Tuesday, October 23, 2007

No more free lunches

By the beginning of the 21st Century, everyone was looking for the proverbial "free lunch". That was the impression created, at least. By mid-century, after some major hard knocks, we were back to the "TANSTAAFL" mindset ("There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch", as Robert A. Heinlein liked to say). We also love our freedom. The natural state of man is to be a small-L libertarian. We tend towards the consequentialist brand of libertarian, rather than the libertarianism of the "rights theorists". Robert A. Heinlein has been described as having a "proto-libertarian" theme in his books, especially the earlier ones. This is telling: "This type of libertarianism is associated with Milton Friedman, Ludwig von Mises, Friedrich Hayek, and James M. Buchanan. Some writers who have been called libertarians have also been referred to as classical liberals, by others or themselves." The "free lunch" crowd tended to want the free lunch at someone else's expense.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

In the mid-21st Century, we like government not to overreach

At the end of the 20th and the beginning of the 21st Century, the situation in America had gotten very strange. Demagoguing politicians had been able to enact laws that raised the penalties for minor crimes so that fines and punishments were excessive. The demagoguing followed a narrative about cracking down on crime. Minor traffic violations had their fines raised by an order of magnitude. Governments, especially in southeastern Michigan, could confiscate your property for crimes, sometimes relatively minor, and which was certainly excessive punishment. In the mid-21st Century, we repeal laws that everyone violates. The situation at the beginning of the 21st Century had made all sorts of common behavior that everyone did be unlawful. For example, speed limits in some areas were reduced down to 10 or 15 mph below what everyone drove. I suspect that much of the motivation was "revenue generation", because late 20th and early 21st Century politicians and bureaucrats liked to spend money, usually to pay off buddies and family members and to buy votes.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Freedom or autocracy?

I have this vision of a land where people are free from an oppressive government that is trying to do too much. This is a free country, as countries which are not free do not allow their people to be armed, much less require them to be. This is a country where we "shoot first and ask questions later", so that is rather odd. This is also a place where we have tight surveillance, even remotely in time and space, so people who would like to operate without anyone knowing what they are doing don't like this arrangement. We are "violating their right to privacy", but we do it to prevent another nuclear attack within the country. The people who would perpetrate such an attack need to be stopped. Therefore, we accept that limit on our freedom.

The 2007 Weblog Awards

Kevin Alyward has opened nominations for the 2007 Weblog Awards.

The 2007 Weblog Awards

Kevin is proprietor and founder of the Wizbang! blog.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Data collection targets

There are several especially important targets for remote viewing with "the Grid" (across time and space). One is the Dutch Ministry of Marine, prior to the fire in 1844 that destroyed many important records about the Dutch navy. The other would be the studio of Willem van de Velde the Elder and the Younger, a father and son artistic team who specialized in 17th Century sailing warships and battles. One theory is that the reason that their drawings often do not have the name of a ship is that the drawings were stored in folders, one for each ship. In that filing system, there was no need to have the name on the drawing, as that would be redundant. This theory is due to the lalte 20th and early 21st Century author Frank Fox.

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