Today's Edition


| Commentary

EpiPen maker to sell cheaper generic version

BBC News BBC News [UK state media]

"The maker of the EpiPen will start selling a generic version in the wake of criticism about steep price increases. Mylan said it expected to start selling a cheaper generic product 'in several weeks' at a list price of $300. That is about half the list price of the existing product, which is used in emergencies for severe food and insect allergies. The cost of EpiPens in the US has risen by 500% in less than a decade. Mylan said the generic version would be identical to the branded EpiPen, which costs $600 for two doses. Allergy sufferers often have several pens -- one to keep at home, as well as others at school or work, or in the car. They also expire after 12 months." [editor's note: Let's review ... price went from $100 to $600 (for two), mainly because FDA outlawed competition with Mylan; now it goes to $300 each, and this is a price-cut?- SAT] (08/29/16)

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John Lennon’s killer denied parole for the ninth time

San Francisco Chronicle San Francisco Chronicle

"John Lennon's killer will remain behind bars after being denied parole for the ninth time. The New York state Board of Parole on Monday announced that it has again denied parole to Mark David Chapman, who on Dec. 8, 1980, shot and killed the former Beatle outside his luxury Manhattan apartment. The 61-year-old Chapman pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and is serving a sentence of 20-years to life in Wende Correctional Facility in western New York. In a description of its decision, the parole board noted that Chapman has since described the murder as 'selfish and evil.' The board concluded that the factors supporting Chapman's parole were outweighed by the premeditated and 'celebrity-seeking' nature of the crime." (08/29/16)

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White House says it sees a path to approval of Pacific trade deal

Reuters Reuters

"The White House said on Monday it could still win congressional approval of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact before President Barack Obama leaves office, and warned that failing to do so would undermine U.S. leadership in the region. 'The president is going to make a strong case that we have made progress and there is a path for us to get this done before the president leaves office,' White House spokesman Josh Earnest told a news briefing ahead of Obama's trip to Asia this week. Obama has made the 12-nation free trade deal the centerpiece of a diplomatic 'pivot' to Asia, but the prospects for congressional approval have looked increasingly dim, with both major presidential candidates (Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump) standing opposed. U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on Thursday the Senate would not vote on the pact this year, punting it to the next president, who will take office in January." (08/29/16)

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Romania: Six government officials indicted on embezzlement charges

Tuscaloosa News

"Romanian anti-corruption prosecutors say six senior interior ministry officials have been indicted on suspicion of embezzlement and making false statements. Prosecutors said Monday they had indicted Rares Vaduva, head of an intelligence agency subordinated to the Interior Ministry, and five former senior officials from the same department for allegedly abusing ministry funds, abusing their position and making false statements." (08/29/16)

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NY: Judge dismisses Citizens United challenge to state donor rules

Raw Story Raw Story

"A federal judge on Monday dismissed a lawsuit in which Citizens United sought to block New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman from enforcing rules requiring the conservative group to disclose more information about its donors. U.S. District Judge Sidney Stein in Manhattan said the attorney general did not violate Citizens United’s First Amendment rights by requiring registered charitable organizations to disclose names, addresses and contributions of big donors before soliciting funds in the state. Citizens United is perhaps best known as the plaintiff in the landmark 2010 U.S. Supreme Court case that allowed unlimited independent spending by corporations and labor unions in election campaigns. The nonprofit group, which advocates for limited government, free enterprise and strong families, had argued that its donors would 'reasonably fear public backlash, financial harm, and worse' should their support be disclosed." [editor's note: Open disclosure of who is funding a political lobbying group should be a given - SAT] (08/29/16)

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IL: Former official sentenced to 10 years in red light camera bribery case

Chicago Tribune Chicago Tribune

"John Bills, the central figure in a massive corruption scheme at City Hall, was sentenced to 10 years in prison Monday for taking up to $2 million in bribes and gifts in return for steering tens of millions of dollars in red light camera contracts to an Arizona company. ... According to testimony, Bills began scheming almost immediately after he was handed the responsibility of overseeing the red-light camera pilot project, hatching a plot to steer traffic camera contracts to Redflex Traffic Systems Inc., an Arizona-based firm. ... In return, Redflex showered Bills with more than $560,000 in cash bribes, including up to $2,000 for each of the 384 red-light cameras installed under his watch. The company also lavished hundreds of thousands of dollars more in gifts -- including car, a condominium, lavish hotel stays and vacations." (08/29/16)

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NM: Cop accidentally filmed himself stealing marijuana

New York Daily News

"A New Mexico police sergeant accused of unwittingly recording himself on a lapel camera taking marijuana from his office and giving it to his girlfriend has been released from jail. KOB-TV in Albuquerque reported Saturday that Grants police Sgt. Roshern McKinney is out of jail. It wasn't immediately known Sunday under what conditions he was released. State police say McKinney was arrested Wednesday. An investigation was requested in July after the video recording was found." (08/28/16)

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Russian lawmaker’s son convicted of stealing 2.9 million credit card numbers

The Hacker News

"The son of a prominent Russian lawmaker has been found guilty in the United States of running a hacking scheme that stole and sold 2.9 million US credit card numbers using Point-of-Sale (POS) malware, costing financial institutions more than $169 Million. Roman Seleznev, 32, the son of Russian Parliament member Valery Seleznev, was arrested in 2014 while attempting to board a flight in the Maldives, which sparked an international dispute between American and Russian authorities, who characterized the extradition as a 'kidnapping.'" (08/29/16)

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Puerto Rico: House speaker resigns post under pressure

ABC News ABC News

"The speaker of the Chamber of Deputies in Puerto Rico resigned from the leadership post Monday under pressure from officials in his party following court testimony that has linked him to a former fundraiser convicted in a political corruption case. Jaime Perello said he was resigning as speaker because he did not want to be used as an 'excuse' if his Popular Democratic Party lost control of the chamber in the November elections. He plans to retain his at-large seat in the lower house of the legislature in the U.S. island territory." (08/29/16)

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France: Sarkozy demands border controls for thousands of migrants in Calais be shifted to Britain

Telegraph [UK]

"Nicolas Sarkozy has joined other conservative French politicians in demanding that border controls for thousands of migrants in Calais be shifted to Britain. The former centre-Right president made the call in a speech in Le Touquet, the northern town where he signed agreements in 2003 allowing British officials to check passports in France and vice-versa, when he was interior minister. The accords were part of a bilateral deal to close a former migrants' centre at Sangatte, near Calais. But Mr Sarkozy said France can no longer tolerate the presence of about 9,000 migrants living in the squalid 'Jungle' camp in Calais while they attempt to smuggle themselves into Britain." (08/29/16)

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Germany: Teen who allegedly stabbed cop charged with support for Islamic State

Yahoo! News Yahoo! News

"German federal prosecutors said Monday they had brought charges against a 16-year-old girl who allegedly stabbed a policeman in February in an operation for the Islamic State jihadist group. The German-Moroccan teenager, identified only as Safia S., was charged on August 12 with attempted murder, grievous bodily harm and support for a foreign terrorist organisation, the federal prosecutor's office said in a statement. A second suspect, named as 19-year-old German-Syrian national Mohamad Hasan K., was charged on suspicion of failing to report Safia S.'s planned attack." (08/29/16)

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Dotcom wants to livestream his legal battle against the United States

Business Insider

"Internet entrepreneur Kim Dotcom wants to livestream his legal battle against the United States on YouTube. Dotcom's lawyers have asked if they can film his extradition appeal, which began Monday at New Zealand's High Court in Auckland. The U.S. opposes the plan. ... A New Zealand judge last year ruled that Dotcom and three of his colleagues could be extradited to the U.S. to face conspiracy, racketeering and money-laundering charges. If found guilty, they could face decades in jail." (08/29/16)

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Belgium: Five held in Brussels crime lab fire

BBC News BBC News [UK state media]

"Five people have been arrested over a fire at crime laboratories in Brussels that officials believe may have been started to destroy forensic evidence. Prosecutor's spokeswoman Ine Van Wymersch said a car broke through fences at about 02:00 (00:00 GMT). The car was then rammed into a building where forensic tests are conducted, before a fire was started. Police could not confirm if a bomb had exploded. Ms Van Wymersch said the likely aim was to destroy 'several files' inside." (08/29/16)

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Security theater: False reports of gunman cause panic at LAX

Denver Post

"Reports of a gunman opening fire that turned out to be false caused panicked evacuations at Los Angeles International Airport on Sunday night, while flights to and from the airport saw major delays. A search through terminals brought no evidence of a gunman or shots fired, Los Angeles police spokesman Andy Neiman said. The reports were spurred by loud noises only, and police were still investigating to find the source of them, Neiman said. Airport officials said that a person wearing a Zorro costume was detained during the incident, but it wasn't yet clear whether the person had any connection to the evacuation." (08/29/16)

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Spain: Socialists to oppose re-election of Rajoy

Reuters Reuters

"Spain's Socialist leader said on Monday his party would not back acting Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's re-election and end an eight-month political impasse after meeting him for the final time before a confidence vote in parliament on Aug. 31. ... Rajoy's center-right People's Party is seven seats short of the majority it needs in the vote after reaching an agreement with centrist party Ciudadanos on Sunday." (08/29/16)

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Iraq: Islamic State claims responsibility for deadly wedding blast


"ISIS has claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing that killed at least 15 people and injured 16 others at a wedding Sunday in the Iraqi city of Karbala. A statement released by the ISIS-affiliated Amaq news agency said four suicide attackers targeted 'a Shiite gathering.' Iraqi authorities said there were five would-be suicide bombers, and that security members killed four." (08/29/16)

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India: Regime relaxes Kashmir curfew

Deutsche Welle Deutsche Welle [Germany]

"Indian security forces removed steel barricades and coils of barbed wire from the roads across the region Monday, but officials said the curfew would continue in some parts of the old quarters of Kashmir's main city of Srinagar and in the southern Pulwama area. At least 68 civilians have been killed and thousands injured, mostly by government forces firing bullets and shotguns at rock-throwing protesters, since widespread unrest began more than 50 days ago. Two police officers have been killed and hundreds of government forces have been injured in the clashes." (08/29/16)

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Yemen: Aden suicide attack kills “dozens”

BBC News BBC News [UK state media]

"At least 40 people have been killed in a suicide bombing at a military facility in the southern Yemen city of Aden, officials say. A training camp, or compound used by the pro-government Popular Resistance militia, was hit, reports say. ... It is unclear who was behind Monday's attack, though bombings in the southern port city are often carried out by militants from al-Qaeda or so-called Islamic State (IS)." (08/29/16)

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FDA recommends Zika testing for all blood donated in US

Reuters Reuters

"The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommended on Friday that all blood donated in the United States and its territories be tested for Zika virus, as it moves to prevent transmission of the virus through the blood supply. The agency said its decision to expand blood screening in the United States was based on concerns about more cases of local transmission in Florida, the growing number of travel-related infections and concerns that Zika-tainted blood could unwittingly be given to a pregnant woman, putting her unborn baby at risk of severe birth defects." (08/27/16)

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Finicum’s widow to sue FBI, Oregon police over killing

USA Today USA Today

"The widow of Robert 'Lavoy' Finicum, the Arizona rancher killed last January during a standoff at an Oregon wildlife refuge [sic], plans to sue the Oregon State Police and FBI agents involved in the shooting, her attorney said this weekend. Finicum, 54, was the de facto spokesman for a group of anti-government protesters who occupied the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge for several weeks last winter in support of local ranchers Dwight and Steve Hammond, who were convicted of setting fire to federal land." [editor's note: Finicum was killed "during a standoff" in the same sense that he was killed "during January." That is, true but irrelevant. He was killed away from the site of the "standoff" - TLK] (08/28/16)

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| News

How “open borders” became an illiberal cry

spiked spiked
by Frank Furedi

"Today, arguments in favour of mass migration don't focus on the virtues of free movement; they focus on what are seen as the positive effects of mass migration on a host society. These positive effects are frequently communicated in the language of economics. But, increasingly, immigration is valued on the basis that it has a transformative effect on national culture, too. The use of immigration as an instrument of social engineering could be glimpsed in a statement made by the European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker last week. He declared that 'borders are the worst invention ever made by politicians.' He coupled his condemnation of borders with a call to support migrants. But this wasn't simply about showing solidarity with migrants. No, he was communicating a broader hostility towards the idea of the nation state and those who support it." [editor's note: Furedi says that like it's a bad thing; nothing is more illiberal than a fully empowered nation state - TLK] (08/29/16)

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The “people’s Fed” and the oracles of Jackson Hole

Richard Eskow Our Future
by Richard Eskow

"When William Greider wrote his 1989 book about the Federal Reserve, it’s not hard to understand why he called it Secrets of the Temple. The Fed’s proclamations can make it seem as mysterious as the Oracle of Delphi. (To be fair, nobody has speculated that hallucinogens are involved, as seems to have been the case in Delphi.) The Fed’s oracular sages gathered in Jackson Hole, Wyoming last week for the central bank’s annual retreat. But this year’s meeting was different: For perhaps the first time in history, some of the Fed’s leaders met with activists who are fighting to change it. Actually, the Fed’s not as mysterious as it seems. Some of its behavior can be explained by its hybrid nature as a publicly created, but partly private, entity." [editor's note: If there is one thing we libertarians share with the "progressives" it's this issue, even if it's not always for the same reasons -- audit the Fed, then end it! - SAT] (08/29/16)

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Commentary on Captain Fantastic

Bryan Caplan EconLog
by Bryan Caplan

"Few movies speak to me more personally than Captain Fantastic. It's not just a movie about homeschooling; it's a movie about natalist homeschoolers living in a nearly-airtight Bubble. And psychologically, the movie's patriarch eerily resembles me. Captain Fantastic raises his six kids with kindness, respect, and the power of ideas, scrupulously avoiding the parental urge to dominate youths with anger, fear, or sadness. I say this even though the content of Captain Fantastic's ideas leaves much to be desired." (08/29/16)

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Clinton’s crazy conspiracy theory

Justin Raimondo
by Justin Raimondo

"Hillary Clinton's recent 'alt right' speech marks a new and dangerous low in what has become race to the bottom -- and, should she be elected, it has ominous foreign policy implications as well. Alarmed that Trump is reaching out to the African-American community, Mrs. Clinton tried to make the case that the GOP candidate is a apologist for such groups as the Ku Klux Klan (do they still exist?) and an obscure amalgam she dubbed the 'alt right.' As she named this latter group, there was a significant silence, a pause in the cheering: perhaps her audience thought she was having a senior moment of the intestinal variety. In any case, none of this is anything new: it's a variation on the 'Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy' theme that she has been dragging out ever since the 1990s." (08/29/16)

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Why Republicans and Democrats can’t agree on basic economic facts

The New Republic The New Republic
by Ian Anson

"Back in 1992, Democratic strategist James Carville uttered his famous recommendation to Bill Clinton ahead of the 1992 election: 'It’s the economy, stupid!' Political scientists beat Carville to the punch, though: As far back as the 1950’s, scholars were uncovering evidence that presidential candidates of the incumbent party tend to win when the economy is strong on Election Day. Presiding over a gloomy economy, in contrast, will guarantee a tortuous uphill climb for parties vying to maintain their place in the White House. ... The central findings should be apparent to anyone who remembers the last time their fiercely Republican aunt sat down to Thanksgiving dinner with her staunchly Democratic brother-in-law. Heading into the 2016 election, Aunt Reba the Republican is convinced the economy is in utter shambles, while Denny the Democrat is steadfast in his economic optimism." (08/29/16)

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Don’t bee-lieve the latest bee-pocalypse scare

Paul Driessen Heartland Institute
by Paul Driessen

"As stubborn facts ruin their narrative that neonicotinoid pesticides are causing a honeybee-pocalypse, environmental pressure groups are shifting to new scares to justify their demands for 'neonic' bans. Honeybee populations and colony numbers in the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia and elsewhere are growing. It is also becoming increasingly clear that the actual cause of bee die-offs and 'colony collapse disorders' is not neonics, but a toxic mix of predatory mites, stomach fungi, other microscopic pests, and assorted chemicals employed by beekeepers trying to control the beehive infestations." (08/29/16)

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Markets, not elections, are where your choices truly matter

Gary M. Galles Foundation for Economic Education
by Gary M Galles

"For voters, the benefits of becoming better informed about political decisions are lower than in their comparable private market decisions, but the costs of acquiring the necessary information to evaluate public policies are higher. To illustrate, compare the benefits and costs of making an informed decision about your own health insurance plan (assuming you are allowed that choice) to those necessary in evaluating alternative federal health insurance policies." (08/29/16)

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States of the unions

Paul Jacob Common Sense
by Paul Jacob

"As Americans contemplate the intellectual breakdown of our two major parties, Brits and Europeans are trying to figure out what the state of their union is. Does Brexit spell disaster for Europe? Germany's vice-chancellor is just the latest European bigwig to preach gloom and doom." (08/29/16)

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Using American power prudently

The American Prospect The American Prospect
by Lawrence Korb

"New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman argues that the next president must read Michael Mandelbaum’s latest book, Mission Failure: America and the World in the Post-Cold War Era, to avoid mistakes of the last several years and have a more successful national-security policy. Our next president should also read Andrew Bacevich’s latest book, America’s War for the Greater Middle East: A Military History. Between them, Mandelbaum and Bacevich have written more than 20 books on U.S. national-security policy. While these authors often overstate their case, they offer useful insights. Taking their critiques seriously will help prevent our next chief executive from reflexively following the advice of the foreign-policy establishment that Ben Rhodes, Obama’s deputy national security adviser for strategic communications, refers to as the Blob." (08/29/16)

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Most arguments against open borders lead to extremely un-libertarian positions

Notes On Liberty
by Zachary Woodman

"If anti-open borders libertarians treated any other issue like they do immigration, it would lead to some pretty absurd, anti-libertarian policy positions. For an example, as long as we have government-provided Medicare programs, allowing people to eat unhealthy foods or smoke will increase the cost of those welfare programs; following the logic of the argument above, the government would be justified in implementing paternalist policies that restrict people's right to consume what they want to reduce the burden of the welfare state. People with lower incomes are more likely to use welfare programs as well, so the government is justified in reducing their population size by restricting their right to reproduce through forced sterilization. Obviously, both these positions are absurd from a libertarian perspective." (08/28/16)

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South Korea can afford its own defense

The American Conservative The American Conservative
by Charles V Pena

"Under a cost-sharing pact, the South Koreans currently pay about 40 percent of the costs of keeping U.S. forces in their country. However, South Korea isn't paying a nickel of the estimated $1.6 billion cost of the THAAD battery; all it will do is provide the land and build a base. But there is no reason that South Korea can't pay for its THAAD battery -- or batteries, as officials there have previously said they want two -- by itself. Indeed, there is no reason South Korea can't handle its own defense entirely, obviating the need for the 28,500 U.S. troops currently on the Korean peninsula." (08/29/16)

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Latin American welfare states are crumbling, exposing progressive lies

PanAm Post PanAm Post
by Hana Fischer

"In Latin America, welfare programs like the ones instituted a decade ago with the rise of populist governments, serve primarily to attract voters. It is no surprise that these systems are designed to keep people in poverty and make them depend on the state. Around election time, leaders then frighten people by saying if the opposition wins, social assistance plans will come to an end. For some political parties, the poor are a means of retaining power." (08/28/16)

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How legal, branded heroin would make drugs safer

Ludwig von Mises Institute Ludwig von Mises Institute
by Chris Calton

"There may be no physical difference between Heinz and Great Value, and a consumer who believes this is the case will purchase the cheaper product. But if a consumer is not familiar with the latter brand, they have to weigh the cost benefit of a cheaper brand against the risk of getting an inferior product; with the brand name product, the quality is more certain. This has important implications on the black market. In the Soviet Union, for example, brands were done away with to reduce the heterogeneity of products. Soviet citizens circumvented this by learning to read barcodes to identify which products were produced in the superior factories. Branding has particularly important implications in the area of narcotics. When goods are made illegal, smugglers will continue to trade them, but the ability to establish brand consistency is suppressed." (08/29/16)

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Hillary and the Clinton Foundation: Exemplars of America’s political rot

CounterPunch CounterPunch
by Eric Draitser

"Hillary Clinton may be enjoying a comfortable lead in national polls, but she is far from enjoying a comfortable night's sleep given the ever-widening maelstrom of scandals engulfing her presidential bid. And while Clinton delights in bloviating about a decades-long 'vast, right wing conspiracy' against her, the fact is that it's the Clinton political machine's long and storied track record of criminality, duplicity, and corruption that haunts her like Lincoln's ghost silently skulking through White House bedrooms." (08/29/16)

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The twilight of Fox News

The Atlantic The Atlantic
by Derek Thompson

"October 7, 2016, will be the 20th birthday of the Fox News Channel, and at the moment, the network is experiencing the soap-operatic highs and lows typical of any teenager on television. In many ways, the summer of 2016 may go down in Fox News history as the company's nadir. Its founder and leader Roger Ailes has been dishonorably dispatched, the remaining executives are dealing with a flurry of sexual harassment lawsuits, and one of its most public faces, Sean Hannity, has ignominiously remodeled himself as a gutless Trump whisperer. And yet Fox News'[s] fortunes are ascendant, at least in the most quantifiable sense. The network's annual profit in 2015 soared by about 20 percent." (08/29/16)

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Top five reasons it’s okay for Libertarians to criticize Gary Johnson

The Libertarian Republic The Libertarian Republic
by Aya Katz

"This year, the Libertarian Party has the opportunity to win over many more voters than ever before, and a possible upset in our favor looms on the horizon. Because of this, we Libertarians have been urged not to openly criticize our candidate, Governor Gary Johnson. It would be like airing dirty laundry in public, we are told. We are urged to show the same kind of solidarity that families used to display in support of the sole breadwinner back in the 'good old days.' Otherwise, we are warned, the enemy will win. But there are some very good reasons why it is more than okay for Libertarians to criticize Gary Johnson. Here are the top five." (08/28/16)


Philippine anti-drug strategy: “Kill them all”

Jacob Sullum Reason
by Jacob Sullum

"Thirty-three countries have laws that authorize the death penalty for drug offenses. The Philippines is not one of them. But since Rodrigo Duterte was elected president last May after promising to 'fatten all the fish' in Manila Bay with the bodies of criminals, police and vigilantes have killed hundreds of drug dealers and users. Testifying before the Philippine Senate last Tuesday, National Police Chief Ronald dela Rosa said cops had killed 756 drug suspects since July 1, the day after Duterte was sworn in as president, while 1,160 people had been killed 'outside police operations.' The death toll rose by 137 between Monday and Tuesday, so by now it is presumably in the thousands." (08/29/16)

1 Comment »

John Locke and American individualism

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

"Personal and economic freedom are under attack in the United States and in many other parts of the world. It is seen most clearly in this year's contest for the White House in the U.S. presidential election. In all the rhetoric about America’s political, social and economic problems that is heard from the lips of the Democratic and Republican Party candidates for the presidency there is one phrase that is hardly ever mentioned or considered important: the liberty of the individual." (08/29/16)

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The Lone Writer theory

The Libertarian Enterprise The Libertarian Enterprise
by J Kent Hastings

"Stephen King is certainly not the Lone Writer working characters central to the Kennedy assassination into fiction. The earliest writer to take a shot at it from the Grassy Knoll, appeared in a Samuel Edward Konkin III publication as well as other libertarian and anarchist counter-cultural publications, and Discordian works associated with the likes of Robert Anton Wilson. I'm referring, of course, to Kerry Wendell Thornley's 1962 manuscript of The Idle Warriors. ... This year, the Dallas Morning News reviewed the miniseries 11.22.63, much of it set in their backyard, and mentioned another libertarian anarchist writer published by Samuel Edward Konkin III (along with Robert Anton Wilson) -- J. Neil Schulman, a writer who also has articles appearing in the pages of Mondo Cult magazine." (08/28/16)

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Permanent record

The Honest Courtesan
by Maggie McNeill

'"As children, we were told that serious infractions might go on our 'permanent record' which certainly sounds ominous to a misbehaving ten-year-old. But despite being the subject of jokes by generations of comedians, there really was no such thing until some alliance of sociopaths decided it was a good idea to put armed thugs in grammar schools to arrest children too young to spell the word 'arrest' for offenses that when I was a lass might've been punished by writing lines, staying after school or (at worst) having one's parents called by the principal. ... in recent years, we’ve seen the schoolchild’s 'permanent record' nightmare become a reality." (08/26/16)

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Five differences between the alt-right and libertarianism

Jeffrey Tucker Foundation for Economic Education
by Jeffrey A Tucker

"Every ideology has a theory of history .... Whereas libertarianism speaks of individual choice, alt-right theory draws attention to collectives on the move. It imagines that despite appearances, we all default in our thinking back to some more fundamental instinct about our identity as a people, which is either being shored up by a more intense consciousness or eroded by a deracination and dispossession from what defines us. To criticize this as racist is often true but superficial. What's really going on here is the depersonalization of history itself: the principle that we are all being buffeted about by Olympian historical forces beyond our control as mere individuals. It takes something mighty and ominous like a great leader, an embodiment of one of these great forces, to make a dent in history's narrative." (08/26/16)


Feeding the ducks

L. Neil Smith The Libertarian Enterprise
by L Neil Smith

"Robert Heinlein said that the smaller any unit of government happens to be, the harder it is to move. It's relatively easy to make enough fuss to alter the course of a federal government, for example, but everybody 'knows' you can't fight City Hall and that the most viciously dictatorial level of government is the school board. My daughter's home schooled. And generally, I ignore my city government because I have far bigger fish to fry (or I'm taking the coward's way out, you may decide for yourself which). But because I'm willing to bet that one city government across this country is pretty much like another (they should all be given 24 hours to get out of town) and the trends they set have a regrettable tendency to spread upward and outward, I think it's appropriate to discuss them from time to time, so that we'll all have an idea of what we're up against." (08/28/16)

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Epi-Pen prices soar as FDA makes life tough for its competitors

Mary Ruwart
by Mary J Ruwart

"Teva had submitted an application for a generic version of the Epi-Pen to the FDA. However, the agency felt 'certain major deficiencies' needed to be addressed. Marketing of Epi-Pen’s new competitor will be delayed until at least 2017. Adamis wants to market a syringe prefilled with epinephrine, the active drug in the Epi-Pen. Some diabetics must inject themselves with insulin, so use of a syringe, rather than an Epi-Pen-like device, is not unprecedented. The FDA wouldn’t approve it without more studies on patient usability and product stress testing. Mylan is protected from still another competitor by regulatory delays." (08/26/16)

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Bipartisan battering of freedom

James Bovard Future of Freedom Foundation
by James Bovard

"For more than 40 years, Republicans have been promising to cut federal spending. In the same period, federal outlays have inched up by a few trillion dollars. But the Grand Old Party continues singing the same song -- though voters may finally be losing confidence in the opposition team. The latest pratfall occurred last December, once again illustrating that Republican congressional leaders are like a football coach who believes the secret to winning is to punt early and often." (08/26/16)

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Clinton campaign: Controversy versus corruption

The American Prospect The American Prospect
by Eliza Newlin Carney

"This summer’s never-ending Democratic email disclosures have shed an increasingly unflattering light on the privileged relationship that big donors enjoy with Hillary Clinton and with party officials. Major Clinton Foundation contributors sought and in some cases received expedited meetings with Clinton when she served as secretary of state, according to the latest batch of emails released by the conservative group Judicial Watch. The July WikiLeaks release of Democratic National Committee emails also detailed the special rewards, such as VIP roundtables and receptions, that party officials showered on top-tier contributors. The disclosures have been jarring on several fronts." (08/25/16)

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Why do some people think that the First Amendment exists only for them?

Timothy J. Taylor Authority!
by Timothy J Taylor

"Is the USA a free country? If it is then why all the fuss about conscientious objectors, and those who choose to sit out the national anthem, or pledge of allegiance? Why do some people think that the First Amendment exists only for them?" (08/28/16)

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Farm follies: The cheese stands alone (with its hand out)

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

"Farming 101: When so many people produce so much of the same thing that the supply of that thing exceeds the demand for it, prices fall. When prices fall far enough that not all the producers can turn a profit, the producers claim that farming is extra super special and that it's the government’s job to make it profitable so that no one who wants to farm must instead go build houses, drive trucks or mop floors to make ends meet. That's why each and every American pays more than $300 to farmers each and every year before actually getting any edible farm goods -- and then pays artificially high prices for those goods." (08/26/16)

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The inflation conundrum

Mises Canada
by Emile Woolf

"As an economic term, 'inflation' is shorthand for 'inflation of the money supply.' The general public, however, usually takes it to mean 'rising prices' which is not surprising since one of the common effects of an increase in the money supply is higher prices. However, supporters of government policy often say, 'If quantitative easing (QE) and its terrible twin, fractional reserve banking, are so awful, why have we got no inflation?' To address this conundrum, there are six related factors that are noteworthy ..."

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The revolution is NOT in Bernie’s hands

The New Republic The New Republic
by David Dayen

"When Bernie Sanders stepped to the stage on Wednesday to announce the launching of 'Our Revolution,' a political organization dedicated to keeping the momentum of his presidential campaign going by supporting candidates at all levels of government, he inadvertently admitted that it wouldn’t do much good. 'Real change never ever takes place from the top on down. It’s not some guy signing a bill,' Sanders said at the live-streamed launch event. 'It always takes place from the bottom up when millions of people come together and demand fundamental change in the country.' Sanders surely knows that a revolution of the kind he deems necessary isn’t likely to unfold through independent-expenditure TV ads on behalf of down-ballot candidates." (08/26/16)

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Crisis and opportunity

CounterPunch CounterPunch
by Rob Urie

"Left unstated in the competitive lesser-evilism of Party politics is the incapacity for political resolution in any relevant dimension. Donald Trump is 'dangerous' only by overlooking how dangerous the American political leadership has been for the last one and one-half centuries. So the question becomes: dangerous to whom? Without the most murderous military in the world, public institutions like the IMF dedicated to economic subjugation and predatory corporations that wield the 'free-choices' of mandated consumption, how dangerous would any politicians really be? And with them, how not-dangerous have liberal Democrats actually been? Candidates for political office are but manifestations of class interests put forward as systemic intent." (08/26/16)

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