Commentary

How the other half speaks

July 23, 2014
posted by

Liberty Unbound Liberty Unbound
by Stephen Cox  

"There’s an old expression: 'seeing how the other half lives.' It means looking at people who are different from you, ordinarily people who are richer, and enjoying the spectacle -- cynically, perhaps, or just with a sense of humor. One of the rewards of writing this column is seeing how the other half lives in its world of words." (07/22/14)

http://libertyunbound.com/node/1279  

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A parody of populism

July 23, 2014
posted by

CounterPunch CounterPunch
by Alexander Reid Ross  

"The Sagebrush Rebellion began in Moab, Utah, and created an upheaval in land management policy that is still felt today. Perhaps its most significant outcome can be seen just three hours away in PR Springs, yet hardly anybody knows the place even exists." (07/23/14)

http://www.counterpunch.org/2014/07/23/a-parody-of-populism/  

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Are we sliding into Idiocracy?

July 23, 2014
posted by

Adam Smith Institute Adam Smith Institute
by Ben Southwood  

"[Idiocracy is] a fairly enjoyable film on its own merits, but the interesting question is whether it says anything about the real world we live in. Arguably it does. Behavioural genetics tells us, as the film suggests, that intelligence is 50-90% driven by genes. And the extent to which intelligence is linked to genes increases through life (suggesting the impact of school & upbringing wears off quickly). This is true for any given socioeconomic class (unless they are exposed to lots of lead pollution or malnutrition or similar big negative environmental shocks). This is true across the world." (07/23/14)

http://www.adamsmith.org/blog/education/are-we-sliding-into-idiocracy/  

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Beyond left and right

July 23, 2014
posted by

Scott Sumner EconLog
by Scott Sumner  

"Is British public policy more left wing or right wing, compared to Scandinavian countries like Sweden and Denmark? The Heritage rankings suggest they are about the same, with Denmark coming in at number 10 in the world (at 76.1), Britain number 14 (at 74.9), and Sweden number 20 (at 73.1). And yet the two models differ in many respects." (07/23/14)

http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/2014/07/beyond_left_and.html  

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The economics of liberation theology

July 23, 2014
posted by

Acton Institute Acton Institute
by Carroll Rios De Rodriguez  

"How did dependency theory with its socialist-like proposals to solve poverty and the Marxist influence on liberation theology fuse together? One often hears disclaimers to the fact that not all dependency and liberationist writings were Marxist. This is of course true. Novak himself argued that 'liberation theology forms a tapestry much broader than its Marxist part and is woven of many colors.' It is worth stating that the work of carefully distinguishing between the various theoretical foundations suited to liberation theology, as Novak and Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger (later Pope Benedict XVI) did at the time, is not the same as trivializing the broader Marxist influences. There are some subtle differences between the Ratzinger-Novak caveat and other claims concerning the impact of Marxism." (07/23/14)

http://tinyurl.com/m2q2pbz  

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The new meaning of “isolationism”

July 23, 2014
posted by

Justin Raimondo Antiwar.com
by Justin Raimondo  

"The recent rash of attacks on 'isolationism' by leading Republican warmongers is doing nothing but making us isolationists more popular than ever -- and is turning what is supposed to be a marginalizing epithet into a compliment and a political asset for politicians like Sen. Paul. I have news for the Majority Leader: Americans want to be isolated from the violence and chaos of a wacked-out world. Not only that, but they resist the superior 'wisdom' of Washington know-it-alls who say such a policy is neither practical nor possible." (07/23/14)

http://tinyurl.com/mkcmny6  

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How “crazy negroes” with guns helped kill Jim Crow

July 23, 2014
posted by

Reason Reason
by Thaddeus Russell  

"I have a dream that one day children in seventh grade will have an American history textbook that is not like my son's. Its heroes will not just be people from the past who upheld the middle-class values of modesty, chastity, sobriety, thrift, and industry. The rebels it celebrates will include not only abolitionists, suffragists, labor unionists, and civil rights leaders who confined their protests to peaceful and respectable writing, speaking, striking, and marching. In my dream, schoolchildren will read about people like C.O. Chinn. Chinn was a black man in Canton, Mississippi, who in the 1960s owned a farm, a rhythm and blues nightclub, a bootlegging operation, and a large collection of pistols, rifles, and shotguns with which he threatened local Klansmen and police when they attempted to encroach on his businesses or intimidate civil rights activists working to desegregate Canton and register black residents to vote." (for publication 08/14)

http://reason.com/archives/2014/07/22/how-crazy-negroes-with-guns-he  

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An abortion act that’s fast-tracked to nowhere

July 23, 2014
posted by

Wendy Mcelroy The Hill
by Wendy McElroy  

"Senate Democrats wish to eliminate almost every legislative gain made on the state level by pro-life activists in recent years. But the bill they propose as a solution is an attempt to federalize abortion and an unconstitutional attack on states' rights. It is also doomed to fail except, of course, in the goal of rousing the Democratic voting blocks of liberals and women." (07/21/14)

http://tinyurl.com/lddtgb3  

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ISIS: Yes, Mr. Blair, you did build this

July 23, 2014
posted by

Kevin Carson Center for a Stateless Society
by Kevin Carson  

"Last month, in a tone which might best be called unlikely insistence, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair reassured the public that 'we' -- the UK and United States -- 'have to liberate ourselves from the notion that we caused' the destabilization of Iraq by the ISIS insurgency. Well, actually you did." (07/21/14)

http://c4ss.org/content/29482  

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Tax inversion freedom vs. fiscal Berlin Wall

July 23, 2014
posted by

Richard M. Ebeling The Daily Bell
by Richard Ebeling  

"The Obama Administration has proposed its latest form of collectivist control over the American people. In a letter to Congress, U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew has called for punishment and prohibition of any company that tries to move its headquarters overseas to avoid higher taxes in the United States. Plus, Mr. Lew has the audacity to call his proposed territorial imprisonment of American business 'economic patriotism.'" (07/22/14)

http://tinyurl.com/jvrbpru  

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Blood, treasure and soul: The exorbitant price of the American empire

July 23, 2014
posted by

Come Home America Come Home America
by Mike Marion  

"It is probably safe to assume that most Americans do not think of their country as an empire. As a conservative in my younger years, I might have even labeled the suggestion as anti-American, rationalizing to myself: Sure, we may have strategic military bases around the world and we may use force at times, but it is only for benevolent purposes. We get the bad guys, give the country back to the good guys, and we leave. The US does not try to rule the world. I was wrong." (07/22/14)

http://tinyurl.com/pugafwa  

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Should doctors and dentists regulate their competitors?

July 23, 2014
posted by

National Center for Policy Analysis National Center for Policy Analysis
by Devon M. Herrick  

"Medical licensure and the state medical boards that govern the practice of medicine within each state has often been described as a self-regulating cartel. Nobel laureate Milton Friedman and many other economists have argued state licensure restricts the supply of physicians and stifles competition. Medical licensure is purportedly maintained for the protection of the public. But, what should be done when, while in the process of protecting the public from providers of dubious quality, the industry also protects itself from competition?" (07/21/14)

http://tinyurl.com/mrf52fk  

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Rand Paul: Less government, more sharing economy

July 23, 2014
posted by

Debra J. Saunders San Francisco Chronicle
by Debra J. Saunders  

"Who will be the GOP nominee in 2016? I don't know, but I have a pretty good idea who the running mate will be: Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky. Unless Paul is the nominee. A new NBC/Marist poll found Paul would be the top GOP vote-getter against Hillary Rodham Clinton in the critical early voting states of Iowa and New Hampshire. Political reporter Chuck Todd duly has proclaimed Paul the Republican front-runner. So I had to see the libertarian-leaning darling Saturday." [editor's note: Been kinda waiting for Ms. Saunders (who's more libertarian than GOPservative, despite her claims to the contrary?) to assess this one ... - SAT] (07/21/14)

http://tinyurl.com/m8rctzm  

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Why Putin’s proxy war is an abject failure

July 23, 2014
posted by

Cato Institute Cato Institute
by Christopher A. Preble  

"Vladimir Putin is having a bad week. Someone among the pro-Russian groups in Eastern Ukraine that he has been supporting is likely responsible for the downing of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 with 298 innocent civilians onboard. The grim details that have emerged since Thursday have merely added to his shame. Putin’s response, so far, has been to 1) ostentatiously mourn the tragic loss of life, 2) deflect attention, and 3) obfuscate. It isn’t working." (07/22/14)

http://tinyurl.com/lgob8ag  

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Have you done your “anarchist calisthenics” today?

July 23, 2014
posted by

LewRockwell.com
by Robert Wenzel  

"Quiet, unassuming, quotidian insubordination, because it usually flies below the archival radar, waves no banners, has no officeholders, writes no manifestos and has no permanent organizations, escapes notice. And that's what the practitioners of these forms of subaltern politics have in mind: to escape notice, You could say that historically, the goal of peasants and subaltern classes has been to stay out of the archives ... More regimes have been brought piecemeal, to their knees by what was once called 'Irish democracy,' the silent, dogged resistance, withdrawal, and truculence of millions of ordinary people, than by revolutionary vanguards or rioting mobs ..." (07/23/14)

http://www.lewrockwell.com/2014/07/robert-wenzel/anarcho-calisthenics/  

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Gold as an inflation hedge

July 23, 2014
posted by

Robert P. Murphy Liberty Chat
by Robert P. Murphy  

"When he’s not bashing Austrian economics, economist Noah Smith likes to mock the allegedly paranoid contributors to ZeroHedge. For example, in a recent post at Bloomberg, Smith argued that the goldbugs were full of it and that the yellow metal offered poor protection against an irresponsible Federal Reserve. In this post I’ll explain the actual case for gold, because plenty of people (not just Noah Smith) seem to think its virtues have been exaggerated." (07/22/14)

http://www.libertychat.com/2014/07/gold-inflation-hedge-robert-murphy/  

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How Silicon Valley millionaires stole progressivism

July 23, 2014
posted by

The Nation
by Zelda Bronstein  

"On a Saturday afternoon in early February, more than 600 residents of San Francisco gathered at the Tenderloin Elementary School for a citywide tenants’ convention. The attendees (an eclectic mix of old and young, veteran activists and political newcomers) came from neighborhoods all over town. They joined together to fight the soaring rents and mounting evictions that have accompanied the tech incursion into San Francisco, and that are threatening to turn a city famed for its inclusive, liberal character into an enclave of wealth and privilege." [editor's note: What? Somebody has co-opted a movement -- just as the socialists co-opted the peace effort some 40-50 years ago? I am truly shocked - SAT] (07/22/14)

http://tinyurl.com/pj8dz9e  

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The death of empires

July 23, 2014
posted by

Future of Freedom Foundation Future of Freedom Foundation
by Martin Morse Wooster  

"At its zenith under the rule of Emperor Trajan (ruled AD 98–117), the Roman Empire was the largest free-trade zone ever created. Moreover, the empire had two hidden strengths: cities were ruled with a light hand and were largely self-governing without interference from distant authorities; and the chief Roman coin, the mostly silver denarius, was a trusted piece of sound money whose worth was unchanged from one generation to the next. But Roman decline, Hubbard and Kane observe, was due to 'an ongoing inability to match its fiscal outlays with available revenues. ...'" (07/22/14)

http://fff.org/explore-freedom/article/the-death-of-empires/  

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Politics online: All tweet and no light

July 23, 2014
posted by

spiked spiked
by Patrick West  

"As anyone who has tried to have a sensible discussion on Twitter, or who has trawled through the sometimes deranged comments under political blogs, will testify: the internet as a forum for political discussion isn’t always a happy or useful place. On social media, it’s hardly ever. Last week’s events, what with Michael Gove’s exit from his education post in the Cabinet and reaction to Israel’s behaviour in Gaza, have once more showed why." (07/22/14)

http://tinyurl.com/k7qq7aa  

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Note to TW stockholders: Listen to Murdoch’s muzzled minorities

July 23, 2014
posted by

Reuters
by Rob Cox  

"Time Warner shareholders pondering whether to surrender to Rupert Murdoch would be well advised to listen to the media mogul’s muzzled minorities. Most Twenty-First Century Fox believers are relegated to owning non-voting stock in the entertainment conglomerate, the same second-tier paper on offer as part of the $80 billion takeover bid for the owner of HBO, CNN and Warner Bros. studios. Despite broad investor overlap in the two companies, the record shows a clear distaste for Murdoch’s imperialism." (07/22/14)

http://tinyurl.com/m27t257  

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Worshiping at the Churchstate … or is it the Statechurch?

July 23, 2014
posted by

Kent McManigal Kent's "Hooligan Libertarian" Blog
by Kent McManigal  

"The State -- by which I mean the bad guys who try to control your life while claiming they are 'government' -- has used religion as a tool, a wedge, against people like you and me for as long as there has been both church and state. Rulers figured out they could do all sorts of horrible things to individuals and, as long as the violations were what religious people thought their church and/or deity wanted, they faced no serious opposition." (07/22/14)

http://tinyurl.com/puv6ydx  

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Walking the red light district

July 23, 2014
posted by

Cathy Reisenwitz Future of Freedom Foundation
by Cathy Reisenwitz  

"On the last day of my recent trip to Germany, I’d wanted to check out Deutschland’s brothels. The focus of my writing on sex work has been U.S.-centric thus far. So I wanted to speak to someone participating in sex work in a country where it’s legal. I was running out of time and euros, but it just so happened that the quickest route to my hotel after drinks with locals included an area known for its ladies of the night." (07/22/14)

http://www.fee.org/the_freeman/detail/walking-the-red-light-district  

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“Prize grants” or patents for pharmaceutical innovation?

July 23, 2014
posted by

John R. Graham Independent Institute
by John R. Graham  

"Pharmaceutical enterprises are corporate bureaucracies that blend R&D functions with sales and marketing, regulatory affairs, government relations, and other non-research functions. Licensing can overcome some of the managerial diseconomies of scope in such an organization. However, if there were a new system of pharmaceutical innovation that would allow more specialization in R&D versus other functions, that would be an exceedingly beneficial public-policy achievement." (07/21/14)

http://tinyurl.com/nvpd4gq  

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What price are YOU now charging to supply the drug?

July 22, 2014
posted by

Don Boudreaux Cafe Hayek
by Don Boudreaux  

"Thanks for alerting me to Joe Nocera’s article on the cystic-fibrosis wonder drug Kalydeco -- a drug that now costs each patient more than $300,000 annually .... You ask how my 'free market principles justify a private business charging sick people this extortionate price.' While admitting that this price is unusually high .... let me answer your question by first asking some of my own. How much would each person suffering from cystic fibrosis have to pay you to devote the time and resources necessary for you to supply him or her with a drug such as Kalydeco?" (07/22/14)

http://tinyurl.com/q9f5bv9  

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A brief history of progressivism

July 22, 2014
posted by

Ludwig von Mises Institute Ludwig von Mises Institute
by Andrew Syrios  

"Assuming progress is one way and reaction the other is a kind of two-dimensional thinking that breaks down very quickly. For example, the progressives of the early twentieth century generally believed things that would abhor progressives of today. Those progressives were the ones who rammed through Prohibition against those 'economic conservatives who ... pushed so hard for repeal' as historian Daniel Okrent put it. The famous progressive William Jennings Bryan was a staunch supporter of Prohibition." (07/22/14)

http://mises.org/daily/6819/A-Brief-History-of-Progressivism  

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