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Thursday, October 20

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A. Magnus and Robert Taylor are the guest editors today.

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photo courtesy of Trey Ratcliff
Original article "Police in Lawrenceville, Ga., are investigating whether a Democratic National Committee campaign bus illegally dumped human waste there, according to multiple reports. The incident occurred on Grayson Highway early Tuesday, while the vehicle promoting Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and the rest of the Democratic Party was between campaign stops, CBS 46 News said."
Original article "Mohamedou Ould Slahi, who documented his torture and imprisonment in the 2015 Guantánamo Diary, on Monday was finally returned home to his native Mauritania. Upon his release, Slahi said, “I feel grateful and indebted to the people who have stood by me. I have come to learn that goodness is transnational, transcultural, and trans-ethnic. I’m thrilled to reunite with my family.”"
Original article "But the system goes one step further than this, to work out 'physical proximity between pairs of individuals' by looking at the Wi-Fi signals they both pick up. For example, the system can track when two users are picking up the same Wi-Fi signal which suggests that they are in the same place. The researchers suggest that the main privacy issue with the system will affect Android users."
Original article "One month ago, when we last looked at the Fed's update of Treasuries held in custody, we noted something troubling: the number dropped sharply, declining by over $27.5 billion in one week, the biggest weekly drop since January 2015, pushing the total amount of custodial paper to $2.83 trillion, the lowest since 2012. One month later, we refresh this chart and find that in the latest weekly update, foreign central banks continued their relentless liquidation of US paper held in the Fed...
Original article "The US military has dramatically increased the number of its airstrikes in Libya in less than a month, new data shows, further cementing President Barack Obama’s record of taking more military action than any other American president. American fighter jets and drones stationed aboard the amphibious assault vessel USS Wasp off the Libyan coast, have so far carried out 324 airstrikes in the country, according to data by the Pentagon’s Africa Command, which leads the operation."
Original article "A fresh pile of Wikileaks documents gives fuel to the fire that Soros, the “change agent” extraordinaire, is not only ordering State Dept.-backed regime change in the most contentious parts of the world, but that he is injecting cash into a basket of (deplorable) organizations designed to hijack the country, and keep a corrupt Democrat – like Hillary – in power for eight more years."
Original article "Note how differently The New York Times prepares the American public for civilian casualties from the new U.S.-backed Iraqi government assault on the city of Mosul to free it from the Islamic State, compared to the unrelenting condemnation of the Russian-backed Syrian government assault on neighborhoods of east Aleppo held by Al Qaeda."
Original article "As previously reported, Obama has made comments to the effect that he and Biden and their wives will still be involved in the next White House administration. It’s like he knows Hillary is going to win and he’ll get his third term after all, which means he knows that Donald Trump is set to lose. To that end, Obama is now downplaying the idea that the election could ever be rigged in this country, as if that’s not even a real possibility. It’s actually kind of hilarious in a sad reality sort of...
Original article I find Trump just as obnoxious as the harridan from the Clinton crime family but do enjoy the f*ck you attitude of the vote for Trump. Most don’t seem to realize that changing the meat puppets in DC does not a change make. But many are waking up to the reeking stink of corruption that is the entire collectivist swamp of Mordor on the Potomac. The leviathan will continue apace and the government will simply get bigger and more intrusive.  
Original article Raising teenage girls in the age of Snapchat exhibitionism is a challenging proposition – and it’s not made any easier by ambitious prosecutors seeking to criminalize unwise acts that fall within parental jurisdiction.  
Original article While politics is zero-sum and all-or-none, voluntary exchange is positive-sum and allows everyone to enjoy whatever they prefer and avoid whatever they don’t.  
Original article America's drug war is a global monster.
Original article From the state to private corporations, many groups benefit from marijuana prohibition. And, they will fight to keep marijuana illegal.    
Original article Onerous licensing laws make it harder for people to move from place to place. And less residential mobility means less economic mobility.  
Original article This is not simply about sound fiscal budgetary policy. Rather, it is about shouldering the burden of our wars and, in doing so, being open to learn from our mistakes. We all want to continue to “support our troops.” Sweeping the costs under the carpet is not the right way to do it.
Original article Being restrained and judicious in the use of military power does not show weakness, and it does not invite more aggression from would-be adversaries. It does foster more energetic support for American interests among our friends and allies. Regardless of who becomes the next commander in chief, let us hope he or she will acknowledge the superiority of this advanced way of thinking over today’s bankrupt definition of “leadership.
Original article protectionist arguments rest on the premise that your tomato-growing neighbor has some positive claim on your income.  If you are prohibited from buying tomatoes from Mexico, or – more commonly today – penalized with a tariff for doing so, the state is insisting that domestic tomato growers have an ethical claim on part of your income.  If you do not spend your income as the state, or as domestic tomato growers, deem best, you will be penalized.  Tomato-growers...
Original article Secret law denies us the ability to shape the rules that govern official conduct through the democratic process. It prevents us from holding the government accountable for violations, rendering such violations more likely. It weakens checks and balances, as both legislative and judicial oversight operate less effectively under the constraints imposed by secrecy.
Original article Economics teaches us that when prices are allowed to function and people are allowed to exchange goods and services, good things happen. People become better connected, have access to more goods and services, and are made wealthier. In many cases, private markets can make things happen where governments fails. 
Original article What happens when an electricity dependent society and economy has an extended loss of electrical grid and communications? One of the hidden realities of modern life is its fragility. For example, few people are aware of the precariousness of the supply chain that refills gasoline/petrol stations around the world every few days.
Original article The reality revealed in these emails is one of media collusion with powerful interests, which only serve to keep the American people in the dark about what is actually transpiring. The exact opposite of transparency.    
Original article For all intents and purposes, we’re all victims of a perverse, perverted, psychotic mindset that views the citizenry as lesser beings: lacking in value, unworthy of respect, and completely undeserving of the legal rights and protections that should be afforded to all Americans.  
Original article The corruption James O'Keefe exposed goes all the way to the top. 
Homogenizing America
Craig Russell 2003-11-13 17:00
Behind that which is seen, lies something which is not seen. ~ Frederic Bastiat
Freedom's Defenders or Politicians' Pawns?
Michael Tennant 2003-11-13 17:00
Having just suffered through the semiannual worship of the various wars of the realm in the guise of veneration of veterans, it seemed as good a time as any to set a few things straight.
On Worship
Jeff Baxter 2003-11-11 17:00
By nature, man worships. Veneration. What is holy to life. It can be the mate one loves. It can be children. It can be job or career. It can be a philosophy. It can be a hobby or special facet of life. It can be metaphysical, and take in the many a various expressions of "God" as they are found in the world. And it can be all of the above.
The End of Conservatism
Lee McCracken 2003-11-11 17:00
It may be one of history's little ironies that the administration of George W. Bush'lambasted by its critics as 'extremist,' 'right-wing,' and 'ultra-conservative''appears hell-bent on destroying whatever remains of traditional conservatism.
What Corruption?
Bob Murphy 2003-11-11 17:00
Now there's something fishy going on here. Dreznel is arguing that the size of the contract has nothing to do with campaign contributions, because (for example) General Electric isn't getting more money than Halliburton, even though GE donated more money to the Bush campaign. But this is attacking a strawman. Of course the Bush Administration can't literally give out money solely on the basis...
Federal Register Watch
Nick Ebinger 2003-11-10 17:00
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...
States Watch Prosperity as Their Prey
George F. Smith 2003-11-05 17:00
"Invention is continually exercised to furnish new pretenses for revenue and taxation. [Government] watches prosperity as its prey, and permits none to escape without a tribute." ~ Thomas Paine, Rights of Man State governments, searching desperately for more pockets to pick because of 'revenue shortfalls,' are casting a predatory eye at the internet. Not e-commerce...
CEO Pay: Normal or Unfair?
Tibor R. Machan 2003-11-04 17:00
In my many years of trying to understand the free market economy, I have been hampered by the simple fact that no such thing exists. Like ideal marriages, genuine free markets are mostly something we can conceive of and understand in theory but rarely encounter in the actual world. Yet, just as with ideal marriages, we can ask whether free markets, if they did exist, would be better for us all...
Contemporary Western Religion: Democracy
Per Bylund 2003-11-03 17:00
Amartya Sen, the 1998 Nobel Prize laureate in economics, argues for democracy as a universal value in The Journal of Democracy (vol. 10, no. 3, 1999). But the only strong case he succeeds in delivering is how indoctrinated he is of democratism, and how ignorant he is of obvious alternatives, and democracy's limits and shortcomings.
Federal Register Watch
Nick Ebinger 2003-11-03 17:00
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...
Taoism and Anarchy
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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...