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Monday, July 27

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Melinda Secor is the guest editor today.

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photo courtesy of Theophilos Papadopoulos

Column by new Root Striker David M. Brown. Exclusive to STR Persons sometimes treat others very badly. This treatment may be institutionally encouraged, and continue for a long time. For example, officials of the Catholic Church once sanctioned torture as a means of extracting confessions from heretics and, with luck, curing them of their heresy. In his account in The Age of Faith of the Inquisition as it developed in the 13th century, Will Durant writes (p. 781): The popes advised that...
Original article "Hey, employers, don’t even think about reimbursing your workers’ health-insurance premiums. Beginning this month, the IRS can levy fines amounting to $100 per worker per day or $36,500 per worker per year, with a maximum of $500,000 per firm. This Internal Revenue Service penalty is not written into the Obamacare law. The amount is over 12 times the statutory amount in the Affordable Care Act of $3,000 per worker per year."
Original article "Given all of this, it's easy to see why many analysts and commentators still belive that Grexit - and everything that comes with it both for Greece and for the EMU - is still the most likely outcome."
Original article "Along with Greece, Spain is yet another nation that has both a history of civil war from recent memory, and the potential for a new war in their future. And as for the EU, they’re busy playing whack-a-mole. They can’t suppress one problematic country without another flaring up. Time will tell how long Brussels can keep their crumbling economic union together."
Original article "Chicago for example, is now paying an exorbitant 8% yield on their bonds, which amounts to almost twice as much as a homeowner would pay for a 30 year mortgage. If other cities have to deal with credit rating downgrades (which they soon will), paying off their liabilities will quickly turn into a Sisyphean task. Widespread municipal bankruptcies will soon become a common feature in America's financial landscape."
Original article "After years of suppression, the forces of reality are threatening to overwhelm our managed global 'markets‘. And it’s about damn time."
Original article "We’ve seen some significant swings in precious metals over the last several years and if we are to believe the paper spot prices and recent value of mining shares, one would think that gold and silver are on their last leg. Last weekend precious metals took a massive hit to the downside, sending shock waves throughout the industry. But was the move really representative of what’s happening in precious metals markets around the world?"
Original article "Supposedly, lower demand is driving the price down, but there’s clearly an increasing demand for the physical metal. When something as simple as supply and demand doesn’t add up, it’s time to question the legitimacy of the forces responsible for setting the price."
Original article "This incident highlights the importance of filming police. Here, we have what seemed like a fleeting exchange with cops, actually evolve into cops lying to ruin the career of an innocent man. Had this not been caught on video, it would have been Kirkpatrick’s word against these two lying cops — and we know who the other cops would have believed."
Original article "It previously has been proven that boats, planes, GPS-driven munitions, unmanned vehicles and even smart homes all can be taken over via remote control But nothing has received the level of attention as the common modern vehicle."
Original article "This is yet another attempt to shatter the rights of all Americans at the expense of one of Washington’s top lobbying clients. While public-private partnerships conspire to protect Big Agra’s market from image damage, the potential health effects of genetically altered foods drenched in pesticides goes not only ignored, but suppressed."
Original article "Beyond the correlations below, she defines and examines the biological mechanism... breaching and turning the the 'no causation' argument on its HEAD. The Monsanto legal 'Argument' is: The correlations don't equal causation, AKA: You Can't Prove it."
Original article "Until now, researchers believed farming was 'invented' some 12,000 years ago in an area that was home to some of the earliest known human civilizations. A new discovery offers the first evidence that trial plant cultivation began far earlier -- some 23,000 years ago."
Original article "It doesn't happen often that a young scientist makes a significant and unexpected discovery, but postdoctoral researcher Stephen Wu of the U.S. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory just did exactly that."
Original article "In biology and medicine, we often need to detect biological molecules. For example, in cancer diagnostics, doctors need quick and reliable ways of knowing if tumor cells are present in the patient's body. Although such detection methods exist, they often require a lot of time, work and money. EPFL scientists have chemically tweaked the enzyme responsible for the light of fireflies to make it "sniff out" target biological molecules and give out a light signal. The result is a...
Original article A Photo Blog
The Good, the Bad and the Half-Asleep
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Bob Wallace 2011-06-27 00:00
Column by Bob Wallace.   Exclusive to STR   It was Aristotle who observed there are two kinds of ignorance: when you’re ignorant and know it, and when you’re ignorant and don’t know it. The second kind of ignorance is the dangerous kind, because people who are ignorant and don’t know it usually think they’re smarter and more knowledgeable than everyone else...
Obama, Where's the Contract?
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Alex R. Knight III 2011-06-27 00:00
Column by Alex R. Knight III   Exclusive to STR   Of course, the more popular question these past three years or so has been, “Where’s the birth certificate?” – so much so that Barack felt obliged to produce a Hawaiian “long-form” piece of paper alleging his 1961 birth took place there. Others contend that this is a forgery, and that the...
Patriot Pauls and Patriot Acts, Part I of II
9.5
tzo 2011-06-24 00:00
Column by tzo. Exclusive to STR Wow. Lots of buzz lately about Rand and Ron Paul and the Patriot Act. It's got me to thinking...   This is for all the Paul supporters out there who believe that their Constitutional vision of returning the nation to the noble framework laid out by Thee Founding Fathers™ is the end to be attained. This is for all those who are disillusioned, dissatisfied...
The (Re)birth of A(nother) Nation
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Harry Goslin 2011-06-22 00:00
Column by Harry Goslin. Since October 26, 2001, the United States has undergone several transformations. That's the date the original version of the PATRIOT Act became law and marked the beginning of Police State America.   Whenever "key" provisions of the Act were scheduled to "sunset," we have been bombarded by warnings from Congress and the executive branch of...
The Absurdity of Hating Walmart...and Not Government
8.33333
Alex R. Knight III 2011-06-10 00:00
Column by Alex R. Knight III   Exclusive to STR   It seems to invoke the ire of the dogmatic leftists to no end, the largest corporation on earth; this homegrown business, now global in scope, second in size only to the U.S. federal government. They inveigh against it as if this department store chain were the summary of all total malfeasance – a horrible capitalist-pig...
The Great Game of Government™
7.75
tzo 2011-06-10 00:00
Column by tzo.   Exclusive to STR   Imagine you are going to participate in one of those chess games in which actual people occupy each of the 64 stations on a large board. If you agree to play, and you are assigned the role of bishop, then you can move only diagonally. Furthermore, you can only move when and how far the player who controls the army of which you are a part decides....
Taking the Bull by the Tail
6.83333
Duane Colyar 2011-06-08 00:00
Column by Duane Colyar. Exclusive to STR While reading news reports in a local daily that is now so small it would barely cover the bottom of a birdcage, my mind wandered over the dark scenes of modern-day America: endless wars of dubious constitutionality and military occupations spawning future wars; hit squads flying uninvited into a sovereign nation; the spectacle of police dressed in...
Pay? How?
9.75
Paul Hein 2011-06-06 00:00
Column by Paul Hein.   Exclusive to STR   I can’t stand it any longer. For days--weeks, even--the chatter on the TV news has dealt, almost exclusively, with the debt “crisis.” Despite the thousands of words uttered about it, none have hit the mark. The problem, as any Monetary Realist could tell you, has little or nothing to do with the way money is spent, or saved, or...
The Triumph of the Bankers
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George F. Smith 2011-05-25 00:00
Column by George F. Smith. Exclusive to STR   In spite of its success in bestowing wealth on some men while funding an unnecessary war, [1] the National Banking System proved unsatisfactory to financial leaders. Even with laws discouraging or restricting redemption, crises still occurred, and banks had to contract and deflate to survive. They were unable to inflate their way out of...
We Have Nothing to Fear but Government Itself
7.5
Alex R. Knight III 2011-05-24 00:00
Column by Alex R. Knight III Exclusive to STR The recent conviction of Bernard von NotHaus, founder of the Liberty Dollar, which had provided a gold and silver-based alternative form of currency to U.S. government-sanctioned Federal Reserve Notes (pieces of paper backed by nothing of any value whatsoever; thin air) since 1998 demonstrates quite clearly where Amerika currently is. ...
Bumper Stickers
8.85714
tzo 2010-08-10 03:00
Column by tzo.   Exclusive to STR     If there is one message that must continually be broadcast to people in order to improve the quality of life on this planet, it is this: Politics is aggression. Until this simple understanding becomes widespread, we will all continue to bog down in the mud.   Politics is aggression.   Recently while driving I noticed that the car...
Authority: God vs. Man
8.85714
Guest 2011-03-21 03:00
Column by new Root Striker Doug Carkuff. Exclusive to STR One of my guilty pleasures in life was watching the Showtime series “The Tudors.” It is great fun watching King Henry petulantly subjecting his subjects to his whims and hacking off heads and torturing people as it suits him. I have no idea with respect to historical accuracy of any of it except in the broadest sense...
Dehumanizing People is Fun
8.85714
Paul Bonneau 2012-03-13 00:00
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR It is clearly fun to make fun of people. Otherwise, it wouldn’t be such a popular pastime.   One can imagine why we are prone to this kind of behavior. For example, in the old days, if you wanted to slaughter another tribe and steal their women and take all their stuff, dehumanizing them first was eminently sensible. It erases all inhibitions...
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...
How to Know When You Have Liberty
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Paul Bonneau 2011-12-12 01:00
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR There seems to be a lot of confusion on this point. Many people believe they are living in a state of liberty, while others don’t think so. How can you know for sure? I have devised a simple test that, I believe, can be used to determine when you have liberty.   I am here following the distinction that some use, between freedom and liberty:...
Creeping Totalitarianism
8.8
Alex Schroeder 2010-02-01 04:00
  Exclusive to STR   In the past decade, public smoking bans in America have become increasingly commonplace; governmental efforts to institute such bans often prove successful, primarily because the majority of Americans do not smoke. In other words, the majority can only gain from such legislation. Supporters reason that they should not have to inhale second-hand smoke every time they...
Government Securities
8.75
Jim Davies 2010-08-02 03:00
By Jim Davies.   Exclusive to STR     Those who lend money to the government participate in a fraud, for all of them know that it has only one way ultimately to pay either interest or principal: by stealing it. So if they ever lose it (and they will, as below) there will be no sympathy from this quarter.   They do the lending by purchasing municipal bonds and Treasury Bills,...
Where's the State?
8.75
Jim Davies 2012-01-06 01:00
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Any phone book has a long list of government offices. So isn't this a silly question? Not really. All those listed items are departments of government, or representatives of the State, or Town etc. Where and what exactly is the state itself? Like the famous Wendy's ad from 1984, we're interested in the core of the matter: Where's the Beef?   If you...
Time for Civil Disobedience? Recommended
8.75
Jim Davies 2012-06-05 00:00
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Underlying approaches to the great problem of how to rid society of government parasites without violence is the insight of Etienne de la Boëtie:   "Resolve to serve no more, and you are at once freed. I do not ask that you place hands upon the tyrant to topple him over, but simply that you support him no longer; then you will behold him, like...
Bellum Sacrum
8.75
tzo 2013-01-02 07:51
Column by tzo. Exclusive to STR Once upon a time there lived a businessman named Muhammad who, at the age of 40, had a divine revelation. He then proceeded to pick up some followers, united them under the Constitution of Medina, took over Mecca, destroyed the pagan idols, then conquered and converted most of the Arabian Peninsula to Islam. After he died, the succeeding Caliphates expanded the...
Do We Need a Vaccine for Hubris? MUST READ
10
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
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
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...