Commentaries

This page contains commentary editorials by Gautier Van Cleave about political, social, and technological issues, along with information about our government.
Thank you for reading and considering these issues.

Topic Menu


Political Suicide

Politicians and newscasters refer to “political suicide” as an excuse for the lack of progress toward a necessary political, legal, or societal goal. Why should a politician risk his career, alienation of his cohorts, and public scorn just to do the right thing? Indeed, why?

I submit that such a politician is a depraved coward, and that anyone who uses the term political suicide
as reasonable for voting against good legislation or avoiding its creation is either likewise depraved, ignorant, or recklessly stupid.

Several election cycles ago I ran for the US House of Representatives, and with due reflection considered what would actually happen to me if I voted for good legislation or to repeal bad legislation, particularly if other representatives, the media, or the general public decried my vote as political suicide. I’d get bad press, and I probably wouldn’t get reelected. I might even be impeached. Just for doing the right thing.

flag-and-soldiers

A simple thought experiment informs my morality. I imagine that I’m standing in front of an audience of others who had put their well-being or their lives on the line for their jobs, with dire consequences. Convenience store clerks who had been shot in robberies, suffering permanent injury. Firefighters whose faces had been burned into scarred horrors. Soldiers who had lost arms or legs or their sight or their sanity. Imagined spirits of those who died trying to do the right thing.

I stand before that ghastly group and tell them, “I cannot do good because that would be political suicide.” Not real suicide—I’d still be alive. Physically unharmed—hale and hearty.
“I cannot do the right thing. Someone might speak inhospitably of me. I might lose my cushy job full of riches and power.”

After offering such an obscenity, I’d wait for those in my audience who were still physically able, to beat me to a bloody pulp. And I’d tell them they were doing the right thing.

Consider your politicians who avoid doing good because to do so would be political suicide. Now, go reelect those immoral cowards and wonder why things don’t improve.


Our Eroding Gun Rights

The Second Amendment is under vicious assault by the Left. The Left hates guns because guns underlie and guarantee all our other rights. All oppressors hate free people with guns, whether Hitler and his Brown Shirts, or California with its Jerry Brown Shirts. We mention California because it tends to lead the nation in new ideas, including very bad ideas, such as the recently passed laws to harass law-abiding gun owners. These laws make it very difficult and expensive to acquire ammunition and turn citizens who own certain currently legal accessories into criminals, unless they turn over their property to the state. We can only hope for a successful Constitutional challenge to these onerous new laws.

guncontrol

Armed Criminals and Disarmed Citizens

Where lawful guns are prohibited, only criminals have guns. Chicago, with utterly oppressive gun laws, will surely top 4,000 shootings and 700 shooting deaths this year. Here are ongoing Chicago statistics. Washington D.C. (District of Columbia or Dodge City— take your pick) with similarly oppressive gun laws, is likewise filled with criminal gun activity including thousands of shootings per year.

Mass murderers run wild in gun-free zones, a favorite place for the left to forsake helpless victims. But, such murderers don’t attempt their atrocities in gun-packed Wyoming, where there is one legal gun for every five persons. A would-be mass murderer could shoot but a single victim before the citizenry took aim and sent the evildoer for a dirt nap.

Only criminals find it easy to get guns and ammunition. Enabling criminals and disabling victims—what a stupid plan! Doesn’t the Left know any better? No, they wallow in their ignorance. They don’t know a clip from a magazine, or fully-automatic from semi-automatic. Caliber? Gauge? Are they the same–are they different—do they care? No. Aren’t all rifles assault rifles? So aren’t all rifles bad? Doesn’t the AR in AR-15 stand for assault rifle? (No.) Shouldn’t we outlaw high-capacity magazines? How could anyone need more than 10 bullets at a time? Oops! The well-trained police only get two hits in 40 rounds fired under stress.

If the Left Can’t Stop Guns, They’ll Stop the Ammo

The government’s excessive purchases of ammunition have been sufficient to conduct both a third and fourth world war without any need for further restocking. This serves two simultaneous goals toward diminution of Second Amendment intent: making ammunition unavailable and so expensive that only wealthy Americans can afford to purchase ammunition. Note that in order to use firearms most effectively, a person should practice with some regularity so as to maintain proficiency, lest rapid aim become enfeebled against criminals or tyrants. This obliges individuals to make purchases well beyond that necessary for a goodly personal stockpile of ammunition.

Why Have a Gun?

  1. The same reason the police and military have guns.
    To stop bad people from harming good people.
  2. Because they are essential to freedom.
    To protect yourself from anarchy when the government is too weak.
    To protect yourself from tyranny when the government is too strong.
  3. “Because it suits me to have one.” You don’t need to justify sport shooting or hunting or plinking at paper targets, or self-defense, or obliterating an oppressive government. It is your guaranteed Second Amendment right, part of the Bill of Rights—endowed by your creator—whether you consider that creator to be a god, your parents, or the natural law that makes you a rational being deserving of your freedom of choice for your life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness.

The Constitution says “A well regulated Militia.” Doesn’t that mean some kind of government controlled group right? When the Founding Fathers wrote well regulated, it didn’t mean controlled—it meant trained or capable. And, no, there are no group rights. Groups don’t need rights—they have a group to wield power. Only individuals have or need rights, as the smallest minority, a minority of one, to wield power against a group. And the Supreme Court ruled that the Second Amendment is an individual right in the case: District of Columbia et al. v. Heller.

When seconds count, the police are only minutes away.
When seconds count, the police are only minutes away.

Limiting the First Amendment in the Style of
anti-Second Amendment Rhetoric and Law

The government has long recognized that the pen is mightier than the sword. Centuries ago, the printing press amplified the pen to create printed books. Further, Gutenberg printed the first movable-type book: his Bible, a religious book. Awesome new technology of laser-guided printing places this mighty power in the hands of almost anyone, threatening great danger. We must keep this power out of the wrong hands, away from the mentally unbalanced and religious fanatics.

Many unnecessary and painful injuries and brutal deaths, including deaths of children, have resulted from the improper use of doctrines contained in religious books: beheadings, crucifixions, selling daughters into slavery, stoning, and burning at the stake.

Therefore, for the public safety, we require a 10-day waiting period between the date of purchase and the date on which someone may physically acquire a prayer book or other religious book, and only from a licensed dealer. This provides sufficient time for authorities to very preregistered purchasers against federal and state databases. It is crucial to close the loopholes by which attendees at open religious shows and events might purchase a prayer book without a background check.

Special application must be made and approved to openly carry a prayer book, otherwise such a book must be transported in a locked safety container. As a further safety measure, no such books may contain more than 10 pages. That number is quite sufficient for any peaceable purpose.

High capacity prayer books containing more than 10 pages or books printed in unusually large typefaces are prohibited. Such high-capacity books that were previously owned had been grandfathered in. But the new laws going into effect make these illegal. You must turn in any such books currently in your possession by January first or face a substantial fine and imprisonment.

We prohibit the sale to ordinary citizens of prayer books of the types normally used by professional clergy, in which many words are released with a single reading of a sentence. There is no reason that an ordinary citizen needs to release more than one word at a time. Regardless, we ignore the distinction between semi-read content and fully-read content.

Certain words carry great weight and are dangerously offensive; some are hollow, pointed, defensive words and equally dangerous, so these must be prohibited from use by private citizens; that is, only active military service members and authorized police officers may use those words. Likewise prohibited are civilian purchases of more than three religious books of any type, whether civilian or clergy, in any one month period, except by licensed authorized dealers.

Ad nauseum!


Voting Rights and Wrongs

We hear the fervent mantra, “Get out the vote!” Politicians and media castigate the 42% of registered voters who did not vote in this recent presidential election. This is misguided. In what other endeavor would a sensible person seek the opinion of the ignorant, the thoughtless, the lazy? Yet we should hand over national policy to such riffraff. That is the height of foolishness and irresponsibility. (We discount the small percentage who actively chose not to vote because they could not countenance any of the available candidates. Such nonvoters made a reasoned and moral choice, and they are not a part of the great unwashed masses under discussion here.)

The Founding Fathers specified that one should be a landowner in order to vote. This was not adopted as a point of discrimination, but under the view that land ownership set a standard of voting from a background of education and intelligence. The issues of actually owning land, women voting, enfranchising minorities, and the like were fixed long ago, but we should consider the underlying idea.

Political correctness more than anything else prohibits a requirement of some level of civics knowledge in order to vote. But, watch any man-on-the-street interview of college imbeciles, even ivy-league imbeciles, to see the value of that concept. Or cringe over late night shows that poll would-be voters about why they thought Obama made a good choice in nominating Marty McFly, John Dillinger, or Sammy Hagar to the Supreme Court.

Other than the intellectually and morally bankrupt (the Democratic Party leadership just jumped up and waved their hands), who would want gullible idiots to vote? Who would attempt to produce as many votes as possible for their political doctrines from persons who are too stupid or ignorant to think clearly? The Democratic Party, of course, who must think that Blacks and Hispanics owe them a Democratic vote but are too stupid to be able to obtain a free ID, and that’s why they object so strenuously to voter ID laws. (But we all know, or should know, that Blacks and Hispanics are just as intelligent and capable as any other racial or ethnic group.) There are already mechanisms in place to safeguard the voting rights of persons so physically infirm that obtaining an ID might be difficult, including voting with a mail-in ballot and casting a provisional ballot should an ID be forgotten or misplaced.

The purpose in fighting against the requirement of an established voter ID is twofold:

  1. Flood elections with the vote of fools who can be persuaded easily by promises of magic free goods and services, or by the ethically depraved who feel that they should receive unearned and undeserved values at the expense of those who did earn and deserve them.
  2. Flood elections with votes for their causes by persons who are not entitled to vote; for example: persons who have already voted, felons, dead persons, and users of stolen identities.

Only a person who embraces voter fraud could regard voter IDs as evil, while trying to make all other IDs mandatory—as with boarding an airplane. Only a person who embraces voter fraud could offer hostility to periodic review of voter rolls that might eliminate the dead, persons who have moved out of their voting districts, and criminals who have become ineligible to vote.

For a video explanation of voter fraud at its root level, review the do-it-yourself interview by Catherine Engelbrecht, founder of True the Vote. For details about the Obama Administration’s persecution of Ms. Englebrecht, review the weaponized assault by the IRS, FBI, OSHA, ATF and other governmental organizations as detailed in her congressional testimony. Watch the YouTube video: Cathrine Engelbrecht Testifies before the House Oversight and Government reform SubCommittee about the IRS’s targeting Consevative groups.


American Government Basics

Have you ever read the Declaration of Independence?declaration-of-independence

Have you ever read the Constitution, especially The Bill of Rights?the-constitution

What is the purpose of the Federal government?

There is really only one proper function for the federal government: to secure our rights; that is, to keep us free. Where did that strange notion come from? The founding document of this country:
The Declaration of Independence

An Excerpt from the Declaration – The Theme
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

Again, why do we have the American Government? From the excerpt above:
“That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men”

Protecting our Rights

As a triplet of corollaries, Government must protect our rights from those who would abridge them:

  • To keep us free from foreign invaders, which is the task for the armed forces.
  • To keep us free from internal destroyers (criminals who initiate coercive physical force or fraud), which is the task of the police.
  • To keep us free from the government, which is the task of the citizenry through votes and judicial action, or armed revolt against post-constitutional tyranny as a last resort.
The Three Branches of Government

With the purpose defined, our government is structured as three branches:

  • The legislative branch creates the laws.
  • The executive branch enforces the laws.
  • The judicial branch adjudicates the laws.

Three competing elements effect control on our society:

  • The Federal Government
  • The States
  • The Citizens

Our government is a Constitutional Republic.
Constitutional – A limited government that has only the powers enumerated in the Constitution.
Republic – The supreme power rests in the body of citizens entitled to vote and is exercised by representatives chosen directly or indirectly by them.
Democracy –  Under a free electoral system, the majority rules, but no majority can overrule our constitutional rights, which protect the minority, especially the smallest minority—the only one that has rights—the Individual.

We are living in a Post-Constitutional society. The Federal Government has ignored much of the word and meaning of the Constitution, especially throughout the past century and getting much worse during the current presidential (Obama) administration. Many persons are uneducated and/or unaware of the proper function of government (to secure our rights.) They assume it is a dispensary of goods and services to be paid for by someone else, if considered at all. For the far too many non-thinkers, goods and services appear by magic, just somehow. But taking what isn’t yours is stealing. You must trade a value to obtain something of value (typically using money), and it must be a voluntary trade.

Improper Functions of the Government

The following are not proper functions of the government: murdering the citizenry, enslaving the citizenry, confiscating the productive effort of citizens’ lives (their earnings), handing out confiscated money as goods, handing out confiscated money as services.

Therefore (as examples, not an exhaustive list):
No giving away other people’s money as shoes, cell phones, cell phone service, hamburgers, TV service, school services, penicillin, or medical services.

No telling people (by force of law) where to live, how to live, what to say, where to go, what to eat, what to put in their bodies, what to read, what deities to worship, what weapons to own, with whom to associate, with whom to trade, with whom to have sex, or how to have sex.

Do you want to be free?

You must educate yourself and oppose those who would use government power improperly.
For the present, we have recourse through elections in which we choose our leaders.
When you vote, choose those who will protect your rights and embrace the Constitution.


Unlike the politically oriented material above, the material below is scientific and technological.
LFTR development may provide scalable high-demand power generation with no carbon footprint that is immune to sporadic unavailability of sunshine, wind, flowing water, precipitation, or tidal motion. 


LFTR Technology
Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor

Safe, clean nuclear reactors to generate electric power

Below are great introductions to the possibilities of Thorium nuclear reactors. The links show two somewhat lengthy and rather technical YouTube videos.

They are here merely as information from a technology advocate. This does not ask you to do anything but possibly watch them and think about the future of electrical power generation. Whether you care about possible carbon effects or not, it produces electricity with no ongoing carbon footprint. Its fuel supply is inexhaustible. It is also safe from meltdowns—unlike Fukushima, a cut from operating power, and it all cools to room temperature. It cannot go super-critical like Chernobyl.

Glen Seaborg, now immortalized as the namesake of element 106 (Seaborgium), came up with the initial idea and many decades ago set up a demo Thorium reactor that ran without mishap for many years.
The development of this technology was never pushed and then ended when Nixon cancelled the research, most likely because Thorium reactors would not advance nuclear weapons technologies.
They’re great for producing power and useless for producing weapons material.

Why should you watch these? They show that safe, clean nuclear power can produce all the inexpensive electricity that mankind could possibly need, including in locations without a gigantic supply of cooling water. In locations with available ocean cooling water, desalinization becomes an extremely valuable automatic side effect. Perhaps thirsty California?

Thorium, a chemical element named for the Norse god Thor, is extremely available and abundant all over the US (and the world) in inexhaustible quantities, even if used for nuclear power for millions of years—no isotope separation required. It is found in especially high concentrations among extremely valuable Lanthanide elements, the so-called “rare earths”.

When will the US government start making this technology a national priority? 10 years or so from now, when China starts to shift all their electricity production to Thorium reactors.
Or when US enemies stop selling us crucial rare earths that we don’t produce ourselves. Wait, aren’t rare earths abundantly available in the US?
Yes, they’re all over the US, but they are found with abundant adjacent Thorium, and the US government (and EPA) have been waging a long and misguided war on Thorium, conducted by bureaucrats who have no technical knowledge.

This YouTube video is filled with details and runs for 59:57.
LFTR Chemical Processing & Power Conversion – Kirk Sorensen

This video shows a different design worked out in immense engineering detail. It runs for 30:59.
ThorCon: A Thorium Molten Salt Reactor System that can be built Now -by Lars Jorgensen @ TEAC7


Thank you for reading and considering what you have read.

Additional Topics Will Appear on this Page

This page will contain additional commentaries about political, technological, and social issues.

Please return from time to time. Thank you.


buttonspacerpreviouspagebuttonupbuttonnextpagebutton