Recent comments

  • Paul's picture
    Paul 6 years 7 weeks ago
    Anarchist’s Progress
    Web link Westernerd
    A wonderful, charming article. Everyone should read it.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 6 years 7 weeks ago
    MinGovia
    Page Jim Davies
    "Government is an organization that consists not only of those who are "given the mandate" to assume authority, but also of all the "citizens" who support the imaginary enterprise. The citizen is just as integral a part of the definition of government as is the King, President, Parliament, or whatever other fancy label some of the participating humans choose to affix to themselves. All governments must have citizens in order to exist. If one calls himself a citizen, then he is actively choosing to participate in the government organization." ~ Excerpted from A Theory of Natural Hierarchy and Government by tzo As far as government employees, (which includes "citizens", in my opinion), quitting in large numbers -- "It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it." ~ Upton Sinclair
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 6 years 7 weeks ago
    Opinion and Reason
    Page Jim Davies
    "No, let's say I have the right to own your life, in whole or in part; you are my slave. But from where did I acquire such a right?" ~ Jim Davies You could only acquire such a right ["just claim"] to my life from my consent, (be it express, implicit or tacit), as the original owner of my life, which, of course, supports the Self Ownership Axiom. And, for the record, Jim Davies, I DO NOT CONSENT. "If each human being has the right of self-ownership, nobody else does--not voters, not governors, nobody." ~ Jim Davies Unless, of course, the original owner, who has the right, [authority via "just claim"], to dispose of his own life as he sees fit, consents to let, or allows, another man, or other men, to have dominion over him. "Citizens" are members of a political community who...have...submitted themselves to the dominion of a government... (Herriot v. City of Seattle, 81 Wash.2d 48, 500 P.2d 101, 109) To submit is "to yield to the will of another", it is an unwillingness to stand up and loudly proclaim, "I DO NOT CONSENT TO BE A MEMBER OF YOUR POLITICAL CORPORATION AND I WAIVE ALL MEMBER-ONLY BENEFITS." This unwillingness to rebut the presumption that one has tacitly consented is nearly always based on the refusal to let go of those "member-only-benefits" inside the "monkey trap" called government; but to admit this, is to accept responsibility for one's own condition, and this is a not a very popular concept. I have had a few men, a small handful, say something to effect of; "What you say makes perfect sense, but I could never do that. I'd lose everything I've worked for." I understand. But keep in mind, "What the servant acquires, he acquires for his master", so you only get to use it at 'his' prerogative." "The ultimate ownership of all property is in the State; individual so-called "ownership" is only by virtue of Government, i.e., law, amounting to mere "user" and use must be in acceptance with law and subordinate to the necessities of the State." ~ U.S. Senate Document No. 43, 73rd Congress, 1st Session (c.1933) (Brown v. Welch supra)
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 6 years 7 weeks ago
    WTF, Max?!
    Page Mark Davis
    The democratic-corporate-state is a three ring circus and the banking elite are the grand masters at the middle of it all. Keiser sounds like he is more of a progressive these days than I previously thought. Stacy Herbert commented on his board that Keiser is so smart that he "figured out" that libertarians are just a bunch of rednecks and crazy Christians who want to set up a theocracy and make Gary North the Pharaoh; or something like that, it’s hard to "figure out" exactly what their agenda is. It certainly isn’t to stand up to the state. But to focus on reining in corporation by further empowering the state is naïve, at best and dangerous at worst.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 6 years 7 weeks ago
    Opinion and Reason
    Page Jim Davies
    Doug Casey's is an outstanding example; brilliant mind, successful investor, and yes as you say he enjoys a good measure of liberty. As far as I know he still has to suffer government gropers when traveling, and still pays some tax when he earns or spends his money; to the government in Argentina if not the one in the US. "Feeling free" or even actually becoming less unfree in reality than most folk, is not the same thing as actually _being_ free, namely exercising 100% control of one's own life as is one's absolute human right. The difference between the two kinds of freedom - partial or relative, and total - is explored in "Freedom's Benefits" at http://tolfa.us/ben.htm We do have to wait, but there's no need to stop part way. BTW: learn first. Then help teach.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 6 years 7 weeks ago
    MinGovia
    Page Jim Davies
    "Anything is possible if the statists are willing to kill enough people." Thanks Paul, you make a strong point. Governments facing ruin cannot be trusted to act rationally to minimize the damage, and they certainly have no interest in preserving life. The example of Hitler comes to mind; in 1945, he ordered that the earth be scorched; happily for Germans, Albert Speer risked his life by disobeying. Even there, though, there was an unusual factor in play: FDR's mad insistence on "absolute surrender." It meant that the Nazis had literally nothing to lose. And it's exceptional. Other recent examples: Russia 1917. Germany 1918. Japan 1945. North Korea 1953 (though that was more a draw than a defeat.) The USA in Vietnam 1975. Iraq 1991 and 2003. The USA in Iraq 2011, and in Afghanistan 2013 (we hope.) In all these cases, once the cause was hopeless the loser "sued for peace" or just walked away, on the best terms he could get. So in the article in the hypothetical case of a minority, statist MA surrounded by free societies, if I'm right and there is no way for a Boston government to win them, I suggest it's unlikely to begin fruitless wars with its neighbors. The case is however hypothetical and IMO highly improbable; I wrote about it only to demonstrate that even if it came about, as some Libertarians think it might, it could not long survive. When the tide of freedom has persuaded a majority of people to scrap government, I can see no way it will stop; the idea of (say) 30% or 20% or 10% at that stage saying "No, we prefer a governed society" is just not going to happen. My "Transition to Liberty" (link at foot of article) has the cover illustration of an avalanche; once government employees quit in large numbers, it will collapse utterly.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 6 years 7 weeks ago
    Opinion and Reason
    Page Jim Davies
    Jim Davies is still exhorting us to become teachers and Doug Casey shows us by example how HE became free. http://www.caseyresearch.com/cdd/wolf-and-lamb
  • Glock27's picture
    Glock27 6 years 8 weeks ago Page fmoghul
    Ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,ha.ha. Most agreeable. This clearly relates directly to the fairy tale legislators of all ilk. They are all schizophrenic and bi-polar and some living in catatonia. That to me is a perfect thrust. I have had my confrontations with prosecutors and judges...all ego centered demi-gods.
  • Glock27's picture
    Glock27 6 years 8 weeks ago Page fmoghul
    Full agreement. Justice is one thing, something the unwashed masses contain a false hope in. Note the most recent supreme court decision that [o]bama care is a legal tax. How in the hell did they derive it was a tax when his people yelped it is not a tax. What dorks. And these individuals are suppose to be smart. Ph-ht. Where Justice is on this blue marble I have absolutely no idea. I really get hung up on the "Human condition with varable constants??". The only justice I get is the justice I deliver...hm-m-m. I believe individuals want the justice they want whether it is just or not. Got enough money and you can, in many cases, buy the justice you want.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 6 years 8 weeks ago
    WTF, Max?!
    Page Mark Davis
    ″Despite all the flags fluttering on First Avenue there are no nations any more, only companies; International companies.″ ~ Kuman-Kuman 28 USC [United States Code] § 3002 - Definitions (15) "United States" means — (A) a Federal corporation... [Emphasis added] All the rest of them, including the so-called "several States", are "subsidiary corporations" created by, attached to, and controlled by, the "parent corporation". "One disadvantage of the parent-subsidiary relationship is the possibility of multiple taxation." ~ West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved. Nah, that could never happen. Could it?
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 6 years 8 weeks ago Page fmoghul
    G'day Samarami, Butler Shaffer asks, "Is it possible to take an effective but peaceful stance against evil; to end such practices and hold the perpetrators accountable without, in the process, engaging in the same kind of retaliatory violence that defined the crime itself?" I answer, "Yes; withdraw from membership in the gang, or gangs, perpetrating evil, do not voluntarily allow them do it in your name (authority)". http://tinyurl.com/9uwudsb "...withdraw consent... That is the only really effective restriction on power, in the last analysis." ~ Clyde Wilson I DO NOT CONSENT TO BE A MEMBER OF YOUR POLITICAL CORPORATION AND I WAIVE ALL MEMBER-ONLY BENEFITS. Watch all the "anarchists" cheer at this suggestion. ;)
  • tzo's picture
    tzo 6 years 8 weeks ago
    WTF, Max?!
    Page Mark Davis
    Max seems to be operating under the assumption that the government created/enabled corporations that we see today controlling much of the world's wealth would exist in a world without government. Your observation that there is no clear line between government and corporation is accurate, I believe. What is perceived to be corporate control today is in fact government control. Without government, there are no corporations. The very definition of corporation disallows anyone from arguing this point. Where there is currently one or two corporations controlling an entire market, there would be fifty smaller ones. Heck, even thirty years ago there were many more, smaller companies competing in every market before they were absorbed, one by one, into the government/corporation maw. So even a cursory glance at recent American history shows that Max's ideas aren't accurate even when there is reduced government influence in business. And so much the further off base he is in the case of no government at all.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 6 years 8 weeks ago Page fmoghul
    G'day Glock27, With all due respect, someone has said, "justice had to be fair"... Justice is the use of power as appointed by law, honor or standards to support fair treatment and due reward. (noun) ~ Webster's New World Law Dictionary [Emphasis added] ...which, of course, is not to say that this always, or even most of the time, holds true. I cannot accept your canon that we are to judge Pope and King unlike other men, with a favourable presumption that they did no wrong. If there is any presumption it is the other way, against the holders of power, increasing as the power increases. Historic responsibility has to make up for the want of legal responsibility. Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men, even when they exercise influence and not authority, still more when you superadd the tendency or the certainty of corruption by authority. There is no worse heresy than that the office sanctifies the holder of it. ~ John Emerich Edward Dalberg-Acton (Lord Acton) [Emphasis added] ____________________________________________________________________ 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 has become the weapon of every kind of greed! Instead of checking crime, the law itself is guilty of the evils it is supposed to punish! If this is true, it is a serious fact, and moral duty requires me to call the attention of my fellow-citizens to it. ~ Excerpted from The Law by Frédéric Bastiat
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 6 years 8 weeks ago Page fmoghul
    Failed to mention, the link to Butler's article was in response to this phrase in your nice piece, Faisal: "Sadly, the statement is symptomatic of a broken system of criminal justice" Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 6 years 8 weeks ago Page fmoghul
    Butler Shaffer had a good picture of "justice" a few years ago on the Lew Rockwell page. Sam
  • Glock27's picture
    Glock27 6 years 8 weeks ago
    Opinion and Reason
    Page Jim Davies
    Hope your are here for a long time to come. It will be a great loss should you ever depart. Thanks for penetrating insight.
  • Paul Bonneau's picture
    Paul Bonneau 6 years 8 weeks ago Page tzo
    "The government shall hold all the guns..." That is of course the rulers' desires, but it does not describe reality. One little fly in the ointment...
  • Paul Bonneau's picture
    Paul Bonneau 6 years 8 weeks ago Page fmoghul
    The only problem with this article is its schizophrenic regard for the law. Either the law is a crock, or it is not. In my opinion, it is a crock, no matter what Sir Thomas More says about that. The bottom line as far as I'm concerned, with the system not even bothering with pretense any more, pretence of some orderly pursuit of justice (the whole notion of government pursuing justice is laughable), is that it no longer makes sense to allow oneself to be arrested for any reason. When the enforcers come for you, your only choices are war, or slavery and the ruination of your life.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 6 years 8 weeks ago
    MinGovia
    Page Jim Davies
    Very well-written article, Constitution-bashing, a strategic error?, Paul Bonneau. I took particular notice of this: "...it would be an act of tyranny to force freedom on those who don't want it. When someone bashes the Constitution, the other shoe is somehow never dropped. That is, there is never any proposal as to what should replace it. There might be an implication that nothing at all should replace it, but how realistic (in the short to medium time frame) is that? Wouldn't that be tyranny, even if anarchists could pull that off (fat chance since we are on the order of 1% of the population)? We'd be betraying anarchy in the very act of imposing it." Which is why I believe that Individual Secession is the only non-hypocritical alternative. As a corollary to the proposition that all institutions must be subordinated to the law of equal freedom, we cannot choose but admit the right of the citizen to adopt a condition of voluntary outlawry. If every man has freedom to do all that he wills, provided he infringes not the equal freedom of any other man, then he is free to drop connection with the state — to relinquish its protection, and to refuse paying toward its support. It is self-evident that in so behaving he in no way trenches upon the liberty of others; for his position is a passive one; and whilst passive he cannot become an aggressor. ~ Excerpted from The Right to Ignore the State by Herbert Spencer
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 6 years 8 weeks ago
    MinGovia
    Page Jim Davies
    While we are on the MinGovia topic, Jim Davies, how many government workers have you, thus far, led to an "honest life"?
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 6 years 8 weeks ago
    MinGovia
    Page Jim Davies
    Mightn't a "voluntary, organized defense" also be called a "well regulated Militia"? A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
  • Paul Bonneau's picture
    Paul Bonneau 6 years 8 weeks ago
    Anarchist's Progress
    Web link Don Stacy
    An excellent article, thanks for posting it. I found this passage wonderful: "My experiences were surely not uncommon, and my reasonings and inferences were no more than any child, who was more than halfwitted, could have made without trouble. But my mind had never been perverted or sophisticated; it was left to itself. I never went to school, so I was never indoctrinated with pseudo-patriotic fustian of any kind, and the plain, natural truth of such matters as I have been describing, therefore, found its way to my mind without encountering any artificial obstacle."
  • Paul Bonneau's picture
    Paul Bonneau 6 years 8 weeks ago
    MinGovia
    Page Jim Davies
    "There is no organized or socialized defense system in the surrounding societies..." No socialized defense, agreed; but there is nothing preventing voluntary, organized defense. In fact it will occur to most people living in voluntaryist zones that such is probably needed, at least while neighboring statist societies exist. "It's possible to conquer states, but not to conquer non-states, with any resulting advantage." Unfortunately, I don't believe this is true. Anything is possible if the statists are willing to kill enough people. Vigilance will be necessary... "So much for the "Libertarian" version of the theory that government is okay if it responds to its public." Your envisioned outcome is the same one I have (although there are much more difficult cases, e.g. one small voluntaryist community surrounded by a sea of statists). Another case would be that voluntaryism might not yield more wealth than mild forms of statism. But assuming your outcome does take place, this does not invalidate the concept that government is okay if it responds to its public. It just means government is a temporary condition. But that is nothing new in human affairs; everything is temporary. As to the constitutionalist view, I agree, however one might want to consider this point: http://www.ncc-1776.org/tle2012/tle684-20120819-03.html
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 6 years 8 weeks ago
    MinGovia
    Page Jim Davies
    Hello Glock. There is no such thing as rational government, so yes; on the premise that government must exist, everything is futile indeed. But watch that bit about the gum heads. If you follow the two links in the middle of the article, you'll find others that suggest that the the biggest fault with the Constitution IS the Constitution. And while the States voted it in, yes, it claims that "the people" did; but the people did not.
  • Glock27's picture
    Glock27 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link Mike Powers
    Stunning for me. This is a must read. How often do we conceed to authority? Frequently. We are conditioned from home to death to obey.
  • Glock27's picture
    Glock27 6 years 8 weeks ago
    MinGovia
    Page Jim Davies
    Greetings Jim, Nice scenario. What actually captured me is the Bush reference "...its nothing but a goddamned piece of paper". For so long I have believed legislatures have viewed the Constitution in this manner. My divide comes from the idea that as a collective of people there must needs be a guiding principle. We have to recognize that not everyone is going to think alike even in natural rights and natural law. Given the opportunity they too will be twisted like the Constitution has been and continues to be. If I am not mistaken, I believe each state voted whether to accept the new piece of paper or not, so collectively, dokie moi (seems as if), the people of that period made the choice to accept it and ergo it has continued on. What would happen if the whole of the Constitution was put up for a vote again.? Would it receive the necessary votes to continue its principles? The biggest fault with the Constitution is not the Constitution, but the gum heads voted in to theorietically speak for the people. What kind of guiding principle would be used by libertarian or anarchist or voluntarist put in place, Natural law/natural rights-- and what would guarantee it would actually be followed? I notice that Washington was the first to violate the rights during the whiskey rebellion. What is to guarantee that any new piece of paper would receive any better respect. We all are trapped in the "Human Condition of Variable with no constant". Everything seems so futile. Respectfully, Glock27
  • Glock27's picture
    Glock27 6 years 8 weeks ago Page fmoghul
    Prosecutors are elected, ergo an agend to convict as much as possible to keep their job regardless of innocense or guilt.
  • Glock27's picture
    Glock27 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link Westernerd
    I must conceed that Romney is not my most favorite pick but from other sources in plethoria I view [o]bama as a destroyer of America--he has no American history but sees it through a world (global0 perspective as having gotten too much through coersion, theft, and other adjectives. His progrom is to make America pay for all its misdeeds. When you view the people he draws around himself, and the people whom are "his" friends it is scarry as hell. I don't believe either are an affront to humans everywhere. They are two people with two different agendas, [o]bama to destroy America, Romney to ??? Anyway. I was under the impression that this sight was not suppose to be political. By the way, I believe the government has been at war with its citizens since Washington. Consider the whiskey rebellion. A militia sent out to enforce no bootleggers. Respectfully, Glock27
  • Glock27's picture
    Glock27 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link mhstahl
    How about just pure old fashioned common sense and not mumbo jumbo. One mans perspective becomes a cornfield of rage for another. Having taught special education for 35 years I have known many human beings with absolutely no self-awarness that could be detected. They are neither Chimpanze nor mushroom. One student which I hopelessly worked with (because it was required of me by legislative law) had no brain, only the primitive cerebellum which controls heart, breathing and etc. Her cerebral cortex was withered into a small lump floating around on a string in the cerebral fluid, absolutely functionalless; then there are half brained individuals whom get along fairly well also. So. From my perspective, self-awarness does not constitute a parameter of humaness. Go figure. Brainlless human being and still a human being. I still contend that once the sperm hits the egg and begins its myotic process (the evolvement of a human being) that it is a human being. I wish people would stop using excuses for their behavior and take responsibility for their poor choices. Two wrongs just don't make a right do it? (Somewhere it was mentioned that kill the ova and you commit murder. How many murders happen when young guys and old fellows jack-off and squirt on the ground or where-ever. By such reasoning one teenage boy is worse than Hitler and a pile of other tyrants). !!!By the way. This has nothing to do with religion. Where you garnered that idea I haven't the foggeiest idea; so lets keep religion completely out of this and stay with the Natural Order of things, it's a bit safer!!! What is such an enigma to me is how so many people are passionate about denegrating the human being. When a woman gets pregnant they want to look at it like its a tumor to be gotten rid of. Pregnancy is the natural result of unprotected sex. (Yes or No?). What do you think is going to happen when a male and female copulate? Now, if pregnancy is the result of a natural act should it not follow that the natural result is going to be a human being and not a chimpanze or mushroom. If it is natural then that evolving fetus has natural rights whether it is conscious or not. When does self-awarness begin with a child? The moment it is born, or is it self-aware in the womb, or is it an hour after it is born? Self-consciousness has nothing to do with humaness--I pointed that out with the brainless child above. It is my opinion that a bit more probing into what human is as opposed to chimpanze or mushroom. Scribbleddeplatz fizzen drupe quizzel snitz!! Give me honest proof that the egg and sperm once united (or not) can be identified as human or not. If it is not, what is it, and don't say tissue because that too is human. not chimpanze or mushroom. Criminal forensics can tell that difference. If they can we should also. I urge anyone else who sees this to send me a message and demonstrate where my thinking and logic is faulty. Jim! Where are you when I need you? HELP!!! Respectfully, Glock27
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link mhstahl
    Buz-z-z-z-z-z-z! Incorrect! ;) A person, in legalese, (an artificial[1] language), is an artificial being, "devised by human laws for the purposes of society and government[2]", (another artificial entity), while an human is a natural being, which explains the reason for following Maxim of Law. Homo vocabulum est naturae; persona juris civilis. Man (homo) is a term of nature; person (persona) of civil law. ~ Black's Law Dictionary, Sixth Edition (c.1990), page 736 This is why their 'laws' read, "All persons shall..." and not "All men shall..." It has nothing whatsoever to do with gender! They have no jurisdiction over men who do not, (knowingly or ignorantly), stand surety for a "person (persona)" created by them. They are actually directing the "person (persona)" but you, (rhetorically speaking), jump through the hoop believing that "person (persona)" is you. "The Matrix is a system, Neo. That system is our enemy. But when you're inside, you look around. What do you see? Business men, teachers, lawyers, carpenters. The very minds of the people we are trying to save. But until we do, these people are still a part of that system, and that makes them our enemy. You have to understand, most of these people are not ready to be unplugged. And many of them are so inert, so hopelessly dependent on the system that they will fight to protect it." ~ Morpheus _________________________________________________________ [1] Artificial, created by artifice, which is, in this case, "human laws". [2] Also note that these bastards know "society and government" are two entirely different things.
  • Eric Field's picture
    Eric Field 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link Mike Powers
    Well written article. Similar things can be said about other graduate schools, or any formal education for that matter. Developing knowledge and competencies is important, but there is no silver bullet for the marketplace.
  • tomcat's picture
    tomcat 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link mhstahl
    What makes higher Forms of Life (that of Humans and maybe that of some other Species, including chimpanzies) so special is Self-awareness. From a scientific Point of view, to be alive and self-aware you will need adequate biological structures as "underlying Hardware".Dont know where to draw the exact line, but a single cell, a bunch of cells or a thumb-sized Embryo wont do it. With lesser or no requirements as far as the Self-awareness is concerned, this basically true for all Forms of Life.To be alive, even as a mushroom, you need functional biological Structures. You are free to believe whatever you want and you should be free to bear the consequences of your faith. For your own person. But should Ideas solely made up by some religious Belief become the Foundation of Laws legally binding for all People ? NO !!
  • mhstahl's picture
    mhstahl 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link mhstahl
    Dbl post.
  • mhstahl's picture
    mhstahl 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link mhstahl
    Glock, Please do be aware that my reasoning for posting an article is most emphatically not because I agree with its content. Instead, the purpose is to generate thought and/or to offer content that might be of interest to STR readers. Tibor Machan is a fairly well known academic who is also a libertarian who made an observation about an event that occurred that day-that is why I posted the article. I agree that the case is, at minimum, somewhat overstated. That said, the idea that one's "job"-meaning wage employment rather than vocation or specialty-is essential in self-definition is an unfortunate pathogen cultured in the industrial revolution. We are, of course, much more than worker drones yet sadly for far too many people attaining a well paying "job"-doing literally anything-has become a dime-store substitute for philosophical introspection. This is not to say that enlightenment was ever achieved, or even attempted, by most people, but rather that the industrial job culture wears a polyester suit and waves a glittering flag promising fulfillment. Tragically, the human mind's capability for self-deception is such that vast multitudes accept this third-rate margarine and convince themselves that they have "done well." Not only do they never taste real butter, they don't even know it exists. Religion once stocked those same shelves, but at least its wares had some nutritional value on occasion. We don't know, and doubtless never will know the motives of the NY murderer. That alone does not render the social commentary useless, rather it makes it that much more important. Were I Machan, I would have focused on the sense of entitlement found in the POLICE who fired multiple times into a crowd of innocent people-wounding several. There is utterly no excuse for this behavior, yet it is excused. We are told that since people who choose to take up a profession that puts them in potential contact with violence and who supposedly exist to "protect" the innocent where at some risk they were then justified in endangering the live of scores of innocents. Talk about entitlement-base cowardice is being justified because the police officers are "entitled" to protect their safety-no matter what the cost. I will say that I suspect that there is far less generational variation than you suggest, and that societies, all societies, are constantly in a state of flux. I also notice a double-helping of conservative finger-pointing in your commentary. It is regrettable that what passes for conservatism today has become so very reactionary and deceptive in its rhetoric-this is useless for anything other than garnering votes. It needn't be that way. At any rate, thank you for the comment.
  • rita's picture
    rita 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link Westernerd
    The US has been at war with its own citizens for over 40 years -- another untouchable topic, apparently. That said, it's probably just as well I'm not allowed to vote. The only thing Romney has over Obama is that Romney hasn't yet presided over the remote-control murder of children. The only thing Obama has over Romney is that Joe Biden is slightly less offensive than Paul Ryan. Both candidates are an affront human beings everywhere.
  • Deepraj's picture
    Deepraj 6 years 8 weeks ago Page fmoghul
    Overzealous prosecutors garner less attention, much less public disdain, than their criminal defense counterparts. A concoction of misplaced values and ignorance, if you ask me. Rest assured, ever-expanding governmental power, coupled with corresponding technological advancements will only leave room for unfathomable and unprecedented levels of abuse in the future.
  • Glock27's picture
    Glock27 6 years 8 weeks ago Page fmoghul
    No one ever said justice had to be fair, only that some form of justice would be applied--fair or not.
  • Glock27's picture
    Glock27 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link Westernerd
    Greetings Rita, Perceptive observation. Why are Americans not interested in the war? Possibly because Americans are fighting a war here as well, a war of economics; aint got two pennys to rub together. When you loose all monitary resources and facing homelessness the Afgan war seems rather small, especially when [o]bama is doing all he can to make us a third world country. As for political faith, I can't remember the last time I had faith in it. I vote, only out of hope. Hope is all I have left. Futile? Maybe. Maybe not.
  • Glock27's picture
    Glock27 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link mhstahl
    I consider abortion a poor excuse for shoddy behavior. For me, I view the uniting of a sperm with an ova to be the initiating point of human life and that of a human being. I strongly disagree with abortion because the end result will be a human being, not a chimpanzie, or a mushroom and at that inception is also the inception of the evolving child. I conceed there are certain cases a woman should determine if the child should be eliminated and incest, rape, mothers life are some. All creatures upon this planet bear out their young and do not obtain abortion. If it comes it is via natural selection--a fact which also occurs with human creatures. The woman, if she is willing to gamble on not getting pregnant but does, should not be allowed the right to abort the human child. Her pregnancy is a result of stupidity and using abortion as a preventative is not an available choice, a right she forfits because she and he knows better. So many want to talk about natural right and natural law. I believe that the part "natural" is overlooked, in that a woman becomes naturally pregnant. Where in natural law does it say she has a natural right to abort the child (property?) I don't think so because one cannot give away their natural rights without having first negotiated such abdicationn. I think you referred me to an author who speaks to these elements and reading his words kind of convinces me of this position. Am I misinterpreting him? Maybe. Maybe not. There are so many options the woman and man can use to control pregnancy. To be lazy and foregoe the options says to me you forgo the right to abort the human being. If it were a chimpanze or a mushroom, please feel free to abort it. If you don't want the child then give the child to a couple desireing a child. This makes far more common sense that simply aborting a child because of being stupid about ones moral and ethical obligation to the natural rights and laws. I anxiously await your or anyone elses reply. Please send me a message. Respectfully, Glock27
  • Glock27's picture
    Glock27 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link mhstahl
    Greetings tomcat, A few books by Hannah Arendt that might be helpful "The origins of Totaliarainism" "The Life of the Mind" and "The Human Condition"
  • Glock27's picture
    Glock27 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link mhstahl
    Greetings mhstahl I scaned over the article you posted. The first thought which came to mind is that the fellow was within the baby-boomer generation prodegy (and I bear the same shame,) but I believe many of the baby-boomer generation pampered their kids, overly protective;then there were the spock generation, burn the bra generation, Viet Nam resistors, individuals whom missed the depression values and morals those people had passing on to baby-boomer generation, a generation which failed to instill the idea of hard work or at least work to attain some position in life building in the sense of "helplessness". As we progress historically the great Uncle decides to start passing out American tax dollars to those out of work. (I recall when uneployment was only 16 weeks and after that you made it on your own one way or another[it seemed reasonable that a person could find some kind of work in 16 weeks]). For this fellow, desperation sat in upon his life, a full year of desperation. I don't believe he shot the first person as a result of entitlement. Yes he lost his job but it may have been the reason of loosing it. Anger and rage set in. At the point of hopelessness, deciding he had nothing more to loose, he created the idea 'F__k that son of a bitch. I'll show him he screwed with the wrong person, ergo, boom! I have not seen anything yet or hear that he went on the rampage because he believed he had a right to the job; subconsciously that may be true. I have a son struggeling to keep a job. He finally landed one and not too long afterward a 20 something kid came in causing the company to loose a major client because he was lazy, disrespectful, unskilled at work ethics and etc. Now my son will be loosing his job because of this blundering idiot. He's not going after the kid who cause the problem, but being creative and has a new situation lined up. I have said more than enough. Give me your thoughts respectfully. I felt the author used the situation unfairly.
  • tomcat's picture
    tomcat 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link mhstahl
    The confusion about the terms of -Human Beeing- and -Person- is most likely a result of the religious Belief that one doesnt need a physical Existence to "be". A new "immortal Soul" is created in the Moment of impregnation, so once you destroy a single Zygote you commit Murder. The real Question should be if our Evaluation of Right and Wrong should be based on religious Superstition or on scientific Knowledge.Especially if we consider the Outcome of this Evaluation to be mandatory not only for ourselves but for others too. Religion has in any case the Advantage to give simple and straightforward Answers to the most difficult Questions and complex Problems.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link mhstahl
    Speaking of "idiotic remarks", anyone pick up on this? "Rather it turns on as yet unsettled questions regarding when and how a human being becomes a "person" with "rights." Anyone here know the answer to this most unusual question? When and how does a human being become a "person"? [Keep in mind that the question was not, when does an embryo become an "human being" with "rights"?] Scope and delineation of term [person] is necessary for determining those to whom Fourteenth Amendment of Constitution affords protection since the Amendment expressly applies to "person". ~ Excerpted from Black's Law Dictionary, Sixth Edition (c.1990), definition of the word "Person", page 1142 [Bracketed information and emphasis added] Why did the authors of Black's feel the adverb "expressly" was necessary in that portion of the above definition of the word "Person"? So, when and how does a human being become a "person" with "rights"? And, what kind of "rights" does he have...as a "person"? Are they the same "rights" that he has...as an human being? [Yes, yes, I know, some of you have no "just claim", i.e. right, to anything. Please, feel free to excuse yourself from answering these mundane questions. ;)]
  • GeoffreyTransom's picture
    GeoffreyTransom 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link Robert Kaercher
    2002: the 3-2-1 crack spread was $4-odd; in 2005: $7-odd; now: $30-odd. To the extent that the War-Rape of Iraq had anything whatsoever to do with oil, it was not to obtain control over Iraqi oil per se, but to revalue (upwards) crony oil endowments and to enable larger per-barrel profit margins. That revaluation and increased crack margin applies to ALL barrels, regardless of source. In the same way, when the State decided to have their mass-scale slaughterfests in 1914 and 1939, steel prices (and commodity prices generally) went up hard. The increase in steel prices did not solely apply to steel used in the manufacture of materiel for the War Pigs to use to lay waste to each other's working classes and infrastructure: ALL steel for ALL uses became more expensive, and the additional margin was pocketed by the Steel interests then, as it has been being pocketed by the oil interests now. Although history is replete with instances of actual resource-acquisition by war (paid for by the taxpayer, with cronies obtaining control over the profit stream through State-rigged extraction-rights agreements), the political-parasite set is no longer inder the illusion that stealing resources in this way can be done at reasonable cost. It's FAR more about enabling them to earn a decent rate of return on their DOMESTIC endowments of resources.
  • Eric Field's picture
    Eric Field 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link Westernerd
    Rita, I have lost most remaining political faith over the past two weeks. I've decided that it's time to rip off the bandaid, and admit that I'm a full on ancap.
  • rita's picture
    rita 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link Westernerd
    Funny thing -- well, not so funny maybe; I was just today talking to my Dad about the noticeable absence of any mention of any of our wars in any presidential speech or ads that I've seen or read or listened to. They don't mention Bradley Manning or Julian Assange or the UK's threat to storm the Ecuadorian embassy, either. But "legitimate rape" -- now, THERE'S a topic worthy of discussion, right?
  • Eric Field's picture
    Eric Field 6 years 8 weeks ago Page fmoghul
    Great article, way to break it down.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 6 years 8 weeks ago Web link Don Stacy
    ~Re: "You say "ideas are not scarce". I beg to differ. Ideas which I consider profitable to me are IMHO very scarce." Nope! Butter gets thinner as it spreads, IDEAS GET THICKER! Ludwig von Mises's view is that ideas are a free good, not subject to economic constraints. They are infinitely reproducible. ....There is a very strange tendency of some capitalists to misdiagnose the source of their profits in a world of Intellectual Property, spending far more on beating up pirates than they would have earned in a free market innovating. ....Disney--for example--which relies heavily on Intellectual Property, got its start and makes its largest profits by retelling public-domain stories and is making block busters on pirate stories! Nothing is absolutely original--we all ultimately stand on the shoulders of others--yet this turns out to be tremendously freeing from confusions about Independence and Dependence and what is actually productive and what is not (It does require some thinking....) Thanks to misunderstandings about Intellectual Property, no one can work on a variation of a theme of something new, something good, something worth being improved, or made different, or enriched....it is highly destructive.... ~Re: "But, it makes the world a better place to show your gratitude as a minimum and "pay" for what you get". ....But how can creators *make a buck in a world of fluid imitation?* The same way they always have: by having the best product at the right price to the market FIRST, front loaded if you will... When others imitate them, they have to hustle again and innovate some more. This is how individuals, societies and economies grow. We have traditionally thought that cooperation and competition were the two pillars of social order; a third could be added: emulation. ...Think of the fashion world, in which Intellectual Property doesn't apply. It is fast moving, innovative, and remarkably profitable...Infact the more imitations, the more refinements, the more the marketing, the better...It is the same with generic drugs, fonts, perfume and other sectors in which there is no IP. Lessons from fashion's free culture: Johanna Blakley on TED.com http://blog.ted.com/2010/05/25/lessons_from_fa/ Bottom line: It is about personally embracing and using the ratification of ideas that emulation and innovation and its diffusion, adoption and improvement are life giving and move one's own world incrementally forward, individual by individual. Where BOTH buyer and innovator (AND the division of labor society) are and can be rewarded without the need of stultifying monopoly privilege and cartelization (backed and made possible by the State) and its pathetically unnecessary destruction...
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 6 years 9 weeks ago Page tzo
    Superb, Tzo, as usual. Thanks!
  • tesla921's picture
    tesla921 6 years 9 weeks ago Web link Don Stacy
    I understand what you are saying and I thank you for making the effort to enlighten me. Let me give you my perspective. Let's go with Caruso alone on an island. He is picking and eating berries. Along comes Friday and sees Caruso picking and eating the berries. He's never seen or tasted berries before but he copies Caruso and gets to taste these berries for the first time and they are incredible. He doesn't have any money but he pays Caruso. He pays him with gratitude. He goes up to Caruso and says thank you very much. You are a real life saver. Caruso is happy. He has made a friend and he takes Friday and shows him how to peal a banana. Again, Friday pays him with gratitude. If he hadn't paid him for the berries, chances are he wouldn't have been shown how to peal a banana. Caruso profits by making a friend and Friday profits by making a friend and eating berries and bananas. I define profit as any moral increase in happiness. Now, you don't have to pay Caruso. No one should be forced to pay for anything. But, it makes the world a better place to show your gratitude as a minimum and "pay" for what you get.