I agree with the title of this article in Salon, but the writer clearly doesn't understand Ayn Rand's philosophy or what's really happening in the world.
Ayn Rand’s novel “Atlas Shrugged” fantasizes a world in which anti-government citizens reject taxes and regulations, and “stop the motor” by withdrawing themselves from the system of production. In a perverse twist on the writer’s theme the prediction is coming true. But instead of productive people rejecting taxes, rejected taxes are shutting down productive people.
Most people I know don't enjoy paying taxes. In fact, Ayn Rand herself said that "In a fully free society, taxation—or, to be exact, payment for governmental services—would be voluntary." You can argue that her position is untenable, but it illustrates the point that taxes are, in fact, mandatory.
This author only looks at the fact people and corporations are avoiding paying their taxes in various ways. Which is true: Apple parks a ton of their profits offshore because of the 35% repatriation tax--money already taxed in another country. Individuals with a lot of income can hide their money in similar ways to large, multinational corporations. And the middle class? They don't like taxes either. Middle class people are moving out of California in droves for that exact reason--the taxes are too damn high.
So it's pretty clear, no one likes taxes, or at least not the kinds of taxes that some would have to pay if they were being completely above board. And what do those tax dollars pay for? Unwinnable wars in other countries, bailing out rich people who made bad financial decisions, and putting people in jail who choose to take substances the government has said are illegal.
So how do those expenditures help people, exactly? What infrastructure does that build or maintain for the common good? From what I can see those that are paying taxes are funding a whole lot of activities that, at the end of the day, do not actually do them any good.
Compulsory taxes are a forced redistribution of wealth. What's worse is that the redistribution is not from the rich to the poor, but from the poor to the rich. Because who controls the people that make the laws? The rich, who can afford to bribe the lawmakers to make more favorable laws for their pet projects and get a tax break to boot.
And you know what? That sounds an awful lot like what Ayn Rand foretold in Atlas Shrugged. Who is John Galt, indeed.
Many years ago, my wife bought me a really fancy Monopoly set. It doesn't get used all that often but it's quite the set!
In the winter of 1972, 20 young women took part in one of the weirdest scientific experiments in this country’s history.
For 98 days in a downtown Toronto hospital, their brains, hearts, kidneys, livers, blood and urine were rigorously tested and analyzed. A team of nurses kept round-the-clock records of their behaviour, logged at half-hour intervals.
Just how was marijuana affecting the 10 who had to smoke it every day?
In 2010, James Corbett recorded this piece on False Flags, which started making the rounds again shortly after the explosions in Boston last week. Corbett highlighted this piece on Corbett Report Episode 266 where he also made the point that the concept of False Flags are clearly entering the consciousness of enough people that the mainstream media made a point to discredit the idea it was a False Flag event.
Meanwhile, ask yourself why we're not seeing more on the fertilizer explosion that occurred a few days later in West, Texas--a disaster that caused a lot more damage and deaths than the explosions in Boston. Or the explosions that occurred in Iraq earlier that day killing far more than the people in either Boston or West, Texas.
I have a lot of thoughts about what happened today in Boston. Unfortunately, none of them are going to be particularly popular.
While it is certainly a tragedy that people needlessly lost their lives today in the bombings that occurred, the real tragedy is only just beginning.
When I first heard about this event, my thought was: false flag. No facts. No research. Just my gut reaction.
Maybe I've spent too many hours listening to No Agenda. But clearly I wasn't the only one thinking this:
I've gotten out of the habit of writing blog posts.
It's actually really hard to write something coherent that doesn't take me an eon to churn out. That's certainly a lesson I learned with my books that I wrote more than a decade ago.
I should have learned that lesson back in 2007. Maybe I did and I forgot, though.
Or maybe I just don't care as much now as I did back then. Maybe I know how to write better and so I need less editing.
Whatever. Now that I have a way to record my thoughts from anywhere and make them available on the Internet pretty easily, why do I need to write anything at all?
But speaking is a lot harder, at least for me. Mostly because you only get one shot at it. At least in person.
When I do a podcast, I've gotten to the point I do one of two things: leave it as is or re-record it. I may occasionally edit something but that is getting rarer and rarer.
Meanwhile, until I hit the "create post" button, the entire stream of consciousness I am typing is here just waiting to be edited.
Or not. Even though I edit a lot in my mind before I type, I'm getting to the point now where I'm done editing. I am who I am. I'm going to say what I'm going to say. You're either going to like it or think I'm full of shit.
Or maybe you'll like it even though I'm full of shit. Whatever floats your boat.
I kinda did a post earlier today, but now that I have everything hooked into IFTTT (at least until Posthaven adds its own support for posting on Social Networks on new posts), I guess I should "reintroduce" my personal blog to the world.
Of course, now that I think about this, it seems like an awfully douchy thing to do. I mean, who gives a crap? I'm barely going to write here. You're barely going to read it. So I guess we're even :)
But since you came here, look at the cool, shiny Posthaven-hosted blog. I can't do much to it right now, but I know that the Posthaven guys are hard at work They at least got a flawless import of my old Posterous sites. That's something.
I've decided to move this blog over to Posthaven. Who better to "preserve" stuff from an old Posterous blog than the people who originally wrote Posterous in the first place?
This is this blog's 3rd move in the last year. I hope this is the last time I have to do this.
There’s this text box. A text box that begs to be filled with the internal chattering, giving it a sort of physical manifestation.
What does the chattering say right now? That it’s bedtime and I should sleep. It also says I want to be heard.
About what, exactly? I don’t know. It really doesn’t matter. I just want to be heard. I guess that’s why we’re online creating content, in the ways we do, right? We just want to be heard.
But the harsh truth is, no one gives a fuck. That and there’s too much other shit out there on the Internet for other people to do. Or read. Or listen to.
I’m lucky in that I started on this Internet thing way early–before it hit the mainstream. I have somewhat of a following. Not a big one, mind you, but I have one.
But I also know the likelihood that anyone will say “hey, I like what you do.” Or even acknowledge that I’m doing something.
At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter all that much. What I said. Or that you acknowledged it. I’m either going to continue doing what I do or I won’t.
That said, a nice note to someone who created something goes a long way. Its lets them know they’ve been heard.
Even if you don’t do it for my little narcissistic blog posting, do it for someone else. Let them know they have been heard.