Commentary

Dana Rohrabacher for Secretary of State?

December 5, 2016
posted by

Justin Raimondo Antiwar.com
by Justin Raimondo  

"From a noninterventionist perspective, Rohrabacher is the best choice of those reportedly in the running, with this caveat: 'realism' is not the same as non-interventionism. It depends on the context. In the present context -- escalating tensions with Russia, deepening US involvement in Iraq and Syria, and the hegemonic pretensions of our political class -- they are our allies. However, they are what I would call 'Asialationists,' i.e. they, like Mearsheimer, see China as a rising threat, and their proposed 'pivot' to Asia -- which was announced but never really implemented by the Obama administration -- spells possible trouble ahead." (12/05/16)

http://original.antiwar.com/justin/2016/12/04/dana-rohrabacher-secretary-state/  

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Free Talk Live, 12/04/16

December 5, 2016
posted by

Free Talk Live Free Talk Live
by  

"India Mandates National Anthem :: Free Ross-a-Thon :: Rerouting Pipeline :: Flag Burning :: Military :: Killer Cops :: Alcohol-Detecting Patch :: Economics in One Lesson :: Government Loans :: Poor Risks and Usury." [Flash audio or MP3] (12/04/16)

https://soundcloud.com/freetalklive/free-talk-live-2016-12-04  

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Economic ideas: David Hume on self-coordinating and correcting market processes

December 5, 2016
posted by

Richard M. Ebeling Future of Freedom Foundation
by Richard M Ebeling  

"David Hume emphasized that commerce and trade were among the most important avenues to offer opportunities to raise people's standards of living, and to bring refinement and cultural betterment to a growing portion of a nation’s population. Commerce also served as an important leveler of the material inequality of a society based on political privilege and government-bestowed monopoly. Through trade, a wider variety and quality of goods became available to a growing number of the people in any society, fostering the development of a 'middle class.'" (12/05/16)

http://www.fff.org/explore-freedom/article/david-hume-self-coordinating-correcting-market-processes/  

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Biofuels: US misses goal (again), and EU destroys forests

December 5, 2016
posted by

H Sterling Burnett Heartland Institute
by H Sterling Burnett  

"In testimony before the Senate Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs and Federal Management on December 1, federal government officials admitted, once again, what free market critics like myself have long argued concerning the mandatory biofuels program -- it can't meet the goals set established in the law, and the more the government tries to force the issue, the worse it is for consumers." (12/04/16)

http://blog.heartland.org/2016/12/biofuels-u-s-misses-goals-eu-destroys-forests/  

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Free Ross-A-Thon

December 5, 2016
posted by

Free Ross Ulbricht
by  

Recorded video from the live-stream event to raise money for American political prisoner Ross Ulbricht's appeal of his life sentence for (allegedly) operating a web site. Numerous speakers. Watch, listen, donate! [Flash video] (12/04/16)

https://freeross.org/freerossathon/  

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The radical’s obligation

December 5, 2016
posted by

L. Neil Smith The Libertarian Enterprise
by L Neil Smith  

"I had a 'discussion' earlier this week, online, with an individual attempting to excuse the many and grievous shortcomings of Libertarian Party Presidential candidates over the years. I had remarked that it was a damned shame that the LP has always been unable -- or unwilling -- to nominate a candidate who is actually a libertarian. ... We can't get any votes, they whimper, if we scare voters away. And of course the whole object of having a political party in the first place is to win elections and put our own people in command -- and our own hogs at the public trough. Actually, the Libertarian Party was founded by individualists -- I was there at the time; I personally knew most of them and counted them among my friends -- whose objective, simply, was to advance the cause of liberty. This did not necessarily involve getting anybody elected; it simply required vigorous and truthful campaigns that would put constant and consistent pressure on the other parties and map a way out of the morass of over-government." (12/04/16)

http://ncc-1776.org/tle2016/tle901-20161204-02.html  

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“Qualified immunity”: What cops and slave overseers have in common

December 5, 2016
posted by

William Norman Grigg Pro Libertate
by William Norman Grigg  

"Michael Slager, the former North Charleston, South Carolina police officer killed an unarmed man and then attempted to frame the victim, will not be convicted of murder. Nor is he likely to be convicted of the lesser charge of manslaughter. Slager's jury deadlocked because a single member of the panel insisted that he could not 'in good conscience' vote to convict Slager of criminal homicide. This is not because the facts of the case are in dispute. Slager was captured on video fatally shooting unarmed, 50-year-old Walter Scott in the back as he fled a traffic stop, and then placing a Taser next to his fatally traumatized body. The critical issue for that juror, apparently, was whether Slager's state of mind as he committed these acts transmuted them from criminal homicide and obstruction of justice into an exercise of state-conferred authority protected by 'qualified immunity.'" (12/04/16)

http://freedominourtime.blogspot.com/2016/12/qualified-immunity-what-cops-and-slave.html  

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What does it mean to be “mainstream?”

December 5, 2016
posted by

Gary M. Galles Ludwig von Mises Institute
by Gary Galles  

"Antonin Scalia's death reignited a long-running battle over the Supreme Court. Trump's victory escalated it. Now unexpectedly on defense, Democrats are demanding any Trump nominee be what they consider 'mainstream.' Incoming Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer has long led the mainstream mendacity. In 2007, he said any Bush nominee 'must prove ... they are in the mainstream rather than we have to prove that they are not.' Subsequent Democratic nominees, however, were simply defined as mainstream. Now he has switched course again, preemptively asserting any Trump nominee who fails to get Schumer's imprimatur as mainstream could even merit consideration." (12/02/16)

https://mises.org/blog/what-does-it-mean-be-mainstream  

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Libertarians and everyone else blamed for Hillary’s loss

December 5, 2016
posted by

Garry Reed HubPages
by Garry Reed  

"Here it is December and political Lefties still can't seem to purge themselves of the upset Trump victory over their Anointed Angel of Liberalism (or Prophet of Progressivism depending on who one listens to), that being Hillary Rodham Clinton. The angst-riddled Millennial Crybaby classes were so distraught that the object of their Girl Crush lost the 2016 Presidential election to the lowly likes of Donald Trump that they took to the streets in angry mobs in cities across the country waving signs of 'Not My President' and 'We Shall Overcomb' along with 'no swastika' drawings." (12/02/16)

http://hubpages.com/politics/Libertarians-and-Everyone-Else-Blamed-for-Hillarys-Loss  

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The Romney gambit

December 5, 2016
posted by

The American Prospect The American Prospect
by Gabrielle Gurley  

"There are denizens of Planet Media who have worked themselves into a state of high dudgeon over the prospect of Mitt Romney serving as secretary of state in the Trump administration. In these tellings, Romney is either a sellout, a hypocrite, or a suck-up. (Or a flip flopper or a shapeshifter, to use terms in vogue during his two failed presidential bids.) The underlying sentiment seems to be: Why would Romney want to work for a man he repeatedly denigrated during a toxic election, who was more than happy to match him insult for insult, and who may be setting him up for a major fall? But being shocked, shocked that Romney wants to set aside his reservations about Trump to serve in his administration ignores the arc of Romney’s career. There is nothing surprising about the former Massachusetts governor’s decision to pursue the State Department post." (12/02/16)

http://prospect.org/article/romney-gambit  

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Obama’s legacy: Murder.gov

December 5, 2016
posted by

A Trevor Thrall Cato Institute
by A Trevor Thrall  

"In the waning days of his second term, a president's thoughts turn to his legacy. His focus the last few weeks and months often tells us a great deal about how he wants to be remembered by the American people. It is, therefore, surprising and disappointing to see that President Obama is busy institutionalizing the targeted killing apparatus constructed piece by piece after the 9/11 attacks. Obama's last-minute efforts to ensure that the costly and counterproductive war on terror continues will certainly help cement his legacy -- as the president who authorized hundreds of secret drone strikes that killed thousands of people, many of them civilians. But they also serve as a terrible reminder of just how far off course American national security policy has gotten." (12/02/16)

https://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/obamas-legacy-murdergov  

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spiked podcast, 12/03/16

December 5, 2016
posted by

spiked spiked
by  

"In this week's spiked podcast, Bruno Waterfield discusses the legal challenges to Brexit, Naomi Firsht talks about the upcoming French elections, and Tom Slater explains why spiked is still defending democracy." [Flash audio or MP3] (12/03/16)

http://www.spiked-online.com/newsite/article/the-fight-for-brexit-goes-on/  

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What the change to Rule 41 means for you

December 5, 2016
posted by

Darryl W Perry Free Press Publications
by Darryl W Perry  

"Despite a last-minute effort to halt the change, federal investigators received expansive powers on December 1. Reuters reports .... 'The government will have 'unprecedented authority to hack into Americans' personal phones, computers and other devices.'' Fortune reports, 'The expanded search power ... is intended to make it easier for the FBI to carry out complex computer investigations.' Prior to the modification, federal judges were only allowed to issue warrants that covered that judicial district, meaning a judge in the Northern District of California could not issue a warrant for the FBI to search the computer of someone outside of that 14 county district." [text, Flash audio or MP3] (12/04/16)

http://fpp.cc/what-the-change-to-rule-41-means-for-you/  

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True or false, Trump’s tweets beat the media at its own game

December 5, 2016
posted by

Reuters Reuters
by Peter Van Buren  

"President-elect Donald Trump discovered the Holy Grail of media relations: the ability with a 140-character tweet to ignore the Fourth Estate. This is brass-knuckled political power that at a minimum pushes the press another circulation drop closer to irrelevancy. The latest example is directed against a journalist who reported Trump’s tweet that he lost the popular vote because of extensive fraud. CNN’s Jeff Zeleny called Trump a 'sore winner,' adding the president-elect had 'zero evidence' to back up his fraud claim. Trump responded with a series of tweets and retweets condemning Zeleny, all echoing around the web for days. ... This is no joke, except maybe on the journalists whose credibility is already a laughing matter." (12/03/16)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-trump-twitter-commentary-idUSKBN13R1C2  

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The Jason Stapleton Program, 12/01/16

December 5, 2016
posted by

The Jason Stapleton Program The Jason Stapleton Program
by  

"Rent control is another creation of those government 'wizards of smart' whose plans always seem to end up hurting the very people they are designed to help. More on that in today episode. Also, SHOCKING NEWS! Republicans plan to delay the Obamacare repeal for up to 3 years. I know, you're floored, right? It turns out the Republicans are going to use this policial gem as leverage for as long as they can. If you were under any false notion that government is looking out for you this episode will cure you of your delusions." [various formats] (12/01/16)

http://www.jasonstapleton.com/why-rent-control-sucks/  

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The Cuban embargo destroy Americans’ freedom

December 5, 2016
posted by

Jacob G Hornberger Future of Freedom Foundation
by Jacob G Hornberger  

"Amidst increasing speculation that President-elect Trump is going to reverse the Obama administration's attempts to normalize relations with Cuba, this would be a good time for Americans to start pushing back against any further destruction of their rights and liberties at the hands of their own government. A good place to start pushing back is by standing firm in favor of a lifting of the decades-long failed, deadly, and destructive U.S. economic embargo against Cuba." (12/02/16)

http://www.fff.org/2016/12/02/cuban-embargo-destroyed-americans-freedom/  

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No, Trump’s deal with Carrier is not a win for liberty

December 5, 2016
posted by

Students For Liberty Students For Liberty
by Omar Benmegdoul  

"Free enterprise generates wealth through firms competing with each other for customers' dollars. Those who serve them best make a profit, and losses induce the others to reallocate their resources to other ventures. When currying favour with politicians is a more effective means of staying afloat than is efficient production of what people demand, firms will use their ingenuity and resources to lobby for preferential treatment, instead of serving customers. Their efforts are allocated to redistributing wealth instead of creating it through gains from trade, entrepreneurship, and innovation. The end result is consumers receive the poor service which we generally associate with firms sheltered from competition." (12/04/16)

http://studentsforliberty.org/blog/2016/12/04/no-trumps-deal-carrier-not-win-liberty/  

1 Comment »

Crony baloney

December 5, 2016
posted by

Timothy J. Taylor Authority!
by Timothy J Taylor  

"Ever since Donald Trump declared his intention to run for president 18 months ago he's been promising to do all he can to dissuade American corporations from moving their manufacturing operations and jobs to Mexico and other countries to the detriment of the American economy. He put American companies on notice then that they would not be free to relocate their companies outside of the U.S. 'without consequences.' In all that time, few if any have complained that his plans would amount to crony capitalism until now with that perennial babbling idiot, Sarah Palin, suddenly wagging an accusing finger at Trump after he started to make good on his promises two months before taking office. As usual, Palin doesn't know what she's talking about." (12/04/16)

http://authoritycon.blogspot.com/2016/12/crony-baloney.html  

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Crony Carrier

December 4, 2016
posted by

Paul Jacob Common Sense
by Paul Jacob  

"Sure, I've complained about the over-the-top anti-Trump bias of much of the mainstream media (which may actually have improved Trump's public standing). But, today, I enthusiastically celebrate that supercilious slant. Why? Because it means much of the media amazingly finds itself on the right side, panning the recent deal to save 1,000 jobs at the Carrier Corporation. Saving jobs is good per se. We want jobs to stay here in America. But, at what price?" (12/02/16)

http://thisiscommonsense.com/2016/12/02/crony-carrier/  

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There is no deficit of erroneous thinking about trade

December 4, 2016
posted by

Don Boudreaux Cafe Hayek
by Don Boudreaux  

"Edward Conard writes that 'Trade deficits occur when countries such as Germany lend the U.S. economy the proceeds from the sale of goods to Americans, rather than using them to buy goods made by American workers. To prevent trade deficits from reducing the wages and employment of lower-skilled workers ... Americans must borrow and spend these savings. But today, savings sit unused despite near-zero interest rates, putting downward pressure on wages as they accumulate' ('A Trade Policy That Wouldn't Leave Low-Wage Workers Behind,' December 5th). Mr. Conard errs. Contrary to his claim -- and to popular myth -- trade deficits (more accurately, current-account deficits) are not exclusively, or even chiefly, debt. Trade deficits occur when countries (actually, foreign people) do any form of investing in the U.S. economy." (12/02/16)

http://cafehayek.com/2016/12/41769.html  

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The LAVA Spurt, episode 24

December 4, 2016
posted by

The LAVA Flow Podcast The LAVA Flow Podcast
by  

"Since 2008, elephants have been slaughtered in record numbers, even after the ivory trade was made largely illegal in 1989. Can this trend be reversed? Thank you for joining me on the twenty-fourth episode of The LAVA Spurt, The Regulate Elephants Like Cows Edition." [various formats] (12/03/16)

http://thelavaflow.com/regulate-elephants-like-cows-edition-tls/  

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Introduction to public choice

December 4, 2016
posted by

Randall Holcombe Independent Institute
by Randall Holcombe  

"Public choice uses economic methods to analyze political decision-making. Too often, both 'policy experts' and the general public perceive problems and conclude that the government should do something about them, without evaluating whether government intervention could actually make things better. Public choice examines how the political process actually works rather than relying on a hope that if things aren’t ideal, somehow government can improve them." (12/02/16)

http://blog.independent.org/2016/12/02/introduction-to-public-choice/  

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Thank you, Donald Trump

December 4, 2016
posted by

Sheldon Richman The Libertarian Institute
by Sheldon Richman  

"We advocates of liberty owe Donald Trump a great debt of gratitude. Thanks to Trump it is clearer than ever that most people who call themselves conservatives, and not just those who have lined up with Trump, are no cousins of ours. (There are honorable exceptions, but alas far too few.) Freedom is not on their list of priorities. Neither (of course) is free enterprise. Nor civil liberties. And I need not mention war, peace, and empire. (Trump is no dove or anti-imperialist.) What apparently matters most is National Greatness, that is, rank nationalism -- even among many conservatives who don’t like Trump and who opposed his candidacy." (12/01/16)

https://www.libertarianinstitute.org/libertarianism/tgif-thank-donald-trump/  

1 Comment »

The Carrier deal

December 4, 2016
posted by

USA Today USA Today
by staff  

"You’ve got to hand it to Donald Trump. He said he’d save American manufacturing jobs at a Carrier factory in Indiana, and he has delivered on that campaign promise even before he takes office. The air conditioner maker now says that it will retain 1,000 jobs that had been slated to move to Mexico. That's terrific pre-Christmas news for workers at the Carrier plant, and the president-elect traveled to Indianapolis on Thursday to announce the deal and warn that other companies would not leave U.S. shores 'without consequences.' Amid the powerful symbolism and celebratory atmosphere, however, it's important to put the deal in context." [editor's note: Bottom line is, Carrier was smart to grab the deal and cut its taxes; Trump was wrong to offer it, since it was blatant crony-corporate welfare - SAT] (12/03/16)

http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2016/12/01/carrier-deal-manufuacturing-donald-trump-mike-pence-editorials-and-debates/94750708  

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Property means preservation

December 4, 2016
posted by

Mises Canada
by Doug French  

"To the minds of most environmentalists, the ham-hand of government is needed to protect wildlife. Private property be damned -- the government must step in, otherwise every species on the planet will be hunted into oblivion, or human development will gobble up all remaining wildlife habitat, leading to the complete extinction of all species. However, on the African plain it's just the opposite. From the van leaving Hoedspruit airport to the Thornybush Game Preserve, we saw nothing but mile after mile of African savannah, enclosed in electrified fencing (and at one point an ape bounding across the road). Although government-owned Kruger National Park is nearby, the area is dominated by private game reserves, with ecotourism being the primary driver of the local economy. If not for these private game reserves, a number of species would be extinct." (12/02/16)

https://www.mises.ca/property-means-preservation/  

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