Commentary

Free Talk Live, 09/28/16

September 29, 2016
posted by

Free Talk Live Free Talk Live
by  

"Obama Veto Overrided First Time Ever :: Jay Noone Planning Move to Shire :: Shire Society :: Malheur Occupation Trial Fiasco :: Mudslides :: Trump and Clinton :: Balanced Rebellion :: Commission to Study Cryptocurrency :: Trumpeters :: Mark Seasteading :: More Threats from James." [Flash audio or MP3] (09/28/16)

https://soundcloud.com/freetalklive/free-talk-live-2016-09-28  

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The LAVA Spurt, episode 15

September 29, 2016
posted by

The LAVA Flow Podcast The LAVA Flow Podcast
by  

"I get asked all the time what libertarian podcasts I listen to, so I thought I'd share. Do you listen to these? Thank you for joining me on the fifteenth episode of The LAVA Spurt, The Libertarian Podcasts I Listen To Edition." [various formats] (09/28/16)

http://thelavaflow.com/1780-2/  

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Freedom Feens Radio, 09/29/16

September 29, 2016
posted by

Freedom Feens Freedom Feens Radio
by  

"Lou Feen chats with Shane from Liberty Under Attack. They discuss the college experience, Shane's Adventures In Illinois Higher Education Series, the Freedom Umbrella of Direct Action, and networking through meetups and liberty festivals." [various formats] (09/29/16)

http://freedomfeens.com/?p=12767  

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Questions for the presidential debates

September 29, 2016
posted by

Jacob G Hornberger Future of Freedom Foundation
by Jacob G Hornberger  

"The federal government was converted into a national-security state after World War II because U.S. officials said that it was necessary to fight the Cold War. The Cold War ended 25 years ago. Why shouldn't we dismantle this Cold War apparatus today, especially given all the dark-side activity in which it engages, including state-sponsored assassinations, coups, invasions, occupations, torture, support of foreign dictatorships, Guantanamo, and secret surveillance?" (09/29/16)

http://www.fff.org/2016/09/29/questions-presidential-debates/  

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The stinky Japanese bond

September 29, 2016
posted by

Mark Thornton Ludwig von Mises Institute
by Mark Thornton  

"Central banks have been engaging in nontraditional, radical, and unprecedented policies in recent years. Policies such as zero interest rates, quantitative easing, a war on cash, and even negative interest rates on bank deposits are now the norm. There has even been talk of helicopter money. This is not money falling out of the sky for you and me. It means central banks simply print money and give it to the government. The latest installment of monetary insanity comes from Japan where the new monetary policy will target the 10-year Japanese government bond at 0% interest rate." (09/29/16)

https://mises.org/blog/stinky-japanese-bond  

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The presidential candidates and civil discourse

September 29, 2016
posted by

Bleeding Heart Libertarians Bleeding Heart Libertarians
by Andrew Cohen  

"Rightly or wrongly, each of the last several presidents has been called 'the most divisive' in history. The divisiveness might not be as bad if the nation had been willing to engage in honest conversation about important issues facing us. Instead, we get candidates who spout scripted lines, ignoring what their opponents say. There is none of the give and take that is the essence of genuine conversation. Unfortunately, this is now true of the majority of political discourse -- not just the debates. Supporters of Hillary Clinton are simply astonished by the behavior of people at Donald Trump’s rallies. Supporters of Donald Trump can't believe how out of touch Clinton's supporters are. And neither group really listens to the other. Neither of these candidates has the ability to end this cycle of failed communication. The two party machinery won't let them. Fortunately, there is a better option available." (09/28/16)

http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2016/09/presidential-candidates-civil-discourse/  

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US military aid: Thai-ed to torture

September 29, 2016
posted by

Thomas L Knapp -- photo by Avens O'Brien William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism
by Thomas L Knapp  

"Amnesty International's mission is 'to conduct research and generate action to prevent and end grave abuses of human rights, and to demand justice for those whose rights have been violated.' Unsurprisingly, the organization's latest report collects 'first-hand testimony of survivors, court documents, medical records and various other forms of evidence relating to 74 cases of torture' in Thailand and urges that country's legislature and military government to follow through on their claimed commitments to bring an end to the practice. After Amnesty staff flew into Bangkok for the report's official release, the regime threatened them with arrest for 'visa violations' if the ceremony took place. Apparently the junta, which has ruled the country since a 2014 coup, is unfamiliar with the 'Streisand Effect.'" (09/28/16)

http://thegarrisoncenter.org/archives/7806  

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Why even racists need the freedom to speak

September 29, 2016
posted by

Foundation for Economic Education Foundation for Economic Education
by TJ Brown  

"Racists are here; they're in our lives on a day to day basis. Many say that racism is a driving force of politics today, and increasingly influential in social media, commerce, and government. But so long as we prevent them from being able to express (not execute, but express) their ideological conclusions and explanations for holding them, we're doing ourselves a disservice. Free speech is essential to freedom itself." (09/28/16)

https://fee.org/articles/why-even-racists-need-the-freedom-to-speak/  

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Interview: Catherine Bleish

September 29, 2016
posted by

Peaceful Anarchism Peaceful Anarchism
by  

"Please enjoy my recent conversation with Catherine Bleish, co-founder of Brave New Books. Herein we discussed her path to Voluntaryism, Ron Paul, my journey to Voluntaryism and Peaceful Parenting, Voluntaryism is true humility, Bitcoin, Airbitz, money is a tool, Federal Reserve researching Bitcoin, local currency, raising undocumented children, Sovereign Living, Peaceful Parenting, reasoning with your kids, what is socialization, Unschooling, A Rule Is To Break: A Child's Guide to Anarchy, Radical Unschooling, Dayna Martin, gently guiding and teaching good food choices, don't always say no, Rethinking Everything, Bitcoin Bus, decentralized lifestyle, tiny home tank, changing the world through the abundance mindset, cleansing toxic elements, living without fear, having a stateless marriage and more!" [MP3] (09/28/16)

http://peacefulanarchism.com/catherine-bleish-peaceful-parent-unschooler-and-co-owner-of-brave-new-books/  

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Can they really say that in a movie?

September 29, 2016
posted by

Strike The Root
by Douglas Herman  

"Every audacious screenwriter wants to write memorable prose, memorable dialogue and memorable scenes for a movie. But can we really say things in our movies that might not go over too well with the film festival programmers, with film critics, with potential distributors, and with theater owners and especially with a paying audience? Bravura filmmaking requires bravura writing. Powerful performances require powerful dialogue. Some things you might want to say in your script may stir up people against you. So be it. If what you wrote came from your heart, your internal beliefs and your inspiration, then say them. After all, you're just continuing a long tradition and history of cutting edge moviemaking and time will be the judge. Not Rotten Tomatoes." (09/28/16)

http://www.strike-the-root.com/can-they-really-say-that-in-movie  

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What would de Tocqueville have made of [this] election?

September 29, 2016
posted by

The Nation The Nation
by Arthur Goldhammer  

"In 1831, the young French aristocrat Alexis de Tocqueville and his friend Gustave de Beaumont, both lawyers in their early 20s bored by their desk jobs at a courthouse in Versailles, traveled to the United States. They ostensibly came to study American prisons, but more importantly to see for themselves the great American experiment with democracy, which both intrigued and terrified them. After nine months in Jacksonian America, which saw the pair ranging from the drawing rooms of New York and Boston to the frontier outpost of Saginaw in the Michigan Territory, and from the pestilential swamps of Frenchified New Orleans to the still largely barren national capital on the banks of the Potomac, they returned home: Tocqueville to write a book that would become a classic, Democracy in America; Beaumont to publish his novel Marie, or Slavery in the United States." [editor's note: There is unintended humor here (comparing Trump to ... Davy Crockett?) but it's overall a very good analysis and review of an ancient work we all should read - SAT] (09/28/16)

https://www.thenation.com/article/what-would-have-alexis-de-tocqueville-have-made-of-the-2016-us-presidential-election  

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Why Trump and Clinton have gotten on top

September 29, 2016
posted by

Jacob G Hornberger Future of Freedom Foundation
by Jacob G Hornberger  

"What people who lament that we’ve ended up with Trump and Clinton just don't get is that Clinton and Trump are the logical outcome of the welfare-warfare state system that modern-day Americans have chosen to embrace, a system that encompasses the wielding and exercise of totalitarian powers. This is reflected by people's continued steadfast allegiance to the welfare-warfare state apparatus and their unwavering hope that it will someday produce good presidential candidates. It isn't going to happen. It's a pipedream." (09/28/16)

http://www.fff.org/2016/09/28/trump-clinton-gotten-top/  

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But … but you HAVE to vote for SOMEONE!!!

September 29, 2016
posted by

MamaLiberty The Price of Liberty
by MamaLiberty  

"A dear friend sent me a raft of article links today, all begging, screaming or whining about how people 'must' vote for someone, anyone ... but especially FOR Clinton! I had avoided talking with her about this over the years because I knew she was a dedicated liberal and I believed there was no point to the discussion. We had other, very important things in common. But this was the last straw, so to speak. I've read many such things over the years, and continue to do so. None of it will ever change my mind. It is a matter of principle, the foundation of integrity and non-aggression I live by. Everything is measured by that, and non-voluntary government in general -- electoral politics in particular -- is not supported in any way as desirable, moral or even practical." (09/27/16)

http://www.thepriceofliberty.org/?p=9787  

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On national security, Trump & Clinton found plenty to agree on, and it’s all terrifying

September 29, 2016
posted by

In These Times In These Times
by Branko Marcetic  

"Much has been made about the differencees between the two candidates during last night’s debate: Donald Trump’s wild-eyed raving vs. Hillary Clinton’s calm poise; his waffling vs. her firm command of facts and figures. When it came to the issue of national security, however, the candidates often seemed to be reading from the same playbook. Their convergence signals a bipartisan consensus on certain national security measures that is likely to carry on well past the election and into the president’s first term. Both Trump and Clinton voiced the belief that the United States needs to be best in the world at cyber warfare. Clinton vowed to 'make it very clear ... the United States has much greater capacity' to wage such attacks itself. Trump agreed. 'As far as the cyber,' he said, 'we should be better than anybody else.' Such rhetoric suggests both candidates are happy to commit the United States to escalating a global cyber arms race that would likely have dangerous consequences." [editor's note: Solid critique of the mess this is from both war party wings, reminding us that some "progressives" really do get this (likely to amuse John McAfee) - SAT] (09/27/16)

http://inthesetimes.com/article/19505/on-national-security-trump-and-clinton-found-plenty-to-agree-on  

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Think government surveillance is no big deal? Talk to these victims of police stalking.

September 29, 2016
posted by

Scott Shackford Reason
by Scott Shackford  

"Every so often we hear or read news reports about a municipal government official -- a police officer, a DMV clerk, et cetera -- using access to databases of citizen information for unauthorized and often very illegal purposes. We've seen them use personal information to stalk ex-lovers, track down potential romantic interests, and even to facilitate identity theft. In this age where both the federal government and municipal law enforcement agencies are deliberately attempting to collect more and more data about us, the Associated Press attempted to investigate how frequently government officials misuse their access to citizen information. The results of their investigation were published today." (09/28/16)

http://reason.com/blog/2016/09/28/think-government-surveillance-is-no-big  

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Moral hypocrisy

September 29, 2016
posted by

A Geek With Guns
by Christopher Burg  

"[T]he United States Department of Labor (DoL) is filed a lawsuit against Palantir because the organization appears to be discriminating against Asians. The funniest part is the threat the DoL is making .... An organization that literally uses slave labor is threatening to cancel its contracts with an organization that may be discriminating against Asians in its hiring practices. How much more hypocritical can an organization get?" (09/28/16)

https://blog.christopherburg.com/2016/09/28/moral-hypocrisy/  

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Young voters love Gary Johnson, for all the wrong reasons

September 29, 2016
posted by

The American Prospect The American Prospect
by Harold Meyerson  

"Hillary Clinton’s in trouble with the young. It’s not that they’re flocking to Donald Trump, who trails her in every poll of millennial voters. Instead, she’s losing their allegiance to Libertarian Party nominee Gary Johnson. The oddity (and potentially, the tragedy) of all this is that many young Americans’ defining beliefs are dismissed or opposed by libertarians generally and Johnson in particular. But then, Johnson’s appeal is less a testament to the popularity or credibility of his program than to the fact that he’s become the none-of-the-above option for disgruntled citizens. It may be that Clinton’s and Trump’s performances in their first debate moved some young voters into Clinton’s column." [editor's note: Read this for angry letters, fact correction, oppo research or just amusement; meanwhile, the writer's analysis works, unless his assumptions about who the Millennials actually are is completely wrong! - SAT] (09/28/16)

http://prospect.org/article/young-voters-love-gary-johnson-all-wrong-reasons  

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Stop Trump! Stop Clinton! Stop the madness (and let me get off)!

September 29, 2016
posted by

CounterPunch CounterPunch
by Eric Draitser  

"Were it only the fact that a corporate imperialist sociopath and a raving pseudo-fascist gasbag are competing to become the Murderer-in-Chief, one could simply retreat to the friendly confines of the Hobson's Choice Inn. There, among the carpets and curtains carrying the stains of elections past, one would watch the political circus in peace while doing the work of organizing against both Tweedle Bum and Tweedle Bummer. But this time, there's something even more sinister afoot, something far worse than mere cardboard cutouts in formal dress. No, this time it's the pompous arrogance and vacuous prattling of 'leftists,' 'anti-imperialists,' and other assorted mental contortionists doing their damnedest to browbeat everyone within earshot (eyeshot?) that THIS TIME it's important! 'How can you sit aside so smug and allow the fascist Trump to win? You're being irresponsible,' they chirp. 'How can you attack Trump and let the Warmongering Witch of the West become President? You know what she'll do,' they drone." (09/28/16)

http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/09/28/stop-trump-stop-clinton-stop-the-madness-and-let-me-get-off/  

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The Gawker shutdown is a victory for privacy rights

September 28, 2016
posted by

Students For Liberty Students For Liberty
by Christopher Wager  

"Online media company Gawker recently went out of business after losing an invasion-of-privacy lawsuit to wrester Hulk Hogan, financed by Peter Thiel. Reason Magazine's Jacob Sullum has argued this ruling hurts press freedom and decried the decision. I politely disagree. Gawker’s shutdown was actually a massive victory for privacy rights, especially when seen through the lens of the non-aggression principle." [editor's note: Interesting piece, but handicapped by the fact that there's no way to get from the non-aggression principle to fake "rights" such as "privacy" - TLK] (09/28/16)

http://studentsforliberty.org/blog/2016/09/28/gawker-shutdown-victory-privacy-rights/  

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Let the people roar: I think Trump won the night

September 28, 2016
posted by

Debra J. Saunders Town Hall
by Debra J. Saunders  

"We all have theories as to how Donald Trump got this far. Mine is that Trump has done well among white high school graduates because he acts the way people think they would act if they were billionaires. If Trump ever doubts himself, he never shows it. He calls people names because he knows he can get away with it. He acts as if having money takes away anguish -- that is, he acts quite differently than most rich people I know. If he didn't pay federal taxes, Trump told Hillary Clinton after she suggested he has not released his tax returns because he has something to hide, it's not a problem. Why? Because if he had paid whatever she thinks he owed, Trump riposted, Washington would have 'squandered' it." (09/28/16)

http://townhall.com/columnists/debrajsaunders/2016/09/28/let-the-people-roar-i-think-trump-won-the-night-n2224169  

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Big-government presidential candidates, look at Venezuela

September 28, 2016
posted by

Michael D. Tanner Cato Institute
by Michael D Tanner  

"Even as Americans lurch toward the conclusion of a monumentally unsatisfying election campaign, Yon Goicoechea is sitting in a Venezuelan prison for demanding the basic political rights that we take for granted. Goicoechea, who won the Cato Institute's Milton Friedman Prize for Advancing Liberty in 2008, for organizing student opposition to the Chavez regime, was seized by Venezuelan secret police a month ago and is being held on trumped-up terrorism charges at an undisclosed location. ... Beyond Goicoechea's plight, there are lessons for all of us in this. What makes our country so different from Maduro's Venezuela, or Putin's Russia, or other authoritarian regimes is our commitment to the rule of law, limited government, and checks and balances. That is why it is so deeply troubling when the major presidential candidates seek to weaken those protections." (09/28/16)

http://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/big-government-presidential-candidates-look-venezuela  

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Utopias denied: Arthur Koestler’s Darkness at Noon at 75

September 28, 2016
posted by

Acton Institute Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty
by Bruce Edward Walker  

"In the world of literature, perhaps only Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn did more to expose the lies and cruelty of 20th century totalitarianism. As a writer for Cyril Connolly's Horizon magazine in the early 1940s, Koestler also was one of the first European journalists to alert the continent to the genocide committed by the Nazis, which earned him brickbats from such esteemed British writers as Osbert Sitwell. Koestler's rejection of Communist principles likewise raised the public ire of such writers as George Orwell who, in short, thought the Hungarian was throwing out the proverbial socialist baby with Joe Stalin's bathwater." (09/28/16)

http://www.acton.org/pub/commentary/2016/09/28/utopias-denied-arthur-koestler%E2%80%99s-darkness-noon-75  

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It’s time for Europe to stop holding referendums

September 28, 2016
posted by

Reuters Reuters
by Paul Wallace  

"The European Union lexicon, already stuffed with ugly words and phrases, needs to coin a new one: 'plebiphobia.' Unlike some anxieties, the fear of referendums is well-grounded. Following Britain’s vote in June to leave the union, plebiscites this fall in Hungary on migration and in Italy on constitutional reform may further destabilize the EU. More fundamentally, plebiphobia rules out the very reforms needed to prevent more Brexit-like uprisings. The EU’s checkered relationship with referendums goes back a long time, restraining its otherwise seemingly relentless expansion." (09/28/16)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-europe-referendum-commentary-idUSKCN11Y22I  

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A federalist prescription

September 28, 2016
posted by

Paul Jacob Common Sense
by Paul Jacob  

"Gov. Jerry Brown just signed the 'right to try' law that the Goldwater Institute has been pushing. It allows diagnosed terminally ill patients with only a few months left to live to try 'experimental' medications. These are drugs that haven't passed through all the Food and Drug Administration's many hoops. The rationale for the law is that the FDA’s decade-long, costly process is ostensibly designed to prevent 'dangerous' drugs from being regularly prescribed and sold and used in the United States. To save lives, you see. But it is simply cruel to hold patients in the process of dying to the strict standards of the slow, bureaucratic federal bureaucracy. Cruel because purposeless." (09/28/16)

http://thisiscommonsense.com/2016/09/28/a-federalist-prescription/  

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The return of torture?

September 28, 2016
posted by

Kelley B Vlahos The American Conservative
by Kelley Beaucar Vlahos  

"[T]he stage is set as the country prepares to turn the White House over to a new commander in chief in January. Trump clearly thinks that current events bolster his tough talk on the campaign trail. 'I am the law-and-order candidate,' he insisted at one press event. He toggles easily between threats: ISIS terrorists, undocumented Hispanic criminals, lone gunmen picking off police in the streets. Trump will deal with them all with a swift blow of force. Strength, he has said numerous times, is the only language the enemy knows. And for ISIS, waterboarding is 'not nearly tough enough, okay?' If this is more than red meat for the base -- if Trump is serious about turning back time to the days after 9/11, when White House lawyers wrote the infamous 'torture memos' to help ensure government officials could not be charged with war crimes for the way they were interrogating detainees -- then he better prepare for some real bureaucratic resistance, Beltway-style." (09/28/16)

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/the-return-of-torture/  

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