The Brutality of Reason Example

By Ironcross One-One

Slicing and dicing things into pieces small enough
to be fed to Liberals, Kooks and Anti-Americans.
When feeding Kooks and Anti-Americans
I suggest a potato gun.

If you are the emotional liberal type, this mindspace will make you uncomfortable. If you think my logic or facts are faulty, lets discuss it. When your findings disagree with my findings, that is dialogue. But using rhetoric to disagree with science is demogoguery. No demogoguery! I usually refrain from insults, but occasionally, ignorance and liberal hypocrisy bring out the worst in me.

Location: Edge of Nowhere, Washington, United States

Military Jumper, Diver, Motorcycle Rider, Air Traffic Control and Demolitions Man. I build furniture and cabinets and can frame, roof, wire, plumb and finish a house. Can weld steel, drive heavy equipment, build pole barns and mortared rock walls. Have written one bad novel and one brilliant thesis. And I play the guitar.

Saturday, April 30, 2005

Taps, Hats Off, and Appreciation

I'm still trying to get settled after my cross-country move. The movers came yesterday, but fitting the stuff back into the house it came out of was like giving birth in reverse. Why is it that "stuff" expands to fill the available space. Three addition pieces of furniture threw six rooms into chaos. Now that whole Feng Shui thing is screwed up and I'll probably have to buy something else to get it fixed.

Additionally, the television doesn't work. I guess I can't complain. I bought it in May of 1990. It moved with me on 5 changes of station in those 15 years. 3 trans-Atlantic moves and 2 transcontinental.

I will not be filing a claim against the movers. Somehow I think they had nothing to do with it. It was a great piece of equipment, But 15 years is a long time and it never required a bit of maintenance or service during those years. "Hats off" to Hitachi. And a moment of silence for a dead "Road Warrior."

Also wanted to express appreciation to those of you that have been stopping by even though I haven't been posting. I'm dealing with new challenges and trying to grapple some alligators that have been living in the sewer. I should be a little more prolific before to long.

As for this morning, I'm off to Best Buy to look at TVs.


Friday, April 22, 2005

Glory vs. Celebrity

The talent of Michael Jackson has doomed him to a life of celebrity. And I mean doomed.

Celebrity borne of the his seemingly unreal ability to dance and sing. Surrounded by a corps of fawning sycophants fueled by infinite supply of celebrity, his influence was unchecked and his behavior was allowed to wander outside the guardrails of common sense and into the realm of deviance. He had many enablers that were willing to pander to him in order to be close to the light of all that celebrity.

Where is the glory? There isn't any. There never was. There was just empty celebrity. All the talent and chic in the world cannot buy the amount of glory that a fireman earns in a "routine rescue."

Elvis died an ignoble death at the hands of his excesses. Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Keith Moon, the list of casualties goes on and on.

Do you seek celebrity? I hope not. If you read this blog, I'd hope you're smarter than that.

Live with honor and do the right thing regardless of the price. Don't shrink from the difficult and don't allow yes-men and enablers to lull you into a hammock of self-appeasement.

Celebrity, showers itself on the untalented as well as the talented. But glory is not so fickle as celebrity. It goes where it is deserved.

Walk the road to glory. But walk fast.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

There is No Glory Without Struggle and Sacrifice

Think about it.

Celebrity may be bought with gold, but glory is bought with effort and blood. I don't know of any culture that grants glory on the cheap.

Power is a commodity that can be traded, but glory is shared only amongst those that earn it.

Shakespeare rounded it up pretty well... And gentlemen in England now-a-bed, shall think themselves accurs'd they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks, that fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day -- Henry V

As little use as I have for Nietzsche, he understood that struggle is the road to glory and a great struggle is won through great investment and sacrifice. A great opponent makes us better that we were and that which does not kill us, makes us stronger.

Be patient in your struggles. Appreciate them. A lack of challenges and struggles is not a blessing. It is a curse. Be persistent in your efforts. Go under, around or over the impediments.

And when you reach the objective, savor the moment and the glory.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Superb Analysis of Liberalism

In 1985 Regnery Published Suicide of the West by James Burnham. It is the best philosophical dissection of liberalism I've ever read. Rather than argue the relative virtues of the ideas of liberalism, he spends his effort to show how liberalism conflicts with its own principles and thus has a native self-destructiveness. Get your own copy. I'm keeping this one.


Scarce Posting

I've been getting ready for a cross country move and a job change so I've been time-challenged for a a couple of weeks. I'll be on the road in transient status for a bout the next 2 weeks. I'll try to post along the way. The lovely missus and I will be taking a reasonably paced trip across the states with planned stops for visits at places historical and spiritual significance.
I'll try to check in as I can.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Magic and Tragic

I found this by chance. I think it's a perfect lesson about the complexity of being human. Take a minute and scroll through it. It's full of joy and sadness, fear and courage, hope and desperation.

Then go fix something in your life that could be better.

The Complexities of Being Human

Just happened on a site that has anonymous secrets that were delivered by postcards.

I have never seen a work that does such a job of expressing the complexity of being human. Joy and pain, reason and madness, celebration and regret. But mostly pain, madness and regret. I suggest this comes from our fundamentally optimistic nature. Most people believe they are entitled to some goodness in their lives. When they don't feel there's enough goodness, it's a painful experience.

I'm not sure what my secret would be. Perhaps this: I cannot deny the spiritual force that protects me from the consequences of my failures.

I have led a charmed life. I have survived dangers and risks beyond the imagination of most. I have escaped from scrapes and scandals with barely a scratch. (The police do know who I am, though.) I'm not as talented as many of the folks I work with. When my purpose in this life is fulfilled (whatever it may be), I imagine cosmic forces are gonna come collecting on all those delayed payments. You can cheat the house for a while, but when you get caught, they're gonna break your fingers.

Being Human is Complex and Wonderful. Don't waste it.

Stop reading this crap right now and go hug someone. Then check out the postcards.


Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Credit Where Credit is Due

Must give credit to a blogger for his post that gives well-deserved credit to Reagan, Thatcher, and John Paul II.
Which brings me back to my original question. Would the events that transpired in the 1980’s occurred without one or all of the “freedom troika” of Reagan, Thatcher, and John Paul? A determinist would say yes, that the undercurrents of history at work in eastern Europe and the Soviet Union would have caused the fall of communism anyway.

I totally reject that notion. Given the alternatives in the United States (Carter and Mondale) as well as Great Britain (James Callaghan and Neil Kinnock) it seems more likely that Soviet communism would have limped along as it had for more than 60 years at that point, being propped up by western defeatism and myopia. And an Italian Pope as an almost certain alternative to Cardinal Wojtyla would not have had the standing in eastern Europe to affect much change at all.
He refers to it as Taming the Whirlwind of History.

I refer to it as "Surfing the Chaos Wave."

It may be irreverent at this point to make reference to Pope John Paul II as a surfer, but I'll risk it. It took courage to paddle out, turn and raise in the rough waters that he chose to surf. He could have chosen safer waters. To wit: many of the historical failings of the Catholic Church grew from political expedience over moral principle.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Unsigned Artists

A friend directed me to Outbound Music which is a site that promotes unsigned bands. I listened to a bunch of them. Some stuff that I like can be found if I search through it. This makes it like the FM dial or a Borders Music, the stuff that I like can be found if I search through it.
I liked:
David Brake and That Damn Band - Rock
Jen Rathbun - Jazz
Christin Cook - Pop Christian
Sarah Jo Gray - Country

Go listen.

What I'd Like to See

4 Dozen conservative senators with the brass to fearlessly go toe to toe with Kennedy and Byrd on social issues and insist that we postpone the war on poverty until we win the war on terror. Cut spending, cut taxes and unleash the economic engine of freedom.

This way we can't be accused of mistreating the poor in other countries. We'll treat our poor the same way.
I know we'll hear all about the poor starving children, but, if starving is good enough for some poor brain-damaged woman in Florida, why shouldn't we share it with other people that can't take care of themselves?

I'm waiting for a great liberal answer on this one.

Monday, April 04, 2005

Gender Based Humor

Some stereotypes are myths and bigotry, but some are based in behavior, culture and tradition.

Let's laugh at ourselves:

She's sitting at the table with her gourmet coffee.
Her son is on the cover of the Wheaties box.
Her daughter is on the cover of Business Week.
Her boyfriend is on the cover of Playgirl.
And her husband is on the back of the milk carton.

"Cash, check or charge?" I asked, after folding items the woman wished to purchase. As she fumbled for her wallet I noticed a remote control for a television set in her purse. "So, do you always carry your TV remote?" I asked. "No," she replied, " but my husband refused to come shopping with me, and I figured this was the most evil thing I could do to him legally."

I know I'm not going to understand women. I'll never understand how you can take boiling hot wax - pour it onto your upper thigh, rip the hair out by the root, and still be afraid of a spider.

While attending a Marriage Seminar dealing with communication, Tom and his wife Grace listened to the instructor, "It is essential that husbands and wives know the things that are important to each other."
He addressed the man, "Can you describe your wife's favorite flower?"
Tom leaned over, touched his wife's arm gently and whispered, "It's Pillsbury, isn't it?
The rest of the story gets rather ugly, so I'll stop right here.

A couple drove down a country road for several miles, not saying a word.
An earlier discussion had led to an argument and neither of them wanted to concede their position. As they passed a barnyard of mules, goats, and pigs, the husband asked sarcastically, "Relatives of yours?"
"Yep," the wife replied, "in-laws."

A husband read an article to his wife about how many words women use a day... 30,000 to a man's 15,000.
The wife replied, "The reason has to be because we have to repeat everything to men...
The husband then turned to his wife and asked, "What?"

A man said to his wife one day, "I don't know how you can be so stupid and so beautiful all at the same time.
"The wife responded, "Allow me to explain. God made me beautiful so you would be attracted to me; God made me stupid so I would be attracted to you!

Sunday, April 03, 2005

Gotta Love Krauthammer

Cause he sounds just like me.

I beat him by a day on this one. He always gets it right. He usually he gets "it" first too.

Here's a Hoo-Hah for Krauthammer

Don't Blame Me, I Wasn't There

Just caught the tail end of a speech by a retired Canadian General named Romeo Dallaire on CSPAN2. He is promoting his book called "Shake Hands With The Devil". He was the commander of the UN mission to observe and report during the genocide in the Rwanda.
He claims that the wealthy and more developed nations of the world are not doing enough to protect peoples of less developed nations and that those decisions are made on the basis of skin color as well as the traditional factors of politics, culture, religion and national interest.

Well excuse me for being confused, but when the US flexes it’s muscle and interferes in the affairs of other nations in it’s own interest, it is condemned for imperialism. Now we shall be condemned when we don’t use our blood and treasure to interfere in the affairs of other nations?

General, I’ve got three words for you. Go to hell! Where were you when Saddam Hussein was gassing the Kurds? And where were you when the US finally decided that someone needed to do something about his heinous behavior? Hypocrite!

You’ve suggested that we can lift these people and change the culture of destruction in the third world by helping them prosper. You may be a great General, but that statement proves you know nothing about the link between culture and economics. Prosperity does not beget order and rule of law. Order and rule of law beget prosperity.

I’m sorry that there is so much pain and suffering in Africa. But from what I can tell, it was there before the racist, homophobe, Christian, white men ever showed up. One must ask what caused the racist, homophobe, Christian, white men to develop the technologies and materials that gave them such an advantage and compare it with the influences that kept the poorer people of the world from developing those same technologies and materials.

Poverty is not the problem. It is a symptom. Poverty, thy mother is Tribalism. Tribalism is the problem and nepotism, corruption and cronyism, are just other names for tribalism. Gang violence is rampant in small pockets of US inner-cities. Real estate that would otherwise demand top dollar rents and royalties is nearly worthless because of gang violence. Gang behavior is tribalism. Africa is the same thing on an exponential scale. Africa could be feeding the world, but no one in their right mind is going to put a boatload of $300,000 wheat combines into a port in sub-Saharan Africa unless he has his own army to protect them. Because without an army, there’s no probability that they will remain under control of the owner.

Africa is an addict. It is under the influence of a seductive drug called liberalism. Africa loves being told that it’s problems are someone else’s fault. It is standing outside the door of the methadone clinic waiting for it’s next fix. And like any other addict, it will have to hit rock bottom before it will turn itself around. And many more will die. And none of those deaths are my fault. They are the fault of all the generations before them that continued "tribalism as usual." No matter what General Twisty-Pants has to say about it, this is where the seeds sown by the fathers are reaped by the children.

Oh yes, and that fresh genocide in Darfur? Why don't you Canadians go do something about it? Since you aren't busy helping oppressed people anywhere else.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

What is Missing From the 9/11 Commission Report?

Since Sandy Berger admits shredding memos that detail the level of knowledge that the Clinton Administration had about Al Qaeda intent to strike the US.

This is what's called a cover-up. Where are the howls from the "honesty in government" zealots? Where are Woodward and Bernstein? Where is the outcry from the Washington Post and the New York Times?

I don't know about you, but I'd like to know exactly what the Clintons knew and when did they know it, since Hillary was the one standing on the floor of the Senate with that NY times headline in her hand, accusing the Bush administration of foreknowledge of the 9/11 attacks.

Lucky for the left, Terry Schiavo and the death of the Pope are burying this story.

Questions About the Morality of War

The Pope was a complex man. He refused to endorse the 1991 Gulf War because he felt diplomatic options had not been exhausted. Yet he also insisted: "I am not a pacifist." He was 18 or 19 when the Nazis goose-stepped into Poland. He spent many years under Communism. He knew the price that a people could pay under the yoke of a totalitarian regime.
Still he did not give sanction to the current war in Iraq. In Dec 2002 he said, "War has never been and never will be an appropriate way to solve problems between nations!"
At the Vatican there are some guys called the Swiss Guards. They provide security for the Vatican and the Pope. They are soldiers. They maintain order by the threat of violence. They carry the finest small weaponry that money can buy. They are trained to instantly and efficiently subdue individuals that act to endanger the Pope. Think of it as a person on person "war."

The Pope could not be a pacifist and maintain his credibility. He had agents in his service that use violence to preempt violence. The Pope also could not frivolously take sides between nations and cultures. He resisted the temptation to wade into the fray and his appeal was enhanced by the use of such a triangulation strategy. If he consistently appeared to be siding with the "west" he would have lost his ability to reach across gaps. Because of his positions, our enemies could not accuse him of being our puppet, but most of the time, he was there for us when we were clearly on the high moral ground. He made it clear that violence should be a last resort. But when it was time to stand for righteousness, it was time. The Old Testament contains this lesson. I'm guessing that's where he learned it.

There's an interesting post over at SondraK about the morality of the Iraq war. The left continues to insist that the war in Iraq was immoral. If that is the case, Saddam is wrongfully imprisoned and needs to be restored to his office. Is that what the left is saying?

How many Iraqi's died by Saddam's hand between 1991 and 2003? How many died by American action since the beginning Mar 2003? And how many have been killed by insurgent and terrorist action? What would have been the strategy to save the most lives?

I will know we are in the midst of rational dialogue when I hear the left stop complaining about the immorality of the Iraq War. I think it's always moral to save innocent lives. If we hadn't intervened, Saddam and his sons would still be killing. We don't let murderers continue killing just because they threaten to shoot the police and the Swiss Guards don't let people threaten the Pope. We judiciously use violence to control threats.

It's moral to save innocent lives even if you have to kill a lesser amount to save the greater amount. It's always moral, but it isn't always practical.

Make no mistake, War is the Answer -- sometimes. And even the Pope knew it, but his politics are not our politics and we Americans would do well to remember that.

How Many Divisions Does the Pope Have?

I will not mourn the Pope, and I have good reasons for it. He was one of the greatest men of the 20th Century. He helped end communism and apartheid. He was a voice for reason in a mad world. He connected with people in a mystical way that crossed divisions of race and culture. He apologized for past failings of the Roman Catholic Church, many of which were heinous and unconscionable. He was an infantryman for peace and freedom. He took three bullets from the enemy and returned to duty, (which is more than we can say for John Kerry). He continued to advance the cause in an armored car. Here is a man who walked the walk and talked the talk. He had the vision to see a better world and the will and talent to work toward it.

I'm not Catholic. I don't think all of their doctrine holds with canonical source. But the greatness of this Pope has nothing to do with his doctrine. It is what he did with his power and celebrity. It was never about him, it was always about the rest of us. He understood the power of freedom and he humbly unleashed the forces that allowed the number of representative democracies to multiply several fold in the past 25 years.

I was deeply saddened when the Princess of Wales was killed in a highly suspicious accident. She had the same sort of focus in her celebrity, a selfless caring for others. But she also had a lot of life ahead of her and she had a frailty that drew us to her. The Pope had no frailty and he lived the fullest life a man of the Catholic cloth can live. (Don't get me started on that celibacy thing) I find it easy to mourn a death that robs us of potential. But I will not mourn the Pope.

I pray that his suffering will be minimal, his passing will be easy and that his entry into the next life may be perfected by the instruction and company of prophets and saints of old. It makes no difference whether you believe in an afterlife or not. Why should one mourn a life well lived?

Stalin once asked, "How many divisions does the Pope have?"

Tears of joy fill my eyes as I write. His given name was Karol Wojtyla. Then he was called John Paul II. But at the end, this Pope's name was Legion. He had divisions beyond Stalin's wildest dreams. And even in death, he will keep the loyalty of his divisions. His potential was lived to it's fullest.

One other great thing about this Pope. He had that same self-deprecating sense of humor that Ronald Reagan wielded so effectively. And if he thought about it, his epitaph would read "How many divisions does Stalin have now?"

Stalingrad is now called Volgograd, The Warsaw Pact is dissolved, Poland is in NATO and Stalin is burning in hell. A Hoo-Hah for the Pope

Diana Spencer is hosting cigars and brandy next Friday night. Ghandi and Martin Luther King are going to be there. Go take your place.

Copyright © 2005 Michael A. Breeden