Thursday, April 14, 2016

The Myth of Public Concern

Oftentimes the government and its supporters will throw around the term ‘public concern’ or ‘public risk’ to distinguish between those matters which are private and those matters which are the business of society. The problem with this idea is the assumption that such a thing as a ‘public concern’ exists to begin with. In order for the public to express concern, the thing that we call the public would have to possess a mind of its own. The truth of the matter is that the public has no mind, only individuals have a mind and therefore only individuals may express concern.

It is important to remember that the only unit of significance in matters of human action is the individual. The individual is the only unit which takes action and makes choices. The public is nothing but a collection of individuals. Single members of the public may express concern, but these concerns cannot be deemed anything more than private concerns. Just because a group of individuals decide to collect into a ‘public’, that does not mean that the nature of their concerns change.

Now, in some cases the government will try to argue that a public concern is a concern which impacts society as a whole. Once again, society is comprised of individuals and it is the individuals that are impacted. With any risk or threat, the only concrete unit of impact is the individual. Once one understands that society is nothing but a collection of individual human beings, then one may understand the arbitrary nature of the concept of public concern.

At what level does a concern become public exactly? Let’s say that two individuals are heavily concerned with an invasion of underground rock people. Is this now a public concern? Most would say no, but now let’s suppose that half the population of the United States is concerned with an invasion of underground rock people. Now that a majority of the public has accepted the impending threat of the rock people, must we designate this concern as a public matter? Some of us would still disagree that an invasion of underground rock people is a significant threat to the United States, however if a majority of individuals within this nation have made up their mind on the issue of underground rock people, then it is likely that the problem will be deemed a public concern.

In the case presented, the true purpose of the concept of public concern is revealed. The public concern is nothing but an imposition of private concerns on other individuals. When the government passes a law to address a public concern, they are effectively stating that the private concerns of those who agree with the law are superior to the private concerns of those who disagree with the law. Under the new law, every member of society is now forced to adopt the same private concerns under threat of punishment. In the case of the underground rock people, the government may pass a law which makes it a crime to step on pebbles. After all, stepping on pebbles may anger the rock people and therefore such an action would be a crime against the public.

Those who understand the nature of society realize that there is no such things as a crime against the public, only crimes against individuals. The government however has now created an imaginary person which represents the collective will of those who control political power in a given area. This imaginary person is a supposed representative of the individuals which make up the public, and in order to address the concerns of this imaginary person, the government violates the rights of real individuals. Essentially, the government creates a scenario where all individuals in society are forced to live their life in a way that does not upset this imaginary person.

One way that the government forces individual’s to accept the concept of a public concern is by forcefully pooling money into a program. Socialized medicine is a perfect example of this. When individuals in society are forced to pay for the healthcare of other people, it pushes them to be concerned with the private lifestyle choices of others. A man who pays no mind to the drinking habits of others for example may suddenly find himself concerned with the large quantities of alcohol consumed by his neighbor. After all, he may end up having to pay for his neighbor’s health bills as a result of the damage done to the man’s liver form years of heavy drinking.

Suddenly, the tax payers are now pushing for the prohibition of alcohol in order to prevent rising healthcare costs. This is the kind of scenario that can only exist when the government gets involved in private affairs. Individuals must realize that their concerns are their own. They may share identical concerns with others, but nonetheless at an essential level those concerns remain private.

A public concern is nothing but a private concern that has been granted the arbitrary status of superiority by a collective. There is no such things as public concerns, just as there is no such thing as public will, or public happiness. When the government gets its hands on a public concern, it can do serious harm to the rights of individuals. Therefore, minding one’s own business is one of the most effective ways to keep the government from growing into an even bigger monster.



Calls for American Unity Are Either Dishonest or Naive

Dennis Prager

Just about all candidates for president regularly announce their intent to unite Americans, to “bring us together.”

It’s a gimmick.  If they are sincere, they are profoundly naive; if they are just muttering sweet nothings in order to seduce Americans to vote for them, they are manipulative.

In his acceptance speech at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, John Kerry, one of the most polarizing figures in modern American political history, said, “Maybe some just see us divided into those red states and blue states, but I see us as one America: red, white and blue.”

And President Barack Obama, who has disunited Americans by race, class and gender perhaps more than any president since the beginning of the 20th century, regularly campaigned on the theme of uniting Americans.

In his 2008 victory speech, President-elect Barack Obama said: “We have never been just a collection of … red states and blue states. We are, and always will be, the United States of America.”

In their current campaigns for president, Republican Gov. John Kasich and Democrat Hillary Clinton regularly proclaim their intention to bring Americans together. He, one suspects, because he is naive, and she, because she will say pretzels come from Neptune if it will garner votes.

Bringing people together is actually the theme of John Kasich’s entire campaign.

Senator Rob Portman said of Kasich on Feb. 1, 2016, “I am endorsing John Kasich because I believe he is the person our country needs to bring Americans together.”

And Clinton, who, according to CNN, is tied with Trump for the most negatives in presidential polling for either Republicans or Democrats since 1984, also speaks repeatedly about her ability and desire to bring Americans together.  The “Hillary Clinton for President Supporters” Facebook page has even said, “We’re in the business of bringing people together.”

What’s more, on April 6, 2016, CNN posted a YouTube video titled: “Hillary Clinton — We need a president who can bring people together.” Lanny Davis, who served as special counsel to former President Bill Clinton, wrote on The Hill website that “Clinton wants to bring us together.”

Beyond Kasich and Clinton, Sen. Bernie Sanders made this a major theme in one of his ads called “Together,” which begins with Sanders saying, “Our job is to bring people together.”

Even Trump, who divides Republicans — not to mention other Americans — like no Republican ever has, uses this mantra. A January article on The Hill site quoted Trump saying, “I can really bring people together.”  Gov. Chris Christie introduced Trump on Super Tuesday, and a column released that night was titled, “Christie on Super Tuesday: Trump is ‘bringing the country together.’”

For the record, Sen. Ted Cruz speaks about uniting Republicans, but not often about uniting all Americans.

All calls for unity by Democrats are particularly fraudulent. Dividing Americans by race, gender and class is how the left views America and how Democratic candidates seek to win elections.

But calls for unity are meaningless no matter who makes them, because no one who calls for unity tells you what they really mean. What they really mean is that they want to unite Americans around their values — and around their values only.

Would Clinton be willing to unite all Americans around recognizing the human rights of the unborn? Would she be willing to unite all Americans around support for widespread gun ownership?

Of course not. She is willing to unite Americans provided they adopt her views.

Would Sanders like to “bring people together” in support of reducing corporate and individual income taxes in order to spur the economy?

Would Kasich be in favor of “bringing Americans together” by having them all support increasing the size of government and the national debt? One hopes not.

I first realized the dishonesty of just about all calls for unity during a 10-year period in which I engaged in weekly dialogues with clergy of all faiths. Protestant and Catholic clergymen and women would routinely call for Christian unity. When I asked Protestants if they would support such unity if it entailed them adopting the sacraments of the Catholic Church and recognizing the pope as the Vicar of Christ on Earth, the discussion ended. Similarly, when I asked Catholic priests if they would give up the sacraments and the papacy in order to achieve unity with Protestant Christians, all talk of unity stopped. And, of course, the same would hold true for both Orthodox and non-Orthodox Jews who routinely call for Jewish unity.

Even more absurd are the calls of naive Christians and Jews to have all the “children of Abraham” — Jewish, Christian and Muslim — unite.

The calls themselves can even be dangerous. One would be hard-pressed to name a single free society that was ever united outside of wartime. The only truly united countries are totalitarian states.

So, why do presidential candidates repeat this nonsense every four years? Because Americans fall for it every four years.

But it’s time to grow up. The gap between the left and right is unbridgeable. Their worldviews are mutually exclusive.



Bernie Smears Israel

Another self-hating Jew

Can he take a Mulligan? Bernie Sanders’ interview with the editorial board of the New York Daily News revealed a candidate more interested in platitudes and dreams than in specifics and realities. He couldn’t even explain how his signature policy—breaking up the big banks—would work. His campaign might as well have sent Larry David in his place. The comic is better informed.

The entire transcript is embarrassing. But when the subject turned to the Middle East, Sanders crossed the line that separates the daft from the dangerous. He not only smeared the Jewish State, he betrayed an ignorance of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that would, if he were president, lead to the loss of Jewish and Arab lives. Naiveté is fine for But it is absolutely unacceptable for the Oval Office.

The subject was Israel’s 2014 war with Gaza. Sanders said Israel’s retaliation for Hamas’ shelling of civilian population centers was disproportionate. “Anybody help me out here,” he said, “because I don’t remember the figures, but my recollection is over 10,000 innocent people were killed in Gaza. Does that sound right?”



Border Patrol's Shocking New Claim On Illegal Immigrants

Art Del Cueto, a Border Patrol agent and Vice President of the National Border Patrol Council, which has endorsed Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, and National Border Patrol Council Spokesman and Border Patrol agent Shawn Moran stated that illegal immigrants who are not given notices to appear “walk out the front door” and “We don’t know who we’re releasing” in a report broadcast on Thursday’s “O’Reilly Factor” on the Fox News Channel.

During the report, Fox News Channel Senior Correspondent Eric Shawn stated that “agents are under orders from the agency headquarters in Washington to release illegals by not giving them what’s called NTAs, notice to appear summonses, that should send them straight to a deportation judge.”

In response to a question on what happens to those who don’t receive NTAs, Del Cueto said, “They get released back into the United States. They walk out the front door.”



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