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Shadow Lodge

"Apocalypse is a frame of mind. A belief. A surrender to inevitability. It is a despair for the future. It is the death of hope." ~ Nicodemus Archleone, Death Masks

RPG Superstar 2010 Top 32

Philip K. Dick's postscript to A Scanner Darkly wrote:

This has been a novel about some people who were punished entirely too much for what they did. They wanted to have a good time, but they were like children playing in the street; they could see one after another of them being killed—run over, maimed, destroyed—but they continued to play anyhow. We really all were very happy for a while, sitting around not toiling but just b!@@$~&@ting and playing, but it was for such a terrible brief time, and then the punishment was beyond belief: even when we could see it, we could not believe it.... For a while I myself was one of these children playing in the street; I was, like the rest of them, trying to play instead of being grown up, and I was punished. I am on the list below, which is a list of those to whom this novel is dedicated, and what became of each.

Drug misuse is not a disease, it is a decision, like the decision to step out in front of a moving car. You would call that not a disease but an error in judgment. When a bunch of people begin to do it, it is a social error, a life-style. In this particular life-style the motto is "Be happy now because tomorrow you are dying." But the dying begins almost at once, and the happiness is a memory. It is, then, only a speeding up, an intensifying, of the ordinary human existence. It is not different from your life-style, it is only faster. It all takes place in days or weeks or months instead of years. "Take the cash and let the credit go," as Villon said in 1460. But that is a mistake if the cash is a penny and the credit a whole lifetime.

There is no moral in this novel; it is not bourgeois; it does not say they were wrong to play when they should have toiled; it just tells what the consequences were. In Greek drama they were beginning, as a society, to discover science, which means causal law. Here in this novel there is Nemesis: not fate, because any one of us could have chosen to stop playing in the street, but, as I narrate from the deepest part of my life and heart, a dreadful Nemesis for those who kept on playing. So, though, was our entire nation at this time. This novel is about more people than I knew personally. Some we all read about in the newspapers. It was, this sitting around with our buddies and b#%*%+%@ting while making tape-recordings, the bad decision of the decade, the sixties, both in and out of the establishment. And nature cracked down on us. We were forced to stop by things dreadful.

If there was any 'sin', it was that these people wanted to keep on having a good time forever, and were punished for that, but, as I say, I feel that, if so, the punishment was far too great, and I prefer to think of it only in a Greek or morally neutral way, as mere science, as deterministic impartial cause-and-effect. I loved them all. Here is the list, to whom I dedicate my love:

  • To Gaylene, deceased
  • To Ray, deceased
  • To Francy, permanent psychosis
  • To Kathy, permanent brain damage
  • To Jim, deceased
  • To Val, massive permanent brain damage
  • To Nancy, permanent psychosis
  • To Joanne, permanent brain damage
  • To Maren, deceased
  • To Nick, deceased
  • To Terry, deceased
  • To Dennis, deceased
  • To Phil, permanent pancreatic damage
  • To Sue, permanent vascular damage
  • To Jerri, permanent psychosis and vascular damage

...and so forth.

In Memoriam. These were comrades whom I had; there are no better. They remain in my mind, and the enemy will never be forgiven. The 'enemy' was their mistake in playing. Let them all play again, in some other way, and let them be happy.

RPG Superstar 2010 Top 32

"Now we are all sons of b@$*+es." ~ Kenneth Bainbridge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

“The state — or, to make matters more concrete, the government — consists of a gang of men exactly like you and me. They have, taking one with another, no special talent for the business of government; they have only a talent for getting and holding office. Their principal device to that end is to search out groups who pant and pine for something they can’t get, and to promise to give it to them. Nine times out of ten that promise is worth nothing. The tenth time it is made good by looting ‘A’ to satisfy ‘B’. In other words, government is a broker in pillage, and every election is a sort of advanced auction on stolen goods.”

― H.L. Mencken

2 people marked this as a favorite.


“In truth, in the case of individuals, their actual voting is not to be taken as proof of consent, even for the time being. On the contrary, it is to be considered that, without his consent having even been asked a man finds himself environed by a government that he cannot resist; a government that forces him to pay money, render service, and forego the exercise of many of his natural rights, under peril of weighty punishments. He sees, too, that other men practice this tyranny over him by the use of the ballot. He sees further, that, if he will but use the ballot himself, he has some chance of relieving himself from this tyranny of others, by subjecting them to his own. In short, he finds himself, without his consent, so situated that, if he use the ballot, he may become a master; if he does not use it, he must become a slave. And he has no other alternative than these two. In self-defence, he attempts the former. His case is analogous to that of a man who has been forced into battle, where he must either kill others, or be killed himself. Because, to save his own life in battle, a man takes the lives of his opponents, it is not to be inferred that the battle is one of his own choosing. Neither in contests with the ballot – which is a mere substitute for a bullet – because, as his only chance of self-preservation, a man uses a ballot, is it to be inferred that the contest is one into which he voluntarily entered; that he voluntarily set up all his own natural rights, as a stake against those of others, to be lost or won by the mere power of numbers. On the contrary, it is to be considered that, in an exigency into which he had been forced by others, and in which no other means of self-defence offered, he, as a matter of necessity, used the only one that was left to him.

No Treason (1867-1870)

by Lysander Spooner (1808-1887)

1 person marked this as a favorite.

In the Kentucky Resolutions, the 1798 protest against the Alien and Sedition Acts, Thomas Jefferson wrote,
It would be a dangerous delusion were a confidence in [politicians] to silence our fears for the safety of our rights: that confidence is everywhere the parent of despotism — free government is founded in jealousy, and not in confidence; it is jealousy and not confidence which prescribes limited constitutions, to bind down those whom we are obliged to trust with power.

Scarab Sages

"The first duty of government is to protect the powerless from the powerful."
- The Code of Hammurabi

“No, I don't mind being the smartest man in the world. I just wish it wasn't this one.”
- Ozymandias, Watchmen

“Nothing is hopeless...not while there's life.”
- Rorschach, Watchmen

“Nothing ever ends.”
- Dr. Manhattan, Watchmen

“Cynicism is not realistic and tough. It’s unrealistic and kind of cowardly because it means you don’t have to try.”
- Peggy Noonan

1 person marked this as a favorite.

“As a general rule...people ask for advice only in order not to follow it; or if they do follow it, in order to have someone to blame for giving it.”
― Alexandre Dumas, author of The Count of Monte Cristo

The Exchange

2 people marked this as a favorite.

“Profanity makes ignorance audible.”

"Treason against tyranny is fidelity to liberty."

A man with a gun is a citizen. A man without a gun is a subject.

That the said Constitution shall never be construed to authorize
Congress to infringe the just liberty of the press or the rights of
conscience; or to prevent the people of the United states who are
peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms...
-- Samuel Adams, in "Phila. Independent Gazetteer", August 20, 1789

Are we at last brought to such a humiliating and debasing degradation,
that we cannot be trusted with arms for our own defence? Where is the
difference between having our arms in our own possession and under our
own direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If
our defence be the *real* object of having those arms, in whose hands
can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in
our own hands?
-- Patrick Henry, speech of June 9 1788

Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed, as they
are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The supreme power in America
cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword, because the people are armed,
and constitute a force superior to any band of regular troops.
-- Noah Webster

“The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be
properly armed.”
-- Alexander Hamilton, The Federalist Papers at 184-188

Militias, when properly formed, are in fact the people themselves and
include all men capable of bearing arms. [...] To preserve liberty it is
essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms and be
taught alike, especially when young, how to use them.
-- Senator Richard Henry Lee, 1788, on "militia" in the 2nd Amendment

Such are a well regulated militia, composed of the freeholders,
citizen and husbandman, who take up arms to preserve their property,
as individuals, and their rights as freemen.
-- "M.T. Cicero", in a newspaper letter of 1788 touching the "militia"
referred to in the Second Amendment to the Constitution.

“To disarm the people... was the best and most effectual way to enslave them.”
-- George Mason, speech of June 14, 1788

“The great object is, that every man be armed. [...]
Every one who is able may have a gun.”
-- Patrick Henry, speech of June 14 1788

Americans have the right and advantage of being armed - unlike the citizens of other countries whose governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.
-- James Madison, The Federalist Papers

Men trained in arms from their infancy, and animated by the love of liberty,
will afford neither a cheap or easy conquest.
-- From the Declaration of the Continental Congress, July 1775.

The right of self-defense is the first law of nature: in most
governments it has been the study of rulers to confine this right
within the narrowest limits possible. Wherever standing armies
are kept up, and when the right of the people to keep and bear
arms is, under any color or pretext whatsoever, prohibited,
liberty, if not already annihilated, is on the brink of
-- Henry St. George Tucker (in Blackstone's Commentaries)

False is the idea of utility that sacrifices a thousand real advantages for
one imaginary or trifling inconvenience; that would take fire from men because
it burns, and water because one may drown in it; that has no remedy for evils
except destruction. The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of
such a nature. They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined
to commit crimes.
-- Cesare Beccaria, as quoted by Thomas Jefferson's Commonplace book

The right of the citizens to keep and bear arms has justly been considered as
the palladium of the liberties of a republic; since it offers a strong moral
check against usurpation and arbitrary power of rulers; and will generally,
even if these are successful in the first instance, enable the people to resist
and triumph over them."
-- Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story of the John Marshall Court

“One of the ordinary modes, by which tyrants accomplish their purposes
without resistance, is, by disarming the people, and making it an
offense to keep arms.”
-- Constitutional scholar and Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story, 1840

Certainly one of the chief guarantees of freedom under any government,
no matter how popular and respected, is the right of the citizens to
keep and bear arms. [...] the right of the citizens to bear arms is
just one guarantee against arbitrary government and one more safeguard
against a tyranny which now appears remote in America, but which
historically has proved to be always possible.
-- Hubert H. Humphrey, 1960

As the Founding Fathers knew well, a government that does not trust its honest,
law-abiding, taxpaying citizens with the means of self-defense is not itself
worthy of trust. Laws disarming honest citizens proclaim that the government
is the master, not the servant, of the people.
-- Jeff Snyder

The possession of arms by the people is the ultimate warrant
that government governs only with the consent of the governed.
-- Jeff Snyder

“Both oligarch and tyrant mistrust the people,
and therefore deprive them of arms.”

“The bearing of arms is the essential medium through which the
individual asserts both his social power and his participation in
politics as a responsible moral being...”
-- J.G.A. Pocock, describing the beliefs of the founders of the U.S.

The danger (where there is any) from armed citizens, is only to the
*government*, not to *society*; and as long as they have nothing to
revenge in the government (which they cannot have while it is in their
own hands) there are many advantages in their being accustomed to the
use of arms, and no possible disadvantage.
-- Joel Barlow, "Advice to the Privileged Orders", 1792-93

[The disarming of citizens] has a double effect, it palsies the hand
and brutalizes the mind: a habitual disuse of physical forces totally
destroys the moral [force]; and men lose at once the power of
protecting themselves, and of discerning the cause of their
-- Joel Barlow, "Advice to the Privileged Orders", 1792-93

The conclusion is thus inescapable that the history, concept, and
wording of the second amendment to the Constitution of the United
States, as well as its interpretation by every major commentator and
court in the first half-century after its ratification, indicates
that what is protected is an individual right of a private citizen
to own and carry firearms in a peaceful manner.
-- Report of the Subcommittee On The Constitution of the Committee On
The Judiciary, United States Senate, 97th Congress, second session
(February, 1982), SuDoc# Y4.J 89/2: Ar 5/5

In recent years it has been suggested that the Second Amendment
protects the "collective" right of states to maintain militias, while
it does not protect the right of "the people" to keep and bear arms.
If anyone entertained this notion in the period during which the
Constitution and the Bill of Rights were debated and ratified, it
remains one of the most closely guarded secrets of the eighteenth
century, for no known writing surviving from the period between 1787
and 1791 states such a thesis.
-- Stephen P. Halbrook, "That Every Man Be Armed", 1984

“Historical examination of the right to bear arms, from English
antecedents to the drafting of the Second Amendment, bears proof that
the right to bear arms has consistently been, and should still be,
construed as an individual right.”
-- U.S. District Judge Sam Cummings, in re U.S. vs Emerson (1999).

(Those) who are trying to read the Second Amendment out of the Constitution by
claiming it's not an individual right (are) courting disaster by encouraging
others to use the same means to eliminate portions of the Constitution they
don't like.
-- Alan Dershowitz, Harvard Law School

2 people marked this as a favorite.

The whole of the Bill [of Rights] is a declaration of the right of the
people at large or considered as individuals... It establishes some
rights of the individual as unalienable and which consequently, no
majority has a right to deprive them of.
-- Albert Gallatin, Oct 7 1789

Where rights secured by the Constitution are involved, there can be no
rule making or legislation which would abrogate them.
-- Miranda vs. Arizona, 384 US 436 p. 491

“Among the many misdeeds of British rule in India, history will look
upon the Act depriving a whole nation of arms as the blackest.”
-- Mohandas Gandhi, An Autobiography, pg 446

When only cops have guns, it's called a "police state".
-- Claire Wolfe, "101 Things To Do Until The Revolution"

Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what
the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An
armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the
final defense against tyranny.
If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only
the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of
our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to
be among the outlaws.
-- Edward Abbey, "Abbey's Road", 1979

The most foolish mistake we could possibly make would be to permit
the conquered Eastern peoples to have arms. History teaches that all
conquerors who have allowed their subject races to carry arms have
prepared their own downfall by doing so.
-- Adolph Hitler, April 11 1942.

The right to buy weapons is the right to be free.
-- A.E. Van Vogt, "The Weapon Shops Of Isher", ASF December 1942

The people of the various provinces are strictly forbidden to have in their
possession any swords, short swords, bows, spears, firearms, or other types
of arms. The possession of unnecessary implements makes difficult the
collection of taxes and dues and tends to foment uprisings.
-- Toyotomi Hideyoshi, dictator of Japan, August 1588

Rifles, muskets, long-bows and hand-grenades are inherently democratic
weapons. A complex weapon makes the strong stronger, while a simple
weapon -- so long as there is no answer to it -- gives claws to the
-- George Orwell, "You and the Atom Bomb", 1945

Every Communist must grasp the truth, 'Political power grows out of
the barrel of a gun.'
-- Mao Tse-tung, 1938, inadvertently endorsing the Second Amendment.

“Taking my gun away because I might shoot someone is like cutting my tongue
out because I might yell `Fire!' in a crowded theater.”
-- Peter Venetoklis

“...quemadmodum gladius neminem occidit, occidentis telum est.”
[...a sword never kills anybody; it's a tool in the killer's hand.]
-- (Lucius Annaeus) Seneca "the Younger" (ca. 4 BC-65 AD),

Strict gun laws are about as effective as strict drug laws...It pains
me to say this, but the NRA seems to be right: The cities and states
that have the toughest gun laws have the most murder and mayhem.
-- Mike Royko, Chicago Tribune

Whether the authorities be invaders or merely local tyrants, the
effect of such [gun control] laws is to place the individual at the
mercy of the state, unable to resist.
-- Robert Anson Heinlein, 1949

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