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Wednesday, August 27

Guest Editor

A. Magnus is the guest editor today.

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photo courtesy of Kansas Poetry

Original article ""Utility disconnection is always considered a last resort, obviously because of consequences for households," but as Detroit News reports, but water-providers can expect more controversy, as a month-long moratorium against shutting off water for those behind on their bills expired last night."
Original article "Beginning next year, if you buy a cell phone in California that gets lost or stolen, you’ll have a built-in ability to remotely deactivate the phone under a new “kill switch” feature being mandated by California law—but the feature will make it easier for police and others to disable the phone as well, raising concerns among civil liberties groups about possible abuse."
Original article "‘It's a cosmic coincidence that connects one of Nasa’s iconic past outer solar system explorers, with our next outer solar system explorer,’ said Dr Jim Green, director of Nasa’s Planetary Science Division at Nasa Headquarters in Washington. ‘Exactly 25 years ago at Neptune, Voyager 2 delivered our “first” look at an unexplored planet."
Original article "The federal government is spending nearly $1 million to create an online database that will track “misinformation” and hate speech on Twitter. The National Science Foundation is financing the creation of a web service that will monitor “suspicious memes” and what it considers “false and misleading ideas,” with a major focus on political activity online. The “Truthy” database, created by researchers at Indiana University, is designed to “detect political smears, astroturfing, misinformation,...
Original article "“[The program] is obviously very sloppy, and it’s another reason that Congress needs to revisit this promptly,” said Tim Lynch, director of the CATO Institute’s project on criminal justice. “We don’t know where these weapons are going, whether they are really lost, or whether there is corruption involved.”"
Original article "Ahead of the bypoll, over 90 licensed gun owners in Saharanpur have been issued notices to surrender their weapons with immediate effect to the district police. "People have started surrendering their weapons already. The notices were issued two days ago," said a senior police officer. The last date for depositing weapons is August 27. "During the election, each licensed weapon will be kept in the strong room of police stations," said the officer."
Original article "When does a prohibitive law become a police state excuse to use coercive force? Answer, when agency regulations say so in their playbook manual. The years of incrementalism are over. The bipartisan administrations during your lifetime have eroded the “pursuit of happiness” to such an extent that it has become a mere memory of what once was."
Original article "But the most encouraging reason to boycott such campaigns is the fact that people are reversing this and other neurodegenerative diseases naturally. Unfortunately, a campaign to get that important and potentially life-saving information out to the public at large has been shadowed by a giant ice bucket."
Original article "A Kauai County law requiring companies to disclose their use of pesticides and genetically modified crops is invalid, a federal judge ruled Monday. U.S. Magistrate Judge Barry Kurren ruled in favor of four seed companies seeking to stop Kauai's new law from going into effect in October. Syngenta Seeds, DuPont Pioneer, Agrigenetics Inc., doing business as Dow AgroSciences, and BASF Plant Sciences sued for a permanent injunction, arguing the ordinance unfairly targets their industry."
Original article In honor of the waning days of summer...
Some Reasons for Libertarians to NOT Reject the Non-Aggression Principle
10
Paul Bonneau 2014-02-12 01:00
Column by Paul Bonneua. Exclusive to STR I just came across Matt Zwolinski’s article, Six Reasons Libertarians Should Reject the Non-Aggression Principle. I think he does point out some problems, but comes to the wrong conclusion. His conclusion: "There comes a point where what you need is not another refinement to the definition of 'aggression' but a radical paradigm shift...
Against the Cutlery Culture: A Few Questions Worth Asking
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Kevin M. Patten 2014-02-07 01:00
Column by Kevin M. Patten. Exclusive to STR While appearing on William F. Buckley’s Firing Line in 1969, the already renowned linguist and anti-war critic Noam Chomsky told a nationwide audience that there was no longer any debate on the Vietnam War. In his view, no question remained that the United States was the ultra-violent aggressor against an innocent people, and that our government...
The Rules
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Paul Hein 2014-02-06 01:00
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR It’s a familiar aphorism: You’ve got to play by the rules. There’s no picking up the puck and running with it; no using a tennis racket in handball. Golfers are not to use baseball bats. And there are penalties for violations. It’s not only sports, of course. If you’re a Rotarian, you’re expected to observe the by-laws of...
A Monster in the Making
9.8
Jim Davies 2014-02-04 23:16
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Last month, I splurged a whole 99 cents on the download of an 89-year-old book. Worth every penny, it's a non-fiction horror story: James Murphy's 1939 English translation of Adolph Hitler's Mein Kampf. Its sheer blandness and apparently reasonable, normal prose is what sets it apart, in the light of what arose from it a decade or two later....
A Review of the Historical Novel 'Abducting Arnold', by Becky Akers
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Lawrence M. Ludlow 2014-02-04 01:00
Column by Lawrence M. Ludow. Exclusive to STR This book has everything you want in historical fiction but never seem to get. As a novel, the suspense carries you all the way to the finish, and the characters have their own motives for their actions; they don’t just hang like puppets suspended from the author’s plot-line. In addition, the characters grow with the story – enabling...
What Libertarians Can Learn From Dexter
0
Steve 2014-01-28 09:33
Exclusive to STR   At this stage of libertarian evolution, we have less a need to refine the theory than to evangelize it, but libertarian propaganda efforts seem overwhelmingly aimed at waking "sleeping libertarians” (if not preaching to the choir) rather than convincing our ideological adversaries. Increasingly often, one hears libertarians dismissing even the possibility of...
A Foul Smell
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Mark Davis 2014-01-27 09:22
Column by Mark Davis. "[W]e are living in a sick society filled with people who would not directly steal from their neighbors but who are willing to demand that the government do it for them." ~ William Comer "A rose by any other name would smell as sweet."  ~ William Shakespeare (Romeo and Juliet) Theft by any other name smells just as foul.  The concept of people...
Representative Government
0
Paul Hein 2014-01-24 09:02
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR There are six million people living in the section of North America designated “Missouri.” They know that because they’ve been told they live in Missouri, not because they’ve seen lines on the ground saying, for example, Missouri on this side, and Oklahoma on the other. People are encouraged to think of the portion of the earth they...
The Meat of the Matter
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Alex R. Knight III 2014-01-22 09:10
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR I can recall a story that circulated widely throughout the field of work I was in during the early 1990s, involving the owner of a meat processing plant in Nebraska. It seems that this businessman (with help from his paid employees, of course) had produced a load of beef that he then wished to bring to market. In order to do this, however, the meat...
Downton Fever
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Jim Davies 2014-01-21 09:21
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...
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...
Declare 9-11 'Government Blowback Day'
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Lawrence M. Ludlow 2010-08-31 03:00
By Lawrence M. Ludlow.   Exclusive to STR   This September 11, let’s help to change the “meme” that has been used by the U.S. government to terrorize Americans into submission and to cynically manipulate the grief of those who lost loved ones in the 9-11 attack of 2001. This year in your community, join hands with others who understand the meaning of the event. Carry...
The Fake TV Challenge Recommended
10
B.R. Merrick 2010-09-02 03:00
By B.R. Merrick   Exclusive to STR   In spite of my opposition to The War on Certain Kinds of Drugs, I wish to inaugurate a new war against another one. I have good reasons for doing so. This drug is cheap. It is everywhere. It is insidious. Once it is in your bloodstream, it is nearly impossible to extricate. It becomes infused with the cells of your body...
Aristophanes' Law MUST READ
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tzo 2010-09-24 03:00
Column by tzo.   Exclusive to STR   Some 2,400 years ago, the Greek playwright Aristophanes put forth an idea in one of his plays that I would like to codify into a law of human behavior. Here are the pertinent lines from his play "The Frogs":   The course our city runs is the same towards men and money. She has true and worthy sons. She has fine new gold and ancient...
The Census Taker's Gun
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B.R. Merrick 2010-09-24 03:00
Column by B.R. Merrick.   Exclusive to STR   “A Census taker once tried to test me. I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice Chianti.” ~ Hannibal Lecter, “The Silence of the Lambs”   Okay, so a while ago, I had to go to a specialist to get something cleared up. Quite mild, all taken care of. It reminded me of how nice it is to have a...
Education for the Individual
10
Michael Kleen 2010-10-11 03:00
Column by Michael Kleen.   Exclusive to STR   Previously, in “Education and the Individual,” I discussed how the two competing educational methods in the public education system in the United States both presuppose a State monopoly on education, and how both seek to impose a uniform purpose and set of standards for all children. In this article, I will lay out the...
The Failed Theory of Relativity
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tzo 2010-10-14 03:00
Column by tzo.   Exclusive to STR   Voluntaryism is, primarily, an ethical philosophy applied to the organization of society. Most of the common modern social organization theories (e.g., “democracy”) focus on organizing society based upon what the majority feels is right and always with an eye toward the utilitarian target that is the greatest good for the greatest number....
Our Moral Duty to Pay Taxes
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Guest 2010-10-14 03:00
Column by Jake Roundtree.   Exclusive to STR   The view of the government as the savior of mankind, the organizer of society and the progenitor of morality, is in present times “profoundly integrated into the depths of our consciousness” (Ellul, 216). Keen observers, since Nietzsche, have recognized the overwhelming degree to which citizens of the West are afflicted...
Just Say No!
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Paul Hein 2010-10-19 03:00
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR   It is interesting to read what St. Augustine had to say about what we now call government: A gang is a group of men under the command of a leader, bound by a compact of association, in which the plunder is divided according to an agreed convention. If this villainy wins so many recruits from the ranks of the demoralized that it acquires...
Rethinking 'School'
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Michael Kleen 2010-10-20 03:00
Column by Michael Kleen.   Exclusive to STR   Few institutions in the United States create more cognitive dissonance than its public school system. Complaints about the cost and quality of American schools fill newspaper opinion pages, and the rhetoric of “improving education” is a staple of every political campaign. Missing from this debate, however, is the role each and...
'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
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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...
Oh, Stanley MUST READ
10
tzo 2011-03-30 03:00
Column by tzo. Exclusive to STR   Stanley Milgram was an American social psychologist best known for his Milgram Experiment, a study conducted in the 1960s.   Dr. Milgram wanted to research the relationship between obedience and authority, and he was at least partly motivated to do so by the events of the Nazi Holocaust. It greatly troubled him that so many supposedly good people could...