Showing posts from November, 2012

The moral basis of socialism

You shall not covet your neighbor's house; you shall not covet your neighbor's wife, or his male servant, or his female servant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor's. If you do not know where that comes from, it is in the Bible, Exodus Chapter 20. Moses has led the Israelites out of captivity in Egypt. God has given the people a short set of laws, the Ten Commandments. The passage quoted above is one of the ten. Of course this law and the rest are bedrock values of Judaism. Christianity, too, has recognized the high moral value and divinely practical tone of the Ten Commandments. The laws of God via Moses, as transmitted through Christianity, have been profoundly influential in shaping the ways Western culture has looked at things. Not coveting anything your neighbor has would seem to rule out the basis of 'redistributive social justice,' aka socialism. While both Christianity and socialism aim to help the poor, there is a fundament

Shooting at zombies

Discussion of zombie invasion scenarios is the shooting fraternity's way of poking gentle fun at itself. For years there were people working out what-if plans in case the country were invaded (the Red Dawn scenario) or in case of the breakdown of constitutional rule (WROL) or some other massive cultural disaster (TEOTWAWKI), such as anarchy ensuing after a nationwide failure of the electrical grid. While the Second Amendment and all it stands for would be of obvious usefulness in a national emergency, none of the scenarios happened, year after year. Thus was invented the zombie apocalypse scenario, a humorous way of lumping together all the awful what-if scenarios people had thought about. If you are ready for the zombie apocalypse, you are more than ready for any of the real world disasters mentioned above. We go to the range and have a good time shooting at zombie targets, which may, optionally, be rigged to bleed green blood when hit.  Obviously it is all a bit tongue in che

The last forbidden four letter word

I and wiser heads heads than mine have observed that the Western democracies, including the United States, are in moral, social and financial decline. I do not expect them to recover. They have thrown away their magic, lost the key that made them great. They will fall into history's ash heap. The word that defined the West was "truth." It meant something objective not personal. What was true for one was true for all. People could debate, and vigorously did, which things were true, but some things were and some were not. That was the thread that wove the social fabric. There were two contributors to this, Jew and Greek. The Jew said, and the Christian after him, that things were true because God's prophets spoke and what they said bore out. The Greeks said you know what is true for everyone because anyone can find it out for himself: repeatable observations, backed by formal logic and math, which they invented to prove their point. In other words the West receive

The 2014 elections

...the political ploy of bribing the people with their own  money falls apart. What happens when the people demand a bigger bribe? Dreary as the political situation is, there is some positive news. The Democrats will be very vulnerable in the midterm elections. How vulnerable they are depends on how bad the economy is then. I cannot see it being very good. Here and in Europe there are rumblings of troubles beyond those we have experienced heretofore.  Even the less reflective members of the public, here and abroad, are starting to understand that more government means less business. I want to focus on the European situation because I think it will likely come to a head in the next year or two. European governments are beginning to talk, at least, about curtailing public benefits. It's an unpopular idea. The populace decides what's popular and this ain't it. So we have an awkward balance of dissonant thoughts wherein the public is unhappy that there is not more publi

An unwholesome social dynamic

 ...even if a solid conservative had been running and had won the election, it would, in one important way, have made no difference . The ideas I'm going to share here came up in an email conversation with an old friend. I thought they might be of wider interest so I rewrote them as a blog post. I added some further thoughts that would have been obvious to my friend, who already knows how I think, but which might need a little bit of unpacking to be clear to other people. Firstly: Am I disappointed that Obama got reelected? I certainly am. I see his ideas and policies as all wrong. I am a fiscal conservative with libertarian leanings; he is a big government statist of the leftist persuasion. Unfortunately no one of my own persuasion was running: Romney, the Republican candidate, is a notable RINO. So there was really no one for me to vote for; I voted against Obama. Not enough people did. It is difficult for a challenger to win when not much differentiates him from the inc