image courtesy of google images

image courtesy of google images

 

Two weeks after the shooting death of 18 year old Michael Brown, the streets of Ferguson Missouri are relatively calm. The looting and violence which precipitated a military style response by local and state law enforcement has all but ended. This quiet suggests that that either the looters feel they’ve stolen enough stereos and cigarettes in the name of ‘justice’ or that they’ve become disinterested with all the talk of “justice for Michael Brown”. A core group of roughly one hundred or so remain. Marching in tight circles around a roughly four block radius, they continue to demand ‘justice'; insisting that Brown’s shooting death by police officer Darren Wilson – ‘in broad daylight’ – is further evidence of a “war on young black men’ by police, by the justice system, and by the mostly white public at large.

Though few will overtly do so, we should ask what – in the context of Brown’s death – precisely does ‘justice’ consist of for the protesters? Leave aside for a moment the question of prosecuting Officer Wilson. Let’s instead ask “to what do we refer to when we use the word ‘justice?”

Philosopher Ayn Rand asked and then answered the question of the nature of ‘justice':

“What fact of reality gave rise to the concept “justice”? The fact that man must draw conclusions about the things, people and events around him, i.e., must judge and evaluate them. Is his judgment automatically right? No. What causes his judgment to be wrong? The lack of sufficient evidence, or his evasion of the evidence, or his inclusion of considerations other than the facts of the case. How, then, is he to arrive at the right judgment? By basing it exclusively on the factual evidence and by considering all the relevant evidence available.”

Rand went on to elaborate:

“But isn’t this a description of “objectivity”? Yes, “objective judgment” is one of the wider categories to which the concept “justice” belongs. What distinguishes “justice” from other instances of objective judgment? When one evaluates the nature or actions of inanimate objects, the criterion of judgment is determined by the particular purpose for which one evaluates them. But how does one determine a criterion for evaluating the character and actions of men, in view of the fact that men possess the faculty of volition? What science can provide an objective criterion of evaluation in regard to volitional matters? Ethics. Now, do I need a concept to designate the act of judging a man’s character and/or actions exclusively on the basis of all the factual evidence available, and of evaluating it by means of an objective moral criterion? Yes. That concept is “justice.””

 

Given the fact that the protesters are demanding justice – and given what we now know of the concept – we really should consider the complaints of Ferguson’s protesters. If we are to satisfy their demands we should ask “what, exactly, do they want?’ What are their basic premises? What facts to the protesters point to as evidence of justice denied or delayed? What, for example, constitutes their ‘war on black men’? What do they seek in order to satisfy their desire for ‘justice’ and ‘change’? Read the rest of this entry »

hypocriteFolks are right to be enraged by the events which have occurred (and are occurring) in Ferguson, Missouri. These events are a demonstration of the state of race relations in the country, and everyone should be concerned. However, despite the implicit claims of America’s race hustlers, moral cowards, and sundry other folks in self-indulgent denial, we do not live in Mississippi circa 1956. No one should deny the continued existence of racism or bias, nor the existence of police officers using excessive force. We should, however, not be so blinded by the sparkling rhetoric of the race baiters among us – rhetoric deliberately designed to give the impression that racism remains a pernicious problem in the U.S..

Racism is not the problem, race relations are. These are not the same.

The race baiting, racial tension, and acts of force against persons and property in Ferguson following the shooting of Michael Brown by a Ferguson police officer are a symptom of that problem. Let’s get the facts straight before we proceed.

First, Michael Brown and Darren Wilson – the officer who fatally shot Brown – are responsible for their own actions, as are the “demonstrators” whose chosen form of protest is to attack police, loot stores, and destroy property in their community. Read the rest of this entry »

Originally posted on International Liberty:

Last month, I nailed Bill and Hillary Clinton for their gross hypocrisy on the death tax.

But that’s just one example. Today, we’re going to experience a festival of statist hypocrisy. We have six different nauseating examples of political elitists wanting to subject ordinary people to bad policy while self-exempting themselves from similar burdens.

Our first three examples are from the world of taxation.

Here are some excerpts from a Washington Timesreport about a billionaire donor who is bankrolling candidates who support higher taxes, even though he structured his hedge fund in low-tax jurisdictions specifically to minimize the fiscal burdens of his clients.

Tom Steyer, the billionaire environmental activist who is spending $100 million to help elect Democrats this fall, is rallying support for energy taxes that could impact everyday Americans. But when he ran his own hedge fund, Mr. Steyer sought to help wealthy clients legally avoid paying…

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Originally posted on Marbles in a Jar:

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We’ve all felt that sense of relief when we finally experience positive concrete changes in our circumstances following what seemed to be an endless period of things going downhill. Two recent social movements which spoke out for freedom, Occupy Wall Street and the Tea Party, should both be breathing a sigh of relief, as this month capped of two years or so of actions which benefit both simultaneously yet, at first blush, appear disparate and even contradictory.

Occupy and the Tea Party ought to say a silent “thank you” to the state and federal courts, be it for the unanimous Supreme Court decision involving police searches, the past few years of judicial and state recognition of gay marriage, or the thirteen consecutive Supreme Court slap downs of President Obama’s overreach culminating in the unanimous rejection of his illegal appointments as well as the recent Hobby Lobby decision. Hailed by some while derided by…

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Sniperhunter2012:

hmmmm…..Hunter considered the notion of suggesting the abortion of adult conservatives, but figured this would be a bit too controversial. However, he would accept any volunteers to the cause as he prepares the fire.

Originally posted on Marbles in a Jar:

Note From the Editor: Before reading this piece, you should be aware that it is an advanced form of bitter satire. Hunter Nash is here parodying a piece by Jonathan Swift, called “A Modest Proposal.” The original proposal was also breath taking for its shock value. Please understand that by publishing this piece, Marbles in a Jar is in no way condoning the actual plan found in the text.

hypocrite
Fewer problems have dominated public conversation than Climate Change and the ongoing ‘War on Terror.’ This is particularly true for Liberals. Perhaps this is because Climate Change and the ‘War on Terror’ are inextricably linked. With Liberal enlightenment comes the recognition that unless we rid ourselves of planet destroying sources of energy we will destroy our wonderful Earth and will never financially separate ourselves from an ongoing war against well-meaning people’s whose peaceful religion we’ve been force to fight thanks to Conservatives and their empire building…

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Originally posted on Marbles in a Jar:

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The atrocities committed by USCSB shooter Eliot Rodger - atrocities which include numerous whiny video rants and a vomit inducing 137 page manifest0 -  brilliantly illuminate and may, hopefully, put an end to one of our culture’s most pernicious problems.  We live in an age of entitlement.

This statement should come as a surprise to no one.

All around us folks feel they are owed everything from birth control to a ‘living wage'; from ‘respect for my opinion’ to, as Rodger incessantly whined about in his rants, affection and ‘accolades’ (his word). Pervading these demands is the notion that merely because they live and breathe they’re exempt from earning what they wish for or need.

Perhaps, in the sheer vomit inducing audacity and clarity that are the Rodger tapes (and manifesto), folks will be better able to draw philosophical parallels on day to day life. Perhaps more will come to recognize entitlement based demands for what they are, whenever or wherever they hear them.

The…

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Hunter Nash – Currency

Posted: May 12, 2014 in Uncategorized

Originally posted on Marbles in a Jar:

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This column is primarily about social issues, but will occasionally delve into the concepts which drive those issues. Today is one of those times. Today we’ll talk briefly about mercy and justice, concepts that are driving forces behind the social issues which move us to action and, occasionally, to tears.

Recently at the city mission the Minister talked about mercy and justice. He drew a metaphor of two coins brought together. The minister discussed how mercy and justice yearn to meet. Both concepts at once appear similar, however it’s clear that they are very different moral concepts. They come from very different basic premises. Each stirs strong – and very different – emotions.

In the haunting lyrics of his song Get Me Right Dashboard Confessional’s Chris Carrabba sings of sin and how

it remains inside of me

It battles and devours me

It cuddles up beside me

And whispers it…

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Sniperhunter2012:

“One is tempted to ask, just who are the actual racists and just who are all these dog whistles meant for?”

Originally posted on Marbles in a Jar:

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It cannot possibly have escaped attention, but nothing shuts down an argument or discussion these days quicker than accusations of ‘racism’. Perhaps it’s just me, but it seems that everything today is ‘racist’ or ‘racially charged’. This author is bewildered, exhausted (and, frankly, bored) from all the racism talk.

The recent racially tinged ‘scandals’ regarding Rancher Cliven Bundy and LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling – along with a conversation with an acquaintance on a slightly unrelated subject – got this author thinking: when do divergent opinions cross over the line, and where is that line drawn? How do we, as a culture, deal with unpopular positions? Who decides which opinions are beyond the pale? Before we get to this author’s recent conversation that connects the threads of this discussion, let’s look at the ‘scandals” of Rancher Bundy and Clippers owner Sterling. On the surface the two situations appear similar. Both…

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Sniperhunter2012:

ya think?

Originally posted on The Daley Gator:

This is just sad

Western Washington University sent a questionnaire to students asking them for advice on how the administration could succeed at making sure that in future years, “we are not as white as we are today.”

The question notes that WWU’s racial make up does not perfectly reflect the nation at large, and asks students to consider strategies that other universities have used to focus on skin color as the paramount indicator of a student-applicant’s worth.

The president of WWU has stated that his explicit goal is to reduce the white population on campus, according to Campus Reform.

“I’ve said before and I’ll say it again, that we as a faculty and staff and student body, as an administration, if we 10 years from now are as white as we are today, we will have failed as a university,” said Bruce Shepard, president of WWU, in a…

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