Veterans Day

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader would like to thank all those who have served our Republic, and are serving our Republic for the portion of their life they dedicated to preserving our civilzation and way of life. He also remembers the sacrafices made by those who died in their service to our nation.

Many thanks to you all.

Carry on.

Just To Be Clear

I don’t actually want Ron Paul to win the presidency.

He’s a kook.

BUT I would like Americans to demonstrate that support for small government exists in the hinterlands.

Letters of Marque and Reprisal

While imbibing beers and roasting a pig in the wee hours of the morning this summer, the Maximum Leader, Polymath and I joked about issuing letters of Marque and Reprisal to private contractors who would then attack terrorist organizations out of a profit motive.

It seems that we weren’t alone:

Washington, DC, October 11:

Congressman Ron Paul today presented Congress with the “Marque and Reprisal Act of 2001,” legislation designed to give President Bush an additional tool in the fight against terrorism. He also introduced legislation that changes the federal definition of “piracy” to include air piracy.

The Constitution gives Congress the power to issue letters of marque and reprisal when a precise declaration of war is impossible due to the vagueness of the enemy. Paul’s bill would allow Congress to authorize the President to specifically target Bin Laden and his associates using non-government armed forces. Since it is nearly impossible for U.S. intelligence teams to get close to Bin Laden, the marque and reprisal approach creates an incentive for people in Afghanistan or elsewhere to turn him over to the U.S.

“The President promised the American people that the federal government would use every available resource to defeat the global terror network,” Paul stated. “Congress should immediately issue letters of marque and reprisal to add another weapon to the U.S. arsenal. The war on terrorism is very different from past wars, because the enemy is a group of individuals who do not represent any nation. Western intelligence in the Middle East is exceedingly limited, so we should avail ourselves of the assistance of those with better information to track, capture, or kill Bin Laden.”

The Act allows Congress to narrowly target terrorist enemies, lessening the likelihood of a full-scale war with any Middle Eastern nations. The Act also threatens terrorist cells worldwide by making it more difficult for our enemies to simply slip back into civilian populations or hide in remote locations.

“Once letters of marque and reprisal are issued, every terrorist is essentially a marked man,” Paul concluded. “Congress should issue such letters and give the President another weapon to supplement our military strikes.”

UPDATE FROM YOUR MAXIMUM LEADER: It is good to see Congressman Paul hopping on the bandwagon. That bandwagon would be the one that your Maximum Leader started back on August 1, 2003 in the wee early days of this blog when he first thought about Letters of Marque.

Ron Paul and Raw Milk

I don’t agree with some of Ron Paul’s positions (immigration and the gold standard to name a couple), but am excited that there is actually a candidate running for the highest office on a platform of reduced government intervention.

On November 5th, he guaranteed that he will get my vote:

From the Congressional Record:

Mr. PAUL: Madam Speaker, I rise to introduce legislation that allows the transportation and sale in interstate commerce of unpasteurized milk and milk products, as long as the milk both originates from and is shipped to States that allow the sale of unpasteurized milk and milk products. This legislation removes an unconstitutional restraint on farmers who wish to sell unpasteurized milk and milk products, and people who wish to consume unpasteurized milk and milk products.

My office has heard from numerous people who would like to purchase unpasteurized milk. Many of these people have done their own research and come to the conclusion that unpasteurized milk is healthier than pasteurized milk. These Americans have the right to consume these products without having the Federal Government second-guess their judgment about what products best promote health. If there are legitimate concerns about the safety of unpasteurized milk, those concerns should be addressed at the State and local level.

I urge my colleagues to join me in promoting consumers’ rights, the original intent of the Constitution, and federalism by cosponsoring my legislation to allow the interstate sale of unpasteurized milk and milk products.

Woo and hoo!

Ron Paul for President!

Time traveling barcaloungers

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader has been up to his eyeballs in various things he’s had to do. Alas, that leaves you, his loyal reader, hoping that Smallholder posts something so that you aren’t subjected to the old post you read yesterday still hogging the top line of the content section.

Since your Maximum Leader hasn’t had time for much original content. So here is a fun little link for you…

Try this on for a line: It was very much like Dad telling his teenage son he doesn’t get a vote on where the family goes for vacation, and the son goes off and sulks for eight years when the fam doesn’t go to Cancun or wherever Brooke Burke went on Wild On; and instead goes someplace sensible and boring like Disney World.

Ah… Brooke Burke… She is not as dreamy as Jennifer Love Hewitt… But not that bad…

Should your Maximum Leader mention that you will not guess the full context of the link just from that line? Has he now already mentioned it? Humm…

Carry on.

100 Below: The butler did it.

Perkins the butler stole into the mansion. He returned surreptitiously from vacation to do the deed. He trod silently in the passages and halls until he arrived at the bedroom of his employer. He entered the room.

Perkins looked at his employer sleeping. Pathetic. Dissipated. The young man wasn’t worthy of the family name.

Perkins put the pistol in his employer’s hand, put the gun to the temple, and pulled the trigger. It would look like a suicide. Richard Cory was dead.

Team of destiny?

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader has been watching lots of football recently. In the spirit of camraderie with other men (and some really smart and sexy women out there) he sits himself down in front of his big screen tv and watches football pregame shows, then football games, then football postgame shows, then night games. On Monday night, he tunes in to Monday Night Football (your Maximum Leader is a big fan of Tony Kornheiser by the way).

So today your Maximum Leader was thinking about the team of destiny yesterday. A team that has everything going for it. A team that is doing what it has to do to win games. A team that comes from behind. When the chips are down, the team of destiny doesn’t give up. They play to the end. And they have been winning.

This team of destiny wasn’t supposed to be as good as they are. They are putting together the pieces of a strong team. A team that should go far into the playoffs. A team that people can root for.

The team of destiny is, of course, the Green Bay Packers.

Who did you think your Maximum Leader was writing about?

Oh yeah… That other team… That team from New England… That team that will likely go undefeated this year and be the greatest team ever to play the game of football. Them.

Honestly, your Maximum Leader believes the Packers are playing above their ability. And that is great. He thinks that the Pack will have some trouble against Detroit (who is also playing above their ability). But the Pack should prevail against the Lions. Indeed, your Maximum Leader thinks that the Packers are the third best team in the NFC (after Dallas and the Giants). A case could be made for the Packers being the second best team in the NFC. But your Maximum Leader isn’t going to make that case…

Of course, no one is as good as the Patriots right now. They are like football Terminators. Just playing methodically and without emotion. Just going after every team like they are just another Sarah Connor in the phonebook…


Go Pack go! Go as far as you motivation, talent, and Brett Favre’s arm will carry you. I hope it is to the NFC championship game…

Carry on.

And we’re back…

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader is back on-line. His host suffered some sort of server outage that kept this blog off the interwebs for a good portion of today.

In case you can’t get to you can always check for your Maximum Leader over at:

Don’t bother clicking through on that link… Your Maximum Leader didn’t post anything there today… It was a busy busy day. No time for blogging…

Carry on.

Seoul’s Response to the Big Hominid

Our good friend the Big Hominid has triggered a change in Seoul’s Subway System.

For shame, you big ho.


Your humble Smallholder is both a Christian and an evolutionist. The first because of faith and the second because I can think logically.

I’ve often thought (and I have no theological grounding in this) that the story of the apple isn’t really about one particular woman choosing to try the forbidde fruit, but an analogy to the point where our brains evolved to the point that reason and not instinct drove our actions. The apple, I thought, was a symbol for free will. And then we could make moral judgments (in the Bible we knew we were naked). You don’t condemn a crocodile for eating a man. You do condemn Jeffrey Dahmer.

Over at Jason Rosenhouse’s Evolution Blog, commentor (commentator?) James McGrath has an interesting observation. Perhaps the point of evolution was the creation of free will.

I still think that one can make a better case for why a God of the sort traditionally envisaged by Christian theology (not necessarily popular thought in that tradition) would create through evolution than for some other method. If God’s aim was to create free beings, then it is unclear how else that could be accomplished. If one creates a first ‘Adam and Eve’ as adults, then they must be pre-programmed with all the things humans learn growing up. If they are created as infants, then what? Raised by wolves? Raised by angels? Evolution certainly makes sense as a process that can produce this end, even though it is clearly extremely wasteful in the process.


Why Am I A Farmer?

The last forty-eight hours have overwhelmed my natural optimism.

I’ll get that optimism back (he says with natural optimism), but I feel like venting.

If you don’t like meaningless whining, skip the rest of this post.

I was supposed to drop my steers off to the butcher yesterday before school. Everything was going very well.

I was able to hook up the trailer solo without a ground guide. So far so good.

I called the boys and then came out of the pasture and I penned them up. So far so good.

I opened the gate and drove the truck and trailer into the paddock. The paddock is rather hilly.

When I tried to back up to the pen, I slid downhill on the frosty, wet grass.

I spent half an hour trying to get the truck back up the hill and couldn’t. So I had to call my dear sweet wife to come and get me so I could go to work. So my poor wife has to wake up the children, bundle them into the van, and come get me.

Rescheduling a slaughter date in the fall is very difficult. This is the busy season. They finally found a way to work me in the next morning. I was able to get the truck back up the hill that evening after the frost was gone.

Trick of treating was great fun (so the days weren’t all bad). When we got the kids to bed and went to sleep, I didn’t sleep long. I woke up smelling gas.

I couldn’t find the gas leak and the valve on our exterior gas tank was rusted so badly I couldn’t turn it off. We called the gas company to come out.

We finally found the leak and I went back to bed. Exhausted, I must have hit my alarm the next morning. I was supposed to get up at 4 so I could pen up the boys again, load them, and take them in. Instead, my wife and I woke up at 7:30. My first class at school starts at 9:14. It takes an hour and a quarter to get to the butcher. We couldn’t reschedule the slaughter again, so I had to call and embarassingly tell the school that I would be late to work.

When I finally got to the butcher, three of the steers went off the truck well. One got agitated, shoved past me, and jumped the four foot barrier. We couldn’t get him back to the catch pen. The butcher ended up getting his rifle and shooting it. The first shot didn’t kill him right away - he had to reload and take a second shot.

I understand that animals are not humans. But…

These are animals that I work with everyday. I understand their purpose is to provide meat, but I take great pride that my boys have good lives and then die without knowing what hit them. I use this particular butcher because he is so good with the moment of death - the boys walk in, looking around, very calm, and he just touches their forehead with his special .22 killer and they fall down, dead as a stone. They never have any fear or pain.

This one lad had about twenty seconds of pain. I felt terrible. I know it was irrational, but I had a real emotional response to it.

And now I’m mad at myself for being irrational.


Venting off. Carry on.

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