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Joined: 2009-08-30
Columns on STR: 243
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Short bio:

Jim Davies is a retired businessman in New Hampshire who led the development of an on-line school of liberty in 2006, and who wrote A Vision of Liberty" , "Transition to Liberty" and, in 2010, "Denial of Liberty" and "To FREEDOM from Fascism, America!" He started The Zero Government Blog in the same year.
In 2012 Jim launched http://TinyURL.com/QuitGov , to help lead government workers to an honest life.
In 2013 he wrote his fifth book, a concise and rational introduction to the Christian religion called "Which Church (if any)?"

RECENT COMMENTS BY Jim Davies

Columns by Jim Davies

Punishment
10
Jim Davies 2013-07-30 07:16
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR In September 1971 there was a serious riot in the state prison in Attica, NY, which left 39 dead, and drew much comment. One of the comments was as follows. See whether you can guess by whom it was made: “Any mutiny by the prisoners is going to be put down and put down hard.” The State Governor, maybe? Or some law-n-order Conservative? Probably...
Taxation Is Theft. Always.
10
Jim Davies 2013-07-08 06:56
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR In a LewRockwell.com blog post on June 7th, Mike Rozeff offered the surprising opinion that taxation is not necessarily always theft, because some people accept the need to pay it and do so willingly. He called that an example of the “consent of the governed.” I've engaged him in a friendly email exchange since, but we still disagree....
Corporate Tyranny?
10
Jim Davies 2013-07-02 07:36
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR In a lively exchange in the Guardian comments section recently, a strong bias was revealed to the effect that government is needed to prevent corporations running wild and tyrannizing the world. That's one of the elderly fictions that is still thrust down the throats of trusting children in government schools, to assure them that government is not...
GDP, Adjusted
0
Jim Davies 2013-06-24 07:32
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR In one of the best STRticles this year, the new Root Striker “forty2oz” proved that if five people each earn $100K a year, and one of them is a cop, as a group they receive not $500K but $400K. I've never seen it done that well, and no fuzzy math is involved. Like all good writing, this stimulated thought, and mine went to the...
Mr. Snowden Departs
7
Jim Davies 2013-06-17 07:25
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR When I mentioned here last year that I'd made a little web site at TinyURL.com/QuitGov, there were, incredibly, some who poured scorn on the idea – which was, as stated, to introduce to its employees the news that it's dishonest to work for government, and so to prepare their minds for the day when one or more of their friends invites them to...
Government Chaos
10
Jim Davies 2013-06-10 07:00
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Yet another overture is being played, for the magnum opus of Armageddon, the long-predicted final battle between good and evil (i.e., us vs. them) somewhere not far from Israel. Others have been played before, in 1967, for example, but this one centered on Syria is shaping up to be quite a doozie. Nearly all players in the region are tuning up their...
The Bubble
10
Jim Davies 2013-05-29 06:54
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR It's the name given to a chart of price movement that shows a very large rise, followed by a very large fall; its shape is more or less symmetrical, like the one shown here representing the price of shares in the South Sea Company around 1720 and denominated in pounds. As it shows, the price rose briefly by a factor of nine. This South Sea Bubble is the...
Sweatshops
0
Jim Davies 2013-05-21 06:18
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR The recent tragedy in Bangladesh took over 1,000 lives, and I hope blame is properly attributed and some kind of compensation awarded. It has unfortunately re-awoken a slew of guilt merchants known, curiously, as “liberals,” who are shrieking for something to be done to stop Walmart, J.C. Penney and other retailers doing business with Bangladeshi...
Chuck's Tummy
10
Jim Davies 2013-05-13 07:02
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Having undergone surgery this year following a stomach ache, that's a condition I will not wish upon anyone; but if stomachs do have to malfunction somewhere, the inside of Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) is one of the least inappropriate places--and he confirmed, last week, that the inner turmoil has already begun: 'the ramifications of make-your-own...
The Rump
5.5
Jim Davies 2013-05-06 06:33
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Only one credible plan exists, as far as I know, for the elimination of government in short order. It's outlined here and in summary it consists of each market anarchist introducing one of his or her friends per year to a freedom school, and resigning his government job if he has one. Easy, inexpensive, unstoppable, and totally indispensable. No other...
Divides
9.4
Jim Davies 2013-04-26 07:46
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Below is a photograph of a happy cop. He's happy because at the end of a trying day, his team accomplished its mission; a suspected murderer had been arrested. He's also happy because behind him, a crowd of local residents, whom he thinks he “protects and serves,” is applauding him and his comrades for a job well done. That doesn...
Maggie
10
Jim Davies 2013-04-10 07:40
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Freedom cannot be imposed by force. I (and many others) have said that before, yet the Libertarian Party continues to exist. There are also those who imagine that if there is a general economic collapse, free-market businessmen will step into the power vacuum and set up a libertarian or anarchist society with which everyone else will then cooperate (or else...
Bank Robbers
9.5
Jim Davies 2013-04-08 06:47
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR There are people who rob banks, and banks that rob people. This is about the latter. Our friendly Main Street banker is a robber; in two ways now, and with a third in preparation. Way #1 applies directly and terribly, but to only a few of his customers, and until he strikes, it's fairly well hidden. Some years ago I opened a bank account, and eventually...
Marriage
10
Jim Davies 2013-03-28 05:52
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR The nation is breathless, as I write, awaiting news from the Supreme Court about what marriage is. Crowds attend its building, working themselves up into a tizzy and a froth, for inside its lobby is engraved the arrogant and outrageous claim:   IT IS EMPHATICALLY THE PROVINCE AND DUTY OF THE JUDICIAL DEPARTMENT TO SAY WHAT THE LAW IS ~ directly...
Politics Don't Cut It
9
Jim Davies 2013-03-27 06:01
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Murray Rothbard never pretended to be infallible, and he wasn't; but when he wrote or spoke on his specialty of economics, he was . . . close enough for government work. I had the chance to hear him speak several times, and have some of his books, and say that he was the most brilliant, prolific and consistent pro-freedom writer of the 20th Century....
Labor's Price
10
Jim Davies 2013-03-20 06:41
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR The wage due for a week's worth of unskilled labor today might be $464, and so it was two or three hundred years ago – though then, it was often called a “pound.” Of silver, that is. Is that to be fixed by law as the permanent value of such labor, or is it to be free to vary subjectively with demand, supply and quality? I hope that...
Hold It, Holder
9
Jim Davies 2013-03-12 06:49
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR The great danger of criticizing specific things government does or says or fails to do or say is that readers can reasonably infer that if the opposite were done or said, all would be well. In other words, they can infer that the author envisages the possibility of a satisfactory government. I do not, ever, anywhere; for by definition (of “govern...
Buchanan's War
10
Jim Davies 2013-03-04 07:00
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Patrick Buchanan is a conservative--and more a social or cultural one than an economic one. He makes no pretense to be a libertarian, still less an anarchist; he is or was a Washington “insider” to the extent of being on the staff of Tricky Dick Nixon, and to that of being a regular on prime-time talk shows like “The McLaughlin Group....
Spoke Removal
10
Jim Davies 2013-02-26 07:47
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR It's often said that government is good at only one thing: waging war. I doubt that. Very true that waging war is its favorite activity, but that seems to me to overstate its skills somewhat; government may be better at waging war than at anything else, but it's not really good at it at all. For starters, the success rate is on average 50%. Then...
Creeds
9.5
Jim Davies 2013-02-19 07:59
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Faith: what a person believes, regardless of fact, evidence, proof or reason; it's powerful stuff. It can cause him to surrender his life, and to rob others of theirs, all the while retaining a strong sense of virtue, of doing the right thing. My first-ever face to face encounter with the Infernal Robbery Syndicate was an audit in Connecticut with a...
To See, Yet Not to See
10
Jim Davies 2013-02-11 07:59
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR All governments everywhere depend for their survival on their victim “citizens” failing to see (that is, to understand) what they are doing. In English, to “see” carries both meanings; we can see what they are up to, yet at the same time fail to grasp its significance. It's an amazing form of blindness, yet it affects nearly...
What Are You?
8.75
Jim Davies 2013-02-04 08:12
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR We are Root Strikers here, because rather than trying to trim the branches of the evil tree of government, we seek a way to destroy its roots. Some want a smaller or minimal government; we want none at all. It's a powerful analogy, a good name. We are also voluntaryists, for we believe every human action should be uncompelled. That's explicit, and...
Hot Money
10
Jim Davies 2013-01-28 07:20
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR It's now 100 years since fiat money was introduced to America, by the Federal Reserve Act. In that century, over 98.5% of its value has been destroyed. Suppose you found a counterfeit bill in your wallet. Would you spend it? The recipient would hand over something valuable in exchange, but when he came to deposit the bill, it would be rejected, so he...
Free Trade
8
Jim Davies 2013-01-22 08:23
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR The Tea Party is confused; no new news there. It has the great virtue of gathering together under one banner a variety of folk displeased with government, but their interests are so diverse as to prohibit a coherent alternative platform. Rather like the electorate as a whole, some want government to do A, while others want it to do Non-A. Unfortunately, I...
The Pugsley Plan Recommended
8.5
Jim Davies 2013-01-14 07:46
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Prior to Harry Browne's first run for US President in 1996, his friend John Pugsley wrote him a passionate “open letter” urging him not to. As far as I know, Harry didn't reply, but he did continue his campaign – and repeated it four years later. He got few votes more than the LP normally receives, but his platform and campaign were...
Spoke Removal
10
Jim Davies 2013-02-26 07:47
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR It's often said that government is good at only one thing: waging war. I doubt that. Very true that waging war is its favorite activity, but that seems to me to overstate its skills somewhat; government may be better at waging war than at anything else, but it's not really good at it at all. For starters, the success rate is on average 50%. Then...
Buchanan's War
10
Jim Davies 2013-03-04 07:00
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Patrick Buchanan is a conservative--and more a social or cultural one than an economic one. He makes no pretense to be a libertarian, still less an anarchist; he is or was a Washington “insider” to the extent of being on the staff of Tricky Dick Nixon, and to that of being a regular on prime-time talk shows like “The McLaughlin Group....
Labor's Price
10
Jim Davies 2013-03-20 06:41
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR The wage due for a week's worth of unskilled labor today might be $464, and so it was two or three hundred years ago – though then, it was often called a “pound.” Of silver, that is. Is that to be fixed by law as the permanent value of such labor, or is it to be free to vary subjectively with demand, supply and quality? I hope that...
Maggie
10
Jim Davies 2013-04-10 07:40
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Freedom cannot be imposed by force. I (and many others) have said that before, yet the Libertarian Party continues to exist. There are also those who imagine that if there is a general economic collapse, free-market businessmen will step into the power vacuum and set up a libertarian or anarchist society with which everyone else will then cooperate (or else...
The Bubble
10
Jim Davies 2013-05-29 06:54
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR It's the name given to a chart of price movement that shows a very large rise, followed by a very large fall; its shape is more or less symmetrical, like the one shown here representing the price of shares in the South Sea Company around 1720 and denominated in pounds. As it shows, the price rose briefly by a factor of nine. This South Sea Bubble is the...
Government Chaos
10
Jim Davies 2013-06-10 07:00
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Yet another overture is being played, for the magnum opus of Armageddon, the long-predicted final battle between good and evil (i.e., us vs. them) somewhere not far from Israel. Others have been played before, in 1967, for example, but this one centered on Syria is shaping up to be quite a doozie. Nearly all players in the region are tuning up their...
Corporate Tyranny?
10
Jim Davies 2013-07-02 07:36
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR In a lively exchange in the Guardian comments section recently, a strong bias was revealed to the effect that government is needed to prevent corporations running wild and tyrannizing the world. That's one of the elderly fictions that is still thrust down the throats of trusting children in government schools, to assure them that government is not...
Taxation Is Theft. Always.
10
Jim Davies 2013-07-08 06:56
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR In a LewRockwell.com blog post on June 7th, Mike Rozeff offered the surprising opinion that taxation is not necessarily always theft, because some people accept the need to pay it and do so willingly. He called that an example of the “consent of the governed.” I've engaged him in a friendly email exchange since, but we still disagree....
Punishment
10
Jim Davies 2013-07-30 07:16
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR In September 1971 there was a serious riot in the state prison in Attica, NY, which left 39 dead, and drew much comment. One of the comments was as follows. See whether you can guess by whom it was made: “Any mutiny by the prisoners is going to be put down and put down hard.” The State Governor, maybe? Or some law-n-order Conservative? Probably...
The Yoke
10
Jim Davies 2013-09-27 06:48
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Recently there was an unusually perceptive comment posted on these pages, that noted the folly of supposing that believers in government can be expected to leave us infidels in peace. There are only two ways of getting what one wants: earning it, or stealing it. Persuade, or compel. This is the great divide, the feature that separates believers from non-...
What They Owe
10
Jim Davies 2013-11-08 08:09
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR There was a lot of fuss recently about something they call the “debt ceiling.” Supposedly, it's a kind of limit to what the FedGov can borrow. It's all a load of horsefeathers, of course, because whenever they find the limit inconvenient, they will raise it – as they have already done, 95 times in a row. One of the key features of...
Letter to a Young Juror
10
Jim Davies 2013-11-18 08:00
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR (With acknowledgements to C.S. Lewis and Christopher Hitchens.) So, nephew, you've been called to serve on a jury. Congratulations! I was very glad to learn last month that you plan never to vote again, so it's a good idea to get yourself off the voters' list. But meanwhile, you're still on it – hence this opportunity to help some...
Lawmaking Lunacy
10
Jim Davies 2013-12-12 08:19
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR I'd be very scared if confronted by someone armed, and evidently mad or malevolent. The first type might well do me harm, fatally maybe, because he or she wouldn't understand or be responsible for the actions about to be taken. A young child, perhaps, slashing a kitchen knife while playing some martial-arts fantasy he has dreamed up. Or an adult in...
Pessimism
10
Jim Davies 2013-12-19 08:18
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR It's very sad, to see so much of it around STR. Several whose fingers fly over the keyboard to make comments seem to think that government is a fixture, here to stay. This is not limited to STR, mind; I enjoy much of the work of Fred Reed on another site, and noticed a fine recent example called Your Papers, Citizen which expertly compared the...
Progress in 'The Capitalist Tool'
10
Jim Davies 2013-12-24 08:18
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Last week Forbes magazine ran an article by one Peter Reilly, to assess the merits of Irwin Schiff's stand against the alleged income tax, and drawing extensively on remarks made by his son Peter Schiff, the investment advisor. To call the article “fair” would over-rate it, but it did bring that debate to the attention of some highly...
Peace, Spurned
10
Jim Davies 2014-01-02 08:43
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR In October 1944, Christian Günther, the Swedish Foreign Minister, relaxed with a group of journalists and casually mentioned a telegram sent to him on June 17th, 1940 by Björn Prytz, then his envoy in London. When the news of his remarks reached London, it threw the then Foreign Secretary, Anthony Eden, into a tizzy: “It is most...
Downton Fever
10
Jim Davies 2014-01-21 08:21
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR It has struck again; Season Four is upon us, descending like a British influenza. More than six million were infected with Season Two, more than eight million by Season Three; and early reports say the present visitation will lay low over ten million Americans on the next several Sunday evenings. I myself am running a temperature. For the few whose...
Help Wanted
10
Jim Davies 2012-03-29 23:00
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR  The power-crazed psychopaths running government need one thing above all: a supply of employees to do their grunt work. With that, they can survive any crisis, any criticism, any revenue shortfall, any desertion by voters; but without it, they are powerless. Therefore, those wishing to enjoy life without government in practice as well as in theory need...
Trade Unions
10
Jim Davies 2014-02-24 00:00
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR On February 14th the UAW took another kick in the teeth; employees of Volkswagen at its plant in Chattanooga voted 712 to 626 not to join. Trade unionists everywhere were buzzing like demented hornets; on The Guardian website I offered a little comfort (“The union lost. Boo-hoo. Get over it. Unions are parasites.”) but, alas, I was heavily...
The Last Days of Government
10
Jim Davies 2014-02-25 08:03
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR At about 7.35 p.m. ET on February 22nd, the NBC News TV reporter grabbed my attention with the following, as well as I can recall it: “Government has disappeared.” and “The are no policemen to be seen. Not even traffic cops.” This, again, was 2014 – not 2027. And it was not a spoof, like the alien invasion one in 1938. The...
Liberty: Rooted in Rights
10
Jim Davies 2014-03-31 07:57
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Everyone wants to be free, to make his own decisions without interference. That's a no-brainer; if there are any exceptions beyond those unhappily born without the ability to manage for themselves, they are very few. I never met anyone who said “Rule me, please!” Libertarians, however, add one crucial and distinguishing feature to that: We...
Working Capital
10
Jim Davies 2012-05-28 23:00
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR "Capitalism" is another of those words, like "liberal," whose meanings have been twisted by time, use and particularly by government influence, to mean something quite different from, and sometimes opposite to, their original intent. When we see Occupy Wall Street protesters waving banners calling for its downfall, they are referring to...
Compassion in a Free Society
10
Jim Davies 2012-08-08 23:00
Column by Jim Davies. One of the ugliest things said about freedom advocates is that in a society without government, large numbers of poor people would be trampled underfoot. Critics say that if all were free selfishly to pursue our own ends, many would be left behind, to suffer and starve. That such a society would be harsh, uncaring, divisive, mean. That it's necessary to have a government, to...
The Invisible Export
10
Jim Davies 2012-12-04 07:59
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR One of the hottest exports from America, to judge from the vacuous rhetoric of the recent election campaigns, is that of jobs. This time it wasn't so much Ross Perot's ”giant sucking sound” from Mexico, but the unprincipled greed of the bargain-producers in China who were the main culprits. Today I found a whole fountain pen for less...
Hot Money
10
Jim Davies 2013-01-28 07:20
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR It's now 100 years since fiat money was introduced to America, by the Federal Reserve Act. In that century, over 98.5% of its value has been destroyed. Suppose you found a counterfeit bill in your wallet. Would you spend it? The recipient would hand over something valuable in exchange, but when he came to deposit the bill, it would be rejected, so he...