When we think of freedom, we tend to look at it in the larger light, at that place where we decry government overreach and intrusive laws. But within each of our lives there are levels of sovereignty, spheres of freedom that we seem to willingly cede to others while we scurry around in fear of the larger picture.
If you’ve been a part of the Off the Grid family for any length of time, you’ll quickly recognize today’s guest on Off the Grid Radio—our very own Brian Brawdy, who has taken a sabbatical from his time here with us to write his soon-to-be released book, Full Contact Freedom.
Off The Grid Radio
Released: April 13th, 2012
Bill: Greetings and welcome everybody. It’s Bill Heid, your host today, with Off the Grid Radio and I have my very close friend and associate, Brian Brawdy, with me. Brian is on a little bit of a sabbatical. Brian has been working on writing a book. Brian, welcome.
Brian: Hey Bill. I have to tell you, when I heard Jeremy cue up the music, I almost stepped on you. I almost said, “Hey, welcome. I’m here today with your host, Bill Heid.” I’m so accustomed to hearing that music. I’m one of those Pavlov’s animals.
Bill: I was going to say, would you call that a Pavlovian response? Was your mouth watering?
Brian: Well, I’ll tell you, forever what it’s worth to get a better voice opening now than you did when I used to sit right across from you. So that’s the good news. But yeah, I heard that music and I was like, “All right. It’s go time. Better stop checking out what’s going on on Facebook.”
Bill: It’s time to go. It’s time to go. Well, I think everybody… As I said, you are on a little bit of a sabbatical. You’re working on a book. Do you want to at least unveil the title at this point?
Brian: Yeah. I would like to. It’s called Full Contact Freedom. I think it’s going to surprise a lot of people Bill, in that a portion of it is talking about exercising your freedom when it comes to the long and tentacled reach of a tyrannical government but it’s also how to exercise that sense of freedom when it comes to your own life. A lot of people are quick to project and say, “Well I don’t want the government controlling me.” But there’s all other types of things around them, a little closer to home, that they allow to control them. So Full Contact Freedom is both the political philosophy and what I believe the psychology of making sure that you’re not being tyrannical to yourself, let alone always worrying about the government being tyrannical.
Bill: That’s a great point and think that you can have a little more impact or full contact first– you and I have had this discussion many times—first with yourself. You look yourself in the mirror and say, “Am I sort of under control? Is there an operative government in my life?” And then the next probably closest thing would be to your family. Is there some kind of governmental thing where I’m a family guy and I’ve kind of got that under control? Kuyper used to call these things “spheres of sovereignty” or “spheres of freedom.” And boy, getting control of the things close to us are so much easier to do but… This is back to Off the Grid News, Brian, in our theme. Everyone would rather farm out our exercise of freedom to someone else—to outsource it—and then have that be only working on the national level. Do you kind of see that as a trend, where people are like, “Well I want Sarah Palin to fight my battles because she hates Obama more than Rick Santorum” or whoever it might be? Just throw in any names that you want to.
Brian: It may have been Gary Vaynerchuk. I don’t know. I think it may have been in the book Crush It! or maybe The Thank You Economy. But he said that the easiest things to do are also the easiest things not to do. So you’re absolutely right. When we look at the sovereignty issues a little bit closer to home, I’m beginning to think it’s a lot easier to blame a distant government for controlling you but right out at the end of your nose, you have some other things that control you. So I’m beginning to wonder… With seven months left to go to the election, are there things that we can do to use some of that energy, to target ourselves and say, “Look. Here’s what’s keeping me ensnared. Here’s what’s keeping me entrapped.” Still use some of that energy for the political debate, which I think is important. But I wonder at times, if we don’t project onto the government this whole sense of being remanded to a prison, when I’m beginning to wonder if we don’t do a pretty sufficient job of remanding ourselves to our own prisons.
Bill: I think that’s really astute. I think we do. And I think that… Do you think some of it is we’re taking in bad information and our paradigms, our presuppositions, are constructed… So it’s got this social construct but it’s based on lies. It’s based on either government or corporate ideas and so what the true social construct is—the input factor in you and in myself and in our society—just becomes this constant drumbeat of what we hear in the media and then that becomes our platform on which we build our view of reality. And what if that’s not true? What if none of it’s true? But you’ve built this platform.
Brian: I said the other day, Bill, that depending upon where you get your news, you’re getting used. You and I used to talk… That’s one of the things I love about Off the Grid News. We used to talk about “news you can use.” Well I’m beginning to believe anymore than depending upon where you get that news… And you can turn to… Pick the top five stories of the day. Depending upon where you get those stories, you’re getting used. Just look at the most recent debate of Trayvon Martin. Now whether Zimmerman is guilty or he’s innocent isn’t what we’re discussing. We’re saying if you listen to ABC, you get one bent. If you listen to NBC, you get apparently, edited audio. So you can’t even tell anymore, these news sources. As I say, you don’t get news. You get used. So you have to find those things, which is why… And I still believe that the tree of liberty today… Bill you’re a huge fan of history. So I know that you know the tree of liberty back in Boston was an Elm. But today—and I focus on this in the book—today the tree of liberty is an electronic tree, which is why sites like Off the Grid News and other places where people get their information—why they’re so important. Because the internet… The tree of liberty is an electronic tree and you have to figure out where you think you’re getting your news, or you’re getting used.
Bill: Whoa. I think that’s really the thing. I walked across, this morning when I came down, and Kim had got some… I think one of our nieces or nephews had a sign up for some magazines, where it would help their school or something. I can’t remember what it was. But I got People. People Magazine was sitting there. And I don’t normally read People Magazine but there is a picture of Trayvon and here he is—pictures of him—and they look like pictures of a 13-year-old boy. So they’re presenting him—just to echo what you’re saying—they’re presenting him of something radically different than what he is. And sort of here’s the image of this boy and he looks like a fine young man in this picture. And then if you see a picture of Zimmerman someplace, obviously he’s got an orange jumpsuit on. If someone got murdered, then it needs to be prosecuted just straight up, irrespective of what someone’s race or creed or thoughts or feelings are. And so that kind of clouds a lot of things. But man, the imagery that I think we’re being fed, just is nothing but lies.
Brian: Well I put up a picture on my Facebook page three or four weeks ago, Bill, of when I was four years old, with the caption “Look. Should I become either the suspect or a victim of the crime, Dear Media, please use this picture when referring to me.” I mean good golly. Here’s another one that I love—when you hear “Oh, a child was gunned down.” Yes, until you find a 17 year old that you believe to be the suspect in a crime, yet you want him tried as an adult because he was 17 years old. And again, you and I are not commenting. You know me and I’m probably a little more over the top. If they find Zimmerman guilty, execute him. If they find him guilty, send him to prison for life. Do whatever you’re going to do in the state of Florida if he’s found guilty of murder. But up until that point… When you hear… I even heard it yesterday on FOX News. “Oh, he gunned down a child.” Okay, great. Up until that point where you have to raise your hand when asked, if a 17 year old commits a crime, do you want him charged as an adult? And then watch the different looks on people’s faces.
Bill: And I think that’s where the action is. But while you were talking, I was wondering could we… Is this a business opportunity? Could you create a press release for people, for just normal Americans or anybody that wants… that could eventually be convicted or at least be charged with something—and it’s a press release. It’s a positive press release but it shows… Like for me, I think maybe my eighth grade Confirmation picture at the Lutheran church. “Here is Bill Heid.” And that’s the image they can have of me. And it’s all ready to go. It can have all the things that I did. I played second base. “He’s a second baseman for the Little League team, The Cubs.” And just have a really nice life story—all of that prewritten, knowing that the government is going to convict you of something at some point because you’re guilty of breaking some law, right? We’re all breaking thousands of laws. And you and I are breaking the laws right now probably, by talking… by making fun of breaking laws. That’s probably a law.
Brian: Yes, probably so.
Bill: Yeah, that’s probably a law. But I think there’s a business opportunity for someone that wants to take it and just press releases for the common man and pictures for the common man. I’m telling you. Someone could make a million dollars right there.
Brian: Well when you think about it… Bill, you know me. We hang out together all the time. I’m 6’3”. Now granted, I’m a little heavier. But I think we could probably do this all morning. The point I’m trying to make is let’s wait for the criminal justice system to work its way out. Everyone’s a huge fan of the Constitution. Everyone’s a huge fan of probable cause and due process. Well then let’s really be a big fan of those things. Let the court and let the prosecutor decide. Let everybody wait for the facts to come out. And then as I say, if you find him guilty, execute him. You know what I mean? This is not about whether Zimmerman is guilty. This is about whether the media is guilty of trying to use us, trying to spin a story one way, so as to get us to believe one thing or the other. Again, that’s what I love about Off the Grid News. I never felt like I’m being a spun in that regard. You put out the information. You decide. And that’s the way it should be.
Bill: Well instead of sort of trying to build something up that you just don’t have the facts on, as you say. I think if you’re going to… This is serious stuff—a murder. This is a tragedy. A murder has taken place—the loss of a human life. I think the news media does this because the news media feeds on advertising and they can get their ratings up. They can stir people up by creating “He said this.” What’s the show at four ‘o clock? Jeremy, that’s your favorite show. What is it? The Five. Jeremy watches that every day. And what’s the lone Democrat that they have? What’s his name? Bob Beckel.
Brian: Bob Bagel?
Bill: Bagel. Yeah, he’s been eating a few bagels. But you just can’t wait to find out how Bob Beckel is going to disagree with one of the other FOX News correspondents, who are more conservative. And I can’t wait… I DVR it and I can’t wait to find out how they’re going to disagree. And then I can then blog about the disagreement and then there are people can blog about my disagreement to their disagreement. And it’s an endless… And then nobody… Brian, nobody does anything. No one is leading a life. They’re all just blogging about other people’s blogs. And I think in the Bible, where it talks about babble—I think we’re getting close to that, right? I’m not predicting the end of the world or anything. I’m just saying I think people are just… What David Burns said, “You’re talking a lot but you are not saying anything.”
Brian: Well absolutely. This morning, Bill, there was… What was it on? Facebook. There was this question. “Suppose the Supreme Court upholds Obama Care as Constitutional. What are you going to do?” And they give you some different things. “I’m going to call for nullification. I’m going to organize in my state.” And then down below, down below—and I’m the sole person as we do this right now to have voted on it—I said, “Obey the lords of the Potomac and maintain your serve status.” And of course right away, I’m getting slammed. “Brian, that doesn’t sound like you.” And I just said, “I’m taking the opportunity to vote in place of those who will scream the loudest, yet in the end, they’re going to do the least. They’ll never admit it to you but deep down, they know they’re not going to do a darned thing.”
So you’re absolutely right, Bill. We get out there and we Facebook and we blog and we Twitter and we MySpace and Jeremy knows a good bit more of them than I do. But we put all of this energy in. But in the end, when it comes down to decide—Do you believe in probable cause? Do you believe in a trial by jury? Do you believe that a protection is afforded to the Constitution? Or don’t you? No bologna. Do you or don’t you? It’s very, very simple stuff. So I like calling people out that will spit and scream and holler and pound the podium and then in the end, they’ll go “Oh, okay. Well, I’ll buy into Obama Care.” You’re absolutely right. It’s all fluff and no circumstance after the fact.
Bill: Here is something that Kim’s grandpa would have done. If I would have presented all of those options to him and given the fact that the soil temperature is warming up and so forth, I would say to him as a young man, when I first met him—and he understood the Constitution quite well and he affected me as a mentor quite a bit about the Constitution and the early founders—and I would have said to him “Well, what are you going to do about Obama Care?” And you know what he would have said, Brian? He would have said, “I’m going to go plant some carrots and some peas because that’s what you do when the soil temperature gets up to about the temperature that it is right now.” So I’m wondering what do you think is the single best response to that? Planting a few carrots and a few peas.
You certainly get the spiritual peace of mind of getting away from it all. You certainly get food that you’ve grown yourself so that you don’t have to worry about maybe your health as much—not that growing carrots and peas is a single healer. But you’re actually doing something and I think America… Brian—we’re depressed people. And we’re depressed because we blog about other blogs and we don’t do anything. And I think if people go out… We need some sunlight. We need vitamin D. We need to get some dirt under our fingernails. And we need to feel like we’ve accomplished something. And so I really think that’s an adequate response. You and I both believe in representative government. We need to do what we need to do. And then that’s it, right? You just do it. You vote. You let your representatives know about how you feel about this or that. But then you don’t need to watch FOX and CNN all day long and just let this stuff drive you crazy.
Brian: Well Bill, that’s why I say you’re being used because FOX or MSNBC– I call it Meshugana National Broadcasting System—or CNN—Constant Negative News. When you watch that stuff, they want you hooked. They want you there all day. They don’t want you putting down the remote because as you know, that’s how they’re able to hook you on the ads. That’s how they’re able to keep the eyeballs, to say to Nielson or some of the web based tract or popularity systems to say, “Oh, we have so many eyeballs. This is why you need to buy the ad.” But Kim’s granddad or dad was so profound in that, “You do what you’ve got to do to get through the day. You go live.”
Bill: You go live a life.
Brian: What do you do when this happens? You plant carrots and peas. It’s so simple. It’s brilliant.
Bill: Well remember St. Francis of Assisi—someone said to him, “If you knew the world was going to end today, what would you do?” And he said, “Finish weeding my garden.”
Brian: That’s right. That’s absolutely right. But no, there’s too many people that… You should put that… When this show goes up, that should be the quote that Jeremy puts up underneath it. What would you do? Finish weeding the garden.
Bill: Finish weeding my garden. And that’s an act of freedom, by the way. And that fits into the things that you and I are… And we have to realize that as organic creatures, this idea of freedom fits in. Freedom is not an abstract thing that Greta and Shawn argue about with punching bag Democrats or whatever it might be. It’s a real thing and it’s part of your life. It’s part of what you do. And the freedom to tell your children stories, the freedom to plant peas—all of those things… The freedom to read a book, to go read Hemingway or Thorough instead of watching that—is something that needs to be exercised just as much as your right to vote needs to be exercised.
Brian: Oh, absolutely. But people… I think what happens, Bill, is that people don’t believe in the power of the vote anymore. They’ve bought into this “Well my vote really doesn’t mean anything.” But they get on Facebook and they put up a post and a half a dozen people like what they have to say or they interact with someone or they may not get any interaction at all. And it becomes addictive—much the same as watching cable news all day long. It becomes addictive. Then your train of thought isn’t your own. You borrow it. You plagiarize it, if you will. I said the other day, “The mind is a terrible thing to wield.”
Brian: Why let truth take the process? Why come up with your own belief is to what the facts mean? It’s easier to have Gretchen give them to you. It’s easier to have Ed Harris give them to you. It’s easier to have Wolf Blitzer give them to you. But they’re plagiarized. They’re not yours. You haven’t grown them. And I think in reference to the garden is that once those peas and carrots come up, you’re responsible. You grew that. That’s the work of your own hand. But everyone else is busy plagiarizing thoughts now and signing on. I call them the packs and the jacks whenever I write about them– the packs being the elephants– the Republican Party or the jacks being the jackasses.
The packs and the jacks—they’re two gangs of the same cartel. And they’re going to do their big government gangs. You know when people say, “Oh, aren’t you glad it’s going to be Romney?” I’m hard pressed to find a lot of differences from time to time between former Governor Romney and President Obama. Sometimes you look at all the different things that they stand for. You take the names off the top. And I don’t think a lot of people could tell the difference between the resumes. So the packs and the jacks—they keep fighting. And those of us that know better plant peas and carrots. Those of us that don’t get caught up in the frenzy of cable TV and the blogs and everything else. And our opinions are plagiarized and then hijacked.
Bill: Well do you remember when we had the gentleman on… He was the only guy that ever beat the FTC and the FDA?
Brian: Oh, Jonathan Emord. Great guy.
Bill: Jonathan, yeah. And Jonathan made that comment about “90-some% of your life is just affected by bureaucrats.” And so you can trade—you know what the old Birch Society used to say—CFR Team A for CFR Team B—and the world really doesn’t change that much. The State Department stays the same. The bureaucrats are all entrenched and they’re the ones that run it anyway. So let’s project… I’m springing this on you but I think it’s kind of fun. Just let’s project a Romney presidency. What would possibly be different? He might… One thing I could think of positively, that Romney might do or Santorum or someone might do, like Bush, is appoint a different judge, a more conservative judge—probably not a great judge. Probably not someone that would have sort of the Libertarian ideas that you and I share but maybe appoint a judge that could hold the fort a little longer. That might be one positive thing. But besides that, I don’t know. I think we’ll still have deficit spending. I think we’ll still have the growth of government. I think we’ll still have…He’s not going to shut anything down, is he?
Brian: Nope. Well he says he’s going to do whatever he has to, to reverse Obama Care and we’ll see what the Supreme Court does or doesn’t do to that end. It could come here in June. I should say, Bill, have everyone direct their hate mail. Just have Jeremy forward it to me. They’re going to be all upset going “How can you not support the presumptive Republican nominee?” And what I’m saying is I don’t see there to be a lot of difference. You’re either big government… And I’m going to keep using your line, Bill. You either believe in big government or you believe you should go to your garden and plant your peas and carrots. Everyone wants you to have a Doctorate in political science but it really does come down to that. You believe that government can cure all your ills or you believe you go to the garden and you make your way. Do you see it any different?
Bill: No, I don’t. I think one needs to do what he needs to do. In other words, you have some responsibilities. You need to vote and it’s not all gone. There’s a fight to be fought. But I think directing your energies to where the fight can be won… And what I like about where you’re going in your book is you’re trying to say, “Look. You’re mortal beings. You’ve only got so much mojo. You’ve only got so much energy and so you have to think about where you’re going to fight. What hills are you going to die on?” And this business of just twiddling around all day, worrying about the next segment of a news show rather than living a life—I think that’s the great American dilemma.
And we know we have sociopaths in power. There are Republicans in forum and Democrats in forum. And you and I are totally on the same page. I think we probably see Ron Paul as the only guy that has any kind of sense of the Constitution, that he sees it as law. In other words, most of these guys don’t understand what a law is. And so as a result of that, they run roughshod on all forms of law. So my guess is they run roughshod… The same folks probably have tendencies to run roughshod on all laws. If you think you can just do whatever you want and that the Constitution doesn’t matter, why would you think…? We talk about down here, hunting ducks. Why would you think that you should only shoot three mallards a day or whatever the rules say that you can shoot? Why not just make up your own rule?
Brian: And I’ll tell you Bill, that lunch that you and I had, when we were discussing about you growing up as a young boy and hunting with your dad and later into life and as you continue to hunt—that conversation always sticks with me and I use it in defense of Libertarians being anarchists, Libertarians being atheist. There is a whole list of things that they attack Libertarians for. But I always go back to the story you told me. At some level, if there aren’t some rules, you’re going to have people taking machine guns, Claymore mines and hand grenades into a duck blind and coming out with 1,000 ducks. And I just want you to know I’ve never forgotten that because some rules are good. Some rules. Even Thomas Jefferson himself… Everyone says, “Oh, Thomas Jefferson. All men are created equal.”
He wanted the government to treat all men equally but you read Thomas Jefferson’s works and he says, “Look. There is a natural aristocracy born into nature and the Constitution’s charge is to make sure that natural aristocracy doesn’t gain control of the government.” Thomas Jefferson absolutely believed in a hierarchy of people. But to your point, and the lesson you taught me about duck hunting, there are just some folks that think they can kill 100 ducks a day and the heck with everyone else’s ability to hunt if you want. So it’s not that we’re anarchists. It’s not that we’re saying, “Government should be overthrown.” It’s none of those things. It’s like “Do we really need…?” What is it, 17,000 pages—the Federal Register? Jeffrey Tucker did a great piece this morning on his website, about it doesn’t matter how many pages you have. One tiny little law can have a massive impact. So we’re not saying do away with all of them. Do we really need all of them?
Bill: Well and should some of that—what we call “sphere sovereignty”—be transferred back to local communities, to churches, to families and individuals? So let me rephrase. I’ll go back to Tocqueville a little bit. In 1831 Tocqueville came to America to study the prison system and he wrote this book Democracy in America and he was able to travel around the country. If you read the book and you’re kind of watching what you read, what he was most struck by is that we didn’t need a cop standing at every street corner. In other words, he would travel for quite a distance. He would travel and he would not run into any police officers. Yet he found social stability. The duck hunting rules were somehow inside the hearts of the citizenry. We go back to Christianity and talk about the law being written in your heart. So you don’t need a guy with a club standing there saying, “If you do this, I’m going to beat your head in” because you just, out of your thanksgiving to God, out of your thankfulness for being alive, you say, “You know what? We’re not going to shoot all those ducks because they need to reproduce for the next generation and for the next season and so forth.”
And so you see the world through a different pair of glasses. We generally refer to that as worldview. De Tocqueville saw a worldview in America that was really something short of amazing and something really wonderful in his eyes because he said, “You don’t really need to govern these people with sticks and knives and guns because they govern themselves—self-governing.” And so the problem with the Tea Party, the problem with a lot of Libertarian perspective is, in my mind Brian, as I’ve always discussed this is you can’t get rid of the concept of law. So in other words, for us to say, “We just want to strike down some laws,” do I think that’s a good thing? Yeah. But the law still has to exist. And if we use the duck metaphor and the duck analogy, we still can’t kill all the ducks, whether the federal government and the state government says that or not. The truth of the matter is, as an individual, as a family, you can’t kill all the ducks. So why not just have that inculcation and installation of that thought in people’s hearts and then you’ve got a society for the first… well, probably until the Civil War. That’s the kind of people that lived in this country, with some exceptions obviously. But you had people that were self-governed.
Brian: And I think that those lessons fall on such deaf ears now, Bill, simply because if… You and I have traveled to Mexico. We’ve been to different places. But imagine you and I land in Paris and we don’t speak French. So we try to envelop someone that doesn’t speak English in a conversation. Imagine it’s a cab driver. We’d be standing there with literally no ability to communicate. So when you talk about personal responsibility, when you talk about saving for future generations, I’m beginning to believe you speak a language that’s not indigenous to our population anymore. You might as well be speaking Russian to a group of people that don’t know Russian. It’s a language. It’s a meme. And when people don’t understand it when you talk. I bet you you’ll have this conversation in person with folks and their eyes just glaze over. “What do you mean, Bill, we can’t have it all now? What do you mean we’re not entitled to shoot 100 ducks? What do you mean we should let the ducks reproduce so that we leave them for future generations?” People will look at you like you have three heads.
Bill: They do look at me that way when I say that. But that’s just because… One of my friends used to say—my biology teacher, Gary Underwood—he goes, “This is not the country I grew up in.” Well he was being playful but at the same time, he was echoing this communicative thing that you’re making reference to. Wittgenstein, the great language philosopher, called those language games. In other words, we have a common way that we talk. When we see a sign that has a little turn that goes off to the right, we know what that means, as a culture. So when we’re driving down the road and we see a little turn sign and it shows us going that way, that sign has meaning to us. But if someone from Mars came here, they wouldn’t know what that sign meant so they’d have a hard time driving.
And when the signs get swapped around to a culture and you live in a culture where the signs, as you’re pointing out, don’t mean anything—the language and symbols and the way we communicate no longer has this transcendent meaning so that everyone objectively understands the same thing, you’re talking about a really atomized culture where we all have our own separate ideas of right and wrong. That echoes the book of Judges. They all thought that they knew the right way to live. But what happens when a society breaks down that way and you have every person who thinks that they have the law in their own mind. That was Sartre’s great vision. And Sartre is the existentialist. He both wanted that but lamented that, where every man can’t be his own god. If I’m the law source, then Brian Brawdy must be my enemy because he’s got his own law code. And our two law codes are going to clash. So Sartre, as brilliant of a man as he was, found himself back in a little bit of a self-created prison. Kind of what you were making reference to earlier, of his own metaphysical devices.
Brian: Now before the listeners go, “Oh great, here go Bill and Brian again, talking to us about philosophers and names we’ve never heard of,” on Off the Grid News you guys did a report—High Youth Unemployment Undercuts Global Stability. So you and I might have a philosophical discussion but it has real words ramifications. When you read that young people around the world are increasingly jobless, ruining the world’s chance of restoring any type of financial stability… So think about it. When they say, “Okay, well if we don’t know that a Martian lands and the slow, left curve doesn’t mean slow, left curve to them, is it possible that the reason that we have high youth unemployment—and that it is very well undercutting the global stability—we haven’t taught them how to read the signs?” And Bill… A really great guy… I liked him a lot. There were a lot of different terms that he taught me but I won’t use my favorites but I’ll ask you, who was the guy that said, “My parents taught me not to raise children but to raise adults”? Because you know why I’m laughing and I promised I would never say it because he had some other great one liners that I just took and ran with. But what was that young boy’s name? Did he have like a honey farm? He’d go out in the morning and check the nuts…
Bill: It was Lance.
Brian: Lance. Wasn’t that a great line?
Bill: He was one of our best guests ever.
Brian: My parents didn’t raise children. They raised adults. So we’re raising an entire generation of folks that don’t know, Bill, to go to the garden and plant peas and carrots. And the real world ramification is look at the high unemployment in that population.
Bill: Well it’s really off the charts. Not only is it growing off the charts here, especially for urban folks of all colors but in Europe, Brian, it is amazing and that’s contributing toward the instability there. So we have to have jobs. As you say, these philosophies, our worldview, how we look at the world really does have very pragmatic and practical implications. I think people march off to war, for example, people die, young men die in Afghanistan and other places, in wars that we’ve fought—based on philosophies. So I totally concur that sometimes bookish people don’t always do a good job of connecting dots so that the common man thinks that that’s not part of what his life is. But every one of us has a worldview. Every one of us has a philosophy of life. If you think that you are going to grab for all the gusto that you can in life, as one beer commercial says, then you have a philosophy of life.
I think that it was the Greek Aristippus that had that philosophy. He wrote academic pieces about that and if you read those academic pieces, the guys would say, “Well I don’t know what Aristippus has to do with me.” But if you said, “Well, let’s grab for all the gusto we can because there’s no tomorrow or I don’t care about the future generations’ ducks. I’m just going to eat my ducks. I’m going to grab for all the gusto that I can today,” that certainly has implications in the world for our children, our grandchildren and so forth. And I think the present administration, to kind of segue into their problems a little bit, I think—like administrations before them—I think they are a little existential, Brian. I think they are… You find yourself, as a politician, governing for the moment because you have to try to steer that media. You have to steer that right now, today.
Brian: Absolutely. The media does a great job of it. The media knows, as you know Bill, that there is tremendous import to the images in our mind. And I talk about in the book; you have to be responsible for the images in your mind because of that import. Don’t let the media hijack those images. Don’t let there be a projector that’s turned on and your opinion becomes their opinion, almost through osmosis. So it’s important to remember that the pictures, the movies that you play in your mind… Everyone loves going to Vegas although I don’t. Everyone that loves going to Vegas or goes gambling, they always talk about how great the slot machines are because of all the flashing lights and all the noise and the colors and the visceral feeling of coins falling into the bucket. But that’s why it’s so important not to let those images hijack you.
To be able to go into an airport that has a slot machine and keep on walking. That’s what it means to control the images in your own mind. And this administration, even as recently as a few days back, saying that the Supreme Court—how dare and unelected body decide to overthrow the majority of a democratically elected Congress? Until you read in the Constitution that the Supreme Court is supposed to be unelected. So you can’t lament that an unelected body, whichever way it goes—an unelected body of justices—can sit in judgment of democratically elected Congressmen. You can’t poo-poo that idea and then say, “Oh, but I’m all for the Constitution.” You don’t get to have both of those views because the Constitution was structured to have the Supreme Court and all the courts beneath them structured in such a way that they were outside of the public vote.
Bill: Sure. Yeah, you have to… The worldview of government in our country, from my take, was always sort of the harmonization of the one and the many. You find that in the Trinity and you find this equal ultimately in these heads of power. And I think that’s the amazing thing about what we have in our country is that. I was thinking about what you said earlier and I was thinking about if you don’t do what… This is a great part about your book and I don’t know if you talk about Joseph Goebbels at all but here is a guy, Brian, that understood what you’re writing about in your book and he understood that you have to manage the imagery, right? So if you do that properly, people think, “Well, that will never happen again. You could never trick people into thinking that Jews aren’t real people.” All I can say is don’t be too sure. Don’t be too sure.
Brian: I think there was a book on that, Bill, wasn’t there? How to kill 11 million people?
Bill: There should be if there isn’t.
Brian: Yeah, there’s a little book that talked about it. He was all smiling, “No, we’re taking you to a better place.” And it was all about how did they… Let me see here. Oh, Amazon.com. How Do You Kill 11 Million People? And it’s a small, little, paperback book. How Do You Kill 11 Million People: Why The Truth Matters More Than You Think. It’s by a guy named Andy Andrews and I don’t believe there are 100 pages to it, Bill. I’ve read it in the space of a couple of hours. But he talks about managing those images. How did you get all those people to get on the trains? To be transported to these different places? So it’s a very powerful book. It was as powerful as it was short and it’s about managing those messages.
Bill: Managing the stream of the collective conscience. How do you do that? And to flow back to your earlier statements, every news agency—they buy each other out and they kind of all have the same stream—but they’re all slightly different derivations of the same overarching concept. That’s the danger of this because I think you’re falling into it. If you just pay attention to it—what goes in, comes out. You can’t help but be affected by what you put in your brain, what you read. That goes back to… And all of the great philosophers knew that. As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he. You keep the pounding drum of this, we’re all socialists now… And I would say even FOX kind of is socialism-light, as a version of that—the drumbeat toward this Hegelian collectivist perspective. You can’t help but… Now think about the kids, Brian. We’re always talking about the children. Sometimes we joke about it but just what if the kids are given a constant barrage of that all day long at school. Then they come home to a TV set that’s just barraging them with the same thing at night. What are you going to get from that next generation? Because you’re programming them. You’re managing their stream of social consciousness. What are you going to get from them? Could you expect Thomas Jefferson from a generation that’s been fed poison?
Brian: Bill, I’m going to answer your question by referring you back to Off the Grid News. What do you get? You get high youth unemployment that’s going to undercut—if it hasn’t started already—global stability. And wait until these poor kids that went on to college and maybe even some got Masters degrees and took out huge loans and now they can’t find a job to start to pay those loans back. The housing bubble was one bubble. Wait until this bubble comes. What if you have all these people that are trying to pay back their student loans…? Because as you said, after years of watching the TV, going to school, being… And I don’t mean indoctrinated necessarily, in a bad way. Let’s just say that the software of your mind was programmed. How’s that? Is that a little easier than indoctrinated?
Bill: It’s a softer version, yeah.
Brian: Yeah, softer version. You uploaded software into your operating system and now look at these poor folks that thought, “I’ll get out of college. I’ll get a great gig. I’ll be on easy street.” That’s what you get from this whole generation. As you said, what would Jefferson think of it? You get high youth unemployment and I think you also get some of the violence. Some of the uncertainty stems from that.
Bill: Yeah, and what does our youth do when they’re not working? What do you suppose they’re doing when they’re not working? Playing video games, watching TV, entertaining themselves. Who wrote the book, Amusing Ourselves To Death? I can’t remember the author. That’s what they end up doing and then they’re further creating a hole that they can’t get out of. So instead of someone hiring them at a below-market wage perhaps because they’re inexperienced, what happens is they just become more and more all the time, unemployable. Brian, I’ve got people that come here. I could tell you stories. Jeremy could smile. And I get people that either have started working for me or that come for job interviews here and they’ll… You’re not going to believe this. They’ll come here and not even tie their shoes. And when I say, “Your shoes are untied,” they say stuff like, “Yeah, that’s the way I’ve been doing my shoes since I was 15 and that’s just the way I roll.” And they want a job from me. And I’m going to let you interact with customers? With people that want to come in here and trust us? Not that wearing shoes around the house that aren’t… There’s nothing wrong with that on your own time. I’m not sure that I’ve had my shoes tied all the time in my life. But at the same time…
Brian: That’s why I wear slip-ons. I’m lousy at tying knots.
Bill: Well you want to be ready if the police come though. I think that’s the difference for you. You want to be able to get out of there in a hurry.
Brian: That’s why I spend all my time in an RV. You never can tell when I’m going to have to pull up anchor and get out of Dodge. I’m with you. I’m with you. I just wanted to make reference. The book you were referring to– I looked it up real quick, Bill—was by a guy named Neil Postman.
Bill: Neil Postman, sure.
Brian: Yeah. Amusing Ourselves To Death.
Bill: Amusing Ourselves To Death. Well that’s part of another way that we’re enslaving ourselves and that you’re making reference to in your book. And as we kind of close down a little bit, Brian, I know I don’t want to pin you down but when do you think you’re going to have your book? We certainly want to be the first to promote the book and to start marketing the book for you because we expect great things from you here. When are you going to say that you think it will be ready?
Brian: I’m looking in about two month’s time. So hopefully to kick off the summer and that would be great, Bill. It’d be an honor. I will promise that you will be only the second person to know. When the publisher says, “Hey, this is the date,” I will call you first because I would love to do it. And a lot of the lessons that I talk about in the book, Bill, I learned from you. I learned in the time that we’ve spent together. Reminded me of some of the stuff I learned from my grandfather. Reminded me some of the stuff that I’ve studied now thousands of books about the Constitution and philosophy and freedom and survival and independence. So it would make perfect sense for me to launch the book on Off the Grid News because it was instrumental. And when I tell you about the publisher, you’re going to go, “Wow, Brian. That really was instrumental.” So it would be an honor to come back and do it here.
Bill: Well that would be fabulous. And right now, if people want to kind of find out what you’re working on and what you’re doing as you kind of take this little sabbatical from us, as you’re working on this stuff, how can they find you and how can they find out what you’re up to and get mad at you or whatever it is they want to do? Send you nasty emails.
Brian: They can stick right on Off the Grid News. I think there’s a link to my website on Off the Grid News. They can click on it there. I would say on Facebook, just Brian Brawdy, or they can Google me. It will take them to the website. And I look forward to hanging out with them, either there or on Facebook and Twitter—something like that.
Bill: That is fabulous, Brian. I can’t wait for the book. I know it will be a really comprehensive book and as I said, we’re looking forward to it and we’re looking forward to promoting it with you. Hey Brian, why don’t you do me a favor? Why don’t you take us out?
Brian: Ladies and gentlemen, thank you so very much. We know your time is precious and the fact that you gave Bill and I and the team here at Off the Grid News a full hour of it means the world to us. Don’t forget—you can find us, as always, on Facebook. You can always hook up with us on Twitter at Off the Grid News. Until next time, Bill Heid will be back. Remember—keep it on Off the Grid News. We have no desire to spin you—just give you the news and let you decide how to employ it.