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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."
The State Against Families
9.66667
Bob Wallace 2011-02-01 03:00
Column by Bob Wallace.   Exclusive to STR   It’s impossible to choose any exact point when the State started destroying families. I’d say it’s been more of a slippery slope than anything else, so you can’t choose any point and say, “This is where it started going downhill.”   But one watershed moment was in 1943, when Americans started...
The Republic Is a Fraud
8
Paul Bonneau 2011-02-01 03:00
Column by Paul Bonneau.   Exclusive to STR   Have you ever noticed how many people have bought into this notion that America is a republic? It’s amusing in a forum to use the word “democracy”; invariably, someone huffily states we have a Constitutional Republic, as if that statement closed the matter for good. How silly is that?   The Wikipedia article for the...
Why the Split Between Non-Violent and Violent Resistance?
5.5
Paul Bonneau 2011-01-31 03:00
Column by Paul Bonneau.   Exclusive to STR   Following a comment from the editor, it occurred to me to take a look at the split between those who advocate nonviolent resistance to tyranny, and those who would not thus limit themselves. Is it actually necessary for this split to exist?   I should first say, that anyone who has a favorite online source that addresses this issue,...
Where's the Beef?
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Michael Kleen 2011-01-28 03:00
Column by Michael Kleen.   Exclusive to STR   By all accounts, Taco Bell is a story of success. Since Glen Bell opened the first Taco Bell in Downey, California in 1962, the franchise has expanded to 6,446 restaurants with over 175,000 employees worldwide. In 2009, the company (which is currently owned by Yum! Brands) brought in $1.9 billion in revenue. It is no secret why this...
Ah, Sweet Mystery of...Taxation
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Paul Hein 2011-01-24 03:00
Column by Paul Hein.   Exclusive to STR   Does anyone really understand taxation? For that matter, does anyone really understand anything?   Well, of course, there are many people who understand--really know the truth about--many things. Still, it seems that, regarding taxes, there is a degree of ignorance that surpasses that of the general level of ignorance!   If, for...
Government Will Die
0
Alex R. Knight III 2011-01-24 03:00
Column by Alex R. Knight III   Exclusive to STR   But not by way of “Second Amendment remedies” or any such hyperbole. True, there may well (and probably will) be episodes of anti-government violence before we get to the zero-government endgame, but as my last piece here at STR pointed out, violence begets violence. And we know that government, by its very nature...
Trade Unions and Bad Economics
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Guest 2011-01-21 03:00
Column by Cristian Gherasim. We are all familiar with the power gained by trade unions in present-day Europe. Lately, it seems that they have also gained the privilege to turn to violence each time their demands aren't met. It's safe to say that a union's decision has become as important as a governmental decree.   Trade unions set wages, working time, retirement age, and social benefits;...
What You Can Do to Detoxify Political Debate
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Robert Kaercher 2011-01-20 03:00
Column by Robert Kaercher. Exclusive to STR Now, about that mass shooting at that Safeway in Tucson, Arizona….Wait, where are you going?   Yes, yes, I know that at this point you’ve probably read and heard about as much as you can stand anymore about all the political fallout that has followed that horrific tragedy. Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik decided to do some...
The Need For Plural Property
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Guest 2011-01-19 03:00
Column by Cristian Gherasim.   Exclusive to STR   The communist regime was quick to define property as something indestructibly linked to an abstract entity: the people. Everything belonged to the people, and people’s property came to explicitly deny the right to individual property. Belonging to everyone, communist property was in fact owned by no one.   After the fall of...
The Internet and Muhammad Bouazizi
9.83333
LaTulippe 2011-01-19 03:00
Column by Steven LaTulippe.   Exclusive to STR   Around the globe, a specter is haunting government. From Washington to Beijing, bureaucrats and apparatchiks are circling the Internet like lions at a wildebeest migration, desperately searching for ways to stop the Web’s relentless flow of information. Some want to “license” users or directly censor websites. Some...
Ode to the Average American Citizen
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tzo 2009-12-09 16:00
Exclusive to STR For the average American citizen (AAC), government is voluntary. The AAC believes that each and every speck of land on the Earth is subject to some national government. The AAC believes that every human being must be a citizen of some government. The AAC believes that the land area of the Earth that we label United States of America on our maps is subject to the federal, state,...
The Road to Freedom
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Lasse Birk Olesen 2006-10-19 23:00
Exclusive to STR October 20, 2006 F.A. Hayek warned us about the road to serfdom, but he was also sure of the road to freedom: convince the intellectuals about the virtues of freedom and capitalism, and the rest of the people will follow. Hayek's strategy continues to be very popular among libertarians, but unfortunately it works so slowly that it leaves only little hope of liberty in our...
The Control Imperative
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Jakub Bozydar W... 2009-11-09 03:00
  Exclusive to STR The most intriguing riddle of statism, and at the same time the most important intellectual challenge that faces every friend of liberty, can perhaps be summarized in the following question: Why has statism indisputably taken over the world, given that it is a position both immoral, based on unjustifiable violence, and economically...
Hired Killers Named ‘Texan of the Year’
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Roger Young 2010-01-05 03:00
Exclusive to STR   The wise, worldly editors of the Dallas Morning News have seen fit to name the “Heroes of Ft. Hood” as their Texan of the Year:   “For their dedication, service and so much more, we salute the heroes of FortHood as the 2009 Dallas Morning News Texan of the Year.”   The News has chosen to honor those who “hear the call” to kill...
How to Survive Obamacare
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Tamara Wilhite 2010-01-19 03:00
1. Get all necessary but schedulable treatment in before rationing kicks in. If you have needed a new hip or knee, rotator cuff injury or lazy eye treatment, have it done BEFORE the government can deny you the right to have the surgery. 2. Have all elective surgery and treatment done before the insurance mandates drive about 40% of doctors out of the profession. If you have been considering...
Love and Freedom in Avatar
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Glen Allport 2010-01-25 03:00
Exclusive to STR [Spoilers ahead] A month after its opening, “Avatar” has brought in more than $1.8 billion worldwide and is still packing theaters, which suggests that it may become the first film to pull in $2 billion or more.   There are many reasons “Avatar” is so popular – it is visually gorgeous and inventive, it tells a good story, and the film's casting...
Why Joe Stack Was So Angry
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Bill Butler 2010-04-05 02:00
Exclusive to STR   What if the United States Supreme Court tomorrow delivered this opinion regarding our present income tax system:   The injustice and harm which must always result from overthrowing a long and settled practice sanctioned by the decisions of this court could not be better illustrated than by the example which this case affords.  Under the income-tax laws which...
Obama Takes a Double Bitch Slap from Israel
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Robert L. Johnson 2010-05-10 02:00
Exclusive to STR   Bitch slap number one: U.S. Vice President Joe Biden is in Israel trying to restart the Palestinian/Israeli peace talks. While in Israel the Israeli government announces its plan to build 1,600 apartments for Jews in Palestinian East Jerusalem. This allegedly outrages Biden and the Obama administration. How can they appear to be working for peace in the Middle East when...
21st Century Paranoid Guy
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Bob Wallace 2010-05-10 02:00
Exclusive to STR   I once received an email which read, in part: "Charles Lindbergh was a traitor who tried to sell out his country to the Nazis just as many leftists today would sell us out to the Islamo-Fascists."   The letter was in response to my review of Philip Roth's libelous (and boring) novel, The Plot Against America, an odious attempt at an "alternate history...
Free Roman Polanski
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B.R. Merrick 2010-06-14 02:00
Exclusive to STR   “Rosemary’s Baby” is one of the greatest films of all time, a one-of-a-kind original. The director of this masterpiece, one Roman Polanski, raped a thirteen-year-old back in the ‘70s. Technically, he never admitted this, and the charge of rape was dropped during a plea bargain, the state’s cynical way of making its own version...
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
10
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...