Tag Archives: philosophy

Please Die Already

Rage.

Rage.

There has been quite a hullabaloo recently about the healthcare reform bill, incited mainly by this man and this woman. Why are they ranting and raving about Democrats creating “death panels” that will decide whether or not the elderly† or mentally disabled‡ continue to receive medical treatment? Can’t they see that America is chock full of people ripe for Death’s annual picking?

The Democrats want people to have access to “end of life counseling.” That is a nice way of them saying “we want to encourage you to die without eating up millions of millions of dollars in care.” And the elderly and infirm DO eat up millions of dollars; 80% of the money you spend on healthcare will be spent during the last three months of your life. Is it really worth it? To spend hour after hour, barely breathing, barely thinking, hooked up to life support with a feeding tube in your gut?

Americans have become highly sensitive to the issue of death. I thought that the whole reason behind this mushy Christianity stuff was to make people comfortable with the idea of dying. “Oh, don’t worry, there’s always the afterlife! Feel free to pass away as you wish.” Nope. Christian evangelicals and conservative Catholics are amongst the most adamant individuals who support your right to clutch on to your existence by any means; even if your body and mind have rotted away to nothing.

Actually, they’re not even supporting your right to life; they’d keep you alive regardless of how you feel.

"Sir, we have found you to be too goddman crochety old for the State to continue financing your life."

"Sir, we have found you to be too goddamn crotchety old for the State to continue financing your life."

What about my right to death? Listen to me: people need to die. People have been dying for millions and millions of years. Its natural. It happens all the time. The problem is that no one has instructed us on how to cope with and move past these tragic events.

Wait. Tragic? It shouldn’t be tragic; it should be joyful. The joyful passing of your loved one. We are so far removed from our natural state of being that we no longer value death… excluding the deaths of our enemies; that has always been joyous.

Lion King

Even Disney supports death panels.

Human bodies were not designed (intelligent or not) to last forever. Our cells stop regenerating as well, our joints become rigid and sore, our systems fail to save over and over again until it gets to a point that your body just dies. All of this extensive healthcare is in denial of the natural ‘Circle of Life‘. Certainly the deaths’ of those who did not live up to the prime peaks of life are tragic; they died too soon. But that only covers people up to about age 40; if you live past that point, I will be joyfully celebrating your passing with explicit glee.

So lighten up. Embrace death (the insurance companies have been running death panels for years now). Maybe even buy a t-shirt. It’ll balance the budget for Christ’s-sakes.

You don’t want to be alive for the zombie apocalypse anyway…

†‡Not that either of these groups really qualify as  being ‘that alive’ in the first place.

jakefunc is a contributing writer and editor of projectgroupthink.wordpress.com. Get instant updates for this blog via Twitter: PGTblog.

5 Comments

Filed under philosophy, Politics, science, social commentary

Philosophy and the Legend of Zelda

Perhaps some of you might be acquainted with the “Philosophy and Pop-Culture” series that exploded onto the literary scene a few years ago. As a semi-professional philosopher, I was at first greatly intrigued by this seeming renaissance of philosophic interest. Having actually read a few of these titles, however, I must appraise their content as somewhat lacking.

Be that as it may, I think the theory is brilliant: saying that philosophy and pop-culture fails because the series was subpar is like saying Jiu-Jtsu doesn’t work because Royce Gracie lost a fight or two. Let me take you, then, on a strange and thought-provoking journey to the land of Hyrule.

Most nineties gamesters are familiar with the Hylian mythos and the three mystic artifacts, the Triforces, whose power sits at the crux of the Zelda series’ plotlines. As you might have deduced, there are three of these: the Triforce of Power, stolen by the malicious sorcerer Ganondorf, the Triforce of Wisdom, belonging to the Princess Zelda, and the Triforce of Courage, wielded by the Hero of Time (known colloquially as “Link.”) When the Triforces combine, they yield a power so mighty that it’s invoker might rule all over all the land. Such a power, of course, could only be Nietzsche’s “Ubermensch.”

Translated as the “over-man” or “super-man,” the Ubermensch is what Nietzsche advises humanity to become. It is the task of the Ubermensch to create new values, and to embrace the Nietzschean “Will to Power.” While historians and philosophers alike are in some disagreement as to just what “Ubermensch” and “Will to Power” might entail, I firmly hold that the mythos of Hyrule will help elucidate the situation.

For long ages, sagacious and philosophic types have used mythic stories to explain confounding existential dilemmas, and our story begins with the Princess Zelda. The next generation and future of the Hylian royal family, Zelda is granted dreams and visions of things to come. In some games, she wields the mighty Arrow of Light against the forces of oppression in the final battle with Ganondorf.

Possessing the Triforce of Wisdom, it makes sense that Zelda would deduce the failures of the old values Nietzsche’s Ubermensch would seek to depose. It is the wielder of the Arrow of Light, the illuminating weapon of truth which alone may penetrate these values, who by shattering them with refutation demonstrates the falsity of all value and the truth of nihilism. When war is declared on the values of the past, the stage is set for the rise of a hero.

Link, with his Triforce of Courage, enters the scene in dark times, often having been informed by Zelda of the coming menace. This is analogous to our Nietzschean hero’s discovery of the failure of objective value, or the idea that any value can be embraced because it is “true.” In what darker time might we find ourselves! With the collapse of the old systems, the lands are cloaked in shadow: up is down, right is wrong, and Clear Channel is musical aptitude. With the palaces forsaken and the citizens zombified, it falls only to the most courageous Hylian to combat the growing darkness; as only the stout of heart may attack the truth of nihilism and survive unscathed (should they survive at all.) The situation is so perilous that many philosophers speak of “suicidal nihilism,” a force so soul-rendingly terrible that it compels us to condemn the world and all its seeming failure; to the destruction of our very will to life.

Nietzsche thinks that we, by our enmity, pay homage to our adversaries. As an example, I might happily disagree with someone in a polite discussion of politics, only to turn on them in rabid hatred if they were elected president. This change in attitude would reflect nothing in my view of this new enemy as a person, but instead would spring from the tremendous change in their level of power to assert a previously harmless value schema on my homeland.

It is Link’s task to wrest from Ganondorf’s fell clutches the final Triforce, the Triforce of Power. Hmm…”Triforce of Power,” “Will to Power” – it does not take an Aristotle to figure this one out. Will to Power, hastily explained, involves the seeking of obstacles against which one’s one will to life may triumph and grow stronger. In epic battle, Link and Ganondorf pit their respective mettle to the test, clashing violently as each opposes the other’s will. I don’t want to drag this bit out, because an explanation will be both long-winded and controversial, but it is clear that he who holds the Will to Power will determine the course of history in the coming era.

2012, it is said, will mark the end of the world. More realistically, it will mark the coming of a new election year; and in ways, the coming of our own new era . Whether or not Obama will withstand the test of time is yet unclear; but the Triforce of Wisdom prophesies that many young heroes are rising against the dark power that is Ganondorf’s Judeo-Christian value schema (this term does not mean exactly what you might think – please don’t be offended without first reading “Beyond Good &Evil.”) So “let me be clear” – in the trying times ahead, it will fall to the courageous to vanquish our land from shadow, and to stand against the forces of power to chart a more heroic course for a race of beings who find ourselves, at present, all too human…

Red Pill Neo is a contributing writer and editor of projectgroupthink.wordpress.com. Get instant updates for this blog via Twitter: PGTblog.

2 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Cute: A Conspiracy Theory?

I’m always interested in the presence of abstracts in reality. I touched on this with my question of good and bad in my last post, but I come back around to it this week. (Because midnight and the end of Monday looms? We shall never know).

The question turning over in my mind right now regards cuteness. What makes something “cute?”

This idea was put to me in, I kid you not, honors Philosophy 101 my first semester of college. Of course, the prof didn’t use such a useful object for consideration. Instead, he presented the question of abstracts by means of a table.

We all know what a table is. What it looks like. We can consciously picture one if we try. And we could all definitely spot one from a hundred yards and say, without doubt, that it is neither a chair, nor a flamingo, a slide, or a plate. It’s a table.

But what makes it a table? Is it what it is made of? Wood or other materials? (So are chairs and some plates.) Is it what it has? A flat surface and legs? (So does a chair and a slide.) Is it what it does? Something you eat off of? (Like a plate or a very confused flamingo.)

The point is that in reality, any of us could see an object and correctly identify if it was a table as opposed to, say, a pink, stupid-looking bird. This is because (and I think this is from Plato, but I’ll defer to my philosophy-buff fellow writers, who’re probably fully erect right now because I said philosophy and abstract in the same post) we each have an abstract idea of what a table is. Without having to picture a distinct table. We know what a table is. Unassailably.

Back to my question. Forget the stuffy table example. Forget Philosophy 101 (erections drooping, I know). Back to cute.

I’ll ask again. What makes something “cute?”

Let’s start with an unassailable, we-may-even-rightly-call-it-borderline-abstract example of cuteness:

baby tails

This is a picture of my dog, Tails, when he was a 3-month-old puppy. No one, and I mean no one could argue that he’s not cute. Look at him. (To put it in perspective, that orange toy, Mr. Binky, is about 4 inches tall.) He is A-dor-a-ble. And cute.

But this post isn’t about a gushing dog owner’s infatuation with his pooch. It’s about understanding the greater depths of thoughts. About pushing boundaries.

So, as I was sitting here, thinking about what to write, I looked at Tails and thought, “why is he so cute?”

Bear in mind, he’s now over a year old and looks like this (still pretty cute, I think).

older tailsSo, while I can admit that he’s not as cute now, my question remains. What makes something “cute?” We have an abstract sense of cuteness. We can judge cuteness in variable spectra (e.g. “Tails was cuter as a puppy, but still cute as an adult”).

But would I know cute if it walked up and smacked me in the face?

Can I see what cute is? What it does? How it’s used? What it looks like?

Cute, unlike the easy table example my philosophy prof used, is even more abstract. But no less important.

I offer this post as a chance to wake up to the abstracts that surround each of us. Recognize the cute things around you today. Or the beautiful things. Or the any-number-of-other-adjectives-things.

Abstracts, they’re all around you. And you didn’t even know it.

davidrsheehan is a contributing writer for projectgroupthink.wordpress.com. Get instant updates for this blog via Twitter: PGTblog. You can also tweet directly with him: davidrsheehan. He is happy to provide more cute pictures of his silly dog Tails, if anyone would like to counter his statement that Tails is unassailably cute.

6 Comments

Filed under philosophy

Happy Independence Day! :)

Today we celebrate our independence from the oppressive taxation and monetary policy of the United Kingdom.  Today the United States government’s monetary policy and taxation is nearly identical to the very reasons our forefathers fought and died to free our country.  That is the United States now confiscates approximately 25%-33% of your income.   In addition, our currency is issued by a centrally controlled bank.  These two things that inspired the very revolution that created our country. 

But we don’t care.  We blow shit up, drink our beer, and have a merry old time.  Because we live in the “greatest country on earth,” the good old USA.  Where at least I have my freedom.

But many countries have freedom.  Europe is full of people that do not believe they are unduly oppressed.  So is Japan.  Australians feel pretty good about their way of life. 

So what’s so damn special about America anyway?

Well ….we have the most criminal society.  A larger percentage of our population is in prison than any other country on earth.

Land of the free indeed.

 

Well …there is our way of life.  The American dream.  That if you work hard, stay in school, and stay determined you can earn your way up the socio-economic ladder. 

What’s actually true in this world is that 1% of the population controls 90% of the wealth, and the other 99% of us spend our time trying to get our piece of the remaining 10%.  The system is systematically stacked against anyone whos lineage is below a certain income bracket.  If you don’t start out ahead you have to work 100 times as hard just to give your kids the chance to start out even (you yourself are screwed, but if you work really hard you may be able to give your kids a chance to not be screwed).

The founding fathers believed in a social contract between the government and those governed.  That if the government ever failed the governed it was the citizens right, no privilege, to revolt against that government. 

No matter how bad our government fails us, we will never revolt.  There are two reasons for this:  the media and the military.

The United States military is way too well funded and armed to be defeated by any citizens’ militia.  No one would ever try.  The US could declare martial law, revoke all civil liberties, and basically set fire to constitution, and the sheep that make up this country would roll over and take it.

The other reason this is true is because of the media.  Not just the news networks.  The entertainment as well.  As long as most people have enough prosperity to eat, sit at home, and watch TV there will never be a revolution in this country.  Never. 

Does there need to be one?  That’s debatable.  I don’t know the answer.

 

But I know this:  the spirit of the constitution and the bill of rights is in a coma.  It is NOT alive and well in our society today.

 merkaba33  is a contributing writer for projectgroupthink.wordpress.com. Get instant updates for this blog via Twitter: PGTblog.

2 Comments

Filed under social commentary

Where does your paradigm come from?

I’m hoping that this post can be an interactive one.  I know the whole premise of blogging implies the opportunity for interaction, but this one in particular needs it.  The purpose of this post is not for me to share what follows, but to induce others to share, creating a collective conversation that is greater in depth, breadth, and quality than any individual contributor could produce.

Paradigms….these are the frameworks, conscious and unconscious, that we use to make sense of our world.  They are the lenses that we see everything else through.  The ideas that guide our thoughts, distort or even create our perceptions.  From our perceptions comes our experience, which further informs our ideas about the world.  It is perfectly circular.  This circle can be sublime or tortuous, or most likely a bit of both, depending on the day. 

I firmly believe in consciously creating your own paradigms.  I reject out of hand that these things are inherited, pre-created, and culturally derived.  That may be for people who sleepwalk through life, but not for me and not for anyone else that dares to take up the reigns of guiding their own evolution.

That being said, I did not create my current incarnation of my constantly evolving paradigm in a vacuum.    Ideas from great thinkers, writers, artists, philosophers, and some everyday people have all contributed raw material to this structure that I’ve built.  So I’m going to attempt to list the top 10 sources of raw material for my paradigm.  As I write this sentence, I have no idea which of the many influences from my life search are about to make this list, but I am about to take the time to hash it out.  I will try and provide a brief intro to each of the items in this list without getting to lengthy. 

Again, the idea is for people to share persons, ideas, books, songs, movies, or any other kind of source that has deeply impacted or informed their personal paradigm.   There is no need to come up with at least ten, or to limit yourself to ten,  it’s merely an arbitrary number I picked for myself to give some structure to this post. 

 

Ok, I’m back.  This is what I came up with.  These are in no particular order (ranking these things seemed to be a futile exercise)

  • An infomercial for self hypnosis tapes that aired in 1984
    • This was my first exposure to the idea that human potential exceeded what the majority of people displayed in ordinary life.  (I was 6 years old)
  • The Power of Your Subconscious Mind by Joseph Murphy
    • I found this book when I was 7 years old, and it was really the beginning of my love affair with the genre of books associated with human potential, development, and ultimately spirituality.
  • Louise Burrell-Christe
    • My grandmother taught me about devotion, spirituality, and that the Divine is not just something to talk at, but also something that will talk back if you listen.
  • Conversations with God by Neale Donald Walsch
    • These books helped me to heal a schism that had formed in my young mind.  I had deep spiritual experiences associated with the ‘G’ word, but so much dogma and rules attached to the word “God” that I couldn’t reconcile the two.  This series of book helped me to re-conceptualize what the Divine is in such a way that it worked well for my evolving paradigm.
  • Integral Life Practice by Ken Wilber, et al
    • This is really just my favorite of a long list of books about the integral theory.  It is about putting integral theory into practice, integrating mind, body, spirit, and shadow.  The AQAL framework does a great job of holding all sorts of things and showing the relationships amongst them.
  • Simplified Magic by Ted Andrews
    • I had always been drawn to the meditative science of the Qabala, but this was the first work that seem to demystify the mystical enough for me to finally be able to understand why I was drawn to it.
  • The Ancient Secret of the Flower of Life (Volume I and Volume II) by Drunvalo Melchizedek
    • Probably  the weirdest book on the list, but one of my favorites.  It is possibly the most complete information I’ve ever found in a single source about Sacred Geometry.  
  • The band Tool. 
    • Maynard James Keenan’s lyrics speak to my path, what I’ve been through, how I’ve gotten where I am, and the kind of bizarre spirituality that I’ve carved out along the way.
  • The Elegant Universe by Brian Greene
    • A simplified explanation of string theory that solidified the foundation left in my consciousness by The Tao of Physics by Fritjof Capra.
    • My Big Picture Theory of Everything (My Big TOE) by Thomas Campbell
      • Helped to smooth the edges in my consciousness between my scientific and spiritual tendencies. 

 

I could go on.  The list is actually very, very long and continually growing.  And here’s the not so hidden agenda behind this (hopefully) interactive post:  I’m always looking for something new to add to this list, something that will send me reeling in a whole new direction the way each of these ten did.  So please, share.

 

merkaba33 is a contributing writer for projectgroupthink.wordpress.com. Get instant updates for this blog via Twitter: PGTblog.

4 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Call it a quarter-life crisis if you must…

This week, I will be posting the following blog about Stoicism on behalf of my friend and guest writer “Aspirana.”

When I look back at the person I had been for the entirety of my ‘early’ twenties, I am alarmed by what I find. Might I offer a metaphor at the expense of my readers?  …I think I shall:  

The director’s cut of the epic saga of ‘me’ should have been left on the cutting room floor.

There, I said it; I am not the epitome of badassness.  I have led an unremarkable life and all of my youthful aspirations have fallen by the wayside.  I am no one’s hero and will not be anytime soon.  (Mmm… humble pie tastes a lot like accountability).  Accepting this truth has forced me to examine my life with more vigor than I was ever moved to do before.  So, I have excavated belief systems of my youth and innocence, restructured my personal ethos with more mature insights, and set forth a plan of action to re-route this train.

Step one: Know Your Enemy.

Why did all that time pass in a sedentary way of life with little focus on nurturing me?

I stumbled upon the answer while kicking around ideas with Soahki.  See, we often find ourselves wondering why life isn’t panning out to be the mega awesome adventure we hoped it would be.  Contemplating this, we examined what I feel is a common enemy to many people… apathy. 

I compulsively wiki’ed apathy and turned up the following standard definition: Apathy (also called impassivity or perfunctoriness) is a state of indifference, or the suppression of emotions such as concern, excitement, motivation and passion. An apathetic individual has an absence of interest or concern to emotional, social, or physical life. They may also exhibit an insensibility or sluggishness.

To some degree, I feel everyone is in the same enduring struggle against apathy; the quicksand in which dreams get lost.  Losing the struggle can lead to a choice to ‘color inside the lines’ (as Po said in Crayons, Existentialism, and our Dystopia) and to a most unremarkable life.  When unwittingly falling victim to apathy, I became a zombified shell of a person that was completely unaware of my affliction.  I had a laundry list of excuses for why it was ok to fall in line with the doldrums of the American mainstream lifestyle.  I side-stepped responsibility and consigned blame for my failures on anyone/anything but myself (which I imagine is a fairly universal and ego-preserving reaction).  I don’t want to beat myself up for it too badly, but I do want to make sure it doesn’t happen again. 

Step two: Vanquish Foe           

Interestingly, within the same article on apathy, I was surprised to find a quote from Stoic Philosophy that said apathy was “the extinction of the passions by the ascendency of reason.”  Upon delving further, I found that many words in ancient Greece had different meanings than they do today and the quote really says: Peace of mind is achieved when anguish, suffering, and immorality are extinguished through reason. (The original meaning of passions was anguish, suffering, and immorality, and the definition of apathy, as the Greeks originally intended it, was the maintenance of equanimity in the face of life’s highs and lows.) I pondered this very introspectively and decided it was time to find out more about this whole Stoicism thing. 

Even though the word stoic has come to mean unemotional or indifferent to pain, Stoicism’s true aim was freedom from pain through understanding.  They championed common reason, the essential value of all people, understanding the processes of nature, and examining their own judgments and behaviors so that peace of mind could be achieved.  More importantly, they believed that those at peace would be able to see limitations as obstacles to overcome, rather than restraints to bend to. 

Now that I am choosing to be more accountable, I have to accept that my lackluster existence was fostered by my own inclination to be ruled by limitations, as perceived both internally and externally.  Knowing this, I have set out to laugh in the face of danger (i.e. quit being a twat waffle) and figure this whole success thing out. I feel that to overcome apathy as it is defined today, that the Stoics had some very powerful notions.  It influences its followers to take full responsibility for themselves as works in progress and to accept the same to be true of others.  It also encourages each man to be unmoved from their own path by perceptions of the outside world and to remain steadfast in the search for reason.  Stoics felt that being unmovable in this way, while also being careful to value all people, could ensure success and right action in any endeavor.  

I also found their method of practice ideal for my own way of thinking.  For a Stoic, philosophy was not just a set of beliefs or ethical claims, it was a way of life.  It involved constant practice and training. Stoic philosophical and spiritual practices included logic, self-dialogue, contemplation of death, training attention to remain in the present moment, daily reflection on everyday problems and possible solutions, keeping notebooks on important subjects (like an intellectual blog, if you will), and so on. This allows philosophy for a Stoic to become an active process of constant practice and self-reminder.  This was best illustrated to me by the following:

Make for yourself a definition or description of the thing which is presented to you, so as to see distinctly what kind of a thing it is in its substance, in its nudity, in its complete entirety, and tell yourself its proper name, and the names of the things of which it has been compounded, and into which it will be resolved. For nothing is so productive of elevation of mind as to be able to examine methodically and truly every object which is presented to you in life, and always to look at things so as to see at the same time what kind of universe this is, and what kind of use everything performs in it, and what value everything has with reference to the whole.

I am moved by the little knowledge I have of Stoicism and relate most to the notion that if I am unhappy, I must determine where I have diverged from reason and that conquering ignorance enables a person to develop clear judgment, good ethics, and inner calm.  Ultimately, I see it as a significant method for tipping the scales towards success for anyone. 

For those of you reading this who are lucky enough to be philosophy students/aficionados, I would really appreciate your insight and any necessary corrections to the information/interpretations in this blog. I do hope this sparks some interesting discussion, and even though I admit concluding this post with another person’s words is a literal crime, these quotes inspired hours of contemplation for me and I hope they can do the same for someone else.

On the Nature of Man:

Say to yourself in the early morning: I shall meet today ungrateful, violent, treacherous, envious, uncharitable men. All of these things have come upon them through ignorance of real good and ill… I can neither be harmed by any of them, for no man will involve me in wrong, nor can I be angry with my kinsman or hate him; for we have come into the world to work together…( Book II, part 1).

On stick-to-itiveness:

“If you work at that which is before you, following right reason seriously, vigorously, calmly, without allowing anything else to distract you, but keeping your divine part pure, as if you were bound to give it back immediately; if you hold to this, expecting nothing, but satisfied to live now according to nature, speaking heroic truth in every word which you utter, you will live happy. And there is no man able to prevent this.” 

“Because your own strength is unequal to the task, do not assume that it is beyond the powers of man; but if anything is within the powers and province of man, believe that it is within your own compass also.” 

On accountability:

 “For as the material of the carpenter is wood, and that of statuary bronze, so the subject-matter of the art of living is each person’s own life.” 

“Outward things cannot touch the soul, not in the least degree; nor have they admission to the soul, nor can they turn or move the soul; but the soul turns and moves itself alone.”

“If, therefore, any be unhappy, let him remember that he is unhappy by reason of himself alone.” 

Aspirana  is a guest writer for projectgroupthink.wordpress.com. Get instant updates for this blog via Twitter: PGTblog.

Leave a comment

Filed under philosophy

Gonzo Philosophy

Friday night in ‘Burque found five young friends kickin’ it to a slower groove, after security has busted up our party on account of someone else’s music. The host reclined, saddened by our communal loss, and consoled himself with a well-taken hit from a festively colored bowl. Sinking into a chemical calm, he found the serenity to accept that the evening could only improve from this dark chapter.

 

“POUND!!! POUND!!!”

 

My friend stuffed his bowl in his pocket and answered the door. Two thugs, clad in black and sporting loaded weapons, further decimated the evening’s feel-good vibe by barging, sans invite, into the sanctity of a couple’s home.

 

“Where’s the weed, and whose smokin’ it?” one of the villains demanded, at which point the host surrendered his stash with a look of true defeat.

 

“Pretty low-grade,” the hooligan chirped mockingly, with a smugness so tacit as to bolster itself in its own presence.

 

“Yeah, we’re kinda broke, man.” the host lamented as they divested him of even this meager offering.

 

“If you’re so broke,” one countered, “why are you spending your money on weed?”

 

There was no pretense of respect: he had the gun, he had superiority; and he had the gall to enforce further mockery upon my beaten friend. Truly, this man was an ass of epic proportion.

 

“Either I’m addicted, or I just like it too much,” he replied, dejected and beyond defense. They left us then, to the pangs of poverty and buzzkill as the night wore on.

 

Now, the question we all have to ask ourselves is: is this the sort of behavior that we as a populace are willing to accept from officers of the law?

 

That’s right: la policia, Big Brother, the fuzz had entered an innocent man’s home and taken by force that which is, by the rights of morality, patriotism, and civil disobedience, his private property. If someone had done the same without a badge, I would have been well within my rights to take the fucker’s kneecap and watch him crawl on home; but because this act of theft was perpetrated behind the paternalist bully-system of America’s executive branch, such action would’ve seen me in fetters. What I wouldn’t have given for diplomatic immunity and a baseball bat.

 

I am not drawing this analogy to encourage violence against police. I do believe that, amongst the moralistic oafs and badged thieves that incite situations like this one, there are a good number of good cops. In point of fact, I may personally owe quite a bit to one in particular, who took the time and interest in the legal plight of a college kid to talk me out of throwing my future away on anger and vengeance. Be that as it may, I stand that, had I or any of my colleagues managed to break these individuals before they could fire, the action would have been both justified and courageous (if perhaps imprudent, from a survivalist perspective.) Before we blame the police, however, perhaps we must also blame ourselves.

 

We live in a democracy, a democracy in which many of us are attempting to regain faith. It is, in theory, the actions and ideas of a free people which will constitute our principles in the years to come, principles amongst which personally liberty is often cited, if only long enough to be discarded at the hands of an overtly Puritan and thankfully dying ethic.

 

If we speak of marijuana (and I stress, other drugs as well) as secretive or criminal, then an uneducated populace will necessarily come to view them as such. Give the people a bit of D.A.R.E. and fear-mongering, and the myths will all but propagate themselves. But if we our honest, with ourselves and our fellow citizens, then the volume of our outrage can only be amplified by the abuses which so tirelessly assail our common liberty.

 

I smoke marijuana. This does not make me, or you, or anybody else a bad person, and it does not give capitalist bullies on machismo trips just cause to violate the sanctity of our homes, the security of our interests, or the Fourth Amendment of our Constitution.

 

I wish here to speak in the promotion of freedom, and not of violence. But whatever anger failed to find my actions on that night must find our pens, our voices, and our spirits; lest the menace of paternalism run unchecked. If the government can waste our time, our money, and our lives on smoking guns, the average citizen should never be without recourse when the barrel’s pointed squarely at his own doorstep.

Redpillneo is a contributing writer for projectgroupthink.wordpress.com. Get instant updates for this blog via Twitter: PGTblog.

9 Comments

Filed under philosophy, Politics