by Robert Metz – May 16, 2013

On top of all of the terrorist plot stories we’ve been exposed to at an increasing pace recently, over the past week or so, we’ve been hearing a lot about the nightmare of evil that was occurring in Cleveland, Ohio. Criminal suspect Ariel Castro was charged with raping and kidnapping three women – constantly for a decade! And then, just as I was preparing this week’s broadcast of Just Right (#300), the tragic news of the murder of Tim Bosma, near Hamilton Ontario, was first being announced via live news coverage in the media. Having gone for a test drive with two strangers posing as potential buyers of a truck he advertised in auto-trading media, Bosma never returned.

Initial public reaction to the news was not surprising, but disappointing. The speed with which many members of the public resorted to blaming or focusing on some object or activity that had nothing to do with the motivation for the crime was quite alarming, actually. Immediate public reaction I heard to the news were variants of the following:

“It was just a truck.” Whatever the motivation for this crime was, it wasn’t about the truck. The only person who really had a legitimate reason to use the “it’s not a truck” argument was Bosma’s wife, and no one else. Why? – Because at the time she used it, she was actually negotiating – offering the kidnapper “a way out” by in effect lying to the kidnapper in suggesting he’s really not evil, and it really is “about a truck.” (This case has so many inconsistencies in what we’ve heard reported so far, including the charging of a millionaire suspect who has no money problems, that it’s just too weird, at this writing, to know what the real story is here.)

Unfortunately, even after it was clear that negotiation was no longer an option, public reaction I heard suggested that most people really wanted to believe that it was about the truck, and even worse, about numerous other objects and activities that have absolutely nothing to do with anything relevant here.

“Get rid of computers and technology,” I actually heard one open-line caller suggest. Really.

“Video games are the problem,” accused another, who was evidently offended by Grand Theft Auto. Hello! It is just a game.

The worst thing about these reactions is that they actually excuse the behaviour of the criminals by putting the blame for their actions on others. No one focused on the perpetrator as being the only cause of his crime. It was amazing just how high emotions were, which was actually a healthy thing to a point, and yet no one, beyond their outrage, responded rationally to events.

Instead, they began to sound very much like a lynch mob, which is curious given that having blamed everything except the perpetrator for his actions, the assumed perpetrator was now the target of their revenge. One common suggestion was to argue that the accused and/or the convicted should have no rights “in cases like this,” whatever “this” was, since no one had any firm evidence about anything.

Consider: if the accused has no rights, we as a society also have no right to prosecute him; it is his having rights that justifies our punishing him. One cannot deprive someone of his rights. One can only deprive others of their life, liberty, or property – the consequences of having rights.

At the heart of everyone’s fear, which leads to the irrational ideas just reviewed, is the realization that one can never in any absolute sense be certain about the moral character of anyone in our midst.

So how can we recognize the good and evil among us? Well, we simply can’t, unless we are offered evidence. But even given plenty of evidence, how many of us are able to define what good and evil are? – or what morality and immorality are? – or what right and wrong are? – even in the simplest of ways?

Fact is, you can’t know one without knowing the other. If one does not understand the nature of evil, one cannot know what is good, or why.

Philosopher/novelist Ayn Rand defined “the good” this way: “All that which is proper to the life of a rational being is the good; all that which destroys it is the evil.” She defined “morality” as “a code of values to guide man’s choices and actions – the choices and actions that determine the purpose and the course of his life. Ethics, as a science, deals with discovering and defining such a code. The purpose of morality is to teach you, not to suffer and die, but to enjoy yourself and live.”

This may be a far cry from what we hear from popular moralists who advocate sacrifice and altruism as the core of being “moral.” However, if you find yourself using these definitions as your basis for morality, the entire world will seem an evil place to you, and for all the wrong reasons. Worse, you’ll be defenseless in being able to identify the real good and evil in your midst – even when they have been made entirely visible to you.

So, for the purposes of judgement, that is, in determining whether someone is in fact good or evil, moral or immoral, right or wrong, I offer the following primer as a starting point. As a rule:

Good and Evil have to do with intentions and motivations – whether conscious or sub-conscious. Is the person in question willing to violate the consent of another? Is he/she willing to harm another person for unearned gain? It matters not whether they have acted on these intentions, because good and evil are more a matter of the character and values that determine the intention.

Moral and Immoral have more to do with actions and consequences. Another dimension of morality is one’s acceptance or rejection of personal responsibility for one’s actions. An action can be said to be moral in accordance with Ayn Rand’s stated standard of what “is proper to the life of a rational being.”

Right and Wrong? That’s the reality check. Determining right from wrong has to do with determining whether one’s intentions, motivations, and/or actions are in accordance with reality and with reason. Reality is the key determinant at this stage.

And of course, the only standard that is rational in the application of any of these terms is the standard of life itself.

In our May 16 broadcast of Just Right #300, (which can be found at http://www.justrightmedia.org) I elaborated on this and a few other related issues. Included were examples of how one might be a good person, but behave immorally, and other permutations of possible judgements applying the distinctions I’ve raised here.

This exploration is just beginning. Further judgements are pending. {end}

by Robert Metz – December 22, 2011

In celebration of the holiday season, I thought those who listen to our weekly radio show Just Right would appreciate having — in print — the collection of LIMERICKS we aired on our year-end broadcast today.

With the exception of those I wrote myself, the rest were excerpted (with some being heavily edited and amended) from: The New Limerick – 2750 Unpublished Examples – American and British, edited by G. Legman, Bell Publishing Company, New York, 1980.

So here they are. Plus one or two changes and additions since the show.

———————————————————————-
sshhhh! it’s sex.

Concerning them bees and the flowers
In the fields and the gardens and bowers,
You will note at a glance
That their sexless romance
Has little resemblance to ours.
Continue reading »

Yes, I have a warped sense of humour. That’s why I spell ‘humour’ the Canadian way.

WELCOME:

This post represents not only my warped sense of humour, but the official launch of my own blog site. I hope that you will all consider becoming regular visitors. As of this writing, I have no idea whatever how things will eventually evolve. Expect future additions of photos, cartoons, audio and visual content, etc., which will be added even to the material already published.

Posts preceding this one were originally published in other forums and media, prior to the launch of this blog.

There’s still a lot of work to do before everything actually begins to take shape and evolve its own identity and character. I’ve learned from past experience that I can never predict how a particular project or undertaking will ultimately manifest itself. Something tells me that this effort will be no different.

So for starters, and just for fun, I present you with a collection of silly definitions of the words which shape our political world. I’ve collected them from various sources, and have written a few of them myself. This is the first time that this collection has been published as you see it here.

As humourous as they may be, at the same time many of the following definitions aren’t really so ‘funny,’ if you know what I mean. And that’s why I’ve been forced to conclude that: The Joke’s On Us!
Enjoy.

- Robert Metz December 7, 2011
Continue reading »

by Robert Metz – July 2007

Had enough of all the heat, garbage and mind-altering pollution — being spewed by our politicians every day and every hour from every level of government?

The heat is on. Get ready for more; the political meltdown is only just beginning.
Continue reading »

Dec 012006

by Robert Metz – December 2006

The following essay represents my personal protest against the Canadian Census.

“Any person refusing or neglecting to complete their Census form, or answering falsely, will be guilty of an offense and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding $500 or to imprisonment for three months or both.” – Canadian Statistics Act -

Continue reading »

by Robert Metz – July 2006

From an objective point of view (namely mine), Freedom Party is the best political party ever invented. Sure, I’m one of the founding members of the party, but I didn’t invent or create Freedom Party.

Freedom Party has evolved into something much larger than any one of us individually, thanks to the work, support, and wisdom of people dedicated to the principle that: “Every individual, in the peaceful pursuit of personal fulfillment, has an absolute right to his or her own life, liberty, and property.”
Continue reading »

Sep 011996

by Robert Metz – September 1996

“IN THOSE DAYS a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be enrolled. This was the FIRST ENROLLMENT, when Quirinius was governor of Syria. And all went to be enrolled, each to his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be enrolled with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child.” (Bible: Luke 2)
Continue reading »

by Robert Metz – September 1995

The following essay is adapted from Freedom Party’s official Presentation to the Reform Party of Canada’s Aboriginal Affairs Task Force, written and delivered by myself on February 26, 1995.

The moment we use the terms “Aboriginal”, “Indian”, or “Native” IN THE CONTEXT OF DISCUSSING SPECIAL GOVERNMENT POLICY with respect to people identified as such, we are already practising RACISM.
Continue reading »

Aug 011994

by Robert Metz – August 1994

(The following essay is an edited version of my final (and successful!) argument before an Ontario Human Rights Commission Board of Inquiry. The board was investigating an alleged “racist” comment made by London landlord Elijah Elieff in reference to Asian tenants occupying his buildings on Cheyenne Avenue. An official complaint against the landlord was filed with the Human Rights Commission by Chippeng Hom, one of his Asian tenants who was recruited for the task. She was represented by Geraldine Sanson who was appointed by the Human Rights Commission at taxpayer expense. Since the respondent, Mr. Elieff, was not accorded the same privilege, I volunteered to represent the landlord after the fourth day of hearings by the board.
Continue reading »

by Robert Metz – March 1992

In the wake of its dismal record in office capped by London South MPP David Winniger’s public statement that “morals and ethics” should not be a consideration in the establishment of government-run gambling casinos, there has been much doubt expressed recently in the media about whether or not the NDP has betrayed its “socialist principles.”
Continue reading »

by Robert Metz – March 1992

“Too many doctors!” say Canada’s provincial health-care ministers. Ridiculous. There’s no such thing as “too much” of anything that people want or need. When supply exceeds demand, prices go down and eventually supply will find its optimum level accordingly. That’s good. Unfortunately, under socialized medicine, the price of visiting a doctor or hospital is already zero and can’t go down any further. That’s bad.
Continue reading »

by Robert Metz – January 1992

Many Ontarians have sensed something sinister about the Rae government’s recent dropping of the allegiance to the Queen by police officers. Unfortunately, few have been able to identify the source of their fears — fears which are well-founded since the issue at stake is far more significant than we have been led to believe, or perhaps, find difficult to believe. Indeed, the change of allegiance is yet another tragic reminder that the Rae government is intent on ruling, and not on governing.
Continue reading »

by Robert Metz – February 1990

Rather than offer a rational defence for the system of governance we have come to know as “democracy”, most of its supporters merely end up apologizing for it. Fundamentally, their arguments all boil down to this: “What — in practice, not in theory — works better than democracy?” as if their inability to consider viable alternatives somehow constitutes an intellectual defence. But for those who ask, my answer is simply this: a social system under which individuals can freely exercise their freedom of choice, and where that freedom of choice is protected (by law!) from majority rule, not made subservient to it.
Continue reading »

by Robert Metz – January 1989

The spring of 1989 saw a truly hopeless spectacle: hundreds of marchers trekking from Windsor to Queen’s Park in Toronto in what was being billed a “March Against Poverty”. Their objective? To persuade the Peterson government to increase its spending on social welfare programs in an attempt to “eradicate” poverty.
Continue reading »

by Robert Metz – December 1988

Free trade, or not free trade, that is the question:
Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The joy and pride while creating outrageous fortunes,
Or to take arms against a sea of “money grubbing” Yanks,
And by opposing end them. To socialize, to trade -
No more; and by socialize to say we end
The risks, and the responsibilities
That freedom is heir to. ‘Tis a consummation
Devoutly wished by Mel Hurtig – to be free, to trade -
To be free, perchance to take risks, ay there’s the rub;
For in being nationalists what risks we take
In isolating ourselves must give us pause – there’s the respect
That makes calamity of free trade.
Continue reading »

by Robert Metz and Marc Emery  -  December 1988

If we were to redefine “democracy” as “a road to inevitable total state control”, we know that most of you would probably cringe at the suggestion.
Continue reading »

by Marc Emery and Robert Metz – September 1988

What is “democracy”?

Contrary to popular belief, “democracy” is not necessarily compatible with freedom! In fact, today’s “democracies” may soon represent as great a threat to individual freedom as any dictatorship in the past ever has.

In determining the value of the process we call “democracy”, it is essential that we first determine what the legitimate role of government is, and most importantly, what the rights of individuals are.
Continue reading »

by Robert Metz – January 1988

The following article originally appeared in the Fall 1983 edition of the London MetroBulletin. Though many Ontarians may already have forgotten about BILL DAVIS, the past leader of Ontario’s Progressive Conservative Party which held the reins of power for 42 consecutive years, it will not be as easy to forget or ignore the consequences and effects of his party’s political philosophy.
Continue reading »

by Robert Metz – January 1988

One of the greatest philosophical questions facing individual citizens in any free society is: Where do we draw the line on individual freedom?
Continue reading »