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Open thread 11/20/23

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  • ghostsniper November 20, 2023, 9:51 AM

    Everyone is a shadow in the urban prison.

    • Casey Klahn November 21, 2023, 2:48 PM

      Until Modern times you were assigned the colors you wore. Going forward (into oblivion if what we fear happens) you’ll be lucky to have a dark ocher jacket. Most will wear some pale type of gray. OD, however, will be reserved for your overlords, so don’t even…

  • ghostsniper November 20, 2023, 10:31 AM

    In normal times we anticipate the splendid gluttony of the American Thanksgiving, the fellowship of family and friends, with gratitude and remembrance of overcoming ordeals past. This year, though, we are a bit preoccupied with ordeals to come, and that nip in the November air conjures rumors of approaching hardship and cruelties we have no idea how we might overcome. These are not normal times.


  • ghostsniper November 20, 2023, 11:04 AM

    Should you be held accountable for the actions of the gov’t of your country?

    • John A. Fleming November 20, 2023, 2:38 PM

      If I have to answer your question, then yes. Jefferson gave the definitive answer: “Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security”.

      And if a sufficient quantity of the citizenry refuse their duty, then all the people deserve what happens to them good and hard.

      I might rephrase that questions. In a republic, should a citizen be held responsible for the choices made by the electorate?

      When the way is uncertain, in republics we decide by voting, either directly or through our chosen proxies. The unforeseen consequences of these decisions are shared by all. Well, at least with the US federal system, there is an outlet, one can flee to another state.

      The ballot is (supposed to be) fair and secret, so it is not (supposed to be) possible to assign accountability and blame. No one’s to blame. Supposedly, that’s the public contract that prevents civil strife. Until that contract is broken …

      • ghostsniper November 20, 2023, 5:08 PM

        I was aware of that. And I am against almost all of it and have been most of my life. I’ll start with the democracy thing, which is a polite way of saying mob rule. Never agreed with it.

        No one gets to slave me into doing “their” duty, or anything else.
        Just because criminals and tyrants exist does not mean it is my responsibility to deal with them.

        You can’t truly understand anarchism until you accept that it doesn’t matter what society “would be like” without the state. It’s not the issue. The issue is that nobody has any right to chain me to their fears or satisfy their greed at my involuntary expense and anyone who thinks otherwise, even just a little tiny bit can just go fuck right off and there’s simply no kind way to put that.

        I have no need for a gov’t nor do I use it and I only comply with it when I can’t avoid it.
        Just like I would treat any other criminal. The day is fast approaching, maybe in my lifetime, where the criminal mask of the gov’t no longer functions and people everywhere will start living as if it doesn’t exist. Can I partner with others for a common goal? Certainly, I do it all the time. Do I have to do as others require? Certainly not, nor should anyone else, unless they consider themselves slaves. I can’t live that way, so….I live like an outlaw. The elitist Jefferson be damned.

        • Anonymous November 20, 2023, 8:06 PM

          If I may be allowed to elaborate over my ” sufficient quantity of the citizenry refuse their duty”, if an insufficient number of those people inclined to do the heavy lifting of throwing off the government refuse to do so, because they say “nahh, it’s not worth it to bail out the scurrilous and feckless crowd that got us into this mess in the first place, I’ll get no appreciation and support and gratitude from that lot, they want it gooder and harder and that’s fine with me.”, then the heavy lifters will fade into becoming Vaclav Havel’s powerful powerless people.

          I see duty as something I choose and accept to do, not something somebody else tells me I have to do.

          • John A. Fleming November 20, 2023, 8:07 PM

            That’s me again, sorry about that, my apologies.

            • Joe Krill November 21, 2023, 7:47 AM

              John, Well said. Thank you. Joe Krill

        • Terry November 21, 2023, 6:55 PM

          I have stated this before, a free people do not need to be governed. A free people “govern” themselves in small close societies. The USA is not governable period. It is not possible to “govern” (control) cultural/racial diversity. Ahab’s and Jews come to mind.

          In my view, the USA is gone as we knew it to be. In the coming chaos only the strong will endure. The beginning of the end started with the national or central bank idea during the first administration by a man killed in a duel by Aaron Burr. Aaron Burr should be celebrated as a hero and have his own national holiday.

          My take.

          • ghostsniper November 22, 2023, 3:52 AM

            I could live in a village of people that thought that way.

            Before the duel proper, Alexander Hamilton took a good deal of time getting used to the feel and weight of the pistol (which had been used in the duel at the same Weehawken site in which his son had been killed), as well as putting on his glasses to see his opponent more clearly.

            The seconds placed Hamilton so that Burr would have the rising sun behind him, and during the brief duel, one witness reported, Hamilton seemed to be hindered by this placement as the sun was in his eyes.

            Each man took one shot. Burr’s fatally injured Hamilton, while it is unclear whether Hamilton’s was purposely fired into the air. Burr’s bullet entered Hamilton’s abdomen above his right hip, piercing his liver and spine.

            Hamilton was evacuated to the Manhattan home of a friend, William Bayard Jr., where he and his family received visitors including Episcopal bishop Benjamin Moore, who gave Hamilton the last rites.

            Burr was charged with multiple crimes, including murder, in New York and New Jersey, but was never tried in either jurisdiction.

  • ghostsniper November 20, 2023, 11:52 AM

    Ready to go back to the 18th century?

    World War III largely remains unfought, and yet its economic victors are already apparent. For decades, the USA has bombed, staged coups, invaded, and occupied in order to defend the primacy of the US dollar. In less than two years, inspired by what has to be the dumbest, least well-considered economic siege in recorded history, the USA has lost its ability to exert currency influence over the biggest economy on the planet and the foremost military power on Earth.

    It’s only a matter of time now before all the BRICS countries stop using the dollar for trade outside the Western bloc. The ramifications of this are massive, and may well serve to mark the precise moment that the USA ceased to be a global power and became a regional one again.


    • John A. Fleming November 20, 2023, 4:40 PM

      Maybe it’s ok to be a “regional power” once again. Let us here in the “New World” have clear boundaries with the “Old World”. Why must one nation be the “King of the world”? Where all we ask is to be able freely trade amongst the nations, the original objective of our nation’s foreign policy.

      Except of course, the problem of ICBMs and nukes, and now biologics, and in another ten years cybernetics and its cousin mimetics. There will always now be one or more ahole countries or organizations controlled by psychos who wish to claim the mantle of power by destroying us, even if we are a “regional” power. The fastest way to claim power is to destroy something good. So we may be a regional power, but with global reach, to reach out and neutralize the aholes that would see us be destroyed. It sounds like I am suggesting “Mossad is the model”. It’s speak softly, big stick time, what’s old must be new again.

      • ghostsniper November 20, 2023, 7:24 PM

        T. Roosevelt

  • John A. Fleming November 20, 2023, 9:56 PM

    Last year at Christmastime I caught the Kung Flu on a business trip. Had it on the flight home, so I did my part to keep it spread throughout the population so we could all get natural immunity. None of my co-workers that I was with for a week on that trip, all day and at after-work dinners, caught it from me, so I was doing something right. It took 3 weeks from first symptoms before I stopped testing positive, so I ended up quarantined the entire Christmas holiday.

    Quarantined at home, all I could do was outside chores working on the house and yard, or stay in my bedroom, my meals brought to my door by my loving family.

    I was further troubled because it was at that time that Gerard had to stop posting due to his turbo-cancer.

    One thing I did was listen to Youtube videos of choral music. I was raised on choral music at Christmastime, my father was the local church choir director. I came upon this “Something Wonderful”® version of Handel’s Messiah. I listened to it every lonely night. I have several other CD’s of the Messiah from name orchestras, conductors and soloists, but after listening to this Youtube version my CD’s don’t sound very good anymore. For this Christmas I’m going to download a high-quality video and sound version of this performance.

    I highly recommend you give this version of the Messiah a listen. I don’t know anything about the singers and musicians, other than it’s in France. Their politics, their troubles, nothing matters except the music they create. No matter the troubles of this world and the troubles we each bear, music such as this carries us away to a land where it is Heaven on Earth. We need reminding that real beauty in this world exists, that we can create it and it can never die. Those European composers, from Bach and all the other Baroque artists, straight through to the Twentieth Century, have gifted us music beyond all imagining. Music that I hope survives until the heat death of the Universe in a time beyond our ken. People ask me what kind of classical music I like, and all I can answer is everything from 1600-1930. After 1930 with a few exceptions it gets weird and is too strange for me. For me, starts now the Season of Music.

    • John A. Fleming November 20, 2023, 10:40 PM

      Oops, I forgot, do as I did and listen to this through a good set of speakers, the tinny little things built into computers just don’t work, it’s like listening to music through foam earplugs.

  • ghostsniper November 21, 2023, 6:30 AM

    Every relationship between men and women is psychological.

    She’s psycho.

    He’s logical.

  • ghostsniper November 21, 2023, 7:35 AM

    The Husband Store
    A brand new store has just opened in New York City that sells Husbands.
    When women go to choose a husband, they have to follow the instructions at the entrance:

    You may visit this store ONLY ONCE! There are 6 floors and the value of
    the products increase as you ascend the flights. You may choose any item
    from a particular floor, or may choose to go up to the next floor, but you
    CANNOT go back down except to exit the building.

    So, a woman goes to the Husband Store to find a husband.

    The 1st floor sign on the door reads:
    Floor 1: These men have jobs.

    The 2nd floor sign reads:
    Floor 2: These men have Jobs and Love Kids.

    The 3rd floor sign reads:
    Floor 3: These men have Jobs, Love Kids and are extremely good looking.
    “Wow,” she thinks, but feels compelled to keep going.

    She goes to the 4th floor and the sign reads:
    Floor 4: These men Have Jobs, Love Kids, are Drop-dead Good Looking and help with Housework.
    “Oh, mercy me!” she exclaims, “I can hardly stand it!”

    Still, she goes to the 5th floor and sign reads:
    Floor 5: These men Have Jobs, Love Kids, are Drop-dead Gorgeous, help with Housework and Have a Strong Romantic Streak.

    She is so tempted to stay, but she goes to the 6th floor and the sign reads:
    Floor 6: You are visitor 31,456,012 to this floor.
    There are no men on this floor.
    This floor exists solely as proof that women are impossible to please.
    Thank you for shopping at the Husband Store.

    To avoid gender bias charges, the store’s owner opens a New Wives store just across the street.

    The 1st first floor has wives that love sex.

    The 2nd floor has wives that love sex and have money.

    The 3rd,4th, 5th and 6th floors have never been visited.

  • ghostsniper November 21, 2023, 7:42 AM

    2001: A Spaced-Out Odyssey Bot

    Enjoy the tranquility as every frame of Kubrick’s classic is posted in order, once an hour.


  • Casey Klahn November 21, 2023, 1:06 PM

    John and Ghost. Ye cahnt goes backwards in time, lads. It’s an impossibility.

    You want to cede US global power to…whomst, exactly. And to what, in particular?

    I’m thinking the last couple of days of toxic environments I’ve had the misfortune of abiding in. Mostly worksplace horseshit, I suppose. Some family mania, to be sure, back in my youth. This current government, not the least. Biden and his gang are toxic.

    Do you see the new president of Argentina? He’s an Anarcho Capitalist. This would be very unlike the anarcho communists who make up the ANTIFA and the BLM (and the US Congress). You avoid anarchy politics because you reason they can never be perfect. Imagine perfect anarchy. But then, what have we now? A kill switch going in every auto? Will a group of feds come to my house and backyard install it on my early model RAV4? What about my 1990 Ford Ranger?

    A bit of a transition here. I give you SecDef Austin (formerly General Austin). It pains me greatly to now consider Mister Austin as currently the worst secretary of defense we’ve even had. That makes him worse than McNamara (of moronic fame and the Vietnam war). Austin lorded over the vax mandate of our military. Today’s news contains articles about the army sending make-up letters to its general discharges who fell asunder in the mandate. They need em back, you see. Elsewhere I am reading some smart lawyers have put together a class action lawsuit to recover billions of dollars in back pay for the poor sods who were mandated out by Austin.

    Carry on.

    • ghostsniper November 21, 2023, 2:01 PM

      I saw that, about the letters and the lawsuits.
      The gov’t will drag that lawsuit out for decades – they make the rules don’t cha know?
      The letters are just the first step.
      Take it as a shot across the bow, a glimpse at things to come.
      What about old fux like you and me, will we eventually get a letter?

      I’ve always been attracted to the ancap way of life.
      To be a lifelong player you have to have your shit together always.
      Honest, trustworthy, and on your toes all the time.
      Drag, in any of those 3 places and it’ll hut you bad, almost instantly.

      The ancap way of life will mostly only work on a small scale, local.
      Eyeball to eyeball.
      It’s not possible to ostracize a shyster (or beat his ass) when he’s a hundred miles away.
      But who knows, maybe one day honesty will become a thing again, who knows?
      Most likely not in my lifetime though.

      The diff between the street thugz and gov’t thugz is the street thugz are up front about it but the gov’t thugz will lie you to death. I prefer up front.

      • Casey Klahn November 21, 2023, 3:14 PM

        In the early 80s I had a C.O. who used to say if he survived the next war he’d come out a lieutenant general. FuckThat, I wanna be a field marshal. LOL/ the very thought of service just elucidates, in detail, my age and I guess you’d have to call it unserviceability. I can shoot like a mother, and I know the military system inside out, upside down, and sideways.

        If you watch Ukraine/Israel closely enough – I mean just the images and vids – you can see old men in uniform. Poor bastards!

        Tell me what “ancap” is?

        • ghostsniper November 21, 2023, 5:26 PM

          Anarchist Capitalist
          Where people stand on their own 2 feets, unsupported without, taking on life in full frontal nudity and dealing with it the best that they can. Knowing the little that I do about you, I believe you would do well in that environment as I believe most honest people would.

          The people that wouldn’t do well are the parasites. They would be discovered fast, and dealt with. People that wish to be politicians would be honest or run out of town. Same with bankers, and anyone else with a criminal bent. Each of us would be a judge and together we would be a court. The tricky part is to not become so big as to be unmanageable.

          • Casey Klahn November 22, 2023, 6:31 AM

            OK, so like I was inferring before, you can never have anarchism a hundred percent, and it begs the question: is it a self-defeating system? Watch Once Upon a Time In Hollywood, and see the scene at the Charles Mansion ranch. That system is hairy, and the only form of order is through fear or intimidation. Total hippy freedom sounds cool until you actually go there.

            Back to fantasyland: one proposes a political system based on no system. We’re all attracted by a completely hands-off government, and as much of that as can be accomplished I hope President Milei achieves it in Argentina. I don’t know the planks of an AnCap government (another misnomer – no govt. but it has planks) but the policy may be less about the total anarchy and more about a completely free market. If you cannot have a hundred percent free market, I’d at least enjoy a %90 free market. Quit telling people what to do with their money! Before long, you’ll be rolling in it.

            Our (Ghost’s phrase here) Rotten Assed Govt. thinks all money belongs to them, and they let you have whatever they allow out of spite, magnanimity, and laziness. If they weren’t so lazy, they’d have all of your money and be full commie. A completely free market is anathema to them, and most never consider it and don’t know what it is. It begins with little to no regulation on investment, manufacture and sales. As it stands right now, in Washington state, the state forces grocers to sell you the shopping bag that used to be complimentary, and a tool of service fundamental to good retailing. But I quibble: you walk into a grocery store nowadays, and you’re the fukn product. If in some dystopian future they start to eat you there, you shouldn’t be surprised one bit.

            Your liberal govt. hates you, and wants you dead. You know that, right? Milei is a product of how deeply the state has gone/ He’s the antidote. He’s the reaction. Put Milei and Trudeau in an Oxford debate and watch the Canadian get his ass beat. It’d be fun.

  • ghostsniper November 21, 2023, 2:33 PM

    ‘spensive pears
    Back in the 90’s my wealthy brother in law sent us some spensive pears at Christmas from a place called “Harry & David”. ( https://www.harryanddavid.com/ )
    Have you heard of this place?
    The pears were very good, the best I have ever tasted.
    But come on man. $10 each????

    Apparently at some point our son had ordered that stuff for someone and for the past 16 years they have been sending their catalog to us in his name. Our son moved back to Florida in 2007 and started a fambly. I’ll presume he has not ordered stuff from H&D since because they still send the catalogs here rather to him in FL.

    How many catalogs do they send out each year to past customers that no longer buy anything? Seems to me they might be more effective if, rather than sending a dank catalog alone, they sent some kind of “cannot refuse” offer (lost leader) in the effort to entice the previous customer buy even more stuff.

    I stack the catalogs we receive throughout the year in a box in the workshop.
    Then, at some point I’ll roll each one up and tie it with kite string then spray it with an incendiary and back into the box to dry. A year later I’ll burn em in the fire pit. Sit up wind.

  • ghostsniper November 21, 2023, 5:32 PM

    Background vibe.
    A year or 2 ago I stumbled upon something that works for me and maybe it can work for you.
    I’ll throw it out there, you decide.
    Youtube has a number of channels that offer music that is low key and easy to listen too. It sort of works with you, rather than trying to lead you. When I am working on complex content in autocad I turn one of these things and let it run in the background, low. Very low. It sort of acts like a subliminal roadmap for my brain. Kind of keeps me focused on a singular goal, whatever that goal might be.

    This is the one I have going on right now, there are lots of others:

    The visuals are not bad neither.

  • ghostsniper November 21, 2023, 5:51 PM

    I’ve mentioned these folks before, and probably will again.
    They are THAT good.
    I’ve watched this countless times and it’s amazing how well put together they are.
    The drummer is the foundation, he is spectacular.
    Precise and never misses a beat.
    The guitar player is over the top in accuracy and execution.
    If you’re a player you’ll recognize this prowess instantly.
    All the other components are spotless as well.
    Dare I say they’re are as good or better than the original?
    Yes. Yes, I believe they might be.
    Keep in mind, english is their 2nd language and all their tools are american born.
    And yet, there are plenty of people right now in this country that wishes them scorn.
    I could write chapters on this.


  • ghostsniper November 21, 2023, 5:59 PM

    Red Sector A


    Rush Lyrics
    “Red Sector A”

    All that we can do is just survive
    All that we can do to help ourselves is stay alive
    All that we can do is just survive
    All that we can do to help ourselves is stay alive

    Ragged lines of ragged grey
    Skeletons, they shuffle away
    Shouting guards and smoking guns
    Will cut down the unlucky ones

    I clutch the wire fence until my fingers bleed
    A wound that will not heal, a heart that cannot feel
    Hoping that the horror will recede
    Hoping that tomorrow we’ll all be freed

    Sickness to insanity
    Prayer to profanity
    Days and weeks and months go by
    Don’t feel the hunger
    Too weak to cry

    I hear the sound of gunfire at the prison gate
    Are the liberators here?
    Do I hope or do I fear?
    For my father and my brother, it’s too late
    But I must help my mother stand up straight

    Are we the last ones left alive?
    Are we the only human beings to survive?
    Are we the last ones left alive?
    Are we the only human beings to survive?

    I hear the sound of gunfire at the prison gate
    Are the liberators here?
    Do I hope or do I fear?
    For my father and my brother, it’s too late
    But I must help my mother stand up straight

    Are we the last ones left alive?
    Are we the only human beings to survive?
    Are we the last ones left alive?
    Are we the only human beings to survive?

  • ghostsniper November 21, 2023, 6:25 PM

    Since day one, back in the mid 80’s, I have named our mutts after 70’s rock songs.

    The first one was a tan cocker male named Dusty (1984) for Kansas – Dust in the Wind.
    Dusty died in 1999 and I was completed depleted. Could barely function. In June 2000 on what would have been Dusty’s 16th birthday I donated 100 lbs of Iams dog food and 100 lbs of Iams cat food to the local shelter in Lee County, FL. While there I set out to make contact and touch or offer a hand and a kind word to every cat and dog in their confines. There were 80 or more cats. 100+ dogs. I visited every one of them.

    The next to last dog kennel I visited held a little female Cocker that looked exactly like my Dusty and she climbed the gate when she seen me. I melted on the spot. I opened the gate and went inside and she wiggled uncontrollably. I sat on the floor and let her own me. If you’re not a dog person this won’t make sense to you.

    She and I melded and our future was already set. I put the process in motion and I took her home. As soon as we got in “Lady’s” new home she lost control and ran pell mell from one end to the other, up over the couch, around the kitchen, down the hallway, then back into the living room where I sat on the floor. She laid on the floor before me panting and so happy. I couldn’t believe this.

    The next morning, about 6am, I was in my home office and I had a reel playing 70’s rock, low, on my 10″ Pioneer reel to reel player. Doobie Brothers – South City Midnight Lady came on and within a moment “Lady” came into my office and stood up at my chair. I looked down at her and fluffed her noggin, then I got down on the carpeted floor and sat cross legged and she got on me and laid down while that song played. I sat there in the semidarkness of the early morning and listened to that song and stroked Lady’s fur. Lady and I were the best of friends for the next 14 years.


    • jd November 22, 2023, 9:53 AM

      Loved the story of your dogs, Ghost. I always wanted a Cocker Spaniel and
      had a name all ready for one as a child but was never able to get one (single mother
      who had to work and had to send me to boarding school). As an adult I finally got
      a dog but it was a Toy Poodle. You don’t see many Cocker Spaniels any more.

      Thank you for a very bright spot in the day.

  • Snakepit Kansas November 22, 2023, 5:29 AM

    Time to get the smoker loaded with charcoal and some chunks of an apple tree. Gonna put a trimmed brisket in there for four or five hours then finish it in the oven for Thursday. There is plenty to be thankful for and it hasn’t all imploded yet. Remus told us to avoid crowds and I do when I can. Hard to avoid the weekly stop at The WalMartz, but don’t go without my Roscoe. Stay strapped.

    • ghostsniper November 22, 2023, 6:51 AM


  • Anne November 23, 2023, 9:41 AM

    There are several popular pictorial books of our small town. The pictures have recorded snaps of daily life during the early years. It is not deep in the heart of down town, but rather about one mile east of town. The primary grocery store sits on one side of the street and a gas station and a cafe are on the opposite side. There is one picture that comes up often in most of these books. It is a little boy about 10 or 11 years old carrying his cocker spaniel across one the street. He is alone and his clothes are not the best. The little boy is my DH. He is the older of three boys. Abused and frequently left at the homes of other family members for months at a time, and even once left at the orphanage who would not accept them. This dear little boy had one friend–his cocker spaniel. The picture is sepia toned and taken as a snap of life in this town in 1953. I am a year younger. If I had lived in that town then that little boy would also have another companion. A skinny little girl who would run alongside him forever!

    Happy Thanksgiving to all!

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