Sunday, July 24, 2016

What a Government Should Do

Still thinking about a recent post on what people are calling "rape culture" ( while I try to finish my first novel ( Also, still thinking about "Brexit"(

When the US Constitution was put together, the legislatures were only supposed to meet for three months out of the year.

Too many people seem to think that was just because the country was too small to need full-time legislation.

It's true that the US was rather small at the time, but that is irrelevant. Has nothing to do with the reason for the short legislative season.

Governments should not be in the business of making laws all the time.

Let me repeat that, in bold:

 People should not be paid to tell other people what to do.

The only valid excuse for the existence of institutional government is to be an extension of the people's will to govern themselves. That is not people telling other people what to do, that is people telling themselves what to do. And doing it.

The tendency to tell others what to do has long been understood (Read C. S. Lewis, et. al.) as a false coping mechanism which people who don't exercise self control resort to.

False coping mechanism.

In other words, method of salving a singed conscience.
Since I can't expect myself to do the right thing, I must MAKE everyone else do The Right Thing! (whatever that is).
Making laws does not fix the problems inside yourself.

Also, making laws at best covers over the general social symptoms.

The only way to solve problems is to get people to look inside themselves and do what they ought to do. Each case is different. There is no way a law can be made to cover each case.

Unfortunately, we are not in the habit of having Congress pass bills of advice. Perhaps that would be better than passing so many bills of law, except that many people would refuse to see a difference between "official advice" and law.

And advice is really more the domain of religion.

(This is why it is so difficult to untangle government and religion. And if you can follow my rantings to this point, it's clear that complex law is the biggest reason religion should be kept out of government.)

So, what should government do?

Governments should do as little as possible, and encourage the people to do the real work themselves.

Get your own insurance.

Work your own job.

Form your own opinions.

Buy your own food.

Solve your own health issues by understanding your own body.


I'd say, "Do it yourself." But that phrase has been turned into trite tripe by people selling you ways to "do it yourself" their way.

When you see someone who needs help, see if you or someone you know can help him or her first, before you go to the local welfare office. A meal now, a job later, so many things we can do without turning to the institutional solutions that are at best 20% effective.

Governments should do as little as possible, and encourage the people to do the real work themselves, and then get out of the way.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Build a Wall? -- Or Tear Walls Down?

This "build a wall" meme seems to be producing results.

Plastic Jesus's wall around the Donald's Hollywood star is a bright spot.

I was shining it all on, but the meme has entered the Japanese press. My wife was commenting on it while reading the Yomiuri Shinbun. And I looked it up to see how serious people are about it.

The Donald seems to be treating it seriously. I say "seems", because his whole campaign is at best a joke gone awry. (Either that or my assertion of Democrat Complicity is dead-on target. Probably both.)

Anyway, I looked up "wall around US" on the web, and found this url:
(No I'm not making that into a link. If you want to go there, plug it into your browser yourself.)

But, if you play with the url, you find that the link
seems to be a cgi or other active web page that pushes you through a capcha and insists that you must be supporting the Donald if you are visiting it.

If you are really adventurous, or just curious, try
It goes through the same "Thank you for your support!" page with the capcha check, although it naturally 404s out if you click the capcha.

Don't bother. I'm sure he'll never publish the number of clicks on sub-urls that insult him or question his politics.

He's a decoy, a 'bot. You can't talk to him.

If you elect him president, there may be a human in there somewhere. I don't want to find out.

Vote the third party candidate of your choice and let the party-hardy boys know they've jumped the shark.

Hmmm. There is the possibility that he is actually deliberately saying stupid things to get the people of the US to start questioning the factory-farmed politics that we are being fed. If he really is deliberately trying to provoke well thought-out conversation, I'd like to hear him say so before the election.

While reading some of the punditry (It's hard to think of a job I'd hate worse.), I wandered onto the news about Qandeel Baloch. "Honor killing." Her brother, out of the shame that he thought she brought on his family (meaning, on him, himself, I'm guessing) brought further shame on both himself and his family by trying to get rid of the problem through an act of deliberate, planned out homicide.

Hopefully, he'll figure out just what he let his pride, and his slavish acceptance of dogma, cost him.

Family should be family. Maybe you can't support what they do or say. But you love them anyway, because they are family.

If you love your sister, you set a good example for her.

Instead of letting your buddies bully you into violence against her because she has gone too far, you stand up to them. Tell them that what they are saying is as much against the scripture as anything she is doing, and if she deserves silencing, so do they.

And if they don't, neither did she.

Why do I wander off to the subject of "honor killing"?

It's the same kind of mentality as that which seriously considers building a wall between Mexico and the US as an attempt to fix the problems that everyone says is coming from across the border.

The problem is not that women want a voice in Pakistan. It is that too many men in Pakistan are willing to buy the cheap religion substitute of painted-over intolerance.

Here is what that false Islam preaches:
  • Don't change yourself!
  • It's too hard to be a better person, yourself! 
  • Force the non-conformists to change, even your own family!
  • If you can't get them to quit making your feel embarrassed about your own imperfections, get rid of them!
  • They are the problem, not you! 
Here is what the false protectionism preaches:
  • Don't change yourself!
  • It's too hard to be a better person, yourself! 
  • Force the non-conformists to change, even your own family!
  • If you can't get them to quit making your feel embarrassed about your own imperfections, get rid of them!
  • They are the problem, not you! 
Here is what the true Islam preaches:
  • Change yourself! (This is the real Jihad: change others by changing yourself first.)
  • It's not too hard to be a better person, yourself. In fact, life is better when you try to be a better person, yourself!
  • Learn not to conform to false norms. Celebrate what is special about you and your family!
  • Choose not to feel embarrassed when idiots make fun about what is special about you and your family. And love your idiot friends, anyway! (Okay, loving your idiot friends can be moderately difficult when they are trying to get you to get rid of what is special about you and your family. But it's better than hating them, in the end. Love doesn't mean going along with what they say.)
  • Everyone has problems! Let's help each other instead of fighting each other!
Is there a true protectionism?

Well, that false protectionism that says "Build the wall!" does not protect anything. If you want to protect the "good" life you have, they only way is to share it. Sharing it rejuvenates the value of things. Turning stingy makes the value evaporate.

If you want the drugs, violence, and sexual immorality to go away, help make a world in which fewer people feel like they have to resort to drugs, violence, and sexual immorality.

Help make a world where even people south of the border can get a job if they want one, and even people north of the same border can live off the grid if they prefer.

Help make a world in which people can have fun without resorting to artificial stimulants.

Help make a world where people can love and be loved without the love substitute of fake sexuality.

Real happiness helps others be happy. If it doesn't really make you happy, leave it alone.

Tear down the walls. Let's all work together.