Crony-Capitalism for the Benefit of the People (Apple-FBI Controversy)?

TRIGGER: http://www.dancarlin.com/product/common-sense-302-courts-cooks-apples

What happens when the Crony-Capitalists explicitly use their influence on Government to the benefit of their customers?

The Apple customers demand privacy. Apple strong-arms the Government (and its politicians) to keep its customers happy.

Wait. . . what?

I suppose this is a round-about way for Democracy to work, with Apple being the surrogate “enforcer” of the peoples’ will?

Enjoy the Donald Trump Political Theatre

As I see the horror people are having of Donald Trump, I’m reminded about the disgust my wife had for Steve Carell’s character as the boss on “The Office.” I told her that it’s not real, and that it’s satire. It’s comedy. She gradually began to enjoy his character.

Consider that politics is all about about “putting on a show” in order to get elected, and then once they get elected, the politicians make the deals that benefit their donors only worrying about reelection. Don’t take what the politicians say seriously. It’s just a show.

Once you accept the premise, then you can enjoy Donald Trump, playing the Presidential candidate Donald Trump, endlessly mock the political establishment. And it’s hilarious!

Come join the fun that is mocking politics and politicians for what it has been for a long time: a huge farce providing the illusion that the Establishment actually cares what you think. Or that your vote even matters. (Don’t forget the electoral college!)

Even if “the Donald” gets elected, none of his domestic policies which require Congressional approval will likely happen as the Establishment will unite to stop him at every turn. In terms of foreign policy for which the President can take unilateral action, Trump is a dove. Trump is self-funded and the military-industrial complex has minimal influence on his decisions. The opposition is so fierce from even the Deep State, that Trump’s assassination would not be surprising.

The Presidential office has long been in the hands of crony-capitalists and war mongers. It’s about time we get a true “outsider” candidate if for any other reason but to give an extended middle finger to the Establishment that has ignored the will of the people.

I look forward to the mockery that will be Trump’s VP ticket, and at least four more years of open ridicule to the rest of the world leaders as Trump exposes the theatre that is Global Politics and the Deep State.

“ARE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED?”

Where’s the Love in the Libertarian Movement?

“People don’t care how much you KNOW until they know how much you CARE” – Unknown

“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not LOVE, I am a noisy GONG or a clanging CYMBAL. And if I have prophetic powers, and UNDERSTAND ALL MYSTERIES AND ALL KNOWLEDGE, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not LOVE, I am nothing.” – 1 Corinthians 13: 1 – 2

“You can see the rider serving the elephant when people are morally dumbfounded. They have strong gut feelings about what is right and wrong, and they struggle to construct post hoc justifications for those feelings. Even when the servant (reasoning) comes back empty-handed, the master (intuition) doesn’t change his judgment.” ― Jonathan Haidt, The Righteous Mind

“Reason is, and ought only to be the slave of the passions, and can never pretend to any other office than to serve and obey them.” (T 2.3.3 p. 415) – David Hume

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To the Libertarians interested in spreading the Gospel of “Liberty”: we have a messaging problem. It’s not an intellectual problem. We fail to demonstrate LOVE.

Did you notice yourself immediately feeling uncomfortable when I mentioned “Love” or while reading the quotes above? Keep that feeling in mind, because it’s you, especially, this message pertains to. [As I write this, be advised this is primarily an inner-dialog than anything else. My inner-voice is quite confrontational and blunt. There’s no way I can actually know your exact situation and for something as deeply personal as this, I acknowledge this.]

I’m going to steal some concepts from Reformed Christianity to help illustrate my point. Even as an Atheist, Penn Jillette has been exploring Evangelical churches to learn from their techniques in demonstrating “love” to apply to his Atheist church, United Church of Bacon. #LoveNeedsNoGod

There are three, primary “roles” in the Kingdom of God:

– Prophets (Speakers of Truth)
– Kings (Day-to-Day Administrators and Organizers)
– Priests (Relationally focused, ministering mercy and sympathy)

Jesus perfectly encapsulates all three, while humans tend to be strong in one or two roles, and weak in another. Libertarian Prophets are Ludwig Von Mises, Murray Rothbard, and others. Libertarian Kings are successful free market Capitalists. Libertarian Priests are . . . largely non-existent.

I’ve been reflecting on this shortage, since within myself, I have a strong deficiency in my Priestly attributes, and weigh heavily as a Prophet/King. The quotes above and the term “Love” causes my Elephant to buck. As the “Rider,” I began searching into my heart (the Elephant), and realized my Elephant has a knee-jerk reaction to look down on those who exhibit Priestly qualities. My Elephant reacts: “Emotions make me feel uncomfortable due to past emotional traumas.” Then the Rider justifies the Elephant: “Priests are pussies, weak-minded, idiots, contradictory, and emotionally wishy washy. I, on the other hand, in my great Ivory tower of Reason, Logic, and Intellect am superior and could never lower myself to pander to people’s hearts. That would be untrue to who I am.”

For Libertarians, our God should solely be Individualism and to proselytize for new believers. But we have strayed from our one, true God. Instead of Individualism, we have created an idol out of Intellectualism. Instead of humbling ourselves, as Christ humbled Himself even to the point of a torturous death on the cross, we choose to demand non-believers to come to Orthodoxy on their own efforts (through Logic and Reason that their Elephants have no regard for).*

If you were to be a missionary to the darkest depths of Congo, and only communicate to them in English, don’t you think that’s foolish? Why insist and denigrate the Elephants who are incapable of understanding the language of Logic and Reason? Understand them. Empathize with them. Humble yourself to their world, and then speak to them in a language they can understand: Love.

Or another example: what is the more effective tool to win converts to Christianity? The hellfire and brimstone confrontations of the Westboro Baptist Church? Or the hopeful, and love filled messages of Rick Warren and and Joel Osteen? Libertarians would be wise to learn from the outrageously successful, positive messaging these Preachers profess. **

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Progressives are right to be skeptical about Libertarians’ claims that charity will adequately provide for the legitimately needy. Libertarians put their “faith” on the goodness of humanity or self-interested individuals to care for those in need. There are no strong, intellectual arguments that can guarantee there will be enough charity, one way or another. Progressives would prefer the sin of “theft” if it means there’s a minimum level of “care” that can be guaranteed. What’s the best way to deal with this “leap of faith” we ask non-believers to make so they don’t have to choose from the “lesser of two evils?”

“Actions speak louder than words.” As Libertarians, we should be like a “City Upon a Hill,” and “Salt Unto the Earth.” Libertarians should be the ones with communities that have the happiest and healthiest relationships. Dumping the intellectual arguments as secondary, Libertarians should have the most loving communities in existence that drive Progressives crazy with jealousy. “By this all people will know that you are Libertarians, if you have love for one another.” ***

Instead, what do Libertarians have to show for a loving community? Ayn Rand? Why do you think non-believers reliably point to Ayn Rand’s personal life as the primary reason to discredit Libertarianism? Yes, I agree, it’s MADDENING! What’s a person’s heart have to do with their ideas? But it’s all about speaking to the Elephant. It’s about pointing to explicit, real world examples that are deeply personal and speak to the heart (and not intellect) of the individual.

Let the doubt toward charity for the needy be washed away by the demonstration of Libertarian communities. Libertarians should be known for communities filled with Love, Peace and Prosperity; “but the greatest of these is Love.”

The Libertarian movement has enough Prophets and Kings. What we need is a revolution of Priestly love. What we need are “Elephant Whisperers” and that starts with us reflecting on our own hearts, humbling ourselves for the sake of Liberty.

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What does this mean practically? Well, I’m sure as hell not an expert. But if I were to confess my sins publicly and project them onto you (as to minimize my own discomfort), here it goes:

1) Stop intellectually masturbating over how logical and reasoned you are (no one cares except you)

2) Stop mocking all those “idiots” out there who don’t know how to speak logic and reason (they certainly don’t like it!)

3) Focus on developing your own emotional intelligence (yes, a very different type of “human capital” than what Intellectuals typically tell you)

But the overarching, #1 priority is to practice and grow your Love muscles. I know. Your Elephant is bucking again. So is mine, even as I type it. LOVE LOVE LOVE. Let your Grinch heart grow!

Sorry, it’s the objective truth. Learn to Love others as they want to be Loved, or you will remain ineffective in influencing people. The reality is that those who can be convinced by Reason and Logic have already done so. The rest requires a whole lot of Love.

And lest you fail to realize that you have your own Elephant and are in denial that your Rider is not actually fully in control, you may need to work through some emotional trauma. Even I, while typing through this article, have a long way to go before I can fully embrace the message of Love.

I know. . . echhh. Just give it some time and reflect upon it. Notice how this discomfort you feel is different than the discomfort you feel when intellectually challenged with questions on the existence of Free Will, or if Truth is relative or absolute. I’d say this is a clear indicator it’s your Elephant that’s being challenged, and not so much the Rider.

See! Now you know how those whom you denigrate as idiots feel!

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* Reflect upon Jesus, and how he interacted with various individuals in the Gospels. He changed his communication style depending on the individual he spoke to. Ranging from no words, “Jesus wept;” to speaking in Parables; Jesus was a master Elephant whisperer. And. . . let’s just skip those examples where Jesus rails into the hypocrisy of the Pharisees, unless your objective is to be crucified just like Jesus!

** I recommend listening to Tim Keller on preaching to the heart: http://resources.thegospelcoalition.org/library/preaching-to-the-heart

*** The Free State Project could be the most compelling argument for non-believers if the Free Staters can exemplify a loving community. Or it could be the worst thing if it breaks down into bickering over intellectual matters that non-believers don’t care about. And I would be remiss not to mention Tom Woods’ Contra Cruise! Also, all the Facebook communities being created to help support one another. Well, already, I’m sure the Libertarian community is already heading in a much more “Loving” direction. Keep it going!

Leveraging Technology and Productivity During Childhood and Teenage Years

Okay, yes it was fun. But when you consider the tools that are available today, I wonder what kinds of music, YouTube videos, etc. we could had produced had they been available during our time.

There are many YouTube income generators today that started producing while in High School.

Instead of income producing efforts, I have this picture to show for our expended time and energy. Extended adolescence is fun, but productivity is much more satisfying.

Kids today, more than anytime in history, have technology at their fingertips, limited only by their own human labor and ingenuity, to produce and globally disseminate digital goods for monetary gain. At least for my kids, I intend to provide the tools necessary, and sense of entrepreneurial empowerment, for them to never need to consider working a minimum wage job.

UNPUBLIC #21 – Reaction to Sam Harris’ Blind Spot in Apple-FBI Debate: Tyranny, Monopoly of Violence

 

Sam Harris believes people distrusting the State are practicing paranoia, dogmatism, and a recipe for anarchy. Anti-State individuals are irrelevant, childish, and imbeciles.

“This whole business about “statism” I find profoundly uninteresting.” – Sam Harris

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Anyone else noticing the “blind spot” that Sam Harris failed to address in his discussion with Apple for his latest podcast? Namely Government abuse of power (AKA Tyranny)?

It’s starting to become so blatant and so obvious, and I have such high respect for his intellect, that I’m starting to believe this “blind spot” is intentional.

I know he said these are his first thoughts on the subject, however, I notice a common “logic” that he exercises on a frequent basis. It seems in his discussions on various issues, he fails to properly address the reality that there are individuals with a Government title that wield a monopoly on violence. Some of these individuals may not be as “evil” as Jihadists, but are ultimately self-serving and willing to crush independent liberties if politically feasible. These individuals, should they commit these very same actions as non-Government officials, would be considered unethical, yet somehow, Sam Harris provides an “exception” clause. Sam Harris repeatedly fails to explain how a Government title exempts an individual from the standard laws of ethics that apply to the rest of us.

He pointed out some examples to support his case for the FBI which are of such fringe concerns, yet sets them up as the foundation of his argument:

1) It’s inconceivable that there would be anywhere on Earth, a room, or a physical space, where no one can gain access to forever.

2) There are people who have filmed murders on their phone, and if only the police could gain access to it, it would reveal the murderer.

3) Terrorists and criminals use the encryption to their advantage.

4) You can trust the Government to not abuse the power of decryption since you have a “court order.”

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REBUTTALS:

1) To equate a digital space to have the same ethics as physical space is fallacious. Primarily, no one is deprived of anything when you deprive them of your digital “space.” You can have infinite “digital” space, but you are limited to “physical” space.

2) How frequently does this actually happen per year? We may “suspect” there is some useful footage, but how many murder victims had enough time to setup their smart phones to record their own murder? This is a false premise to “authority,” made especially obvious when he said his source is a “district attorney” whom he won’t mention.

3) And so do innocent individuals who want to protect their privacy from Government bureaucrats and law enforcement who frequently demonstrate their penchant to abuse their monopoly on violence. Once this unlock tool gets released to the FBI, does Sam Harris seriously believe it won’t eventually be released to the State, County, and City level?

4) What world does he live in where the judicial system can be trusted, in the long run, to rule against Government officials that pay their salaries and give them their power?

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SAM HARRIS’ LOGIC: When it comes to trusting individuals with a Government title versus individuals without a Government title, Sam Harris errs on the side of Government tyranny, because without Government tyranny, terrorists and murderers will rule the world.

Sacrifice your individual liberties under the guise of safety by your benevolent protectors: Government bureaucrats.

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Referenced Article

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1sAJGkhMk8hJtfdI24Usfg8BYcAZS9YIV55Otex0jHSI/edit

https://www.samharris.org/podcast/item/meat-without-murder

https://www.samharris.org/podcast/item/ask-me-anything-1

https://www.samharris.org/podcast/item/throw-open-the-gates

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Jonathan Haidt, “The Righteous Mind,” Questions on Moral Relativism

I’m going through the audio book on “The Righteous Mind” and just passed the section where Haidt discusses Kantian deontology as though it’s only one of five “tastes” of the tongue, and then stating that a restaurant that only had “sweet” as its only item on the menu would not be popular.

From a purely Descriptive point of view, I agree that Libertarian ethics hinges on the “single flavor” of the “Non-Aggression Principle.” I would also agree that Libertarians have a messaging problem since they insist that people must have ideologies that are logically consistent for which most people have difficulty maintaining. In the book’s example, Haidt demonstrates that the Elephant (AKA Emotion) is the main driver of people’s beliefs rather than the Rider (AKA Higher Intellect). Or, in another metaphor, the “tail wags the dog.”

Now going from a Descriptive to a Moral Declaration, is Haidt’s position essentially that each “perspective” is just as “valid” as another perspective? Is Haidt’s premise essentially moral relativism?

Would Haidt say that claiming you have the absolute truth on morality to be, within itself, an immoral act?

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Coming from a Platonic / Aristotle view on metaphysical laws of Reason:

1) Identity
2) Non-Contradiction
3) Causality

I’m having difficulty seeing how contradicting ideologies are equally just as morally, and objectively true to each other. How can stealing be both moral and immoral? Or Rape? or Slavery? or Murder?

Or to take it beyond politics, how can there be both a God and not be a God? For there to exist an individual, and not an individual? “Free Will” to exist and not exist?

New Hampshire and the Free State Project: Moving on Principle

Interesting. Perhaps I’ll need to look at making my next hotel purchase in New Hampshire. Not necessarily because it may make the most monetary sense, but on principle.

Or I could justify it by projecting that New Hampshire, with its growing number of Libertarians, will, in the long run, be the most “business friendly” State (especially in light of the SJW growing into politics).

Sam Harris’ Blind Spot on the Apple Encryption Debate: Tyranny

UPDATE:  2/23/2016

It’s intentional:

This whole business about “statism” I find profoundly uninteresting. This is a separate conversation about the problems of U.S. foreign policy, the problems of bureaucracy, the problems of the tyranny of the majority, or the tyranny of empowered minorities (oligarchy)—these are all topics worth thinking about. But to compare a powerful state per se with the problem of religion is to make a hash of everything that’s important to talk about here. And the idea that we could do without a powerful state at this point is just preposterous.
If you’re an anarchist, you’re either fifty or a hundred years before your time (not withstanding what I just said about artificial intelligence), or you’re an imbecile. We need the police, we need the fire department, we need people to pave our roads, we can’t privatize all that stuff, and privatizing it would beget its own problems.
So, whenever I hear someone say, “You worship the religion of the State,” I know I’m in the presence of someone who isn’t ready for a conversation about religion, and isn’t ready to talk about the degree to which we rely, and are wise to rely, on the powers of a well-functioning government. In so far as our government doesn’t function well, then we have to change it. We have to resist its overreach into our lives. But behind this concern about statism is always some confusion about the problem of religion.”

ORIGINAL:

TRIGGER: https://www.samharris.org/podcast/item/meat-without-murder

Anyone else noticing the “blind spot” that Sam Harris failed to address in his discussion with Apple for his latest podcast? Namely Government abuse of power (AKA Tyranny)?

It’s starting to become so blatant and so obvious, and I have such high respect for his intellect, that I’m starting to believe this “blind spot” is intentional.

I know he said these are his first thoughts on the subject, however, I notice a common “logic” that he exercises on a frequent basis. It seems in his discussions on various issues, he fails to properly address the reality that there are individuals with a Government title that wield a monopoly on violence. Some of these individuals may not be as “evil” as Jihadists, but are ultimately self-serving and willing to crush independent liberties if politically feasible. These individuals, should they commit these very same actions as non-Government officials, would be considered unethical, yet somehow, Sam Harris provides an “exception” clause. Sam Harris repeatedly fails to explain how a Government title exempts an individual from the standard laws of ethics that apply to the rest of us.

He pointed out some examples to support his case for the FBI which are of such fringe concerns, yet sets them up as the foundation of his argument:

1) It’s inconceivable that there would be anywhere on Earth, a room, or a physical space, where no one can gain access to forever.

2) There are people who have filmed murders on their phone, and if only the police could gain access to it, it would reveal the murderer.

3) Terrorists and criminals use the encryption to their advantage.

4) You can trust the Government to not abuse the power of decryption since you have a “court order.”

=====

REBUTTALS:

1) To equate a digital space to have the same ethics as physical space is fallacious. Primarily, no one is deprived of anything when you deprive them of your digital “space.” You can have infinite “digital” space, but you are limited to “physical” space.

2) How frequently does this actually happen per year? We may “suspect” there is some useful footage, but how many murder victims had enough time to setup their smart phones to record their own murder? This is a false premise to “authority,” made especially obvious when he said his source is a “district attorney” whom he won’t mention.

3) And so do innocent individuals who want to protect their privacy from Government bureaucrats and law enforcement who frequently demonstrate their penchant to abuse their monopoly on violence. Once this unlock tool gets released to the FBI, does Sam Harris seriously believe it won’t eventually be released to the State, County, and City level?

4) What world does he live in where the judicial system can be trusted, in the long run, to rule against Government officials that pay their salaries and give them their power?

=====

SAM HARRIS’ LOGIC: When it comes to trusting individuals with a Government title versus individuals without a Government title, Sam Harris errs on the side of Government tyranny, because without Government tyranny, terrorists and murderers will rule the world.

Sacrifice your individual liberties under the guise of safety by your benevolent protectors: Government bureaucrats.