Americans – both those born on this soil and those who weren’t but who got here as fast as they could – are natural rebels, stiff-necked, stubborn, and not inclined to bow the knee and truckle to those who think they are our betters. Oh, it might not seem so in these dolorous times; too many of our fellows seem just too ready to be passive, landless serfs with an appetite for crumbs and approving notice from the wanna-be-nobility’s table, and too damned many outright want to be the nobles, or their willing henchmen/women/whatever. But a preponderance of us are not that ready to be pushed into servitude to the State – witness the drubbing at the pools that the voters of Wyoming gave to the presumed princess-heir of the landed house of Cheney yesterday. Losing an election by a 40% margin is not just the voters saying ‘no, thanks’, it’s the voters escorting the candidate to the city limits, brandishing buckets of tar and bales of feathers while snarling, ‘…and don’t come back!’
Ah well – I have long disapproved of political dynasties – the Kennedys, the Bushes, the Murkowskis, the Gores and their similar and lesser-known political ilk. The only political dynasty that was ever any good for America as republic and in the long term was that of John Adams, and that was back in the day when we all were pretty adamant that there would be no patents of nobility issued, tither formally or otherwise in this blessed experiment in citizen governance. For myself, I hated the choice I had between two scions of political dynasties in the 2000 election. What – a choice between two sons of political privilege? I think I held my nose and voted blindly, and can’t remember who for, not that it made much of a difference then or now. Although one of the two has retreated to a relatively quiet life in Texas, and the other has chosen to humiliate himself on the international stage as one of those campaigners for radical actions to oppose climate change, traveling hither and yon at great expense on energy-spewing jets.

It’s nice that the voters in Wyoming can emphatically kick to the curb a notorious carpet-bagger pol (whose speaking resemblance to Miss Piggy ought to be noted.) and whose personal portfolio has increased to an incredible degree during her tenure. Alas, cut short due to the obstinacy and stupidity of the voters – but never mind, she will no doubt flit off to some other profitable perch among the minor nobility. They do tend to take care of their own, after all.
In the meantime, we can make fun of them. It can be vicious, enjoyable fun – passing around disrespectful memes, satires, jokes and cartoons about our ruling class, pointing out their many hypocrisies, their double standards and public pratfalls. Laughter and derision are potent weapons, as Saul Alinsky pointed out in his Rule #5; “Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon. There is no defense. It is almost impossible to counterattack ridicule. Also it infuriates the opposition, who then react to your advantage.” Think of Sabo’s painting of Joe Biden in a mask and nothing else, and a hotpants and garter-clad Kamala Harris. Consider that picture of Sec Def Austin, double-masked and outdoors, inspecting the troops – all he needs is a flowing cloak and Darth Vader’s music. We can laugh and poke fun, while the media handmaids of our Ruling Class fume and stomp their feet while insisting that it’s not funny …
Well, it is. And we are a rebellious people. Ridicule is our weapon. Along with ruthless efficiency, determination and fanatical devotion to … oh, blast. I’ll come in again. Comment as you wish.

29 thoughts on “Rebellious”

  1. among the reasons I frequent Babylon Bee and Not the Bee…and enjoy ATH…and delight at finding posts by Sgt Mom

  2. Liz Cheney may have set an all-time record for arrogance by a would be politician. She dismissed the issues of Wyoming after her loss by asserting that she had “more important ” things to do. For one thing, most og her votes came from the county that contains Jackson Hole, which is a playground, like Aspen CO, for the rich left. She was obviously asking Democrats to vote in the Republican primary and about 10,000 did so from many estimates. I was a fan of her father. When in Congress, his ambition was to be Speaker, a noble goal. I’m not sure how much of a neocon he was in reality. I was sorry to see that ridiculous ad he made for her but he has the excuse of a heart transplant.

  3. I’m reading Frank Herbert’s sci-fi classic “Children of Dune” right now. A couple of quotes for your consideration:

    “Governments, if they endure, always tend increasingly toward aristocratic forms. No government in history has been known to evade this pattern. And as the aristocracy develops, government tends more and more to act exclusively in the interests of the ruling class – whether that class be hereditary royalty, oligarchs of financial empires, or entrenched bureaucracy.”
    – Frank Herbert, Children of Dune

    I read this the other day and just nodded my head. Here’s another one:

    “We know the major conditions wherein this large populace may turn upon its keepers – One: When they find a leader. This is the most volatile threat to the powerful; they must retain control of leaders. Two: When the populace recognizes its chains. Keep the populace blind and unquestioning. Three: When the populace perceives a hope of escape from bondage. They must never even believe that escape is possible!”
    – Frank Herbert, Children of Dune

    Timely quotes; strange that I am reading this book right now. I first read Dune 35 or 40 years age. These quotes wouldn’t have held very much power for me then.

  4. “But a preponderance of us are not that ready to be pushed into servitude to the State”
    I just don’t think this is true anymore. I think the loss of “the frontier” was a catastrophe for American individualism, and the “one person one vote” abomination that gave all power to cities over the country was a death blow.
    Wyoming clearly is “Old America”, a glorious throwback, but not who we are today as a country, unfortunately.

  5. Some can be pushed, this has been true down through the ages. The question is – when do US citizens reach this point:
    “If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.”

    ― Samuel Adams

  6. There are an awful lot of people today who are in jobs where their evaluation is based entirely on totally subjective judgment of other people within the organizations…NOT ‘did the parts you machined fit spec? or ‘did the code you wrote work’ or even ‘did your restaurant make money last month?’ or ‘did you meet your sales quote last month?’ (The latter two examples being based on subjective judgments, but judgments by people *outside* the organization and manifested in ways that are not subjective)

    This subjective evaluation leads to a ‘courtier’ type of attitude, which is not very compatible with true individualism.

  7. We definitely need to make more use of mockery, especially with such a bunch of ninnies pretending they are in charge. One I heard recently:

    Biden saw a headline saying that the President was sick again … and called up Obama to wish him a rapid recovery.

  8. Honestly, I think that conservative humor really is hitting the vile progs where it really, really hurts – look at how fast “Let’s go Brandon” took off, to the point where they tried to launch “Dark Brandon” – which within milliseconds became “Dork Brandon”. Marking “Brandon Falls” on google landmarks, where Joe Biden fell off his bicycle – another spontaneous bit of derision. The progs are proud spirits, who cannot abide laughter directed at them.

  9. Brian…”I think the loss of “the frontier” was a catastrophe for American individualism”

    In Steinbeck’s ‘The Red Pony’, a grandfather who was once a leader of westbound pioneers comes to visit. his daughter and her family. Jody, his grandson, loves hearing his own stores, but his son-in-law (Carl) resents them and finds them boring. Eventually, the grandfather overhears what Carl has been saying about his stories.

    To Jody, he says: “”I shouldn’t stay here, feeling the way I do.” He examined his strong old hands. “I feel as though the crossing wasn’t worth doing.” His eyes moved up the side-hill and stopped on a motionless hawk perched on a dead limb. “I tell those old stories, but they’re not what I want to tell. I only know how I want people to feel when I tell them.”


    “Then we came down to the sea, and it was done.” He stopped and wiped his eyes until the rims were red. “That’s what I should be telling instead of stories.”

    When Jody spoke, Grandfather started and looked down at him. “Maybe I could lead the people some day,” Jody said.

    The old man smiled. “there’s no place to go. There’s the ocean to stop you. there’s a line of old men along the shore hating the ocean because it stopped them.”

    “In boats I might, sir.”

    “No place to go, Jody. Every place is taken. But that’s not the worst-no, not the worst. Westering has died out of the people. Westering isn’t a hunger any more. It’s all done. Your father is right. It is finished.” he laced his finger on his knee and looked at them.

    Jody felt very sad. “If you’d like a glass of lemonade I could make it for you.”

  10. Honestly, I think that conservative humor really is hitting the vile progs where it really, really hurts – look at how fast “Let’s go Brandon” took off…

    I’ve seen angry claims that “Let’s go Brandon” is a coded white supremacist slogan. :-D

  11. that demands the billy madison rejoinder,

    “no you (redacted) the press couldn’t even acknowledge your cigar store indian, handed a full military complement to al queda, and got 13 marines killed, choked off our oil supply, and sent the rest of it overseas, make us scramble for baby formula, etc etc

  12. I might need a neuralizer to get that image, out of my mind, (and no I didn’t click) maybe a pimp costume for shambling is in order,

  13. In a sane world this story would be causing riots right now:
    “Adam Neumann, the co-founder and former CEO of the shared office startup WeWork, is working on a new rental real estate business that has received funding from Andreessen Horowitz. According to a report from The New York Times, the venture capital firm invested around $350 million in Neumann’s up-and-coming real estate business, called Flow, which aims to provide a consistent housing experience across a chain of branded apartment complexes.”

  14. I know, bill engvall should be handing out signs, oh the dan price guy, who wanted to pay his workers anything he could imagine, is finally out,

  15. If I were in investor in whichever Andreessen Horowitz fund is putting money into the Flow deal, I’d be concerned, but I’m not.

    I guess there is some danger that this company will absorb government subsidies and loans that won’t be paid back, but is that any more likely than with any other company.

  16. It’s another brick in the “you will own nothing and be happy” WEF wall.
    All these moves towards Black Rock, other VCs, etc., buying up massive amounts of housing stock, need to be crushed mercilessly.

  17. Sgt. Mom:

    Living in northwestern WY I can safely say that the blowout of Hageman v. Cheney was not entirely unexpected, but it was much larger than most folks here thought it would be. Cheney had a sweet lock on the wealthy, not just in Teton County (Jackson A-holes, etc.) but even in my little town. All of the very wealthy properties had Cheney signs, while the vast majority of us normals had Hageman signs.

    The only troubling part is that the local and state elections didn’t gather anything from Hageman’s coattails. Gordon will still be a squishy RINO governor, and here in state House district 24 the Loathsome Newsome (who votes 70% with the Dem-wing) will apparently remain in office, winning by about 90 votes out of around 7,000 cast. The conjecture here is that the several hundred Dem-wingers in this area who changed their registration (possible to do even just before voting) to “R” were the ones who swayed the local and state elections. I watched them come into the polling place; you could easily identify the Dem-wingers by clothing and demeanor as they went over to the specially-set-up table to change their registration.

    Of course, the unethical and immoral Cheney gave them detailed, step-by-step instructions on how to do that, rendering all of her posturing about “defending the constitution” moot. Suborning perjury for congressional committee testimony? No problem. Telling people to “peacefully and patriotically march”? INSURRECTION!

    A hypocritical piece of garbage that should never be allowed to hold another public office again.

  18. I think we are slightly more rebellious than other countries, but the variation always has been great. The Scots-Irish and maybe the Celtic Irish make a big deal of it, and seem to think they represent the Real America, and believe others should be more like them. In fact we have had many personality strains throughout our 400+ years. If we want to elevate the value of not taking orders, then urban blacks would have to be regarded as the direction we should be headed.

    I think that approach to freedom (of Fischer’s Types of Liberty from the founding era is a perfectly good one and has done much to make us what we are. Yet it is not the only one, and it has the significant downside of providing intellectual cover for people who are just teenagers who don’t like to be told what to do. Regarding it as more intellectually defensible than the other versions is just feelz for people who like being that way anyway.

  19. Humor is about the only think that can get us through. And you are right Sgt Mom, the left is on the whole pretty humorless. There has to be a lot of corruption in our govt when a Liz Cheney can accrue (so I’ve heard) $36 million while in Congress. Or a President who has been on the public payroll most of his adult life can have (so I have heard) 5 homes.

  20. Due to having a large frontier, America favored a governing style that placed decision-making forward, in the hands of those on the scene. Given the comm technology back then, it wasn’t feasible to write to DC asking for timely guidance. So a loose set of ideas (like the “pirate’s code” in Pirates of the Caribbean: “more like guidelines”) which allowed tailoring to local circumstances. It dovetailed nicely with, if not reinforcing, our Founders’ notions of individual liberty.

    The Brits didn’t repeat this mistake in their other colonies, exporting a large bureaucracy to keep the locals in line (especially in Australia, which started as a penal colony).

  21. OC….”Due to having a large frontier, America favored a governing style that placed decision-making forward, in the hands of those on the scene.” It goes back even further than that. Rose Wilder Lane, contrasting the differing colonial strategies of France and Spain, on the one hand, and Britain, on the other:

    “The Governments gave them (in the case of the French and Spanish colonies) carefully detailed instructions for clearing and fencing the land, caring for the fence and the gate, and plowing and planting, cultivating, harvesting, and dividing the crops…The English Kings were never so efficient. They gave the land to traders. A few gentlemen, who had political pull enough to get a grant, organized a trading company; their agents collected a ship-load or two of settlers and made an agreement with them which was usually broken on both sides…To the scandalized French, the people in the English colonies seemed like undisciplined children, wild, rude, wretched subjects of bad rulers.”

  22. “Americans – both those born on this soil and those who weren’t but who got here as fast as they could – are natural rebels”

    Had to stop reading right there.

  23. }}} and can’t remember who for, not that it made much of a difference then or now.

    While I understand your attitude, sorry, no, I think it did make a difference.

    We did not have a pansy-assed bed-wetting Democrat in charge on 911, whose response would have been three years of hand-wringing “can’t we all just get along?” bovine excreta as more attacks occurred. Then he would have been out on his ass in 2004, but with a lot more dead people.

    I think far less of Bush II these days as a Never-Trumping RINO he’s defacto become, but even if you don’t like him or his family (very understood) he was a far better option on 911 than Gore would have been.

  24. Jeff, the dune trilogy is one of the most quotable books around, second only to RAH in general. As a whole, that trilogy is one of the best moral, philosophical, and governmental works ever written. Offhand, among fiction, only Starship Troopers really stands in challenge.

    “The mind can go either direction under stress – toward the positive or
    toward the negative: on or off. Think of it as a spectrum whose extremes
    are unconsciousness at the negative end and hyperconsciousness at the
    positive end. The way the mind will lean under stress is strongly
    influenced by training.”
    – Bene Gesserit Axiom, ‘Dune’ –

    “Killing with the [knife]point lacks artistry, but don’t let that hold your
    hand when the opening presents itself.”
    – ‘Dune’ –

    “You cannot avoid the interplay of politics within an orthodox religion.
    This power struggle permeates the training, educating, and disciplining of
    the orthodox community. Because of this pressure, the leaders of such a
    community inevitably must face that ultimate internal question: to succumb
    to complete opportunism as the price of maintaining their rule, or risk
    sacrificing themselves for the sake of the orthodox ethic.”
    – ‘Dune’ –

    “The concept of ‘Progress’ acts as a protective mechanism to shield us from
    the terrors of the future.”
    – ‘Dune’ –

    “Deep in the human unconscious is a pervasive need for a logical universe
    that makes sense. But the real universe is always one step beyond logic.
    – ‘Dune’ –

    “When your opponent fears you, then’s the moment when you give the fear its
    own rein [by being silent], give it the time to work upon him. Let it
    become Terror. The terrified man fights himself. Eventually, he attacks
    in desperation. That is the most dangerous moment, but the terrified man
    can be trusted usually to make a fatal mistake.”
    – ‘Dune’ –

    “When religion and politics travel in the same cart, the riders believe
    nothing can stand in their way. Their movement becomes headlong – faster
    and faster and faster. They put aside all thought of obstacles and forget
    that a precipice does not show itself to the man in a blind rush until it’s
    too late.”
    – ‘Dune’ –

  25. Dune Messiah:

    “How easy it [is] to mistake clear reasoning for correct reasoning.”
    – ‘Dune Messiah’ –

    “Empires do not suffer emptiness of purpose at the time of their creation.
    It is when they have become established that aims are lost and replaced by
    vague ritual.”
    – ‘Dune Messiah’ –

    “No matter how exotic human civilization becomes, no matter the developments
    of life and society nor the complexity of the machine/human interface,
    there always come interludes of lonely power when the course of humankind,
    the very future of humankind, depends upon the relatively simple actions of
    single individuals.”
    – ‘Dune Messiah’
    “The convoluted wording of legalisms grew up around the necessity to hide
    from ourselves the violence we intend toward each other. Between depriving
    a man of one hour of his life and depriving him of his life there exists
    only a difference of degree. You have done violence to him, consumed his
    energy. Elaborate Euphemisms may conceal your intent to kill, but behind
    any use of power over another the ultimate assumption remains: ‘I feed on
    your energy.'”
    – ‘Dune Messiah’ –

    “There exists a limit to the force even the most powerful may apply without
    destroying themselves. Judging this limit is the true artistry of
    government. Misuse of power is the fatal sin. The law cannot be a tool of
    vengeance, never a hostage, nor a fortification against the martyrs it has
    created. You cannot threaten any individual and escape the consequences.”
    – ‘Dune Messiah’ –

  26. “Children of Dune” is where Herbert really got going.

    “These are illusions of popular history which a successful religion must
    promote: Evil men never prosper; only the brave deserve the fair; honesty
    is the best policy; actions speak louder than words; virtue always
    triumphs; a good deed is its own reward; any bad human can be reformed…;
    the rich are doomed to unhappiness…”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “Good government never depends upon laws, but upon the personal qualities of
    those who govern. The machinery of government is always subordinate to the will
    of those who administer that machinery. The most important element of
    government, therefore, is the method of choosing leaders.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “In all major socializing forces you will find an underlying movement to
    gain and maintain power through the use of words. From witch doctor to
    bureaucrat it is all the same. A governed populace must be conditioned to
    accept power-words as actual things, to confuse the symbolized system with
    the tangible universe. In the maintenance of such a power structure,
    certain symbols are kept out of reach of common understanding – symbols
    such as those dealing with economic manipulation or those which define the
    local definition of sanity. Symbol-secrecy of this form leads to the
    development of fragmented sub-languages, each being a signal that its users
    are accumulating some form of power.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’

    “The one-eyed view of our universe says you must not look far afield for
    problems. Such problems may never arrive. Instead, tend to the wolf
    within your fences. The packs ranging outside may not even exist.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “Because of the one-pointed Time awareness in which the conventional mind
    remains immersed, humans tend to think of everything in a sequential,
    word-oriented framework. This mental trap produces very short-term
    concepts of effectiveness and consequences, a condition of constant,
    unplanned responses to crises.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “Peace demands solutions, but we never reach living solutions; we only work
    toward them. A fixed solution is, by definition, a dead solution. The
    trouble with Peace is that it tends to punish mistakes instead of rewarding
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “The limits of survival are set by climate, those long drifts of change
    which a generation may fail to notice. And it is the extremes of climate
    which set the pattern. Lonely, finite humans may observe climatic
    provinces, fluctuations of annual weather and, occasionally may observe
    such things as ‘This is a colder year than I’ve ever known.’ Such things
    are sensible. But humans are seldom alerted to the shifting average
    through a great span of years. And it is precisely in this alerting that
    humans learn how to survive on any planet. They must learn climate.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “Any path which narrows future possibilities may become a lethal trap.
    Humans are not threading their way through a maze; they scan a vast horizon
    filled with unique opportunities. The narrowing viewpoint of the maze
    should appeal only to creatures with their noses buried in sand. Sexually
    produced uniqueness and differences are the life-protection of the
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “The child who refuses to travel in his father’s harness, this is the
    symbol of man’s most unique capability. ‘I do not have to be what my
    father was. I do not have to obey my father’s rules or even believe
    everything he believed. It is my strength as a human that I can make my
    own choices of what to believe and what not to believe, of what to be and
    what not to be.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “To be sighted in the land of the blind carries its own perils. If you try
    to interpret what you see for the blind, you tend to forget that the blind
    possess an inherent movement conditioned by their blindness. They are like
    a monstrous machine moving along its own path. They have their own
    momentum, their own fixations.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “If you focus your awareness only upon your own rightness, then you invite
    the forces of opposition to overwhelm you. This is a common error.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “The universe is just THERE; that’s the only way [you] can view it and
    remain the master of your senses. The universe neither threatens nor
    promises. It holds things beyond our sway: the fall of a meteor, growing
    old and dying. These are the realities of this universe and they must be
    faced regardless of how you FEEL about them. You cannot fend off such
    realities with words. They will come at you in their own wordless way and
    then, then you will understand what is meant by ‘life and death’.
    Understanding this you will be filled with joy.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “Humans cannot bear very much reality. Most lives are a flight from
    selfhood. Most prefer the truths of the stable. You stick your heads into
    the stanchions and munch contentedly until you die. Others use you for
    their purposes. Not once do you live outside the stable to lift your head
    and be your own creature.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “…I’m going to rub your faces in things you try to avoid. I don’t find
    it strange that all you want to believe is only that which comforts you.
    How else do humans invent the traps which betray us into mediocrity? How
    else do we define cowardice? … To exist is to stand out, away from the
    background. You aren’t thinking or really existing unless you’re willing
    to risk even your own sanity in the judgement of your existence.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “If you believe certain words, you believe their hidden arguments. When
    you believe something is right or wrong, true or false, you believe the
    assumptions in the words which express the arguments. Such assumptions are
    often full of holes, but remain most precious to the convinced.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “What you … seem unable to understand is that you seldom find real
    loyalties in commerce. When did you last hear of a clerk giving up his
    life for the company? Perhaps your deficiency rests in the false
    assumption that you can order men to think and cooperate. This has been a
    failure of everything from religions to general staffs throughout history.
    General staffs have a long record of destroying their own nations. As to
    religions; I recommend a reading of Thomas Aquinas. … Men must want to
    do things out of their innermost drives. People, not commercial
    organizations or chains of command, are what make great civilizations work.
    Every civilization depends upon the quality of the individuals it produces.
    If you over-organize humans, over-legalize them, suppress their urge to
    greatness – – they cannot work and their civilization collapses.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “The surest way to keep a secret is to make people believe they already
    know the answer. People don’t ask questions then.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “The assumption that a whole system can be made to work better through an
    assault upon its conscious elements betrays a dangerous ignorance. This has
    often been the ignorant approach of those who call themselves scientists
    and technologists.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

    “There’s always a prevailing mystique in any civilization. It builds
    itself as a barrier against change, and that always leaves future
    generations unprepared for the universe’s treachery. All mystiques are the
    same in building these barriers – – the religious mystique, the hero-leader
    mystique, the messiah mystique, the mystique of science/technology, and the
    mystique of nature itself. We live in a [world] which such a mystique has
    shaped, and now that [world] is falling apart because most people don’t
    distinguish between mystique and their universe. …it tends to take over
    the consciousness, becoming all things to the observer.”
    – ‘Children of Dune’ –

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