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Thursday, March 5

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Robert Taylor is the guest editor today.

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photo courtesy of Pai Shih

Original article The “evidence based” reform campaign presumes that politics is essentially a noble business in which public servants love nothing more than serving the public. But for politicians, programs are fiefdoms. How many kings have abdicated their thrones after becoming convinced that monarchy did not truly serve the downtrodden masses? Will politicians cede power after social scientists document how their favorite programs do more harm than good?
Original article As we engage in peer-to-peer civil disobedience, we are making choices that are leading to the emergence of new law, however slowly and clumsily it follows on.  
Original article Each time we try to understand some individual market exchange, what we are viewing reveals only traces or hints of the individual acts of valuation engaged in by the actors, and even less so about such acts when we attempt to forensically examine any group of market exchanges. But this is more or less exactly what most economists do. It is why, in fact, economists are so blazingly wrong most of the time.
Original article If you crave war like Netanyahu, it is peace that is an existential threat.
Original article We can live without the fear of terrorism — but only if the U.S. government stops antagonizing foreign populations that have never threatened us.  
Original article Fear is a powerful tool. This is not only well-known by those in positions of power, but exploited. Just like a child makes a parent check under his bed for the monster, U.S. citizens, out of fear, have called upon their elected leaders to be “proactive” against monsters like “drugs” and “terrorism.” 
Original article Innocent Americans are vulnerable to petty harassment by officious officials who demand blind obedience as the price for letting us go about our lives.
Original article The following story should send shivers down the spines of all decent, law-abiding American citizens. It’s also a great reminder of the primary reason it’s so wise to videotape interactions with police. Many of them turn out to be egregious liars.    
Original article They’re less expensive, better at crime prevention, they do not target citizens for revenue, and, best of all, each officer is personally accountable for his or her actions.
Original article All prisons should be scrapped, scorched, and relegated to the past along with the lash and the hangman. There is no substitute for abolition and there is no prison undeserving of a riot.  
Original article Those on the inside of the military/industrial/surveillance supercomplex -- who leak under the name of "anonymous official" to aid filmmakers, deploy talking points or steer narratives -- will never see this side of the two-faced administration. Their leaks are more equal than others.  
Original article It's not surprising that the Status Quo craves pseudo-solutions, for real solutions necessarily disrupt the corrupt, sclerotic, wasteful, inefficient, fraud-ridden and cronyist-paradise of vested interests..."faster, better, cheaper" destroys the friction of vested interests.
Original article “Sovereignty” is a claim of ownership. If individuals cannot be “sovereign,” their only choice is servility. There was once a thoroughly imperfect but in many ways commendable country on the North American landmass that was created by people who understood that principle, and shed blood in righteous defense of individual liberty. That country has been supplanted by a soyuz in which even speaking of such things is often treated as a crime.
Inferno, Part II of II
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tzo 2011-08-14 23:00
Column by tzo.  Exclusive to STR Part II of II   Nel mezzo del cammin di nostra vita, (Midway upon the journey of our life,) Mi ritrovai per una selva oscura, (I found myself within a forest dark,) Che la diritta via era smarrita. (For the straightforward pathway had been lost.)   Without realizing it, the citizen has gotten off the path that he intended to take. He looks around...
Strike The Root Can Teach Everybody Something
8.33333
jd-in-georgia 2011-08-11 23:00
Column by John Shelkop.  Exclusive to STR  On its 10th anniversary, it has been both a joy and an education keeping up with the links and commentary on Strike The Root. One month before thousands of Americans were killed on September 11, 2001, a site filled with links to stories and ideas of a classically liberal slant had begun. I will confess that I did not even know this site...
Inferno, Part I of II
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tzo 2011-08-11 23:00
Column by tzo.   Exclusive to STR Quoth Nietzche with regard to the State, “Yes, a hellish artifice has been created here, a death-horse jingling with the trappings of divine honors!”   The State is perhaps better understood in this industrial and technical era as a death-machine. The true ugliness within the guts of this meat grinder is hidden behind a well-crafted...
STR: A Glorious Decade of Radicalism
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Per Bylund 2011-08-10 23:00
Column by Per Bylund.  Exclusive to STR  For the five-year anniversary, I wrote a column about the value of a site like Strike The Root. I argued that the main problem to making anarchism an attractive social theory is its lack of guarantees. Rather than basing our worldview on the illusion of a stable and never-changing core to which we can fix and around which we can organize our...
On Striking the Root
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Michael Kleen 2011-08-10 23:00
Column by Michael Kleen. Exclusive to STR I am a relative newcomer to Strike The Root, so on this 10th anniversary of the website’s founding, all I have to offer is my own small perspective. I published my first column at STR, Spending Our Way to Ruin, in February 2009. At that time, STR already had quite a following. Chris Lempa, a longtime friend and Friday guest editor for the website,...
About Strike The Root: A Terror and a Wonder
8.5
Lawrence M. Ludlow 2011-08-09 23:00
Column by Lawrence M. Ludlow.   Exclusive to STR   I have encountered a range of responses to material that appears on the website Strike-The-Root.com. Some people dislike the vitriol that rises to the surface of some of the columns. Some say the topics are too specialized. Others complain that an article was of poor quality. All of these criticisms can be partially true at times, but...
A Decade of Striking the Root
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Alex R. Knight III 2011-08-09 23:00
Column by Alex R. Knight III   Exclusive to STR   Although for myself personally, it’s been very close to half that long at the time of this writing. My very first STR column, “The Trouble With Star Trek,” appeared on August 22, 2006. It was the first time I came to recognize the immense power of the Internet. I’d only learned of STR’s...
Ten Years and Counting
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Emmett Harris 2011-08-08 23:00
Column by Emmett Harris.   Exclusive to STR   Ten years ago the United States government was a poorly restrained leviathan, consuming vast amounts of wealth at home and meddling higgledy-piggledy in the affairs of others around the world. While the size of the state loomed large, the voices sincerely espousing liberty were few and, amid the burning debris of September 11th, they...
Jumping the Gun on Egypt
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Michael Kleen 2011-08-07 23:00
Column by Michael Kleen.   Exclusive to STR   For the 79 million people living in Egypt, the protest movement that led to the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak in early February was an earth-shattering event, and the enthusiasm of the crowds in Cairo’s Tahrir Square was echoed by many here in the United States. Now that the dust has settled on the “Egyptian Revolution...
Government Is an Obsolete Idea (and Castro Proves It)
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Alex R. Knight III 2011-08-01 23:00
Column by Alex R. Knight III   Exclusive to STR   Fidel Castro is one of the only personages within recent memory--and this was while talking to a host of news reporters back in the 1990s--who repeated the Marxist myth that ideally, Communism would eventually make governments disappear. Of course, when then asked when the world could expect to see the Cuban government disappear,...
Outreach to Non-Anarchists: A Suggestion
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Dylan Delikta 2012-11-30 08:07
Column by Dylan Delikta. Exclusive to STR A multitude of events have occurred these past few weeks; Hurricane Sandy, the presidential election, the multiple calls for secession, and Israel attacking Gaza. The masses are in a political frenzy and are calling their representatives! A wet dream upon all your politicians, bureaucrats, and apologists, I say! Of course, all of this will fade away...
What a Century!
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Jim Davies 2012-12-19 07:54
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR It was the best and the worst century in human history, and it ends this month. The previous one closed in 1912, a year best remembered for the sinking of the Titanic--a story that has been skillfully tuned to incite distrust of business and reliance on governments. It's a fable, which I demolish here. But the fable served as a prélude to what...
I'm a Liberal, You Dirty Radical!
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Alex R. Knight III 2013-01-09 07:49
Column by Alex R. Knight III Exclusive to STR I’d like to share a little something here with you, a recent e-mail exchange I had with a now-former Facebook “friend” of a few years. This individual will remain unnamed here, though I will provide some details. This person is a not untalented filmmaker, photographer, painter, and musician. He has published an autobiography of some...
A Deal With Government
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Jim Davies 2013-01-09 08:04
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR World history was radically changed, in the small Turkish town presently known as Iznik. It affected a vast range of human activities during the last 17 centuries; it housed an event more significant than Rome itself with its claim to dominate Christendom, than Paris with its thousand years of prominence in trade and culture, than Florence or Venice with...
You Say You Want a Revolution?
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tzo 2013-02-12 07:55
Column by tzo. Exclusive to STR Logical Consistency Warning: Severe mental discomfort may result from any serious consideration of the comparison made in the following essay. Please disregard said comparison as ridiculous in order to restore previous state of mental tranquility. Here is a familiar passage that any self-respecting Patriot recognizes and supports: ". . . that whenever any...
Government, a Force of Nature
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Paul Bonneau 2013-02-21 05:56
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR When I go outside this time of year, I get cold. I compensate by getting a coat on, and then go about my business. This is the standard way of dealing with forces of nature. I don’t spend a lot of time lying in bed wishing it weren’t cold. I have better things to do with my time. Why is government any different? Government is just a gang of...
The Smilers Among You
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Alex R. Knight III 2013-03-05 07:43
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR I don’t know why you do it, any of you, when I talk about or discuss the fundamental issues. It is entirely inappropriate, absolutely irrational. Yet you continue to do it, almost every time. The smiles. The grins. The amused looks – sometimes even outright laughter. It puzzles me, and it frustrates me. I’ll even admit, it upsets...
Hold It, Holder
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Jim Davies 2013-03-12 06:49
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR The great danger of criticizing specific things government does or says or fails to do or say is that readers can reasonably infer that if the opposite were done or said, all would be well. In other words, they can infer that the author envisages the possibility of a satisfactory government. I do not, ever, anywhere; for by definition (of “govern...
Do We Owe Gratitude to American Veterans For Having Fought in Iraq?
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Robert L. Johnson 2013-03-22 04:56
Column by Robert L. Johnson. Exclusive to STR U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel marked the 10th anniversary of the U.S. war against Iraq by saying, “Every one of the more than one million service members that deployed to Iraq, often for multiple tours of duty, deserves our highest praise and deepest debt of gratitude.” Is Hagel correct? Do the American people owe the veterans of...
Politics Don't Cut It
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Jim Davies 2013-03-27 06:01
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Murray Rothbard never pretended to be infallible, and he wasn't; but when he wrote or spoke on his specialty of economics, he was . . . close enough for government work. I had the chance to hear him speak several times, and have some of his books, and say that he was the most brilliant, prolific and consistent pro-freedom writer of the 20th Century....
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
0
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...