Random Thoughts

RandomThoughtsThumb2by Brad Nelson6/24/15
Next month (coming soon!) marks the second anniversary of StubbornThings. I feel like a pompous dweeb making an announcement like this from on high. I never wanted that. This isn’t a Mickey Mouse club with me as head mouse, although some might agree with the mouse part.

It took some time to get the basic format of this site going. Part of that was just learning what this software can do. What it can do is ruin your day in an instant if you’re not careful. But (fingers crossed and knock on wood), it’s been running fine of late.

The point of the site is to think outside the box without merely being contrarian or self-consciously showy. The thing is, if you’re standing around the water cooler with your friends (at least your smart friends) you can quite literally solve the world’s problems. The answers are simply, as Reagan would say, although not easy.

But when it comes to discussing these subjects outside the bounds of the water cooler, most people either clam up or delve into “PoliticalSpeak” whereby much is said, and in quite formal tones, but bled out of the words is the vital and relevant meaning. Entire conservative websites have been rotted out because of this. Think: Mark Steyn, a guy who is routinely capable of giving fully-hemoglobined words. His truth was a revolutionary act for NRO. Even poor John Derbyshire — a victim sometimes of his own snarling attitude — has spoken truths that have gotten him into trouble with the “you can’t say that crowd” — truths we are finally realizing are oh so true.

But our intent here is not to shock or to necessarily be on the cutting edge. As George Orwell said, “In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.” One thus need not try to intentionally shock or be on the cutting edge, for both “shock” and “cutting edge” have become truly mindless tools of the relativistic Left. To shock or be on the cutting edge can mean, and usually does mean, little more than taking a hatchet or wrecking ball to any established idea or institution with the mind that tearing it down is a holy act.

Here at StubbornThings we can understand the concept of truth being a revolutionary act — and not only that, but a rare act. One need not reach for bombast or gird for shock. In a room full of acrid and combustable fumes, lighting a simple match is all it takes to create an explosion. A little light in this era of universal deceit is all it takes to get people’s panties in a bunch.

“What is truth?” Pontius Pilate once asked. Whatever his motivation for the question, it’s a good and necessary question. Truth can be everything from truth to a reasonable opinion. The idea here is not that the truth will necessarily fall out of your mouth or my mouth but that, like a point on a map, it is a place that can be approached. We fill in the details and move a bit closer. We dredge the sandbars of obfuscation and move a bit closer, perhaps never exactly arriving but getting close enough too see the shore.

This concept does not exist with the Left. As Dennis Prager says, “Truth is not a left wing value.” And as I say, the politicized mind is the crazy mind. I urge one and all to write, to think, to read, and to learn. But don’t just be a copycat. Don’t be Charles Krauthammer. Let Chuck be Chuck. Let Ann Coulter be Ann Coulter. But let you be you. We should no more mindlessly ape conservative styles of thought than we should scar our bodies with tattoos just to fit in with and follow mass culture. Many of the people we admire are simply talking heads, mere book sellers.

I take it as axiomatic that if the culture we are living in is highly poisonous then there is a good reason to disengage from it. We are all becoming a mass-marketed mind, almost incapable of finding our individuality and humanity. Much of mankind right now is beholden to one vapid idea or another, be it the fraud of global warming or whatever. We have trivialized and devalued nearly everything. Think about the fact that not only do we have a counterfeit American president but the world has a completely fraudulent Pope. On a regular basis, people are saying the most obviously idiotic, untruthful, and bizarre things. It’s becoming normal for the truly abnormal to be accepted. Do not accept.

And the conservative media is by no means exempt from this which is why I say we need to chart our own course. We should adopt a style not beholden to mindless mass culture, rife as it is with corruption and deceit if not just vulgarity.

That all might sound very intimidating, as if we’re aiming for perfectionism here. Nothing could be further from the truth. Excellence, yes. Creativity, yes. Frankness, yes. Outside the box, yes. But “perfect” is for fools and suckers. Many people, because of the insane, totalitarian, and bully Left, have gotten it into their heads that what they say and do must be flawless. Well, I spit in the face of the Left and their totalitarian bullies. Dare to be creative, unique, thoughtful, and to be yourself and to hell with the frauds in the media. And they are frauds. Do not forget the awful game they are all playing. We need not take part.

Another thing, and I hesitate to bring this sensitive subject up. But it costs money to run this site. And so, echoing the recent words of the Pope, you can’t be a true conservative or Christian unless you skip a house or car payment and instead send that money to me as a donation. You may think that saving for your child’s college education is a good and necessary thing. But I’m telling you that you can’t consider yourself an heir to Reagan, let alone George Washington, unless you first fund me. You must give “not the excess, but also what is necessary for one’s own well-being” to quote his Holiness.

No pressure. I’ll take it all in small denominations if need be.

Brad is editor and chief disorganizer of StubbornThings.
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Brad Nelson

About Brad Nelson

I like books, nature, politics, old movies, Ronald Reagan (you get sort of a three-fer with that one), and the founding ideals of this country. We are the Shining City on the Hill — or ought to be. However, our land has been poisoned by Utopian aspirations and feel-good bromides. Both have replaced wisdom and facts.
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25 Responses to Random Thoughts

  1. Timothy Lane says:

    Actually, I see my style as something of a combination of Ann Coulter and Rush Limbaugh, which no doubt is why I enjoy them so much.

    As for monetary contributions, when my Social Security kicks in (early retirement) next month, I could always send something — but not on-line. Given the computer problems I have, and the history of hacks in recent years, I avoid that as much as possible.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      Yes. Yes. Yes. You need to take a good chunk of that SS check and give it to me before such trivial things as food or shelter. That will make you a good and proper member of StubbornThings.

      Sorry, I just can’t get the sarcasm out of my system about the Pope thing. But thanks for hanging with us for two years and being our unofficial official librarian.

      • Timothy Lane says:

        Well, I can understand the need to react sarcastically to anything from the Peron Pope. I guess it’s still legal to call it black humor.

    • faba calculo says:

      “early retirement…next month”


  2. SkepticalCynic SkepticalCynic says:

    Brad, you almost had me there. I had my credit card out and ready to donate.

    If you will be a little less blatant and use a little more polish, I believe this could become a gold mine for you. Perhaps you could sell repentance. To wit: “All you have to do is send me one thousand dollars and I will have all your sins expunged. Yessir, living a sinless life can be yours for just one grand a month. Sign up now on AmericanThinker.com.”

    • Timothy Lane says:

      But does Brad want to change his name to Johann Tetzel?

      • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

        I had too Google “Johann Tetzel.” What a character he was.

        Here’s my wish list:

        1) We become the one and only place on the internet where you don’t have to wade through six inches of cow droppings to get to the core of an issue. Much of the internet is little more than chatter. The meaning-to-noise ration is horrendous at most places.

        2) Truth and authentic opinion always trumps posing. We’re not here to collect attaboys, gold stars, or “likes.”

        3) We continue to collect contributors of quality who also put their pants on one leg at a time. I don’t have much patience for those who think they are somehow so special that, well, little ol’ StubbornThings just ain’t good enough. We’re always as good as the lead article on the home page and the thoughtful comments underneath. No more. No less.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      Cynic, I don’t think I’d make a very good huckster. I just have a problem looking people in the face and trying to sell them baloney.

      People have been very generous donating to this site and they know who they are. (Matthew 6:6). And as I remind people, within certain bounds, this is your site. Write ten decent articles in a row, people will come here and suppose you own the site. I’m not pitching for the journalistic equivalent of spam. But people shouldn’t be shy about it. If you aim for quality and have something to say, don’t hold back. Make this site your own. Where else can you do that without various usually insane gatekeepers with haphazard rules, most who simply relish being Little Napoleons?

      I don’t ever expect to make money off this site. I figure George Washington didn’t expect to make much when he joined the Revolution. Last time I looked, I wasn’t quite George Washington, but the principle is the same. For goodness sake, not everything has to have a monetary angle. I wouldn’t reject, say, a $5000.00 donation for the Koch brothers. But that’s not why we’re here.

      Yes, we’re quirky. Sometimes irreverent. Usually politically incorrect. And sometimes pushing the bounds of “You can’t say that.” But hopefully we’ll never be dull. We’ll never be boxed in by Establishment politics and conceits.

      I think it’s okay that this site isn’t for everyone. I think some people can’t handle it or don’t trust it. And that’s fine. But if someone has something to say, and it concerns them more that they say it than that they be seen to say it, if you know what I mean, this is the place. If we’re not your normal average American, then God help us all.

      • SkepticalCynic SkepticalCynic says:

        I hope you realize that I am pulling your leg. I like to use a little sarcasm myself sometimes. Perhaps I will donate anyhow.

  3. Tom Riehl TRiehl says:

    Brad, this post and the comments enlightened me, so I’m considering submitting my random thoughts, too. Don’t hold your breath, though, because I’m healing from shoulder surgery and can’t type much yet.

    I truly appreciate this site since I always come away a bit wiser after visiting it, every day. Thanks!

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      so I’m considering submitting my random thoughts, too.

      The way things are going. Don’t wait too long.

      • faba calculo says:


        • Tom Riehl TRiehl says:

          Me, too; huh?

          • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

            TRiehl, the way things are going (net neutrality, banning “hate speech,” etc.), you might not want to wait for too long to submit your random thoughts. The fascists of the Left are gaining strength. Today the Confederate flag, tomorrow any web site that dares to question these kooks.

            And, frankly, conservatives have been sitting on their asses for too long “waiting” for the right time to say something. Well, if now isn’t the right time, I don’t know when that will be. Speak out while you can. Tomorrow may be too late.

            • Timothy Lane says:

              I remember a lot of paranoid worries about what Bill Clinton might do. Unfortunately, with the Fascist Messiah, similar fears are not paranoid at all. The naked fascism at the heart of modern liberalism is increasingly open as they believe they can’t be stopped — unless “Chief Justice” Worthless and “Justice” Weathervane learn how to stand up to the arbitrary despotic rule they have chosen to enable.

            • Tom Riehl Tom Riehl says:

              Gotcha. My shoulder is healing…

        • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

          Say what?

  4. Pst4usa says:

    I’m in. Congratulation on the upcoming anniversary.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      Ladies and gentlemen, I’d like you to meet the unknown Koch Brother. He’s shy and doesn’t like appearing on Fox News so that’s why he goes under the name “Tarzwell.” But because of his stream of generation donations, he is this site’s Koch Brother.

      Anyway, thanks for the more-than-generous donation, Pat. I should say “Baby needs a new pair of shoes.” But I don’t. I could just use more friends like you.

      • Pst4usa says:

        As always, Brad, you’re welcome! I may not be able to add much to the discussions, but I do enjoy and learn from the quality of the writers here.
        As far as being a Koch brother, I do not know about that, but the leftist around our area like to call us that. At least they have called Sandy that, she’s adopted so maybe she is related, but no checks have shown up as of yet.

        • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

          Pat, it’s fast becoming illegal to be a conservative. Just as a cover, will you marry me?

          Joking. I think.

          • Pst4usa says:

            Why not, if all conservatives get married to each other, 20 million all married to each other in one giant internet ceremony, then we will be using the Cloward and Piven tactic of overwhelming the system.

            • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

              Sounds good. But just want you to know first that I plan on assembling a harem. You can still be head wife (since you’ll likely be the tallest).

              I’m just redefining the redefinition of marriage. That’s totally okay now. Watch out, Lassie.

  5. James Deaton says:

    Brad–You have terrific website, you write so well, you have sharp mind and you look great — what’s not to like? Congratulations on this milestone and many more to come. When can I get a “Stubborn Things” T-shirt, ball cap and coffee mug???

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      Perhaps Samuel Johnson was correct when he wrote, “No man but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money.” One wonders if he was paid to write that. But we’re not here to fault-find in regards to Western Civilization. That said, there have been a lot of pompous blowhards throughout history. I’m not saying he was one of them though.

      But this site was founded on the strange, surely idealistic, notion that there were people out there — ordinary people — who had a lot to say, who had a lot of personal wisdom built up through the living of life, that they had more to offer than just pontificating from above…which much of the conservative press has become, cut off from fly-over country. And they would do it because they wanted to express themselves and they were tired of seeing their country and civilization taken over by bandits.

      James, you’ve both proven the format of the site and contributed much. But “contributed” to whom, me? Oh, LOL. Your glorious hard-working worker-bee has no such delusions. I’ve simply volunteered to form and mold the kind of site that I would want to contribute to. I got tired of all the other ones. I’ve posted here and there and almost always there were insane and arbitrary restrictions. Not that I was Solomon, but simply stating plain facts (or honest, reasonable opinions) became difficult. I mean, look at what happened to Mark Steyn at NRO.

      Yes, yes, we certainly do have a filtering system here (me). I won’t allow this site to be taken over by liberal pinheads. Alinsky tactics will not be allowed to rule here. I did not just fall off the turnip truck and have seen nearly every cheap, sleazy human trick of rhetoric. That said, if someone did, say, want to write a tract on why they think humans are a plague on the planet, and if such a tract was reasonably written, I’d publish it. But “reason” and the Left rarely coincide. It’s all ideological Kool-aid from people made zealous on the fumes of a totalitarian and trendy narcissism.

      Mugs? T-shirts? That sounds great. Maybe in the future. But we’ll need to think of something appropriate to our format and principles. NRO has their cruise, which makes perfect sense for a bunch of generally upper-crust Establishment types. Nothing against the rich, but regarding the Samuel Johnson quote, is that all an idea is worth, what you can sell it for?

      I don’t think so. So let’s soldier on and see where this take us. And thanks very much, James, for your contributions.

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