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Monday, June 29

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Melinda Secor is the guest editor today.

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photo courtesy of Theophilos Papadopoulos

Original article "Banks will remain shut until at least after a July 5 referendum called by Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on whether to accept austerity in exchange for a European bailout, Kathemerini newspaper reported, citing unnamed sources."
Original article "With the eyes of the world on Greece and a possible collapse of the of the Eurozone as a likely end result, many are ignoring a potentially much more massive elephant in the room. It’s been the hottest market in the world, so flush with cash that they have actually built entire ghost-cities lacking populations and mega shopping centers without tenants – a clear sign of bubble waiting to be pricked. But the inevitable seems to now be taking hold as once unstoppable Chinese...
Original article "'In France, only half the population works,' concluded our friend. 'The other half tries to stop them.' With so many people trying to keep anything from happening, it’s no wonder many things don’t get done."
Original article "What’s more shocking is that this isn’t an isolated case. Airbnb has an entire page dedicated to tent rentals in California. I suppose it won’t be long before America starts spawning the most expensive shanty towns in the world."
Original article "Vladimir Putin denounces, more and more explicitly, the servility of France and Europe towards the United States, whether in the case of wire-tapping French leaders or that of Mistral ships."
Original article "With intra-Europe relations hitting a new all-time low; and, having already been busted spying on Merkel, Obama got caught with his hand in Hollande's cookie jar this week, the following exultation from one of Germany's top politicians will hardly help Washington-Brussells relations. As Russia Insider notes, Oskar Lafontaine is a major force in German politics so it caught people’s attention when he excoriated Ash Carter and Victoria Nuland on his Facebook page yesterday...
Original article "Thousands of angry, torch-bearing Hondurans marched on Friday to call for the resignation of President Juan Hernandez and demand an independent probe into one of the worst corruption scandals in the country's history."
Original article "Beyond the sensational headlines is the story of paid FBI informants with long criminal histories who spent a year working to befriend the brothers and enlist them as terrorists. This effort, both expensive and time-consuming, nevertheless failed to convince the Duka brothers to take part in a violent attack. Indeed, over the course of hundreds of hours of surveillance, the plot against Fort Dix was never even raised with them."
Original article "The program involved several weeks of 'amnesty' for 'pointed knives.' Civilians can turn in these apparently dangerous weapons at their local police station in exchange for 'amnesty,' apparently, even though knives (rounded or pointed) aren’t illegal in the United Kingdom.....Incidentally, the knife violence rate in the United Kingdom is about double the rate of gun violence in the United States." Sigh....Just in case you thought the "they'll...
Original article "A disturbing report published Wednesday by Human Rights Watch details how the Colombian military callously murdered thousands of innocent civilians and dressed their lifeless bodies in leftist rebels’ uniforms, just to artificially inflate the body count for a period of at least six years. The commander of the armed forces and other senior army brass knew about it the whole time"
Original article "You might think that young children would first learn to recognize sounds and then learn how those categories of sounds fit together into words. But that isn't how it works. Rather, kids learn sounds and words at the same time. Now, researchers present evidence from European starlings showing that songbirds learn their songs in much the same way."
Original article "A team of scientists and engineers at The University of Texas at Austin has identified the first sensor of the Earth's magnetic field in an animal, finding in the brain of a tiny worm a big clue to a long-held mystery about how animals' internal compasses work. Animals as diverse as migrating geese, sea turtles and wolves are known to navigate using the Earth's magnetic field. But until now, no one has pinpointed quite how they do it. The sensor, found in worms called C....
Original article "Since it made its courtroom debut in the mid-1980s, DNA evidence has been integral to thousands of cases (including, famously, the OJ Simpson murder trial). Juries and lawyers alike generally consider DNA evidence to be extremely reliable—a 2005 Gallup poll found that 58 percent of people considered it to be 'very reliable.' But in reality, DNA evidence is much less reliable and objective than most people think."
Original article A Photo Blog
The Limits of Philosophy
9.75
Paul Bonneau 2014-10-17 08:27
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR In an earlier article, I wrote to counter the notion of Matt Zwolinski that libertarians ought to dispense with the Non-Aggression Principle. I have since found another article countering Zwolinski by Jason Kuznicki coming from a different direction, as well as another supporting Zwolinski by Julian Sanchez. Not only do I not find Zwolinski convincing,...
Two Modest Suggestions
9
Paul Hein 2014-10-15 08:31
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR A long time ago, in a different galaxy, I offered a suggestion for the relief of the financial problems of the airline industry. My advice went unheeded, and today we see the sorry mess that constitutes that industry today. I told you so! My idea, as I’m sure you remember, was to enhance the profitable aspects of airline operation, while reducing the...
The State Is Out of Date: We Can Do It Better
10
Alex R. Knight III 2014-10-09 08:25
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR While there are many books both in and out of print designed to proselytize for a voluntary society to a layman audience, none perhaps have done so while retaining the kind of populist feel present in this offering from author Gregory Sams. Initially published in 1998 in a slightly less expansive form, earlier this year saw the latest edition of The...
Where Hoppe Goes Wrong
10
Paul Bonneau 2014-10-07 08:25
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR P { margin-bottom: 0.08in; }Sometimes I have to laugh at all the arm-waving that libertarian theorists display. The inclination to argue about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin must be irresistible. I’m referring in particular to Hans-Hermann Hoppe’s latest 9,600-word broadside, A Realistic Libertarianism. 1) It is amusing to see...
Who's On First--And Where Is It?
9
Paul Hein 2014-10-03 08:01
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR I am bemused at the concern shown about the problem of illegal aliens, but perhaps that can be attributed to the fact that I live hundreds of miles from the border. There seems to be some controversy about the role of the federal vs. state governments. I think this would be an ideal situation to employ the principle of subsidiarity, which states that problems...
Who?
10
Paul Hein 2014-09-23 08:38
Column by Paul Hein.  Exclusive to STR Hillary is being coy about declaring her ambition to be president, and the first female Ruler of the World. While she dithers about the announcement, let me make mine: Once again I declare my candidacy for the presidency. You may recall that the last time I garnered 15 votes; this time I hope to get at least twice as many. The usual question is raised...
An Electrifying Event
0
Paul Hein 2014-09-11 08:21
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR I’ll wager you don’t drive a Tesla, or know anyone who does. But you’ve probably heard of it--a pricey deluxe sedan powered by electricity, with a range of over 200 miles between charges. Tesla management wants to sell its cars direct to consumers, rather than to dealers who will then re-sell it to buyers, after adding their costs, plus...
A Review of Randy England's Book 'Free Is Beautiful: Why Catholics Should Be Libertarian'
0
Lawrence M. Ludlow 2014-09-10 08:00
Column by Lawrence M. Ludlow. Exclusive to STR Like the latter adjective in its title, Free Is Beautiful, this book—insofar as it is a clear and well-argued introduction not only to libertarian theory itself but also to the close correspondence of libertarianism with true Catholic teaching—is also beautiful. Consequently, Randy England was able to harmonize libertarianism with...
Crime and Punishment
8
Paul Hein 2014-09-03 08:05
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR P { margin-bottom: 0.08in; }About three decades ago, I was visiting a friend at the penitentiary in Jefferson City, where he was about at the end of his sentence for the ghastly “crime” of buying cigarettes cheap in a neighboring state, and selling them to his clients in Missouri. It was the practice at the time to allow soon-to-be-released...
The Good and the Bad of Constitutionalism
10
Paul Bonneau 2014-08-28 08:31
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR There are many, including myself who, having examined how and by whom and for what purpose the Constitution was used to overthrow the clearly superior Articles of Confederation, tend to throw up our hands at any notion of restoring it. Why bother? Our current police state can be traced directly way back to the 1787 Convention, it seems. However, it might...
Voting Sophisms
10
Mike Powers 2008-11-03 04:00
 Exclusive to STR   With Election Day looming, Americans are constantly being reminded about the importance of voting.  Politicians, news media, celebrities, and talk show hosts alike wax poetic about this hallowed institution we call democracy and how crucial it is for voters to cast their ballot.    Rock the Vote!  Vote for Change!  ...
Do It. Vote. MUST READ
10
strike 2001-12-31 04:00
They Hate Us Because of Our Freedom
10
Alfred A. Hambi... 2004-04-19 00:00
Whenever I hear 'they hate us because of our freedom' or "because they hate our way of life" or some other such drivel, I don't know whether to laugh or cry. If real people didn't suffer the consequences of it, such ignorance would be amusing. But another annoying thing about statements like these is that they perpetuate the myth that we live in a land of freedom. The sad fact is, we are not...
Let Us Awake Now
10
B.R. Merrick 2009-06-04 03:00
Exclusive to STR On May 30, 1962, a modern musical masterpiece premiered in England ’s newest cathedral, built next to the remains of the cathedral that was destroyed when the Nazis bombed Coventry .  Benjamin Britten's "War Requiem" combines two choirs, two orchestras, three vocal soloists, and the Latin religious funeral text with...
The Abolitionist Argument in 35 Seconds MUST READ
10
Glen Allport 2010-06-21 03:00
Exclusive to STR   -1- ". . . a power too great and terrible to imagine."   The Lord of the Rings trilogy was released on Blu-Ray in April, which reminded me that I hadn't seen the first installment, The Fellowship of the Ring, since its theatrical release in 2001. While watching the film again I was struck anew with its abolitionist message – a message that is clear,...
Who Is Afraid of a Real Inquiry?
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Uri Avnery 2010-06-21 03:00
  If a real Commission of Inquiry had been set up (instead of the pathetic excuse for a commission), here are some of the questions it should have addressed:   1. What is the real aim of the Gaza Strip blockade?   2. If the aim is to prevent the flow of arms into the Strip, why are only 100 products allowed in (as compared to the more than 12 thousand products in an average Israeli...
Public vs. Private
10
Paul Hein 2010-07-19 03:00
By Paul Hein.   Exclusive to STR     The two terms have always confused me. In general, public means the people considered as a whole, the populace, the citizenry, etc. Private, on the other hand, refers to particular individuals. So public ownership means ownership by everyone, which is a bewildering concept, to say the least. Private ownership, on the other hand, is...
Had Enough Government 'Regulation' Yet? MUST READ
10
Glen Allport 2010-08-19 03:00
By Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR    - 1 - The Blessings of True Regulation in a Civil Society   Many things should be regulated – for health and safety, for protection against fraud, and for other reasons.   Regulation is a normal function of civil society. We don't want to get electrocuted when we touch a toaster or vacuum cleaner, for example, and the makers of...
Blame Wikileaks?
10
Patrick Coleman 2010-08-27 03:00
By Patrick Coleman.   Exclusive to STR   The media controversy concerning the recent leak of over 91,000 military reports, termed the “Afghan war diary,” by Wikileaks.org has focused very much around the supposed moral culpability of Wikileaks as an organization, its founder, Julian Assange, as well as the accused leaker, Bradley Manning, who now faces 52 years in prison for...
Why People Believe Government Is Here to Help Us Recommended
10
Paul Bonneau 2010-08-27 03:00
By Paul Bonneau.   Exclusive to STR     The tenacity of the meme, that government is here to help us and protect us, is hard to understand. All evidence throughout history points in the opposite direction--that government is here to prey on us, and that if there is anything we need protection from, it is our own governments. Why do people cling to this harmful meme?   A...
Do We Need a Vaccine for Hubris? MUST READ
10
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
10
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
10
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
10
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
0
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
9
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
10
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...