Recent comments

  • Paul's picture
    Paul 16 weeks 3 days ago Web link TheMPP
    What's the point of being a cop, unless you have access to coerced sex?
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 16 weeks 3 days ago Web link TheMPP
    He seems to want to ignore the trend in poverty prior to 1964. Of course every study of human beings has an axe to grind; not a single one of them is honest, nor could they be even if they wanted to be.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 16 weeks 3 days ago Web link TheMPP
    There is money to be made; careers...
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 16 weeks 3 days ago
    Defining Anarchy
    Page Mark Davis
    In doing research for a comment at another site I ran across this essay by Mark, written nearly ten years ago -- and which elicited no STR comments whatsoever. Interesting. This was an excellent overview of anarchist observation. I obviously read it, made no comment myself at the time (I must have been brand-new to compooterization in general and this site in particular in 2005), so certainly am not entitled to hurl insults at anybody for ignoring the important in this case. So many "anarchist" comment sections end up with driveling and sniveling commentary over pablum ("religion", "science", "sex", and such-like detritus) -- while allowing the meat and spinach to go by the wayside (the "stuff" of libertarian and anarchist thought). I suspect none of us have good call to wail or gnash teeth over the non-acceptance of anarchy out there in the mainstream where all the little fishes swim. Just sayin'. Sam
  • ReverendDraco's picture
    ReverendDraco 16 weeks 3 days ago Web link TheMPP
    There doesn't need to be evidence of actual harm because WORST CASE SCENARIO!
  • Plant Immigration Rights Supporter's picture
    Plant Immigrati... 16 weeks 3 days ago Web link TheMPP
    "Right. But you have to own that then,” grilled Oliver. “You’re giving documents with information you know could be harmful, which could get out there.” Harmful to whom? That is the question. Harmful to the government? The same government that is spying on us, eviscerating or liberties, and bombing innocents overseas? If so, that is a GOOD thing. And is there any actual evidence that any human beings were physically harmed as a result of this? I mean physically, not embarrassed, but actually physically harmed? If so where is it?
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 16 weeks 4 days ago Blog entry Glen Allport
    Well spotted, Glen; and it's always fun to watch one government entity squabbling with another.   But is it quite fair to conclude from the article that "Nuclear power is [not] workable as a free-market industry"?   Surely, what the UK situation tends to prove is that nuclear power is not workable as a government monopoly; it's never been anything else. The question of whether it could work in a free market is left, by the article, wide open. The Guardian writer does not even pose it - despite that journal's honorable history during the Victorian era as a champion of classical liberal values.  
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 16 weeks 4 days ago
    Us, or U.S.?
    Page Paul Hein
    Paul Hein: The tragedy is that we allow them to do it. Shame on US! I "voted" you a 9 on this essay, Paul. I would have "voted" 10 -- a perfect score -- were it not for these last two sentences. I have not allowed "them" to do it. So I herewith absolve myself of "shame". Nah, I can't be totally absolved of shame. There are times I just let 'er slip due to such complete saturation and lack of interest in changing -- often among my dear libertarian writer/friends. There are friends on this very page who, I suspect, rue the day I stumbled upon the late Delmar England's "Insanity As the Social Norm". For years -- even prior to my official enrollment into the confederation of anarchy -- I had come to recognize the fallacy of "we", and also of "reification": "Missouri casts 15 votes for the next grand wizard of the klan!..." Neither you nor I cast any votes. I suppose as in the case of a political "convention" one individual can be delegated to speak for and represent a delegation of individuals who have met, voted and agreed upon a specific candidate for grand wizard. But it would be beyond the capacity of political reason to ask them to say something like, "...the Missouri delegation casts..." That would border on ending obfuscation, upon which all political "planks" reside. But "Missouri" did not support Barack Obama or John McCain or Ron Paul. A certain number of people in a place they're calling "Missouri" may have, but neither you nor I supported anybody. Well, I can't speak for you. Reification has drawn more professing libertarian writers into the snares of collectivist mentality than we can shake fingers at -- not that it does any good to go shaking fingers at anybody. "Japan attacked the US at Perle Harbor." Wrong. "Japan" doesn't exist. Nor does "the US". People exist. We need to stop engaging in collectivist thought hawsers if we're going to be effective in proselytizing our "ism" of libertarian thinking. You've provided a good start with this essay. Here's a good documentary outlining the phenomenon (1 hr 22 min). It was posted and promoted on Dollar Vigilante just today. I do greatly appreciate this article, Paul. It is well-written and clear. I no longer feel like the lone voice in the wilderness. Sam
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 16 weeks 6 days ago Blog entry Mark Davis
    Good job, Mark, in questioning the authority of government numbers.   Here are some more funny ones.   Assuming that the population is distributed evenly by year and that the life expectancy is 80, there are about (320/80 =) 4 million alive per year of age. Further assume that people retire at 62 on the fortune they have amassed (like Sam, for example) and begin work at 16, there are (4 x (62-16) =) 184 million people of working age.   However, half of them (92 million) are ladies, and Nature has equipped those best to mind the children, so not many of them ought to be out there laboring. Hence the working population "ought" to be 92 million men, plus a few exceptional ladies - say, round it up to 100 million.   But the referenced article says that 148.3 million people are actually employed. Therefore the unemployed number negative 48 million and the over-employment rate is 48%.   Lies, damned lies, and satistics.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 16 weeks 6 days ago Blog entry Mark Davis
    Mark: "...their ain't a whole lot of new rich people these days..." I am a sovereign state. I am also "... the new rich..." It really wasn't that great of an accomplishment, with a population of 1 -- but it is an achievement. My affluence came about through my divorce from measuring wealth in terms of "federal-reserve-notes". Oh, I keep some with me. Every day when I cross the border into a place they're calling "The-US" I find precious few merchants who would accept or even recognize anything other than FRN's. Ever now and again a clerk will hold the '20' I just handed her up to the light. I'll usually say, "that's counterfeit!". They generally stare back with that blank, suspicious appearance; although lately I've discovered a few will smile with a look of perception. Which is another reason for my prosperity: I don't need their approval for my self-esteem. Or the approval of those psychopaths who make up that abstraction called "the state". Because I now understand that anybody within that group, in order to maintain their employment and hope to rise to the top of their "division", will prevaricate. Obfuscation has been the bulwark of the science of rulership since the very first khans discovered they could become governors and senators and kings by allowing the inhabitants of the conquered villages to remain alive and continue to produce and trade; rather than to rape all the women, then slaughter all the men, women and children. Obfuscation is the bulwark of what has recently been defined as "Stockholm Syndrome" -- the desire of the conquered to gain recognition and amenities from their conquerors (also known as "patriotism"). The enormity of the truth is incredible. Sam
  • Thunderbolt's picture
    Thunderbolt 17 weeks 2 days ago Web link Government Deni...
    Thank you, Sam.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 17 weeks 2 days ago Web link Government Deni...
    You didn't ask for my take, but I'll present it nonetheless: Years ago I ceased using the term "rights". It is no longer in my vocabulary. I make choices. I am aware there are people near and far who feel duty-bound to interfere with many of the choices I make. It is my responsibility, and mine alone, to defend myself from those interlopers. And, if my choices should give rise to behaviors that interfere with your tranquility or your well-being -- or that of those you love -- I can expect negative repercussions from you, or them. It will be your natural backlash from my impudence, not due to your "right" to be left alone. So I refrain from interfering in your life. I want you to like me. It's funner that way. As I see it (and I could be wrong), use of the term "rights" would imply that there are folks somewhere who are responsible for granting, maintaining or sustaining my "rights". They might, and they might not. If they don't, what am I going to do about it? Whine? Wring my hands -- gnash my teeth? If it's going to be, it will be up to me. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 17 weeks 2 days ago Page GainesvilleCoins
    "Financial Markets" are fairy tales. Coins are forever. "...There are certain spheres where you simply cannot remove the human element without terrible consequences..." Smartest sentence in the essay. Once I knew an economics teacher, Bob Lawson (long gone), who argued: "There is no such thing as technological unemployment..." This would have been around 1950. Long before compooters -- even Univac. I was a railroad telegrapher -- headed in the direction of the stage coach and buggy whip. Lawson was wrong. Teletype and land-line telephones were about to cost me my career. Turns out I got myself enslaved by the white man about that time to participate in a war ("conflict" ha ha) like those regularly conducted by lunatics. They were using the euphemism "draft" to describe that phenomenon. Had I known what was to come I would have courageously fled to a non-combative political entity, such as that in the place they like to call "Canada". But the "service" solved my problem. I was re-educated, re-trained, re-vamped, re-programmed, and re-evaluated -- all thanks to psychopaths who lurk under the mindless abstraction called "government". Somehow I managed to have seven kids and a hungry wife. I became quite successful as an "educator" in government ("public" ha ha) schools. Mr. Lawson was right. But not for the reason you might suspect. I am now the richest man in my city. Not due to bank balances or investments calculated in "federal reserve notes". Due to libertarians and anarchists grabbing me by the seat of the pants and scruff of the neck and eventually dragging me here -- causing me to become a free, sovereign state. In spite of the naysayers (thanks, Jim Davies, wherever you've ended up). Wherever, whenever a man or woman is willing to roll up her sleeves and put forth her best efforts to accomplish the assigned task(s), s/he will likely meet with success. It's the rule of the marketplace. Sam
  • Thunderbolt's picture
    Thunderbolt 17 weeks 2 days ago Web link Government Deni...
    Good day to you, Paul. I will presume that many, and perhaps most, libertarians believe in rights. Please elaborate about your perception of the term "rights." May I also presume that you do not think that rights are something that are defined and provided by government? I respect those who dare to think outside the box. Please again defend this position. Best wishes, T.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 17 weeks 4 days ago Web link Government Deni...
    Another paean to the religious notion of rights. Unfortunately there is no way to comment on the article, to set him straight or at least present another viewpoint.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 17 weeks 4 days ago Web link Government Deni...
    "Average citizens, he argues, must once again take their public responsibilities seriously and elect representatives who will take their oversight duties to heart and bind down this technocratic Leviathan with the chains of the Constitution." Yeah, that'll help (rolls eyes). What a moron.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 17 weeks 5 days ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    Each and every dominant social theme, each and every meme, I strongly believe, have been fetes of social engineering carried through over time by psychopathic and sociopathic tyrants -- each of whom is fully aware how easy it is to lead most people away from reality by simple slight-of-hand -- or slight-of-emotion. Some may have been more-or-less accidental (or coincidental), others carefully designed to redirect the attention of the hoi polloi from making identification of the man behind the curtain. Enforced vaccines (think about the childlike ridiculousness of that for a moment); sexuality from stem-to-stern ("gay", "gay marriage", "LGBT" whatever, "trans" this or that [I've lost track of all the sexualities nowadays, but seems I read of a government form where one needed to mark yay or nay to as many as twenty different "preferences for flavors of sexuality"], abortion -- sexual in nature); "hate" ("thought") criminality; police brutality (what else is new?), etc etc etc. The majority of human beings -- until somewhat recently -- have bought into the charade with docility. I believe the term "Stockholm syndrome" in itself is a total distraction from the fact that an extremely high percentage of people WANT to be subservient to masters. So the construct is to make it appear that only a small percentage of people -- like those involved in a rather obscure robbery over in Sweden that included hostages back in the 70's -- are the ones inflicted with a form of capture bonding, now labeled "Stockholm Syndrome". Nah. It's everywhere, folks. But that is changing. Slowly. As another post here at STR today suggests, even supposedly knowledgeable people are backing away from compliant submission to travesties such as mandatory inoculations. "Anti-Vaxers?" A fun time to be alive! I hope to live to see all human rulership everywhere collapse. Not likely. My most effective contribution is my ongoing urge to my dear friends that they abstain from beans. But I can dream, can't I? Sam
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 18 weeks 3 days ago Web link TheMPP
    You can always buy an aftermarket CSA plate holder if you really want  to express that sentiment.  CSA and other so-called specialty plates were only conceived as a way to provide extra money for the state.
  • Douglas Herman's picture
    Douglas Herman 18 weeks 4 days ago Page Douglas Herman
    Thanks Mark, You can order the DVD with a cheesy box cover from Amaz, Targ, Walm, Borders, etc. Or you can send me $20 for a personally burned Dvd, with boxcover you see, autographed somewhere, to  me, at  1829 North Palm Dr, Tempe, AZ 85281, postpaid.  Check, money order or silver American Eagle..... lol.
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 18 weeks 4 days ago Page Douglas Herman
    You're an inspiration Doug!  How do we order/see the movie?
  • helpfuljosh's picture
    helpfuljosh 18 weeks 4 days ago Web link KenK
    It was a long read but absolutely worth it. How these corrupt cops just plant evidence and the way they decide to go at it themselves is really bad. The civilian clothes they wear where only legal for catching gangs not for doing searches in a dispensary. I hope they will get locked away for some years. And I am pretty sure they will not be able to "serve" as a cop anymore in there lifetime. Thanks for sharing this interesting piece. These dispensaries should be protected better by law. Now they have criminals AND cops coming after their money. http://www.ilovegrowingmarijuana.com/how-obtain-cannabis-card/
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 18 weeks 6 days ago Web link KenK
    The only serious attempt at imposing outside rule on the zomians in modern times was in the 90s and 00s when the US DoJ made $$$ grants and military/police hardward available to eradicate opium production. Once the $$$ for that ran out, the whole situation regressed. So their strategy worked again.
  • mjackso6's picture
    mjackso6 18 weeks 6 days ago Web link strike
    "He followed up the remark by saying that 'long-term I think it would be fun to have a constitutional amendment process about... how our financial system works.'" It would be "~fun~" to have a ~constitutional amendment~ "process" about how our financial ~system~ works?! WTF?! Did he actually ~say~ that? We all know that Marx, Mao, Lenin and their ilk are his idols, but wow! His internal external monologue must have malfunctioned seriously there; might as well just come out and say, "Yeah, communism or fascism would be a lot more "fun" than what we've got now." As for the mandatory voting thing, yeah, big surprise there. Unlike the Ausies, however, they haven't succeeded in taking our "teeth" away from us just yet, so I'd imagine that the average American out there would be a little harder to bully into the voter's booth. Of course, I highly doubt that he'd have the "stones" to go that route. More likely just another "tax" for those who fail to meet their mandatory voting "obligation". Fun, fun, fun...
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 18 weeks 6 days ago Web link KenK
    From the paper: "...Even many anarchist economists such as Bruce Benson, Bryan Caplan, and Robert Higgs are fairly pessimistic about whether the state can ultimately be eradicated and repelled..." Throughout, the writers commit (among other fallacies) the "wrong question" fallacy: keep them asking the wrong questions and you never have to worry about answers. It is not a question of whether "the state" can ultimately be eradicated and repelled. The state does not exist. People exist -- psychopaths all when pertaining to mindless abstractions such as "the state". The question is whether support for the state can ultimately be eradicated and repelled. As the internet awakens a greater and greater mass of individuals to government and media chicanery -- as more and more ordinary folks come alive and abstain from beans -- there will be drastic changes in what we perceive as "the state". How that will all turn out -- when taken with the inevitable economic upheavals in the offing -- is anybody's guess. Sam
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 19 weeks 20 hours ago Web link KenK
    "Although authors such as Rothbard (1973) and Friedman (1973) provided many very good theoretical reasons why society would be better off without a state, they have spent less time showing how stateless societies could avoid takeover by a state in the long run. Without understanding the mechanisms or having evidence of the long-term viability of statelessness, does it make sense for anarchists to be pessimistic ones who only support the idea in the abstract?" From the paper at the link.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 20 weeks 1 day ago Web link TheMPP
    Ah, Mark. But remember diversity. Change is good. Keeps us aware of who the authoritarians are. Who know what's best. For us. Sam
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 20 weeks 1 day ago Web link TheMPP
    Exactly Sam.  It doesn't matter where you set the clocks at, just stop changing it back and forth.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 20 weeks 2 days ago Web link TheMPP
    If "DST" is such a good deal, why not set clocks ahead 2 hours -- or six hours??? (Same mentality as "minimum wage" argument -- why not a law requiring pay of 100 federal reserve notes per hour???). Actually, I've got a better idea: set clocks ahead one full day -- 24 hours! That way we could eliminate Monday, and all the debilitating hassles therewith! No sense being sad, pathetic or small -- it takes men with great wisdom and vision to make a village. Sam
  • ReverendDraco's picture
    ReverendDraco 20 weeks 3 days ago Web link TheMPP
    DST is the best thing to happen since clocks. We ought to go to DST and leave it there. DST makes for perfect backyard BBQs. . . As for me, I sleep better during DST - my workday (12-14 hours, 6 days a week) goes much more smoothly. The biggest deal about DST though - is how many whiny bitches cry about it - like there are so few issues of *actual* importance that this is the best they can come up with. Sad, pathetic, small humans. . .
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 20 weeks 3 days ago Web link TheMPP
    Amen.  This population control bullshit needs to end.
  • Steve's picture
    Steve 20 weeks 3 days ago Web link Government Deni...
    Google anti-semitism+Europe, and you'll see that it is rising everywhere: http://www.cnn.com/2015/02/16/europe/anti-semitism-in-denmark/ In last year's elections, right-wing nationalist parties indeed got poor results in Ukraine, but they did well across the rest of Europe. If you want to find anti-semitism, start in Russia: note the state TV newscasters' glee when they read Putin's condolence telegram to Boris Nemtsov's mother, repeatedly emphasizing her Jewish maiden name. Ask any Jews from Russia or Ukraine where there is more fascism and anti-Semitism. The Israeli embassy in Moscow has been packed lately, and probably not just for economic reasons. This is not to say that there is no anti-semitism in Ukraine--as Russians often say, the two countries' cultures are quite similar--but I'm not hearing about it from my Ukrainian friends, Jewish or gentile. It is Russia chauvinism that is provoking Ukrainian nationalism, but that nationalism will not be restricted to opposing Russia. It is foolish of Putin to play with such fire in a neighboring country. One should also bear in mind the history of collaboration with the Nazis in Finland and the "bloodlands" of Ukraine, Belarus, and the Baltics: many of these people suffered from the Soviets, and saw the Germans as the enemy of their enemy, an ally of convenience, not conviction. Russians and their apologists would like to forget this, but we see these countries' rising fear of their neighbor. I suspect that many of those expressing Nazi nostalgia are nationalist but not particularly anti-semitic. More European anti-semitism means more Jewish immigrants to the US. Their loss is our gain.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 20 weeks 5 days ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    That's just a rounding error to them.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 20 weeks 6 days ago Web link KenK
    Even then they never let a good crisis go to waste.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 21 weeks 12 hours ago Web link KenK
    Agreed. On both counts. My oldest daughter (age 55 -- yikes!) is about to retire from a lucrative state job. She's worked for government since she was 18. She'll draw considerably more in her retirement than my earnings ever amounted to through most of my working years. Of course, since the state is broke there's always anxiety amongst the retirees drawing the big bucks. They understand state agents in the form of governors, senators, etc., break contracts easy as a duck shoot -- no apologies. Of course I'm her Dad and don't think of her as psychopathic (or sociopathic). I'm as proud of her as any of her other six brothers and sisters. I'm also aware one must practice self-dishonesty to remain in state employ -- which, as you say, is part of the indoctrination. Like you, I spent time as a government hireling (serf) -- draftee, then ocs, then state patrol (as a trade off for early release from commitment as commissioned officer). This back in the days before police-state mentality. If a state policeman un-holstered a sidearm or a baton in those days he would face investigations and hearings and boards like you wouldn't believe. That was in the 50's -- Jim Crow was alive and well -- a factor of which I remind those who chide me for leaving police work. Racism goes with the job -- you do what you're told. You do not think. Or feel. Sam
  • mjackso6's picture
    mjackso6 21 weeks 13 hours ago Web link KenK
    Samarami, While I agree with you that "government" is one mass delusion organized and run by and for a select group of psychopaths, I have to say that, in my experience, the bulk of it isn't. The sad truth is that most of those employed by government are just the average joes of the world, programmed by parents and the public indoctrination (school) system to believe the shining knight, ma and apple pie, "Uncle Sam knows best" clap-trap that's been all-pervasive since at least Lincoln's time. I'm chagrined to say that I wasted almost 20 years of my life in the employ of Uncle Sam, thinking the whole time that I was doing what was best for folks both at home and abroad. It was kind of a rude awakening to finally grasp the true picture, but I'm glad that I finally did. I think that the majority of government's minions fall into that category.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 21 weeks 18 hours ago Web link KenK
    Strange that Masnick (author, "Tech Dirt") sees this as out of ordinary -- but amazing that any of us reading on this page could also fathom as such. Has anybody here come to expect "justice" from an organization of psychopaths grouped under the mantle of what they're calling "U.S. Department of 'Justice'"?? "...the government can basically seize whatever it wants, just by claiming it was somehow related to a crime, but the seizure is only a temporary process. If the government wants to keep it, it then needs to go through a separate process known as civil asset forfeiture, which is effectively the government suing the assets..." People writing for Tech Dirt make no claims to anarchy -- or even libertarian "ism" sofar as I know. It is my opinion, however, that in order to effectively grasp anarchy one must come to understand something so basic it shouldn't bear stating: that mindless abstractions such as "...the government...('it')" do not exist. People exist. Psychopaths all, if employed by that group of woolgatherers. So if you let yourself fall under the "jurisdiction" of the white man, feel privileged if you come away with your shirt and your undershorts. Sam
  • Spartacus Rex's picture
    Spartacus Rex 21 weeks 2 days ago Page Douglas Herman
    Douglas, I love you like a brother of another mother, however I think your writing talents and criticism would be better spent being directed at the true culprits behind the clusterf**ks in Iraq and/or Afghanistan, rather than posthumously denigrating and disparaging the service of a multiple decorated deceased individual. Would you even remotely feel somewhat better had Chief Petty Officer Christopher Kyle USN Retired not served (repeatedly) saving countless lives of front-line Grunts, many of which had simply joined the Reserves, and even after their contract was up, were “stopped lossed” and compelled into numerous deployments? Who in hell do you otherwise imagine signs off on these clusterf**ks, and is responsible for raising the revenue to fund same, ergo are held accountable to their constituents every two years? Where the hell were all of these constituents, and why were they not decrying their public servant congress critters abdicating their sworn duty, with their “separation of powers” purpose for even existing? Where were all of the protests in the streets, and on America's campuses (similar to Vietnam) when it became clear years ago that George the Shrub Jr. had blatantly lied in order to violate Int'l law, and invade Iraq to begin with? This damnable crap started with the Korean Conflict, and continued, compounded in Vietnam, claiming the unheralded lives of tens of thousands of America's young, who had never even reached the age of majority so as to have a vote and any say in the matter, naively trusting that the “adults” in this Republic would hold their elected public servants accountable so that lives would not needlessly be squandered simply for the benefit of the M.I.C., their shareholders, and burying the rest of the Country with unimaginable debt. Now whether or not you actually served “In Country” Douglas, how many of your peers can you actually name that lost limbs, or otherwise never made it back alive to the real world, because I can personally name dozens until the sun comes up, and therefore will always honor and respect the service of Christopher Kyle, not for the amount of “Kills”, but for the amount of Grunts' lives that he saved, and would not have otherwise made it home to their families. Therefore, I respectfully suggest that should anyone of us ever feel an urge to cast either scorn or stones, we had all better first look in the mirror, perform a little soul searching and ask ourselves if we truly have done all that we can to pressure Congress to bring ALL of our Troops Home and Now! Nevertheless Zoomie, Cheers & Semper Fi Little “Wild Blue Yonder” Brother (& God Bless Forever those USAF Pilots who risked their lives performing LAPEs when Grunts lives depended on same) S. Rex
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 21 weeks 2 days ago Web link A. Magnus
    If people simply gave up on the fantasies about government "help" and realized that everyone, including regulators and people in food corporations, work in their own interest, then this problem would be solved. They need to break the law, just like the homeschoolers did. The more who break it, the better off they will be - "safety in numbers".
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 21 weeks 2 days ago Web link A. Magnus
    Now that's funny. Usually people get prizes after doing something, while Obama got it because he was expected to do something - and then didn't deliver. I should say however, that his prize certainly is worth mentioning during any debate on his war mongering, as a bit of snark. Here is what Feynmann thought of the prize: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f61KMw5zVhg
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 21 weeks 2 days ago
    What's the Difference?
    Page Paul Hein
    "Besides, you cannot jump from crypto-fascism to freedom in a single bound, like Superman leaping over those tall buildings." Hmmm, I have at least some reservations about this statement (putting on my conventional political hat for the moment). For example, New Zealand made a significant jump in the direction of liberty a while back, by goring everybody's ox at the same time. If they had done it piecemeal, the usual interest group politics would have arisen to stop it. It's one thing for people to recognize that the system cannot go on as it is; another thing entirely for one interest to be singled out for the sacrifice. However, maybe this is picking at nits, since "going actually Constitutional" surely qualifies as at least as large as the improvements in New Zealand. About the only drawback I can see, is that ordinary people would resume their belief in the government religion, which is looking pretty shaky at the moment. So I'm not sure in the end that Constitutional government would look better for anarchists. "But, again, if both candidates would actually limit themselves to the somewhat minor responsibilities of the presidency as outlined in the Constitution, why would any of these things matter?" True, as far as that goes. But your argument has a flaw here. What if one candidate would adhere to the Constitution, and the other would go Hitler? Then it surely would make a difference, as you have already admitted that Constitutional government is way better than the current situation. Then voting makes sense, and even I would do it. This assumes their positions are evident and they are not lying. Of course the reality is that a true Constitutionalist will never become President. But it is certainly within the realm of possibility that one candidate is substantially worse than the other, and that that information is reliable enough. Doesn't voting make sense then? Don't we expect people to act in their own interest? I cannot bring myself to condemn voting per se. Sometimes it makes sense to support a better candidate, assuming it's possible to detect that he actually is. Sometimes it makes sense to support the worse candidate, if you think the situation is not recoverable conventionally and that a societal reset is in order. And sometimes it makes sense not to vote, if both candidates are odious or you can't detect which one is better - or even if you can, that the need to be independent of the system, or to condemn the whole system trumps any difference you can detect. I happen to think the latter happens with overwhelming frequency, so in effect I am a non-voter, and encourage others not to vote. The election is usually between Tweedledee and Tweedledum. From LeFevre's article: "When we express a preference politically, we do so precisely because we intend to bind others to our will." I like LeFevre's article, but I think this is largely wrong. To whatever extent one can determine the intentions of others (not much), the dominant reason seems more to be some variation of "less harm to me" than of "I want to screw my neighbor". It would be interesting to add an "opt out" vote in an election, anyone voting that way getting to opt out of the laws passed by the winner of that election. I bet a lot of people would take it. Also, intentions hardly matter, do they? Who cares what people intend? What matters is what they do.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 21 weeks 2 days ago
    What's the Difference?
    Page Paul Hein
    Your take on voting is absolutely on target. If you believe you are going to suffer only one of a number of illnesses, and that you have a choice, or vote, as to which illness, then you will probably do well to go ahead and vote for the "good" sickness -- and against the "bad" one. Engaging in politics is indeed playing one sickness against another. What will make a difference is the extent to which you declare yourself sovereign -- and believe in your own choice of liberty. If you believe psychopaths grouped into that abstraction we call "the state" have jurisdiction over you, you are correct. If you believe they do not, you are also correct. Of course if a dangerously-armed badge-carrying loon in costume pulls you over, he has "jurisdiction" at that place and time -- just as does the armed robber who accosts you on a dark street. You have an advantage with the free-market robber, however. S/he knows s/he is a robber. I always believe a man with a loaded gun. And a woman (L-rd have mercy!) You do, in fact, "vote" for the pilot or bus driver -- except to the extent that nowadays transportation is incestuously connected to agents of government, and in many cases IS government (AMTRAK). I often end my comments with "abstain from beans" (don't vote) -- a short essay in which the late Robert Le fevre taught that we place legitimate "votes" whenever we select one product or service over another in the free marketplace. Your article is well-taken, Paul. Sam
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 21 weeks 3 days ago
    The Mind of a Pol
    Blog entry Jim Davies
    Thanks, Alex!  My, so it is; nearly 11 years. How time flies, when you're having fun.   That one (Primary Day in the Trash) features in STR's non-voting archive, but there is a large collection of other, splendid articles there. It's an excellent resource.
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 21 weeks 4 days ago
    The Mind of a Pol
    Blog entry Jim Davies
    Jim, an excellent one, duly shared widely on social media.  Just in time for VT Town Meeting Day.  :-)  Upon reading the intro, I instantly recalled your prior STR piece with a similar theme...though upon pursuing the link, was stunned to see I'd first read it 11 years ago.    Good news:  My recall skills seem to be crackerjack.  Bad news:  I also seem to be suffering from mid-life time dilation.   :-)
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 21 weeks 5 days ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    Seems these types of articles always stop short of grasping the overview: "...NATO exists to manage the risks created by its existence...” That, my friends, is the definition of monopoly state -- also referred to as "government" ("Our-Great-Nation", "My-Country" et al.) NATO is but a miniscule sliver of that megalopolistic behemoth. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 21 weeks 6 days ago Page Mark Davis
    This is one of Mark's older essays. I like a phrase he posted in an essay a year or so earlier: "...Working within the system means to become a part of the system. When you go into the voting booth, the only meaningful significance that your action will have is to show that one more person supports the state..." ~Mark Davis From Be Free, by Mark Davis July 10, 2005. http://www.strike-the-root.com/52/davis_m/davis1.html Last time I voted was 1964, for Barry Goldwater. I worked my heart out all summer break (from teaching) to attempt to help him "beat" Lyndon Johnson. I was yet a long ways from anarchy -- or even "libertarianism" -- but I was on my way. I saw what strange and violent bedfellows needed to be romanced in order to "win" any national election. But that is true with even local and state elections. I came to see that the state does not "represent" anybody -- that "it" is an egregious monopoly upon violence, will not tolerate competition in any of its "services"; and that war is its health. A US Army draftee, I was still in those days suffering from what they're now using the euphemism "PTSD" to describe. Abstain from beans, my dear friends. Sam
  • NomNoms's picture
    NomNoms 21 weeks 6 days ago Page Mark Davis
    I have worked as a precinct officer (the person who looks up a person's name and issues them a ballot) for 11 years now. I have seen and heard it ALL - excuse after excuse after excuse. Believe me, I'm not one of those people who are going to shame you for writing this article. Shake a finger at you - call you UN-patriotic....because that would be un-American of me. You do have every right NOT to vote, NOT to disclose your political party - you have the right to free speech.... With that being said. When I work at every election (there are 2 every year if there isn't a presidential), I see mostly older or upper middle/working class, law abiding people come to vote. The rest are "new" American citizens who are proud to have the privilege to vote. I understand what you mean concerning the corruption of the government which is ruled by corporations and greed. In my opinion, I think "not voting" in a whole, is not the solution. I believe everyone has heard of the 'electoral college'. It's a secretive institution that chooses who we should vote for. Well, this obsolete 'program' was first constructed for the American people due to the fact that, in those days, it was common for the majority of voters to be illiterate. In China there have been protests against this same issue. They wanted to vote for whoever they want without any interference. The young generation took after such actions like the 'occupy movement' and held mass occupation in protest for their right to vote. My point is, telling people to stop voting isn't going to do anything because there will be people who are going STILL to vote. We have to tackle the problem at the root or it will never be fixed.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 22 weeks 10 hours ago Web link KenK
    It might be important for those of us trying to be libertarians to remember certain basic facts: The power elite have their grubby fingers in all media: religion, entertainment, news, et al. Especially "science". Little, if anything, comes out of the entertainment industry that has not been sanitized. For the good of us all, of course. Them anarchists and sovereign citizens are everywhere. Sam
  • Lawrence M. Ludlow's picture
    Lawrence M. Ludlow 22 weeks 2 days ago Page Lawrence M. Ludlow
    The other day I came across a French theologian's concurrance with me on Jesus' use of irony regarding the coin:   From “Anarchy and Christianity,” by Jacques Ellul, pp.59-60. Copyright 1988. We now come to texts which record Jesus’ own saying and which exegetes regard as in all probability authentic. We do not have here early Christian interpretation but the position of Jesus himself (which, evidently, was the source of this early Christian interpretation). There are five main sayings.   Naturally, the first is the famous saying: “Render to Caesar.” I will briefly recall the story (Mark 12:13ff.). The enemies of Jesus were trying to entrap him, and the Herodians put the question. Having complimented Jesus on his wisdom, they asked him whether taxes should be paid to the emperor: “Is it lawful to pay the taxes to Caesar or not? Should we pay, or should we not pay?” The question itself is illuminating. As the text tells us, they were trying to use Jesus’ own words to trap him. If they put this question, then, it was because it was already being debated. Jesus had the reputation of being hostile to Caesar. If they could raise this question with a view to being able to accuse Jesus to the Romans, stories must have been circulating that he was telling people not to pay taxes. As he often does, Jesus avoids the trap by making an ironical reply: “Bring me a coin, and let me look at it.” When this is done, he himself puts a question: “Whose likeness and inscription is this?” It was evidently a Roman coin. One of the skillful means of integration used by the Romans was to circulate their own money throughout the empire. This became the basic coinage against which all other were measured. The Herodians replied to Jesus: ”Caesar’s.” Now we need to realize that in the Roman world an individual mark on an object denoted ownership, like cattle brands in the American West in the 19th century. The mark was the only way in which ownership could be recognized. In the composite structure of the Roman empire it applied to all goods. People all had their own marks, whether a seal, a stamp, or a painted sign. The head of Caesar on this coin was more than a decoration or a mark of honor. It signified that all the money in circulation in the empire belonged to Caesar. This was very important. Those who held the coins were very precarious owners. They never really owned the bronze or silver pieces. Whenever an emperor died, the likeness was changed. Caesar was the sole proprietor. Jesus, then, had a very simple answer: “Render to Caesar that which is Caesar’s.” You find his likeness on the coin. The coin, then, belongs to him. Give it back to him when he demands it.   With this answer Jesus does not say that taxes are lawful. He does not counsel obedience to the Romans. He simply faces up to the evidence. But what really belongs to Caesar? The excellent example used by Jesus makes this plain: Whatever bears his mark! On coins, on public monuments, on certain altars. That is all. Render to Caesar. You can pay the tax. Doing so is without importance or significance, for all money belongs to Caesar, and if he wanted he could simply confiscate it. Paying or not paying taxes is not a basic question; it is not even a true political question.   On the other hand, whatever does not bear Caesar’s mark does not belong to him. It all belongs to God. This is where the real conscientious objection arises. Caesar has no right whatever to the rest. First we have life. Caesar has no right of life or death. Caesar has no right to plunge people into war. Caesar has no right to devastate and ruin a country. Caesar’s domain is limited. We may oppose most of his pretensions in the name of God. Jesus challenges the Herodians, then, for they can have no objections to what he says…      
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 22 weeks 2 days ago Web link TheMPP
    Pathetic.
  • helpfuljosh's picture
    helpfuljosh 22 weeks 4 days ago Web link KenK
    Ha! Nice article! I have started growing last year in the Netherlands. When I visited Cali last year ran into somebody who was growing in the Forrest near Santa Cruz. It inspired me to start growing back home as well since 5 plants are legal here :-) I wound this website is very useful because they give away a free Growguide in pdf format. And they write a lot about growing for beginners as well. http://www.ilovegrowingmarijuana.com/grow-marijuana-washington-legal-way/