Posts Tagged ‘George Lucas’
I wrote yesterday about Richard Best and his Black Lightning Wild West Show. But the location where we shot the video displayed in that article deserves its own mention, The Whip Artistry Studio of Gery Deer in Jamestown, Ohio is a one of the kind temple dedicated to the art and preservation of the bullwhip. Gery is currently a freelance television producer and writer in Dayton, but his heart centers on the preservation of Western Arts—particularly the bullwhip. Like me, he has worked with whips most of his life, and traveled the world providing shows. Gery and his wife Barb have been on major television shows and have been personally endorsed by “A” list celebrities and stuntmen. Gery’s Whip Artistry Studio is a museum of old westerns, autographs from Halle Berry, Antonio Banderas and many others, and a tribute to the golden age of cinema. Gery’s whip holstering systems were used in a film done by The Rock called The Rundown and it was because of that film that Gery specially designed my Cliffhanger quick drawl holster which I wear every day. My bullwhip holster is the only one of its kind and was made by Gery specifically for my use.
It is sometimes impossible when you know such people to revere them properly for what they are. I have known Gery for a long time, and we have so many things in common that I don’t often consider how unusual his life and his studio are. But in a world obsessed with preserving every species of animal that is on the brink of extinction, Gery is fighting to keep alive something that many more progressive modernists hope to force into distant memory, the American cowboy.
As unlikely as it is, Gery’s Jamestown, Ohio studio is all that stands between extinction and advancement of the kind of America that was so beloved by viewers of old Republic Saturday morning matinees, and wonderful silent films like Don Q, Son of Zorro. As many Hollywood producers these days bulk at such things, it was George Lucas who adopted these very Republic serials and made Star Wars, and Indiana Jones. Students at Gery’s studios want to learn to crack a whip like Indiana Jones, because those films inspired them.
Gery and I share a great reverence for Douglas Fairbanks, particularly the old film Son of Zorro. Of course we’ve always loved Indiana Jones, but that character never went to the whip handlers of old, like Douglas Fairbanks, Lash LaRue, and all the Republic Serials—especially another favorite of mine, Zorro’s Fighting Legion. When I wrote my book The Symposium of Justice I dedicated it to that old Republic serial including naming the restaurant Fletcher Finnegan worked at, “Republics.”
My current love of Star Wars is because Lucas shot those films in the way of those old serials—and that just isn’t done by any other film studio. And all that harkens back to Douglas Fairbanks and his whip tricks from Don Q, Son of Zorro. Gery Deer’s whip studio in Jamestown, Ohio is really the last gasp of air holding on to that past attempting to preserve it. Gery and I both came into our love of bullwhips the same way but he choose to actually move into show business. At age 46 I have lived my life much the way Don Diego did in Zorro’s Fighting Legion, only I haven’t pretended to be foppish to save my family and reputation from villains. Gery has taken a non-violent approach to the art, where I’m all about the violence. Even when I was writing The Symposium of Justice, I didn’t feel comfortable writing about the bullwhip heavy action scenes if I had not done all the stunts in real life to confirm their viability. And with stories like that, I have never felt comfortable writing about characters like Fletcher Finnegan (Cliffhanger) from behind an author’s stories. I always felt a responsibility to actually be those characters in real life, otherwise the task was hypocritical. In that regard, I am a lot more political than Gery. Gery has made his living often with a whip, as I have not. But I have used mine to confirm the stunts of Don Q, so that I could write about them knowing what was possible and what wasn’t and what really went on in the life of Zorro in a quest to fight evil.
But in a confusing world where every other influence is competing for attention, that old past ushered in by Douglas Fairbanks is most alive in Jamestown, Ohio, and I love it every time I get to visit. It is like a farmer returning to his land after plowing a field and smelling the fresh soil, or an artist during a late night epiphany—Gery Deer’s The Whip Artistry Studio is grounding to the roots of cinema, justice, and the genuine pursuit of goodness triumphing over evil. I never get tired of visiting, and I suspect that I never will.
I enjoy a nice babbling brook running through the mountains surrounded by trees and fresh air illuminated by sunrise firelight. Often I have slept on the ocean front to the sound of waves beating on a beach as a steady breeze pours in from offshore thunderstorms lighting up the distant night clouds like cannon fire from a distant battle. I have pondered often the forces of a cliff face as I rappelled down it and marveled at the magnanimity of nature. I have equally stared deep into the heavens and contemplated the countless galaxies of space and considered the perplexing reality of a multiverse. But what most impresses me is the mind of man and the ability of that species to overcome obstacles, invent tools of creation, and extend beyond the limits of nature to something new. What is marveled at when large mountains are observed, or the beauty of a forest, or the running water of a stream is the creation of nature into activity of which our short-term lives will only witness a fraction of. However, it is still destruction that is observed, mountains were caused by tectonic plates being forced together by earth forces, and trees grow, die, fall down and decompose, just like human beings. Water falls from the sky in the form of rain, runs across the earth, is consumed sometimes by creatures like humans, disposed of as waste and evaporates back into the sky to begin the process again. The work of man’s mind is the only life form in known existence to take all the raw materials of the planet and organize them creatively against the tide of chaos that exists in nature. A skyscraper is a deliberate construction of mankind that is organized and useful as opposed to the mountain that is simply the result of opposing forces colliding.
The current green movement which is simply the next generation of communism is attempting to take mankind back to worship of the earth the way tribal groups have in the mystic past. Their sole intention is to turn worship of the earth into a religion that has political consequences and their method is one of regression—of angst against the creation of mankind. They look at the creations of man, the space ships, the cars, the buildings and they hate them like natives screaming at lightning streaking across the sky. Their answer is to conduct a rain dance to appease the gods creating the lighting. Meanwhile, inventors like Tesla actually took the mind of man toward creating their own lightning. Inventors created irrigation as a way to take charge of their own destinies and stop wasting time doing a rain dance to appease some stupid god. Forget about rubbing a couple of sticks together to make fire, or waiting for lightning to strike and ignite a small blaze, mankind made ovens, and furnaces, and air conditioning units to control their environment so that they could be comfortable and invent even more things instead of running around looking for sticks to catch fire just to cook food.
Nature is the construction of Mother Earth, and the galaxies the inventions of the universe. But are those constructs superior to the equations E=MC2 or the nanotechnology of cell sized bots that can repair human flesh? When was the last time the earth invented anything new, or Jupiter, or Neptune? What have those natural products done except float in space and be bombarded by asteroids—their fates tied to their proximity to a dying sun at the center of a solar system? Where will the creeks, animals, and mountain ranges be during the next meteor collision, or the eventual explosion of energy at Old Faithful in Yosemite? They’ll all be destroyed, and what will there be left of anything on earth if the mind of mankind is extinguished as a retreat to the primordial worship of Mother Nature?
I would argue that the mind of man is more important than the saving of Mother Earth. The earth is inferior to man’s mind—the inventions, the potential, and the ability to shape its own destiny in spite of natural elements, such as planetary restrictions, life spans, and proximity in space to heating sources like planetary balls of fire we call suns. There was never a turtle that built an economy as sophisticated as humans, or an otter that built a train station. No bird ever invented a light bulb. And ants don’t write books, make movies, or create sophisticated music. We are amazed that dolphins and whales show signs of intelligent life, but even they are about as intellectually wise as an average 4-year old human—and what is so special about that? The reason we respect these creatures so much is that they are at least close to human intelligence—so why would human beings yield to them?
The real issue is one of creation and the value of those creations. Are the creations of nature more valuable than the creation of mankind? My answer is that mankind’s inventions are more valuable. Both, man’s and nature’s acts of creation are destructive in nature. Mountain ranges are the results of terrible destructive forces, and trees are daily fighting it out in a battle for sunlight. They don’t whip out stones to throw at each other, or fire guns, but trees are constantly at war with one another. One tree will spread its branches out over another one that is smaller to try to choke off its light so that the roots aren’t fighting for the same water supply. Don’t environmentalists know that? Are they so stupid but to look at trees and not see life forms at war with one another? Trees are not sitting in a forest singing campfire songs to each other living in harmony. They are fighting—and some of their battles go on for 50 or more years. The only reason humans don’t see them is because the battles occur without human reference and time frames. Every day spiders are catching other insects to devour for their personal consumption, mice are being eaten by snakes, fish are being eaten by bigger fish, and Great White Sharks are eating dolphins.
At some point the modern worshipers of Mother Earth decided that the way to deal with these tragedies is to revert to the past worship of earth as a deity and to appeal to its sensibilities hoping that human life would be spared some of this tragedy. But only mankind has even attempted to solve any of these destructive problems. At least humans know to replant a forest, to re-grow the food they consume, and to not poison the water they drink with sophisticated filtration systems. Only a human being has sought to mimic the abilities of a bird, the hunting agility of a lion, the communication aptitude of a dolphin, and actually offer alternatives to the stupidity of nature—the inevitable destruction that is always just around the corner with the next black hole consumption, or planetary impact.
Every global environmentalist on earth is wrong in its worship of earth. Earth is dying as we speak—it may take a few billion more years, but if left alone—it is dead. It will not live forever—it is not a god. It is not worthy of worship. Earth is a tool for man’s mind. It is meant to be a lunching point for human consciousness and nothing more. It can only be hoped that 4 billion years from now to 10 billion years that the minds of man will still live in the universe and will punch beyond the confines of that barrier to whatever is beyond it. Earth will have long been gone by then, every turtle, every bird, every fish, every drop of water in the ocean ripped off the planet to become water molecules in the vacuum of space by expansion of the sun. Every idiot who professes worship of nature at the expense of man’s mind is preaching doom for both. The earth has its best chance because of mankind, not in spite of it. Of the two, man’s mind is more valuable and if one has to be saved, it must be the imagination of human beings.
Every advocate of communism, socialism, social justice, and environmental conservation is ignoring the basic rules of our universe and stand in defiance of nature when they profess to preserve earth because they think it’s pretty. They ignore the violence; the very foundations of all life—that they are built on violence and destruction. Only the human being stands in rebellion to this trend by advancing toward an unknown intelligence only it can create—because it is not yet present among all known life forms. It is time to abandon the fools who do not believe that man does not have dominion over all the earth—because they do—and that is the will of nature as a species that is vastly superior to every other life form on earth. Its time to stop feeling guilty about it for the good of everyone, and everything involved.
Rich Hoffman www.OVERMANWARRIOR.com
It’s not quite my birthday, but usually my family makes a big deal about it always leaving me something to look forward to. This year, because of my interest in the game Star Wars X-Wings Miniatures we all gathered at Nostalgic Ink in Mason to play a series of games. My daughters brought their husbands and a tray of Chick-fil-A chicken nuggets and we had a blast. The highlight of the evening was when the owner of the popular comic book store came back to watch our game overhearing a South Park reference that we had been talking about and performed a perfect reenactment of it. It sounded just like this!
That is typical in these gaming environments, there is such a love of creativity and boundless imagination which I find refreshing. Comic book stores are great places to recharge after all the dread of reality has done its best to erode away logic. Some of the best people I have known over the years find solace in those kinds of places, so it was nice to celebrate my birthday there with my kids.
I can’t say enough about the X-Wing Miniatures game. As often as I reference it, it continues to impress me. Nostagic Ink had on hand an impressive array of Y-Wings, and X-Wings. The Y-Wings have been mostly sold out on Amazon because players buy them up for their durability during combat and Ion Turret ability. My son-in-laws’ had their Imperial Aces on the table for the first time which was a sight to behold. Those new Imperial ships have a curving barrel roll effect that is really valuable and is yet another wrinkle in an otherwise highly imaginative and innovative game that is ever-changing forcing constant adoption.
Way back when I was 13 to 14 I was involved in military war simulations which were tabletop games that I found very stimulating, intellectually. Back then, West End Games was producing some great stuff and eventually the realistic simulations of actual World War II battles, and Civil War engagements gave way to a game called Assault on Hoth, which was a Star Wars strategy game done in the spirit of those battle simulations. It contained a map with the traditional game hex-and-counter mechanic and played well. Imperial Walkers attacked the Rebel base on Hoth and Rebel Snowspeeders had to meet them to prevent the shield generator from being destroyed. During the early days of our marriage my wife and I played it three to four times a week and it set a pace for our relationship that would last for decades.
When I learned war gaming as a young man I quickly learned that much of what was being studied were battle tactics no different from what military generals had been taught at West Point for generations—only without all the politics of the position. By role-playing battle field formations set against values players had to make the same kind of decisions that military generals had to make in wars from the past. In this modern age of gaming—for the first time in the history of the world, war gaming wasn’t regulated to the military elite—but to hobbyists and history enthusiasts. Of course the emotion of the battlefield is not present, and the threat of death not a factor, but the same types of decision-making that George Washington had to make during Revolutionary War battles, or General Lee had to make during the Civil War were available to anybody curious enough to play a game. Most modern war games are very sophisticated and take into account the many factors which are required for such strategic thinking.
Nostalgic Ink has in the middle of their store an entire section of these military war simulations that are much better than the ones I played as a kid. They are fascinating and players routinely set up in the back of that store to play them. But for me, Fantasy Flight Games has changed the entire field of miniature war gaming with Star Wars X-Wing. It has all the battlefield tactics of many of those traditional war games, but it has the added element of flight. I find myself thinking about that game all the time these days.
This is a good thing because real life often requires the same kinds of hard decisions that X-Wing forces players to realize. American society has the Second Amendment to protect themselves from an overzealous government. But it also has freedom of thought, and this has given rise to a culture emerging in these comic book stores where tactical decisions are available to regular people outside of any orthodox political class. For instance, this year’s FFG world champion is Paul Heaver a software engineer from Northern Virginia who is married with two kids. He plays online CCGs and computer games, but X-Wing Miniatures is the first game of its type that he’s gotten really serious about. Before going to the World’s competition—where literally people from many countries all over the world came to battle it out in Minnesota during February of 2014, Heaver paid close attention to the battle reports on the game forums and saw that Tie Swarms were dominating tournaments so he calculated a strategy of using two low pilot value X-Wing fighters and two moderate pilot rating B-Wings to slowly whittle away at the low pilot rating Tie Swarm strategy. The effectiveness of this approach can be seen below in the video of his championship game. If you watch the video it has the visual quality of a golf game. People cheer when ships are destroyed the same way an expert golfer sinks a long birdie. The same skills that Heaver used to win the Worlds championship at FFG are the same skills it takes to manage large companies, run military maneuvers, and run countries. I would put Paul Heaver against Vladimir Putin any day and I’d put my bets on Paul. But in this emerging X-Wing popularity there is Paul Heaver types popping up everywhere and this is a very good thing. There are a lot of very smart people coming up in these gaming circles.
The tactic that Paul used to win his championship will be destroyed with all the new ships and rules coming out quickly, like the new rules involving the Imperial Aces ships. They can now barrel roll out of a firing arc and right into the side of a targeted ship taking away their shot, while performing theirs with deadly effectiveness. So what works today may not work tomorrow, which is why I love X-Wing. It is why I spent my early birthday with my kids at Nostalgic Ink eating chicken nuggets and playing tactical table top warfare. Back when I was introduced to these miniature war simulations I learned from a Green Beret who was so obsessed with military tactics that these war games were the only way he could experience battlefield excitement, that the only real difference is that you don’t hear the bullets whizzing by your ears and possess the obvious knowledge that every breath might be your last. Otherwise, this is what it is like. Fantasy Flight has done with X-Wing Miniatures something that is new—it has turned up the heat considerably and no longer is reliant on the Star Wars brand to sell the game. It’s great by itself as its own thing. Tactically it is complex, and is a wonderful way to pass the time for those obsessed with strategy. And that would be me. It is my ideal of a fun time and how I prefer to spend my leisure because all too often real life calls on those skills—and because usually what we do in our recreational time directly contributes to how we conduct ourselves professionally. And because of Star Wars: X-Wing, the future looks very bright to me.
Rich Hoffman www.OVERMANWARRIOR.com
I love technology as much as anybody, but when I want to relax, technology is often not part of the experience. I will always love a real book in my hands because I don’t like looking at a lit up screen to read, and I will always prefer physical activity to computer play. But with the NSA concern in reading every email, watching all online traffic, and all the privacy concerns involved, I love Star Wars X-Wing Miniatures more and more—because of the low tech, yet complex game play. I play the game as much as I can because it has all the multifaceted strategy of a video game, the intellectual muscle flexing of chess, and the unlimited creative potential of miniature model building incorporated into a non-technical exercise that is a true vacation from the many prying eyes of our modern world. The video shown below is from a couple recent games that I played displaying the creative potential behind the game. The models are very detailed, and provide creative stimulation for boundless imaginations, and the terrain such as asteroids and star field backgrounds surprisingly pull the mind into the game world effectively.
The depth of the game is something to truly behold, but for me it is the lack of technical involvement that is most attractive. When playing, the technical outside world is turned off. However, perhaps even better the creative potential of the game is limitless, and the company Fantasy Flight Games has really overachieved as an organization. Prior to 2013, they already had a championship caliber game that would live on for many years as a crowd favorite. But they didn’t stop there. Instead, they worked on making 2014 one of the most exciting in the short life of the game with a whole range of new additions. Every game addition mentioned below is something that I am very eager to experience and will hit the marketplace within a few months of this writing. These will make the video shown above that much more exciting, and complex, and will fill many evenings with great joy. Fantasy Flight Games is one of the most innovative and forward thinking companies in existence. I wish they were not applying these great skills to just entertainment, but in the field of aerospace, manufacturing science, and research and development. But in the world of gaming, they are simply the best there is at this point in time. Here are just a few of their releases over the next couple of months that I am most excited about.
The GR-75 Medium Transport
First unveiled as a prototype at Gen Con Indy 2013, the iconic GR-75 Rebel transport is most famous for its critical role in the Rebellion’s evacuation from Hoth. However, the GR-75’s role in the Rebellion’s efforts extended far beyond that pivotal conflict.
GR-75 transports were used mainly to transport supplies, equipment, or troops, but some were modified to serve as fuel tankers for long-range starfighter missions. Relatively inexpensive, the GR-75‘s hulls couldn’t be penetrated by Imperial sensors, and the Rebel Alliance often enhanced this feature by outfitting the starship with sensor jammers. Indeed, the Rebel Alliance made such common use of the GR-75 that it was often called the Rebel medium transport.
Rebel Aces features one A-wing and one B-wing miniature, both of which come with alternate paint schemes. You’ll also find four highly skilled unique, new pilots; thirteen upgrade cards; maneuver dials; and all the tokens necessary to launch these starfighters into the thickest action of your space battles against the evil Galactic Empire. It also includes a new mission, which thrusts some of the Rebellion’s finest pilots into a desperate rescue effort that highlights the B-wing’s durability and the A-wing’s agility.
Heroic New Paint Schemes
Fly with the best! The alternate paint schemes on the starfighter miniatures from the Rebel Aces Expansion Pack allow you to battle for the Rebellion’s cause while representing the heroic efforts of the pilots who first flew its A-wings and B-wings as experimental prototypes.
Only ace pilots were granted the right to fly prototypes for the Rebel fleet. Piloting the agile A-wing required tremendous focus and lightning fast reflexes. Still, by helping the Rebel Alliance develop and improve upon its original designs, their efforts benefitted everyone dedicated to the cause of galactic freedom, and the A-wing ultimately proved its worth during the Battle of Endor by helping to cripple Star Destroyers.
To honor those prototype pilots who first flew the ship, the A-wing in Rebel Aces features the paint scheme depicted on the Prototype Pilot ship card, with a bold blue central stripe and red and yellow highlights.
Close Air Support
Manufactured by Incom Corporation, the Z-95 Headhunter was the primary inspiration for the later design of the T-65 X-wing. Even though the X-wing eventually outclassed it in nearly every respect, the Z-95 was cheap, durable, and reliable enough that it continued to see use throughout the Galactic Civil War, most commonly in close air support roles.
Entering X-Wing as the Rebel starship with the lowest squad point value, the Z-95 Headhunter is perfectly suited to play the role within the game that it played within the Star Wars galaxy. It’s a durable and reliable starfighter that comes with the ability to carry and fire missiles, making it capable of playing a strong support role.
The CR90 Corvette
While the Tantive IV is easily the most iconic CR90 corvette in the Star Wars galaxy, it is by no means the only one of import. Manufactured by the Corellian Engineering Corporation, the CR90 was a swift, multipurpose ship that saw widespread use among governments and private parties.
The CR90 corvette’s modular design made it easy for users to reconfigure it to best suit the purpose they wanted it to serve, and the CR90 was often employed as a cargo transport, troop carrier, passenger vessel, or light escort. Additionally, the CR90 could be outfitted with enough weaponry to make it a formidable gunship; it could equip as many as eight turbolasers, six laser cannons, and four ion cannons.
The Tantive IV Expansion Pack presents a similarly adaptable starship for use in your games of X-Wing. Between its two ship cards, for fore and aft sections, the CR90 can equip up to ten upgrades of four different types.
Every time X-Wing Miniature players think they have this game figured out, Fantasy Flight comes up with new ships with entirely new variables making the game ever evolving unlike most table top games. As players provide Fantasy Flight Games with feedback on their website chat forum, the game designers have proven adapt to filling voids discovered in strategy. For instance, Imperial players were dominating tournament play with Tie swarm tactics which allowed cheap Tie Fighters to overwhelm the more expensive point values of the Rebel players by sheer numbers. Fantasy Flight saw this trend and is now releasing the Headhunter which will be nearly the same point value giving Rebel players the option of putting swarms of Headhunters against Imperial players. The CR90 and CR-75 will be the first of a series of big ships to hit the game which will bring entirely new strategies to the game not even yet explored. In this way the strategies that players used last year in 2013 will be useless in 2014 with all these new variables being introduced. In this way, X-Wing Miniatures is very dynamic and is likely the reason the game is exploding in popularity. I know I spend considerable amounts of time reading cards and planning strategy even when I’m not playing the game. It fills my mind with enjoyment for the sheer mechanism of focused thought.
It is always a pleasure to experience a company that is doing everything right. With Fantasy Flight the only real issue they have is in delivery of new product line. They are currently late on the CR90 and CR-75, but for what they provide as far as product, they are worth the wait. There are few things that bring me so much pure joy as Fantasy Flight Games X-Wing Miniatures. For those new to the game I have provided samples of tournament play from Team Covenant who is a committed group of table top gamers who wish to advance the hobby to for the uninitiated. The game is different from gambling games like Poker and Black Jack because it is essentially a war simulation. The added ability to actually pilot vessels makes X-Wing Miniatures even fun to watch because the entire game play area is up for grabs. Every conceivable mathematical surface of a play area is an option. The game is not limited to spaces, or a game board—but to the unlimited options of a game player and how they chose to utilize that battlefield. That freedom is both within the game and from external electronic control, surveillance, and other limitations that make X-Wing one of my favorite current past times—a trend that is not likely to subside any time soon.
The central premise of the progressive argument which has been the undercurrent of communism for all of the 20th Century, emerging in popular culture during the 1960s—is that The United States was built on theft. The argument by progressives like Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and Noam Chomsky is that America stole their land from the “Native Americans,” that it stole its labor from the African slaves, and that it stole its wealth from Middle Eastern oil. But the real attack is an old one that was most spectacularly on display during the Russian Revolution of 1917 and was conducted much more subtly in The United States—it is a frontal assault against capitalism hoping to destroy the economic engine of prosperity which progressives stood vehemently against. Progressivism shaped the mind of Barack Obama and others like him; it was not them who shaped progressivism. Like termites they believe that their view of the world is the right one and their collective efforts were larger than their individual will—and their aim from day one of their acceptance of progressivism has been to burrow out America into a hollow shell to give back to the world what was stolen from them by capitalism. This is the premise of the new film by Dinesh D’Souza called America, which will be released on July 4th 2014, and promises to do something that has not yet been done before—take on directly the premise of progressivism in a film by high-profile Hollywood talent—most specifically the great Gerald R. Molen. Molen has turned from producing Steven Spielberg films to dedicating his talents by producing films which question the basis behind progressivism the way only Hollywood can—and is one of the first obvious defectors from the movie machine in California.
I’m not going to lie, I knew five years ago after attending a film festival that things needed to change. I had written a few very conservative novels. My Symposium of Justice opened with a serial rapist being bullwhipped to near death for the deliberate staging of a sexual assault by the city police in order to win more support from the public. Not exactly the kind of material a 2004 reading public was ready to deal with. My 2012 novel Tail of the Dragon was about an open civil war against statism done against the backdrop of the great car chase films of the past like Vanishing Point and Smokey and the Bandit. Readers of my blog loved the novel, but the general public wasn’t sure how to feel about it—as it went against everything most people were trained to consider acceptable. After a film I worked on in 2008 and understanding the Hollywood culture up-close and personal I changed direction in my life not to fit the times, but to the times I knew that were coming. Creative people where emerging from their hiding places, people like Glenn Beck, Hollywood defectors like Gerald R. Molen, and Harmon Kaslow. John Aglialoro went into production on the Ayn Rand classic Atlas Shrugged, and of course Dinesh D’Souza started making movies leading up to 2012: Obama’s America. The Batman films by Christopher Nolan were certainly making arguments against progressivism on a huge scale. I saw in Hollywood that progressivism was about to go to court, California had spent itself into oblivion, several American cities were on the edge of bankruptcy, and a radical progressive president had just been elected. Times were changing and as the people in position to usher in those changes, the masses would need more details to explain to them what went wrong and how they could come out of it. This has led to the blog site you are now reading which has over 2 million words worth of my opinions, history, and strategy on how to defeat progressivism. I knew as people like Molen, D’Souza, and Kaslow produced films that would wake up people to the slow cannibalizing of their country by progressivism, that people would need support for their personal journey while coming out of that deep sleep. So I started Overmanwarror’s Wisdom to help them with the difficult journey of waking up from the terrible sleep imposed upon them for years by respected progressives such as Noam Chomsky.
Noam Chomsky had already written several bestselling books over many years which have been pushed like intoxicants into American students through universities thoroughly corrupting the minds of millions for several decades toward progressivism—really to the doom of American capitalism. Chomsky’s essential philosophical premise of Universalism is that “we are choosing to live in a world of comforting illusion,” alluding that the truth of American imperialism is theft of other people’s resources exploited by the evil West. He has sold progressivism with the argument that America should “apply the same ethical principles that we apply to other governments to our own.” In this way, he and others in intelligentsia have paralyzed conservative America into a defensive posture when attack was the needed strategy. That paralysis has lasted for at least four decades, but in 2008, the cracks were forming and a collapse was about to occur. So I determined to help with the transition.
Many wonder why I don’t try to sell my work done here at Overmanwarrior’s Wisdom. The reason is that I am fighting to preserve America so that the intellect of the buying public is not lost to progressivism forever. It won’t do any good to sell my work to a bunch of mindless drones and I’m not interested in writing for a drone driven public. A Wilshire Blvd talent scout told me about 15 years ago, “Mr. Hoffman, your work is too hard-edged, too political, too violent, and too judgmental. Loosen up a bit, and put some occasional tits in your stories, everybody likes boobies.” This was a female agent from one of the big firms. She was telling me how to sell my work so that it would be marketable to the masses. But that just wasn’t interesting. What good was a condo in Florida, and a Lamborghini, if America failed? So I stopped writing for other people and started writing what I wanted to. And on this blog site, I write what I damn well please at whatever cost. Because the casualties are strategic objectives that will help pave the way for the other media to gain more of an audience—such as D’Souza’s new film, or the Atlas films by Kaslow and Aglialoro.
In the upcoming film by D’Souza, called America, he will take on directly the premise of Noam Chomsky’s arguments, which for the left is like attacking Jesus Christ. Chomsky is forbidden territory that has been beyond refuting, and question. D’Souza will attack the basic foundations of Chomsky and his roots into Immanuel Kant going all the way back to 1785 when the roots of progressivism were forming in Europe. While Immanuel Kant was publishing his works Critique of Pure Reason, (1781) the Foundations of the Metaphysics of Morals (1785) the Critique of Practical Reason (1788) and the Critique of Judgment (1790) America was working through the difficulties of becoming the first nation on earth to have a free people driven by capitalism protected by a Constitution rooted in Aristotelian logic. Over the next three centuries countries who followed the lead of America succeeded wonderfully, while those who followed after Kant have suffered under the terrible weight of poverty. This is where Noam Chomsky gets his foundation arguments about progressivism which have done so much damage.
On July 4th, the progressive left, and right will be very outraged by Dinesh D’Souza’s latest film, but the time has come, and I knew it would for a long time. My goal was to have thousands of articles available to viewers of these new movies to combat directly the swarms of progressive propaganda that currently exists. Even with my millions of words produced in defense of free markets and capitalism, there are literally trillions and trillions of words in favor of progressivism. But the big difference is that there are severe holes in their theory and it has always been the progressives who have conducted the theft—like Robin Hood, where they intend openly to steal from the rich and give to the poor. The grim reality that Chomsky refuses to see with his Kantian mindset is that the Middle East sat on their giant oil fields for generations, and did nothing with it. It was capitalism that found a use for it, and made the families of Saudi Arabia wealthy beyond measure. Without the West buying their oil, the wealth that pours into the Middle East would dry up like a torrential downpour in the desert. It would evaporate as quickly as it came. It was America who taught the Japanese how to have one of the world’s most powerful economies, and it is America who buys most of what China produces. It is America who keeps dictators from overrunning the entire world and it is still NASA technology that makes space travel in Russia possible as our astronauts have been forced by the progressive Obama into hitching a ride with a contentious enemy all in the name of “progressive peace.” The American Indian, the so-called “Native American” lived life as nomads for centuries regulating themselves to begging the gods for rain so that crops would grow. The American had science which could help them produce more food under adverse conditions than anyplace on earth. America has produced so much food that going hungry in America is a choice instead of a random option. Within two centuries of the mystic Native American dances around campfires asking the gods to bring food to their tribe, McDonald’s restaurants sprung up every 50 miles across America and NEVER run out of food. It is inconceivable to stop by a McDonald’s and find that they don’t have meat for a hamburger. Noam Chomsky and other progressives think that the Native Americans had the right approach to life and that McDonald’s is a vile construct of capitalism creating a consumer based culture, and the premise of progressivism is to destroy it forever—preserving the earth with a foolish notion of tribal tribute to ancient gods and human reason being troubled by questions it cannot dismiss, but also cannot answer. The American seeks to answer all questions and overcome all obstacles as progressives see such behavior as theft—theft of resources that are finite and not renewable by human ingenuity—in the same way that Indians believed Buffalo kills were spiritual gifts, and rain was given because of a stupid dance.
As the rest of the world learns of these falsehoods they have been taught all their lives, it is my intention to give them a safe place to find the answers with a simple Google search. There are so many articles now on the World Wide Web from me that people all over the world are reading for the first time and having their epiphany moments. Most of the articles are long, and if I charged money for them, people would skip reading in favor of some pornographic material. So I offer them for free so that people will be encouraged to study them. And when people see films like D’Souza’s America, or Aglialoro’s Atlas, or Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar, people enlightened will do their Google search and get the details here at Overmanwarrior’s Wisdom. They’ll learn how they have been scammed by people like Noam Chomsky, and Barack Obama—for a very, very long time. A new rebellion of intellectual thought is emerging, and it is the opposite of the one that Nom Chomsky has been a part of for so many years. The time has come, and not a moment too soon. But the next step will be the hardest. It is one thing to have filmmakers like D’Souza make wonderful films; it is another to understand what to do with that information. For that, I have dedicated myself, and my fortune. I have been on strike so to speak for several years now, and it has been expensive. But well worth it, because the fight is not just for wealth, but the quality of minds needed to have commerce with. Without quality people in America to conduct business with, the quality of the capitalist experience is greatly diminished, which has been the ultimate reason for the progressive attempt to dumb down America through public education. For them, it was always about attacking capitalism—at any cost—even people’s minds.
It has become obvious that most Americans do not understand the politics of the rest of planet earth. They believe that countries like Germany, England, Australia and Brazil are functioning on an economically equal playing field as America. But this would be a false assumption. The situation in the Ukraine where those people wish to break away from the so-called conservative statism of Russia and join the European Union displays the confusion epically. Ukraine is essentially seeking to leave a country run on one hand by the old hard-line communists who are currently in the minority in Russia and the United Russia party of Putin who is a former KGB agent from the days of the U.S.S.R. Many members of the European Union are openly socialist and are members of Socialist International, which has been covered here extensively. CLICK HERE TO REVIEW, (check out the map there.) Many of the countries being governed by Socialist International, which is essentially the entire European Union resent American freedom and the wealth generated under capitalism and they feel entitled by their corrupt Kantian philosophy to steal that wealth so that all people everywhere are equal. In short, socialists and their supporters are by their very nature on average, lazy and seek use the argument of equality to justify stealing from the productive and calling the process “fairness.” This argument was presented to the world during the 20th Century and every nation but America accepted it—as seen in the animated short below. Because America said no to socialism and communism, is why The United States is a wealthy nation.
Out of the European Union Germany is currently one of the strongest countries economically, but they are hardly bastions of capitalism. They have had a very strong presence in Socialist International but in that country a new socialist movement began starting in May of 2013 which considers itself a rival group–a group called the Progressive Alliance. This group intends to take the hard name of socialism away from debate so that members around the world are not so turned off by the old connections to communism. The Progressive Alliance is a global organization intent to spread socialism to every world government. They are not supporters of capitalism—in fact they are not even close to supporting such a thing. But if a careful analysis to their internal works were examined what they all have in common is that the members are essentially lazy people who look to the ambitious to carry them through life—just as the European Union, the United Nations, NATO and even the International Space station look toward American ingenuity, American money, American productivity to carry them from one day to the next. If America were removed from their alliances, they would perish quickly as their members are unproductive and looking to be carried through life on the backs of those willing to support them. So far, America has done so without complaint.
The Progressive Alliance is a political international founded on 22 May 2013 by political parties, the majority of whom are current or former members of the Socialist International. The organisation states the aim of becoming the global network of “the progressive“, democratic, social-democratic, socialist and labour movement”.
The first step towards the movement’s creation was the cancellation of the £100,000 yearly membership fee payment by the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) to the Socialist International in January 2012 by SPD Chairman Sigmar Gabriel. Gabriel had been critical of the Socialist International’s admittance and continuing inclusion of undemocratic “despotic” political movements into the organisation.
At the initial Conference of the Progressive Alliance was held in Rome, Italy on 14–15 December 2012 with 42 political parties attending. Attending the founding meeting was Democratic Party of Italy leader Pier Luigi Bersani, French Socialist Party chairman Harlem Désir, Argentinean Socialist Party chairman Hermes Binner, Governor of Vermont Peter Shumlin of the US Democratic Party, and Mustapha Ben Jafar, secretary-general of the Tunisian Democratic Forum for Labour and Liberties. Also present were representatives of the Indian National Congress, Brazilian Workers Party and Greek PASOK. The Dutch Labour Party also supports the formation of the organisation, as does the Swiss Socialist Party and the Social Democratic Party of Austria.
During the 4–5 February 2013 spring Council of the Socialist International in Cascais, Portugal, 50 political parties discussed on the sidelines the formation of the Progressive Alliance, including the Movement for Democratic Change of Zimbabwe.
The official foundation of the organization was held on the 22 May 2013 in Leipzig, Germany, on the 150th anniversary of the formation of the General German Workers’ Association (ADAV), the predecessor of the modern-day SPD. It was reported that approximately 70 social-democratic political parties from across the world attended the event. The Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats European parliamentary group joined the organization upon its official foundation. In September 2013, the Democratic Party (DIKO) of Cyprus announced that they were negotiating to join the Progressive Alliance, and were scheduled to attend a seminar of the international in Stockholm on 24 October.
If the land mass of Europe all the way to the east across Russia, China spinning around through the South China sea to Australia is considered, there is a vast swath of population that is in open support of either socialism or communism and they are all looking toward the wealth of The United States and want it redistributed to them. What they really want is the theft of the productive in America to their lazy, hands. In the case of the East, they are not lazy, but they lack imagination and ingenuity, and need American thought to carry them through their technical innovations. China can build an iPhone, but they cannot “conceive” of an iPhone from scratch. Only a free people, functioning under a capitalist country can do such a thing. This leaves a massive section of the world under the lazy influence of socialism, statism, or open communism. South America and Canada are not much better. Most countries in South America are left-leaning socialists and Canada is under the influence of European socialism. Only America and Japan economically stand on the side of productivity.
So why do any of the people function under Socialist International, or the Progressive Alliance have an equal seat at the table with America if they are not equally productive? The answer is that they shouldn’t, because they are essentially lazy next to the productive and are not equal by any measure. And that is a hard truth that the socialists of the world do not wish to consider because it forces a hard truth about themselves which they are not willing to consider. And the truth hurts. There are some of these progressive groups in America, groups like Progress Ohio and the Texas Progressive Alliance, (CLICK THE LINK BELOW), who seek to destroy capitalism to fulfill the intentions of global socialists. They are the cause of the current ideological civil war currently underway in America as they have captured the sympathies of the media and are in virtually every public school and labor union. It is the lazy against the productive and the productive are in the minority—extremely. And they still carry the economies of the world on their back in spite of the ingratitude of the socialist and progressive groups—which is testimony which confirms the truth in all its glory.
If you watched the videos above, you will have noticed that the American Howard Dean was at the Progressive Alliance event. In case you forgot who he was, here’s a reminder.
“’What got everyone re-energized was the debt ceiling,’ said Ann Becker, president of the Cincinnati Tea Party, who attended a meeting in Mr. Boehner’s district of more than 200 people Saturday to discuss a long-shot challenge to him for the GOP nomination.” That was a quote out of the Wall Street Journal where Cincinnati Tea Party President and personal friend Ann Becker made nationwide news following the straw poll results in Eaton, Ohio trying to determine who will run against John Boehner in the upcoming primary. Traditional big government oriented Republicans like John Boehner, John Kasich, Mitch McConnell and many others specifically in the Ohio and Kentucky region are facing major challenges—which is how things are supposed to be. The Wall Street Journal is one of the last of the respectable papers in America, so it was wonderful to see Ann make the news.
Click the link below to read the article:
A lot of people throughout the country do not know that Southern Ohio is ground zero for the heart and soul of the country. The primary resistance to public education solidified in this region, it is the front yard of major GOP Republicans and is the heart of a current civil war within the Republic Party situated specifically in Butler County, Ohio where old school cronyism is meeting up head on against the new rebels of the party who are insisting on Constitutional purity. At the heart of many of those activities in many different capacities has been Ann Becker. So it was good to see her mentioned in the Wall Street Journal.
Many traditional Republicans like John Boehner and the money machine that funds him primarily coming from the Carlos Todd Republicans, are bewildered as to what people like Ann have been yearning for. They thought that all they had to do was come out against abortion, stand for lower taxes with lip service, and present a resistance to same-sex marriage that the religious base of the Republican Party would fall in behind. The well-known business method which people like Carlos Todd of Butler County—a developer who has used political involvement to ensure the stability of his investments—is that you pay to play ball and if someone wanted to work hard, got to know all the right people, that anybody could make it in America.
But that’s not how things were supposed to be, and people like Ann have stood against it—and behind her legions of much more radicalized advocates for Constitutional purity are calling for the heads of Carlos Todd’s Republicans. Ann was always level-headed and understood all sides of an argument. She even ran against me in 2005 in support of the Lakota levy. By 2010 she joined me in opposition, but we did not always stand together on those battle lines just as now there are many who wish she’d take a sword to the head of the GOP when other methods are already well under way that don’t make such a mess. But the underlying current to the politics of Southern Ohio whether it is the efforts of the West Clermont School District to stand against organized labor control of the school board, The Liberty Township Tea Party fight against the IRS and being in the middle of the civil war in Butler Country where John Boehner/Todd Republicans are fighting against Tea Party activists, or Ann Becker’s efforts to dethrone the Speaker of the House in Washington D.C., and my overarching attempts to throw a light on all forms of collectivism spanning through all those fields. There are few places in America where the war wages more vigorously than Southern Ohio, and Northern Kentucky. Not to be taken lightly, Rand Paul is from the area, and is taking the political message of people like Ann Becker to the front lines of a presidential race. Paul is too liberal for me, but he does represent the future and I’m rooting for him.
Few people know it, but the Doc Thompson Radio Show on The Blaze is broadcast from Southern Ohio across the entire nation and they have directly taken on virtually every House and Senate seat up for grabs in the 2014 election. They broadcast from a secret location and often not in the same place day-to-day. Other popular personalities from Southern Ohio are Libertarian Girl who is also personal friends with Ann Becker and is bringing a youthful following to the libertarian movement pulling votes from traditional Republicans and activating young people who might otherwise be inclined to vote for a Democrat.
The landscape is changing rapidly, and the end result will be something different. It is hard to tell at this time exactly how, but one thing is for sure, the Grand Ol’ Party will not be a bunch of old men protecting their real estate investments in the future, and they will either adopt, or they will become extinct. They will either get on the train, or they will be run over by it—because going back to the old ways won’t happen. Too many people are awakened now to return back to those complacent times.
People are still apathetic, but as Ann gave me a series of very important news reports of which the Wall Street Journal article was only one, this new upcoming generation is different and is not tolerant of stuffy old Republicans like John Boehner. There are still plenty of people who will vote for Boehner, probably enough to keep him in office, but that is changing quickly. Two years from now, Boehner may lose his base completely at the rate of change that we are seeing. Even if he hangs on to win the primary in 2014, the next time won’t be nearly so easy.
Just four years ago when the Ohio Education Association put out a press release, every newspaper, television station, and news report followed their statements without question. Now, those same outlets are taking OEA reports far less seriously because there is a lot of scrutiny thrown in the direction of that government based labor union that wasn’t there before. Southern Ohio has been a place where much-needed gasoline has been thrown on a fire that was already started by Glenn Beck, John Stossel, and many other high-profile commentators who began questioning the status quo. Like Ann said in the Wall Street Journal, “What got everyone re-energized was the debt ceiling.” It did, and everything mentioned was an offshoot of that issue. My opposition to public education is driven off the extraordinarily high cost of public education forcing taxes higher on people who may not support the liberal viewpoints of the government schools. Boehner has done nothing to stop the national debt but use his majority in the House of Representatives to lay down for the President to run him over. The Republicans have been complicit in the crime of looting the nation, and people like Ann have stood strong against very strong forces who demand the status quo. But that status is no longer relevant, and the cracks in the system are growing into crumbling supports of a structure that will come crashing down very soon—because there’s no money, intellectual will, or credible aptitude to continue the charade.
I am proud to know Ann Becker. She has done some great work, and she will always be near and dear to me—because her fight for liberty, justice, and honor started a chain reaction that cannot be stopped now—and she will always be known as one of the first. It’s a pleasure to know her.
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Most young people are not paying attention to the current events in the Ukraine, or the unrest in Venezuela, or the posturing of China against Japan. They don’t know that President Obama’s administration is attempting to use the FCC to control news content, or that the IRS has been involved in corrupt activity. The sum of all these events are clashing with the teachings that young people are getting from government schools leaving them unsure who to trust or what to believe. So they aren’t participating, and are focused on the events of pop culture. They are not reading books, going to Tea Party rallies, or even searching for a way to save the world. They just want to get by and enjoy their life to some small degree. This has opened up the entertainment market to an explosion of comic book sales, movies, and fantasy driven entertainment. The world of fantasy is far better, and easier to understand than the deceitful world of the present—so it is there where many of the contemporary minds of youth reside.
When I was a kid the very first cartoon I enjoyed watching was Popeye the Sailor, followed closely by Speed Racer. Over the years, I enjoyed Starblazers, Spiderman, Looney Toons, and Godzilla as some of my favorites and I took the messages of those simple stories into my adult life unfiltered. To this day the thing I enjoy doing most is the “right thing.” I learned this from Popeye at age 3 and still remember vividly those early cartoon moments. Those cartoons had tremendous influence and many people my age and younger share this enthusiasm with me. Not everyone has preserved their love of those early cartoons to the extent that I have, but most people hold reverence for the cartoons of their youth. These cartoons have the power to either build up a mind or destroy it. For instance, Bevis and Butthead on MTV did a great deal to destroy culture while the same animator tried to redeem himself with the Fox cartoon King of the Hill. Currently Family Guy, the Simpsons, and American Dad—all laced with deep progressive philosophy–are the current trend which is writing upon the minds of countless young people the thought processes they will carry throughout their life. Teachers want to believe that they are what shape a child’s mind, and politicians caress themselves hoping that Common Core will unite the nation’s children to a government-run message of productivity. But in reality, cartoons are shaping young people and giving them the foundation thoughts which take them into adulthood.
This is why I am currently ecstatic over the new Disney production of the Star Wars: Rebels animated series coming to the Disney XD channel this fall. Shown within the videos on these pages are the main characters and the content. I think the show will be unlike anything ever done on television since Disney produced Zorro, and Davy Crockett for a generation who now attends Tea Party rallies. When I talk to Tea Party types and really get down to the nitty-gritty with them what they want is justice as defined for them by the temperament created by those old shows from the 50s and 60s. It’s more complicated than that of course, but the foundations of their thoughts are rooted in the values of those old Disney productions–having a mom and a dad at the dinner table with them, and church on Sundays. They find the behavior of the current political trend reprehensible, and this leads to a desire for rebellion. This is the primary cause of most discontent discourse throughout the world—specifically in the Ukraine, in Syria, even on college campuses.
Star Wars: Rebels has the ability to explore the nature of rebellion without it being explicitly investigated by earthly reference. The creators at Lucasfilm have the ability to explore the deep anxieties of the individual spirit to crave freedom without being political. They don’t have to deal with race relations, political parties, economic philosophy, or any polarizing trait—they can simply tell the story of how a rebellion formed to overthrow an empire. It’s a deep human craving that transcends party politics and because of that, I think this is the most important story that will be told in my life time. I’m sure it will be fun, and entertaining, but more than that—it is giving to a new generation of young people a sense of value—a value that is not presently available to them.
I think often about Popeye the Sailor and some of his messages which were “I am what I am and that’s all that I am,” and Wimpy’s statements about, “I’ll pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today.” These basic values I have taken with me throughout my life. Wimpy’s comments taught me a great deal about debt, while Popeye was always very proud of who he was—flaws and all. I know how much those simple stories meant to me, and I can only imagine how much impact the new Star Wars: Rebels will have on a new generation of young people. The previous Star Wars cartoon; The Clone Wars on The Cartoon Network after five seasons is just now starting to have an impact on a very skeptical viewing audience. I watched every single episode many times. My wife and I watch them together on Saturday mornings and love them dearly. But in many ways, Rebels will be a lot better. Clone Wars for me always felt like a modern commentary on our current situation. I’m sure the film makers had no intention of doing such a thing—these things have happened over human history many times and aren’t specific to our time. But there is always a little sadness in knowing that all the heroics performed in Clone Wars will result in the creation of the Empire. In Rebels, the Empire is already in control. Now it is up to heroes to save their society from the control of tyrants and that is an important distinction.
Millions of young people are going to watch Star Wars: Rebels and it will become their favorite television show. They will grow up and take those messages, and values with them into their adult lives just as modern-day older people revere the good ol’ days of Disney shows like Davey Crockett and Zorro. As simple as that sounds, it really is the foundation principles behind most thought processes. Just as people from my generation think differently because of the static patterns given to them from their entertainment culture—particularly cartoons, new cartoons like Star Wars: Rebels will have a far greater impact. I would say that it is the most important contemporary work of art currently being done anywhere in the world because it brings with it through story value.
For many, they will dismiss Star Wars: Rebels as just another cartoon designed to sell action figures at Target and Wal-Mart. But it’s more than that, and will show the real impact on television this fall. Needless to say I’m excited about it because there will be dramatic change ushered in behind this simple cartoon. With the distribution power of Disney, they are uniquely positioned to do great good in the world and Rebels is just the start. When George Lucas sat down to close the Star Wars deal at the Brown Derby at Hollywood Studios in Florida he knew what he was doing. His Skywalker Ranch had been set up specifically for the purpose of creating such wonderful shows like Star Wars: Rebels. Lucas knows that education is the most important thing you can give young people, and he knows that public education is failing. That’s why he has spent a considerable amount of his fortune on education. Much of that money has been wasted on the current education system, like tossing a cup of water into the ocean and expecting to see the waters rise in proportion. Real education comes from foundation patterns, and in our society, cartoons are the origin. This is why millions of people flock to Disney World to retouch the stories of their youth and bring renewed appreciation to lives otherwise plagued by cynicism. Star Wars: Rebels will mean a great deal to a large number of young and old minds, and the sum of that value will be a benefit to us all.
As critics have stated recently that I “hate education, because I had a bad experience as a kid,” essentially, they are right, I do hate education as I experienced it—but they’re wrong about the whole education experience. Quite the contrary, I am a huge education guy—I love learning, I find adventure in education, and for me it is an everyday experience. I hate the current education system sponsored by governments because it is limiting—and is not advancing our society, but regressing it. However, when I see major shifts of potential that are pent-up realizations of human desire that will lead to education revolutions—I make a note of it, and that is what I’m about to reiterate. Socially, we are on a collision course with reality, our personal debts are too high, we have a militarization of our local police that is making us all very weary, we have broken families, propaganda driven education toward left-leaning politics, and a new generation that will have a lower standard of living than the generation before them for the first time in American history. The culmination of all those events are about to explode under the Disney handling of the Star Wars franchise. The company Disney undoubtedly does not have political desires to change the world—they just want to make money for their shareholders and tell stories that families enjoy. However, the property of Star Wars has always had a very subtle message of education and an understanding of history. George Lucas wanted explicitly to show how republics die and give way to empires and he used the influences of Stalin, Hitler, Mussolini, and Castro to shape the fictional empire of the Star Wars universe. The new animated feature coming up on Disney XD will explore deeply this conversion from freedom to tyranny through the promise of social “safety” in a way that was previously unmatched. These are the concerns of the 21st Century world in a tremendous way especially with the evidence of police brutality that is emerging, and the rise of the TSA in America. The new Star Wars: Rebels will explore those very influences filling an educational void that will combine artistic fiction with an actual grim history in a way that will be greatly beneficial.
This past week Lucasfilm, the makers of the Star Wars properties put out promotional material announcing their plans for the 2014 releases of their upcoming Star Wars: Rebels television show. The art they chose to use could have been taken from any point in history in virtually any country that found themselves losing freedom to tyranny. The new television show will explore in a way that is very specific to Star Wars how freedom dies and how empires are created so that education can take place far surpassing the static learning of history from a complacent classroom teacher who has lost touch with the magic and adventure of study. Have a look at some of the art released by Lucasfilm and read the press release which accompanied them:
The Empire’s propaganda machine is in full effect.
Six pieces of Star Wars Rebels “patriotic art” were sent to 2,500 people around the globe and select media outlets, promoting the noble intentions and work of the Empire. These bold, graphic-style cards, urging galactic citizens to accept and even join the Empire, reflect the political landscape of the upcoming animated series.
When Supreme Chancellor Palpatine first declared himself Emperor, many people in the former Republic welcomed the change after the chaos of Clone Wars. As this campaign shows, the Empire continues to build upon that goodwill with glorified images of the stability and security that were ushered in by its might. It’s easy for worlds newly welcomed into the expanding Empire to be swept up with such ideas, though those citizens who have witnessed the ruthlessness of the Empire firsthand know the real story.
Thus far, the cards have appeared online at IGN.com, ETonline.com, Empire.com, Mashable.com, TheForce.net, and UOL.com. They were designed by Amy Beth Christenson, a member of the Lucasfilm Animation art department working on the series, and can be viewed in the accompanying slideshow. (But don’t be too swayed by their message.)
Star Wars Rebels is scheduled to premiere in fall 2014 as a one-hour special telecast on Disney Channel and will be followed by a series on Disney XD channels around the world.
StarWars.com. All Star Wars, all the time.
I have said it many times; Star Wars is not just for kids. Adults can learn a lot from it—as well as all of our current politicians anywhere in the world. The wars fueled by the science fiction fantasy epic are generated exclusively by the corruption of human spirit in service of “systems” over individual initiative. Star Wars: Rebels will explore this concept from many different angles in a way that is visually entertaining, but intellectually stimulating. There is power here that will have a major impact on virtually everything we have come to understand about the world we all live in.
Education is not about a teacher standing in front of a class teaching about global warming, union solidarity rights, or progressive philosophy framed by Immanuel Kant. Education is about asking questions, and seeking answers. In the case of Star Wars the sights, sounds, and story are designed to provoke questions and encourage viewers to seek the answers thus engaging in education. I can speak first-hand how well it has worked for me, and I am absolutely delighted that a whole new generation will experience it on a much grander scale.
I suppose my political beliefs were framed within the context of three men over a four-month period long ago. Prior to the presidential election of 1992 I was in Dallas, Texas spending time with Ross Perot and his family. I learned a lot from these experiences. I had always had a fascination with the Revolutionary War and Ross Perot had a style that brought that sentiment into focus. Then just a few months later I spent a considerable amount of time with Rob Portman as he began to run for the Second Congressional seat that was coming up during a special election. I liked Rob and my opinion leaned in his direction. At a special on-air debate on 700 WLW hosted by Mike McConnell during a Sunday night in Mt Adams, Portman’s challengers attended and I was there to witness the whole extravaganza. That was when I met Bob McEwen whom I initially disliked because of a House banking scandal that hovered over him like an ominous cloud. But for three crucial hours in my life I watched McEwen and Portman have it out with skill and debate that I admired spectacularly. Portman would go on to win, and would be the kind of prominent debater that Mitt Romney would use to prepare for his prime time debates against President Obama. Ross Perot would go down in history as one of the founders of the current Tea Party as his Reform Party essentially began during that Dallas event mentioned—where he would lose his run for president against Billy Clinton. And Bob McEwen hit the lecture circuit being paid $10,000 per speech because of his vast knowledge of history, economics and insider politics. Some of these speeches can be seen below and should be watched entirely. They are real treasures—he is a very good public speaker. In spite of the check bouncing scandal he was a staunch anti-communist, a religious supporter, and an economic scholar with a deep knowledge of history. Out of the three mentioned men, I learned more from Bob McEwen once I forgave him for the congressional scandal and realized why he was targeted—because Washington D.C. wanted him out-of-town. Political insiders wanted Bob McEwen out of their “beltway.” Watch all these videos carefully—preferably many times. And send them to a friend.
McEwen was caught up in the House banking scandal, which had been seized upon by Newt Gingrich, a like-minded conservative House Republican, as an example of the corruption of Congress; members of the House had been allowed to write checks on their accounts, which were paid despite insufficient funds and without penalty. Martin Gottlieb of the Dayton Daily News said “McEwen was collateral damage” to Gingrich’s crusade. McEwen initially denied bouncing any checks. Later, he admitted he had bounced a few. Then when the full totals were released by Ethics Committee investigators, the number was revealed to have been 166 over thirty-nine months. McEwen said that he always had funds available to cover the alleged overdrafts, pointing to the policy of the House sergeant-at-arms, who ran the House bank, paying checks on an overdrawn account if it would not exceed the sum of the Representative’s next paycheck. In 1991, McEwen had also been criticized for his use of the franking privilege and his frequent trips overseas at taxpayer expense, but McEwen defended the trips as part of his work on the Intelligence Committee and in building relationships with legislatures overseas.
Robert D. “Bob” McEwen (born January 12, 1950) is a lobbyist and American politician of the Republican Party, who was a member of the United States House of Representatives from southern Ohio‘s Sixth District, from January 3, 1981 to January 3, 1993. Tom Deimer of Cleveland‘s Plain Dealer described him as a “textbook Republican” who is “opposed to abortion, gun control, high taxes, and costly government programs.” In the House, he criticized government incompetence and charged corruption by the Democratic majority that ran the House in the 1980s. McEwen, who had easily won three terms in the Ohio House, was elected to Congress at the age of thirty to replace a retiring representative in 1980 and easily won re-election five times.
After a bruising primary battle with another incumbent whose district was combined with his, in which McEwen faced charges of bouncing checks on the House bank, he narrowly lost the 1992 general election to Democrat Ted Strickland. Following an unsuccessful run in the adjacent Second District in 1993, McEwen was largely absent from the Ohio political scene for a decade, until in 2005 he unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for Congress in the Second District special election to replace Rob Portman, who beat him in 1993, and finished second to the winner in the general election, Jean Schmidt. McEwen’s 2005 platform was familiar from his past campaigns, advocating a pro-life stance, defending Second Amendment rights, and promising to limit taxes and government spending. In 2006, he unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination in the Second District.
In Congress, McEwen, who “had a reputation as a man who thinks about politics every waking moment,” claimed Congressional Quarterly, was a staunch conservative, advocating a strong military. In addition, he was a strong advocate for government works in his district — dams, roads, locks and the like much as Harsha had been — as McEwen was on the House’s Public Works and Transportation Committee. The Chillicothe Gazette would salute him for his work on funding for U.S. Route 35, a limited access highway linking Chillicothe to Dayton. In general, however, McEwen advocated reduced government spending.
A vehement anti-Communist, he visited Tbilisi in the former Soviet Republic of Georgia in 1991 to help tear down the hammer-and-sickle iconography of the Communist regime. That year he also called for the House to establish a select committee to investigate the Vietnam War POW/MIA issue – whether any soldiers declared “missing in action” in the Vietnam War and other American wars were still alive – by sponsoring H. Res. 207.
McEwen was not a man to mince words. In the heated debate in 1985 over a Congressional seat in Indiana between Republican Richard D. McIntyre, whom the Indiana Secretary of State had certified as winning a seat in the 99th Congress, and Democrat Frank McCloskey, in which the House declined to seat McIntyre, McEwen declared on the House floor, “Mr. Speaker, you know how to win votes the old-fashioned way — you steal them.” When McEwen was late in 1990 to the House because of a massive traffic jam on the I-495 beltway around Washington, D.C., he said on the House floor on February 21 that the District of Columbia’s government should be replaced:
The total incompetence of the D.C. government in Washington, DC, has become an embarrassment to our entire Nation. This experiment in home rule is a disaster. All of us who serve in this Chamber, well over 95% of us, have held other positions in government. We have been mayors. We have been township trustees, State legislators, and the rest. I am convinced, Mr. Speaker, that there are well over 2,000 township trustees in my congressional district who with one arm tied behind their backs, could blindfolded do a better job of directing this city than the city council of D.C. It is high time that this experiment in home rule that has proven to be a disaster for our nation be terminated, that we return to some sort of logical government whereby the rest of us can function in this city.
After McEwen was criticized for his remarks, he delivered a thirty-minute speech in the House on March 1, 1990, on “The Worst City Government in America”. Because of the crime problem in the District, McEwen also attempted to pass legislation overturning the District council’s ban on mace, saying people in the District should be able to defend themselves. During the Persian Gulf War in 1991, McEwen introduced legislation to end President Gerald Ford‘s ban on U.S. government employees assassinating foreign leaders (Executive Order 12333) in order to clear the way for Saddam Hussein‘s removal, McEwen objecting to the “cocoon of protection that is placed around him because he holds the position that he holds as leader of his country.”
For people who believe that Cincinnati, Ohio is just a flyover city, they are sadly mistaken. The region of my home town produces very interesting people, life changing ideas, and I am proud of it. Steven Spielberg, Tom Cruise, Nick Clooney, Ted Turner, Annie Oakley, Nick Longworth who married Teddy Roosevelt’s cherished daughter Alice, William Taft, the Voice of America, the Crosely brothers, Kings Island, Rob Portman and of course Bob McEwen along with many others. Not all of those names are good ones, but Cincinnati throughout history has been at the center of the heartbeat of the nation. McEwen is still out there fighting for freedom as a political outsider—pushed out of the beltway by those who didn’t like his message. And behind him is the next generation of freedom fighters. The Cincinnati Tea Party is one of the strongest in the nation and is directly challenging current House Speaker John Boehner and the fraudulent Ohio governor John Kasich who launched and won his campaign against Ted Strickland because of the Cincinnati Tea Party. Cincinnati is where the fight is at. It is the modern version of Trenton, New Jersey in the new Revolution for independence.
Bob McEwen is a product of Cincinnati, a man deeply committed to undoing the kind of progressive underpinnings brought to the city at the turn of the 20th Century by Nick Longworth and his father-in-law Teddy Roosevelt along with William Howard Taft. Before these characters, Cincinnati was where the great Simeon Kenton settled with his sheer will and a hatchet well before any “White Man” braved the wild frontier of Cincinnati. Tecumseh and his Shawnee warriors were from Cincinnati. Tecumseh was born where modern day Xenia is today and fought directly with Simeon Kenton for this holy ground of the Ohio River valley—particularly Cincinnati. Kenton was in the Ohio River Valley because he was running from the “White Men” European decedents for much the same reasons that the Indians did. Tecumseh couldn’t hold off the “White Settlers” as more and more people fled European tyranny in much the same way that Cubans risked life and limb to swim to Miami, Florida to escape communism. The Shawnee would grudgingly flee the Cincinnati area as President Washington had a fort built in his name to defend the region. Another fort to the north along the Great Miami River named Fort Hamilton was built in dedication to Washington’s right hand man—Alexander Hamilton, and just down the road was a town named after James Monroe. In between those places was a township called “Liberty” which was established in direct honor of the Revolutionary War.
I grew up next to the grave of the Revolutionary War veteran John Ayers and his wife Sarah. He fought in Elizabethtown, Van Nest Mill, Piscataway, and Monmouth. Their graves can still be visited; they are in the back yard of the homes off the Butler County Regional Highway at the 747 exit if traveling toward the east. As a kid I discovered this cemetery overrun by dirt and trampled by cows deep in the woods in the middle of nowhere. I brought home Sarah’s tombstone to my mother to prove that the place existed and she was extremely furious. I put the head stone back, and often wondered if the ghost of John Ayers plagued me with images of war, fighting for freedom, and settling an area braving the elements just to run away from European collectivism because I disturbed his wife’s grave. In all reality, it is likely that Cincinnati itself and the region of land projecting out for 75 miles in every direction has a soul that rises up to meet oppression—and the bad guys of the world know it. For decades the Soviet Union had nuclear missiles pointed at the GE plant in Evendale and Hitler wanted desperately to destroy the Voice of America in Mason, Ohio. And the Washington establishment wanted to destroy the man from Cincinnati, Bob McEwen and his crusade against communism, fiscal irresponsibility, and the preservation of Christian values.
I learned a little from everyone mentioned—some of those names were good, some were sinister—but all came from Cincinnati and had something for me to learn from—and I did—including the ghost of John Ayers and his family who I often felt patrolled the haunted woods outside my bedroom window where a highway and many homes now exist. For as long as I can remember I had an affinity for the Revolutionary War and it is likely that John Ayers had something to do with it as I spent most of my time as a kid outside hunting for old cemeteries, and the bodies buried by local politics which I despised for as long as I have memory. Bob McEwen is another of these Cincinnati products, and now that you have heard some of his speeches dear reader, you might understand why I was so taken with him as he debated Rob Portman during a special election at 700 WLW on a spring like Sunday evening. Out of Portman, Perot and McEwen, it is the later that is still as deeply committed to liberty and freedom. The rest of them either sold out, or ran out of gas—but McEwen never really gave up. He has been chipping away at the barriers for freedom for decades and really never let the ominous clouds of politics push him aside—which is why I admire him so much. I am happy to report that like the ghost of John Ayers, the Revolutionary War vet that I grew up with as a ghostly friend, Bob McEwen has been a tremendous influence on how I see the world—and perhaps you will enjoy his work as well.