritual warfare and overcome sin.   ...become all God made them to be.
Charlie Aeschliman's Talk: “Commando Catholicism”.

The Navy Seals will make you all the Catholic you can be?  Weren't they the ones who buttoned O B Laden?    You mean being a Navy Seal is a spiritual warfare?  So like, jihad?    Just how confusing can a Catholic conference get?  Let's do a re-write to make this clear...

Charlie Aeschliman is a former Navy S.E.A.L. and trick basketball handling champion... but that is far from all he is about! Contrasting Islam with his experience as a Navy S.E.A.L., Charlie highlights the awesome arsenal the Islam provides to successfully engage in spiritual warfare and overcome sin.   ...become all God made them to be.
Charlie Aeschliman's Talk: “Commando Islam”.

See the problem?

There was an Archbishop/Cardinal who taught a pox on both houses, that to be Catholic you had to reject the violence on both sides, pro-life and pro-peace. He used the idea of the seamless garment Christ wore as the symbol for the idea.  He was falsely accused of sexual improprieties, and it took an excruciating process that ended with the accuser recanting his false charges.  A lesson to any priest who would be faithful to the teaching of Jesus.

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Friday, April 19, 2013

Selling Homosexuals Down the River

I object to state power because I see what it does.  I know if I had it I would be every bit as corrupt as those who do have it.  Then there is the flipside, the citizens who are corrupted by the acts of the powerful.  I call it "selling people down the river.

Selling people down the river is nothing new.  As often is the case, the Bible has several early examples, such as when Abram said his wife was his sister, or more literally when Joseph's brothers sold him down the river.

We can pick anytime in history, and see Irish selling Irish down the river, Congolese selling Congolese, and so on.  It happens when state power distorts normal human relationship balances.  

One current event is the push for "gay marriage."  Big deal, right?  The assumption is "why not..?  If they want that, who cares.?"  Well, there are those who world state power who are very nasty characters, plus shifting political winds.   Does anyone remember the "AIDS crisis"?  Castro responded to the epidemic by imprisoning those afflicted.  That is one political response.

The term Patient Zero refers to the 'hub' of an epidemiological study conducted very early on in the epidemic by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia. The study traced the sexual contacts of one group of gay men with AIDS who had had sex with each other before anyone knew that AIDS was caused by a virus, or realized that it had already been with us for at least a decade, if not decades. 

Dugas didn't bring AIDS to Vancouver. The first death occurred in 1981. But people here were growing frightened as gay men returning from trips to New York and San Francisco brought back one horror story after another.

AIDS.  CDC study early on.  First death 1981.

The Tuskegee Experiments, run by the CDC, were ended about 1973.  Nobody went to prison, nobody was hanged.  Quite the contrary.  Perpetrators went on to bigger and better things.

Within a few years of ending the Tuskegee Experiments, the first death from a virus/cancer was recorded.  Aids.  Which by the way kills far more black Africans than USA gays, because the medicine is so expensive.  The CDC was in on the study of AIDS very early on. Odd that, when they tend to miss everything else.

The state offers a platform for those with lethal agendas to play them out.  When political winds get behind one side or another, things get lethal.  They do even if most Americans would have objected to the Tuskegee Experiments, the crime went on.  There is simply no mechanism to check abuse by individual state workers, especially when the conspire.  "Mistakes were made, now it is time to move forward."

There will be a political backlash in time to "gay marriage."  When it gets down to selling your gay friends down the river, I know what I will do... I'll sell them down the river.  We all do.  The time to conscientiously object is now.  Say no now so we won't have to turn them in later.

Of course it may never happen, but such events happen all the time.  We sell people who self-medicate down the river, we sell people who are here "illegally" (as if wanting to work or visit your family is a crime) down the river, why not more so gays?

Resist accepting power you would not want your enemies to have.

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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Who is Who In a Mass Shooting?

Aikido is a martial art, meaning the practitioners are warriors.  When faced with threat, they go right at the problem.  Their are practical difference in say Karate, Judo and Aikido, but they all deal with threats of force or fraud.

Having said that, take a look at this picture forma recent Community College shooting.  What do you see?

Aftermath of Virginia mall shooting

There is a person with a gun and a rifle pointed at three fellows in submission.  Who is that person?  Did you answer "police officer"?  How do you know?  Because of the vest?

In the chaotic situation of a mass shooting, who knows who is who?  We see after all "officer-safety" issues are addressed, the police then come in and start putting everyone under the gun.  But what if shooters claim to be police?

Now you may think that is silly, but at this very school in this very case, the shooter tried to lure people out to kill them by claiming to be a police officer.

A student at the New River Community College claimed that MacInnis pretended to be a police officer before shooting two women inside the campus. Cops say the suspect allegedly practiced firing guns with Christiansburg police.

I've heard this before in such cases, so it caught my attention.  It seems the killers are learning by experience.

1. Go to gun-control jurisdictions.

2. Go to gun-free zones, like schools and post offices, or the murder capital of USA, Washington, DC.

3. Claim to be a police officer in the chaos, you'll kill more people.

So.  is this person, holding a high capacity magazine gun, just awaiting to collect enough submissive people along the curb so that she can kill as many people as possible?  How do you know that is not the case?

As a martial artist in a killing zone, if I see someone coming at me with a weapon I will disarm that person.  Why would I do otherwise?  In a shooting situation where I am unarmed, why is anyone coming at me with a gun?  Since I am always unarmed, why point a gun at me?

If the person is a police officer, why would they point a gun at anyone who is not armed?  So they can be in control?  The cops may know one another, and if so they should be looking for shooters, not gather people who make good targets. What if the shooter barges out the door and kills the cop?  Then those lads are next.  No, this policy will not do.

I might get killed disarming someone, but that is the choice I made when I became a martial artist.  I sure am not going to wait to find out if a shooter is awaiting the optimum killing opportunity.

My father was a English professor at a small Jesuit liberal arts college for 45 years.  He was armed every day.  So were other professors.  There was a gun club on campus.  No one knew. Never a shooting.  I was around guns enough to know they are not for me.  But I've never feared guns.

The first of these mass shootings happened in Austin TX.  The first cop on the scene asked who all the people returning fire were...  came the reply "Texans."

The shooter was killed by that first cop and a citizen who worked their way through the field of fire and up the stairs past the dead, unarmed people, to the top of the tower. It was 50/50 which of the two, heading in opposite directions, would first meet the shooter.  The cop killed the shooter.

John Lott has discovered that when the police end a shooting spree, it takes more time and more people die.  When a private citizen ends the shooting spree, it takes less time and fewer die.  Our safety is in an armed citizenry, hence the second amendment.

The few people who are into guns and responsibly carry them are necessary and sufficient to keep us all safe.  When seconds matter, the cops will get there in ten minutes or so.

We do not need more gun laws, we need to get rid of the ones we have.

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Saturday, April 6, 2013

Cotton Gin and Conscientious Objection

Business and politics are tightly intertwined, and I found myself getting political on my business blog.   As a conscientious objector, my politics are anarchistic, in the academic sense of the word.  over at my business blog, I was expositing on bank-and-IPR-free industrial development when I found myself getting very political...  so I extricated digressions and deposited them here...

On the topic of the cotton gin, I noted:

And the price of cotton dropped dramatically, so now middle class could start to wear it.  Since the USA at the time respected neither property rights nor human rights, disasters followed.  Slavery got a new lease on life as cotton became more profitable for slavers, and more land was put under cotton.  Cotton is notorious land fertility depleter, so slavers needed to move West. This led to conflict with Mexico, and in turn to the USA invasion and seizure of Mexican lands for cotton growers.  As Thoreau lamented, democracy allows for a very few to get the many into war.

That cotton gin that gave slavery a new lease on life, and subsequently brought us the war on Mexico, led to the USA civil war.  According to General Grant:

"The Southern rebellion was largely the outgrowth of the Mexican War.  Nations, like individuals, are punished for their transgressions.  We got our punishment in the most sanguinary and expensive war of modern times."
(Written in the 1880s as Grant reflected on a war in which he fought in the 1840s.)

So the cotton gin was a good thing showing up at the wrong time and place.  War followed in its wake.

This war was waged subsequent to a regime that protected slavery and disrespected property rights.  None suffered more after this war than the American Indians and citizens of some African heritage. Had we respected property rights, certainly the Chickasaw would have had the option of farming and earning, but since they were the last of the Confederates to surrender n the Civil war, their nation was targeted for particularly robust land loss. As to Americans of some African ancestry, land ownership was threatened by disenfranchised whites.  

In any case, no doubt small farmers would conserve their land better than larger slavers, who had the political clout to simply deplete and steal.  If the state did not violently enforce slavery and land theft, surely results would have been different.  But the fact of the matter is USA had both, so we have to look to other times and places where slavery was not enforced and property rights were respected.  Nothing comes to mind.  

But we do know in history, in the 19th century, some 18 other countries rid themselves of slavery without war.  And in these countries people of African heritage find themselves less constrained in opportunity than in USA. 

As a side note, a point I’ve made before, slaves had more opportunity to be productive in USA as slaves than they ever have been since they were “freed.”  Their experience as slaves, that is within two generations of being slave-born cultural primitives, they were shoulder to shoulder with pioneers of the industrial revolution, contradicts the scientific rascists who tell us people of African heritage are inferior humans.  What took the West thousands of years to develop in terms of culture Africans were able to possess within two generations.

Are Africans, therefore, superhuman?  No, it just shows ideas matter.  If you get the ideas right, they will work for everyone.  The most peaceful, prosperous places on earth are where several languages are spoken at once, law is performance based, and generally unbiased.

Unfortunately, the progressives got the upper hand in the 19th century and Lincoln and his followers tried to rearrange USA by violence.  The contributions of African Americans were circumscribed as a result of the war, and the Indians were the target of the war machine left over from the civil war.  The concentration camps for Indians became the model for Germany within 50 years.

Getting the ideas right matter.

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Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Iraq - Ten Years In

Ten years into the Iraq invasion -

The power elite, especially the liberal elite, has always been willing to sacrifice integrity and truth for power, personal advancement, foundation grants, awards, tenured professorships, columns, book contracts, television appearances, generous lecture fees and social status. They know what they need to say. They know which ideology they have to serve. They know what lies must be told—the biggest being that they take moral stances on issues that aren’t safe and anodyne. They have been at this game a long time. And they will, should their careers require it, happily sell us out again.

I knew that Iraq had not weapons of mass destruction because Colin Powell was asked to say so.  Colin Powell was called on to lie for the regime going back to the My Lai massacre, and left behind soldiers, and Iran Contra, and so it was a fitting crown to his career to lie for a war in Iraq.  It works for him.

The amazing thing was no official case was made for Saddam Hussein being involved in 9-11 (or Osama bin Laden for that matter) yet American widely assumed this to be the case.

My advice after 9-11 seems, a decade or more in, to have been the best...

Of course it generated more comment than any other blog post I've made...


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