No child can be trusted with a man, apparently.

Glance at this article from CNBC.

What’s going on here?

On two separate flights, with two separate airlines (Virgin Australia and Quatas) men were moved from their seats away from unattended child passengers and replaced by women.  Each of these two airlines has an actual written policy in place that disallows men from sitting next to children that are traveling without adults.

An airline, of course, ought to be able to make any rules it likes regarding passenger seating.  If they want to keep men away from children, fine.  If they want to keep haberdashers away from people with webbed toes, fine.  If they want to keep Mac users in odd numbered seats and Windows users in the evens, whatever.  If you don’t like it, fly another airline.  If all the airlines are doing it, start a boycott.

It’s discouraging, though, that this attitude is out there, strong enough to actually make it into corporate policies, that men in general are prone to child predation.  Apparently, some people, in serious numbers, fear men.

Are men dangerous?  Well, yes.  Men are evolved to kill, fight, hunt etc.  Men have more upper body strength and testosterone then women.  Men are, by evolution, more directly violent and more sexually assertive.

Should men be feared?  Some men, probably.  But we live in a civilization and much of the danger that men pose is meant to be neutralized by the force of civilization.  This process fails with regularity.  Individual men freak out all the time, shooting strangers, punching strangers in the nose, and sometimes even doing something inappropriate with unattended children on an airplane.

But it’s a big world.  The fact that these things happen is attributable to statistics.  Run any process enough times and the improbable becomes inevitable.  Fluky things happen every day, both good things and bad things, because there’s a tremendous amount of activity on this planet.

But that two separate airlines would get it in their minds to set written policies separating men from children points out of an irrational fear of men in general.  In order to become policy, this fear had to seem reasonable to an actual policy committee–more than one person–within the company at some point in time.  Or, if the policy was written by one person, it at least had to pass the scrutiny of higher ups for the period of time that the policy was in place.

That all men are potential child molesters is a social reality in some pockets of the world.  These pockets of the world include the administrators of corporate businesses.  Administrators–a generally under-recognized scourge of the human race–tend to take on gross black-and-white points of view because they are given so many decisions to make and are largely sheilded from any real consequences of their decisions.

We can make something out of this, though.  Social attitudes are like yeast, and corporate policy making is like grain mash left in the open air.  Here we see an ambient social attitude finding fertile ground and making itself apparent by it’s success.  The fear of men, and the paranoia for the safety of children has shown itself to us.  The attitude is out there.  Whether that attitude is trending upward or downward we can’t know from this particular pair of incidences, but we do know that it is loose in the wild, creeping and ready to take root.

And at the same time, the myth of total male power over society is shown to be untrue.  Men, as men, have their challenges.  The hidden premises of industrial feminism are firmly lodged in the world of ideas.

It’s out there, men.  Beware.

What is still more sad is that the two young boys in the Virgin Australia case might have been deprived of a valuable experience.  And boys in general might be deprived of valuable experiences every day, just because of a quiet attitude in the hearts of the paranoid.  Depriving boys of chances to interact with a variety of men is demasculating.  When boys are given only a few different men to look up to, they develop a distorted understanding of what it means to be a man, if not a total blindness altogether to the concept of manliness.

I’m tempted to think that a purposeful vindictive desire to deprive young boys of manliness lies at the heart of this idea that men and children should be kept separate.  I’m tempted, also, to think that industrial feminism has an aggressive agenda, wanting to eradicate the male point of view entirely, and insulating children from men wherever possible is part of this agenda.  Preventing the masculation of the next generation is a viable front in the ongoing struggle to demasculate the world as a whole.

It takes a village, right?  We are all responsible for the care and socialization of the next generation, but let’s be careful to screen any untoward ideas from that socialization process–untoward ideas such as those any random man might bear.  Because men are the killers, the destroyers, the predators and the warmakers.  Men are aggressive and aggression must be eradicated.

So, it seems, the proverbial village required for good child rearing must not include any men.  If all children are raised by women, and women only, the next generation will be peaceful and gentle, as all women are.

Right?  Of course not.  Aggression is not a learned behavior.  Aggression is biological and can not be engineered out of us.  What can be done, though, is to teach boys how to manage themselves.  How to channel their aggressive energies into constructive endeavors, such as building, creating, protecting the weak.  Well-socialized men who retain their basic manliness are crucial to this process.  Without these men in their lives, boys grow up confused.

A completely demasculated young man remains a man despite his demasculation.  Most often his male impulses become frustrated through self-censorship.  This frustration can motivate all different kinds of behavior, and we are lucky that such behavior is not often an overwhelming tide of accumulated aggression.  But we can never know what is lost because so many men have been raised to believe that their manliness is inappropriate, that they should think like a woman.  And still more we can never know what is lost in men who have no understanding of what manliness is.


Hi, remember me?

Hi- it’s been a long time.  Maybe you forgot about me.


Well, I’m still alive.  Been working hard at a thousand projects, including putting money in the bank.  Blogging’s been way down on my priority list, though I’ve been anxious to get back to it because I feel it’s important to inject my personal point of view into the world conversation.  After all, I see the future and I’m generally right about everything.  It would be a terrible and shameful thing for me to deprive you all the benefit of my better understanding.

But you know, it’s hard.  I’m just so busy all the time.  So, I’ve initiated a Tumblr blog, where I can just highlight and right-click.  Boom–post posted.  You can see the RSS stream in the right column over there.

It’s called Dystopic Drift because lately I’ve been kind of fixated on our general slow sinking into a global totalitarian daydream.  It’s currently all robots, police cameras, bankers gone wild and so on.  But, I’ll get over that soon enough and start posting about other things.  You’ll love it.

Some posts will come up with comments from myself, others will just be a snippit or a photo and a click-through link.  That all depends on how much time and energy I have.  Astute readers will see my meaning in the pattern of the posts, even when there is no comment.

In time I will post something more in-depth at this wordpress url.  For best results, I recommend you drop both and in your newsreader.

If this had been a real emergency, your face would hurt really really bad.

Well, shit.  It’s the Sunday before Monday and early on in the itchy season.  I sit down to write and find it difficult because my hands are too busy chasing down flares of itchiness all up and down my back and head and arms.  I think my brain is dehydrated, too, because the ideas just aren’t flowing these days.

On the bright side, it’s also sicky season and I’m getting lots of hours at work covering for the weak and getting union wages to do it.  I’m making dollars so fast I can barely keep up with converting them to rice and rifle ammunition.


Plus I’ve got other projects besides this blog.  There’s the preliminary research I’m doing for Secret Project #1A.  There’s that novel I’m reading. And the various side hustles I’m developing.  And keeping up with all the trades I’m jack of but not master.  And dishes.  And Warzone 2100.

But mostly I scratch.

So rather than post mediocre content here just to meet a self-imposed deadline, I’ve decided it’s wiser to announce a short hiatus for the Wretched Facts.  I’m going to take some time to assemble a few things that are worth your attention. (Frankly, the recent stuff has been a snooze.  Too much tl;dr and not enough jokes.)  Four posts ought to be a good amount.  Once I’ve got that put together, I’ll start posting again.

In the meantime, I’ve got to give great thanks to Ferdinand Bardamu at In Mala Fide and Charlie Bushmeister at the Single Dude’s Guide for giving a lot of juice to this blogging cycle.  And the only traffic.  If you’re reading this page, it’s probably because you’ve already read theirs.

So check back in a month or so.  I’ll be back with a fresh haircut and a ruthless vengeance.

Zeno Izen for President 2012… my agenda: “The Plan”

Hi, my name is Zeno Izen and I am running for President of the United States of America.  I have developed a simple plan to restore freedom, peace and prosperity to America.  Here is that plan:

Step 1:  Every U.S. citizen with a Social Security number will receive, by U.S. Postal mail, an unactivated plastic debit card.  The details of the accounts that these cards will access are a technical matter that will be worked out before this plan is implemented.

Step 2:  Citizens will have a short period of time to activate these debit cards, and the accounts that they access.

Step 3:  At an appointed moment, which may or may not be revealed in advance, each citizen’s account will be credited with a sum of money.  The amount of money is a technical detail that will be worked out before this plan is implemented.  Hypothetically, the amount is mostly irrelevant, though it will need to be significant enough to qualify as a windfall for the average citizen.  Numbers between $10,000 and $100,000 are probable.

Step 4:  The U.S. federal government will cede power to the States, and declare itself dissolved.

Step 5:  A period of adjustment will ensue.

See, I'm practically a centrist.

The benefits of this plan will be many.  The velocity of money, and the vitality of the economy will increase dramatically as citizens will be motivated to spend what money they have as soon as possible before its value drops to zero.  All sides of political debate will be satisfied by this plan as well, as redistributionists on the left will be directly compensated and minarchists on the right will see their domestic agenda implemented in full.

At the same time, the results of this plan will be unpredictable to the degree that manipulators of the economy, along with entrenched totalitarian interests, will not be able to fully retain their power.  Prices and currencies will swing to extremes as the results of this plan ripple across the globe.  Innovators and small time players will find themselves knee deep in opportunities, which will disrupt society and make resources newly available in the fairest way possible:  according to wit and competitivity.

My plan will initiate a new global golden era based on merit and voluntary association.  This is what everyone wants, perhaps excluding those deeply invested in the status quo.

So vote for me for President of the U.S. or whatever other office you want.  I ain’t on the ballot and my budget is zero, but I’ve got a slogan and it is thus:

“Vote for Zeno Izen motherfuckers!  He’s got the Plan!”

Odd magazine covers

Every Friday I will upload scans and photos of items in my collectibles inventory.  Many of these items will be listed for sale at

I’ve got lots of oddball magazines in my collection.  Here are the covers of some of them.  (And let’s see how terribly I can lay them out, too.)

The great Harvard Lampoon
Heckler's Tales. Good stories about a guy's adventures as a chronic heckler.
Riverwurst Comics
Inside Joke... get it? Me either.
The Partisan. Newspaper of the ever popular Peace and Freedom Party.
Snuff It, tool of the globalist depopulation agenda

Halloween twofer: Steroids + the Decline of Civilization

It’s Sunday morning on the day before Halloween 2011.  About a week and a half ago I wrote a vampire story that I thought might be good to post here for Halloween day, but then I realized two things. 1. The story isn’t ready.  It reads like an actual short story, but compared to what I was trying to create, the thing is more like an outline.  2. Halloween is the worst time to post a vampire story.  The world is glutted with horror fiction on Halloween day.

So, instead I’ve decided that I’m going to post a few paragraphs of economic/current-history musings (or ramblings, as the case may be) and follow it up with some old material that I posted at another blog many many years ago.

The decline

What the hell is taking so long with this decline of civilization?  Hyperinflation, totalitarian government, grand-scale urban rioting and other Really Bad Things seem to be always looming in the distance.  No one, of course, can really be sure what the future holds, but I think most observant people can agree that major changes are afoot.  Just the simple fact that there isn’t any money left to maintain U.S. and European governments indicates that adjustments need to be made.  Adjustments that are being drawn out in an excruciating way by politicians and central bankers who seem to think there’s any kind of fix to sovereign debt problems.  (There is a fix, yes.  It’s called “time.”  The balm of time, though, is perfectly counteracted by picking the scab off over and over again.)

It's a Mad Max scenario in full-spectrum stereo.

Here in America, I think there is a great debt of suffering that the general population owes.  We don’t owe this suffering for any moral reason, or spiritual or mystical.  I’m talking about simple cause and effect.  For many years, our way of life has been like a tissue-padded bra.  Our abundance was false, our voluptuousness prosthetic.  Pyramids of perfect fruit in every supermarket, a thousand varieties of breakfast cereal, glittering richness of entertainment options, a robust, complex national infrastructure, military dominance of the globe, cars, bars, restaurants, movies, blue jeans, handbags, paid time off, pensions, dependable emergency services, single family homes, clean white sheets and drive-through service have all been part of our lives and lifestyles because of credit.  Visa cards and Treasury bonds provided the liquidity that kept this cruise ship afloat.  That liquidity has receded, but we still try to find ways to live as though it hasn’t.  As long as our central banks and the consumer herd keep forestalling the inevitable–a much lower standard of living–we all risk the acute pain of a rude surprise.

These are not novel concepts.  There are hundreds of other people, across all media, saying the same thing every day.  My point is that this is taking too long.  I certainly don’t want to suffer, or see others suffer.  And I can always use more time to prepare.  But, the slowness of all this is an additional agony.

The wisest thing of all our choices, collectively, would be to institute a nationwide policy of personal restraint.  For instance, a spartan Christmas season would help a lot.  What if we all just gave each other handmade cards this year?  Don’t spend a dime?  Just for this year? What would happen?  I don’t know.  It could make things worse for the economy, but that might actually be a good thing.  Running the ship aground once and for all would show us what we have left to rebuild with.  And in any case, it might have psychological benefits for the U.S. population.  It feels good to be proactive, even when the proactivity is imperfect.  Also, our consumer culture has been driven in a large way by feelings of smallness and disatisfaction at the level of the individual.  The world is too big, and we are too small, so we distract ourselves with buying and spending.  Feeling some amount of historical control might feed the soul hunger that has been a major motivation for all of this borrowing.

Something like this will never happen, though.  Humanity takes the path of least resistance as predictably as water finds the lowest ground.  This is easy to see in the very synthetic Occupy Wall Street assemblies.  Lots of people may show up because it seems like something to do, but that’s as far as it will ever go.  In the long run, collectivism never works.  Individuality is far more powerful.  Agreement is scarce, cooperation rare.  Mass movements do erupt, but not often with long term agendas.  It’s easier for the crowd to express inarticulable anger than to create something.  To create requires the individual.

That’s why I really believe that a global market-based anarchy is the best thing for us all.  But that isn’t happening any time soon, either.  No, nothing great will be happening for a while.  First we have to slog our way through this slow motion disaster.

This was posted at another blog in October of 2007.  Even back when I wrote this, I thought the idea was somewhat obvious.  As far as I know, though, I’m the only one that’s ever vocalized the idea seriously.  Probably because the idea offends too many basic cultural values.  Oh, if we could only get past that kind of crap.

A Solution to the Steroid Problem

Steroids have been a part of sports for years now, and they are here to stay. Not only that, but steroids are just the beginning. Soon enough we will see robotic and genetic enhancements to the human body that will let athletes perform at many times their natural capabilities. As science marches on, records will be smashed over and over again. Are you ready for the 200-mph fastball? How about the 1500-home-run career, or the two-minute mile? Not even science fiction is the limit in the world of athletic competition, because whatever can be engineered will be put to quick use on the playing field.

The only uncertainty is how the rulemakers of the various sports leagues will treat these advancements. The current trend is to prohibit technological ability-boosters, to banish them into a hidden sphere. With steroids prohibited, honest players must compete against cheaters, standards of achievement become skewed and sports fans can no longer be sure who is a true winner and who is a juiced-up manbeast taking advantage of an unbalanced situation.

It’s as true in sports as anywhere else, prohibition is terrible mistake. The difference is that, in sports, to ban enhancements is twice the error. Drug users tend to fail in the real world, but the opposite is true in sports–at least over the short term. Steroid users will always win against their more honest opponents, and those who follow the rules will never break the records set by more-than-human competitors.

Quaaludes are like performance enhancing drugs for the sport of fatherhood.

But while prohibition is a foolish policy, it is clearly necessary to exert some sort of control over these substances–not to mention whatever else might be on its way down the research pipeline. Whatever is allowed will become an immediate standard. If one man quadruples the size of his pitching arm with stem cells, then everyone else will have to do it just to keep up. In competitive situations, what is not prohibited becomes obligatory. It would be terribly unwise to ask our up and coming athletes to destroy their bodies just so that they can play a game.

The best solution then is to partition our sports. There is no reason we can’t have separate leagues in each sport, one that allows any possible enhancement, and one that allows no enhancements at all.

The benefits of a system that separates sports into enhanced and non-enhanced leagues are plain.

A main improvement under this system will be that performance enhancement will come out of the closet. No parent will have to lecture their children on the dangers of steroid or amphetamine use because these risks will be openly illustrated by the scores of sports heroes who will suffer from brain cancer, abnormal hair and sudden coronary explosions.

As cyborgenics become available, we will also see athletes with robotic limbs and bits of facial circuitry. Admittedly, the fact that these physical upgrades will be introduced to us by famous sports figures may actually add an element of romance to the technology. However it’s also an undeniable fact that when once these things are invented, there will be no way to stop their infiltration into our culture. It is better to have the gear tested in full public view under high-performance conditions than to have them sold to us “as is” by less-than-honest marketing hacks.

Wearable computing and cyborgenics are things of the near future. As a species, we have lived through the introduction of many new technologies, and it’s about time we began to get this process right. Consider the automobile. How many years, and how many lives, passed us by before we saw the invention of seat belts and air bags? Or take an additional example–genetic engineering. The citizenry tend to fear this technology and clamor for regulation that is much more dramatic than necessary. In either case, the legislation on these innovations has been either too late or too quick.

But in the case of re-engineering the human body, we have the luxury of a class of people who will willingly test these things and do it at their own expense. Considering the entertainment value that comes as a bonus, why not let them?

There are many more possible benefits of this idea, but I will add just one more. When performance enhancement is brought out in the open through league partitioning, we will no longer have to suffer the heartbreak, or witness the disgrace, as our beloved athletes are inevitably caught cheating at their games. Episodes such as our ongoing suspicion of Barry Bonds, and our shock at the downfall of Marion Jones will no longer haunt us, and we will be free to enjoy the diversions of sport once again.

World War Two ration stamp booklet

Every Friday I will upload scans and photos of items in my collectibles inventory.  Many of these items will be listed at

Front of book.

War ration books are fairly common items in antique stores and on eBay.  But, because they are printed on cheap paper, they tend to be in terrible condition and they also often have many of their stamps removed.

This booklet is in pretty good shape, though.

Some of the stamps inside the booklet.
Back of the book.

The market is already free.

The market is an arena of peace.

There’s a premise that I’ve accepted as true since I was in high school.  The premise’s survival in the face on many years of new information tends to suggest that the premise has some validity.

The premise is this:  The human system, as a whole, is anarchic.

Yes, we have nation-states.  Yes, we have corporations.  Yes, we have elites.  Yes, there are people in charge.  But, try as they might, there is no single entity that has absolute control over humanity.

At the very top of the global social ladder, there are opposing interests, offsetting forces and competing entities.  And, as this is the top of the pyramid, with nothing governing it, the churn here is subject to the laws of emergence and market dynamics.

And as above, so below.  From the yacht clubs of Massachusettes to the black hole of Calcutta, governance exists in pockets.  Control exists in finite zones that emerge within an overall system of anarchy.  And if these zones are seen as discreet bodies within the anarchic system, we can see that they emerge and behave according to the laws of the system that they inhabit.

In other words, a government is the product of a free market.

Empires rise and fall.  Kings are as subject to economics as a business owner.  Certainly, a king may control the money supply in his realm, but he can’t violate natural law.  A king can’t print money indiscriminately and avoid the consequences any more than he can hover in midair.

Between kingdoms there are natural laws, too.  As von Clausewitz said, war begins when diplomacy fails.  Between individuals a fist fight might result from failed negotiations at a tavern.  Of course, there are laws pertaining to that.  But what law stops one nation from invading another?  Only alliances, quasi-influential international bodies and other artifices have any effect on international relations.  These artifices are the product of an anarchic system.

So, seen from the moon, we realize that we already live in a free market system.  When anyone talks about, or lobbies, for market freedom they are doing it on a local basis.  To work for free markets is a dismantling process, an uncovering of human layers to reveal what lies below.

But let’s remember that these zones of control are temporary.  They may last for a long time. Just as an overfunded business can operate at a loss for years on end, a government with faulty financial policies can run for a long long time.  But in the end they will fail.  No entity, coporeal or corporate, can evade the laws of its environment.

“Nature Bats Last” says the bumper sticker.  It’s really true.  And if we believe that market forces are natural laws, then the agorist has already won.  His only struggle is with his local situation.

Masonic memorabilia: Order of the Amaranth membership card

Every Friday I will upload scans and photos of items in my collectibles inventory.  Many of these items will be listed at

Front side of membership card.
Back side of card.

I got this card in amongst a random batch that I bought on eBay.  Oddly, old Masonic membership cards go cheap.  They average about $3 each on eBay.

The Order of the Amaranth is a Freemasonry spin-off that allows women in and also probably has minimal involvement in running the world.