Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The Harmful Influence of Politics on Everyday Life

It may seem to many of you that I like writing about politics. When I think back on it, I find myself thinking that actually, I don't. I can think of so many better things to write about and I've shown this by my work as a novelist. I'd much rather be writing adventures and working with fiction than expressing my opinions on the political happenings in this nation and the world. The problem is, as I discovered long ago, politics doesn't want to leave me alone. It wants to seep into every aspect of my life. It wants to micromanage my personal decisions. It wants to tell me what I can eat, what I can and can't put into my body, what medications and medical procedures I can and can't use, what businesses I can and can't open, how I must operate a business when I open it, what I must accept as money from any given costumer, who I can and can't marry, how I can travel, etc. They keep their hands in my pockets and their eyes on all my activities. In short, politics wants to control my actions from cradle to grave and make sure they get a piece of everything I produce during my time here on earth.

I write about politics because I felt compelled to do so when I started in 2006. The world had changed greatly and our society was headed down a dark and dangerous path. I had to do something. I could no longer just go through life with my head hung, mumbling and complaining and pretending I had no real power, even though that's what I felt like. Since that time things have gotten worse if you go by what the federal government has become, but they've gotten better if you go by how the people have reacted and how they've realized that something is very wrong. There is a huge problem however, in my opinion, in the solutions that continue to be proffered by the establishment. It seems to me that their solutions treat symptoms and never cure the disease.

I took a trip to Florida not long ago to visit family. My 19 year old daughter came along with me. She hates when I talk about government, so whenever possible I try to avoid the subject when she's around. I try to avoid speaking about it in general because I don't like getting into arguments and I find I can write out my feelings better than I can vocalize them.

My brother in law, however, brought up the subject in a round about way. He owns a heating, ventilation and air conditioning business down in Florida. He was telling me about new laws that require him to put the thermostat at a lower level for handicapped people, even in units on upper floors where handicapped people are extremely unlikely to live, even though many handicapped people don't live alone, and even though such placement increases the likelihood that some older, non handicapped person can now harm themselves because they have to bend over to look at and/or adjust the thermostat. He brought the subject up not because he wanted to talk about politics or government, but because it directly impacted his life and showed just how arrogant government can be with their "one size fits all" solutions to problems that aren't really even that big of a deal.

The next day, my daughter expressed concern about my brother in law being uncaring and told me she liked the concern shown for handicapped people. She felt that if non handicapped people didn't like it than they could live elsewhere. I tried to explain to her that all new multi unit buildings were required to have the lower thermostats and that everyone would have to live with that because government had taken choice away. She got mad at me for bringing government into the conversation. I was stunned and told her that she had brought it up, not me. She didn't see it that way. She somehow failed to connect the fact that laws come from government, that politics are simply an argument over who to point government guns at. The discussion ended immediately and I tried to quickly think of a more innocuous subject to talk about.

Herein lies the problem. Government puts its tentacles into just about everybody's everyday life, yet niceties prevent us from talking about it. I've seen posts on social networks insulting Republicans and others insulting Democrats. These are usually posted by people who identify with the party that is not being insulted. How do you think that makes people feel? Don't you think people will get angry when they're insulted? Don't you think they'll react with vitriolic insults of their own? Don't you think this will simply turn off the reasoning aspect of the human mind and turn on the reactive emotional side? Certainly this is no way to go about trying to change people's points of view.

Anger stems from fear. Fear is the mind killer. These are the weapons the establishment uses to maintain its control. There seems to be an infinite number of ways they can implement these emotions. Mostly they seem to use the party system. They present good ideologies in certain aspects to attract a certain type of person and then tyrannical ideologies in other aspects to anger a different type. That's how they polarize people. That's how they remove reason and empathy from the debate.

For instance, Democrats or liberals are supposed to be for freedom in personal affairs, but they wish to demonize and regulate businesses. Republicans are supposed to be for freedom in business affairs, but they wish to regulate personal choice more and supposedly are war mongering and law enforcement oriented. All wish for more security in some form because they fear insecurity. This is approaching life from a fear based perspective. As a result, we are more concerned with differences rather than similarities. This ends up in Democrats tyrannizing the business aspect of our lives while Republicans tyrannize the personal aspects of our lives. Personal freedoms and choices shrink while government intrusion and tyranny grows. I want freedom and choices to grow while big government tyranny and intrusion shrinks.

Choosing between Democrat and Republican is like choosing a poison or a cancer. One kills quickly and is not so painful while the other is painful but allows you to live longer. Which do you choose? Neither is a good choice. Either way you get sick and die. I want to have the choice where I am healthy and live a long, happy life. I want to choose not taking the poison. I want to chose other than the two choices presented to us by the establishment. But people get so emotional invested in these parties, in the positive aspects of these ideologies, that they can't see the negative and argue vehemently when such things are pointed out.

The problem with government is that it is force. While I will admit that I believe there are situations that might arise where such a force is necessary to protect individuals, those situations are few and far between. They certainly don't arise when one is making a personal choice for his own life. They certainly don't arise when one is doing business on a voluntary basis with another. The only times such force might be necessary, in my humble opinion, is when such a force needs to be brought to bear against a corporation or government that can also command such force.

People get upset with others who express strong opinions on government because of this force. Let's face it, when someone points a gun at you, you're likely going to get upset. That's what government is, a gun, a threat of force, a coercive way to get people to behave in a manner in which they do not wish to behave or to prevent them from engaging in behaviors they wish to engage in. While many people might not realize it or don't think of it like this, when one has a debate about politics often times it's a debate about who to point the gun at. Democrats often times want to point the gun at people who simply want to run their own businesses. Republicans often want to point the gun at people who believe government is some kind of charity there to help the poor and downtrodden. Neither group deserves to have guns pointed at them. Both groups will go on the defensive when they feel threatened.

Many people don't think of government in such terms. They believe those who have been elected to office to be legitimate and have the attitude that the words they write as laws should be unquestionably obeyed. Those who are savvy and who have figured out that government is force can use this knowledge and the attitude of the many to manipulate the populace to their own benefit. I believe, in fact, that this is what has happened. It started long ago, when royalty ruled as feudal lords, and has progressed through time. It has become hidden and sophisticated to keep the general populace in the dark.

While it can be debated whether or not this has happened purposely by design or organically as a function of an elite trying to hold onto power while the common folk try to empower themselves, the effect is the same. People of good intentions attempt to use the guns of government to force others to act in certain ways while those on top of the heap become wealthier and more empowered. Until enough people realize that we are being played, the ploy will work, the elite will control the masses, and we can expect to be treated as obedient slaves rather than sovereign human beings.

As long as we approach politics from an angry, fearful perspective, we will continue to do harm to our society and our future. As long as we continue to propagate a forceful institution instead of a more voluntary and tolerant system people who get their hands on the handles of power will try to use it to their own benefit and to the detriment of others. If this is left unchecked long enough the system becomes corrupt to the core and atrocities can be committed. The founding fathers of our nation created laws meant to prevent this as set forth in the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence and the Articles of Confederation. These documents have been ignored for too long by those who seek power over this American nation. It is time to start enforcing the spirit of the laws that made this nation great.

Moreover, in an effort to help mankind grow and prosper as a species, I think that the more individuals who approach politics from a loving, caring perspective, the better. I'm not talking about a perspective where a sweet smile and a "please" is applied to the end of the gun, I'm talking about an empathetic perspective where the gun is taken out of the picture. The best way to keep people from becoming corrupt is to take away the vehicle that takes them there. The best way to keep anger and fear out of your life is to remove the threats that can be leveled against you. The founding documents need to be enforced against those who would disregard their sage advice. Power needs to be given back to the people. The rights of the individual need to be honored by government. In this way we can reclaim our morality, our respect, our prosperity, and our humanity. In this way we can begin to heal.

My archives can be found at my website szandorblestman.com. Please visit there to read more and support me by making a donation.

I am proud to announce the release of my book "The Colors of Elberia; book 1 of The Black Blade trilogy" as an ebook. Here is a list of my works by Matthew Wayne at different web retailers for your convenience. "The Edge of Sanity" at smashwords, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and Diesel. "The Ouijiers" at smashwords, Barnes and Noble, Kobo and Diesel. Here are links to my book "The Blessings of Freedom, Creating Prosperity in the 21st Century" serialized version: Chapter 1. Chapter 2. I thank you for your support.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Energy Independence and Disempowering the Mob

In these economically tough times, it might not be a bad idea to think outside the box when it comes to saving money. In fact, I wonder if wandering away from the principles this country was founded upon hasn't proven to be our downfall. These principles were pulled outside the box long ago and the box given to us by big government controlled by multi national corporate interests became very comfortable. I believe they felt we would completely forget about the "quaint" ways of our forefathers and succumb completely to their domination if they made us comfortable enough. I believe we really missed the boat in a lot of ways, but that's okay, there's always another boat scheduled to leave port at some point in time.

We have become a nation dependent upon many "biggies." We depend on big government for too many things to count. We depend on big agri to keep the shelves filled in our grocery stores. We depend on big finance to provide us with currency and credit to finance lifestyles we can't really afford. We depend on big pharma to provide us with medications to improve or extend our lives. We depend on big oil to provide us with cheap energy. We depend on these things and others and we put our trust in these institutions. Many invest so much emotional energy into depending upon and trusting in these institutions that when they are exposed to the truth they don't want to hear it and refuse to believe it.

There are ways to break your dependence on all these institutions and more. The problem is, many of these solutions aren't necessarily easy, yet. That's how these institutions work, they rope you in with promises of "cheap and easy" and then put the whammy on you when you become dependent on them. It's kind of like drugs, alcohol or smoking, in order to quit you have to really want it. You have to really bend your will toward achieving your goal. Otherwise, it is too easy to slip back into dependency. Excuses are a dime a dozen, and I'm not talking about a pre 1964 silver dime, I'm talking about the extremely cheap dimes of today. Sometimes, breaking dependence can be very difficult, but the pride and self esteem that one instills inside one's self when they break dependence and learn to live in a truly free manner is likely well worth the effort.

When one talks about energy independence, one often discusses the cost of such a venture. One often hears figures thrown around in kilowatts created per hour and how solar or wind power is not worth the cost because fossil fuels or nuclear power is so much cheaper. I am very leery about such claims. Here's a little experiment for you if you've been living in your house for ten years or more. Take a look at your electric bill. Now see if you can find your bill from ten years ago, the same month if possible. Have the rates gone up? By how much? Can you remember when the rates were raised? If you can figure out how much you've spent on energy over the last ten years, could you have bought a system that would have taken you off the grid for that amount or less? If not, how many more years until you reach that amount? What if there is another rate hike?

There are a lot of variables when you try to figure this out. It's not always as simple as the cost of kilowatts per hour as set today. But even if the established system can provide you with energy for much less than the cost of an off the grid system, there are quite a few other things you should take into consideration. For one thing, I don't know about you, but the house I used to live in used to have the power knocked out quite often, at least once a year, sometimes for two or three days and possibly as long as a week. Finally, we went out and got a gas powered generator to at least keep our sump pump, water pump and refrigerators going.

That cost about $400. It was for local emergencies only, however. I certainly wouldn't want to have to keep it going for more than maybe a week. Then there's the question, what if there's a wide spread disaster? What if the power is off for hundreds of miles around? What if a massive solar flare goes off and the whole grid goes down for a month or more? What if we can't get gasoline to run our generators? What then?

That's why I advocate energy independence. That's why I think every house should be powered with solar panels and wind generators hooked into a rechargeable bank of batteries. I know that the energy companies want to keep us dependent on them for our power. They want to keep that money flowing into their coffers. If they had their way no one would be allowed to have power except through their wires. I believe there are technologies that will provide cheap or free energy to the masses that are hidden because of this reason. Until such technologies are released, we must take what is available on the market. Right now, that seems to be solar and wind.

Right now, as things stand, there have been tremendous improvements in performance, materials and price in solar power. Wind power has also improved, but unfortunately many municipalities won't allow the towers in neighborhoods and smaller, more visibly pleasing units remain elusive. A determined consumer would be able to find solutions to becoming energy independent if they so wished. These solutions might not be perfect, they might not get you completely off the grid, but the more people that seek energy independence, the more likely it will be that the marketplace will come up with better, cheaper, more complete systems to meet that demand.

At the very least, for the purpose of disaster preparedness, one should have an emergency solar generator to power necessities such as water pumps, sump pumps and refrigerators in the wake of a major disaster such as a category 5 hurricane or a direct hit from an X class solar flare that knocks out the power grid. Equipped with such a device, you might end up enjoying potable water, toilets that flush, a dry basement and food that isn't rotting while your neighbors have to depend on unreliable government agencies or have to drive dozens or hundreds of miles to find gasoline to power their noisy generators days after a disaster has struck. Who knows, in the wake of an even wider spread disaster, such a device might save the lives of those in your family.

Watch for costs to keep rising. As the cost of power goes up, your investment looks more and more intelligent. What if the costs double, or triple. With the ongoing problems in the world's financial sector, the economy looks as uncertain as ever. The establishment news wants you to believe that everything is rosy, but looking about the real world that view is very difficult to accept. Those at the top have the jitters. An attack on Iran, be it American or Israeli led, could be catastrophic. Just the threatening postures taken on all sides has led to increases in the price of oil. It is perhaps time to put the cost comparisons in the back seat and to ask yourself how much the extra security would be worth to you.

The establishment does not want you to be independent. The mob of established corporate interests want to continue to use big government to help keep you dependent on them so that they can continue to collect their monthly tributes. They don't even want you trying to learn more about recent advancements in residential power collectors. They will keep pumping out the propaganda and misinformation as long as they feel they can prevent you from seeking energy independence. It is up to you to dig deeper and figure out for yourself whether such systems are right for you or not because those who control the system now certainly aren't going to help you figure out how to stop paying them. By becoming energy independent and getting off the grid, you at least disempower a portion of the mob and empower yourself.

Hopefully no disaster ever strikes. Hopefully the worst case scenarios remain at bay. Still, as time goes by, we need to make ourselves independent of big government and corporations if we are to live free. We need to find ways to power our homes so that our fates aren't dependent upon the skills of others. The question is, are you going to be one of the first, or are you going to wait on others to take the first steps, perhaps waiting until it's too late. The choice is yours to make.

If you like my writings, I am asking for your help. Please visit my website szandorblestman.com to see my archived articles and help support me by making a donation. I am also pleased to announce the release of "The Edge of Sanity" by Matthew Wayne. It is also available for the Kobo Vox, at Barnes and Noble and at Diesel. The download for this book is only $2.99. I have also released "The Ouijiers" at smashwords.com. The download is also $2.99, but you can get the first 20% of both books free. "The Ouijiers" is also available for the Kobo Vox and Diesel.

I am working on a book. The working title is "The Blessings of Freedom: Creating Prosperity in the 21st Century." I am offering this work as a serial for those who are interested and can't wait for the book to come out. I hope to publish a chapter every couple of weeks or so. I will offer the chapters for sale exclusively at smashwords.com as I finish them. The price is $0.99 for each chapter as it comes out. Here is the link to Chapter 1: "The Blessings of Freedom: Creating Prosperity in the 21st Century" Chapter 1. Here is the link to Chapter 2: The Blessings of Freedom: Creating Prosperity in the 21st Century" Chapter 2 Keep an eye out as further chapters will be announced as they come out. I wish to thank everyone in advance for their support in this endeavor.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

The Ring of Power and the World Economy

"One ring to rule them all
One ring to find them
One ring to bring them all
And in the darkness bind them."
From "The Fellowship of the Ring" by J.R.R. Tolkien

I cut my fantasy reading teeth on "The Hobbit" and "The Lord of the Rings" when I read the books way back when I was in the 7th grade. These might seem like difficult books for a 7th grader to read, but I was a voracious reader and these books posed a challenge both to my comprehension of the English language and my imagination. It took the making of the movies, excellently done under the direction of Peter Jackson I might add, and perhaps a more adult point of view, to really consider the parallels between this fantastic tale of good versus evil and modern economics and politics.

The ring of power, for those who do not know, was a magic ring created by Sauron to control all the other rings of power which had been produced in Middle Earth. The rings of power gave the bearers the strength to rule over their peoples, (elves, men and dwarves) but the one ring gave Sauron the power to rule over the minds of the bearers of the other rings. When the ring was cut from Sauron's finger in the war against the last alliance, (between elves and men) Sauron lost his form, but a great part of his malicious spirit remained with the ring.

The ring of power easily corrupts the hearts of men. One who would desire to do good, who would desire to bring order and coordination for the greater good, would end up spreading chaos and destruction. It derived its power from hatred and fear. It made men and mortal creatures despair and could therefore make them quiver and quake and bow before the bearer of the one ring. Of course, the wearer of the ring of power becomes very arrogant and when he is challenged his anger seethes. The anger is used to destroy and that is how good intentions bring about destruction.

In this world we may not have rings of power, but we do have powerful corporate entities. Those who rule over these corporations have the means to rule over many people and influence much in political matters. Some of the most powerful corporations involve the energy, pharmaceuticals and weapons sectors. There are also very influential corporations in the communications, information, transportation, agricultural and chemical sectors. These corporate interests have been known to form alliances and cartels to maintain their power and influence. They have tied in to many industries of lesser influence, but they wield their "rings of power" over their business sectors with great zeal and have turned governments into their enforcement arms to make sure their will is done.

There is a corporate interest that rules over all other corporations. It uses its awesome power to bring them all together and in darkness bind them, so to speak. That corporate interest is the banking sector. The ring it wears is the ring of currency control. It is the power of monopoly over the commodity called legal tender. The central banks of the world have come together to form an economy of debt, and they have indebted even the largest of corporations and the greatest of governments using their ability to force common folk and businesses to accept their paper, to artificially set interest rates, and to lay claim to properties, commodities and other real wealth they never earned through default. The Federal Reserve System of the United States of America is the most powerful of these central banks. It wields the might of this ring of power without regard to the harm it might be doing the good people of the world.

In J.R.R. Tolkien's work, Sauron becomes impotent when his ring of power is unmade. This is done by throwing the ring into the volcano where it was created. One way the monopoly of currency can be unmade is to throw it into the volcano of big government where it was created. An audit of its wealth can show us where all our money has gone. It will show us just how much control the central banks exercise over corporate interests, particularly in the financial sector. This, along with the repeal of legal tender laws, would set up an environment of growth where the multitude determines the directions of markets. It would set up an economy much more stable than what a few wealthy elite can come up with. It would set up an economy where your voice is important, for you would be voting with your dollar which is worth something, not your vote which is worth less than the machines which count votes.

Reversing the damage that has been done by central banking might seem like a daunting task at first, there will be some pain and the elite who run them will want to twist the knife, but we must be brave. The economic landscape would likely look bleak for a time, but soon those who wish to profit in the new economic environment will plant the seeds which will grow new green shoots. The world of the free market will be a world where what you have is owned by you, not the bank. You won't have to worry about losing your home should you lose your job. It will likely be a world where you will be protected not by a huge central government full of greedy politicians working for corporate interests and trying to take advantage of the least influential common folk, but by a community of individuals who care for their fellow human beings and wish to see all prosper in a stable economic environment.

There are a couple of important lessons we can take from "The Lord of the Rings" that seem incredibly difficult for mankind to learn. The first is that power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. The second is that in order to rid the world of tyranny, the power the tyrant wields must be neutralized. The power the modern day tyrant wields is the monopoly power over currency. A big central government will do its best to protect those with this power as they benefit from such power. But the little folk can still triumph. With a little education the true nature of the Federal Reserve as a privately owned central bank can be exposed. A multitude of voices raised for a singular purpose cannot be ignored even by the most corrupt politician. End the Fed.

If you like my writings, I am asking for your help. Please visit my website szandorblestman.com to see my archived articles and help support me by making a donation. I am also pleased to announce the release of my novel entitled "The Edge of Sanity."by Matthew Wayne. It is also available for the Kobo Vox, at Barnes and Noble and at Diesel. The download for this book is only $2.99. I have also released "The Ouijiers" at smashwords.com. The download is $2.99, but you can get the first 20% free.

I am working on a book. The working title is "The Blessings of Freedom: Creating Prosperity in the 21st Century." I am going to offer this work as a serial for those who are interested and can't wait for the book to come out. I hope to publish a chapter every couple of weeks or so. I will offer the chapters for sale exclusively at smashwords.com as I finish them. The price is $0.99 for each chapter as it comes out. Here is the link to Chapter 1: "The Blessings of Freedom: Creating Prosperity in the 21st Century" Chapter 1. There is a bonus as the Introduction to the book is included with this download. Keep an eye out as further chapters will be announced as they come out. I wish to thank everyone in advance for their support in this endeavor.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Super Ron Paul Victory on Super Tuesday

On this the eve of Super Tuesday, 2012, I'm going to make a prediction. I predict that Ron Paul will not officially win any state on March 6th, 2012. I'll predict that, despite all the enthusiastic supporters and loud, cheering rallies, those who wish to see honest, citizen statesmen in office rather than the corrupt, bought and paid for career politicians will somehow forget to go to the polls and vote. I predict that, despite all the sign waving, billboards, grass roots donations, political organizing, and other complicated, time consuming activism that they spend hours engaging in, Ron Paul supporters will somehow be unable to find the fifteen minutes needed on election day to get to their polling place and cast their vote. Somehow, this extremely popular man expressing ideas most Americans are very familiar with - after all we brag so much about how great this nation is because of our freedom - is not as popular on election day as wealthy globalists who endorse freedom killing policies.

Why is that? Why hasn't Ron Paul won one primary election or caucus yet? Why is it that such a lauded, popular personality loved by so many hasn't been able to garner one first place finish even in some of the smallest states by Super Tuesday? I sit here stroking my chin pondering such things the day before perhaps one of the most important days in years when it comes to pointing the direction in which this world will head in the years to come. Do so called conservatives really want to vote for someone who takes credit for the Obamacare before Obamacare? Do they really want to vote for someone with a record of voting for big government programs that any dyed in the wool Democrat would be proud of? Do they really want another lying, hypocritical, promise breaking politician that will serve the power elite? Really? If not, then why is Ron Paul not winning these contests by landslides?

I'd really like to believe that people are intelligent. I'd really like to believe that they can see past the BS and understand how the controllers try to manipulate them. I'd really like to think that they could look past the rhetoric and talking points spewed out by the candidates and pundits and dig deeper into voting records and past words and actions to discover who is honest and who is corrupted and corruptible. I'd like to think that people who believe there is a difference between Republicans and Democrats would vote for someone with a proven record that he is different from the common politician. I'd like to think a lot of things, but the evidence does not bear it out.

This all makes me wonder. Take a look at this Ron Paul rally at Michigan State University. Can you show me any other Republican candidate who garners so much support? Did any of you see this on any corporate media news? I didn't think so. There they are, all these intelligent, enthusiastic kids ready to vote for Ron Paul, but keep an eye on the polls. I bet he doesn't win Michigan.

I suppose now I should get into the conspiracy of all this. The powers that be simply don't want Ron Paul winning. They don't like this idea of freedom. They don't like the idea that common folk would be making decisions for themselves. They don't like that people will be making decisions on where to best spend their own money. They don't like that they might lose their monopoly privileges, that someone might actually have the opportunity to compete with them and make them offer excellent costumer service should freedom break out. The powers that be are lazy. They don't want to actually have to work and produce and make quality products. They've hired their political puppets to occupy the seats of power. They'll be damned if they're going to let some true populist old man like Ron Paul get in and upset their well laid plans.

So what do they do about it if more people actually vote for Ron Paul than vote for any of their guys that they've paid so much for? What do they do if the people actually start to figure things out and vote for someone who will reduce the power of the elite? They do what they do best. They steal.

The powers that be will steal the election if it suits them, if they feel their interests are threatened, and if they feel they can get away with it. There is already evidence that this may have happened. This is an interesting article about the Nevada caucus. Watch the video. Listen to what the people speaking have to say. Remember that this is a caucus of people who, according to most political pundits paid by the corporate establishment, should be voting against Ron Paul due to his foreign policy stances. How is it he can get so many votes at a caucus where the votes are counted by hand on live tv and so few when it comes to the rest of the state? Are these people so different from the rest of the inhabitants of Nevada? I doubt it. We are all more alike than different. They just understand freedom. The principles of freedom apply to all people regardless of religion, race, sex or creed.

Here's another interesting voting anomaly coming out of Maine. The results from this county is once again contrary to the rest of the state. Strange how the results from these late caucuses are so divergent. I'm not sure if the votes here were on paper ballots and hand counted under the watchful eyes of every campaign or not, but it wouldn't surprise me. That seems to be the only way Ron Paul wins. As the old Led Zepplin song goes, "oooo, it really makes me wonder."

There are those who I'm sure are snickering at me right now. "You're just a crazy conspiracy theorist." Or, "You're just crying sour grapes because your candidate isn't winning." Or, "You can't prove a thing." Maybe so. But I think I'm just looking at the facts and pointing them out, for the most part. I'm just pointing out the circumstantial evidence, which is quite convincing to me. You can deny it all you wish. Maybe I can't prove I'm right, but unless there's a place where paper ballot votes are counted by hand with someone from each campaign watching, no one can prove I'm wrong either. With the current voting situation where machines handle the vote count, you can only prove to me that we live in a country where people are far too trusting of authorities.

Then there are those who will claim I'm being negative. How can we win if the system is so against us? Why should we even vote if the powers that be have already made up their minds? Who can we turn to if even a "fair and unbiased" press has been bought and paid for by anti Ron Paul forces? They are just too powerful, why should we even try? That's not the case. I'm as positive a thinker as anyone. I just think that the reality of the situation needs to be pointed out if we are to deal with it. Don't give up. Don't turn over the power you have just because things seem hopeless. They are not.

Go to your caucuses. Vote in the primaries. Let the world know you support Dr. Paul and all he stands for. Numbers are what is needed, numbers so great that they can't be denied. Watch for any irregularities you might see and report them to some watchdog group. I wouldn't trust government or party reporting agencies. Blackboxvoting.org is a non profit, non partisan group that actually looks into such allegations.

One last thing I'd like to mention. Perhaps the Ron Paul campaign isn't as lame as you might think. Maybe he is very electable. It could be that you're just not hearing that if your main source of news is the corporate run media. Here's a widely unreported story reported by Rachel Maddow. Take heart Ron Paul Supporters, he might be doing better than you think despite the best efforts of the powers that be, the GOP and the mainstream media to bury him. Keep the faith because in the immortal words of Yogi Berra, "It's not over until it's over" and in politics, it's never over.

Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe Ron Paul will win every state tomorrow, or even at least one or two. In this case, I'd love to be proven wrong. Go out and vote tomorrow, if your state is one of the Super Tuesday states. Watch for Mitt Romney to win most of the states, not necessarily because he's the most popular and gets the most votes, but because he's the choice of the wealthy elite who own the system. Keep an eye out for anyplace where votes are on paper and counted by hand with all concerned watching. I predict Ron Paul will handily win any such vote. But keep in mind that even if the results are not favorable for Dr. Paul, things aren't always as they seem. There are things going on behind the scenes most of us are unaware of. As dark as it might seem now, there is always hope, and sooner or later the dawn will come.

If you like my writings, I am asking for your help. Please visit my website szandorblestman.com to see my archived articles and help support me by making a donation. I am also pleased to announce the release of my novel entitled "The Edge of Sanity."by Matthew Wayne. It is also available for the Kobo Vox, at Barnes and Noble and at Diesel. The download for this book is only $2.99. I have also released "The Ouijiers" at smashwords.com. The download is $2.99, but you can get the first 20% free.

I am working on a book. The working title is "The Blessings of Freedom: Creating Prosperity in the 21st Century." I am going to offer this work as a serial for those who are interested and can't wait for the book to come out. I hope to publish a chapter every couple of weeks or so. I will offer the chapters for sale exclusively at smashwords.com as I finish them. The price is $0.99 for each chapter as it comes out. Here is the link to Chapter 1: "The Blessings of Freedom: Creating Prosperity in the 21st Century" Chapter 1. There is a bonus as the Introduction to the book is included with this download. Keep an eye out as further chapters will be announced as they come out. I wish to thank everyone in advance for their support in this endeavor.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Paypal, Credit Cards and Government Censorship by Proxy?

As you all know, I am an independent author. It is my way of trying to make a living in a slow jobs market that shows no sign of ever getting any better as the powers that be continue to exercise the policies that brought about the financial disaster in the first place. I work hard to produce written content that people will want to read. I work hard to produce value in the story telling field, as well as working to express my feelings of how a free society should act. I work hard on my own even though I am most days not paid a penny, even though there is no guarantee I will ever see one dime from my hard work. If nothing else, I do try. Something has happened recently that threatens even this most modest means of trying to earn a living.

Paypal has decided to threaten the platform I use to publish my works. They have threatened to close the account held by smashwords.com if smashwords does not pull all book titles dealing with bestiality, rape or incest. While I understand that these topics can be disturbing to some, I also understand that nobody is forced to read such topics. While I understand that this is meant to target erotica books written specifically about these topics, I also understand that sometimes these topics come up in the context of different types of books not about those specific topics.

While I know that authors like myself are not yet targeted, I support free speech and abhor censorship of any type. I also understand that this is a foot in the door. Once these people are censored, it won't be long before political ideas such as freedom become targets by the power elite. While I support the free market and a company's right to not do business with certain people for certain reasons, I don't think we have a free market. According to paypal, they are censoring due to pressures from credit card companies. Credit card companies are heavily regulated by government. Indeed, if you ask me, credit card companies are sleeping with government, they are an integral part of the elite corporate structure that rules our lives. This to me seems to be government censorship by proxy.

I don't think it's appropriate for me to say more. My opinion on this mess is very biased, as you can imagine. My anger is seething. Instead of saying anything more, I thought it best to reproduce in part Mark Coker's latest email. He explains the situation much better than I can and offers some very good ideas on how to deal with this situation at the end. These ideas adhere to my stance on remaining peaceful and help to relay to the powers that be that censorship should not tolerated. In my opinion, censorship is more obscene than any sexual deviancy that could ever be described in a work of fiction. Below is Mark Coker's email that deals with paypal:


In case you haven't heard, about two weeks ago, PayPal contacted Smashwords and
gave us a surprise ultimatum: Remove all titles containing bestiality, rape
or incest, otherwise they threatened to deactivate our PayPal account. We engaged
them in discussions and on Monday they gave us a temporary reprieve as we continue
to work in good faith to find a suitable solution.

PayPal tells us that their crackdown is necessary so that they can remain in
compliance with the requirements of the banks and credit card associations (likely
Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express, though they didn't mention them
by name).

Last Friday, I sent the following email to our erotica authors and publishers:
https://www.smashwords.com/press/release/27 Then on Monday, I issued an update,
and announced we would delay enforcement of PayPal's guidelines so we and PayPal
could continue our discussions: https://www.smashwords.com/press/release/28


PayPal is asking us to censor legal fiction. Regardless of how one views topics
of rape, bestiality and incest, these topics are pervasive in mainstream fiction.
We believe this crackdown is really targeting erotica writers. This is unfair,
and it marks a slippery slope. We don't want credit card companies or financial
institutions telling our authors what they can write and what readers can read.
Fiction is fantasy. It's not real. It's legal.


There's no easy solution. Legally, PayPal and the credit card companies probably
have the right to decide how their services are used. Unfortunately, since they're
the moneyrunners, they control the oxygen that feeds digital commerce.

Many Smashwords authors have suggested we find a different payment processor.
That's not a good long term solution, because if credit card companies are behind
this, they'll eventually force crackdowns elsewhere. PayPal works well for us.
In addition to running all credit card processing at the Smashwords.com store,
PayPal is how we pay all our authors outside the U.S. My conversations with
PayPal are ongoing and have been productive, yet I have no illusion that the
road ahead will be simple, or that the outcome will be favorable.


Independent advocacy groups are considering taking on the PayPal censorship case.
I'm supporting the development of this loose-knit coalition of like-minded groups
who believe that censorship of legal fiction should not be allowed. We will grow
the coalition. Each group will have its own voice and tactics I'm working with
them because we share a common cause to protect books from censorship. Earlier
today I had conversations with the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), The
American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression (ABFFE) and the National
Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC). I briefed them on the Smashwords/PayPal
situation, explained the adverse affect this crackdown will have on some of our
authors and customers, and shared my intention to continue working with PayPal
in a positive manner to move the discussion forward.

The EFF blogged about the issue a few days ago: https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2012/02/legal-censorship-paypal-makes-habit-deciding-what-users-can-read
Today, ABFFE and NCAC issued a press release: http://www.scribd.com/doc/83549049/NCAC-ABFFE-Letter-To-PayPal-eBay-re-Ebook-Refusal-2012

I will not be on the streets with torch in hand calling for PayPal's head, but
I will encourage interested parties to get involved and speak their piece. This
is where you come in...


Although erotica authors are being targeted, this is an issue that should concern
all indie authors. It affects indies disproportionately because indies are the
ones pushing the boundaries of fiction. Indies are the ones out there publishing
without the (fading) protective patina of a "traditional publisher" to lend them
legitimacy. We indies only have each other.

Several Smashwords authors have contacted me to stress that this censorship affects
women disproportionately. Women write a lot of the erotica, and they're also
the primary consumers of erotica. They're also the primary consumers of mainstream
romance, which could also come under threat if PayPal and the credit card companies
were to overly enforce their too-broad and too-nebulous obsenity clauses (I think
this is unlikely, but at the same time, why would dubious consent be okay in
mainstream romance but not okay in erotica? If your write paranormal, can your
were-creatures not get it on with one another, or is that bestiality? The insanity
needs to stop here. These are not questions an author, publisher or distributor
of legal fiction should have to answer.).

All writers and their readers should stand up and voice their opposition to financial
services companies censoring books. Authors should have the freedom to publish
legal fiction, and readers should have the freedom to read what they want.

These corporations need to hear from you. Pick up the phone and call them.
Email them. Start petitions. Sign petitions. Blog your opposition to censorship.
Encourage your readers to do the same. Pass the word among your social networks.
Contact your favorite bloggers and encourage them to follow this story. Contact
your local newspaper and offer to let them interview you so they can hear a local
author's perspective on this story of international significance. If you have
connections to mainstream media, encourage them to pick up on the story. Encourage
them to call the credit card companies and pose this simple question, "PayPal
says they're trying to enforce the policies of credit card companies. Why are
you censoring legal fiction?"

Below are links to the companies waiting to hear from you. Click the link and
you'll find their phone numbers, executive names and postal mailing addresses.
Be polite, respectful and professional, and encourage your friends and followers
to do the same. Let them know you want them out of the business of censoring
legal fiction.

Tell the credit card companies you want them to give PayPal permission to sell
your ebooks without censorship or discrimination. Let them know that PayPal's
policies are out of step with the major online ebook retailers who already accept
your books as they are. Address your calls, emails (if you can find the email)
and paper letters (yes paper!) to the executives. Post open letters to them
on your blog, then tweet and Facebook hyperlinks to your letters. Force the
credit card companies to join the discussion about censorship. And yes, express
your feelings and opinions to PayPal as well. Don't scream at them. Ask them
to work on your behalf to protect you and your readers from censorship. Tell
them how their proposed censorship will harm you and your fellow writers.


American Express:



Ebay (owns PayPal):

I applaud the efforts of smashwords and the coalition they have built to combat this attempt at censorship. I applaud their efforts to allow everyone the freedom to choose the type of entertainment they wish to engage in. I applaud their efforts to nip this in the bud. I hope that my readers will also take a minute or two to let these powerful financial corporations know that their efforts to censor are not appreciated by a free people.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Drugs, Medicines, Vaccines and the Freedoms to Discover and Believe

There are several important principles I prescribe to and I try my best to adhere to them in my life. These principles form the basic tenets to building a free society. The most basic of these beliefs is the idea that you own yourself. Any person is the owner of their own body. No one should be able to force a person to do something with their own body that they do not want to do. No one should be able to force another person to eat a certain food, or take a certain medication, or ingest anything of any kind if that person does not want to, even if it's supposedly for the benefit of that person, even if it's for the benefit of all humankind. Only non coercive methods of convincing someone to partake in any kind of ingestion, injection, or procedure, invasive or non invasive, is acceptable, or we are not free.

Another basic principle is that if you want to live as a free individual you need to allow others to live as free individuals. That seems to be an obvious practice, but so often in this life many try to force their way of life onto others. Many people will do so without even knowing that they're doing so. They believe they know what is best for all and want to apply a one size fits all solution to all sorts of problems. They may even genuinely believe they are acting for the best interests of everyone involved. They aren't. Forcing people to act in one way or another and taking away all other choices is wrong. It ends up, in the long run, working to everyone's detriment.

There are those who think the proper way to go about wiping out disease is to force everyone to be vaccinated. They want to shoot you up with not only the disease, but all kinds of other stuff that might not be so good for you. For instance, there've been warnings in the past that if you have an allergy to eggs you were not to take the flu shot. This is because some flu shots use an egg medium to grow the virus. There are often other things in the shot like mercury (in thimerosal, a preservative) and squalene (an adjuvant) that can possibly do harm. There are risks involved with taking vaccines and the benefits and risks to the individual should be considered before that individual makes a decision.

There are those who do not want to give the individual the ability to make that decision. in fact, they want to take nearly all decision making abilities away from the individual. They may very well believe they own you, and just about everybody else. They may be right, if we all let them be right. Many of the most vocal advocates of taking such decision making rights away from the individual have a vested interest in mandating vaccinations. Can you say "Conflict of interest?" Have you noticed how often those in places of power have put the profit of multi national corporations in front of the best interests of the common folk? If not, you might want to pull your head out of the sand and start taking a look at what's really going on rather than thinking the status quo or any powerful industry has your best interests at heart.

One woman, an attorney named Patricia Finn, believes everyone should have the right to make their own decisions about vaccinations. She believes so much in this right that she has become an advocate for vaccination rights. She shows people how to legally and ethically keep from exposing their children to the risks inherent in vaccinations. Because of this, she is being threatened with criminal charges. The state of New York is trying to intimidate her into giving over he list of clients so they can intimidate them. The unaccountable judicial system is trying to force people to purchase or obtain medical products and procedures that they don't want and no one is arresting the judges doing so. This is wrong. Personally, I no longer trust or believe much of what the medical establishment tells me. I believe that system is more worried about profit than the health of individuals.

The state has charged that attorney Patricia Finn's advocacy is "threatening the public interest." I would argue that the public interest should be maintaining the sanctity of individual natural rights and therefore she is upholding the public interest. It is the court that is threatening the public interest. Indeed, the court system seems to rule in favor of big government and big corporations more often than not. The individual who wishes to make up his own mind seems to be prodded down a path without choices by monstrous bureaucracies he has little to no chance of escaping, like a slave continuously surrounded by masters with superior armor and weaponry. It has gotten to the point where there seems to be no place to turn, no one to listen to grievances, and the bullies have taken over all the powerful places where you are supposed to be represented.

Do not give in to despair. Millions upon millions are beginning to realize that they do have power. If we all get together and stand up for our rights, they will be forced to listen. We are many, they are few. It is just a matter of us no longer allowing them to be the bullies they want to be.

One of the ways people have been able to exercise their power is in the so called drug war. For decades the federal government has waged a propaganda campaign against the use of marijuana for medical purposes. It has been illegal to conduct tests. They have presented doctors and scientists who have claimed there was no known medical uses for marijuana. People who have been caught possessing marijuana, for whatever purpose, have been marginalized and stigmatized. Despite this fact, 16 states and Washington, DC have all passed provisions for individuals to be able to use medical marijuana without having to worry about legal ramifications. 17 more are considering such measures. This despite the best efforts of the feds to prevent knowledge from spreading.

For most people, nobody knows their body better than they do. They know what helps when they ail. They know what stops their pain. They know what makes them less nauseous. Sure, medical professionals can make suggestions. They know the science behind medications and can make recommendations, but sometimes something that works for one person simply does not work for others. There are even occasions when harm can be done. More people now die yearly from prescription drugs than from illegal drugs. As far as I know, nobody has ever overdosed on marijuana. So why is it still illegal? Especially, why are people living with disease still denied access to such medication in most states? Why are the feds still raiding legal marijuana dispensaries in states where medical marijuana laws have been passed?

Medical marijuana also gives rise to business opportunities. Before the advent of laws legalizing medical marijuana, the trade in pot was limited to the black market. Several companies have popped up, from producers to distributors to dispensaries, to fill the new demand for this product. Entrepreneurs are stepping to the forefront and taking this business out of the hands of shadowy figures in the black market. Honest, competitive businesses are striving to provide the best products and build a reputation so that new customers will come to them when they need product or advice. Providing medical marijuana is a growing industry which provides much needed jobs to a populace that has been devastated by the off shoring of many industries over the past couple of decades. This is how business should be done, in the light of day from an open storefront rather than in the dark of night in a shadowy alley.

You own your own body. I own my own body. No one should be able to tell us what we can and cannot put into them. We should all be free to discover for ourselves what treatments work and which don't. We should all be free to determine for ourselves which sources to believe and which to disbelieve. No one should be able to force us to partake in any medical procedure. No one should be allowed to threaten us with imprisonment or fines or any other kind of punishment for using a natural herb if we feel it is medicinal. We should all be allowed to do business with one another on a voluntary basis. We don't need a third party such as government horning in where they're not wanted. I would not try to stop you from consuming whatever you wish to consume. I would allow you the freedom to make your own decisions when it comes to your body. Would you allow me the same?

I want the government to leave me alone. I want them to stay out of my medical decisions. I want them to stay out of my decisions on what to eat. I want them to quit trying to decide for me what products I wish to purchase. I am an adult and perfectly capable of looking into the risks and rewards, the advantages and disadvantages of the products and services I wish to buy. The established products and services promoted by government, the medical establishment, the pharmaceuticals, and many other multi national corporations, have proven to be inferior and even harmful and no one is held accountable. I trust my own judgment over theirs. I support the freedom to choose. I support the end to personal mandates.

If you like my writings, I am asking for your help. Please visit my website szandorblestman.com to see my archived articles and help support me by making a donation. I am also pleased to announce the release of Matthew Wayne's (my pen name) novel entitled "The Edge of Sanity." It is also available for the Kobo Vox, at Barnes and Noble and at Diesel. The download for this book is only $2.99. I have also released "The Ouijiers" at smashwords.com. The special pricing has ended so the book can be distributed to other venues. The download is $2.99, but you can still get the first 20% free. Even if you simply take a moment of your time to download the 20% of the books that is offered for free it will be of tremendous help to me in gaining exposure for my work which will help create sales.

I am working on a book. The working title is "The Blessings of Freedom: Creating Prosperity in the 21st Century." I am going to offer this work as a serial for those who are interested and can't wait for the book to come out. I hope to publish a chapter every week or so. I will offer the chapters for sale exclusively at smashwords.com as I finish them. The price is $0.99 for each chapter as it comes out. Here is the link to Chapter 1: "The Blessings of Freedom: Creating Prosperity in the 21st Century" Chapter 1. There is a bonus as the Introduction to the book is included with this download. Keep an eye out as further chapters will be announced as they come out. I wish to thank everyone in advance for their support in this endeavor.