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Sense & Nonsense

Parents have no choice about what children will be taught in public schools under Federal Law. Parents have three choices for educating their children - Home School, Private School or abandoning that responsibility to the government, a phrase used in the Federal Court ruling that forces parents to accept whatever curriculum public schools offer if their children attend public school.

Read more: Education - Three Choices

The federal government in the USA does not have the authority under the Constitution to allocate resources. The fact that the federal government does shift resources from the young to the old, from the industrious to the lazy or from the healthy to the unhealthy does not make it legal.

It just means that they do it in violation of the most fundamental body of law in the United States of America. The rule of law has been replaced with the rule of people who have seized sufficient power to act illegally.

Most people will take exception with that statement, particularly with the idea that the federal government is operating in violation of the law of the land. Some will latch onto general phrases in the Constitution (such as the very first paragraph) to justify ignoring the remainder of the document.

Others will argue that the fact that the government does it makes it legal under the dubious reasoning that “precedent” is part of the constitution. (I say dubious because the same people who make that argument would find it ludicrous for me to say that the fact that I have driven at speeds in excess of the legal limit in the past, I can legally ignore speed limits now and forevermore).

Read more: National Resource Allocation

The news media feed us a daily diet of impending doom. Bankrupt nations, drought or flood, budget deficits, debt limits, murderous mothers, corrupt politicians, climate change, epidemics, earthquakes, pirates, insane dictators, bankers run amok - the list is endless and changes every day. Did you ever get news that a single one of these problems has been solved?

No, they haven't been solved, they have simply been passed over in favor of newer, more exciting problems or more strident descriptions of the old ones.

Even personal conversation gravitates to the problems of the week. Lamentations, doom and gloom become a part of our daily life. But many of the problems we worry about are beyond our power to solve. We may fall into cynicism (see rule 7 below), anger or depression depending on our personal tendency.

It is amazing how fast a gripe session ends when someone asks, "What are you doing about it"?

Read more: Essential Rules of Liberty

Part of the problem facing America is widespread disagreement on what is ethical and what is unethical. The following offers a good working definition of ethics and some limited discussion of where the ideas came from. I did not write it, I found it on the internet somewhere. It the author will let me know, I will attribute credit.

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Ethics, principles or standards of human conduct, sometimes called morals, and the study of such principles, sometimes called moral philosophy. This article primarily concerns ethics in the second sense in Western civilization, although every culture has developed an ethic of its own.

In the historical development of ethics, three principal standards of conduct have been proposed as the highest good: happiness or pleasure; duty, virtue, or obligation; and perfection, the fullest harmonious development of human potential.

Three distinct authorities invoked for good conduct include the will of a deity, the pattern of nature, or the rule of reason. When the will of a deity is the authority, obedience to divine commandments is the accepted standard of conduct. If the pattern of nature is the authority, conformity to the qualities attributed to human nature is the standard. When reason rules, behavior is expected to result from rational thought.

Read more: Ethics Overview

This essay was written by Louis Beam in 1983 and published at that time. It was republished in 1992. It is presented here with Mr. Beam's explicit consent.

Louis Beam, who was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for heroism in Vietnam, was tried for sedition (acquitted in 1988) for his outspoken criticism of his own government's abuse of power. During the Clinton years he was again in the news pointing out the abuses of power by Attorney General Janet Reno at Waco and Ruby Ridge. He doesn't lead a placid life.

I would add that maybe the Tea Party movement doesn't need a leader. So far, it looks a lot like normal Americans doing what they think is right without any big shot telling them just what to think and do.

Read more: Leaderless? Good!

Things you might not know that may or may not matter.

Personal stories and pictures of social collapse in the United States of America, Argentina, Russia, and  Chile.

The Who, What and Why of Sense & Nonsense

Real- time account from a typical Greek citizen as Greece collapsed during 2011 and 2012.

Sense and Nonsense Is dedicated to providing the information, ideas and interaction necessary to build a community of people who can be trusted and who trust each other.