Archive for August, 2011

Which is it.

August 24, 2011

Which is it.   After reviewing this picture I was      wondering if this was an art exhibit or a TSA instructional poster. I am still unsure. The TSA has raised the number of bomb-sniffing dogs to 800, despite there being no need for them. There is some concern as to whether the dogs have been cross-trained to sniff out drugs as well.  This would just save time and be too much common sense to handle.

At the Global Business Travel Association’s conference in Denver on August 21st, Transportation Security Administration chief John Pistole was quoted as saying, “But I also want to give the highest level of assurance to all the American people that we are doing everything we can to provide the best possible security while respecting the privacy and civil liberties of everyone.” Right, like the time they forgot to turn on the metal detectors or did it on purpose (Ref).  Of course this doesn’t just happen in America.

We also know that it influences fashion. Footwear being relegated to mostly that which can slide on and off easily. Frocks are back in style since the new body scanners have been in use. It gets harder and harder to tell who is on a pilgrimage though. However, if you are still wearing a chastity belt like this woman it might be a little embarrassing.

If You Love Taxes, And I Hope You Do.

August 11, 2011

Some jackass at the decided it would be nice to highlight the good that taxes do. And while I am inclined to agree that it helps on a minor level, obviously this guy hasn’t done his homework or been out of work lately. He also fails to address, nay notice, how tax dollars are frittered away on political philandering.

I’ve put his original post in quotes so he won’t get mad. I wouldn’t want that:

  • “Do not use Medicare.” – You’re going to die anyway and it’s begun to cover less and less.
  • “Do not use Social Security” – There’s none left.
  • “Do not become a member of the US military, who are paid with tax dollars.” -Not a problem
  • “Do not ask the National Guard to help you after a disaster.” -I won’t. I will rebuild my community with my own bare hands and help my neighbors.
  • “Do not call 911 when you get hurt.” -Because then I will have to get my ambulance ride pre-approved by an HMO and be paying $75,000 for the rest of my life.
  • “Do not call the police to stop intruders in your home.” -Buy a dog and a gun.
  • “Do not summon the fire department to save your burning home.” -It’s ok. I have insurance.
  • “Do not drive on any paved road, highway, and interstate or drive on any bridge.” -Have you seen the condition of these roads lately, pal. Trust me. They’re all not paved in gold.”Do not use public restrooms.” -Ok. How about this tree??
  • “Do not send your kids to public schools.” -Then they won’t get all that corporate education about how good government and  are.
  • “Do not put your trash out for city garbage collectors.” -I will find ways to recycle, compost and re-use almost everything so I will not waste and have to consume more.
  • “Do not live in areas with clean air.” -Right, because without government there would be no clean are. In fact, I think they are about to charge us for breathing it.
  • “Do not drink clean water.” -Name ANY city that will tell you they have clean drinking water, that it is in fact safe to drink.
  • “Do not eat or use FDA inspected food and medicines.” And e coli outbreaks are a thing of the past and no medicines EVER get recalled after FDA approval.
  • “Do not bring your kids to public playgrounds.” -So my kids…can’t go outside…because I don’t pay taxes…
  • “Do not walk or run on sidewalks.”-What if I just pay state tax?? Then can they run??
  • “Do not use public recreational facilities such as basketball and tennis courts.” -What about a private club?? Like the YMCA.
  • “Do not seek shelter facilities or food in soup kitchens when you are homeless and hungry.” -These are private companies that provide these services. Yes, there are some state ones and yes, tax exemption is a benefit to their operation. But if we taught people how to grow their own food, what do you think would happen??”
  • Do not apply for educational or job training assistance when you lose your job.” -Pal, I’ve gotten all the help I need in that area.
  • “Do not use the judiciary system for any reason.” -Because watching people who have money get off for stuff the average person would never get away with is…entertaining??
  • “Do not ask for an attorney when you are arrested and do not ask for one to be assigned to you by the court.” -Um, that’s a right, not a tax. Allegedly.
  • “Do not use any product that can trace its development back to NASA.” -Like Tang??
  • “Do not watch the weather provided by the National Weather Service.” -How about the weather channel??
  • “Do not use the internet, which was developed by the military.” -It wasn’t developed by the military. It was developed by the National Science Foundation, which is a non-military body. Research was also being conducted at the same time at UCLA to create the first LOGS. So, it would’ve happened anyway.
  • “Do not swim in clean rivers.” -I can’t. Because all my tax dollars are going to corporate subsidies to clean up companies that have poisoned the rivers. Oops. Did I say that??
  • “Do not buy any vehicle that has been inspected by government safety agencies.” -That are made by companies that get bailed out every ten years by my tax dollars. Walking and biking are healthier.
  • “Do not buy any product that is protected from poisons, toxins, etc…by the Consumer Protection Agency.” -A body which has NO authority to shut down or stop distribution of anything.
  • “Do not save your money in a bank that is FDIC insured.” -Money is the misconception of wealth. When you have what you need you can sustain. Consumerism is an illusion. If you can make your own clothes, grow your own food and provide for yourself, then why do you need money exactly??
  • “Do not apply for unemployment benefits.” -Which really keep giving it to the people who don’t want to work and stop giving it to the people do. Also the rate is structured that if you go back to work, you will be making less money then on unemployment. There’s little motivation to stop using it.
  • “Do not use any electricity from companies regulated by the Department of Energy.” -Put solar panels on the house. Use humanure for heat and energy. Don’t have to pay a thing.
  • “Do not use public libraries.” -Write, swap, trade.
  • “Do not use the US Postal Service.” -telegraphs are easy and free. HAM radios are better.
  • “Do not use airports that are secured by the federal government.” -Not even gonna touch that one.

The guy goes on in a bit of an elliptical argument, not unlike a toilet flush. His point is taxes are good because they provide for the little guy and big bad politicians wanna take that away. He fails to realize that the politicians and many Republicans are not affected by tax changes. Beyond his reasoning, which I have heard many times, is what comes next. For too long the paradigm of our political system has been all that can be seen. There is nothing outside of it. The alternatives I’ve listed above are but a fraction of what can be achieved if one but peers outside the veil.

Open Letter to Christopher Hitchens

August 2, 2011

  Mr. Hitchens:

Thank you for taking the time to review this letter. For a   long  time I have admired you and your actions, and I resent my hesitancy in sending you my thoughts. You did  say once that you should never put off writing a letter to someone in distress.
My admiration for you is based largely on your used of language and reason. Few, such as Stephen Fry, Douglas Copeland, and Tom Robbins, have utilized language so effectively and correctly as you have. Furthermore I have witnessed with great approbation your efforts on behalf of the atheist movement. Spiritual though I am, your demand that religion reign in its pugnacious and compunction-free activities brought an unmistakable joy to my heart. It was an indictment of responsibility as I have never seen before, an extension beyond the comedic genius of Bill Hicks and George Carlin. For many months and on often occasions I disseminated your arguments to friends and people who forward me Christian-themed emails; in a vain effort to open dialogue.
Another of your many facets that have been inspiring, is your confrontational approach, that somehow remained respectful. You were direct, honest and almost presented a warning that engagement would eliminate all, but exposure of the soul’s truth (excuse the reference).
I’ve been writing since the age of ten and have recently ceased due to lack of subject and waning interest in humanity, uninspired as it were. Encountering your work led me to a new hope that our species could return to more loftier goals and executions, not of outright snobbery, but an embrace of potential. We think in language and lifting us beyond the petty arguments of religion was a great service to me; recognizing that simple compassion and commonalities that were all share.
This letter could carry its subject on, but I will retreat to brevity to spare you. I wish you a full recovery, for I have a glimpse of the fight that is in your heart and spirit. But should, as you say, the eternal Footman come calling, then good journey be to you.

Sincerely yours,

Jim Witness