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Jingo Bells

I make a sharp delineation in my mind between patriotism and nationalism.  The words "patriot" and "nationalist," at least in American usage in the 20th century, have been severely diluted and warped.  To me, and according to older dictionaries, a patriot is someone who defends and protects the land, culture and history of a place, while a nationalist is someone who defends the government of that place.

Frankly, I have little to no use for government of any kind.  The only things I have ever gotten from governments are things they told me I had to have, like identification papers, and that I had to pay for them and renew them on a regular basis, since my identity changes regularly.

I certainly have never received any benefit from government.  I have, on the other hand, paid a pretty penny to maintain government, but to what end I really don't know.

I've heard hundreds of times that I have to pay my fair share, but for what?  What share am I supposedly getting that I have to pay so dearly for?

Well, security and protection, I'm told.  Yet, my home and those of pretty much everyone I have ever known have never been attacked by foreign invaders, though I must say my home has often been attacked by domestic invaders - government goons worried about what I am doing in my home, for the most part.

When it comes to security, I am ready, willing and able to defend my home and family without help from any goons.  I am also under no illusion that there is such a thing as security.  Every lock can be broken and I would rather be responsible for losing my own stuff, thank you very much.  Depending on government for security is like keeping a rabid dog in my bed for defense.  It tends to bite the hand that feeds it.

As for protection, well I was a registered marksman and owner of a fine collection of firearms.  I still maintain a formidable collection of knives that I am pretty handy with.  I have also learned to make a wide range of booby-traps from household items, just for shits and grins.  My assumption is that if a bunch of goons ever come around wanting to protect me, they will probably draw fire and do more damage than if I was left to my own devices.

I was raised in the ancient tradition that any able-bodied male is a defender.  I never saw much use for the armed forces, since my country has not been attacked since 1864, and that attack was carried out by the very folks claiming to be my protection.  Sounds like a mafia protection racket to me.

Most of what I have ever seen from government was a bunch of lard-ass blowhards looking all serious about making laws that have little intended effect, but make nifty reasons to harass people, when the need arises.

These glorified mountebanks get a lot of my money to sit around in fancy buildings thinking up new things to me to do.  They wear splendorous titles and expect honors and deference, yet they are nothing more than common crooks in three-piece suits with nifty little flag pins on their lapels.

Under them are thousands of uniformed goons who run around enforcing laws they have never read and couldn't care less about, as long as the paycheck and benefits keep coming - out of my pocket, by the way.

I'm a patriot, I suppose.  I love the land and the people, the culture and the language.  I would defend those things to my death, so that my children could also enjoy them and further enrich them with their own contributions.

I am not a nationalist, though.  I have little use for government.  I want nothing from it but to be left alone.  It offers me nothing I need, and takes everything I have to support a privileged few at the expense of the many.  Under all the pomp and circumstance, government is nothing more than a bunch of hoods with bigger guns than me that they bought with my money.

What puts me in the frame of mind is watching the US elections.  All I keep thinking about is the brilliant humorist P. Jl O'Rourke's book title, "Don't Vote, It Just Encourages The Bastards."  And as comedy genius George Carlin said, "If you vote, you have no right to complain."

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