Today's Edition


| Commentary

Ukraine regime accuses Russia of “invading” as aid trucks enter LPR

BBC News [UK state media]

"Lorries from a Russian aid convoy are streaming into [Lugansk People's Republic] without permission [from invading/occupying Ukrainian forces], after Russia accused Ukraine of unreasonable obstruction. Russia's foreign ministry said Ukraine had held up the convoy in order to pursue war against rebels in Luhansk, where the aid is destined." (08/22/14)

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Gaza: Hamas executes 11 alleged collaborators

The Globe and Mail [Canada]

"Hamas said it shot dead 11 suspected informants for Israel on Friday, a day after an Israeli airstrike on a house in southern Gaza Strip killed three top Hamas military commanders. The Hamas-run website Al Rai said the 11 were killed by firing squad and warned that 'the same punishment will be imposed soon on others.' ... A Gaza security official said the suspected informants were killed in the Gaza City police headquarters. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media, said the 11 had previously been sentenced by Gaza courts." (08/22/14)

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Syria: Regime troops claim scores of jihadists killed

Quad-City Times

"Syrian troops killed dozens of jihadi fighters, including a prominent media activist, in heavy clashes on Thursday around a sprawling northern air base that the Islamic State group is trying to seize, activists and state media said. Islamic State fighters began a long-anticipated offensive on Wednesday to seize Tabqa air base in the northern province of Raqqa, the last position held by the Syrian government in a province that is a stronghold of the al-Qaida breakaway group." (08/21/14)

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FL: Federal judge strikes down state’s marriage apartheid law

USA Today

"A federal judge declared Florida's voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional Thursday, but he delayed allowing county clerks to issue licenses, pending appeals. U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle, sitting in Tallahassee, ruled that the 2008 voter-approved measure defining marriage as only between one man and one woman violated the Constitution's guarantees of equal protection and due process." (08/21/14)

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US “concerned” by arrest of American in Israel

Rochester Post-Bulletin

"The U.S. government has raised concerns about Israel's arrest of a Palestinian teenager with American citizenship whose cousin was burned to death by Israeli extremists earlier this summer. The State Department says it was never notified by Israel after Mohammed Abu Khdeir was arrested at his home in east Jerusalem on July 28. It also says Israel appears to be targeting members of the Abu Khdeir family for arrest." (08/21/14)

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MN: GOP Supreme Court candidate banned at fair booth

Fresno Bee

"The Minnesota Republican Party's endorsed candidate for Supreme Court is watching her support from the party erode. Party officials passed a resolution banning Michelle MacDonald from the GOP's booth because of a pending drunken driving case. And the Republican nominee for attorney general on Thursday endorsed MacDonald's opponent, longtime Democratic attorney and current Justice David Lillehaug, saying he can't support her." (08/21/14)

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GA: Two patients treated for Ebola leave hospital

Atlanta Journal-Constitution

"One of two Americans treated for the Ebola virus expressed his gratitude to Emory University Hospital and those who have prayed for him Thursday morning as the hospital announced his release. ... Both Brantly and Writebol received an experimental treatment called Zmapp, but it’s not known whether the drug helped or whether they improved on their own, as has happened to others who have survived the disease. But these week, both tested negative to the virus, are free of symptoms and pose no health risk, Ribner said. Writebol was released Tuesday and asked for privacy as she continues to recover. Brantly was released Thursday, and appeared with his wife to read a statement for reporters." (08/21/14)

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Venezuela: Charges dropped against protesters


"Venezuelan courts have dropped all charges against hundreds of demonstrators detained during anti-government protests that wracked the South American country this spring. A local human rights organization announced Thursday that 276 demonstrators no longer face prosecution for vandalism and inciting violence. Their arrests will not be noted on their records." (08/21/14)

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Hagel: Islamic State militants pose “biggest threat” to US

BBC News [UK state media]

"Islamic State militants are the most dangerous threat the US has faced in recent years, Washington has warned. Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel said US air strikes had helped to break the Islamist advance in Iraq, but the militants could be expected to regroup. ... Speaking at a news conference on Thursday, Mr Hagel described IS as an imminent threat. 'They are beyond just a terrorist group. They marry ideology, a sophistication of strategic and tactical military prowess, they are tremendously well-funded ... this is beyond anything that we have seen.'" [editor's note: Sounds like Hagel is off his thorazine ... - TLK] (08/22/14)

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India: Police rearrest hunger-striking activist, citing suicide risk

The Globe and Mail [Canada]

"Indian human rights activist Irom Sharmila, on hunger strike for the past 14 years in protest against alleged army atrocities, was arrested again on Friday two days after being released from hospital detention. 'Sharmila has been rearrested. It is clear that she is attempting suicide and we cannot allow her to do so,' said M.C. Singh, a police official in Imphal .... Sharmila, 42, went on hunger strike in 2000 in protest against a law originating in the British colonial era that gives security forces wide powers to search, enter property and shoot on sight. During her detention, she was force-fed by doctors through a tube going into her nose to keep her alive." (08/22/14)

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VA: McDonnell testifies on marital woes in corruption defense

Columbus Dispatch

"On his second day on the witness stand, Bob McDonnell, the former Virginia governor on trial on public-corruption charges, deftly oscillated yesterday between expressing sympathy for his wife, Maureen, and skewering her for poor judgment and emotional volatility, pressing his contention that the estranged couple could not have conspired illegally. ... the couple’s legal jeopardy stems from $177,000 in loans, cash and gifts that a vitamin manufacturer showered on Virginia’s first couple as he tried to promote his nutritional supplement firm, Star Scientific Inc." (08/22/14)

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Oklahoma City cop accused of raping, sexually assaulting seven women while on duty

New York Daily News

"An Oklahoma City police officer is accused of sexually assaulting at least seven women -- including a 57-year-old grandmother -- while on patrol duty, officials said. Daniel Ken Holtzclaw was arrested Thursday afternoon on a probable cause warrant. The 27-year-old officer attacked the seven women, between the ages of 34 and 58, over a period of months, police said." (08/22/14)

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BofA to pay $7 billion restitution, $9.x billion bribes in mortgage case


"The Justice Department announced Thursday that Bank of America will pay a record $16.65 billion fine to settle allegations that it knowingly sold toxic mortgages to investors." [editor's note: As the DoJ press release, linked from the story, reveals, about $7 billion of that is restitution to damaged parties; the bulk of the settlement is bribes to various state and federal government bureaucracies - TLK] (08/21/14)

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NC: Judge rules private school vouchers unconstitutional

Miami Herald

"A new school voucher program for low-income families was ruled unconstitutional Thursday by a judge who said taxpayer money should not be used for tuition to private or religious schools. The vouchers pay for students to attend privately run K-12 schools that do not have to meet state curriculum requirements, violating the state constitution, Wake County Superior Court Judge Robert Hobgood said." (08/21/14)

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Argentina regime bonds steady as investors brace for long fight


"Argentina's latest debt swap proposal may have made resolution of its default mess an even more distant prospect, but the sovereign's bond prices still remain surprisingly robust. Indeed the latest gambit in the long-running Argentine saga -- a complicated swap that risks running afoul of US law and that most believe can't work -- has hardly hit prices at all. Argentina's dollar bonds dropped two points Wednesday when the debt swap plan was announced, but that was a far cry from the freefall that many in the market were expecting." (08/21/14)

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Gaza: Hamas says Israel kills three top commanders

Gulf Business [United Arab Emirates]

"An Israeli air strike killed three senior Hamas military commanders in the Gaza Strip on Thursday, the Islamist group said .... Hamas, which dominates the Gaza Strip, named the men as Mohammed Abu Shammala, Raed al-Attar and Mohammed Barhoum and said they were killed in a bombing of a house in the southern town of Rafah. ... Late on Tuesday Israel targetted Hamas’s top military commander, Mohammed Deif, but failed to kill him. Deif’s wife and seven-month-old son were killed in the air strike, Hamas said." (08/21/14)

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New US strikes in Iraq after IS Foley video

BBC News [UK state media]

"US aircraft have launched fresh strikes against Islamic State (IS) militants in northern Iraq, despite threats from the group to kill a second American captive in retribution for continued attacks. US Navy fighters and drones provided air cover to Kurdish and Iraqi forces battling IS near the city of Mosul. On Tuesday the group released a video showing the beheading of journalist James Foley, who went missing in 2012. In it, the militants threatened to kill another US reporter they are holding. But since the video was released, American forces have conducted 14 new strikes near the Mosul dam, a key facility recaptured from IS militants earlier this week." (08/21/14)

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Indonesia: Police clash with Prabowo supporters on election verdict


"Indonesian police fired tear gas and used water cannons against supporters of defeated presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto, as the constitutional court ruled against parts of the former general’s challenge of the results. The court took a brief break this afternoon after reading some of the 4,300-page verdict, with initial rulings striking down two key parts of Prabowo’s argument against Jakarta Governor Joko Widodo’s victory in last month’s poll. The complete verdict was expected to take several more hours." (08/21/14)

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VA: SCOTUS grants anti-family group’s request for stay on ending marriage apartheid

Columbus Dispatch

"The U.S. Supreme Court stopped gay marriage in Virginia from going ahead today, staying an appeals court ruling that had struck down a state ban. The court granted a stay application filed by opponents of gay marriage. The action was not a ruling on the merits of gay marriage, but means a July 28 pro-gay marriage ruling by the Richmond, Virginia-based 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will not be implemented while litigation continues." (08/20/14)

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Afghanistan: AG bars NY Times reporter from leaving country

Concord Monitor

"Afghanistan’s attorney general banned a New York Times reporter from leaving the country yesterday pending an investigation into a controversial story about purported plans by unidentified officials to take power if a political crisis continues.  Matthew Rosenberg, 40, said last night that he was summoned to the attorney general’s office in the afternoon and asked numerous questions about the story." (08/20/14)

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NH: GOPer arrested for flapping & clucking at Dems

Raw Story

"A 23-year-old Republican staffer was arrested in Londonderry, New Hampshire on Saturday and charged with disorderly conduct after he repeatedly harassed two Democratic officials who were marching in the town’s 'old home day' parade. According to WMUR Channel 9, Michael Zona, operations coordinator for New Hampshire’s Republican State Committee, was taken into custody after officers repeatedly asked him to stop following U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen and Gov. Maggie Hassan along the parade route. Detective Christopher Olsen told WMUR that Zona was repeatedly asked by the governor’s security detail and by local police to stop shadowing the two elected officials and in particular to stop flapping his arms, yelling and making chicken sounds." [editor's note: I'm confused; did he need a special flapping & clucking license? - SAT](08/20/14)

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Thailand: Army ruler expected to become new premier

ABC News

"Three months after overthrowing Thailand's last elected government, this Southeast Asian nation's junta leader is poised to step out of his army uniform for good -- to take up the post of prime minister in a move critics say will only extend his time at the helm and consolidate the military's grip on power. The legislature, hand-picked by the junta and dominated by active duty soldiers, is expected to hold a vote in Bangkok on Thursday nominating Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha to the new role." (08/20/14)

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Tibetan rights group claims five dead after unarmed protesters shot by Chinese police

Fox News

"Three more Tibetan protesters shot and detained by Chinese authorities died in jail after being denied medical treatment, bringing the death toll from recent violence to five, according to overseas Tibetan rights groups and a U.S.-backed broadcaster. Rights groups said Chinese security forces opened fire on unarmed protesters on Aug. 12, wounding at least 10 people, before they detained the protesters and rounded up more male villagers in the southwestern province of Sichuan -- the site of repeated ethnic protests and violent suppression." (08/21/14)

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Russia: Regime shuts McDonald’s flagship restaurant

CNN Money

"Russian officials have shut four McDonald's restaurants in Moscow, including the first to open in the city nearly 25 years ago at the end of the Cold War. McDonald's (MCD) said the restaurants were closed Wednesday following a claim by Russia's federal consumer agency. Local media said the agency accused the company of 'sanitary violations.' ... The pressure on McDonald's comes as tension between Russia and the West rises over Ukraine. The U.S. and Europe have applied sanctions against Russian banks, companies and officials, and Moscow has responded with a ban on imports of food from the West." (08/21/14)

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US mission to rescue hostages in Syria failed

Chattanooga Times Free Press

"President Barack Obama sent special operations troops to Syria this summer on a secret mission to rescue American hostages, including journalist James Foley, held by Islamic State extremists, but they did not find them, the administration disclosed Wednesday. Officials said the rescue mission was authorized after intelligence agencies believed they had identified the location inside Syria where the hostages were being held." (08/20/14)

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| News

What’s the use of crying over spilled blood?

Bryan Caplan EconLog
by Bryan Caplan

"When the original supporters of Operation Iraq Freedom urge further military action, it's rhetorically easy to mock them for their past failures. But is it reasonable? Sure, mistakes were made. But shouldn't arguments about additional military action rest exclusively on the world we actually face right now? In economic terms, harping about past failures sounds like the sunk cost fallacy writ large. What's the use of crying over spilled blood? Here's the use: Past failures predict future failures." (08/21/14)

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There is a market for human organs, whether you like it or not

John C. Goodman Independent Institute
by John C. Goodman

"The buying and selling of human organs was in the news this weekend, via an investigative report in the New York Times. People tend to be moved when they learn about someone donating an organ to someone else who needs it, but they also tend to be disgusted by the notion of a market where people can sell their organs to strangers. Naturally enough, this market consists of high-income patients and low-income donors." (08/20/14)

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Sellout: JPFO to be handed off to SAF — unless we stop it

Living Freedom
by Claire Wolfe

"Aaron wanted to educate people so that victim disarmament would go away. He would have been thrilled to be able to close JPFO’s doors and say, 'We’ve done it.' On the other hand, he despised Alan Gottlieb and saw him as an opportunist who used scary mailings to turn SAF/CCRKBA into a fundraising factory. ... a viable plan exists to keep JPFO healthy and independent. And so far the board won’t even acknowledge it." (08/22/14)

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Your silence confesses your guilt

Wendy Mcelroy The Daily Bell
by Wendy McElroy

"The right to remain silent is at the core of American due process. It is historically anchored in the quest for religious freedom that was instrumental in founding America. It served as the strongest single protection against the use of torture by state authorities. Today, security is said to trump liberty. Due process guarantees are often viewed as obstacles to security because they shackle authorities who are allegedly hunting terrorists and the like. It is true that due process occasionally protects the guilty. But what it always protects are average people who would otherwise be targets for the exercise of arbitrary power." (08/21/14)

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The holy war on corporate politicking

Acton Institute Acton Institute
by Rev. Robert A. Sirico

"The religious left's long-running campaign to silence those with different views has moved aggressively into corporate boardrooms. CEOs and directors of public companies are being hectored by social justice activists to abandon lobbying and other political activities. Let's hope they don't succeed. Our political life would be impoverished and unbalanced by muzzling corporations whose interests go far beyond the boardroom to number millions of employees, shareholders, and community members. The cravenly political ploy of dressing up a progressive campaign to silence dissent with religious sentiment and Scripture proof texts brings honest religious witness into disrepute." (08/20/14)

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An explosive night
by Andy Sirkis

"The large police van filled to overflowing with anxious officers pulls up just before the start of the event. A crowd is expected so the cops, ready and excited to do their duty, pour out of the van and station themselves strategically in the area. Is this the beginning of a violent protest against police brutality? No way, because I’m in Japan and my town’s annual mid August hanabi (fireworks) festival is going to start in just an hour or so. There’s no tear gas, no billy clubs, no barrel chested crew cut brutes barking out commands, not a gun or any other military hardware in sight. The cops hurry past and ignore the street vendors, half of whom are selling beer, cocktails, and Japanese sake, no ID check required here. Rather than establish authority over an occupied population, the police merely position themselves where they can best direct traffic in and out of the parking lot and assist pedestrians crossing the street. Barney Fife and his colleagues on the Mayberry police force couldn’t do it any better!" (08/22/14)

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I trolled my congressman on Twitter

Justin Raimondo
by Justin Raimondo

"What jumps out at me about this brief exchange is that Huffman didn’t care about the War Powers Act, he only wanted to correct the impression that he and his congressional confreres might be taking a vacation from their constitutional duties. He didn’t lower himself to answer my question about the 60-day time limit on the President’s alleged power to send troops abroad willy-nilly. Why should he? After all, we’re just peons living in fly-over country -- and during my follow-up phone call to his office I thought I heard someone saying in the background: 'Is that Justin Raimondo again?' Yes, our political class disdains our very existence – but only, it’s important to note, on a one-to-one basis. When we show up in numbers, they suddenly begin to pay more respectful attention, and the bigger the numbers the more respectful it gets." (08/22/14)

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The Imperial Empress of Naught

Timothy J. Taylor Authority!
by Timothy J Taylor

"Some politicians understand that the constitutional purpose of government is to secure the rights of the people; that they are public servants in that endeavor; and their jobs involve giving of themselves with diligent humility as opposed to taking for self interest. Others think that the people ought to serve them; that they are our imperial masters; their official privilege for taking. George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Ronald Reagan come easily to mind as examples of the former. Hillary Clinton is an archetype of the latter." (08/21/14)

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Siege mentality

Rad Geek People's Daily
by Rad Geek

"If you spend much time at all reading articles and public statements by government police, you’re likely to see this received factoid over and over again. Time never alters it; things only get more and more dangerous. No matter what year it is, it’s always this year that’s poised to become the most dangerous year for police ever .... The thing is that all these claims are false." (01/23/11; revised/reposted 08/19/14)

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Ferguson cops and the Fourteenth Amendment

Bumper Hornberger Future of Freedom Foundation
by Jacob G. Hornberger

"The Bill of Rights and the Fourteenth Amendment help to remind us of the wisdom, insight, foresight, and courage of the Framers and of our American ancestors. They understood that government at both the federal and state level inevitably attracts the type of people who hate liberty and love power. How right they were back then. And how right they have proven to be today. How those militarized cops are reacting to those protestors and demonstrators is bad enough. But imagine what those cops would be doing if they knew that they wielded omnipotent power to do whatever they wanted to people who were protesting their policies and actions." (08/21/14)

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Abolish the police

C4SS Center for a Stateless Society
by Cory Massimino

"The tragic chaos in Ferguson, Missouri following the shooting of an unarmed teenager and massive protests has prompted a discussion police power and how far it should extend. For the anarchist, the answer is simple: police power shouldn’t exist." (08/21/14)

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Don’t tax the Internet into oblivion

Heartland Institute Heartland Institute
by Alexander Anton

"It seems at first glance that the federal government should not be telling states and municipalities what they can and can’t tax, but undue taxes naturally hinder the flow of the marketplace to begin with. Looking at current cell phone taxes provide some insight as to how Internet access taxes could look if the law expires. The national average on cell phone taxes is over 16.3%! My $80/month 'unlimited everything' plan from Sprint sounds good in a Spotify ad or on a billboard, but it’s deceiving. It’s actually closer to $100 with all the extra taxes. A similar phenomenon could happen and put accessing the Internet out of reach for people who can barely afford it now." (08/21/14)

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Libertarianism at SEP (and a few words on self-ownership)

Bleeding Heart Libertarians Bleeding Heart Libertarians
by Bas van der Vossen

"A little while ago, the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy published its revised entry on Libertarianism, co-authored by Peter Vallentyne and myself. The entry focuses on libertarian theory in the narrow sense, a self-contained moral theory built on ideas about self-ownership and the possibility of private ownership of the external things. Focusing on libertarianism in that sense of course leaves a lot of things out -- including a number of views defended by people on this blog. Many of us reject the idea of self-ownership in its logically strongest form. The entry discusses some of the reasons why one might want to reject that idea." (08/21/14)

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Government meddling creates auto loan mess

Competitive Enterprise Institute Competitive Enterprise Institute
by John Berlau

"Should we worry about a crisis in subprime auto loans? That question has been asked in the financial media lately. As I said recently on CNBC, my answer is yes, with caveats. While there are important differences in the auto and mortgage markets, there are similar government interventions that have the potential to fuel a bubble in car loans the same way they did for home loans." (08/19/14)

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Bergdahl swap for Guantanamo detainees violated law, says GAO

JD Tuccille Reason
by JD Tuccille

"There are a lot of ways to think about Bowe Bergdahl and the U.S. government's exchange of five detainees at Guantanamo for his release by the Taliban. The Government Accountability Office's (GAO) take on the swap is: illegal." (08/21/14)

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The bigger threat: Police state or looting?

Robert P. Murphy Liberty Chat
by Robert P. Murphy

"After a few days of genuine shock, most Americans have now managed to place the events unfolding in Ferguson into their familiar compartments. Progressive pundits want police forces to hire more black cops and for the government to provide more job training to eliminate the 'root causes' of poverty and crime. The talking heads on Fox News, for their part, are outraged that Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton are butting in yet again, and trying to tell white guys how racist they are. And while these media figures go back to their normal posturing, Americans have just gotten another taste–after the Boston Marathon lockdown and the Bundy Ranch standoff–of heavily militarized security forces confronting regular citizens on U.S. soil." (08/21/14)

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Think the Third Amendment is irrelevant?

Campaign For Liberty Campaign for Liberty
by Megan Stiles

"When was the last time you heard of the government quartering troops in private residences? Well, have you heard of Anthony Mitchell of Henderson, Nevada? He is currently suing the Henderson Police Department on third amendment grounds for using his house without his consent to conduct surveillance on his neighbor." (08/21/14)

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What to do about a swarm of parasites

Daily Anarchist Daily Anarchist
by Stephen

"Considering all of these new swarms, is it any wonder that people would like to throw them off in the same ways as the animal kingdom? We need to create, collect and share different ways to 'swat the parasites' and keep them from drawing even more of our blood. Here are three simple ways to reduce the impact of these pesky creatures in your life. I hope this will be just a beginning, a priming of the pump if you will." (08/20/14)

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Philip Giraldi on The Scott Horton Show

Philip Giraldi The Scott Horton Show

"Philip Giraldi, Executive Director of The Council for the National Interest, discusses the authoritarian streak in Americans who support Israel’s destruction of Gaza and militarized police in Ferguson, Missouri." [Flash audio or MP3] (08/20/14)

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By the numbers: Is private gun ownership responsible for police militarization?

Foundation for Economic Education Foundation for Economic Education
by Daniel J. Bier

"[T]he biggest issue with Winkler’s claim is that widespread private gun ownership far predated police militarization. Large numbers of private citizens have owned firearms throughout American history. Moreover, gun ownership in the US has been declining, both before and throughout the process of militarizing law enforcement." (08/21/14)

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The Rio Grande frontier

The Price of Liberty
by Nathan Barton

"While there is a lot going on in Missouri, California, and of course Ukraine, Syria, Mesopotamia, Nigeria, Liberia, and Canaan (Gaza), we should not forget that bad things are continuing to happen other places, and some good things too. One place with such mixed messages is the Rio Grande, Texas’ border with the 'United' Mexican States. Unlike many lovers of liberty, I think that borders and boundaries, even invisible lines in the dirt, mean something and are important." (08/20/14)

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Police state brutality inevitable amid discordant law

The Canal The Canal
by Fergus Hodgson

"At times like these, various observers want to attack either the police or the criminal, but both are at fault. Worse, such condemnation fails to acknowledge that these outcomes are inevitable, given the conditions at play. Neither police accountability nor a crackdown on criminals will fix the tragic mess." (08/21/14)

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Six myths about money and inflation

Ludwig von Mises Institute Ludwig von Mises Institute
by Patrick Barron

"The following are six of the most prevalent economic myths that appear time and again in the mainstream media. I will give a brief description of each and a brief description of the economic reality, as seen from an Austrian perspective." (08/21/14)

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Quids in: How sterlingization and free banking could help Scotland flourish

Sam Bowman Adam Smith Institute
by Sam Bowman

"The argument for Scottish independence has repeatedly foundered on the question of currency. Since the Chancellor, George Osborne, ruled out the prospect of formal currency union between an independent Scotland and the rest of the UK (rUK) in early 2014, a move that was backed by the other major Westminster parties, the question has become central to the referendum debate: Without an agreement that gave Scotland a right to use the pound sterling (GBP) as its national currency, would an independent Scotland be stillborn?" [PDF] (08/21/14)

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Tax credits won’t lift economic growth

Cato Institute Cato Institute
by Daniel J. Mitchell

"There’s a policy debate among conservatives in Washington about the best way to cut taxes and reform the tax code. The supply-siders want to replicate the success of Reaganomics with lower marginal tax rates. But there’s also a camp who call themselves 'reform conservatives' who want income tax credits or payroll tax cuts explicitly for the purpose of reducing tax liabilities for middle-class parents." (08/20/14)

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Freedom Report Podcast, 08/21/14

The Libertarian Republic

"Writer for the Huffington Post Robin Koerner joins the Freedom Report podcast to discuss Ferguson and the rise of the warrior cop." [Flash audio or MP3] (08/21/14)

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Why Washington’s war on terror failed

CounterPunch CounterPunch
by Patrick Cockburn

"The reality of U.S. policy is to support the government of Iraq, but not Syria, against ISIS. But one reason that group has been able to grow so strong in Iraq is that it can draw on its resources and fighters in Syria. Not everything that went wrong in Iraq was the fault of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, as has now become the political and media consensus in the West. Iraqi politicians have been telling me for the last two years that foreign backing for the Sunni revolt in Syria would inevitably destabilize their country as well. This has now happened." (08/21/14)

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Cameron’s Iraq policy

Cagle Post
by Paresh Nath

Cartoon. (08/20/14)

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Understanding the minimum wage

Don Boudreaux Cafe Hayek
by Don Boudreaux

"Even if (contrary to Liya’s and Rachel’s finding) states that raised their minimum wages did indeed enjoy higher employment growth than did states that did not raise theirs, the foundational economic argument against the minimum still stands. That argument is that the minimum wage reduces the employment prospects of the lowest-skilled of low-skilled workers." (08/21/14)

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Mission creep in Iraq

Sheldon Richman Future of Freedom Foundation
by Sheldon Richman

"There are several reasons not to intervene militarily in another country’s conflict, even modestly. One is the potential for mission creep. We already could detect the signs of mission creep in Iraq. Now, with the stepped-up U.S. airstrikes after the Islamic State’s horrific execution of American reporter Jim Foley, the signs are clearer than ever." (08/21/14)

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Welcome to military America

Bumper Hornberger Future of Freedom Foundation
by Jacob G. Hornberger

"Perhaps it’s finally dawning on many Americans the adverse effect that the national-security state apparatus, which was grafted onto America’s governmental system after World War II, has had on American society. It’s taken the events in Ferguson, Missouri, to cause people to see what a militarized society looks like." (08/20/14)

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The problem with the police is that it’s not just a few bad apples

Robert P. Murphy Free Advice
by Robert P. Murphy

"[A]s a general rule, 'good cops' keep their mouths shut even when they observe some of their colleagues breaking the law. ... When a member of any other profession is accused of wrongdoing, colleagues are willing to pontificate on whether the accused should be considered in the right or wrong. For example, if a historian is accused of plagiarism, it won’t be hard for CNN to line up other historians to defend or 'convict' the accused. In contrast, police who are still on the job almost never come forward and say one of their colleagues was in the wrong." (08/21/14)

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A strategy to preserve liberty: Serve on a jury

10th Amendment Center Tenth Amendment Center
by Dave Benner

"I have often heard friends and acquaintances complain when they are called to jury duty. It is easy to understand the common gripes made in response to this mandate. As a result of the obligation, people are often displaced from their jobs and other pursuits, often for long hours and for little compensation. I find it hard not to empathize with their qualms. After all, it is easy to find disfavor with required government service of any kind. However, serving on a jury remains one of the most effectual ways to preserve someone’s liberty." (08/20/14)

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Time to retire unemployment

by Edward Hadas

"Give Janet Yellen credit. The chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve is keen to use monetary policy to help get more people into good jobs. Her priority (work is more important than finance) is reflected in the subject of this week’s get-together for the world’s central bankers: 'Re-Evaluating Labor Market Dynamics.' One item should be on the agenda of the distinguished guests at Jackson Hole, Wyoming: how to replace the concept of unemployment. The suggestion may sound frivolous, but the idea of a simple measure of unemployment is tied to a wrong view of how modern economies work." [editor's note: Heresy? Or a sane perspective on an outdated concept? You make the call - SAT] (08/20/14)

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Why taxation is immoral and should be criminal

Tibor R. Machan The Daily Bell
by Tibor R. Machan

"Governments and their defenders insist that taking taxes from citizens in perfectly okay. As Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes alleged, it is 'the price we pay for civilization.' Like saying handing over your money to a hood amounts to paying for safety! Balderdash!" (08/20/14)

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