Saturday, July 21, 2012
Wow, what a day! So many great old cars, many of them racing around the ‘track’, which is really the roads in and around Schenley Park in Pittsburgh, PA.
There are many different marques, but mostly foreign makers today. There was an American car section, but only a few special cars, one of which I snapped. The Italian section was so crowded with people I couldn’t get clear shots no matter how patient I was, but I did my best. Lotta VW’s, with a few special photos and one showing the hillside covered with them. A good number of Mercedes and BMW. There were tons of Minis but I only snapped a couple unique ones. And of course I photographed a few Saabs, Audis, Lancias, Datsun/Nissans, Mazdas, and even a Honda. A Cobra, some Lamborghinis, Ferraris. And a couple Porsches on the track.
Sunday was nice too, but sunnier, so hotter. Saturday was cloudy but bright, great for photography. There was more glare and more shadows on Sunday, but we did our best, while trying to stay cool ourselves. We were under the tree by the Porsche tent in the middle of a couple of great turns with elevation changes.
I labeled the photos as well as I could see from the thumbnails, but I think I got a few wrong, so I’ll be going back and editing. Please comment if you see that I still have something wrong, esp if it’s YOUR car!
Like all changes that would improve the American economy and restore American liberties, sound money — money beyond the ability of governments to manipulate and multiply at will — is treated with derision and contempt by the political and media establishments. That should be clue number one of how important and worthwhile it is.
The fact that Aunt Ethel fears driving faster than 40 doesn’t mean her grandson can’t handle his car competently at 70 – and ought not to be punished for doing so. Unless he’s actually caused someone else harm by so doing.
As a reformed minarchist conservative, one of the last intellectual obstacles I overcame was coming to accept that any use of force prior to actual harm done is always and necessarily illegitimate – and the proverbial camel’s nose under the tent. What begins as “reasonable” restrictions or prior restraint soon become anything but reasonable. And why? Because if you cannot establish definitively that an actual harm has been done – then you have opened the door to the idea of punishing people for things not actually done. Victimless “crimes.”
This is it, boys, this is war – what are we waiting for?
Why don’t we break the rules already?
I was never one to believe the hype – save that for the black and white
I try twice as hard and I’m half as liked, but here they come again to jack my style
“States are merely temporary monuments designed to order our lives, maintaining power for those motivated enough to seek it. But the state needs perpetual maintenance in order to remain relevant, and while the power-hungry cannot divorce from the state, the rest of us who merely wish to lead happy and peaceful lives can. And that is where our power lies. The notion that the state is a con is gaining momentum. It’s a notion that doesn’t need to be backed by guns. It just has to take root in our minds, for it is in mind where all failed states go to die.”
Clover does not grasp that each time he submits, he has surrendered a piece of his life. And much worse, the lives of others, too.
Eventually, there will be nothing left to surrender.
But this ugly inevitability does not trouble Clover. He agrees to allow others to direct and control his life, to make his decisions for him. And because he has accepted this “direction,” so also must others. If they do not, if they object in any way, then they deserve what comes to them.
It will please Clover to see them punished.
Unfortunately, Clover’s psychological S&M routine is not his private perversion – which incidentally would be ok, in a free society. If he likes being told what to do – and punished when he does not do as he’s told – he has every right to live that dynamic provided it’s just between him and his dominatrix. What’s not ok – if society is to be free – is Clover’s demand that everyone else don the Gimp suit and rubber ball in the mouth, accept the lash and say “yes, Mistress” (that is, yes, Officer) on cue.
“Also, what kind of a contract allows for one party to unilaterally change the terms of the deal? Congress passes new laws almost every day. The bureaucracy issues new edicts. The tax system is changed. The pound of flesh they got already wasn’t enough; now they want a pound and a half!”
I was stunned. “You’re f—— kidding me,” I said in response. I pushed for an explanation of why the pilot was willing to overrule/ignore the judgment of the trained security officers. “Why can’t I board? What’s the concern?,” I asked.
His response left me even more stunned: “Just use your imagination.”
Wow. Let’s just consider that for a moment.
In short, security screenings and any other evidence-based assessment method have been deemed irrelevant. Whatever I do, I am suspicious. Why? Not because the shirt I’m wearing presents some sort of legitimate threat. Not because I have weapons or potential bomb-making tools in my luggage. And not because I’ve shown any other indication of any sort that I’m a potential terrorist. Rather, the pilot and some Delta rep can project upon me their worst fears of what I am possibly capable of. If that’s the case, why even bother with the bloated security apparatus — since Delta pilots have discretion to kick off passengers who’ve passed multiple checks, after all?
I was [...] questioned by TSA about the significance and meaning of the shirt. I politely explained that it was “mocking the security theater charade and over-reactions to terrorism by the general public — both of which we’re seeing right now, ironically.”
Neo-conservatism has been around for decades and, strangely, has connections to past generations as far back as Machiavelli. Modern-day neo-conservatism was introduced to us in the 1960s. It entails both a detailed strategy as well as a philosophy of government. The ideas of Teddy Roosevelt, and certainly Woodrow Wilson, were quite similar to many of the views of present-day neocons. Neocon spokesman Max Boot brags that what he advocates is “hard Wilsonianism.” In many ways, there’s nothing “neo” about their views, and certainly nothing conservative. Yet they have been able to co-op the conservative movement by advertising themselves as a new or modern form of conservatism.
Here is a brief summary of the general understanding of what neocons believe:
They agree with Trotsky on permanent revolution, violent as well as intellectual.
They are for redrawing the map of the Middle East and are willing to use force to do so.
They believe in preemptive war to achieve desired ends.
They accept the notion that the ends justify the means – that hard-ball politics is a moral necessity.
They express no opposition to the welfare state.
They are not bashful about an American empire; instead they strongly endorse it.
They believe lying is necessary for the state to survive.
They believe a powerful federal government is a benefit.
They believe pertinent facts about how a society should be run should be held by the elite and withheld from those who do not have the courage to deal with it.
They believe neutrality in foreign affairs is ill-advised.
They hold Leo Strauss in high esteem.
They believe imperialism, if progressive in nature, is appropriate.
Using American might to force American ideals on others is acceptable. Force should not be limited to the defense of our country.
9-11 resulted from the lack of foreign entanglements, not from too many.
They dislike and despise libertarians (therefore, the same applies to all strict constitutionalists).
They endorse attacks on civil liberties, such as those found in the Patriot Act, as being necessary.
They unconditionally support Israel and have a close alliance with the Likud Party.
Various organizations and publications over the last 30 years have played a significant role in the rise to power of the neoconservatives. It took plenty of money and commitment to produce the intellectual arguments needed to convince the many participants in the movement of its respectability.