Guest Column by a Baby-Boomer Feminist


Guest Column by Lightning Star White Fox

Lightning Star White Fox is the pen name of a former high-tech worker, college librarian, and musician, now retired. — JNS

Feminism Logo

I have been a feminist for 47 years.

Back then, I joined a women’s group that was involved in taking a hard core look at how gynecologists, predominantly males in those days (there were only male gynecologists where I lived), treated women, who believed they needed husbands to dictate their needs and control them, and from whom women needed their husband’s permission to do anything they may want to do on their own.

In this group we all got speculums and looked at each other’s cervixes, which we were never shown when we were examined by our gynecologists (and, by the way, we still aren’t – my current gynecologist is female and even though she’s a truly wonderful doctor, she has never even offered to show me what my internal female organs look like when she’s examining me).

We were astonished to find that women’s cervixes look like penises and that the difference between male and female biology is that women are innies and men are outies with regard to reproductive organs.

I have experienced several forms of discrimination based solely on the fact that I am female.

When I was first married and was working to support my husband while he was still in college, I applied for a credit card and was told I needed my husband’s permission even though he was completely financially dependent upon me and had absolutely no source of income on his own.

I have been pregnant twice and had abortions scheduled for each pregnancy.

For the first pregnancy, the fetus died a week before the scheduled abortion which could be interpreted to be a naturally occurring miscarriage, and my gyn said he wanted to just go ahead and clean me up, but since I had the abortion scheduled the following week, I said I’d wait and do that instead, which I did.

For the second pregnancy I had begun to bleed about a week or so before the scheduled abortion, and went to see the abortion doctor who asked me if I wanted to keep the baby. He told me if I did, I’d have to stay in bed the entire pregnancy which would have been 8+ months. I told him no, I didn’t want the baby, and I had an abortion scheduled for the following week so he said let’s take care of this now. Whether this could be considered a true abortion since I was beginning to miscarry is a moot point, as was the first terminated pregnancy, as I didn’t have any intention to have children, and consider both times to be intended by me abortions.

And yes, Roe V Wade made this possible. I totally believe a woman owns her body and nobody, no man, no woman, no dimensional being, no alien from another planet, no government entity federal, state or local, no religious entity, has the right to make any decision for a woman about what she does with regard to her pregnancy. It’s totally up to the woman and, if she’s in a relationship, taking into consideration that person, and her doctor. Period!

I find that it took legal action to protect the inherent right of women to be master of their bodies egregious and a sad statement about human beings.

When I was 39 years old I decided to have a tubal ligation as I didn’t want to take the chance of getting pregnant again. The first question I was asked is did I have my husband’s permission in case he wanted to have children. When I told the doctor I was single and I wasn’t in a relationship with anyone and that it was solely my decision, there was an underlying implication and attitude that I must be a hooker to want to have this procedure. I did have the tubal ligation.

When I was in my late 20s, I was driving home from having taken a boyfriend of mine from his visiting me where I lived to where he was going to college in another state. My VW died on the way and it was towed to a truck stop where there was a mechanic who knew something about how to work on VW’s. I was going to need to spend the night so I got a motel room. However, I couldn’t see the motel from the restaurant due to all the semis blocking it. I asked a trucker if he could show me where the motel was and he said he’d walk me to my room.

In those days I was pretty open and trusting so I said ok as he appeared to be an ok guy. I was also smoking pot pretty regularly then (point of reference, gave up doing that 30 years ago). When we got to the room I asked this guy if he’d like to smoke a joint with me since he was so nice to show me where my room was, and invited him into the room.

Inside the room he started making some moves towards having sex, but I was able to talk him out of that and get him out of the room by saying I was really tired and invited him to come back a few hours later. I lucked out! He did come back later and I had all the lights turned off and called the motel desk saying someone was trying to break into my room. They sent a car around and he took off. So I narrowly avoided any kind of an assault or rape, but I surely was ignorant and it could have gone another way.

I remember most everything about this incident relative to what happened and how I felt. I don’t remember the name of the motel and truck stop, though if it’s still there since I do remember exactly where I was I most probably could find it. I don’t remember the exact date though I know the week during which it happened and that it was in the afternoon. My encounter with the person was only a few minutes, and I don’t remember his name, nor what he looked like. I do take full responsibility for what happened and could have happened since I was the one doing the inviting and was appearing, for all intents and purposes, that I was willing by the way I looked and my actions.

So, I well know discrimination against women, and how scared I was just almost being forced to have sex I didn’t want to have simply because I thought I was being nice to someone. That being said, I have a real problem with the #metoo movement.

I saw a tv story shortly after it was formed and women were beginning to accuse men en masse, as well as gay men accusing other gay men, of having been sexually assaulted and raped, about one women in a position of power (I tried to follow up and find her and couldn’t find anything about her and what she said, nor could I find the original tv piece I saw, and I cannot remember her name or what her profession was) who was asked if an accusation was enough to suffice to prove someone had been sexually assaulted or raped. She said yes, that’s all that’s needed. This is simply, clearly, not all that’s needed.

And here’s where I have, as a long-time feminist, a real problem with the attitude and belief that all that’s needed to prove a person was sexually assaulted or raped is an accusation.

I have a friend whose boyfriend at the time was accused by a very good female friend of hers of having been raped by my friend’s boyfriend years before. She had no proof but she was absolutely sure he was the guy who raped her. The truth was he was nowhere near where she said she was raped at the time that happened, and that could be proven as he was with somebody who could corroborate that.

Additionally, after the time he was accused of having raped her, he’d been in a horrific fire and had been burned badly on a good deal of his body, which required lots of reconstructive surgery leaving him not looking anything at all the way he looked before the fire when this rape took place. The person my friend’s friend said raped her looked to her like my friend’s boyfriend after he’d been through reconstructive surgery and not the way he looked at all before the fire. So, there was absolutely no way this man could have been the one who raped her as he didn’t at all fit the description of the man who did when it happened. And obviously, my friend’s boyfriend did deny he was involved.

But all that still didn’t convince that woman he wasn’t the person who raped her.

I totally believe Christine Blasey Ford was assaulted and it completely traumatized her. However, not even her best friend, who she said went to the party with her, could provide any corroboration of the party, or of even knowing Kavanaugh.

There’s no one who remembers a party at a house of that description, nor where it took place, nor when or that it took place.

No one has come forth to give an address of the house.

No one has come forth to say they remembered driving her to the party.

No one has come forth to say they remember driving her home from the party.

No one remembers seeing her at a party in a house of the description she provided.

No one remembers that Kavanaugh went to a party of that description.

Why?

Was there a group of nefarious people who found everyone who could corroborate her story and paid them off to lie under penalty of grave personal consequences to say that there was no such party and her story is a complete fabrication with regard to Kavanaugh? How come there is absolutely no one who will say they remember anything remotely like what she’s described happened to her?

To my way of thinking, that is innocent until proven guilty. Even if Kavanaugh is guilty and was lying to congress, there’s no proof. That is our legal system based on people’s rights as per our Constitution.

That is why murderers, and thieves, and rapists, and terrorists end up going free when there is not enough proof to convict them or even sometimes to charge them with a crime.

Whether or not Kavanaugh is truly the perp who sexually assaulted Christine Blasey Ford, there’s nothing that can be done about that without any proof. And that 36 years have passed makes her testimony with regard to remembering it was specifically and without a doubt Kavanaugh who assaulted her not being able to provide any proof is the great difficulty.

This has nothing to do with preventing women who have been sexually assaulted and raped from speaking out and making sure such criminal acts are dealt with appropriately and making sure those perpetrators and violators are convicted and sent to prison (although, my personal feeling is prison does no good – they should be castrated, medicated to keep them docile, and forced to be a slave to the person they harmed for the rest of their lives – to hell with their “rights” – they lost them when they violated another human being).

Additionally, and this is my personal perspective, at 15 years old, which means being in 9th or 10th grade, what was Christine Blasey doing going to a private party with senior high school boys, where there was no adult supervision, where she was drinking, even if only one beer, which was illegal at her age, where she was clandestinely taken by someone and clandestinely driven home by someone?

Even if nothing had happened to her, her parents finding out she’d been out drinking with senior boys, or confiding in a friend who might have spilled the beans so her parents might have found out, would have minimally gotten her grounded if not a good whipping. No doubt she was afraid to reveal where she’d been and what she’d been doing to anyone, irrespective if something horrible happened to her. I know that if I had done something like that at age 15 and my parents found out, I’d have been grounded until I had graduated high school, graduated college, been married and had children. A 15 year old female going to a party with older boys where there is drinking is risky business.

Also, what is someone who is teaching psychology doing carrying around traumatic baggage without having found some way to deal with it and heal after 36 years?

I am not implying being sexually assaulted is to be tossed off lightly, nor that women should not be allowed to name those who have harmed them immeasurably and shut-the-fuck-up and remain silent and in pain, nor that traumatic experiences aren’t to be treated with the utmost tenderness and respect.

I am saying that we each are responsible to ourselves to not allow some motherfucking-piece-of-shit to steal our power and ruin our lives. Fuck them!

We are responsible to find ways to free ourselves from being slaves to those who have harmed us. Take that trauma and use its energy to throw it back at them. Holding on to the trauma and pointing fingers outside to continually blame others for what has happened in our lives and claiming continuing victimhood disempowers us.

A person who truly wants to empower women wouldn’t advise women to continue to remain victims, whining and moaning and blaming and being afraid. That is where there is the true violation because it entraps us, immobilizes us and keeps us in an endless loop of being traumatized. How does that help healing? How does this empower women? Continuing to be angry and enraged and bathing in hurt makes healing impossible.

Not taking personal responsibility for our actions and knowing that there is always interaction between people, and that a person, on some level, even if innocently, can put themselves in a position where they can be harmed, is throwing your power away.

A couple of generic examples:

While rape or sexual assault is never excusable for any reason, a woman who wears a low-cut, tight, very short dress and goes to a bar letting men buy drinks for her, and then leaves the bar and starts walking down a dark alley is not asking to be raped, but she surely is not thinking clearly about her safety and is putting herself in a very precarious position.

Someone drunk and driving isn’t looking to have an accident, but surely is putting themselves and others at risk. We have to think about what we’re doing, and take what part of the ultimate consequences is our responsibility vs what part is the other’s responsibility.

I’m for self-determined, empowerment of both men and women. People who have been harmed by others do have an inherent right to speak out, female and male. But blaming and shaming and holding on to baggage that ends up destroying a life, and being told and persuaded that this is the way through to personal victory and being free does not accomplish that freedom. It’s the exact opposite. It makes someone weak and vulnerable to further damage.

I see the #metoo movement as DISempowering women because it misdirects those attempting to create a true voice of power. It has gotten to the point of the boy who cried wolf and it’s beginning to backfire.

I’m for women’s rights and men’s rights and treating all beings and the earth with respect and honor. The radical feminists who blame and in the past blamed men for all their problems aren’t any better than the patriarchal attitude that has been in the forefront for hundreds of years.

Until we human beings realize it takes a unity and coming together of men and women, and disparate belief systems that put people at odds, finding ways to understand each other even when we have great disagreements, instead of blaming, pointing fingers, he said-she said, and letting accusations condemn and convict without proof, we are heading towards disaster, not only of all of our rights in the U.S., but planet-wide.

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The FBI and Christine Blasey Ford

Fiat Justitia
Google Translation:
“Let justice be done though the heavens fall.”

Does anybody actually care about the truth of Christine Blasey Ford’s accusation that as a teenager President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh drunkenly assaulted her?

Democrats don’t. They were out opposing the nomination within minutes of the announcement. They have a fantasy that Kavanaugh would be the swing vote to overturn Roe v Wade.

Republicans don’t. The pro-lifers have a fantasy that Kavanaugh would be the swing vote to overturn Roe v Wade.

The #MeToo activists don’t. To them Brett Kavanaugh is an entitled male whom they see as a symbol for male domination and violence.

I’m a libertarian. I’m pro-choice. I’m opposed to how Brett Kavanaugh eviscerates the Fourth Amendment protections of privacy in his rulings allowing the government to collect personal information on private citizens.

I watched his testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee in which he made it clear that as a judge he ruled according to the text of the Constitution, of written law, and of legal precedent. The man thinks like a clerk, a bureaucrat. The idea that he’s some sort of incendiary judicial revolutionary that if he’s seated on the Supreme Court will vote to overturn apple carts is ludicrous.

But Democrats, liberals, progressives, feminists, all want the Kavanaugh nomination stopped, if for no other reason than that his nomination came from their nemesis, President Donald J. Trump. So if a scandal needed to be cooked up to stop him — “Borking,” it’s called — that’s D.C. business as usual.

Me, I’m a libertarian, and one of my mentors, Murray Rothbard, wrote that above all libertarianism requires “a passion for justice.”

That passion long ago infected me and I’ve never been cured of it, thank God.

Libertarian and anarchist friends of mine don’t care about the truth or falsity of the accusations against Brett Kavanaugh that Christine Blasey Ford has testified to in subsequent Senate hearings because Kavanaugh is a statist — so whatever happens to him, he has it coming.

That attitude is how over 15,000 people were murdered in what historians record as the Reign of Terror in the 1790’s French Revolution. They “had it coming,” too.

I believe in truth, justice, and the American way, just like my first childhood hero, Superman.

I found Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony emotionally authentic.

I found Brett Kavanaugh’s rebuttal testimony later the same day just as emotionally authentic.

Only one of them can be telling the truth.

Senator Jeff Flake was convinced to go along with his Democratic colleagues’ demand for a further FBI investigation. I’ll leave it to cable-news talking heads to debate the politics of this.

Given the history of the FBI under J. Edgar Hoover — and latter controversies about how the FBI labs’ pseudoscience about fibers have put many innocent individuals behind bars — I’m not sanguine about the FBI as a fully competent investigative service.

But “investigation” is in their name so let’s put them to work investigating the charges Christine Blasey Ford has made against Brett Kavanaugh.

To start off, Christine Blasey Ford has testified that she knew and socialized with Brett Kavanaugh while both went to separate high schools, so she knew that it was him who assaulted her.

Let’s test that the way police always have: a line up. Now, this allegation dates back to 1982 when Brett Kavanaugh was 17 and Christine Blasey was 15. A line up is no longer possible.

But when a physical line-up isn’t practical police have relied on a photographic equivalent: asking the witness to make their identification of the accused by picking the suspect out of a stack — or array — of photographs.

There are landmines to test for familiarity of the witness from other encounters. Sometimes photographs of police, or models, made to look similar to the suspect, are used.

There’s a scene in the classic movie The Manchurian Candidate where the brainwashed Major Marco (Frank Sinatra) is shown a series of slides containing the communist scientists and political operatives who could have brainwashed him — mixed in with a bunch of slides of decoys. Marco is able correctly to pick out the genuine commie scientists and political operatives.

Let professionals in the field of photo identification put together just such a photo array to test Christine Blasey Ford’s “100 percent certainty” that her attacker was Brett Kavanaugh.

There are gaps in Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony and her prior interview with the Washington Post.

She can’t remember an address for the house this attack took place, nor a date. She can’t remember how she got to and from the party. I don’t actually have a problem with memory lapses such as this.

But I do have a problem with Christine Blasey Ford testifying that music was already playing when she was pushed into the bedroom, and that either Kavanaugh or Judge turned the volume up. If the two boys were already in the bedroom with music playing, why? Wouldn’t there have had to be someone else in the bedroom that the music was for? Or is she suggesting that these two totally-drunk-out-of-their-minds teenagers were sober enough to plan a rape that they were incapable of executing?

And what was the music playing during the assault? I guarantee you that this song would be burned into her memory by the trauma and she’d be so freaked out by the association she’d react to it every time she heard it forever after.

Christine Blasey Ford says she went to the second floor of this house seeking a bathroom. That implies a full bladder, perhaps from the beer she remembers drinking.

She then testifies that before she reached a bathroom she was pulled into a bedroom, tossed onto her back on a bed, and that Brett Kavanaugh threw himself on top of her, crushing her, and holding his hand over her mouth when she tried to call for help. She says she was afraid he might accidentally kill her.

So why doesn’t she testify to having wet her clothes and the bed? That would have been compelling detail. I wet my long underwear on a Boy Scout camp-out called Operation Zero, sleeping alone in a tent in the dead of winter. It was so humiliating it was the end of scouting for me. It’s the sort of detail it would be impossible to forget.

It’s been pointed out to me that she talks about Brett Kavanaugh and Mark Judge locking the bedroom door.

But she doesn’t mention unlocking the door when she manages to escape the bedroom to a bathroom across the hall — where once again she testifies to hiding but not relieving herself.

Then she testifies to running out of the house and feeling safe once she’s outside that she’s escaped and that Kavanaugh and Judge haven’t followed her.

But she never tells us why she feels safe just because she’s outside the house. How did she get outside without her attackers seeing her and why couldn’t they follow her outside?

I’m not calling Christine Blasey Ford a liar. I’m just saying that before anyone is judged guilty of anything, the testimony needs to be comprehensive and with certainty not only about the who, but certainty about the where, the when, and particularly the what.

There’s an FBI investigation?

Let them investigate this.

Washington Post Article

Video of Christine Blasey Ford’s Opening Statement to the Senate Judiciary Committee

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Demand Versus Demands


Here’s an irony for you.

The word “demand” as it is used in economics and “demands” as it is used in politics sound like the same thing – yet the two words are polar opposites.

In economics “demand” is what someone wants and what those who want their business work to supply.

People want to communicate to other people who are far away. That’s the demand. To satisfy that demand Morse supplies the telegraph, Bell supplies the telephone, and Tesla supplies the radio.

People want to be able to have light after the sun sets. That’s the demand. People supply torches, gas lights, and electric lighting.

A man wants an erection or a delayed climax. If there are lots of men who want that this is a market demand that stimulates the hunt for or creation of pharmaceuticals to make penises hard or delay ejaculation. The desire is a demand. The entrepreneur looks for a supply with the entrepreneur’s typical motive being profit by meeting demand with supply.

But “demands” in political use is semantically closer to what a foiled bank robber with customers as hostages asks for to release the hostages unharmed.

“Medicare for All!” is a current political slogan used by political candidates. But what is demanded is not demand in the economic sense. No entrepreneur can by invention or offering any combination of products and services supply to everyone regardless of age the medical, hospitalization, and pharmaceutical coverage the United States federal government now provides to seniors, paid for by taxes and fiat money.

But the stark difference between “demand” and “demands” only begins here.

I have had my entire adult life a musical dysphoria caused by being the son of a virtuoso classical violinist who cannot, himself, play the violin. I can imagine myself playing violin at expert level but imagination, alone, can not enable me to do it.

This is not my only dysphoria.

I have never had the upper body strength to do a pull-up, a push-up, or to climb a rope, although I would have loved to have this capability.

I have never had the physical stamina to run for more than a short distance before running out of breath. I am dysphoric – unhappy, in less clinical language – that I have never been able to run a marathon.

Unisex sign

There are people born with male bodies who feel they are gender displaced and belong instead in female bodies, and there are people born with female bodies who feel they are gender displaced and belong instead in male bodies.

If we apply politics we have the political demand that self-identification for gender be granted regardless of physical genitalia, in public rest rooms, locker rooms, and showers.

In our current day the transition from one sex to the other is aspirational and not fully achievable despite hormonal treatment and cosmetic surgeries.

Political demands cannot turn a male into a female or a female into a male.

No male transitioning to female can then be inseminated to pregnancy and bear a child to birth.

No female transitioning to male can then ejaculate semen and impregnate a female.

No dysphoria – no imagination – can overcome the stark fact that a biological technology to accomplish a full gender transition does not yet exist.

Economic demand just might.

As demand set before entrepreneurs, the gender dysphoria of living in the “wrong” body could encourage the development of a full sexual transition as a future market product.

My desire to play the Brahms Violin Concerto – or to run a marathon – might inspire some entrepreneur to satisfy that experience in virtual reality, if not in actual reality.

The difference between “demands” and “demand” is the difference between an idiot holding a gun and a potential customer for a new product.

You only get the satisfaction of a demand in a world where demands aren’t made by first taking hostages.

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Brad Linaweaver on One-World Statism

This begins with a tweet I forwarded in email to my friend, author/filmmaker/publisher, Brad Linaweaver:
Tweet on Cato

Brad responded, and later in the day granted my request to publish. I’ve added links. — JNS

Subject: Re: I tweeted
Date: Sun, 19 Aug 2018 18:09:35 -0400
From: Brad Linaweaver
To: J. Neil Schulman
CC: [concealed]

[Personal comment deleted]

As for the fake libertarian at Cato, a lot more is going on than we can lay at the altar of Keynes. The issue is globalism. The current nervousness is about the currency of Turkey. That economy is in trouble because of the ridiculous policies of the Turkish State. The globalists (which coalition includes my favorite whipping boy, the Neo-cons) are all about managing the world economy as if it were the economy of a single state.

The British Keynes gave advice for national economies, a lot more than he did for the entire world. He was more of a nationalist than today’s libertarians, whose problem is not being a critic of nations but instead being advocates of a world state.

The globalists feel the same proprietary emotion for China’s economy, say, as the American economy. They don’t see individual businessmen any more than they see separate nations. They are not low-level collectivists. They are super-collectivists.

No debate is possible without a consensus on the primary subject matter. We can’t discuss a problem about private markets where the other side has redefined markets outside of the private realm forever!!! Cato is on the other side.

Lord Maynard Keynes never went that far.

Do you remember when President George H. W. Bush talked about a “New World Order”? It freaked out a lot of people because Hitler also talked about a New World Order. But Hitler didn’t originate the phrase. He ripped it off from our side — that is, the Anglo American side, the English speaking side. Bush was simply taking the phrase back from German into the original English.

Want proof?

H. G. Wells was not merely the father of modern science fiction. He was the best selling writer in English for many years. He was a best seller before the Great War. He was a best selling writer all over the world in the 1920s.

He advocated new world orders, and new intellectuals (before Rand), and new this and new that, and intellectual samurai, and technocracy, before the Nazis (and a lot of anti-Nazis) used this rhetoric. His last book, Mind At The End Of Its Tether, was a pessimistic meditation on how his dream of world government would never happen. It came out shortly after the conclusion of WW2.

Wells simply died too soon.

His dream is on the march.

As I once told [mutual friend] Bill Ritch, Trump is a speed bump on the way to World Government. But that is only a delay. Reagan was a delay, too.

Robert A. Heinlein went from predicting and advocating World Government (back in the 1930s) to predicting and opposing world government for the rest of his life. But he never stopped predicting it.

My favorite libertarian science fiction long novel* is The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress because it says a world government is coming, but a libertarian revolution off the earth can successfully resist the tentacles of that gigantic state.

My love of the RAH novel is why I made all the sacrifices required for Free Space.

That anthology is not entitled Free Earth.

Heinlein would never have said 1969 is Year One if he believed the future of the human race is here on the old mud ball.

Never, never, never.

Cato is very much of the Earth, but not of the United States. The USA is the greatest nation in the history of the planet, but it will not last forever. Anyone who thinks the USA is eternal is nuts. We are simply fortunate to be citizens of the USA while it is still here. We are fortunate to have a President who is trying to keep America alive at all (which is sufficient greatness for me).

However, any student of history knows this unusually reasonable Empire will not be here forever. It’s not possible.

Even the religious nuts are smart enough to understand this perfectly obvious fact.

*My favorite libertarian science fiction short novel is Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451. It’s also my favorite novel, without qualifications.

Brad

Brad Linaweaver
Brad Linaweaver

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Plastic Politics


Earlier today (August 15, 2018) I sent out two tweets intended to cause trouble for my political enemies — totalitarians who want to leave no aspect of human life — even the most trivial — free from their commands.

The first:

https://twitter.com/jneilschulman/status/1029905033742172160

J. Neil Schulman
@jneilschulman

Why do progressives want to ban non-biodegradable plastic straws, grocery bags, and rubber balloons, @TuckerCarlson, but would go crazy if San Francisco, Seattle, or Portland legislated that condoms are a hazard to wildlife and condom possession brought fines and jail time?

6:37 PM – 15 Aug 2018

The second:

https://twitter.com/jneilschulman/status/1029906776827809792

J. Neil Schulman
@jneilschulman

Planned Parenthood is destroying the environment and murdering ocean wildlife by passing out nonbiodegradable condoms! @greggutfeld @TuckerCarlson @JesseBWatters @andylevy @nickgillespie @billmaher @iamjohnoliver @colbertlateshow

6:44 PM – 15 Aug 2018

tweet

I’m not a conservative. I don’t oppose Planned Parenthood passing out condoms or even arranging for abortions.

As a libertarian I’m Pro-Choice. The determination of when human life begins — or doesn’t — can’t be taken by the State without violating fundamental human rights.

As a student of religion I note that the religious anti-abortion movement is historically revisionist, based on a modern premise identical to the atheist’s: that only biological gestation — not the inspiration of the immortal soul with a baby’s first breath, as the ancient Hebrews believed — determines when human life begins.

But we live in an age when consistency of one’s political premises is replaced with any momentary expedience. If it diminishes the capitalist bourgeoisie to deprive them of plastic grocery bags, drink straws, or birthday balloons, leftist-dominated cities like Seattle, Portland, or San Francisco are more than willing to ban plastic items with fines and jail time attached for violation, on the grounds that such small items when multiplied by millions of others harm ocean wildlife.

Fine. You want to play it that way, right back at you.

Ban the non-biodegradable plastic condoms that protect against HIV and keep gays alive. Biodegradable sheepskin condoms don’t.

You want to make plastic politically toxic? Pay the political price of killing the gay community and bringing back the AIDS epidemic from the last century.

Make the gays your enemy.

I dare you. I double dare you.

Or leave the personal use of plastic items out of your totalitarian grasp and shut up about that, you lousy crats.

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Anarchists Versus Anarchy

Greg Gutfeld: I challenge you to respond on either The Five or The Greg Gutfeld Show.

Back in my salad days as a libertarian activist, in Fall 1974, I organized the first-ever conference on countereconomics – CounterCon I – featuring Samuel Edward Konkin III as keynote speaker. In May, 1975, Sam, who supplemented his income as a graduate student in theoretical chemistry at NYU by doing commercial typesetting, typeset for me a full-page ad for Countercon II — featuring both Sam and Robert LeFevre — that I wanted to buy, advertising the second conference in the newsletter of Laissez-Faire Books, then a brick-and-mortar bookstore on Mercer Street in Greenwich Village, founded by Sharon Presley and John Muller.

The headline for the ad was, “Will You Survive Anarchy?”

Keep in mind that all of us – Sam, Sharon, John, and I – were all anarchists. Yet the ad was focusing on the chaos that a collapsing above-ground economy — due to government overspending leading to monetary hyperinflation – could cause.

Sharon Presley rejected the ad because it was using the word “anarchy” negatively. The ad as revised and run was stupid and missed the point, reheadlined, “Will You Survive Anomie?”

Since 1974 I’ve established a solid reputation as a writer of books, journalism, Op-Eds, humor, academic essays, commercial copyrighting, fiction, poetry, blogging, tweeting, and screenwriting. A quick look at my bio confirms how I’ve frequently been honored by world-class celebrities and icons – including Nobel-prize-winner Milton Friedman and an Academy-Award winner Charlton Heston – for my writing.

So from my vantage point as a wordsmith going back over four decades – and still an anarchist – I can safely say that my pejorative use of “anarchy” in an ad intended for anarchist consumption was correct.

Welcome to Customer Service

In an article now an afterword to the latest edition of my 1979 novel Alongside NightAlongside Night the Movie Edition – I wrote the following:

In common usage the word “anarchy” is a synonym for chaos and anomie, just as in common usage “anarchist” is a synonym for terrorist or nihilist.
It places an immediate communications burden on anyone who believes, as I do, that a stateless society can be not only as well-ordered and agreeable as any society which attempts by a constitution to limit the powers of government for the purpose of ensuring common individual rights, but in theory could do a better job of preventing a reemergence of tyranny.

I start this essay with a challenge to the Fox News Channel’s Greg Gutfeld because – like Bill O’Reilly before him – Mr. Gutfeld applies the word “anarchist” to the scum who use violence, destruction of private property, and fascist tactics of intimidation against their political opponents.

I’m an anarchist who, after decades of principled non-voting, decided to cast ballots in presidential primaries and races for Ross Perot, George W. Bush, Ron Paul, Barack Obama, Gary Johnson, and Donald Trump.

I watch the Fox News Channel more than I watch CNN or MSNBC.

I wrote in that same afterword:

Yes, that’s right. The revolution only succeeds when the Anarchist is more for law-and-order than the Statist.

As an anarchist thoroughly conversant with the history of anarchists and anarchist movements, I think it’s well past time for the word “anarchist” not to be equated with lawlessness, communism, violence, and nihilism. Of course there are those calling themselves anarchists who are better described because of their actions as fascists. That is nonetheless true of those who call themselves every other label, including liberals and conservatives.

I’ve made it easy for the Greg Gutfelds to know what this particular anarchist thinks. Read my books available on Amazon, both fiction and nonfiction.

Read my blog posts and my many articles in The Libertarian Enterprise.

I have two movies — Lady Magdalene’s and Alongside Night, which I wrote, produced, and directed — currently streaming on Amazon Video / Amazon Prime.

Greg Gutfeld, as a fan of yours if nothing else, I deserve more attention, if not respect.

So do many other anarchists who overlap with you in the values of common sense and common decency, which you’d know if you paid attention.

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Mars Pirate Radio Interviews J. Neil Schulman on The Fractal Man and Multiversal Living

Mars Pirate Radio Episode 142

Mars Pirate Radio Episode 143

Mars Pirate Radio Episode 142 Logo

Mars Pirate Radio Episode 143 Logo

Episode 142 and 143 of MPR feature Parts One and Two of Doug Turnbull’s July 16th interview with J. Neil Schulman.

During this interview Turnbull and Schulman discuss The Fractal Man, his newest SF novel.

They also discuss at some length, the concept of the multiverse that is an important feature of the novel, and how this concept fits into Schulman’s personal experience.

It is quite a spirited discussion and Turnbull thinks you will enjoy both parts.

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Conversation on Democratic Socialism

An excerpt from my novel in progress, The Metronome Misnomer.

Cover: The Metronome Misnomer

“Five seconds,” said the stage director.

Jennifer sat catercorner to her opponent, just elected to Congress, with the debate moderator between them.

“Three, two –”

Hand signal for one. Camera light on.

“Good evening,” said FNN news anchor, Shawn Oldman. “Our guests tonight are Senegal Diaz-Jaffe, newly elected Congresswoman from New York’s 14th Congressional District, and renowned arbitrator and TV judge Jennifer Solomon. Our topic for tonight’s point-counterpoint is the proper role of government in seeking social justice. Congresswoman, let’s start with you. You describe yourself as a democratic socialist. What, precisely, do you advocate?”

“Only that which almost every American has agreed upon for close to a century now. That everyone be treated with dignity and the least among us be afforded the equal access to adequate health care, education, and housing that the elite seize for themselves. We need to recognize that capitalism is a rapacious system that we’ve evolved beyond.”

“Judge Solomon?”

“Where does the money to pay for these benefits come from, Ms. Diaz-Jaffe?”

“The government.”

“And where does the government get the money?”

“It must tax those whose fortunes were made by exploiting the working poor.”

“Let’s leave out that your math doesn’t work – that even taking one-hundred percent of the wealth from the top ten percent can’t provide the services you’re demanding for the other ninety percent. So let’s ask the primary question. Exploiting how? How can there be exploitation when a worker is free to quit?”

“To quit and starve? Not be able to pay for rent and food? That’s not a real choice.”

“It’s not a real choice to take a job elsewhere, or start their own business to compete with their former employer?”

“That’s a fantasy. Most start-ups end in bankruptcy.”

“What about those whose fortunes were made by their own hard work and superior products enriching everyone?”

“No one is an island,” Diaz-Jaffe said. “Everyone is dependent on everyone else. The rich get a free ride from publicly funded schools and colleges training their workers, direct taxpayer subsidies, legal shields against the harm their products cause to others.”

“That’s called limited liability and I’ll immediately concede these laws distort the market, allowing a corporation to grow larger than the marketplace would otherwise allow. Nonetheless even a company with such legal shielding must compete to win their share of customers, who freely choose their product or service over the existing alternatives.”

“Unless the government stifles the competition,”said the Congresswoman.

“I agree again,” said Jennifer. “The solution isn’t more government regulation – which is always used to protect one company from its competition – but to eliminate the government preferencing and allow competition to do its job. Your problem – Congresswoman Diaz-Jaffe – is that you detect arsenic in drinking water and wish to replace it with cyanide. If you had studied real economics your solution to market corruption wouldn’t be the fascism you label democratic socialism but the truly free market Agorism I advocate.”

Copyright © 2018 The J. Neil Schulman Living Trust. All rights reserved.

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Why Donald Trump Is Not Richard Nixon

I’m an anarchist. Anything I write in this essay is not as an anarchist theorist but as an opinion journalist speaking in common political terms.

Richard Nixon’s presidency ended many of the imperial powers of the presidency that Nixon had enjoyed as a gift from Lincoln as president during the Civil War, Woodrow Wilson from World War I, and from Franklin Delano Roosevelt through Lyndon Baines Johnson, from World War II and Cold-War enterprises including the Korean and Vietnam unwars.

Watergate weakened the presidency transferring power to courts, lawyers, bureaucrats, and somewhat to the Congress– and neither Barack Obama nor Donald Trump have been able to exercise the power twentieth-century presidents had. People forget that George W. Bush was elected in 2000, the last year of the twentieth century; the September 11, 2001 attacks — though at the opening of the twenty-first century — gave Bush 43 a chance to exercise powers that only pre-Nixon presidents had owned.

To quote the Wikipedia article Saturday Night Massacre:

“The Saturday Night Massacre was a series of events on the evening of Saturday, October 20, 1973, during the Watergate scandal in the United States. U.S. President Richard Nixon ordered Attorney General Elliot Richardson to fire independent special prosecutor Archibald Cox; Richardson refused and resigned effective immediately. Nixon then ordered Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus to fire Cox; Ruckelshaus refused, and also resigned. Nixon then ordered the third-most-senior official at the Justice Department, Solicitor General Robert Bork, to fire Cox. Bork considered resigning, but did as Nixon asked. The political and public reaction to Nixon’s actions were negative and highly damaging to the president. A new special counsel was appointed eleven days later on November 1, 1973, and on November 14, 1973, a court ruled that the dismissal had been illegal.”

And that was that for the Imperial Presidency. Presidential powers, both foreign and domestic, are still fulsome, but just aren’t what FDR enjoyed.

Donald Trump & Richard Nixon
U.S. Presidents Donald Trump & Richard Nixon

It’s hard to be the Führer when a former functionary like John Brennan can call you a traitor with zero consequence.

Or when any federal-court judge can reverse any presidential executive order or reverse a Department of Justice order that federal funds be withheld from cities in rebellion against federal law.

Fascism just ain’t what it used to be.

The question remains whether Trump could take back lost presidential powers.

If the 2018 midterms keep both houses of Congress in GOP hands, could President Trump fire Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein — and have his next-in-line fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller — with Trump not facing impeachment from his own party as Nixon did?

It would require Trump to understand that he’s not the CEO of a business enterprise — but a Caesar — for him to do it.

My friend and political advisor (not an anarchist) Brad Linaweaver tells me not to hold my breath.

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Mars Pirate Radio Interviews J. Neil Schulman on The Fractal Man and Multiversal Living

Mars Pirate Radio Episode 142

Mars Pirate Radio Episode 142 Logo

Episode 142 of MPR features Doug Turnbull’s July 16th interview with J. Neil Schulman.

During this interview Turnbull and Schulman discuss The Fractal Man, his newest SF novel.

They also discuss at some length, the concept of the multiverse that is an important feature of the novel, and how this concept fits into Schulman’s personal experience.

It is quite a spirited discussion and Turnbull thinks you will enjoy it.

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