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Category: Privacy and self ownership

Owning our own information and telling Big Brother to get lost

IN PRAISE OF MEN, Part V:
About the Boys

Part I Part II Part III Part IV This fifth installment of “In Praise of Men” is about encouraging boys to become the good, strong men we’ve talked about needing. I’ve hesitated to write this for two reasons. First, there’s simply so much happening so fast in the world — so much degradation of freedom, common sense, and economic sanity — that I feel pulled to write about that even though focusing on current events can be such a diversion of energies. Second, who am I to write about raising boys? I’ve never done it. I’m at risk of sounding…

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Where there’s Internet, there’s hope
(plus an invitation)

The news is dire, depressing, infuriating, terrifying, ominous, twisted, biased, and generally panic-inducing. As always. Okay, it’s more than usually ominous lately, what with the country rather suddenly being ruled by a coalition of pandering post-Alzheimers proponents of the old order and a whole new class of juvenile Masters of the Universe. The flick-of-a-switch “disappearing” of Parler and our then-present president from the ‘Net finally rattled us in a way that previous censorship, deplatforming, demonetizing, Twitter mobs, and disappearances of lesser ‘Net operations could not. Scary, scary, scary, scary, scary. BUT. Have you noticed that activist ‘Netizens (that good old…

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Communications in the Purge

This morning. I hung up from a long phone call with a friend in which we talked (among other security-related issues) about alternative communications for these censorious, tech-whim times. I poured myself a new cup of tea, hit the button to download mail, and in comes a message from another friend with the above subject line: “Communications in the Purge.” The entire (bcc broadcast) message was nothing but alternate email addresses, phone numbers, and physical addresses that could be used to reach him if our tech overlords switch off standard avenues of communication. We’ve gotten so used to the Gods…

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The Quality of a Free Man

This is a reprint of an article I wrote back in the late 90s or early oughts. It’s part one of a four-part series, all of which are available to full members of The Living Freedom Forums. Despite being some of my best writing and thinking, neither this piece nor the series, called Sustainable Freedom, ever received much circulation or comment. I’m resurrecting it because it matters to me and to some of the most important people in my life — and still matters more than ever in reality. Also because my friend “Tex” referred to it in his quotes…

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IN PRAISE OF MEN, Part IV
A Good Man

Parts I, II, and III here. —– “To be a good man is to struggle every day.” So says my good male friend “Tex.” Earlier in my life, I might have responded (thinking about the struggles of my own sex such as pregnancy, childbirth, the aptly named “curse,” lower status, household drudgery, learned helplessness, and endless restrictions), “You think you struggle? You ain’t seen nothin’!” For sure, both sexes and all genders have their burdens. And none should go flaunting the superiority of their sufferings over others’. Ultimately, we’re all in this difficult sentient-mammalian life together. Dividing into hostile camps…

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IN PRAISE OF MEN
Part I: Groundwork

I’ve come to realize that this (now darned-near mythical) blog post I’ve been promising, “In Praise of Men,” is a book, not an essay. And it’s a book I’m not going to write. So I’ll to try doing what I can in a series of posts. Today I’ll just state my premises and lay some groundwork. This step has been a stumbling block for me and I need to get it done so I can move ahead. Let’s get some basics down on pixels. Premise #1: BIOLOGY Sex is biological and overwhelmingly binary. Are there exceptions? Of course, and they…

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Fear and loathing in the hinterlands, part II

A small sign of the times The town at the foot of the hill had a crisis last week. It didn’t have to be a crisis. It began as a mere glitch — human caused, but easily human reparable, too. The city expected a contractor to notify residents of several streets about a planned water outage. The contractor didn’t do it. When residents quite naturally began contacting city hall (aka the water company), city mucky-mucks proceeded to make things infinitely worse. They spent an hour pointing fingers (“It’s the contractor’s fault! We have nothing to do with it! They lied…

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Our tribal future (a ramble)

The “left” wants somehow to unite us all behind ideas that are inherently divisive. (“My life matters more than your life,” “I belong to more victim classes than you do,” and “If you don’t think exactly what I happen to think today, you’re evil and should die.”) A growing faction on the “right” (including, apparently, former quasi-pseudo libertarian Peter Thiel), wants to unite us all behind big-government nationalism. Here’s my bet: neither plan will fly, at least not outside of academia, think tanks, and their devotees. The only thing that will ever unite millions in the foreseeable future is a…

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Indulgences on the road to Armageddon

This afternoon I poured myself a glass of a lovely white wine. Then I just sat. First I sat in the newly finished screen porch contemplating the bank of ferns behind Mo Saoirse Hermitage. When it got too chilly I came inside and slipped into a big bentwood rocker that has a view out the south windows. A few stalks of Crocosmia Lucifer were beginning to open their exotic flame-red blooms. Beyond them lies my 1/4-acre park-to-be, which is about halfway done and is now pastoral and pleasant after seven years of fitful labors. I so seldom do this, just…

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A Sunday ramble, from politics to picking up cedar limbs

The problem of free speech Gab, the free-speech social network, has suffered yet another blow. Visa has yanked their merchant account, preventing people from using Visa cards to make payments to the company. Worse, the ban also extends personally to Gab founder Andrew Torba AND to any members of his household. Gosh, can anybody think of other times and places when family members were punished for the politically incorrect deeds of others? Oh yeah … the Soviet Union, Communist China, and Nazi Germany. Fun times, fun places. Of course, this is just Visa, a private corporation, and not the work…

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