Social Problems - Part 6 Disregarding the Rules


Social Problems – Part 6
Disregarding the Rules
Rescinding rules is one thing, it takes time, and during that time people on each side to have a chance to defend their positions.  Blatant disregard for rules is an entirely different matter.  It skips the debate process altogether and encourages others to disobey the rules, even though they would never even think of doing such a thing on their own.  It can bring about devastation so rapidly that no one has time to react.  I personally have firsthand experience with this.
When I was in eighth grade, we had a school store of sorts, to raise money for our class trip.  One day, my buddy and I were running the “store” which consisted of a folding table set up in the hallway during lunchtime.  Our inventory consisted of school supplies, homemade baked goods, and one-dollar candy bars. (Which were pretty good sized back in 1976.) 
It was just about the time that those bi-centennial quarters were coming into circulation, and I had not yet seen one.  I mentioned this to my buddy, and he looked at me like I was stupid and said, “Are you kidding me?  They’re all over!  I’ll bet you a dollar there’s one in the till right now!”  I took the bet, even though I was flat broke at the time, because I was entirely confident that there would be none.  Guess what?  There were several of them in there.  Suddenly, my classmate wasn’t such a good buddy anymore and demanded immediate payment.  Being resourceful, I suggested he just take one of the candy bars and I would stick a dollar in the till the next day.  He was OK with that, but that day just happened to be a Friday and by Monday I had forgotten to bring a dollar to repay the store.
A dollar was a lot of money for a kid back then, and I figured that as long as I had gotten away with it so far, I’d just let it slide.  I would have never stolen money directly out of the till, but somehow defaulting on an unauthorized loan did not seem as bad.  This got my buddy thinking that maybe he should take out a few such “loans”.  The problem was, that he was no more creditworthy than I, and soon other kids with equally bad credit ratings got the same idea. This decimated the fund raising effort for our class trip.  Some kids go to Washington D.C. for a class trip.  We went to Prairie Du Chien, WI.
About that same time, some boys in my brother’s class smashed the windows out of all the cars on one street in a neighborhood.  The police quickly apprehended them, and when one of the boys was asked, “What could possibly bring you to smash all those windows out of all those cars?” his response was, “After the first one, it was easy.”
Since it has been proven that government spending is not the answer to all problems, especially social problems, I can see no other alternative but to return to the codes of moral conduct that we used to have.  This will not happen immediately, but we must all encourage it.  A lot of people may not like this, but problem solving is rarely an activity that people like. 

Social Problems - Part 5 Rescinding the Rules


Social Problems – Part 5
Rescinding the Rules
If you watch old movies about young people, you can’t help but feel that they are hokey, but if you believe that art imitates life, you will have to admit that they reflected the attitude of people at the time.  One of the reasons that society used to place so many restrictions on young unmarried people was to prevent unwanted pregnancies, and of course, there were other rules in place to prevent other problems.  You are free to disagree with, or not like those rules, but they did do a much better job at preventing social problems than any amount of government spending.
Pop culture, which has always been dominated by the left, has worked at rescinding those rules and destroying the institutions that embraced them throughout the twentieth century, and they continue to do so.  This has caused blatant disregard of some rules, and certain problems to become so large that they have become almost unmanageable here in the twenty-first century.



           
           
           

Social Problems - Part 4 The Cause of the Cause



Social Problems – Part 4
The Cause of the Cause
Maybe we should skip the whole debate on allowing abortion and focus on why the number of abortions performed each year is as large as it is.  If we could figure out the answer to this problem, we might be able to bring the need for abortions down to such a small number that it wouldn’t even be on anyone’s radar screen.
What is the cause of so many women being placed into the position where they even need to consider having an abortion?  That’s a stupid question.  We all know the cause.  A better question would be, “What is the cause of the cause?”
I am going to suggest that liberal ideas and policies are at least partially to blame, knowing full well that the reaction of many people will be that I am a knee-jerk reactionary type that will blame anything and everything on liberals.  If you haven’t done so already, now would be a good time to read my earlier “Barbecue Grill” post.
The problem I have with so many liberal ideas and policies is that they often create or aggravate problems and later, the people that were pushing those ideas are the same ones that expect the rest of us to pay for “solutions” to these problems.  Throwing money at problems is not always the answer and often makes things worse.  Whenever you subsidize anything, you get more of it, whether it’s corn, ethanol, solar power companies, poor people, single mothers, or abortions.



           
           
           

Social Problems - Part 3 Abortion - For Example


Social Problems – Part 3
Abortion – For Example
It’s easy to say that dog owners, young single women, or anyone else for that matter should be more responsible, and when it comes to abortion, there is surprisingly little argument here.  People on both sides of the issue say that it’s best to avoid being in the situation where an abortion might be considered, but at best, this advice will only have some impact on future events.  It cannot change anything that has already occurred, and how to deal with what has already happened is what almost all of the disagreement is about.
Only the most hard-core anti-abortion advocates suggest that there should never be any abortions for any reason, so the argument really isn’t about whether we should or should not allow abortion.  It’s about under which circumstances we should allow abortion, and whether the government should pay for it.  One’s opinion on this is based upon one’s beliefs and who’s to say which beliefs are correct?  This is why there is such disagreement on this issue.


           
           
           

Social Problems - Part 2 Conflicting Beliefs


Social Problems – Part 2
Conflicting Beliefs
This situation is hypothetical, but it is not unique.  Many people base their stance on certain issues based upon beliefs they hold without realizing that these positions are in conflict with other beliefs they have.  Even if they knew this, they wouldn’t have a problem with it.  There is a problem with that however, and ignoring it won’t make it go away. You cannot argue in favor of two conflicting ideas and maintain credibility, but many people try to get away with this.
Take liberal animal rights extremists for example.  Their position is that animals have the same rights as human beings, and they would most likely to be the ones to suggest that the dog owner deserves the death penalty for killing the puppies.  They also usually advocate that all pet owners spay or neuter their animals.  This is where they run into the problem of conflicting beliefs.  They say that animals have the same rights as humans, but it is generally accepted that forced sterilization is among the greatest of human rights violations.  Being liberal, they are probably pro-choice, but they would still get all upset about the guy killing the puppies.
Many conservatives are guilty of having conflicting beliefs too.  Many are anti-abortion, but don’t like the idea of single mothers living off of government assistance so they can raise their children.  Sure there are examples of single mothers who raise children without any government help, but we must be honest.  In some situations, it is a very difficult, almost impossible thing to do.  While we’re being honest here, we should all reexamine ourselves to see if we have any conflicting beliefs.  Chances are, that all of us have at least some.  Maybe we all need to add, subtract, or modify some of our beliefs to reduce conflict.

           
           
           

Social Problems - Part 1 The Puppy Killer


Social Problems – Part 1
The Puppy Killer

Hypothetical Situation: A man has a dog that has a litter of puppies and for whatever reason; he does not have the options of either giving the puppies away or taking them to a shelter like the Humane Society.   The man has a job that requires him to live on site, and his boss will only allow him to have one dog, so he kills the puppies.  What do you think should happen to him?
            The answers to this question will range from, “Nothing at all.” all the way to “He should receive the death penalty.” and probably depends upon one’s position on animal rights.
            Before you answer, let me ask, “Would it have made any difference if the man had taken his dog to a vet before it had given birth and had the puppies extracted in a medical procedure which killed them?
            Would it have been any better if he were able to quit his job and have the government support him for years and years, allowing him to provide a home for the puppies?
            There are three possible outcomes for the puppies here, and none of them are good for the puppies and fair to the rest of society at the same time.


           
           
           

Beavis and Butt-Head and Obama

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Beavis and Butt-Head and Obama

            There are people out there that are referred to as “birthers”.  They claim that Barack Obama was not born in the United States and therefore his presidency is illegitimate.  There has been a lot of controversy over this and I do find it quite curious that he had such a hard time producing a legitimate birth certificate or his college records for that matter.  I don’t know anyone who would have a very difficult time producing either of these.
There was an episode of “Beavis and Butt-Head” that parodied the movie “It’s a Wonderful Life”.  Their guardian angle came down from heaven to show them how much better the world would be if they never even existed.  I guess my problem with Obama isn’t so much where he was born, but rather that he was born.  Think of how much better things would be if Obama never even existed, or least led a life of obscurity.  You know Chris Stevens, our former Ambassador to Libya would have liked that, and all those people killed by Fast and Furious guns in Mexico would have thought it was pretty cool too.
For those of us who have not been killed as the result of Obama’s policies and management, think how much better our lives could have been.  We wouldn’t have pissed all that money away on the stimulus package, we would have less government spending and national debt, we wouldn’t be facing the ravages of Obama care, unemployment rates would be lower, and we would be experiencing a full-fledged economic recovery.  We’d have a wonderful life.  Come on, Clarence.  Where are you when we need you?
You might say to me, “You can’t blame Obama for every bad thing that has happened in the past four years, a lot of it would have happened anyway.”  My response to that is, “Yeah, and Osama bin Laden would certainly be dead anyway.”
           
           
           

Superstorm Obama and Global Warning

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Superstorm Obama and Global Warning

Hurricane Katrina, Superstorm Sandy, and now, Winter Storm Nemo.  All these storms and all that damage.  About the only good thing about storms is that they usually don’t last that long, a few days at most.
Superstorm Obama is going to last eight years and has already done much more damage than all of the above-mentioned storms combined.  Don’t believe me?  Hurricane Katrina caused $108 billion in damages, Superstorm Sandy caused $71 billion, and Winter Storm Nemo’s damages will surely be in the tens of millions.
Think that’s a lot?  Obama’s economic stimulus package alone cost over $800 billion. What do we have to show for it?  That money’s gone.  The wind didn’t blow the money away, the government just blew it.  That was just the beginning of Superstorm Obama.  The damages continue to pile up and he still wants to spend and tax more.  He wants $1.6 trillion dollar tax hike and another $50 billion dollar stimulus package. 
Superstorm Obama’s policies have kept our economy lagging.  We have been stuck with a growth rate of 2 percent or below for over three years.  Obama says we are in an economic recovery.  Normally in a recovery, you’d expect to see 3 to 5 percent growth of GDP.  The Congressional Budget Office has determined that a one tenth of one percent reduction in GDP per year results in $314 billion of additional deficit spending over ten years.  When you combine this with all the wealth that has not been created due to the sluggish economy, it’s quite possible that Superstorm Obama will be more costly than all storms that have occurred in the U.S. in the past 100 years combined.
We are facing a cataclysmic change in our economic climate.  It’s not like we didn’t see it coming.  Policies similar to Obama’s have been used in Europe with disastrous results.  Unless we do something about it, what is happening in Greece could happen here and lead to a major world wide economic downturn.  Therefore, not only the United States should take heed.  This is truly a GLOBAL WARNING.
What is the reason for this GLOBAL WARNING?  It’s quite simple, really.  Too many governments want to act like Communists and take care of everybody instead of having people take care of themselves.  This can cause countries to spend more than they take in, and go into debt.  This becomes a problem when Countries OWE TOO much.  We’ll tag the scenario described in this paragraph in shorthand as C-OWE-TOO.
Long- term dependence on entitlement programs and public assistance can trick folks into believing that the government spending money (dollars, greenbacks, etc.) on them is their only salvation.  We’ll call this the GREENHOAX EFFECT.  Deficit spending on entitlement programs and public assistance causes C-OWE-TOO levels to rise.  The GREENHOAX EFFECT itself can contribute to a rise in C-OWE-TOO levels because it encourages deficit spending on entitlement programs and public assistance, which can contribute to the GREENHOAX EFFECT.  It’s all a rather vicious cycle, and is the cause for this GLOBAL WARNING.
There are other dangers too; some types of assets are becoming endangered species.  As the sea-of-debt levels rise, governments will be tempted to print more money and pay off what they owe with inflated currency, but this will cause the value of cold hard cash to melt and some investors will face a loss of habitat.  Our entire economic environment is threatened.  In desperation, many people will believe lies and elect charlatans and we will have even more tempests like Superstorm Obama.
So let’s review.  C-OWE-TOO contributes the GREENHOAX EFFECT which causes even more C-OWE-TOO and so on, which is the cause for this GLOBAL WARNING about economic disasters like Superstorm Obama.
Don’t you wish the left would take real threats to our economy as seriously as some bogus theory based upon faulty data?

Misplaced Resentment - Part 2


Misplaced Resentment – Part 2

Every time the price of gas spikes, you’ll hear people griping about the oil companies and how they’re gouging the consumer.  Next time you hear someone spouting off about big oil and their “obscene profits”, ask them, “What would be a fair profit for the oil companies on a gallon of gas?”  A lot of people would be shocked to learn that oil companies make about eight cents profit on a gallon of gasoline.  If you don’t believe me, look it up.  The number does very a little depending upon which source your information comes from, but not a whole lot.  No one with any credibility is saying that big oil is making 30 cents profit per gallon.
It’s easy to get upset over high gas prices, but whom should you get mad at?  Not the oil companies.  In order to get their eight-cent per gallon profit, they have to pay to; explore the world to find the crude oil, drill for and pump the crude oil, transport the crude oil, refine the crude oil, and distribute the gasoline, whether they do these things themselves or hire other companies to do it for them.  Together, federal, state, and sometimes even local governments, are taking up to 40 and sometimes even 50 cents per gallon in taxes, and they did absolutely nothing to bring the gas to market.  Now who’s doing the gouging here?  To make it worse the 8 cent per gallon is an after tax profit, so the government is taking even more when you consider that they are collecting corporate taxes from the oil companies.
Think it’s fair what federal, state, and local governments are taking from you every time you buy gasoline?  There’s even more governments with their fingers in the pie.  Consider this, 94% of the world’s oil fields are not owned by the big oil companies.  They’re often owned by despotic governments who do basically nothing in the production of gasoline except charge for crude oil and the rights to extract it.   Since the price of crude oil accounts for 76% of the price of a gas, we are getting gouged - by the obscene profits of people that don’t really like us all that much.  All the more reason to increase our own domestic energy production.

Calling All Hippies

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Calling All Hippies

            I recently attended a meeting of the Rock River Patriots, my local Tea Party organization.  Most of you who have never attended such meetings probably assume that they would cover topics like the ones you can hear everyday on Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity.  They do, but they also discuss things most people have never even heard of.  It reminded me of my college days, when I signed up for a class because I thought I was an “expert” on the subject and could get an easy “A”.  I quickly found the class would go well beyond the realm of my knowledge.  No easy “A”, but I did learn quite a bit.
            Two of the things that they discussed were Agenda 21 and Codex Alimentarius.  I can’t encourage you enough to look up both of them.  I think they are both good examples of large, complex, global issues that exist, and most of us know nothing about, even though they affect all of us.  I am not going to comment directly on either of these here and now because; I am nowhere near well enough informed on these subjects to do so.  I am going to tell you how I felt about what I saw and heard.
            I arrived late to the meeting so I missed the introduction to a video they were already showing.  (You can watch this same video on You Tube.  It’s titled – Dr. Rima Laibow, Codex Alimentarius Nutricide Criminalizing Natural Health, Vitamins, and Herbs) It took me several minutes to figure out why they were showing this video.  Were they trying to show that this Dr. Laibow character just another goofball liberal running down large corporations, or was she a lover of freedom, warning us about the dangers of a new world order?  It turned out to be the latter and it got me thinking, there might be a lot more people that could be courted into the conservative fold than I ever before thought.
            I was only seven years old when the sixties ended, but I sure heard enough about them in the years that followed.  If I know anything about hippies, it’s that they were all about freedom, mistrust of governments and authority, organic lifestyles, “Down with the Man!” and “Do you’re thing!”  I challenge anyone who either currently agrees with, or ever has identified with, the hippie philosophy or lifestyle, to watch this video and attend some Tea Party Meetings.  If you ever truly believed in the things you claimed you stood for, watch this video and it will show that Codex Alimentarilus is DEAD SET AGAINST ALL OF IT!  At the same time you just might find that the Tea Party folks are just expressing their love of freedom, just like you did when you were marching and protesting all those years ago.
            There are two types of liberals out there, the dyed-in-the-wool lefties and good-hearted people who are truly concerned about the less fortunate.  I appeal to the latter.  I challenge you to do the same, and see if it at least raises some suspicion that the causes you hold dear, have been hijacked and used by organizations that promote power and control, as means to an end that you would never agree with.  Conservatives on the other hand, promote freedom and opportunity.  Which group are you more closely aligned with?
            Civil rights were originally a republican issue.  You all know about the civil rights protests in the South in the early sixties.  The Democrats were the political party that resisted the cause.  Somehow, in later years, the Republicans were caught sleeping and the issue got stolen from them, but it proves that any issue is not necessarily the permanent property of any party.  Everyone should from time to time, cast aside their preconceived notions, take a fresh look at everything with an open mind and realize, who is actually on their side. 
           

Why Am I Doing This?


Why Am I Doing This?

            Four years ago, just before the Tea Party movement started, I came up with the idea of the Golden Geese.  I talked to my wife and some friends about it, and they seemed to think it was a good idea.  But like so many good ideas, it got sidelined as I dealt with the everyday issues of life.  Since then, we’ve seen the passage of the stimulus package, the passing of and the Supreme Court upholding Obama Care, an unemployment rate consistently hovering at about eight percent, out of control federal spending and debt, Fast and Furious, the Benghazi attack, and gun control by executive order.  That’s just off the top of my head.  It would be easy to come up with more.  Notice anything in common here?  IT’S ALL BAD!  I challenge you to come up with anything on the bright side.
            The worst part is, none of this had to happen.  Besides voting, I did nothing to try to prevent it.  In times like these, voting is no longer the minimum requirement.  It’s been proven twice now that our votes are not enough to prevent the damage that’s being done to our country.  We all must start acting now to prevent further damage.  Saying, “There’s nothing I can do about it.”, is just an excuse to nothing.  Think of all the things that are important to you; your property rights, gun ownership rights, your right to say what you want without fear of retribution, a strong economy that provides good jobs, reasonable fuel prices, our national security, our personal and national financial security, the value of our currency, and traditional moral values.  All of these things are threatened.  If you’re not going to take action now, when will you?  It’s so easy to do nothing, but can you afford not to take action now?  Do you honestly think that things can keep going on the way they are without losing most or all of the things that are important to you?  If you lose the things you value most, how will you feel if you didn’t even try to prevent them?
            We can still save our country if we all start acting now.  Imagine what things could be like if we all had acted years ago, and each of us convinced just one person to join our ranks and vote for conservative candidates.  Most or all of the bad things I listed above would have never happened.
            Political parties and political action groups spend millions and millions of dollars trying to win over undecided voters.  In the last presidential election, the percentage of undecided voters was relatively small, so the amount spent per voter swayed was huge.  Kantar’s Campaign Media Analysis Group determined that in the last presidential election, there were about 800,000 undecided voters in the nine swing states, and about one billion dollars was spent on TV ads.  That comes out to about $1000 per persuadable voter.  If one side managed to get fifty percent of them, it would come out to about $2000 spent per vote gained.  Although campaign ads are surprisingly ineffective in terms of votes gained per dollar spent, they’re one of the most effective tools a campaign has to neutralize their opponent’s ads.   What else can a campaign do?  Compared it to war, where even though there is a very low number of enemy soldiers killed or wounded per shots fired, guns are still one of the most effective tools an army has, and the enemy is shooting back.
           
There are a few things that you can do without spending much time or money.  You can be more effective than any campaign ads ever could be.  You can have much more influence on friends, family, and coworkers simply because you know them personally.  People are very open to ideas that appear to be in their best interest, so you don’t have to come across as a campaign worker.  You know who may be open to hearing your point of view, and you know what is important to them.  All you have to do is tell them how conservative policies would have a positive impact on them and how liberal policies can harm them.  Don’t wait until the next presidential campaign to start.  You will have better luck presenting a soft message over the course of time than trying to convert someone on the spot.  Also there will be plenty of important midterm and off year elections coming up in the next few years, some of which you may not be fully aware of, which leads me to my next point.
            Even if you agree with me, it can be hard to get started, especially if you haven’t done anything like this before.  The two biggest problems most people have are lack of information and not knowing how to present their message.  Fortunately, both of these problems are easily solved.
            Getting information is easier these days than ever before, and you are using the tool for getting it right now.  For just sheer volume of up to date information, I believe there is no better place to look than the Drudge Report.  Not is it only constantly updated, it has what I believe are the best links to other good sites, and it’s very easy to navigate.  I plan to eventually have a link to it in the future.
            Another good place for information is conservative talk radio programs and Fox News.  If you have never made it a habit to tune in to types of media outlets, make an effort to do so for at least a month, then compare them to the mainstream media.  You will be amazed at the number of stories you will hear that are not even mentioned by the traditional networks or newspapers.
            As far as presenting your message is concerned, check out your local Tea Party organization.  Not only is it another place to get information, it will give you a first hand look at how to present your message.  If you have not had much experience talking about politics, you will find it easier to practice expressing your ideas with like-minded people.
            I have resolved that I would not let another year go by doing nothing, while our country slips further into the abyss.  That’s why I started this blog.  I am going to fight this battle everyway I can, so even if my side loses, I won’t have to look back someday with shame and wish I would have done something.
           

Misplaced Resentment


Misplaced Resentment

            The left has been using class warfare as a campaign tactic for sometime now.  Why?  Because it works.  It’s easy to get people to resent others who are more fortunate than they are, and parlay that resentment into votes.  Since they won the last two presidential elections, we must conclude that they are good at choosing campaign tactics that work.  Too bad they’re not so good at choosing policies that work once they win.
            Resenting someone, simply because they have more money than you, is not a good quality.  Envy is one of the seven deadly sins, and the tenth commandment says that we shall not covet anything that is our neighbor’s.  For those of you that automatically reject anything connected to with religion, check out my earlier “Barbecue Grill” post.
            It’s hard to not resent the super rich; it almost comes naturally, especially if things are not going that well for you.  Even if you know that you should cast that resentment away, it seems like it can creep up on you whenever you let your guard down.  Maybe we will always have some form of resentment in us that we can never entirely eliminate.  Maybe the best we can hope to do is to manage and control it.  Maybe our problem isn’t resentment itself; maybe it’s misplaced or misdirected resentment.
            Envy is always a bad thing, but resentment is not.  We should resent things that are illegal or immoral, but being rich, in and of itself, is neither of these.  What reason is there, other than envy, to resent the rich?  Can you come up with any instance where a rich person has directly caused you harm?  Maybe, whenever we have any feelings of resentment creep up on us, we should ask ourselves that type of question, which will let us know if the resentment is justified.
            OK, so we all know that we cannot justify resenting someone simply for being rich, what about them not paying their fair share of taxes?  The “rich” already pay the most in federal personal income taxes by far, and even if you don’t believe me or, if you believe me and still don’t think they pay enough, the rich don’t set their own tax rates, the government does.  If you’re going to resent anyone here, look to the folks in Washington D.C.
            How about all those celebrities and athletes?  They aren’t even employers.  Why do they deserve more money than someone who provides jobs and struggles with the challenges of running a business?  The way our economic system rewards individuals with success is based upon supply and demand.  As soon as you introduce subjective notions such as, “who deserves what” into the mix, you start slipping toward having a different type of economic system that doesn’t work as well.  We shouldn’t resent celebrities for the money they make, but when they use their positions to push political agendas and comment on things in which they have no expertise, they’re fair game.
            The people who we should resent are the ones that cause us harm.  This includes:
1)    Criminals – No explanation needed.
2)    Certain politicians – The ones who want to limit our freedoms and take even more of our hard-earned money.
3)    Certain government employees – The ones who receive far better salary and benefit packages than most people in the private sector could ever hope to have, and throw a fit when a debt-laden government asks them for even the smallest concession.
4)    Able bodied people living off the system – It’s not only unfair that they’re doing nothing while we all work to support them, they are essentially stealing resources from people who are truly in need.
5)    The mainstream media – They’re too short sighted to see that their left-biased reporting will in the end, will hurt themselves most of all.


           
           



Intellectual Bullies - They're Not Smarter Than You

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Intellectual Bullies – They’re Not Smarter Than You

            There is a law professor at Georgetown University who has actually been promoting the idea that we should do away with at least parts of the U.S. constitution.  (Does anyone else sense the irony of a law professor suggesting that we abandon the constitution?)  He has a whole list of reasons and historical examples to support his claim, but it’s still a stupid idea.  It’s got to have some merit, doesn’t it?  After all, the man is a professor, so he has to be intelligent.  Right?  He may be, but if intelligence is horsepower, common sense is traction. Every racer knows that all the horsepower in the world is useless, unless you can put that power to the ground, and this guy – he doesn’t appear to have the traction of a set of drag slicks in a snowstorm.
It’s bad enough when someone from the “Occupy Wherever” crowd spouts off such nonsense, but when someone that is supposed to have some credibility proposes something like this, at least two bad things happen:  1) People with big mouths and small brains latch on to the idea and repeat it.  2) People who know better are intimidated because an “expert” promoted the idea.
             Originally, I set out to debunk the professor’s idea, and refute each of his reasons, one by one.  It would be very easy to do.  I have chosen not to because other people have already done that, and the idea is so bad it will probably fade away into obscurity on its own.  Bad as it is, CBS still thought it was worthy of airtime.  I still think it’s worth mentioning, as an example of how bad ideas can become mainstream media stories.  If they get too much attention and not enough criticism, they can become planks in a campaign platform, and then, even worse, our government can enact them.  We’re watching that happen with health care right now.
 Many people, who instinctively know that the professor has a terrible idea, would have a hard time refuting others who parrot his claim. It’s not because they’re stupid.  Sometimes, things we take for granted can be hard to defend simply because you never dreamed that anyone would ever challenge them.  Sure, you could do some research and come up with a perfectly logical, factual argument to support your position, but at the spur of the moment, there’s not time for that.  Sometimes, people know exactly how to rebut a claim, but they fear confrontation and say nothing.  When either of these two things happens, the people making such outrageous statements can end up going unchallenged and winning arguments.
There’s a lot of talk about bullies these days.  Mention the word “bully”, and the classic playground bully usually comes to mind.  He’s the kid who has the reputation for being tough, whether he deserves it or not.  He usually will continue to torment his victims until someone stands up to him.  About the only good news for victims of bullies is, you don’t have to defeat them, you need only stand up to them.  The bully might win the fight, but he will have to fight, and since bullies like to pick the easiest target, he will usually move on to someone else.  Playground bullies in general, do not have a reputation for intelligence, so the process mentioned above, usually must be repeated many times before he learns not to treat others so poorly.
There are different types of bullies, but they all want to impose their will on other people through intimidation.  There are people out there that I refer to as “Intellectual Bullies”.  I’m sure you’re familiar with them.  They will often point out to you, their level of education.  You know, so just in case you didn’t already know that they are superior to you, that graduate’s degree they have will prove it, kind of like how a middle schooler might treat a sixth grader.  The only opinions that matter to them belong to people on their side, with the same level of formal education or higher, and these opinions are to be regarded as facts.  They always have plenty of these “facts” and figures to support their arguments, but don’t question any of it, or you will make them angry.  They feel entitled to win an argument by virtue of their extensive education, and one way or another, they will try to intimidate people who disagree with them.  Never mind if any of it makes any sense, they’re “more educated” than you. 
At this point, I’d like to remind everyone that intelligence, knowledge, and formal education are not interchangeable terms with identical meanings.  There are few things more offensive to me than someone who thinks that they are smarter than anyone who has less formal education than they do.  It implies that school is the only place anyone can learn anything.  This is ridiculous because at some point, everyone eventually finishes school, and what then?  Are you done learning for the rest of your life?  Of course not!  We continue to learn through out our entire lives. You never realize how dumb you were in your twenties until you reach your forties. 
I’m not disparaging education here.  Obviously our colleges and universities play an important role, especially in this high tech age we live in, but for the most part they provide educations related to specific fields.  A brain surgeon does not necessarily have any more expertise in economics for example, than a fireman. Even if someone has a degree in a certain subject, that doesn’t always mean that your opinion has no value compared to his or hers.  You may have relevant experience dealing with the subject. 
In college, you can write a paper presenting a theory that would never work in practice and still get an “A”.  In the real world, if you try something that can’t work, you get burned.  In which case do you think someone might learn a lesson with the most value?
OK, we all know that intellectual bullies aren’t smarter than us, but they’re still out there.  How do we deal with them?  Stand up to them!  Don’t let them get away with it!  Come to the defense of anyone being verbally assaulted by these a-holes!  If you’re not confident about your position on a particular issue, do a little research and get yourself prepared.  It’s not hard to do and doesn’t take long.  And remember, you don’t even have to win the argument, all you need to do is show these clowns a little resistance, they’re not used to that.
We’re never going to rid the world of intellectual bullies.  Many of them eventually figure out that education doesn’t end with college, and they finally learn to treat others with some respect, but a new crop of graduates always replaces them.  We just have to let them know that they’re not going to get away with any of their crap on our playground.

Snow Days


Snow Days

              Sorry for no posts recently, but I was plowing snow.  Unlike many of the people I criticize, I have to work for a living.  (Ever wonder how come the Occupy Wall Street types and the people who protested Scott Walker at the Wisconsin Capitol had so much free time on their hands?)  Anyway, stand by for my next posts.  They’re coming soon and they’re gonna be awesome!