2020: A Year of Perfect Hindsight

As we begin the year 2020, I’d like to reflect on what I’ve seen and experienced, since I was born in 1960. In my novel Patriots, a couple of my characters used the now-cliched phrase: “Hindsight is 20/20.” But I must say that in many ways that it truly is. With the benefit of some hindsight, I have formulated a few observations for 2020 — a year of 20/20 hindsight:

Technology

When I was growing up, computers were enormous lumbering beasts that were primarily batch-programmed with Hollerith punched cards. I had the advantage of attending Livermore High School, where those of us enrolled in a computer class could log on to one of the four Cray-designed Lawrence Livermore Laboratories mainframe computers. (As I recall, two of these were the CDC-7600 model.) Starting in 1977, we did so via a Texas Instruments Silent 700 terminal with an acoustic phone handset coupler. (Remember those?) Following high school, I still wrote all of my college papers on an electric typewriter. The first Apple Macintosh computer wasn’t released until the year I graduated from college: 1984. In 1986 I bought my first Apple. It was a Macintosh Plus — the faster, “big memory” upgraded model with 1 MB of RAM and a 8 MHz Motorola 68000 processor. That cost around $1,800. Over the winter of 1990-1991, I wrote the first iteration of my novel Patriots on that Mac, and released it as shareware, under the title The Gray Nineties. At the same time, I was using a “fast” 4,800 baud modem to access AmericaOnline (AOL). This was all before the first web browser became available for Macs, in 1993. By today’s standards, this recitation may seem quite Stone Age. But back then it was considered cutting edge home computing.

I’m writing this in the last week of 2019. Computers are now so ubiquitous that most people carry them around in their pockets. A $200 smartphone has the processing speed of a million dollar Cray mainframe of the 1970s. It also has more storage capacity than a wall rack full of 10.5-inch memory tapes.

The Velocity of Data Retrieval

One of the key benefits of new technology is what some term the velocity of data retrieval. When I was growing up, people would get into arguments about history or trivia. These tiffs could only be settled with either a check in a Book of Facts, a set of encyclopedias, or a phone call to the library. There, they had someone on staff with the job title of Reference Librarian. She sat a desk strategically near the library’s Reference section. She had a phone with an extra long handset cord — a 25-foot-long phone cord. She was a miracle worker. Our local Reference Librarian, named Beverly, seemingly knew just where to look. Sometimes after a multi-minute delay, she’d be back on the phone, with a cheery: “I found what you needed…”  Back in the 1960s that was considered very fast fact-checking. But the serious, detailed fact checking was done by mail. Today, of course, most urbanites carry a smart phone, and they can retrieve arcane facts and figures in just seconds. The main concern now is that people depend on Wikipedia, which has a notorious liberal sociopolitical bias, and is also notoriously pranked and vanadalized.

Surveillance

All of the advance in computing and surveillance technology that I’ve described is a two-edged sword. The same tools that are driving our economy and solving crimes can be used to target us for tyranny. Surveillance cameras are now ubiquitous.  When I was growing up in the 1960s I remember seeing just one surveillance camera in our town. It was trained on the door of our local bank, to identify exiting bank robbers. There are now cameras built into almost every computer screen, every smartphone (sometimes two cameras!), and most television screens. Worst of all, are the A.I.-enabled surveillance systems working in the background, parsing billions of images and looking for patterns of behavior.

Up until the 1990s, surveillance cameras required human watchers, or post-facto review of footage from crime scenes. But now, facial recognition is in play. It used to be that just cars with toll transponders were tracked. But now, automatic license plate reader (ALPR) systems are operating, scanning constantly, and cross-correlating movements. It is noteworthy that ALPRs are used both in fixed positions scanning traffic going by, and mounted on police patrol cars. So only a car parked behind a garage door is safe from being scanned. Facebook recently admitted that they are tracking people, even if they have “tracking” turned off. Geolocation of every cellular phone has become almost standard practice. Almost every day, there is a new revelation about surveillance and intelligence gathering in every app and social media service. And even genetic history services like 23andMe have been compromised. With these advances in surveillance technologies, the Creepy Factor is rising, constantly. It seems that if you touch any tech, there simply is no more privacy nor anonymity.

Politics

In retrospect, I can see that over the past 30 year politics, political campaigns, and the court of public opinion were fully weaponized. The hounding of President DJT is of course the most-publicized example. Another is  the Covington High School boys, who were horribly castigated by the mass media, just for grinning and hooting at a man who was acting like a buffoon.

Back in the 1980s, we began to hear the old Soviet term Political Correctness begin to be applied to American society. And in the 1990s, “non-PC” speech and behavior was beginning to be frowned upon, and cause for scorn and after 2000, even public humiliation. Just two weeks ago, we learned that non-PC behavior is now grounds for prosecution, and incarceration. (Can you see a double standard?) Some might say that if Adolfo Martinez had instead bought a rainbow flag and then burned it, then it would be considered protected speech. But I’m not so sure about that. We need only look to Canada, for a glimpse of what the near future might be like, for the United States. Disapproval of non-PC speech and behavior has gone from simply frowning, to shaming, to public mocking, to civil suits, and now criminal felony prosecutions. That “progression” has been seen in just one generation. This cascading shift in worldviews was not fully apparent, back in the 1980s, and 1990s. But now, in retrospect, it certainly is.

Moral Degeneracy

Another thing that I can see with the benefit of hindsight is the accelerating moral degeneracy of our society. Smut, depravity, cross-dressing, and pederasty used to be practiced by just a few creepy old men. Now it is “celebrated” at children’s story hour, at your local library. Meanwhile, pornography has become a $20 billion industry. The income from Internet porn is $3,000 per second. 25% of search queries are porn-related, and 35% of Internet downloads are for pornography.

In the 1970s and 1980s, homosexuality was just quietly tolerated. But now, it is not just normalized, but “celebrated”, often with taxpayer-funded celebration events. Most recently, this shifted beyond mandatory acceptance to now mandatory participation. In the America of 2020, anyone who fails to vocally support  “Pride”, is called out and shunned. First there was Pride Day, then it became Pride Week, and now Pride Month. Even corporations now feel obliged to get into the act. Here is a photo that was recently taken by a friend, inside of Apple’s new ring-shaped 2.8 million-square-foot Apple Park Headquarters building. Note the huge rainbow arch that is positioned in the very center of the ring. It seems that they didn’t go for the subtle emphasis approach.

Apple Headquarters

 

 

 

I can now see that I had an innocent and quite sheltered childhood. Today’s children have a hard time avoiding degeneracy, especially with it so commonplace on television.  Merely avoiding “those” television shows is no longer sufficient protection, since the degeneracy even extends to commercial breaks with other programming. A side note: Woe be it to anyone who speaks out against such commercials.

Now, with 20/20 hindsight, I can see that my wife and I made the right decision in not giving our children access to broadcast or cable television. Two years ago, when out youngest child reached age 15, I finally bought my first television set. But I did not and will not connect it to an antenna, satellite dish, or cable. It is only used as a display screen for showing very carefully selected DVDs and streamed movies.

A New Wave of Socialism

Much like in the late 1960s, America is experiencing a new wave of socialist political maneuvering and “activism”. Back in the 1960s, they were called the SDA and SDS.  Today they are “The Woke.” (Or, as Paul Joseph Watson calls them: “The Woko Haram Jihadists.”) I expect the antics of these nouveau socialiste to get worse. That is, before they grow up, and get real jobs.

A New Wave of Gun Grabbing

Again, much like in the late 1960s, America is experiencing a new wave of “gun control” advocacy. What these gun grabbers really want is control, and they see taking away our guns as just a means to accomplish their desired ends. Hopefully, two things will happen: First, they will be slapped down by the courts. Second, they get truly “woke” to the fact that they are planting the seeds of Second Civil War. If such a war were ever to break out, then they would lose quite soon, and very badly. On one side there would be people who hate guns, own very few of them, scarcely know how to handle them, or even know correct firearms terminology. On the other side would be people who grew up with guns and who pride themselves on their accuracy, shooting at long range. Civil War 2 would hardly be a fair scrimmage match-up. That’s because one team will be playing from the 400 yard line.

We Can’t Turn Back The Clock

I recognize that we can’t turn back the clock. There are some aspects of American culture that are almost impossible to reanimate. Just by itself, the demographic shift caused by recent immigration makes that  impossible. In a recent essay, I mourned for the loss of the California of my youth. I concluded that the  governments of California and many of the other coastal states are beyond repair. But I still have some hope for our nation’s interior states. There is still a bedrock culture–a remnant of traditional America. Yes, it is those “bitter clingers”, such as I.

I’m Optimistic

When I formulated the American Redoubt Movement in March of 2011, I had the expectation that it might at best make a small dent in some of the ongoing negative societal trends. But I’ve been very pleased to see the growing in-rush of Redoubters. The great majority of these new arrivals in the Redoubt region are just the folks that we were looking for: Christians and Jews with traditional family values, pro-gun ownership conservatives, and libertarians. I’m also happy to report that many of these people brought extant businesses with them. So instead of being a drain on local resources, they’ve instead bolstered them–providing new job opportunities in their communities. So count me as cautiously optimistic.

Looking back on the first 60 years of my life wells up a mix of good and bad memories. For my personal life, my writings, and the children that I raised, I have no regrets. Granted, there are some things that in retrospect I would have done differently. There were a few missed opportunities–which were a failure of foresight. But there were also some propitious successes. I was greatly blessed by both my late wife, and my new wife, and our children. I’ve been blessed by a succession of good church homes and Bible study groups, wherever I’ve lived. And I’ve also been blessed by the success of this blog, the American Redoubt movement, the CFAPA press credentials project, and the publication of my books. (The latter, thanks to my amazing literary agent, Robert Gottlieb.)

All in all, hindsight beats foresight.

I’m hopeful that in 2020 there will be some landmark document declassification news. Now those revelations would certainly provide some more fascinating hindsight!

I pray for America and our elected representatives, daily. I urge you to do the same. – JWR




58 Comments

  1. Back in 1982, When I was a young man in Coeur D’ Alene, I used to hang out with an old guy He was in his 70’s. A much older and wiser Christian than I was. He was also retired from the budding computer age back when IBM Punch cards were used. He told me that the Apple logo was thought up as a way to rebel against the believer, and morals that Christianity represent. The rainbow, the bite of the forbidden fruit… I thought to myself, ‘This old guy is off his rocker.’ I’m not so sure anymore.

  2. Hmm, my earliest memory of ” computers ” is the hand crank activated adding machine, that was used by my folks at income tax time. The kind that you needed a roll of paper to get a print off on. Then in 1961 or 62, a female classmate came to school with a calculator that had 6 functions that cost a whole $49.95. ( the math instructor said that it was a nice toy, but she couldn’t use it in class ), imagine that. My computer has spell check, but have and use a dictionary for spelling. On politics, I remember my Dad calling George McGovern a lying SOB to his face during corn palace days ( many yrs ago ) when GM was running for reelection. Yeah, I remember a lot of these things that use to be. And the Oscars and other award programs on tv, I’ve heard it said, ( the way the women are dressed ), just another meat market on display ( hey, I like the human female figure as well as the next old fart, but lets use some common sense ). Hmm, I could go on and on here and I agree with you on just about all accounts, but I’ll shut up and go have another cup of coffee. Have a Happy New Year everyone, CYA. Hopefully poop won’t be happening any time soon, but get ready anyway. Saw a red cap the other day with the logo: “Relax, it is just a red cap”. Hmm, I wonder if this comment will be posted, none of my other comments have been posted and I don’t think I said any thing out of line . I know I didn’t.

  3. > On one side there would be people who hate guns, own very few of them, scarcely know how to handle them, or even know correct firearms terminology. On the other side would be people who grew up with guns and who pride themselves on their accuracy, shooting at long range.

    The wars of the 21st century will be fought with drones and Boston Dynamics style robots, not small arms. And let’s be honest here: most of the pro-2A folks I see at the range are overweight and set up their targets at the 25 yd line. Trained militia they are not.

    1. I’d stake our future on a bunch of old, cranky, overweight men who have nothing to loose and no ego to satisfy. They are the type that just want to be left alone with their cigar and bourbon. If you poke them, they will not fight fair. They will fight to win.

      1. You and AnimalHouse are exactly right. The more I hear from the state of Virginia (officially called a “commonwealth” =probably with the secret intent of enacting socialism) and Governor Doomberg, the more I think that our current Cold Civil War will go HOT. If it does, I believe that the ‘leaders’ of the gun-confiscation movement will be targeted along with the poor slobs that they send door-to-door to do the actual confiscation. Targeting the so-called leaders would both lower the morale of the gun-grabbers, but would raise the morale of patriots on the other side. We have been LOSING ever since 1934 and need something to boost our spirits. THEY keep pushing, and now it is time to stop backing up. The one issue which could ignite a dreaded civil war is the RIGHT to keep and bear arms.

        1. A few days ago, OneGuy posted this note of caution. As you consider civil war, heed well his words.

          I would urge the 2nd amendment sanctuary movement to be careful. The left is very good at exploiting any mistakes you make AND pushing you into a position where you will make those mistakes. Be careful of infiltrators who will try to get you to break the law and show the video on national news to destroy your organization. You will be called racists, nationalists, radical nut cases, etc. Don’t give them anything that will support that claim. Do not have an armed conflict with the police or national guard, nothing will destroy your support and goodwill faster than that will. Expect to be tricked by the media. When you demonstrate bring your families including children and do not be armed. Encourage/insist that your fellow demonstrators do the same or walk away. If they are going to do something stupid you do not want to be involved with them. Be smarter than the lefties, don’t allow them to trap or trick you, don’t be angry be firm in your beliefs but be able to express that without anger. The media ONLY needs one video clip of someone from your group making threats or swearing or worse to totally destroy you. Focus on your rights not your anger.

          Carry on

    2. My guidelines for reloading custom AP (armour piecing) ammunition are in the comment section located here: https://survivalblog.com/preparedness-notes-wednesday-january-1-2020/#comments

      Should I die tomorrow, those who find my dead body, will also find the ammunition with instructions, and the means of delivering it. Whether it be the U.N. , Chinese hordes, or terminator robots, we gotta a cure for it. Yes, it will be a sniper war. Should the enemy get within 200 yards, hop on your ATV and drive away.

  4. Well stated Mr. Rawles. We could start every sentence today, ‘Short of divine intervention…’ Is there earthly hope? Yes. To me the best example is our homeschooling families, especially on Sunday. It is so encouraging to see parents still raising children with strong values, skills and morals.

    I’ve moved beyond the fall of our once God-fearing America. In fact it was liberating. Pastor Chuck Baldwin often reminds us that the Bible is replete with examples of God working with His ‘remnants’. Something will rise from America’s ashes. With God’s grace we may mold it and pass liberty on to our children.

  5. In some respects I agree with you MAAG, but then again no. I haven’t shot national match courses for a lot of yrs, but I do sight my deer rifle in at 100 to 150 yds ( and hope that long legged varmint is closer than that ) and yes I do put my target at 25 yds for my carry. And no, I’m not trained militia and haven’t been for close to 30 yrs. The only thing I’m looking forward to drawing my SS ( after having had to pay into since I was 17 ) and watch the world go to h*ll in a hand basket by a bunch of idiots ( democratic clowns, AOC, Warren, Sanders, and other unnamed people who think they know more than me and have less ife life experience than me ). Sorry there Mr Rawles and MAAG for going on and on.

    1. Lanny: You are right! There are millions of us that took an oath to protect the constitution and defend our country against all enemies both foreign and domestic.
      An oath is your solemn word and can not be broken.

      I doubt if there are many of “the others” that are men of their word.
      I think that they have bitten off more than they can chew.They just don’t realize it.

    1. It’s been a gigantic chess game, for the last century at least, to destroy the experiment in self-determination and limited government that is The United States of America.

      It really does seem like all the pieces have been maneuvered – slowly, quietly over generations – and are now in place and primed for that spark to set things off.

      The agendae are certainly not hidden anymore. The masks are off. I can only hope that they, as have all despots and tyrants have in the past, underestimated the resolve of free men and will act precipitously.

      We are filled with Cold Rage.

      https://theconservativetreehouse.com/?s=a+call+to+action

  6. Happy Gregorian Calendar New Year! This is a very good article. It describes much of what us “tail end boomers,” with any common sense and the time to think are feeling. The sad thing is any of our kids raised in the secular world don’t know any different. As for SHTF and us versus them, the problem is one can no longer trust which side the active military and its equipment will land. There’s probably an interagency memo on that somewhere in the bowels of the Deep State. The Lord is in charge and what He has planned, I do not know, but that He is the one I can assuredly trust these days.

  7. History is undeniably helpfully if charting through the future pitfalls repeated by most of us. I have a likened a healthy dose of history as in this example.

    Driving a vehicle takes extraordinary awareness & adeptness with a dash of mental gymnastics – though adaptation to “repeated familiarity” leaves us sometimes wondering how we got here! So, here’s the picture –

    You are driving this vehicle… there is a HUGE windshield in front of you to clearly see where you are headed. There is also (usually) three LITTLE mirrors (new backup cams also) to keep an eye on what is coming up behind you. Glancing in the rearview mirrors – Healthy! Staring in them rather than where you’re headed is deadly. Physically, mentally and Spiritually applicable.

    BTW on the readied front. Don’t discount the vast number of us who love our God given freedom. Most of us don’t need to go to the range – because we live on it!

  8. JWR, thanks first for that great stroll down memory lane, and secondly for all the great work you’ve done and continue to do. My resolutions list as well as my 2020 to-do list is getting longer by the day.

    So you were one of those rich kids in the dorms with an ELECTRIC typewriter! lol. I had to bang my term papers out manually and I still hit the computer keyboard too hard today.

    I agree with you on television. The biggest favor I did my kids was never having a television in our home. (I’ve still never owned one.) They all learned to read, the play outside, and to build things and make stuff. They all turned out to be excellent readers and very creative problem solvers, exactly the kind of people who are going to survive in a messed-up world, pre- and post TEOTWAWKI.

    Your story of the reference librarian brought back memories and made me smile. Hard to believe what we had to go through to get basic information.

    Keep up the good work, we’re going to need it even moreso in the Uproaring Twenties!

  9. In the very near future a small drone will quietly xray your entire house for contraband (guns, hoarded food, unpermitted persons hiding out) and you will be notified that you have a certain amount of time to turn in those items, if not, another drone will simply drop an ied down your chimney.

      1. Drone technology is advancing at pace that exceeds the wildest imaginings. Along with these developments are terminator drones, that are small and self sustaining. Imagine a drone smaller that a human fist that rest on a tree, or the side of a building, and soaks up solar power while it waits for a victim. A target appears, and it flies directly for the forehead to deliver a fatal small projectile, or bullet into the brain. What is described here is old technology, and was demonstrated on TED Talks some years ago.
        This type of drone can be spread en mass over a region via aircraft. It gets worse….

        1. Sad, but true. See:
          https://www.epa.gov/newsreleases/epa-takes-steps-improve-regulations-wood-heaters

          A quote:

          “EPA’s proposed amendments to the 2015 NSPS for Residential Wood Heaters would provide consumers additional time to purchase already-manufactured wood-fired hydronic heaters and forced-air furnaces that meet the latest emissions limits before they are required to sell units that meet tighter limits due to take effect in 2020. The proposal would not change the effective date of the tighter emissions limits; however, it would allow retailers to “sell-through” or sell existing inventory of heaters meeting current emissions limits through May 2022. “

    1. The guy with a water buffalo kicked our butts , tech won’t change the out come when all is said and done ,the more you push down the more resistance you will cause ,
      What matters is the fire in the heart ,and the belief in what you are doing
      Drones can be defeated ,

    2. The government that sends the drones has government employees that go home at night (not in armored cars) and have families and houses. It would be a shame if something happened to them. The same thing applies to every organization that intends to do you harm (drug dealers, etc.). When the rule of law is no more, and we are fast approaching that time, it will be up to the public to protect themselves- which is the basic human right that they are trying to do away with- among others.

  10. Lily is correct.
    …..going to be harder/sadder than we think,
    ….take place quickly and in shocking ways that the masses will sign-off on because of their desperation.
    …test our friendships, beliefs and faith in God (some events will differ from what some churches have taught).
    So-the small things are the big things; in life now.
    God is and has always been faithful with more grace and help-as needed; but-that doesn’t always mean it’s going to be great on earth…as Lily alluded to-we all have an end date, no one is exempt from that date/time.

    I’m within a couple weeks of being the same age as JWR…the past few years my motto has to live 110%-the throttle locked in the full position…not saving this temporary body for retirement or old age…stewarding the time with Gods direction for each day as best I can and trusting Him to have me at the right places and at the right time as adversity increases.

    A wise New Year to all!

    1. MG, when you say,
      “God is and has always been faithful with more grace and help-as needed; but-that doesn’t always mean it’s going to be great on earth.”, I can only breathe deep and offer an AMEN.

      Carry on

  11. God is out, perverse is in. We allowed this all to happen. All the sheep with – it doesn’t affect me, why should I care – attitudes have led to this. A government that is out of control. Corporation who rape, pillage, and kill in the name of profits – like banks, big pharma, etc. The idea of the Redoubt is a wonderful one, however, it won’t last, IMHO, as the socialist will infiltrate everywhere.

    Hope? You have to have it, but my expectations for the future are low. I too was born in 1960 and see myself doing my best for myself and my immediate family. I contribute to causes, volunteer, work to survive, try to homestead the best I can. What else can I do? I don’t have much hope for this country, let alone the world. I used to feel that a few can make a difference, but there has been so much respect lost in this world that it really would take a reboot to fix it – I mean a major reboot.

    And that, might be on its way…then again, when has there EVER been a time without war?

    Peace,
    Michael J.

  12. From what I can gather, I am about a year younger than JWR. So our period of observation is about the same.

    I see some of the threats that this essay describes but I think there is another side as well.

    From the time of radio, and really before, information was tightly controlled. Initially when people were illiterate they had nothing but word of mouth and what the literate people were willing to tell them. When literacy increased, books were still expensive. When books got cheaper to purchase, they were still expensive/hard to publish. Initial radio and TV were limited in channels and really total propaganda tools available to a very limited number of people to get their voices out.

    With the Internet, the common man got his first real voice in human history. At least the first voice that covered extensive distances and if other people were interested could be heard by many others. JWRs essay above will likely be read by at least a few thousand (I would guess?) particularly as it is linked to people who share it with others. It will have to compete with a lot of other ideas out there and there are many people (some powerful) that will attempt to debunk his thoughts but he will be heard. The people commenting will also be heard. That is powerful IMO. And fairly unique for large numbers of people in human history.

    So while being tracked on a surveillance camera does not thrill me, being heard might be more powerful. Censorship will be and is attempted but it always has been and always will be. People under estimate the propaganda of the past. I shudder now at some of the stuff I read and viewed as a student in public school in the 60s and 70s. Much subtler than now but in many ways maybe more dangerous. And the propaganda previous generations were exposed to is chilling when I read about it.

    I am going to keep my eyes open to the dangers around me but also adhere to Phillipians 4:8. Phillipians 4:8 is a command not a suggestion.

    I am going to the range today to test some reloads and practice a little. And I will likely get a workout in amongst other things. Those with guns that cannot move without wheezing and cannot shoot straight and don’t have their weapons clean, well maintained and sighted in are not going to be very effective should (God forbid) we come to political unrest. And should peace prevail in the future, I enjoy shooting and working out and both activities are good for my mind and body so my time will still be well spent.

    I look at my gardening, wood chopping and other stuff the same way.

    So I will enjoy myself today as well as preparing a little and focus on a GOOD future at the same time.

  13. Happy New Year to all, may we be granted the blessings of 20/20 Foresight. My computer was a “slide rule”! If you don’t know what that is you should check it out. It’s an EMP proof computer!

    There are so many things that are brought to mind that could be commented on in this article….that’s what I love about SB, the creative discourse of intelligent minds. At this time of year and during the patriotic holidays my mind always turns to those who have given all for me to be here
    today typing this. I share the following with new friends and associates through the year. Although we have never met I consider you friends in spirit.

    A SOLDIER’S PRAYER

    O God, as I stand at the precipice of battle, I pray that your strength may infuse my very soul. May the fears that grip my sinew not deter me from my sacred duty. May the pains of training now be a soothing ointment to melt away my fears and allow me to function as one with my brothers-in-arms. Do not allow me to falter at the breech. Give me strength, O God, that I may support my brethren and with honor and valor move ever forward into the fray.

    As for those who may die by my hand this day, I pray it will not be with hatred that I return them to your bosom but with the knowledge that their their blood does mingle with that of my brethren, as it soaks into this sacred soil to water the seeds of peace. The peace for which all soldiers pray. May mankind soon honor all lives sacrificed on the alters of war and accept peace.

    If I should fall this day, O God, I have but one prayer, may I be the last soldier to ever die on the field of battle.

    SP5 Edward A. Mennig, Da Nang Viet Nam. In honor of my friend PFC Edrick Stevens, 173 Airborne, KIA 11-6-67, Kontum, Viet Nam.

    Thank you, Edrick.

  14. Technology is the main problem. So is BS propaganda; The tools used to control.
    I get a kick out of the admiration for patriotic slaves and blind fools on this site. “WW2 heros”and BS like that. Why ? because they all blindly followed orders ?
    Following orders isn’t an admirable trait. It will become a hard wired trait too,more than it already is because of the technology and science we all have failed to counter so far. Not to mention strategic propaganda for the sheep and their kids.
    I enjoyed Patriots, Liberators,Survivors. Exciting, good hints. I’m a prepper too. It was fun, but sad because they were all so willing to get back to some form of gov’t in the end. Libertarianism is the brick wall you hit on your way to Anarchism-which is what they should’ve shot for. They failed to admit that it was in fact civilization that got them to that point of collapse. It’s been a big fat team effort this whole civilization thing. Too many people, ultimately cooperating as slaves. Maybe after real collapse we won’t be so stupid as to try to bring it all back again. Hopefully enough will know to kick it while it’s down.
    If anyone here wants to read fact and not fiction, I suggest reading all of Uncle Ted’s writings. (Kaczynski) “Industrial Society & Its Future” “Technological Slavery” ” Anti Tech Revolution Why & How”. His writings are much more in tune with our actual problems, and also provide a strategy if Revolution is ever to occur. (it may be too late for this) Ted was a murderer, but so is every soldier, along with many cops. What’s admirable about Kaczynski is the fact that he figured who and what the enemy was all on his own. A man that didn’t fall that BS nationalism.
    In 2020 we should question those who suggest what’s good for our best interest, especially the ones that aren’t behind bars, and have free reign on the net.
    Matt Fraser

    1. Matt Fraser, your ideas are NOT traditional American ideas. You cite Ted Kaczynski and his ideas; Kaczynski was a destroyer. The American ideal is to become a builder, and make the world a better place.

      The US Declaration of Independence:
      “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, …”

      The 9th Amendment to the US Constitution:
      “The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.”

      Natural Law:
      “Natural law (Latin: ius naturale, lex naturalis) is law that is held to exist independently of the positive law of a given political order, society or nation-state. As determined by nature, the law of nature is implied to be objective and universal; it exists independently of human understanding, and of the positive law of a given state, political order, legislature or society at large. Historically, natural law refers to the use of reason to analyze human nature to deduce binding rules of moral behavior from nature’s or God’s creation of reality and mankind.” [Wikipedia]
      ***********************************************************

      Traditionally, Americans have wanted government to >secure their God given rights. +Government actions should before the Common Good of everyone.
      The idea of the Common Good is the reason governments build roads, provide for the National Defense, and so on. [Yes, obviously the ‘Common Good philosophy is misused to benefit small groups of people, and to use government money to >buy votes.]

      Americans generally believe that our ‘rights’ come from a God in Heaven, and NOT our political leaders. … +The people attacking our society are generally atheists. … Ted Kaczynski scorned religion, and seemed to be an atheist.

      The question we face in every age is the >source of ‘right and wrong.’
      1. For some, = It’s a God in Heaven.
      2. For other’s, = It’s their government leaders.
      3. For atheists such as Ted Kaczynski, They seems they create their >own rules as to ‘right or wrong.

      The question everyone has to answer. = “What is the source of right or wrong?” ~ An amazing number of people do NOT seem able to answer that question with certainty.

      The vast majority of Americans want a >good Government; with good leaders.
      “That to secure these rights, ~~>Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,”

    2. I agree with you completely Matt. Kaczynski’s books “Technological Slavery” and “Anti-Tech Revolution” are absolute MUST READS for any serious, rational people concerned with the fate of the world in the face of radical technological growth.

  15. Great essay. Christians have been deceived into thinking that our governing principles must be libertarian, thus allowing unlimited vice and no restraints on movement of goods or people. This libertarian lie has been advanced by various stripes of Marxists, liberals and Freemasons with the intention of destroying Christian civilization. Once civilization is they will not give the Christian any benefit of these libertarian principles they have sold us. What is needed is strong Christian government to stamp out this degenerency.

    1. Sean, you are mistaken.
      Libertarianism IS a form of government, and therefore not in tune with Christianity.
      Christianity is closest to Anarchism, meaning no bowing to “authority” below God. I am a Christian & an Anarchist and no fool for “libertarian values”. ALL forms of government need to go down. The looters will need to be countered. The gangs will need to be countered. The TOOLS brought to light by scientists & technophiles that empower these fake transmitters of “authority” need to be destroyed.
      MF

      1. Matt F, as ~unsolicited advice, you should consider using SurvivalBlog for finding a Church Denomination in your area. The benefits of a Church Denomination is the mitigating of extreme positions. The Pastors will ‘discuss’ together Church theology in terms of the Bible.
        ……. [The bigger group has the ability of being able to mitigate mistakes made by a single person or small group.]
        ……. One of the hazards of a ~single stand alone Church with only a relative small group of Pastors ~mistakes can be made, when reading the Bible, or in Church Theology.~ … The hazards for the unchurched Christians is even greater when applying biblical interpretations.

        This is a particularly dangerous time in America. There are many people that want to destroy traditional America. … They advocate it politically; +they insist on the ‘right’ to sacrifice children to their false god Moloch.
        [Of course, they give their false god Moloch alias. = Environmentalism, Overpopulation, ‘Choice’, a ‘Career’ of making lots of money, and so on.]
        **********************************************************************
        **********************************************************************

        FYI = I attend a big Church, where the chief pastor wears a big hat. To prevent confusion of words spoken [and interpreted by the fake news] >by the man wearing the big hat, my Church has the Bible and other resources for understanding the Will of God.
        Here’s what my Church instructs about governments:

        I. AUTHORITY

        1897 “Human society can be neither well-ordered nor prosperous unless it has some people invested with legitimate authority to preserve its institutions and to devote themselves as far as is necessary to work and care for the good of all.”15

        By “authority” one means the quality by virtue of which persons or institutions make laws and give orders to men and expect obedience from them.

        1898 Every human community needs an authority to govern it.16 The foundation of such authority lies in human nature. It is necessary for the unity of the state. Its role is to ensure as far as possible the common good of the society.

        1899 The authority required by the moral order derives from God: “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore he who resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.”17 [footnate: 17 = Rom 13:1-2; cf. 1 Pet 2:13-17.]

        1900 The duty of obedience requires all to give due honor to authority and to treat those who are charged to exercise it with respect, and, insofar as it is deserved, with gratitude and good-will.

        Pope St. Clement of Rome provides the Church’s most ancient prayer for political authorities:18 “Grant to them, Lord, health, peace, concord, and stability, so that they may exercise without offense the sovereignty that you have given them. Master, heavenly King of the ages, you give glory, honor, and power over the things of earth to the sons of men. Direct, Lord, their counsel, following what is pleasing and acceptable in your sight, so that by exercising with devotion and in peace and gentleness the power that you have given to them, they may find favor with you.”19

        1901 If authority belongs to the order established by God, “the choice of the political regime and the appointment of rulers are left to the free decision of the citizens.”20

        The diversity of political regimes is morally acceptable, provided they serve the legitimate good of the communities that adopt them. Regimes whose nature is contrary to the natural law, to the public order, and to the fundamental rights of persons cannot achieve the common good of the nations on which they have been imposed.

        1902 Authority does not derive its moral legitimacy from itself. It must not behave in a despotic manner, but must act for the common good as a “moral force based on freedom and a sense of responsibility”:21

        A human law has the character of law to the extent that it accords with right reason, and thus derives from the eternal law. Insofar as it falls short of right reason it is said to be an unjust law, and thus has not so much the nature of law as of a kind of violence.22
        [From Catholic Catechism]
        ***
        [The founding documents of the USA were inspired by the same Protestant theological approach to governments.]
        *********************************************

        My advice is to use SurvivalBlog as a resource to join a good Bible based Church Denomination. … Certain Protestant Denominational Churches are often mentioned here on SurvivalBlog. [There is a resource page too.] ……. +There is a recognition here, of the >Judeo-Christian heritage of America. SurvivalBlog understands the spiritual connection between Jews and Christians in today’s America.

  16. A wakeup for the red flag laws that are saving us from the dangerous ones.
    As of December 2019, Florida has confiscated
    18,000 weapons from it’s citizens. And DJT has said that he would sign such a bill.
    JAS

  17. Born the first year of the “Baby Boomers”, (as we were called back then.)
    Drafted into the U.S. Army after graduating college in the ‘60’s.
    Spent 20 years as Dual Rated pilot. (Both rotary wing and fixed wing.)
    Retired as a Major.
    Spent 25 years as an Industrial Arts instructor in rural California.
    Retired to S.C. Where I do CrossFit five times a week, golf three times a week and go to several different ranges many times a week.
    Just waiting, just watching, working with like minded individuals to be ready for whatever comes down the road. Hoping it’s not civil war. Just waiting…

    And may the good Lord bless all of our souls!

  18. I am far from an expert on Bible, but this talk about technology, the future and the bitten Apple gave me a thought – what IF the mark of the beast was IP address? We take it freely and each year we get closer to not being able to perform commerce without it?

      1. I believe that the mark of the beast on the hand or the forehead will be literally that. Look at the proliferation of tattoos, piercings, and other mutilations of the human body, not just among savages but among ‘civilized society’ including the younger generations. I believe what is in the Bible and take it literally- even if I am not smart enough to understand or imagine it all. You are free to interpret it your own way, of course, but I believe that the words used do not stray very far from the correct intended meaning of the Scriptures.

    1. God surprises people; we need to pray for discernment. “In >spiritual Church time, the Wise Men are still traveling to see the Christ Child.” = The celebration of Epiphany is still a few days away.
      (Yes, it happened 2,000 years ago; yet it’s the spiritual journey we all need take). … The Wise Men first looked for Jesus in the Big Palace in Jerusalem. They were then guided to a more humble dwelling. = God surprises people.

      Bible 1 Timothy 2: 3&4 in part “… God our Saviour; 4 Who will have ~~>all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
      (from the KJV. ~ More modern translations would say, God >desires all men to be saved. Plus, it needs repeating now days, the use of the word >men includes women.
      “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and >female created he them.” The wife is called the ‘Better Half’ in Christianity.

      The Christian Churches are operating Missions all over the world. All people need to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ. There is still spiritual darkness for >billions of people.
      *********************************************************************************************
      Why do I mention this? Today is the day to prep. Only God knows the future. The ‘Beast’ and its mark might not be this time period.
      Still, the people of the USA might be >tested by God. Sin has multiplied. There is a large number of Americans that want Sodom and Gomorrah values for the USA. We know how those two places ended up.
      ***********************

      This is the 1/2/2020 news-flash for the New Year. =

      “Baghdad (AP) — Iraqi TV and three Iraqi officials said Friday that Gen. Qassim Soleimani, the head of Iran’s elite Quds Force, has been killed in an airstrike at Baghdad’s international airport.”

      “The officials said the strike also killed Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy commander of Iran-backed militias known as the Popular Mobilization Forces.”

      “Their deaths are a potential turning point in the Middle East and are expected to draw severe retaliation from Iran and the forces it backs in the Middle East against Israel and American interests. The PMF blamed the United States for an attack at Baghdad International Airport Friday.” [Their time-zone]

      “BAGHDAD (Reuters) … “The American and Israeli enemy is responsible for killing the mujahideen Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis and Qassem Soleimani,” said Ahmed al-Assadi, a spokesman for Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Forces umbrella grouping of Iran-backed militias.”
      *************************

      To paraphrase, Clint Eastwood as Josey Wales: = “The USA might be in for a turbulent ‘Missouri boat ride.”
      Look at the recommendations on SurvivalBlog, and make sure some preps are in place.

      Trillions of dollars are being taken out of America by people that want America destroyed. Trump is trying to stop it. >Many people and countries want Trump gone, and America as we know it destroyed too.
      … It’s taught in our public school systems; ‘there are too many people in the world.’ + ‘America is a source of evil in this world.’ + ‘Loyal Americans, especial preppers, are scorned by our ‘self appointed’ elites’ and many school teachers.

      Today is the day to prep; we need both spiritual prepping, and prepping with some stored earthly goods. Check out SurvialBlogs recommendations, and the advertisers here on SurvivalBlog.

  19. Mr. Rawles

    Agree with you on the decline of American society in the last 40-50 years. Immorality and perversion have undeniably been accelerated by the PC culture from our so called leaders and the corporatists ( although these views from companies are largely profit driven; ie ; don’t want to alienate the customers ) .

    But I think we part ways on the readiness of most of the pro 2A crowd to rise up in open rebellion and take on the leftists and the .gov black boot lackeys. If only 3% of the public supported the American Revolution, as is so often claimed, then we would be lucky if 1% of our current population did the same. We are not made of the same stuff as our forefathers were, far from it. There are far few people who even know how to hunt and field dress an animal than ever before.

    You talk of engagements at 400 yards by our straight shooting pro 2A gun owners but my observations from 40 years of public and private range shooting does not support such acumen. Perhaps in your area of wide open spaces out west these are viable defense strategies. In most urban areas the longest shots would likely be 20-60 yards at most, with most being under that. Also the legal ramifications of shooting at someone at that distance, unless the collapse is totally WROL, would be problematic.

    But all of this sad decline of American culture is easily foretold, in a general sense, in the Bible. Among many verses the absolute definition of our moral decay is detailed by Christ himself in Matthew 24-25. So our inevitable dissolution is foretold by Jesus, and no one can forestall it or avoid it.

  20. Now 82 an not as quick as I was, but think I will put hurt on a few knuckleheads when Necessary. Joint choice live in western Oregon Her choice, I desire to Stay Married.
    Its has been a good Life. Sons and grand children Stand on their Own, Praise the
    Lord.

    Peace Be with You

  21. A great analysis of our journey as a country. Regrettably, we have been walking backwards politically, socially and spiritually. Only technology has advanced by astounding leaps to both amazing and terrifying levels. I have concerns for the redoubt as it has government problems we all are facing. Keep doing what you are doing, but you must have state leaders on board or you will eventually go the way we are all sliding. It looks like once again in our nation’s history, that “laws” will determine the response of the people. A note on the mark of the beast, taking the mark is a choice as noted in The Book of Revelation.

  22. Enjoyed your perspectives as always. 2020 has been on my mind for a number of years, but my perspective is focused on perfect vision. I believe this is the year that Revelations are made for all those with eye’s to see. And this year we will all see, how badly we have been decieved. Revelations, litterally the great revealing is in full swing. Our Lord has a tremendous sense of humor. What’s more fitting than to show his mighty power thru the use of 2020 sight. All should look back in hindsight, as it is clearly perfect vision in it’s own right. But many who have been stuck in the normalcy bias will be forced off that position this year. The corruption is being exposed thanks to Trump and his actions. Lets hope indictments come quick and the swamp is fully exposed. This year will be memorable, on a very large scale.

    Pray and prep. Looking forward to this latest stick.

  23. Very enjoyable comments; to me you seem so young; but then I typed my college papers on a nonelectric manual typewriter. Do you remember in the early 1940s when the head of IBM, the only USA computer manufacturer, said he couldn’t imagine the country ever needing more than four or five computers? I remember when we were thrilled to toss the multi-line phone and get one just for us. There was only one TV on the street and all the kids miraculously appeared at that door at Howdy Doody time.

    My first computer was a Radio Shack TRS80. My primary use for it would be word processing, and to me the SuperScripsit program it used in 1985 was the best available. And believe me, I knew because everybody in the office had a different type of computer and system. Secretaries had to learn them all.

    I don’t believe we can say technology is good or bad. It depends on what we do with it. I loved TV as a child and teen; about 5 years ago I turned it off and never went back. My Hubby has one in his room, and I occasionally watch storm/weather reports. I haven’t watched a regular TV program in over 20 years. We have some control over how technology affects us. It’s called a plug.

    Unlike most of you, I don’t attend religious services. This is not the result of me moving away from the church; it’s a matter of the church moving away from me. As a youngster I was taught that premarital sex, lying, stealing, homosexuality, and moving boundaries were all wrong. I haven’t heard God rescind these commandments. I have watched denomination after denomination fall under liberal fire; I can’t wait until the Pride movement takes on the Satmars. I’m betting on the Satmars.

    A very good article; you’re a smart, observant man. I hope the next decade, which will probably be my last, will be a good one. Deep inside, I think it’ll be a disaster. Which is why I read SurvivalBlog.

  24. My prepping journey has led me to become a scout master. Hand of God pushed me that way persistently and patiently. I am doing it to save our culture and build the youth program at my church. Started a troop in April this year.

    We just returned from something called Polaris. My son and another earned their Rifle Merit Badge. Both about 12. Beaming at hitting the target the required way. The camp was run by someone age 20. What scouting does for maturity through rank advancement and its general structure is amazing.

    The stuff spouted by the critics is there to divide us. Not 100% happy about girls in scouting. On the other hand, I put my daughter, 12, (yes a twin) in a girl boy scout troop. The oath, law and leadership build and benefit them just as much as the boys. Just taught a couple merit badges. The maturity level of my students varied with rank and not age in a stunning way.

    The meal time prayer is really funny at camp. “Lord! Thank you for the mountains, sky and rivers. Bless this food and protect us from it as we experience your bounty.” Apparently half the staff ended up with food poisoning a couple years ago. Dropped four pounds myself.

    My college intro to computers involved those punch cards. Stinkers equipped the punch room with 7 machines, only one of which was not missing teeth. There is something wrong in punching code at 4am to avoid the time wasting line. It was one of the classes they used to reduce the size of the class in business school.

    I’ll see if I cannot round up a few dimes. Best to you and yours in the coming year.

  25. JWR, thank you for helping get the American Redoubt movement going. We fled CA two years ago and relocated to the Redoubt. We are conservative, armed, homeschooling and hard working Christians. Since then we’ve helped five (going on six) families with similar standards make the move. Our church was a plant two years ago and is growing like crazy, as are most churches in the region due to the influx. I feel badly for the changes we refugees are bringing to the region, and catch a lot of flack for being from CA, but right now lines are being drawn and sides are being sorted across the nation. The Redoubt states will change politically, as natives fear, but I suspect it will be in the direction opposite to what they expect – most of us coming are far more conservative than the natives!

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