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Monday, March 30

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photo courtesy of Tommie Hansen

Original article This article is comprehensive (17,000 words) and covers everything you need to know about why mass surveillance is dangerous (whether you "have nothing to hide" or not), what kinds of surveillance are happening now, and what dystopian surveillance mechanisms we may have in the near future.
Original article "A passphrase is like a password, but longer and more secure. In essence, it’s an encryption key that you memorize. Once you start caring more deeply about your privacy and improving your computer security habits, one of the first roadblocks you’ll run into is having to create a passphrase. You can’t secure much without one."
Original article End the ridiculous War on Some Drugs.
Original article "If you’ve noticed that the national security policies of Pres. Barack Obama’s administration are almost indistinguishable from those of the previous Republican administration and wondered why, Glennon has a “disquieting explanation” for you."
Original article "Google wants to attack independent news media, it seems to me, now, in order to prevent coverage damaging to the Obama government and other major world powers from individuals reporting the truth about war, espionage, and violations of civil liberties.  For what benefit?  Google wants more government influence, government contracts, power, and money, it seems clear, to me, from their actions."
Original article A great summary of the conflict and its geopolitical significance.
Original article "Rumours are flying that the owner of a beachfront mansion in Hawaii, which was once used to film the hit TV series “Magnum PI”, is none other than President Obama – the same President who warns us that global warming, and rising sea levels, are a greater danger to the future of America than Islamic terrorism."
Original article "The overwhelming majority of police brutality cases stem from the war on drugs. When so many people are tasked with finding and prosecuting those in possession of a substance deemed illegal, the interactions become more frequent and less cordial. If we end that, we get the state out of the private lives of most individuals. This will only serve to lessen the scope of police harassment, in turn lessening the instance of brutality and killings."
Original article "They are all welfare ranchers subsidized by US taxpayers, and you know who are the biggest welfare ranchers of all, grazing livestock on the hundreds of millions of acres of public grass and forest land, all assisted by public subsidies paid for by US taxpayers? Billionaires that populate Forbes rich lists."
Original article War is a racket, and bankers are the biggest winners.
Original article "And here we are today, in March 2015, just 3½ years after said “point of no return,” with the world at its low economic point of our lifetimes; debt not only at historic highs, but risingparabolically; the “final currency war” more explosive than ever; and global social discontent at unprecedented levels due to the inflation and wealth disparity caused by such suicidal monetary policies. Clearly, the root cause of this economic hell is the global fiat...
Original article "Former Internal Revenue Service employees have access to your sensitive financial information. So do current employees who aren't authorized to see such data. Even some visitors to IRS facilities may have access to sensitive material. Unless the IRS patches up its information security, warns a Government Accountability Office report, "taxpayers could be exposed to loss of privacy and to financial loss and damages resulting from identity theft or other financial crimes.""
Original article "Without a doubt, the core principles of that “paranoid” libertarian impulse were present to both motivate and justify their selfless defiance of bad laws. That “impulse” led them to actions that exemplify a historic unification of radical libertarianism and civil disobedience as underwritten by natural law, a potentially powerful combination of ideas if it is wielded responsibly and inspires others to follow suit."
Original article And once there is a viable one, it will be very, very difficult to stop.
Original article "Tutanota is Latin for “secure message,” at least if you separate the two words. The company was founded in 2011 and presently serves around 100,000 accounts. It is backed by two German private investors and has ambitions to expand into other areas, such as a secure calendar interface and a file sharing / storage service not unlike Mega."
Achtung! Are We the New Nazis? (Soldiers, God and Empire)
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Douglas Herman 2003-05-04 16:00
Gott Mit Uns. I felt a little shock and awe, actually disbelief, seeing the antique belt buckle for the first time. Worn by a Nazi German soldier, the aluminum, World War II era buckle carried the imperial eagle of the Third Reich above the familiar Swastika. Surrounding the eagle and Swastika was the motto, "Gott Mit Uns," or "God With Us." Certainly the Nazi Germans,...
Liberate Literacy
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Craig Russell 2003-05-04 16:00
'In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.' ~ John 1:1
I Surrender All, a Neo-Conservative Hymn
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Brian Bowman 2003-05-01 16:00
A Neo-Conservative Hymn All to Dubya, I surrender; All to Him I freely give; I will ever love and trust Him, In His presence daily live. Refrain I surrender all, I surrender all, All to Thee, my blessed State, I surrender all.
Three Chickens and a Fox
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Cat Farmer 2003-05-01 16:00
Once upon a time, there were three chickens who shared a coop, and quarreled amongst themselves constantly over the choicest morsels, their favorite perches, who laid the biggest eggs, or which one the farmer liked best. One day, a fox sauntered by and observed them arguing, so he hid and watched them from the bushes.
Tagging the Curs
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Emmett Harris 2003-05-01 16:00
The Crown Prince of Homeland Security and Animal Husbandry, Tom Ridge , addressed a domesticated pack of reporters Monday to voice his support of a national identification system for livestock. This, claimed Ridge as he stood atop a regal podium bathed in the amber hue denoting the current 'Elevated' threat level, was to be yet another piece in the Bush administration's ongoing efforts to corral...
Television and the State
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Craig Russell 2003-04-29 16:00
Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. ~ Exodus 20:4
Federal Register Watch
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Mike Powers 2003-04-27 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...
Rick Santorum and the Myth of a Morally Neutral Government
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Lee McCracken 2003-04-27 16:00
One almost feels sorry for Rick Santorum. Could the Republican Senator from Pennsylvania have foreseen the firestorm that is currently brewing around his comments on homosexuality and sodomy laws? Of course, given the recent public shellacking administered to his colleague, Trent Lott, maybe he should have expected it.
Hey Nineteen
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Doug Newman 2003-04-27 16:00
Where is America's true constitution? Please stay with me for a few minutes, and I will answer this question. I write this shortly after April 19, the anniversary of numerous events -- positive and negative -- in the freedom movement. April 19, 1775 marked the beginning of the American Revolution; April 19, 1943, marked the start of the Warsaw ghetto uprising; on April 19, 1993, federal agents...
Confessional
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Fred Reed 2003-04-27 16:00
Sometimes a writer craves to bare his soul and lighten his burden of hidden sin--yes, to admit that he hasn't always lived as a Christian, that he has played cards in low dives, and done shameful things with floozies in foreign ports. He wants to make a clean breast of it before the world, to say, "There. You see me in all my sordid sorrow and moral wretchedness. Forgive me if you can." Well, I'm...
Untitled
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Joseph S. Bommarito 2003-03-17 17:00
Beyond the count of years I walked the world, and my children built their shrines to me.  Decades and centuries and millennia pass, and still the shrines are built. Temples insubstantial to men, clear to my eyes.  No foundations or walls or roofs, but shrines nonetheless. Holy ground, consecrated  Today, every day, somewhere in the world, the earth is prepared for my coming. ...
Taoism and Anarchy
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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 . . . .
Do We Need a Vaccine for Hubris? MUST READ
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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
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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
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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
9.625
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
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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
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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
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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
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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
9.25
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
9.5
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...