Friday, October 28, 2011

Have you any idea why a raven is like a writing desk?

“Have you any idea why a raven is like a writing desk?”
……………………………………The Mad Hatter (Johnny Depp), Alice in Wonderland, 2010

I never cease to be amazed when I visit the halls of the left wing intellectuals and expect coherent, well agued philosophies, just to be disappointed yet again. My amazement is not at the inability of these folks to think clearly (I would never expect that) but of my own stupidity in hoping that things will one day change.

For over 35 years I have been discussing the relative merits of capitalism and socialism with folk who truly believe that social justice is best represented through social actions, through redistribution of wealth, through government controls and regulations, through the forced sharing of property, through the forced acquisition of wealth by one organization from another.

And for 35 years I have been hearing the same old tired arguments of globalization, fairness, oppression and all forms of corporate skullduggery.

Yesterday I visited some websites related to the OWS groups and started reading blogs and messages where these folks are expressing their educated opinions. Ignoring the ones that called for more violent action (of which more than a few did – but I suspect that these folks are on the crazy edge of the fringe much like the extreme religious right are on the crazy edge of the fringe) I decided to try to make contact with some of these folk to find out what they really understood and thought.

I even invited them to this blog, to see what I really think. Although the numbers of visitors to my blog was higher than normal, very few deemed it interesting enough to comment, however a few di…and these comments will be the focus of today’s blog.

Of course, I understand how Alice must have thought when she first ventured down that rabbit hole…and ended up in a place that made no sense.

“There is a place. Like no place on Earth. A land full of wonder, mystery, and danger! Some say to survive it: You need to be as mad as a hatter.”
………………………………… The Mad Hatter (Johnny Depp), Alice in Wonderland, 2010

Could the Mad Hatter have been referring to the OWS brigade?

Let’s see……

Before I continue you like to refresh your memory of yesterday’s post…

Now let’s take a look at some of the comments, shall we?

Thescreaminghead said…” However, there are people out there who have simply never been given the chance. Not everyone has the entrepreneurial spirit that you do, or the training to successfully implement their ideas if they do. These people need protection. To pay for these protections, it is only right to take from the people who have more.”

Really? What people have never been “given” the chance? Some people may find themselves in circumstances that make it HARDER to achieve, but the opportunity is there if they want it. And don’t tell me poor people do not have opportunity. They do. Granted, it is more difficult…but life isn’t fair. If you want it, it is there for the taking…but you have to want it and have to work for it. The people who do not want it enough need protection? And it is right to take forcibly from others to pay for that protection? Since when is it right to TAKE from anyone that which is not yours?

And then…” If you push the lower class out of opportunities, they will simply bumrush your mansion, kill you and take your food. Your money will not be able to stop them. You give them enough to stay in their place. It's a good investment.”

So…to avoid violence and brutal overthrow of the system the wealthy must be held captive and forced to pay a ransom to protect what they have? And this is a reason to support OWS….a movement that is trying to overthrow the system and force the wealthy to pay? You, sir, may not realize this but you are not only supporting the taking by force that which is not yours, but are actually advocating it as a reasonable solution to prevent bullies and thugs from becoming violent.

This is simply unacceptable in a country ruled by law…a Republic. What you are suggesting is the mob rule of a democracy.

And finally….” Before you call me a socialist, Roosevelt did the same thing to end the Depression.
Roosevelt was a Blue Blood. The 1% if ever there was one. But he recognized the fact that if the poor got pushed any farther, there was going to be revolt and the system would be overturned, and money would mean nothing at the edge of a knife.
So the New Deal came about. And the 90% tax rates. It was a good investment.”

So you think FDR and his socialist programs ended the depression? It sounds like you have simply listened to the claptrap that the left facing educators have spoon fed you. Do some honest research and you will find that there is significant evidence that the New Deal in fact extended the depression way beyond what is should have been. In fact, the depression ended only with the military build-up of WWII…not with the socialist New Deal programs that have plagued this country ever since.

Moving on….

Anonymous writes…” Fair share is everyone pays the same. GE paid $0 in taxes and made billions in profit. They are not the only ones who paid $0. If it is 25% then it should be for all me and them.”

Ho hum….so I expect you to be in favor of a flat tax of , say, 20% for everybody. Those earning $20k a year and those earning $20 million a year? That is fair…everybody pays the same.
As far as corporations paying tax, the truth is that NO corporations actually pay tax. The purchasers of their products pay the taxes as the estimated tax is built into the product price. If GE paid $0 in taxes then you were able to buy your GE products for a lower price than if they paid $30 billion in taxes.
Before spouting off these sort of cliché ideas, you would be well served to get educated in how business works, how taxes work, and how the economy works. It is way too easy to make the claim that companies should pay taxes without understanding anything about it.
Enough of that fantasy world….what else do we have?

Ahhh…..heres a good one….

tanner campbell writes…” Interesting that you only care about what you're doing. How very microcosmic of you. I came here from a post where you called anonymous commenters cowards. I wonder devereaux, who are you? Care to cast aside your anonymity and own your words?”

There are two aspects to this post…

1.      I only care about what I am doing
2.      Anonymous posters are cowards

I am truly sorry that you spent all those dollars on your education just to find that you didn’t learn to read. Or maybe it is your comprehension that is faulty? Whatever the reason, you clearly missed the part in my post where  I wrote…” there is something else that I DO care strongly about. I care for those who through no fault of their own find themselves in need of help. A hand up is always in order. I care for those who have neither the mental nor physical capability to improve their lot in life…a commitment to care is in order there. I car for the homeless, the hungry and the destitute…the elderly, the young and especially those who have defended my freedom. My freewill gifts to these people are not charity but a way of expressing concern and offering hope. I care for the helpless…not the clueless.”

What part of that indicates that I only care about what I am doing? How microcosmic of you!  LMAO

The second part of this comment is about the cowardice of the anonymous poster. Yep…the posters who drift from blog to blog posting either as anonymous or without any reference to their other writings are definitely cowards. I don’t know if your real name is tanner Campbell or something else…that is just a title and means nothing…same as my name (devereaux)…just a title. Tells me no more about you, what you believe, what you think than signing in as anonymous.

On the other hand, you have literally dozens of blogs that I have written that tell you all you need to know about me. If you read them you will find out who I am. You even have a way of contacting me…which some lefty crazies have done with threats of physical danger to myself and my family.

I do not include my home address for that reason. And does it matter to you if I live in California or Georgia? Does it make any difference who I am…or is it what I believe that makes me who I am?

I stand by my assertion that “drive by” comments on blogs is just cowardice…give me a link where I can find out who you are and what you believe, as our friend “the screaminghead” did…and I will hold a whole new level of respect for the poster, even if I disagree with what they say.

And now we get to my favorite…wow…this anonymous poster has got me this time….

Anonymous writes….” You fail to understand the impact of globalization on individuals.”

Please enlighten me. Which individuals exactly are you talking about? Globalization of what? Industry? Creating jobs in countries that would not have otherwise had those jobs? Is that what you are talking about? Or are you talking about the concentration of wealth in a fewer number of companies because they make millionaires buy buying out the owners of other corporations? If you are going to make broad-brush statements like this, please explain in detail so that we can at least know you understand what you are saying.

There are many things I do not understand….economics and business and the impact on developing nations is not one of them. So, if you want to really tackle me on this, you better know your stuff, ok?

OK…here’s a gem from the same writer….” Have you ever met the 8 year old child who stitched your running shoes?”

Don’t you know that you should never ask a question that you don’t already know the answer to, when in a discussion like this?

I am going to answer this question and maybe enlighten you a little.

No…I have never met the 8 year old child who stitched my running shoes….but I have met the 8 year old girl that sewed dresses and blouses and shorts and skirts etc that ended up in stores like K-Mart and Target in the 80’s and 90’s. (By the way…I hope that you can say something similar? Or are you relying on simply what you have heard?)

Now…here is what I discovered in a tiny village in Tanzania. There were awful working conditions. No heating, no cooling other than the breeze wafting in through the windows of the large hut. The workers (mainly young girls and their mothers) were using those old treadle type sewing machines that you may have seen at your grandma’s house. When I was there, there was no power because their only generator had broken down and they were waiting for a new one to be delivered.

The one water supply in the village was from a faucet on a pipe sticking out of the ground. The women would fill containers every day for cooking and washing purposes. The children would attend school every morning from around 8 am through to 11 am…and in the afternoon, the girls would work with their sewing while the boys would go out with their fathers and tend the few cows that the people owned.

I don’t recall what these folk were paid to sew these dresses that we bought at Target. I do know it was shockingly small.

 A hundred miles away I encountered another village. This one had not been subjected to the abuse and oppression of corporations demanding cheap labor and forcing child labor. It was totally unsullied by the capitalism that was ruining the world and taking advantage of the disadvantaged.

There was no power…there was no generator…there was no generator coming. There was no school…there was no education. There were no cows…there was no water (the nearest water was from a pipe installed by a charity organization about 3 miles away from the village. The women walked and filled containers every day.) The men sat around helplessly…smoking dope and generally wasting their lives. The children had the distended stomachs of malnutrition and wore rags and were dirty…exactly the type you see on the charity advertisements.

One village was happy and prosperous, growing and educating their children, with clean clothes good water and a solid food supply. The other lived in hopelessness and despair.

This is what I SAW. These are not just some words spouted by a know nothing wannabe capitalist troll. Now…which of these two villages were oppressed by capitalism? Which of these two indicate the impact of globalization on people?

Next time you start on with stupid clichés like you did, remember this. While the labor rates and the use of child labor may affect your sensibilities, they make a huge positive difference in the lives of the children that are fortunate enough to VOLUNTARILY advance their and improve their conditions.

Enough of this nonsense….moving on…

After determining that I am some sort of “Marlboro man” type cowboy, this tool wrote…” In reality, you depend on countless other people for the things they produce. In some sense, those people depend on you to buy them. To assert your own personal detachment from the global economy is ludicrous. You claim that the keys to your prosperity rest snugly in your own hands. I say BULLSHIT. You depend on the exploitation of people by clothing manufacturers. You depend on all of us turning a blind eye to the destruction of our water supply to keep the power bill down. You depend on the military supporting ruthless dictators in the Middle East to keep the petrol flowing. Turns out most of your 'wealth' has absolutely NOTHING to do with your efforts, and it comes almost exclusively at the expense of others.”

Let me make this perfectly clear….you could not be more wrong!

I BUY those products, those goods and services that I want…I buy the things that I feel are good value, are reasonably priced, do what I need them to do, and have the characteristics that I desire. Food, clothes, cars…it all works the same way. When a company creates a new product, I may or may not buy it depending on whether I want it or not.

I DO NOT rely on anybody. I make a transaction of fair value for fair value. The people who produce these products that I buy, essentially sell their labor and receive something in return for it. They produce a product that I pay for. If I chose not to pay for it, they would not produce it.
If I didn’t buy it from Company A I would buy it from Company B, and if nobody had what I wanted, I would find a way of making it, growing it, or building it myself.

So…I do not RELY on anyone for what I have. I choose to sell my skills to earn the money to buy the product that somebody else has sold their skills to make. It is not reliance…it is mutual benefit.

Only socialists and communists think in terms of global reliance on everyone else, and it is that kind of thinking that will drive the economic value of a heartbeat down that rabbit hole of stupidity.

Let me ask you a question…..assume I sat at home on my ass all day, collecting unemployment benefits, and totally reliant for my survival on strangers who, by virtue of the wealth they created and the taxes they paid, are supporting me. OK? Now…am I as wealthy as the person who works 15 hours a day, makes a VERY good income, pays his taxes to support me and made choices for his own life that turned out to be good decisions?

By your logic, both of us are equally reliant on the exploitation of others…so how come one has this “wealth” and the other doesn’t? Could it have anything to do with the choices made, the efforts made, the decisions made? I know you are going to say that the unemployed guy had no choice…he was laid off because of the economic downturn yada yada yada…..ok…so why is he sitting on his ass and not out knocking on doors until his knuckles bleed? Can you answer that one?

Tired old cliché’s from people who think they have it all worked out but have NO idea of how the world works. Let me tell you something…the world is what it is….and no amount of wishing will change that. The laws of economics will never change. Human nature is what it is. People will continue to screw people and exploit people. But not all people do that. Most people do not.

Same old song, same old tired repetitive erroneous thinking….same poor education… as Led Zeppelin said…”The Song Remains the Same”.

And finally, this comment from yet another anonymous poster…” Nice work. Did your tenth grade social studies teacher give you an A for it? It's so cliche, it deserves about a C.”

Stupid is as stupid says….


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