Saturday, June 30, 2012

Why Don't You Mind My Own Business

Bill Whittle sums it up perfectly, as always:

You probably already know this. The people who need to see this don't come here.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Race to the Bottom

Sure, Jarlsberg is putting words in her mouth. But they couldn't be any more startlingly asinine as the ones she put there herself:

It still escapes me how that despicable woman ever reached the position of Speaker of the House.

Climate Panel Adopts Controversial 'Grey' Evidence

NewScientist reports, Climate panel adopts controversial 'grey' evidence. Yeah, this is new...

Climate scientists are likely to face charges of putting politics before science, following two decisions by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

At a meeting in Geneva, Switzerland, earlier this month, the IPCC decided for the first time to impose strict geographical quotas on the elected officials that make up its bureau. There will also be a push to increase the representation of women among its authors.

Quotas and gender preferences? Sure, why not? Objective scientists do that all the time!

It had also voted at a meeting in Kampala in November 2011 to increase the role in those assessments of "grey literature": publications not subject to peer review. Using such material in the last assessment is what led to the "glaciergate" scandal in 2010, when the report was found to have vastly overestimated the rate at which Himalayan glaciers are losing ice.

I don't think "grey literature" would be any worse than the fraudulent, peer-reviewed "hide the decline" literature. What does peer review matter, when the peer review is hand-picked to rubber stamp the agenda? This saves having to cover up or falsify any dissent among the reviewers. The IPCC has finally publically admitted that it has no interest whatsoever in objective truth; only a predetermined political outcome.

The panel publishes three voluminous assessments of the state of climate science every six years, the last of which came out in 2007.

I got your state of climate science right here! Fortunately, IPCC has absolutely no jurisdiction within sovereign US borders -- right? It looks as if Orwell was only off by 28 years.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Study: Obesity Could Lead To Depletion Of Earth's Resources

Here's your justification for regulating health and food choices:

ATHENS, Ga. (CBS Atlanta) – A recent study conducted by scientists in London found that the obese persons of the world are playing an increasingly large role in the rate at which the planet’s finite resources are used.

“Increasing population fatness could have the same implications for world food energy demands as an extra half a billion people living on the earth,” the study concluded.

The findings were published in the BMC Public Health journal earlier this year. (Continue reading...)

This is a study from London, but this kind of collectivist thinking has been gaining momentum on both sides the Atlantic for a long time. I am becoming more and more convinced that our government run public schools have been doing a great disservice since the early part of the 20th Century, replacing critical objective thought (including the scientific method) with post modern claptrap (progressivism). Our technology (a lingering product of objectivity and the scientific method) provides a wealth of information, but most recent graduates cannot interpret it in any kind of meaningful way. These "scientific studies" always seem to be designed to promote an agenda.

The current dithering with string theory and parallel universes is the price we pay for this uncritical thinking. Have you noticed, science hasn't had any major breakthroughs since around 1920? It ended with Relativity and the Standard Model of Quantum Theory. Is it any coincidence that 1913 was the year we passed the 16th and 17th amendments? The Wilson regime? I'm starting to think not.

Most Arrogant Man in the World

This is a great parody of the Dos Equis commercials.

Fight tyranny with humor. Stay free, my friends.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Tragic, Unhealthy and Completely Predictable

Author Brian Sussman interviews a victim of our public indoctrination system:

Her conclusion is tragic, unhealthy, and completely predictable.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Corruption: Lake Whatcom Reconveyance

I presented this in open session to the Whatcom County Council two weeks ago. 

Honorable council members, 
It has come to my attention that the Lake Whatcom Reconveyance has once again wormed its way onto the Tuesday agenda – this time without a hearing – at the behest of narrow special interests attempting to create the illusion of broad support.  
This effort has already removed a large amount of land from future private use and/or private ownership. This land is already “protected” inasmuch as proponents desired that. Therefore, the matter before you now is the final reckoning. Do We the People of Whatcom County really need an additional 8,700 acres of park? Does this amalgam of DNR land and trust parcels represent the correct  8,700  acres? Is this really the most pressing need at this time? 
What say the county meet all of its fundamental responsibilities of legitimate services to its citizens (e.g., a new jail) before it takes on any more responsibility for land ownership and management?!  You already have the land tied up in trusts; why not just leave it that way? If Bellinghamsters want a playground or a nature preserve, let them make a private park, on their own dime. Please do not saddle the rest of the county with that expense. Further, the justifications for this “preserve” or park for wildlife management, transportation, and watershed protection are a distortion of roles that do not apply to the Parks department.  
 A safe jail is a legitimate and essential function of government. Parks are nice to have, but they are not essential government functions, even if someone could objectively prove they would “help the environment”. Please direct your efforts to the far more urgent needs of Whatcom County citizens.   
Karl Uppiano, etc.

The Natural Progress of Things

I presented this to the Whatcom County Council in open session four weeks ago.

Honorable council members,
I made a new year’s resolution to attend each council meeting, because I was becoming alarmed at the geometrically increasing burden by all levels of government on our liberty. Our tax bill keeps growing in order to finance the increasing criminalization of normal human activity. Then, we’re told, we still aren’t paying our “fair share”.
So, I have sat fairly quietly in the peanut gallery since January 2012, watching as every two weeks, another raft of plans, grants, resolutions and ordinances pass. Sure, some fail, but never is anything repealed to make room for the new stuff. In general, the burden just gets heavier. Where does it end?
Seriously, what is the end game – total domination? I am fond of quoting Thomas Jefferson, who said, “The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield, and government to gain ground.” It’s just so many words until you see it in action for a few months. But this has been going on for decades! Liberty rots without maintenance.
I hear all these lofty concepts and ideas with names like conservation, watershed, habitat, preservation… but invariably, invariably, the proposed action – the implemented action – involves the transfer of property from private ownership and private stewardship, to government ownership and government control, as if somehow, government would do it better than someone who invested their life’s work earning it.
Rent-seeking NGOs and non-profits exist for the sole purpose of promoting an agenda that you know at least half the public doesn’t agree with. These groups spend their days lobbying and litigating government even at our expense, to impose their views on the rest of us – it’s their day job – while the rest of us work at our day jobs, trying to mind our own businesses to support our families. We the People elect representatives – you – to protect our right to make our own choices. It is discouraging to see you do the exact opposite – and join forces with them.
I’m up here now because of the ag preservation discussion at the last meeting. There was zero mention of individual liberty. Now, I would expect the “progressives” to think, “This land was made for you and me” (sing along!), but even the conservatives among you questioned whether it was okay for a landowner to build a house on his own 40-acre lot. Which article of any constitution or charter grants you the authority to make that determination?
The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield, and government to gain ground. In these council meetings, would it be so bad to err on the side of liberty? Thank you.
Karl Uppiano, etc.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Cyber Warfare -- Governments Developing Computer Viruses

Two articles caught my eye in the last week:
Researchers say they have uncovered "proof" linking the authors of the Flame cyber espionage program to Stuxnet, the most powerful offensive cyber weapon ever developed -- both of which are believed to have targeted Iran.
CHICAGO — On the sixth floor of a sleek office building here, more than 150 techies are quietly peeling back the layers of your life. They know what you read and where you shop, what kind of work you do and who you count as friends. They also know who your mother voted for in the last election.
I write software for a living. In recent years, most software vendors have become much more pro-active about hardening their software against security threats. If word of a vulnerability gets out, it is corporate suicide not to address the problem immediately. But this takes lots of time away from doing our primary job of developing programs that address what our customers really want: Programs that make them more productive or provide entertainment. It isn't that they don't want security, but addressing security concerns slows development and increases cost.

I just discovered our job got a lot more difficult and expensive. Until recently, most malware (i.e., computer viruses) was written by "hackers" who want to vandalize your machine, or by organized crime, which wants to steal your identity, and thus, your money. But now, two very sophisticated computer viruses have been discovered in the middle east that are so destructive, and so complex that they could only be developed by a nation-state: a government with the ability to print money or leverage its tax base for seemingly unlimited resources. But my employer doesn't have  unlimited resources. Not by a long shot.

So far, these weapons have been directed at Iran. Stuxnet successfully sabotaged Iran's nuclear program, by making computerized centrifuges spin out of control and fly apart. Flame is a spy tool. Suppose that a government wanted to aim its weapons at its own citizens, or at citizens in another country. We already have political candidates using computer data mining to get themselves re-elected. Who could stop it? Not the private sector.

Both Stuxnet and Flame have leaked out into the wild, which means everyday hackers and "script kiddies" will be able to use these powerful tools for their own nefarious purposes. Think of the dysfunctional computer nerd living in his parents' basement  -- or a crime ring -- with a pile of hand grenades. With these apps, it's essentially the same thing, only much harder to track. How much longer do you suppose the private sector will be allowed to develop software, when software is a military asset?

We're entering a brave new world, my friends.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Got Principles?

I believe that most of the problems facing this country at all levels of government derive from unprincipled citizens electing unprincipled leaders – the blind leading the blind.

When I say “unprincipled”, I mean people who do not understand – or people who reject – the principles of the American form of government: constitutional government. Mind you, unprincipled does not mean “unscrupulous”. Nevertheless, the unscrupulous can easily take advantage of the unprincipled. It is a dangerous combination.

Many people think tea partiers and property rights wonks are a bunch of anarchists. We do not want anarchy; we want the level of limited government that will maximize liberty and justice for all. We believe humans are happiest when we are free to make our own decisions and take responsibility for our own lives.

In the chart below, you can see that self-determination coincides with maximum liberty. Liberty suffers in a totalitarian state, as it does in a state of anarchy. We are called “far right” because in recent decades, the political window has moved so far to the left. We actually want something closer to the center.

This chart is not to scale -- assuming a scale even exists. It is merely to illustrate the relationships being discussed here.
Red is on the far left (of course), and violet is on the far right. Yellow-green is optimal. 
Government derives its just authority from the consent of the governed. Our constitutions and charters are the official specifications for our government. They are the instruments of all government authority. Any regime that distorts or disregards the documents that they swore an oath to uphold and defend are untrustworthy and dangerous. It is crucial that we adhere to these documents, or amend them as needed, with the consent of the governed.
The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield, and government to gain ground. ~ Thomas Jefferson
Elected leaders: I am sure that you have doubts from time to time about some of the votes you cast in session – where you might go either way. When that happens, I would only ask that you please give liberty the benefit of the doubt.

Operation Chaos

For the 2008 election, Rush Limbaugh invented something he called Operation Chaos, urging conservative voters, or more accurately, Republican voters, to cross over in the primaries and vote for Hillary Clinton. This was supposed to make Barack Obama have to work hard at something for the first time in his life.

Fast forward to 2012: I would never advocate using our official vote to disrupt the "other" side. However, I receive lots of calls and emails, polling me for my political views. My instinct is to proudly declare my preservative principles and honestly answer which issues and candidates I prefer in this election.

I propose that all preservatives submit the opposite answers. Skew the polls more than they already are. Make the 'progressives' think that they have more support than they actually do. It will make them complacent, and (we hope), make the preservatives work harder. When the 2012 election is a blow-out, they'll be completely flummoxed. They'll never know what hit them.

Polls are garbage, and we should not cooperate. The only poll that matters is the one in November.

Update: Better yet... Just don't participate in the media polls. You don't have to lie; you just let the 'progressives' over-represent themselves. If they have no response from people calling themselves "preservatives", the effect will be the same. Their data will be worthless.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Inalienable Rights

It was pointed out to me that some people might have no idea what inalienable rights are. Inalienable rights are the rights that we are born with (among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness). Thomas Jefferson cites three important examples in the Declaration of Independence, but the actual number is indefinite.

The word inalienable means "incapable of being alienated, surrendered, or transferred". From this we know:
  • Government cannot grant rights: We the People retain our inalienable rights (by definition!), and with those, we voluntarily grant specific authority to government. We did that when we ratified The Constitution of the United States, and subsequently, the state constitutions, and county and city charters. The only way that government can legally and morally assume more authority is through the informed consent of the governed; that is, by constitutional amendment.
  • Government cannot create rights: We do not have a right to food, clothing, shelter or health care. We have a right (and a responsibility) to obtain those things by honest labor, but to demand that someone provide them for us, would infringe on their right to keep what they earned -- it is called theft. We have a moral obligation to help those who are down on their luck, and unable to provide for themselves -- this is called charity. However, government hasn't the authority to compel us to provide for anyone -- not even ourselves -- that is called slavery.