Was thinking this morning — no idea why — about a friend who was once arrested on the absolutely magnificent (and no doubt Victorian) charge of “tending to lead an idle, lewd, and dissolute life.” A kind of catch-all charge, I gather, for underage kids who weren’t actually caught in any specific act, but who were nevertheless up to no good.
A 17-year-old high school senior, he was busted at a college party where drugs figured heavily. Apparently that high-flown charge was originally invented by reformists committed to the belief that minors were salvageable and as yet incapable of actually leading an idle, lewd, and dissolute life.
I can confirm that my friend was already thoroughly immersed in lewdness and dissolution (which eventually killed him) but not idleness. On the contrary, he was a diligent, focused worker who got a full-time job at 18, never left it, and continued to rise in the ranks despite being stoned out of his mind half the time he was on the clock. He bought a house when he’d barely turned 21 and owned lots of toys for his genuinely idle druggie friends to steal while he was at work.
As it happened, the “idle, lewd, and dissolute” charge had to be dropped because cops made the mistake of tossing him into a cell with adults when he was underage. So the Victorians never got a chance to save his tender young self from dissolute ways. Not that they’d have succeeded in any case. Never in my life did I know anybody so determined on slow self-destruction.
Speaking of being highly functional while on drugs, a new study casts doubts on the arbitrary blood-THC levels pot-legalizing states have chosen for punishing drivers.
Until recently, I believed Joel was the only one among us who intended to betray the revolution and become dictator for life.*
However, it now appears that others harbor this secret not-so-secret ambition. Just this week (while addressing the hotly subversive topic of pink plastic flamingos**), Commentariat member A.G. weighed in, dubiously claiming benevolent intentions, followed by Dana, who announced a more comprehensive agenda to open his term as dictator for life.***
That got me wondering. How many more intend to betray the revolution and become DfL? Good heavens, it’s possible the field is as crowded**** as the Republican and Democrat presidential races.
So. Your freedom fun question for the day is: What will you do on your first day as dictator for life?
Strictly for laughs, okay? I realize the temptation to find a certain “conservative” Supreme Court justice and give him a fair but extremely brief trial before … ahem … may be tempting once one holds the dictator seat. But let’s keep it light today.
Go for it.
* In the extremely unlikely chance that such an opportunity should arise.
** Let our NSA overlords anxiously ponder the significance of that one.
*** Presumably very short life, just before being liquidated by the usual mob of deviously plotting henchpersons.
**** Though surely not as loathsome, scurvy, and scrofulous
Though I gasp at his apparent belief that U.S. cops aren’t hardass enough, Kevin D. Williamson is once again perspicacious. He says we’re seeing “peak leftism.” We can surely hope so, because if the current crop of ranters and banners goes much farther, we’ll end up with full-blown fascism.
You thought maybe the TSA was the fedgov’s worst example of idiotic “security”? Hey, at least the TSA puts on an impressive pretense. OTOH, it appears that the Office of Personnel Management actually gave root access for all those now-hacked personnel files to contractors in Argentina and … yes, here it comes: China.
Then Y.B. ben Avraham writes about the rabid “boycott, divest, and sanction” movement that’s the latest respectable facade for hatred of Jews. Yes, you can have issues with Israel and a state without animosity toward Jews; but as Y.B. reveals, that’s not what BDS is about.
If somebody in private enterprise did this — let alone did it again and again — heads would roll, congressthings would hotly hold hearings, new regulations would strangle business, and the fedgov would mutter about the need to take over entire fields. But … oopsie! (H/T MJR)
Here’s one more for the “one term in office and one in jail” concept of term limits. Better yet, former Honorable Speaker Hastert is going down not for some real crime, but for one of those faux crimes that Congress itself invented.
Chris Pratt (aka Star-Lord) apologizes in advance for anything offensive he might say on his upcoming media tour. (Too bad he’s yet another Hollywood anti-gun hypocrite — a Fudd, too, it seems — ’cause that’s funny.)
The Boy Scouts: doing their best to close the gender gap. (Yeah, don’t ask me how that became their mission.) By Eagle Scout Jim Bovard.
And don’t even get my friendly local Scout leaders started on the Michelle Obama-inspired (recently) new requirements for the cooking badge. Where’d the fun go? Any kid who had to learn cooking that way would probably avoid the kitchen for the rest of his life.
You want to be treated with dignity? Behave with dignity. (Via ML who, like me, doesn’t agree with all Ringer’s points but thinks the overall piece is spot on.)
The loathsome Section 215 of the USA-UnPatriot Act is set to expire next month. (I love sunset provisions.) Congress actually seems to be in a reform mode — well, a reform-ish mode — about the surveillance state. Courts, too. But I’m picturing the heads of the Uber-Government (in the No Such Agency and other places) cackling wickedly and rubbing their bony hands together over their Black Mamba capes. Laws? Regulations? Courts? Constitutions? Bwaaahahaha! The little fools! Don’t they know they can’t stop us?
The Sugar Pine Mine situation in Oregon, which a lot of people have been cautiously watching, is not yet (and hopefully won’t have to become) a stand-off with the Bureau of Land Management. But according to David Codrea, Oath Keepers (bless ’em) has been on the scene to provide security as the confrontation remains tense.
Oath Keepers is looking for responsible volunteers (no agenda-driven grandstanders/provocateurs) to support them at a noon rally in Medford, Oregon, today. They are also looking for a camp cook, medical personnel, and other volunteers with specific skills. They may need other help in the future, as well. Potential volunteers should take their lead from Oath Keepers and (other than for today’s rally) should contact local Oath Keepers organizers in advance; don’t just show up.
Josephine County, where this situation is developing, is one of the poorest (if not the poorest) county in Oregon. Much of it is remote and in many ways it is a forbidding, if utterly gorgeous, place. Like many areas that rely on income from natural resources, it has been economically crushed by regulations and there has been quiet hostility building for years between the people and the fedgov.
Josephine County is part of the State of Jefferson, a unique area that takes its identity seriously even if Jefferson statehood was never officially sanctioned.
Whatever happens with the Sugar Pine Mine dispute, expect interesting developments out of Jefferson. Eventually.
On April 19, 1993 I was on a long drive toward a client’s headquarters when I heard the Branch Davidians were burning. For some reason I hadn’t taken the siege very seriously to that point (even though I’d taken the earlier Weaver siege as seriously as I’d ever taken anything in my life). Just a bunch of Jim Jonesy cultists, I thought. I figured the FBI would wait them out until Koresh got done with his preposterous “seven seals” manuscript, then peaceably arrest and later release most of them. Cause you know, why would the FBI want to do more harm now than they and the ATF had already done? Silly me.
On April 19, 1995 I don’t recall where I was physically. I just recall wondering how anybody could attack ATF and FBI offices and manage only to kill innocents, including babies and toddlers. Oh, why did it have to be babies and toddlers? I recall thinking, “Oh sh*t, everything gets a lot worse from here.” (Rince and repeat 6-1/2 years later.)
So where were you? Physically, mentally, politically, and otherwise during those two cruelest months?
On this April 19, I’ll be out in the sunshine, sweating as I move leftover materials from last year’s house projects to better, more long-term places. On this April 19, I’m two days past having rid myself of those three heavy boxes that were my last tangible connection to the Weaver tragedy.
The intangible connections are harder to shake. Impossible, actually. But sunshine, sweat, and decluttering help. In the end, there’s nothing to do but go on living.
And for some reason this all reminds me of that other T.S. Eliot poem, “The Hollow Men.” Don’t read unless you’re up for a downer. Complete with scholarly annotations. It was a favorite of mine when I was young and bleak. Now I’m old and much happier, but some things truly don’t change.
Been feeling distracted and tired lately. Concerned about money. Not “OMG, how will I keep the lights on?” money issues. More like “How do I juggle all this?” It’s temporary (vehicle repairs, taxes) and I’m not asking anything from anybody. Everything is fine. Just know that right now I feel muzzy-headed, unclear on many of life’s little details, as if I want to crawl back in bed by 9:00 a.m., and for some reason also ravenous for protein. Preferably protein saturated in honey and brown sugar (so it’s a good thing I made beef jerky the other day, yes?)
Anyhow, I don’t have much for you right now, so I thought I’d just share a little email exchange from the weekend. It’s the kind of communication that should make you glad you didn’t opt for a career as a freelance writer.
Background: I wrote a S.W.A.T. magazine article asking, “Do we have a right to rebellion?” The article isn’t online, but basically I was answering that statist eejit Paul Begala’s multi-idiocy remarks from earlier this year. Then some “expert” answered me.
Before I get to the exchange itself, I’ll acknowledge that, yes, I’m well aware that some readers here deny that any such things as rights exist. Consider your point to be noted in advance. We have a right to differ. :-) But my position in the article was that we damn well do have a right to rebellion, Mr. Begala to the contrary.
For the rest of you who consider discussions of the nature of rights meaningful, on to the exchange.