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Apr. 10th, 2011 @ 07:39 pm Some words about language, liberty, and tyranny...
Words mean things, so let's get some definitions on the table right now.

Language - the words, their pronunciation, and the methods of combining them used and understood by a community.

Liberty - the quality or state of being free; freedom from arbitrary or despotic control; the positive enjoyment of various social, political, or economic rights and privileges

Tyranny - oppressive power {every form of tyranny over the mind of man — Thomas Jefferson}; especially : oppressive power exerted by government {the tyranny of a police state}


If we can all mutually agree on the above terminology, then we are cleared for continuation of this dialogue.

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We value many things to varying degrees. We love our friends, cherish our families, and take positive stock of the things that routinely make our lives better and worthwhile. If we are gainfully employed, earning a living wage and accumulating enough wealth that may one day sustain us during the years when we are no longer able to actively add to our own retirements, we consider ourselves blessed and among the fortunate. Ditto those of us who were lucky enough to have been born in a family or entered into a relationship in which wealth had already been acquired.

Wealth is just another way to say private property, or assets that are not owned by anyone else other than the individual or individuals. If we value liberty, we value the rights of others, to include ourselves, to pursue as much private property as an individual needs or desires.

Private property isn't accumulated in a vacuum, but in an environment that requires infrastructure and maintenance. The finances required to defend the country, build the roads, staff the emergency services, etc. come directly from the people who actively produce wealth, or from people who are stewards of of wealth previously produced.

Lather, rinse, and repeat.

If we, as a society, wish to have a plethora of extras (libraries, museums, parks, etc.), in addition to the necessities as required by contract, charter, or constitution, it is in our collective best interests to ensure that the conditions exist to facilitate all citizens to actively contribute within their own ambitions and abilities. That requires minimal interference by government, and a demand of accountability and morality by and of the citizenry.

What am I really saying here?

1 - Unless mental illness, physical limitation, or outright laziness is involved, everyone capable of working for their own self interests (to include basic survival) should be able and strongly encouraged to do so.

2 - Those souls incapable of independently providing for themselves should be afforded a "minimal safety net" in order to have their needs attended to. Human morality demands no less than this. Enhancements and upgrades to their quality of living should be dealt with by willing individuals geographically closest to the affected.

3 - The needs of a community are taken care of ahead of the wants. If more is desired, the governing authority should ensure that the output of citizenry contribution exists to support the item in question long after its creation.

4 - A moral people takes care of their own, period. A moral government takes just enough to ensure its basic needs are met, and facilitates the conditions to allow its governed to act morally.

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When we interact among ourselves, the resulting conversations are ultimately determined upon shared understanding of language and self interests. If we happen to have to same interests and share a similar world view, the tenor of the discussion is likely to be positive. If, on the other hand, we share neither the same interests nor the same world view, the semantics utilized are going to be considerably different and perhaps a bit more contentious.

If we are to continue to exist as a democratic republic, we all need to first and foremost acknowledge the right for people to believe whatever they wish. Furthermore, if we are to come to a consensus, or at least better understand the other party's argument prior to presenting what we conceive to be the superior conceit, we have to consider both the end state we wish to accomplish and the conditions in which future dialogue is to take place.

Calling the opposition "Nazis," if in fact they are not Nazis, does not advance your cause. Distorting the actions of your political foes only enhances your own intellectual dishonesty. Telling falsehoods and encouraging others to repeat the same (knowing that such statements are lies) makes the originating proponents into immoral beings.

This needs to stop, and stop immediately.

There are very serious problems in our world today that require the attention of competent adults; children need not be involved in the resolution process.Time is not on our side, and the stakes could not be higher. There are certain "truths" that can not be taught quickly, necessitating the need of the smart, not necessarily of the intellectuals:

* The very nature of man can never be totally regulated by law, and we must all accept that.
* People will tend to do things to circumvent the rules when they are complex and over-burdensome to their own self interests.
* The inclusion of middle men inevitably raises the price and extends the time pipeline of all goods and services involved.
* Generosity is a luxury that is more easily and willingly demonstrated after one's own self interests are met.

There are more items than can be listed, but I hope the tenor of my point is made. I can only hope that the sincere lawmakers who understand this outnumber the ones that don't and never will.

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There is a fiscal crisis upon us here in the United States that truly threats every American citizen here and abroad, and indirectly impacts the rest of Western Civilization. Solutions are needed and needed quickly, and that includes holding conversations such as the one we are having now.
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itzwicks
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From:rowangolightly
Date:April 11th, 2011 01:08 am (UTC)
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This is one of many reasons I like you so much and am so proud to call you friend. And of course, I agree with you 100%. On the ways and means of achieving such we may disagree but when these basics are broadcast and agreed upon, what could we not achieve from there on?
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From:myndcryme
Date:April 11th, 2011 03:03 am (UTC)
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Very well said. Thank you.

- V -
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From:wookiemonster
Date:April 11th, 2011 03:38 am (UTC)
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I would agree with most of what you have written, except I don't see libraries as a fringe benefit, but rather as a necessary tool in maintaining a civilization, much less a democracy. In order for anyone to make an informed decision, they must have a reservoir of knowledge to visit, and people there to help them navigate it. Librarians can navigate not only books, but on-line resources.

As for the rest...we are definitely in a class war. I think that both sides of the political spectrum are feeding into this, giving us rhetoric and riling us up, and the media is feeding on it like sharks in bloody waters. One would have thought that all the talk after Representative Giffords and others were shot that we'd start turning down the violent and vitriolic talk, but, we all seem to forget. Just like we all forget the way we pulled together as a nation after 9-11. Unfortunately, I think the general political and economic division that was already in place doomed that unity and until we all get it together, it will continue to be doomed. Also, there are no simple problems, and what everyone wants is a quick fix to problems that have multiple factors and have been festering for years. In short, we've already screwed ourselves out of easy solutions and, if we keep up with the rhetoric instead of finding real solutions, I think we're just going to screw ourselves overall.

Just my $0.02...
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From:ravenchilde_art
Date:April 11th, 2011 04:12 am (UTC)
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The world would be a much happier, more generous, much more peaceful, and better off place if everyone just agreed with me. *runs off*
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From:nsingman
Date:April 11th, 2011 01:26 pm (UTC)
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The only moral government is that which neither steals, nor coerces, nor engages in aggression against its own citizens or others. There is no such thing as a moral government that levies taxes, or that makes laws with prohibitions (on anything except the aggression) or mandates, or that engages in non-defensive wars.

Good luck finding a moral government, Bryan. You won't find one in the District of Criminals.
:-)
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From:saishuu
Date:April 29th, 2011 09:57 pm (UTC)
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All I can say is, 'This, exactly'.

[I'm so glad you keep up with LJ, this is my first time checking in over here in a while!]
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From:imperceptible1
Date:August 22nd, 2011 10:21 am (UTC)
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I know that I haven't been around in a long time, but I still agree completely with everything you say.