That Makes Her a Heroine in My Book


A government court has convicted Martha Stewart of lying to the government. If she actually did it, good for her! And down with Them!

As a libertarian writer, I've tried to popularize the traditional distinction between a =malum in se,= an act that is wrong in itself; and a =malum prohibitum,= an act that some political authority has prohibited for reasons of its own. The latter category--consisting entirely of fake crimes--has come to dominate what passes for the American criminal-justice system.

Now I have to propose a third category of illegal acts--the =bonum in se.= Lying to the government is an act that is good in itself. If everyone did it all the time, we'd be far down the road--at last!--to Revolution.

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Nicholas Strakon's picture
Columns on STR: 9