Obama Hears, Addresses “Voices” of Opposition

While speaking at a commencement ceremony in Ohio, President Obama stated that college graduate and young people should disregard any “voices” that constantly warn against government tyranny.

“The voices”, according to the president, say that government is a source of tyranny and bad things. That “tyranny lurks just around the corner.”  The president urges his audience to reject these “voices,” because accepting that tyranny is possible means that our experiment in self rule is just a sham and that people can’t be trusted.

The the president expresses in this speech illustrates his utter ignorance of America’s founding and the very points of federalism, divided government, checks and balances on power, and the concept of natural rights–those given to men and women because we are born, not because some government grants them to us.

In Federalist No. 51, James Madison writes, “If men were angels, no government would be necessary.” But men are not angels. In this line, he acknowledges that some government is necessary. But he goes on to write, “If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary.”  But angels do not govern the affairs of men, nor are they working in modern government. Thus government power must be controlled.

The president implies that those who fear government tyranny and speak their concerns seek only to “gum up the works” to getting things like gun control, government healthcare, and other legislative agenda items pushed through Congress.

Perhaps the president fails to recognize what tyranny is, we are glad to help him out.

Source: Dictionary.com

Government (at all levels, not just federal) has engaged in a variety of oppressive behavior in the last few years. Examples abound such as banning the sale of sodas of an arbitrary size, banning legal gun owners from having or purchasing guns with more than 7, 10, or more bullets in an ammunition magazine. The government enacted a mono-partisan take over of healthcare, passing a law of approximately 2,000 pages with so many fill in the blanks for the Secretary of Health and Human Services and the federal bureaucracy that the current count of regulations issued to fill in the legislative blanks stands at nearly 20,000 pages, a tower of paper more than 7 feet tall. The president has, despite taking an oath to the contrary, arbitrarily selected what federal laws he will enforce and which he will not.

The president signed a law authorizing the indefinite detention of US citizens without trial and without right of judicial review. His Department of Homeland Security has amassed more deadly hollow point ammunition at a rate faster than used by the US military in conducting the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. His Department of Justice is involved in an illegal gun running scandal that resulted in Mexican drug cartels obtaining weapons which were used to murder a US ATF agent and Mexican citizens. Instead of submitting to Congressional oversight, the White House asserted executive privilege to avoid having to answer for its bad acts.

Finally, the US government has recently involved itself in a number of warrant-less, paramilitary raids on American businesses for trumped up charges (The Gibson Guitar factory raid is just one of several examples). While no actual wrongdoing is found, the government refuses to file charges, return seized property, or allow a judicial hearing on the actions that took place.

The examples above do not inspire confidence that government is a merely a benevolent, nurturing force for good. Despite the president’s urging to the contrary, government and the intention of individuals running it are not always noble or pure. And that is why the entire framework of setting up the federal government is one that restricts its powers. The federal government is granted power by the Constitution via enumerated powers–those specifically given to it. Those powers not granted are reserved to the states or to the people. No matter what politicians benevolently promise, that’s how the system should remain.

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10 Responses to Obama Hears, Addresses “Voices” of Opposition

  1. Joe Blow says:

    I don’t think he is claiming that government is “merely a benevolent, nurturing force for good”. What he is criticising is the over-use of the word “tyranny” every time the government makes a decision someone doesn’t like. The Obama government is like all governments. It doesn’t always represent the will of the majority of the people. Sometimes politicians pursue their own self-interest. Sometimes they are seduced by money from big corporations. Sometimes they cave in to minority pressure groups like the gun lobby. But the over-use of the word “tyranny” discredits the critics who use it. Democracy itself is tyrannical to such people, because often the majority favour something they find oppressive.

    To make practical level-headed criticisms of the government is the proper thing for a citizen to do, but to shout “tyranny” every five minutes is the act of someone who is not at war with the government so much as they are at war with reality. If the government are really the problem then the best thing would be for those on the left and the right to put aside their differences and work together to get rid of the current government. If the left and the right can’t do this, then how are we going to get a different kind of government? Are those who favour some kind of minimalist government going to try to force it on everyone else by taking away their right to vote?

  2. I think Obama and Joe Blow missed the lecture, and the point, about the price of liberty being eternal vigilance. Wooing young minds into voluntary apathy as been the hallmark of despots and dictators throughout history. Obama might well have said, “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain…” just before the Iron Curtain descends. Within the context of his speech, Obama echoed the rhetoric of would-be tyrants: let me use the government for the good of all, forget your individual selves (and your individual onus to do good), and trust the State. Taking the easier road did not serve the Germans well; the State is a collective phenomenon and cannot abide the individual.

    Obama missed the opportunity to say to the graduates,”Develop your character, discipline your mind, and, and determine the truth. Pursue your dreams with dedication and your relationships with devotion. Therein lies achievement; use the freedom God gives each of us to become truly human,” because Obama believes none of these things constitute the essence of free will directed by maturity. He wants the State to direct the conscience and therein lies folly.

    Joe says: If the government are (is) really the problem then the best thing would be for those on the left and the right to put aside their differences and work together to get rid of the current government. If the left and the right can’t do this, then how are we going to get a different kind of government?

    He forgets where these differences come from: fundamental world-views. At some point, neither side can “put aside” the essence of their belief systems, and “work together” to get rid of the current government without surrendering to the ultimate evil. For the right, this ultimate evil is collectivism as public policy. For the left, the ultimate evil is individual freedom. The framers of the Constitution knew this, and constructed a document that balances the interests of the collective with the individual because men are not angels and need an independent moral compass that overcomes both anarchists and tyrants.

    How is America going to get a different kind of government? The same way it got the first free America: revolution. Constitutionalists and Communalists will necessarily diverge into two countries: free America and Communist America. There will be a fight. There will be blood. Neither time nor modernity has erased the only way fundamental impasses can be resolved. As Lincoln said, “A house divided against itself, cannot stand.” It must be all slave or all free, and the right cannot surrender to collectivism anymore than the collectivist can surrender to individual freedom. Just like the American colonists could not “work with” King George. They either had to be completely free or completely slaves to the Crown.

    The left is fighting this battle now with excessive taxation. As Joe said, the government cannot represent the majority. In this case it does not protect the minority either. That minority is the taxpayer, who now is in the same position as the colonists. No taxation without representation! The government may seem benevolent, but it can never be when it confiscates individual wealth so it can “do good’ for the collective. The government now practices unrestrained confiscation and it will only get worse now that SCOTUS has abdicated its defense of the individual. The ruling in the Obamacare case now allows the government to force people to do anything it wishes. There will be blood.

    • Joe Blow says:

      Comparing Obama to Hitler is pretty ridiculous. Hitler was a militaristic, nationalistic, racist, homophobic, anti-communist supported by capitalists like Henry Ford. And he was hugely popular. Obama is less militaristic or nationalistic than Bush was. And I see no evidence of him exploiting or promoting hatred of any races or sexual orientations. You wouldn’t find Hitler saying good things publicly about someone who admits their homosexuality. And Obama isn’t all that popular. He was when he first was voted in. But the left are disenchanted with him because he has refused to stand up to the oligarchs who really run the U.S. And others are disappointed he caved in to the gun lobby. I think a lot of people like him because is so much better than Reagan or Bush or Bush and they vote for him because they don’t want the Republicans to get in, especially since their ranks are salted with religious fanatics who oppose abortion and gay marriage, and even, in some cases, would like creationism to be taught in schools. If America is going to have a tyrant it will have to be someone either more popular or more brutal than Obama.

      I think that those who view Obama as a Hitler-like tyrant (rather than just another compromising politician) are suffering from paranoia. This is when someone projects the disowned part of their own psyche onto someone else. These anti-government fanatics see Obama as a tyrant because their deepest desire is to tell other people what to do. They see themselves as the champions of liberty but it is really only their own liberty they care about, liberty from having to be giving members of society or cooperate with people who think differently and live differently than they do.

      The price of liberty is eternal vigilance against idealists of all kinds – right wing and left wing. If society becomes too right wing (i.e. too tolerant of selfishness) then the fabric of the community is torn and crime and violence result. If it becomes too left wing our selfishness becomes too frustrated and we lose our vitality as a society.

      We will have to find a compromise between these extremes until we have succeeded in curing the mental suffering which makes us selfish. This is very easy, but until it catches on we will need to be accepting of the fact that people who hate themselves deep down will feel the need to be arrogant and egotistical and greedy. It’s a grim depressing existence for these people, and the best way we can help them is by showing how much more rewarding is a life of freedom, love and pleasure. The true tyrant for such people is not the government, but their conscience. Free yourself from your conscience and your religion (which for most Christians is a vile blasphemy against God and Jesus anyway) and, as you say, be truly human, that is an uninhibitedly creative playful loving problem-solving childlike being.

      You say that the right believe in individual freedom. I see few on the right who are as free as me. I see plenty of people who are slaves to religion or the pursuit of useless quantities of money which gives them no happiness. To be free is to be free of addiction. And on the right I see people addicted to righteousness, addicted to the pursuit of wealth, addicted to materialism, addicted to watching Fox News…

      I can see another solution. A split of the U.S. into three countries. One big one for sensible people and two small ones, one for those who want true socialism – i.e. government ownership of the means of production (I think this would be a very small state as I hear few people calling for this these days) and another small one for right wing fanatics who will end up fighting with each other about who is going to do the menial work, as hardly any working class people would be stupid enough to move there.

      You say there will be blood. That would be a pity, but if it happens, I hope it is fanatics like yourself killing each other off and leaving the world free for those of us who like to cooperate with each other and have a good time. We don’t need you.

      • Hello Uber-Liberal Mr. Hippie! Guess you skipped the part where I said that the Constitution BALANCES individual and collective goals. You obviously buy into the idealism that says self-interest is inherently selfishness with absolutely no regard for others. That is not what personal freedom is all about. Did you not read what I said Obama should have said?

        ”Develop your character, discipline your mind, and, and determine the truth. Pursue your dreams with dedication and YOUR RELATIONSHIPS WITH DEVOTION. Therein lies achievement; use the freedom God gives each of us to become truly human.”

        See, pursuing relationships (inherently meaning interacting with other people), with devotion, means you don’t exploit them or be cruel to them. Got it? OTHERS matter.

        I never said Obama was a Hitler. I said his speech echoed the rhetoric of would-be tyrants. Hitler didn’t tell the crowds, “Elect me and I’ll kill millions of people but, like Mussolini, I’ll make the rains run on time.” No, he started by making the State the grantor (and take-awayer) of personal freedom and political rights. By the time people realized the mistake they’d made, it was too late.

        Sort of like you, who want to rid your utopia of people like me…people who exercise the 1st Amendment right to speak their minds. Do you see your error?

        You want tyranny without even realizing it, only in the name of “cooperation” and “having fun” instead of in the name of race, color, creed, or national origin, or sexual orientation…Your tolerance ends when people actually exercise their rights.

        You have a collective mentality. In true Uber-Liberal fashion, you make the paranoid grand leap and make accusations because you have no rational…let me say that again, RATIONAL, response to what I said. Please, respond, if you must, to what I really said, not what you knee-jerk think I said.

        And those three countries you mentioned? Never happen. The left depends on the wealth of others to “do good”and the government and dependent people cannot, and do not, produce wealth. When people on the right finally leave, they’ll take their wealth (and I mean more than money—values, education, creativity, innovation, etc.) with them.

        Seriously, ask yourself WHY inner cities have crumbled under leftist policies. It’s because the producers of wealth left and took their wealth out of those drug ridden, oases of desperation and destitution and left the Democrats without the resources to support those dependent upon the party. You want life to be easy and ‘fun’ and that’s not maturity. That’s childishness. We do not live in a butterfly world, but a nuclear weapon world. That’s the reality. If only you (and Obama) would just grow up.

        • Joe Blow says:

          There is a difference between self-interest and selfishness. We all operate from self-interest. Any other mode of operation is impossible for us because it is the self which operates and has the interest to do so. We can’t operate from someone else’s interest. The nature we have when we are born is to seek pleasure and interact in a loving way with others. As we get older we learn to take satisfaction in problem solving and cooperating with others in creative activities. It is only when we begin to suffer that we become selfish. Selfishness is the natural self-directedness of the suffering individual. If we hit our thumb with a hammer we can think of nothing but our thumb. The selfish individual can think of nothing but himself because his primary task is to address his suffering and find some kind of relief for it. This is what happens to all of us. We conform to a repressive frightened culture of hurt selfish people. Some respond passively and some actively to their own neurosis. Some try to overcome their feelings of shame and worthlessness by pursuing idealism, some by accumulating wealth, some by doing productive things like scientific research and others blot themselves out on drugs. There are many ways to cope with our neurosis, but everyone has it to a greater or lesser extent. If we learn to accept ourselves unconditionally then we can heal our selfishness, then we will operate out of enlightened self-interest, that is we will realise that the meaning of life is love, and at last we are capable of love, and we will enjoy our pleasures without shame as something healing and life-affirming, and we will get great satisfaction out of work as long as it is work which we can see solves necessary problems and helps people.

          If by relationships you mean loving relationships, that is relationships of equality and mutual aid, then I agree that that is the key. But most of us have relationships of some kind. What matters is the nature of the relationship. You say “devotion” but some people are devoted to people who exploit or abuse them and vice versa. Devotion is not the key, love is.

          Hitler may not have promised to kill lots of people but he did exploit wide-spread hatred of the Jews from the beginning. And he appealed to people’s desire for discipline. People who vote for Obama are, in general, not disciplined types, and if he started trying to regiment society they would tell him to go and get fucked. Those who feel they are being taxed too much may feel regimented, but I don’t think the average person feels regimented by Obama.

          “Sort of like you, who want to rid your utopia of people like me…people who exercise the 1st Amendment right to speak their minds. Do you see your error?”

          A. I don’t live in a utopia, yet.

          B. When did I object to you exercising the right to free speech? I’m enjoying this discussion. I love the fact that you are speaking your mind.

          C. I didn’t say I wanted to be rid of you. But you said : “There will be blood”. I said that would be a pity. I don’t want violence. But I’m sick of seeing peaceful people being killed. So if killing is inevitable let it be those who feel there needs to be the shedding of blood who have their blood shed, not those who do not believe in violence. As Jesus said, “Those who live by the sword shall die by the sword.” I don’t want this to happen. I’d rather people put down their swords. And I mean by choice, not sword-control laws. :o)

          “You want tyranny without even realizing it, only in the name of “cooperation” and “having fun” instead of in the name of race, color, creed, or national origin, or sexual orientation…Your tolerance ends when people actually exercise their rights.”

          What makes you say I want tyranny? I can’t force people to cooperate or have fun. And why would I bother? I’m having too much fun cooperating with those who want my help and whose help I want. When have I shown anything less than tolerance? Am I intolerant simply because I disagree with you? Am I intolerant simply because I’m less angry at Obama than you are? I don’t know what you are talking about.

          “You have a collective mentality. In true Uber-Liberal fashion, you make the paranoid grand leap and make accusations because you have no rational…let me say that again, RATIONAL, response to what I said. Please, respond, if you must, to what I really said, not what you knee-jerk think I said.”

          What do you mean by my having a “collective mentality”? My philosophy of life is my own discovery and runs counter, in one way or another, to our whole culture. Certainly I’m inspired by the thinking of lone individuals of the past such as Socrates, Jesus, William Blake, Wilhelm Reich, Carl Jung and others, and I do see a connection with hippies as you point out. But I’m my own guy. I don’t hang around with a bunch of people who share some ideology with me. I interact with people of all different philosophical and political persuasions. One of my best friends on-line is a libertarian like yourself. We have our disagreements on politics, but find agreement in other areas and help each other out with the world of writing and on-line publishing. I love people but I’m uncomfortable in groups with a shared belief system. I like to cooperate but I will never conform, and collectivism requires conformity.

          The use of the term “Uber-Liberal” is a sign of desperation. This is propaganda straight out of George Orwell. Try to control people’s thinking by creating terms which are loaded with a false connection you hope will not be questioned because of the combination into one word. “Uber” suggesting Nazi domination of the world attached to the word “liberal” which actually means “free”, specifically applied to one who feels free to depart from tradition. This concept is another case of paranoia I think. At least if you are applying it to me. I don’t care how much you cling to traditions as long as you don’t try to force them on me. I might advise you to depart from tradition in some ways but it’s your choice whether you take my advice just as it is my choice whether I take any that you might give me.

          “And those three countries you mentioned? Never happen. The left depends on the wealth of others to “do good”and the government and dependent people cannot, and do not, produce wealth. When people on the right finally leave, they’ll take their wealth (and I mean more than money—values, education, creativity, innovation, etc.) with them.”

          I think you are stereotyping people on the left. Many, if not most, are hard workers. Some are wealthy. There are, believe it or not, some very wealthy individuals in the United States who feel they are not paying enough tax.

          And the wealthy are dependent on labour. It is possible for someone to create a prosperous company beginning only with labour. I know someone who bought a wheelbarrow full of wood and built it into a 2 million dollar furniture company. But an entrepreneur with loads of money and no workers will find it hard to do business. We over-rate the importance of capital in capitalism. Capitalism depends on labour. Another question is customers. The majority of people, I believe, would want to stay with big government, because they don’t want to be without a safety net and they want a decent level of public services, which means that those entrepreneurs who moved to the other America would lose a very large proportion of their customers. I think your view of economics is far from being holistic.

          I think we may both have done some knee-jerk responding, but that is hard to avoid when two people who have radically different views of the world try to communicate. I think it is still worth the effort.

          “Seriously, ask yourself WHY inner cities have crumbled under leftist policies. It’s because the producers of wealth left and took their wealth out of those drug ridden, oases of desperation and destitution and left the Democrats without the resources to support those dependent upon the party. You want life to be easy and ‘fun’ and that’s not maturity. That’s childishness. We do not live in a butterfly world, but a nuclear weapon world. That’s the reality. If only you (and Obama) would just grow up.”

          Why does Australia have less of these problems than the U.S., and a healthier economy, when we have more left wing government policies than you? I think one reason for oases of desperation in the U.S. is that so many of your industries closed down U.S. factories and moved production to poor countries were the people are desperate enough to work for a pittance in unsafe conditions. Now you might say this is because of the minimum wage in the U.S. but there is a moral choice open to these business owners. They can pay more to the workers by cutting their profit margin. To exploit the poverty of people living in countries with repressive regimes while claiming to support freedom is obscene, but this happens.

          I think there are a number of things contributing the problems in the inner cities. One is the war on drugs. Decriminalise drugs and a lot of the crime will dry up. And drug use will probably actually go down, as there will not be pushers and social workers will have greater access to helping people break their addictions. Also, I think, the U.S. relies too much on the penal system. You have a higher percentage of your population in jail than any other country. Talk about the land of the free? Some people need to be kept away from society, but most criminals can be rehabilitated outside of prison. Prisons serve as colleges for criminals where they can learn from each other how to commit more crimes and where they can build up a greater level of hostility toward the society that locked them away. It’s a crime breeding system.

          We only live in a nuclear weapon world because of the human neurosis which makes so many of us paranoid. But our leaders are the most prone to paranoia, so the key to defusing nuclear tensions is to make friends with people in countries like Iran and North Korea over the internet if we can. Probably not possible with North Korea. But Iran is accessible and there are a lot of people there who oppose their government just as much as we do.

          I would be tempted to say that world leaders (and the United States started it) waving their nuclear penises at each other is childish behaviour, but that would be an insult to children.

          What we can do though is not to fear these things. That is what is meant by faith. Trust in life and don’t let the pathological behaviour of others keep you from making the most of it. Though I’m not a Christian I always tend to come back to Jesus : “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be earthquakes in various places, and famines. These are the beginning of birth pains.” We will not always be living in a nuclear weapon world. The culture of the world is changing. The old repressive ideologies are dying and when they are as dead as the dinosaurs, life and freedom will once again flourish on the earth. Obama is not the answer, but neither is he the problem. The problem lies in the old-fashioned neurotic control mentality approach to dealing with life. The battle between the Obama supporters and the libertarians is just one of those irrelevant earthquakes which occurs along the way. To fight against either side is simply to encourage them. And I don’t. But I’m always willing to expound my views.

          • I think my first clue about your state of mind regarding the voicing of opinion is your sentence that ends thusly; I hope it is fanatics like yourself killing each other off and leaving the world free for those of us who like to cooperate with each other and have a good time. We don’t need you.

            Gee, why would I think you’re less than tolerant when you refer to me as a fanatic and say you hope people like me kill each other off, and you don’t need me? You said it. That’s why.

            One thing’s for sure, you psychologize human nature. All this psycobabble about people being born cooperative and become selfish because of pain….nutsy time. Have you raised children? They must be taught to share and cooperate because the little tykes have no morality or self control at birth. Don’t know what you’all smoke down under, but there’s no such thing as a “noble savage”….that’s Rousseau’s oxymoron.

            But…you’re in Australia. So, let me give you some Yankee thoughts to ponder. You’re isolated from much of what ails the world as America once was isolated by ocean and might. How much $$$ has Australia given to the world’s poorest countries? It pales in comparison to the trillions the American taxpayer has spent on “development” and oh yes, we pay for the UN (that useless cooperative garbage peddler) and are called upon to help every disaster victim in the world while the rest of the world spends its money on…well, whatever it wants to. And countries like Australia criticize America along with the hate-America-first Liberals here.

            Call it humanitarian fatigue. The right in America (much as you characterize it as radical, you’re wrong about that) gives more money to charity and does more community work than you could ever conceive of.

            Why do people like me “hate” Obama? He’s a liar. Think Benghazi. Think illegal immigration. Think obamacare. To name three of his most outlandish insanities. He and his administration and the lap-dog press lied about a terror attack, and an American citizen sits in jail because of that lie. Four are dead because of the administration’s inaction. (He bragged about killing Bin Laden and a Pakistani doctor sits in prison because of Obama’s outing him.)

            Obama is irrational, confiscating the wealth of America to pay off his misguided judgement that America “owes” $$$ to the downtrodden. Do you have any idea what Obamacare is going to cost the American taxpayer? It will bankrupt the country. Do you have any idea what 11-20 million new welfare/Obamacare recipients will do to our economy? (Australia doesn’t take the world poor, downtrodden masses yearning to be freeloaders, you know. Why?) It will bankrupt our country. Do you know what a bankrupt America will do to the world?

            I hope Australia can help cover the cost of feeding 7 billion people three times a day, because America will no longer be able to help out.

            Obama is NOT an American. He may have been born in the People’s Republic of Hawaii, but culturally he is NOT American; he does not understand the American ethos, or the American temperament. Moreover, he is a black racist, setting race relations back a hundred years at least.

            Mostly for me, however, the biggest problem is that Obama’s an intellectual midget. The only reason he sits in the White House is because of racial identity politics run amok. Even black people admit the only reason they voted for him is because he’s black. Such identity politics nonsense dooms America (and the world) to an ever increasing insanity. Just what did happen to that “red line” in Syria? But no one’s supposed to say anything because he’s black. Well, the Emperor is not only naked, he’s stupid, and cowardly.

            America has a Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette in the White house and no Guillotine to dispatch him–not that many Americans (stupid by Leftist design) know who these people were. But their “let them eat cake” mentality is getting to critical mass. Obama plays golf while the American unemployment and underemployment problem festers. In three years, there will be no America.

            You’re an idealist—you’ve obviously never been mugged yet. I’m a realist. Never the twain shall meet. Oh, and by the way—“The culture of the world is changing. The old repressive ideologies are dying and when they are as dead as the dinosaurs, life and freedom will once again flourish on the earth.” The Islamofascists haven’t received the memo yet. Ask the Bostonians.

          • Joe Blow says:

            I’ve heard most of this before and I’ll hear most of it again. I’m not worried. I work for the new world and I leave the old world to fight its own battles. As Jesus said : “Let the dead bury the dead.” There is little point fighting dinosaurs when they are on their way out because of their own inability to adapt.

          • Joe Blow says:

            “Obama is NOT an American. He may have been born in the People’s Republic of Hawaii, but culturally he is NOT American; he does not understand the American ethos, or the American temperament.”

            You say you oppose collectivism. So how can you say what is or is not “culturally American” and what is the “American ethos” or “American temperament”. To talk in these terms is to lump Americans into a collective and dictate what they can or cannot be. Is this freedom? Surely freedom is the right of each individual to be what they want to be. If there are rules and regulations to being an American (over and above the usual laws) then I’m very glad I’m not one. I’m me. I’m not an Australian, except in the strictest geographical sense. I have no patriotism or pride in my country. If I were to associate myself with the good things which a bunch of individuals who just happen to live in the same vicinity as myself happen to have done, then I’d also have to associate myself all the bad things that people who live in Australia have done. I’d rather just take responsibility for myself.

            “You’re an idealist—you’ve obviously never been mugged yet. I’m a realist.”

            I’m not an idealist. I oppose idealism. I wrote an essay in which I said that the way to free ourselves is to “drive a stake through that vampire idealism”. I have been an idealist in the past, but I learned the error of my ways. An idealist is someone who does not love the world and its people unconditionally, and thus tries to force his demands onto others. I am a realist. I strive to understand myself and the world. Only by finding insight into ourselves can we improve things for all. Trying to fix things in the world by force is just moving suffering from one place to another. We might move it away from ourselves sometimes, but only at a cost to someone else. But honesty heals, so I strive to be more honest. Honesty is realism, because we are telling the truth, that which is real.

            Whenever I’ve tried to force change in the world around me I’ve failed. Now I just speak my mind, do what feels good and open myself to the needs of others. In doing this I find that the world around me changes for the better. I’m sure there are areas in which you are doing good in the world, but it will be in your quiet vulnerable moments with those close to you. Not in your political organising and ranting on message boards. But I don’t expect you to believe me now. Maybe sometime later when you see how little you are gaining.

            You come across to me as an idealist. A person who has an ideal about freedom which she is trying to make the world meet.

            I’ve never been mugged. I’ve been physically attacked a couple of times. I put up no resistance and was not seriously hurt. Have you been mugged? I can see how that would make it harder for you to feel safe. I’ve been lucky, when it comes to treatment by others, my problems have arisen from mental illness – depression, OCD and bipolar disorder. I found my way out of them though, and learned a lot in the process which has helped me to help others with similar problems.

          • Oh, then you admit you’re nuts. Good. Glad you worked your way through it. Stay saintly. Take your meds. Let the rest of us deal with the terrorists and the external problems of the world. You just enjoy the sunshine. You might want to stay off the message boards if you don’t like the “rants”…but you said you enjoyed the conversation….hmmm. Have a bit of a problem making up your mind too, I see. Well, hang in there.

            “I have no patriotism or pride in my country.” Sad. Very, very sad.

          • Joe Blow says:

            I have suffered from a number of mental illnesses. I don’t now. I’ve learned a lot from the experience. What about you? Have you ever felt depressed or suffered from an irrational fear?

            I will let you deal with the terrorists and “external problems of the world”. As a single individual I have no control over these problems and I renounce the idea of trying to control others, or of being a member of a collective which tries to maintain control over others. This is contrary to a belief in freedom. But I wonder how much success you will have. There is a war on crime. Crime gets worse. There is a war on drugs. Drug trading and addiction gets worse. There is a war on terrorism, and the number of individuals turning to terrorism increases. I see no evidence that the control approach is working.

            I express my ideas about the problem of character armour to those who will listen, and some of them find this liberating and begin to put aside their armour. This is a bottom up approach to the problems of the world. The terrorists and others, like yourself apparently, who believe in trying to reshape their world through violence (i.e. “there will be blood”) are the extremely armoured, those who have become so embattled as to be “the walking dead”, no longer able to remember what it is be truly alive. You may be inaccessible to my message, but the cure for your disease may spread among the living and eventually reach you. If it doesn’t, well, that’s your loss.

            I didn’t say I disliked your rants. I just expressed the opinion that they are unproductive. Masturbation can be fun, but you won’t produce a baby from it.

What do you think?