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NeoNotes - Who gets to call the shots

For length reasons, this entry appears on it's own page. It's very long.

“Freedom is what matters.”

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Friday roundup

Report Says DEA Doesn't Even Know If The Billions In Cash It Seizes Is Having Any Impact On Criminal Activity

So if siezing cash doesn't work, why do it?

Poor Neighborhoods Hit Hardest by Asset Forfeiture in Chicago, Data Shows

Another of my maxims applies here. “Government authority tends to be used against those least likely to resist.”

Redesigned pride flag recognizes LGBT people of color

Behold the victim hierarchy, “my victimhood is more important than yours.” They took something that was inclusive and made it about race. What's more, the black and brown stripes are on top. Do you really think that just happens to be the way it turned out? See also There's Controversy Over The Addition Of Two New Colors To The Gay Pride Flag

The Progressive Tea Party that Never Was

Why can't progressives build effective groups from the ground up?

What to do with a broken Illinois: Dissolve the Land of Lincoln

Utter catastrophe is not strong enough for what Illinois faces. This may well be the only way out.

Good riddance to the Russia myth — and blame Team Obama for promoting it

I'd say Team Hillary, but at leat they are calling it a myth.

Fifteen Lawyers in Search of a Crime

There's no evidence that the Russians helped the Trump campaign, but that doesn't stop the government lawyers.

Carrier Will Move Jobs to Mexico, Despite Trump’s Promise to Keep Them in Indiana

It's still crony capitalism, an unholy alliance between a company and government.

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“Blockstack: A New Internet That Brings Privacy & Property Rights to Cyberspace”

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“Isaiah's Job” by Albert Jay Nock

For length reasons, this entry appears on it's own page.

This first appeared in the Atlantic Monthly in 1936. It was published by William Morrow & Company of New York in the now out of print Nock's own Free Speech and Plain Language in 1937.

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☆ Media utopia

When I was a kid, I delivered newspapers. After school I read them. Oh not cover to cover, I'd skip the ads and the sports and usually most of the “lifestyles” stuff. It wasn't hard to spot a pattern. What appeared in the newspapers usually appeared on the local news within a day or so. By the time I hit high school, I had discovered the local and school libraries with their out-of-state newspapers. Once again, there was a pattern. Three papers would usually have the “important” stories first, the next day or so the major papers would have the stories, and then within a week or so the other papers and the local television news.

It wouldn't be every story. But it would be the big stories, the ones that everyone would be talking about. So if you wanted to stay ahead of the curve, you'd read those three papers every day you could. The three papers were The New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Wall Street Journal. Oh, The Economist was good too, but I couldn't always find that.

These papers set the agenda that the rest of the nation's press followed. Not always the opinion, but definitely Which Stories Were Worthy. Even newsweeklies and the television news magazines followed the stories that these three newspapers had pointed out.

Telling people what has happened, that's reporting. But the best reporters went beyond that, they put it into context. If the President rapped his knuckles on the desk, they'd tell you what his predecessors did, when, and why. You'd understood how it fit.

There never was journalistic objectivity, but that was okay. As long as some differing opinions made it to press, the public would learn what happened. Reporting was the priority.

Over the years, the Washington Post grew convinced that it had taken down a President. Maybe setting the agenda wasn't enough. Maybe they could shape world events with their reporting. If they said it happened, maybe enough people would believe and the Elected Leadership would react. It worked kinda-sorta with Ronald Reagan, and it worked well with George H. W. Bush.

Then came Bill Clinton who wanted to change the world. So he cultivated and seduced the press. He convinced them that his administration together with the press could change the world if they only tried hard enough. And before the press admitted that there were all sorts of juicy tidbits in Clinton's background, it worked out pretty well. It also cemented belief that the press had a Higher Calling, and it was up to them to turn ignorance into enlightenment.

After Billy-boy came George W. Bush, Bush the Younger. Or Bush League as I eventually called him. Bush the Younger would have been a tolerable President, but then we had 9-11. And the press didn't want a war. Or at least, they didn't want an Official War® with heroes and patriotism and Amazing America riding to the rescue. So they decided to control the agenda. Most of the heroism coming out of 9-11 and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan never made the headlines. The failures, real and imagined, did.

Yeah, about that imagined bit. It was the Higher Calling. American ideas couldn't be allowed to succeed, especially on a world stage. America had to have more failures if only because America had more success. For most of his administration, George W. Bush could do no right according to the popular press.

And then came Barack Obama, the Imperious Leader, He Who Could Do No Wrong. The press loved this guy. For the first time ever, a president mostly played along with what the press said. The press didn't have to report it, they could create reality. That's what happened for eight years.

By 2016, the press had forgotten that their primary job was reporting what happened. No one realized that while the Grand Vision was put in place, they were losing Democrat lawmakers and elected officials to keep it into place. Meanwhile many people resented being dragged into a Utopia without their consent. Especially when Utopia was more expensive and more tyrannical.

So Donald Trump happened.

The press completely missed it. What happened wasn't nearly as important as what was supposed to happen.

The truth was a prison. The answer was to do what had worked for eight marvelous years. Reality had to change. Legality didn't matter. Morality didn't matter. Only the Utopia.

The untruths came fast. No one was going on record but it was obvious that Trump would fail if he got pushed. He couldn't hope to succeed. So stories of high-level meetings that never happened came out. Stories about sex orgies and golden showers in Russia. Stories about Trump hoarding the White House ice cream. None of these stories could be verified. The answer was to accelerate the news cycle. That was easy enough with the internet. Literally hours after each story was released came the debunking, new stories followed minutes after that.

We've reached the point where most of the “news” about President Donald Trump and his administration can't be trusted. The newspapers and news sources I used to trust can't be trusted.

I hate admitting it, but Trump is right about the press. And it's because the press won't report the news. The press wants the Utopia.

Truth doesn't matter.
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John and Cindy McCain's shaky foundation

Soros, Clinton-Linked Teneo Among Donors to McCain Institute

Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain in 2012 turned over nearly $9 million in unspent funds from his failed 2008 presidential campaign to a new foundation bearing his name, the McCain Institute for International Leadership.

The institute is intended to serve as a “legacy” for McCain and “is dedicated to advancing human rights, dignity, democracy and freedom.” It is a tax-exempt non-profit foundation with assets valued at $8.1 million and associated with Arizona State University.

>snip<

Critics worry that the institute’s donors and McCain’s personal leadership in the organization’s exclusive “Sedona Forum” bear an uncanny resemblance to the glitzy Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) that annually co-mingled special interests and powerful political players in alleged pay-to-play schemes.

The institute has accepted contributions of as much as $100,000 from billionaire liberal activist-funder George Soros and from Teneo, a for-profit company co-founded by Doug Band, former President Bill Clinton’s “bag man.” Teneo has long helped enrich Clinton through lucrative speaking and business deals.


Cindy McCain: Crony Philanthropist

It turns out the "freedom, democracy, and human rights" institute launched by Cindy and Sen. John McCain is supported by large donations from entities known for persistent rights violations, including Saudi Arabia, a U.S. defense contractor selling smart bombs to the Saudis, and a Moroccan mining company occupying land in Northwest Africa.

In fact, examining McCain's philanthropic record reveals a long history of personal abuse of nonprofit resources, shady connections, and shoddy work. For years, McCain has been playing the role of crony philanthropist, and now she is poised to bring her dubious advocacy to the highest levels of government.

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Headline roundup

Single-payer health care would have an astonishingly high price tag

Some of us already knew that. When we tried to tell people, we were told to shut up because obviously we were wrong.

Harvard: California minimum wage hikes have led to major restaurant closings

More expenses and the same price means less profit and fewer business. It also means fewer jobs.

City trees are dying early because they are struggling to sleep due to streetlights

I didn't see that one coming.

Victory!: Governor Abbott signs Texas “Bowie Bill”

Bowie knives are illegal? In Texas?

Advances in apathy

Claire Wolfe says it's long past time to tune out.

Whistleblower Banker: “All Misery on Earth is a Business Model”

Wondering what happend to the free market?

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Bilingual futility

I can tell you the second I realized the utter futility of mandated bilingual communication. I was at an ATM in San Francisco and the only two language choices were English and Spanish.

In Chinatown.
     — NeoWayland

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KYFHO

Keep your freakin' hands off!
     — NeoWayland, FAQ - KYFHO: Keep Your Freakin' Hands OFF!

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Progresses

Authority progresses and freedom regresses.
     — NeoWayland

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Question

If you don't question what a book or Authority Figure™ tells you, you aren't doing your part.
     — NeoWayland

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Absolutely

As a rule, absolutes don't.
     — NeoWayland
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Acknowledge

Acknowledge but do not celebrate.
     — NeoWayland

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Right choices

Government can’t make the “right” choices for a free people.
     — NeoWayland

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Enlightenment

Why does your enlightenment demand that I sacrifice?
     — NeoWayland

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Selective

I want to talk about the curious restrictions of Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

Keep in mind the language of Mr. Mueller’s assignment, as articulated on May 17 by Rod Rosenstein: To investigate:

“any links and/or coordination between Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of President Donald Trump, and any matters that arose or may arise directly from that investigation.”

The new subjects of Mueller’s inquiry are not only remote from that recent but apparently forgotten assignment, but they begin to sketch the outline of a lawyer who is stocking up on matters of inquiry for a long-haul investigation.

Notice what isn't there.

There's no mention of the Obama Administration trying to sieze control of the 2016 election from the states by making elections "critical infrastructure."

Or how Obama Administration tried hacking voting machines in Indiana.

Or how the Obama Administration colluded with the Clinton campaign to lock out all other possible Democrat candidates.

Or how Obama's Attorney General Loretta Lynch tried to meet secretly with former President Bill Clinton on the tarmac in Phoenix to "discuss our grandchildren."

Or Hillary Clinton's many, many Russian connections.

One might speculate that Robert Mueller's real mandate is to protect the institutions of government from someone like Trump.

But only perhaps if one were a paranoid libertarian.

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Nullify this!

Juries Can Acquit the Guilty, 9th Circuit Says, but 'There Is No Right to Nullification'

Advocates of jury nullification argue that jurors have both the power and the right to acquit a guilty defendant if they believe the law or its application is unjust. According to a recent ruling by a federal appeals court, they are half right.

USA v. Kleinman involves an operator of medical marijuana dispensaries in California who was convicted of federal drug charges and sentenced to nearly 18 years in prison. Among other things, the defendant, Noah Kleinman, argued that the judge had improperly instructed the jury regarding nullification. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit agreed but said the error was harmless because "there is no right to nullification."

>snip<

Unfortunately for Kleinman, some of the actions to which he admitted, such as shipping marijuana to other states, clearly did not comply with state law.

This is one of those rights that predates the nation.

"Jury nullification of law", as it is sometimes called, is a traditional American right defended by the Founding Fathers. Those Patriots intended the jury serve as one of the tests a law must pass before it assumes enough popular authority to be enforced. Thus the Constitution provides five separate tribunals with veto power -- representatives, senate, executive, judges and jury -- that each enactment of law must pass before it gains the authority to punish those who choose to violate it. Thomas Jefferson said, "I consider trial by jury as the only anchor yet imagined by man, by which a government can be held to the principles of its constitution."

The power of the jury to judge the justice of the law and to hold laws invalid by a finding of "not guilty" for any law a juror felt was unjust or oppressive dates back to the Magna Carta, in 1215. At the time King John could pass any laws any time he pleased. Judges and executive officers, appointed and removed at his whim, were no more than servants of the king. The oppression became so great that the nation rose against the ruler and the barons of England compelled their king to pledge that no freeman would be punished for a violation of any laws without the consent of his peers.

>snip<

Earlier in America jury nullification had decided the celebrated seditious libel trial of John Peter Zenger (Zenger's Case, 1735). His newspaper had criticized the royal governor of New York. The law made it a crime to publish any statement, true or false, criticizing public officials, laws or government. The jury was only to decide if the material in question had been published; the judge was to decide if the material was in violation of the statute. The defense asked the jury to make use of their own consciences and although the judge ruled that the truth was no defense, the jury acquitted Zenger. The jury's nullification in this case is praised in history textbooks as a hallmark of freedom of the press in the United States.

There's an old saying, “There are three boxes for freedom: ballot, jury, and ammo.” The jury box is useless unless the jurors can judge both the law and the accused. And yes, this has been subverted over the last few decades.

For further information, check out the Fully Informed Jury Association.


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None of your business

Queering the Census

Here is the letter from the two Democrat Senators, Tom Carper and Kamala Harris.

I have an answer for that.

Unless it's with me, who you have sex with, how you have sex, and how many times you have sex is frankly none of my business. Likewise, unless it is sex with me, I'm not responsible for the consequences.



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FINALLY!!   It's about damn time!

Speech may not be banned on the ground that it expresses ideas that offend.


A law found to discriminate based on viewpoint is an “egregious form of content discrimination,” which is “presumptively unconstitutional.” … A law that can be directed against speech found offensive to some portion of the public can be turned against minority and dissenting views to the detriment of all. The First Amendment does not entrust that power to the government’s benevolence. Instead, our reliance must be on the substantial safeguards of free and open discussion in a democratic society.
     — Justice Anthony Kennedy

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Demand

You demand bondage, I choose liberty.
     — NeoWayland

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Headline roundup

Net Neutrality Supporters Want to ‘Ban Drudge’

One of my maxims applies here. “Ever notice that when someone starts talking about the common good, they try to take something away from you?”

Judge: Lois Lerner’s tea party-targeting testimony can stay secret — for now

So what are they hiding?

How Team Obama tried to hack the election

We know it happened. Why isn't it being investigated?

Inside Obama’s Secret Outreach to Russia

Again, we know it happened. Why isn't it being investigated?

Get Congress Back to Legislating, Not Just Budgeting

Another example of unintended consequences.

CNN’s Kathy Griffin and the Face of Tolerant Democrats

Griffin doesn't want to face the consequences.

Flashback: Obama Admin. Offers to Share Syria Intel on Terrorists With Russia

Yep. We know it happened. Why isn't it being investigated?

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“How to save the USA in six words”

Stop making everything a moral issue.
     — Don Surber, How to save the USA in six words

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Freedom of religion

Freedom of religion does not mean deferring to Christianity.
     — NeoWayland

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Absolute morality

Absolute morality serves those in power and those in fear.
     — NeoWayland

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Not your friend

Government is not your friend.
     — NeoWayland

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Sympathy

Sympathy is not part of my nature. Fellow-feeling is a gift that I have to work at, so I do. I consider it as restitution for the person I once was.
     — NeoWayland
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Headline roundup

Obama Ordered The U.S. Intelligence Community To Share Intel With Cuba

Obama will go down in history as the first anti-American president.

Some Black Lives Don’t Matter

It "matters" only if it fits the narrative.

THERESA MAY TO CREATE NEW INTERNET THAT WOULD BE CONTROLLED AND REGULATED BY GOVERNMENT

The internet is the last, best hope for freedom.

Is Trump Correct in Calling the Media Biased? Harvard Study Says…

Yep.

Sweden: 16 Sexually Assaulted Girls Called “Racists” “Islamophobes” for Complaining

You must submit, it is your destiny. Islamophobic

This is the way the climate scare ends; not with a bang, but a whimper

We still don't understand climate and weather.

Regime Change by Any Other Name?

Trump gets blamed.

DNC Workers Sue Party for Receiving Sub-Minimum Wages, No Overtime

The self-described "party of the little guy."

Miss USA sparks Twitter debate by saying healthcare is a 'privilege'

Speaking the truth makes no friends.

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NeoNotes — You're the product

Heinlein was right. "There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch."

There's an internet adage that has popped up in recent years. "If it's free, you're not the customer, you're the product."

And finally there's the old reliable. "Follow the money."

NeoNotes are the selected comments that I made on other boards, in email, or in response to articles where I could not respond directly.

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from crux № 9 - Testing ideas

We need our beliefs and convictions tested by people who don't agree with us.

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“Five Clichés Used to Attack Free Speech” from ReasonTV

“We live in perilous times when it comes to free speech, and the threats are coming from both the left and right. The president has threatened legal action against the media, and progressive activists have used violence to shut down campus speakers they don't like.”

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Destroyed

America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.
     — Abraham Lincoln
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Hate the truth

The truth is hate speech to those that hate the truth.
     — unknown
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George Washington's Farewell Address

For length reasons, this entry appears on it's own page.

Penned by James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and Washington himself. This was read annually to Congress on Washington's Birthday until the 1970s. If you haven't read or heard it, you should take the time.

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NeoNotes — Deserved to be heroes

For length reasons, this entry appears on it's own page.

“We let generations be victims when they deserved to be heroes.”

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Roaming Millennial on Oppression

“People of Color: You Are Not Oppressed”

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from crux № 15 - make it better

“I want a government that is smaller than absolutely necessary.

I believe that people are perfectly capable of making their own choices and that society is the better if people do exactly that.”

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NeoNotes — Subjective morality

For length reasons, this entry appears on it's own page.

“The law should be limited to punishing direct, measurable harm.”

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hiatus

Due to unforseen circumstances, I'm taking a break from blogging until June 5, 2017.
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Just a bit biased

“Before Lois Lerner Targeted The Tea Party, She Helped The Clinton Foundation”

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