Health Care Reform Bill – A Modern Advanced Civil Right?

Health care reform was sold with the argument that all Americans had the right to health care. How can something you are forced to do be considered a right? Call me mad, call me crazy, but I thought a right was something you could choose to do, or not do.

Imagine –

You were required to speak out.

You were forced to prove you are a member of a religious organization.

You were mandated to publish something.

You must own a weapon to defend yourself.

You had to peaceably assemble a certain amount of times each year.

Imagine if you didn’t do any of the above, you had to pay a 750 dollar fine for not exercising each of these rights.

This is the logic behind the health care reform bill: you have the right to health care insurance, and if you choose not to exercise this new right, you’ll pay a heavy penalty.

To sum it up, we are are being sold a lie that individual rights are an old-fashioned notion. A negative campaign is being waged that says America needs to change and be more like modern advanced countries that believe society as a whole has rights that supersede individual rights. Putting individual liberties first is only old-fashioned to Americans, because the rest of the world is still catching up with the concept. Ignoring individual rights is an age-old concept and that can hardly be described as modern or advanced.

Let me point out some less advertised features of these advanced countries American has been compared to. These are examples of what happens in countries where individual rights are placed behind society rights:

Canada – The Customs and Revenue Agency is responsible for determining which books, videos, comics, and other material should be allowed into the country.

Germany – Declared the Church of Scientology unconstitutional.

France – Wants fines for wearing burqas in public.

United Kingdom – Censors political speech and attitudes.

These countries should be examples of what not to do; they are example of the dangers of putting individual rights at the back of bus. Don’t look to them for examples on how to run America, because changing the definition of rights is not progress, it’s not advanced, and it is not a bright future.

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The Department of Carrots and Sticks Mission Statement – Liberty through Behavior Modification

The phrase “carrots and sticks” appears in political discussion so often, the first results on Google for “carrots and sticks” are about politics and not about animal husbandry. The Beast of Burden is officially human.

Example: President Obama speaking about dealing with Iran

“If we show ourselves willing to talk and to offer carrots and sticks in order to deal with these pressing problems — and if Iran then rejects any overtures of that sort — it puts us in a stronger position to mobilize the international community to ratchet up pressure on Iran.”

A good way NOT to make progress with Iranians is by analogizing them to donkeys and the USA as their master.

This phrase is dehumanizing , in that carrots and sticks are used on beasts of burden by their masters. It is one of the few honest appraisals you’ll hear a politician utter on how they view the world. From their perspective, you and I and other nations are the dumb animals to be steered in the direction of their desires.

You don’t use carrots and sticks on someone you consider to be your equal. You wouldn’t threaten a neighbor with a club or bribe them with money to resolve a dispute. When you consider someone your equal, you let them decide how to act for themselves without coercion.

You don’t use carrots and sticks on your friends. If you were to say to a friend, “Come over to my home for a superbowl party; there’ll be lots of snacks for you if you come–and if you don’t show up, I’ll flatten your tires,” they won’t be your friend long.

You wouldn’t say to your spouse, “If you’ll lose some weight I’ll help clean up around the house, and if you don’t, I’ll have sex with someone else,” unless the goal was to divorce so you could have sex with someone else.

Politicians are loaded with these carrots and sticks; they’ve got them for health care, cap and trade, banks, buying cars, and the economy in general. Politicians see so much more work to be done, and have an arsenal of creative ideas to corral the masses. That’s what politicians do; they pat themselves on the back for thinking up new forms of behavior modification.

Why is it acceptable to use laws to modify other peoples’ behavior? We wouldn’t treat people we know and care about with a carrot and stick approach, so why is it considered acceptable to treat strangers this way?

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Liberal Hypocrisy vs. Conservative Hypocrisy – the Damage is Done

The left and the right cherry pick principles to champion based upon marketing strategy, and not based upon any core principles. This cherry picking approach has been steadily destroying the principles each claim to defend. Here are some examples of liberal hypocrisy and conservative hypocrisy and the damage they have done:

Defending Liberty – banning unhealthy living (left) vs. banning euthanasia (right). Both the left and the right claim to defend your right to live your life however you like. The left wants to restrict you from shorting your life by unhealthy living and the right doesn’t want you to choose when you die. If there is one thing that shows you live in a free society, it’s the right to decide to end your life by either slow or quick means.

Defenders of Justice – hate crimes (left) vs. terrorism crimes (right). Hate crimes are committed to send political messages and terrorism is often about religious intolerance. How important is the motive for murdering strangers when deciding an appropriate punishment? When the left wants to treat terrorists according to established law, the right labels them “terrorist sympathizers.” When the right wants to treat hate crimes according to established law, the left labels them as “racists sympathizers.” There isn’t any difference between these types of crimes. The left and right each want to be the champions of protecting the people: they just pick different villains to terrify the public while ignoring the principles of justice.

Defending free speech – banning the N-word (left) vs. flag burning (right). Both the left and right claim to be defenders of free speech but it turns out each would restrict speech that offends. Generally speaking, the left would censor violence and the right would censor sex in movies, TV, music and video games.

Both the left and right follow the same underlying dynamic – if they don’t like something, you can make it go away by passing a law. They really believe the evils they see in society can be made to go away by passing a law or declaring war on it. They have declared war on terrorism, poverty, drugs, and racism. How are all these wars working out for you? When will people realize no government has the power to make things like terrorism and racism go away?

The results of liberal and conservative hypocritical governing speak for themselves. In championing their causes, they have blown up the economy, put more limits on freedom, put people out of work, made a mockery of the justice system, stuck us in endless wars and thrown the country into to debt for decades.

In theory, our elected officials are there to protect our freedom, but they forget to ask themselves a simple question, “Will this lead to more freedom or less freedom?” It doesn’t matter if the issue is fighting evil or doing good for others, the question of more or less freedom is always relevant. Maybe if the question is asked more often the damage they’ve done can be repaired.

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The Future of Civil Disobedience in America – I WANT YOU Ziggy Stardust

4chan users were upset with YouTube for deleting the account of Lukeywes1234. 4chan let YouTube know just how upset they were by launching a porn bomb protest at YouTube on January 6th, 2010. YouTube will be busy for days cleaning out all the hidden porn from the 4chan group.

What would happen if 4chan were angry with Washington D.C.?

The tried and true ways of protesting through signs, emails, calling and faxing don’t seem to be very effective. In the future, I hope people will start launching protests similar to the 4chan model.

A selective service protest could be launched by walking into the post office and getting a few cards to fill out with bogus information. If there were millions of fake registrations, the system would be useless.

Around 100 million tax returns are filled every year with the IRS.  How well would the IRS function if another 100 million returns were fake?

The 2010 census forms will be out soon–with enough effort, Alaska could become the most populous state.

Each government agency or program has a plethora of forms that can be filled out for free. All these agencies are susceptible to a denial of service attacks through an abundance of requests for service.

How about a cell phone app to alert others when your civil rights are being violated? A GPS-equipped phone with this app would quickly alert every liberty-minded person in the area to rush to the scene. Your civil rights will be better protected when several people are live streaming video of encounters with the police.

If you’d prefer your email not be read by the NSA, then spamming the world with emails incorporating terms the NSA screens for is an option. “Ziggy has the bomb in his underpants”

Start an internet rumor similar to the one that caused chaos when utility payment assistance was offered by the city of Detroit. “The President will be giving away federally owned homes to people at his next speech. Under each seat will be a certificate for one foreclosed home.”

These are just a few ideas for the future of civil disobedience; with the right amount of anger and creativity, it will be possible to catch the conscience of the king.

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Liberty Airway – The Safest Wings in the Air

Ron Paul and other Libertarian minded people have suggested airline security should be left to the airlines and not the TSA. What would the airline industry be like if security was left to the airlines? How would the free market natural evolution process change an airline industry responsible for their own security?

Insurance companies would set their rates based upon an airlines security procedures. Higher insurance rates would push airlines to improve security to bring their costs down.

Restaurants can refuse service on the basis of safety, welfare or well-being of other patrons; airlines could refuse service for the same reasons, if a passenger is deemed a security risk.

There would be a list of airlines with the fewest number of terrorists incidents. Consumers would weigh for themselves how much they are willing to pay for security. Some airlines would advertise themselves as being the most secure way to fly.

There would be a market for the security-conscious people who are willing to pay more for better security. Less secure airlines would run themselves out of business, because people would be unwilling to fly with them.

Possible security features airlines might offer if they were in charge:

Pre-screening of passengers with a security background check.

Passengers and carry-ons scanned more than once. I double check my work; why not double check screeners?

Security stations on-board planes with armed guards.

Security cameras to monitor all passengers. Security cameras monitor people in department stores now, so why not on airplanes?

For the less expensive airlines without on-board security officers, airlines might try the following:

Carry-ons locked in the overhead bins or no carry-ons allowed at all.

Seats going sideways with lap bars (like those found on roller coasters) to keep everyone seated.

Only allowed to get out of seats when escorted by a crew member.

Taking the TSA out of air travel would be safer, because it is in the airlines’ own interest to improve security. Consumers would be more informed about the risks involved in flying. Consumers could weigh for themselves the inconvenience and loss of privacy from security measures vs. safety. In the long run, costs associated with security would come down because airlines would have motivation to create cost-effective and efficient security procedures.

Weighing the TSA’s motivation of improving security when something goes wrong vs. the airline industries self-preservation motives to improve security, the scale of safety tilts towards the airline industry.

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