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Thursday, October 8

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Serenity is the guest editor today.

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photo courtesy of Luis Medina

Original article Even people who are inclined to believe in a universal, objective foundation for morality are sometimes prone to the impression that in certain situations invoking “moral” arguments is rather insincere. For example, moral arguments in favor of (income) equality are often dismissed by libertarian-leaning individuals as just a sanitized expression of resentment and envy by “losers.” But can this argument be generalized? Is moral rhetoric simply a way of pulling someone...
Original article What we miss, according to Graeber, is this simple fact: “Police are bureaucrats with weapons.” Rather than protecting us from genuine threats, though sometimes they do, “they spend most of their time enforcing all those endless rules and regulations about who can buy or smoke or sell or build or eat or drink what where.” This is something that rings tragically true over the last year or so.
Original article Here's a clue: When someone points out the silliness of your position or otherwise disagrees with your absurd claim, it isn't necessarily a sign they are angry. You may be projecting.
Original article Andrea Heath, a former police officer in Desert Hot Springs, California, died three years ago at forty-four years of age. Her untimely death was indisputably the result of trauma she suffered in the line of duty.  Yet she was not the subject of an elaborate state funeral, nor was her name inscribed on the Officer Down Memorial Page. She was an authentic victim of what can legitimately be called a war on cops – specifically, the unending war waged within law enforcement...
Original article John McCain has called for sending the Free Syrian Army surface-to-air missiles to bring down Russian planes. Not only could this lead to a U.S.-Russia clash, but U.S.-backed Syrian rebels have a record of transferring weapons to the al-Qaida affiliate.
Original article The Mises Institute recently spoke with Nicolás Cachanosky, an Argentina-born economist, now at the Metropolitan State University of Denver, who is familiar with sovereign debt issues. We asked him about a recent UN resolution that seeks to make it easier for governments to default on their debts.
Original article This past weekend, I saw Pawn Sacrifice, the new movie about Bobby Fischer, the world-renowned American chess player who defeated Russian Boris Spassky to become the first American ever to win the world championship in chess. It was an interesting and entertaining account of Fischer’s life up until the time he won the championship in 1972 in Reykjavik, Iceland. I’ll leave reviews of the movie to the pros, but I’ll recommend one entitled '' Bobby Fischer Won...
Original article In complete reversal of course from the stated position of her predecessor, Attorney General Loretta Lynch says the federal government shouldn’t mandate police departments to report lethal shootings of civilians.
Original article Tomas Lindahl of the Francis Crick Institute in Hertfordshire, UK, Paul Modrich of Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, and Aziz Sancar of the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, shared the prize for each finding different ways our DNA is repaired.
Original article THE HEAVENS—Killing four and critically wounding several others, armed guards dispatched from the Right Hand of God reportedly opened fire early Monday morning on a group of angels attempting to escape from heaven. (the onion)
Original article photos
Patrick B. Yancey 2003-09-24 16:00
I despair, I fear, of ever communicating a thought to anyone who does not already agree with me. Is the point of discourse the sharing of reasoned, rational viewpoints, seasoned by experience and tempered with reflection, or is it the discussion of triviality, the weather, what Movie Star #35 is doing in his latest contrived vehicle, or what his tacked-on love interest is wearing in it? Why is...
Left and Right Are One Now
Tibor R. Machan 2003-09-23 16:00
Hearing President Bush at the UN on September 23rd reminded me that the Florida 2000 decision probably didn't make any difference after all. Sure, I find Bush more simpatico, just because Gore possesses such an unappealing personality. But that shouldn't matter for political purposes. What ought to count there is which of these individuals is likely to promote the best protection for...
Patrick B. Yancey 2003-09-23 16:00
"What force has a multitude? They can only force me who obey a higher law than I." -Thoreau, "Civil Disobedience" I live in solitary confinement. What most, however, would consider the literal, prosaic interpretation of this concept is, happily, not my implication. I do not feel imprisoned, or deprived of any comfort or liberty I choose to enjoy, within the limits of expense and...
Federal Register Watch
Nick Ebinger 2003-09-22 16:00
What freedoms have you lost this week? The Federal Register is the official daily publication for Rules, Proposed Rules, and Notices of Federal agencies and organizations, as well as Executive Orders and other Presidential Documents. This column attempts to summarize the highlights (or lowlights) of the Federal Register during the preceding week. Instructions for subscribing to the Federal...
Finally, a Drug That Should Be Banned
Michael Tennant 2003-09-21 16:00
'The measure of the state's success is that the word anarchy frightens people, while the word state does not.' ' Joseph Sobran Suppose someone invented a new drug that could significantly reduce the risk of contracting cancer. Suppose, further, that the drug was free and that all you had to do to be protected from cancer was to take the drug once a day. Would you take it?
Free to Be Me: Homeschooling Advances Liberty
Isabel Lyman 2003-09-20 16:00
"Goat-Boy Goes to Harvard" was how Grant Colfax was once described. In addition to raising dairy goats, the teenager's admission into the venerable New England institution, in 1983, attracted national media attention because he had been homeschooled by his bookish, hard-working parents - David and Micki - on a ranch in northern California . While home education wasn't a new phenomenon,...
Fox TV News Ain't So Fair and Balanced
Tibor R. Machan 2003-09-17 16:00
Two items: Some companies are now producing food with low carbohydrates, seeing a demand rising from customers who wish to try that approach to loosing weight; and Seattle 's citizens are voting on 10 cent tax on espresso coffee.
Police and State
John Spain 2003-09-17 16:00
The police; the fuzz; the man; cops. Our self professed guardians or shepherds. Those among us who have been granted by the State direct, physical control over the rest of us. It's a dirty job, does it really have to be done to us? Almost everywhere there is great ambivalence or outright hostility to the cops. Even the staunchest 'law and order' man scoffs when he himself gets a traffic...
A Tax on the Tiny: Air Bags and Nanny Gadgets
Cat Farmer 2003-09-16 16:00
It's time to replace my trusty old 1991 Honda, which I have loved since I bought it to replace the earlier Honda that preceded it in my affections. How I've dreaded this day: Now I'm facing a head-on collision with the issue of airbags, and assorted other nanny gadgets that may not be optional whether I buy new or used.
Criminal and Political Minds
Tibor R. Machan 2003-09-16 16:00
If anything unites most criminals it is their belief that instant forceful action is best. Robbing, raping, murdering or assaulting others to get what one wants from them seems to them more effective than peaceful means to their ends. This is their form of immaturity and, as adults, their moral failing. (I am talking here about real criminals, not those made criminal by government via, for...
Taoism and Anarchy
Mark Gillespie 2003-10-21 16:00
I have studied many religions in my search for truth. In my searches, I embraced a few. I was a nominal Christian for many years and converted to Islam about six years ago. Of course, I have left all of those religions behind, in my never-ending quest for truth. However, there is one "religion" that I studied that seemed to contain more truth than any other. That way is Taoism.
An Open Letter to the Peace Movement
Roderick Long 2003-03-10 17:00
Dear Peace Activists:All honour to you. In your opposition to the United States' impending war on Iraq, you represent a welcome voice for sanity and civilisation, lifted up against the incessant baying of the dogs of war.But I want to urge you to follow the logic of your position just a bit further.Much has been said, and eloquently so, about the need, in dealings between nation and nation, to...
How I Said No to the Automatic Social Security Number
Scarmig 2003-12-11 17:00
This is the story of how I successfully refused to accept a Social Security Number for my child. I simply said 'no.' Really. That's how easy it was. I just said no, again, and again. On the Texas Application for Birth Certificate, which I was unable to get a copy of for this article, there is a check box down at the bottom of the page. It says, and I'm paraphrasing, 'Check here to have your...
Supreme Court Lets Dogs Go Fishing...for Drugs
Rex Curry 2005-01-25 17:00
A new Supreme Court case states that cops can take dogs fishing. Dogs can go fishing for drugs in Illinois vs. Caballes. As an attorney, I am often consulted by people victimized in searches by dogs trained to smell drugs. A drug dog's skills are often overestimated because people anthropomorphize dogs. A humanlike quality that dogs have is that they are natural libertarians with no interest in...
Radical Solidarity and Moderate Anarchism
Anthony Gregory 2005-01-27 17:00
Libertarians, and especially anarchistic libertarians, are known for their principles and strong ideology. This has often been, but does not have to be, a double-edged sword in the fight for freedom. To be a libertarian, one must embrace the Non-aggression Principle, or at least come to the same policy conclusions as one would based on the principle. Some libertarians say they don't like the...
The Suppression of Dissent
Jim Davies 2005-10-25 16:00
Exclusive to STR The jury is still out, as I write these words. Its verdict may be in by the time you read them, and there's a blog with the latest news--but that's okay because the point of this article is not to comment on the trial's outcome but to show what government had to do, in order try to silence an influential advocate of freedom. Its conclusion will be that government is wholly unfit...
The Power of One
Jim Davies 2005-11-21 17:00
Exclusive to STR Nobody is better qualified than my friend Per Bylund to propose, as he did in a recent STR article, that we who yearn for liberty "save the world through saving [our]selves." Per is not only a brilliant thinker and prolific author (in two languages!) he founded an anarchist website before many of us got our brains in gear and has engaged in debate there all comers from...
Be Free
Mark Davis 2005-07-10 16:00
The state has grown too big and powerful and conversely the individual appears small and powerless. Libertarians of all stripes can debate endlessly on why this has come about and where we should ideally be instead. When the question of what to do about it comes up, there is typically a moment of silence and perhaps a chuckle or two coupled with some frustrated cynicism. After this moment of...
Utopia vs. Liberty
Richard Rieben 2005-07-18 16:00
In his insightful analysis of the Dark Side, STR writer Jonathan David Morris notes that, "The Dark Side of the Force is not evil for evil's sake. It's evil because it believes the ends always justify the means . . . .
The Preamble Reconsidered
Jim Davies 2006-05-17 16:00
Exclusive to STR The Preamble to the United States Constitution is surely one of the most sublime paragraphs ever written. Before this dissection begins, let's prop it up and admire it in all its glory: We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure...
Do We Need a Vaccine for Hubris? MUST READ
D. Saul Weiner 2015-02-13 09:13
Column by D. Saul Weiner. Exclusive to STR There are a lot of heated exchanges going on right now in social media related to vaccination. Many people have become convinced that parents who do not vaccinate are jeopardizing the health of others and that vaccines for children should be mandated. Politicians who are expected to run for president in 2016 are starting to weigh in on the topic and some...
'Obamacare Nightmare Edition' of Ringo's Law and the Healthcare System of Doom MUST READ
Glen Allport 2013-10-30 08:02
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
Alex R. Knight III 2013-05-07 06:52
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
fmoghul 2013-04-10 08:12
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
Glen Allport 2012-12-06 08:44
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
Glen Allport 2012-05-14 00:00
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
Glen Allport 2012-03-26 00:00
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
JGVibes 2012-02-17 01:00
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
Glen Allport 2011-12-01 01:00
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
Glen Allport 2011-04-13 03:00
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...