War in Appalachistan

[Continued from Part One Part Two Part Three Part Four Part Five Part Six Part Seven, Part Eight] [Parts Nine, Ten, & Eleven part Twelve part Thirteen part Fourteen part Fifteen part Sixteen &Seventeen Title and Art Contest] [part Eighteen] [part Nineteen] [part Twenty] [part Twenty-one] [part Twenty-two] [part Twenty-three] [part Twenty-four] [part Twenty-five] [part Twenty-six] [part Twenty-seven] [part Twenty-eight] [part Twenty-nine][part Thirty][part Thirty-one][part Thirty-two]

“We never announced a scorched-earth policy; we never announced any policy at all, apart from finding and destroying the enemy, and we proceeded in the most obvious way. We used what was at hand, dropping the greatest volume of explosives in the history of warfare over all the terrain within the thirty-mile sector which fanned out from Khe Sanh. Employing saturation-bombing techniques, we delivered more than 110,000 tons of bombs to those hills during the eleven-week containment of Khe Sanh.

~ Michael Herr, 1977

The Softening Up

Daylight came early on Thursday 8 June. In another twelve days, the very longest day of the year would hail the arrival of full Summer. Sadly, a great many who saw that dawn would not live to see another.

First light saw pilots and technicians swarming toward aircraft up and down the coasts and up into the mountains of Appalachia. Jets and attack helicopters began taking off just before dawn.

All along Interstate 85, from Lynchburg Virginia to the crossings of Lake Hartwell on the border between South Carolina and Georgia were deployed the tanks, troops, armoured transports, and command vehicles of the slave owners including hundreds of thousands of volunteers from the communist-indoctrinated inner cities. These forces would head upslope three hours after dawn, once the anticipated “softening up” had battered the resistance into what the owners anticipated would approximate submission. They still had no understanding of the abolitionists opposing them.

Meanwhile, their artillery crews began pounding the nearby hills, villages, and towns with round after round of shells, mostly incendiary and anti-personnel, but in some places high explosives for fixed emplacements and to shatter buildings. Where defenders were in armoured vehicles, these were targeted with armour piercing rounds from the artillery units, although many such vehicles were hidden from view in caverns, hollows, entrenchments, inside buildings, and in other ways.

Some aircraft were aerial reconnaissance, now necessary because the orbital assets of the slave owners were being rapidly destroyed, ever since the late Tuesday victory in the space war by the freedom alliance. Isaac Vossius’s name was on the lips of all the freedom enthusiasts worldwide who had followed the events in orbit. His sacrifice was not in vain.

In the early light, behind the first ridge line, all along that route, men, women, and children began to inflate balloons of various sizes. In some places, there were pressurised tanks of helium, in other places hydrogen was used. As the first owner aircraft began to dot the eastern horizon, hundreds of thousands of balloons were released, each carrying aloft a cable, chain, or small piece of metal. As the jet aircraft sped overhead, they met the rising clouds of the smallest balloons coming out of the West, carried on the prevailing wind. Dozens of aircraft sucked these into their air intakes, flamed out, and came out of the sky – here and there crew members were able to eject successfully.

The coordinated offensive continued. Now attack helicopters were sent in to wipe out the rebels manning the lighter than air defence. Now these people released many tens of thousands of pairs of balloons, each set with a cable between them, many also linked to the ground by strong tethers. Various applications of nanotechnology and 3D printing had gone into some of these cables, others were simply the strong metal familiar to tow cable manufacturers.

Elsewhere, defence teams were pulling cables taut between trees, towers, buildings, and across ridges where the cable ends could be set in stone. Helicopters encountering these obstacles in their “nap of the earth” flights were quickly arrested. Some flew between balloons only to find fouling cables wrapping their rotor systems. Few of these high speed encounters were survivable.

Yet the assets of the slave owners were massive, and everything seemed to be committed in this battle. For every jet brought down, four more were behind it, for every attack helicopter reduced to burning debris, six were following.

Having done their work, the lighter than air defence crews left their empty gas cylinders and moved to other locations. Some took up positions to resist the assault waves with sniper rifles, anti-tank and anti-aircraft guns, rocket propelled grenade systems, and many other innovative weapons. Others fled back to safer locations in the hills and hollers, going to ground or taking up support roles in logistics, communications, or supply. Women and children retreated into the massive limestone caverns found all over the region, or were shepherded by loving families into deep underground bunkers.

In spite of the efforts of these brave defenders, hundreds of aircraft completed their bombing runs, attacked isolated positions, and supported the ground assault. It was as though the slave owners were throwing everything that they had at the interior of the country, to destroy those who would defend themselves from tyranny.

The Deep Fake

Deep underground at Wasp, Tennessee, there was a muted sound and much shaking of the ground with each nearby bomb detonation that exploded up above. Susan Nolan and her children gathered around Bob Nolan and Sam Smith who were about to set out.

Bill Watson looked around for Tyrone and, sticking his head through the partly opened doorway of Ty’s bedroom, found him staring at a computer screen. Bill said, “Ty, it’s about time for Bob and Sam to head out.”

Tyrone looked up. His sickened expression was disturbing to Bill, who turned his head slightly to indicate his question. Tyrone gestured him over and moved his mouse a bit, then pushed back his desk chair on its casters, as if to distance himself from the video now playing on the screen.

Bill watched the video as an actor turned toward the camera, displaying Ty’s face, and then did various terrible things to women and children. The sound was off, but from their expressions it was clear they were screaming in pain and terror. He shook his head, reached over to the screen and pushed its power button. The blank screen reflected Ty’s image, then Bill turned to face his friend.

Bill said, “You knew this would happen. As soon as we began discussing telling the world about their death camps and torture sites, you knew that they would use your images from the video to create a deep fake. We all knew it was coming, too. Everyone knows it’s how they operate, how they think, who they are. They think people who obey them believe all their lies and are unaware of their deep fake technologies. Perhaps they even think that people in the rebellion would be taken in, but we’re not. They can’t discredit you. And this video of theirs tells you how desperate they are.”

Tyrone sat with his arms crossed, looking down. He nodded, looked at his friend, gritted his teeth, and gave a slightly feral grimace, as if he were ready to tear into someone, anyone. Then he mastered himself and shook his head. He said, “I know it. I still feel hatred toward them for doing these things.”

Bill nodded, “I know. Hard to love your enemies when they’re so patently evil.”

Tyrone nodded as well. “Jesus never said it would be easy to follow his ways. He also cast out demons, and I think that’s part of what we’re facing.”

Bill nodded again and said, “C’mon, let’s go shake hands with Sam and Bob. They’re heading out.”

Hopping to his feet, Ty held the door open for Bill and followed him into the main room.

Ground Attack

All along the line of their enemy’s attack, people loyal to the rebellion began dropping highway overpasses and bridges. In many places, they were using already rigged explosives, in other places more impromptu methods were needed. Some hillsides above stretches of highway were brought down to landslide ove the road, leaving dirt, boulders, and whole trees littering the path of the oncoming troops and transports.

Some of these actions took out individual vehicles, but that was incidental to their purpose. In a few places, bottlenecks into the hills kept the enemy from advancing. In most, though, it simply delayed them while they found alternate routes. But in every case, it pinned the lead vehicles heading toward the broken roadway, forcing them to stop and make arrangements to back up the column of those following them.

As a result of having now stationary targets, the abolitionists were able to bring in attack aircraft of their own, such as the Super Cobra flown by Sam with Bob handling the weapons systems and accompanying drones. Where aircraft weren’t available, artillery shells rained down on the stopped columns. Panicked troops fled their vehicles and tried to find ways off the roads, which had become killing zones.

The View from on High

Up in orbit, Juan’s teams had spent the entire day Wednesday gathering the materials from the remnants of the destroyed enemy battle stations. Several dozen sky rods were salvaged. When the enemy attack on Appalachistan came, Thursday morning, these rods were directed at the columns of tanks heading up Interstate 26 from I-85.

Numerous craters were left where the sky rods fell. One company of tanks crossing the French Broad River were hit by six sky rods that not only obliterated many of the vehicles, but also dropped the bridge, stopping the column of tanks, trucks, and armoured vehicles behind. Again, the rebellion sent forward attack aircraft and used artillery to disrupt the trapped column.

Ann Branson sent a detailed report down to the team at Wasp, Tennessee. Analysis of the attacking formations made it clear that they were attempting to reach, with as much firepower as possible, the location where Bob Nolan’s lab was hidden. As the weary day wore on, it looked as though some enemy infantry, the irregular forces out of the coastal cities, including Red Rangers, were going to get through.

Difficult Answers

Karen Runningwolf looked into the web cam above the laptop. She said, “Mr. Difficult completed his interrogation today. Things are much worse than they seem. The owner’s whip, Antony Marcus, revealed that the owners are preparing to use nuclear weapons all over the Appalachians, in the Rockies, and wherever they think our people are found. According to Mr. Marcus, they were looking for an excuse to justify their actions. No doubt the destruction of Hampton Roads and the damage to Newport News is the pretext they were looking for. I’m sorry I don’t have better news to report. You’ll find attached to this message lists of targets recovered from the bunker where we found him. Some of these are marked highly probable from his reactions under interrogation. Every effort should be made to warn the affected populations, including our own people. May God have mercy on their souls.”

Another Cataclysm

Far away across the continent from events in the mountains of North Carolina and Tennessee there was a deep rumble throughout San Francisco. The long awaited and much feared “big one” had arrived. Seismomenters read 9.2 on the Richter scale, and the modified Mercalli intensity was rated at XII, the most extreme level.

Seismic waves could be seen on ground surfaces. Buildings collapsed. Bridges and overpasses slammed down. Underground pipelines throughout the city ruptured. Rail lines bent and sheered. Rapid transit and cargo trains derailed all over the region. Everywhere lines of sight and level were distorted. Cars, people, and many other things were thrown into the air.

Within moments of the initial shock, fires broke out. Rubble, bodies, and debris littered the city. Clouds of smoke and dust blew slowly along with an onshore breeze.

Colonies in Space

Far to the east around the curve of the Earth, the space colony lifted off its cradle. One hundred three rocket engines provided lift, and their nozzles were slightly canted to provide spin. Moments after liftoff the vehicle was hundreds of feet in the air, spinning gently for stability and accelerating.

From their acceleration stations Aamiina Hersi Kalinle and Harold Ley monitored the launch sequence with elation. Everything was going great. The enormous spacecraft headed east to take advantage of the Earth’s rotation. As its ground track crossed over the shore of the Indian Ocean, it was fifteen miles in the air.

Far below them in the waters of the Indian Ocean, a submarine had just surfaced. Crew members scurried out of hatches and onto the deck, rapidly assembling equipment and deploying an experimental surface-to-air rail gun. As they made ready to aim and fire, the new space colony continued on its ponderous way, gaining altitude and passing toward the east.

A klaxon sounded, and the captain’s voice came over the crew address system. “Stand down. Target has reached altitude beyond our range.”

All across the deck crewmen stared at the fiery apparition as it continued to rise beyond their reach. Many of them smiled, then looked around to see who had seen them doing so. Finally, they returned to their tasks, and began disassembling the rail gun.

Strategic Retreat

As Friday night fell, the enemy forces were still battling their way in eastern Tennessee. Bob and Sam had already refueled their Super Cobra twice during that day of fighting. Like a massive amoeba, the forces of the slave owners sent out one pseudopod after another. Everything that wasn’t headed toward Wasp seemed to be part of an effort at envelopment.

At 10 pm, Bob called for retreat. The people remaining in his lab were clearly in danger of being surrounded and there was no way to hold the position. Indeed, their military doctrine was against holding positions. Far too many weapons could project force into any given building, fortification, or cavern. No location was worth sacrificing men and women to defend it, simply because the locations were not the freedom alliance. The people were.

Bill made sure everyone was headed down the northern escape tunnel. Then he set the trip wires. Anyone forcing their way in would not survive the explosions prepared for them. Nevertheless, Bill wanted to leave the lab intact in the event they were able to return to it. So he left all the power systems operational. He, Bob, Susan, Mary Sue, and Clementine all had the codes for getting back in. If there were anything left to get back into, that is.

As they emerged from the tunnel, Bob and Sam’s helicopter, once again fully fuelled, came overhead. It headed up the valley toward US 25. Scouting the area, they found everything clear and reported back. Then they proceeded west along the highway to check further down the intended escape route.

As the refugees came up to the highway, they entered a long low wood building. From the outside it gave every appearance of being an abandoned stable. Opposite the road was the door they entered by. Inside were several pickup trucks and SUVs. Screened from the highway by trees were two sliding doors that Bill and Pete opened.

Susan, Clem, Mary Sue, and Tyrone drove the various vehicles out onto a gravel parking lot. Pete and Bill closed the doors behind them. Bill climbed in on the passenger side of the pickup driven by Mary Sue. Pete did likewise with the SUV driven by Clementine. Susan had her three children with her. Soon everyone was seated and heading West.

Three jet aircraft came out of the eastern sky, flying low and fast. Their sonic booms swept over the fugitives. Their cannons and missiles targetted Bob and Sam’s helicopter. Bob’s drones expended all their ammunition returning fire at the jets, downing two of them, and fighting off the missiles, interposing themselves to absorb much of the auto-cannon rounds.

Screaming in a high gee turn, the last of the enemy jets came back around. Its remaining air-to-air missiles and cannon fire from its guns overwhelmed Bob’s remaining defence systems. Sam had brought the helo up to just above auto-gyro altitude. When the main rotor system took a hit, began leaking hydraulic fluid, and started flaming up, the last jet broke off and headed for its home base. Shrapnel in his left shoulder, Sam guided the copter as best he could through its emergency landing.

As the copter crashed in a farmer’s field, Susan turned the convoy of ground vehicles down a side road. Coming through the open gate into the field, she was fairly confident that open gate meant no livestock. Flying over bumps and folds in the ground, she raced with her family toward her husband, the other vehicles following only slightly less recklessly.

Cresting the last ridge separating her from the crash site, she saw Bob supporting Sam as the two moved quickly away from the flaming wreckage. Rounds began too cook off behind them, sending tracers, shrapnel, and bullets in all directions. Somehow everything seemed to go elsewhere, but seeing the chaos ahead, Susan turned on the crest of the hill, slowed, and turned to parallel the ridgeline, getting her children back below the hillcrest away from the wreck.

As if to confirm her fears, a fireball lit the sky. The fuel had exploded. The uncontained explosion went in all directions, preceded by a ground shock travelling at the speed of sound in dirt, knocking the feet out from under Bob and Sam, followed moments later by the air shock, and then a rain of debris. Fortunately, only minor wounds were inflicted as they hugged the ground beneath them.

Having made certain of the explosion, Susan turned again and headed over to her husband. Parking nearby she and the children rushed up to Bob and Sam, who were still clinging to the dirt. Lifting his helmeted head and shaking it slightly, Bob looked up, rolled onto his side, and exposed his shattered visor. His face, battered, bruised, and cut, but mostly intact displayed a rueful grin.

As Susan, Little Bob, Kathy, and Amy rushed up, Bob said, “Hello wonderful people. It’s good to be home.”

[End part thirty-three, book one concludes in part thirty-four]

Download pdf here.

contact: jim@resilientways.net

=====

Jim Davidson is an author, entrepreneur, actor, and director. He is the cfo of KanehCN3.com and the vision director of HoustonSpaceSociety.net You can find him on Twitter.com/planetaryjim as well as Pocket.app and Flote.app also as planetaryjim. He appreciates any support you can provide as times are very difficult. See the Paypal link on this page. Or email your humble author to offer other choices. Visit IglooLuau.com for more information. Those seeking a multi-jurisdiction multi-hop VPN for communications privacy please visit https://secure.cryptohippie.com/houstonspacesociety.php For those seeking colloidal silver try ppmSilver.com/Jim Ask Jim about CryptoWealth.

Your Power

“Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces.”

~ Jesus, quoted in Matthew 7:6

For generations you and your forebears have been obeying. You’ve delegated power to liars, thieves, murderers, rapists, and cannibals. My first request: Stop doing that! Stop it right now, stop delegating your power to others. Keep your power.

You’ve been given excuses. You’ve been told that things are very complex, that you need experts to guide you, that you cannot trust your neighbours with the power they have so they have to relinquish their power and you must relinquish your power, but somehow it’ll be okay. Because, the excuses continue, you can trust the people to whom you give power. How’s that again?

Well, sure, they are people, just like you, just like your neighbours. So, fallible, prone to error, capable of corruption, inclined to their own interests before yours, but, well, and then there’s a line of patter. For example, “…but, well, you get to elect them!” Ah. Yes, elections wherein maybe your votes are counted, maybe someone who agrees with your views is available to represent you, maybe there is some power you have for the elected official to be required to keep their promises? Well, no, none of that actually, but, still, trust the plan, says Q. Trust the system, says the system. Trust the police, say the police.

You should stop doing that part, where you trust liars, thieves, rapists, murderers, and cannibals, and expect it is all going to work out.

In Micah chapter 4 God says that each of you will sit under your own vine and under your own fig tree, and none shall make you afraid, for God has so decreed. Why would you wish to give up your sovereignty, your independence, your guns, your freedom, your privacy, your property, your freedom from abuses and usurpations, torture, false witness, lack of due process, warrantless searches, uncompensated seizures, and all the rest?

Which is another of those lines of patter, right? “The constitution protects you!” Well, no, it has no teeth. There’s no clause that punishes politicians and bureau-rats for violating your rights. You should want them to be punished, but you have no standing, not being a party to the constitution. As Lysander Spooner wrote, the constitution has either authorised all the tyranny you have been suffering, or it has been powerless to prevent any of that tyranny. Either way, it is not fit to serve a free people.

STOP DELEGATING YOUR POWER. It is your power. God gave it to you. You earned it, built it, gathered it, created it yourself in some ways. You were born free, so why are you being told to wear a masque, close your business, keep six feet from other people, never hug anyone ever again, never take the sacraments at church, always meet via Zoom except when they are upgrading over the weekend and your meeting for worship is out of luck, and why, why, why are you obeying? Stop obeying, please.

Jesus

Let’s talk about a voluntaryist named Jesus. He consorted with sinners, spent time around prostitutes, talked a crowd out of stoning to death an accused adultress, whipped the money changers in the temple, told his followers to sell their cloaks and buy arms, told a legalistic sort that one should render unto Caesar only that which belongs to Caesar, and to God that which belongs to God, and said many other fine things that you can read about in a number of books. My suggestion is that you notice he is the Prince of Peace, but not the king of compliance, the Way, the Truth, and the Light, not submissive to authority, that he was not crowned by the Romans, but crucified by them.

Thus, it is my thought that the sovereignty you have over yourself is like the pearls you should not cast before swine, lest they trod the sovereignty under foot and then turn on you and rend you. Pig herders will assure you that a four hundred pound boar can be very vicious, see the film “Hannibal” or read John Ross’s Unintended Consequences if you need confirmation. Politicians are swine. Stop giving them your power. Bureau-rats are dogs, stop giving them your power, your sacred honour. You owe them no duty.

Rebellion Now

There are plenty of reasons to think that lockdown isn’t acceptable. There are plenty of people willing to end it. And, there are long hot summers in our history. Some times people do riot, and some times are times of revolution. Many revolutions begin with acts of repression like the Boston Massacre and acts of disobedience like the Boston Tea Party. That event, December 1773, led to a great deal of fear among the magistrates and politicians in Massachusetts who mostly lay low and did not serve in their offices until October 1774, when the British fleet arrived with occupation troops. Months later, 19 April 1775 to be precise, there was open warfare in Massachusetts, which spread throughout the colony.

The Declaration of Independence says that you have rights to life, liberty, pursuit of happiness, and that to secure these rights governments are formed. So, you have a government, how secure do your rights feel? Not very.

It also says that when any government becomes abusive of these rights, it is the power of the people to overthrow such government and establish new means for their peace and happiness. People don’t change things to which they are accustomed for light and transient reasons, but only when a long train of abuses and usurpations shows evidence of reducing them under the boot of absolute tyranny. I submit to a candid world that such is the patient suffering of the American people, and nothing can be more clear than that design is being carried out. You are being sold into slavery.

How should you pursue any acts of rebellion? On your own. Tell no one what you do for freedom. Simply do it. And, of course, build a team to help you if there are problems. Some days things will be done to you. “Some days you eat the bear, some days the bear eats you,” is a good description of your world. So, do form a rapid response team with people you know, do work to help one another, do send lawyers, guns, and money as appropriate to get your people out of trouble.

But, do not make the same mistakes. Don’t delegate power to a committee. Don’t expect your new committee to be trustworthy. For if they should win, they simply become the new bosses. And, worse, if they think they are losing, their family is suffering too much, they are not going to be part of the winning coalition, they may decide to surrender. Why would you surrender to rapists, liars, thieves, cannibals, and mass murderers? You should not, and if you would not, don’t give anyone else the power to surrender on your behalf.

My goal here is very simple. I want you to be free. I want you to be free because your freedom is better than your slavery, for me, in terms of me keeping my freedom, having interesting conversations with good people, and engaging in trade and commerce. Also, your freedom is better for you and therefore pleasing to God, who is connected to your soul and feels everything you feel. God would rather feel happiness than terror and fear, so, you being free is better.

Yes, Jesus is the Prince of Peace, and there can be no peace without justice. God has said repeatedly that we should use fair weights and measures, treat each other justly, not bear false witness, not lie someone into trouble with the law, not covet one another’s stuff. There can be no justice, though without freedom. Right? You cannot be in the presence of justice if you are enslaved, tortured, beaten, raped, murdered. You need to be free to speak up, to keep and bear arms, to practice your religion or lack thereof, do as you think best with your property, not be spied upon constantly, and so forth.

Peace requires justice. Justice requires freedom. Freedom requires weapons. You have to defend it. It is, after all, a pearl of great price. It is your sacred individual sovereignty. So, sell your cloak and buy arms.

Also, don’t ask me to lead you into battle. Don’t become a follower. The rebellion and the change to the world of Malachi chapter 4, where you crush your enemies as ashes beneath your boots, that world requires that you be free and independent. That vine and fig tree each one of you sits under, where no one makes you afraid, that requires that you be sovereign. In many ways that is a metaphor of your sovereignty.

If you need to form a team and you need a team leader, if you need rules of engagement, if you need to work together, do so. Of course. But don’t delegate power over your existence to liars, thieves, rapists, murderers, and cannibals.

That’s what’s been happening, and for over a century, and unless you stop it, it will continue.

My grandparents obeyed Woodrow Wilson instead of having him tried for treason and executed. My parents obeyed FDR instead of having him tried for treason and executed. My generation obeyed Bill Clinton instead of having him tried for treason and executed. So, you see, there has been a long train of abuses and usurpations, and obedience has not created the freedom you crave.

If you mean to be free, you are going to have to free yourself. If you mean to be free, please keep your freedom. Keep your power. Don’t delegate your power. Choose whether to go along with others, work together for common goals, but don’t imagine that they should become your new masters. Seriously. You have to stop doing that stuff. It’s really annoying.

Your freedom involves your power, and your power is your sovereignty. Keep your sovereignty, your power, and your freedom. Or the cycle of violence and oppression and rebellion and new bosses and violence and oppression will never end.

My grandparents did not bequeath freedom to their children and my parents did not bequeath it to me. What are you going to leave for your children? Why not leave them in control of their own destinies? It would be a refreshing change.

PDF Download.

Contact: jim@resilientways.net

=====

Jim Davidson is an author, entrepreneur, actor, and director. He is the cfo of KanehCN3.com and the vision director of HoustonSpaceSociety.net You can find him on Twitter.com/planetaryjim as well as Pocket.app and Flote.app also as planetaryjim. He appreciates any support you can provide as times are very difficult. See the Paypal link on this page. Or email your humble author to offer other choices. Visit IglooLuau.com for more information. Those seeking a multi-jurisdiction multi-hop VPN for communications privacy please visit https://secure.cryptohippie.com/houstonspacesociety.php For those seeking colloidal silver try ppmSilver.com/Jim Ask Jim about CryptoWealth.

Kings of the High Frontier

[Continued from Part One Part Two Part Three Part Four Part Five Part Six Part Seven, Part Eight] [Parts Nine, Ten, & Eleven part Twelve part Thirteen part Fourteen part Fifteen part Sixteen &Seventeen Title and Art Contest] [part Eighteen] [part Nineteen] [part Twenty] [part Twenty-one] [part Twenty-two] [part Twenty-three] [part Twenty-four] [part Twenty-five] [part Twenty-six] [part Twenty-seven] [part Twenty-eight] [part Twenty-nine][part Thirty][part Thirty-one]

“A good plan violently executed now is better than a perfect plan executed at some indefinite time in the future.”
― George S. Patton Jr.

Carlos Perez nodded at the image of his son on the laptop screen on his desk, glancing briefly into the web cam mounted there. He said, “Yes, that seems best. Leave a minimal team in the captured space station, take all the firepower we have, and blast that new battle station. When can you go?”

Juan looked at his father’s image and said, “Right away. There’s no advantage to delay, things will only get worse the longer we wait.”

Seeing nods from all the others present at his conference table, and from the images of the other team members now in orbit, Carlos nodded once, firmly, and said, “Go with God.” He sat back and looked at the main status screen, thinking through the orbital trajectories. A significant concentration of their firepower should be nearing Battle Station 7 in about two hours. Carlos ordered the calculations and had them sent up to the orbiting teams. The same calculations could be made on orbit, of course, but having the ground team handle things reduced the work load on those in orbit.

Hu Ponse spoke up from his position near the ceiling of the Destiny lab module. He asked, “Why don’t we keep skeleton crews aboard the spacecraft we send against that new battle station, and leave as many here in our captures space station? Wouldn’t that be safer than sending everyone into harm’s way?”

Juan smiled at his team mate. He replied, “You know better, Hu. Concentrating our forces only makes sense if we use them in attack. Putting everyone in one pressure vessel, the one with the least firepower, makes no sense. It is the same centralisation mythos that ruined the economy a few years ago. As it is, the people we leave here need to isolate each module, and wear their pressure suits with helmets at hand, as unpleasant as that will be. No telling what may happen, except that no battle plan survives contact with the enemy.”

Deke Mason looked over to Juan’s end of the module and asked, “What is the plan?”

Juan replied, “Envelopment. I want to go at that battle station from every direction at once. We can get everyone there at the same time, about two hours ten minutes from now. Think of it as the enemy’s gate in Ender’s Game. That battle station is ‘down’ and our goal is to send everything we’ve got down at it. If it does to the Guban station what it did to Sky Angel Seven, we’re going to have trouble holding on up here.”

Sky Angel One

Tiffany Tomasovna was worried. Despite their envelopment of Battle Station Seven, it was still very dangerous. Its sky rods and its rail guns were part of the danger, its MIRV warheads were another, and despite a number of solid hits, its reactor was very much on line. Tif could see its automated systems repairing the damage. Two additional sources of concern. The plane change manouvre it had executed was bringing it toward the captured international space station, what they were calling Rebel Orbital Port Two (ROP2). Worse, it was also going to be over Somaliland in a few hours and be able to target its warheads and sky rods at ROP1 now in finally launch prep in the Guban.

The rebellion could lose its temporary logistics hub, lose its main base of operations in orbit before launch, and they’d launched everything they had ready. Additional Sky Angel teams were gearing up for launches in about a week, sooner if anyone could manage, but a great deal of good fortune would be needed to reduce that timeline for any of the potential replacements.

This idea about needing replacements had only just crossed Tif’s mind when she saw Sky Angel Fourteen take a direct hit on their propellant tank. There was an explosion and an asymmetrical impulse, causing the vehicle to tumble.

Juan Perez took charge and said, “Ramos, move Angel 12 to cover that gap, we don’t want to leave an opening. Pete do you read? Status report on Angel 14 please.”

Everyone was busier than usual for tens of seconds while they adjusted their positions. Battle Station Seven responded after a second to the gap with a flurry of rail gun missiles and several more sky rods at Angel 12 to attempt to prevent the gap from being covered.

After fifteen seconds of this activity, Frank Taylor’s voice was heard from Angel 14. He said, “Pete Ling is badly injured from an electrical fire at his control station. I’ve re-routed controls and should have our tumble recovery completed in a couple of minutes. We’ll be low propellant though. Main oxygen tank is gone, using auxiliaries only.”

Tif opened a separate encrypted channel to Juan. She said, “There’s a timing delay. That beast has a remote operator. If we can isolate its signal or destroy its antennae, we can put it on internal control. Then we just have to outsmart a machine.”

Juan replied, “Thanks Tif, that’s good thinking. There are a number of antenna structures we can target.”

Switching to the general channel, Juan called out, “All Angels, target anything that looks like a radio system on that beast. We’re not going to break through the reactor any time soon, but we can take down its remote operator’s input. That should reduce its tactical capabilities. Angel 8, rendezvous with Angel 14 and deploy tethers. Gil, see if you and Frank can arrange a tow back to ROP2.”

Twenty minutes later, a new problem became urgent. Although they were fairly sure the remote operator was largely or at least intermittently cut off, all of their vehicles were running low on ammo. Isaac Vossius in the captured battle station, now designated Rebel Battle One or RB1, reported that he had zero sky rods left. Only one of the rods he’d thrown had damaged the last enemy battle station early in the conflict, and that damage seemed to be fully repaired now.

Juan Perez keyed off the external communications system for his team’s spacecraft. Then he looked across his crew compartment at Hu Ponse and Nancy Farnham who were still aboard. For tactical reasons, to conserve manouevering fuel, they had left George Memtok aboard Rebel Orbital Port Two, the former international space station. Hu seemed to have anticipated the moment because he returned Juan’s gaze and nodded.

Nancy was a little busy just then targetting their rail gun to send the last of their ammo at the enemy. That accomplished, she looked up at Hu’s tap on her elbow. Seeing his gesture, she looked over at Juan.

“We can hit that reactor with a collision,” Juan said. Nancy looked confused for a moment, not sure what would be colliding with the enemy’s reactor. Then her eyes widened.

A thousand thoughts passed through Nancy’s mind in a few seconds. Misgivings, unfinished business, and the situation screens in front of her all flashed by in her mind’s eye. The deciding factors were the vulnerable space station on the ground and the recently captured space station in orbit. They didn’t have much time left to save either target. They really wanted to save both. All these ideas brought home the conclusion that Juan had reached. Glancing briefly at Hu, she realised that he had also steeled his resolve. Looking Juan in the eye, she nodded.

Juan’s hands moved on the controls to shift their orbit, and he keyed on their communications with the fleet. “Sky Angel Twenty, to all angel teams. I’ve taken a collision course with the enemy battle station …”

Isaac Vossius spoke up, “I’m sorry sir, but I cannot let you do that. Tell my family goodbye.”

From the position of his vehicle, it was clear that he had reached the same conclusion even earlier than Juan had. Moments later Isaac’s massive captured battle station collided with the nuclear reactor of the enemy vehicle. The collision broke open the containment vessel, destroyed all the coolant systems simultaneously, and the explosions from his propellant tanks took Isaac’s life and further damaged the enemy station.

There was a moment of stunned amazement. A general intake of breath could be heard followed by muttered prayers and expressions of shock.

Unfortunately, in its death throes, the enemy station now launched all its remaining sky rods and all six of its MIRV warheads. None of the rebel fleet were targetted. The sky rods headed toward the orbiting space station and the reentry vehicles headed for ground targets.

Tif said, “What can we do? Everyone is out of ammo!”

Gil Dartmouth spoke up, “Not quite everyone. Frank and I are targetting the sky rods now. We should be able to disable them before they damage anything.”

Juan’s eyebrows went up. In the heat of battle, he’d forgotten about Angels 14 and 8 which had shaped orbit for the captured space station earlier in the conflict. He sat back full against his padded seat and sighed.

At that moment, Nancy saw an indicator light up on her control panel. She said, “New signal detected.”

Seeing that she had her controls well in hand, Juan said, “Let’s hear it.”

There was a brief squawk of radio noise. Then a new voice spoke up, “Rebel fleet, this is Master Control. My name is Lars Hopkins. When you removed the antenna systems, Master Station Seven went to internal command and control. Unfortunately, its software design was determined by psychopaths who made sure it would wreak havoc if it was about to be disabled. I am now triggering the self-destruct systems for those nuclear warheads. Please confirm. My action is going to be seen as betrayal by the owners, of course. No doubt it is my moment to take independent action. As you can imagine, I don’t want the destruction of six cities on my conscience.”

All across the rebel fleet, optical systems were already focused on the re-entering warheads, and, sure enough, one by one they began to show small explosions. Safety devices detonated their internal propellant tanks and exploded their guidance systems. These asymmetric impulses caused each warhead to tumble.

Nuclear warheads designed for reentry are fairly robust, but they do depend on attitude control during reentry. Otherwise, the enormous heat of atmospheric reentry can completely consume the components necessary to cause a nuclear explosion. Of course, the nuclear material itself is very dense, and some components would likely reach the surface of the Earth, but with neither guidance nor propulsion, and with their reentry shielding rendered useless from tumbling, there was no longer a danger of nuclear detonation, with one exception.

As each warhead was nullified by the self-destruct system, Lars entered a new set of codes at his work station, giving him the ability to signal the self-destruct on the next warhead. He was acting rapidly, but his controls were designed to limit his freedom for independent action. He was having to over-ride multiple systems meant to lock him out in case he went rogue. These intricacies worked the first time, the second time, the third time, the fourth time.

All across the sky, and down at Angels Control, sighs of relief were widespread as each of the first four warheads was destroyed. About thirty seconds went by and then the fifth warhead detonated.

Typing furiously at his work station, Lars experienced a power failure. His entire work station went dark. A moment later his entire vehicle went dark. The internal protocols had given up on keeping him in line, and had nullified his ability to act.

Juan typed a few commands and sent an in-the-clear radio message. He said, “Lars, come in Lars. Master Control, five out of six is good, but can you go one better?”

There was no reply. Far below, the last remaining reentry vehicle dwindled with distance.

Juan switched back to the rebel fleet channel and said, “Angel 16, see if you can rendezvous with that Master Control spacecraft. I think our new friend is in trouble. And, anyway, there’s zero chance he’ll want to return home after what he’s done. Angel Control, there’s going to be a nuclear detonation somewhere on the eastern seaboard.”

Hampton Roads, Virginia, was a body of water famous for the battle of the ironclads in 1862. At that site, the USS Monitor and the CSS Virginia fought for two days in early March in an ill-fated to lift the blockade of Confederate ports. The surface detonation there of a 475 kilotonne nuclear warhead wiped out ships, warehouses, bridges, buildings, ended tens of thousands of lives, and wiped out electrical and electronic systems for miles around.

The war for freedom had just gone nuclear. No one in the rebellion had any idea why Hampton Roads had been targetted.

[End part thirty-two, continues in part thirty-three]

Contact: jim@resilientways.net

PDF version here!

=====

Jim Davidson is an author, entrepreneur, actor, and director. He is the cfo of KanehCN3.com and the vision director of HoustonSpaceSociety.net You can find him on Twitter.com/planetaryjim as well as Pocket.app and Flote.app also as planetaryjim. He appreciates any support you can provide as times are very difficult. See the Paypal link on this page. Or email your humble author to offer other choices. Visit IglooLuau.com for more information. Those seeking a multi-jurisdiction multi-hop VPN for communications privacy please visit https://secure.cryptohippie.com/houstonspacesociety.php For those seeking colloidal silver try ppmSilver.com/Jim Ask Jim about CryptoWealth.

Flying Home

[Continued from Part One Part Two Part Three Part Four Part Five Part Six Part Seven, Part Eight] [Parts Nine, Ten, & Eleven part Twelve part Thirteen part Fourteen part Fifteen part Sixteen &Seventeen Title and Art Contest] [part Eighteen] [part Nineteen] [part Twenty] [part Twenty-one] [part Twenty-two] [part Twenty-three] [part Twenty-four] [part Twenty-five] [part Twenty-six] [part Twenty-seven] [part Twenty-eight] [part Twenty-nine][part Thirty]

“I can go for miles in my airplane

Have a lotta smiles in my airplane

I can go up, I can get down

But I can’t get to you if you don’ want me around

In my airplane…”
~ The Royal Guardsmen

John Kell turned his head to look at Mary Morris. He said, “What do you mean, we can never go home?”

Mary smiled at John, then looked away to the view out her side of the plane. She replied, “Oh, it’s a saying from Heraclitus. He was fascinated by the ever-changing nature of reality. He said that you can never step twice into the same river. You cannot be the same person you were the last time you stepped into it, because you change. The river cannot be the same river it was the last time you visited it, because it also changes.”

John nodded. Just then Mary turned her head to look at him. She smiled at him. He smiled at her. They were on their way.

Glancing past John for a moment, Mary’s eyes widened. Her smile disappeared. She pointed out John’s window and said, “Look at that convoy!”

John’s smile faded as he turned his head to the left to look in the indicated direction. There below them on Interstate 85 were hundreds of trucks, some painted in woodlands camo and many in desert colours. At least a division of combat troops were moving.

Up in a cloudy sky at 11,000 feet, the Cessna 400 was unlikely to be seen, or considered a threat. Even so, John was briefly happy that their route was not going to parallel the convoy below them. It looked like all those troops were headed to Greenville.

Craning her neck a bit and looking past John’s shoulder, Mary exclaimed, “Those are tank transporters down there!”

Dipping his left wing briefly, John took a good long look of his own. Sure enough, there were M1A1 Abrams tanks en route. They were mounted on low-boy trailers being hauled by the army’s version of the semi-tractor.

John said, “Mary? Can you reach into the back and get my binoculars, please? I’ve got a bad feeling about this stuff.”

Mary unbelted and fairly climbed into the cramped space behind their seats. Twisting the pack, she found a convenient outer pocket just the right size, and came up with the Vortex Razor binoculars. She handed these forward to John, then climbed back into her seat and put her belt and shoulder harness back on.

Looking over the convoy, John found insignia he recognised on every vehicle he scanned. It was an army division loyal to one of the owners. He shook his head. Setting the binoculars in the space between his seat and the pilot’s door, he focused on the instrument panel.

He was familiar with the Garmin G1000 glass cockpit having learned in one. It showed him their cruising speed, about 265 mph. Their heading was right on track, and the righthand panel map showed their progress. The “steam” instruments at the top of the dashboard showed the same information in older formats.

For a few moments, John pondered whether to reconnoitre more closely. Looking to his left, he imagined the difficulties. A convoy that size would either have crewed air support or drones. Anything he radioed would be intercepted. Even an encrypted signal would be detected, and the fact of that signal would be meaningful. Better to get home, get connected, get the word out. Besides, Mary was precious cargo. He glanced right, and saw her staring at him.

Mary said, “You’re thinking about going down there to get a closer look, and whether that’s going to be dangerous.” She raised her eyebrows and continued, “I can see you’ve decided against the idea. They’ll have drone patrols and maybe combat aircraft. Besides, any signal we send is going to be a problem, so we have to get connected.”

John widened his eyes a bit, and smiled. He nodded. “Those were my very thoughts. We’re just ordinary travellers on a flight from the coast up into the hills. No bother to them unles we get close or look like we care about them.”

Mary looked aside out her window. She nodded. “First rule is, don’t get caught,” she said. She turned her head toward him and grinned.

Moving his right hand off the control yoke, John reached over and gripped Mary’s left hand. He nodded and smiled at her. “It isn’t much further. I’m glad you’re here.”

Squeezing his hand briefly, Mary said, “I’m glad I’m here, too.”

Homecoming

John guided the Cessna down onto the grass airstrip. It was a calm day, and the windsock atop the barn hung somewhat limp. John had landed many aircraft at his family’s ranch in the last fourteen years. His dad had taught him when he was only fifteen. Today the landing was perfect.

John let the plane roll along for a while as he eased the brakes on, got stopped, and then taxied back to the barn which doubled as a hangar. Next to it was a broad concrete apron with tie downs for visiting aircraft. Deftly, John stopped at one of these.

The ninety minute flight had not been tiring for either of them. John had flown many longer flights over the years, and had slept on board the Flying Nell. Mary had also slept, and the virus-specific antigen she’d been given had worked wonders. Like many of the freedom community developed bio-pharmaceuticals it actually worked, unlike nearly everything touched by the evil mass-murdering cartels. Physically, Mary felt great. Spiritually, she was still very troubled.

John went through his post-flight check list from memory. With Mary’s able help, he tied down the plane. Then he hefted his backpack and put it back on, hooking the ends of belly band together. Mary was wearing the vest Karen Runningwolf had given her. Smiling at her, John held out his rifle. She smiled too, and slung it over her shoulder. The two of them held hands and walked toward his family home.

Slam! The screen door always swung fully open and into the wall next to it whenever Melissa Kell came running outside. Today was no exception. Having heard the plane land and taxi, Melissa had finished in the kitchen on the other side of the house where she was taking some freshly baked biscuits from an oven. Walking swiftly across the house, she fairly leapt off the porch without pausing to use the three steps, and was several paces down the walkway, shedding her apron when she saw that her brother was bringing company.

Fifty feet apart the two siblings stopped, and Mary did as well. Directly in front of her was an imperfect mirror, sharing her height and weight almost exactly, Melissa was as pale and blonde as Mary was dark and brunette. Mary smiled. Melissa smiled. Something about her … each woman had the same sense of familiarity to the other.

Melissa raised an eyebrow and glanced at her brother, which brought Mary back down to Earth. Mary also glaced over at John. John was grinning broadly at his sister. Releasing Mary’s hand, he brought his arm up to gesture that here was someone new.

“Sis,” he said, “Please meet the princess we rescued from the enemy’s castle this morning, Mary Morris.”

Using his same right hand to gesture at his sister he continued, “Mary, please meet my sister the spiritual healer, Melissa Kell.”

Gathering her skirts, Melissa executed a perfect curtsy, saying, “Pleased to meet you, your highness.” With these words, a frisson passed down her spine, and Melissa realised that she had a spiritual connexion with Mary that transcended their current lives.

Having felt a similar frisson of energy, Mary smiled and giggled. Making her own curtsy, and said, “John has elevated me to princess without my prior knowledge. I’m very pleased to meet you as well, Melissa.”

Melissa looked at Mary with a quizzical expression and said, “John, you’re going to want to put your pack in your room and talk to mom and dad in the kitchen. Help yourself to the biscuits. Mary and I have a bunch of things to discuss, and we’ll be in my room.”

Mary turned to John, hugged him quickly, kissed his cheek, and ran over to Melissa. The two women hugged, and ran hand in hand back to the house, up the steps onto the porch, and inside. John looked at them go, glanced up at the windsock over the barn which was suddenly standing straight out as a gust of wind came out of the north. He felt it as coolness on his face. Smiling to himself, John stepped lightly down the path and leapt up the three steps onto the porch in a bound. He was very happy.

As he came into the parlour, John smelled the biscuits all the way from the kitchen. Those smelled great! Past the living room, he could see the brightly lit kitchen, and his parents sitting at one of the kitchen tables. John waved and smiled, then gestured upstairs.

He said, “I’m running my gear up to my room. Be down in a minute. Don’t eat all the biscuits!”

His mom replied, “Don’t be silly dear, your sister made fifty of these little delights. There’ll be plenty when you get here.”

Smiling broadly, John took the steps two at at time, passing the landing for his parents’ master suite and going on up to the top floor of the house. Pausing for just a moment in the stairwell to look out the window at the familiar view spread below, his smile widened. Weeks of training and hours of the mission had left him eager for familiar sights.

With a start, he realised that his ankle no longer hurt. Whatever Lisa Angeleno had done while he slept aboard the Flying Nell it was fully healed. Even the dramatic hop onto the porch and stair climb had not brought so much as a twinge of pain. Counting his blessings, he walked past the closed door to his sister’s room, punched his privacy code into the door lock for his room, and watched it chase a small green light around a circle, then display the words “now open.”

Going in and turning on the overhead light, John quickly shed his pack. Then he went for a moment into his bathroom, ran warm water in the sink, splashed some on his face, rubbed some onto the back of his neck, and towelled off. Regarding his own familiar visage in the mirror for a moment, John smiled again.

Having paused for his ablutions, John went to his desk, booted his computer, and entered a series of passwords to mount the encrypted drives. Waiting for the boot cycle to complete, he reached into the mini-fridge and pulled out a nearly empty bottle of pomegranate juice which he poured into one of the glass tumblers on top of the fridge. After entering a very long password to access his Linux debian desktop, he launched an open source email client and composed a few messages regarding the things he and Mary had seen moving up Interstate 85. He encrypted these messages to various people up his chain of command and several others in his network of cadres, applied his digital signature, and sent them out.

A few minutes later, sitting at the kitchen table with his parents, John attended to buttering a couple of his sister’s highly acclaimed biscuits. Everyone in the family all around the country who had occasion to sample them spoke well of these buttermilk blessings. Fresh from the oven, with butter and a bit of red raspberry preserves from his mom’s canning operation, they were a blissful joy.

His mom brought over a glass of iced tea. She set it beside him, leaned over and kissed her son’s cheek. Then she tousled his hair briefly and returned to sit by her husband.

Alfred Kell looked at his son. Waiting for a few bites to be swallowed, he asked, “Who was that young woman your sister rushed upstairs with just now? It seemed like they are fast friends, but in all my born years, I’ve never seen her before.”

Cassandra Caine Kell looked at her husband and then at their son. From the blush coming over John’s face, she surmised part of the truth, and said, “She’s someone you brought home from your adventure today, isn’t she? We read about it on the ‘net this afternoon, that you’d opened that terrible slave camp in New Jersey, then got away with all kinds of people, scattering to the four winds as the hoaxer reports claim. The owners are claiming to be very distressed by all the damage to their camps up and down the two long coasts. You’d think they were talking about brigands breaking into a factory or something.”

John drank quite a bit of tea, then wiped his mouth on a cloth napkin that was at his place. He nodded. “That young woman is Mary Morris. I think she may be the most amazing person ever.”

For the next twenty minutes, he told the story of his descent into the camp, the death of their pilot, the minor injury to his ankle, his part in the rescue operation, the trip by Hydro Lance to Savannah, and their recognition by the crew, the gifts from the rental car company and the fixed base operation, as well as their flight over the military convoy. He mentioned in a general way that he had sent messages out when he visited his room upstairs.

Cassandra said, “We’re very proud of you, John. It went well for your team. Some of the other teams met more organised resistance. All of them were successful at rescuing most of those in the camps. We’ve seen some of the photos and videos. There have been a great many atrocities.”

Her eyes shifted to the right, as she recalled the things she had seen earlier that day. Scenes of carnage and brutality inflicted by those with power over those without. She sighed.

Alfred reached over and took his wife’s hand. She looked up. She smiled a brave smile. Her husband smiled back. He said, “We’ve begun. We knew it wouldn’t be easy, and we knew it had to be done, and so we’ve made a beginning.”

Clattering down the stairs came the sound of two sets of feet. Moments later Mary and Melissa came striding across the living room. John’s face lit up. He leapt to his feet and held out the empty chair next to his. Mary smiled and nodded and took that seat. Melissa grabbed a chair from another table and brought it up. Then she set a plate with two biscuits in front of Mary, rifled a silverware drawer for utensils, and came back with them. Grabbing some biscuits for herself, Melissa sat.

During these activities, John said, “Mom, dad, please allow me to present Mary Morris. Mary, my mom, Cassandra Kell and my dad, Alfred Kell.”

Cassandra said, “Welcome to our home. We’re very glad you’re here.”

Alfred added, “Yes, you are welcome here.”

Mary smiled at each of them. “I’m very pleased to meet you. Melissa has told me a great deal about you. You’ve a very nice home.” She glanced down and saw the biscuits, so she attended to buttering these and adding some jam to her plate.

Melissa said, “Mom, dad, I want Mary to stay in the room across the hall from me. She’s been in that camp for months and the trauma was terrible. Torture, rape, seeing people beaten down, people she worked with at the camp beaten and disappeared. She and I have a lot of work to do together to get her beyond what she’s been through.”

Cassandra looked briefly at Alfred, who was already nodding. She said, “Well of course, dear, that’s exactly right. We want Mary in our home for as long as she wishes.”

John grinned on hearing this point. He looked at Mary and saw that she was smiling and crying at the same time.

Melissa reached over and put her left hand on Mary’s right shoulder and used her right hand to take hold of Mary’s right hand. John reached across the table to put his hand atop both of theirs.

Mary smiled at John, then at Melissa. Then, turning to their parents said, “Thank you Mr. and Mrs. Kell. Your generosity of spirit is very touching. My parents died when I was little and my grandparents raised me, but they passed away two years ago. And when I was caught, all my things were destroyed or stolen. Your welcome is a great blessing to me.”

Alfred smiled, nodding, and said, “You are welcome as long as you care to stay. We have a lot of animals here, and several gardens, so there’s no shortage of beauty and harmony. I hope these can be a balm to your spirit.”

Looking down, he attended to the last piece of a biscuit on his plate. With his mouth full, he looked carefully at his son. Swallowing, he glanced at his wife, whose beaming smile made clear that she could see the signs of love as well. Not wanting to there be any doubt, he continued, “Welcome to the family.”

[End part thirty-one, continues in part thirty-two]

Contact: jim@resilientways.net

PDF download.

=====

Jim Davidson is an author, entrepreneur, actor, and director. He is the cfo of KanehCN3.com and the vision director of HoustonSpaceSociety.net You can find him on Twitter.com/planetaryjim as well as Pocket.app and Flote.app also as planetaryjim. He appreciates any support you can provide as times are very difficult. See the Paypal link on this page. Or email your humble author to offer other choices. Visit IglooLuau.com for more information. Those seeking a multi-jurisdiction multi-hop VPN for communications privacy please visit https://secure.cryptohippie.com/houstonspacesociety.php For those seeking colloidal silver try ppmSilver.com/Jim Ask Jim about CryptoWealth.

Devilish Experts

“What the devil do experts know, except how to impress other experts?”

~ Harry Turtledove, American Empire: Blood & Iron, 2001

Experts may tell you that they know a great deal, but they aren’t paid more by appearing ignorant. Rather, their self-interest is to convince others that they know how things really work. In some cases, that is either true, or it is easily falsified.

For example, in the case of an auto mechanic, she might say that she can fix your transmission. If you pay her to do so and it works, you have a good deal. If the transmission does not work, however, the particular expert failed. Either they failed in a particular matter, or perhaps they simply weren’t good at the work. The consequences of failure may be borne by the expert, who would guarantee the service. So, one way of testing an expert is to see whether they stand behind their work. Will they pay the cost of fixing problems they cause?

Recently, experts have assured us that nCoV2019 is a deadly, virulent, terrible disease. They insisted that dramatic measures be taken, beginning in late January 2020 in Wuhan with severe travel restrictions. Of course, these measures came too late, as we now know. One of the experts who modelled the anticipated global pandemic claimed that millions would die and hundreds of millions be infected, again if dramatic measures were not taken.

To the shock and disgust of many observers, that same expert was recently caught breaking quarantine to spend time with his girlfriend. And, of course, the actual course of the disease does not closely match the model provided by the expert. Unfortunately for 33.3 million Americans now forced out of work and thousands of business owners forced to close their doors to the public, the expert who made all these predictions is uninsured for the dramatic liabiity involved.

Worse, none of the government agencies responsible for implementing procedures to shut down the economy are ever going to take responsibility for the harm they’ve done. They will claim, and the courts will defend, their usurpation of unconstitutional powers under the notion of “sovereign immunity.” So there will never be any justice.

One of the many problems which arise when the people in government determine to interfere in the economy is: the free market cannot be micromanaged. Every command economy causes hardship and suffering because it necessarily eliminates the one thing that free markets alone can provide: price discovery. Price discovery is simply the process of buyers and sellers shopping around and finding market clearing prices for their goods and services.

Free markets are inherently cooperative. All markets exist to find market clearing prices, and all buyer and all sellers are highly motivated to find those prices, strike deals, and clear trades. Doing so benefits all involved.

Governments, however, are parasites which tax, regulate, pick winners in the economy, and force losers. So the more governments get involved in a given kind of transaction, the worse things are for those in the market.

What we are now witnessing is the planned, forced, violent closing of businesses. People who have tried to reopen have been arrested. The Ector County sheriff’s department sent its SWAT team with rifles and an armoured personnel carrier to a local bar to arrest people who objected to these heavy handed methods.

Let’s go over some of the things that are in violation, and then we can look at why governments cannot succeed at the management of the economy.

People in government have now said that the sacraments cannot be given in any church, including the eucharist or communion. Singing is banned on the theory it might spread disease, without any proof. All restrictions on the freedom of religion are unconstitutional, and all politicians and bureau-rats enforcing such restrictions are traitors to freedom.

People in government have decreed that people are to be forced to stay in their homes, whether they are ill or not, during this plandemic. Doing so violates a number of rights. First, by putting people in custody in their own homes, the government is not building separate prison or quarantine facilities, and is quartering prisoners in the same way that imperial troops were once quartered by imposing them on American home owners. Doing so is wrong. Further, hotels and motels are being forced to house the homeless and refusal to do so has led to threats of confisaction. Again, the spirit of the prohibition on quartering troops is being violated.

Most important, everyone is being treated as though they are guilty without being proven guilty in a court of law. Trump rather piously announced some years ago that he wants to seize guns first and then provide due process, which has led to the passage of so-called red flag laws. The red flag in question is the flag of communism, and already people, such as Duncan Socrates Lemp, have been killed by evil police pursuing red flag arrests, police who will never be held to account for their criminal behaviour and treason.

Lockdown is cruel and unusual punishment. Private businesses being closed by decree represents the taking of private property without any compensation. The ninth amendment says that we all have rights that are not enumerated, such as buying and selling. The first amendment says we can peaceably assemble, including to transact business. The tenth amendment says that powers not delegated by the people remain with the people, and nowhere in the constitutions of the national or state governments is there any power to either suspend all liberties or micromanage the economy.

So, even if it could work economically, what is being done for the last few weeks, and what is supposedly going to continue for months or years to come, is treason. It is a terrible and pernicious violation of freedom, and anyone who disagrees is some sort of authoritarian filth.

Four Reasons It Fails

Why is the economy so suddenly and terribly shattered? Don’t the experts know how to do everything? Aren’t they qualified to call for the closure of businesses without any restriction? No. They simply cannot know how to manage all aspects of economic activity.

1. The economic calculation problem can only be resolved by free markets. You cannot find market clearing prices any other way. These facts were proven repeatedly by economists like Carl Menger, Ludwig von Mises, Friedrich Hayek, and Murray Rothbard, among others. All planned economies necessarily lead to tyranny to enforce whatever arbitrary provisions are imposed, whether price limits – which cause shortages which lead to secret trading – or prohibitions, forced closures, or other similar decrees. It is impossible to manage the entire economy, and every government that has tried to do so has failed.

2. Complex systems are governed by a branch of mathematics that examines chaos. A sign of a chaotic system is when very small changes in initial conditions result in dramatic and unexpected changes in final conditions. Complex systems are non-linear, and they fail in non-linear ways. Chaos mathematics describes strange attractors and other oddities. What we’ve seen in two months of forced lockdown is the dramatic end to prosperity, an end to the booming economy, and huge numbers of newly unemployed. The food supply is now threatened because the free market has been destroyed.

3. Incompleteness is a fact of life. Reality does not provide us with a complete logical system. That was proven many decades ago by Kurt Godel. His incompleteness theorem shows that every logical system has to begin with assumptions, with givens, with things that are taken on faith. Which means that there is no way to prove that the entire system is based on good ideas or on the shifting sands of expedience. You cannot build a stairway to the stars unless it is founded on bedrock. Building on sand leads to collapse and death.

4. Quantum physics is very strange. It is also the best understanding we have of reality as it really is. We don’t appear to live in a deterministic universe, but in a probabilistic one. Therefore, it is extremely difficult to predict outcomes. The idea that politicians and their pet experts can manage the entire global economy is arrogant conceit. It is also a deadly delusion.

What should you do with this information? Stop obeying. Stop trusting experts. They don’t know better than you. And they don’t pay any penalty for being wrong.

You have to choose for yourself whether you go to work, open your business, buy and sell, trust the court system for relief, work openly or in secret, live amongst karens and other snitches or away from them. As long as people were reasonably free to go about their business, cities could be quite liveable, especially those cities where people were free to buy guns and use them in self-defence.

Today, it is clear that you aren’t safe in a city. If you try to run a beauty salon in your home, one of your neighbours will rat you out to the pigs. Then you’ll have fines and possible jail time plus court costs, lawyer fees, bail money.

You might not be safe out in the country, but there are fewer neighbours, and many rural people are not inclined to snitch, preferring to live and let live. Not all, by any means, of course.

Trusting experts can lead to your demise. Choose wisely. Choose for yourself.

Contact: jim@resilientways.net

PDF download.

=====

Jim Davidson is an author, entrepreneur, actor, and director. He is the cfo of KanehCN3.com and the vision director of HoustonSpaceSociety.net You can find him on Twitter.com/planetaryjim as well as Pocket.app and Flote.app also as planetaryjim. He appreciates any support you can provide as times are very difficult. See the Paypal link on this page. Or email your humble author to offer other choices. Visit IglooLuau.com for more information. Those seeking a multi-jurisdiction multi-hop VPN for communications privacy please visit https://secure.cryptohippie.com/houstonspacesociety.php For those seeking colloidal silver try ppmSilver.com/Jim Ask Jim about CryptoWealth.

The May Scale: Monetary Hardness in an Era of Soft Money

“The noble silver drachma, which of old we were so proud of, and the one of gold, coins that rang true (clean stamped and worth their weight) throughout the world have ceased to circulate. Instead the purses of Athenian shoppers are full of shoddy silver-plated coppers.”

~ Aristophanes, The Frogs, 405 BC

We live in a time of new types of money. For many thousands of years, people have used a small weight of gold, silver, or copper as a medium of exchange. Many other things have been used as money, such as salt, from which we get the word “salary” and the phrase “worth his salt” and cattle, from which we get the word “pecuniary.” In war time and in times of monetary inflation, things like hard candies, chocolate, cigarettes, tins of anchovies, and silk stockings have been used as media of exchange. The function of money is to make trade and commerce faster.

In the 13th Century, according to Marco Polo, as related in Antony Sutton’s excellent book The War on Gold the emperor of China painted some vermillion ink on pieces of a paper made from the bast between the bark and the core wood of mulberry trees and used these pieces of paper as a substitute for gold, silver, pearls, and precious stones, all of which he required the merchants and people to exchange at rates he fixed. While the paper money was supposedly redeemable back to the backing instruments, the occasions when redemptions were allowed became more and more rare. Eventually nobody could redeem the paper money, fewer and fewer people would accept it, and it became worthless.

Paper money experiments have been tried from time to time, and we are currently in the midst of one. It is by no means the first, nor the longest period in which unbacked money substitutes have been thrust into the world economy. It seems destined to fail as all the rest.

Back in 1640, Charles the First, then king of England and somewhat hard pressed by the parliamentarians, seized the private gold stored at the royal mint. After that, merchants preferred to keep their gold with private gold smiths who issued receipts on their holdings. These goldsmith notes were circulated as money, and were often endorsed on the back from one party to another. However, Charles the Second borrowed most of that gold from the goldsmiths, then closed the exchequer, bankrupting the goldsmiths, in effect stealing the gold. Eventually that led to the establishment of a bank of England which did other things with money.

Goldsmith notes were a circulating medium, a substitute for the gold they represented. Similarly, in 1772, the London Credit Exchange Company began issuing traveller’s cheques for 90 cities in Europe. A century later, Thomas Cook was issuing traveller’s cheques that were widely accepted. Checkbook money is similar, in that it represents a claim on funds on deposit with a bank or credit union.

Since about 1960, there have been credit cards. Credit cards are a digital claim on the credit of the card holder. Companies like Diner’s Club, Mastercard, Visa, Discover, and others provide a digital interaction between their databases and those of merchants. Credit is extended to the card holder up to a limit or according to some analysis of the credit worthiness of the buyer. The vendor either accepts or declines the transaction based on the willingness of the credit issuer to pay them, and there are fees for the processing of card transactions. Owing to the unbacked nature of these transactions, and the desire to please their card holders, credit card companies are happy to reverse charges on the slightest provocation, and then make the merchant prove that they were paid.

Beginning in 1995, the Internet brought about the ability to transact in digital gold. For about a dozen years, companies like e-gold, e-Bullion, and others did so. In 2007, the USA government attacked and effectively destroyed e-gold. Subsequently, other digital currencies were pioneered to remove the perceived risk of “trusted third parties” who held the gold and would, on the slightest provocation, turn it over to governments. Bitcoin was designed, in part, to reduce the risk of such a seizure of the backing medium. Instead, bitcoin and other crypto-currencies create value through a public and decentralised ledger of transactions that requires computation to effect transactions.

The May Scale of monetary hardness was developed around 2002 by JP May who ran such iconic e-gold merchant sites as BananaGold, CoconutGold, and 1MDC. The concept begins by ranking the extent to which money is “hard” or represents an actual asset such as gold. There are many insights from this scale, including the fundamental insight that using a soft money to buy a hard money is very risky for the party selling the hard money.

Hard
1Street cash, gold coins, silver coins, US dollars, Bitcoins where you hold the secret keys
2Street cash, euro currencies, Japan
3Street cash, other regional currencies
4Interbank transfers of various sorts (wires etc), bank checks
5personal cheques
6Consumer-level electronic account transfers
7Business-account-level retail transfer systems, bitcoins on the Lightning Network
Soft
8Paypal and similar ‘new money’ entities, bitcoins on a bitcoin exchange controlled by your username and password login
9Credit cards

People who accept credit card funds in exchange for bitcoin or gold run into the problem that the asset they are selling is of certain value, very hard, very definite. The money substitute they are accepting is very soft because the credit card holder can ask the credit card issuer to reverse the charge, and they will. Then it becomes the obligation of the seller to prove that the transaction was valid and the buyer got what they were sold, and even then it takes time and effort to actually get paid.

Similarly, cheques can be stopped. A checking account holder can ask their bank or credit union to stop payment on a cheque. That can require a higher level of proof before the stop payment order is accepted, but it creates the same difficulty for the merchant.

Thus, people who mine bitcoins are not necessarily enthusiastic about trusting the other party to their transaction. They want their money up front, before they turn over the shiny new bitcoins which have never previously been used in transactions.

Bankers seek to buy such bitcoins preferentially because blockchain analysis can be used to figure out the vast array of previous transactions associated with any particular bitcoin, and money transmitter laws preclude laundering of funds that are suspected to have been used in any sort of crime, drug trafficking, terrorist organisation funding, or prohibited transaction – and there are a very large number of prohibitions in the world.

To sort out these problems for large transactions, escrow services are employed. However, many banks are reluctant to use the escrow service of any other party for their own transactions, claiming that their reputation is all that should be needed. And, of course, they cannot use their own escrow service in transactions on their own account. So, it is the case that some large transactions do not occur because of conflicting levels of monetary hardness.

Contact: jim@resilientways.net

PDF download.

=====

Jim Davidson is an author, entrepreneur, actor, and director. He is the cfo of KanehCN3.com and the vision director of HoustonSpaceSociety.net You can find him on Twitter.com/planetaryjim as well as Pocket.app and Flote.app also as planetaryjim. He appreciates any support you can provide as times are very difficult. See the Paypal link on this page. Or email your humble author to offer other choices. Visit IglooLuau.com for more information. Those seeking a multi-jurisdiction multi-hop VPN for communications privacy please visit https://secure.cryptohippie.com/houstonspacesociety.php For those seeking colloidal silver try ppmSilver.com/Jim Ask Jim about CryptoWealth.