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They say that Louis XIV had the inscription Ultima Ratio Regum cast into all the cannon of the French Army. It means "The Ultimate Argument of Kings," and that always struck me as one of the most honest and up-front things any ruler or would-be ruler ever said. "We can dress it up prettier than this, but when it comes down to the unvarnished truth this is what it's about: You'll do as I say or I'll send my goons to kill you."
I thought about that for a long time. If there's an ultimate argument, it seems only logical that there must be an ultimate answer. For years I thought the ultimate answer must be the bullets in my rifle, but it never seemed quite right. I've got bullets - he's got frigging Cannon Balls. I mean, if there were three hundred million rifles throwing bullets at him, then maybe. But we all know that's not going to happen. So if there's an ultimate answer to his ultimate argument, it sure as hell ain't bullets.
It finally came to me - and that's when I left the city, abandoned a goodly percentage of my goods, and gave all that was behind me a good, stiff Randian Shrug.
The ultimate answer to kings is not a bullet, but a belly laugh.
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Do you suffer from a lonely, unfulfilled, angst-driven existence? Do you often wish you could do something meaningful with your life, like end death or war or taxes, or maybe just read a really good book?
Then you need to buy the following novels immediately!
The Scroll of Jeremiah
The Last Faithful Man
Songs of Bad Men and Good
Author Archives: Joel
Yay! Since Tam has evolved past the point of wishing to converse with hoi polloi, I’ll just comment here. Thanks to the infographic located here, I have learned that the Gulch is located smack in the heart of one of … Continue reading
I’ve got a big yellow paperweight sitting in my driveway at the moment, and the large portion of my subconscious that still thinks normal discourse involves bullying and being bullied has a field day with me every time I look … Continue reading
There really is one sense in which we’re living in an L. Neil Smith utopia. I was all by myself, having hiked to J&H’s to find them not home because they went to town to buy hay. No problem, I … Continue reading
Via Robb Allen, this offering right here. If this doesn’t ruin your morning, you’re untouchable. I Was Mugged, And I Understand Why Last weekend, my housemate and I were mugged at gunpoint while walking home from Dupont Circle. The entire … Continue reading
Know what happens when you get a little jolly in the evening before you finish all your chores? You don’t finish all your chores.And then you get to deal with the giant block of ice where your chicken waterer used … Continue reading
Everything was fine until 9:30 when I loaded up the boys and the Jeep wouldn’t start – at all. Cranks fine, won’t hit. I used to tell students that’s the easiest condition to diagnose, but that was on cast-iron pushrod … Continue reading
12-Year-Old Boy Shot by Cleveland Police has Died. I had quite a rant going on this, but weariness caused me to remember I’ve said it all before. So just go read that if you want, and we’ll pretend I spent … Continue reading
Hope you guys are staying warm wherever you are. I am. Sticking to my resolution to stop letting warm fires freak me out, the cabin temperature is up 15 degrees and climbing fast as of this paragraph, from the low … Continue reading
It’s one of those awful cold windy days where the only shelter is indoors but the wind is swirling around so much that the stovepipe can’t make up its mind if air should be going up or down. Fire don’t … Continue reading
Regular commenter MJR sent me a couple of presents yesterday. I never really considered whether TUAK needs a logo, but do appreciate the thought.
Once upon a time, my neighbor H moved up here intending to raise horses. Among the things she arranged for that make her yard different from yours and mine, she put in a lovely rustic-as-hell hitching post made of rough … Continue reading
“It’s a sign of how dull my life has become,” I said to J, “That breaking in this new shit fork may be the high point of my day.” Actually it’s a typical busy Friday: Right now I’m waiting for … Continue reading
Seems there was another coyote attack in NH a few days ago, and this time the dog stood and delivered. The woman involved in the Monday morning attack didn’t want to be identified. Her 4-year-old dog, Mac, has too many … Continue reading
So said L as we strapped a big horse-feeding tub on top of a pickup-load of plywood, roofing, wood pellets and long tools. I said, “Well, we sort of are.” I saw the greatest thing this morning, just as the … Continue reading
I have to leave early for hardware and glaucoma meds, and may not be back for quite a while. Given the topic of yesterday’s last post, I didn’t want anybody getting the idea I was now residing in the colons … Continue reading
That was very unusual. I just got a personal visit from D&L, who said they couldn’t raise me on my phone, wanting to know if Little Bear was all right. Seems they got a call from another neighbor who lives … Continue reading
Okay, so the gunblogoverse is getting its jollies LOLing on the new, weird Taurus Curve.And while I hereby cheerfully join the chorus of people saying they’d have no use for this gun – ever, under any circumstances – I don’t … Continue reading
I have said before that I have an older brother who is to me, in terms of intelligence, as Stephen Hawking is to Little Bear. We don’t correspond much because he had the misfortune of being born the only social … Continue reading
One thing I’ve noticed about the coverage of that European comet probe? Somebody always has to mention that the comet is moving at the time of the rendezvous. I suppose the writer thinks the scientists did it that way for … Continue reading