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Monday, December 11

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photo courtesy of Trey Ratcliff
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR I was having an Internet discussion that caused me to utter the sort-of Founder quote, “Free trade with all, entangling alliances with none.” Someone questioned me about it, which caused me to take a deeper look. I’m glad I did. This was a policy that appeared in Washington’s Farewell Address, created with the help of Hamilton and Madison. Not in so many words, though; apparently Jefferson later adopted the policy and came...
Original article "Given that we learned this week of 44,000 troops stationed in locations the Pentagon itself deems 'unknown', perhaps we are long overdue for a massive drawback of overseas forces and bloated military budgets? Of course if the Pentagon can't find them in the first place, it might be hard to bring them home."
Original article "The massive undertaking will examine every aspect of the Defense Department, from personnel and supplies to bases and weapons. At least 2,400 auditors will be tasked with spreading out across the department to examine the Pentagon's estimated $2.4 trillion in assets."
Original article "FRIDAY WAS ONE of the most embarrassing days for the U.S. media in quite a long time. The humiliation orgy was kicked off by CNN, with MSNBC and CBS close behind, with countless pundits, commentators and operatives joining the party throughout the day. By the end of the day, it was clear that several of the nation’s largest and most influential news outlets had spread an explosive but completely false news story to millions of people, while refusing to provide any explanation of how...
Original article "As the United States Congress runs out of time to vote on a bill that would reauthorize one of the government’s most egregious warrantless spying programs, officials are claiming that those programs won’t end anytime soon—even if they are not reauthorized by the end of the year."
Original article "One of the women from a group that live streamed the torture of a mentally disabled man received a four-year probation sentence for her actions Friday."  
Original article "1984 wasn’t an instruction manual but governments keep thinking it’s a play-by-play of how to spy on civilians; but this time they may have crossed the line violating users’ privacy rights."
Original article "Philadelphia’s Public Health and Human Services Committee passed a bill Monday to ban shop owners from protecting themselves with bulletproof plexiglass. Philadelphia 8th District Councilwoman Cindy Bass, who is behind the bill, said previously that having to see plexiglass represents an 'indignity' to her constituents and should therefore be banned."
Original article "After resigning from his position as chief, an autopsy doctor is now calling out the sheriff for overriding his death investigations to protect officers."
Original article "Stockpiling is a top method for preparing for natural disasters or other SHTF scenarios. Preparing for a future job loss might encourage you to build a large stockpile. A stockpile allows you to provide for your family for an extended period. However, stockpiling also comes with common mistakes that you might make without realizing. Some mistakes seem minor, but remember that any mistake could lead to a loss of food. That means you also wasted money and time, and now you are less...
Original article "Hypothermia is weird.  It can incapacitate a person very quickly; within minutes after immersion in icy water.  However, as one EMT explained it to me, 'They’re not dead until they are warm and dead.'  People have been revived, without brain damage no less, after more than nine hours of immersion in cold water.  The cold slows the metabolism, and with the very slow metabolism the cells can live a very long time with no oxygen.  The key is obviously...
Original article "Our world has changed enormously in ten, twenty and fifty years. It’s night and day from a hundred years ago. How we reach each other and share information is mind blowing. We now know things about illness, waste, and chemicals that make us shudder a little at the past. We’ve seen fisheries and industries rise and collapse. However, some things have stagnated. In many ways, mainstream food production is one of those areas."  
Original article "The fermentation of foods likely was accidentally discovered by our ancient ancestors. Certain foods that were left unattended or ignored actually developed unique properties that not only accented their flavor, but lent them unique preservation properties. In this article, we will cover some basic foods that can be preserved by fermentation and a bit about the science of fermentation."
Original article A Photo Blog
Of Dogs and Men
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Paul Hein 2011-12-14 00:00
Column by Paul Hein.   Exclusive to STR   We have two dogs. They are both miniature poodles, pure-bred, with papers (gosh!). What I am about to reveal now may make you despise me and my dogs, but at least give me credit for honesty: our dogs are defective. I cringe to admit it, but it’s true.   A poodle, I have learned from the appropriate authorities, may be any color (...
How to Know When You Have Liberty
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Paul Bonneau 2011-12-12 00:00
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR There seems to be a lot of confusion on this point. Many people believe they are living in a state of liberty, while others don’t think so. How can you know for sure? I have devised a simple test that, I believe, can be used to determine when you have liberty.   I am here following the distinction that some use, between freedom and liberty:...
History, Rewritten
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Jim Davies 2011-12-09 00:00
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR As a thought-experiment, I've been trying to imagine how different US history would have been if, at certain alternative times in the past, government had altogether disappeared--if ours had become a truly free society. So let's see how it might have worked out, moving back in time in discrete steps. In each example below, all government in America is...
The Secrets to Nonviolent Prosperity: The Principles of Liberty
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Lawrence M. Ludlow 2011-12-08 00:00
Column by Lawrence M. Ludlow Exclusive to STR The new book by Trevor Z. Gamble – The Secrets to Nonviolent Prosperity (published in paperback and Kindle editions, 2011) – provides a welcoming introduction to ideas that go a long way toward resolving many of our contemporary problems and the deeper concerns behind them. Like many of us, the author realizes that something is amiss in...
A Look at the True Collectivist, Socialist and Communist Nature of Today’s Conservatives Recommended
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Scott Lazarowitz 2011-12-06 00:00
Column by Scott Lazarowitz. Exclusive to STR Many of today’s conservatives speak of traditional moral values and free-market capitalism, and say they are “against collectivism, socialism and communism.” But an examination of the actual policies they support and the way they want to implement their “values” shows that many conservatives are really the collectivist,...
Bad News Is Good News
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Paul Hein 2011-12-05 00:00
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR The pretty TV newsperson was interviewing a doctor about the coming crisis in the funding of health care. It seems that physicians will be taking a 27% cut in reimbursements by Medicare, which will not, however, make a corresponding cut in their expenses. (Thank God I’m retired!) Can a doctor opt out of Medicare? Sure, but then he’s not...
What Would Free Market Justice Look Like?
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Paul Bonneau 2011-12-05 00:00
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR I was reading a chapter of Jim Corbett’s My India, when I ran into an illuminating clue about the range of possible judicial solutions where freedom exists. Most people seem to imagine free market justice working more or less like our current system, just better and cheaper and more fair. But would it actually look anything like that?   To get...
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...
The Iconography of Evil
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Alex R. Knight III 2011-11-30 00:00
Column by Alex R. Knight III Exclusive to STR If you ever want an irrefutable indication of what’s wrong with America today, I suggest you have a look at some of the iconography government is putting out there – symbolism, if you will.    It has long been a known psychological principle that symbols and icons are a powerful yet subtle means to instill certain emotions and...
Freedom is Not an Intellectual Pursuit
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Paul Bonneau 2011-11-30 00:00
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR Every once in a while, I get tired of arguments around here, trying in some way or other to justify freedom and liberty. One can go overboard with this stuff.   After all, does one need a PhD in Philosophy to understand freedom? Of course not. Everybody already understands it. It’s just doing whatever the Hell you want to do. No justification is...
Jurisdiction
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Paul Hein 2015-05-08 06:52
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR If I correctly remember my high school Latin, the word “jurisdiction” is from two Latin words, “dicere,” to say, and “juris,” of the law. So if you have jurisdiction, you can “speak” the law. What you say is the law. A synonym for jurisdiction is “authority,” referring to a creator, an author. What...
Defiant, She Advanced: Legends of Future Resistance
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Alex R. Knight III 2015-06-01 06:39
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR Let’s begin by forgetting about libertarianism altogether for a few moments and focus only on the primary aspect of this anthology: science-fiction. There are a total of ten tales in this little micro-collection, edited by George Donnelly, and I found every one of them to be a singular gem. Some appealed to my sensibilities a tad more than...
Pilfering for Pluto
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Alex R. Knight III 2015-07-20 06:22
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR It is unquestionably a scientific achievement of no small measure, the recent flyby made by NASA’s New Horizons space probe of the binary dwarf planets Pluto and Charon – and associated moons – at a near constant velocity of 30,000 miles per hour: the fastest object yet sent into motion from the Earth! The amount of data collected...
How to Make the Confederate Flag Respectable
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Paul Bonneau 2015-07-22 06:21
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR It used to be that the Confederate flag (correctly known as the battle flag of the Army of Northern Virginia) was not respectable. It was found on dirty pickup trucks, hanging in bars, and painted on the roof of that orange car in “The Dukes of Hazzard,” which was about as silly a show as one could find. The intelligentsia and the chattering...
Cecil Was One of Us. No, Wait, He Was Just a Lion.
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Harry Goslin 2015-08-05 06:50
Column by Harry Goslin. Exclusive to STR The irrational, overly-emotional and childlike reaction to the killing of a lion in Africa is another example of why Americans will be forever in the dark about what’s important in the world and what’s not. It’s these kinds of silly, irrelevant stories that especially gets the lip-quivering left up in arms and unfortunately dominates the...
What About Peak Liberty?
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Alex R. Knight III 2015-09-17 07:09
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR In a prior column published some time ago, I outlined the sociologically necessary pre-requisite for the transition to a voluntary society: a full 10% minimum of the population dedicated to that ultra-libertarian goal, and nothing less. In short, at current estimated American population levels, roughly 33 million persons ready, willing, and able to...
Why Renters Are Screwed
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Paul Bonneau 2015-12-02 08:03
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR Every now and then my wife and I get the itch to go into property rental. For example, we look at real estate listings on the Oregon Coast. A duplex would be nice, because we could take one unit for ourselves, and rent the other out. The renter could help watch our place while we were not around, and we might even work out a deal for him to do lawn mowing...
SPECTRE: Not Scarier Than the Newspapers
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Kevin M. Patten 2015-12-17 07:43
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?
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James Clayton 2016-02-11 08:31
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
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Alex R. Knight III 2016-02-16 08:46
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...
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
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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
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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
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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...