Beyond the Cusp

June 25, 2016

Brexit Passes and Cameron Plans to Resign and Jo Cox Memorialized

 

All of the votes have been counted and it is official as 52% voted yes to Brexit and 48% voted to remain in the European Union (E. U.). Along with the Brexit yes vote comes news that Prime Minister Cameron will resign, as he stated, “But the British people made a very clear decision to take a different path and as such I think the country requires fresh leadership to take it in this direction. I will do everything I can as Prime Minister to steady the ship over the coming weeks and months. But I do not think it would be right for me to try and be the captain that steers our country to its next destination.” Well, he said the if vote went against his preference that he would pass the torch, and the good news is we will have another national vote for new leaders to give us a break from the Hillary and Donald catastrophe across the pond. Below is his entire talk from in front of 10 Downing Street to the media. He stated that he would like to see new leadership by October when the Conservative Party is holding their national conference. I can only assume he expects his Conservative Party to continue to lead the nation such that the new Prime Minister will also lead the party; and if they fail, then he can step forward to lead the nation in repealing the Brexit as I doubt he would change his stated view on E. U. membership.

 

 

Now we will see the rush for the door. Already France and the Netherlands have had public pressure for their own exit vote on their E. U. As we had stated earlier, with Brexit passing, and not by what should be considered anything but a fairly definitive vote, all right, landslide it wasn’t; but any politician would be very happy to have a 4% margin of victory which the media in any election would report that the people had made their decision known as if it was a really definitive vote. One has to further note that initially the “remain” vote was comfortably leading after the early vote count from London and other metropolitan cities where the population is younger and considered more erudite, but the rest of the country was definitively of a different mind. This was sort of reminiscent of the Dewey Defeats Truman headline which proved erroneous as the rural votes came in and Truman won the day. The vote was expected to be close with the older population favoring leaving while the youth desired to remain in the E. U.; so once again it fell to that favorite item of pollsters, the ever unpredictable middle. This time the middle was not the middle between conservatives and liberals but the middle aged people, those who may not have lived or only their childhood witnessed Britain before the E. U. but were raised by people who lived through both before E. U. membership and after joining E. U. From appearances this middle aged voting public really did not want to remain in the E. U. or they really wanted to remove Cameron, whichever, the vote is done and the British are free of the Brussels Bureaucracy and their dictatorial ultimatums.

 

Dewey Defeats Truman

Dewey Defeats Truman

 

It will be interesting to see which nations now have similar demands for being allowed to see whether their people desires remaining in the E. U. or demanding their government be empowered and freed from the restrictions and economic directives from Brussels. As noted, France and the Netherlands may already be heading for a vote and if there has been sufficient public outcry, we can expect they too will vote favorably for leaving the E. U. and in many ways the E. U. has brought this upon themselves with their slow but steady suffocation of individual sovereignty. The E. U. was supposedly a mostly economic and trade union and not supposed to replace the individual government’s dominion. But as time went the E. U. grew and assumed more and more power taking these decisions from the individual governments and supplanting them with the dictations and ultimatums from Brussels. They took control over immigration erasing borders between the separate nations. Further they began taking from the wealthier nations and giving to those faltering nations which are where the idea of central planning began to fail. There we are again with central planning being the difficulty, the causational problem. This had a dual effect which simply furthered the problems. The wealthier nations were put out for being made to cover these other nations which they regarded as slacker nations where the people did not have the same work ethic of say Germany or Britain and at the other end these faltering nations were being dictated on decisions which they refused to obey which caused further friction. Both the sides found the demands placed upon them by an unelected set of faceless bureaucrats to be onerous and distasteful. The E. U. will press the predictions that leaving their overseeing guidance as resulting in confusion, trade wars, and every problem conceivable as should the E. U. be disbanded these bureaucrats and the governing central planners will all be out of a job and with no prospects for future employment. What will these poor central planners do without the power of the E. U. charter, a document they have stretch beyond all recognition, to empower them and grant them powers, well, some of the powers they wield as some might be beyond the original intents the member nations originally agreed upon. Overreach can really be a downer that can lead to resentment followed by people actually doing something about being so dictated to.

 

Perhaps the lesson here is that when the representatives that the people elect are slowly but ever so steadily disempowered by an unelected group of central planners who have been overreaching and taking more and more power to themselves, well, you eventually get blowback. The decision to also allow thousands of refugees from Syria, Afghanistan and beyond into the E. U. may have been the final straw. Then there were the terror attacks which many blamed on the E. U. and their immigration policies. This was possibly brought to the fore last week with the horrible event where a Labor Party Minister of Parliament, Jo Cox, was murdered by a reportedly mentally unstable fanatic who was anti-refugee and believed to have been a white supremacist. We can only hope he gets treatment and remains incarcerated in a mental health institution or prison for the mentally unstable such that he never again has the opportunity to harm anyone. This crime did bring an end to the discussion a full week before the vote and was thought would suppress the voters favoring Brexit. If that was true then the Brexit was even more favored than the vote may have indicated though it is more likely that this crime had little if any effect.

 

Late Minister Jo Cox Refugee Advocate Killed by Anti-Refugee Fanatic

Late Minister Jo Cox
Refugee Advocate
Killed by Anti-Refugee Fanatic

 

This crime also deserves some investigation. Jo Cox was both shot and stabbed as was a 77-year-old man, who intervened to help Cox and sustained a serious injury to his abdomen and remains in stable condition in the hospital. Britain had gun laws which are amongst the strictest in the world and yet this unstable individual somehow came to possess and use a firearm in this criminal act of murder. This goes a long way in proving that if a person is determined to murder, there are no laws which will prevent them from attaining a firearm with which to commit their heinous crimes. As long as there are firearms, and that means as long as nations have armies, then people will find a way of attaining weapons. We don’t want to get into a gun control vs. gun rights argument beyond the understanding that anyone willing to commit a violent criminal act will never be deterred by laws about weapon possession or any other law as they are already committed to violating far more serious laws than possession laws or crossing the street outside a crosswalk or stalking or anything else on the books, period.

 

As far as we have been capable of determining, Jo Cox was a refugee advocate and had been quite vocal about the responsibility of the wealthier and peaceful nations of Europe to offer open doors and open arms to the refugees from the war torn areas of the Middle East and Africa. The man who murdered her in cold blood was an adamant and vehement opponent to immigration of those people he saw as from an inferior society and likely incapable of acting and interacting with Europeans and would be a disaster waiting to happen. He had a history of prescribing to white supremacist and apartheid organizations as well as other, according to police and media reports were “right-wing” and “extremist” groups. The Southern Poverty Law Center, a left-leaning United States ‘human rights and minority rights’ organization, has published what it says are documents showing that the suspected murderer, Mr. Mair, had a history of purchasing material from the National Alliance white supremacist organization based in the United States. They released copies of receipts and a 2013 subscription to the National Alliance’s publication, National Vanguard, as well as receipts from 1999 showing purchases for neo-Nazi book “Ich Kampfe,” the “Improvised Munitions Handbook” and other books and traced his activities back to his having also subscribed to a pro-apartheid group’s magazine in the 1980s. Thank you Southern Poverty Law Center for your timely research into this person’s history.

 

This person, Mr. Mair, had definite problems and if law enforcement or public health had known of his problems, it raises questions as to why he was still permitted to be outside of observation and managed care. There was a movement back in the late 1960s and through the 1970s and continuing to this day which operates under the misconception that people with mental difficulties benefit from living in the real world even if this means their missing taking necessary medications. The numbers of homeless living on the streets rose precipitously coinciding with the decisions that mental institutions were harming the people they cared for and that the monies wasted on such institution could be better used in outpatient services for these people. There were studies done subsequently which varied and conflicted with some reporting that many of the former institutionalized individuals were not receiving their medications and has missed appointments with counselors and had been removed from rolls and left on the street without getting the medical attentions they had received previous to being placed out in the world without any real assistance in adjusting. Others reported how many had obviously found a better life as living in the real world had filled them with and through interactions such that they were no longer in need of medication or counseling. One side of these results has to be horrifically missing the mark as they are opposites though their percentages are remarkably similar. So we have to believe that either there are a number of formerly institutionalized individuals who remarkably recovered or that an equal number of these people have fallen through the cracks and nobody really cares. How many of these people will end up on the wrong side of the law or are being abused by others also on the streets as many are likely easy marks. Either way, if there are even half of these people not receiving the medication and help they need, that is a calamity of tragic proportions. One of the victims of this experiment is now Minister of the British Parliament Jo Cox, and that too is a tragic price that British society has paid.

 

Our final note on Brexit, this is just the beginning and this story is about to take on a whole new and serious proportion as the rest of Europeans force their governments to allow them the same choice and we may soon have a free and independent new Europe free of the dictatorship in Brussels. This might be the start of a healthier Europe when each nation will determine their own trade and future and economically they will now be able to have a free and independent currency as each return to their own currency which then adjusts with their economic strength and needs. The ones who would benefit most from being independent from the E. U. would be Greece, Spain and other areas which have found the Euro to be inhibitive of their economic needs. Time will tell and we can hope that the people will get the freedom to decide for themselves and each nation does what is the best for their economies and people.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

June 16, 2016

Political War in Aftermath of Pulse Nightclub, Orlando

 

The horrors and the toll in human life and limb makes anyone come to definitive conclusions on how to insure that such horrors never again darken our morning news. Reading the reactions in the news and online and each individual was adamant in their solution not only being the obvious solution but also inarguably the only possible conclusion any rational person could reach. What’s the problem then BTC? The main problem is people had fallen into two camps as distinctive as the day is long and nobody remarkably suggested what we see as a third solution just as possible of solving the problem as the others. There was one camp in which we find President Obama and Candidate Hillary Clinton. They agree that the real problem is the private ownership of guns and that if nobody had access to firearms then such crimes would never happen. The other camp which we find candidate Donald Trump where they claim the problem is radicalized Muslims. The former camp would accuse the second camp of Islamophobia. The second camp called the first on being unrealistic and ignoring a little impediment called the Second Amendment. What both sides missed was an easier solution to the problem, make reporting such news illegal. I know, we would be ignoring Amendment I, but since rights and the code of laws did not constrain the other two groups, why not throw in an easier if not more legal approach. Of course there would be another consequence of a law allowing only positive news stories; it would destroy news reporting until somebody discovered the work-around.

 

News reports could always take a positive slant on negative news such as we can all celebrate we were not crossing the street when two cars collided flying out of control and destroying a mailbox, isn’t it just wonderful there were no pedestrians who found themselves in the location in question. OK, sure we need some polish, but with time there would be formulae which could be implemented for virtually any evil being reported with a positive slant and avoiding any mention of the negatives. They could even point out how it was a fortunate circumstance that somebody called and an ambulance responded to transport the people for necessary treatment once again proving the great healthcare provided in the country. Well, maybe we should just leave the media free and not challenge Amendment I. As for the other two finger pointing claiming that either Islamists or firearms are to blame? Perhaps we should take them each in turn.

 

The claim that firearms were the problem and that, if only people were not permitted to own firearms, and all guns were removed from the world, then shootings like the Pulse Nightclub in Orlando would become impossible. Of course there is no mention that the removal of all firearms from the world is impossible as long as nations insist on keeping their militaries armed with, you guessed it, firearms. Making matters even worse, militaries use real fully automatic fire weapons as well as explosives and rocket firing weapons which some are capable or taking out entire rooms and small buildings as well as armored vehicles and downing aircraft, all a whole lot more destructive than anything generally out in the public currently. As long as there are weapons anywhere, there will be weapons everywhere, just the more illegal they are made the more sinister the people who will deal in them and the far higher the prices of firearms for which they will be sold. Further, as long as only military weaponry will be manufactured, the firearms which do make their way into the hands of the most determined of criminals will have far more destructive capabilities and possibly by leagues is likely as only slightly. Further, a determined killer or a mentally unbalanced one would still be capable of committing a crime of similar or potentially more devastating result in a similar scenario. Since it appeared that escape was not easily available for the victims in the club, a person armed with a sword of the quality and ability of those used in warfare since time immemorial, the resulting slaughter may have been even greater and the injuries far more horrific and the victims still just as incapable of defending themselves. This would be even more true had the perpetrator in such scenario would have armed themselves with leather armor, studded and spiked, chain linked helm and other items making them just as dangerous as any attacker in a closed room (see below). The main difference is a firearm is a ranged weapon but one could arm themselves with ranged weapons with a small version equally deadly crossbow which fires four inch darts. There are no limits to how deadly and devious to weapons beyond that of imagination, and human imagination has proved to be virtually limitless or at least not bound by laws of man.

 

Sword Alternative to Firearms Real and Imagined

Sword Alternative to Firearms Real and Imagined

 

So restricting weaponry would be just as futile as it would impossible; so what about the other side, limiting those believed to have dangerous beliefs or practices? This too has been tried in the past when science was young and religion was king. Their attempts to limit science proved only temporary and ineffectual as well. Discoveries came and science spread almost as far and as fast as the imagination could perceive new ideas and experiments to prove or disprove each postulation. It mattered little whether it proved or disproved as long as it produced answers which would simply generate more questions. There was no locking the box which is the human mind and it eventually proves preposterous to even try. The King of Spain sent an Armada to bring Protestant England back under the control of Rome and approved Christianity. At that time there was only the Church of Rome and the Church of England and the second was the young upstart. So initially religion attempted in Europe to regulate religion within defined boundaries and failed. Some claim that the spread of Protestantism indirectly led to the scientific revolution which spawned from the Protestant Reformation to the Reawakening, the Renaissance, then followed political revolution, industrial revolution, and then the greatest invention of mankind, for the first time since the giving of the Law at Mount Sinai the world gave people time to themselves, the weekend and private time. Jewish Law, Torah had conceived of the necessity for human beings to have time where work was put aside for a day and the Sabbath was observed where people could pursue private endeavors and learn which originally meant the study of Torah. Even the time spent in study of Torah allowed for time with family and relaxation from the daily burdens of toil and labor which even applied to the servant and the slave, which were more like one’s employees. The salary was clothing, housing, food and protection from facing the world alone with nothing and if one worked for a successful person, they might even have a small salary on top of everything else; otherwise, one would need to request their employer if they desired something beyond the basics.

 

That piece of history should serve to prove that the desires of the mind and the soul cannot be strapped and tied down by laws, edicts or any oppressive acts from an establishment or even the counterculture. The mind, the individual, the soul if you will, cannot be prevented from going wherever it is destined by the chain of experiences, influences and, yes, often the temptations of the forbidden. If “radical Islam” as a belief system were to be regarded as something forbidden, that would simply serve to make it all the more enticing and often to the most vulnerable and Islamic State gives a perfect example of the result of attempting such a ban. That is the problem with Donald Trump’s idea to ban Muslims for a period from entering the United States as that would just make those who did find their way over the border placed with such difficulties that radicalization would be made far easier as the concept that they were being beaten down and forced into the shadows. The best path has been proven time and again throughout history though more often societies have gone from the best to the worst method of facing differences in cultures. The tried and proven method is limited accommodation with reward for incorporation of the existing societal model while allowing for variance as long as it remains within legal standards. Acceptance goes a long way towards modifying behavior towards cooperation rather than conflict. That is not to say that all behavior is to me accommodated as there are, by necessity, limitations to acceptable behavior. An example would be the Aztecs could be permitted to dress as they wish but their practice of cutting out the beating heart as part of an annual ceremony would need to be prevented from the start. Human sacrifice is not an acceptable form of worship and some other means would have to be found. The same would be for animal ritual sacrifice. Sacrifice of an animal for a celebratory feast would also need to be regulated in some manner such that the animal does not suffer. Simply placing the live animal in a cage and rotating it over the fire would be unacceptable as would many cruel means for killing the animal, but if an accepted and humane death be performed and then the animal roasted and consumed, it might be extreme to many but it is not that far removed from taking a side of beef and roasting it on a spit at a huge celebratory feast where the meat is to be consumed. Granted, the majority would prefer smaller servings but how many have been to an all you can eat buffet where roast beef is carves off the bone for those who desire roast beef over say meatloaf.

 

Donald Trump’s seeming well timed but probably ill-advised suggestion that all Middle East immigration be ceased for a period of six months, where it could be done, would prove ineffectual as anybody wishing to reach the United States from the Middle East need only reach Turkey with whom there exist laws allowing for their immigration to the United States and even if not Turkey, the news informs us how easily any Middle East refugee can reach most of Europe and from there the United States again would be legal and relatively easy. There is no way to prevent a determined person from reaching the shores of the United States legally and most definitely illegally. Donald Trump’s claim that by making this ban it would prevent any terrorists from the Middle East from reaching America is utterly false as the terrorists are exactly those who would have the funds to defeat any regulation one could enact as their “blanket fix” for the problem. The solution is a full background check and with records as lax as they are and the turmoil making most people all but without any identifiable or especially documented history and once again it is the terrorist who would most likely be capable of meeting even those requirements. There is no absolute means of preventing terrorists from gaining entry to any nation as has been proven by the recent attack in Tel Aviv, as Israel has likely the most effective screening and tracking for terrorist and terror likely individuals; but still there are attacks and in great numbers as it is impossible to prevent those attacks committed by what are termed “lone wolves” as they have no traceable history of interaction with terror institutions or even other terrorists.

 

The best way to protect and prevent such horrific criminal carnage comes down to a select few things. Have a society which commits to equality, extends egalitarianism in all things, and provides opportunity. Further the people themselves need be welcoming, accepting of various cultures for as long as they remain within societal codes, enjoys respect of every individual and remembers from where they came as it sets where they will proceed. The laws must be equally applied and respected by all members of the society. The last thing is to remember that every person is a gem to be enjoyed and allowed to shine with their own special brilliance and every day offers equal opportunity for all to achieve. Beyond that is the government’s responsibility in making all safe and respecting of the laws and rights of one another. None of this is easily accomplished and no society has provided such a high standard for more than half a millennium. Some very select groups have managed to maintain such expectations of standard of their peoples and their identity we will leave for each reader to research and discover the identities for themselves as they may be quite surprised and the greatest surprise is amongst the select groups.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

October 21, 2014

Upcoming Midterm United States Elections, a Slightly Different Look

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Who is ahead in the different races depends on the state and even on the political leanings of the news or talk shows one follows. If you go to polling it gets even more confusing. Not only are the polls often slanted depending on who ordered the polling but it also depends on what the subject the poll is covering. Here are a few examples from some polls. A CBS poll recently showed that fifty percent of those responding said the Democrats are the party that “cares more about the needs and problems of people” while only 34 percent chose the Republicans. Meanwhile, the Republicans have a nine point lead concerning the economy, an eleven point lead on foreign policy and a twenty-one point lead on addressing terrorism in an October CBS poll. So, who wins; the party of the people or the party which appears to be more competent? These numbers are nothing new as often the Democrats have polled well on sympathy and feeling the people’s pains while the Republicans historically win on foreign policy and confronting threats from the outside world. The fact the Republicans are polling slightly ahead of Democrats on the economy is not nationally definitive enough to be applied to every race. The probability is that in the traditionally Democrat leaning states the Democrats will probably poll even or ahead of the Republicans while in traditionally Republican states the Republicans will poll ahead. The place where that mere nine point lead for the Republicans becomes evident will be in what is often referred to as the ‘purple’ states where the parties have split the wins between them would thus likely give the Republicans a slight lead on the economy. Unfortunately that may not transfer to votes as there is also the personality of the candidates as well as the effectiveness of their campaigns and whether there are third party or independent candidates on the ballot and from which side they will draw away votes. Libertarian and Constitution Party candidates tend to take more votes from Republicans while Green and sometimes Libertarian Party take more votes from the Democrats. But other than their campaign, their affability or their campaign commercials and use of media and social networks, the most important determining item will simply be which party gets the voters to the polls, period.

With this year not being a Presidential election year, the national party machines are operating but there are far fewer volunteers and fewer funds for them to make a large determining difference. This means that it will be up to the State and even more local party machines and the candidate supporting campaign staff which will make up a significant part of the get out the vote efforts. States with Gubernatorial elections this election will have more party influence than those without. What makes these midterms so difficult to make predictions is because there is no real enthusiasm evident in the electorate and it is very possible that both of the major parties will suffer from miserable voter turnout and thus calling the elections near impossible. There will be some states where polling data is so skewed to one candidate that there is almost no challenge to picking the likely winner short of an unseen stumble where the leading candidate is caught in a criminal act or other compromising situation. They do not even need to actually be guilty as that will depend on a court of law, but such accusations can sway the court of public opinion and that is exactly what elections are, the court of public opinion choosing those they feel are less guilty of potentially bad leadership. That has been the truth in all too many elections in the United States in recent times where people are literally trying to choose which evil is less harmful. Some have gotten to the point that they have finally refused to vote for the lesser from two evils and they refuse to ever again vote for evil no matter how slight. These voters are demanding the parties to put forth candidates who are capable of leading and representing the people with integrity and virtue. This might even lead to making a third party or independent candidate to have a real possibility to take elections and possibly change the American political landscape once again. Perhaps it is time for a new political movement as the last great movement was the Abolition Movement which birthed the Republican Party and the Whig Party was laid to rest. The more likely bet is that the two major parties have so slanted and poisoned the election laws throughout the United States that it has become next to impossible for any third party or independent candidate to make the ballot, let alone have any funds remaining should they manage to make ballot, and trust I know from where I speak. This is really a sad problem as this may prevent a new direction to be proposed and placed before the American electorate and instead continue forcing them to choose between two toxins, progressive Democrats who want to double the size of government every decade, or the progressive Republican who wishes to slow government growth so that it doubles only four or five times each century. Since both the major parties are in favor of growing government and the sole difference is exactly the rate of growth the American people can rest assured that over time the Republicans will seem like the Democrats of a few decades back while the Democrats will be breaking new ground which the Republican will fall in love with a few decades hence. Should this trend not be reversed soon the United States will continue in decline and only accelerate with time.

Beyond the Cusp

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