Friday, March 17, 2017

This Is Not Your Fathers Diplomat

In the history of bad appointees to the Secretary of State office the current one will likely go down as the worst of the worst. Unlike many others who have held the position, Rex Tillerson has no qualifications that a rational person would have looked for in someone who was going to fill the slot of America's top diplomat. He showed this to all and sundry during his trip to South Korea, a longtime American ally in Asia and the country that stands to lose the most should a conflict break out again, between North and South Korea. He, as a representative of Trump and the US, (but mostly Trump, as his potential policy decisions show) actively threatened to start a war with North Korea, if they don't toe his imaginary line. Never, in the history of diplomacy on the Korean Peninsula, has a Secretary of State uttered words that the diminutive and insane tyrant in the North could take as a direct threat to him and his rule. Needless to say, Mr. Tillerson would be nice and safe back in his office in Foggy Bottom, while missiles rained down on the citizens of Seoul, and elements of the Norths million man army poured across the border and rampaged through the countryside. The US's paltry military presence would last about as long as it did in the first Korean war.
   Add in the fact that the North Korean regime has nuclear weapons and you have a whole new ballgame. One the supremely unqualified Mr. Tillerson would seemingly like to see played out, from the safety of his D.C. office. Such is always the way with fools who are content to see others blood and treasure wasted for their rhetoric. Republicans should be truly ashamed that they put in place a man who would appoint fools such as this to represent America as its top diplomat. As someone who is intimately familiar with the workings of the diplomatic corps, I can assure you that war, and threats of war, are always the farthest thing from their minds, as it should be. Diplomacy is our first line of defence. War the last. Maybe someone should let Mr. Tillerson know this.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

The Debt Machine Roars On

Well, the national debt has reached a staggering $18.2 TRILLION and shows no signs of decreasing. Each of us, unwilling slaves to that debt, now owe $154,161. Most of us couldn't afford to pay our "fair share" of that number even if they came and confiscated all of our yearly earnings and left us thoroughly skinned.
   The congress, for all their talk of being fiscally responsible republicrats have managed to slow our economy and hasten the demise of the shrinking middle class with their spending on their pet projects and lobbyist masters in various industries. Their democrat buddies have been no better, saddling us with historically high levels of social spending. And the president shows no signs of that he won't sign spending that comes across his desk. None of these cretins has anything approaching the best interests of this country and its future in mind. They simply do not care about anything but their partisan politics and appeasing their monied constituencies and masters.
   We have reached the point where pumping the brakes is not even nearly enough. Slowing the accrual of further debt is untenable. The brakes must be applied and the course reversed, if we are to avoid catastrophe. The debt currently stands at 102.6% of GDP and is going to rise to more than 105.7% by 2019, by some estimates. I have no faith that it won't be higher than current estimates, because no-one within the DC Beltway has any intentions of actually cutting spending and ridding us of this onerous debt that they have accrued in our name with their endless programs, conflicts and cronyism.
   This is a drum we libertarians must be beating. The two wings of the Boot On Your Neck Party have shown their clear intention to continue business as usual, using us and our economy as their personal piggy banks to fund their draconian dreams. Their avarice, where our money and future are concerned, knows no bounds. We must, somehow, force these political robber barons to cease their spending. They must all be replaced with people who will actually act as stewards of the nation, its economy and our future, not as masters within their own petty fiefdoms. I would encourage any reader to forward the linked article, or this one, to their representatives, if I thought it would make any difference, but I fear we are beyond that point. The people who are robbing our children and grandchildren of their futures have no interest in having their crimes pointed out to them. They are safe in their partisan electoral havens and the people who continue to put them there are seemingly oblivious to the coming train wreck. Perhaps all we can do is take some small measures to soften the blows for ourselves, as we continue to cannonball towards the inevitable.
   Best of luck to everyone. We're going to need it.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

You Don't Own That Tractor

You don't own your tractor and you don't own your car. You're just leasing it, for all intents and purposes from the manufacturer, (even if you've "paid it off"). That's the case that the corporations are making to the Copyright Office, anyway. Since they've managed to put so much software into your modern vehicles, (like your John Deere tractor and your Honda) they are using the DMCA to assert ownership over your vehicle. You're just buying a license to use the vehicle. This kind of nonsense goes a long way towards destroying what little faith people have in the concept of Property Rights and the "intellectual property" movement. I, as a consumer am at the mercy of these corporations and their highly paid lawyers, if I want to attempt to repair my own vehicle. They assert that they, not I, are the real owners of the vehicle, because they wrote a a few pages of code to aid in the operation of the vehicle. Sorry, intellectual property mavens, I don't buy it. I didn't sign a contract or users license when I purchased my vehicle that allowed for anything other than full ownership of the vehicle and its contents, software included. If I want to tinker with it, that's my affair once it's in my hands. This nonsense has to be stopped. At the rate we're going the entire concept of ownership will be destroyed, and with it, our basic rights as property owners.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Happy 4/20 Day To All Those Folks That Indulge

Here's a little something to get your 4/20 day toes a tapping. Two highly successful potheads still rocking it after decades of partying. They're letting their liberty flag fly and not caring who knows it.