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Wednesday, April 16

Guest Editor

A. Magnus is the guest editor today.

WANTED: A new guest editor for Saturdays.  A guest editor selects the external links for that day and then uploads them to STR.  If you're interested, please email me.
 

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photo courtesoy of phil_theone

Original article "Some gun owners have long threatened to ignore a requirement to register assault weapons under the SAFE Act, a set of strict gun laws approved by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and state lawmakers last year. With the registration deadline set for Tuesday, they'll soon have their chance."
Original article A summary of the new book Taxed To Death: A Citizen’s Guide to How the Income Tax and IRS Harm EVERYONE in America, by Lawrence Hunter.  (Editor's pick)
Original article "The 63-year-old former narcotics investigator with the LAPD, shot himself after a final radio show broadcast, a friend reported." (Editor's pick)
Original article "The use of chemical weapons is not really in question since both sides of the conflict – the Syrian government and the death squad forces – are reporting their use. However, both sides are also blaming each other for the deployment of the poison gas."
Original article "Thirty Venezuelan military officers of different ranks, including several generals, have been arrested for alleged conspiracy to overthrow President Nicolas Maduro, a leading national newspaper has reported."
Original article "A Bay Area federal judge says the Obama administration can keep secret a memo spelling out the legal rationale for a 2011 drone attack in Yemen that killed a U.S. citizen and alleged terrorist mastermind. The Justice Department was entitled to withhold the memo on the grounds of national security and lawyer-client confidentiality, Chief U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken of Oakland said Friday."
Original article "New images of cattle rancher Cliven Bundy’s tense standoff with the Federal Bureau of Land Mangement (BLM) on Saturday afternoon reveal how the armed agency’s military operation configured to forcefully engage Bundy cowboys and their supporters who sought to liberate federally confiscated cattle over the weekend."
Original article "Three months following Colorado's decision to legalize the production, sale, possession and use of recreational marijuana — a vote that Denver city officials including Mayor Michael Hancock, among others, fought kicking and screaming — guess what's happened to Denver crime rates in 2014? According to new data, they've fallen across the board. Property crime is down 14.6% compared to the same period in 2013. Violent crimes are down 2.4%."
Original article "Thanks to documents released by Snowden, it is now well known that the NSA is sucking up and storing practically all traffic on the Internet using its various spying tools, including the XKeyscore tool. The ability to obtain the private keys from servers using the Heartbleed bug means that the NSA can decrypt all past traffic encrypted to the keys it obtains, even traffic from years before the bug was introduced."
Original article "The best-yielding, most affordable crop varieties to "feed the world" are non-GMO, says a retired team leader for the Environmental Protection Agency's biosafety program."
Original article "CNN's coverage of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 has reached such astounding stupidity in the past five weeks that it accomplished something previously unimaginable: uniting Bill O’Reilly and Rachel Maddow on the same side of an issue."   Looks like US 'Mainstrean' Media is about to have a 'Pravda' moment...
Original article "Last year, it was revealed that the IRS was claiming the right to read taxpayers' email and private information on social media accounts without first getting a search warrant. After a brouhaha from civil liberties groups, citizens, and lawmakers, the IRS announced the no-warrant-required policy would be ditched for email, but it did not make the same commitment for other private electronic communications."
Original article "On February 11, Christian Stanfield, a 15-year-old sophomore at South Fayette High School, recorded seven minutes of the bullying on his iPad. His mother showed school officials the footage the next day. The school officials, including Principal Scott Milburn and Superintendent Bille Pearce Rondinelli, took immediate action. They contacted police for a possible violation of wiretapping laws." Ben Franklin must be rolling in his grave...
Original article "Next time you see on the TV screen / There's a man talking about sh*t he's never seen / Change the channel and ignore the fool / Get out on the streets / Then you go to school"
Original article If you can't make it out west, at least you can enjoy some of the views before the Caldera erupts next...
Reflections on Public Sector Unions
10
Alex Schroeder 2011-02-28 04:00
Column by Alex Schroeder.   Exclusive to STR   Let’s say you and your friends are bored one evening, looking for a way to pass the time. You see there is a high school basketball game in which the hometown favorites will be playing their county rivals. You decide to attend and show up along with your friends and much of the town. The game begins. The crowd quickly realizes that...
Rights Are Santa Claus Recommended
7.44444
Dabooda 2011-02-24 04:00
Column by new Root Striker Dabooda. I question the usefulness of the idea that people have natural, god-given, inalienable human rights.  It's been given a fair trial over the last several centuries, and it doesn't work. As philosophers have noted, "rights" are a moral concept, without existence outside the human mind.  In the context of a particular moral code, one may...
There's No Better Government Like No Government
10
Guest 2011-02-24 04:00
Column by Cristian Gherasim.   Note: Cristian Gherasim plagiarized this column from here.   There is nothing the state can do, and which society needs done, that cannot be done far better by the market. Another point that is just as telling: No state empowered to do what is supposedly necessary will restrain itself to those things. It will expand as much as public opinion will...
Debt Madness
6
Mark Davis 2011-02-22 04:00
Column by Mark Davis.  Exclusive to STR  Finalist #1 in the "Odious Debt" essay contest   It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning. ~ Henry Ford   Are you mad yet? Tired of all the odious bulldebt being dumped on your head out of...
Spend More, Print More, Tax Less
9.2
Guest 2011-02-22 04:00
Column by Cristian Gherasim. Note: Cristian Gherasim plagiarized this column from here.   Whether it's a bailout of subprime mortgage holders, large investment banks, or going to war, whether or not the resources exist to do these wonders rarely enters into the equation. Why is it that tax cuts don't curb the government? And why do politicians not feel the need to tax us more when they...
A Silver Lining Shines Within the Odious Debt
7
Marcel Votlucka 2011-02-22 04:00
Column by Marcel Votlucka. Exclusive to STR Co-winner (with Mark Davis) of the 2011 Strike the Root "Odious Debt" essay contest   Fourteen trillion, one hundred twenty-three billion, five hundred eighty-nine million, three hundred-seven thousand, one hundred ninety dollars and fifty-three cents.   That’s the total US national debt as of February 17, 2011. I figured I...
The Money Ceiling
5
Paul Hein 2011-02-21 04:00
Column by Paul Hein.   Exclusive to STR   4th place in the "Odious Debt" essay contest   Coincident with the swearing in of the newly elected Congressmen is the impending end of the present debt ceiling. It is a topic of much discussion, with various pundits weighing in with this or that recommendation. Universally, they deplore the necessity of raising the ceiling, but...
There’s No Such Thing as a Statist
7
Paul Bonneau 2011-02-21 04:00
Column by Paul Bonneau.   Exclusive to STR   Nor are there any minarchists or anarchists.   In this brouhaha stirred up by Per Bylund, some strange lines of argument have appeared. Here is an example:   ---------------- "There are a huge number who would reject abolishing the state while consenting to leave us alone." [quoted from previous comment] That is redundant...
Rejoinder on Evil Minarchism Recommended
7.66667
Per Bylund 2011-02-18 04:00
Column by Per Bylund.   Exclusive to STR   John deLaubenfels responds to my previous column on minarchists being “the enemy.” His response is a case in point. Even though it is surely not his intent, his “quick response” directly supports the thesis of my original column. This is also true with most of the e-mails and comments I have seen by those disagreeing...
A Quick Response to Per Bylund
6.4
John deLaubenfels 2011-02-17 04:00
Column by John deLaubenfels.   Exclusive to STR   Per Bylund's most recent column on STR is titled Why Minarchists Are the Enemy. That's a pretty strong statement, especially as it identifies minarchists not as AN enemy, but THE enemy, and the text of his column reinforces rather than softens the message. We read, for example, that (in some sense at least) "minarchist...
Cyprus, v.t.
8.66667
Jim Davies 2013-09-09 07:57
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Last month in The Thirteenth Year, I suggested a few dreadful government actions that would make 2013 memorable. I missed one: mea culpa. This was the year in which a minor government in the Mediterranean turned an island into a verb. Its subject is a government, its object is the money someone holds in a bank in its jurisdiction, and its meaning is that the...
Legitimacy of the State
8.5
Per Bylund 2003-08-31 16:00
Whether the state can be legitimized is a core concern in political philosophy and ideology. If it cannot, what is the alternative?
Fee Speech
8.5
tzo 2009-10-08 16:00
Exclusive to STR The heavy-handed tactics used recently by police against G20 protesters in Pittsburgh has Constitutionalists up in arms once again about the government's infringement upon the human right of free speech, which is protected by the First Amendment. If anyone knows anything about America, it is supposedly this—all Americans have the right to free speech. But just when, exactly...
A Theory of Natural Hierarchy and Government
8.5
tzo 2010-01-05 04:00
Exclusive to STR   Introduction   There was a time here on Earth when human beings did not yet exist, and now here we are. From this simple observation, it logically follows that X created human beings.   But who or what is X? That is the million-dollar question that I am absolutely not interested in answering here.   Because whether the answer is God, Tao, Mother Nature,...
Between Barack and a Hard Place
8.5
Mark Davis 2010-06-14 03:00
Exclusive to STR   Socialism (noun)-   1. a theory or system of social organization that advocates the vesting of the ownership and control of the means of production and distribution, of capital, land, etc., in the community as a whole.   2. procedure or practice in accordance with this theory.   3. (in Marxist theory) the stage following capitalism in the...
Resist the Collectivist View of History Recommended
8.5
Roger Young 2010-06-14 03:00
Exclusive to STR   After reading Anna Morgenstern’s Memorial Day: Remembering the Dead, I was struck by a common (though understandable) error that even the most ardent anarchists and voluntaryists make. Though Anna’s description and analysis of war gangsterism is dead on accurate, I find her views on the (misnamed) Civil War and WWII surprisingly statist.    I...
Where Have They Been?
8.5
Paul Hein 2010-06-15 03:00
By Paul Hein.   Exclusive to STR     It would be difficult to watch television news for more than five minutes without some mention of the debt “crisis.” Economists are interviewed, and express deep concern about the fact that Uncle Sam is printing money at an unprecedented rate. And, yes, they are very worried about this mountain of debt, and how it can be paid....
Hope in the Age of Darkness
8.5
Per Bylund 2010-06-29 03:00
By Per Bylund   Exclusive to STR   These are troublesome times: the police state is literally only months away (if not here already), Big Brother already has full control of what everybody’s up to, and governments wage numerous wars while taxing their poor populations to ridiculous degrees. Yet in the midst of all this darkness, after a century of endarkening, there are signs of...
Booing the Goose
8.5
Jim Davies 2010-08-17 03:00
By Jim Davies.   Exclusive to STR   Chapter 8 of my Transition to Liberty shows that I foresee the time--in the mid-2020s, for reasons it explains--when widespread civil disobedience will play a valuable part in hastening the end of the government era. It will be a period when around one in four of the population has learned what liberty means (and what government means) and so is eager...
Voluntary and Peaceful
8.5
Duane Colyar 2010-09-09 03:00
By Duane Colyar.   Exclusive to STR   Early in his political career, Abraham Lincoln once described his politics as “short and sweet, like the old woman’s dance.” Without going into the ultimately disastrous consequences of many of Lincoln’s policies, it is fair to say that most readers of this daily forum also share a short and sweet political outlook--we...
'Obamacare Nightmare Edition' of Ringo's Law and the Healthcare System of Doom MUST READ
10
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
10
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
10
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
9
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
10
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...
Oh, Stanley MUST READ
10
tzo 2011-03-30 03:00
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...