Some words of wisdom from Claire Wolfe:

[T]he thing we have the greatest power to change — our own lives — is the thing we’re often most resistant to change. This is a good-old/bad-old human trait in general; we don’t want to give up our grudges or our self-destructive habits (because after all, they’re ours). But especially we don’t want to practice our “political” ideals in our own lives because it’s risky and uncomfortable to personally resist the evils we claim to oppose.

We want to stop the war but we won’t do it by refusing to finance the war. We want to stop the invasion of our privacy, but we won’t do it through non-cooperation with the database makers or through smashing the surveillance systems. We don’t wish to reduce our dependence on heavily regulated and taxed products. We cooperate, we collaborate, then we complain.

It’s so comfortable to complain. So familiar. So us. And it is so easy just to blame the entire loss of freedom on them — whoever they may be today.

So the one part of the world that we’re best positioned to “do something” about is the one thing we often do the very least to change. The one place we really, truly can oppose evil — right at our own doorsteps, right in our own hearts — is the one place where we perpetually surround ourselves with excuses for inaction.

I wake up to the news that the voters of San Francisco have boldly passed a non-binding resolution declaring that the people of San Francisco disapprove of military recruiters in the public schools. This pairs up nicely with ’s Proposition N, in which San Franciscans boldly voted to declare their absolutely powerless opinion that U.S. troops should be withdrawn from Iraq.

When it comes time for empty gestures, San Franciscans can be counted on to disapprove of the war. When it comes time to send representatives or money to Congress, however, these scolding peaceniks seem to have other priorities.

The people, united, will pass a non-binding resolution disapproving of their defeat!


Speaking of barter, if you go to One Red Paperclip, you’ll see the ongoing story of a man who is trying to barter up from one slightly-used red paperclip to a house. So far he’s traded the paperclip for a pen in the shape of a fish which he traded for a ceramic doorknob in the shape of a face which he traded for a camping stove which he traded for an electric generator.

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