... Polite Society

Submitted by Bill St. Clair on Thu, 11 Nov 2004 13:00:00 GMT
From smith2004:
"'Christian Right' is in its way a pejorative. And so would some consider the term 'Christian Left'. A number of political parties in Europe have either set of those words proudly in their names. I just use the phrase 'christian idiot' for anybody who feels that his faith should have priority over my rights. G-d himself doesn't have priority over my rights. I'm ethically superior to every deity I've ever heard of (I don't initiate force nor allow anybody to do so in my name)." -- Ward Griffiths

# George Potter at anti-state.com - ...polite society - Mr. Potter got a Savage Arms .22/.410 over and under when he was seven. A tear-jerker (for me) about the polite society he grew up in. You can download it and other stories here for $3.75 or get it on dead trees for $10. [notreasonblog]

I was given my first gun at the age of seven.

It was a Savage Arms .22/.410 over and under, one of the sweetest most functional firearms ever designed and mass produced, perfect for a kid. To me, raised around guns, taught to shoot from the day I was big enough to steady and aim, it was almost like some futuristic artifact dropped by a time-traveller as he passed on his way to some far more interesting era in the past. Small, compact, sized just right for me - perfect for squirrel, rabbit and game birds, not to mention the ongoing holy crusade against the diabolical tin cans and beer bottles that my younger brother and I seemed to be constantly waging.

Without a doubt, the idea of a 7 year old owning a gun will send liberals ( and many so called 'conservatives' and 'libertarians') into spastic fits of sheer horror. The admission that I was allowed to keep this 'awful weapon' in my own room, carry it with me on my daily jaunts through the forested hills, and was expected to assume full responsibility for it's use, upkeep, and maintenence would no doubt push them over the edge into death-shock.

But it really wasn't that big of a deal. I was, after all, up to the task.

For I was raised in a polite society.

I was raised in an armed society.

# SorryEverybody.com contains posted pictures apologizing to the world for America's reelection of Bushnev. Cute. [smith2004]

# Sensitive Light has lots and lots of incredible photographs. People, birds, bugs, natural panoramas, all perfectly photographed. Don't miss the favourites. [sunni]

# The Onion - Housemate Reject Third-Roommate Debt-Relief Plan - brilliant satire of the International Monetary Fund, bringing their behavior down to earth where its absurdity is obvious. [samizdata]

Huygens and roommate Jake Epstein, 24, said they first provided Doogan with emergency funds last winter, when they granted him an aid package in the form of a no-interest loan obtained through the Apartmental Monetary Fund, founded by Huygens and Epstein in February 2004 at the behest of third-roommate advocacy groups, such as Doogan's buddies Dan "Cosmo" Richards and Douglas "Scooter" Pye.

"Cosmo and Scooter were all like, 'C'mon, Chad's a good guy, have a heart,'" Epstein said. "So finally, me and Doug were like, 'Okay, okay, we'll float him some cash, but only for a few weeks until he gets his shit together.' Well, you can see how great that worked out."

Although the donor roommates supplied additional aid in the months that followed, the AMF placed strict conditions on the loans. These conditions were designed to accomplish three goals: to prevent corruption and misuse of funds, to ensure that the monies were spent wisely, and to reduce third-roommate economic isolationism, integrating the debtor's personal economy more fully into the interdependent apartmental community.

# No Quarters - Now this is to strange to believe - a review of Live-Shot.com, who have a rifle hooked up to a computer and allow you to remotely aim and shoot it. Kule. $15/month membership, $5 per shooting session (10 shots, max 20 minutes), $10 for a DVD recording of the session, $3 for the paper target. [smith2004]

# John Ross - Fun and Games With TV Ad Responses, , or Engaging in a Battle of Wits With an Unarmed Opponent - Mr. Ross is running television ads in Missouri for his training courses that are part of the qualification for getting a concealed carry permit there. He has received lots of positive feedback and a few people who don't like his ad. Here he relates two of the negative feedback calls, one of which he turned around, and the other who was clueless.

Longer pause. "It's just that more guns out there would be bad. It's just common sense."

"Common sense is what tells us that the earth is flat."

Still longer pause. "Well, I just wanted to know what your ad meant. Thanks." Click.

I think I might have caused his brain to overheat.

# Andy Steadman at No Treason - The Slippery Slope of Knife Control - gun control has apparently not been enough for the Brits. Now they forbid the sale of knives with blades over three inches long to under-16-year-olds. And you can bet it'll get worse before it gets better. This is the source of the link above to the George Potter story.

# LA Indymedia - Westwood Anti-Occupation Demonstration Pictures - two armored vehicles arrived at a protest in LA against the attack on Fallujah. Link to video here (6.6 meg QuickTime). This comment (from the video page) likely explains what happened: [whatreallyhappened]

I wasn't there at the Tuesday night demonstration in Westwood, but I did do some follow-up investigation this morning about the two armored vehicles.

Turns out the West Los Angeles Veterans Administration was having a Veterans Day parade and celebration this morning (Wednesday). I drove over and walked in to the WLA VA to look around at 10:50am.

Lots of marching middle school ROTC "cadets" (including 11-to-14-year-old boys and girls from Mt. Vernon Middle School all in US Army uniform, some shouldering parade "rifles") and a high school band and antique cars filled with VAFW members. And two USMC Striker armored vehicles complete with 6 or 7 Marines in fatigues and body armor giving junior high ROTC kids and adults tours of the vehicles.

I talked to one Marine with one of the "Striker" vehicles. He told me they had driven the vehicles up from Camp Pendleton the night before (Tuesday) on the freeway. Getting off the 405 Freeway North taking the Wilshire East (instead of WEST to the VA) offramp, they would have passed Wilshire and Veteran where the anti-war rally was underway protesting the attack on Fallujah in Iraq.

I asked him if he was "rolling around Westwood" Tuesday night. He said, "Yeah, and we drove past that anti-war demonstration. We was lost. We're not from L.A. We didn't know where this place (WLA VA) was. We were trying to find it."

"Did you drive around the block twice?" I asked.

"Yeah, we did. We stopped to ask them (the protestors) directions, but they weren't very nice."

There was more conversation, but that was the gist of it from the Marine side concerning the armored vehicles. For what it's worth.

I've also been receiving emails from friends who were at the rally who tell me the LAPD officers said they had no idea why the Striker armored vehicles had shown up.

Author: Steve

# George Paine at Warblogging - The Logic of Criminal Regimes - commentary on Bushnev's pick to replace Ashcroft as Attorney General, Alberto Gonzales. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss. [warblogging]

Gonzales has developed and defended the Bush Administration's legal policy in the War on Terror, including the destruction of civil liberties. He has written that international law does not exist and will soon be -- if he isn't already -- as much a lightning rod as Ashcroft (sans the jokes about nude statues).

Anyone who thought that Ashcroft was being replaced because of his policies is today proven wrong.

In February of 2002 Gonzales wrote a memo in which he claimed that the President of the United States has the right to waive law outlawing torture and ignore international treaties protecting prisoners of war. In his "Memorandum for the President" Gonzales called the Geneva Conventions "obsolete" and suggested that ignoring the Conventions would help insulate the Bush Administration from the War Crimes Act, which he made sure to point out carried a death sentence.


In June of 2004 the Washington Post, having learned of memos on the subject of torture from the Justice Department, from the White House Counsel and from the Department of Defense, wrote that the reasoning in the memos were the "logic of criminal regimes".

The Post wrote:
There is no justification, legal or moral, for the judgments made by Mr. Bush's political appointees at the Justice and Defense departments. Theirs is the logic of criminal regimes, of dictatorships around the world that sanction torture on grounds of "national security." For decades the U.S. government has waged diplomatic campaigns against such outlaw governments -- from the military juntas in Argentina and Chile to the current autocracies in Islamic countries such as Algeria and Uzbekistan -- that claim torture is justified when used to combat terrorism. The news that serving U.S. officials have officially endorsed principles once advanced by Augusto Pinochet brings shame on American democracy -- even if it is true, as the administration maintains, that its theories have not been put into practice. Even on paper, the administration's reasoning will provide a ready excuse for dictators, especially those allied with the Bush administration, to go on torturing and killing detainees.

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