There is no such thing as poor and free…

Someone once told me, during one the many Facebook arguments I used to have: “I’d rather be poor and free than rich and a slave.” Now, I’m willing to bet a lot of you are smart enough to recognize the logical fallacy there without me naming it (false dichotomy/false dilemma, for those who don’t know). However, the person who told me that either didn’t realize what he was telling me was full of holes or he did it on purpose.

Here’s why there is no such thing as being poor and free:

1.) Most comparisons of the concept of poor are radically biased. The old “the poorest person in America is still richer than the poorest person in third world countries” argument is a non-starter. They can’t be compared. Why? Because America isn’t a third-world country. The United States of America is literally one of the ten richest countries on EARTH. There is no way to compare a superpower to a place like Ethiopia, Burundi, or South Sudan. These places are almost like other planets. So, simply by the way math works, the poorest person in a rich country will be in better financial shape than the poorest person in a country where people are living under the rule of warlords.

2.) When you are poor you are completely at the mercy of your environment. At the time of this writing minimum wage is $7.50 per hour. That comes out to around $14,400 a year BEFORE TAXES. Now, that’s for a full-time position at 40 hours per week. Many positions are part-time, or just enough time to qualify as full-time while still paying short of those 40 hours per week. $14,400 is about $1200 per week. Try affording a mortgage on that. Auto loan? Utilities? Food? Insurance? Rent? Necessities?

Minimum wage is a subsistence wage, which means, if you’re lucky, you’ll make enough to barely survive. You will be lucky if you can make it from paycheck to paycheck (a great many Americans can’t, as 10 million Americans used payday loans in 2016). Pop a tire? That’s about $200. Suddenly wake up one night and can’t urinate? Even with insurance you’re facing thousands in medical bills. Little Billy’s shoes just fell the fuck apart in gym class? $70 (unless you buy the $20 Walmart ones, which could mean you just blew a week’s gasoline budget). Car suddenly doesn’t start in the parking lot at work? That could mean hundreds or even thousands.

Every. Single. Day. Is a gamble. You are a slave to the ebb and flow of the universe. You have no savings. There isn’t enough. According to this story (a little old but still applicable) about 44% of Americans are one good unforeseen financial circumstance away from total ruin. Now, I imagine there is a certain sense of freedom in losing everything and being financially ruined. You lose every single thing you’ve ever worked for. The Buddhists and Yogis would probably tell you that shedding material possessions is a good thing.

Except, in America, we tie our self-worth to what we do and how much we own. It’s a very sick and vicious cycle. We shouldn’t but we do.

3.) You are a slave to the cycle of poverty. Americans love their myths. Chief among them is the Great Man Myth. Financial lore is replete with the story of the poor kid made good; the person who started out sleeping on dirt floors, who saved every single nickel and worked 400 hours a week to become super successful. All it takes is hard work.

And luck. And the ability to recognize and capitalize on opportunities .

By and large, people who live in poverty spend so long locked in day-to-day survival mode (think “generations”) that learning to recognize and capitalize on opportunities which would result in future wealth are as alien as Martian hieroglyphics. The cycle of poverty has a complete hold on their functionality. When no one teaches you what opportunity looks like and how to prepare for opportunity to arise, you will never know what to watch for.

Thus, the great man is all but a freak occurrence; a statistical anomaly. For the most part, people who work hard continue to grind until the grind gets the best of them; surviving the struggle until the day they finally shuffle off the mortal coil.

3.) Google, YouTube, and the gurus would have you believe that all the Poors need to do is change the way they think and they’ll strike it rich. If it worked this way, there’d be no such thing as obesity in America. There’d be no mental health issues. Everyone could just perceive themselves out of everything!

Except that’s not exactly how it works. Sure, changing the way one perceives the world could help disrupt the cycle of poverty that dictates how people living in poverty function. However, perception alone is not enough to break a cycle. Perception of a problem is worthless without a method of breaking the unhealthy cycle, then having an action plan with attainable goals and objectives by which one can extricate himself from the environment.

People die every year because they get lost in the wilderness; know they are lost; but lack a viable plan by which to affect rescue. Poverty is that exact scenario. Millions of Americans are lost in a generational cycle, a great many of which are cognizant of their predicament, yet lack the skills or assistance to affect rescue. A person does not accidentally escape being lost in a rainforest and a person does not accidentally become successful just because he puts in 80 hours per week (ask the coal miners who were present for the Harlan County Union fights).

4.) I’d rather be poor and free, than rich and a slave is a pitiful sleight of hand that ignores the fact that there is an entire middle class section of America who is not “rich” by the metrics, but who own homes, have savings, and professional careers. A whole section of people who used government assistance to go to college or tech school and use those credentials to escape the cycle that, otherwise, would surely have ensnared them into the same struggle for survival as previous generations.

This basic bitch rationale (a word I can only loosely apply here) completely disregards that a well-funded, well aimed social safety net can (and has in Denmark) shrink wealth gaps and foster an environment in which poverty cycles can be broken, by providing ample and effective assistance to those who are cognizant of their situation, have a plan with attainable goals, but lack the ability to capitalize on opportunities.

Poor and free? Nah, bro. No such thing.

American Eulogy…

Before you read this piece, I need you to sit and watch this clip from the show News Room because it perfectly describes the perspective this entire blog takes on America; it’s ideals, the society, and current defenestrations to the contrary by the patriots among us.

There are quotes there that are objective truths. America is:

124th on World Atlas’s site for literacy rate, at 86%. Outpaced by Poland, Cuba, Azerbaijan, Finland, and many, many others who all have 100% or near 100% literacy rates.

18th in the world rankings for healthcare. Denmark is number 1.

40th in life expectancy. Japan is number 1.

5th in education attainment. Canada is number 1.

Those are just a few. America is mediocre, gang, and slipping. But, hey, just everyone doesn’t leave this post feeling completely demoralized, let’s look at some things America is Numero Uno at!

#1 in healthcare costs per person.

#1 in military spending.

#1 in the size of the middle class. No. Wait. That’s China. America’s middle class is shrinking. So, we’re getting to the point where one is either a Have or a Have Not. My bad.

#1 in GDP.

#1 in cellphone ownership.

#1 in nuclear weapons.

#1 in total wealth.

#1 in number of people in prison.

So, you see, there are some things which America excels at. Although, it can be argued that certain countries who shall remain nameless — ::cough cough:: China ::cough cough:: — are making tremendous strides to unseat America in some of those areas.

There’s a line in the video made by our good friend, Harry Dunne, er, I mean Jeff Daniels:

We didn’t beat our chests.”

We do now. It’s nearly all we do. While the state of our infrastructure, education, healthcare access, and economy slips, we are not one bit bashful about standing in a crowd and screaming out our superiority because, liberties. We like being able to say what we like, without being imprisoned.

Except for those who want to make burning a flag an offense punishable by imprisonment, including one guy who was President .

We congratulate ourselves over the accomplishments of the past, while oligarchs continue to buy our government out from under us. Corporations use propaganda to convince us we are America, The Unstoppable. Except we aren’t unstoppable. Just ask the Coronavirus and the 500,000 shipping containers stuck at sea near California.

America is not the best country in the world. But, like the sign the girl in the back of the room was holding up said: it can be. The amount of work it requires is gargantuan, but America has historically been good at gargantuan undertakings. What America sucks at, at least currently, is admitting it has a problem.

And, we’ve got a big goddamn problem.

American myth busting…

The following is from the movie “Killing Them Softly”:

Barack Obama (on TV): …to reclaim the American dream and reaffirm that fundamental truth, that, out of many, we are one…

Driver: You hear that line? Line’s for you. 

Jackie Cogan: Don’t make me laugh. One people. It’s a myth created by Thomas Jefferson.  

Driver: Oh, so now you’re going to have a go at Jefferson, huh?  

Jackie Cogan: My friend, Thomas Jefferson is an American saint because he wrote the words ‘All men are created equal’, words he clearly didn’t believe since he allowed his own children to live in slavery. He’s a rich white snob who’s sick of paying taxes to the Brits. So, yeah, he writes some lovely words and aroused the rabble and they went and died for those words while he sat back and drank his wine and fucked his slave girl. This guy wants to tell me we’re living in a community? Don’t make me laugh. I’m living in America, and in America you’re on your own. America’s not a country. It’s just a business. Now fucking pay me.

Words of wisdom, Jackie-boy. Words. Of. Wisdom.

Thomas Jefferson, like many of the guys who signed the American Declaration of Independence, was a complete and total hypocrite. A rich, white, landowner who believed what he wrote about as much as I believe The Lord wants me to give preachers money. For starters, he never fired the first shot in the war he helped start. What’d Tommy do? He wrote shit. But, if you read about him in a story book (they call them history books but they clearly are NOT), they make it sound like Jeffy was out on the front line, beating the Brits to death with his massive freedom erection.

Thomas Jefferson spent the entire war, one he helped get started (I mean, I’m glad I’m not a British citizen. So, thanks for that.), writing propaganda and letters. Oh, and impregnating slaves.

But, try telling that to the crowd who creams their jeans every time Glenn Beck or Sean Hannity mentions his name like he was an apostle.

History and myth are not the same things, kiddies. And Americans are far too keen to believe in that second one. Try to interject a little of that first one and you, sir, are an anti-American nazi loving piece of commie scum. Don’t believe me? Here’s a social experiment to try at the next Fourth of July picnic:

Get yourself a t-shirt. Get yourself a black Sharpie (or otherwise suitable permanent marking utensil). On that t-shirt, write: If all men are created equal, why did Jefferson own slaves?

You will not be the most popular patron at that party. Why? Because you’re questioning the myth. People don’t like their myths questioned. You punch the fragile membrane of the white social psyche and it will rebound (I say the white one because most anyone who’s an ethnic minority – especially if they’re black – already knows a lot of the truth behind the sanitization). White folks don’t like to hear that the guys who built this nation were world-class bullshitters.

When they said all men were created equal, they meant all white land owning men. The rest of you — be you Native or some other flesh tone decidedly not Caucasian — could bugger off. And, by bugger off, they meant “go work my plantation.”

Simply put, Jefferson — and by extension the rest of the American Justice League — were humans. Humans are not all good (they’re not all bad, but they’re not all good either). They have biases, self-interests, habits, and perceptions. There are shades of Gray. Absolutes don’t do anyone any good and understanding that maybe, just maybe, the Founders were good at convincing others to do what they saw as a benefit, while working to enrich themselves at the expense of other humans, won’t kill us.

Well, at least not those of us who don’t have a vested commercial interest in keeping the myth alive, anyway.

It HaS a 99% SuRvIvAbIlItY rAtE…

If this is your response to choosing not to get a vaccination for COVID, it tells me one major thing: you are ignorant of many things. I will not tackle them all in this piece, mainly because the more I think about how selfishly ignorant that statement is, it makes me want to reach through the internet and slap the people who use it.

You don’t wanna get a shot? Fine. Don’t get one. But, at least be honest about why you aren’t getting one: you just don’t want to because you’re scared. It’s okay to be scared. It’s not okay to rationalize and intellectualize that fear while ridiculing others for making a different choice.

The one issue I will tackle, as to why it is important to at least consider getting vaccinated, is a readily evident, immediately tangible one: overtaxation of medical resources.

All across this country, and especially in the South, hospitals are out of rooms. Their floors and ERs are filled with people who have COVID. There are reports of people dying because they cannot get in to get checked. Numbers? Let’s talk numbers. 99% of deaths and 97% of hospitalizations are unvaccinated people.

You see, what happens when a disease spreads rapidly is that it overwhelms the facilities through sheer population explosion. Sick people bottle neck the system so much that it causes system resources to be diverted to that need, which reduces them in other areas. Covid-filled ICU and CCU beds means no room at the inn for a man having a heart attack, a woman suffering a stroke, or a child having a grand mal seizure. The resources just aren’t there. Because of this overwhelming of resources, treatable emergencies become life threatening or deadly.

The problem isn’t just one or ten or a hundred people getting COVID in a week and getting better at home. The problem is MILLIONS getting it in short order, having severe symptoms, and clogging up hospitals — which causes a ripple effect into other emergency issues and illnesses. This is not a closed loop system where, by and large, you get the sniffles and stay in bed for a couple of days. By and large, COVID is putting people in the hospital. Covid killed 300+ thousand people in 2020. Influenza A & B killed 19+ thousand from 2020-2021. COVID-19 is NOT the flu. Period.

The WHO estimated COVID-19’s reproductive rate at R=2.4. That means for every person with it, they infect 2.4 other people. Given Delta’s blinding transmission rate, it is likely even higher than that. Given Lambda’s infection rate, it’s likely to go even higher.

More people with the disease = greater taxation on a buckling system = treatable illnesses become deadly.

It’s the Law of Cause and Effect.

So, when people are talking about social responsibility they aren’t telling you that your being vaccinated is good for the LGBTQ community, or that it’s the Woke thing to do. They are literally telling you that it is GOOD for your community, your neighbors, your extended family, the little old lady across the street with the heart problem; who is going to the emergency room tonight and just doesn’t know it yet. Maybe it’s good for little Tommy up the lane who, at 2 AM tomorrow morning, will have a bout of appendicitis and need an ICU bed. Maybe it’s good for your wife who contracted COVID and is now gasping for air on your living room floor because of double lung pneumonia, and needs to be rushed to the ER.

Oops, sorry Tommy-boy, sorry wife of the scared guy, that bed is filled and there are six people in the filled-to-capacity ER with COVID waiting on it. 97% of whom decided that getting vaccinated wasn’t worth it because COVID has a 99% survival rate.

It’s okay to be scared. But, selfish and willfully ignorant is no way to go through life.

No, Nineteen Eighty-Four is not a book about Socialism…

Caveat: this post is less about a perpetrated work, than it is about being flat out wrong.

Say the word socialism around anyone who considers himself a conservative. Use the phrase “I think healthcare should be free/single payer.” Then, stand back and listen to the endless slogans, many of which will involve quotes from Orwell’s seminal work. These people can’t help themselves. They thrown the terms Big Brother and the mantra of war is peace, freedom is slavery, ignorance is strength at you like you have fangs and a black cape and they have a crucifix and wooden stake.

But, here’s the thing: 1984 isn’t about socialism. It’s about totalitarianism.

The thing that all of the literature buffs don’t realize is (or maybe they just don’t know, it’s a little hard to tell sometimes) that Orwell was a democratic socialist. Now, my own disagreements with socialism and the re-branding attempts aside, this is probably handy info to have when trying to assert that ‘84 is written to be a warning against socialism, period. It wasn’t. It was written as a drawing out of Stalinist and Naziesque styles of “socialism” (which was really totalitarianism) to their natural conclusion: which was a one-party state wherein all things are centrally controlled. This is not your uncle Bernie’s “socialism.”

It’s not socialism at all, actually.

You see, socialism, distilled to its simplest component is a collectivist control of social/governmental functioning. Operations are carried out by will of the group. A company would have a collective of owners and workers making decisions together; a government would be made up people who consider the common good and social contract ahead of the desires of the individual; that type of thing.

Well, ideally anyway. This ignores the fact that power attracts the easily corruptable and the fact that, eventually, you’re gonna get a hype-Karen in the bunch, that’d turn your favorite co-op into a homeowner’s association from hell.

Orwell wasn’t warning against Skyler and Sage having a union say-so in how they are treated at Widgets, Inc. Orwell was warning against the installation of a power-hungry despot who thought his way was the only way and that society would conform or be manipulated and/or bullied into conforming. See? This is where we start getting into all that War is Peace, Chocolate is salad, Cake is Healthfood stuff. Because, fellow babies, that is how totalitarian despotism works: gaslighting.

“What do you mean the people won’t like toiling in the fields 23 hours a day for the common good and their children collapsing from exhaustion? Well, that’s a simple fix! We’ll just market that shit as morally righteous and if you don’t like it, you’re anti-Labor! Then, we’ll reverse psychology that bitch and convince them that Work is Rest by convincing them that the harder they work now, the better the rest will be later.”

Step 1 is the coup. Step 2 is convincing the plebs that Step 1 was what they wanted but just didn’t know it. It has very little to do with giving people control and everything thing to do with convincing them they have control.

Okay, so my caveat was a little inaccurate. We have veered into work territory!

In 1984, Orwell took great care to craft a world dominated by the Party. The Party, however, didn’t exist. The central authority structure was what pretended to be the party and, through that, controlled the people through various avenues: The Ministry of Truth spewed constant lies to keep the people afraid and ignorant; The Ministry of Peace feigned and fomented constant war; The Ministry of Truth perpetuated the authoritarian lie by persecuting those who dared to discover the truth; and the Ministry of Plenty controlled the food stores because starvation was rampant. Disinformation and gaslighting. These were accurate caricatures of how the totalitarian machine works.

But, here’s the real kicker about conservatives lobbing Orwell quotes at you: totalitarianism can be every bit a right-wing force, as it is left-wing. For some reason, the conservative knuckleheads who’ve missed Orwell’s meaning completely just refuse to understand that a dictator can be a religious zealot who persecuted anyone not towing the line of whatever dictates they set forth. Nope, to the right-winger swing away at you with his copy and paste Eighty-four’isms, you are the threat because you did a socialism and George said socialism was bad.

The power of division…

When I was a younger man I worked in corrections. I worked that job for four years. There were good times. There were bad times. There were shit shows. I made friends. I made enemies.

But, I learned some very important lessons.

The most important thing I took with me from that place was how powerful a tool division can be. You see, people like what’s familiar: a familiar face, a familiar area, a familiar place. It promotes a sense of safety and safety is a part of the hierarchy of needs. In prison, that safety is racism that comes in the form of voluntary ethnic segregation. Asians go with Asians. Latinos go with Latinos (delineated by regional affiliation). Whites with whites. Black with Black. Now, this affected by micro politics, such as gang affiliation and what not, but by and large this is how it shakes out.

The inmates play their inmate games, mainly against each other. Here is the power inherent in the hustle: as long as they are trying to out-hustle each other, as long as they are divided against each other as enemies, they will be too busy to unite against the woefully outnumbered officers.

The shysters and politicians understand this.

If you’re a Liberal, you’re being programmed to hate Conservatives. If you’re a Progressive, you’re being programmed to hate Liberals and Conservatives. If you’re a Conservative, you’re being programmed to hate Liberals and Progressives. If you’re a Second Amendment supporter, you’re being programmed to hate Gun Control Advocates. If you’re white, you’re being sold fear of minorities. If you’re a minority, you’re being sold fear of all whites as being inherently racist. And so on, and so on, and so on, and so on.

Here beginneth the work…

2021. Cellphone cameras are everywhere, all the time. Our politicians are, if they’re lucky, a product of the 70s and 80s; times when cameras were nowhere near as ubiquitous. They were big, bulky, conspicuous contraptions that one could spot from 1,000 feet off. Now, though, they’re tiny. They fit in the palm of a hand and render at a level greater than the human brain can process.

In the 70s and 80s, politicians could play politician games without too much concern for getting caught (Watergate would have been a TMZ or Vox post, had they this decade’s tech gadgets). Now, though, millions of eyes are upon them at all times. This is the social media age, bay-bay.

Almost daily, the American public is bombarded with the latest episode of America’s Next Top Filandering Huckster. Invariably, some narcissistic anachronism forgot that saying/doing certain things is, to quote Jesus, “Not cool”. And, invariably, they get recorded being a narcissistic, anachronistic ass hat. They react with the typically feigned shock and offer (well, sometimes offer) some half-assed mea culpa in an attempt to save their own skin.

How could Old Boy have ever known telling a woman that worked with him that he would drink her urine just to get a glimpse of where it came from was probably unacceptable? I mean, it worked out just fine back in the 70s. Back before these women got all these silly ideas about being able to say no to a man’s sexual advances.

And it all used to work pretty well. Then, something started to change. The plebs got access to 24 hour streams of information. And sometimes, these streams of drivel exposed the serious infractions. For the most part, they tended to accidentally elucidate the natives to the narcissistic hedonism and Rules-is-for-the-poors attitudes. This inadvertent finding of nuts by blind squirrels was not to be tolerated.

And never you mind about the purposeful finding of nuts by squirrels with 2020 vision, like Eddie Snowden or that Assange fellow.

Then, the plebs got hold of recording equipment that would fit in the pocket of a pair of yoga pants.

Fast forward a few years and now every foible, every gaffe, every hypocritical do-as-we-legislate-not-as-we-do moment, every shady back room promise is getting light spilled all over it. The only trick they have left, the only trick that works effectively, is to convince Karen that her unmasked neighbor is an existential threat of epic proportions; a threat that must be hounded and Facebooked.

If you keep the inmates fighting with each other, they’ll be too busy to unite against you. In this case, the inmates is you and the you is them. They’ve got you focused on each other because they know you now have the power and information available to ruin their long con.

The war machine fires up the auxiliary propaganda wing to bash Biden and convince you the fluster cuck in Afghanistan is all his fault…

Generals gathered in their masses; Just like witches at black masses…

Flip through the media channels. For the entire last week every wagging chin with even a tangential relationship to the Five Sided Asylum has been making the rounds, non-stop, flogging Biden to the point of making Mel Gibson consider directing a movie about it. CNN, MSNBC, and especially Fox News, have all been glomming onto any entity they can get their hands on, that will come on and talk about the awful mistake that is leaving Afghanistan.

Take, for instance, the media’s current obsession with the Taliban mocking the Iwo Jima Marine photo (propaganda of its own right) and their endless broadcasting of it. Let’s get something clear straight out the gate: the Taliban are pieces of shit in every conceivable objective way. So, that the American media is blasting this photo all over the place and carrying the message of the opposition force — a force they claim is awful and that we should stay indefinitely to fight — is a bit perplexing.

Why would our media carry imagery of the “enemy” retaking Afghanistan?

Well, there’s a website that, if you take an image and upload it to that site, it’ll tell you the earliest known occurrence of that photo. The site is called Tineye. Tineye’s earliest recorded occurrence of that particular photo is 8/2/21 — ALMOST TWO FULL WEEKS BEFORE THE TALIBAN TOOK AFGHANISTAN. This means the photo isn’t even of the most recent event. It’s a staged photo somewhere else, that is now being used to convey a message of victory over America.

And the United States Main Stream Media is eating up just like they were meant to…

Ask yourself, dear reader, if all of these talking heads cared as much about the people in Afghanistan as much as they claim, why would they carry the obvious propaganda of the people they claim are so evil?

Because the goals intersect. The Taliban wants to insult America and have figure out that our media outlets are filled to the brim with base morons who want money through ratings no matter how they can get it. The war machine wants war any way it can get it, to keep the defense contractors lining the coffers and to justify its GIGANTIC budget. The media wants you outraged so that you’ll keep tuning it.

They don’t care about Afghanistan or the affronts to human rights that is the Taliban. They only want to protect the status quo any way they can.

When the law sets its sights on you, you’re going to jail…

Let’s get it out of the way: you’re guilty until proven innocent. Period.

The jury, whether instructed to believe that you are presumptively innocent until the other guys PROVE BEYOND ANY SHRED OF DOUBT otherwise, heaps the onus of proof of innocence onto the accused.

The police? Once they decide you’re their guy, get ready for a living hell. You’ll be locked up, interrogated, terrorized, coerced, and a host of other tactics aimed at eliciting your cooperation (don’t ever cooperate. Get a lawyer and don’t say shit, not even who you are, until said lawyer gets there).

The District Attorney is not interested in justice. He’s interested in maintaining his career (just ask Kamala Harris). The office of the DA has endless governmental resources to come after you: money, investigators, police, labs, and on and on.

If you’re poor and can’t afford an attorney? It’s the Public Defender for you. Chances are they’re understaffed, inexperienced, underfunded, and lack access to the same level of resources to prove your innocence (or to mitigate the destruction of the sledgehammer that’s about to drop on you).

How do I know this? In September 2016, the PCAST group (President’s Counsel of Advisors on Science and Technology) issued a report that crushed the accuracy and applicability of police investigative forensics, such as ballistics, dna, and other such methods. This report highlighted the unreliability inherent in such subjective practices by illustrating that these processes followed few or no scientific review procedures. The report can be found HERE.

Sometime later, the Department of Justice (a bunch of lawyers and plenty of whom are former prosecutorial types, most of whom are law and order types) decided to write an ANONYMOUS rebuttal to the PCAST report — after the PCAST report had been used successfully in a number of cases to reign in the language law enforcement and investigators were using to try and imply that forensics was infallible, which resulted in dropping charges or innocent verdicts.

A direct quote from the report states that the “peer community is almost exclusively law enforcement. It is not scientific.” No one who is an actual scientist reviews or evaluates the processes investigators use to convict people.

Think about that: someone at the United States Department of Justice (it’s widely speculated to have been Ted Hunt; a Jeff Sessions disciple) was so offended by actual scientists taking to task the validity of processes that are questionable and being used to convict innocent people (faulty forensics was discovered to be the source of about 25% of 2880 wrongful convictions) they wrote a reply to attempt to set a self-serving precedent—

AND IT WORKED.

If the law sets it sights on you, gang, you’re going to jail. You’ll either be terrified into copping a plea (95% of convictions are by plea deals) or you’ll be crushed in an avalanche of carefully coordinated police and “justice system” manipulation (see The West Memphis Three or The Liberty City Seven). If you’re rich, you stand a good chance of going free. If you’re poor, though? You’re fucked.

It’s a work, gang. All of it: The War On Drugs is a covert racist effort started by old, rich, white guys. The Justice System is full of narcissistic assholes who believe in innocence about as much as I believe in Santa.

And if you do get convicted and are innocent? Good luck getting your conviction overturned. There are as many as 230,000 innocent people sitting in jails in the USA, at any given time. There are few organizations dedicated to overturning false convictions; all are overworked; and every single one of them faces the Herculean task of convincing the system it is wrong. Judges won’t turn on prosecutors. And, even when the wrongs are so egregious and so obvious, as they were in the case of The West Memphis Three, it can take DECADES to make any headway. Even then, the system can be so incredibly obtuse that it can force you to plead guilty while maintaining your own innocence, just so that you don’t die in prison because law enforcement and the “justice” system decides you’re guilty.

So. If you ever find yourself staring down the barrel of a cop who says, “We just need to ask you some questions”:

1.) Assume they aren’t your friend.

2.) Assume they believe you’re the person who did it and they’re looking to put you in jail TODAY.

3.) Don’t say anything. Don’t nod your head. Don’t agree with them.

4.) Prepare yourself to be threatened, screamed at, cursed, beaten, isolated, and tortured. They want you to give them what they want. You are now a guilty suspect.

5.) Stay strong and wait on your lawyer.

6.) Accept the fact that you’re going to jail. They want you to sweat. They are counting on you to be so scared of jail that you’ll do anything to avoid it.

7.) Get ready to fight like hell and possibly lose everything you own defending yourself.

If you’re poor and can’t afford a lawyer? Get ready to spend time in prison for something you didn’t do.

Socialism: The HOA from hell…

Go to any college campus. Chances are you’ll find some kid with plastic frame glasses and a nose ring preaching about the virtues of socialism. Go to YouTube and you’ll find people like Bernie Sanders and Richard Wolff championing the equality for all inherent in the wonders of Marx’s favorite child. Go to Twitter and chances are good that you’ll find some pseudo-intellectual thumb-humper monologuing about how wonderful it is and how superior it is to the evils of capitalism. Remind them socialism never once been successful and they will, invariably, tell you that it has never been tried — at least not in the pure way it was intended.

Fair warning, this will piss off most of the internet but I don’t care. You kids need to understand some things.

Feel free to stop reading now, if you like.

Still with me? Okay. Here we go. Here’s why socialism is a work and, instead of being the equanimity delivering vehicle the kiddies want it to be, is really a vehicle for hyper-Karens to achieve ultimate control — which is why it fails all the gawddam time.

What Skyler left off the end of his reason for why socialism continues to fail is because, if socialism is ever tried in its true form, it’s step one to full communism — as was intended by the guy who thought it up: Karl “Fuck The Bougies” Marx (no relation to Groucho ‘n’ ‘em). If you haven’t read Karl Marx’s Communist Manifesto, you really ought to. I don’t mean read it to try to confirm your bias. I mean READ it. Take an objective attitude and read it.

Sure, Marx hits the nail on the head about the treatment of lower classes by elites. He nails the ideas of workers being the backbone of a country and deserving rights and protections. But, if you read that book using critical thinking, there’s a section where he literally (not figuratively, the actual use of the word “literally”) writes that he KNOWS people will never accept communism straight away — a key flaw in its failure — but that people must be baby stepped (I say suckered) into communism. How? With socialism.

Again, I’m not giving you sources. Assume I’m lying and go read the damn book.

What is socialism? Well, to hear the proponents tell it, it’s a system by which every single human on earth is guaranteed an equally rosie outcome. Everybody gets equal say in how things operate. Workers get to have a say in how the company is run. Everybody gets housing, food, schooling, and life is just peachy keen, jelly bean.

Except for some problems…

Everyone who champions this system never stops to think they’ll be the guy at the bottom and they all just automatically trust that everyone is going to do right by each other. No one I’ve ever encountered has ever paused long enough to think about what happens if they’re the person who accidentally somehow gets on the outs with this system they love. They’re always on the bright side, in the in-group. What happens if you’re the guy who wants to start a business and the collective doesn’t like your idea? What happens if you elect a guy who decides to usurp ultimate power? What happens if the new council of leaders decides it’s your job for the next decade to be the pig shit shoveler? Or maybe your house is too big? Maybe, in the interests of fairness, you should give your kid’s PlayStation to the family that doesn’t have one?

Here’s what I know about humans, after working exclusively with them and their mindsets for a long time: somebody is always looking to get over. Whether they use you as a means to that end or they use use the system to that end. Ayn Rand (the subject of a future post) was right about one thing: people are selfish. From the virtue signaling hipster who Insta’d his charity work, to the selfless billionaire who donates millions to charity. We’re all getting something on the back end (see Freud).

People in the intellectual elite class espouse socialism because they know for a stone cold fact they’ll be in the upper echelons of the system. After all, someone will have to tell the plebs how to run it. It’s easy to lambaste capitalism from the comfy chair of tenured public college professorship.

Not that capitalism is perfect. It’s a shit show, too.

It’s easy to say, “Boy, if I ran this company, things would be different,” from the confines of your cubicle, where you only have to worry about your TPS reports. What’s damned hard is being the guy who scraped together the dough and took the chance to get the thing started, then stay cognizant of all the things it takes to keep it successful. That’s a position most people can’t grok.

Now, I’m not saying workers aren’t important. A man might build something himself, but he damn sure doesn’t keep it growing by himself.

Socialism sounds fun, until you realize the exact same assholes running the show now, would pretty much be running it then because they have you convinced they’re the ones who’d have to tell you how to run it. Richard Wolff and Bernie Sanders and AOC and all the rest know they’d be on top. They know they’d still have power. Ask a person like Richard Wolff why he doesn’t do all his speaking engagements for free. Ask Bernie why he doesn’t abrogate his salary. Ask AOC if she plans on forgoing the comfy retirement package Congressional Reps get.

No, fellow bipeds, Socialism is an intellectualist sleight of hand to replace the robber baron and the corporatist as the elite class. You still get to be a peon.

Consider this: socialism is a collectivist ideology, wherein the community gets to dictate how the individual operates. The community needs a trash collector? They pick him. The community needs a code enforcer? They pick him. Little Johnny wants to start a grass cutting business to save up for a car? He has to run that through the assembled group of designees (if you’re lucky they’re designees, if you’re unlucky it’s a group of people who are in tight with the elites). They’ll deliberate and if they don’t like the idea because it may be unfair, Johnny-boy is S-O-L.

At best socialism is a hindrance. At worst it’s a homeowners association from hell: telling you how high your grass can be, what color your house can be, what kind of fence to have, number of pets, number of cars parked in the driveway. Socialism is Karen Marx trying to strong arm you into functioning her way. And that’s exactly how Karl Marx intended it — and too many of the people trying to convince that it’s the best thing since sliced bread (probably an evil capitalist invention) are deliberately leaving out that the guy who invented the idea wanted it to be a work to get the marks to buy into communism.

So, don’t be a Marx-mark. Don’t let the same elitist pricks screwing you now convince you that their favorite alt theory will be less of a screw job than the one we have. It won’t. It’ll just mean their side gets to be in power. You’ll still have to clean the latrines. The difference is, you’ll have eight different bosses telling you you’re doing it for the good of the community.