Chris Callen Is Ranting. Awesome.

Chris Callen, editor of Cycle Source Magazine sent me this beautiful quoted text to share with you. It’s the weekend. Get a cold one and take the time to read attentively what he has to say. Who among Us will lead? .

“This post may not seem like it has much to do with motorcycling but stick with me for a minute. I have long believed that motorcycle people have always been on the side of freedom in its truest sense. That we bikers, have counted ourselves among the ranks for freedom fighters since the beginning of motorcycling. It is based on this premise that I offer the following small rant. Usually I find very little interest in television. I try hard to limit the time I spend in front of the idiot box and instead spend my days involved in more productive activities, most times which involve motorcycling.

Don’t get me wrong, the eighteen hour days I spend in my office chair around deadline find the noise of a television in the background but that’s usually the doing of my girl and her need for regular doses of reality. Hmmmm. Recently I heard interesting ideas coming out of the box, enough of them broke through that I began to pay attention. The program featured was “John Adams” a new mini series on HBO. This is the story of how our country was founded and like most programs I do end up watching, It offers the prospect of obtaining knowledge, not just the typical slobber inducing opiates fed to the masses through 185 digital channels.

In the story of the 30 years John Adams gave to the independence of our original colonies, many of those years spent alone in foreign lands, you get to look at what it was like for a man to make sacrifices for things he believed in. Adams gave up his family life, his home land, most of his youth and was under the constant scrutiny of the general public in whatever country hosted him while he rallied for support of separation for the colonies from England. It also provides a look at the ingredients formulated in the making of our great country. Having watched the first four of seven installments of this program I have come to a few summations. There is probably no person alive in this country that appreciates freedom the way these great men did. Except for any of our soldiers that have fought for freedom.

I am personally ashamed of the way we have let the foundation of our government crumble beneath the guise of free trade and an open market. We all need to pay closer attention to our elected officials. Now this is not a rant aimed at bolstering support towards one party over another, this is a simple statement of fact: Our government was set up to protect the interests of the people it governs. I came to this and was especially touched when John Adams and John Hancock began to work on the Declaration of independence. It may have been a while sine you read this great document so I am posting it here with this simple request. Think about what these men were making themselves independent from. that in doing so they were risking their lives, the lives of their families and estrangement from the life line provided by England to the 13 colonies. Think about what this document should mean to us today and remember it in all you do from now till November.

Quote: "When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation. We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good. He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them. He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only. He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people. He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers. He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries. He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance. He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures. He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power. He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation: For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States: For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the worl. For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury. For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences: For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies. For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments. For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever. He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us. He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people. He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation. He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands. He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions. In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends. We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor".

Let’s bring back a sense of personal responsibility and keep true to documents and principals that our country was founded on. In closing, I leave you with this quote from another great man of those times”. "If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; May your chains set lightly upon. you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen."
—Samuel Adams".


32 Responses to “Chris Callen Is Ranting. Awesome.”

  1. 1 Bobby Schonberg Apr 5th, 2008 at 8:38 am

    Good reminder of our Constitution. I would have never read if it was not in this blog.

  2. 2 goldiron Apr 5th, 2008 at 9:15 am

    An editor that is finally making sense. Damn, I will have to get a subscription if I can expect that kind of thought from an editor. I hope to hell your advertising increases because of it too.

  3. 3 Peter Muller Apr 5th, 2008 at 10:56 am

    I love when people are ranting…positively. Thank you Cyril for publishing this.

  4. 4 mike x Apr 5th, 2008 at 11:14 am

    Hey Chris , I have this thought on how it went bad. A long time ago (before supermarkets) it was very important for men to KEEP THEIR WORD and BE LOYAL because I NEEDED you to help me build my house , and hunt for food, and lots of other things that most people cannot fathom and as well you needed me. Today , you can be a lying sac or a littering dirt bag or whatever , point is: there is no real challenge for people.You can turn yer back on everyone who has helped you and shit on those that are down but still go and get grocerys and have the small girl push them out to your CAR for you (yeah in Florida) . With this mentality, the snakes have steadily slithered into charge of thing$ In the Days of John Adams I think it was easier to gather peoples will. Not saying it cant be done today, buuut most people here (not here on this blog )and now only think they know sacrifice. Stuff wont change in 08 either , “that chair” has become about GETTING FAT look at what did for bill and his pig wife, 109 million ? ?? just think what the real number was before they doctored it all up . The choices are VERY scary. Do we go on strike as a nation ? or do we start shooting? or do you think one can reason with a W or a DICK. ???? Hey how bout everyone on this fantastic blog GIVE UP YOUR CAR AND RIDE YOUR MOTORCYCLE what a concept!!!! who’s in ??

  5. 5 Brandon Apr 5th, 2008 at 11:27 am

    I agree with the reasons you give, but there are probably others. Yep, if everybody would abandon cars and ride motorcyc;les, they would rediscover some basic values: honor, pride, respect, soldarity, friendship, generosity, honesty.

  6. 6 burnout Apr 5th, 2008 at 4:02 pm

    I’m in! I don’t want too much about B&H but I would like to quote a verse from a song by Rodney Crowell: “Ken Starr, wordman talking absurd, spendin forty million dollars just to give the man the bird. He’s a king, she’s a queen, the rap won’t stick. Get it on with a rubber and ya won’t get sick.” ! Thank you Cyril for taking the time to remind us just what freedom is and means. Greed is so rampant now but I stubbornly press on in my attempt to live the values Brandon has listed. FREEDOM FOR US! peace

  7. 7 Nicker Apr 6th, 2008 at 12:38 am

    “…bikers, have counted ourselves among the ranks for freedom fighters since the beginning of motorcycling…”

    Well, those of us who are into it for that reason. Not all are.

    “…a new mini series on HBO. This is the story of how our country was founded …”

    When i moved to this country every kid in grade school was taught these lessons.

    “… this thought on how it went bad…”

    NO!…. It started with John Dewey and the Progressive Education movement who took over the education system in order to re-engineer American society, into a “Heaven on Earth” under the Progressive banner.

    If you have kids in school you better get involved in the school board and what they are being taught.
    There is a reason why the Progressive Socialists in CA are trying to shut down Home Schooling.
    They want to set the pace and dictate the outcome.

    READ… READ… READ….!!!!
    (i’ve a reading list for anyone interested)


  8. 8 madpuppy Apr 6th, 2008 at 10:51 am

    Politics, ( both sides ) are just a Game ! The rich get richer and the poor get poorer ! Our elected officials don’t give a rat`s ass about the American Tax payer! We are supposed to be the Strongest, wealthiest country in the world ! Well , why then do we have homeless, sick and hungry people every where ? We should take care of America First ! Then if we have some thing left over, Maybe we could help some other country ! But the way it is now, Our Government gives away our hard earned tax dollars to foreign lands, that Never pay us back , hate us and then beg for more! I don’t know about anyone else but I am tired of giving more and more tax dollars to Our government, just so they can give it to someone else ! Billions wasted on ” the war on drugs “, They lost that before they started ! Just legalise drugs like Tobacco and Alcohol ! The dumbing down of our children, cutting school programs and such ! They should be Cutting the Fat off the school Administrators . I`m sorry to go off on my own rant, Thanks for the topic Cyril, these things really bother me. PS, the post on Kennedy High School Chopper Class was Great, I would love to see that program spread Nation wide! PSS. Nicker, Ca. wants to stop home schooling because, they don’t get money from the government if there isn’t a warm butt sitting in the class room! pure and simple ! Its all about MONEY !

  9. 9 saorijohn Apr 6th, 2008 at 11:15 am

    Great blog even though I live in England. It has relavence for folks in the UK also. We think we have freedom and democracy. The only democratic and free choice we have is to vote or not. The guy who gets elected makes ALL the decisions on your behalf. And ‘Madpuppy’ is correct in saying that there are poor, sick and hungry people everywhere. The USA has the biggest proportion of ‘poor’ people than any other 1st world nation.

  10. 10 Chris Callen (Source Editor) Apr 6th, 2008 at 11:47 am


    I read all the time so I am always up for new titles, let’s hear your list.

    Thanks to Cyril for posting this rant. I am very proud to live in this country and am also tired of visitors laughing at us. When I stated above that bikers have always been freedom fighters I didn’t mean in a sense of fighting for rights in political areans, more that freedom and individuality are the key ingredients in motorcycle culture. Anyway, just some thoughts, thanks again.


  11. 11 Marilyn Stemp Apr 6th, 2008 at 1:35 pm

    Thanks for getting the discussion back to the basic premise: the price paid by those early “freedom fighters” that provide us the autonomy of movement and free expression we all enjoy – and take for granted – here in America. Of late, we’ve been too willing to give these freedoms away in exchange for so-called security.
    This theme rang a bell in my feeble brain so I spent an hour going through some old issues of IronWorks and found a column written by Dennis Stemp around Memorial Day in 1997 that touched on the topic of appreciating what we have, and respecting those who gave their all to earn it for us.
    Here’s an excerpt from that column, titled Gone But Not Forgotten:

    We often use the word freedom in an attempt to describe the feelings we experience when we ride our motorcycles. It is a difficult word, technically a noun, but so vast in its connotation that the meaning is abstract without a frame of reference…
    But from any perspective, freedom is the most valuable of concepts. It is the freedom to move about without excessive interference, regulation or control; to act without restraint or direction; to have exemption and immunity from tyranny, oppression or slavery. Remember, the freedom we experience going down the highway as the front wheel passes state and municipal boundaries without consequence, has been dearly bought over many generations.
    My generation grew up under the shadow of the Vietnam War. My father’s war was World War II – and the Korean conflict. His father’s war was WWI and his father’s was the Civil War. That war germinated perhaps the most concise and poignant illustration on the cost of freedom that I have found. I would like to share it with you here:

    To Mrs. Bixby, Boston, Mass.
    Dear Madam,
    I have been shown in the files of the War Department a statement of the Adjutant General of Massachusetts that you are the mother of five sons who have died gloriously on the field of battle. I feel how weak and fruitless must be any word of mine which should attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so overwhelming. But I cannot refrain from tendering you consolation that may be found in the thanks of the republic they died to save. I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom.
    Yours very sincerely and respectfully,
    A. Lincoln

    That’s the end of the column excerpt, and I’ll tell you, both Dennis and I were amazed at the responses we had from it – most of them debating whether Lincoln was a god or a devil and missing the point completely. I’m sure that readers of Cyril’s blog would never be guilty of that error.

  12. 12 Kiwi Mike Tomas Apr 6th, 2008 at 2:38 pm

    Great topic from Chris and a great contibution from Marilyn/late Dennis Stemp. I came from New Zealand 25 years ago on an around the world trip for 6 months. I travelled a few countries before arriving in America where I bought another motorcycle to travel around on. I loved what I saw, I loved the people and I fell in love with what this country was founded upon and its freedoms. 25 years later I’m still here and have no intension of ever leaving.
    Chris, you are a master. Having gotten to know you, you are for real and what we as American’s (I’ve applied for my citizenship) and motorcyclists stand for.
    Riding motorcycles regularly keeps me close to reality, even if all of them are old Indians and some of them are decrepit but they are the building blocks of what many now ride came from. While some may gloss over our past, it should never be forgotten.
    Thanks Chris.

  13. 13 Rodent Apr 6th, 2008 at 7:00 pm

    Bobby Schonberg , ya better read it again…It ain’t the Constitution, It’s the Declaration. Big, Big differnce.
    Did ya read the part that says “when the government fucks you you have the right and duty to overthrow it” but not in those exact words but thats wha t it means.

  14. 14 mike x Apr 6th, 2008 at 8:27 pm

    WOW! , TALK ABOUT A 180 DEGREE TURN !!! HOLY COW !!! Did anyone else see that?

  15. 15 Nicker Apr 7th, 2008 at 2:27 am

    RE: -Chris C.-
    “…always up for new titles…”

    Dude you’ve opened Pandora’s Box……. 🙂
    “The Bell Curve, Intelligence and class Structure in American Life” -Herrnstein & Murray-
    “Radical Son” -D. Horowitz-
    “Set up & Sold Out What Green Really Means” -Swanson-
    “Managers of Virtue” -D. Tyack & Hansot-
    “Tenured Radicals, How Politics Corrupted Higher Education” -R. Kimball-
    “Indoctrination U. The Left’s war Against Academic Freedom” -D. Horowitz-
    “Reach For Glory, LBJ’s Secret White House Tapes” -M. Beschloss-
    “U.S. Customs, Badge of Dishonor” -D. Catalon-
    “Fourth World War, Diplomacy and Espionage in the age of Terrorism” -Count De Marenches-
    “Stolen Lives, 20 years in a desert jail” -Malika Oufkir-
    “The Tempting of America” -R. Bork-
    “Slouching Toward Gomorrah, Modern Liberalism and American Decline” -R. Bork-

    Bell Curve is a tough read, ya might start with Set Up & Sold Out.
    Bell Curve was a tough read for me.
    Got a bunch more…. Real good ones too. If your really interested.


  16. 16 Nicker Apr 7th, 2008 at 2:30 am

    “… Politics, ( both sides ) are just a Game !…”
    Well, today “both sides are the same.”
    But, Dude i’m here to tell ya it’s no “game.”
    Not by a long shot!
    It’s about control of your ass and mine. And i ain’t giving up till i’m dead.

    “…why then do we have homeless, sick and hungry people …”
    Because homelessness disease and hunger have been part of the world since the beginning of human history.
    That is reality.
    Any thing else is an academic Utopian dream.

    “… [other countries] hate us and then beg for more! … I am tired of [it]…”
    What do you expect?
    What part of human nature don’t you understand.
    That is SOP! you want isolationism then vote Libertarian.

    RE: -saorij-
    “…sick and hungry people everywhere. The USA has the biggest proportion of ‘poor’ people than any other 1st world nation…”
    Say what?
    In all the 3rd world places i’ve been to exactly the opposite is true.
    Moreover, after his return from self imposed exile, even Eldridge Cleaver go on the radio (here in Nor-Cal) and said….
    “i’ve lived in a lot of places in the world and i’ve come to the conclusion that America is THE BEST of them all.”

    RE: -Marilyn-
    “… we’ve been too willing to give these freedoms away in exchange for so-called security…”
    Socialism is the devil’s bargain…. ‘i’ll take care of you, but you must put me in control’

    You are spot-on girl!!!
    And why have “we” been so willing????
    Dewey and is Progressive pals insinuated this crap into the American Public School system.
    And it’s still there.

    RE: -Kiwi Mike-
    “…fell in love with what this country was founded upon and its freedoms…”
    ya Mike, me too. But that freedom swings both ways. Free to do good and free to fuck-up.
    It’s all on you. Know your limitations. Your family is your support group, not the Government.

    “…Riding motorcycles regularly keeps me close to reality…”
    Well, more to the point it’s one of the increasingly few activities that still allow you to control your own fate.
    You build it, you ride it, you decide how much risk you wanna take, and you deal with the consequences.
    (as long as we can keep the lawyers and DOT out of it)

    RE: -rodent-
    “… “when the government fucks you you have the right and duty to overthrow it’ …”

    Ya, that’s about what the 2nd amendment means.
    It’s about maintaining a militia capability that can take power away from an out of control government.
    Not about putting squirrels on the dinner table.
    See the Federalist Papers for a reality check.

    Sorry about the rant…. 🙁

  17. 17 saorijohn Apr 7th, 2008 at 11:30 am

    RE: -saorij-
    “…sick and hungry people everywhere. The USA has the biggest proportion of ‘poor’ people than any other 1st world nation…”
    Say what?
    In all the 3rd world places i’ve been to exactly the opposite is true.
    Moreover, after his return from self imposed exile, even Eldridge Cleaver go on the radio (here in Nor-Cal) and said….
    “i’ve lived in a lot of places in the world and i’ve come to the conclusion that America is THE BEST of them all.”

    I meant similar countries e.g. Japan, Germany, Great Britain. G8 summit countries.

  18. 18 Nicker Apr 7th, 2008 at 4:29 pm


    “…I meant similar countries e.g. Japan, Germany, Great Britain. G8 summit countries…”


    Well, visited my cousin in Germany last year.
    That socio-political system has squashed their ambition and drive to do anything, but sit.
    That’s not the type of “freedom” i want.

    Visited Japan in the late 60’s.
    A monolithic group-think culture.
    Not my idea of freedom.

    And GB (source of the cartoon strip Andy Cap).
    Their medical system killed more people in 2007 than their Highway system.
    Here’s a society that has raised at least one generation (cradle to grave) without working (on the dole).

    Freedom isn’t easy, no one said it would be..
    There is a reason why the US has more people locked up than any other country.
    Your free to fuck-up, big time… and many people do (just ask BL)!

    Anyone who wants a guaranteed painless life, please feel “free” to immigrate to another G8 country.
    But stop trying to change the place most other people in the world seem to want to move to, the USA.

    And if the US gets socialized medicine, where will the Canadians go….. 🙂

    “Any society that tries to indemnify stupidity will find itself quickly populated with morons”
    Some one said it (don’t remember who).

    Sorry, i’m not much into sympathy or a free lunch.

  19. 19 Nicker Apr 7th, 2008 at 4:38 pm


    “…Ca. wants to stop home schooling because, they don’t get money from the government if there isn’t a warm butt sitting in the class room! pure and simple ! Its all about MONEY ! …”

    Really wish that were true…. 🙁
    But, as a partial product of that system and knowing lots of teachers here, le-me assure you that ,for the most part, it’s about control and social engineering.
    (see the reading list)


  20. 20 Pepper Apr 7th, 2008 at 6:59 pm

    As those of you who read Cycle Source know, Chris and his team are all about courage. Courage to say the hard thing, courage to say what might not be popular, courage to tell the truth. And it’s still a great read! It’s a fantastic day for journalism!

    And speaking of freedom, let’s not forget the grassroots movement in this country, and around the world, who represent riders, who are generally unaware of the battles that are still being fought so they have the right to ride. Currently Florida is trying to pass legislation that will allow your motorcycle to be confiscated should you do something illegal. Not fine you, not take away your endorsement for six months, but confiscate your property. It is aimed at sportbike riders but a motorcycle is a motorcycle…

    SB-802 GENERAL BILL by Garcia (Compare HB-137)
    “Motorcycles or Mopeds/Reckless Driving [EPCC]; Provides that if a person is operating or is in actual physical control of a motorcycle while driving recklessly, a law enforcement officer shall arrest the person, take him or her into custody, and seize the motorcycle. Requires that a person riding on a motorcycle or moped must ride while sitting astride the seat with one leg on each side and with both wheels on the ground at all times, etc.”

    The motorcyclist’s rights movement needs the support of all the motorcycle magazines and blogs. Keep up the good work, and be diligent.

  21. 21 saorijohn Apr 8th, 2008 at 10:34 am

    I’m with you on what you stand for. I’m just saying that us Brits also have similar problems over here. And you are correct on your points about Germany and Japan. I have a German buddy who will readily agree with you. My ex-wife is Japanese so I have a fair bit of first hand experience of their culture. Their herd-like mentality is depressing. And as for the problems we have in Britain……..last year the number of Brits that permanently left the country was greater than the immigrants that came in. There is no Utopian country to live in.

  22. 22 burnout Apr 8th, 2008 at 10:47 am

    Too many people in this country refuse to acknowledge how much our freedom is at risk. Greed is so rampantly taking charge. I watch little tv but when I do, Its all about vanity and dollars. Thanks to all of you for keeping the fire going for FREEDOM!!!! peace

  23. 23 madpuppy Apr 8th, 2008 at 11:10 am

    Nicker, I wont stoop as low as You, by trying to belittle your “name”. You try to come across here as the wizard of “Know it All “, I also know teachers, educational administrators , University Professors and a Regent at a little university in Berkley Ca.. So What, Big Deal ! Yes, both sides of the political spectrum are about Control of you and I!
    That’s my POINT ! IT IS a Game! A game of Money and Control, and WE are Always the losers ! And in the class rooms It Is the same thing ! If ” little nickers ” butt isn’t in that seat the state loses money ! Another Game.. Now go have a cup of tea and wake the hell up ! I used to enjoy what you wrote about motorcycles, but when you get in to politics and the Sky is falling mode, you are just talking Trash ! PS. If I were to stoop as low as you, I could sum it all in four words !

  24. 24 Nicker Apr 8th, 2008 at 4:12 pm


    “…. I wont stoop as low as You, by trying to belittle your ‘name’…”
    “…. If I were to stoop as low….”

    Stooping to what..???
    I’m clueless, the beef….??

    As i understand it, you see politics as a “Game” played by politicians so “the rich get richer and the poor get poorer .” And because those in power don’t care we’ve got a country that’s filling up with homeless, hungry, sick, poor, and “dumb” people.

    Now that sounds more like typical “Progressive Class Envy” to me, anyway.

    “…I also know teachers, educational administrators , University Professors and a Regent at a little university in Berkley Ca.. So What, Big Deal ! …”

    Well, ya got me there Dude. I don’t know any UC Berkeley Regents or Profs.

    But i do know from the News, History, and Books, and common local knowledge that UC has been and continues to be as a Progressive hot bed where “class-envy” is promoted and Socialism and Communism are openly taught..

    “…You try to come across here as the wizard of “Know it All “…”

    I don’t “try to come across” as any more than who i am. Never have, never will. Mostly because it’s just too much trouble. I know what i know through experience (training, reading, going, doing and living).

    As i read your comments, apparently my anti Socialist/Communist experience (and thus, perspective) pushes your buttons(?).
    Well, there i gotta plead guilty.

    The stuff that’s happened to my family and friends at the hands of Progressive Social Governments around the world is my motivation. And i’ll not stop talking about it till the day i die.
    So, if you’re a Progressive Liberal then we’re diametrically opposed in our life-perspective and i would expect you to react negatively to my writing. Hell, that’s why i do it…..!

    Those trying to social-engineer Utopia where i live is gonna “feel my pain.”
    And those who think such endeavors are a good idea should be made to “feel uncomfortable.”

    “….I used to enjoy what you wrote about motorcycles, but when you get in to politics and the Sky is falling mode, you are just talking Trash …”

    The only thing i can say in my defense is I’m simply a product of my life-experience.
    I am who i am, no apologies offered.

    I don’t see politics as a game. If it is, it certainly is a deadly one.
    the way i see it Politicians should take a Hippocratic Oath…. “First do no harm”
    The road to hell is paved with good political intentions.

    Writing about motorcycles is fun.
    Writing about politics is necessary.

    And yes…”i authorize the previous message”……………. 🙂

  25. 25 Chris Callen (Source Editor) Apr 8th, 2008 at 10:33 pm

    Wow, I was half afraid that this was way too off topic for a post. Thanks for the reassurance in all of your replies.

    Pepper, you are a beautiful woman and a beautiful mind. Thanks for the kind words and for the update on Florida.

    Marilyn, my sweet friend, thank you. You have the ability, like no other has ever, to make me feel that someone out there is on the same vibe as I am. When you share with me the eloquent words that Dennis put to paper on the same issues before me, it makes me realize why he is listed as one of my heroes.

    Nicker, I’m off to the library. Like I said I read constantly and I have managed to get through books like Machiavelli’s “The Prince” and Emanuel Kant’s “Critique Of Pure Reason” so I’ll give these a stab. Although the “Slouching towards Gomorrah” title sounds like it could give either of them a run for their money…..


  26. 26 Dave B. Apr 8th, 2008 at 11:15 pm

    I fear that America’s laziness in monitoring our political leaders has given rise to a political machine that has taken a life of its own, with no head or tail to chop off to kill the damn thing. I don’t know what it will take to correct the mess of giant government and legislative log jams, but something simple & effective has long vanished from the horizon… more laws to correct the old laws that were ineffective, etc, certainly isn’t working. Still, America is the greatest achievement in what now is a mere emulation of its originally small govermental control over the everyday actions of its citizens, and I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. Maybe I should write a long-winded and observational concensus of the failings of our governmental system… it, like all the other books mentioned above, won’t change anything because it is preaching to the converted, but at least it would give Nicker something to read in the shitter.

  27. 27 JoAnn Bortles Apr 9th, 2008 at 8:14 am

    Chris reminded us all of something that in all the static of 21st century life, seems to have gotten lost. The real meaning of what this country was founded on.

    The incomperable Hunter Thompson said it best, and this quote may not be 100% correctly worded as I am remembering it, but the meaning is still clear, ” It is tragic, that a country that was founded on rugged individualism gives so little to those who still practice it.”

  28. 28 madpuppy Apr 9th, 2008 at 9:52 am

    Stooping to what..???
    I’m clueless, the beef>>> Mad, not Mud. I`m to old and crippled to be a maddog anymore ! lol

    >But i do know from the News, History, and Books, and common local knowledge that UC has been and continues to be as a Progressive hot bed where “class-envy” is promoted and Socialism and Communism are openly taught..>> I just used U.C. Berkley as an example, I am a very strong Republican, and I don’t envy anyone, I live where I want, do as I please, don’t owe anyone for anything, and every day is like Christmas to my wife and myself. After reading then re-reading your [post and mine, I think we may be saying the same things ! But with different wording? Yes , I believe Politics are a game played at our expense, any way you put it, and Yes, I agree, it is a very deadly game. If it were up to me , I would institute a drug policy for testing, starting with the President on down.

  29. 29 Nicker Apr 9th, 2008 at 3:52 pm

    Sorry “mad”

    I’m dislecsic, so a lot-a the time the letters jump around on me…. 🙁

    “… I am a very strong Republican…”

    Well, i’ve always been an independent conservative.
    But this last year i had to sign on as a Rebublican in order to be a local precinct captain.
    When i go door-to-door i tell-em i’m an American First, then a Conservative, and then a Republican.

    Sounds to me like we’re in violent agreement………. 🙂

    “…old and crippled …”
    I hear-ya, My “friend” Author-Itis is taking me dowm that road too.


  30. 30 paul Apr 9th, 2008 at 5:00 pm

    Gee, I didn’t think Chris had time to watch TV, what with him working 24/7 putting out a passionate magazine that is Cycle Source.

    nice to know you have SOME spare time Chris.


  31. 31 Nicker Apr 16th, 2008 at 6:21 pm


    Sorry i missed your last post.
    Those titles weren’t in any meaningful order. I had a bookcase cave in. The resulting book-slide destroyed my “book-system.”
    Can’t find a damned thing anymore.

    Going to the Library?
    “Manufacturing Matters” (the myth of the post industrial Economy) is a great retort to all those intellectual snobs who were responsible for the demise of High School shop classes.

    It counters all those arguments about why its OK for America to outsource its manufacturing capability.

    Moreover, it validates all of us who love…… no, make that need to build stuff in the Garage……. 🙂


  32. 32 Nicker Apr 16th, 2008 at 6:43 pm

    Dave B.

    Sorry, Dave, i also missed your post.

    “… Maybe I should write a long-winded and observational consensus of the failings of our governmental system… it, like all the other books mentioned above, won’t change anything because it is preaching to the converted, but at least it would give Nicker something to read in the shittier…”

    No! The shitter is reserved for Hot Rod and Circle Track tech articles ….. 🙂

    “… I fear that America’s laziness in monitoring our political leaders …”

    Well, there is a fix.
    But it’ll take all of us getting off our lazy asses and involved.
    My wife an officer in the Federate Republican Women’s organization.
    I’m an alternate on the count Republican party central committee. and a precinct walker.
    Ya, it’s a pain in the ass….. but what’s the alternative?

    How about instead of a “long winded observation” you try getting involved…..??

    Just a thought.

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