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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 abandoned the city and most of my stuff, 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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Author Archives: Joel
Not much more than an inch of snow fell early this morning, and it stopped around eight – exactly like the weather report predicted. The same report that predicts it’ll start back up soon and basically snow all day. No … Continue reading
I know for a fact that there was no snow on the ground at 4 ayem, because Torso Boy and I went out for a pee at that time. Then when I crawled out of bed for serious an hour … Continue reading
I don’t celebrate Christmas or any holiday especially, and as far as I know neither does Torso Boy. But it was a cloudy, blustery day perfect for sitting inside where it’s warm, and I decided that holiday or no, it … Continue reading
Only those who have actually raised a baby will completely – and I do mean completely – sympathize with the conclusion. There’s a shorter version but it misses the funny part at the end. I’m also a fan of Samuel … Continue reading
TB and I are cocooning in the Lair and nothing much is going on, so in lieu of political filler things are currently a little quiet on the TUAK page. But just so you know I’m prepared to be inconsistent … Continue reading
I never used to pay the slightest attention to it – in fact for much of my adult life I couldn’t even have defined it with assurance, it was that insignificant. But off-grid, with improvised, scrounged, inadequate homemade housing and … Continue reading
I don’t care what the calendar says, Winter Is Here. Which means one of the first essential daily chores of the Compleat Desert Hermit is to get liquid water to his chickens. And from now until sometime in late February … Continue reading
I genuinely sympathize.
Joel to the Past: I’m sorry I laughed at Murduck and said it was the most idiotic product ever packaged and sold in the western world. Okay – Murduck may have been the most annoying product in history, but he … Continue reading
37o in the main cabin when I rolled out around 5:30, and it’s struggling to get above 60. Yesterday temp stayed below freezing all day and the sky was clear so you knew it would get good and cold overnight. … Continue reading
I haven’t seen Landlady in five weeks, and some of this stuff has sat at her house for longer than that. So apologies if you’d given up ever hearing what became of your kind care package. About five weeks ago, … Continue reading
I filled that hole yesterday afternoon after spending an hour in the wash collecting stones for LB’s grave. Filled it with rocks and then smoothed it out with the displaced sand. Went past Boot Hill first thing this morning to … Continue reading
Somehow not entirely unfitting under the circumstances. Several of the graves on Boot Hill have decorative rocks that may serve some accidental protective function. I never got around to doing that with LB’s grave, and this morning I found reason … Continue reading
I went out for a nice long walky this morning – the weather was perfect for it, no wind or rain, temp just cold enough to freeze the mud. No direct sun which isn’t so great for the batteries but … Continue reading
I shouldn’t complain. I keep inheriting the care of dogs who were raised by women, and who prefer the company of women even if they accept living with me from day to day. TB, of course, spent his whole life … Continue reading
“I do not think it means what you think it means.” Or maybe I’m just behind the times. That’s not uncommon. I happened to be reviewing the game camera mem card just now. Nothing on it but some rodents hanging … Continue reading
Rain. Rain since sometime around eleven last night. This is the desert. It’s an arid environment. And I really hate mud*. It hasn’t been cold enough to waste wood and make a big mess running the woodstove. But I’m gonna … Continue reading