Today would have been her 142nd birthday. There are loads of websites about her, and about the Montessori method - here is one blog I like:
One of the viewers points out "There are perfectly legal things we can do? They will just change the rules. You just said that's what they do."
Yes, they will. But we keep doing those things until they do (and maybe even after.)
I've just heard from one of the Minnesota RNC delegates in Tampa that they will be holding a press conference at 6:00pm Eastern Time. I'm very interested to hear what they have to say. As soon as I find out where/if you can watch this live, I'll post the info. here.
I’ve seen many posts like this one today, from Antonia Litsinger:
“Well, I'm not going to get into the classic insanity mode - doing things over and over and expecting different results. I'm done with this whole political shit. It was fun for a while and I met a whole bunch of great people in the liberty movement. Let the crooks and the deviants have it. I've withdrawn my consent and am turning my back to them all.”
This is good. This is someone waking up. This is someone - and there are many of them - who has put a real effort into changing things for the better through the political system. Many have been doing it since 2007, some even longer. And while some will continue the fight, continue working to get “good people” into bad offices, others are starting to look a little deeper, are starting to recognize that it is the system itself that is broken, not the particular individuals who happen to be heading it up at the moment.
I shouldn’t be, but I am still surprised when I hear people urging me to support Romney because Obama will be so much worse, or Obama because Romney will be so much worse. I hear this from smart people, people I respect, and I have to do a double take because I can’t believe what I’m hearing. I can’t believe they can’t see that both of these people - or more accurately, the interests that support both of these people - are phenomenally evil and that to support either one is to support driving our country further toward a police state, aggressive military adventurism, economic cronyism and ultimately bankruptcy.
Yet people are so tribal, and so ruled by fear. I don’t know where the tribalism comes from. Some of it is learned, but I fear some of it is innate, and it still astounds me to see how powerful it is, to watch otherwise intelligent and caring people throw their support behind what can only be described as a fascist dictator, all because he’s “one of them”. “He’s a Democrat and I’m a Democrat and Democrats are good!” Or “yes, he’s awful, but the other guy is so much worse!” It is such a powerless position to be in, and is precisely how the power elite maintain their control over our lives - through fear. Fear of the terrorists their own policies incited; fear of “rich” people; fear of “illegal” immigrants; fear of the other guy who might win if you don’t throw your support behind our equally awful candidate.
What struck me, in reading the Tweets of those watching the proceedings, was this: Those who today were cheering because now “Ron Paul will finally retire and we’ll be done with him”, or berating him for not falling in line and supporting Romney like a good Party Member, really don’t get it. It’s not that they don’t “get” Ron Paul, it’s not that they don’t agree with his message or don’t understand why so many people are so passionate about him. It’s not even that they don’t “get” that Romney and Obama are essentially the same. What they don’t get is that the point of the liberty movement is not simply to win elections, and it is certainly not to win elections just for the sake of winning them. The point of the liberty movement is to bring about liberty. And after witnessing the corruption and dishonesty of the 2008 election proceedings and now the 2012 elections so far, it just may be dawning on more than a few in this movement that participating in the establishment’s rigged game is not an effective way of bringing about a free society.
If there is anything good that comes out of the Republican National Convention of 2012, it will be this: That the Republican Party leadership’s blatant disregard for its own procedures, its willingness to change the rules at the last minute to prevent an outcome it does not want, will be instructive to those who still believe in “working within the system to change the system.” It will push more liberty activists to start thinking of more creative ways, more productive ways of bringing about a free society. And it’s about time.
Many of us were cynical about building a free society by using the machinery of the state all along. But we supported Ron Paul because we had to say we tried. For myself, I felt that if his presidency was even a possibility (even though I don’t even believe in the office of the presidency) I had to do what I could to make it happen, for the sake of the lives that would be saved by reining in an aggressive foreign policy if nothing else. And I did, and I don’t regret it. But now it’s time to get serious about building a free society. The illusion that we can do it through the voting booth should by now be thoroughly discredited. Our focus should now be on building the society we believe in - one that is based on peaceful, voluntary interactions, where violence is only acceptable as a response to violence. The coercive system is failing, and it will only get worse. It’s time for us to get to work.
UPDATE: The two clips I had originally posted here are now "private" and cannot be viewed. Until that changes, you can see my Dad's talk here, starting at around 58:30.
My Dad was one of the speakers at the Ron Paul Revoloution rally in Tampa yesterday. Here is his talk, in two parts:
There was a time when, if I heard about a shortage or other major disruption in some market or another, I was prepared to entertain the possibility that it was due to myriad factors, some of which may be entirely out of the realm of human control, and that I couldn’t possibly know what was at the root of the problem without digging further. Of course, this is always true. It IS possible that shortages and market disruptions are due to such things as unpredicted weather fluctuations or freak insect attacks out of nowhere. Things do happen. However I’ve been around long enough now to be fairly certain that whenever something goes badly wrong in a market for anything, there is usually some sort of government intervention at the source of it - if not as the direct source, as an extreme exacerbating factor.
When I called our local, reliable party supply store to inquire about getting balloons for our daughter’s party tomorrow, I was somewhat stunned to hear the reply “no” followed by the explanation that there is a global helium shortage and that party stores everywhere are suffering - to say nothing of hospitals and nuclear reactors. As soon as I was off the phone, I did a quick search online and quickly found this:
"In 1996, the US Congress decided to sell off the strategic reserve and the consequence was that the market was swelled with cheap helium because its price was not determined by the market. The motivation was to sell it all by 2015," Professor Richardson said. The basic problem is that helium is too cheap.
...The law stipulated the amount of helium sold off each year should follow a straight line with the same amount being sold each year, irrespective of the global demand for it. This, according to Professor Richardson, who won his Nobel prize for his work on helium-3, was a mistake. "As a result of that Act, helium is far too cheap and is not treated as a precious resource," he said. "It's being squandered."
This should come as no surprise. In fact I don’t even know why I’m posting about this except possibly that there are still a few people out there for whom it does come as a surprise.