Wednesday, August 24, 2005

John Woolman's 'War on War' now

I believe that God has but one rule to follow with many permutations. The rule is 'Do not use coercion on any fellow man capable of reason'. Permutations include 'Do not sit idly by while coercion is used on your neighbor'. I believe also that Christ taught two lessons - how to live and how to die. The living part is rather easy. Many people would rather gloss over how he died. I do not believe that he died in our place but that we must risk death at the hands of the tyrants or give up any claim to glory. Simple, right? Paying taxes to government is the opposite of preventing the use of coercion, don't you agree? Getting a drivers license and registration plates to use the roads that you own is, too. Anyone that agrees with me is welcome to manufacture your own plates and "register" them with (I own the site). Have transfer letters made that say that and fit across the top of a white painted-over state plate (saving the black letters/numbers) and other transfer letters saying "permanent" beneath them. When you write to me I will print out an official looking certificate and post your info on the database (accessible only with a password unique to you). This is the walk that I walk, the change that I wish to see made. In Connecticut, I am resisting property taxes for the eight years I have owned a townhouse in Clinton, relying upon the State Constitution, Article 9 (read it). I pay no income taxes to anyone, either. I do not have time to get around gas taxes, however. I buy most of my goodies on eBay. I advocate making direct, polite approaches to legislators at all levels pleading the position of conscience (NOT - spend the tax money on my favorite cause). I advocate easing out the traitors from all the Churches leadership positions (the ones that support Romans 13, 1-8). On the Duty of Civil Disobedience is nearly perfect gospel to me.


Blogger ayanrand99 said...

Hi John,

I'm contacting you because an e-mail from "Tee" on your upcoming appearance in upstate NY. There is a book and webiste you need to know about,

The author of the book and site is a libertatian author named Marc Stevens. Many GREAT links to Lysander Spooner as well Henry David Thoreau.

Please contact me at if you'd like to know more. I urge you to check out the site. The buy line of Marc's book is "should any good or service be provided at the barrel of a gun?"

"I am sure there was no man born marked of God above another for none comes into the world with a saddle upon his back, neither any booted and spurred to ride him."

-Last words of Richard Rumbold before being hanged for planning an insurrection against the tyrant Charles II, 1679

10:55 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

I have recently changed the thrust of my "advice" to freedom fighters. It boils down to this: It does not profit us to spend our intellectual capital on trying to convince the sheeple of our better vision for the world, with reason and logic, that is. Instead, we must utilize the nuclear weapon of political battle which is low and visious ridicule. This must be poured upon the POLICIES of government, and not the personages, to de-legitimize statism in the eyes of the sheeple rather than invoke defensive measures. An old commie radical, Saul Alinsky wrote about it, too:
Saul Alinsky: The American Radical

An inspiration to anyone contemplating action in their community!

Saul Alinsky wrote the book on American radicalism - two books, in fact - a 1945 best-seller, "Reveille for Radicals" and "Rules for Radicals" in 1971. The "Reveille" title page quotes Thomas Paine...

"Let them call me rebel and welcome, I feel no concern from it; but I should suffer the misery of devils, were I to make a whore of my soul."

Saul Alinsky, who was a labor and civil-rights activist from the 1910's until he died in 1972, has written here a guidebook for those who are out to change things. He sets down what the goal is: a society where people are free to live, and also aren't starving in the streets. A society where there is legal and economic justice. Then he sets out to say how to get there.

Alinsky spends a lot of time critiquing the idea that "The end does not justify the means." What end? What means? He feels that there are circumstances where one can and should use means that in other circumstances would be unethical. I am not sure I agree, but Alinsky certainly speaks with the voice of experience.

Alinsky's goal seems to be to encourage positive social change by equipping activists with a realistic view of the world, a kind of preemptive disillusionment. If a person already knows what evil the world is capable of, then perhaps the surprise factor can be eliminated, making the person a more effective activist. Alinsky further seems to be encouraging the budding activist not to worry to much about getting his or her hands dirty. It's all a part of the job, he seems to say.

Alinsky, the master political agitator, tactical planner and social organizer didn't mince words ...

"Liberals in their meetings utter bold works; they strut, grimace belligerently, and then issue a weasel-worded statement 'which has tremendous implications, if read between the lines.' They sit calmly, dispassionately, studying the issue; judging both sides; they sit and still sit.

The Radical does not sit frozen by cold objectivity. He sees injustice and strikes at it with hot passion. He is a man of decision and action. There is a saying that the Liberal is one who walks out of the room when the argument turns into a fight.

Society has good reason to fear the Radical. Every shaking advance of mankind toward equality and justice has come from the Radical. He hits, he hurts, he is dangerous. Conservative interests know that while Liberals are most adept at breaking their own necks with their tongues, Radicals are most adept at breaking the necks of Conservatives.

Radicals precipitate the social crisis by action - by using power. Liberals may then timidly follow along or else, as in most cases, be swept forward along the course set by Radicals, but all because of forces unloosed by Radical action. They are forced to positive action only in spite of their desires ...
o The American Radical will fight privilege and power whether it be inherited or acquired by any small group, whether it be political or financial or organized creed.
o He curses a caste system which he recognizes despite all patriotic denials.
o He will fight conservatives whether they are business or labor leaders.
o He will fight any concentration of power hostile to a broad, popular democracy, whether he finds it in financial circles or in politics.
o The Radical recognizes that constant dissension and conflict is and has been the fire under the boiler of democracy. He firmly believes in that brave saying of a brave people, "Better to die on your feet than to live on your knees!"
o The Radical may resort to the sword but when he does he is not filled with hatred against those individuals whom he attacks. He hates these individuals not as persons but as symbols representing ideas or interests which he believes to be inimical to the welfare of the people.

That is the reason why Radicals, although frequently embarking upon revolutions, have rarely resorted to personal terrorism."

Alinskiypracticed what he preached. He said...

"Tactics means doing what you can with what you have ... tactics is the art of how to take and how to give."

He uses eyes, ears and nose for examples...

Eyes -
"If you have a vast organization, parade it before the enemy, openly show your power."
Ears -
"If your organization is small, do what Gideon did: conceal the members in the dark but raise a clamor that will make the listener believe that your organization numbers many more that it does."
Nose -
"If your organization is too tiny even for noise, stink up the place."

Alinsky devised and proved thirteen tactical rules for use against opponents vastly superior in power and wealth ...

1. "Power is not only what you have but what the enemy thinks you have.

2. Never go outside the experience of your people.

3. Wherever possible go outside of the experience of the enemy.

4. Make the enemy live up to their own book of rules.

5. Ridicule is man's most potent weapon.

6. A good tactic is one that your people enjoy.

7. A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag.

8. Keep the pressure on.

9. The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.

10. Major premise for tactics is development of operations that will maintain constant pressure upon the opposition.

11. If you push a negative hard and deep enough it will break through into its counterside.

12. The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative.

13. Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.

The real action is in the enemy's reaction. The enemy properly goaded and guided in his reaction will be your major strength. Tactics, like life, require that you move with the action."

Alinsky was hated and defamed by powerful enemies, proof that his tactics worked. His simple formula for success ...

"Agitate + Aggravate + Educate + Organize"

9:52 PM  
Blogger edprehiem60431789 said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

2:25 PM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

Other peoples thoughts on war, always timely:

War will exist until that distant day when the conscientious objector
enjoys the same reputation and prestige that the warrior does
today. ~John F. Kennedy

Join the Army, see the world, meet interesting people - and kill them.
~Pacifist Badge, 1978

You can no more win a war than you can win an earthquake. ~Jeanette Rankin

In war, there are no unwounded soldiers. ~José Narosky

If we let people see that kind of thing, there would never again be
any war. ~Pentagon official explaining why the U.S. military
censored graphic footage from the Gulf War

The battered earth bore nothing but groaning wounded who couldn't
be helped, distended bodies that your foot sank into, among broken
guns, punctured helmets, scattered equipment. -- Jacques Meyer,
writing of the Battle of Verdun

War would end if the dead could return. ~Stanley Baldwin

It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished
unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.
~Voltaire, War

If it's natural to kill, why do men have to go into training to learn how?
~Joan Baez, "What Would You Do If....?"

The tragedy of war is that it uses man's best to do man's worst.
~Henry Fosdick

The first casualty when war comes is truth. ~Hiram Johnson

Patriots always talk of dying for their country and never of killing for
their country. ~Bertrand Russell

The refuge of the morally, intellectually, artistically and economically
bankrupt is war. ~Martin H. Fischer

War is only a cowardly escape from the problems of peace. ~Thomas Mann

The military don't start wars. Politicians start wars. ~William

Anyone who has ever looked into the glazed eyes of a soldier dying
on the battlefield will think hard before starting a war. ~Otto
Von Bismark

War hath no fury like a noncombatant. ~Charles Edward Montague

Law never made men a whit more just; and by means of their respect
for it, even the well-disposed are daily made the agents of
injustice. A common and natural result of an undue respect for law
is that you may see a file of soldiers, colonel, captain, corporal,
privates, powder-monkeys, and all marching in admirable order over
hill and dale to the wars, against their wills, ay, against their
common sense and consciences, which makes it very steep marching
indeed, and produces a palpitation of the heart. They have
no doubt that it is a damnable business in which they are
concerned; they are all peaceably inclined. Now, what are they?
Men at all? or small movable forts and magazines, at the service of
some unscrupulous man in power? The mass of men serve the State
thus, not as men mainly, but as machines, with their bodies.... In
most cases there is no free exercise whatever of the judgment or of
the moral sense; but they put themselves on a level with wood and
earth and stones; and wooden men can perhaps be manufactured that
will serve the purpose as well. ~Henry David Thoreau, On
the Duty of Civil Disobedience

O Lord our God, help us tear their soldiers to bloody shreds with our
shells; help us to cover their smiling fields with the pale forms of their
patriot dead; help us to drown the thunder of the guns with the shrieks of
their wounded, writhing in pain; help us to lay waste their humble homes
with a hurricane of fire; help us to wring the hearts of their unoffending
widows with unavailing grief; help us to turn them out roofless with their
little children to wander unfriended the wastes of their desolated land in
rags and hunger and thirst, sports of the sun flames of summer and the icy
winds of winter, broken in spirit, worn with travail, imploring Thee for the
refuge of the grave and denied it. ~Mark Twain, "The War Prayer"

"When I pray for peace, I pray not only that the enemies of my own
country may cease to want war, but above all that my country will
cease to do the things that make war inevitable."
Thomas Merton

10:56 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

This is my letter to a Quaker affiliated organization that wishes to create a "Department of Peace" in the US government.

Dear Friends,

Not withstanding your sincere belief that your endeavours will lead to a more peaceful world, please gently hear my objections to the success of any such program.

First, the State would still be left with all the financial lifeblood it requests to carry out its various programs. Plus, it would have your enthusiastic backing for going forward with things like prisons and multitudinous militarized police forces and pollution credit-granting environmental agencies and infinite other bureaucracies. In other words, none of the various 'wars' that it commits on us would be harmed. You would convince yourselves to feel better but innocents would continue dying in equal or greater numbers.

Second, every single statement contained in your pamphlet begs no difference between serving only God and attempting to serve God and man. The first is totally devoid of feeling an obligation to pay taxes and the second is totally devoid of serving God. Honesty alone will make a conscientious person consider that paying others to STEAL in ones name is just as morally bankrupt as paying to kill. Further, stealing from people invariably results in innocent death, so, where is the difference? Even 'innocent' libraries offers obvious extra services like free movies and music 'rental' that competes with a person trying to make a living at it. This is beyond the very basic fact that lending books at taxpayer expense is, well, corrupt. And then we get into public golf courses. Eventually ones eyes can be opened to the farcical public education system.

Third, there is the inevitable matter of fraud, waste and abuse. How willing should persons of conscience be to feed that. Are we also obliged to not lead others - say, for instance, politicians - into the path of temptation? Is not power over others the greatest force for corruption? And you agree with giving these fallible people this mind-destroying dagger? If YOU do not seek power over another's life, can you stand aside and allow /agree for a fellow human to be so changed (assuming he/she was not already spoiled by poor parenting or mental disease, say)? If so, WHY? HOW?

Elitism is a disease that infects us all to some degree and racism is a minor form of it. We are all at a heightened awareness of racism whether or not we are personally free of it or not. Elitism, however is more insidious in that it divides US right-thinking, charity-giving, liberal/progressives who would naturally do the "right thing" from THOSE who need to be FORCED to support the "weak" (who NEED a safety net because they otherwise could not cope). There is a completely corresponding aspect of elitism found in ANY politicallly theoried 'group', so please don't think I'm picking on just 'liberal/progressives'. Common to all is the coupling of self satisfaction with the perceived need to exert force on those who do not agree.

In God's most self evident (IMO) command, 'You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your strength and with all your mind and your neighbor as yourself', I see within that the absolute prohibition to use or participate in the use of coercion/force on our fellows. I see as a corollary to that, 'Thou shall not sit on your ass while coercion/force is used on your neighbor no matter what the personal cost.' This is what Christ did, no? I will hold you in the light that my loving intent is felt and can help ammend your purpose.

If I have not completely offended, I will gladly discuss my idea for a spirit led, coercion free program that addresses the root causes of oppression.

John Boanerges Redman

7:59 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

Dear Friends,

I characterize my enemy broadly (K.I.S.S.). I include
all bureaucracies both civil and private. Those real persons that
inhabit these devil-creations are consistently urged towards a
mindset that elevates job performance (and receipt of salary) over
the effect that job functions have on the people he or she
interacts with. This, of course, leaves room for stellar persons
that occasionally or often manage to transcend these strictures but
where do most of them fall? "I was just following orders", is the
answer to that, be it cop, soldier, clerk or librarian. Yep, my enemy is
the "system". My answer to it is to reach out to the persons staffing it
because they all have some measure of a conscience. Loving the
person is God's command. Loving or respecting the system is placing
other gods before Him.

8:02 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

Dear Frieind,

In all things I aim for the simple answers. With respect to all that the government has taken over (from society), I look for the coercion, the one stain that colors all. Public schools are products of theft from the public. I hold that nothing good comes at the point of a gun. The harm that attaches to mandatory public schooling is widespread and has little to do with how you individually found it. If you are defending "public" but not "Public" things, then I am with you but maintian that society, before, provided it at much lower cost and far greater efficiency. Nothing was ever perfect but the devil's promise of something for (practically) nothing is blatent temptation that should be shunned. As far as the quality of the school that any of us went to, the judgement is invariably purely subjective. I can show you an 8th grade graduation test from the 1880s that none of us could pass.

As far as the personal, I can hardly but appologize but have said all along, I am not the best presenter on Christ's leadings. The stage is, however, as I see it, still remarkably empty. ON th4e other hand, Christ led by leading and I, if I believe in him, must do my best. I assure you that I am, in an evolving way, doing my best. The speaking from an "I" perspective must be considered better that from "You", no?

I favor free markets unfettered by Corporatism and Socialism in all forms for delivery of all goods and services. I believe in private property including the ultimate, my body, my life. I feel that any trust in the Institutions of Man (that involve coercion) implies placing other gods before Him - not a good idea. In doing what I do, I have no problem with being the change I wish to see made. If that entails a following, I take responsibility for it and try, my very best, to follow Christ with hints from Thoreau, Ghandi, Sheehan, Woolman, Wilmerding and others when I run down.

8:05 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

Dear Friends,

Our children are not our hope for a better future. We are theirs and must make all sacrifices to fulfil this.

A spirit-led life views obedience to the callings of the world as competition to that of God. To obey the world means placing other gods before Him.

God forbids man the use of or participation in the use of violence/force/coercion/threat of force against our fellow mankind (AT LARGE) to achieve "good" ends (or bad).

God forbids us sitting on our (safe) butts while violence is used upon our neighbors no matter what the cost to us.

Fidelity to non-use of/participation in violence is essential to leading others to the narrow road to God.

Words are only words. The greatest users of violence in this world often have said quite sensible and pacific things but their actions 'speak' louder (as do ours). We do not, however, need to throw the baby out with the bathwater. Wisdom can be found in the most unlikely sources and can be learned from fools (like even me).

The various calls to action from the likes of Christ, Woolman, Fox, Mott, Bonhoeffer, Sheehan, Ghandi, etc., apply to each and every one of God's responsible humans.

I accept Christ's constant calling to mankind to live spiritual lives as a leading to do likewise (both).

I think that Quaker 'voting' should comprise making oneself informed of the legislative behavior of each of ones representatives, doing ones best to meet personally with them, informing them of their divergence from non-violence and pleading the case of conscience - often.

I believe that major attention ought be devoted for the benefit of our oppressed prisoner population in abolishing legislation requiring incarceration and prisons and jail themselves.

Quakers will lead the world in spirituality and sacrifice.

John Boanerges Redman

8:08 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

Friends and friends,

As many of you are well aware, I am trying to spark a change in Quakerism, one that involves a "return" to basic values. I try to center around 'Honesty' involving the core value of the renouncement of corecion as a means of achieving ends on earth. We are all well aware of the expediency that coercion can "offer" in helping our neighbor and the rediness which fellow man throughout recorded history has (ab)used this means. Honesty, I feel, tells us that ALL use of it violates God's will. I am "taught" that man creates government as a means of achieving our 'social contract'. Such wiser people teach me that such norms mandate that we (all) must operate from within them. How can this be? How can this be? Man also has created social organizations that operate NOT by coercion but by agreement. I don't think that these involve killing or stealing from people for the most part (though it certainly does occur). Please can we agree on this one thing? Please?


8:09 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

This is my 1st posting on

As a new poster, I feel like I should put my heart on my sleeve, even to you fellow freaks. I know what I have to say is unlikely to be new to you but here I go: The enemy is bureaucracy in all forms. It (a creation of the devil) is evil simply because it enhances attention to form at the expense of the effects that form has on PEOPLE that are affected. Promotions, even job retention depend on following rules. A spirit-led life, and by that I mean one in which a person follows ALWAYS his or her conscience, puts it the other way. Serving God means caring about people. And putting other gods before Him, well, how do you feel about that? Let me emphasize that. Serving God is NOT putting on funny hats/costumes or even reading particular books or appearing in designated places on particular times/dates. To live a (true nonviolent) libertarian or anarchist life IS to follow God AND be a decent human being. My take on "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart and with all thy strength and with all thy mind and thy neighbor as thyself" is simple (K.I.S.S.). God forbids us the use of coercion on fellow man. 1st corrolary to that is: Thou shalt not sit on your ass while coercion is used on your fellow man. OK, since I am a true believer in the non-use of coercion, I have to have answers to the 'what to do' question and I do. Ready? Since I hold bureaucracy to be the true enemy of freedom, I feel that any effort we (should) make that starves/shrinks/bleeds resources from/ridicules (had to get that in) it is good. Any effort that bleeding heart liberals and their friends republicrats/socialists make to enlarge the state/create more/larger bureaucracies ONLY enhance the monster's ability to make war (on us all). Redirecting stolen money from "war" to "education/health/greenspace/etc." is still war in another form and I feel that the disingenuous really know this, plus large government still retains the strength to revert to the other form the next time it feels the need to grow. OK, enough preaching to the choir and I mean that as a prescription for the better writers out there. Ridicule is the most powerful means of opinion change God has given us. Because it is available to the 'other side' as well as guns, our use of is must be circumspect for reasons of NOT amounting to coercion. This limitation is very simple; it must never be applied to a PERSON, only to policy or institution. The idea behind this is that hurting a person is self defeating (even if the person resembles Alfred E. Newman) in that it, one, creates sympathy and, two, hardens the attitude of the victim and his "friends". Our attitude should be to make as many friends with our efforts as possible even including the originator of the horrible policy, no? Covering the rest of my bases, I advocate not voting for the many reasons enumerated throughout this website and because helping to choose a person who is going to use coercion on us and others is wrong. Going along to get along is hardly worse, right?

Conversation is welcome. Anyone agreeable to this is invited to attend your local Quaker Meeting to aid in my efforts to reform it.
« Last Edit: Sep 10th, 2006, 4:17pm by JohnBoanerges » Logged
John Boanerges Redman, Prophet of God, Quaker reformer, enemy of bureaucracy

4:56 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

Famous saying/quote. Forget who: Truth is first ridiculed. Then it is violently attacked. Then it is accepted. I actually got the first two parts, though it acknowledged that there were three, in a fortune cookie a couple of weeks ago.

What follows is a poem, set to a welsh melody in the mid 19th century, by James Russel Lowell. In most hymnbooks it is called by the first line but not the Methodist one where I am copying it from.

Once To Every Man and Nation

Once to every man and nation comes the moment to decide,
In the strife of truth with falsehood, For the good or evil side;
Some great cause, God's new Messiah, Offering each the bloom or blight,
And the choice goes by forever 'Twixt that darkness and that light.

Then to side with truth is noble, When we share her wretched crust,
Ere her cause bring fame or profit, And 'tis prosperous to be just;
Then it is the brave man chooses While the coward stands aside,
Till the multitude make virtue Of the faith they had denied.

By the light of burning matyrs, Christ Thy bleeding feet we track,
Toiling up new Calvaries ever With the cross that turns not back;
New occasions teach new duties, Time makes ancient good uncouth;
They must upward still and onward, Who would keep abreast of Truth.

Though the cause of evil prosper, Yet 'tis truth alone is strong:
Though her portion be the scaffold, And upon the throne be wrong;
Yet that scaffold sways the future, And behind the dim unknown,
Standeth God within the shadow Keeping watch above his own.

Amen. This be my ministry and witness of love to my fellow mankind.

OK, then. Let us assume that this truth has been ridiculed and attacked and accepted. Where are we then with this? A forth stage, lip service? Or is this become a "New Truth" that I and others of us must re-present to the world? I have to assume such and accept that the Bushies hold the scaffold as a constant threat to we dissenters.
I tell the Quaker Meetings I attend (some of them, anyway) that our children are NOT our hope for a better future - we are THEIR hope and there is a terrible leadership burden on us to walk a path that leads to that scaffold. There SEEMS (to me) a sickening assumption among Quakers, particularly, that if the adults TALK a good game (which to most seems a lot of leftie social justice), that the mostly undisciplined youth will take the torch and accomplish something. Human nature cowardice, I think.

I feel that God will judge us by what we are doing when we die. Are we fighting, risking, for true freedom/lack of coercion? Or are we 'going along to get along' with statism/bureaucracy, in which case that person is merely on the broad road to destruction with the overt perpetrators.

Since we may die at any time, why not enter the fray now? If not now, when?
« Last Edit: Sep 22nd, 2006, 10:09am by JohnBoanerges »

5:02 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

Part of a reply to "How are you doing?" from a friend I missed seeing this summer.

I'm doing too well, haven't been arrested for a long time. My ministry is doing 'well', being received in friendly fashion but people still don't 'get it'. I spoke at Providence Meeting a couple of weeks ago (have since returned to Atlanta) and said that Quakers had not prevented the 'torture enabling act' from being passed. I was told how the Meeting had accomplished the fact that not one person in the RI delegation, either house, voted for it - as if that is enough. No, REAL sacrifice is called for, TOTAL non-violence and a lot of Quaker (and other) blood and treasure. The Civil Rights movement suceeded because of that sense of sacrifice coupled with extreemly strong belief in God's saving grace. The fact that the disparity in treatment was SOOOOO obvious made everyone think that "equality" was enough of a goal. OK, now we are ALL being subjected to an increasingly tyrannical government, now what? Now what is the fact that a REAL civil rights movement is imperative which strips the government of its coercive powers - to tax, to make war, to "solve" social problems, to deal death at its pleasure. It starts with people NOT paying any taxes and brings down the wrath of despotism upon our willing heads. I find that, for the most part, Quakers and white people in general are not christians. They lack the reliance upon God to help them through difficult times/decisions that minorities have had. No self satisfied, comfortable, middle classer can proceed to defend freedom, at all the costs that entails, without true faith and humility. Trusting the institutions of man (government) to accomplish social ends is perfect evidence of lack of faith. "Thou shall have no other gods before Me" leads in the right direction, the one that will stop murder and torture and wholesale theft and murder.

10:28 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

Thus I spoke today, the 15th of October 2006 at Atlanta Meeting of Friends: I gratefully return to this loving space. I saw a leaf on a young man's hand this morning that reminds me of a sequence going on in Calvin and Hobbes right now being reprinted where Calvin is about to exchange earth to the aliens that have landed in exchange for a catalog of 50 alien leaves.When the aliens leave and Hobbes mentions this, Calvin just says that the adults have not done such a good job of running earth anyhow. Well, we have Lancet Magazine to gratefully thank for pointing out what many of us already knew, that 2/3 of a million people in Iraq, alone, have been collateral damage. Two weeks ago, on the 28th of September, the congress dutifully passed the Torture Authorization bill. I gave vocal ministry two days following in Providence, RI, saying that we had not done enough. we Quakers had not done enough. We human beings had not done enough to stop this. I was told after Meeting that what I did not know that the Providence Meeting is pretty much responsible or feels itself responsible for the fact that not one Rhode Island delegate, House or Senate, had voted for that horrible thing. And yet I still say, even they, stopping with just addressing their delegates had not done enough. Addressing them is fine. It is part of my ministry. But it's going to take blood, our sacrifice. This week and for the last several weeks, PBS has been running the series on the CIvil Rights movement. Why did it succeed? My take on that is that it is because, one, the disparity between the way that they were treated and the way that white people were threated was huge. It would embarrass a lot of people. The privileged would be embarrassed. Now there still is a disparity. We can't dispute that. Racism is rampant. It's just not as obvious. But what they had. What those minorities, those downtrodden, those black people had was a deep, abiding faith in their God. They could not have gotten through those marches to Selma without that faith. What is lacking in us probably is that faith. We just, we white, we middle class, we prosperous, we privileged, we don't have it cause we don't need it or so we feel. We do need it. Two thirds of a million Iraqis, GOd knows how many Afganiis, if Lancet had counted them, if Lancet had counted the world, people are being wholesale murdered by government. Christ, God, Moses, told us that we are to have no other God before Him. Those of us, and there are many, who believe that the institutions of man can be trusted to solve our social problems are indeed putting another god before our Lord. It's a lack of faith. It's a lack of faith. God can solve these problems. We can solve these problems in this room. OUr own problems and beyond that it will radiate out. We can solve our problems without resorting to force, coercion. Nonviolence, the embrace of nonviolence is absolutely essential. We no longer have, if when Bush signs that bill, we will no longer have much of the protections that his country has enjoyed. The writ of Habius Corpus, one of the greatest defences of our freedom, it will be gone. We are on the verge, just as the Germans were in 1932, of a burst of totalitarian despotism and it's our fault. It will be our fault if it gets worse. It will be our fault if we hand this world over to our children in this condition and saying, "Alright, we did our best, now it's up to you." and go comfortably, as comfortably as we are allowed to our deaths in our own bed. I call for Quaker blood. As nonviolence, as our sacrifice as our march to Golgatha is the only way to deliver us from this horrible situation that we find ourselves in. There can be no comfort in the so-called "gifts" that government gives. There are none. There is no good from a poisoned tree. There can be no benefit from paying Taxes. We are paying our killers. It happens, if you look at history, that tax protesters, including Christ, suffer the greatest. The Whiskey Rebellion, Shays Rebellion, examples in this countries early history, but we have to take that upon ourselves. We do. We have to. (9 minutes)

8:30 PM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

This is my latest entry on the Quaker F&T forum:
Here is MY take, my K.I.S.S. perspective on:

Knowing Christ, Being a Christian: Christ was not a simple man though
his approach to all might be characterized as 'simple charity'.
Unfortunately for most of us, we or I, at least, are not as able as
He to dispense healing and this attribute is lauded by many, likewise
His miracle-working. That aside, if one reduces these to acts of
simply giving what each IS capable of then I become more comfortable
with knowing what is expected of me. The 'charity' of placing my
body, life at risk and my talents and treasure at the benefit of the
freedom and welfare of mankind becomes something that I can emulate
and peacefully accept.

Coming from a Christian culture: I see this, post Constantine et al,
as a serious impediment to actually knowing Christ. Somewhere in the
early history, Statists crept into the hierarchies and inserted the
heresy of Romans 13, 1 - 8. This murderous treachery has convinced
(almost all) would-be Christians to keep a foot in both camps
(worldly and spiritual). Queries; Is placing other gods before Him or
alongside Him or even somewhat behind Him, likely to please Him?
Would one who did so find himself on the broad road to destruction?
Almost persuaded? Almost a saint? Wholly lost? Phillip Bliss and
Daniel Read had answers to this and I align with them. In finding
much of my theology in hymns, I also take as Gospel the words of
Martin Luther, "Let goods and kindred go, This mortal life also, The
body they may kill, God's truth abideth still. His Kingdom is
forever." Funny, this verse is left out of Quaker hymnals (Number

John Boanerges Redman

4:52 PM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

A Friend on Friends Theology discussion list questioned me about my Christian beliefs. I answered his question (down below) this way:

Christ invited all to take up his cross and follow. I presume that means emulating Him in all possible ways. Would it be safe (for the soul) to presume (as do most "Christians") that He did the only dying necessary? Many of the early (and true) Christians were martyred. They were also pacifistic to their best ability, right? Were they taking the 'head' position? I think not. Has something changed? Did God 'forgive' the requirement to worship only Him? Again, for me, no. Thus 'War on War', as taught by Woolman (and Chuck Fagel), becomes the cross that I take up. Bureaucracies (but not bureaucrats) are my enemies as are the coercive policies of earthly government. The elephant in the middle of the room (that is killing people) is my focus and I seek to rally Quakers and others to follow the eloquent leads of Bonhoeffer, Fox (Tom), Woolman, Ghandi, Mott, Sheehan, and others. I advocate loving means of attacking coercion and abjure the common forms of weaponry saving leading by example and persuasion (within limits) as spititual means. The examples I live by include not paying any taxes including motor vehicle plates and drivers licensing ones and property taxes, too. Going to jail for justice, too. I also write extensively as well as visit a good number of Quaker Meetings. I am a burr under the saddle as much as I can be. I take some eldering on my methods and retoric but give it back on the general meaning. I am 'late' to Quakerism but 'early' to Christian Hymns. To be frank, I 'like' Quakerism more in its early form, before taming by Margret Fell and reject the acceptance of Romans 13, 1 - 8 wherever I find it (even when in G. Fox).
So, in as much as Christ acted as a role model, so, too, must I. If the Statists kill me, I will know that what I do makes me a candidate for their hate but I offer only love in return.

[FT] Christian beliefs
> Date: Wed, 01 Nov 2006 22:31:36 -0500
> John Boanerges Redman wrote
> "one reduces these to acts of simply giving what each IS capable of
> then I become more comfortable with knowing what is expected of me.
> The 'charity' of placing my body, life at risk and my talents and
> treasure at the benefit of the freedom and welfare of mankind
> becomes something that I can emulate and peacefully accept."
> My response: John, Would you clarify your position? Do you see
> yourself reliving the role of Messiah? Are any of the sources for
> your position part of Scripture or early Quaker writings? Does your
> way of being Christian fit you into the body of Christ directed by
> the Jesus the head? I know many people expressed their Christian
> beliefs the way you do, but I have not understood it very well. I
> look forward to knowing more about it.

11:00 PM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

My response today to further questions on Friends Theology about my beliefs:

I believe that God's forgiveness is boundless. I see that as a different issue as to the souls that will enter His kingdom. I believe that those persons that "protect" themselves sacrifice their place in His kingdom. Those that "risk" themselves for His sake make the cut, thus the 'broad road to destruction' theme that I echo. I do not believe that an exempler can carry another's burden. Christ carried the burden of TEACHING us and fully explaining (to those who will listen). If we truely love Him and trust in His word, OUR sacrifice will be made peaceful (to our mind) and the foundations of tyranny will be shaken - thus easing the physical burden of our progeny (our job as responsible adults). ALL claims of loving fellow mankind are hollow and hypocrisy otherwise. Does the forgiving God want hypocrits around Him? Or is Hell a good enough place for them?. In my view, the only difference between them (His presence and Hell) is the presence or lack thereof of God. Flames and torture? Not at the will of MY God, certainly.

12:55 PM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

A response on Freinds THeology today that I agree with:

Friends, I have enjoyed and appreciated the recent discussion that seemsto be trying to define who really is a Christian and who may not really be even though they think they are. I dare not say too much for I don't think it is up to us to make such judgments. If you claim Christ as your Lord it is not for me to judge the theology of the proclaimer. That to me seems to be the problems with not just liberal and conservative Friends but among all Christians and all faith groups including Moslums and Jews. We so easily see what we think is a speck of wrong theology in another person's eye but are blind to the 2x4 in our own eye. After all, our own theological vision must be right or at least close to 20/20 or we would not be able to see the error in the other person's thinking. I do not claim to be a Bible scholar or even one who reads the Bible
daily. When I do read I try to see the general theme. What is is that
Jesus is trying to tell us about God. It seems to me that it is that God loves us and we ought to love or at least care about one another, even our enemies. Hopefully that drivers our peace testimony. In word and deed Jesus expresses this theme over and over. To me the death of Jesus is an example of how much God loves us and we are to take that example into our lives and build our life on it. We may not have to lay down our life for some one as Jesus did but many Christians in fact have done that. In Matthew 25 toward the end of the chapter, Jesus describes who will get into heaven. At least that is what I think he is trying to tell us. No
where does it say it is based on a right interpretation of scripture or
for that matter than you have to believe in Jesus. You do have to care about those who have needs and have no way of getting the necessities of life for themselves. I think of it as caring for the little people. When the Catholic church canonizes a saint, it is not
because of our smart they are or how rich they are, or how powerful they are. It is because of what they did, they ministered. They made Jesus become real.
The last thing as I recall that Jesus said to Peter was "Feed my
sheep." Ministry! That seems to be message of Jesus rolled up into one
command. If you are concerned about saving your soul you had better be
about ministry. I think it is James who said that "Faith without works"
is not of much value. I would add, the right theology without works is
worthless. I believe that where ever ministry takes place Jesus is there incognito. I don't think that Jesus needs or wants the credit, but He does call us to minister to the least of these my brethren if we are
going to be His disciple. Jesus identified with the little people.
I share these thoughts because they are important to me. Thirty five
years ago when I was getting out of seminary I thought I had a pretty
good grasp of the Truth and what needed to be preached. I still think I have a pretty good grasp of the Truth but somehow the Truth I hold to now is not the same as that of 35 years ago. Friends in this
discussion group are insightful, knowledgeable, and often speak with conviction. I find myself agreeing with some and totally bewildered by the thoughts of others. That does not mean that the person is wrong. It just means that I don't come to the same conclusion from my
experience and knowledge. Some may read the thoughts I have written
as just so much fluff or the
confused ranting of a misguided Friend, or yet maybe a heretic who has not the foggiest notion of what the Truth is. I hope not all three. I do believe that it is possible that I may be wrong in my
understanding verse or verses of scripture, but not the reason Christ
died and tells us to "Feed My sheep."


6:56 PM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

Letter to a friend, identity withheld, that I wrote today:

I was arrested in Columbus on the 18th as I told you I would. Obstructing Officer, City Code violation. I was arrested the previous Thursday night for driving without a license, no insurance. I lost in Columbus City Court yesterday and go to court in Atlanta tomorrow to lose again. I posted appeal bond in Columbus (almost 3 times the fine) and took out another $2,000 from the bank today to pay appeal bond there, too. I speak about freedom to everyone I meet and almost always get a responsive chord. I tell of my ministry (including fighting in court). They are mighty tired of me at Quaker Meeting but I speak out every week. Cato said "Carthage must be destroyed." over and over and over. He went from ridiculed to the sponsor of the Punic Wars. He was WRONG but his program worked. SO, I am saying that the tireless minority has, as led by Sam Adams, to be the firebrand. Do not call for more than we have but call out WHAT we have. No guts no glory, no pain no gain.
I love, don't get me wrong. I DO wish to see more ridicule
cause reason only works on (already) true believers but I forward
an awful lot of the stuff appearing in your site, the Christian
centered material, especially. We are what we are and I believe
that we are enough, especially when we REALLY civily disobey (and
get our heads busted for it). I am NOT a leader but Christ (Ghandi,
T. Fox, Bonhoeffer, White Rose Sofie and her brother, King, and
anon) really is. The revolution is now.

4:51 PM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

My letter today to Luxlight Associates who have published a book lashing out at Jimmy Carter, the "Worst President" ever (shudder shudder), for interfering in Bushco's foreign policy. I freely indentify these neocon-aiding goons and invite others to heap scorn on them as well:
How could being the "worst president" (worse that Wilson?. Worse than Lincoln?, Worse than FRD?, Worse than Teddy? Worse than Truman?) be relevant to attempts to stop murder? C'mon, your credibility gap is showing. The current monster in charge, along with his father and the intervening Clinton, have unleashed DU to our world in such a way as to make long term drastic harm far beyond Kiawait, Bosnia and Iraq (as well as Nevada where it was developed). These three will eventually make Mao look like a piker (around 100 million murdered). As far as interfering with Bushco's "foreign policy (PHEW!!!!)", for this SOME of his obvious sins ought be forgiven. Don't think I'm blind to what this "do-gooder" has done. Murders all and I'm not about to support a one of them. Thou Shalt Not Kill means politicians, too. It also means Thou Shalt Not Support Murderers, as well, and I think that you are 'guilty' of this heinous sin. INMHO, the ONLY "good" president" is an ineffectual one and this bozo came close (Warren Harding still tops)(Washington "did" the Whiskey Rebellion, remember).

6:07 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

In today's Lew Rockwell, a U. of Vt professor is featured decrying Major Media press "bias" against the poor Chief Decider. Somehow the plient public is being forced to go against the 'proper' foreign policy of killing everything that wants to walk their own (rightly or wrongly) path. Anyway, I could not resist sticking my oar in the water and shot this off to him (and LRC):

Dear Jim,

I generally fail to understand (and I'm not about to purchase your book to "find out") what you seem to have your shorts in a twist about. Evidence of SIAT?, well, how about "What I found was stunning."? As one of the few persons that does not even look at MM offerings for my information, I can only see that, whatever they had to 'say' about Bushco's blatherings (lies, and that's the important part), it has not (yet) resulted in the sheeple tossing down on the monster-in-charge. Even the incoming Nancy-chief-House-handholder, wherever she gets her information (and biases), is not disposed to act against the interests (perceived) of proven murderers (euphamism for much worse). If you are one who DEFENDS the actions of US government administrations, including, at least, THIS one, I hope your scabs fall off really soon, before you die and find yourself excluded from the company of God. An intelligent (though you ARE misdirected) writer is capable of doing good with given talent. You, currently, clearly are not (doing good, I mean).

See you next August (at the Champlaine Valley Folk Festival down at Kingsland Bay State Park)? I'm assistant site coordinator. Glad to talk face to face.

John Boanerges Redman, Prophet of God, Quaker reformer, roving PITA (Pain - - - )

10:07 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

Just posted this to almost ever person in my gmail account:

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, dear friends, or should I really say, the Good News. Christ made the example, as if His words were not revealing enough, that loving sacrifice is the way to end war and suffering. Violence only begets it. It is our very participation in it (that includes paying for it, voting for it, wishing "good things as the product of it especially [good ends from evil means are justified] ) that has brought about the very state of the world, including torture, famine, war, pillage, mass sexual abuse of children(in Africa, Asia, USA), and it is mandated by God that we (each of you addressed and me) cease our participation in the "system". AFSC good, FCNL mostly bad. Violent wolves cloaked as peaceful sheep very bad. Forgiveness is only possible with the ceasation of participation and the active non-violent opposition. Get right with God. Before YOU die and before MORE die.

The early Christians, following Christ most closely, believed in non-violence. How is it that modern Quakers know better than they? Than Christ Himself?. We really are at a crisis point in the history of Christianity and freedom this very day. WE are the turning point. Our sacrifice or the offer of it is made essential for the very sake of the current generation of the world's children and innocents. With DU blowing in the wind from Bosnia , Kuwait, and Iraq and Nevada and Iowa, the doom of many is already made sure by the grossest War Crimes ever imaginable. With greedy pustules begging for favors from the dispensers of death comprising the legislative bodies of the world, the preservative powers of the active murders is only extended. Stand aside, Christians, or those who somehow consider themselves as such, and make the worldly irrelevant. God will grant you Peace of mind for your courage. Cowardice will only kill more.

I extend the Call of Christ to the 300 or so in this message, mostly Quakers or Christian Ministers, to make your stand. As Martin Luther said, "Let goods and kindred go, This mortal life also. The body they may kill. God's truth abideth still, His Kingdom is forever.

This ain't MY leading, folks. You cannot EVEN argue with it.

John Boanerges Redman

7:22 PM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

More on the dialog with XXX from Atlanta Meeting:

On 12/5/06, XXX wrote:

I fear that your single-minded devotion to your political philosophy has blinded you to the fundamental nature of Quakerism. You preach against coercion but you are trying to coerce Meeting into accepting your anti-government message.


Thank you for continuing a dialog. I do not have the talent to say what I feel has to be said without coming across somewhat strongly and I mean nothing but love in my discourse.

I hold you to conventional definitions of words. I will not give to you perversions of the meanings of coercion and force. You pervert my meaning of my leading, too. It has nothing to do with politics because I will have nothing to do with politics. For you to label me as 'anarchist' (if not you, certain others) is a philosophical cop-out. Yes, you are copping out. What you call 'anarchy' is nothing but a spirit-based life that will have no other god before God. You - and ZZZZZ - place human institutions wielding murderous power before God's power.
Romans 13, 1-8 aside, the Magistrates Sword is NOT an adjunct to the Love of Christ

I don't give a hang about 'Quaker Traditions' and I don't need an education on what they are. I HAVE studied them and, for the worst part, I reject them. I ACCEPT the Testimony of Integrity (Most don't). I ACCEPT the Peace Testimony (most, including you, don't). I do not accept coercion as a societal need to accomplish "good". You do and you are flat-out unchristian in that acceptance. I have a RIGHT to a purely Christian demeanor in the conduct of His worship and a leading that advocates violence is abhorrent to that purpose. OUTSIDE with it, NOT in His space.

I HAVE a religious philosophy and that is God forbids man the use of force on his neighbor. He also forbids the sitting on one's ass while coercion is used (for whatever "intended" purpose) on his neighbor. K.I.S.S.. The consequences of this are that I am a Pain In The Ass to certain (Quaker) comfortable persons who should know better. Because Christ ministered mostly to the poor does NOT mean that the rich and powerful are to be ignored. I AM in the right place, like it or not (me, too). More: You HEARD my query about what Quakers are doing to proclaim the Good News. I ALSO queried on what Quakers are doing to bring others to our space. And you call me single-minded? The week before I expanded on YOUR (and VVV's) leading. How am I not diverse?

Libertarians, too, though they are a lot closer to God's design than most, are pretty rudderless and I work hard on them, too. You just don't see it.

As an aside, I do not believe that raising funds for Ethan's defense (I gave) is PROPERLY in the life of the Meeting, NOR for WRFG. The Meeting is desperate to raise the funds necessary to meet the commitments it has already made and THAT is the "life of the Meeting".

6:33 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

I just looked at a display of pictures from an anti-wolfowitz
protest. All of the signs carried blamed the "cabal" for being 'war
criminals'. Well, they are, but who else is? Actually, all
politicians, that's who, even your favorite ones. They all take your
(tax) money (At least. Many are really on-the-take) .

So, if being responsible adults means actually taking responsibility
(SHUDDER the thought), what are we able to do? Well, a lot more than
most of us are willing to. Virtually all will claim that they ARE
doing enough, by voting, for instance. Sorry, Nancy Pelosi says that
impeachment is off the table. You got suckered if you thought that
this past 'election' was going to change things.

AND, the suckering was done by yourself. THEY merely trotted out some
lies and hope. The carrying of the water was done by (most of) you.

OK, that puts blood on your hands but you CAN 'wash it off'. You CAN
actually wash theirs 'clean', as well.

To do it, you HAVE to remove the guns from their hands. You HAVE to
remove the power to kill that you have endowed them with. NOBODY does
well with unaccountable power (Lord Acton, remember?). Jesus denied
himself that option when he could have had that 'earthly kingdom'.

Those who wish to 'see them punished' might think whether they are on
some trip, themselves. Those that think that government power is
merely mis-directed are on another (denial) trip, too.

It is the POWER to make decisions on behalf of others (ESPECIALLY
unaccountably) that kills innocents (in mass).

It is the abnegation of personal responsibility that gives these
deviant personalities (almost all politicians) the blank check to proceed.

It is the willingness to be lied to that greases the skids.

Leo McKern, in Rumpole of the Bailey, called his wife 'Master of the
Bleeding Obvious'. Like HE was so smart (actually, that WAS the way
his character was written and portrayed. How nice for us the
viewers). Let ME take his wife's part, please.

PLEASE vote in a different way, not by endorsing one party as opposed
to another, but by letting them (politicians) know of your
displeasure. Do so striongly and unequivocally. Be consistent with
your belief that murder and theft are wrong. Take the risk of their
displeasure and STOP PAYING FOR IT.

LET THEM KNOW with your VOICE. Shame them, but do it lovingly,
politely. PLEAD the voice of Conscience. Keep it simple and do not be
distracted from the principal that ALL theft and murder is wrong and
NOT the province of individuals (termed common criminals) or groups
(termed gangs, mobs and governments) .

It will take courage. You might just stand alone. Thoreau (and
Christ) well anticipated that. So did many many others throughout the
march of humankind, many unsung and many being women (REALLY? Even
sissy-girls? Yes, especially)

John Boanerges Redman, PITA to the comfortable

2:08 PM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

I'm Shocked

I recently learned of a dastardly tactic being proposed by unpatriotic, monkeywrenching America-Haters. It is apparently based upon a requirement within the beautifully bureaucratic regime of the Treasury Department's IRS (Lord Bless the holy employer of otherwise unemployable marshmellow-spined young men and women with law and/or accounting degrees) that every single Form 1040 that enters their maw be thoroughly investigated for correctness (by golly, a proper expedient. We cannot have errors polluting our dear government's Democratic efforts to redistribute the ill-gotten wealth of this otherwise pure, patriotic if almost totally servile, sheeple). If you are following this dreaded thought to the same disgusting conclusion that leaps to my mind, one revulses at the tactic I heard proposed; namely that persons fill out and send in Form 1040s with completely fictitious information. Why, just think of the chaos that would ensue if thousands of fictitious 1040s came into the processing centers at the same time as deliberately unscrupulous normal filings of tax-cheating actual persons. Why, some of these malefactors might get overlooked due to the economy of allocating scarce investigatory resources.
It disturbs me endlessly to think of these paper-dynamite-throwing Guy Fawkses entering our enclaves of public servitude that distribute our voluntary submission materials like Post Offices and Public Libraries, wearing gloves to hide their fingerprints and removing large quantities of booklets and forms (1040s, 1040As, etc), repairing to their evil dens and indulging in this nefarious enterprise. The thought that they would, fox-like, use every trick and artifice to shield themselves from the proper efforts of our Constitutionally endowed standing army, the FBI( hosanna, hosanna), to root (see: them out (such as using bottle water, instead of spit, to apply proper postage and seal envelopes) just makes me see red(s, under every bed).
I even heard of a suggestion that these dastardly individuals (gotta DO something about this word appearing so much in the early literature of this Democracy) might use the letter "V" as a middle initial of these non-persons or somewhere in the address or something.
I approach you, as a fellow right-thinking Patriot to aid in my appeal to these wrong-thinking, misdirected (There ARE all these FEMA camps they might be PROPERLY directed to) individuals (there's THAT word again. I feel like one of the Knights-who-say-nitght recurringly finding himself saying the eye-tee word) to refrain from this enterprise and seek new employment as a government spy. Many former supporters of a mythical 2nd amendment "Right to Bear Arms" now work for the NRA and actually help PROPOSE gun control legislation, so, anything is possible with these nut-cases.

7:48 PM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

My response to one nay-sayer on a liberty blog:

Dear Bucctoo, I am taking real risk, for a purpose that is well defined and understood, that has at least SOME chance of sucess and I will shephard this "process" on as many forums as I can through as many tax seasons as I am out of jail. It is not all I am doing. I also drive w/o license in a car w/o plates about 30 thousand miles a year, mostly on interstates. I occasionally get arrested for that. I get arrested at the SOAWatch demonstration for crossing the police lines at the sides because I want an end to 'free speech "zones"'. I have not filed an income tax form in 17 years though I will, now, in this way. I also maintain a Quaker ministry in about 20 different meetings in Georgia and New England. In some, my leading gets (Quaker) booed (like you are doing, right now). I go back anyhow. My message is that I hate bureaucracy (not bureaucrats) and I am willing to DO something to monkeywrench them. I can point to a long line of monkeywrenchers that thought it important enough to lose their lives in the persuit of maximum personal freedom for their progeny, starting with Christ. Was Christ an anarchist? Yes, in the sense of opposing any form of coercive earthly government. In the sense of calling all to be led by their conscience, however, he was not. And He was aware of the power of sacrifice. Maybe you have heard His story. Maybe you got caught up in the gloss that organized religion tries to paint on it to secure a good living at others' expense. I don't collect a dime from others in the re-teaching that I do but I do not kick out of bed others who do. I do not kick out of bed anyone who can aid the process of ridding mankind of networks of coercion (including corporations). Maybe you will someday cease being a sniper (with unsubstantiated comments like your pathetic last one).You are going to die sometime. Do not pass on helping enslave others (like paying taxes, holding public office, working in the public sector, voting for candidates for public office) or doing NOTHING. No risk, no glory, for real. Look up an old hymn by Phillip Bliss called "Almost Persuaded". It describes a terrible situation that the vast majority of humanity finds itself in. If not you, who? If not now, when?

10:51 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

On another Blog, a new poster suggested Marxism to "solve" the economys problems. I responded thus:

Oh, yeah, this is just the right place to make that kind of conclusion. Well, just in case it was made seriously, let's just look at the kill ratio of marxist to capitalist governments as if it is even ancient history. The only reason that the kill ratio of the bushitists is growing is the further emulation of socialist slime BY the corporatist (not capitalist) pigs in control. OK, Stalin - 40 million, Mao - 100 million, Hitler - 20 million (yes, socialist), Pot - 2 million (but high proportion of population) and Lincoln to present - under 4 million. Good reason to go the other way? You answer me.


Just an asside on those murder figures attributed to socialist/communitarian/marxist perveyors of mindless violence (governments) ..... they do not actually account for the deaths caused by lost opportunities (as over 50% of all early deaths in "poor" countries - high as 70% - ruled by bureaucracies). Do I sound angry? Sorry if it hinders my effective communication but I sure am. I am angry at elitist hypocrits who have one libertarian standard for themselves and an authoritarian one for "those people". Remember that Jesus cleared out the money changers and angrily at that. Not trying to justify myself. I should NOT have used the word "slime" above and I appologize. Whatever else goes on this forum, I hope that it is not used a vehicle for envy-induced plans for wealth redistribution to be touted.

John Boanerges Redman

10:54 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

My comments today on including Islam among the historic "Peace Churches" of Quaker, Mennonite and Brethern.

Here are some of my thoughts:
Apart from the issue of self defense, I think that pacifism and very
strong individuality and personal responsibility are essentially
linked. I think that the decision to live by the dictates of ones
conscience is the measure of spirituality. On the other hand, the
tendency to be influenced by outside forces or groups of whatever
nature is a corruption of pacifism and responsibility and
spirituality. In other words, how can bowing to the admonition of
having no other gods before Him be consistant with applying to the
zoning board to build a shed or looking to a Preacher, Priest or Inman
for permission to keep dogs in ones house? To the very extent that
this acceptance of outside governance resides in our personality is
how far we diverge from Pacifism. I find Quakers pacific only to the
extent of their individuality and love of individual liberty for their
fellow humans. Of course this measure varies widely but is far higher
than the general population. It is even higher among the low-life scum
(used affectionately) I often hang with in my folk festival persuits.
I think that Christ found this comradship and this is why there was
only one Pharisee in his 'company'. My understanding of the Koran is
that it is not but extensive rules for personal behavior, a crutch for
those unwilling to look for answers within (from God). Such belief
guides my use of the Bible and the laws of men. So, no, the secular
'church' and that of Islam (Southern Baptist, Hindi, Shinto, Church of
England, Church of God, etc.), neither convince me of being peaceful.
Whatever else, peace must come from within and not be imposed else it
will certainly and often fail. As to the others (in this discussion),
I don't know any Brethern or many Mennonites.

8:20 PM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

What follows is the more eloquent words of one who shares my leading.

Published on Saturday, May 19, 2007 by

What Happened to ‘Fill the Jails’?

by Sean Gonsalves

You can’t expect a chicken to produce a duck egg - Malcolm X

Thank God, there are people willing go to jail in obedience to a higher law in protesting, say, the continued occupation of Iraq. It’s inspiring.

What’s discouraging, though, is the possibility that there’s not enough activists and/or movement organization in the U.S. right now to make a lasting difference on a whole host of foreign and domestic policy issues.

Because the pollsters don’t ask about people’s willingness to take part in civil disobedience, I have no way of knowing for sure. I just hope my sense of it all is waaaaay off. But, it feels like most disaffected Americans - profoundly disturbed with the State of the Union, in particular; and the State of the World, in general - have deceived themselves into thinking that electing the “right” person to government office is going to change things; that if only we get-out-the-vote, write even more letters, and create yet another blog. . . I’m not saying it’s trivial to do such things, but if folks think that’s enough, then we’re in trouble.

Think about it.

The Republicans got spanked during the mid-term elections in what was billed as a referendum on Bush’s Mess-in-Potamia and just as I predicted in this very column immediately following “the thumpin’”, Bush interpreted the election results - not as a call for an exit strategy - but as a plea for better war management. And what have the Democrats done?

Maybe the conventional wisdom, inside-politics view is that the Dems still don’t have enough power to end the occupation of Iraq, or they’re just “playing politics” by exploiting the now popular anti-this-war momentum, while not wanting to be seen as being “weak on defense” or “soft on terror.”

When even Lee Iacocca is writing: “Where the hell is our outrage? We should be screaming bloody murder. We’ve got a gang of clueless bozos steering our ship of state right over a cliff, we’ve got corporate gangsters stealing us blind….but instead of getting mad, everyone sits around and nods their heads when the politicians say, ‘Stay the course.’ Stay the course? You’ve got to be kidding. This is America, not the damned Titanic” - you know it’s “fill-the-jails” time, to borrow from Gandhi’s tactical playbook.

America’s Gandhi, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., touched on the idea in his celebrated Letter From Birmingham Jail.

“Why direct action? Why sit-ins, marches, etc.? Isn’t negotiation a better path? You are exactly right in your call for negotiation. Indeed, this is the purpose of direct action. Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and establish such creative tension that a community that has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue. It seeks to dramatize the issue so that it can no longer be ignored.”

King wasn’t talking about holding peace vigils or media-staged protest marches. He was talking about MASSIVE direct action - the kind that brings together huge numbers of disciplined, committed people, in a key location (or several strategic locations at once) to cause the political-economic system to grind to a screeching halt until the matter is resolved, or negotiated.

King was talking about gumming up the gears of the system - fill the jails - to the point of gridlock. That - or the very real threat of that - is what brought progressive victories and is the reason why King was such a powerful and dangerous man in the eyes of his opponents.

It wasn’t the moving pep talk rallies and Negro spirituals that did it. It was the “true power” Hannah Arendt talked about: Power, she said, is “created not when some people coerce others but when they willingly take action together in support of a common purpose. Power corresponds to the human ability not just to act but to act in concert.” That’s the kind of power King wielded - a lesson completely lost on those who think that “the best defense is a good (military) offense” football-ism is the same thing as sound military strategy. But I digress.

I also went back and re-read Stride Toward Freedom, which is King’s account of the Montgomery bus desegregation campaign. He wrote about the sophisticated coordination of the campaign, the movement infrastructure, the car-pool network which assured the boycotters that “no bus” didn’t mean “no way to get to work.”

“Altogether the operation of the motor pool represented organization and coordination at their best. Reporters and visitors from all over the country looked upon the system as a unique accomplishment,” King described the early workings of the Montgomery Improvement Association.

“But, the job took money. For a while the MIA had been able to carry on through local contributions … But as the pool grew and other expenses mounted, it was evident that we needed additional funds to carry on … Fortunately, the liberal coverage of the press had carried the word of our struggle across the world. Although we never made a public appeal for funds, contributions began to pour in from as far away as Tokyo.”

How can there be a progressive movement in this country - an evolutionary leap forward in the way we relate to each other and the environment - without massive direct action?

And, if you’re going to ask folks to be down with The Movement, where’s the material support network for those people who want to “do something” but have to worry about not getting fired because they have kids to feed?

Or do you have to be independently wealthy, like Iacocca, to even think about getting involved?

Where’s the fund for those who get caught up in the system, jailed and/or fined, because they were fighting for the cause?

Voting, letter-writing, blogging, vigils and speeches are necessary and can even be honorably courageous. But history says it ain’t enough - if we’re talking about real social evolution. Shit, fill-the-jails may not be enough, at this point

The way I see it: those who fear real change have nothing to fear and far too many of those who desire real change are expecting a chicken to produce a duck egg.

Sean Gonsalves is a Cape Cod Times staff writer and syndicated columnist. E-mail him at
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7:18 PM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

There is nothing appalling about the behavior of the AJ but rather that of the friends of liberty who cannot think outside of the box. For those who do not know me here, I am a Quaker missionary to the so-called "Christian" (and particularly Quaker) world revealing that Christ's message to the entire world is the rejection - rejection - of outside "rules" and "laws" in favor of simply listening to ones own 'educated' conscience (meaning that we have an obligation as adults to continually study ethics and our world and act in accordance to the interests of the oppressed and poor around us - but NOT under the orders of our 'betters'). You might regard that as 'libertarian' - I do - or anarchist - I don't - but that is why I am on this list in the first place, because true followers of Christ (Ghandi, Bonhoeffer, Bro and Sis Schoell, the martyrs, etc) really DO believe in free markets and personal freedom as do you. Statists and all makers up of RULES for our behavior (thing Islam) constitute the antichrist which is ALWAYS opposed to freedom, hence the AG's actions. True followers of Christ are ALWAYS ready to monkeywrench and act in truly nonviolent ways to relieve the effects of government oppression. Being surprised by a statist's actions is misleading to those who love freedom for it supports the absurd notion that freedom come from a stupid piece of paper (Bush had THAT right). It is a gift from God and not to be trifled with. MAN builds boxes for our thinking, God breaks them.

John Boanerges Redman
Prophet of God, Quaker reformer, roving PITA to the comfortable

5:11 AM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

2:12 PM  
Blogger John Boanerges Redman said...

Letter to new friend met at Sacred Harp event:

Dear -----,

I did not intend to hold forth. I gave you my card with my blog on it. I feel that Liberty (AND Mt Vernon and all songs about "holy David") IS a political statement that has no place in todays Sacred Harp liturgy. Whatever it once meant, and I dispute that the nation that suppressed the Whiskey Rebellion and Shay's Rebellion, passed the Alien and Sedition Act and started the War of 1812, was EVER free of (home-grown) tyranny, liberty is and can only be a condition of living under God's laws as revealed in our own conscience. Those who force a Police Force on us because they see crime everywhere are blood guilty of having no faith in their fellow man and God. Yes, there will always be crime but it cannot begin to approach the levels of death and theft afforded by town hall.

The message that I repeat (not originate) is that love of fellow man is worship of God is love of fellow man and NECESSITATES physical intercession on behalf of the afflicted or about to be afflicted without regard to personal cost or safety (Christ, Bonhoeffer, Ghandi, Mott, Sophie and Hans Scholl, Martyrs, etc.). I also say that lip service is a form of lying that I will not be quiet about (either). No service member has EVER given a thing (in the course of assigned duties, of course) in service to God or liberty or freedom but to the ruling oligarchy alone, a god before God. This is also true of public service employees and politicians, those who would wield force/coercion over their fellow man. Earthly government is ALWAYS evil and unnecessary. In case you need to know this about me, I was in the Navy for 7 1/2 years, a State Cop for 3, Civil Servant for 12 and I have not paid income taxes for 30 years, property taxes for 20, had a drivers license for 18 or a plate on my car(s) for 14. I get arrested regularly (as recently as the 18th) and fight in court every time (and win not quite every time). I have been a Quaker without portfolio for about a dozen.

Thank you so much for the unusual courtesy of a thoughtful reply. It is rare among even Quakers.

John Son of Thunder and Pain In The Ass Redman.

PS. 38B and v 4 of Mighty Fortress say it all

8:09 AM  

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