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Sunday, March 19, 2017

The Legal and Ethical Limits of Technological Warfare

The Legal and Ethical Limits of Technological Warfare
This was the title of a symposium held at the University of Utah in 2013. I received a postcard invitation for the symposium from a colleague whose father was an attorney and alum of the U. 

I didn't attend the symposium, so I don't know if they concluded whether or not there are limits, legal or technological, to warfare. However, I have been thinking about this in the interval.

I concluded at the time that for the US, there really are no limits. Now, listen carefully so you don't misunderstand. I think that the US feddle gummint believes that there are no limits to how it conducts warfare.

I further think that the US passed the ethical limits of technological warfare long ago, perhaps on a certain few days in August, 7 decades ago, perhaps earlier.

If anyone doubts the messianic character and grasping of the feddle gummint, one only has to see the assumed omniscience and omnipotence of the drone wars being conducted around the world by the US.

Here is a little wisdom from the actual source, "Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord." (Romans 12:19)


Sunday, February 26, 2017

Fighting Big Gummint with Something Better

Fighting Big Gummint with Something Better

You have probably heard the adage, “you can’t fight something with nothing.” Old adages happen to be true, like this one.

I have been opposed to Big Gummint for years, and for varied reasons. The tax burden I and every other American bear was one of the big reasons I opposed Big Gummint and I could list many others. Many of the reasons were economic and some were moral, but beyond asking for the elimination of Federal, three letter agencies, I didn’t have something else to put in its place.

Just this week I read Gary North’s explanation of The Freeman, a magazine that was published by the Foundation for Economic Education, where he outlined the philosophy of the magazine and the Foundation. Leonard E. Read, the head of the foundation called it the freedom philosophy.

This was the first time in decades that I have heard in the conservative movement what can be described as that something with which to oppose Big Gummint.

Read did not see the freedom philosophy as simply anti-government. He saw it as a defense of a society in which individual liberty would unleash the creative forces that are necessary to build a better society. He always emphasized the positive message. He always fought big civil government on this basis: individual creativity is the basis of progress, not the negative sanctions of civil government, and surely not the imitation positive sanctions of civil government. He and the many authors who contributed to the magazine constantly returned to this theme: the civil government is able to bestow benefits on some people only because it has extracted wealth from other people. The state is not a source of net positive sanctions. It is at best a source of restraints on violence and fraud.
 Gary North continues:
It is not good enough to be anti-. You have to have some idea of what should replace the system created by the forefathers of today's bad guys

This is a theme that I would like to build on. More from Gary:

It is not good enough to diagnose a problem. You have to suggest a cure. Otherwise, people are not going to pay attention to your diagnosis. It is easier to eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we die.
You can't beat something with nothing.
In every philosophical system, there is a pro and a con. There is a benefit and a liability. There is something to be attained and something to be avoided. There are positive sanctions and negative sanctions. There are carrots and sticks. Christianity teaches about heaven and hell.

Let's replace Big Gummint with individual liberty and creativity and let the positive and negative sanctions that are part of reality have full sway.

Sunday, January 8, 2017


I've gone from being a denier to being a so what-er! Let me explain.
 Shown above are last night's temperatures in Northern Utah. My dad grew up in Randolph, where it was -35 degrees F! Where I live it was in the range of -10F. These temperatures represent clear and present danger to life. Only heated homes keep us from death.

This is why the whole catastrophic man-caused global warming narrative is irrational.

The progressives want the deplorables to pay more for energy (carbon tax) in the present to avoid a possible 3.6 degree F (2 degree C) rise in temperature in a hundred years from now.

We are freezing now. Why we we be concerned about a possible temperature increase in 100 years?! We welcome it. The -35F would be what, a -31F? This is supposed to be catastrophic?  Ha ha.

You progressives need a better narrative, like Saddam has weapons of mass destruction, the Vietcong fired on us at Tonkin, the Germans are killing Belgian babies, etc.

This leads me to SO WHAT! SO WHAT if the global average temperature goes up a few degrees over a century!

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Ships and Planes

Both of my readers will agree that I take myself too seriously at times, OK, well most of the time.

So, here is a chance to have some fun. I went with my family to Cancun and Cozumel in July of this year. I saw some impressive ships and planes. Here are some photos of the biggest/coolest.

The ship was moored in Cozumel, where we saw it on a snorkeling trip.

This plane was parked at the Denver airport, where I saw it on the way home.

 I day-dream sometimes about being the captain of these fine vessels. Maybe in another life. Then again, who knows, it would be a ton of fun just to ride in the jump seat or on the bridge for a flight or two or a trip or two!

Deplorable Denier from Flyover Country (aka Red State)

I'm a deplorable denier from a red state. By mutual exclusion, that means that I am not a leftist twit who aims to force all humanity into their conception of reality.

Denier is such a convenient term with which to label one's enemies.

Let's take it apart. What is a denier allegedly denying? In this context, I am accused of denying that humans are causing catastrophic climate change. Let's break it down into 4 questions:

1. Is climate change actually occurring?
2. Is it catastrophic?
3. Is it caused by humans?
4. If it is caused by humans and it is catastrophic, is there anything humans can do to stop or mitigate it and at what cost?

Number one: It is very difficult to detect climate change, because the weather is changing all the time. Where I live in Northern Utah, the annual low to high temperature range is commonly well over 100 degrees F. The daily temp change can be 30 degrees or more.

The question becomes; how does one measure a small change in something that is always changing a lot?

Satellites provide the best earth-wide coverage and temperature measurements and have shown no global warming for 18 years, at a time when fossil fuel burning has added CO2 to the atmosphere.

Number two: If there has been no global warming for 18 years, how can it be catastrophic? The answer is simple, it isn't catastrophic.

Number three: The answers to one and two were negative, three has to be negative also. But, let's address the question of CO2, caused by fossil fuel burning. CO2 has been added to the atmosphere by human activity, but not all of the increase in the Keeling curve is due to human activity.

Also, note that all life, plant, animal, and HUMAN is carbon based. That carbon comes from CO2 in the atmosphere. That CO2 is increasing means that life is increasing. To curtail CO2 is to curtail life itself.

That brings us to number four: It is hard to detect climate change. It hasn't been happening for the last 18 years, during which humans have burned a lot of fossil fuels and it isn't certainly isn't catastrophic. So, why do we need to do anything about something we are not sure is happening, let alone catastrophic?

Again the answer is simple, we don't need to do anything. But, let's look at the estimated cost to fix the non-problem, that isn't catastrophic, that we are not causing.

One of the proposed mechanisms is a carbon tax. What would that mean to you and me that don't own G650s? (BTW, these babys burn lots of fuel to cruise at just under the speed of sound!)

(I'm just poking fun at the global elite and looking for a good excuse to put a picture of a cool airplane in my post.)

 The Sanders-Boxer carbon tax was estimated to cost $1.2 trillion dollars over a decade to reduce CO2 in 2025 by 20% over 2005 levels. That really is a lot of money - a crushing amount!

I perceive that the global warming global elite aim to do me harm with their tax schemes. Why would I sign on for that?


Great Ideas from Texas Part Deux

My friend has a theory that everyone is stupid. I call it the Bailey Theorem.

I find myself part of the theorem.

If having a state legislature meet every other year or only every five years, imagine what blessings would flow to mankind, all seven billion of us, if the US Congress only met every other year, or never?

This didn't occur to me when I was thinking about the state legislatures, because I'm stupid. But, I thought of it now.

All you have to imagine is law, custom, tradition, what was historically accepted in all of history, before the French Revolution.

Law was known by everyone, because it was small. It was accepted by everyone, because it was traditional and customary and it wasn't changing with every session of Congress or the legislature. Laws couldn't be passed that would make something legal today, but not legal tomorrow, or visa versa.

What would previous generations think of 5 robed justices (a majority of SCOTUS) rewriting 4,000 years of law just because they think they can socially engineer 350 million people? The Bailey principle applies to them, too. They just think they are smarter; they really aren't.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Great Ideas Come from Texas

Maybe there is a reason that Texas is the land of opportunity. They have great ideas.

One of them is that the state legislature meets only on odd numbered years! Think of that! On even numbered years you can sleep peacefully knowing that the cretins can't dispossess you!

That is such a great idea that I think Utah should adopt it, but with the modification that the legislature should only meet on years that end in zero or five! Sweet relish! Four years of peaceful sleep and joy knowing that the laws won't be changed or new ones invented to torment you or tax you to death!