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Monday, January 16

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Melinda Secor is the guest editor today.
 

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photo courtesy of Trey Ratcliff
Column by Douglas Herman. Exclusive to STR “This is the true joy in life – being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one: being thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap; being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy.” ~ George Bernard Shaw Mike: I’m a fellow Michigander, a fellow filmmaker like yourself, raised with...
Original article "Chief among the common misconceptions about the way official propaganda works is the notion that its goal is to deceive the public into believing things that are not 'the truth' (that Trump is a Russian agent, for example, or that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction, or that the terrorists hate us for our freedom, et cetera). However, while official propagandists are definitely pleased if anyone actually believes whatever lies they are selling, deception is not their primary...
Original article "A couple of days ago, Politico published a fascinating piece describing how factions associated with the current Ukrainian government apparently interfered in the U.S. election on behalf of Hillary Clinton. The findings seem pretty damning, and certainly warrant at least some conversation within the American media given the 24/7 obsession with Russia. Nevertheless, most of you have probably never heard of this saga, since when it comes to the corporate media news cycle, some election...
Original article "Do not be fooled by the tears and gushing words of Obama and his supporters as he counts down to his departure from the White House. They are an insult when measured against the tears of the countless Libyans, Syrians, Afghans and others who have suffered as a result of a foreign policy that brought his administration into disrepute."
Original article "As Obama’s days as U.S. President draw to a close, both the Obama administration and the mainstream corporate media are attempting to provoke a greater conflict with nuclear-armed Russia on the basis of something that never actually happened; at least on the basis of something that they have yet to prove has actually happened. Still, the hype and hysteria being piped from the halls of the White House, intelligence community, and the mouthpiece of the establishment, the corporate...
Original article "Having arrived in Germany a few days ago, a mass of over 3,000 US ground troops backed by a large column of American tanks are advancing eastward toward the Russian border today, heading across Poland as part of a major NATO operation called Atlantic Resolve."
Original article "The 'fog of war' erupts in the confusion caused by the chaos of war. And in the media, it’s an intentional phenomenon that makes it difficult to separate fact from fiction. While the battles over war narratives evolve, they all have a common goal: to distort reality on the ground. Such is the case on the crisis in Syria, the new cold war with Russia, and even the buildup for President Bush’s support for Kuwait’s 'humanitarian' war against Iraq....
Original article "Thanks to CNN and BuzzFeed, a war now rages among corporate media outlets, a true study in irony, as the New York Times and Guardian hurl accusations the two outlets are guilty of publishing Fake News — the same Fake News all of the aforementioned have cited in unabashed attempts to discredit legitimate alternative media."
Original article "Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) John Sopko is once again warning about the long-standing problems of corruption in Afghanistan, and the amount of US 'reconstruction aid' disappearing down black holes over the course of the years. As always, the discussion came around to 'ghost soldiers.' Ghost soldiers are a phenomenon in which Afghan military commanders fill their ranks with fictional names and just keep the salaries, which since the...
Original article "On average, we spend over 50 hours a week away from our homes. Chances are, if a sudden disaster occurs at your workplace and you are forced to shelter in place for a given time, many coworkers (including yourself) could be unprepared."
Original article "Yes, You Need a Vehicle Survival Kit! And here’s why. You jump in the car, fire the ignition, head down the road, and all is well. But then, the unexpected happens. A small error, an unavoidable accident, a rapid change in weather, some black ice, vehicle malfunction, something causes everything to change in an instant."
Original article "Fear your exploding smartphone no more. Scientists have designed a heat-activated molecular fire extinguisher that could make lithium-ion batteries safer."
Original article "Researchers are reporting development of the world’s thinnest electrical wires, made of chalcogenide and diamondoids (the smallest possible bits of diamond)."
Original article "A chemical that is thought to be safe and is, therefore, widely used on crops—such as almonds, wine grapes and tree fruits—to boost the performance of pesticides, makes honey bee larvae significantly more susceptible to a deadly virus, according to researchers at Penn State and the U.S. Department of Agriculture."
Can They Really Say That in a Movie?
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Douglas Herman 2016-09-28 07:52
Column by Douglas Herman. Exclusive to STR “But talking about it (freedom) and bein’ it, that’s two different things. I mean, it’s real hard to be free when you are bought and sold in the marketplace. Of course, don’t ever tell anybody that they’re not free, ‘cause then they’re gonna get real busy killin’ and maimin’ to prove to you...
Growing Up
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Mark Davis 2016-09-21 08:07
Column by Mark Davis. Exclusive to STR “Can we all get along?” ~ Rodney King Finding our way in the world includes seeking companionship and furthering self-interest. There are many forms of companionship ranging from umbilical cords to satellite signals, from blood-related to totally unconnected and intimate to casual. Humans crave both autonomy and brotherhood, to be left alone...
Ignorance of Bliss
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Anarchoblake 2016-09-15 07:52
Column by Blake Bengtson. Exclusive to STR The cascading nature of human events is truly a sight to behold, amplified tenfold by the advent of technology's current level. We are simultaneously connected and disjointed from one another unlike any other time in history. There is division. There is camaraderie. Fear, love, anger and pain. All for the world to see at any given moment through...
It's Very Simple
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Paul Hein 2016-09-08 06:22
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR I have often wondered why candidates for political office are never asked the most fundamental question: What, in your opinion, is the purpose of government? I have posed this question to several office-holders, both state and federal, even including a self-addressed envelope for their convenience. The question is never answered. If pressed, a politician...
Voluntaryist Vitriol: Anarchic Attacks Against Alcoholics Anonymous
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Alex R. Knight III 2016-08-29 05:12
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR Times have changed considerably – at the very least, for myself – since I scribed my first piece even touching upon this subject for STR, a decade ago. As I’ve talked about here in both direct and allegorical terms, I’ve gone from being a chronic, practicing alcoholic, to a recovering one. And my active participation in...
Slaves of the Law
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Paul Bonneau 2016-08-18 07:18
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR It’s been noted many times, that to obtain liberty, the first and most important thing that must be freed is one’s own mind. I don’t know who first recognized and stated it. Of course the reverse is true as well; the most important thing for the ruling class to do is to enslave people's minds. And the way that is done is to make those...
Yes, Or No?
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Paul Hein 2016-08-14 22:03
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR There can be good reasons for not answering questions. If you are being questioned by the police, for example, prudence would dictate that you remain silent. Or perhaps you do not know the correct answer to a question, and would prefer not to guess and subsequently be proven wrong. But you might also decline to answer if your answer could put you in an...
Jealousy, Jouvenel and the War Against Socialism
8.5
Alex R. Knight III 2016-07-28 06:36
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR In his famous post-World War Two exposé, On Power: The Natural History of Its Growth, Bertrand de Jouvenel makes some salient observations at the very beginning of Chapter IX, “Power, Assailant of the Social Order” (pp. 171-172): “Power is authority and makes for more authority. It is force and makes for more force. Or,...
The Elastic Standard
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Paul Hein 2016-07-20 07:06
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR The needle is approaching “E.” Not to worry; there’s a gas station in the next block. Your car’s owner’s manual gives the gas tank capacity as 20 gallons, but when the pump finally clicks off, you find it’s taken 500 gallons to fill your tank. Well, that’s not surprising. Your car is nearly ten years old, and...
The Confessions of Congressman X
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Alex R. Knight III 2016-07-06 07:21
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR A very slim volume was published in late May, which, although it may hold few new revelations for the long initiated, is nevertheless a grimly fascinating window view into the mind of a modern American bureaucrat: At once and at times fraught with sociopathy . . . and yet filled with a kind of jaded cynicism that belies pangs of bitter conscience,...
A Dollar in Peril
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Jim Davies 2008-11-02 16:00
Exclusive to STR One of the nice things about not voting is that one can enjoy a little sport at the expense of those who do. Let me share with you an example or three. A few days before November 4th, I visited a nearby town, and first called at the government postal monopoly for some stamps so that I could write to an innocent friend incarcerated in a government prison. Standing in line, I said...
Deadliest Catch: One Alaska Fisherman to Another
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Douglas Herman 2008-09-28 15:00
Exclusive to STR September 29, 2008
The Confessions of Osama Bin Laden
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Douglas Herman 2008-11-17 16:00
I confess I did not know then, but I know now, why you Americans stopped chasing me at Tora Bora in October 2001.
What's So Hard to Understand About the Right to Bear Arms?
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Wilton D. Alston 2009-02-03 16:00
Exclusive to STR February 4, 2009 'Among the many misdeeds of British rule in India , history will look upon the Act of depriving a whole nation of arms as the blackest.' ~ Mohandas Gandhi, from An Autobiography
Do You Really Want Freedom, Or Are You Just Kidding Yourself?
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Wilton D. Alston 2009-06-09 15:00
Exclusive to STR June 10, 2009 'The people have always some champion whom they set over them and nurse into greatness. This and no other is the root from which a tyrant springs; when he first appears he is a protector.' ~ Plato 'Wherever is found what is called a paternal government, there is found state education. It has been discovered that the best way to ensure implicit obedience is to...
A New Strategy For Liberty - Part 1: An Open Letter To Ron Paul Supporters
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Stewart Browne 2009-05-17 15:00
Exclusive to STR May 18, 2009 Dear Ron Paul Supporters, Thank you. Thank you for giving your time, effort, and money to the cause of liberty. Thank you for taking a stand for what you know is right, and putting yourselves out there in favor of opinions the State would rather you didn't hold.
A New Strategy For Liberty - Part 2: Secession in Three Easy Steps
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Stewart Browne 2009-05-17 15:00
Exclusive to STR May 18, 2009 Then Saul dressed David in his own tunic. He put a coat of armor on him and a bronze helmet on his head. David fastened on his sword over the tunic and tried walking around, because he was not used to them.
Objectivist Resistance to Anarchy: A Problem of Concept Formation?
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Carrie Burdzinski 2009-05-19 15:00
Exclusive to STR As a former Orthodox Objectivist who now recognizes anarchy's intrinsic coherence, I have particular interest in studying the ethical basis of anarchism. Roy A. Childs, Jr.'s "Objectivism and the State: An Open Letter to Ayn Rand" and "The Epistemological Basis of Anarchism: An Open Letter to Objectivists and Libertarians," and Nicholas Dykes' "Mrs....
Charity Never Faileth
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B.R. Merrick 2009-05-13 15:00
Exclusive to STR May 14, 2009 The title of this article comes from 1 Corinthians 13:8. I can't call myself a believer anymore, but I do believe quite strongly in the need for each of us to be charitable. I think it's good for us. I know that for me, it helps to remind me of things I tend to forget, when I think of what it is that I lack. There are plenty of people worse off than I am, or...
Functional Rights: The Elephant in the Parlor, Part II
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Scarmig 2009-06-03 15:00
Exclusive to STR June 4, 2009 Part II: Rights are' So what are rights? If there are none of these things, functionally, despite what anyone might claim, then what are they? How do they function in daily life? How are they exercised inalienably by every person everywhere that has ever existed, regardless of the government that claimed authority over them? George Potter wrote:
Do We Need a Vaccine for Hubris? MUST READ
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D. Saul Weiner 2015-02-13 08:13
Column by D. Saul Weiner. Exclusive to STR There are a lot of heated exchanges going on right now in social media related to vaccination. Many people have become convinced that parents who do not vaccinate are jeopardizing the health of others and that vaccines for children should be mandated. Politicians who are expected to run for president in 2016 are starting to weigh in on the topic and some...
'Obamacare Nightmare Edition' of Ringo's Law and the Healthcare System of Doom MUST READ
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Glen Allport 2013-10-30 07:02
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR Introduction for this 2013 Edition As I write this – October 28, 2013, more than four years after the column below was posted (here with minor edits; see the original at this link if you wish) – NBC News is reporting that the Obama administration “knew millions could not keep their health insurance" under Obamacare, and has known...
An Armed March on Washington? MUST READ
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Alex R. Knight III 2013-05-07 05:52
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR Perhaps never before have I encountered a proposal within Liberty Movement circles that has generated more controversy faster and further than Adam Kokesh’s planned July 4th march on Washington, District of Criminals, in which he states that himself and the other participants “will march with rifles loaded & slung across our backs to...
The Orwellian Paradigm--Killing You, For Your Own Safety MUST READ
9.625
fmoghul 2013-04-10 07:12
Column by Faisal Moghul. Exclusive to STR Almost 30 years ago, cultural critic Neil Postman argued in Amusing Ourselves to Death that television’s gradual replacement of the printing press has created a dumbed-down culture driven by mindless entertainment. In this context, Postman claimed that Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World correctly foresaw our dystopian future, as opposed to George...
Frameworks, Virtual Reality and Civil Society: A Manifesto for the Doctrine of Love and Freedom MUST READ
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Glen Allport 2012-12-06 07:44
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR Perhaps I should say this paradigm shift is resuming. The healthier incoming paradigm is a modern, more accurate, better-supported, and better-understood version of one that began the shift towards a free, healthy, and prosperous world more than three centuries ago and which informed the creation of the United States itself: Classical Liberalism. - 1...
Timeline of a World-Killing Paradigm Shift MUST READ
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Glen Allport 2012-05-13 23:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR   Part 3 of "Could the Non-Aggression Principle Stop the Sixth Great Extinction?"   Part One of this series discussed the Non-Aggression principle, calling it "the libertarian half of the Golden Rule" (compassion being the other half) and describing the function of aggression in creating not only tyranny and war but also...
Terrorist Alert: Government Extremists Threaten Americans MUST READ
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Glen Allport 2012-03-25 23:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR   Question: are you more terrified by Muslim extremists, by "domestic terrorists" – or by your own government? Which group is more likely to assault you? To kill you? To unjustly imprison and even torture you?   The U.S. federal government has ALREADY:   Built and is staffing a huge gulag of concentration camps [...
The State Is a Firing Squad MUST READ
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JGVibes 2012-02-17 00:00
Column by JGVibes.   Exclusive to STR   Although the common perception of human nature is very negative, the truth is that most people who aren’t mentally ill have a very difficult time committing acts of violence. Usually it takes a sizeable payment and a fair amount of manipulation to convince someone to act violently, and even then a tremendous amount of guilt typically...
How the 1% Took America's Wealth--and How to Get It Back MUST READ
9.25
Glen Allport 2011-12-01 00:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR  - 1 - Plundering Wealth vs Producing Wealth   In recent decades, the rich have gathered an increasing share of the total wealth in the United States. As this wealth disparity grows and especially as large numbers of the formerly middle class fall into poverty and even into homelessness, this flow of wealth from main street (from anyone not...
'Anarchy or Minarchy' Is Only Half the Question, Part 2 MUST READ
9.5
Glen Allport 2011-04-13 02:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR  This is Part 2 of a response to a column by Wesley Messamore. Last week's Part One of this column discussed the following:   ·      Minarchy: Lighting a Match to the Fuse of Tyranny ·      Anarchy: By Itself, Yang without Yin ·      The Missing Key...