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Friday, February 27

Guest Editor

Ken Kraska is the guest editor today.

WANTED: A new guest editor for Saturdays.  If you're interested, please email me.

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photo courtesy of Pai Shih

Original article "[With] very rare exceptions, there is no reason to believe that actors, directors, rock stars, and other such celebrities have any more insight into public policy than the average person on the street. ... [Although] Patricia Arquette might well be a good actress, it is unlikely that she has any special insight into the wage gap between men and women, or how best to deal with it."
Original article "We’re told that radar traps and so on exist not to extract dollars from our wallets but for 'safety.' If so, why do the cops squeal so loudly about Waze? After all, people slow down for the trap up ahead. Isn’t that the desired object? Obviously, not. The squealing erupts not because people are slowing down but because they slow down in time to avoid being hit with a fine for not slowing down. As they used to teach in journalism school: Follow the money. It is always about the money."
Original article "You know who else thought he was a sheepdog? George Zimmerman. How’d that work out? Sure, he was legally justified, but he ended up killing a guy who probably didn’t need killing, and has now had his life completely ruined. All because he was a 'sheepdog.' ”
Original article "For the most part, the portable computer is a dream machine for the few. The limitations come from what people actually do with computers, as opposed to what the marketers expect them to do. On the whole, people don’t want to lug a computer with them to the beach or on a train to while away hours they would rather spend reading the sports or business section of the newspaper. Somehow, the microcomputer industry has assumed that everyone would love to have a keyboard grafted on as an extension...
Original article The feds are seeking to contract for medical personnel at JFK airport to administer enemas and then dig through the resultant poo, looking for ingested dope.
Original article I find these polls to be of dubious reliability, given the failed Scottish independence referendum last year, but at least English succession from the mega-state is still being discussed.
Original article "The power to require permits is the power to prevent something from ever existing. This lovely movement would've never begun or spread if everyone who wanted to build a Little Free Library recognized a need to apply and pay for a permit. Instead they did good and asked permission never."
Original article "The many ways that corporations, special interests and political interests of all stripes exploit media and the Internet to perpetuate astro-turf [political movements] is ever-expanding. Surreptitious astro-turf methods are now more important to these interests than traditional lobbying of Congress." On this list most are funded by leftist billionaires.
Original article "Even though a DNA test proved Carnell Alexander is not the father of a child a woman claimed was his on a welfare benefits form, the state of Michigan [i.e., a judge] says he must pay $30,000 to settle the case – or go to prison." Go figure?
Original article "When speculating wildly about the source of these white freckles, we thought they could be evidence of cyrovolcanism or even icy geysers, but were confused how such an isolated, small world could be thermodynamically active enough to generate either of them."
David Holmes: A Capitalist's Eulogy
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B.R. Merrick 2011-03-04 03:00
Column by B.R. Merrick.  Exclusive to STR  I was informed of David’s demise on Wednesday morning, December 15, 2010, just a few days before the same holiday that began my correspondence with this fascinating individual two years prior. It was my desire to get as much information as I could about David Lowden Holmes so that I could honor him the way he deserves. Sadly,...
How the Constitution Enabled Socialism and Fascism in America
9.6
Scott Lazarowitz 2011-03-04 03:00
Column by Scott Lazarowitz. Exclusive to STR  Even though Barack Obama is still president, the conservatives are already suffering from Obama Derangement Syndrome, as they constantly label Obama a “socialist,” just as the left continue to label George W. Bush a “fascist.” This is strange, given that Bush is also a socialist and Obama is also a fascist. Go figure. But...
In Defense of Apathy
7.25
R. K. Blacksher 2011-03-03 03:00
Column by new Root Striker R.K. Blacksher.   Exclusive to STR   Apathy is one of the most commonly derided dispositions that an individual can possess. We are constantly inundated with pleas to “get involved” by friends, colleagues, teachers, politicians, and pundits. These pleas come from people of all political persuasions: liberals, conservatives, moderates, greens,...
More on Minarchism as Evil
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Per Bylund 2011-03-03 03:00
Column by Per Bylund. Exclusive to STR My previous two articles on minarchism versus anarchism [1, 2], and why minarchism is “evil,” have stirred up quite a debate online.[1] This was expected, since minarchists desperately want to see themselves as radical (whereas compared to anarchists they clearly are not) and anarchists almost as desperately seek alliances and ideological kindred...
The Producers and the Parasites
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Bob Wallace 2011-03-01 03:00
Column by Bob Wallace.   Exclusive to STR   I have expended several thousand brain cells – which now means I am pretty much out of them – trying to figure out who are the producers and who are the parasites.   Are firefighters parasites? They don’t produce anything, but they are necessary. Are the police necessary? They don’t produce anything...
The Purpose of the State is to Turn You Into a Machine
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Bob Wallace 2011-02-28 03:00
Column by Bob Wallace.  Exclusive to STR  A few months before I turned 12, I read H.G. Wells’ The Time Machine. I was never the same. Since at that age I was very susceptible to science-fiction, the novel had a profound effect on my 11-year-old sensibilities (you should have seen what Edgar Rice Burroughs’ A Fighting Man of Mars did to me – I read it at least...
Reflections on Public Sector Unions
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Alex Schroeder 2011-02-28 03:00
Column by Alex Schroeder.   Exclusive to STR   Let’s say you and your friends are bored one evening, looking for a way to pass the time. You see there is a high school basketball game in which the hometown favorites will be playing their county rivals. You decide to attend and show up along with your friends and much of the town. The game begins. The crowd quickly realizes that...
Rights Are Santa Claus Recommended
7.44444
Dabooda 2011-02-24 03:00
Column by new Root Striker Dabooda. I question the usefulness of the idea that people have natural, god-given, inalienable human rights.  It's been given a fair trial over the last several centuries, and it doesn't work. As philosophers have noted, "rights" are a moral concept, without existence outside the human mind.  In the context of a particular moral code, one may...
There's No Better Government Like No Government
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Guest 2011-02-24 03:00
Column by Cristian Gherasim.   Note: Cristian Gherasim plagiarized this column from here.   There is nothing the state can do, and which society needs done, that cannot be done far better by the market. Another point that is just as telling: No state empowered to do what is supposedly necessary will restrain itself to those things. It will expand as much as public opinion will...
Debt Madness
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Mark Davis 2011-02-22 03:00
Column by Mark Davis.  Exclusive to STR  Finalist #1 in the "Odious Debt" essay contest   It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning. ~ Henry Ford   Are you mad yet? Tired of all the odious bulldebt being dumped on your head out of...
Just a Bou Bou
8.5
Tim Hartnett 2014-12-09 07:51
Column by Tim Hartnett. Exclusive to STR How would you feel after almost burning a 19 month old baby’s face off? Can we cross heroic off the list of emotions? A Habersham County, Georgia SWAT team tossed a stun grenade into the playpen of sleeping toddler Bou Bou Phonesavanh at 3 A.M. on May 28th. The ordnance exploded inches from his face. So far the child’s medical expenses approach...
Don’t Trust the Childrenry With Guns
8.5
Shaquille Brisset 2014-12-10 08:33
Column by new Root Striker Shaquille Brisset. Exclusive to STR “You are incompetent. You are a tall, naive child, and you do not possess the wherewithal to be granted full autonomy. If not properly supervised, you may get hurt or hurt the other children. As loving guardians, we will be implementing a few measures to ensure your safety. From here on out, you are not to run with scissors,...
Obama's Prison Camp Economy
8.33333
Bill Butler 2009-12-21 16:00
Exclusive to STR Friends and clients who are just beginning to understand the truth that is Austrian economic theory are starting to ask me what I think the economy will look like over the next several years as the dollar inevitably declines. Whether the dollar lives and merely loses its status as the world's reserve currency or actually dies via an 'orderly' or sudden death, I think the result...
Half Full
8.33333
Jim Davies 2010-01-21 03:00
  Exclusive to STR   I've been re-reading a couple of excellent, recent articles on Strike The Root, each of which in its way predicts a gloomy future.   One is Glen Allport's "Year Ahead" and the other, Tzo's "Got Money?. Glen provides us as usual with a wealth of evidence to prove his point, piling one piece atop another until there can be no doubt of the message...
The Emperor's Clothes
8.33333
Paul Hein 2010-09-09 02:00
By Paul Hein.   Exclusive to STR   Having, by sheer good fortune, escaped any formal training in economics, I often feel like the little boy who observed that the emperor wasn’t wearing any clothes. “Shush,” I’m told. “You don’t know anything about it. It’s too complicated for you to understand.”   Well, maybe so. Despite that,...
Walks and Talks
8.33333
Paul Hein 2010-11-08 03:00
Column by Paul Hein.   Exclusive to STR   I enjoy taking the dog for a walk, although he probably enjoys it more. These Fall mornings the fresh air is bracing, and the chance to be alone with my thoughts is welcome.  I’ll even grudgingly admit that the exercise might be beneficial, although I’m not convinced of that. It’s meeting other walkers that pleases me most...
The Absurdity of Hating Walmart...and Not Government
8.33333
Alex R. Knight III 2011-06-09 23:00
Column by Alex R. Knight III   Exclusive to STR   It seems to invoke the ire of the dogmatic leftists to no end, the largest corporation on earth; this homegrown business, now global in scope, second in size only to the U.S. federal government. They inveigh against it as if this department store chain were the summary of all total malfeasance – a horrible capitalist-pig...
Caveat
8.33333
tzo 2011-07-18 23:00
Column by tzo.   Exclusive to STR   Any rational conversation on ethics must begin with the following caveat:   If you, as an individual human being, are interested in creating and maintaining a society based on justice, cooperation, freedom, and equal human rights, then there exists a set of objective, ethical rules that can be discovered. Let’s explore them.   But if...
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...
CISPA: Should We Care?
8.33333
Paul Bonneau 2012-06-06 23:00
Column by Paul Bonneau.   Exclusive to STR   Yet again the puppet masters have gotten all the puppets jumping about in a frenzy. It makes me wonder whether there is actually reason to get exercised about this bill.   Certainly, the notion that the U.S. government will protect the Internet from attacks is absurd, given that the source of all the most serious attacks (of which CISPA...
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...