Nov
24
2009
1

Obama’s Afghanistan Decision

You cannot solve a problem from the same consciousness that created it. You must learn to see the world anew. – Albert Einstein

What is Obama saying when he commits another 34,000 troops to Afghanistan while talking about an exit strategy in the same breath?

“We haven’t killed enough of our children.”
“We haven’t traumatized enough of our young men.”
“We haven’t stolen enough from the citizens.”
“We need to placate the morally sensitive.”
“We need for people to forget about Iraq.”

The contradiction between committing more troops and announcing an exit strategy is rather startling. How is it that an escalation of violent force is going to cause the violent response to decrease? Has that ever happened in the history of mankind where one or both sides did not end up dead?

I have no idea exactly what would happen if the troops were withdrawn, but I can tell you this: adding bodies will only add to the ever-increasing cost of this war. I’m not talking about the money that’s been stolen (past, present, and future) but the even greater cost of children who must grow up in a household with an adult who has been paid for murder and who almost certainly has not received any sort of counseling as to why they landed in the military in the first place or even to what they’ve participated in as part of the bloody machine.

Violence cannot be used to solve problems that arose from violence. It has never worked, it does not work, and it will never work.

Written by James Pyrich in: Politics | Tags: , , , , , , ,
Oct
10
2009
0

The Nobel “Peace” Prize

What in this world is more darkly absurd than the Nobel Peace Prize?

The Nobel Peace Prize is only awarded to those who have achieved or represent the exact opposite of peace. Politicians and their cronies wouldn’t have their jobs without the initiation of violence against citizens.

Obama is no exception to the rule, but even if we accept that the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize is meant to recognize great accomplishments for peace, then one has to wonder how is it that Guantanamo Bay is still open, US troops are still largely deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan, and that whole little torture thing has not been remotely addressed and Obama somehow deserves to be recognized as one of the greatest humanitarians this year?

I think that Stef sums it up best:

Written by James Pyrich in: Politics | Tags: , , , , , , ,
Sep
27
2009
0

“Creation” and Troubles in America

There was a recent post to Derren Brown’s blog reporting that the new film about Darwin, “Creation,” was being shunned by American distributors. (It has since been picked up by Newmarket… and I think I would like to see this film. :))

On the blog and especially on the facebook post sharing this post, there were a TON of comments to the effect of, “Stupid Americans.”

I was debating with myself whether I should post a response on the blog, on facebook, or even if I should post anything at all. I decided that I would at least start a post on my own blog… mostly in part because what I have to say has very little to do with the movie in question, but also because I would rather have a discussion here than bungee in elsewhere and stir up a shitstorm.

The epithet, “Stupid Americans,” has always bothered me. I used to think (and the temptation is still there to do so) that it bothered me because of the “Americans” bit. After all, I am an American (though through absolutely no choice of my own), and for a very long time I would identify myself with that, for better or for worse.

However, I think that it was the “stupid” part of the phrase that bothered me more, because “Americans” is just a label but “stupid” is the part that’s meant to be insulting.

This might seem blindingly obvious, but please bear with me. 🙂

Why would the expression, “Stupid Americans,” bother me so much? It’s not like I chose to be born in the United States, and certainly when I was a child it was impossible for me to choose to leave. Even as an adult, it is exceedingly difficult, and it’s not like it is easy to assimilate into another culture, no matter how much of its comedy you watch on television. So, I really am stuck here, and even if I did relocate, it’s not like I would escape others who are keen on labeling entire groups of people however they like. (After all, there are those who hate ex-pats.)

No, it’s the “stupid” part that bothers me so much.

Why is that?

Well, in this particular case, “stupid” is referring to the abundance of religious belief and fervor in the United States.

However, “stupid” simply does not apply.

People do not become Christians because they are stupid.

People become stupid because they are Christians.

In order to believe in Christianity, you have to have your capacity for processing reality severely crippled. You have to be able to believe in an entirely anti-reality concept such as “god,” but still be able to function in the world.

Even then, it’s not fair to call it stupidity. Civilized people do not sneer at a paraplegic and call him “lazy” for being unable to get out of his wheelchair.

People who are religious are mentally crippled and deserve the sympathy to the extent that they deserve.

This does not, of course, excuse them for inflicting their handicap on children, especially with the access to information we have available today. Even if a religious parent did not wish to alter their belief, they are definitely aware of other religions, and especially of non-belief. It is indefensible to tell a child that God is absolutely real when there are so many resources available to parents to present differing viewpoints, at the very least.

Still, “stupid” does not apply. It is not through a lack of intelligence that religious people believe what they do. It is through having their brains damaged by being inflicted with unrealities as if they were absolutely true.

Religion is not a reasoned position; this is why presenting evidence and a strong logical case against religion fails to convince so many people.

One last thing, and then I’ll be finished.

The vast majority of people who are throwing around the epithet, “Stupid Americans,” are almost guaranteed to be holding beliefs just as irrational and just as dangerous and damaging as religion.

This is because almost everybody in the entire world today believes that violence is the best tool to use to solve social problems. This is not generally the case in their personal lives, but in society at large, they champion and cheer violence being used to further their goals.

This belief is the fundamental curse of humanity; it is the cause of war and devastation and economic crises and all manner of violence in the world that is entirely avoidable.

The reason people believe this is because, as children, they are made to believe that even though violence is bad for an individual, it somehow becomes good when used by a group. This is a complete contradiction, because members of the group are individuals themselves, and it is this unreality inflicted on children that damages their ability to process reality…

Hence, even if “Stupid Americans” wasn’t an invalid and cruel thing to say, it would merely be a case of the pot calling the kettle black.

Jul
08
2009
0

“Eternal Vigilance,” or, the Argument from Exhaustion

In a recent debate between Michael Badnarik and Stefan Molyneux, Badnarik commented that anarchy wouldn’t work because (paraphrased) people lack the killer instinct. One must be eternally vigilant against the hordes of marauders just itching to destroy one’s life and livelihood.

A comment by a FDR poster completely collapses this “argument”:

I wonder, are we currently being “eternally vigilant” for any signs of slavery coming back into society or is this no longer a concern? It’s just time that makes these problems appear worse. In the midst of a statist world there is much hand-wringing and brow furrowing over the idea of anarchy whereas when it does finally start turning around (I dunno, a few hundred years from now) people will look back at our time and think, “Cripes, can you believe how paranoid those people were back then about a government!?”

The reason slavery hasn’t returned to society is because people recognize that the ownership of human beings is completely immoral. This has not penetrated our social consciousness to the degree that it is commonly understood that we exist as tax livestock, but there is no chance of slavery being accepted as moral.

This is what will cause statism to be rejected: a recognition that the initiation of violence to solve social problems is completely immoral.

Once we put this into practice, vigilance against statism will no more be required than vigilance against slavery is today.

Mar
14
2009
0

Anarchism Is…

… non-violent.

Jan
09
2009
0

Freedomain Radio Media Response

The following is a response by Stefan Molyneux to a recent request for a media interview:

Thank you for your e-mail, but I am not going to participate in any show with Mrs. Weed. I consider it reprehensible that she is openly broadcasting her son’s identity as widely as possible, and that she is blaming some podcaster on another continent for the very sad problems within her family, rather than the significant and terrifying abuse that her son suffered for 18 years at the hands of his parents. As I am sure you have heard in the podcast in question, Tom sobs openly about the terror he experienced in the face of his father’s rages, when the enormous man would kick and smash in windows, hurl objects and destroy entire rooms with horrifying rapidity. Mrs. Weed did not protect her helpless and dependent child during these extended and highly dangerous explosions.

Of course, Mrs. Weed dismisses and minimizes the brutality of this continual violence, which is the true source of this continuing tragedy — the reality, though, is that Tom would have no incentive to invent such an awful tale, and no ability to spontaneously erupt into such painful emotions after asking for my help.

I fully stand by my philosophical and moral positions, which is that child abuse is immoral, and adult relations are voluntary. If child abuse is not immoral, then there is no such thing as immorality — and if adult relations are not voluntary, then we should ban divorce, and force even those wives suffering from violent abuse to remain with their husbands until the end of their days.

It is also important to remember that out of the 35,000-50,000 Freedomain Radio listeners, only about 20 have taken breaks from abusive families, which is far below the statistical average for child abuse. I do not tell listeners to leave even highly abusive families, but rather strongly encourage them to seek out professional psychological help to deal with these tragic issues.

There are a number of parents and adult children who listen to the show together, which I think is wonderful. Many families, friends and couples have also used the philosophical resources of Freedomain Radio to help build better and closer relationships, which I am very pleased about.

Finally, I am very pro-family myself – my wonderful wife and I just welcomed our first child into the world. I am fully aware that I will need to continue to win and maintain the love of my daughter by keeping her safe, happy and secure.

The sole source for these slanderous articles about my website and show has been a little forum called Liberating Minds, where Barbara Weed and a few other abusive parents post. For some examples of the kind of thinking and communicating that goes on at this site, you might want to check out the link below – warning, the language is extremely offensive.

http://www.freedomainradio.com/liberating_minds.html

Regards,

Stefan Molyneux, MA

Host, Freedomain Radio

www.freedomainradio.com

I personally cannot understand how people can support the likes of Barbara Weed and then go to sleep at night.

Dec
24
2008
1

Valkyrie

I just saw a “sneak peek” commercial for one of the latest WWII movies to come out: Valkyrie.

Valkyrie is a dramatization of an internal plot to kill Hitler–that much has been made clear by the previews. The commentators punching it up say things like, “This is a story about the greatest evil the world has ever known.”

There are two things that are interesting about that comment. The first thing is that Hitler, while certainly evil, isn’t alone in terms of body count. Heads of state and the armies they control far outstrip the body count of the worst serial killers that act alone.

The second thing comes out of a discussion I had with a friend about WWII movies in general, especially Holocaust movies. It seems that these movies, while often gripping and emotional, don’t ever really progress beyond, “Hitler was bad, Nazis are bad, Concentration camps are bad.”

These movies don’t have to go deeper than that, but it is telling that the question, “Why Hitler?” never seems to be asked. Hitler rises to power in Germany–why? The Nazi party spreads like wildfire–why? Concentration camps are built and various minorities are rounded up and shipped off–why?

Deeper than why Hitler rose to power is why the German people were susceptible to a man like Hitler, why they looked to him as a leader. How did Hitler come to be who he was?

I think that some answers to these questions can be found in The Origins of War in Child Abuse by Lloyd Demause (audiobook) as well as in For Your Own Good: Hidden Cruelty in Child-rearing and the Roots of Violence by Alice Miller.

There are deeper and more ancient evils at work that result in the horrors of war.

Nov
11
2008
2

War

As a society, we like war. We like murder. We love the violence and destruction.

We don’t like to admit it–in fact, we run from admitting it, we fog, we evade, we cover-up, we do everything short of admitting that we really, really like to solve social problems by pointing guns at people.

We like to dress up children in uniforms, give them guns, and tell them it is good, right, just, and moral to kill. We like to complain to our leaders about how our chains chafe us, and we beg and grovel for the chains to be loosened just a tiny bit, oh please, just a tiny bit.

We like to attack those few daredevils who cause us to feel anxiety when they talk about living a voluntary life on the grand scale. We like to shame them, as we once were shamed.

We like the violence.

We like to attack our children, filling them with rumors and lies and deceptions about the nature of reality, saying to them that what they see is not truly what they see, but that invisible things are real, and good, and just, and moral.

We like the violence.

Why do we have war?

We like the violence.

Written by James Pyrich in: Politics | Tags: , , , ,
Nov
11
2008
0

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