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Monday, November 24

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photo courtesy of Kansas Poetry

Original article "A new report released today by the University of Toronto’s Citizen Lab—a multidisciplinary research organization specializing in cyber security, hacking, and online surveillance—shows state sponsored hackers are targeting human rights groups and political dissidents with impunity."
Original article "Even if you take into account the abandonment of its outposts in Iraq -- which hosted 505 U.S. bases at the height of America’s last war there -- and the marked downsizing of its presence in Afghanistan -- which once had at least 800 bases (depending on how you count them) -- the U.S. continues to garrison the Greater Middle East in a major way. "
Original article "The changes from the Snowden disclosures are found far from the Kabuki theater of the D.C. political class, and they are unquestionably significant. That does not mean the battle is inevitably won: The U.S. remains the most powerful government on earth, has all sorts of ways to continue to induce the complicity of big Silicon Valley firms, and is not going to cede dominion over the internet easily. But the battle is underway and the forces of reform are formidable—not...
Original article “The job hopping has long fostered a culture of coziness that, even without direct evidence of impropriety, generated a public perception that regulators and bankers form unholy alliances. But the new accounts of a regulator and a banker actually sharing confidential documents — violating a cardinal rule of the regulatory world — suggest that those impressions may no longer be purely hypothetical.”
Original article No, drivers are not being exploited, despite what many socialists/progressives/leftists of all stripes proclaim.
Original article "If we are looking at inflation in its narrowest term, the purchasing power of a unit of currency, then no, we don’t see inflation. The problem with looking at an inflation index is the same problem as Keynesian economics: it aggregates all the important information away."
Original article "Ostensibly, the CPI is a linear combination of the “prices” of things/stuff consumers could actually purchase weighted by a percentage that the “ideal consumer” spends on any particular stuff/thing in his “ideal” basket. The main problem here is that the “prices” used are not the prices a consumer would actually pay; instead the real price for an item is scaled by what the BLS calls a “Hedonic Quality Adjustment (HQA)”. The HQA...
Original article "The latest news on the burgeoning police state in the US -- a page-one investigative report in the New York Times disclosing that at least 40 agencies of the US government from the Department of Health and Human Services to the Supreme Court (!) are using undercover agents to spy on and even to entrap law-abiding American citizens -- suggests that we have passed the tipping point. One can no longer speak in terms of the US as a country that is moving towards ...
Original article "The book-cooking could mean bad news for public pensions and other programs that rely on these budgets. The report finds that, nationwide, states have unfunded liabilities of nearly $5 trillion, or $15,000 per American (even though the states allegedly low-ball that number at $2.7 trillion)."
Original article "A visually impaired Florida man said police took him to an unfamiliar area and left him there in retaliation after his stepfather recorded cell phone video of a pot bust."
Original article Can you imagine the hell we'll have to pay when economic collapse occurs?
Original article I'm sure these fantastic results will be more than enough to convince many states to adopt them.
Original article "...decentralized darkmarkets promise a number of features that surpass those offered by sites like eBay, Aliexpress or Amazon, as multisignature escrow, P2P lending, low fees, Ricardian contracts, decentralized arbiters system… Darkmarkets are working as decentralized and distributed organizations."
Original article "Whatsapp will integrate the open-source software Textsecure, created by privacy-focused non-profit Open Whisper Systems, which scrambles messages with a cryptographic key that only the user can access and never leaves his or her device. The result is practically uncrackable encryption for hundreds of millions of phones and tablets that have Whatsapp installed—by some measures the world’s largest-ever implementation of this standard of encryption in a messaging service....
Economics for Dummies
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Paul Hein 2014-07-31 07:06
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR I don’t want to deceive you: I am not going to present a sort of Economics 101 for the benefit of the economically illiterate. In fact, I am myself among that number, never having studied economics. What I am suggesting is that, in the current financial crisis, economics may be, in my opinion, somewhat irrelevant. It may be foolish to think that there...
Who Owes What?
0
Paul Hein 2014-07-22 07:00
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR I recently came across some old news reports from 2009, when, in the early days of July, the media concerned itself with the really significant news: the death of Michael Jackson. However, we were also given a glimpse of other matters, admittedly less important, such as the nation’s perilous finances. What I most vividly remember was the report that...
The Advantage of Panarchy
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Paul Bonneau 2014-07-14 05:32
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR The crucial advantage of Panarchy is that it converts aggressive violence into defense. Most people on the Internet tend to “stick with their own kind”; for example, liberals read only sites like Daily Kos. However, when they venture out and run into those of different persuasions, you always see a battle of competing arguments, and the...
Small Things
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Paul Hein 2014-07-08 07:14
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR The small things in life are sometimes enclosed in ritual. There’s nothing wrong with this per se; it often adds an appropriate appreciation to the simple thing being done--as, for instance, being married. The accompanying ceremony may give the couple an awareness of the importance and significance of what they are doing. Sometimes it can be amusing....
Dick Cheney and the Dead Pool
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Douglas Herman 2014-07-07 06:41
Column by Douglas Herman. Exclusive to STR “It is a universal trend for peoples to unite in a national emergency.” ~ Uri Avnery Dick Cheney rarely reads my columns here at STR. Certainly I’m glad that millions of Winston Smiths over at NSA read my stuff. I want them to read my stuff. I want young and impressionable minds, like Edward Snowden, to read STR and have ideas implanted...
A Pleasantly Filled Dungeon in My Back Yard
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Kevin M. Patten 2014-07-03 06:52
Column by Kevin M. Patten. Exclusive to STR P { margin-bottom: 0.08in; }A:link { }“This ain't no place for no hero. This ain't no place for no better man. This ain't no place for no hero To call "home." ~ The Heavy, Short Change Hero It’s been now, for me, more than five years of freedom; and eight years since I first experienced the Los Angeles county jail...
Logical Fallacies?
8.5
Paul Bonneau 2014-06-30 07:23
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR I vaguely remember when I first discovered logical fallacies (hint: it was not in a government school); I recall being thrilled that there were some boundaries for argumentation that could be used to reject some poor arguments and help find the truth of things. I have long used Stephen Downes’ site as a particularly good exposition of them, since it...
Cancerfornia: A Letter to the Golden State
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Kevin M. Patten 2014-06-27 06:33
Column by Kevin Patten. Published in late 2009 There is a cancer growing inside the State of California. It is crushing the social stability of our counties and destroying the lives of thousands. The mass media has lied to you, saying it is in your best interest. But do not be deceived by this creature, for it is our own prison system – The California Department of Corrections and...
Kindness Generates Kindness
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Douglas Herman 2014-06-27 06:16
Column by Douglas Herman. Exclusive to STR “I’d love to change the world But I don't know what to do So I'll leave it up to you” ~ Ten Years After Memorial Day weekend. Mixed emotions. Sunshine and flowers in bloom and flags flying everywhere. Pretty girls and propaganda on TV and more empty, patriotic slogans from those who want to stir up trouble but never served....
Through Thick and Thin: Ahoy!
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Mark Davis 2014-06-25 06:17
Column by Mark Davis. Exclusive to STR Mini-statists love to use lifeboat analogies in an effort to reveal a weakness in the Non-Aggression Principle (NAP) and/or in respect for property rights (self-ownership).   But what is revealed?  These lifeboat situations are, of course, not even close to being universal experiences.  These analogies are used by statists to make the...
I Don't Mind If You Keep Voting, But Do You Mind If I Keep Laughing While You Do?
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Wilton D. Alston 2008-08-26 16:00
Exclusive to STR "It is the continuing decline in faith in the politicization of society that has, for well over a year, made the 2008 presidential race the preoccupation of the mainstream media. The media must continue to advertise the products and services of the establishment owners, just as it does for the sellers of prescription drugs and other nostrums. Still, the outcome of the 2008...
A Dollar in Peril
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Jim Davies 2008-11-02 16:00
Exclusive to STR One of the nice things about not voting is that one can enjoy a little sport at the expense of those who do. Let me share with you an example or three. A few days before November 4th, I visited a nearby town, and first called at the government postal monopoly for some stamps so that I could write to an innocent friend incarcerated in a government prison. Standing in line, I said...
Deadliest Catch: One Alaska Fisherman to Another
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Douglas Herman 2008-09-28 15:00
Exclusive to STR September 29, 2008
The Confessions of Osama Bin Laden
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Douglas Herman 2008-11-17 16:00
I confess I did not know then, but I know now, why you Americans stopped chasing me at Tora Bora in October 2001.
Do You Really Want Freedom, Or Are You Just Kidding Yourself?
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Wilton D. Alston 2009-06-09 15:00
Exclusive to STR June 10, 2009 'The people have always some champion whom they set over them and nurse into greatness. This and no other is the root from which a tyrant springs; when he first appears he is a protector.' ~ Plato 'Wherever is found what is called a paternal government, there is found state education. It has been discovered that the best way to ensure implicit obedience is to...
A New Strategy For Liberty - Part 1: An Open Letter To Ron Paul Supporters
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Stewart Browne 2009-05-17 15:00
Exclusive to STR May 18, 2009 Dear Ron Paul Supporters, Thank you. Thank you for giving your time, effort, and money to the cause of liberty. Thank you for taking a stand for what you know is right, and putting yourselves out there in favor of opinions the State would rather you didn't hold.
A New Strategy For Liberty - Part 2: Secession in Three Easy Steps
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Stewart Browne 2009-05-17 15:00
Exclusive to STR May 18, 2009 Then Saul dressed David in his own tunic. He put a coat of armor on him and a bronze helmet on his head. David fastened on his sword over the tunic and tried walking around, because he was not used to them.
Objectivist Resistance to Anarchy: A Problem of Concept Formation?
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Carrie Burdzinski 2009-05-19 15:00
Exclusive to STR As a former Orthodox Objectivist who now recognizes anarchy's intrinsic coherence, I have particular interest in studying the ethical basis of anarchism. Roy A. Childs, Jr.'s "Objectivism and the State: An Open Letter to Ayn Rand" and "The Epistemological Basis of Anarchism: An Open Letter to Objectivists and Libertarians," and Nicholas Dykes' "Mrs....
Charity Never Faileth
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B.R. Merrick 2009-05-13 15:00
Exclusive to STR May 14, 2009 The title of this article comes from 1 Corinthians 13:8. I can't call myself a believer anymore, but I do believe quite strongly in the need for each of us to be charitable. I think it's good for us. I know that for me, it helps to remind me of things I tend to forget, when I think of what it is that I lack. There are plenty of people worse off than I am, or...
Functional Rights: The Elephant in the Parlor, Part II
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Scarmig 2009-06-03 15:00
Exclusive to STR June 4, 2009 Part II: Rights are' So what are rights? If there are none of these things, functionally, despite what anyone might claim, then what are they? How do they function in daily life? How are they exercised inalienably by every person everywhere that has ever existed, regardless of the government that claimed authority over them? George Potter wrote:
'Obamacare Nightmare Edition' of Ringo's Law and the Healthcare System of Doom MUST READ
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Glen Allport 2013-10-30 07:02
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR Introduction for this 2013 Edition As I write this – October 28, 2013, more than four years after the column below was posted (here with minor edits; see the original at this link if you wish) – NBC News is reporting that the Obama administration “knew millions could not keep their health insurance" under Obamacare, and has known...
An Armed March on Washington? MUST READ
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Alex R. Knight III 2013-05-07 05:52
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR Perhaps never before have I encountered a proposal within Liberty Movement circles that has generated more controversy faster and further than Adam Kokesh’s planned July 4th march on Washington, District of Criminals, in which he states that himself and the other participants “will march with rifles loaded & slung across our backs to...
The Orwellian Paradigm--Killing You, For Your Own Safety MUST READ
9.625
fmoghul 2013-04-10 07:12
Column by Faisal Moghul. Exclusive to STR Almost 30 years ago, cultural critic Neil Postman argued in Amusing Ourselves to Death that television’s gradual replacement of the printing press has created a dumbed-down culture driven by mindless entertainment. In this context, Postman claimed that Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World correctly foresaw our dystopian future, as opposed to George...
Frameworks, Virtual Reality and Civil Society: A Manifesto for the Doctrine of Love and Freedom MUST READ
10
Glen Allport 2012-12-06 07:44
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR Perhaps I should say this paradigm shift is resuming. The healthier incoming paradigm is a modern, more accurate, better-supported, and better-understood version of one that began the shift towards a free, healthy, and prosperous world more than three centuries ago and which informed the creation of the United States itself: Classical Liberalism. - 1...
Timeline of a World-Killing Paradigm Shift MUST READ
0
Glen Allport 2012-05-13 23:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR   Part 3 of "Could the Non-Aggression Principle Stop the Sixth Great Extinction?"   Part One of this series discussed the Non-Aggression principle, calling it "the libertarian half of the Golden Rule" (compassion being the other half) and describing the function of aggression in creating not only tyranny and war but also...
Terrorist Alert: Government Extremists Threaten Americans MUST READ
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Glen Allport 2012-03-25 23:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR   Question: are you more terrified by Muslim extremists, by "domestic terrorists" – or by your own government? Which group is more likely to assault you? To kill you? To unjustly imprison and even torture you?   The U.S. federal government has ALREADY:   Built and is staffing a huge gulag of concentration camps ["...
The State Is a Firing Squad MUST READ
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JGVibes 2012-02-17 00:00
Column by JGVibes.   Exclusive to STR   Although the common perception of human nature is very negative, the truth is that most people who aren’t mentally ill have a very difficult time committing acts of violence. Usually it takes a sizeable payment and a fair amount of manipulation to convince someone to act violently, and even then a tremendous amount of guilt typically...
How the 1% Took America's Wealth--and How to Get It Back MUST READ
9.25
Glen Allport 2011-12-01 00:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR  - 1 - Plundering Wealth vs Producing Wealth   In recent decades, the rich have gathered an increasing share of the total wealth in the United States. As this wealth disparity grows and especially as large numbers of the formerly middle class fall into poverty and even into homelessness, this flow of wealth from main street (from anyone not...
'Anarchy or Minarchy' Is Only Half the Question, Part 2 MUST READ
9.5
Glen Allport 2011-04-13 02:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR  This is Part 2 of a response to a column by Wesley Messamore. Last week's Part One of this column discussed the following:   ·      Minarchy: Lighting a Match to the Fuse of Tyranny ·      Anarchy: By Itself, Yang without Yin ·      The Missing Key...
Oh, Stanley MUST READ
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tzo 2011-03-30 02:00
Column by tzo. Exclusive to STR   Stanley Milgram was an American social psychologist best known for his Milgram Experiment, a study conducted in the 1960s.   Dr. Milgram wanted to research the relationship between obedience and authority, and he was at least partly motivated to do so by the events of the Nazi Holocaust. It greatly troubled him that so many supposedly good people could...