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Melinda Secor is the guest editor today.

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photo courtesy of Trey Ratcliff
Original article "Short of troops to fight in Iraq and Afghanistan a decade ago, the California National Guard enticed thousands of soldiers with bonuses. Now the Pentagon is demanding the money back."
Original article "The Associated Press has reported previously on Justice's debts to coal suppliers and contractors, and a recent National Public Radio report compiled a list of Justice company debts, including back taxes and mine safety fines totaling $15 million. At the same time, Justice — the richest man in West Virginia, with a fortune estimated at $1.56 billion by Forbes magazine and a profusion of coal and agricultural interests — has spent almost $2.6 million of his own money...
Original article "There is not yet a law in America that obliges you to consent to the corruption, lies, criminality, war-mongering, fear, hate, stupidity, tyranny, surveillance and self-destruction being championed by today’s candidates. You are still free to opt-out and explore the moral highroad of conscientious objection, should your value system be so utterly insulted by the fake election process taking place before us."
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. In the eyes of Bill, Hillary, Donald and the powers-that-be, we’re all little more than 'bimbos,' 'trailer trash,' 'nuts and sluts,' 'loony toons,' 'fat pigs,...
Original article "While campaigning for Hillary Clinton in Cleveland, Ohio former Democratic Governor Ted Strickland is interviewed by Infowars reporter Millie Weaver about the possibility of election fraud. Triggered by her questions, Strickland evades discussion about Project Veritas’ investigations and denies everything."
Original article "If there is any truth to it, the 2016 election could be a kick-off for total tyranny. According to an unnamed source – who has provided accurate intel in the past – an unannounced military drill is scheduled to take place during a period leading up to the election and throughout the month after. It appears that the system is gearing up to handle outbreaks of violence, chaotic rallies and poll stations, and the possibility that the people of the United States may...
Original article "In order to sustain public support for its war-making, the State must suppress dissent. If it cannot achieve this through media control and other subtle means, it is prepared to take more forceful measures."
Original article "Once a 'flagship socialist nation,' Venezuela has suffered over the past couple of years from a dramatic economic crisis that has resulted in severe shortages of food, clean water, electricity, medicines and hospital supplies all of which have resulted in a desperate population which has resorted to the black market and violence for survival.  That said, Venezuela likely inched one step closer to revolution on Friday when Maduro's leftist government took steps to block a...
Original article "Visibly shaken, as Reuters put it, Canadian trade minister Chrystia Freeland walked out of EU trade negotiations in Belgium on Friday evening, lamenting that the EU is 'incapable of reaching an agreement – even with a country with European values such as Canada.' A big trade deal that had taken years to negotiate, mostly in total secrecy, had just collapsed. So how in the world did such a mega screw-up happen?"
Original article "Debates about internet security and the limits of state power just got a lot more interesting."
Original article "For the first time, scientists have revealed the mechanics of how bacteria build up slimy masses, called biofilms, cell by cell. When encased in biofilms in the human body, bacteria are a thousand times less susceptible to antibiotics, making certain infections, such as pneumonia, difficult to treat and potentially lethal. In a new study, engineers and biologists tracked a single bacterial cell as it grew into a mature biofilm of 10,000 cells with an ordered architecture. The findings...
Original article "In 1976, two Viking landers became the first US spacecraft from Earth to touch down on Mars. They took the first high-resolution images of the planet, surveyed the planet's geographical features, and analyzed the geological composition of the atmosphere and surface. Perhaps most intriguingly, they also performed experiments that searched for signs of microbial life in Martian soil."  
Original article "Early humans living in southern Africa in the Middle Stone Age after 65,000 years ago used advanced heating techniques to produce silcrete blades, according to a new study."
Original article "A research team from the University of Bonn has succeeded for the first time in using light stimuli to stop life-threatening cardiac arrhythmia in mouse hearts. Furthermore, as shown in computer simulations at Johns Hopkins University, this technique could also be used successfully for human hearts."
Original article A Photo Blog
9/11 and the Prospects for Liberty
R. K. Blacksher 2011-09-15 00:00
Column by R.K. Blacksher Exclusive to STR State propagandists are predictably marking the 10th anniversary of 9/11 with vulgar displays of collectivist self-pity and celebrations of the power and glory of the state and its uniformed agents. The evildoers hate us because we are so good and so free, we are told. There are terrorists hiding around every corner, inside every closet and under every...
Chinese Communism and America’s Free Traitors
gautry 2011-09-14 00:00
Column by new Root Striker Greg Autry. Exclusive to STR  Say it is a dictatorship, but we want to be associated with it. Say it is worthwhile being associated with the devil, as Churchill said, in order to defeat another evil which is Hitler. There might be some good argument made for that. But why pretend that Russia was not what it was? ~ Ayn Rand, testimony to HUAC, 1947   America...
How to Get a Job
Paul Bonneau 2011-09-12 00:00
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR  Most of us have grown up in an era of substantial job growth (funded largely by low interest rate-driven malinvestment, but no need go get into that now). Any fool could make a million. Well, the party is over, and mindsets that might have been workable then, have now become harmful to self-preservation. It’s time to examine this point.  ...
Government Steve, This Will Not Pass
Alex R. Knight III 2011-09-09 00:00
Column by Alex R. Knight III.   Exclusive to STR   There was a pretty good article back in June published at by David Weigel. The title was “Live Free or Move: Hanging Out With the Young Kids Who Want to Turn New Hampshire into a Libertarian Paradise.”    It’s a trite label for what was otherwise, in my opinion, a pretty good write-up. Not...
Aquacalypse Now: Some Reflections on Tropical Storm Irene in Vermont
Alex R. Knight III 2011-09-08 00:00
Column by Alex R. Knight III   Exclusive to STR   Good night, Irene. And good night, as well, to any number of roads, storm drains, bridges, businesses, and homes here in Vermont and some surrounding environs. In a roughly 24-hour period on August 28th, the landscape of the Green Mountains was radically transformed. It will be weeks and months before any semblance of full...
Not Enough Enemies? Let’s Create More!
Paul Bonneau 2011-09-08 00:00
Column by Paul Bonneau Exclusive to STR  I was just reading how anarcho-syndicalists are so bad, that they are even worse than the state.   Wow, that is something else. We have no idea what things are going to come about at this end of empire, what our true enemies will be; but we are already searching for other dragons to slay. The more obscure, the better!   The article, by...
Homeschooling Is Easy!
Paul Bonneau 2011-09-07 00:00
Column by Paul Bonneau.   Exclusive to STR   I was reading Lawrence Ludlow’s excellent series on Voluntarist schooling when I came upon this statement: “For many busy parents, home-schooling is not an option – despite the extraordinary success of home-schooled children. Many parents do not have the time, skills, and resources needed by their children to flourish....
A Sign of Our Depravity
R. K. Blacksher 2011-09-02 00:00
Column by R.K. Blacksher   Exclusive to STR    Some people love to lament the popularity of violent video games and rap music. They view this as a sign of our depravity. Other people love to lament the popularity of NASCAR and professional wrestling. They view this as a sign of our stupidity.   Are they right? Does the popularity of these cultural phenomena emblemize the much...
A Rose By Any Other Name Is Still Vegetation
Paul Hein 2011-09-01 00:00
Column by Paul Hein   Exclusive to STR   Suppose you hired a landscape architect, and asked him to submit a plan to beautify your yard. He would ask you what you had in mind. “Well, how about some vegetation?” He might smile at that, or frown; but he would want you to be more specific. “What vegetation would you like?” “You know, green plants, maybe...
Voluntaryist Schooling at Libertopia 2011 - Part 3: Why We Need Summum Bonum Learning Center – Now!
Lawrence M. Ludlow 2011-08-30 00:00
Column by Lawrence M. Ludlow   Exclusive to STR   The Failure of Conventional Schools   Parents and children are frustrated by public schools (85% to 90% of all students). Not only do they do not meet their needs, but they treat parents and children as if they were sick patients instead of as valued customers. Moreover, student needs are superseded by politically sensitive funding...
SPECTRE: Not Scarier Than the Newspapers
Kevin M. Patten 2015-12-17 08:43
Column by Kevin M. Patten. Exclusive to STR Spoilers. The newest 007 film is, all and all, a dud. Putting the summation first: It’s predicable, uninspired, disjointed. It sets itself up for real potential by attempting to give the secret agent a genuine backstory, and then fails miserably without much effort. It brings in supernova-sized casting, and then wastes the talent. It teases us...
Debt Bondage Or Monetary Freedom?
James Clayton 2016-02-11 09:31
Column by James Clayton. Exclusive to STR State-sanctioned monetary systems are instruments of control. The individuals who benefit the most will not be easily persuaded to change the arrangement and will attempt to prevent us from using alternative methods or media of exchange. Canada provides one example. The state, personified in the monarch, gives to the Parliament of Canada the exclusive...
The World Beyond My Time
Alex R. Knight III 2016-02-16 09:46
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR Some time ago, I wrote a piece here on STR about some of my experiences as a practicing alcoholic, and how my initial years of substance-abuse denial are directly analogous to the philosophical position of Statists. And I’m about to come out of denial again. In the 22 years now that I’ve been aware of it and involved, the libertarian...
A Candle in the Darkness
Paul Hein 2016-03-03 08:32
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR Those of us of a certain (old!!) age find it easy to be pessimistic about the future, and depressed by the present obvious disintegration of the America of our youth and young adulthood. Considering that garrulous gaggle of gangsters seeking the presidency is enough to ruin my day. The shrinking of the middle class--the productive class!!--convinces me that...
A Thought Experiment in Rights
Paul Bonneau 2016-03-23 08:16
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR A thought experiment is a useful device for getting down to the truth of things. For example, Einstein discovered the Special Theory of Relativity through a series of thought experiments; certainly back in those days, there weren’t many trains actually running near the speed of light! I noticed in another forum, in one of my discussions about rights...
Self Interest
Paul Bonneau 2016-06-10 08:06
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR It took me a long, long time to figure out how important self interest was, in motivating people. It’s essentially all there is. Humans do not appear to have much of a natural in-born tendency toward virtues such as truth or decency. As a parent, I try to warn my son about this; but he thinks I am being too cynical. I suspect that, even though we...
Slaves of the Law
Paul Bonneau 2016-08-18 08:18
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR It’s been noted many times, that to obtain liberty, the first and most important thing that must be freed is one’s own mind. I don’t know who first recognized and stated it. Of course the reverse is true as well; the most important thing for the ruling class to do is to enslave people's minds. And the way that is done is to make those...
Ignorance of Bliss
Anarchoblake 2016-09-15 08:52
Column by Blake Bengtson. Exclusive to STR The cascading nature of human events is truly a sight to behold, amplified tenfold by the advent of technology's current level. We are simultaneously connected and disjointed from one another unlike any other time in history. There is division. There is camaraderie. Fear, love, anger and pain. All for the world to see at any given moment through...
Bumper Stickers
tzo 2010-08-10 03:00
Column by tzo.   Exclusive to STR     If there is one message that must continually be broadcast to people in order to improve the quality of life on this planet, it is this: Politics is aggression. Until this simple understanding becomes widespread, we will all continue to bog down in the mud.   Politics is aggression.   Recently while driving I noticed that the car...
Authority: God vs. Man
Guest 2011-03-21 03:00
Column by new Root Striker Doug Carkuff. Exclusive to STR One of my guilty pleasures in life was watching the Showtime series “The Tudors.” It is great fun watching King Henry petulantly subjecting his subjects to his whims and hacking off heads and torturing people as it suits him. I have no idea with respect to historical accuracy of any of it except in the broadest sense...
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...