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Thursday, May 25

Guest Editor

Robert Taylor is the guest editor today.

WANTED: New guest editors for Saturdays and Sundays.  If you're interested, please email me.

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photo courtesy of Trey Ratcliff
Original article Where would Communism and National Socialism be on the world stage if it weren’t for the Great War?
Original article Our inflationary economy is sending the prices of luxury goods soaring — while prices on products for regular people are often flat.  
Original article The roots of this disaster are in the presidency of George W. Bush: he and his neoconservative advisors launched a war that was supposed to transform the Middle East into a laboratory of “democracy” – exported by force of arms. The idea, as expressed by neoconservative ideologues, was to “drain the swamp” of the Middle East, so altering the environment in which the “mosquitoes” of terrorism lived and flourished that they would be unable to produce a...
Original article This country is becoming a total joke and it’s not merely because of Donald Trump. While he’s certainly becoming a key player in our national embarrassment, this country’s decent into a reckless Banana Republic has been a long time coming.  
Original article While the chattering classes spend all their time rehashing Donald Trump’s alleged — there’s a word you don’t much see in the media anymore — coordination with Russians over their alleged — there it is again — hacking of the Democrats’ email, a story with far more ominous implications is being ignored: Trump’s trip to Saudi Arabia and Israel.
Original article From Clinton to Bush, then Obama and now Trump, it’s as if we’ve been caught in a time loop, forced to re-live the same thing over and over again: the same assaults on our freedoms, the same disregard for the rule of law, the same subservience to the Deep State, and the same corrupt, self-serving government that exists only to amass power, enrich its shareholders and ensure its continued domination. The republic has fallen to fascism with a smile.
Original article The close U.S. association with Saudi Arabia has long been a stain on America’s honor. Trump and Tillerson have deepened that stain.  
Original article While Trump was acquiescing to Saudi cajolery, Iran was doing something the Saudis never have: holding a presidential election. And the message that emerged once the counting was done is clear: Iranians are ready for moderation, for openness, for their country’s relations with the West—locked in deep freeze since the Islamic Revolution in 1979—to at last begin to thaw.
Original article The explosive growth of occupational licensing is yet another example of how government regulation can benefit the few and the powerful. When government plays favorites, society as a whole suffers, with our most vulnerable citizens often bearing the burden. Freed of restraint that benefits the politically powerful, our markets best serve consumers by reducing prices, fostering innovation and creating new job opportunities.
Original article One can never tell exactly when a bubble will burst or which corner of the financial system will be the epicenter of the earthquake. But if and when these looming bubbles explode, the main culprit will be the irresponsible policies that were supposed to prevent future bubbles and that created the perfect storm of moral hazard, easy money, and cheap credit one again.    
Original article Like in Colorado, New York, and Vermont, California is learning that a single-payer plan would be prohibitively expensive.
Original article While it may have only been for a few moments, Offerman shows that even celebrities have at least one issue where their views are, often unknowingly, libertarian. And for this Parks and Recreation star, the government better keep their hands off his whiskey.  
THE Question
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Paul Hein 2016-02-10 09:14
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR The Missouri Department of Revenue, like most modern businesses, publishes a website, on which it provides answers to commonly asked questions, of which there are a great many. Typically, they deal with rather narrow, technical issues. For instance: How do I file a request for a refund for a decedent? Or: How do I claim gambling losses on my Missouri tax...
Feel the Bern!
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Mike Wasdin 2016-02-10 08:57
Column by Mike Wasdin. Exclusive to STR I have been watching the circus known as “Dumbocracy” for some time now. Although I do not buy tickets to the circus or participate in promoting it, I like watching the clowns, as they are always entertaining. I don't like the idea of voting for my masters. I have not participated in the futile exercise known as voting for a long time, not...
Judaism: Making a State Out of a Religion
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Robert L. Johnson 2016-01-27 08:20
Column by Robert L. Johnson. Exclusive to STR Judaism is the original Abrahamic “revealed”/hearsay religion. Christianity, Islam, Mormonism and Baha’i all have their roots in Judaism. The primary “holy” scripture/Word of God of Judaism is the Torah, which is the first five books of the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy....
Jackass Abiding
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Paul Hein 2016-01-20 09:48
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR If you were to ask people on the street, “Are you law-abiding?” the vast majority would say, some with evident pride and self-righteousness, “You bet I am!” A smaller percentage would say, after some hesitation, “Sure, I guess I am,” and a very few might grimace and say, “Only when I have to be!” Thank God for...
The Libertarian Position on Immigration
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Hogeye Bill 2015-12-29 09:22
Column by Hogeye Bill. Exclusive to STR When intelligent libertarians get an issue totally wrong and seem to endorse government aggression, it is worthwhile to examine their reasoning and look for error. Lew Rockwell’s piece endorsing State-controlled simulation of markets in immigration is a case in point. Although Lew Rockwell and others on his web zine (Bionic Mosquito, Hans Hermann...
Say It Isn't So!
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Paul Hein 2015-12-24 08:21
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR Three people in California are suing chocolate manufacturers, most notably Hershey, Mars, and Nestle. “Aha,” you cry. “The chocolate made them sick, and they had tremendous pain, suffering, and medical bills!” No, no, not at all. The three suffered no ill effects from the chocolate products. Their suit alleged false advertising....
Do You Suffer From Putinitis?
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Douglas Herman 2015-12-17 09:10
Column by Douglas Herman. Exclusive to STR Epidemic of National Erectile Dysfunction Strikes America! Experts Point to Putin as Culprit in Incurable Disease.   What Is Putinitis? Do you find yourself not only questioning authority, but pitying all those who do not? Do you drive down the freeway, feeling surrounded by sociopaths on cellphones, most of them madly tweeting and texting, while...
SPECTRE: Not Scarier Than the Newspapers
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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...
A Panarchist Take on Borders and Immigration
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Paul Bonneau 2015-12-09 09:24
Column by Paul Bonneau. Exclusive to STR Bionic Mosquito has written a thoughtful piece on the border/immigration issue. The money quote? “So what does culture have to do with maintaining a libertarian order? This, to me, is quite simple: the less conflict, the less chance that some self-proclaimed and self-pitying disadvantaged group will look to a savior to deliver them from their...
Why Renters Are Screwed
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Paul Bonneau 2015-12-02 09:03
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...
America’s Sacred Pudenda: They Hate Us for Our Junk!
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Lawrence M. Ludlow 2010-11-18 04:00
Column by Lawrence M. Ludlow.   Exclusive to STR   For too many Americans, history “began” on 9/11. Sadly, the same goes for their superficial sense of morality. It begins and ends with their pudenda – what they do with their sexual organs and what they allow others to do with them. Imbued with a Puritanism that has infested their collective psyche since the cold...
Hooray for the TSA! Recommended
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Paul Bonneau 2010-11-18 04:00
Column by Paul Bonneau.   Exclusive to STR   It’s just funny what a complete cluster-f*ck government can make of something if you simply let them have their way. I suppose that is normal with all parasitic organisms; they could live just fine if they knew when to stop their depredations--but they never do. They literally cannot avoid the self-destructive course.   The latest...
FDR Turned a Blind Eye to the Holocaust
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Robert L. Johnson 2010-11-19 04:00
Column by Robert Johnson. Exclusive to STR November 16, 2010 marked the 77th anniversary of Franklin D. Roosevelt and the United States government turning a blind eye towards the Holocaust of the Ukrainian people. On November 16, 1933, the United States formally recognized the Soviet Union for the first time with an official pact.   The pact was brought about not by Roosevelt negotiating...
Reflections on the Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear
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Michael Kleen 2010-11-19 04:00
Column by Michael Kleen. Exclusive to STR On a beautiful autumn day at the end of October, an estimated 210,000 people gathered in the National Mall to watch television for four hours. At least, that’s what it felt like from my position behind the sound stage in front of one of two giant flat screen TVs that flanked the main stage at the Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear. As the crowd...
TSA Should Offer Travelers Search Options
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Emiliano Antunez 2010-12-03 04:00
Column by Emiliano Antunez.  Exclusive to STR If you boarded a plane over the holiday weekend, I am sure you weren’t very comfortable exposing your “privates” on a screen or having a “highly trained” TSA employee feel your “junk.” The TSA should explore giving flyers options in order to make these invasive procedures more bearable or constructive....
Laughing Terrorists
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Paul Hein 2010-12-15 04:00
Column by Paul Hein.   Exclusive to STR   Do terrorists have a sense of humor? If not, perhaps that’s what makes them so terrible. But if they do, how they must be laughing!   Their use of box-cutters on 9/11 resulted in heightened security for anything sharp--even such things as nail clippers and nail files. Not surprising, of course, although slightly ridiculous. It did...
Between Monsters and Gods
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Bob Wallace 2010-12-17 04:00
Column by Bob Wallace.   Exclusive to STR   "Mankind is poised midway between the gods and the beasts," wrote Plotinus. A similar theme runs through most of the older mythologies: Did we come from the beasts or from the gods? Are we merely more evolved animals or fallen angels?   The answer, refined through millennia, is this: We're part beast, but far better...
A Conversation With Vox Day
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Michael Kleen 2010-12-20 04:00
By Michael Kleen. Exclusive to STR Vox Day is a Christian libertarian opinion columnist and author of "The Return of the Great Depression." He is a member of the SFWA, Mensa and IGDA, and has been down with Madden since 1992. Visit his blog, Vox Popoli, for daily commentary and spirited discussions open to all. His commentary has appeared on World Net Daily since 2001, and an archive of...
Sneering as a Tactic: The Campaign Against WikiLeaks Recommended
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Glen Allport 2010-12-21 04:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR - 1 -   Be very cautious when hearing any argument against someone that relies on a sneering tone. To put it bluntly, decent people don't use such tactics.   On the web are blog posts and columns that attempt to link Julian Assange and his WikiLeaks organization to Israel, or to the Rothschilds, or to the CIA. WikiLeaks, these pieces insist, is a...
The Welfare Binge: Lessons from Europe
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Guest 2010-12-22 04:00
Column by Cristian Gherasim. Exclusive to STR It is often said that keeping a strong European welfare system is mandatory for retaining stability and social cohesion. Is there any backing to this statement? The Gini coefficient, the one measuring income dispersion, jumped in the US from 32% in 1980 to 40% in 2000. The same goes for the UK, where inequality has risen from 29% in 1980 to 34% in...
Do We Need a Vaccine for Hubris? MUST READ
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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
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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
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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
9.625
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
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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
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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
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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
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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
9.25
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
9.5
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...