Note from the Hinterland

We have been traveling and I make it a point not to use the blog as a travelogue. Sometimes in our trips I run across pertinent matters … in Paris a couple of years ago I realized that photos of American troops entering that city on Champs Elysees in 1944 were paste-ups, mere war propaganda. No such triumphic march took place. In Copenhagen I realized a shooting in the hippie district of that city was fake, and witnessed a giant and pointless show of police power. I suspected it was a real estate-minded affair, as that part of the city, Freetown Christiana, can probably support high rises and expensive restaurants.  And then there was our trip to Buenos Aires and stumbling on to the grave of Eva Peron, realizing her death was fake, and later learning that she went on to offer her birth canal to the mediocre talent Madonna.

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Irony

I write here about a personal event, but also one that happened 31 years ago, so time has healed most of the wound. The event was as follows: A man broke into our house and raped our eight-year-old daughter on March 20, 1987. I was asleep in the basement, my then-wife asleep on the couch after having watched March Madness (she followed Notre Dame).

Police were unable to solve the crime, and because of its gruesome nature, had to provide the public with a perpetrator. They settled on a young man, Jimmy Ray Bromgard, and lacking any evidence, forged hair samples and provided an “expert”witness who said those hairs were Jim’s. The kid spent fifteen years in prison. In 2002 the Innocence Project set him free, and because the State of Montana was fraudulent in its case against him, he received a $3.5 million settlement. I imagine he got some of that. I hope he did.

In 2015 the real perpetrator was uncovered, Ronald Dwight Tipton, whose family name appears in the 1988 Billings, Montana phone book as living one block from our home. Why did he choose our daughter? That’s a family matter. I understand it now, though I did not before this year. However, Tipton will walk free now, as the statute has run.

I understand irony. It is a thing quite apart from humor. It cuts deep. Our “justice” system first imprisoned an innocent man. No one cared that Jim Bromgard was innocent. They “solved” the crime. The system worked. The lead detective on the crime landed a nice FBI position!

They have now let the guilty man go free. It cuts no deeper than that.

How not to rebel?

Immanuel Velikovsky died in 1979. The following passage is from his book Mankind in Amnesia, published in 1982. I found it, like him, profoundly insightful. He describes a situation that has not changed in the intervening years. It is, in fact, much, much worse. We are surrounded not just by stagnated and bureaucratic science, but with corrupt science. Warm your globe on that.

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What is up with 8, 11 and 33?

Find the next two numbers in this series:

1,2,2,4,8,11,33

The answer, as shown here, is 37 and 148. This has no significance in regard to this post, but I thought it kind of funny that the three numbers I will be discussing, 8,11 and 33, just happened to pop up. That is a coincidence.

I was listening to Ab over at Fakeologist some time ago, one of his call-in podcasts, and in it he said something to the effect that he does not pay much attention to numerology. I tend to agree with him, but only to a degree. I do not think there is any particular significance to any number any more than there is to any one hair on my head. Numbers serve a useful purpose. They help us quantify and measure things.

I know that some numbers have unusual properties, 9 for example – any time two numbers are transposed, 18 for 81 for example, the difference is divisible by nine. There is a such a thing called the “rule of 72”: Divide the rate of return on an investment into 72 and the answer is how many years it will take to double. It works. A 6% return doubles in 12 years, and a 12% return doubles in 6 years.

That is just fun and games, however, and has no cosmic significance. There is, however, something going on with numbers and public hoaxes and fake events. There may be superstition beneath it – if so, I do not care. Numbers still mean nothing. Superstitious people often have odd beliefs.

I am going to go through some numbers here, taken right out of real events, just to demonstrate the importance of what I once heard a man named Michael Parenti say: “Just because we don’t know what they are doing does not mean that they don’t know what they are doing.”

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Taxes Part 2: The Tax on Social Security Benefits

Note to readers: Part one of this two-part essay was about FICA, and how a hidden tax affecting only people who work for wages is used to levy a heavy tax on those workers. Part of the strategy behind that tax is to hide half of it behind the employer, calling it a matching tax.

This part of the essay deals with another tax, this one not so hidden, but its creeping nature slowly taking more and more benefits from Social Security recipients each year. The means by which they accomplished this were diabolically clever.

This essay will be a bit more complicated than the one before, so if you find the calculations incomprehensible, merely skim them, as I will describe the  outcome in understandable terms.

As Johnny Carson used to say of comedy, “If you buy the premise, you buy the bit.” The premises behind taxation of Social Security benefits are two: (1) The program is in dire straits, and will soon run out of money, and (2) Recipients receive a gift in the form of the employer match, so that it is just to levy income tax on half of the benefits paid.

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What of this “Trust” Fund?

Trust Fund

The above image is making the rounds on Facebook. Later in this post I will talk about the so-called “Social Security Trust Fund” and how it never was and never will be. For now I want to thank my friend Kevin for putting up his post directly below called A Crashing Success, as it offers an easy and early escape  from this post about (cue violin screech) … taxes!!!

Go now, quickly, or prepare to be flooded with the conceptual abstractions that are used to justify the theft of our hard-earned money. The words “hard-earned” are important, as there are other forms of wealth that are easily owned by people who by pure chance slid down the right birth canals – trust funds, stocks and bonds, inherited wealth and Cayman bank accounts. The essential feature of taxation is that hard-earned money is heavily taxed, while the birth-canal funds are only lightly touched, if at all, by the IRS.

So journey with me now beneath the fold, or make your escape. The particular tax I am going to write about has a name you might know, one that sounds like a disease or the claw of a wild beast. It is called … “FICA.” From that word springs the myth of something called a “Trust Fund.”

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The Plausibility Index

Our friend and fellow writer, Tyrone McCloskey, has started a new blog called The Plausibility Index. I urge all readers to pay it a visit. He has a unique writer’s voice.

I don’t wish to detract attention from Kevin’s very interesting piece below, but wanted to get this publicity out there. Though we are five writers on a common blog here, we are often of five minds about various matters. Ty chose to use a separate outlet to voice some of his personal reflections, but is still on board here, and for that I am thankful. .