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Living Freedom by Claire Wolfe. Musings about personal freedom and finding it within ourselves.

Want to Comment on a blog post? Look for and click on the blue No Comments or # Comments at the end of each post.

Slow brain and harbingers of things to come for my beloved doggie

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014 by Claire | 23 Comments »

I don’t know if it was the weather (muggy and overcast) or lack of rest (waking at 2:00 a.m. and not going back to sleep), but over the weekend I was useless. I couldn’t move myself to do the simplest task. Anything requiring actual thought was out of the question.

Then yesterday morning it was as if somebody hit a switch. I zipped, roared, zoomed, and accomplished stuff all day.

So much for energetic days, though.

« Read the rest of this entry »

Monday links

Monday, July 21st, 2014 by Claire | 18 Comments »

How the calamities of a long-ago century helped us gain our freedoms

Saturday, July 19th, 2014 by Claire | 18 Comments »

I go on at great length about seventeenth-century England. But trust me, it’s relevant. Even interesting. And it’s got to do with how we came by our gun rights and why we’ll keep them if we’re wise and worthy.

Friday Freedom Question: What would be on your “mixtape”?

Friday, July 18th, 2014 by Claire | 25 Comments »

Via jed: Artist sends the National Spy Agency a super-encrypted “mixtape.”

So why would Huerta create a mixtape no one else could open? Well for one, there’s no worry that someday he’ll regret sending our nation’s protectors a whole bunch of mushy love songs that will sound really, really cheesy 10 years from now. Oh, and there’s this, which he posted on his Medium blog: “The NSA can read my stupid Facebook updates but without my consent it will never be able to listen to my kick-ass mix tape, even if it’s sitting right in front of them.”

Actually, that simplifies things a little too much. Huerta explains in the same post that he was inspired to create his art statement because he has “[bleep] feelings about mass surveillance, and they are not warm and fuzzy. To take the Internet, which I grew up with so much hope for in being so much more free than the world I physically occupied and turn it into a panopticon brings out the tortured artist in me; I can’t help but respond.”

So the mixtape, which he says “contains a soundtrack for the modern surveillance state” is his response. It’s basically a giant “na-na-na-pooh-pooh” (my words, not his) to the NSA and a musical tribute to documentary filmmaker and journalist Laura Poitras and lawyer-journalist Glenn Greenwald, both of published news stories based on NSA documents leaked to them by Edward Snowden. It’s also “a reminder that the rules of mathematics are more powerful than the rules of even the most powerful states,” says Huerta.

So what would be on your freedomista mixtape?

P.S. Hope he’s right about the security of his encryption — even if there’s nothing on the “tape” but bad renditions of “Dancing Queen” and “Lady in Red.” Wouldn’t count on it, though.

Midweek links

Thursday, July 17th, 2014 by Claire | 25 Comments »

Of mostly more-or-less good news this time.

Okay, and now back to the more usual ranting.

  • So let me get this straight. She’ll be drawn and written by guys and she’ll have the standard, obligatory gigantic plasticy-looking boobs, without which no female is allowed to enter the action comics/movie universe. But turning an ancient Norse god, who’s been male for thousands of years, into a woman is supposed to be liberating for girls … how??? And why not just create a character based on any of the kickass goddesses already available? (This is quite a different thing than the also PC claim that Captain America will now be black. First of all, the claim is misleading. Second, the Capt is Marvel’s creation and they can do whatever they want with him. But Thor? A woman?)
  • Big Brother is behind the times. I read the whole article waiting for this quote, which duly appeared: “‘If we have another 9/11, the people who hear about it through an EAS message are going to be the last to know,’ he said. ‘By the time you hear that annoying “buzz” sound on the radio, all your friends will have tweeted about it.”

Anybody have any idea …?

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014 by Claire | 16 Comments »

… what these are? Or more pertinently, how they were originally used?

They’re tin and appear to be of a kind and vintage with old stamped metal ceilings. I picked up a baggie full of them at a thrift store yesterday for $1.50 and despite what I said about using only items already on hand, I think they’ll have a place in my funky table project. I see gold spray paint in their future.

But I’m curious about their history and purpose.



Tuesday links

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014 by Claire | 10 Comments »
  • Honesty is the best policy will screw up your life. When what you’re being honest about is firearms. Powerfully sad article from Nicki Kenyon at JPFO.
  • The above is also an example of what can happen when you entrust government with your rights. So is this. Activist, denied “shall-issue” carry permit, needs help fighting back. (H/T MWD)
  • Target security officer spots shoplifter. Takes standard action. Turns out shoplifter is a cop. Guess who gets fired?
  • Carjacker forces way into vehicle with gun. Intended victim grabs it and shoots him. (This is also a case of another carjacker flummoxed by a stick shift. Gadzooks, you’d think if you’re going to steal vehicles you’d at least learn to drive them.) (H/T New Jovian Thunderbolt)
  • The curious case of passive voice in reports of police shootings. Radley Balko says what has long needed saying.
  • Former cop confirms what the Living Freedom Collective said in Rats!, the anti-snitch book.
  • Eighteen things highly creative people do differently.

Monday links

Monday, July 14th, 2014 by Claire | 11 Comments »

Basketweaving, leather tooling, drugs and other therapies for staying sane

Sunday, July 13th, 2014 by Claire | 6 Comments »

Ah, the good old days at the Funny Farm. But that’s another story. No basketweaving, these days. No therapeutic leather tooling. No drugs (damn)! But I did spend this weekend on other mental-health therapies.

To wit …

« Read the rest of this entry »

Dispatch from the Future

Saturday, July 12th, 2014 by Claire | 13 Comments »

Writing is wonderful therapy. Thank you, creepy hoplophobe, for inspiring my latest article at JPFO.


NOTE: The following document was found in the ruins of the Mount Weather complex in the year C.E. 2715 and has been in the keeping of the staff of the Interglobal History Museum since then. Although our scholars and scientists are still analyzing this material, it is believed to date from the era of Malia Rodham-Bloomberg (reigned C.E. 2044-2067) or her successor Mitt Kennedy Bush (reigned C.E. 2067-?).

Below is our translation.


By the Blue-Ribbon Panel on the Current Crisis

BACKGROUND: Following the Sunnyside Nursery School Massacre and similar disasters, Americans in the mid decades of the twenty-first century realized that “NO GUNS” signs and similarly stringent security measures were no longer sufficient to totally eliminate deadly violence from society.

Although the gun-rights movement had experienced decades of successes, Americans finally rose up and demanded sweeping reforms. Some notable pacifists called for the slaughter of all gun owners and the torture of any politicians perceived to be pro gun. Police chiefs threatened to have their officers shoot any armed person on sight. The nation was in crisis.

With Congress in its 23rd consecutive year of disarray, the president moved to calm the fury with a unilateral series of moderate but firm measures. The president issued a comprehensive series of Executive Orders targeting firearms and their owners.

It has been five years since these Orders took effect. We, the members of this impartial Blue-Ribbon Panel, are now charged with analyzing their effectiveness and making recommendations …


Continue reading at JPFO.

Since the “dispatch” contains only what I was able to come up with in a few hours, feel free to make your own additions and corrections to the Blue-Ribbon report in comments.

Those nice people who want to annihilate you

Friday, July 11th, 2014 by Claire | 19 Comments »

On Monday I did something I shouldn’t have. It’s been gnawing at me all week.

Monday morning, first thing after booting up my computer and before I even had a sip of tea, I clicked on a link. Yes, the same thing most of us do hundreds, if not thousands, of times per week. You’d think by now the brain would be numbed to any creepiness that might be hiding behind any link. But no.

This particular link was to an anti-gun thread on a forum I used to (until that moment) visit daily. The forum generally has nothing to do with politics, but when political discussions do arise, they can get … heated. I know that. Most of the politically engaged people on the site are also liberal or progressive or whatever they’re calling themselves these days. I know that, too. I also know that there are a handful of people on that site who, when the subject is guns, are foaming-at-the-mouth rabid. Normally I stay away, but I noticed that the most recent post in that thread was by somebody I respect. He’s not pro-gun, but he’s sensible, moderate, and often witty. So I clicked.

My eye strayed to the post right above that one. It was that post that blighted my day and much of my week.

I won’t quote it here lest it mess up your Friday, but basically, in two short paragraphs, it contained so much prejudice, ignorance, and downright irrational loathing that I was stunned. The majority of gun owners are murderers. They’re killing all the rest of us. The usual. But this person — who in other contexts has seemed friendly, smart, and reasonable — added that since gun owners are a minority nobody should have to respect their rights, anyway, so whatever the government does to us is okay.


What got to me, what still gets to me, what has gotten to me before, isn’t the sheer hatred. It isn’t the bigotry. It isn’t the fact that people like this won’t even look at facts, won’t even consider considering an opponent’s point of view. (Although that, too.)

It’s that there are so many people who froth with loathing in the name of “tolerance” or “civility” or “decency.” It’s that there are so many people who view themselves as noble defenders of minorities while wanting to wipe other minorities of the face of the earth. It’s that there are people out there who are ripe to be whipped into a deadly frenzy against some politically chosen “other” — and who don’t know it.

They’re totally unaware. They’re so mindlessly righteous of their cause that they have no grasp of the fact that all of history’s witch-burnings and pogroms and genocides have been enabled by minds functioning exactly like theirs.

It’s not the ignorance and bigotry that are the worst of it (though that, too). It’s their total absence of self-awareness.

Liberals aren’t the only ones prone to this, of course. Millions of “patriots” have marched off to slaughter, totally unaware of how they’ve been manipulated into feeling what someone else wants them to feel. During the Cold War, there were plenty of “conservatives” who were so rabidly anti-Communist that they’d have turned the U.S. into a Soviet-style police state to “protect” us from those monstrous, villainous Commies (that they themselves so came to resemble). Religious fanatics everywhere and at all times have been stirred into handy political manias, having no idea that their quest to make the world a better place by eliminating “heretics” or “infidels” would only bring catastrophe. (Oh yes, and bring profit and power to the already powerful.)

And none of them see how much alike they are. That spittle-flecked hoplophobe who scared me so much on Monday has no idea how much he’s like the “good German” who believed that political paradise could be obtained, if only the world could be rid of a few million inconvenient Jews and “defectives.” He has no idea how much he’s like the jihad supporters whose eyes gleam as they envision “improving” their world by eliminating Westerners and Western ways.

No, because totally, totally unlike them — and totally, totally unlike us drooling, unreasoning, inferior, downright murdering gun owners — he’s on the side of the angels. So what could possibly go wrong? Just annihilate a few million and …

And so the cycle of hysteria-driven disasters goes on and on and on through all of history.


I have a JPFO article due today and I plan to write about this. But frankly, beyond talking about being gobsmacked by the depth of self-unawareness I witness in the most rabid hoplophobes, I don’t know what to say.

Tell the girl children …

Wednesday, July 9th, 2014 by Claire | 10 Comments »

the things that will help them become strong.

Tell their families not to be so eager to define them by stereotypes — not the old stereotypes of sugary pink or the new stereotypes of gender identity.

Two powerful pieces. (And not just for girl children and their families, either.)



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