For good men to do nothing…

Yesterday’s post was partly influenced by my thoughts and impressions on this article.  Now, quite honestly, I see this mostly as a publicity stunt and an excuse to take things offline, but if taken at face value, as so many things often are, what you have left is this.  Bad things are happening, so I’m going to run and hide.  Or, to choose another metaphor, the proverbial player is taking their ball and going home.

When I was in seventh grade, I was the victim of the local school bully.  My size and strength kind of singled me out for those people looking to establish a pecking order, which is so necessary to all the alpha males in training.  I was socially naive and didn’t know how to handle myself in the situation, I had no idea what to do.  My guidance counselor at the time had some advice for me that I’ve never forgotten.  “Punch him in the nose, get in close and beat on him.  He’s a boxer so wrap him up and take him down.  You can do it.”  This was a huge paradigm shift for me at the time.  Fighting at school, especially as suggested by a teacher/authority figure, was a mind blowing concept to me.  I followed the rules, I respected the guidelines, I didn’t make waves and draw attention to myself…and I was just told to punch the bully in the nose…

Fast forward to today and what do we have?  We have a bully for a government.  A police state in training, if I might be so bold.  Threats, both real and imagined, are cropping up everywhere.  Abuses of power are rampant, especially in relation to the one thing that allows most Americans an unfettered access to knowledge, to a voice unrestrained by physical and social boundaries.  The Internet.  And now people, who have a modicum of size and strength, like GrokLaw and Lavabit, are choosing to submit to their bullies, to take their ball home instead of punching them in the mouth.  If too many people and businesses continue to do this, our ability to find our own voice, our own information, will diminish to almost nothing.

By Dan Granot

I chose the Shorter Whitman because of his work, "Song of Myself" and because of my self-deprecating sense of humor. I am under no illusion that I can write successful essays or poetry, but I have been known to write them anyway.


  1. One of my standard greetings is ‘What do you think?’

    It is a suble compliment; it implies that one’s thoughts are worth hearing. Also I may learn something. It provides an oportunity for the rare person to engage in repartee.

    Alas, a large supermajority say ‘I don’t think.’ Then they express a link to trouble or pain. Thus we grow old but not wise.


  2. Dance and combat are related; close, interactive contact that require a great deal of cooperation. And either one is the equivalent of a formal introduction. Or superior. But dance is tightly constrained. I must show care to be gentle. Pay attention to her feelings. Be gentle on my feet and hers. Only a fool, however, would crave combat.

    Still. Fighting gives a trancendental freedom. A release from the rules that gives a certain joy to our opponents who wage war on our civilization. An exhilarant lack of constraint. The only upside I see to our soi-disant masters breaking our social contract is that it allows a sense of liberty. A dark thought that should give the bullies-in-training pause.

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