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Friday, July 3

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Ken Kraska is the guest editor today.

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photo courtesy of Theophilos Papadopoulos

Original article "The Internet Archive—including its Wayback Machine, which currently stores 485 billion snapshots of the world's web pages at different dates—is inaccessible for some users in Russia, as a post on the Global Voices site explains. This is the result of a blocking order from the country's Attorney General, under legislation originally designed to protect minors from pornography sites, sexual abuse sites, and sites that provide details about drug use and suicide, but later extended to cover sites...
Original article "WE HAVE TWO OPPOSING VISIONS of the future. In one, technology has advanced so far it seems almost magic. We blithely teleport ourselves around the planet and explore distant galaxies. We manufacture iPhones and steak dinners out of thin air, just from their component molecules. Scientific knowledge has unraveled the structure of the universe, technology allows all our needs and desires to be met with a minimum of effort. The second is more dramatic and less idyllic. Desperate and hungry gangs...
Original article Greek socialism is now, as the Marxists like to say, on the "wrong side of history".
Original article "Burning Man festival organizers are pushing back after the U.S. Bureau of Land Management requested upgraded accommodations for its officials at this year's event in the Nevada desert. The [BLM cops] asked for flush toilets, washers and dryers, hot water, air conditioning, vanity mirrors, refrigerators and couches at its on-site camp, called the Blue Pit, ... The toilets are also to be cleaned daily by Burning Man staff."
Original article "The 'Chicken Tax' was signed into law back in 1963 by Lyndon Johnson as a retaliatory measure directed at France and West Germany, which had imposed tariffs of their own on the importation of U.S. chicken. Hence the name. The measure hit back with tariffs on potato starch, brandy and light trucks imported to the United States, with the object of making all of them more expensive to import." Forty-two years later it's distorting the market for medium sized pick-up trucks.
Original article "The Nimble not only organizes your cards, keys, dollars, and change in one ultra-slim place, but it provides top-notch RFID protection to stop hackers from stealing your personal information."
Original article "When it comes to drone law, some opinions are more equal than others. A bill sitting on the Illinois Governor’s desk would create an 'Unmanned Aerial System Oversight Task Force,' with 22 set-aside seats for representatives from different groups who might reasonably have opinions on drone use. So long as the public is included, it’s a good idea, but there’s something strange about the list: it completely omits any group concerned with civil liberties, and it also leaves out the media."
Original article The media flog the blood and gore after one of these events non-stop for weeks and then wonder where unbalanced kooks and terrorist wannabes get their ideas from? Go figure?
Original article "The flow of information on these pages is reminiscent of the party line system. There is one line of communication and it's open to everyone. Anyone can hop on the line, and some people do spend an inordinate amount of time sharing and commenting, and requesting information. These people aren't called out for their activity, but with time, and as the quality of their participation becomes questionable, they're gradually ignored. Privacy is willingly compromised on these pages as members share...
Freedom is Not an Intellectual Pursuit
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Paul Bonneau 2011-11-30 01:00
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 01:00
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 01:00
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 01:00
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 01:00
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
8.83333
Jim Davies 2011-11-14 01:00
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 01:00
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....
Tools for Tyrants: Hatred, AKA 'Divide and Conquer'
9.2
Paul Bonneau 2011-11-04 00:00
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR   The next tool we are going to examine is the tyrant’s use and encouragement of hatred among those he wishes to govern. This is a part of the “divide and conquer” or “divide and rule” strategy.   Of the elements mentioned in the Wikipedia article, the most important are 1) creating or encouraging divisions among...
Heartless Libertarians Recommended
9.33333
tzo 2011-11-03 00:00
Column by tzo. Exclusive to STR   The specter of the heartless libertarian arises when it is suggested that society could perhaps be better organized without a coercive government at its core. The proponents of this shocking scheme are dismissed as being either blatantly naïve or else accused of being calculating, soulless monsters who don’t want to be bothered with the less...
To Vote or Not to Vote? I’d Rather Go Fishing
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Alex R. Knight III 2011-10-31 00:00
Column by Alex R. Knight III.   Exclusive to STR   There resides here in southern Vermont a radio personality and newspaper columnist who prefers to simply go by the handle of “Fish” (no, it’s not Abe Vigoda living out a retirement fantasy in the Green Mountains), who in the October 26th edition of the Brattleboro Reformer began his column titled “To Vote or...
Happy Meals in the Crosshairs
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Michael Kleen 2011-04-26 03:00
Column by Michael Kleen.   Exclusive to STR   Back in November 2010, the City of San Francisco effectively banned Happy Meals by requiring any meals that included toys to meet strict nutritional guidelines. The ordinance was criticized and lampooned by many, including the Daily Show. Now, the self-appointed protectors of consumer health are at it again. This time, Monet Parham, a mother...
Don’t Leave Me Alone... Not!
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Paul Bonneau 2011-05-02 00:00
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR   One of the Strike The Root guest editors linked to an article a few days back, Steve Horwitz’ "Don’t Leave Me Alone". This was an opportunity for a little personal edification. One question that arose was, “What is a libertarian?”   Apparently the answer is, “Who the Hell knows?” In other words, it...
Koros to Hubris to Ate to Nemesis
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Bob Wallace 2011-05-04 00:00
Column by Bob Wallace. Exclusive to STR “The fear of humiliation appears to be one of the most powerful motivators in individual and collective human behavior.” ~ Donald Klein There is no light on human nature more pitiless and perceptive and accurate than mythology. Through hundreds if not thousands of years all the dross was burned away, leaving some very acute observations...
Zenigma
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tzo 2011-05-09 00:00
Column by tzo.   Exclusive to STR   The Voluntaryist Master was addressing a new class of students.   "As a Voluntaryist, your mission will be to educate others about human freedom. But in order to spread the ideas of freedom, you must first become a free person. And in order to become a truly free person, you will need to learn, unlearn and relearn many things. But acquiring...
The Secret Ballot: A Tool For Tyrants
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Paul Bonneau 2011-05-12 00:00
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR It’s funny how human beings can become so attached to a meme, that they can’t even imagine life without it. As the Wikipedia article on the secret ballot puts it, “Today the practice of casting secret ballots is so commonplace that most voters would not consider that any other method might be used.” It is somehow imagined to...
Nietzsche on the Origin of the State
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Michael Kleen 2011-05-12 00:00
Column by Michael Kleen. Exclusive to STR   In the mind of 19th Century German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche, the growth of the State (Staat) was one of the most alarming developments of the modern world. Where others saw the promise of a new democratic age in which “the people” ruled, Nietzsche saw a “cold monster” that was, in reality, destructive of creative and...
The Narcissism of Politics
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Bob Wallace 2011-05-12 00:00
Column by Bob Wallace. Exclusive to STR “Nowhere are prejudices more mistaken for truth, passion for reason, and invective for documentation than in politics.  This is a realm, peopled only by villains or heroes, in which everything is black or white and gray is a forbidden color.”  ~ John Mason Brown, Through These Men (1956)   I sometimes entertain...
Wildcat Inflation Fighters
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George F. Smith 2011-05-16 00:00
Column by George F. Smith Exclusive to STR Summary: Though banking and government have had a corrupt relationship throughout history, the Suffolk Bank and Independent Treasury System, both of which were prominent during the “wildcat banking” era of the 19th Century, represent significant efforts at reform.    In his 1994 book, Money Mischief: Episodes in Monetary History,...
Against State-Sponsored Gay Marriage Recommended
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R. K. Blacksher 2011-06-29 00:00
Column by R.K. Blacksher. Exclusive to STR In an 1877 essay titled “Against Women’s Suffrage,” Lysander Spooner wrote, “Women are human beings, and consequently have all the natural rights that any human being can have.” These natural rights, Spooner argued, do not include the “right” to use the power of the state to engage in theft and coercion against...
For What It's Worth (Go Thoreau!)
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Mark Davis 2011-07-08 00:00
Column by Mark Davis. Exclusive to STR There's somethin' happenin' here. What it is ain't exactly clear. There's a man with a gun over there A-tellin' me I've got to beware. I think it's time we stop. Children, what's that sound? Everybody look what's goin' down. ~ Buffalo Springfield   What to do?   When asked what to do about the predicament that I have described over the...
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
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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
0
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...