Beyond the Settlements (Weekend Sermonette)

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Life ‘far beyond the settlements‘ — a painting by David Wright
It gets more and more difficult to return from life far beyond the settlements. If you’re a city person and if you are not self reliant, you won’t get it. You’ll think me to be eccentric or worse, insane. Who would turn their back on all this? (see below)

The melting pot of humanity (Los Angeles pictured above), the freeways, the rush, the pressure and stress, the anger, the disappointment, the money, the power and fame and the material goods…who wouldn’t love it? No, it’s not the Temple of the Living Elvis (Las Vegas), but it’s still a nexus (some would say a temple) of greed, debauchery and ultimately, captivity…because we owe our souls to the company store. Making it in “the system” requires you to surrender your time and that’s all we really have isn’t it? Time and the choice of how we spend it. That’s all that life offers us.

While I’ve been far beyond the settlements these past few days, I’ve still be in touch with clients who are concerned about events in places outside of the USA and so forth. They call, e-mail I manage and that’s how it goes. Work requires me to return to the Temple of Greed and when the people who pay the bills snap their fingers, I dance (dance Bojangles, dance!). But the day when I cut the strings gets closer and because I can ‘feel it’, there is hope.

There is no escaping corrupt politicians, taxes and the basic stuff of life on the planet, but it can be attenuated. You simply need to move where the population density is much less – far beyond the settlements. Where you can’t see your neighbor from your property, where there are no signs designating that people turn here or there, where there are more trees than billboards, strip malls,  Starbucks, massage parlors and freeways. Furthermore absent a spike mike, it’s difficult to spy on people who aren’t fully plugged into the matrix.
I’ve been reading Bill O’Reilly’s new book, Old School. In the book, which I have enjoyed, O’Reilly sets himself up as the ultimate old school guy, and in truth, he is ‘old school’. But he’s also a ‘city guy’. He has always been a city guy. He’s never had kill the food that he eats for supper or do a number of other self-reliant things that separates “Old School” from the sissies in the Ivy League who run for their safe spaces at the first sign of a micro-aggression. His co-author is a prog friend of his. Naturally there were parts of the book that I didn’t connect with. O’Reilly also doesn’t condemn the metrosexual, former drug dealer and professional community organizer, Barack Obama as a bad man. But he was and is.

I hate to distill the whole book down to a few bullet points for you, but I will.

To me, there are the Heinlein admonitions: 
  • “Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea.”
  • “I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do. I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them. I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do.”
  • “A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly.”
It was snowing when I came down from the Mogollon Rim and a herd of a few dozen elk were moving through the world silently. Now there are cars, freeways and bandwidth. Which is the better course? You needn’t ask me. I know the answer. Up there the concern about Obama’s regime spying on everyone, the Democrat faux concern about the Russians, the silly machinations of a rusty, musty, somewhat broken world where the ‘new morality’ is nothing but the old immorality — is only an echo. A dim and distant echo. And you can listen to it if you like, or you can ignore it and chop some firewood, or make your own charcoal for the steaks you’re going to BBQ in the coming summer.

Here in the progressive land of the great unwashed, I can hear the muezzin on the loudspeaker at the mosque-down-the-street calling the faithful to prayer and reminding me that I am a stranger in a strange land.

If you don’t get it, don’t worry. It’s a philosophy.
Gen. John (Black Jack) Pershing

27 thoughts on “Beyond the Settlements (Weekend Sermonette)

  1. The urban areas do have one thing and that is catastrophic health resources short of a SHTF situation. Freedom always comes with a price, doesn't it? Still, better to die on your feet than live on your knees.

  2. AZ puts a lot of effort into fighting forest fires. There is a fire-paramedic station not far from the WWM with a short response time if there is a problem. It's manned 24/7/365. That went into the planning mix when I decided on that place to live. It's off the grid, but not off the map.

  3. Bill O'Reilly has always rubbed me the wrong way for two reasons:

    1. He hates the oil companies, and was blaming them for high gas prices a few years ago, saying they were fixing prices. Now that oil has come down about $100 a barrel, not a peep out of the guy. If Big Oil was fixing prices, did they just get together and decide that they would all take a $100 dollar a barrel haircut, because they felt guilty about screwing us? Hardly. What from Bill about the collapse of oil prices? Crickets chirping. He is as wrong as anyone could possibly be, but is so arrogant, he will never ever admit it.

    2. His tolerance of what a rotten guy Obama was in his past, over looked his God Awful associates coming up through the Chicago machine, and gave him a pass on all of his scandals.

    O'Reilly is a squish. A liberal squish, if you ask me. Sure, he has a few conservative twitches from time to time, but he's a pinko deep down inside.

  4. O'Reilly made hundred(s) of millions and is currently worth $85 million. That came from hob-nobbing in the media circles in the US and working partly in the corrupt, elite, mainstream media. I'm not saying that he didn't earn the scratch, but he's an insider…and he liked O'Bama, defending Barack and the shrill harpy Mrs. Obama in his book. We don't see eye to eye, but I did read the book – and something like 2/3 of it was ok in my critical eye. He struck a cord in his criticism of the social justice warriors, the income redistributionists, etc.

  5. Spent the say with the wife filling new raised beds and doing a little planting, in my place here among the outer settlements. Its my way of revolting against control.

  6. Beautifully written, LL.

    At the end of May we're going out to Fort Collins to see our grandson and do some serious house hunting.

    It's not the White Wolf Retreat, but we'll be far enough away from L.A. that it will seem like a different world.

  7. So you’re implying that you’re not eccentric and insane? Pull the other one, pal 😉

    “I laid sixteen tons, whadda ya get, another day older and deeper in debt..”
    You have a realistic melancholy about you, LL. Maybe you too are an art philosopher.

    There’s a lot to be said for sodding off to the countryside and the ‘place less inhabited’ City life drains and corrupts you. It’s all about balance, Larry Lambert.

    I am not morally responsible for everything I do. The world is full of trickery and as a curious being I have been hoodwinked time and again into misdemeanours. I blame everyone else.

    I think I could do all those things except butcher a hog even though I love bacon.

    Snowing? How did you cope with that, Mr. sun shines everyday Californian? Do you need a scarf crocheting?

  8. Going beyond the settlements is where it's at Jules. And when that place is complete, I am going to have to invest in a "body warmer" vest since fashion doesn't really matter there. The elk and eagles don't judge as harshly as homo sapiens.

    You must butcher the hog, chop the wood for the smoker, etc. to get to the bacon.

  9. In a subjective sense, LA is soul-sucking. And you need to get closer to your grandson to be able to teach him to build his first radio, work on his first car, etc. Grandpas get to 'pass it on' and that's what makes it fun. Please keep me posted.

  10. Enjoyed the post. Although I live in SD, I would choose to be more remote if I could. I've managed some of Heinleins list and would like to experience a few more. I don't watch TV, not worth the time so have no opinion on O'Reilly. Black Jack had the right of it I think. Those of us who value self reliance are definitely strangers in a strange Land (that gets stranger every day). Stay safe in the city.

  11. You can only have a body warmer if it has a WW leader of the pack emblem on the back. It must also be inflatable should you fall in a river. These are my terms.

  12. I too have read several O'Reilly books, and when he sticks to history, he is fine. When he swerves into politics, he's an ass. I stopped reading his stuff after Killing Patton. His other 'Killing' books are lauded as history never before seen by the proletariat, and yet as a public school guy I knew all of it from my 8th grade class taught by Mr. Tedd in 1968.

    Yes, he is corrupt, just as much as the press was when they looked the other way at Saddam Hussein's terrorism in order to gain access. I still watch him quite a bit, but mostly just to yell at him.

  13. Larry, what criteria did you have for finding a new location.
    I am in a nice little pocket surrounded by growing insanity.
    (10 acres, good neighbors, but anytime I leave, the traffic is horrendous and the politics are swerving left. Western WA.)

  14. I think that Killing Jesus was very well done. I've read Killing Patton but it was a re-hash for me, as apparently with you. I have a considerable 'reading habit' but there are many out there who don't and so his work appears as novel and groundbreaking. Even in the case of Killing Jesus, some of it was a rehash of Pliny and Josephus, which I've read, but I liked the general format he used.

    I tend to read as widely as I can to get a good handle not only on what is going on but on what went on. There's not much new under the sun…

  15. I started on a long reply, but I'll do a separate post on the subject because it takes more explanation than I can do here in the reply box. Stay tuned.

  16. I'm not in Los Angeles for long. I've lived a rather unusual life and have been and done a few things that helped me get through the list out of expedience. But the fetid inner cities and even the suburbs have become too much for me.

  17. I note (for the others) that you rejected the Dallas metroplex and selected a better and more balanced location to settle in.

  18. +1 WSF. At our ages, a good, quick health system close by is almost a must. That and a Waffle House withing distance. But the life of living off the grid is so attractive. I don't need a lot of people, but love the quiet and watching nature in all her aspects – animal, plant and weather. I know you are looking forward to 'The Day'.

  19. Even though we can see our few neighbors, we agree with you. Hubby has butchered cows. Maybe pigs, too, as they did raise them.
    But I think the common sense fish is more endangered than the competent government. But not by much.
    Big cities, as far as I am concerned are only good for visiting for something I can't find here, or for going through to get to family. Nothing more.
    That last paragraph summary of the book would not seem to fit either O'Reilly OR his prog friend.
    I hope your business buddies are working on grooming your replacement! 😉

  20. I regret to report that the nearest Waffle House restaurant is over 100 miles distant. Then again, the nearest Waffle House to my present home is much farther. I don't think that they have any in Southern California (which may serve to explain a great deal about why the place is circling the drain).

  21. I think that when I leave the business, the business will vanish. Somebody else may pick up the gauntlet, but there literally isn't anyone else in the US who is doing what I do. That may partly be because I don't advertise. Partly because it took 35 years of pain to get to a point where I knew enough to do what I do.

    Finding common sense in a person is like finding a precious gem.

  22. I couldn't imagine living in a big city anymore. It took a few moving back and forth to realize that fact. It's bad enough the way Post Falls is growing. I avoid the worst of it by running errands like Walmart at 7am. I was there day before yesterday and the store was empty, sparkly clean, and well stocked. Sometimes, when weather is bad I scoot over and just walk the parameter for exercise.

    The older you get, the less you crave "big city life."

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