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Saturday, January 31

Guest Editor

Lloyd Ritchey is the guest editor today.

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photo courtesy of Pai Shih

Original article The old spy master is out, and his replacement has been selected. He's reputedly not known for "innovative thinking," and for that we might end up being grateful as the end results of innovative spy masters is the erosion of civil liberties.
Original article The U.S.' last innovative spy master, Michael Hayden, recently argued against the Fourth Amendment.
Original article SOCOM's top brass recently stated that they receive about 1.8 percent of the DOD’s budget--turns out the figure's a bit higher than that.
Original article The official confirmed that suspects were quizzed at base on Diego Garcia (an atholl in the Indian Ocean) and says British 'must have known' what happened to passengers on rendition flights.
Original article They're planning on using license plate readers to collect information on even lawful activity that they don't like...assuming they haven't already done so.
Original article Unsurpirsingly, the implementation of this system of standardized exams, rubrics, standards, and curriculum did not follow the process as laid out in the Constitution.
Original article J. Edgar Hoover and Joseph McCarthy soon to rise from their graves shouting "I told you so!"
Original article Joseph S. Diedrich highlights some of the more common stages in this philosophic development.
Original article The statist paradise of the fifteen dollar minimum wage isn't done solving people's problems for them.
Original article The training mission has been the subject of plenty of discussion among US policy makers for months, and the United States has already earmarked $19 million to help build the Ukrainian National Guard. Unlike our own National Guard, these guys will likely prefer packing Vodka instead of Natural Light in their rucksacks.
Life Without Rights
7.5
Paul Bonneau 2010-06-25 02:00
By Paul Bonneau   Exclusive to STR     What if you woke up one morning, no longer believing you had a "right to life" - whatever you mean by that? How would your life change?   Some have contended that one would immediately commit suicide! Or they somehow imagine that people would no longer defend their lives from killers, passively awaiting their fate. Of course...
The Myth of Public Goods Recommended
9.5
Mark Davis 2010-06-25 02:00
By Mark Davis   Exclusive to STR     The myth of public goods is based on the belief that there are special things that everybody needs, but nobody will pay for. The priests perpetuating this myth include self-interested professors who spend a lifetime informing young, bright-eyed students about the magical qualities of these special goods that can only be provided by popular...
The Great White Lie Recommended
9.33333
B.R. Merrick 2010-06-23 02:00
By B.R. Merrick   Exclusive to STR   Like most good anarchists, I read Antiwar.com on a regular basis. They are to be commended for the outstanding work they do, and for the fact that they do it with such consistency. Recently, James Bovard posted an entry in the blog concerning the Obama Administration's refusal to permit discovery in the case of Maher Arar, a man who was...
The Abolitionist Argument in 35 Seconds MUST READ
10
Glen Allport 2010-06-21 02:00
Exclusive to STR   -1- ". . . a power too great and terrible to imagine."   The Lord of the Rings trilogy was released on Blu-Ray in April, which reminded me that I hadn't seen the first installment, The Fellowship of the Ring, since its theatrical release in 2001. While watching the film again I was struck anew with its abolitionist message – a message that is clear,...
History Repeats Itself: A Trip to Germany
8.66667
Lawrence M. Ludlow 2010-06-21 02:00
Exclusive to STR    There is nothing like travel to remind us that “this happened before” – especially when it comes to examples of government running amok. I recently spent a few weeks in Germany, and I was reminded that individuals from that region are responsible for a staggering number of cultural contributions – in music, art, philosophy, theology,...
Who Is Afraid of a Real Inquiry?
10
Uri Avnery 2010-06-21 02:00
  If a real Commission of Inquiry had been set up (instead of the pathetic excuse for a commission), here are some of the questions it should have addressed:   1. What is the real aim of the Gaza Strip blockade?   2. If the aim is to prevent the flow of arms into the Strip, why are only 100 products allowed in (as compared to the more than 12 thousand products in an average Israeli...
One Cheer for Obama!
8
Jim Davies 2010-06-15 02:00
By Jim Davies.   Exclusive to STR     Normally I give politics all the close attention it deserves, which is to say, next to none; but I've been unable to avoid the thick layers of hypocrisy that have been oozing out of the Mexican Gulf since BP's blowout preventer failed to prevent a blowout.   At once, it was plain that an awful tragedy was looming. Not just the tragedies of...
Where Have They Been?
8.5
Paul Hein 2010-06-15 02:00
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....
The Four Cardinal Virtues and Government
8.2
Bob Wallace 2010-06-15 02:00
By Bob Wallace.   Exclusive to STR     The Four Cardinal Virtues are not what most people think they are. Justice and Courage sound like good things; Prudence and Temperance, don’t, not really, to many people.  The idea that many people have of them, they sound like they take a lot of the fun out of life. But in reality they are good things. It’s just that...
The State as Machine
8.66667
Bob Wallace 2010-06-14 02:00
Exclusive to STR   "The mass of men serve the state thus, not as men mainly, but as machines, with their bodies...." ~ Henry David Thoreau   "All machines are amplifiers" ~ Cooper's Law   That's a true saying: Machines are amplifiers, amplifiers of our inherent abilities.  Machines are not moral or immoral; they're amoral.  They can be used for good or...
Lustful Money and Hateful Religion
5
Bob Wallace 2009-12-21 16:00
Exclusive to STR The United States is a empire. Some cheer that fact. I'm not one of them, and I consider such people deluded, since all empires fail, and it's going to happen to the United States , too. There are several reasons why all empires fail, but there are two that stand out: the financialization of the economy, and an intolerant "us vs. them" religion. Those two reasons...
Immigration
5
Alex Schroeder 2010-11-01 02:00
Column by Alex Schroeder.   Exclusive to STR   While myriad exceptions certainly abound, in contemporary American politics two prevalent views seem to frame the immigration debate. There are those to whom the label “open border advocates” can be rightly ascribed, typically associated with the political Left. Alternatively, there exists a sizeable grouping of people who...
The Money Ceiling
5
Paul Hein 2011-02-21 03:00
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...
David Holmes: A Capitalist's Eulogy
5
B.R. Merrick 2011-03-04 03:00
Column by B.R. Merrick.  Exclusive to STR  I was informed of David’s demise on Wednesday morning, December 15, 2010, just a few days before the same holiday that began my correspondence with this fascinating individual two years prior. It was my desire to get as much information as I could about David Lowden Holmes so that I could honor him the way he deserves. Sadly,...
It's Not All That Hard
5
Bob Wallace 2011-07-05 23:00
Column by Bob Wallace.   Exclusive to STR   “The opposite of war is not peace; it's creation.” ~ Jonathan Larson   Back when I was in college (close to worthless then and even closer now, except for the hard sciences) I realized none of my classes that I was really interested in were logically connected to each other, so that I could come up with an accurate model of...
Could the Non-Aggression Principle Stop the Sixth Great Extinction?
5
Glen Allport 2011-07-10 23:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR [A five-part series]   Part 1: Civil Society Requires Non-Aggression (and one thing more)   Unless you're a hard-core libertarian, you probably haven't heard much about the non-aggression principle, or NAP. That's a shame, because the NAP is what would have saved the world from the Fukushima nuclear disaster, from the BP Gulf of Mexico spill (and...
Freedom is Not an Intellectual Pursuit
5
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...
A Quandary for the Left and Right
5
Greg Haley 2012-12-28 00:00
Column by Greg Haley. Exclusive to STR I believe that anti-statists (libertarians, anarchists, or what have you) have a wide tent. We can get support from conservatives on the need for rolling back government regulations and the welfare state, and from liberals on civil liberties and warfare. A lot of time this agreement is in name only. We find conservatives happy to support the welfare state as...
State of Civilization
5
Paul Hein 2015-01-28 07:47
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR I didn’t watch the president’s State of the Union address, and I haven’t read it. Even so, I can state confidently that Union is strong! We need only to consider what happened to the 13 sovereign states that tried to extricate themselves from it to see just how strong it is: almost 800,000 people dead! Today we hear tantalizing talk of...
North Korea Is Not a Problem – The U.S. Is
4
Per Bylund 2010-11-23 03:00
Column by Per Bylund. Exclusive to STR News agencies report on another potential nuclear threat from North Korea, which has developed an advanced program for enriching uranium. Granted, nuclear weapons are extremely dangerous – and they are especially dangerous in the hands of nutcases such as Kim Jong-il. However, the media misses the point as they urgently run in the direction pointed out...
'Obamacare Nightmare Edition' of Ringo's Law and the Healthcare System of Doom MUST READ
10
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
10
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
9.625
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
10
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
9
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
10
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
10
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...