Thursday, August 30, 2007

Nicolaus Copernicus

1473-1543 Astronomer/Scientist

By Richard E. Noble

Nicolaus Copernicus was a Polack in denial. It seems that he would rather have been a German. But there is no recorded historical documentation confirming the notion that Copernicus ever roamed about the streets of his hometown, Thorn on the Vistula, telling dumb Polack jokes. Whether he was proud of it or not, he was born in Polish territory to a Polish father who was, himself, born in Cracow. For some reason none of the biographies that I’ve read seem to want to mention his mother. I’ll bet she was Jewish and nobody wants to admit it.
Nicolaus was obviously a lazy S.O.B. who didn’t want to get a real job. He spent most of his life sucking a free education out of the Roman Catholic Church. He went to school for about twenty-seven damn years. First he studied mathematics, then astronomy, and finally he got off the pot and became a doctor. I’ll bet his mom and dad were happy - though they were probably dead by that time.
Nicolaus, besides being a lazy screw-off who didn’t want to work and sucked up one scholarship after another for his FREE perpetual education, wasn’t really much of a hero either. He had discovered, early on in his free education in math and astronomy that the earth wasn’t really the center of the universe. He figured out, that the earth was actually moving on it axis and in orbit around the sun. So, does he tell anybody about it? Hell no. He sits on the darn information until he is just about to croak. Why? Because he was afraid to get locked in his room for life or get his little tootsies toasted by the Pope and the Inquisition.
It seems that the Church had declared that this guy named Ptolemy who had compiled a book that he called The Almagest, which he basically gleaned and plagiarized from nearly everybody in the scientific world who came before him, was the sole authority on the subject. Ptolemy’s notion that the earth didn’t move and everything else did, supposedly confirmed some story in the Bible. Since the Bible was the revealed word of God Ptolemy had to be right and everybody else wrong. Ptolemy’s version of the universe, or at least our little part of it, had Jupiter and Mars doing hook shots and fast breaks to the right and the left all about the heavens. Nobody at the time had a problem with this because, as many people still contend today, if that’s the way God wants it to be, that is the way it will be, by golly. Copernicus used his trigonometry and his geometry and his astronomy to point out that if the earth were really moving, all of these planetary shenanigans would be logically explainable and confirmable mathematically.
Well, Copernicus got his “De revolutionibus” published on his death bed in 1543 and in just a few short years later, 1838 or so, the Catholic Church finally agreed with him. I don’t know about you, but that certainly gives me hope with regards to the Catholic point of view on birth control, abortion, and pedophilia.
Copernicus was a “liberal”. Worse than that, he was a “humanist°. And the conservative/republicans of his day have Anna Schillings to prove it. What did a sixty five year old, like Copernicus, need a pretty, little, twenty year old housekeeper like Anna for, anyway? Why, it’s Bill Clinton all over again, Yogi. Besides, Copernicus stole most of what he had to say from Plato, Philalaus, and Aristarchus. Liberals, they’re all the same.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Story of My Life

By Clarence Darrow

Book Review

By Richard E. Noble

We don’t hear or read all that much about Clarence Darrow these days. He was clearly what is termed a “liberal”. Actually the American derisive version of the term “liberal” may have been coined in his honor.
Clarence once gave a speech at a prison where he lectured on his theory of the nature and origin of crime and its treatment and cure. When he was done a reporter interviewed some of the prisoners who were in attendance. They all thought that Clarence was a very kind and understanding man but even they, as criminals, couldn’t bring themselves to be quite so understanding about their own criminal natures as Mr. Darrow was.
Though he was an agnostic or even possibly an atheist, he believed in destiny or fate when it came to the determination of an individual’s life. He felt that a man or human being was no more capable of deterring his destiny than a planet hurdling through space could alter its direction or change its course.
If there is a God and consequently a devil, I have no doubt that at the Final Judgment, Clarence Darrow will be on hand to bring before the Almighty the case for the Devil and his right to be evil. I can hear him now: “Didn’t you know, my God Almighty, when you created the devil that he would be evil and do evil things? And since you must have known the devil would be evil when you created him can you truly consider Yourself to be “All Just” in condemning him now? What kind of an omniscient, infinitely loving God are you? What kind of infinite justice are you pretending to practice here anyway?”
Clarence Darrow only defended people. He was called “The Attorney for the Damned”. He never prosecuted. And there is no doubt, if you were in need of defense, Clarence was one man that you wanted on your side.
Clarence was seventy-five when he sat down to write this book and his thoughts and ideas are as clear and cogent as ever. Clarence was certainly the kind of grandfather any child would love to have. There would never be any question of his support and love for you ... ever. Not that he would agree with what you did or why you may have done it - but there is no doubt in my mind that he would be there “in your defense”.
So Clarence believed that everything had a plan, was determined and that we were all subject to our own personal destiny. But he did not believe that there was a “planner”. Nor did he believe that the plan was fair, honest or decent. There was a plan and it was determined but it had no direction; it occurred spontaneously, moment by moment; and it was without moral integrity. It was unjust and arbitrary. It was a plan as devised by an unthinking “mother nature” whose guiding force was science, evolution and chance. That you would end up where you would end up was assured. But your position was not designed by a responsible, thoughtful Nature; nor was it governed by fair play or moral rectitude. It would be the way that it would be and it would be that way whether you liked it or not and regardless of right or wrong.
I guess one would say that Clarence was a fatalist.
I have been reading about the exploits and adventures of Clarence Darrow for a long, long time but always from the viewpoint of another observer. This is the first time that I have read and learned about Clarence Darrow from Clarence Darrow. It was different. As someone once said, an autobiography is never objective and this autobiography supports that allegation. But it was certainly one of the more enjoyable self-defenses or personal evaluations that I have ever read. But I have always enjoyed listening to philosophers expound and generalize on themselves, and their situations.
Make no mistake, Clarence is a philosopher. He is a man of very strong and definite opinions. He doesn’t mince any words in defending what he believes or thinks.
He has a very good way with words. There is kindness, understanding and even poetry in his style.
In this book he goes over many of the important legal cases for which he is famous. I had previously read about all of them; I have read many of his actual defenses but I have never heard about these stories right from the horse’s mouth. This man is so simple in his speech, so logical and so reassuring in the correctness of his stance that it is easy to see how he was so often victorious.
He lost the Scopes case (Monkey Trial) against William Jennings Bryan. Many people even today think that he actually won that case.
He defended union agitators and even the radical IWW and Big Bill Haywood but he supported World War I despite the union and labor movement’s strong opposition.
This book is a descriptive lesson in the art of growing old. It is melancholy; it is thoughtful but sad. It is an old, lovable man saying good-bye to life. The very last chapter is a poem in prose.
I have always been attracted to and admiring of Clarence Darrow. I feel much closer to the man now that I have read the story of his life, narrated in his own words. He was a sentimental, tough, well spoken, simple, logical, compassionate and ardent supporter of the things that he believed and the people whom he loved and befriended during his life. I feel that this man could have been a good friend. Though he has never met me, I feel that I am one of his friends. Like him, I may not agree exactly with everything that he believed but that small distinction does not deter in any way our one-sided friendship.
I like his style. I hope that a bit of him has rubbed off on me.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Herbert Clark Hoover

(president from 1929-1933, 31st)

By Richard E. Noble

Well, Herbie is the third president thus far who is not either a lawyer or General/war hero. Herbie was an engineer. So far our non-lawyer/General presidents are not doing too well. Andrew Johnson was impeached. Warren Harding is credited with the most corrupt administration in American History. And Herbert Hoover?
In his 1928 campaign Herbie predicted the end of poverty in America.
Well, he was no Nostradamus, that’s for sure.
Herbert then “Hooverized America. Herbie introduced Hoover blankets (old newspapers), Hoover wagons (autos being pulled by horses), the Hoover Flags (pockets turned inside out),Hoover leather, newspaper stuffed into worn shoes and Hoovervilles (towns built out of scrap wood, cardboard, and tin – hobo jungles).
Herbert Hoover came into the office of president a self-made millionaire and post War administrative hero. He left as the most hated man in America. Al Capone had more fans than Herbert Hoover. Herbert Hoover was the man who supposedly solved the problem of starvation and food shortages in post World War I devastated Europe, but had no solution for similar problems in Depression ravaged America. I don’t get it. His personal investments must have been European. I know he had investments in both Germany and Russia.
Herbert Hoover seems to me to be symbolic of a type of American whom I’ve met all my life. This is the type who always seems to have compassion for strangers but not for his own. The type who has no problem taking from and demanding of his own, while giving generously and overlooking the inadequacies of strangers. Herbie solved the problem of hunger in Europe, but seems to have been perfectly willing to ignore it in the United States. When he was questioned about all the out of work venders selling apples on the street corners, he concluded that apple selling on street corners must be more lucrative than whatever job it was that these people had previously. Talk about not having a clue! Al Capone supported soup kitchens when Herbert Hoover wouldn’t.
Herbert was known as the theologian of Republican Philosophy. He didn’t believe in Government spending, unless the spending went to war, industry, police or National Guard. When the Stock Market crashed in 1929, his solution was to give a tax cut. He then opposed strongly any Federal relief programs, while granting amnesty to Europe for payment of any debts owed to the U.S. He refused to support international steps to punish Japan for their belligerency towards China, probably still pissed at the Boxers for throwing his and other fat asses out of China. He credits World War II for eliminating unemployment, yet blames the increases in national debt on F.D.R.’s social spending programs.
He is the original ‘trickle down’ man, and like a certain type of human being, has the unique ability to blame the victim. His policies were clear - coddle the rich and beat up the poor. His greatest achievement seems to have been beating up on a bunch of poor veterans and their families who had assembled from all parts of the U.S. in Washington D.C. They were called “The Bonus Army”.
Veterans of World War I were promised a cash bonus as a reward for their courageous exploits in that War. The only problem was that the Congress was going to withhold payment until the year 1945. A bill was before Congress to pay the bonus in 1933, but it was voted down. Herbie sent in our fearless leaders MacArthur, Patton, and Eisenhower to disperse and burn out this ‘Commie’ Red uprising. They did their duty while many lesser American Soldiers, dropped their rifles and refused to attack their own countrymen and fellow veterans. Sounds like America’s Tienemen Square.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Budget Workshop 8/08/07

Editorial Commentary

By Richard E. Noble

[This was a editorial that appeared this past week in The Franklin Cronicle. I think it has significance on a national basis because there seems to be a movement all over the country that is heading in this unfortunate direction. In any case this is a little of what is happening in our tiny neighborhood.]

Due to numerous unsigned irate editorials and a recent inflammatory letter to the editor from the president of The Concerned Citizens of Franklin County to a local newspaper, the annual budget workshop began with a rather dire warning from Chairman Crofton as to order and procedure. Mr. Crofton (and others including myself) were obviously expecting a rather ruckus day of festivities at this years usually boring budget workshop.
The first item on my agenda was to check the security. I was expecting to see the building surrounded with possibly a few FBI snipers on the roof and any number of police with gasmasks in place and brandishing body shields—somewhat as one would see in Miami, Washington D.C. or London, Paris, or Rome at a “secret” meeting of World Bank executives. I was very disappointed to see none but four or five of the usual and ordinary police staff. And none of the attending participants in this “riot” were sporting orange hair or any visible tattoos or body art of any kind. In fact most looked rather well cared for and it would be my guess that none of the attendees had missed too many meals in their recent past. Actually now, in retrospect, this was more like a local chapter meeting of the tenth annual “bean counters” convention in DesMoines, Iowa.
The large old Court House auditorium was reasonably populated but once again, nothing like what I had been led to expect. There were no crowds flowing down the stairway or out onto the sidewalks as I often remember from my riotous days as an oysterman and seafood worker. Not only that but a good many of the crowd were actually County staff members, department heads and helpers, general county workers and a reasonable group of representatives from the various local agencies seeking funds from the County rather than opposed to county spending. But the local tax watch movement was represented, apparently with its most outspoken members being from the Island.
Very much to my great surprise the event appeared to be more of a county worker celebration than a chastisement. Nearly every department head was praised, lauded and given “kudos” for their exemplary service. I was completely befuddled. Even Richard Harper, Vice president of the Concerned Citizens of Franklin County, was full of praise and very warm and inspiring remarks for several of our County Department Heads. I must admit, being the sensitive type that I am, I got a little choked up and a lump came to my throat and a tear to my eye as I listened to Richard heap praise onto Marsha Johnson, Clerk of Courts, Doris Gibbs, Elections Supervisor, and most shocking of all … Sheriff Mock of all people.
Actually there were only three or four areas where I noticed that the tax protestor crowd became somewhat agitated. Most obvious was Mr. Colvert and the much beat-up-on Community Hospital issue—Weems, whether we like it or not is at this moment a “Community Hospital”.
Once again an individual came forward from the audience, without shame or apparent personal self-respect, to criticize the Hospital Board for providing Health care insurance to the doctors, nurses, and other dedicated hospital workers. I realize that I am a horribly unbalanced person, filled with numerous prejudices and unfounded hatreds, but even I in my depravity, and miscreant being as a citizen of this little community find it shameful that we would keep a “Community Hospital” open, even temporarily for business and not expect the management of that facility to provide health care. My God! Sometimes I just can’t believe my ears.
Keep the hospital open or close it down if you like, but managing it with respect to the staff and employees while it is in your care, should be the least the community can do. I put it in a category equal to the humane society and anti-torture legislation. What is done in the name of private enterprise or individual ownership is one thing but what is done in the name of the community reflects upon all of us – not simply the morality of the few or the several for that matter.
The gentleman made the further analogy that since he, in his working career was not provided benefits equal to the Community Hospital staff, why should they be treated so lavishly? If I had that attitude this country would look more like southen Pakistan than the good old USA.
Next this same gentleman was brazen and callus enough to come forward to express his regret that the County Commission had spent “road paving money” on the Weems Hospital and I suppose its blatant “indigent care policies”. Some folks seem to be of the opinion that people who go to the hospital and haven’t the means to pay their bill are somewhat in the category of shoplifters, draft dodgers, or delinquent child support offenders. I am very proud to report that Mr. Crofton at the last County Commission Meeting expressed his opinion that if the decision comes down to one of having a hospital or paving roads, he would choose the hospital.
Mr. Colvert managed to mention that the hospital did service some twelve thousand cases each month and that if the community were to close down the hospital and sell off its assets, they could recoup all of the money spent thus far on the county’s investment in this health care experiment.
What I think of each time this hospital business is brought up, is that day when Mr. Lake came in with tears in his eyes and confessed to the Board and the community that he, the hospital and his company was bankrupt and that he would not be able to meet next week's payroll. Mr. Lake could hardly speak. His wife and daughters were sitting in the courtroom showing their courage and support and balling their eyes out. It was a sad day all around. He had much the same problems that Mr. Colvert seems to experiencing at the present – maybe that all hospitals are experiencing at the present.
But what if the County Commissioners at that point said, “Oh well, get the helicopters and the life flight crews over here and close that baby down. Obviously this town can’t afford a hospital.” You can say what you want but I think that we would have had some riotous days at the next few Board meetings. So I would say that it appears to be one of those “damned if you do and damned if you don’t” type deals. One way or the other some folks are left unhappy.
The next individual to somewhat prickle the hair on the necks of the locally maligned, disgruntled, overburdened and belching who were present was Doris Pendleton, Property Appraiser. She was not praised, “kudoed”—nor did she receive a round of applause when she was through. She was the only department head via the State mandated 9% budget requirement reduction to actually be forced to fire an employee. But she did and she was very unhappy. She expressed her regret publicly, much to her credit as a human being. She added that to do so was the worst thing that she ever had to do in her life.
Mr. Lockley then asked Ms. Pendleton if she couldn’t go back over her numbers and see if she could find a way to meet the reduction without firing anyone. At that point a heckler from the back of the room yelled out, “Why don’t you pay her salary, Mr. Lockley?”
Mr. Lockley rather inappropriately yelled back, “Why don’t you.”
To which there was a chorus of, “We do”, from the same area.
I wondered why this group of shallow minded hecklers presumed that Mr. Lockley wasn’t a taxpayer also? I also wondered why they felt the right to use the term “we” in uttering their insensitive remarks. They certainly weren’t speaking for me or given the right by any franchise that I am aware of to voice their personal opinion on behalf of the entire taxpaying community. I am sure that the young lady who was just dismissed pays taxes too.
There was a question of a $39,000 budget entry. This was obviously confusing. Doris Pendleton explained that this entry was some sort of state mandated requirement that had to be put in one place and then deducted in another which therefore made it of no pertinent significance to her spending. This was clearly not clear and nobody got it except possibly the accountants who may have been in attendance.
Ms. Pendleton went on to explain that her budget had to be certified to the State and thus the confusion and different format followed by her department.
People from the audience then came forward to present the case for zero based budgeting and itemization of expenses. I really thought that both of these suggestions were great ideas. I also thought how wonderful it would be if we could have this group go to Washington D.C. on behalf of Franklin County. If this type of scrutiny were placed on our federal legislators and the current administration I would guess that nobody would be getting fired in Franklin County or any other county for that matter.
Zero based budgeting requires a budget formulator to justify his/her spending on a year to year basis and not beginning with last years totals.
One citizen asked if Ms. Pendleton could itemize her spending to justify her totals. No one prior to Ms. Pendleton had been requested to meet this standard or make such a presentation.
Ms. Pendleton then stated that she was prepared to make such a presentation but added that if she was demanded to do so, she would expect that the same requirement would be asked of all the other department heads. This remark by Ms. Pendleton actually received a round of applause from the disgruntled.
The discussion then went off on a tangent and Ms. Sanders suggested that next year the County budget may be required to be cut by as much as 25 to 50 percent. I don’t know if this is a true and accurate prediction or where Ms. Sanders is getting this notion but if it is true, may I be the first to suggest that we had all better get ourselves ready to experience a major recession in the State or nation. Because if there is anyone out there who is under the impression that a 50% cut can be made in government spending without serious repercussions throughout this nation and this economy you better start boning up on your economics. It ain’t going to happen. It won’t be allowed to happen.
If it has taken twenty years for government to grow it will probably take that many years of gradual cutbacks to get it back to where you think it belongs. Large cutbacks in the government are like large cutbacks in the military or anywhere else, they are easier said than done and they are not necessarily a good thing, economically speaking.
Then we were back to the $39,000 that was in the budget but really wasn’t in the budget. Ms. Pendleton then suggested that if anyone doubted her on this issue, they could call the State Department of Revenue … Kathy Collins, 338-4448. Ms. Collins is the person who handles Ms. Pendleton’s budget before it goes to the Department of Revenue.
Unfortunately the County Engineer was not present to speak in his own behalf. If there was anything positive to be said in defense of the need for his professional services, I didn’t hear it. Alan Piece did offer some valiant phrases but Mr. Rothwell’s future looks dim.
This seemed to please the crowd at the “Coliseum”. Several people came forward to speak of their knowledge as employers but none spoke to their knowledge of the responsibilities of employers. None spoke of severance pays, the disservice being done to Mr. Rockwell, his family, and his life; or his probable financial loses due to the Community’s lack of commitment and irresponsibility. I hope Mr. Rockwell didn’t buy an overly expensive home when he arrived here. In today’s real estate market place, he will probably lose his shirt if he has to sell. Unfortunately Mr. Rockwell isn’t a box of paperclips or an idled police cruiser, or a bucket of paint. And he wasn’t just a “low-level” peon. His position was discussed and supposedly “researched” before he was put on the staff.
Frugal fiscal policy, freezes, wage caps and the rest of it are certainly inline. But disrupting people’s lives and firing anonymous or dedicated employees should not be subject to the selfish mutterings of a vindictive outspoken minority. Because a super-wealthy group of greedy, money making speculators inflated the real estate market all over the nation and the world, taking advantage of the inadequacies of the system to add to their super-wealth is no reason to run around beating up on the poor working population – even if they work for the “government”.
I’m not really sure if here on the local level there is a lot of “fat” to be cut. It seems that we are already in some mighty lean areas – like hospitals, staff, secretaries and whatnot. I wouldn’t exactly call this “fat’ or “profligate spending”. People who truly want to save taxpayer dollars ought to be reserving bus tickets for a trip to Washington D.C. or for a trip to the Pentagon – talk about trickle down! Some folks around here need to wake up! Actually a little bus trip to Tallahassee might even be more appropriate.
And last but not least, there came Sheriff Mock.
The Sheriff received a good deal of adulation, I must say, contrary to all the whispers and negative rumors that I have been hearing. Individual citizens came forward to praise his accomplishments and to speak to his benefit. But his budget was nevertheless confusing. The Sheriff seems to have so many different pockets and spending areas to contend with. There’s the prison and the department of corrections and auxiliary staffing and regular staffing and one thing after another.
The Sheriff brought his book keeper along as did Mr. Chipman from the road department. People were asking questions of the Sheriff that I know had already been answered months ago in the Chronicle. I know because I wrote them. One such question related to the profitability of our community taking on state prisoners. The Sheriff was asked to bring in that number weeks ago and he did. Our Communities absorption of state prisoners was so profitable to this community in terms of expenditures and funds received in return from the State, that Mr. Mock had even suggested absorbing 40 more state prisoners to pay for an addition to the jail or prison complex or whatever.
He too had met his required cuts by not hiring replacements for retiring officers and cutting back on services etc.
Before getting into the non-governmental and charitable outlays, Mr. Harper of the Concerned Citizens of Franklin County stood and announced to the Board that his group would not criticize any of these allotments and that they would leave these decisions to the consciences and discretion of the elected officials.
That was indeed gracious of Mr. Harper and the self-appointed guardians of the community welfare and county moral commitment. I thought for sure that we were going to lose our humane society contribution or our “meals on wheels” for the elderly.
All of these type contributions were nevertheless cut by the mandatory 9%. The worst hit was the Boys and Girls Clubs who if I am not mistaken lost about $50,000.
Was everybody satisfied with the cuts and reductions? I don’t think so. Nobody likes paying taxes – any kind of taxes.

Friday, August 17, 2007

The Bible

“Challenging the Bible”

By Robert G. Ingersoll

By Richard E. Noble
“Challenging the Bible” is a book edited by Dean Tipton and consists of a series of selections from the writings and speeches of Robert G. Ingersoll.
Robert Ingersoll was a politician, lawyer and a wealthy, prominent public speaker in the post Civil War period in the United States. He served as attorney general in the state of Illinois. He was also a popular spokesman in presidential campaigns for the Republican Party. Because of his outward and bold opposition to religion and belief in God in general, he became know as the “Great Agnostic”.
This book deals with some of his public opinions with regards to the Bible. “Moses was not the author of the Pentateuch” (first five books of the Old Testament) claims Mr. Ingersoll on page eleven and from that point on the onslaught rages forth.
“No one knows the author of “Judges”; no one knows the author of “Ruth”; no one knows the author of First and Second Kings or First and Second Chronicles; the Psalms were not written by David; and Solomon did not write Proverbs or the Song; Isaiah was not the author of the book bearing his name and no one knows the author of Job, Ecclesiastes, Esther or of any book in the Old Testament with the exception of Ezra; and Ecclesiastes was written by an unbeliever
“We know, too, that the Jews themselves had not decided as to what books were inspired - were authentic - until the second century before Christ.”
Mr. Ingersoll goes on to criticize the Bible not only for its historical inaccuracies and mis-claims but for its scientific ineptness. Mr. Ingersoll believes that if the Bible were truly the inspired word and direction of the Creator of the Universe - certainly its Creator should know its proper workings.
“There are two accounts of the creation in the first and second chapters (and they are at odds with one another) ... Is it well to teach children that God tortured the innocent cattle of the Egyptians? ... Does it make us merciful to believe that God killed the firstborn of the Egyptians - the firstborn of the poor and the suffering people - of the poor girl working at the mill - because of the wickedness of the king? ... We know if we know anything that this book was written by savages - savages who believed in slavery, polygamy and wars of extermination.”
It is clear that Mr. Ingersoll does not believe the Bible to be “inspired” or to represent the “truth” and the “way”. He considers the Bible to be of pagan origin and extremely Godless - in fact on several different occasions he says; “Was Jehovah god or devil?” Mr. Ingersoll asks this question, not once, but continually through the book.
He says that there never was a captivity and we know this because there are no Hebrew words in the Egyptian language; nor Egyptian words in the Jewish language.
“Who wrote the New Testament?” asks Mr. Ingersoll.
“Christian scholars admit that they do not know ... The first mention that has been found of one of our gospels was made about one hundred and eight years after the birth of Christ ... The four gospels do not agree. Matthew, Mark and Luke knew nothing of the atonement, nothing of salvation by faith. They knew only the gospel of good deeds - of charity. They teach that if we forgive others God will forgive us ... With this the gospel of John does not agree. In that gospel we are taught that we must believe on the Lord Jesus Christ; that we must be born again; that we must drink the blood and eat the flesh of Christ. In this gospel we find the doctrine of atonement and that Christ died for us and suffered in our place.
The fact is that the Ascension of Christ was not claimed by his disciples ... At first Christ was a man - nothing more. Mary was his mother, and Joseph his father. Then the claim was made that he was the son of god, and that his mother was a virgin and that she remained a virgin until her death.
“We do not believe in the miracles of Mohammed and yet they are as well attested as this (miracles of Jesus Christ). We have no confidence in the miracles performed by Joseph Smith and yet the evidence is far greater, far better.”
Mr. Ingersoll does not think all that highly of the philosophy of Christ - Resist not evil. If smitten on one cheek turn the other.
“No man has the right to protect himself, his property, his wife and children,” says Mr. Ingersoll. “Government becomes impossible and the world is at the mercy of criminals. Is there any absurdity beyond this?”
Love your enemies.
“Did Christ love his (enemies) when he denounced them as whited sepulchers, hypocrites and vipers? Not to resist evil is absurd; to love your enemies is impossible ... Only the insane could give or follow this advice.”
On the inspiration of the Bible, Mr. Ingersoll has this among other things to say: “Not before about the third century was it claimed or believed that the books composing the New Testament were inspired ... It will be remembered that there were a great number of books of Gospels, Epistles and Acts, and that from these the “inspired” ones were selected by “uninspired” men ... The truth is that the Protestants did not agree as to what books are inspired until 1647, by the Assembly of Westminster.”
It is obvious that Mr. Ingersoll knew his Bible. I must admit; I do not. As a child I was not encouraged to read the Bible. I was told that it was too confusing and its interpretation was the work of scholars. But hearing over and over that it was the greatest book ever written I decided to read it. I read it one time from cover to cover when I was still in my teens. It may be true that it is or was inspired by God but I did not find it inspirational myself - and I felt if it were the work of a God, it certainly was not my God.
I personally felt, and still feel today, that Les Miserable by Victor Hugo was considerably greater and a good deal more inspiring - at least for me.
I was drawn to my religious curiosity not by the Bible but by the notion of God and the idea of a Creator. I felt that if there was truly a Creator of this Universe there should exist at least some rational arguments establishing that notion to my satisfaction.
I began that endeavor as a teenager and I am still actively pursuing proof of that notion today. As of yet I have not been able to do so. And this has been sufficient occupation without any investigation into any Holy Books
I have decided to read more of the Bible today only because it is being touted in so many different venues and with such passion that I feel more knowledge on this subject is necessary for my basic understanding of what seems to be the cause of much of the consternation, killing and havoc mounting in the world around us today.

Monday, August 13, 2007

A Regular Guy


By Richard E. Noble

Many, many years ago I was watching the Bill Cosby Show. As Most of you probably remember “The Bill Cosby” show was a situation comedy. Mr. Huckstable (Cosby) was a successful Doctor - a pediatrician - and his wife was a successful lawyer. This was a great show; one of the funniest shows ever - and with a message.
This show was clearly designed to influence and promote a positive black image in America - an upscale image. At the time “The Jeffersons” and their “movin’ on up and finally getting a piece of the pie” was the prevailing image. The Jefferson’s was a step or two above Amos and Andy and Cosby was - to most white Americans - a fantasy.
Today we see black lawyers and doctors everywhere but back in those “good old days” I would guess that most white Americans never saw a black lawyer or Doctor in their entire life. Not only hadn’t they ever seen either - they probably believed that such a possibility was genetically impossible. Even as late as the 1950’s and 1960’s there were books being written about the genetic inequalities of Backs. They were slightly more sophisticated than those written before the Civil War and the Reconstruction period but the message was the same - “they weren’t created that way”.
But Cosby and his bright and attractive TV wife made it all very believable - except to a few guys who were still peeking out from under white bed sheets and burning crosses out in the woods.
I loved the show and watched it every week. But of all the episodes there is only one that I remember to this day. I have been mulling it over now in my mind for twenty or thirty years it seems.
The plot of the episode was about when his teenage boy decides that he is going to drop out of high school or not go to college. He explains to his dad that he just wants to become a “regular guy”.
Cosby then proceeds to confront the young man with the perils of attempting to live a life in this modern day America as a “regular guy”. He lays the whole thing out for junior in plain and simple economics. And he proceeds to demonstrate that the young man could not even afford to live as he now lives in his parent’s home with the amenities provided there on the salary of a “regular guy”. He could not have the tapes and the music; he couldn’t have the nice clothes; he couldn’t live in a home of his own; he couldn’t drive a late model car; he couldn’t eat out in restaurants; he would never be able to have any of the things that he had already learned to enjoy and take for granted.
Even though I am one of those regular guys and have been a regular guy all my life, I supported the message that Mr. Huckstable was providing to his naive child. I was not only a regular guy myself but I was the son of a regular guy who was also the son of another regular guy. We all lived in regular apartments in regular neighborhoods. We wore regular clothes (sometimes irregular clothes). We ate regular food and did regular things. I hung out with the regular children of other regular people. And for the rest of my life I worked at a regular job next to hundreds and thousand and millions of other regular working stiffs. My own dad warned me about becoming a regular guy like himself - but that was different from Mr. Cosby, a non-regular guy, giving what appeared to be similar advise.
My father didn’t want me to grow up to be a “regular guy” either. He wanted me to become somebody - somebody like the person he always wanted to become but didn’t or couldn’t. But nevertheless I became a regular guy. I was never ashamed of it. I always wished that I could have done better but that’s how it goes. We all can’t become “somebody”.
My problem with that Cosby episode was that Mr. Huckstable did the job of putting down “the regular guy” a little too well. I felt that being a regular guy in Mr. Huckstable’s eyes was something not only disgraceful, foolish and silly but just plain stupid.
A regular guy was a laughable moron. He was more than stupid - he might even be considered disgraceful or shameful. It is the lot in life put aside for those who don’t care; who don’t try; who are lacking in intelligence and ambition. It is the American version of the old Indian “untouchable” class. I felt like the “regular guys” were no longer the G I Joe’s or the Bill and Andy of the World War II era - the guys who won the war. They were no longer the tough rugged guys that Bill Maldon and Ernie Pyle wrote about and immortalized in their books and cartoon strips. Can you imagine an army with no privates or enlisted men and only Pattons and Macarthur’s - my god! The “regular guy” to Mr. Huckstable seemed to me to be the new neutral colored Amos and Andy - us regular guys were all a sad and sorry joke.
We were no longer the Paul Bunyons who cleared the forests; we were no longer the Casey Joneses who drove the steam engines; we were no longer the John Henry’s who were the steel drivin’ men who laid the railroad tracks across America; we were no longer those heroic but pitiable strong men that toted that barge and lifted that bail and got a little drunk and, yes, even landed in jail. We weren’t even the vagabond propagators like Johnny Appleseed and the Zippidy Dudahs who skipped and laughed our way through life with wise tales about common folks and common things. And what about those romantic hoboes who road the rails and fought for the rights of “regular guys” to earn a regular living? We weren’t even Rosie the Riveter - a female regular guy.
What about Davy Crockett, Jim Bowie and Daniel Boone - weren’t they regular guys who just went off “wrastled” the bears and settled the west? What happened to “the Waltons” and “I Remember Mama” - with Papa and his industrial lunch pail? That wise old Papa who spoke in broken English and was the hero of his regular children who lived in their little rented apartment.
But you know even in the new Global economic world 80% of the workers in our society are still regular non-college graduates doing regular jobs for regular wages. For every supervisor there are a hundred to be supervised; for every plant manager there are a thousand plant nobodies; for every oil company executive there are a million mom and pop gas station operators; for every gated community there are a thousand middle-class neighborhoods and a hundred slum neighborhoods.
For most “regular guys” becoming a regular guy was not a preferred choice or even a matter of choice. It just happened. Not too many regular guys sat down with an advisor and chose “regular guy” out of a vocational handbook. For that matter nobody said that they would prefer to be born in a slum or to abusive parents or into poverty. Despite all the Horatio Alger hype these days, the majority of regular people come from other regular people and will remain regular people all their lives.
Most poor and average regular guys work very hard all their lives just trying to maintain that status. There will never be a shortage of regular guys and regular people and even if you educate all the children of the world and make them all qualified to be physicists all that will do is upgrade the intellectual caliber of dishwashers, and truck drivers and garbage men. As long as the world has a majority of regular jobs that must be done there will have to be a supply of regular guys to do them.
All the “wise men” and the Best and Brightest should be very thankful for all of us regular guys because if we were all as bright and wise as they, most of those folks would all probably have to settle for being “regular guys” just like us. Wouldn’t that be a shame?

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Mein Kampf Chapter 9

Meditations on the Military Industrial Complex

By Richard E. Noble

Two things occur to me at this point. The military industrial complex, what is it? And secondly, is peace a realistic possibility or is war inevitable?
Isn’t the notion that War is inevitable the whole premise of this book, Mein Kampf?
After World War I probably the strongest peace movement that the world had ever experienced took hold. The world was appalled by the tragedy of World War I and most people never wanted to see such a thing happen ever again. But the talk of peace bored the belligerent and enraged the militants like Adolf who saw peace only possible through dominance. It also threatened the livelihood of the wealthiest manufactures in the world, those who produced war goods and materials.
The Military Industrial Complex?
In the name of protection and self defense, national manufacturers produce weapons that will counter any possible aggression. During times of conflict this type of production is stepped up to a point where it becomes the main industry of a nation, employing millions. What industry in terms of production could compete with the weapons industry? In what other industry do you manufacture something which is then immediately destroyed, and because of the circumstances, instantly re-demanded, and at whatever the price?
People are employed by the weapons industry. The products that they produce are then blown up; money is then taken from the paychecks of the workers within this industry (taxes), and reinvested in more bombs to be blown up once again. Money is also contributed to this industry from all other, even non-related industries, liberally and freely for the cause of the survival of the nation.
Now, the war stops. What do we do? We close down these industries and return to consumer production? But millions of workers are then displaced. No consumer industry can compete with an industry, in terms of production, that blows up its product, almost as soon as it is manufactured. Unemployment is the result. Consumer goods are also subject to supply and demand, and their price fluctuates. Wages and profits in consumer industries cannot compete with an industry whose wages and profits are without any natural controls. The bombs must be manufactured and paid for. This is necessity. The only restraint on profits is the conscience and patriotism of the industrialist manufacturer. The restraint on wages is somewhat better. The supply and demand of workers comes into play, along with the pleas to conscience and patriotism. But wages can always be higher in this type industry because profits are almost without controls. The only control is the government, and the possibility of it exhausting the finances of the people of the nation. But if the finances of the Nation are being supplied by the taxes being collected on the wages and profits of the Armament industry there is no end to the cycle of prosperity except for the horrible outbreak of ... PEACE!
This was Adolf’s biggest fear, and eventually one of Adolf’s biggest backers was Krupp Industries. But, if the government gets its money from the taxpayers and the taxpayers are getting their money from industries that are getting their money from the government, where does the government get all of this money?
The bombs are not sold to anyone, they are simply exploded. The money that is being supplied in this cycle is actually pieces of printed paper that the government itself prints in the form of bonds that its sells to other citizens and now foreigners. It really has no backing. It cannot be redeemed for gold or silver or precious metal or jewels but only more and other varied pieces of paper.
But, wait a minute, actually it can be. With money you can buy gold and silver and jewels at the free market place, at a price in paper determined by the faith shown in that paper on an international money exchange. If it is not a reserve of gold and silver that backs up the pieces of paper that a government prints, what determines the quantity of paper money that a government can print? This sounds like the old nursery rhyme Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers, to me. But in any case, we have governments all over the world printing paper money, with different value equivalents that are accepted by other countries on the basis of what? Faith? Hope? ... What?
A foreign country will accept our currency because even if other countries refuse to accept it as money, they can then use our government’s printed money to buy our country; its land, its capital goods, its industries. So, in this case, what is really backing up a government’s printed paper is the Country itself. Its physical existence. But then every country is actually in jeopardy of loosing its very soil to a more acceptable foreign currency, and possibly a more powerful, or should I say wealthy, foreign government – without anyone firing a shot.
Can a country that can be bought and sold to foreign investors really maintain its nationhood?
Well, a country could pass a law stating that with its money a non-citizen cannot buy the actual soil and buildings of their country. They can not purchase real property. They can only buy goods and services from that country. But if a country does this would it not cause the value of its money to be decreased in international faith because now the spendability of their money, its real value, has been limited?
So then by printing money with no backing, countries are actually putting their homeland up for sale. But if you buy that homeland what can you do with it? You then have to control the government of that country. If the government is rooted in a democracy or has a direct controlling linkage to its citizenry, then controlling its government becomes more difficult. But if the government is a dictatorship, or a powerful Oligarchy, then you could choose a more direct route. Rather than trying to buy up a country lot by lot, acre by acre, you simply have to buy off the man or group who control the government, and of course its military. As for buying up a foreign country, or even buying up its government you must then always withstand the risk of internal revolution. If you had this power why would you want to own a foreign country - a country that can not be bound to you by race, nationhood or patriotism? You would probably only want to own this country surreptitiously, for the purpose of some sort of strategic gain against and enemy or for the extraction of some sort of needed or necessary commodity, or to repopulate it and expand your own nationhood.
So what have we come to with regards to the value of printed money?
Governments print money. The real value of this printed money depends on its foreign and domestic acceptance. Its foreign and domestic acceptance depends on its power to buy goods and services and real property throughout the world, and within the country of its origin. It also depends on the power and ability of the printing government to control its population against internal revolution, and external aggression. So the value of a Country’s money also is dependent upon the stability of its government. The stability of its government is then linked to its internal popular support among its citizens, and its internal and external security forces. So can we then conclude that a powerful military and police force is essential to a stable economy, and that the strength of your country’s money may be involved in the strength and actual sovereignty of your individual nation?
It would seem to me that it would be a lot less involved and complicated to back up a government’s money with gold or silver or whatever than to actually put the soil and substance of your nation on the line. But once again, I must admit I have a very limited understanding of economics and money.
The problem with gold and silver, as I see it, is that they limit expansion. Devaluation can only go so far before it looses all relevance – for example 1 million pieces of paper being worth one once of gold. With gold and silver how does a country expand its economy to meet the demands of increased population or expanding production? If capital is not expandable, businesses will come and go as grains of salt in a saturated solution and growth will be stagnant. Businesses simply compete for dollars in circulation. They do not create wealth. For an economy to be unlimited the money supply must be unlimited (elastic). There must be more and more money available and in a constant progressive supply.
At the end of World War I and at the time of Mein Kampf the German internal and external forces were in a shambles and its money was in the state of escalating inflation, or worthlessness. So, who or what was running Germany at the time of the rise of the Adolf revolution?
Winston Churchill expressed in his analysis of the times his lack of understanding of Adolf’s outrage over the reparations and demands of the treaty of Versailles. He says that the United States at the time was loaning Germany more than enough money to pay all of its debts and reconstruct its country and its industries to boot while still demanding payment for its loans from its allies. At this time the United States had nearly all of the gold reserves in the world, and nearly every nation in the world was in debt to the United States due to loans made to them during the war. So it seems the United States had virtually all the marbles in the neighborhood. If it wanted to have anybody to play with, it had to give some marbles away in terms of more loans or forgive somebody’s debt.
Like in the game of monopoly the United States had everybody landing on its hotels and houses. No matter which way anybody moved they landed on U.S. controlled property and owed the U.S. money. So the U.S. had to redistribute its collected marbles, and forgive debts, or nobody could play the game anymore.
So they did. But my question is why did it give inordinate child support and welfare payments to the country that had given birth to World War I; the very country that it had just defeated in a bloody, horrible war - a war that had devastated most of Europe; a country against whom they themselves had declared war and sent their own children in the millions to die fighting against?
If we presume, for the sake of fantasy, and indulge in the oversimplistic notion of conspiracy, and say that World War I was in fact a trumped up war instigated and manufactured by the super-wealthy and the capitalist governments that they controlled, in response to the socialist worker revolutions that were taking place in all of the industrialized nations of the world, then a certain sensibleness does begin to reflect on this situation.
The international Capitalist manufacturers and bomb merchants were not mad at Germany. Germany was more or less simply a pawn in their game; the game being to disorganize and disarm the World Socialist Labor movement and divert their army through loyalty and patriotism to their individual nations by involving their countries in a War. But the propaganda against the Super-wealthy world capitalists had not been defeated by the efforts of World War I; in fact they had gained a certain amount of strength. The Russians Marxist or Communists (the Socialist Labor Movement), by the time of the publication of Mein Kampf, had murdered the Tzar, and taken over the government of one of the largest populations of the world. And the philosophy of their Government was basically the antithesis of the established order. The World peasant revolt had begun; a world Magna Carter was in the awakening; a national anti-industrialist Capitalist revolt had been consolidated and formed into a national government (Russia).
By the end of World War I the international Capitalist and bomb manufactures had backed the challengers to their thrown into a corner. The Enemy of the established order of wealth was the New State of Russia. Now if War produces wealth for us as industrialists, Capitalists and bomb merchants how do we turn the tide on the Russians? Why would we want to waste time beating up on the defeated Germans when the Russians had now emerged with the banner of anti-capitalist revolution?
We are now at war with Russia, but we have a problem. How do we turn the armies of our own countries against the anti-capitalist government of Russia when large sections of our own populations agree with their prophesies and speculations. In fact, American troops that were in Russia at the time of the end of World War I were ordered to attack the Russian revolutionary army, and the soldiers refused. The soldiers said that their enemy was Germany, and Germany had surrendered, and now we want to go home and not get involved in a Russian civil war.
If we look at the situation in this light, it does make sense to rebuild Germany and re-establish its power. The Germans are fierce fighters and a natural enemy of the Russians. The Russians have taken a course to destroy the international kings or rulers of the world. We now have two enemies. An enemy of Socialist reactionaries within our own countries, supporting a movement against the kingdom of the wealthy super industrialists and war manufacturers, and the whole nation of Russia that is now under the control of those who seek to kill and destroy us, our power, our control, our wealth, and the system that has brought us to this favorable position.
Next, one must ask, who controls the government?
In a Capitalist society, I think that most will agree that the rich and powerful control the government for the most part. So then what is left to place restraints on the profits of the war time military manufactures? If the Military manufactures now become the biggest and most powerful employer and manufacturer in the nation, and thus the biggest influence within the government, then who is there to regulate the prices and controls on these bombs? Do we not have the foxes guarding the chicken coop?
I realize that this is an over-simplification, and that in a Democratic society we have the influences of the general voting public. We have the information supplied by a “free press”. And we have the complaints and competition coming from the legitimate consumer industries. But what happens when the rich and powerful Military industries buy up troublesome consumer industries, and the major newspapers, as was the accusation before and during World War I, which precipitated the world interest in Marxism and the rise in Socialism and radical Communism, not to mention the desertion of the Russians from the battlefields of Europe and the elimination of the Russian Tzarist traditional government? And what happens when armament industries during periods of reduced conflict form international alliances? As for example was the case with Krupp industries.
After World War II an attempt was made to dissolve Krupp (Nuremberg Trials) but it was determined that “its tentacles” were spread so far and wide throughout the world economy that it would be impossible to dissolve Krupp without disrupting, in some significant way the economy of the whole world. And, of course, the legal ramifications of trying to determine who owned what, was so far reaching as to be deemed impossible. Then again this might just have been a polite way of saying; if we investigate all the tentacles of Krupp will expose too many of our own home businesses and other businesses in the free world that were also profiting from the death and destruction of their own countrymen. In other words to fully expose Krupp Industries would then expose the international nature of the “Merchants of Death” - those businesses, industrialists, bankers, and marketeers who profited from the death and destruction of War - any war.
Learning these factors to be at minimum, one of the causes leading to World War I, what steps have been taken to assure that these factors will or would not continue to be a problem in world affairs today? What controls do we have here in the United States over our own armament industry to assure that it is not an influence in promoting War for profit? What controls do we have over its potential international expansion, which could reduce its loyalty to the nation and lead it on a road to higher profits through precipitated conflict, rather than its traditional role and purpose as a national defense mechanism?
Who owns our present day armament industry and what share do they own in our national media? What assurances have we installed in our media enterprises to guarantee a freedom of our press?
What connection does our armament industry have with our national Military services, our Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Pentagon? Are these independent organizations working cooperatively, or are they an integrated unit?
Is our Armament industry a corporation whose shares are distributed in the international market place?
What controls do we have on international corporations that are involved in the security and defense of our nation?
We continue to have war after war after war, but have we set any system in place to learn the causes of these conflicts and suggest possible methods for their prevention in the future?
We have Military Academies that teach war, do we have any such Academies teaching or seeking the prevention of war? Certainly this cause is equal to the other and just as important to our national security.
Can we assume from looking at our institutions or the institutions of any of the nations of the world that they are seriously concerned with the prevention of War and the promotion of peace?
If peace is truly our goal shouldn’t a part of our enormous military budget be going to the purpose of preventing future conflicts and promoting peace? Or are we living presently in a world that is virtually controlled by the descendants and promoters of the philosophy of the author of Mein Kampf?
Germany lost World War I, but its Armament industry was not defeated, nor were the Armament industries of the rest of the world. The industry continued to prosper worldwide after the First World War. The movement towards peace suffered a humiliating defeat with the return of hostilities of the Second World War. The philosophy of peace and its defeat worldwide is pretty much captured in one word . . . “Munich”. Munich put an end to the “stupidity” and naivete of seeking peace in the eyes of the world.
Again Germany was defeated in World War II, but the Armament Industry emerged worldwide strong and prosperous.
With the emergence of the cold war and the advent of the Atomic bomb and the nuclear arms race it precipitated, the bombs and bullet manufactures have grown to be without question the biggest and securest industry in the world. But how can it continue to grow? What does it do with its inventory in periods of non-conflict? How does it keep manufacturing new and advanced products? How can it continue to grow and expand? How does it keep up its payroll and growing number of employees?
There is only one way. It must sell off or continue to explode its inventory.
Trade in weapons is now the biggest business in the world, and small seemingly controlled conflicts are a daily routine. We have a professional army and no spot on the globe is not within the concept of our national security. The U.S. has a military presence of one kind or another in over two thirds of the nations of the world (approx. 168 of 200 nations).
The Military Industrial Complex? Is this not the industry of which President Eisenhower warned us? Are we now in the horrible economic position of the continuing necessity to feed the beast? And feed our sons and daughters, like the virgins of old, to the all powerful, all consuming dragon or volcano god of War?
And is this not the exact situation Adolf found himself in, once in control of his Military Government? And if this is the case how can we escape the paranoia of the Munich Syndrome, and move from the inevitability of War into a prosperous and economically productive peace?
Can we turn peace into an industry that will pay the dividends of a war economy?
How can we make creation and not destruction the goal? How can we replace industries that feed on destruction with industries that feed on creativity?
What tools do we need to wage this battle on a worldwide basis? What knowledge must be uncovered? What philosophy is there to counter the philosophy of Mien Kampf? The philosophy of War has defeated the philosophy of Peace. Those who believe in peace must dig deeper. They must find an answer and it must have economic consequences. It must be profitable.
If ‘money’ is in reality simply a printable commodity of governments of the world, used and accepted to purchase labor in the consequence of producing weapons (among other things) whose sole purpose is to be blown up or destroyed, why couldn’t this cycle be expanded to anything? I mean, isn’t this the ultimate ‘boondoggle’?
Why as a nation couldn’t we employ people to work in factories designed by Rube Goldburg, making products with no purpose or function, other than employing people? This would certainly be better than employing people for the purposes of blowing up other people, and creating and promoting an industry founded on hate, paranoia, and hysteria.
Why couldn’t we produce medical goods and pharmaceutical goods to be sold to the countries of the world to cure and help their sick and diseased, or food products?
But you say people or countries that do not have food do not have the money to buy these products. So loan it to them, lend lease? This is how we financed Word War II. And how do they pay us back? They don’t. We eventually forgive their debts, just as we did after World War II with all of our allies.
And on another point it seems that even the most destitute countries in the world have or find the ability to procure weapons, bombs and all of the necessary means to destroy themselves and those around them. Where do they get this money?
Why couldn’t we sell construction equipment in the same way that we proliferate weapons?
Space seems like a wonderful, limitless area to dump money and promote work projects for the people of nations. Food production and techniques, medical research and pharmaceutical production, Space, Scientific research, literature, the arts, education these are all areas that could greatly be expanded for the purposes of employing the population and producing products that, like bombs, are consumed, used up, or destroyed in one way or another. Couldn’t we gradually establish these type industries and slowly fade out the need for the proliferation of war industries and economies?
How about a couple of modern day Pyramids? Let’s build a stairway to paradise, with a new step every day. We can get there at any price, because as with bombs and bullets the price doesn’t matter. What really matters is that we continue to destroy them as fast as we can produce them.
The biggest problem with creating boondoggles to replace the War Boondoggle is providing the workers of the society with sufficient reward, and purpose. Human beings for whatever reason must believe that whatever it is that they are doing should have a purpose. They must think that they are being personally successful and that their work is necessary.
One purpose could be in finding a new planet for the habitation of our swelling world population. Then maybe we could concentrate on repopulating other planets of the Universe as opposed to de-populating this one.
Let the competitive instincts of the human beast soar in discovery, survival without cannibalism and self-destruction, in creation in the sciences and the arts. Certainly all the buildings of the outdated, inefficient cities of the world could be destroyed peacefully and reconstructed with architecture and design for the future. Let us feed the creative beast within the human animal and seek to subdue the destructive one. Your purpose for going to work each day is to participate in a project that will expand the scope of human understanding and creativity and build a stairway to the stars for the future expansion and survival of the human species, and, of course, to get your paycheck to buy your groceries, and the expanding amenities and consumer goods of the day.
You will advance at your project because of your ability to promote and advance toward the project’s goal successfully and competitively. These projects could be initiated by the government, through government contract, through private enterprise competing for government contracts, or through purely personal endeavor encouraged financially by the sale to consumers of their marketable discoveries, as is the exact case with most everything manufactured or produced in today’s world.
If this all sounds insane to you examine your present state of affairs and the affairs of this world and determine which of us is the truly insane

Monday, August 06, 2007

Anthracite Miners strike of 1903

Striking America

By Richard E. Noble

In 1900, 10,000 miners in the Scranton and Philadelphia area leave the mines on strike. Within one week 100,000 miners were on strike. This type of strike seemed almost impossible to mine owners. The Molly Maguire hangings about twenty-five years earlier had just about stifled the chances of any union taking hold in the area. But a man by the name of John Mitchell had come along and in just a couple of years, he had organized a large membership of “dagoes and hunkies” into the United Mine Workers, an affiliate of Samuel Gompers’ A.F.of L. It was a presidential election year and Marcus Hanna, Republican National Committee chairman, wanted no trouble. Hanna was a successful businessman. He was the brains and financial backer behind McKinley. He contacted the mine operators and their main man, banker, investor and mine owner himself, J. P. Morgan and encouraged them to settle with the workers. They did. And that next year in 1902 they re-negotiated a similar contract. By 1903 things had gotten out of hand. The operators of the mines did not like Johnny Mitchell and his “dageos and hunkies”. They considered Mitchell and his United Mine Workers to be outsiders. They wanted their workers to join the company union. The workers didn’t feel so inclined. The mine owners and operators decided that this would be as good a time as any to get rid of Johnny Mitchell and his so called United Mine Workers.
The mine workers were not very happy either. For one thing the official weight of a ton of coal kept growing. It went from 2,000lbs to 2,400lbs and at present seemed to be hovering around 4,000lbs. This was due to the manner in which it was required that they load the one ton coal cars. In compensation for their 10% wage increase in 1900 the cars had to be filled higher and higher. Now one car had been so rounded off that it equaled two. This was, of course, in addition to the usual inflated prices at the company stores, the mandatory monthly medical fee for the services of the company doctor, the cost of their mandatory housing, and of the blasting powder which they had to furnish themselves. Their rents were interesting. Not only were they high and the living conditions poor, but the rent was calculated by the day. Workers had to sign a rental agreement which stipulated that they could be removed, virtually, at a moments notice. This helped the mine owners to keep down any dissension in the rank and file. One researcher reported that the miners were forced to live like pigs and stray dogs.
Things were at a stand still. The miners had been out on strike now for six months. Mitchell had tried to negotiate but Mister Baer, mine owner and spokesman, would have none of it.
Coal was not only a big item to the coal miners and the coal mine owners, but it was equally important to the nation. Millions of people depended upon coal for their winter heat. The northeastern section of the country was especially concerned. The governor of Massachusetts had gone to the President, Teddy Roosevelt, predicting a catastrophe if something wasn’t done. Citizens and legislators were writing to the President. He had to do something before the winter came. No coal for heating could produce an outright revolution in some parts of the country. Roosevelt felt that he must do something. This was not simply an argument between workers and bosses. There was a third party of innocent bystanders involved, the nation.
Teddy went to the area to have a talk with the disputants. He called Mr. Baer and some of his friends and associates, and Mr. Mitchell to his hotel room for a chat. Mr. Mitchell immediately came forward and told the President that if he would appoint an arbitration commission to investigate and survey the situation, the union would abide by their decision. Mr. Baer and friends were not so accommodating. In fact, they got down right nasty. They didn’t even want to be in the same room with Mitchell. They told the president what they thought of Mitchell, and it seems that they told the President what they thought of him, catering to the likes of such a band of cutthroats, murders and blackmailers. The operators wanted nothing less of Roosevelt than the U. S. Army. They wanted this band of 140,000 traitors shot. Teddy later wrote that he wanted to grab one of them mine owners by the seat of his pants and throw him right out a window. But Teddy controlled his temper. Teddy had come a long way since the days, not too long ago, when he wanted to come in with a band of his rough riders and shoot strikers down in the streets. Now, as the President, here he was sympathizing with the workers.
The mine owners flatly refused to settle by arbitration. They wanted no committee, even if it were of their own selection. And why should they? What did they have to loose? The money that they didn’t have to pay out in wages was money in their pockets. When they finally got their mines back on line, the inflated price of the needed winter heating coal would compensate any loses three fold or more. The strike was a win-win situation for the bosses. Teddy thought about the situation and then called J. P. Morgan. He told Morgan that he would be moving in the federal troops, but they wouldn’t be coming in to shoot down the 140,000 mine workers. They would be coming in to “socialize” the mines, unless the mine owners agreed to the appointment of a committee. After getting this bit of news from J. P. Morgan, the mine owners had a change of heart. No word sends greater fear into the heart of the Capitalist as “socialized. They were quickly back in Teddy’s hotel room working on the selection of an “impartial” committee. They made their selections. Of course, there were no selections on the committee who were sympathetic to, or associated with unions. Mr. Mitchell proposed that two additional members be added to the committee. The Bishop Spalding, a well known industrial scholar, was an acceptable addition, but Edgar E. Clark, chief of the railway conductors union, was not. The mine owners flatly refused to have anything to do with any union sympathizers. In the midst of all this heated turmoil George F. Baer made a statement that has been immortalized in the annals of Labor History. He received a letter from a devout Christian who pleaded with him to have mercy and considered Jesus in his attitudes with regards to the poor miners;
“The rights and interests of the laboring man will be protected and cared for by the Christian men to whom God has given control of the property rights of the country. Pray earnestly that right may triumph, always remembering that the Lord God Omnipotent still reigns.”
Surprisingly enough this brought the starving miners little consolation. The committee was at a standstill. Teddy was depressed. He was not a “socialist”. This was the year 1903, not 1917. The Russian Revolution was yet to come. Yet socialism was already a word of terror in some dinning rooms and smoking parlors. Other members of the committee predicted nothing short of out right revolution if a labor leader was placed upon this committee. What would Teddy do?
The committee had specific requirements. One of its accepted propositions was that one chair could be filled by a sociologist. Teddy went back to the committee and, rather tongue in cheek as a last resort, suggested that Mr. Edgar C. Clark, the union labor leader, be seated on the committee as an “eminent sociologist”. To Teddy’s surprise and delight Mister Clark, the eminent sociologist, was welcomed and approved without hesitation. Teddy later said that he felt that a man like Clark, who had spent his whole life as a worker and union leader, certainly should know something about sociology. He laughed also at the fact that if he called Clark “Tweedledum” he was rejected, but if he called him “Tweedledee” he was welcomed graciously.
So the Committee was now in session. It would be in session for three more months. A team of twenty-three of the countries top lawyers would represent management at the hearings and the union would have the mental equivalent in, Clarence Darrow and associates. Mr. Baer read the summation for the bosses, and Clarence Darrow summed it up for the Union. Darrow’s summation lasted eight hours. He spoke entirely impromptu, never referring to a note. When he was through the meeting had to be temporarily suspended due to the applause.*
The mine owners granted the workers a 10% wage increase. A sliding minimum wage scale which was suggested by Mr. Baer was approved. An eight hour day was granted to several different worker categories. Checkweighmen and scales were employed. Most astounding of all, the miners actually received several million dollars in back pay. This was the most outstanding settlement for the unions to date. Membership in the A.F of L. sky-rocketed. By 1904 the A.F. of L. had a membership of 1,675,000. But don’t be deceived. This did not mean that the bosses had found Jesus, or had a change of heart. This decision was a defeat. Now would begin an age of serious commitment on the part of the bosses. They would organize themselves more seriously through Employer Protective Associations, Citizens Leagues etc. They would combat these outside labor unions with inside company unions. They would pressure government and legislatures, promoting bosses’ rights and “open” shops. They would disseminate, promote and publish negative propaganda. Union bosses would be gangsters and criminals. Trusts and monopolies would be patriotic and democratic. Right to work, open, freedom, American, and democratic, would all be applied to the company store and big business. They would promote their own worker welfare programs to undermine union loyalty. Once unions were destroyed, business as usual could be resumed. Future welfare promises could always be reneged on by bankruptcy and re-establishment programs. Anti-union (yellow-dog) contracts would be promoted and encouraged. They would infiltrate their companies with professional spies and develop and army of strikebreakers and scabs. They would destroy the labor movement in the U.S. More controls on housings, company stores, company script, and individual family security would be pursued. It was War! War on unionism. Unionism was anarchist, un-American, socialist, eventually communist and even monopolistic. It acted in opposition to freedom and democracy. This war was not over by a long shot.*

“The Robber Barons” Matthew Josephson, page 374.
“Attorney for the Damned”, Clarence Darrow in the Courtroom, Edited by Arthur Weinberg.
*Books used in this essay include: “Theodore Rex” Edmund Morris; “Attorney for the Damned”, Clarence Darrow in the Courtroom, Edited by Arthur Weinberg; “The Robber Barons”, Matthew Josephson; “Labor Problems in American Industry”, Carroll R. Dougherty; “A History of American Labor”, Joseph G. Rayback.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Tycho Brahe (1546-1601)


By Richard E. Noble

When I first read a small note somewhere about Tycho Brahe, I thought that the author was pulling my leg. No one with such a great legacy in scientific history could have been such an insane lunatic. I was wrong.
Tycho was from the super wealthy, elitist class of his day. He was born a twin, but his brother died at birth. Tycho was then kidnapped by his childless uncle, Joergen Brahe, who was the vice admiral to Frederick II. His parents couldn’t get Tycho back from uncle Joergen because Joergan was too rich and too powerful. At school Tycho showed an interest in mathematics, astronomy and astrology. He got his nose all bent out of shape in an argument with a relative and fellow student about who was the best at mathematics. They had a duel and his cousin slashed off his nose. He had an artificial nose constructed out of a sliver and gold alloy that he wore for the rest of his life.
He got exceedingly interested in star gazing and eventually became the leading observational astronomer of his day and maybe ever. He made detailed lists of the movements of the stars and the planets about the heavens. He disagreed with Aristotle on his sphere’s theory. Aristotle had this notion about fixed and moveable spheres. The area of space beyond the moon was supposedly fixed. Well Brahe had tracked comets and other things, moving in the suggested fixed areas.
He also didn’t like the notions of Copernicus. In Copernicus’ notion he could find no stellar parallax (whatever that is) and Copernicus’ ideas were not in tune with the scriptures. The scriptures said that the earth was the center of the universe. So Tycho re-designed the universe with the earth once again at the center and the sun revolving around it. Copernicus, Tycho and Galileo all agreed on the notion that everything moved in Godly circles. This was one of Pythagoras mystical notions.
Frederick II liked Tycho so much that he gave him a whole island filled with people. Tycho was mean and nasty and ruled the island like a tyrant. He even had a dwarf slave named Jepp who spent most of his time living under Tycho’s dinner table trying to catch some fallen scraps. Tycho ruled over this island paradise until Frederick II croaked and Christian IV took over. Christian wasn’t about to put up with Tycho and his wicked, wicked ways. But Tycho was immediately picked up by the Roman Emperor Rudolph II who game him Benatek Castle near Prague.
It was while at this castle that Brahe contacted Johannes Kepler. Brahe had heard about Kepler and he wanted him as his assistant. They ended up becoming the Laurel and Hardy or the Martin and Louis of astronomical history. It was a good financial opportunity for Kepler but their personalities didn’t jive. Brahe was drunken, abusive and secretive. He didn’t like “sharing” very much. Nevertheless, when he died he left all of his heavenly calculations to Kepler. He died in a rather fitting manner.
One evening he had an important house guest. Brahe was busy over-eating and over-drinking. Brahe, being true to class tradition, refused to leave the table before his guest did. Consequently, he never got to go to the bathroom. This caused him a urinary infection that killed him.
In any case, he left Kepler all of his astronomical records and calculations. Information that Brahe’s family didn’t really want to give up, but finally did. Brahe’s last words with Kepler at his bedside were, supposedly. “Let me not seem to have lived in vain.”

Thursday, August 02, 2007

World War I to Iraq

Part III

“A Theory on the Evolution of Today’s Liberal Politics”

By Richard E. Noble

Harry Truman was no Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Harry was all over the ball park politically. But when it came to the American War Machine, he was “Right” on top of the pro-war contingent. When the war was over and it looked like the war machine might be dismantled, Harry together with Winston Churchill laid down the gauntlet for the Cold War and basically put the U.S on a full-time war economy.
Winston was, at heart, a politician and a pro-war man. The British had dumped him after the war. He wanted to be reelected. He talked it over with Harry in Missouri and then came out with his famous “Iron Curtain” speech. This recreated the enemy. Without missing a beat the arms industry went from war with the Nazis to a cold war with Russia - the original enemy of the rich and famous and the real reason for World War II in the first place. With a Cold War in place, the business of war could proceed with a future.
The problem with war, from a business point of view, is the sad fact that all wars come to an end - an often quite abruptly. They often start abruptly and end abruptly. Increasing production to meet the needs of a war, and then decreasing production when the war comes to an end creates big problems for suppliers of war materials.
A perfect case study is the DuPont Company and the Old Hickory gunpowder plant established in Tennessee for the World War I effort.(1)
Consequently Arms manufacturers, of necessity, become subsidized by their respective governments. As with the Banking industry, due to the erratic business cycles of war the Government must become the financier of “last resort”, the Federal Reserve, if you will, of the war manufactures. The governments must guarantee all loans, all R&D, all market fluctuations, and absorb all losses. War like banking, is a Socialized government Capitalist co-operative. Wars cannot take place without the price and profit guarantees of the respective governments involved.
Big Businesses need steady, predictable growth in ordered to be managed properly.(2) War does not provide predictable, managed growth. Governments must be the insurers of war.
The Cold War was a way to stabilize war manufacturing for the smooth operation of the present economy and future preparedness and possible demands. It would serve as a means of continuing public support for war, during the unfortunate slack times when there may be no war presently available - thus stabilizing the economy.
The traditional enemies of Mother Russia were Japan and Germany. So, even though we had just finished a horrible war with them both, the U.S. decided to rebuild these countries and let bygones be bygones. These countries provided a needed base for containing Russia, or attacking Russia if need be. We even hired the German and Japanese, anti-Russian murderers and spy experts. We incorporated them into our country and into our CIA. This is all now a matter of historical fact. I have, right here on my desk a book entitled “The Service”. It is the memoirs of General Reinhard Gehlen.
Gehlen was the leader of the German Intelligence for the Russian Division and after the war for the U.S. and our C.I.A. He is given a good deal of credit for the American Cold War strategy. Although I have yet to read this book, I am of the very strong historical opinion that Gehlen was an activist Nazi who surely should have been brought to trial at Nuremberg and when his activities were investigated would have been convicted of crimes against humanity, and shot. Instead, he lived a very good life as a prominent member of our C.I.A. And he was paid handsomely with your tax dollars.
From 1951 onward the U.S. would never be unprepared for War.(3) The Korean and the Vietnam wars were both good as far as the War Machine and pro-war group was concerned. It kept the home grown socialists cowering for fear of anti-patriotism and the Russian and Chinese Communists contained - and the bomb and bullet factories rolling full speed ahead. The new theory for the pro-war industries was “small” wars; wars that could be controlled. Korea almost got out of hand with Macarthur, but Truman solved that problem. Then Eisenhower came in and put a stop to Korea, entirely. Eisenhower also gave us warning about the future, if the War Machine was not kept under wraps. Lincoln had given a similar warning about big business shortly before his assassination. Both of these presidents gave their grave warning to the American people to no avail. Big business took over the American government after Lincoln and the profiteering War Machine resumed itself after Eisenhower.
Vietnam was perfect for the War Industry. It lasted almost fifteen years. It kept American deaths at a minimum, and conveniently spaced out - no large number of American deaths, all at once, to scare off the American people. Fifty thousand dead in Vietnam is really nothing - we have that many killed on our highways yearly and no one bats an eye. This number dead doesn’t amount to even a small percent of the total population.
The Bosses and the War Machine had lost World War I to the Socialist Revolution. They tried to destroy the movement economically by putting people out of work at home and creating a depression in 1929. This was fairly successful. They then reinvested their money abroad, supporting Russia’s enemies.
They supported Adolf Hitler in particular. He ended up “stabbing them in the back” when he signed a pack with the Russians to divide Poland. He then later went on to attack Russia trying to appeal to his Western secret money suppliers, but it was too late. He had already shown his colors. Adolf was not a man to be trusted or controlled. What caused Adolf to attack Poland instead of going directly to Russia after Czechoslovakia, only Adolf knows.
If he went to Russia after Czechoslovakia he would have had the whole free world as his allies. Maybe, even Poland. Poland had been eager, and had no qualms of conscience with regards to getting their piece of Czechoslovakia after Adolf’s take over. But???(4)
In any case, Hitler had bitten the Western Capitalist hand that was feeding him and he had to be stopped. When that was accomplished then the war against Russia could be resumed. And it was. It would be a Cold War, but the benefits to the war industry would be vibrant and necessary.
Now we had experienced two World Wars and we were still fighting the socialist labor movement. The Left had to be put out of business before it exposed the Right and its Nazi War supporters.
McCarthy and anti-Communist paranoia were the weapons of choice. Whether McCarthy was a paid political “roughneck” from the Right or simply a “Man of Zeal” is irrelevant. The War-for-Profit crowd got off the hook - no war profiteering investigations - and people of leftist principles were vilified. Many were imprisoned or had their lives and careers destroyed for no other crime than supporting or knowing someone who supported our war time ally, Russia. Those who supported our Allies were punished, and those who supported our enemies got off scot-free.
I know of only one American company punished or fined for supporting Nazi Germany during the war. That Company was the Union Banking Corporation under Prescott Bush (George W. Bush’s grandfather). Another company that was investigated was Sullivan and Cromwell with John Foster Dulles and Allen Dulles its most prominent members. Standard Oil (Rockefeller) was challenged somewhat but was able to finesse most allegations.(5) Records show today that there were many, many others. Arthur Miller wrote about one such family in his somewhat anesthetized play “All My Sons”. William
Manchester points out in his “Arms of Krupp” that Roosevelt was well aware of the treasonous activities of prominent American companies and individuals during World War II. Roosevelt didn’t expose them during the war for fear of undermining the morale of the fighting troops, claims Manchester. Instead Roosevelt tried to outwit them and outsmart them. In the end, it seems that they were the ones who outwitted and outsmarted his successors, Harry S. Truman and Dwight D. Eisenhower.
When the Berlin wall came down and the Russian Soviet Union disintegrated, the war machine was set adrift. If Russia was no longer a threat, the war machine could now be disassembled. This actually started to happen. In the U.S. they were actually talking of a peace dividend.(6) The military could now be cut; a military that was by this time the largest military investment ever recorded in all of history. The pro-war people and those involved and benefiting from the War Machine began to panic. They needed an enemy and they needed one quick.
Their first choice was China. Even though Richard Nixon had opened doors with China and American business had befriended China in many avenues of trade, China was still a socialist/communist nation. When Bush II became president he immediately started to turn China into a new Cold War enemy. There was even the possibility that the war advocates could get a little thing going with Formosa. Then came 9-11 and the problems of the War Machine were solved. From the point of the War Machine people and the pro-war advocates, nothing better could have happened. It makes one wonder about Osama bin Laden. I have since heard it rumored that his family is involved in the armament industry. This would put a lot of pieces together. If Osama wanted to help the War profiteers, he could have thought of nothing better.(7)
In any case, here we are at the present. The War Machine is in good shape and on track once again. In declaring war on Iraq, a viable enemy has been re-established. The future of the armament business has been re-established. The execution of John F. Kennedy may very well have been directed towards this same purpose.
Immediately after his death, the Vietnam War Machine was put into overdrive. When Martin Luther King spoke out against the Vietnam War, he ended up on a slab. Robert Kennedy came next and very possibly for the same crime. The execution of Martin Luther King may fit into this category also. It was not long after he took up an anti-war posture that he was assassinated.
The War Machine is once again on the roll. Bush, like Harry Truman and Woodrow Wilson before him, has drawn the line in the desert. Just as Woodrow Wilson, with his trusty attorney General A. Mitchell Palmer, and his right hand man J. Edgar Hoover painted the Red Scare after World War I; just as Harry and Winston laid down the Iron Curtain to establish the machinery of war without end in the fifties, George Bush has done the same today.
After watching the U.S. for these last few years there should be no third world country who doesn’t want to have its own nuclear arsenal. I am sure that any country in the world who feels even slightly threatened by the U.S.A. is now in a scramble to get a couple of nuclear weapons or anything that will give the U.S. pause.
China, you can bet will be deep into research and development. In fact, it may even be American based companies that will help them in this project. As Mister Krupp laid out in his dealings with Adolf, the U.S. weapons suppliers and manufacturers will probably only sell China last year’s models. If the U.S. government doesn’t like this option the War Machine can easily move its operations to China just as Krupp had threatened Adolf that he could move his operation to a very accommodating Russia during World War II.(8) Anything more would be ... treason?
Treason? Do we still have such a concept?
And regardless, our war machine no longer belongs to us - the whole process has been internationalized. They are already in China. The international war machine is now a citizen of the world.
This, I think, means that the dead or maimed bodies of Americans will have no more sympathy to the present “Merchants of Death” and those of the future, than the dead and maimed bodies of enemy or lesser and third world nations has mattered in the past.
The War on Terrorism is the “Perfect War”. Dissidents, radicals as well as social reformers can be put down and silenced in every nation of the world, just as World War I and II, as well as Vietnam were used in an attempt to stifle Socialism, Communism and radicalism in their day.
The War on Terrorism can also be used to establish a police state here at home, just as Hitler used the bombing of the Reichstag in Germany. Unfortunately the Bombing of the Reichstag and 9/11 have a vary distinct and familiar smell.
Hitler and his supporters and cronies it is claimed, blew up the Reichstag in order to blame it onto their enemies and establish a police state in Germany before World War II. Could George Bush and his cronies in the pro-war machine have been involved in the attack of 9-11, or simply stood idly by allowing it to happen?
There is certainly a greater and more suspicious link between George Bush and his pro-war machine connections than ever existed in the Roosevelt administration and the accusations by right wingers - to this very day - that the Democrats and Franklin Delano Roosevelt were involved in the vulnerability of Pearl Harbor which opened the door for the U.S. involvement into World War II.
George Bush and his cronies may be truly innocent of any connection with the horror of 9-11, but they are certainly not innocent of using the tragedy to authoritarian and militaristic advantage. Their predisposition to the strategies as outlined in Hitler’s political manual, Mein Kampf, seem uncanny.
Their pre-emption against Iraq and Afghanistan and their “Shock and Awe” tactic, certainly brings to mind the Austrian Anschluss and the German Blitzkrieg; their violations of the Constitution here at home in the name of security; their involvement and, hopefully temporary, return to torture; their use of propaganda - contrived press releases and news stories - to undermine a free press; their all too vicious substitution of the word Liberal as opposed to Hitler’s all encompassing term for universal evil “Jew” - Jew (Liberal) science, Jew (Liberal) intellectual, Jew (Liberal) press, Jew (Liberal) Art, Jew (Liberal) traitor; Jew (Liberal) labor unions; Jew (Liberal) Politics; their attitude to sexually transmitted disease - Syphilis vs. Aids - Hitler suggested quarantine, isolation and death as compared to the present conservative approach of shunning, avoidance, ignoring or lack of funding; their lack of respect for the poor and unproductive - at the moment they have not suggested extermination as Hitler, they are still in the alienation (slums, ghettoes, sewers, homeless) stage; their return to abstinence as a method to eliminate sexually transmitted diseases - Hitler’s more “kinder/gentler” suggestion was “early marriage”; their antipathy toward the legislature and traditional democracy - Hitler eventually dismissed the “congress” - this administration simply wants to modify it, at the moment; their control of the legal system by infiltrating the courts with judges who adhere to their party’s doctrine; their control of the schools and methods of education - the Bible vs. Mein Kampf, Creationism vs. social Darwinism (survival of the fittest); are certainly all reminiscent of European fascism.
As for security, the American people should be intelligent enough to realize that physically securing our borders and our entire population is impossible in a nation this large and with our diversity and acceptance of free trade and unrestrained immigration. To promote fear instead of courage is a tactic along the lines of the Red Scare of the Wilson administration and the Communist Threat of the Truman years; it is not a viable policy. World domination through military adventure rather than via cooperative diplomacy and mutual economic advancement is not possible. This is truly a scenario for destruction and a very, serious look into the evil eye of a final world war or revolution - Armageddon.
If George Bush is, in fact, an employee of the National or International Military Industrial Complex, he is a success. He has, without doubt, re-established war in the minds of Americans and the World as necessary and unavoidable. He has re-established the mandatory nature of our military spending. He has justified paranoia and fear. We will certainly not experience any “peace dividends” in the up and coming decades. George Bush did not need a second term to establish his historical legacy. He has re-established the “glory” and the inevitability of war, and replanted the defense industry on a secure footing for a long time to come. Unfortunately, we the peace-loving people of the world have already lost. There will be thousands more of us lying about the world in pools of blood, fighting for “peace” and “freedom” Bush-style. George Bush has not only condemned us, but our children and their children too.
The War on Terrorism can be waged in bits and pieces. It can be stopped temporarily and started at any time and anywhere by a single explosion. It can be used forever to enhance military spending. By our current administration’s standards, any country can be attacked or “liberated” if we have the suspicion that they may be harboring terrorists or even planning a possible act of aggression against us.
This is not the first time in human history that such a policy has been advocated. All past conquerors and war lords have advocated a similar disposition. This is not new. It is truly “Biblical” in its historical perspective.
The trouble with being prepared for war, as Thomas Jefferson pointed out, is that such preparations invariably lead to war.
Armies need to be maintained. The cost of their maintenance demands conquest and the acquisition of more wealth and assets as Adolf Hitler found out in World War II. People in our defense plants here in America in order to obtain top security are asked to sign a paper accepting the notion that war is necessary to the maintenance of our present standard of living, I have been told.
War is not necessary to our standard of living. If money can be fabricated from thin air to advance needless destruction, certainly the same source could be tapped to promote “creation”.
War is the ultimate “Boondoggle”. Money is advanced; factories are built; people are hired; a product is produced and then this product is destroyed. We build the factories; we hire the people; we design the products; we manufacture the toothpaste of war, then we take it up into a plane and toss it out. If this can be the driving force behind profit and a better standard of living, certainly a similar profit could be gained in producing cancer stopping drugs, eradicating hunger, encouraging architecture, art science and the general welfare of the entire world.
The enemy does not buy our bombs. We give them to him for free. We pay for them ourselves. We do not ask our enemies if they can afford to buy our bombs. Nor do we ask them how they intend to pay us back for our investment in warring on their country. If World War II cured the Depression and saved Capitalism for the world, surely this type of investment and salvation can be made in anything.
If this War Machine scenario outlined above is factual, then what should those of us who disagree with war do about it? It would be nice if we could say ... Let those who enjoy and profit from war do so; and those who do not enjoy or profit from war disengage themselves from such activities ... We can not be so tolerant and understanding. War ends up involving all of us whether we want to be involved or not.
Alger Hiss who was on the Nye committee investigating war profiteering said that the only way that he saw to stop war profiteering was to stop war.(9) That is a good idea, but it doesn’t seem to be happening. I suppose that in the same tone of thinking we could say that the only way to stop death would be to stop making people; or the only way to stop crime would be to stop making laws. We have this same logic on the Right with regards to economic liberty. The only way to promote economic liberty is to abolish government and rules in general. This type of thinking is not realistic. We don’t stop studying medicine because we can not conquer death. We don’t stop making laws because we know that crime will never be eradicated. No one with any reasonable mentality can imagine a better world coming about with the abolition of all governments and all law.
War, like crime and death, should be on our list of things to conquer and overcome. We may never, ever do it, but we should never stop trying. We should expose the abuses of war whenever possible. We should discourage war in every reasonable manner. We should attempt to minimize any profits gained through war, or by active participation in war. People who encourage war for personal gain and profit should be exposed and if they have broken laws in so doing, they should be punished.
Just as removing the outrageous profits from the illegal drug market would reduce crime, if excess profits could be removed from the War Machine a good many wars would not happen and would have never happened in the past. We should not promote war as being glorious. It is not a creator of character, but its destroyer. There is no such thing as a just war. There is no such thing as a just murder.
There is such a thing as rational killing and rational war made mandatory by irrational beings and irrational circumstances.
But there is no justice to killing, whether it is done by man or in the name of God or by God, Himself.
Killing is a part of existence, but it can never be justified - it can only be rationalized. It should never be used as a diplomatic tool and it should only be employed against other men in self-defense. We should work as a nation to wean ourselves from war and gradually replace the War Machine with a Peace Machine. A Peace Machine directed to replace the Machinery of War with the Machinery of Creation. A Peace Machine that produces products, employs people and sells or gives away its end results, just as is done with the machinery of War.
The fact that such a useless industry as War is successful should be adequate inspiration for the world. If products can be made to be destroyed with no limits placed on payroll or production and no limits on costs or sale prices, then certainly anything is possible.
Although no acceptable or adequate definition of Aggressive War has yet to be agreed upon, Aggressive War was declared illegal by the Nuremberg Tribunal after World War 11.(10) It took man all of his civilized history to come to that conclusion. This principle should not be discarded so easily.

1 “Du Pont”, One Hundred and Forty Years, by William S. Dutton, Charles Scribner’s Sons 1942, PP. 230-261. Search This Blog under “Old Hickory”.
2 “Economics and the Public Purpose” by J. K. Galbraith, Penguin Books Ltd.
3 “Shattered Peace”, Daniel Yergin, the Origins of the Cold War and the National Security State, Houghton Muffin Company.
4 “The Gathering Storm”, by Winston Churchill, pp. 347.
5 See Prescott Bush. Go to Search This Blog and enter Prescott Bush.
6 Search this Blog “Fortress America” by William Grieder.
7 Recent Information not only corroborates the involvement of the bin Ladin family with the defense industry via the Carlyle Co. and other industries but also supplies a close connection between all of the above and George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush.
8 “Arms of Krupp”, William Manchester.
9 “Recollections of a Life”, by Alger Hiss. Little, Brown and Company.
10 “The Anatomy of the Nuremberg Trials”, Telford Taylor. Little, Brown and Company.