Jim Davies's blog

The Meaning of War

I found the following in The Complete Libertarian Forum, Kindle location 24600. It's two centuries old. When will they ever learn? - never. Therefore, they (government) must be abolished.

A suggestion from Dr. Benjamin Rush (1745-1813), signer of the Declaration of Independence and pioneer psychiatrist.
Signs of War
In order more deeply to affect the minds of the citizens of the United States with the blessings of peace, by contrasting them with the evils of war, let the following inscriptions be painted upon the sign, which is placed over the door of the War Office.

1. An office for butchering the human species.
2. A widow and orphan making office.
3. A broken bone making office.
4. A wooden leg making office.
5. An office for creating public and private vices.
6. An office for creating a public debt.
7. An office for creating speculators, stock jobbers, and bankrupts.
8. An office for creating famine.
9. An office for creating pestilential diseases.
10. An office for creating poverty, and the destruction of liberty and national happiness.

In the lobby of this office let there be painted representations of all the common military instruments of death, also human skulls, broken bones, unburied and putrefying dead bodies, hospitals crowded with sick and wounded soldiers, villages on fire, mothers in besieged towns eating the flesh of their children, ships sinking in the ocean, rivers dyed with blood, and extensive plains without a tree or fence, or any other object, but the ruins of deserted farm houses.

Above this group of woeful figures, let the following words be inserted, in red characters to represent human blood: “National Glory.”

Where have all the gold bars gone


- long time passing?
The late Pete Seeger sang that (with slightly different lyrics) movingly, Communist though he was. But currently, the game played by the world's central banks is coming unglued like flower petals in a storm.
The German one has asked for its gold stock, stored "safely" in New York. It's not being shipped. Paul Rosenberg would like to know why not, and speculates on some answers. It may be that the game is even more deceptive than we supposed.
When will they ever learn?

No State Required. Ever.


- in any circumstances.
Thunderbolt drew my attention to a superbly reasoned article by Stefan Molyneux, titled "Disproving the State." Stefan shows that no matter what we may think about the "goodness of mankind" the existence of a state is always destructive.
I have my ideas about whether humans are intrinsically good or evil, or some mix of both, and probably you do too. It doesn't matter. The state is never a solution.
Somehow I'd missed it - first published in 2005 - but it's a must-read.

PBS Talks Nonsense About Talking Cars

You-all know I'm a peaceful, laid-back kind of guy; but just occasionally I get so riled up as to shout at the TV. Last evening on the News Hour was such an occasion. By and large the reporters are nice folk, but Gwen Ifil I dislike; Non amo te, Gwen Ifil, nec possum decere quare; hoc tantum posso dicere, non amo te. (See here.)
She ran a segment on talking cars, the latest squeak out of Detroit. Interesting, to a point, so long as it's an option. But her guest was a pro-government guy called Dan Neil, from the WSJ, and his implication is that government will do the choosing, not the owner. Take a read or a view, though do it sitting down. And best have no projectiles handy unless they're soft.
At the end Gwen asked him about those silly people who think there might be a privacy problem, what with government and all knowing everything there is to know about every car journey everyone ever takes. Ha, ha. Dan replied "Big Brother, more like Target and Wal-Mart and H&M. You know, when commercial interests have a good idea of where you are in your car, they can advertise to you, much like they do on the Internet. This is — the connected car and the connected Internet are going to have the same death of privacy issues."
No, they aren't, Dan, the issues aren't the same at all. There's all the difference in the world. The worst a company can do is to advertise to us (shock, horror) but there's no known limit to what government can do to us.

New Schiff Appeal Memo


The illegal-tax protestor Irwin Schiff has been in a government cage since 2005, and is not due out until 2017 - if he lives that long. He's 86 this month and is in failing health. Despite that, he's just produced yet another crackerjack legal brief to support his latest appeal.
It proves conclusively to anyone with an open mind that the income tax is being collected in gross and multiple violations of law. It can be read here - or, to set it in context, you can read a trial summary first, then click on the APPEAL button at its top-right and then on "2014 Appeal Memorandum" at the bottom.
In one sense it's all irrelevant, because government would be unacceptable even if it conscienciously observed all its own laws and limits on its power. But it does provide powerful proof that in this important field - the collection of nearly half its revenue (more, if one counts the state income taxes that rely on it) - no shred of such obedience can be seen. The story therefore supports any effort we make to show that limited government is impossible.
One of the Memo's key points is Schiff's tightly reasoned proof that the tax is a tax on property, not "income" (which is not and cannot be legally defined) and therefore must be apportioned, by State; yet it is not and never has been.
I predict the 9th Circuit will find a way to shut its eyes to the Memo, so it's up to us to spread the word as widely as possible so as to put the Feds under the pressure of public opinion. Possibly the kind of outrage that has followed the Snowden revelations will be repeated when 130 million i-tax payers realize they have been swindled as well an impoverished.

The Snowden Plea Bargain Offer

My Guardian post about this was well received yesterday.
The Guardian is left-of-center and has an excellent "Comment" forum, well patronized. I encourage other Root Strikers to join me there.

Police Cause Crash

Here's a half-minute video from the UK.
The fuzz set up a roadside speed trap and flag down a biker - who stops in time, despite the fog. The biker behind him nearly stops in time, but not quite. Graphic evidence that radar traps are the #1 road hazard.

Vance Calls Down a Curse

Lawrence Vance is my favorite Christian, and in his short blog today he out-does himself with a malediction against a whole bunch of low-lifes who have brought about half a million deaths in Iraq. It's a must-read, an elegant composition.

Acquit Ross Ulbricht

A recent STR Blog by Don Stacy, along with my Letter to a Young Juror, eventually worked on my slow brain to suggest that the freedom-loving community may soon have a big opportunity to turbocharge the process of eliminating government.
From Wired magazine I read that Ross “Ulbricht, who [prosecutors] say was Dread Pirate Roberts, the founder and operator of the online drug bazaar known as Silk Road who earned millions in commissions from the sale of drugs on the site, faces drug conspiracy and money laundering charges in the Southern District of New York. He also faces a more serious charge in Maryland of conspiring to have a former administrator of Silk Road murdered in exchange for $80,000. The deal was allegedly negotiated earlier this year between Dread Pirate Roberts and an undercover DEA agent.”
I have no idea about that bit concerning commissioning murder, except that it makes no sense at all if everything else alleged is true. Ross was apparently making tens of millions of dollars in Bitcoin, serving a large market of people wanting to buy and sell illegal drugs. Why jeopardize all that, by committing a real crime?
One explanation of that charge is to dissuade you and me from supporting him in any way; to undercut his popularity prior to trial. It's the kind of thing prosecutors do, to poison the jury pool. They may fabricate such an accusation out of nothing, knowing it will be dismissed – but by then the court will be in session, or about to begin. Support needs to raise a head of steam well before that day.
So for now, I will assume that the murder item is totally bogus. Even the price doesn't ring true; the alleged hit was not a prominent politician but a former “administrator.” $10K or $20K would suffice. That part of the story aside, then, IXQuick Free Ross Ulbricht to see the latest news and how one might help. Nothing else he allegedly did had a victim; he furnished an anonymous trade mart (eBay is a trade mart) on line, period.
Even if it's found he used illegal drugs, there is no victim. Even if it's found that he traded them, there is no victim. This is a victimless-crime case, and so is ripe for jury nullification. But in fact, he didn't even do those things, from what I've read; he just furnished a trade mart.
His will be a high-profile trial, and acquittal would bring huge gains for liberty:

  • the principle of jury nullification will become far more widely known
  • Ulbricht, and/or others, will be free to resume “Silk Road”-type business(es)
  • the value of anonymous, virtual money (Bitcoin) will become far more widely known

From the last of those, a heavy and possibly mortal blow may be struck against government monopoly money and the banks that promote it. From the second of them, the government's century-long “war on drugs” will head for collapse, along with much of the outrageous spying on financial affairs that it is designed to sanitize. From the first of them, a whole raft of laws prohibiting peaceful conduct may become unenforcible – with immense benefits for society.
In Chapter 4 of my Transition to Liberty I foresee that such laws will become unenforcible anyway during the last few years of the Government Era, as more than one-twelfth of the population from which jurors are chosen have graduated from the Freedom Academy; for it will not be feasible to empanel a jury without at least one member refusing to convict. But a successful campaign right now, to Free Ross Ulbricht, could bring forward that happy day.

Pay Everyone $100 an Hour!

The real nature of any Minimum Wage law is explained in this 1996 essay I wrote for the local paper. But currently, there's a screech going up from the Dems to raise the natonal minimum to $15.
That is cruel! How can Democrats, who care so much for the poor and downtrodden, propose a mere $15 an hour?
Why not $50?  In fact, why not $100 an hour?  Even lawyers fresh out of Law School and wet behind the ears get to earn $100 an hour, and lawyers command no more public esteem than pimps, politicians and used-car salesmen.
$100 an hour would, overnight, propel every janitor and Walmart worker into the Beemer class. So, why not exactly?
Hillary, I'm listening.

Syndicate content