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Monday, January 26

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photo courtesy of Fred Moore

Original article "Life itself is a danger zone.  It’s not possible to live in total safety and security.  So any system that aims to offer that, even for one phenomenon, and then feeds off the very opposite, should be open to question.  Certainly, sacrificing things that have long been considered important to American life for protection from the rare and random chance that you might be injured or die is a decision that should be rethought from time to time.  In this case, however...
Original article Welfare destroys economic growth and is a prime tool of the power elite for maintaining control of the population.
Original article Because freedom of speech is highly valued in the West.
Original article "The NSA's mass surveillance is just the beginning. Documents from Edward Snowden show that the intelligence agency is arming America for future digital wars -- a struggle for control of the Internet that is already well underway."
Original article Video debunking common myths about anarchy. (20 minutes)
Original article Keeping drugs off the streets.
Original article Some more questions about 9/11 from Newsweek.
Original article If history is a guide, then chances are good the latest terror plot was organized by the FBI itself.
Original article "Political-economic systems throughout the world, including ones typically thought to be market-oriented (or "capitalist"), such as in the United States, are in fact built on deeply rooted and long-established systems of privilege. Favors, which the rest of us must pay for one way or another, typically go to the well-connected, and prominent business executives have always been well represented in that group."
Original article "Nobody who lives in Boston actually wants the city to win its bid for the 2024 Olympic games. And yet, in a joinder agreement between the city and the United States Olympic Committee, mayor Marty Walsh has signed a contract that forbids city employees from speaking negatively about the bid, the IOC, or the Olympic games. It's a great day for free speech in the cradle of liberty."
Original article Here's one: "Almost all of the banking systems in Western countries are fundamentally unsound—leveraged to the hilt and backed by the promises of insolvent governments. Worse, most of these banks only keep a tiny fraction of cash on hand to meet customer withdrawal requests. This means that in the event of a financial shock like another Lehman-style event, you could have trouble accessing your money."
Original article "But recently published files from the NSA showed that British agency GCHQ used the phones UDIDs — the unique identifier that each iPhone has — to track users. While there doesn’t seem to be any mention of such spying software in any of the revelations so far, a range of documents are thought to be still unpublished."
Original article "Certain financial transactions are private but not anonymous; for example, the donor wall at the local art museum, which identifies the names of donors but not the amounts donated. Bitcoin, by contrast, is anonymous but not private: identities are nowhere recorded in the bitcoin protocol itself, but every transaction performed with bitcoin is visible on the distributed electronic public ledger known as the block chain."
Original article "'I think it might be good for someone who is enthusiastic about Bitcoin and wants to use it as a way to deepen their knowledge of computer science in general,' he said. 'That's the kind of audience we're targeting here.'"
What Would Free Market Justice Look Like?
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Paul Bonneau 2011-12-05 00:00
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR I was reading a chapter of Jim Corbett’s My India, when I ran into an illuminating clue about the range of possible judicial solutions where freedom exists. Most people seem to imagine free market justice working more or less like our current system, just better and cheaper and more fair. But would it actually look anything like that?   To get...
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...
The Iconography of Evil
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Alex R. Knight III 2011-11-30 00:00
Column by Alex R. Knight III Exclusive to STR If you ever want an irrefutable indication of what’s wrong with America today, I suggest you have a look at some of the iconography government is putting out there – symbolism, if you will.    It has long been a known psychological principle that symbols and icons are a powerful yet subtle means to instill certain emotions and...
Freedom is Not an Intellectual Pursuit
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Paul Bonneau 2011-11-30 00:00
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR Every once in a while, I get tired of arguments around here, trying in some way or other to justify freedom and liberty. One can go overboard with this stuff.   After all, does one need a PhD in Philosophy to understand freedom? Of course not. Everybody already understands it. It’s just doing whatever the Hell you want to do. No justification is...
Vermont's Raw Arrogance
9.33333
Alex R. Knight III 2011-11-17 00:00
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR Of course, it’s already common knowledge for the most part that Vermonters have the temerity to carry firearms without any form of government say-so – even neighboring “Live Free or Die” New Hampshire will not suffer such uppitiness from the mere non-governmental hoi polloi. But another freedom – albeit not nearly...
There’s the Law, and Then There’s The Law
9.83333
tzo 2011-11-17 00:00
Column by tzo. Exclusive to STR The law perverted! And the police powers of the state perverted along with it! The law, I say, not only turned from its proper purpose but made to follow an entirely contrary purpose! The law become the weapon of every kind of greed! Instead of checking crime, the law itself guilty of the evils it is supposed to punish!   If this is true, it is a serious fact...
Lemmings and Pied Pipers
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Paul Hein 2011-11-16 00:00
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR Suppose, for a minute, that several of your neighbors came to your door and presented you with a paper on which they had written, in quite formal language, their intent to build a playground for neighborhood children, and that this enterprise was to be funded by a “contribution” from you, among others. “No thanks,” you tell them....
No, Society, There Is No Santa Claus
8.66667
Alex R. Knight III 2011-11-15 00:00
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR  I know that I have likely irked some of you already by writing a Christmas-themed column before we have even gotten to Thanksgiving, but I can at least offer the caveat that it will likely not be near as onerous as the fact that the latest crop of political parasites (with all due respect to Ron Paul) have already ramped up their bids to be...
Ron, Reviewed
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Jim Davies 2011-11-14 00:00
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR  It's been a great pleasure to see media mention every day recently of the man who once said in my hearing that the IRS is "the world's largest terrorist organization." The mere possibility that Ron Paul could actually get elected President is enough to make any liberty lover salivate. That he should already have stacked up some straw-poll...
Ethics and Morals and Law, Oh My!
9.25
tzo 2011-11-08 00:00
Column by tzo. Exclusive to STR   "It's a beautiful thing, the destruction of words." ~Syme, 1984   Ah, words.   Philosophy is the pursuit of knowledge distinguishable from other methods by its critical, generally systematic approach and its reliance on rational argument.   When we discuss the organization of society, we are in the realm of political philosophy....
A Lion in Daniel's Den
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Jim Davies 2010-07-19 02:00
By Jim Davies.   Exclusive to STR     The abrupt termination of the distinguished, six-decade career of Helen Thomas, after she expressed her opinion about Jews on May 27th, has something fishy about it. There are layers of deception to be uncovered, and since nobody else has removed them, I will make the attempt. You read it here first.   Until that day, there had been no...
The Philosophy of Authority
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tzo 2010-07-30 02:00
By tzo.   Exclusive to STR   “Authority” is one of those words that is commonly used but less commonly understood. It may be claimed that a person has the authority to decide what to do with his own life and property, and it may also be claimed that a police officer has the authority to arrest a person who has broken the law. How does the concept of authority properly apply...
Reflections on the Evolution of the Welfare-Warfare State
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Duane Colyar 2010-08-24 02:00
By Duane Colyar.   Exclusive to STR   Expanding on the ideas presented in by the author in a previous column, the reader is invited to imagine a federation, such as the United States, where the central, federal government functioned within the limits imposed by a founding document, such as the Constitution of the United States. Now imagine everyday life for the citizens of the...
Education and the Individual
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Michael Kleen 2010-09-10 02:00
By Michael Kleen.   Exclusive to STR   In the intellectual battlefield, libertarians, individualists, and anti-Statists have frequently neglected the subject of childhood education (1-8th Grades) and the intellectual development of children. Because of the laissez faire nature of our philosophy, we are more willing to leave those matters up to parents or to the individuals themselves....
Become Dangerous
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Paul Bonneau 2010-09-16 02:00
By Paul Bonneau.   Exclusive to STR   You know who you are. You're a "philosophical libertarian" or "philosophical anarchist." You might think of yourself as a bit bookish or intellectual. You tend to express yourself through words rather than action.   You have a philosophical agreement, perhaps including some discomfort, with the right to bear arms. You either...
Annoying Guy
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tzo 2010-09-29 02:00
Column by tzo.   Exclusive to STR   A play in one act. SCENE: Two people chatting in a coffee shop.   A: Let me ask you something. Are you an ethical person?   B: I would like to think so, yes.   A: Do you use violence to get what you want?   B: No! What do you mean?   A: If you want a new shirt, do you steal it from someone?   B: Of course not.   A:...
Malthus' Mistakes
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Jim Davies 2010-10-08 02:00
Column by Jim Davies.   Exclusive to STR   The Reverend Thomas Malthus was no dummy. He made a colossal and famous error by predicting at the end of the 18th Century that human population would stop growing for want of food to feed any more people, but he was a serious scholar nonetheless. He was a fellow of Jesus College, Cambridge and as well as being an Anglican clergyman was...
It's Better to Lose an Election, Than to Win
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Paul Bonneau 2010-10-08 02:00
Column by Paul Bonneau.   Exclusive to STR   I've read lots of articles about the disutility of voting. It's not like there are a shortage of them! Here's my take on it, perhaps a bit different than most (my title refers to winning or losing from the voter's point of view, not the politician's).   At my age, 60, I've seen a lot of elections. Much of my life was spent in frantically...
Terms of Association Recommended
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Jim Davies 2010-10-15 02:00
Column by Jim Davies.   Exclusive to STR    An advocate for the US Constitution recently argued on the Peter Mac Show that any group of people in any locality properly has the right to set up an association and to define its terms. He was correct, of course. The terms agreed would relate to who can belong and who, not--and to how decisions of policy and practice shall be made, as...
Your Sticker Makes a Lot of Sense Recommended
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Per Bylund 2010-11-03 02:00
Column by Per Bylund.   Exclusive to STR   Election Day means there are a lot of people walking around proudly carrying a sticker on their collar or lapel: “I Voted.” It bothered me at first that they would take pride in such ugly, immoral, and destructive behavior and that they so urgently wanted me to see that they had cast a ballot. I do not particularly like that these...
'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
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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
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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...