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Friday, May 29

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Ken Kraska is the guest editor today.

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photo courtesy of Terry Chen

Original article Armatix GmbH’s CEO Ernst Mauch is not creating a good many consumers want. He is creating a technology which he hopes people will be FORCED TO PURCHASE, and competitors COMPELLED to license from him, by convincing politicians and bureaucrats to mandate Armatrix’s technology be included in all new firearms. A John M. Browning or Sam Colt he isn’t. More like a rent-seeking shitheel.
Original article The U.S. Gov gives ex-presidents Secret Service protection for themselves and their wives for life, a $200k pension, and a $2 million a year “office budget” for ….? Hard to see why this is the case, given that every single living ex-Pres is a multi-millionaire in their own right already. The Obama’s aren’t, not yet anyway, but with ex-presidential speeches going for $250k apiece, he’ll be as flush as the others in no time at all.
Original article “[The] Ecocapsule, is a new kind of micro-house powered entirely by solar and wind energy. The capsule, made by a Slovakian company called Nice Architects, comes pre-made and ready to house two adults. Its kitchenette spouts running water, the toilet flushes, and the shower flows hot. It is 14.6 feet long and 7.4 feet wide.”
Original article “But the absence of any overt motivation creates a problem: it would be easy to understand why somebody religious would want to be ethical, no matter the hardships, looking forward to rewards in the afterlife.” And everyone else? An essay about ethical philosophy in post-apocalyptic pop culture media.
Original article “Here's another company that just doesn't get security research.” Indeed. It’s almost like they’d rather have their customers be hacked and/or ripped-off rather than suffer any embarrassment for their own security lapses. No good deed goes unpunished does it?
Original article “I was pretty proud of the way I had dealt with this problem until [the] Rangemaster … started his critique. ‘I liked the way you immediately alerted on the water bottle. But I wonder why you didn't just go back inside the house where you had excellent protective cover, extra guns, extra ammunition and a telephone?’ ... Sadly, we occasionally read about this sort of poor judgment in the news.”
Original article “A first-year sanitation worker [makes] more than $100,000 in total comp, including overtime, holiday pay, and benefits. When the Department of Sanitation announced last year that it would offer its employment exam for the first time in seven years, more than 90,000 people signed up to take it.” I’ll bet.
Original article For the reason that political pork, crony capitalism, and local VIP’s status-signaling combined  together seem to be an unstoppable force. And so it looks like SoCal taxpayers are next in line to get fleeced for another one.
Original article “[A] central bank or some sort of coinage monopoly can continually skim and redistribute throughout the financial system. Currency [then] ceases to be a highly accurate unit of account ... and becomes more a measure of how well connected and obedient you are to the system as a whole. Under such a system, price distortions become systemic.” And then you become Zimbabwe.
Original article And just when you think that the War on Drugs™ can’t get any more irrationally brainless…
Original article "The ticket handed out for jaywalking actually only carries with it a $25 base fine. It's when penalties and assessments are added in that the cost begins to skyrocket. So, where does the money go? Of that final $190 bail total, only $22.54 goes to the City of Los Angeles according to data provided by the Los Angeles Superior Court. $28.42 goes to the County of Los Angeles, while the State of California receives $139.04."
Finally, a Drug That Should Be Banned
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Michael Tennant 2003-09-21 16:00
'The measure of the state's success is that the word anarchy frightens people, while the word state does not.' ' Joseph Sobran Suppose someone invented a new drug that could significantly reduce the risk of contracting cancer. Suppose, further, that the drug was free and that all you had to do to be protected from cancer was to take the drug once a day. Would you take it?
Free to Be Me: Homeschooling Advances Liberty
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Isabel Lyman 2003-09-20 16:00
"Goat-Boy Goes to Harvard" was how Grant Colfax was once described. In addition to raising dairy goats, the teenager's admission into the venerable New England institution, in 1983, attracted national media attention because he had been homeschooled by his bookish, hard-working parents - David and Micki - on a ranch in northern California . While home education wasn't a new phenomenon,...
Fox TV News Ain't So Fair and Balanced
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Tibor R. Machan 2003-09-17 16:00
Two items: Some companies are now producing food with low carbohydrates, seeing a demand rising from customers who wish to try that approach to loosing weight; and Seattle 's citizens are voting on 10 cent tax on espresso coffee.
Police and State
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John Spain 2003-09-17 16:00
The police; the fuzz; the man; cops. Our self professed guardians or shepherds. Those among us who have been granted by the State direct, physical control over the rest of us. It's a dirty job, does it really have to be done to us? Almost everywhere there is great ambivalence or outright hostility to the cops. Even the staunchest 'law and order' man scoffs when he himself gets a traffic...
A Tax on the Tiny: Air Bags and Nanny Gadgets
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Cat Farmer 2003-09-16 16:00
It's time to replace my trusty old 1991 Honda, which I have loved since I bought it to replace the earlier Honda that preceded it in my affections. How I've dreaded this day: Now I'm facing a head-on collision with the issue of airbags, and assorted other nanny gadgets that may not be optional whether I buy new or used.
Criminal and Political Minds
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Tibor R. Machan 2003-09-16 16:00
If anything unites most criminals it is their belief that instant forceful action is best. Robbing, raping, murdering or assaulting others to get what one wants from them seems to them more effective than peaceful means to their ends. This is their form of immaturity and, as adults, their moral failing. (I am talking here about real criminals, not those made criminal by government via, for...
Defining Freedom
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Craig Russell 2003-09-16 16:00
None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free. ~ Goethe George Orwell warned us more than 50 years ago about the political consequences of lazy and sloppy thinking in his 1946 essay Politics and the English Language. Our language, he wrote, 'becomes ugly and inaccurate because our thoughts are foolish, but the slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us...
Federal Register Watch
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Nick Ebinger 2003-09-15 16:00
What freedoms have you lost this week? The Federal Register is the official daily publication for Rules, Proposed Rules, and Notices of Federal agencies and organizations, as well as Executive Orders and other Presidential Documents. This column attempts to summarize the highlights (or lowlights) of the Federal Register during the preceding week. Instructions for subscribing to the Federal...
A Disaster Foretold
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Uri Avnery 2003-09-14 16:00
So now it is official: The government of Israel has decided to assassinate Yasser Arafat. Not any more to 'exile.' Not any more to 'expel or kill.' Simply to 'remove.' Of course, the intention is not to remove him to another country. Nobody seriously believes that Yasser Arafat will raise his hands and allow himself to be marched off. He and his men will be killed 'during the exchange of fire...
Dream a Little Dream
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Jeff Baxter 2003-09-14 16:00
It has been a newsworthy month thus far. The bloody fiasco in Iraq continues as the administration dances a propaganda jig trying to re-explain its intentions while the body bags keep coming home. The Terminator is stalking California, and his main opponent is running on promises to increase the root cause of the problems the state faces. The maudlin prostitution of 9/11 as a political gimmick...
Taoism and Anarchy
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Mark Gillespie 2003-10-21 16:00
I have studied many religions in my search for truth. In my searches, I embraced a few. I was a nominal Christian for many years and converted to Islam about six years ago. Of course, I have left all of those religions behind, in my never-ending quest for truth. However, there is one "religion" that I studied that seemed to contain more truth than any other. That way is Taoism.
An Open Letter to the Peace Movement
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Roderick Long 2003-03-10 17:00
Dear Peace Activists:All honour to you. In your opposition to the United States' impending war on Iraq, you represent a welcome voice for sanity and civilisation, lifted up against the incessant baying of the dogs of war.But I want to urge you to follow the logic of your position just a bit further.Much has been said, and eloquently so, about the need, in dealings between nation and nation, to...
How I Said No to the Automatic Social Security Number
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Scarmig 2003-12-11 17:00
This is the story of how I successfully refused to accept a Social Security Number for my child. I simply said 'no.' Really. That's how easy it was. I just said no, again, and again. On the Texas Application for Birth Certificate, which I was unable to get a copy of for this article, there is a check box down at the bottom of the page. It says, and I'm paraphrasing, 'Check here to have your...
Supreme Court Lets Dogs Go Fishing...for Drugs
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Rex Curry 2005-01-25 17:00
A new Supreme Court case states that cops can take dogs fishing. Dogs can go fishing for drugs in Illinois vs. Caballes. As an attorney, I am often consulted by people victimized in searches by dogs trained to smell drugs. A drug dog's skills are often overestimated because people anthropomorphize dogs. A humanlike quality that dogs have is that they are natural libertarians with no interest in...
Radical Solidarity and Moderate Anarchism
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Anthony Gregory 2005-01-27 17:00
Libertarians, and especially anarchistic libertarians, are known for their principles and strong ideology. This has often been, but does not have to be, a double-edged sword in the fight for freedom. To be a libertarian, one must embrace the Non-aggression Principle, or at least come to the same policy conclusions as one would based on the principle. Some libertarians say they don't like the...
The Suppression of Dissent
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Jim Davies 2005-10-25 16:00
Exclusive to STR The jury is still out, as I write these words. Its verdict may be in by the time you read them, and there's a blog with the latest news--but that's okay because the point of this article is not to comment on the trial's outcome but to show what government had to do, in order try to silence an influential advocate of freedom. Its conclusion will be that government is wholly unfit...
The Power of One
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Jim Davies 2005-11-21 17:00
Exclusive to STR Nobody is better qualified than my friend Per Bylund to propose, as he did in a recent STR article, that we who yearn for liberty "save the world through saving [our]selves." Per is not only a brilliant thinker and prolific author (in two languages!) he founded an anarchist website before many of us got our brains in gear and has engaged in debate there all comers from...
Be Free
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Mark Davis 2005-07-10 16:00
The state has grown too big and powerful and conversely the individual appears small and powerless. Libertarians of all stripes can debate endlessly on why this has come about and where we should ideally be instead. When the question of what to do about it comes up, there is typically a moment of silence and perhaps a chuckle or two coupled with some frustrated cynicism. After this moment of...
Utopia vs. Liberty
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Richard Rieben 2005-07-18 16:00
In his insightful analysis of the Dark Side, STR writer Jonathan David Morris notes that, "The Dark Side of the Force is not evil for evil's sake. It's evil because it believes the ends always justify the means . . . .
The Preamble Reconsidered
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Jim Davies 2006-05-17 16:00
Exclusive to STR The Preamble to the United States Constitution is surely one of the most sublime paragraphs ever written. Before this dissection begins, let's prop it up and admire it in all its glory: We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure...
Do We Need a Vaccine for Hubris? MUST READ
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D. Saul Weiner 2015-02-13 09:13
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 08:02
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 06:52
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 08:12
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 08:44
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 2012-05-14 00:00
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 2012-03-26 00:00
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 01:00
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 01:00
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 03:00
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...