The Beaten Path
Sticky, of San Diego, California
A while back, I had an appointment to see my doctor. Days like that drag but have to be done, sometimes. In this case, it was to review some recent X-rays, only to learn everything is hunky-dory. Of course, I waited about 2 1/2 hours for my 2-minute consultation but, not like I didn't have time.
While waiting, most guys like myself catch up on their reading or just keep to themselves. This time, though, I got stuck next to a man who didn't know how to shut his mouth. He blubbered unremittingly about how the system isn't fair. The longer I listened to his constant drivel, the more I realized this is precisely the kind of person who gives convicts a bad name.
Mr. Wonderful claims he was homeless and just needed a warm place to sleep. So, he committed a petty theft and was sent to jail for 90 days. They feed you and it is warmer than the streets. The next year, when the mercury started its descent, he shoplifted a CD right in front of a security guard. That time, 180 days and, the year after, 270 days. That's three stints in the county jail in three years.
Once smart guy had exhausted the judge's patience, he was sentenced to state prison. His 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th & 8th terms of incarceration were the result of a multitude of crimes and parole violations. He claims it was because the weather got frigid but, at some point, a person with half a brain would simply relocate to a warmer climate, don't you think? It isn't rocket science!
That brings us to incarceration term #9, this one. The previous eight instances he'd been busted for little things like shoplifting, petty theft, drugs, etc. Seven months ago, he teamed up with his pal, and the two meatheads decided to go stick up a donut shop. The problem was the Chinese immigrant who ran the place had seen the dumbasses in his shop on many occasions. He was able to tell the cops that smart guy lived only a 1/2 block away. Chalk up another story for the dumb criminal shows.
The only thing wrong with this story is that all of us in that medical waiting room had to listen as idiot whined about how the judge was racist because he labeled this man a habitual criminal and threw the book at him, sentencing him to sixteen years plus a strike. Apparently, the judge was very upset because that was the maximum sentence allowed. Incidentally, it seems minorities almost always claim racism.
Now, the reason this all sticks in my head is that there was a time when I'd look in the mirror and see that guy staring back. Nowadays, I hear a story like his and recall the person I once was. It's painful when I think about the path not taken. I am never the one who roots for the cops or the justice system. I see a high speed chase on the stupid-box and cheer when the cops wreck. This case is my first exception. I think everyone in that room agreed with me ... except one.
In four years, when I am released, I just want the opportunity to live a normal life, while disappearing into the woodwork (pun intended — I am a woodworker). What I am not happy about is that it took me 40+ years to see the light.
Letters to the Editor
1) Judicial Antiques [March 2016, page 1] by Outman was an excellent piece, reminding me of some of your own factually important & stirring writings....
2) Several of your articles impressed me with the classic S.A.M.-III genius. I was so moved by & well-taught by in scores of your Frontiersman newsletters going back many years in the old days of me initially becoming acquainted w/ your writings. (Eg. Elusive Remedy, Principles of Liberty [February 2016], And Preying... [March 2016], ... About the U.S. Constitution [June 2016]. (All therein I totally agree with & can't be denied — if only people would read that document; but also may require having a mind that can both think and discern — a rarity today)
As to the Principles of Liberty, the stated fact that "people are ignorant,"
have "made bad assumptions," "believe that govt has a legitimate mandate
... to punish people for ... even their thoughts" etc — this problematic
phenomenon can be summed up in one word in my opinion, something that's
been warned against since time immemorial, including by "the Nazarene,"
and that is idolatry. The masses have an obsession to idolize govt,
& stripped to its least common denominator, that keeps bubbling to
the surface as the whole root of the problem & cause of our present
5) A lot of great jokes = good medicine for the soul.
6) But, oh, what a shame in Cura Te Ipsum [April 2016] you say, "Remember, Hitler claimed that his cause was worthy." The more I study underneath the lying war victims' false propaganda about Hitler, the more it's proven that most (almost all?) (or virtually all?) the negative things ever claimed about this natural leader are vicious lies usually the exact inverse and opposite of what he did and who he was. That in fact his cause was a worthy one. I would never agree that the things "said about" him or his supposed "cause" are worthy, but rather first strip away all the lies, and then in regard to the truth of what he actually did and stood for and planned to do — were among the most worthy causes and accomplished facts in fact, ever achieved by any great natural leader. In fact his track record in such regards of worthy achievement for German's and all good peoples' benefits were so astounding as to be almost unmatched by any of the greatest standouts in all of recorded history. This is exactly why he's been so specially, uniquely vilified and demonized by the greatest machine of vitriolic, venomous lies in all of man's written history. Don't forget, Hitler & his self-defense war machine of WWII was the only thing that stopped that "specially entitled" "chosen" alien seed that has destroyed the whole world wherever they go from making all of Europe what they made of Russia beginning in 1917 and not ending until about 1989 (a murder machine of tens of millions of innocent good people under Stalin et al). And once Europe would have fallen to them, the whole world would have. Hitler alone erected the formidable barrier that stopped that spread in WWII, which the good German people are still paying unconscionably for today — as well as for a similar feat in WWI under different leaders. Sam I urge before using Hitler's name as the quintessential symbol of evil, go under the surface and study what he really did & really did not do. The best sources for that information that contains so much unrefutable proof as to be unassailably reliable is: The Barnes Review, 16000 Trade Zone Ave, Unit 406, Upper Marlboro, MD 20774 — enough books & magazines of reliable proof to keep a truth hound busy for a lifetime.
7) Well said — the US Constitution was a treacherous trap from inception, which is why Patrick Henry — perhaps the greatest statesman of that era, denounced it & ran from it. Like denunciations of Hitler, I once supported the US Constitution, but upon studying the truth about it, astutely, I deem it fit for the historical scrap bin.
I commented long ago, in Milam's Notes, that the most important difference between fictional characters and historical characters is the intentions of the authors who created them. The winner of a war will misrepresent the loser. The U.S. government, its news agencies, and its licensed publishers are accomplished liars. So, was Hitler guilty of the evils that are attributed to him? My best guess is that he was. It isn't that his critics are more credible than his supporters. It's that he was the leader of a government. Such people are usually guilty. I believe that not just of Hitler but also of the leaders of other countries, including the USA. Your uncritical approval of Hitler is unexpected in someone who otherwise seems to be so savvy about government. I don't even admire Heinlein as much as you seem to admire Hitler.
More generally, I suggest that you study my articles Holocaust?, October 1996, page 2, and Dawn of Darkness, March 2009, Page 2.
[Re: Privacy Isn't Guilt, July, page 1]
Asserting your right to privacy is not in itself suspicious!
Similarly, a driver's refusal to submit to a sobriety test doesn't necessarily mean that he's drunk. He might just be defending the principles of liberty. The government's presumption of drunkenness in such situations verifies the existence of the police state.
Sam Aurelius Milam III
I began to wear contact lenses while I was working as a Nuclear Engineer at GE, probably sometime during 1975. So, I've been wearing contact lenses for about 40 years. I got my first lenses at Kaiser Permanente, in Santa Clara, California. They were hard lenses and were difficult to wear. Any dust at all under them was painful. I'd have to stop whatever I was doing and clean the lenses. As soon as I started wearing the lenses, my eyes turned red. The optometrist at Kaiser tried to find a remedy but my eyes stayed red. I eventually switched to soft lenses and that was a big improvement. The soft lenses were a lot easier to wear. They seldom caused any pain, but my eyes stayed red. Sometime during the late 1980s or early 1990s, I started wearing disposable lenses because they were less expensive. My eyes stayed red.
In October of 1996, I moved to a farm in Idaho. The problems that I encountered there, and my chronic lack of funds, forced me to wear the same pair of disposable lenses for about seven years. I didn't see an optometrist at all during those seven years. I wasn't able to replace the lenses until I moved to Arizona, in October of 2003, where I was in a better situation. The optometrist in Show Low, Arizona, looked at my lenses through a magnifier and proclaimed that they were actually encrusted with deposits of something. He speculated that I probably held the world record for wearing disposable lenses too long. My eyes were still red.
After I moved to Georgia, in March of 2008, I started to get my eye exams and contact lenses at an optometry office in Gainesville. I don't know if optometry in general has become increasingly authoritarian or if these optometrists just have a "policy" but they're more aggressive than were any previous optometrists. They've made a determined effort to discourage me from wearing contact lenses. During an eye exam in June of 2014, one of them actually grabbed the case containing my contact lenses out of my hand and threw it in the trash. Since then, I've refused to have appointments with that optometrist. My eyes are still red.
During my most recent visit to the Gainesville office, in June of 2016, the optometrist that I'm still willing to visit walked into the exam room and immediately began to lecture me about my red eyes. He declared that he has a "duty" to protect my eyes. He insisted that I have to switch to glasses. I wore glasses for about 20 years before I started wearing contact lenses. Glasses hurt my nose. They hurt my ears. They give me headaches. They don't correct my vision as well as contact lenses do. I told him that I'm not going to wear glasses. He told me that I'm risking blindness. I replied that every optometrist, starting way back at Kaiser, has given me the same warning and that, after 40 years of not going blind, it seems to me like the optometrists might be "crying wolf". Maybe they're more concerned with protecting themselves from liability than with protecting me from blindness. He conceded that, at my age, I might be able to make it for the remainder of my life without going blind. He grudgingly agreed to "prescribe" lenses for me, for this visit, but maybe not for the next one. That didn't seem like a threat, not quite. When he suggested that he might refuse to prescribe lenses at the next examination, I informed him that I've accumulated a large collection of used lenses, in soaking solution. I've saved them in anticipation of an eventual denial of service, due to my undocumented status. I commented that he'd probably fulfill his "duty" to my eyes a lot better by prescribing new lenses than by forcing me to start wearing those old ones. My eyes are still red.
Why is any of this important? It's important because of the learning process that it represents, and because of the lessons that I've learned. Medical people act like they have some kind of superior authority over us. I insist that they don't. They should be doctors, not dictators. They should give advice, not "doctors orders". They should provide a service, not dictate our behavior. We should say no to medical authoritarianism, justified by some alleged "duty". If an optometrist has a duty to protect my eyes, then I have a superior duty to protect my freedom of choice. The issue here isn't the color of my eyes, but who gets to make the decisions. My eyes are still red. If the optometrists can find a way to fix that without giving me orders, then I might follow their advice. Until then, red is the color of choice.
My thanks to the following: SantaClara Bob; Lady Jan the Voluptuous; my mother; and Betty.
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— Sam Aurelius Milam III, editor