Today is Constitution Day

These days, I’m not sure if we’re supposed to be celebrating it…..or mourning it.

Every day should be Constitution Day.

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How People Become Easily Controlled By Tyrants

From Tyler Durden at ZeroHedge….you can decide who this applies to…..

Excerpt:

Here is how they achieve this goal, and how average people help them do it…

False Assumptions

Almost all bad situations start with false assumptions based on bias rather than facts or evidence.  The most dangerous assumption when it comes to tyranny is to say “we are in the right, therefore we are not supporting tyranny.”  The question that needs to be asked, though, is are they really “right” according to the facts?  If the answer is “no,” then they are probably fueling a tyrannical system.

First and foremost, many human beings want to be “right” more than they want to be correct.  That is to say, they are happy to “win” arguments and conflicts regardless of whether or not the truth is on their side.  This bias is the root of many catastrophes in history.

This is not to say that they don’t have a conscience.  Most people in fact do have a conscience that tells them their assumptions are wrong, but they can still commit acts of stupidity and atrocity.  This is where tyrannical manipulators tend to help them along.

Tyrants find great joy in creating all kinds of logical fallacies, mental gymnastics and morally relative sales pitches in order to convince a group of people that their wrong assumptions are right.  The truth becomes foggy and evidence becomes unnecessary.  In this state of mind, when individuals melt together into a mob, assumptions become cult dictates and “winning” becomes paramount.  False assumptions and biases can be used to turn normal upstanding people into monsters, all because they refused to accept that their ideological position was flawed; all because they were afraid to feel embarrassed or admit they had been conned.

False Sides

The taking of sides in political discourse is natural and normal.  Even when people are entirely honest about the facts on hand and agree on basic principles of human decency and freedom, they will STILL disagree on what solutions should be used to deal with the problems in front of them.  This creates a spectrum within society that is ever present; it cannot be helped or avoided.  Tyrants understand the basis of this spectrum and try to use it to their advantage to manipulate people away from thoughtful discourse and towards mindless conflict.

Tyrants exploit the masses more easily when people assume that corrupt political and social leaders are working for “their side” against the “other side.”  Often these leaders can be bought or threatened into subservience.  Tyrants then use them to drive the spectrum to the furthest opposites, until both sides adopt an attitude of zealotry.

This happens not only in politics, but in geopolitics, as entire nations are driven to war with each other by puppet presidents and governments over engineered conflicts that only ever benefit the cabal of tyrants behind the curtain.

Zealotry And False Narratives

I view zealotry as a kind of psychological disease that is actually communicable – it spreads like a virus through a culture until everyone is infected.  Zealotry happens when a person embraces an ideology to the point that it overrides their personality and their soul, and they are no longer able to think clearly as an individual.  This includes considering the possibility that they are on the wrong side of history and morality.

Zealotry on a mass scale depends on a number of dominoes set in succession.  The threat of civil breakdown and economic suffering helps.  Ideological opponents must be painted as an imminent and vile threat to the very fabric of society.  In some cases they are a real and created threat (controlled opposition); in other cases they are a paper tiger meant to drive another group to support tyrannical measures.

Tyrants build false narratives.  This is what they do best.  They encourage people to unknowingly become villains, or they accuse innocent groups of villainy in order to sow division.  They need all sides to see everyone else either as an ally or an enemy.  There is no in-between.  If a person does not conform to the views of the zealot, then he must be immediately treated as a threat.  This causes an endless echo chamber which destroys all dissent or disagreement, no matter how rational.

Zealots operate primarily on fear, making them easy prey for tyrants.  And as some nerd somewhere once said, “Fear is the mind killer; fear is the little death that brings total obliteration.”

Apathy And False Hope

More than anything else, tyrants desire an apathetic population.  Apathy breeds complacency and inaction, and it also encourages delusional thinking.  Apathetic people tend towards the philosophy of pacifism as a means to vindicate their own behavior, but this is merely a mask designed to hide their fear.  They might fear suffering, they might fear loss, they might fear failure, but they certainly have fear, and it stops them from standing in the way of developments that they know are evil in nature and that require an aggressive response.

Apathy can also be bred into a society through the use of false hopes.  Tyrants conjure scenarios in which the public is made to believe positive “change” is about to take place, usually through politics.  But, there will be no change for the better beyond the cosmetic.  Things only get worse.  In this process of conditioning, tyrants raise up the hopes of the masses, and then dash them to the ground over and over, until the public gives up.

For the Children: The Emotional Marketing of Gun Control

Reflex Handgun

In his fascist masterwork Mein Kamph Adolph Hitler wrote “The state must declare the child to be the most precious treasure of the people. As long as the government is perceived as working for the benefit of the children, the people will happily endure almost any curtailment of liberty and almost any deprivation.  In the wake of every mass shooting egregious curtailment of personal liberty is proposed in the name of public safety and for the children.  Thus, the left leverages the emotional rhetoric of fascism while simultaneously trying to paint all who oppose their collectivist world view as fascist.  Oh, the irony.

There are two fallacies inherent in the argument for gun control to save children: First, as is clearly obvious, “gun violence” is at its peak in the locales with the most stringent gun control.  Look no further than Chicago or Baltimore.  Criminalizing guns ensures…

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Rights……

Remember that rights are moral principles which define and protect a man’s freedom of action, but impose no obligations on other men. Private citizens are not a threat to one another’s rights or freedom. A private citizen who resorts to physical force and violates the rights of others is a criminal — and men have legal protection against him.

Criminals are a small minority in any age or country. And the harm they have done to mankind is infinitesimal when compared to the horrors — the bloodshed, the wars, the persecutions, the confiscations, the famines, the enslavements, the wholesale destructions — perpetrated by mankind’s governments. Potentially, a government is the most dangerous threat to man’s rights: it holds a legal monopoly on the use of physical force against legally disarmed victims. When unlimited and unrestricted by individual rights, a government is men’s deadliest enemy. It is not as protection against private actions, but against governmental actions that the Bill of Rights was written. – Ayn Rand, 1963

Of Security Clearances and Fainting Couches

So Trump ordered the revocation of former CIA Director John Brennan’s security clearance.

Yawn. Both side of the aisle are getting the vapors over this issue.

To begin, though an established norm – senior intelligence and law enforcement officials retaining access to classified information – POTUS is well within his rights to revoke anyone’s security clearance, at any time, for any reason. However, a key difference here is that Brennan’s clearance was not revoked for cause, but be-cause. Brennan didn’t violate [as far as we know] his life-long agreement of non-disclosure of classified information. His clearance was revoked, because he is an outspoken critic of the current POTUS.

Still legal, but proponents of this act should not lose sight of the fact that as this violates said long-standing norm, it establishes a precedent; that if a future Democrat POTUS elects to do likewise against a political opponent…..previous proponents should nary utter a peep, lest they whistle to themselves in the wind.

Sadly, the current political reality-TV paradigm that we abide under….is anything but far-sighted.

On the flip-side….in order to obtain classified information, one must have the appropriate security clearance, access and need-to-know. These former officials who maintained a security clearance typically do not have the latter two, unless specifically brought in by an Administration or an Agency…..to consult or advise on a specific, focused issue. Brennan being no different.

So, other than providing ammunition for the base, detractors and the media spin cycle…..this entire affair is a case of the vapors – on both sides.

The Accidental Guerrilla….in the Homeland

As a Kilcullen fan, I took special interest in this piece. If you’re a Patriot, and not reading Forward Observer…..you should be.

This month, I’ve been re-reading The Accidental Guerrilla by counterinsurgency theorist (and practitioner) David Kilcullen.

The premise of the book is simple: Osama bin Laden baited U.S. and Coalition Forces into Afghanistan, Pakistan, and elsewhere in the Middle East, while simultaneously baiting the Muslims in those countries to fight the Americans, thus ensuring a protracted war between Islam and the West. The book covers many examples of irregular, tribal wars and the ‘accidental guerrillas’ who fight in them.

Many fighters in Afghanistan didn’t necessarily want to fight until American soldiers stepped foot into their homelands and, being now forced to fight them, became ‘accidental guerrillas’ because they had no other choice.

One potential I see for us going forward is that current cold civil war tactics will progress into regular but sporadic acts of armed political violence (like the attempted assassination of Steve Scalise).

Since reciprocation is a universal human trait, victims of political violence or their supporters will, once political violence is normalized (and armed political violence is rationalized; read this), carry out their own political violence and perhaps one to five percent of the U.S. population become ‘accidental guerrillas’ involved in a hot domestic conflict.

In the very first pages, Kilcullen discuses the Chinese way of “unrestricted warfare” and I think it sets up a worst-case scenario or model if our cold civil war turns hot. Here’s a brief background:

First, Chinese activities like intellectual property theft (economic and industrial espionage) to the tune of $200-300 billion per year should be classified as an act of war — because the Chinese Communist Party certainly see themselves being at war with the U.S.

Second, espionage outside of government and military sectors has been going on for decades; this is much more than just competition for military supremacy, it’s competition for total supremacy and eventual global dominance (especially economically, commercially, and technologically).

Third, an acquaintance recently described to me how the Chinese look at espionage. “To the Chinese, a door is a door,” he said, describing that all avenues are on the table, regardless of how traditional or acceptable the targets are. Every door being just another door to walk through is the basis for understanding Chinese “unrestricted warfare”.

“The first rule of unrestricted warfare is that there are no rules, with nothing forbidden.” – Qiao Liang, People’s Liberation Army

Kilcullen describes Chinese unrestricted warfare as:

“combining direct combat with electronic, diplomatic, cyber, terrorist, proxy, economic, political, and propaganda tools to overload, deceive, and exhaust the U.S. ‘system of systems’.”

In previous posts (here and here), I’ve described why we’re already locked in a cold civil war or, a term I like better, domestic conflict. Here are the types of ‘warfare’ we’re already seeing:

  • Diplomatic (international solidarity in national populism and international socialism/communism)
  • Economic (boycotts, politicization of corporations and commerce)
  • Political (soft coup against a sitting president, battle over immigration, struggle for political dominance)
  • Propaganda (media/news outlets, misreporting facts and poor reporting for political gain)
  • Information (censorship in social media, selective reporting of the news, doxxing)

(Kilcullen just uses ‘propaganda’ but I think a broader description of information operations or information warfare is applicable to what we’re seeing in this country.) What we’re not seeing either in great numbers or to great effect is electronic, cyber (questionable), terrorist, or proxy warfare.

We might be tempted to say that attacks against Trump supporters is a form of terrorism but through the lens of low intensity conflict, Trump supporters are actually cultural combatants. They’re among the politicized social bases involved in this civil war/domestic conflict and, in the eyes of their opposing belligerents, are acceptable targets of political violence. (One thing we ought to keep an eye on is the normalization of violence against socialists/communists, because that seems to be a logical progression of tit-for-tat political violence, which would mark a turning point in our otherwise cold civil war.)

In the United States right now, we’re seeing all the hallmarks of low intensity conflict — confrontation between politicized social bases below the threshold of conventional war but above peaceful and routine competition. That’s the basis for my argument that we’re already in a domestic conflict, albeit a low grade one.

Millennials and Motorcycles….

A list making the rounds of the interwebz, but as a Harley owner…have to share with any who haven’t seen it yet. Perfect logic!

From Every Blade of Grass:

Harley Davidson Closing Plant Due to Declining Sales

Apparently the Baby-Boomers all have motorcycles. 
Generation X is only buying a few, and the next generation isn’t buying any at all.
A recent study was done to find out why?
Here are the reasons why Millennials don’t ride motorcycles:
1.  Pants won’t pull up far enough for them to straddle the seat.
2.  Can’t get their phone to their ear with a helmet on.
3.  Can’t use 2 hands to eat while driving.
4.  They don’t get a trophy and a recognition plaque just for buying one.
5.  Don’t have enough muscle to hold the bike up when stopped.
6  Might have a bug hit them in the face and then they would need emergency care.
7.  Motorcycles don’t have air conditioning.
8.  They can’t afford one because they spent 12 years in college trying to get educated.
9.  They are allergic to fresh air.
10. Their pajamas get caught on the exhaust pipes.
11. They might get their hands dirty checking the oil.
12. The handle bars have buttons and levers and cannot be controlled by touch-screen.
13. You have to shift manually and use something called a clutch.
14. It’s too hard to take selfies while riding.
15. They don’t come with training wheels like their bicycles did.
16. Motorcycles don’t have power steering or power brakes.
17. Their nose ring interferes with the face shield.
18. They would have to use leg muscle to back up.
19. When they stop, a light breeze might blow exhaust in their face.
20 It could rain on them and expose them to non-soft water.

21. It might scare their therapy dog, and then the dog would need therapy.

Advise for today’s “activist” youth

I am a Holocaust concentration camp survivor. I am one of a rapidly dwindling number of eyewitnesses to the Nazi Holocaust, the most systematic genocide of all time.

I regularly speak at high schools, universities, and community events, sharing my eyewitness account with newer generations of Americans who have no concept of the horrors governments can inflict. I feel a duty to keep alive the memories of millions of Jews who were murdered by Adolf Hitler’s Germany and who cannot speak for themselves.

Today, misinformed students cynically led by progressives are using that event and its rallying call to confiscate guns and turn them over to government–the exact opposite of the core lessons to be learned. This is so fundamentally wrong no justification can excuse it. Naming a book Never Again!–which is a desperate call to arms–to address drug-addled, video-mesmerized, psychotic, murderous classmates –misappropriates and reverses the central messages and lessons of the Holocaust.

In the 1940s, the words Never Again! in German were scrawled on the wall of the Muehldorfer Hart Nazi concentration camp in southern Germany, where 2,200 prisoners, mostly Hungarian Jews, were murdered and buried in a mass grave. For 70 years, the slogan Never Again! has been the post-Holocaust rallying cry of Jews everywhere. It is a solemn vow that millions of Jews will never again be disarmed and defenselessly marched into camps for systematic liquidation because we can resist with the same powerful firearms we might face in the hands of totalitarian government. That progressives would take this vow, turn it upside down, and use it to grab guns is an abomination.

Dov Marhoffer
JPFO Board of Advisors
July 17th, 2018