Saturday, August 30, 2014

Random Thoughts for September, 2014

Random Thoughts for September, 2014
Robert A. Hall

I believe that almost all of the pathologies that are destroying western civilization, and with it our peoples' hope for the future for freedom and progress, can be laid at the foot of the 1960s. The collapse of marriage, a birthrate that that has fallen below replacement levels, but with a drastic rise in non-marital births with the accompanying poverty and other ills, the widespread drug abuse that destroys families and kills the self-indulgent people "doing their own thing," the decline in civic participation, the decline in church attendance and the belief in God, the extended adolescence many people never grow out of, the cynical view of patriotism that makes it hard for the West to stand against wild-eyed fanatics, and the general moral relativism all flowered in the 1960s--a criminal decade that has assassinated our culture. And progressive intellectuals were its accomplices. Their grandkids will live like savages--and loath them.

You can support Israel or you can support Democrats and Hamas.

I predict Obama will delay any executive action on immigration until after the November election, keeping Hispanic voters hopeful, while not endangering Democrats by riling the majority of voters who oppose amnesty. Same reason he delayed so much of Obamacare until after November--a majority oppose it.

On issue after issue Obama and the Democrats stand against the majority opinion. (e.g. Late term abortion, Keystone pipeline, amnesty, Obamacare) Not very democratic of them. But, hey, Obama's black, so "Democrats" (but not small-D democrats) still support him.

Obama is still in the catbird seat on the budget and spending. Either the Republicans in congress give him every dollar he wants to spend, or he vetoes the budget, the government shuts down, he closes open air parks (spending money to do so) and the media convinces the public to blame the GOP. Nice racket.

The policy of the left is to demonize as racist any rational discussion of the downside to affirmative action or illegal immigration. Intimidating the thoughtful people who disagree with them leaves only the crazy racists speaking out against these things. Thus they can further picture all disagreement as "racist."

When you read a job advertisement that says, "Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer." don't you want to ask, "Well, which is it?"

If you believe in a society where a person is judged by the content of their character rather than the color of their skin, if you think people should be judged on individual merit, intellect, experience and ability, and not on their membership in a particular ethnic, religious, racial, gender, age or sexual orientation group, progressives now consider you a vile racist.

The Democrats' Slogan: Once you go black, the media's got your back.

Democrats have revered figures: Jefferson, who stood for limited government and fiscal responsibility, Martin Luther King, who was a life-long Republican and believed that skin color shouldn't matter, and Cesar Chavez, the migrant farm workers leader who strongly opposed illegal immigration. Just don't ask them to support their heroes' principles.

Barack "NPD" Obama once said, " "I think I'm a better speechwriter than my speechwriters," Obama told him."I know more about policies on any particular issue than my policy directors. And I'll tell you right now that I'm gonna think I'm a better political director than my political director." Apparently he's not better at war than a general or at intelligence than an intel operator.

A liberal is someone who hates the use of poison gas against anyone, never mind innocent civilians, hates the use of torture, hates the very idea that men rape young girls--and hates George W. Bush for deposing Saddam and his sons, who did all these things.

I've probable said this before, but try to banish the catch phrase, "Well, to be honest..." from your speech. I always respond, "Aren't you always?" Using the phrase implies that you are being honest this time, which is unusual for you.

I'm sure I've said this before, in one form or another. I owe my successful career and life to three months in 1964 with my Marine DIs, Sgt. William H. Harris, Sgt. Michael P. Martin and Sgt. Ezekiel Owens, Jr. (who died at age 74 in Dec). They gave me self-discipline and determination, pearls beyond price.

Dr. Thomas Swell: "I don't know. It is a phrase that should be used more often. It might well replace the phrase, 'Well, what is the answer?'"

Going to war is a catastrophe. But sometimes it is necessary to avoid a larger catastrophe, like being enslaved by one well meaning tyrant or another, from Mao to Hitler to Stalin to Islam to statists at home.

Slavery is a system whereby the fruits of the labor of some people are taken from them to benefit other people who didn't labor. Now we call it the Welfare State.

A patriot is a person who cares about the future of the country when he or she won't be here to see that future.

If voter ID laws are racist, how come Mexico has them? Same with strict immigration laws.

It is claimed that rape is not about sex, it's about power and control. (Personally, I think it's a combination of the two.) But if this is true, isn't the rape of a black woman by a white man, or the more frequent rape of a white woman by a black man a "hate crime"?

Internet Joke: What' green on the outside and red on the inside? Environmentalists.

Everyone's crying over a couple of "botched" executions of murderers. If my wife, child or other loved one was the victim, I'd celebrate a "botched" execution. Not as bad as what I would do if I had the evil-doer in my power. Yes, I'm a terrible person. This is news?

Let's tell the IRS that the illegals are Tea Party members. They'll be gone in a month.

Let's tell the liberals that ISIS refuses to pay for women's birth control. The bombing will start tomorrow.

A progressive will adopt any theory, spout any absurdity, believe any impossibility, ignore any evidence and countenance any enormity if it will earn him the approbation and esteem of his fellow progressives.

Progressive, communists and socialists (including the National Socialists) have always believed that the ends justify the means. But they also believe that good intentions justify any amount of harm to real people. And they also believe that as the guardians and guides of the benighted masses, they are entitled to live better than the average person. Which is why Al Gore can campaign against global warming and support tax increases in theory, while making $200M off global warming to join the rich one percent, trying to avoid the tax increase he championed when he sold his TV channel to the oil-rich terrorist network, and maintaining a life style with a carbon footprint 100 times yours and mine.

I've noticed that with many over-the-counter medicines, the generic and the name brand are equally ineffective.

If a judges believe something should be done, they can always find an excuse, however flimsy, in the US or state constitution. The constitutional prohibition of congress from making any law establishing a state religion has been used by judges to outlaw a whole host of things that would shock the founders, who were thinking of the England's established, tax-supported church. The constitution guarantees the right to bear arms--unless the judge doesn't agree. The constitution always the feds to regulate interstate commerce, so states couldn't put tariffs on goods from other states. Back in the 1930s, this was upheld as allowing the federal government to stop a farmer from growing a crop on his land to feed his animals or for his own use. All sorts of new "rights" have been discovered that are not mentioned in the constitution. Conservatives judges tend to rule on their personal opinions of what should be as well; I just don't notice it as much. But neither side can afford to nominate non-political judges who will decide cases on the clear expression of the law and constitution, because they'd be overwhelmed by the ideology-driven activists on the other side.

The good news is that the liberals in Washington and many state capitals are no longer spending your money. The bad news is that they are now spending your great grandkids' money.

I saw an ad for a local Mexican restaurant advertising their menu which included a "white trash burrito." I wonder if a restaurant advertised a "wetback" taco or "spear chucker's soul food" at a place next door if there would be more of a reaction.

"Negative Campaigning" is often media code word for telling the truth about a liberal opponent supported by the media.

Liberals believe that a black person in America has the right to grow up and become anything he or she wants to become. Except, of course, a Republican or a conservative.

We've had a lovely, cool summer, temps mostly in the high 70s, low 80s, only two or three days over 90. It makes up for the harsh, fridge winter (one night it went to 23 below!). The only drawback is weather like this year's beings out the global warming cultists, turning hand springs to prove this is all part of what they cleverly now call "climate change." Clever, since the climate has been changing ever since the Earth war created.

Thomas Sowell often writes about Dunbar High School in Washington, DC. As the only black high school during segregation, it drew on the kids of janitors and cleaning ladies, but, with less money, beat two of the three white high schools in the city in test scores. It also turned out many of the black leaders who became prominent in many fields. After integration it got more money--but also all of the nostrums of modern progressive education. Now it is another failing inner-city school. I bet when it was successful, no one at Dunbar worried about giving the kids "self esteem." They gave them a good education in the basics and instilled discipline--and the students developed self esteem through their accomplishments in life. That is, they earned it--the only kind of self esteem worth having. And the parents supported the school and solid education. If a kid flunked, he got a whipping, not a lawsuit against the school for racism.

I notice that people have an easier time breaking good habits than bad ones.

Income inequality? How about research inequality? Brest cancer is now killing between 39,000 and 40,000 people every year, while pulmonary fibrosis is killing between 40,000 and 45,000 according to the best numbers I could fine on the net. Yet breast cancer gets about 80 times as much research funding as pulmonary fibrosis. I assume this is because most of the BC victims are woman, making it a political disease, while PF is an equal opportunity killer.

I'm at that awkward age where I'm often over-medicated and under-estimated.

Internet joke: Three reasons to oppose Islamists: Bacon, babes and beer.

From a retired Marine Colonel: Many years ago when I was a lt. in an infantry battalion we had a commanding officer, the executive officer, and the operations officer who all were idiots. Fortunately, we had an assistant operations officer and the company commander who were really good and as a result, the battalion functioned fairly well. In my opinion, we are faced with the same situation on a national level. The president, vice president, and secretary of state all leave much to be desired. What is keeping the nation afloat is that we have enough state governors to keep the ship afloat. That can not last forever.

Abortion is the ultimate expression of the cult of the self, the idea that the highest morality is your own convenience; your highest duty is to follow your inclinations at the moment. The child growing inside you thus has no standing beyond being an inconvenient blob of cells. The cult's full flowering now occupies the White House. Thousands of children are abandoned every year on the same principle.

When someone says, "My conscience is clear," it usually isn't.

"Public Opinion" can be the worst of tyrants.

The suffering of real people hardly registers in the balance against liberals' endless quest for self-esteem. That quest is why they have made handing out unearned self esteem the highest goal of the educational system. They would like it handed to them without the effort of doing esteem-worthy deeds. So they hand it to each other, but it naturally feels empty to them, so the quest goes on, regardless of the harm done.

America used to have a space program, but it has been eaten by the welfare state, which is now happily dining on national defense. Eventually it will consume everything--and it won't be enough. Then comes the collapse, riots, looting, chaos and death.

Funny we used to hear almost daily about the number of military dead in Iraq and Afghanistan, back before 2008. Seems since then the media has lost interest. What changed?

There are clearly advantages to being President. I wish I could call in air strikes on evil people even from vacation.

"Liberal" is a code word for pharisaical.

Whether in the city or the country, progressive policies have made life for the lower class a nightmare. The nightmare is spreading to the middleclass, but the wealthy liberal elites in their gated communities only call for more of the same.

Some of the largest egos are also the most fragile, unable to take even a mild hit or tolerate a small slight.

Every year, we have more people who are not happy unless they are complaining bitterly about something.  Economic data show that Americans are of all classes are far better off than they were 40 years ago, but surveys suggest they are far less contented. The poor in America have food, health care access, entertainment options and consumer goods like cars, TVs, AC, smart and their income from minimum wage jobs, government wealth transfer from workers and off the radar income, from unreported jobs, drugs, sex, etc., would make them solidly middle class in much of the third world. Kings of 200 years ago would marvel at their "wealth." Yet a grateful heart is so rare today as to be a tourist attraction. Every day I thank God for allowing me to be born in the USA, a modern society with a free market system that has allowed me to live longer and better (at 68) than 99% of the folks ever born. So are most Americans happy? Not at all. They feel empty and bored, and seek to dispel that with sensation in place of meaning: drugs, sex, alcohol and the excitement of violence. All of which leaves them more empty and bored. The only path to happiness is to care about something greater than yourself--church, community, country, charity or cause or an organization such as the USMC.

I could never be a liberal. I'd find being perpetually offended and always morally outraged too exhausting.

For progressives, compassion is just another trophy to impress their peers, and the poor and downtrodden are mascots. Like other mascots, you can visit them, but they can't live in the house with you.

For those who have served in the chaos and carnage of war, the only lasting memorial is courage and comradeship. Obelisks of the heart, if you will.

No fantasy is more dangerous than the progressives' delusion that socialism, if just implemented properly by the right people, will bring about a just and happy world. As a quick reference to the three leading socialist "implementers" of the 20th century, Mao, Stalin and Hitler (who called his version National Socialism) show, it leads only to oppression and death on an industrial scale. This is because the implementation requires that ever-more freedom and choice must be taken from the hands of the individual and given to statist bureaucrats backed by the coercive power of the state. The Nazi's called this Gleichsaltung, the overall coordination of the society and the economy. You must be forcibly stopped from using your property as you wish, saying what you wish (e.g., it's racist hate speech to condemn Muslim atrocities or Drug Cartel violence), even from eating what you wish.

Liberals believe, as an article of faith, that poverty causes crime. But it is certainly true that, among folks at the bottom of the ladder, crime causes poverty. This is especially true in the poor black community. Liberals are solicitous of these folks, but going lightly on black thugs to show they are not racist and thus realize that crime comes from societal causes victimizes the majority of decent black folks who want to live their lives free of fear of the thugs.

If I had a means of distribution, I'd make up tee shirts that said, "Orthodox Liberal" and "Born Again Progressive." I bet in Madison, WI they'd buy a ton of them.

Liberals believe that sociopaths are people too, deserving of equal respect and kind treatment. Never mind how this victimizes their victims a second time.

"Antiracism is the new racism." --Theodore Dalrymple (Dr. Anthony Daniels).

Saying, "Others have done worse" provides neither excuse nor justification for your (or my) misdeeds and failure to be the kind of person we think we are.

I think Obama gets away with lies and promises he knows he cannot keep because the attention span of the American public has dwindled to the vanishing point. I do not know if this is fed by the fickleness of the mainstream and social media, or they are simply responses to the development.

I may have said this before. Anything made to be collectible is not worth collecting. Eventually the maker will flood the market, either with the same item or new variations until there is no more profit--and the collections become worthless. See Beanie Babies, now 50 cents each at yard sales.

We went to the Sun Prairie Corn Fest Parade to see our 13-year-old granddaughter, Britnye, march with her dance group. My step-daughter brought Britnye's two-year-old brother, Dale, and the boy who lives next door, who is six. Told to hold Dale's hand so he didn't dart away, the older boy asked plaintively, "Why do I have to be the grown up?" That might be the anthem for American life since the 60s.

Some day, I'd like to hear the media complain that the rioters or criminals were using "excessive force."

If you have to constantly prove to people that you matter--you don't.

Very few lives matter a thousand or even a hundred years after the person is dead. But we can all matter ten years after we are gone--if you work at it and live a good life, caring about other people.

If you RSVP for an event with a fee, and don't turn up, you have an ethical obligation to pay anyway. The host organization has costs to meet. This, of course, assumes you are one of that dwindling group of Americans who care about ethics.

Most Democrats are for the poor the way most doggie bags are for the dogs.

At my age and with my health concerns, folks may think I'm going downhill--but every day feels like uphill to me.

A truth too many people never learn: Wishing won't do what working will.

In our politically-correct world, being called a racist by a minority is serious juju, barely above being called a pedophile and well below being called a drug dealer. But being called a racist by a white liberal because you disagreed with him on some point is hardly worth notice. It's the price of thinking for yourself, rather than how the media and the liberal elites tell you to think.

Just as there is no such thing as a former Marine, there is no such thing as an unarmed Marine. We were armed in boot camp by our DIs. The Marine is the weapon--a rifle or knife is just a tool.

The world is full of short-term thinking. It's why people start smoking, using drugs or having children outside marriage that they can't support. Long term thinkers are much needed, but it is often uncomfortable and they can often be wrong. See Paul Ehrlich (The Population Bomb) or Al Gore (The arctic will be free of ice in the summer of 2013). Maybe that's why the numbers of short term thinker grow every year.

Everyone is boring to someone, but some folks are boring to everyone. And are congenitally unable to realize or believe it.

Progressives support equality, but not it's vital component, meritocracy.

With the indictment of Rick Perry that even liberal are decrying, and the long but so far fruitless pursuit of Scott Walker, it's clear that Democrats have embraced "lawfare," war through the courts on any potential GOP presidential candidate. Republicans need to be zealously reviewing the records of Hillary (she of the $1,000 contributions from non-English speaking immigrants making minimum wage in 2008) and other potential Dems for legal violations. But we must make sure they can be substantiated, not trivial, are true and are worth exposing before we go forward. Not to do so will expose us to media criticism where Dems get a pass--and is wrong in the bargain.

I'm surprised that more Congress Critters don't carry claw hammers--you know, in case something they want to steal is nailed down.

I was not considered a sharp dresser when I was a Massachusetts state senator. In fact, a writer for the Lowell Sun once labeled me "the worst dressed senator." My response was that now my constituents knew that if I was stealing, I wasn't spending it on $1,000 suits. But now that I live in Wisconsin, I'm a changed man. I wear a tie and jacket to church, which makes me an elegant swell. But I still shop at Goodwill--I was into recycling before it became a cult.

I think I should be in charge of naming medicines. They always give them names like Therobilanzadine, which you can't remember, spell or pronounce. I'd call them things like "Head Pills."

Five minutes of boredom is equal to two hours of fun, or an hour of work. Luckily, I'm rarely bored, because I'm such good company.

Don't let wishful thinking keep you from planning for a less-than-perfect future.

For the media, being black means never having to say you're sorry.

Do you notice how little diversity there is in government or hiring in much of the Third World?

Get the collection! My “Random Thoughts” from 2008 through July, 2013 are now collected in this book: The Old Jarhead's Journal: Random Thoughts on Life, Liberty, and Leadership by Robert A. Hall
The Old Jarhead’s Journal is a collection of Random Thoughts on politics and life and Conservative Political Essays, mostly published on the author’s blog, including the essay “I’m Tired” which went viral on the Internet in 2009, “The Hall Platform,” “This I Believe,” and “Why I’m a Republican.” While they will be of interest to conservative thinkers, they are collected here in book form as a service to readers who wish to give a copy to favorite liberals and watch their heads explode. All royalties are donated to the Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund.


Robert A. Hall is a Marine Vietnam Veteran who served five terms in the Massachusetts State Senate. He is the author of The Coming Collapse of the American Republic. For a free PDF of Collapse, e-mail him at tartanmarine(at) Hall’s eleven books are listed here:

1 comment:

  1. Again, one of the reasons I love your posts. Your thoughts and attitudes so closely resemble mine, yet you put them into words much more clearly and eloquently than I do.

    Thank you!

    Good health and God Bless (while I can still say that)