which, contrary to the beliefs of many starry-eyed idealists would NOT be a good thing.
in New Zealand, for example, who rules?
“Cars, cash and property seized from Kim Dotcom by police in the 2012 raid at his Coatesville mansion could be returned to him within the next 14 days.
When police raided the Dotcom Mansion in January 2012 they seized $6 million of luxury cars – including 15 Mercedes-Benz, a pink 1959 Cadillac and a Rolls-Royce Phantom – and $10 million from financial institutions.
They also took a number of personal items belonging to Dotcom and his wife Mona.
The property was seized under a foreign restraining order made by the United States District Court two days before the raid.
However today an order was made in the High Court at Auckland declining a police request to effectively extend the order so Dotcom’s assets could be retained.
Minutes ago Dotcom tweeted about the ruling.
“Breaking News: High Court ruling just now. Mona and I are getting our New Zealand assets back, unless the Crown appeals,” he said.
(emphasis mine) Read more: HERE
The US government is one of the only two (to my knowledge—please correct me if wrong) that preserves and rigidly inflicts the ‘right’ to universally tax its citizens anywhere in the world. No escape. If you’re a Yank then regardless of location you are simply a funds-grubbing slave to your ‘freedom’ state.
I WONDER WHY, SOMETIMES
more and more Americans are bailing out. You know, jumping ship, signing off from their beloved Birthrights, getting away, quitting the Land Of The Free — taking up citizenship of some other country and no longer funding good ol’ Uncle Sam. Just a trickle right now but increasing annually.
The USG will have to act, and fast, lest the trickle become a tsunami.
- Can you expect the cost of getting a passport to go up horrendously?
- Can you expect laws to be enacted to prevent you holding a second citizenship?
- Will the delay in getting the passport you apply for increase until you’ll need months—or even years—of advance notice?
- Will you need to be signed off with the IRS (namely a very comprehensive ‘tax audit’ first)?
- Will you need to do the rounds with a checklist, and acquire a clean bill of health from the police?
- Will it become a case of if you are overstaying your expected absences for any reason your assets will be frozen and held in limbo until you’ve satisfied Boards Of Enquiry—at their leisure?
DON’T ASK ME
But just try having private funds. Even sadder, just try having any say in what is done with the monies you have worked for, that your government has ‘taxed’ … oh, of course! Representative Democracy! How silly of me, to overlook that. Of course you tell your government what to do … hold me tight.
SO HOW COME
the US government can tell New Zealanders what to do—to order us to persecute one wealthy guy (which it seems we have done with great enthusiasm) and get us to — without referendum — commit troops and treasure to ‘fighting’ America’s lost causes?
DON’T ASK ME
I’m just another sheep for the skinning. But it cracks me up when I hear ignorant people babbling about how wonderful it will be to have just one government for the whole world—one set of laws, no need for passports, one worldwide currency (and all to Christian principles of course).
Before I leave: does anyone know how many pages there are to the US tax-code(s)? And whether there’s any individual citizen anywhere with a functioning keep-me-out-of-jail grasp of the whole? Just askin’—
but NO, THANKS
Recently I signed up for a WordPress free course.
The guff was good and appealed marvellously to my desires as a camera-clicker—a free course of free instruction in photographic improvement in a free social environment at no charge. Wow~!
AND THEN I DISCOVERED
that to activate my lovely membership I had to sign on for ’two-step verification’ of my identity.
Okay, them’s the rules and beggars can’t be choosers. So I looked further into the process, and discovered that there’s apparently no way around it—
AS A WOULD-BE MEMBER
of the extended family I must enable 2-step verification if I’m to proceed. Okayyyy …
So I pressed on … and got to this—
—which even though from a beloved and trusted source is enough to put me right off.
AS A CARD-CARRYING
paranoid/paranoiac/maniac any reader should know by now that I am a wary Conspiracy Theorist. I’m forever avoiding dark alleys …
although I understand the need to keep a private club private, I wondered why WordPress ‘needs’ my mobile phone number. Why? For ID purposes any appropriate password/verification would do. (Where did you have your first ice-cream, and what flavour was it?) No?
On occasion I’ve pondered how WordPress makes its buck and can afford to supply all these lovely free services, free, but as Tennyson put it: “Ours is not to reason why …” etc etc so I just lie back and enjoy.
If WordPress is surreptitiously funded by the US government I owe them a wee vote of thanks, I love the service. I have nothing to hide from Spooks—I pay my taxes (grudgingly) and pretty much keep myself to myself. I don’t even burp in public. I have no ambitions towards flying into tall buildings (or leaping from them~!).
for anyone with the massive funding that the debt-ridden US government has (borrowed from the Chinese and others) an ideal would be for all would-be independent thinkers to be forced to carry locator beacons. Get ‘em all chipped, in fact, RFID the lot of ‘em! (“We have the technology …”* ). But force is politically unacceptable at present, although it will come: pro bono publico …
* In New Zealand dogs must by law be microchipped. By law. And it’s only a matter of time before people likewise—after all, just look at the wonderful justifications: instant identification of the headless body, personal medical records on tap in emergency, find the missing child … wonderful!
sucker trap, but I’ll bite …
ON THE EVE OF
the anniversary of the opening rounds of World War One (WW1) I have no option but to note the plethora of monuments that are about to be dusted off, repainted, rededicated and generally re-upped. No doubt cheap plastic poppies will abound too …
SO I REVISITED
my favourite enigma in Invercargill. This guy is built into a tall monument and carries an awesome amount of inscriptions for so small a colony as New Zealand was at the time of WW1. Quite a few added since, but please don’t worry—they’ve left room for those to come. No sweat, their noble sacrifices won’t be forgotten (not on at least one day of the year, anyway).
the wee fellow looks quite comfy up there—snugger in his lofty rocky alcove above than many were in the mud (quite a few drowned in that mud, but you never see such heroic deaths celebrated heroically in inspiring prints or patriotic films) of Flanders et al.
IN CASE YOU
missed it first time, here he is again—
–his expression: is that disapproval? Resignation? Or simply someone looking forward to getting home and dagging the sheep? (Who knows, I’m just a weary commentator).
THEN IN GORE
Spouse and I love Gore~! I called by the RSA (Returned Services Association) building there and captured some shots of their monuments. Souvenirs, actually, trophies—but I like to think of them as monuments-in-folk-art. Sue me …
—this one being contemporaneous with the WW1 theme. If you swarm all over it you’ll come across a wee rusting date confirming my statement. And a wee bit further along the car parking area another, but this time properly bought and paid for in accordance with imperial prosperity (not our empire, though) (in NZ we know what side our bread is buttered on)—
—the poppies in the trail are NOT photoshopped or otherwise inserted, they were really there which adds piquancy to the poignancy (were I to wax so lyrical. Sarcasm and satire are lonely roads) and this particular beast is dated a bit later:
WHICH OF COURSE
invites a question. I’ll bet you can’t possibly guess what question? (CLUE: the answer is at the end of this post*)
AND TO FINISH
We’ll get a little closer to that monument and try once more to fathom the guy’s expression.
But first—hist, what light through yonder barrel breaks, illuminating the lands? Don’t ask—but this is the last thing many hundreds of millions of bullets and shells and other unpleasantries ever saw/will ever see (excluding the rust of course, tut~!) and I confidently predict that we won’t run short of ‘em.
AND CHEER UP
all is not lost: you too (if young enough) and definitely your kids (and theirs etc etc) will get their chance to gallantly ‘serve’ their
masters Country, and if really lucky you’ll perhaps get a lovely Gold Star to stick in your street-facing window.
AND NOW A WORD
from our sponsors—
“Don’t forget to buy your commemorative ribbons and plastic poppies, Folks! Get ‘em while they’re hot!!!”
* You didn’t spot it? No reason why you should:
Q. What progress has humanity made in 72 years?
A. The tyres on the wheels are now made of rubber …
AS AN ARMCHAIR ADMIRAL
with no possible risk of involvement* I like to peer knowingly at Google images of the regions concerned whenever things happen in the world. “This,” I mutter darkly (often) “could have far-reaching consequences!”
SOMETIMES I’M EVEN RIGHT
which is why it’s good being a pessimist (optimists often annoy the snits out of all around them, pessimists though are rarely (if ever) wrong).
attitudes and actions wrt the Crimea, Russia, and all else in the region. If it were possible to do the wrong thing the US does it. And having done it then runs up flags and blows whistles to draw attention to the current stupidities. All good clean fun, but costly—at some point the ever-indulgent Chinese may just pull the plug, or even worse request some of their money back. Ouch …
not to America, but to any Russians that may be reading this (precious few so I’m quite safe) is to take a closer look at what it’s all about. Peer intently at that map—do you really dread any military effect from a US naval presence in the Black Sea? You do? Why?
ANYONE DUMB ENOUGH
to put a significant force—say a carrier battle group—from the Med via the Aegean via Istanbul into the Black Sea (BS) would be double-plus unbright (to paraphrase Orwell). If push came to shove the Russians would be leaning forward in their seats, silently urging the US Navy into the BS. As much of it as the president cares to write off, please … ’nuff said.
SO, WHAT WOULD I DO
if I were a Russian of significance? I’d look very seriously at flooding the Black Sea with midget submarines, that’s what …
(Oops, gotta go, Toots wants me to take her to town and I’m already a bit adrift. Anyway, there’s a wee thought for the Russkies—and I’d keep quite a few of ‘em at sea at any one time.)
* Oh … really?
I AM SPENDING AN UNHEALTHY
amount of time in the graveyard. Or so I’ve been told. But let’s face it, I have a camera and for my mileage am fit and sprightly. I deserve to be in a graveyard, the dead are good company and make the best subjects for a photo—they never sneeze at the wrong time or go all funny when they realise the lens is on them.
JUST THE COMPANY
of the deceased is enough to make one (healthily!) introspective. Then recently a lady I know who is a recognised practising medium told me that angels were watching over me. I took it in the spirit offered, but it made me think of the great Angel of Mons—a legend that gets no weaker with the passing of time. Where would we be, without our myths and legends?
SO PHILOSOPHISE ON THIS LOT
This first snap is a wee screenshot from the ol’ Mac. I recently updated the operating system (and wish I hadn’t!) and part of the ‘improvements’ is in Mac’s iPhoto—which has now been programmed to identify every face therein. I have several thousand snaps and not all of them are ducks or mushrooms—wait, we haven’t got to my beef yet—but there seems to be nothing that I (and probably every other mortal that ever drew breath) can do to stop it. Nowt, nada, zilch. I am stuck with endless faces pouring out of my screen, cascading over my desk top and dribbling down to the floor where they are trodden into the carpet by the unwary Spouse bearing gifts of coffee—and I am defenseless before the onslaught.
At last I’ve regained enough control that the brooding Mac no longer arrogantly orders me to identify faces, it just sulks and pounces from ambush when I’m half asleep.
So: you may be pondering the image above? It’s a screen shot of an unidentified face. Not the first, and as fast as my once-beloved Mac produces them I flick them away (till next time). I need one of those blessed angels, and to hell with Mons—Mons is history, part of gallant little Belgium and all that and I daresay a big thing at the time … but Mac is now. Here and now.
People will never ever ever ever (not for a few years yet) forget Mons* but who will ever remember my own unsung battle against hopeless odds? ‘Nuff about that, on with the show—
TO NOT DIGRESS
The above is a wee thing that crossed my bows somewhere (TradeMe, I think. It’s their style). It’s an advertisement for a lovely angel complete with goldy bits. There’s nothing like having an angel to watch over you, and yours, and protect them from all harm living or dead. I don’t know if having a piccie of an angel in your possession invokes the protection or if gold enhances the effect; but there you go—I’m a self-confessed ignoramous in need of enlightenment. Which leads me to another snap I snope in the cemetery:
I read a lot (it’s a compulsion) and when there’s no books to read I read whatever’s on offer. Many’s the street sign I’ve savoured when all else failed and I used to be an expert on beer-can labels; so I read tombstones and came across this wee beauty below—slightly askance but I put it down to either vandals or act of God. Perhaps one and the same …
And being naive I have to ask: was the Angel of Mons moonlighting when he went to the Dardanelles and London and France (all over, in fact) and gathered up an entire generation of Mothers’ darling babes, clasping their hot sweaty little hands to wing them off to Paradise?
Did God really need unknown millions of ‘angel child’ types to line his voracious maw?
The first to give me a good (acceptable to reason) answer gets the Argus Award of the month—hell, of eternity—but please, no pap answers. I’m too long in the tooth for pap; that’s for the young and impressionable—the types who buy angel medallions to protect them when they trot off to war, in fact.
Mothers little darlings.
Dougald and Mary should be proud … hell, if they were in America these days they’d get not one, not two, but three (SFX: loud cheer right here, please—give it heaps of bells and whistles) Gold Stars to display and show the world what good parents they are. Were. Whatever …
* Mons who? Oh … that Mons. (French for mister, abbreviated, no?)
PS No puns were injured in the course of this blog. All are of sound mine and body, their oldsters and grammars too … quite deliberate. Sue me …