“Activisimist” Movements: The Unavoidable Hypocrisy of Modern Culture (Warning for the sensitive, Profane Language Within!)

AmpersandQuest

I have always considered myself a humanist for my own reasons. No self-proclaimed humanist was ever able to teach me why, I just found myself attached to the ideologies behind humanism. It’s not for secular reasons or because a bunch of hipster activist told me I should be one. I am one despite those people. I am one because I believe in humanity to improve and progress through a lot of hard work. Not so that the government can grant everyone privileges and screw over everyone else just because they’re in the majority.

 

It seems in this “modern civilized world” it is not enough to be a decent human being, no, you have to be a part of this kind of “ism” or a certain type of “ist” in order to fit in. These “movements” are taking what was such a beautifully simple notion of goodwill towards men and have spun it into their own unique perceptions and delusions of how best to operate one self in a world wrought with war, political cesspools, a crumbling economy, and do gooders trying to get in everyone else’s business. They will point their filthy fingers at everything and everyone other than themselves and will never look in the mirror to see how they’ve duped themselves into believing that if they just scream loud enough, the world will listen and change. In other words, these people love to complain.

 

I am humanist because fuck you. What I mean to say is that I as an individual strive to better myself. I am part of a society of other humans so I have had to learn to go along to get along to a certain degree but the reason for this word press being written is to point out that society at large is stepping all over itself to prove to themselves that they are these gleaming and shining examples of morality. But we all know we are imperfect and typically shit headed towards one another. Yet we find ourselves involved with groups of people proclaiming to have the answer to solve all the worlds ills. Myself included, so don’t misunderstand me. I include myself in this article because I actually realize I have a lot of work to do on myself and I do it every day. I can’t say the same for others though. For others, mediocrity is just fine.

 

This same harsh “fuck you” goes to anyone who belongs to any of the following groups, Republicans, Democrats, Feminist, Libertarians, Anarcho Capitalist, Anarcho Socialist, Socialist, Communist, Jihadist, Christians, Muslims, Men’s Rights Activist, and many many others so if I left you out, fuck you too. Do you want to know why? Because while there are exceptional people within each community who I want to be friends with and would love to be around, there are always those extreme people who take the idea way too far and go way out of their way to not just exclude others from even the slightest conversation but will actively seek to bring harm to anyone outside that community. This is the problem I have with every single one of these “ismist”. They subvert themselves by proclaiming peace but it’s at a cost. They are not at all peaceful once they start lobbying for laws to be passed in order to limit the behaviors of those who disagree with them. Granted some are much less inclined to do so than others so I am not exactly painting with broad strokes here. I recognize good, better, and best.

 

I realize right about now I sound completely hypocritical and I agree, but how can this be avoided? How can we live in society with all these special interest, all just as annoying as the next, and not at some point put your head out of your ass and remember who you really are? Humanism to me does not mean I think all humans deserve special treatment. To me, it means, we’re all a bunch of dip shits for thinking that some little group we were a part of at some point was going to make a difference by complaining about some oppressor at large until someone paid attention to us. Never once providing a working solution or internalizing our own faults and communicating to others that sometimes the bullshit that happens to us in life is our own damn fault.  Perhaps then I am not a humanist, perhaps then I am just an individual who is sick of movements.  In any case I have been a part of several movements in my life time and never once did I feel fulfilled. Just a brief encounter with inspiring ideas at first which quickly succumb to in fighting, finger-pointing, and complaining. It’s rather disgusting.

 

I see all these disappointed faces all the time. You’re in a movement, things are going well, then reality sets in and people tailspin into denial, self-pity, and loathing of their brethren.  Did you really believe you were going to make a difference? So disappointing isn’t it? You were fooled by a guru into believing in something abstract and unrealistic and at first their were positive results because you were excited about something. It gave you positive energy and something to believe in while you continued to your ultimate destiny. But eventually, you had questions about what you were doing. Just as an atheist questions God or an Anarchist questions Government YOU question this community you’re a part of.

 

But you deny it don’t you? Anything to belong. Anything to maintain this near narcissistic shell  that you are good because your people are good. That you could never ever be a shit head and neither could your activist friends. Ha! Wake up fools, you live on an ancient rock, it’s been alive for billions of years and will probably outlive our species. And the reason it will is because you are so narcissistic that you actually believe we will kill the Earth before it kills humanity. You honestly truly believe that what you are doing is truly good and right and correct meanwhile you make enemies at every turn. Bring harm to those who disagree and in turn those shit heads you piss off come back and attack you.

 

I am Humanist because I think humanity has such great potential to be truly exceptional and good. But I see what we’ve become and i am sick! If it’s not cleared by your board members, internet gurus, or political party you will not even think about doing it. It’s disgusting to think that I used to be the same way but I met others who showed me another way. These people didn’t kiss my ass and tell me pretty lies. They said, “FUCK YOU, GROW UP, MOVE ON.”

 

These men to be a little more specific are part of an online culture called “the manospehere” and I realize I am being hypocritical but it simply cannot be avoided in this culture of ours.  Because there is no way around it I must find a way to compromise my position without being a complete piece of shit so here it is. My brand of Humanism is called Pinnaclism and you can read all about it here. https://verbosepeak.wordpress.com/2014/02/13/pinnaclism/

 

Within the confines of that article are what represent to me a set of ideals that constitute a way of life. I no longer want to be another follower in a group that represents the interest of people who at one point had the same idea I had. I want to be a leader in something new, unique, and truly revolutionary. I realize this means dire consequences should anyone out there take my ideas seriously but honestly, it’s a short life and I’m sick of following dishonest people who have their own agendas and use people’s best qualities against them in order to galvanize and quarter off a market of meat heads who will worship them and hang on to every word they say without question. I’m sick of the guru’s and the ism-ist of modern culture and desire a return to what makes human beings so damn amazing. Honesty, honor, hard work, self-responsibility, and ingenuity. I saying this I am not going to blow smoke up anyone’s ass and pretend I am a shining example to be followed at this point. But the fact that I recognize my shit headed behaviors and seek to change them is something people should follow.  I want others to read my words here and rip them apart and give me feedback, positive and negative feedback because if I’m perfectly honest right now everything I’ve written here feels absurd. I feel there is something underneath it all though which is tried and true.

 

Does anyone out there have anything to add? I would absolutely love to hear what others think about this. I wrote this article with a lot of anger and after re-reading and writing it I found many inconsistencies with my arguments but I still feel underneath it all is an undiscovered truth about humanity that we should all example. Please let me hear what you think and take care folks!

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Pinnaclism

Ampersand Daily2

Pinnaclism is my idea of looking at the vastly superior ideas from any given political or social movement and combining them under one umbrella. When those ideas compete with one another, we should lean towards the more ideal conditions and compromise those ideas which are not in our best interest by accepting the faults of that idea and allowing new and innovative ideas to take their place. This will require a high degree of intellectual honesty and also the ability to let go of preconceived notions once it has become apparent that one idea is inferior to the other.

This is a new term that I have come up with and in my opinion is the only solution to an authoritarian state where violence is deemed required to spread ideology. Pinnaclism still allows freedom of expression, thought, and allows us all to have our positions without the threat of violence. However once put to the test on the market or public arena and adjusting to the reality of the situation, it will become necessary to allow the winning idea to flourish . This requires a very active participation from individuals on a personal basis where we all seek to improve ourselves one step and one day at a time. Where problems exist, people must bring their ideas to the table, even if faulty, it will create a ground by which another can apply the benefit of hindsight and fill in the gaps. This process should repeat until ultimately the economic or social situation is solved to the satisfaction of those individuals involved.

This can be done on a large-scale without coercion or violence though I believe in and still  see the need for very strong defensive violence as detractors from this idea will preemptively strike and lash out at those of us trying to make improvements to our world. That said, through the use of ideologies such as voluntary free trade and association, charities, and many other economic and social options available to all of us at any given moment, we can avoid unwarranted violence more often than not. As a result violence will become less of a problem as time pushes forward. Actions taken by individuals that threaten the existence of others must be met with cold intelligence and brute force. Once on display, parties involved are open to public scrutiny and free press where the violence and coercion are observed in a very public way. If two individuals or collective of individuals seek war with another or among themselves they would be immediately held accountable by social and market forces which seek to render their aggression obsolete by providing similar and superior results that should persuade more people than not to both hold up private agreements and share among each other without the use of violence.

Perhaps in this way, we can eventually find the root causes of aggressive authority in our world and in the interest of the survival of our species dig and cut those roots once and for all, ridding ourselves of an evolutionary weakness and replace it with genuine authority who would have all the resources and reasons available to them to sustain a peaceful social order. I ask you the reader to understand that this does not mean pacifism. In all actuality it means this new social order has the ability to render unjustified violence completely and totally obsolete by having the resources to do so constantly being upgraded through voluntary free trade which will always seek to protect itself from outside illegitimate threats of violence on itself and those who benefit from it.

Try to imagine the possibilities and corrections you can make to my idea and run with it to the next person who works with you peacefully to create new realities, the idea is to allow this process to continue and grow into a new society based on real information and the accepting of new proposals in order to reach a peaceful end to all situations. For the overwhelming majority of time violence will not be necessary and as a result new innovations will only arise faster and better as time pushes forward uninterrupted by those among us who do not have the strength and peace of mind to build and maintain a society we can all enjoy and benefit from. In that case, it will not be an unfortunate turn of events to see these overly aggressive authoritarian forces eliminated from the scene and will also allow new innovations in dealing with these forces more and more peacefully with each passing year. Imagine being able to stop a killer without killing them and simultaneously benefiting from their labor and rehabilitating them and their would be victims to allow a much more prosperous situation to occur. The outright hedonist will not be able to bring about their anarchy on the backs of every living soul of which they would take pleasure in harming, rather, every living soul has an opportunity to present the hedonist with a choice. Responsible freedom or seclusion from freedom. 

I strongly desire all forms of criticism for this article. Whether you completely hate, moderately hate, moderately love, or completely love what I’ve put forward please leave a comment below. This is not meant to be a populist movement by any means, it is a means to an end that discourages such action but rather is an open door to any and all dissent and acceptance. That being said, both dissent and acceptance of this idea taken to extremities that result in massive demonstrations that seek to harm other’s interest will not be tolerated by myself. My goal isn’t to create a monster.  I want this to become the absolute most ideal way of looking at the world so it will require myself at times to be corrected and I completely accept that responsibility. So, if you believe you can improve or even disprove these ideas please do not be shy. It will only strengthen the idea either way and as a label it will survive any and all adjustments to the philosophy as it is meant to consistently be improved upon.

Music Review: Kyuss Blues for the Kyuss Fan; Devil’s Advocate (Part 2 of 3)

I have thought about this particular case a lot since it’s happened. I know one of the reasons why is because I just absolutely love Kyuss’ music. Anything that tarnishes the awesome music they produced makes me feel a bit angry at those responsible and I have an emotional reaction to it. This part of the 3 part article is to install a sense of contrast. Perhaps I am wrong for feeling the way I do in some ways and I believe in challenging yourself in order to understand yourself better. To know why you feel the way you feel and to learn whether or not your initial reaction to a situation is a factually correct reaction to have. This case, as a whole, provides a lot of very important lessons one can use in other areas of life and for that reason, I chose to go into great detail and write a blog entry about the case in order to both share the story and also hopefully grow my understanding of ideas like “intellectual property”.

When this case first hit the web, my initial reaction was to throw my anger towards Josh Homme and Scott Reeder. That anger has the potential to be misappropriated because as Josh and Scott point out, Brandt and John filed papers as well, to claim ownership over the name sake Kyuss. This goes against my idea of intellectual property as well so why should I just be angry with Josh and Scott? After thinking about this further I’ve discovered I now feel quite differently about everything that happened. I find myself dividing that initial frustration unto Brandt and John as well. Why do they all believe that they should own Kyuss? Don’t they remember the excitement that came with writing and performing those songs? Has their successes and failures in life lead them to forget what it was like to be a fan of your favorite rock and roll band? Is it no longer about the fun, joy, and challenge of creating something special with their given talents in order to embrace the cold confines of financial security and ownership of ideas? Looking at the picture below, it makes me realize that at one time all these guys were friends, band mates, and colleagues. Somewhere along the line, something must have happened between them that lead to all this. That said, maybe, just maybe, something else can happen to lead to another fully fleshed out Kyuss project down the road. Though I’m not getting my hopes up.

Perhaps then there is an alternative way for someone like myself to view such a tragic situation such as this. I don’t have to like that Kyuss is no longer going to ever exist or perform any of their classics or create anything new for audiences to enjoy and pay for. It’s all about the money to all of these men when it comes to Kyuss it seems. Though I did appreciate being able to see Kyuss Lives! for the last time and I appreciate the effort of continuing Kyuss by Brandt and John I find I must place some blame on them as well for not trying to work harder with Josh and Scott on finding a private resolution to this situation. While I still disagree with Josh and Scott’s lawsuit, I can say now that I understand why they did what they did. I just wish everyone involved could have found an agreement and not ruined one of the greatest unknown 90’s hidden gem of a band that has inspired me for quite a long time now.

What’s done is done however, the past is the past for a reason. From here on, I will find myself enjoying Kyuss for the epic band they were, the songs for the classics they are, and also all of these musicians career’s as they continue to write their stories with Vista Chino and Queens of the Stoneage.  I must admit though that my frustration with Josh and Scott lead me to pre-maturely boycott the release of Queens of the Stoneage’s …Like Clockwork. Perhaps it is time for me to let the past be the past and press play on the present so that I can enjoy what I know will be a quality effort from Josh Homme with Queens of the Stoneage.

So, at the end of my frustration with this story, I find myself fine with the squabble between the former band mates. I see now that it is their failure to find an agreement that lead to this situation, not that my ideals are failed. I keep thinking back to Wizards of the Coast and their Dungeons and Dragons character. They must have heard about this story by now and still, no news of a major lawsuit against any one of the former members of Kyuss for reaping the rewards of being in a band with the name of a character which they indeed created for their monetary interest. Perhaps then there still are good people who just love to have a good time, share ideas freely, and let each other benefit from one another without putting up barriers and walls to divide ourselves from one another. The Devil’s Advocate has failed to persuade me that I had everything all wrong. That I should just forget about my principles, that the right things happened here, and that I am just being too critical or overly sensitive. Obviously, music and art mean much more to me than the average person. These things have an obvious and much welcome impact on my life and I am not ashamed to admit that. That is why I cared so much about this case.

Now that I feel I’ve explained this as much as I possibly could in two parts, it is time to do the review of the album. The next part of this series is going to focus specifically and only on the album Blues for the Red Sun by Kyuss. There will but no mention of any of this behind the scenes drama and will be strictly about the albums qualities and why I love it so much. I hope that by the time you read this article in full you would have already listened to the entire album and understand why it is a tragedy that Kyuss can no longer exist no matter what anyone says or thinks or feels.

And now, Blues for the Red Sun

Please come back for the 3rd and final installment! 

You Only Hear What You Want To!

Ampersand Daily2Sometimes in life I run into situations where I find myself unable to easily accept the situation going on around me. All of which happens on a small personal scale, local scale, and even larger national or global scale. I’ve been told that I only hear what I want to several times by several people and I have to admit that sometimes this is true. Though I don’t celebrate this fact, I know it to be a true weakness not only of myself but by humanity in general. I always try to look at things from different perspectives and I thought this “catch phrase” would be an interesting idea to explore in some detail through my word press.

First of all, I question whether or not this behavior is always a bad thing or a weakness. Sometimes, what you want to hear, is probably the ideal outcome of the situation you find yourself in. In a world so ruthless and unforgiving, I’m sure many human beings have begged and wished for a better situation in life. Is it not that desire which sometimes pulls us through difficult times and tough situations? The idea that you can over come and the imagination of your goals being accomplished can give you the positive energy you need to get through. Only hearing what you want to hear in these terms to me simply means you want to maintain a good thing in your life and keep it a healthy part of what you’re trying to achieve with your life. This though, is not why you hear people saying “You only hear want you want to.”

The reason you usually hear someone saying “you only hear what you want to” is when you are being stubborn on an issue and unable to process difficult information without making an ass out of yourself. This is when you get in an argument over politics or sometime more simple like who should clean the living room. I would say that most of the time, only hearing what you want to hear only has it’s downsides because you are incapable of allowing communication to take place between yourself and another which in turn ruins any chance of a productive and  healthy outcome. The real honest truth is often very difficult to hear and often interferes with our plans, but avoiding the truth is often more dangerous and risky than it is to face it head on and accept the challenge of that situation.

I think it comes down to a healthy regulation of one’s ego to over come this situation where you simply aren’t going to listen to anyone’s advice. Remember that you alone will never always be right about certain things. The people in your life who love you and would look after you no matter what are there to help you, don’t forget that. We live in a world of endless distractions and ways to escape reality, don’t allow that, no matter how entertaining, to get between you and significant others in your life. This doesn’t mean simply give up on your ideas and beliefs, but it does mean adapting to the reality going on around you in a way that benefits not only yourself, but those around you as well.

Speaking of only hearing what you want to, if you like this article, I have other philosophical articles that relate to politics, religion, and even pop culture. This blog is intended to speak my mind on a plethora of different topics and try to consider all kinds of different perspectives. There are a couple of music review articles on the way and also am working on my first movie review. I’m always working on new articles and want to truly be a daily source of new information, but have found it difficult to keep up. If you aren’t a fan of one of my articles, like this one, please check out my other articles. You may find yourself enjoying a topic you may never have considered before. That is my goal here, to get people to start being curious about the world again so they CAN start hearing good news, the things they WANT to hear coming true. I want to be part of anything that helps that process for even one person on the planet.

Thank you for reading!

Scott D. Vogler

Music Review, Kyuss; Blues for Queens and of the Red Stone Age Sun; Part 1 of 3

Ampersand DailyMusic

I will provide the track name, number, length, and a link to the lyrics for each song followed by my review of each song. My favorite site for looking up song lyrics is http://www.songmeanings.net/ so if possible I will use their site almost exclusively. Also, I recommend using Spotify to listen to these songs as you read through the review. https://www.spotify.com/us/for-music/ If you do not want to use Spotify visit YouTube and look for the songs on there. http://www.youtube.com/

I realize my interpretations are not going to match that of the creators or of every body out there, hell maybe not anyone out there. But that’s not what this is all about. I am doing this because I love art and inspiration and blogging. Not to insult anyone or ruin anybody’s day out there so please, if you feel I have insulted you in any way through my interpretations please let me know as kindly as you can conceive how I might change the way I’m looking at a song or film or even just a piece of art work. This is about being open and communicating well with others in a positive manner. Not personal agenda’s.

Lastly, I find that often lyrics listed in the albums inserts and album art are sometimes different from what is actually presented on the song itself. I strongly recommend reviewing the lyrics on Song Meanings and attempting to edit where necessary. This is the first part of a two page review. The reason I have chosen to divide it into two articles is because there is a controversial story to be shared about this band, it’s members, and it’s “intellectual property.” My wordpress page is for both entertainment and also to talk about more serious dilemma’s in the world that I feel are important to talk about. This whole scenario I am going to attempt to tell fits perfectly into the mission of this wordpress and consider this to be one of my more passionate pieces to date. I am not here to offend anyone, but if my opinions do offend you, please share the reasons, I am not closed minded to criticism in any way, so please do share your thoughts below. This albums holds a special place in my heart, along with most of Kyuss’ library. They are not a perfect band, they are not that uber success story that everyone loves to hear about. In fact, just lately, former members sued each other and fought legally for rights to the bands name and music. It is a tragedy in Rock and Roll that breaks my heart. I had the pleasure of seeing the second effort of this bands wonderful premise, straight forward, yet extremely unique blend of stoner rock and what I always felt was a strong mixture of 90’s and 50’s rock. Under the name and guise of the title Kyuss Lives! comprised of three of the four original members and two replacement members, the band toured Europe and the United States playing old Kyuss tracks for fans across the world. This was brought to a halt once they tried to gain the rights to the name “Kyuss” and two former band mates brought a civil suit against Kyuss Lives for copyright infringement.  This band eventually spawned to more successful project of the lead guitarist, Josh Homme, named Queens of the Stone Age, of whom I consider myself a fan of as well. However, the lawsuit has me angry with Mr. Homme at the moment and I do not feel obliged to buy the latest release, even though I want to. For this to happen to two of my favorite bands breaks my heart. Let’s get names out of the way, this is going to be a long, perhaps segmented music review because of my love for this kind of music, and also because of the important legal matters involved. It is perhaps not a unique situation all together, but it does have a bit of notoriety behind it so I feel obliged, being a big fan, to say my two cents here on my WordPress blog. Here is a list of both original cast of musicians Kyuss and of Kyuss Lives! so we can understand who, what, when and where what a little bit better. Each name will lead you to a wikipedia page about each musician.  Kyuss  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kyuss) 1987-1995

Kyuss Lives! (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kyuss_Lives!)

2010-Current
I saw Kyuss Lives! in Chicago at The Vic on December 2nd 2011. In March of 2012, Josh Homme and Scott Reeder filed a lawsuit naming his former band mates as the defendants. The lawsuit was filed in federal court under the charge of “trademark infringement and consumer fraud by Kyuss Lives!”  
This is what Josh Homme had to say in a press release. 

“It sucks. To think we went to a meeting in January solely to help them with their request to continue Kyuss Lives! With open arms, we made every attempt to help them continue Kyuss Lives! respectfully. Only to discover while they looked us in the eye, Kyuss Lives! management and band had filed federal documents in 2011 in an attempt to steal the name Kyuss. This is desperately what we were trying to avoid. It’s a sad day for us and for John – but most of all for the fans. What a needless mess.”– Josh Homme

 

Scott Reeder made this post on his facebook page to comment on the situation as well. “Maaaaaaan, I’ve been called every foul name in the book, and all I did was make a choice to stand up to defend and retain small rights that I should be able to keep sacred and unhindered for the rest of my life and beyond. I didn’t have much of a choice: lose all of the rights in two weeks, or keep them forever. I didn’t choose to be in this situation at all — I was forced to react very quickly with a looming deadline, and it’s been rough. I saw people bitterly divided over this stupid stuff… crazy. But the overwhelming support from friends and family was very much appreciated and needed. Thank you.” -Scott Reeder

Kyuss from Dungeons and Dragons game.

Kyuss; D&D Character

http://www.canonfire.com/wiki/index.php?title=Kyuss

Disciple_of_Kyuss

Disciple of Kyuss; D&D Character.

http://ddadventuresystem.wikia.com/wiki/File:Disciple_of_Kyuss.jpg

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kyuss_(Greyhawk)

The above pictures and links are there to provide the fact that it was not Josh Homme who invented the name Kyuss, not even a little bit. So I have to ask myself, why didn’t the “true owners” of this character, name, and likeness not come forward when Kyuss was first formed to begin with? All I have to go on is a theory, but I imagine that certain people view sharing ideas and information differently than others. I have heard a lot of fans say that just because Josh Homme and Scott Reeder didn’t have to sue, doesn’t mean they should just let the members of Kyuss Lives walk all over them. That said, it still remains they could have chosen to let this go in favor of a friendship, for the fans sake, and also for the survival of a band that is beloved by many people. Allowing something you worked really hard on to continue to live on with your former band mates and friends to me would seem to please most people I know, especially considering the level of success Josh has gained for himself with Queens of the Stoneage. It’s easy to take the route where just because it’s legal, means he could and should have sued, but I honestly believe everything would have been much better if Josh Homme would have let this go and let his former work continue to live on. He should consider the fact that Wizards of the Coast nor Hasbro gave him any legal trouble when Kyuss first hit the scene. He and his band mates were able to create music that inspired a whole bunch of people based on a characters name that was lifted from a campaign in the table top game of Dungeons and Dragons. To me, this is hypocritical of him to sue.

Brandt Bjork had this to say in an interview with Rolling Stone.

“In the summer of 1987, I started a band with my best friend, Chris Cockrell. This band would ultimately become Kyuss. Kyuss was a name I found in a Dungeons and Dragons book called Fiend Folio. Kyuss is a big part of my life as a musician, and when someone asks me formal questions about Kyuss, or wants to discuss the band casually, I can’t help having a point of view that is naturally inherited by someone who is the original founding member.”

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/kyuss-lives-respond-to-josh-homme-scott-reeders-lawsuit-20120521#ixzz2XyikRlGM 

Before moving on I’d just like to say that I admire all of these musicians for their extremely creative and talented attributes. Their music, even their side projects, have inspired me to learn more about music in general and have even helped me get through tough situations by providing me with amazing music to inspire the best in me to come out and shine, like all good music should do. I realize my opinions don’t really hold sway over the situation, but I think it’s important to share our opinions openly so despite having the unpopular opinion here, I side with Kyuss Lives! in this situation. Mostly due to the fact that they at one time were all friends and if I were in Josh Homme’s shoes I would be happy to let my old band mates and friends use the name Kyuss and even claim it as their own. Simply because they were there from the beginning too, they helped create the project and made it into the band all the fans still love today. I would have been happy to know that something I was heavily involved with was going to see new light and perhaps have a second chance to take off. I realize there are monetary concerns here, but sometimes money shouldn’t be what’s important. Again, this is just my opinion on how I believe I might have handled the situation. Considering both Josh and Scott both enjoy very much alive music careers, especially Josh with Queens of the Stoneage being as popular as they are. This should have been a situation where he could sit back and enjoy the fact that his creativity has allowed his friends to enjoy the benefits of working with him on something that many fans still hold on to. 
Obviously I have a biased opinion on this because I really just love Kyuss, the band, and am sad that the project simply cannot continue because of money. I’m not sure how I would react if I were Josh Homme in this situation, perhaps the same way, perhaps not. I understand that Brandt Bjork and John Garcia attempted to claim ownership of the name “Kyuss” as well, and I think that’s just as wrong as Josh suing them for it, but at least Brandt acknowledges where the name actually comes from in his interview with Rolling Stone. Josh to me, along with Scott Reeder, seem to have done this simply because they could. It’s not as if John Garcia and Brandt Bjork weren’t there from the very beginning or anything like, this isn’t a perfect stranger coming along and stealing material right out from under Josh and Scott. It’s as if I’m supposed to forget that John and Brandt had EVERYTHING to do with Kyuss as a band becoming a reality. Josh and Scott definitely played their part, Josh more so than perhaps anyone else which is why I say, if I were him, I would have been more than happy to let Brandt and John continue to play old Kyuss songs under the name Kyuss and generating a buzz for the band as they continue on to make new albums. I know the objection to my argument is obviously that Brandt and John filed for ownership over the name, but like I said
I realize by now this is old news, but it presents me an opportunity to express a concern I have about intellectual property while also reviewing one of the best rock albums from the 90’s that I feel not enough people have heard. When listening to this album, please ask yourself, if you think it is of high quality. Should anyone own an idea? More specifically, should anyone, myself included, be allowed to force others to pay them for using an idea that either resembles their or is a direct copy of their idea? I think force in any situation is bad and that if you have to use it, your ideas are wrong to begin with. But that is just my humble opinion and you did not come here to read a bunch of band drama, or maybe you did, nevertheless this part of the article has run it’s course and I feel it is time to start the actual album review. Which you will find in Part 2 as soon as it’s finished. 

We are not done here!

Devil’s Advocate:

I am writing this into this article because after some serious thinking, there is another angle to be considered here. I have a strong emotional connection to Kyuss which could blind me from anything outside of allowing the project to continue unobstructed. That is why I have added this section to the article, to provide a train of thought that contrast what I personally want and gives Josh Homme and Scott Reeder my benefit of doubt. They claim that John and Brandt tried to file for ownership over the name Kyuss. If that is the case I have to send some negativity towards John and Brandt because of how I feel about intellectual property. Again, why didn’t the originators of the name Kyuss, at Wizards of the Coast ever sue anyone when Kyuss the band gained their popularity in the early and mid-90’s? This goes back into what I said previously that perhaps some people in this world view things differently, what a surprise right?

Please come back for part 2 if you are interested in hearing an alternative view point that perhaps contrast what I’ve said here. 
Thank you for reading! 

Armed Carry in Washington D.C. on July 4th: Adam Kokesh

GunControlMarch

Time to set the precedent. Adam Kokesh, an internet blogger, youtuber, and pod-cast host has made plans to have an armed march in Washington D.C. on July 4th. From the moment I heard Adam speak, I knew he was an agent of massive change for our society, whether good or bad. I respect this man for the courage he displays and for always doing exactly as he stated he would do. Though do not mistake my respect for Adam to be full-fledged undying loyalty to him or everything he’s ever said. I do not believe he expects such accolades from any one individual either. I believe his motives are pure and good, that he simply wants to set the precedent that having a loaded weapon on you does not mean you are harmful, dangerous, or a criminal to be treated like an animal and locked in a cage and pumped full of psychotropic drugs. I’d like to try and discuss alternatives to both the current mainstream view on guns and also contrast a few of Adam’s points with my own, hopefully fulfilling the needs of both points of view while avoiding violent conflict but also reaching a higher understanding on self defense, personal liberty, and self ownership without the desire to control or manipulate others with force, fraud, or coercion. Of course no single idea is perfect, but that is why we share them so freely, to communicate with others who may agree or disagree with your assessments and help define a better path for both minds to interact with the world through peaceful interactions with those around them. This is important for both sides of the argument to remember as July 4th approaches. My biggest question is will this march be peaceful? I don’t believe Adam wants there to be any violence, but at the same time I realize he thinks the government will resort to violence and force if their rules are confronted. Adam realizes that in order to assert his belief that he has the right to carry a loaded weapon where ever he wants, he has to risk his life and freedom to do so and that is his main point. He shouldn’t have to be so afraid of doing something so simple and so openly to peacefully demonstrate the idea of owning a weapon but using restraint and learning self defense. Adam doesn’t want to use his weapons as a means of force and preemptive dominance over others, his desires, in my opinion, probably weigh in more along the lines of self defense and as a hobby at the shooting range or even for hunting.

Another point, to see whether or not authorities will tolerate people standing in formation with loaded rifles on their backs. So far, the police have said that the only one’s allowed to have guns are the police. ““Passing into the District of Columbia with loaded firearms is a violation of the law and we’ll have to treat it as such,” – Metropolitan Police Department Chief Cathy Lanier said to http://www.wjla.com/blogs/news-talk/2013/05/q-a-with-d-c-police-chief-cathy-lanier-18750.html. Ultimately this means the government official and law enforcement agent is claiming the monopoly on carrying a weapon openly and publicly. In the same breath, they are claiming you as an individual have no right to do so in any capacity. Even if you never harmed a single person, you would be considered and treated like a criminal for merely having a gun on you in public. If the police of Washington D.C. choose to end this with violence and show their true colors I can only hope that it will help others realize the kind of world we are living in and have a change of heart about what governments role should and can possibly be. I would prefer a world in which we are free of bully’s and egotistical men and women gaining larger than life sums of wealth and power and controlling through force, fraud, and coercion all the rest of their minions and the common people who inhabit the planet. I wish I could turn on my television and see a real world of innovation and constant positive growth and change in our species. I feel that we are close to such and event taking place but I also believe things have to take place before this does happen. 

 

 If we see this break out into violence on our TV screens, it will more than likely come from paranoid authoritarians who lust for control and power over those who are defying their arbitrary rules and regulations that have nothing to do with peace or equality for anyone. Hopefully people will see that harming anyone here means initiating force, not defense. The history that is unfolding is that either we are free people who can do what we want as long as we don’t hurt anyone or we are not free and have to submit to and be afraid of our government as we are threatened with violence if we do not comply with their orders. As biased as I may have become towards government, I do realize there are some really good intentions at play within the halls of congress, the white house, and other government buildings, however, I believe these people do not understand that for every rule they come up with, people will have to needlessly suffer because of it. It is a function of the state to assert itself on every major issue through the use of public displays of force and dominance. When said so bluntly I realize it makes everyone cringe but that is merely a reaction to the tyranny that exist because of government, not in spite of it.  I share Adam’s sentiment that no one individual or group of individuals have a monopoly on defense, gun ownership, or violence. In my opinion it is immoral to coerce or violate physically the natural right of another human being to live in peace and prevent them from interacting with fellow human beings the world over. Claiming such power over others is a sign to me that the person or persons have not considered or have very little concern for their own freedom or safety. Also, this authoritarian mind-set has time and time again showed up in human history and overtly rejected every single time. However, the tragedy here is that people often forget the lessons of history and choose to justify this unwarranted authority by creating a moral high ground which does not exist in reality. In their mind, because of the legitimate services that government can provide its people, it is okay to violate people’s privacy, monetary situation, personal freedom, and even take life from individuals who stand up to them. To be more blunt, it’s okay to mug the banker walking down the street in order to feed the homeless man in the alleyway. I reject this notion outright. Wouldn’t it be better, if you really cared, to talk to the homeless man, convince him to go with you and donate your time to helping them get back on their feet? Wouldn’t it be easier to help them find a part-time job? When does it become clear to “the authoritarian” that using guns to take care of people often has a greater long-term negative consequence than the short-term benefits of welfare? When does it become clear that it would be much easier to help these people without force, fraud, or coercion? What if the threat of violence and coercion that exist in our current system simply didn’t exist in the first place? After all, isn’t it this situation which causes people to become homeless in the first place? All of the lies, violence, and other misdeeds perpetrated by those in power all add up in lending a hand to human suffering and those very same people are trying to convince me that I have no right to defend myself and be armed. That to me says that there are some people in the world who merely believe they have some superior right to do and say as they please while the rest of us have to grovel and bow down to their rulings. In the end, no matter how well intended a law is, if it violates my ability to peacefully interact and live among other people, I reject it out right and with all of my heart.

 

This armed march in Washington D.C. on July 4th is going to create a new situation. It’s going to cause both sides of this debate to be brutally honest with one another and it’s about time. Either we will find out that we are all indeed free to do and say as we please without hurting anyone else or we are not. It’s not uncommon for such a thing to take place, however, this time it has a lot of weight due to the massive amount of legislation to restrict gun ownership in America. We have been told two things from gun control advocates. The first is that gun control is necessary. The second is that they claim they do not want to take everyone’s guns. To me, the second claim must be exposed for the lie it is. What Adam’s protest is going to do is cause this authoritarian mind-set to come clean with the world on their real stances and intentions. If the government opens fire on these protesters and starts arresting people it will prove that some people do not have the mental strength or capacity to handle being in the presence of a non-government individual being armed. It will prove that all these people can see is the gun and not the human being carrying it. They will prove that they are not for gun control, but rather the control of people who own guns. They will prove this to the world by using guns to enforce their rules on others. In that light, this march is much less a protest on gun control and much more about standing up to unjust authority. It is about addressing the problems presented to independent individuals by authority figures who claim the monopoly on gun ownership. It is about laying it all on the line and starting a revolution of the mind about what it means to be armed, to be a free human being, and questioning the legitimacy of governments role in our daily lives. This is being done to show the world how the United States Government will treat its people. It will go down in history as an important mile stone event. One where either we show this government that we will not be victims of their unjust authority. That we will live in peace and harmony, armed or not, with one another with the goal of prosperity and more freedom for more people around the world. Or, on the other hand, we could see a disaster unfolding. Will the government use violence to quell this revolutionary act of defiance? If so, will it set a new precedent in the hearts and minds of the masses about what is acceptable behavior from our government? What if the government starts shooting people, will people then realize how wrong it is to preemptively attack people who’ve harmed nobody? I have a disgusting feeling that something similar to the latter will occur and a giant “I told you so” campaign will grip the barely beating heart of this anti-political liberty movement and strike it down with fear and violence. That being said, I will not be swayed by terrorist who will do anything they have to do in order to keep their false power. I realize these people rely on the fact that human life is fragile and use that psychology to dominate the hearts and minds of every last individual on planet earth. It’s time to set the precedent. Either we water this tree of liberty with pure, clean, and refreshing water or it will be watered with the blood of the victims of government violence and coercion. The choice is clear.

I realize a large segment of people experience a certain level of fear and discomfort surrounding the ownership of a fire arm, much more the openly carrying of a loaded weapon in Washington D.C. must seem absolutely insane to many of you out there. Consider this though, you support a government which has all the latest surveillance technology, the latest weapons, the latest and greatest in policing technology, and a whole army of enforcers. Why are you so afraid of a few thousand people simply wanting to prove whether or not their own government will use violence against them for exercising a right supposedly guaranteed by The Constitution? Adam Kokesh has several times as of the writing of this sentence that he wants a peaceful protest where the police escort is there to ensure a safe situation. If violence happens on July 4th it will be because of the paranoid authoritarians who cannot allow any kind of questions arise about them. Scott D. Vogler

The Mirror: Just Look at Yourself

The Mirror

This blog is meant to be a place of positivism and open mindedness. I enjoy bringing an unencumbered and positive messages to anyone who reads from many topics which include technology, politics, social studies, and other areas of interest, however, sometimes I feel it is necessary to reach into the dark side of humanity to discover hidden truth’s about us. This article is about human nature, not anyone in particular. Also, realizing I am not being original or very clever in pointing out what I consider to be flaws in humanity, I am fully aware of my short comings and my negativity is mostly my own reflections of my short comings being projected out onto the reader. I am not a professional practitioner of psychology or sociology so please do not think I believe my words are solution for every last person, please also do not imagine me to being coy with my words in this article.

As we descend into this challenging article, I want to recognize old and wise words which say that it is our flaws which make us who we are the most as we strive to be a more perfect human being. This is not an attempt to wish failure upon anyone but rather an attempt to get my reader to look deeply into themselves at some things that perhaps are not comfortable dealing with. Speaking for myself, one of my biggest flaws as a person is an inherent inability to handle harsh yet constructive criticism. When met with this challenge from another, I recoil in horror to a shyness from which I find it difficult to recover. The first thoughts in my mind when met with this are typically of a very negative nature, not giving he or she the benefit of doubt and imagining the worst possible thing about them. Coming to the point, this flaw of mine is being remedied more and more every time I converse with someone who is challenging me. If not for my willingness to look my situation right in the hairy eye ball and accepting who I am, I would not know what I want to become. I would not realize there are many paths out of this situation. Which brings me to what I consider one of the most detestable and tragic flaws of humanity on a collected scale. The unwillingness to admit imperfection.

In earlier articles I wrote of bullies and how I deal with them. Offering solutions for how to deal with a bully is one thing, but now I have to turn the tables on the idea and consider the possibility of being a bully of sorts myself. Not only myself but others who may feel they have been treated unfairly by a bully in their lives for it is well known that the meanest of bullies get that way from being bullied themselves and could not find it within themselves to face their flaws and stand up for who and what they are. The real tragedy of this is that the solution eluded them because of an unwillingness to simply admit to their flaws. Every human being has limits, which are yours? What an important yet poignant question to have to ask yourself. However poignant it may be, it is akin to setting a broken bone or pulling a rotted tooth. The pain is extreme, yet must be done in order to bring healing into the realm of possibility. This to me appears to be a fact as solid as the ground we walk upon, but again, I am no professional.

Are we born to live with this propensity? Does everyone suffer this as consequence of living and breathing? Or do we learn it through systematic psychological abuse through social interactions and entertainment designed to lower our sense of self? Are we as a species doomed to live in perpetuity with this unwillingness to look directly into the mirror and see our flaws? How deep does the matter go? Is it something humans are just naturally adherent to or do we learn it as I posed before? Difficult questions demanding lengthy and in depth answers and I shall attempt to discover some satisfactory answers as this article continues. In the spirit of this article and keeping consistent with the message of these words, I shall look deep into this rabbit hole and attempt to bring out the treasure at the bottom. In order to address this further I want to take a look at society as a collective hive mind for a while and share my feelings about our world, harsh as those feelings may be, please try to read between the lines.

I am well aware a great many of you out there will not read these words, you had already moved on before even finishing the first paragraph for a various reasons and that to me is perfectly fine. However, I struggle to find a reason other than mere avoidance of the truth for why you wouldn’t be interested in this topic. When breaching this topic with others around me I hear many reasons, I’m too busy, I have kids to worry about, I’m too tired, etc, etc. While everyone has a right to avoid this, I urge you to imagine how much less busy, tired, and worried you would be if you discovered how much happier you would be accepting yourself for who you are.  There are enough people out there who fit this description for it to be safe for me to put them in a group. I realize I am taking great liberty in labeling here, for which I will make no apology because I too fit into this group at times as I’ve described my flaws and am willing to admit my laziness in dealing with them at times. Coming to point, put in mind the amount of people who surround you at this very moment who not only fit into this group, but give meaning to it’s very existence.

I am describing a mass scale delusion of vanity and perfection, the likes of which bring about unspeakable tragedy. The bigger question to me then is of scale. Are the leaders of our communities, cities, counties, states, and nations members of this group as well? I would bet on it which is the precise reason of breaching this subject in the first place. This brings us to the incredible difficulty of solution since it is on an individual basis remedy is found, how is society to ever over come? The prospect of perpetuity of this egocentric attitude is more than alarming, it is nightmarish in it’s complexity. It’s remedy eludes me at every turn and burns a hole in my heart and mind when I discover just how few of us living are even willing to ask a single solitary question of ourselves, much less on the larger scale of society. I believe it is that which we dare not speak or think of which leads to war and many other tragic events from which we are further scarred and damaged.

I see this whole process culminating in the quest in some men and women’s hearts to force their views on others through government regulation and force. Why is it that in the quest for peace, we lose focus of what that means and give a monopoly of power and force to just a few among us to force others to behave the way we would see fit? We live in a world where in one situation it is totally wrong to force anyone to do anything yet, if you create a law out of that idea, it is perfectly fine and accepted when people are beaten, tortured, jailed, and sometimes murdered for behaving even a little bit outside the realm of The Law. To me, there is nothing more ugly than the fact that while government does provide some legitimate services, the price for those services is human life. The price is losing your humanity and honesty because you would rather pay your taxes and have bully cops order people around, yet leave you alone when it’s your turn to be confronted by this ugly brute of a system. It’s not right and this needs to change if humanity is to survive and reach into the universe. If it does not change, I am afraid we will be stuck on this old rock for good and die with it as a species. We would never make it among the stars in our current situation and mind set. We would quickly find something to make us strive for even more power and domination over others. We are bullies, each and every one of us and to those few out there who I know for sure are not, I thank you for giving me hope that perhaps one day, on this tiny little rock we call home, our species will know peace amongst one another. Underneath all that bigotry, intolerance, racism, and hatred is a heart of gold. The question is, what does it take to crack off the ugly crust which covers it?

Scott D. Vogler

Head down, Lights Out, Lock the Door.

HeadDown

All through history we can find examples of the two types of people I’m going to talk about. For the purposes of this article, there are two types of people, those who bury their head in the sand and those who keep their head on a swivel. In my eyes, it is very tragic that so many choose to stay ignorant. Some people are simply ignorant due to lack of information perhaps because of their living situation. However, I find that people in this situation are not the kind of people I’m trying to refer to here. Ignorance is not bliss to these people, it just so happens that they have not been exposed to certain information. The types of people I’m talking about are those who have been exposed to information, yet, choose to live in a fantasy world.  Like in Plato’s Allegory of The Cave, out of the four prisoners, only one escaped and was willing to leave the cave and the puppet show behind. The others willingly stayed behind and chose to live as a slave and in the fantasy world.

I’m not sure if there is a precise enough word for individuals who live as if they are invulnerable to new information, but there is a popular slang term being used a lot, “sheeple”. I don’t want to delve into ad hominem or name calling, so while it would be easier to just label these kinds of people, I feel it’s more responsible and educational to fully describe them rather than relying on a single blanket word like “sheeple”. In order to do so, I’ll share personal situations from my life to help define these kinds of people without a blanket label. In my life, I have attempted to wake several people up and in doing so have lost friends, family, and relationships along the way. It is frightening to me that some people cannot handle the truth. It reminds me of the story 1984, 2+2=5. People want 2+2 to equal 5 because the delusion is apparently easier to deal with. I have had people literally melt down and cry simply because I challenged their politics, people have literally screamed at me for suggesting they were mistaken, and worst of all have shunned me from their life for pointing out what I believe in.  I always make sure to tell these people, that when or if they decide we don’t have to be enemies over a disagreement, to come talk to me again. So far, not one person has stepped back into my life. I just hope they realize it was they who chose not to be around me anymore, that I miss them greatly, and I am deeply concerned for their well-being after choosing to live the lie. Some people cannot be helped because they do not want to be helped. Keep in mind, this is the majority of people around me. Also, just as a reminder, this has little to do with personal politics. I am not attempting to claim superiority over anyone but I am suggesting that some people need to open up their hearts and minds.

In contrast there are also people who simply cannot stand not knowing. I like to count myself in with this crowd, but it’s not so easy to crowd these kinds of people in either. So again, I’m going to avoid using single terms like “awake” or “enlightened” because of what comes with the seeking of knowledge and new information. This means my truth may contradict another persons truth. This leads to conversation, debate, and argument which gives further definition and substance to ideas. This will also lead to experimentation, which is probably the most important aspect to all of this. Guesses are a start, but no matter how smart, good-looking, or social someone is, a guess is inferior to experimentation. These kinds of people are not afraid of being wrong. To me, it seems like those who are truly seeking knowledge and understanding are happy to learn when they are wrong and enjoy having been corrected. This shows me a great deal more maturity in contrast to those who choose to remain ignorant to the world around them. This doesn’t mean these types of people are superior or better than anyone else, what it does mean though is that they are more willing to broaden their hearts and minds to encompass something greater than themselves.

I feel the need to consistently reiterate the point about one not being “better” than the other. As I have grown and learned more about myself and the world around me, I have come to find that sometimes people are very awake and aware but it will not seem like it at first until you really get to know them. This goes back to being open-minded, patient, compassionate, and kind to others around you. I believe there is a very specific reason why some people keep their head down, yet, have a tremendous amount of knowledge and wisdom. The reason I am referring to is bullying.

Bullying is a large part, in my view, of why people keep their head down and stay out of the conversation. It causes people to avoid confrontation and to fear rejection of their ideas. While I believe there is help for these folks, have a bit of tough love for them. What kind of excuse is that? If that’s what your excuse is I can’t help but imagine that you are less interested in learning and more interested in pushing a certain agenda. While I may be wrong in saying that, there is an old saying, “You can’t help others until you’re able to help yourself.” This, in my opinion, is exactly right, especially in this article. If you have an idea about reality and you share it with others who might have some constructive criticism and you react negatively to it, you are a perfect example of someone who would rather stay ignorant. The point here is keeping your mind open. Perhaps your ideas are sound and beneficial, however, closing off to everyone around you just because they see it a little differently is not helping you or anyone. In fact, this kind of attitude only serves to discredit your ideas if you are unwilling to even listen to a different angle. The danger in behaving this way is that you may begin to feel you are just superior to others, that you know something they do not, therefore, should be able to tell them how to think and feel. The danger here is you becoming authoritarian in your social life. Or perhaps you completely seclude yourself from everyone around you. Either way, this is no way to live in my opinion. I wish I could help you see another way.

I don’t know of any one solution to this dilemma, perhaps some suggestions from my heart will help. You will never convince someone through force or coercion so step number one is to forget about treating people this way. Many many people have experienced being bullied and we’ve all seen the effects of this so straight away, just forget about being a bully. I realize the temptation, however, know the results are not genuine. People will say a lot when under pressure just to fit in. I want real understanding not a belief brought about by some sort of abuse or brainwashing. I think one of the keys to do this is patients. If you have information about something and have experimented with it and know in your heart and mind that it’s true, then you need to stand strong with those ideas. People who disagree with you may or may not have valid points to make, so instead of reacting negatively to this, keep your ears open. You have to set the example in order to convince others, so take it upon yourself to become a very good listener. This avoids bullying in two ways, firstly, by listening to someone else’s ideas, you yourself are less likely to be a bully and in turn, you’re negating reasons for the other person to bully you. If confronted with a bully, do not cower in fear of them, but also, do not react aggressively or violently towards them. Instead, see it for the opportunity it is to improve yourself and perhaps improve them along with you. Results are what you put into any given situation or dilemma. Ignoring reality and blaming others isn’t going to do one solitary bit of good for you or anyone else around you. This is merely a suggestion to everyone to learn how to put aside petty disagreements and work a lot harder towards real solutions that work in the real world.

In closing this article, I just want to point out that I believe humanity is wonderful. I have a very optimistic outlook when I think about the future and it’s because so many wonderful people have taken it upon themselves to live and be who they are. These people inspire me to grow and learn and become a better human being. I have a girlfriend, who for the life of me, would not be with me if I hadn’t chosen the life I’ve chosen to live. She’s not into all of these things like I am, but that does not make her the type of person with her head down, lights out, and door locked. I sometimes try to see the world through her eyes and I have to tell you, it’s amazing to ponder. In the end, it’s not about whether or not she agree’s with me on everything or listens to the same information I listen to. It doesn’t matter if she can’t stand some of the music I love or some of the things I say every day. What matters is, she is who she is and she lives that way every single day. She communicates what she see’s and feel’s with me and it helps me grow into a better person. I only hope I provide the same kind of experience for her in turn because to me, she’s worth every drop of blood I have.  She keeps her head on a swivel and learns something new every single day, things I could really care less about, until she shows me how important it really is. This is what I’m talking about, people from vastly different perspectives can learn, grown, and achieve with one another simply by being open to new ideas and suggestions. That to me, is vastly superior to purposefully living a lie. Not that those people are evil, but they sure are missing out and I for one wish to do something about it.

Thank you for reading! I am more than open to suggestions, criticism, and new ideas. Please comment below and let me know what you think!

Scott D. Vogler

Agorism & Statism: The True Paradigm

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Agorism & Statism: The True Paradigm 

This article is going to be focused on what I feel is true political paradigmatic ideology. We are brought up, typically, in a two-party system depending on which part of the world you live. Where I live, in the United States, it has been the same two parties in charge for a very long time now. The Republicans and the Democrats. This has created a very clear division between people who affiliate themselves with either the left political spectrum, or the right political spectrum.

While I understand the differences between the two parties, what I don’t understand is how the followers of these two parties do not clearly see the poignant similarities both parties share. I believe party patriotism blinds people from the reality of the two-party system. Many even swing like a pendulum between the two parties depending on popular opinion. These people I feel will have a much easier time understanding the points I will attempt to make in this article because they are not so tied down by political favoritism. If you are one of these people, I am asking for your empathy and attention because I believe it is you who will make the biggest difference. Those that do not feel the incredible urge to support only one side of the same coin, I’m talking to you most of all and asking you why you play along? It will be clear why I ask once you’ve read the entire article.

For those who are reading this and are thinking to yourself “get to the point already” I will kindly ask for your patience because this is an incredibly complex issue that must be explored to its fullest extent. I am attempting to break through apathy, blind patriotism, and the arrogance that comes with party politics. For those of you who are still reading and thinking “get to the point already” because you can see where this is going, understand that I realize you already understand the points I’m going to try to make. This article is directed at those who have not yet heard the message.

Now that I’ve clarified a few things, let’s continue on with the article. Again I recognize the political difference between liberals and conservatives. Big-Gov v. Small-Gov, left/right, red/blue. I believe most understand the obvious differences. What I want both sides to realize is that whether you argue for larger or smaller government, both still require certain situations in order to exist. These situations are exactly the same thing and cannot be divided by political rhetoric or opinion. Attempting to wiggle around this will only prolong the inevitable truth. The reason the left and the right are nearly identical is because both parties have shown their abilities and desires to use force and coercion in order to maintain their power.

Please don’t be confused. I am not saying that all liberals and all conservatives are aggressive, violent, and dis-honest people. I just understand the inherent nature of party politics, especially in the mainstream, to be dismissive of anything that goes directly against the party doctrine. I am asking you to question why you support a system that uses force and coercion to maintain its power. One of the most popular answers I receive when asking people this question is, “Yeah, but we have to have a government!” I can’t help but imagine how this stance would crumble if they themselves became a victim of government force or coercion.

Another popular answer is “So few people fall through the cracks, so to get the benefits of government, I’m willing to accept the mistakes they make.” That’s fine and dandy, but would you be willing to say that to someone who’s fallen victim to these so-called mistakes? “I’m sure they’re working hard every day to solve these issues, I have faith in the system.” So much faith that you’ll ignore the reality of prisons being full of non-violent offenders, the reality of warrant-less authority, the reality of using force against peaceful people? When push comes to shove, do you believe they will let you simply step to the side?

It has been estimated by author Harvey Silvergate (who happens to be a libertarian) that the average American commits three felonies a day. While I cannot support that claim with evidence of my own, it does make sense to me given layers upon layers upon layers of laws put in place by both parties.  All of these laws are enacted and enforced through coercive political posturing, violent policing measures, and information gathering. How far are you willing to go in your patriotism of a system which can create a criminal out of anyone?

I’m trying to leave names out of this, I only mentioned Harvey Silvergate, because of the title of his book and to give him credit for presenting the information in his book. I can ask these daring questions of statist all day long and make some of them feel angry or frustrated, but that is not my intention so after all of the questioning, if you are still paying attention that is, I want to extend an invitation to take on an idea that isn’t quite new, but could be new to you. It could be called anything you want it to be called really, since it is simply being who you are and living in reality as a free and independent human being. There is a term becoming popular among certain individuals who call themselves Agorist.

Basically, an Agorist is someone who lives as if there is no government. That is taken in the most extreme of contexts. There are also agorist who believe in government for some things, but they may be agorist towards another area of government. It is the equivalent of being atheist for one God, but theist for another. This to me represents a beautiful part of human nature. Sometimes, no matter who or how many people tell you to behave a certain way, think a certain way, or even speak a certain way, you will not give up your independence. For some people this means, no one can tell them who they can and cannot marry. While another individual might not give up his fire arms. If you stop to think about it, that means most people have something very powerful in common with each other even if it comes from completely different circumstances.

When faced with this reality, my first inclination was to point out that they are completely different situations, that they have no relation to one another, and no similarities can be drawn from one to the other. However, this is false. It is because human beings desire to live free of oppression that I can compare the two social situation. I hope this brings you to understand that all around you are people who are just like you in a strange and complex way, they live in a world where violence is promised if you do not comply with certain people’s rules, yet, despite circumstance, almost everyone I know seems to hold on dearly to who and what they are and will not give in to tyranny against them. I just want you to see that there is nothing to fight over if we all agree that we should be free and actually use that freedom to protect each other from tyranny of any sort.

I do plan on offering some challenges to this ideology however, because I have my own definition for who I am and how I think about the world. I will not give in to these paradigms that express a lot of promise yet in the end, produce the same results. It is a paradox, where in the place that they meet are ideas like war, control, manipulate, lobbying, police, torture, poison, and most importantly power. Agorism to me is a superior state of being, because it means you do not depend on anyone but yourself in whatever regards you see fit. However, there are some challenging questions I have had to ask of myself and I want to explore those as well. So fellow Agorist out there, like you, I am still learning perhaps right along side and behind a lot of you out there, but I am definitely interested in learning more in how to change your life in this manner.

One of the most difficult questions I have is that of practicality. This deeply offends me when somebody tells me that they like my ideas, but they just seem so impractical. It’s easy for me to point to horrible examples from their side of the argument of impracticality and chaos. However, this does nothing to address their question, which is essentially,”What are we offering that’s not government but is better than government?”

The answer to this, as I’ve been able to reach myself thus-far is that it probably still looks and behaves like something called “government” but is entirely different from what we accept today as government. The problem with complete and total Agorism is that people will compromise and work with others to achieve larger goals. If we woke up tomorrow in a zen-anarchist utopia, it would still have groups of people who exist to provide goods and services and who even take on the appearance of authority. The difference is, they will not exist to limit personal liberty, but would instead have to produce a good or service that actually benefited those who choose to use them. This leads to another huge topic that I will not go into now, but please refer to my other articles about Pinnaclism and Transhumanism. Those can be found on the main page for this blog.

I am confused though, what would an agorist society do about those who bring harm to humanity? Would we lock them in a cage? Would we just kill them? Would we bill them into obscurity? Perhaps we can isolate them from society and hold them publicly accountable in some way that absolves the situation so that further peace and prosperity can take place without further interruption from that individual. Now that I am asking these large questions and lazily offering very vague but heartfelt suggestions. I think it’s time for this article to find its way to the end.

This single issue holds so much potential power for you as an individual. Whether or not you chose to be Agorist is far less important than you yourself never behaving in a forceful or aggressive manner to those around you. Do not be a bully just because you think or even know you are right. Forcing others to be something they are not is akin to the inability to put a square peg in a round hole. It is not your fault nor theirs for being born this way so instead of wasting time and energy hurting others, please recognize that you only harm yourself and everyone around you when you behave this way. You know that the only reason you ever get away with it is because others have chosen not to use force and coercion in their lives. You prey on the innocent as if they were just a doormat to your castle. I do not want you to suffer through this delusion any longer so please, I beg you, think about who and what you really are and if what you are is a bully, try to use it wisely enough not to pick on innocent people who never hurt you nor would they hurt you.

 

Thank you for reading. I know I will be writing more about this in the future, especially as others examine my ideas and have objections, recommendations, and questions about it. Please remember to rate, subscribe, share, or otherwise remember this article. Your participation is very much appreciated!

 

Scott D. Vogler

 

Grown Up Stuff & Ampersand Daily: The Final Solution

Ampersand Daily2

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The Final Solution

Host of the show Grown Up Stuff has invited me on to be a guest on Wednesday February 13th at 9:00 PM. We will be discussing many topics I am sure but just to give you an idea of the discussion, please read a bit from Notus’ and myself’s Facebook discussion.

http://www.wereweliedto.com/

 

Me: “you want to talk about anything in particular?”

Notus: “No problem Scott! Actually yes, if you wanna think how to answer that’s cool. Pretend I’m a 10 year old child asking you this, what is agorism and what would daily life look like in a anarchist society, what major differences? and lastly back to adult me, When do you think the house of cards falls? or when does the economy implode?? get what im sayin?? and i guess who loses out most when the economy hits the fan?”

 

First of all Notus, thank you for inviting me on to your show. I have my calendar filled for Wednesday February 13th at 9:00 PM and very much look forward to talking to you and Swamp. Let the good times roll!

To a 10 year old I would have to say that agorism is knowing when it is neccesary to break the rules and then breaking them. A 10 year old may ask, “but rules are good right?” To which my reply would be, “Yes, but some are made to be broken if not improved upon.” This would open up a whole plethora of other very important issues to a child of 10. In contrast, I would tell an adult that it’s living as if there is no authority over you. I think most adults would brag that they do life this way, but most also will support the government on most issues.

 

A completely anarchist society is difficult to imagine for most and even myself because it’s never been done successfully before. To be honest, I believe in authority to a certain extent, but it’s not from a authoritarian perspective. Justifiable authority simply means that which is true can and should be preserved and made into reality. It does not mean initiation of force to change people’s behaviors or beliefs, but make available for them the scientific knowledge of any issue. An anarchist society would have an authority in technology and technocratic power structures. It’s been said that even in anarchy, there will be organizations that appear to be authoritative and governing, however, these organizations are an inevitable part of people communicating and coming to agreements on certain issues. The difference in an anarchist society, this body would have absolutely no reason to interfere in the movements, speech, thoughts, or other behaviors of individuals. One vital component of anarchal society is the broad sweeping acceptance of the non-aggression principle. This though is probably not a good explaination for a 10 year old child.

 

For that I would point to Democide numbers and tell the child, all of these people were killed by government directly. Then I would answer the child with a question, “What would the world be like if these people didn’t have to be killed?”

 

The house of cards will never fall, there has and always will be a house of cards. Parts of it fall and crumble into the pages of history, however, the unique thing about humans is that we’re alive so we live and provide new alternatives that lead to expanded peace, long life, happiness, and growth. Who will be affected most by the current system crumbling as described? Those who depend on it most obviously, the bankers, the bailout riders, the lobbyist, the politicians, the police, and all the people who live on their knees in front of it all. While I realize the calamity that comes with this, I also recognize that through this failure of society will come a new society based on different principles all together. It is my hope that we make it through to the other side free from those who sought to steal our wealth, start wars with us, and dehumanize us into their control grid. If we cannot do this, we will end up in The Matrix I’m afraid.

 

Thanks again for inviting me to the show, this is just to give everyone a taste of things to come on Grown Up Stuff and Ampersand Daily (almost daily)…

Remember Wednesday February 13th @ 9:00 PM!!!!

http://www.wereweliedto.com/