Recent comments

  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 1 day 15 hours ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Interesting factiod, that the "Allies" burned more books than the Nazis. I didn't know that. Of course it's evil, to burn books. Extinguishing from the non-private domain expressions of belief, however bizzare and poisonous, is always evil. Bad ideas need countering by reason, not bombs. But just as there are degrees of evil among governments, there are degrees of evil among such acts of governments. The German Nazis were very evil, in that they denied the rights to life of certain classes of human being; notably Jews, Gypsies and Communists. Some or most of these, they consigned first to emigration, then to slave labor, then to death. About six million of them. The British and (later) American governments were also evil, in that they too denied the rights of all within their domains to own and operate their own lives. But although the US one confined some to concentration camps on the basis of race, they did not indulge in systematic extermination - so they were somewhat less evil then their German counterparts, during the decade 1935 to -45. The great evil of the "Allies" is that they waged needless war on the German people, more than half of whom were innocent even of electing the Nazis to power. They killed seven million  of them. They had also (by 1945) destroyed large parts of the German economy, in which ordinary survivors might have expected to live and regain some degree of normal life. The evil they did by burning Nazi books was less evil than all that mass murder. Blame them, by all means; government is intrinsically always evil, because in its nature it denies the universal right of self-ownership. But blame them more for burning humans than for burning books.
  • julyfrank's picture
    julyfrank 1 day 21 hours ago Page Paul Bonneau
    On the contrary, gun control in the US has been mind-bogglingly effective. In 100 years, the common man's travel speed improved from horseback to jet airplane. In the same timeperiod, the common personal defense weapon improved from a revolver to a revolver that won't go off if dropped.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 2 days 2 hours ago Web link KenK
    Michigan has been blessed, so far anyhow, in that the Supreme court here (stacked at the time with "conservative" justices) outlawed them but for very specific exceptions. The cops can set up perimeters and check cars and even look in trunks for a fugitive, or for an amber alert, but nothing like the trawling for violations that they do in other places. Of course I expect this happy state of affairs to change at some point. Sadly, feds can still do them.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 3 days 2 hours ago Web link KenK
    Hail Britannia in its great victory over donkey vids!
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 3 days 5 hours ago Page Paul Bonneau
    This, Paul, is one of your best. You've exposed the nemesis of the beast: the free exchange of information betwixt and amongst the hoi polloi. Read this: http://jim.com/killer.htm And this: https://jonrappoport.wordpress.com/2016/11/30/mainstream-news-is-humpty-... Anthony Wile outlined what you've described thusly: http://www.thedailybell.com/editorials/anthony-wile-defining-the-moment-... A fun time to be alive. You can bet that very quickly there will be moves of one kind or another to quell and/or quash and/or truncate the web. Trump will no doubt be among the loudest proponents. But the cat is out of the bag. There will be many and divergent cries to manage and steer. For your own good, of course. Sam
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 3 days 8 hours ago Page Paul Bonneau
    And now cryptocurrency is being co-opted, and the bureaucrats are learning to become more sophisticated about tracking and taxing it via the FBI and IRS.   The parasite must always learn to adapt to the host to stay alive.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 3 days 11 hours ago
    The Swamp of War
    Web link Westernerd
    From the Tomgram article: "...you don’t have to be either a genius or a general to draw a simple enough lesson from these last 15 years of American war, even if it’s not Trump’s lesson: don’t do it..." Individuals who write tripe such as this are the ones who believe that if "we" can just get a better class of people "in-office-to-rule-'us'" things will go much more smoothly. None, it appears, can come to really, really believe that war is the health of the state, and/or that insanity is the social norm. Precious few, it seems, can come to see that it is the state itself (or, more accurately, that group of psychopaths who claim to represent that mindless abstraction we've come to call "the state") that is the enemy. The enormity of the truth is incredible. Sam
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 3 days 23 hours ago
    The Swamp of War
    Web link Westernerd
    It isn't the general officers that are the cause of all these conflicts that USGov finds itself embroiled in; it's the hubris, idiocy, and criminal incompetence of the political appointees of the last four American presidents. Never been a big fan of Bacevich either, although I read his stuff sometimes.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 days 7 hours ago
    A Wake-up Call
    Blog entry Jim Davies
    For the good reasons stated in this ZGBlog, I asked Rob, STR's Editor, to cancel the membership of Bonneau and Knight. He has declined. There's quite an irony here. Rob owns the STR site, so is entitled to do with it as he pleases, including driving it off a cliff and contradicting his own Mission Statement. I deplore his decision, for STR has been a major asset to freedom, but support fully his right to control its future. As Hope said to Miss Daisy, "It's yaw chicken!" Paul and Alex, on the other hand, are no doubt celebrating his decision even as they maintain he has no rights, and therefore no right to make it. Those interested in authentic libertarian commentary - "Rational, Refreshing Reflections on What's Happening Now" - are welcome over at the Zero Government Blog. The current issue can always be reached via http://www.theanarchistalternative.info/zgb/ or via http://TinyURL.com/ZGBlog for short; you could place it among your bookmarks. Its "Recent" button leads to a full dated list of earlier offerings. Its "About" button has a reminder that all genuine market anarchists are welcome to submit articles for publication. It would be neat if a few regular contributors were to join me, and so provide more frequent reader refreshment. With that encouragement, and other resources like QuitGov, The Anarchist Alternative and above all TOLFA, we can contribute to human freedom. To the rest - choristers, clergy, ex-libertarians and psycho-babblers - farewell.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 days 8 hours ago
    A Wake-up Call
    Blog entry Jim Davies
    It's now been a week since you posted your peacemaker proposal, which I accepted at once; but there's no response from Alex. I conclude he is not interested in reconciliation. It might well have succeeded regarding the many harsh lies he wrote about me personally; those I'm ready to forgive as soon as he withdraws them, and so resume our former friendship. The clash of ideas, though, would have been much harder. Either humans have the right of self ownership or we don't; these are logical opposites and this one is vitally important, as explained in Warning! Poison!  There is no way to turn A into Non-A. Even so, it would have been right to try (though properly dressed, Sam, thank you) and you, Enoch, made a worthwhile attempt. Be happy.  
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 4 days 9 hours ago
    Fundamentals
    Page Paul Hein
    "...In a people adrift without a moral compass, basic things will sooner or later go awry..." How would one define a "moral compass"? Or, for that matter, "a people". Am I a people? Or are you? These, of course, appear to be superfluous questions. But here's one that is not: Is "without a moral compass" referring to anarchy as it is properly defined? Here I'll present Hasnas' definition and his observation: Anarchy refers to a society without a central political authority. But it is also used to refer to disorder or chaos. This constitutes a textbook example of Orwellian newspeak in which assigning the same name to two different concepts effectively narrows the range of thought. For if lack of government is identified with the lack of order, no one will ask whether lack of government actually results in a lack of order. And this uninquisitive mental attitude is absolutely essential to the case for the state. For if people were ever to seriously question whether government actions are really productive of order, popular support for government would almost instantly collapse. Now, Paul, I present this quandary without intention to be argumentative. This is my succinct outline of my entire philosophy and reason for engaging in discussion on STR: I believe I must be(come) free if I am to be instrumental in assisting you or anybody else to be(come) free. Especially members of my own rapidly growing family (51 folks, including my wife and me, all the kids, kids-in-law, grandkids-in-law, grandkids and great-grandkids). You used the term octogenarian. I'm well into that phase of life. I can't argue one way or another "...the fact that things are seriously wrong in America..." I don't have time. I've gotta deal with the things that might be wrong with ME and MINE. My freedom (and the liberty of those I love) will depend upon my (and their) ability to side-step and circumnavigate the beast at hand. My concern is the statism (or vestiges thereof) that may still be residing between my ears. Example: Am I still using language such as "our-leaders" or "our taskmasters"? Or "our money"? Because for me to be free, I need to divorce the "our" and the "we" words. The late Delmar England, whom I see as among the very best authors on anarchy (partly because he is one of the least acclaimed among "libertarians"), calls that "the psychology of oppression". I need to be free. Today. Here. Where I'm "at". Now. Sam
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 days 15 hours ago
    Fundamentals
    Page Paul Hein
    Another fine piece, Paul. I don't vote, otherwise I'd rate you 10 again.   Is "moral decline" the root? Maybe. It's a tricky question, though. If the average person is less moral now than in 1935, why? To a considerable extent one's morals reflect one's upringing, and the latter was arranged by government from 1840 onwards. But then, in the 1840s the ordinary voter chose to welcome government schooling, even though he must have known it was a scheme to force his neighbor to pay for his kids' education. A vicious circle?   I'm a bit foggy about the Spanish American War, but didn't the US do some invading then, of countries incapable of attacking us? - and in 1917 wasn't there an invasion of German occupied France, when there wasn't even a whisper of Prussians marching down Fifth Avenue? As for when you and I were lads, US intervention in WW-II was "unnecessary" even for the UK, let alone this one six time zones away from that guy with a moustache.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 4 days 23 hours ago
    Fundamentals
    Page Paul Hein
    '...Many similar questions to a variety of authorities have only confirmed that their “answers” are no answers at all....I’ve received no answers yet, and if I do, I fear they may be evasive and/or non-responsive....' I submit, Paul, that you are seeking information from the wrong source(s). I mean, why would a thief attempt to present logic to you as to why s/he stole your resources??? Of course, you would have a distinct advantage with free-market robbers and thieves on that undertaking -- they are not politicians. You wouldn't expect sagacity or reason from them in the first place. You'd quickly recognize you were wasting your time. But I can see how you'd be enjoying a spectacle of standing up, twisting around, scratching butts, sitting down, etc etc.; when attempting to elicit rational explanations from the political criminals who are the prime rustlers to the pulling off of the heist. Because they no doubt think your queries sincere, if not naive. "...The octogenarians among us--present writer included--can recall a vastly different America..." I should have recognized my first signal the day I received my notice of enslavement ("military draft notice") when I walked out of high school in the early 50's. However, after 12 years of having been indoctrinated with the ideology that central political power served socially useful purposes (and deserved my -- as well as your -- support), I sincerely believed this just might be a good opportunity to "serve". Fourteen months in a place called "Korea" solved that problem for me. You mentioned the names of two men in history, a Thomas Jefferson and a John Adams. I submit that the individuals we know as Clinton, Trump and/or Obama have suffered no more in the way of "moral decline" than did the former gentlemen. It's just that the malignancy we like to refer to as "government" has had 200+ years to metastasize. The Huns and the Khans of early history (our true "founding fathers" if you're a libertarian historian) came to see the absolute necessity of coining "money". You can see evidence of that in early writings. "...the role of money in society is of utmost importance..." If the conqueror failed to quickly control the money supply, he'd just as well have allowed his warriors to rape the women, slaughter all the men, women, and children (as did his predecessors), leaving their carcasses to rot in the desert sand. After that they could pillage the city, leave it in burning ruins. The Genghis Khans of history fully understood the nature of the conquered. They would soon refer to coinage (later fiat currency) as "our money". Insane. Sam
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 5 days 10 hours ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Oh, Sam, I don't expect you to agree with everything I say. How boring that would be. :-) Anyway, I know what you mean about not understanding your own points. Happens to me too. Also, I have a thick hide by now. Nice thing about getting old is that a lot of rain rolls off one's back, like a duck.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 1 week 10 hours ago Page Paul Bonneau
    "...This just shows how poorly I convey ideas at times..." As I just now commented to Paul, Mishochu; increasingly (in my dotage) that which I write does not stack up properly with my intentions. My diatribe ("belly-button thesis") was my way showing appreciation for your nice comment. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 1 week 10 hours ago Page Paul Bonneau
    "...I'm having trouble understanding the points here..." Sometimes I'll write something, read it a few days later, and have trouble understanding MY OWN points. So don't feel bad :-) . My singular point is simply that a dogmatic view ("reification", in this specific example) that I have does not make you "wrong" if you don't share the same view. That's the point. No reason to engage in personalities or rancor in a forum for discussing freedom and liberty. And then commit aggression by trying to have anyone with whom I disagree "banned" from the discussions. Over dogmatic trivialities. Duh!!! Was trying, in my own senile way, Paul, to compliment you -- not to denigrate you. But, increasingly, my points often fail to fall in line with what's goin' on inside my old cranium. Sam
  • mishochu's picture
    mishochu 1 week 18 hours ago Page Paul Bonneau
    This just shows how poorly I convey ideas at times. I meant to say that your comment could've been (and probably should've been) an article on its own. Particularly so that others who find STR and some form of freedom may know that their form does not have to be my form. I particularly like this excerpt: "But my believing this does not mean you should not continue to present us with good essays. Or that your reason and logic (which is genuine and valid) should be "banned". Or that you "...are not libertarian..." because you don't subscribe precisely to my dogma or my reality. Thankfully, I've not seen fit to produce articles and/or essays regarding the liberty I've acquired by reading Harry Brown, you, Jim Davies, Alex Knight, Mark Davis, et al. Because I would in my dotage probably fall into the syndrome of "...my way or the highway..." had I achieved prominence. That would be disastrous -- for me. And not very healthy for you either. You'll notice that I often provide lots of links in my comments -- none to anything I wrote. I'm grateful for that."
  • Brian Mast's picture
    Brian Mast 1 week 1 day ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    I am serious.
  • Brian Mast's picture
    Brian Mast 1 week 1 day ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    All right! I won without even running! Now I get to dismantle the Presidency!!!!! My CB radio handle used to be Nobody. I and serious.
  • Brian Mast's picture
    Brian Mast 1 week 1 day ago Web link KenK
    Perhaps we could get The American Hat Company to make hats for Bill and Hillary Clinton like they have for Donald Trump minus the gold and diamonds in the headband. They could make them out of whatever orange fabric prisons use or get the felt Arkansas hillbilly hats and die them orange.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 1 week 1 day ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Hmmm, I'm having trouble understanding the points here. Governments may not exist, only people may exist, but it's also true that people with bombs exist. Yes, I used the term "Russian government" rather than "those psychopaths who try to control what other people in a place normally designated Russia say and do"; but it was just shorthand, not that I think "Russian government" thinks and acts. Of course if one of those people have calculated they want to drop a bomb or start a war, then the war will happen. But having fewer nukes out there is still a good thing, if that end is attainable. And with the hair-trigger we are living with these days, it can also happen that simple mistakes might start a war. Philosophy cannot exist without people. It makes no sense to talk about freedom or anarchy with the missiles raining down. Of course one might say that whatever we peons think or say is not going to affect what people with bombs do in any case, and that point is certainly arguable. Yet it's also true that concepts have made their way into the world that have not originated in the ruling class - and even sometimes in the face of their opposition. This might just be another example of my lack of affinity for the doctrinaire. But mostly it is just an idea that occurred to me, so I threw it out there.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 1 week 1 day ago
    A Wake-up Call
    Blog entry Jim Davies
    I once saw it put forth that "leaders" (war-mongering psychopaths) should be forced under penalty of death to do their Reichskonkordat bare-ass naked. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 1 week 2 days ago Page Paul Bonneau
    "...It is rather freeing to accept that not everyone should see things the way I do..." You've heard my belly-button thesis on "individualism", Mishochu, but I'll repeat it: The world revolves around my belly-button, not yours. My world. Your world revolves around your belly-button -- whether you admit it or not. This gives me lots of freedom. I can know that you didn't get up this morning with plans to denigrate or chastise me for any reason. You're far more concerned with your worries and cares than to concern yourself with any philosophical differences you and I might have. Same here. It's not that I never think about you (I do -- along with many of my other cyber-friends here at STR), but I spend much more time thinking about me than I do thinking about you. The fact we're both here at this forum indicates we share similar views of the world and have no reason to be at loggerheads with each other. This is no arena to spar over dogma. Sam
  • mishochu's picture
    mishochu 1 week 2 days ago Page Paul Bonneau
    That could've been an article unto itself. It is rather freeing to accept that not everyone should see things the way I do.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 1 week 3 days ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Paul, many of us I'm sure recognize your nice little essay as tongue-in-cheek, so I'll refrain from taking jabs at the concept presented. Fun or serious jabs. On the other hand, I suspect you've covertly (intentionally) brought up certain libertarian/anarchist concepts that should without doubt find their way to the surface if forums like Strike-The-Root are to survive. Because the issues go back to the idea of one individual(s) proclaiming to have somehow acquired "jurisdiction" over other individuals ("the-people" -- often lamented with teary eyes). Without question a religious notion indeed. You referenced that phenomenon in your link. I believe this reality probably needs to be emblazoned foremost in the mind of the anarchist who truly wants to experience "...freedom in an unfree world...". I'll use Murray Rothbard's footnotes to "Anatomy of the State" to explain, as he quoted from Oppenheimer and Nock (footnotes 4, 5 & 6): [4] Franz Oppenheimer, The State (New York: Vanguard Press, 1926) pp. 24-27: "...There are two fundamentally opposed means whereby man, requiring sustenance, is impelled to obtain the necessary means for satisfying his desires. These are work and robbery, one's own labor and the forcible appropriation of the labor of others. . . . I propose in the following discussion to call one's own labor and the equivalent exchange of one's own labor for the labor of others, the "economic means" for the satisfaction of need while the unrequited appropriation of the labor of others will be called the "political means". . . . The State is an organization of the political means. No State, therefore, can come into being until the economic means has created a definite number of objects for the satisfaction of needs, which objects may be taken away or appropriated by warlike robbery. [5] Albert Jay Nock wrote vividly that "...the State claims and exercises the monopoly of crime. . . . It forbids private murder, but itself organizes murder on a colossal scale. It punishes private theft, but itself lays unscrupulous hands on anything it wants, whether the property of citizen or of alien. Nock, On Doing the Right Thing, and Other Essays (New York: Harper and Bros., 1929), p. 143; quoted in Jack Schwartzman, "Albert Jay Nock - A Superfluous Man," Faith and Freedom (December, 1953): 11. [6] Oppenheimer, The State, p. 15: "...What, then, is the State as a sociological concept? The State, completely in its genesis . . . is a social institution, forced by a victorious group of men on a defeated group, with the sole purpose of regulating the dominion of the victorious group of men on a defeated group, and securing itself against revolt from within and attacks from abroad. Teleologically, this dominion had no other purpose than the economic exploitation of the vanquished by the victors. I've had to resist temptation to become dogmatic after having read and digested the works of the late Delmar England -- an obscure and unknown anarchist writer who produced two pieces, (1) and (2), (that I know of -- the latter posthumously). Then he up and died without fanfare, or much in the way of "libertarian notoriety". England showed me the need to recognize that how I form my perceptions will determine how free I can become. I can't eliminate those that Oppenheimer describes as using robbery as their means for satisfying desires ("political means") -- which form the foundation for the existence of war and nuclear warheads. But I can practice methods to sidestep and circumnavigate them -- and their mode of thinking -- without being dogmatic in insisting that you or anybody else "should" do (or think, or write) exactly as I do (in order to "..remain a member of STR.."; l-rd have mercy!). For example, I've come to abstain use of the English language as you've used it above: "...Imagine that the American and Russian governments wanted a substantial reduction in the number of nuclear warheads, in order to reduce the possibility the whole planet could be wrecked. The problem is always, whether the other side can be trusted..." This is reification. Governments do not exist. People exist. Some of them, so I understand, exist within a large land mass that is called "Russia". Others in the place called "America". Many of them on both land masses fall under the category of that group of robbers who use the political means for the satisfaction of their desires. A Dr. Kevin Barrett referred to that specific group of individuals as "psychopaths". I think he (and Delmar England) was correct. I believe that, in order to free myself, I must cease thinking of land masses in which those groups of psychopaths reside as "countries" or "nations" that actually breathe, with hearts and souls and minds -- capable of logic and reason. They do not and they cannot. But my believing this does not mean you should not continue to present us with good essays. Or that your reason and logic (which is genuine and valid) should be "banned". Or that you "...are not libertarian..." because you don't subscribe precisely to my dogma or my reality. Thankfully, I've not seen fit to produce articles and/or essays regarding the liberty I've acquired by reading Harry Brown, you, Jim Davies, Alex Knight, Mark Davis, et al. Because I would in my dotage probably fall into the syndrome of "...my way or the highway..." had I achieved prominence. That would be disastrous -- for me. And not very healthy for you either. You'll notice that I often provide lots of links in my comments -- none to anything I wrote. I'm grateful for that. You've given us many good essays and comments, Paul. You've hung in when the going at STR was tough. Please keep it up. Sam
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 1 week 3 days ago
    A Wake-up Call
    Blog entry Jim Davies
    Good idea. I accept.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 1 week 4 days ago Web link KenK
    "Does Ms. Clinton's innocence or guilt figure into your calculation at all?"  Nope. ALL of the ex-POTUS' could be indicted given the USGov's "ham sandwich approach" to law enforcement. The fact that new American administrations do not prosecute or harrass the previous incumbents is moderen political tradition. I believe that it was brought about by a combination of PR considerations, (ie., wishing to appear magnanimous), and understanding that what goes around, comes around. Unless the incoming regime believes they'll never have to leave office (e.g. PRI party in Mexico), you don't harrass and jail election losers or ex-POTUS' cuz as long as we have these elections followed by a peaceful transfers of office, at some point they'll have to leave too. Bottom line: In a staged managed two-party system like the USGov, the tradition makes sense. Massive guilt makes no difference, something the Clinton Crime family was counting on. Jesse Jackson said this to express his doubts about Trump keeping to the tradition.
  • Enoch Root's picture
    Enoch Root 1 week 4 days ago
    A Wake-up Call
    Blog entry Jim Davies
    I had an epiphany today that might be a good thing for world "leaders" to remember. I heard that our President Elect was going to meet with the Dalai Lama soon, and I would like to suggest (probably to His Holiness rather than The Donald) that during their meeting, they ought to hold hands (both hands dammit, come on) and maintain eye contact throughout the entire conversation. Wouldn't it be fantastic if all the important things were decided that way? It is seriously doubtful that in that level of connection, anything but the truth could possibly be told. Try it sometime with someone you care for. Say what? Dude there is no fucking way either you or I is going to get away with a lie in that setting. Try that shit with Wolfy Shitzer or Anderson Pooper. Hands pulled back, eyes subverted. That is all that is needed to propagate liberty and test the intention of the aspirant. It's why we are here, to hold hands and lock eyes, just for a moment, and then carry on till we meet again. Or never part, and carry on. ER
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 1 week 5 days ago Web link KenK
    Of course! I always am.   But compared to that of rights, this topic while interesting is very minor.
  • mishochu's picture
    mishochu 1 week 6 days ago Web link KenK
    Phew, at last a comment "on-topic". I think these are interesting strategies. I would take it one further...house arrest. I want her jailed, but I don't want Americans to have to pay too much for it. Plus she must be ~70 yrs old. Mr. Schiff should've been sent home, I would extend her the courtesy not afforded to so many non-violent imprisoned people. I think an ankle bracelet, a short radius, and political [neutering] would suffice for me.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 1 week 6 days ago Web link KenK
    If BHO were to stymie the new Prez in this way, it would give the latter an endless opportunity to point out that HRC escaped only by that trick, and that all Dems are corrupt. I imagine that will deter such action. But Trump would win either way.   If BHO keeps his distance, I have a suggestion for Trump: do a deal with her. Have her plead guilty and sign a full confession, plus an undertaking never again to speak or donate in support of any candidate. Then let the prosecution proceed, and have her photographed in prison orange with cuffs and shackles, and see that she remains behind bars for at least a week. Then grant her a pardon.   Trump would emerge as big-hearted and non-vindictive, while she would be permanently neutered.   None of that would prevent State prosecutors going after her for murder, of course.
  • John deLaubenfels's picture
    John deLaubenfels 2 weeks 16 hours ago Web link KenK
    <i>One sure sign of a banana republic-style democracy is the way the new administrations jail or exile the bigshots from the previous administrations.</i>   Does Ms. Clinton's innocence or guilt figure into your calculation at all?  To my view, one sure sign of a banana republic is the way high officials are treated as above the law.  Hideous Hillary has taken advantage of this for years, and it appears very clear that there's plenty of evidence to find her guilty of multiple felonies.  Should she  be let off the hook just because her rival won the presidency?  That strikes me as absurd.
  • Douglas Herman's picture
    Douglas Herman 2 weeks 1 day ago Page Douglas Herman
    Jim - Your droll sense of humor brings a smile to my face. Here in the dreary West Coast today it's raining from northern California down here to LA.  "Global Warming not having then been invented?" Think I'll steal that quote and claim it as my own.  Riddle: Why are climate change and teenagers exactly alike? Because they're always changing and always unpredictable.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 2 weeks 1 day ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    "And correspondingly, a waste of time.   "And I'm quite done with it.   "Just parting food for thought.   "Be damned with you.   "Rest assured I'll be ignoring the promised 'great deal more to come' ... 'And with that, I'm done.'"   These five are not very consequential when compared to the big lie, but all of them are solemn resolves of Alexander Knight III as recorded in this very thread above, and all the first four have been reversed. He has continued to "waste" his time, is not at all "done with it", has by no means "parted" with the matter, and evidently mistrusts whatever deity to whom he uttered his imprecation to damn me.   He will not have to wait long for the first instalment of the "more to come", and we shall all see clearly whether or not is "assurance" to "ignore it" and be "done" is, or is not, worth a red cent.                
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 2 weeks 1 day ago
    Growing Up
    Page Mark Davis
    Paul, I apologize for not seeing this sooner. Parenting is certainly not easy, and instilling obedience using threats is a phenomenal time saver; and busy young parents must learn on the fly. Thus, I do see the monumental task of overcoming most, if not all, existing human cultural norms for parenting. But we seem to be heading in the right direction and I believe that society may soon be able to formally grasp the need for this fundamental change. The best way to teach good behavior is to demonstrate it by providing examples of how to face up to life, make good choices and take responsibility for that life and those choices. Making obedience the focus of childhood learning leads to what we have. Making responsibility the focus of childhood learning leads to what I believe is something better. This process will take some time, no doubt; but I hope for sooner rather than later.
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 2 weeks 1 day ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Well you certainly disagree with Rob's judgment, insist on railing against activities here incessantly, and there are plenty of other Voluntaryist forums, so what other conclusion might one draw?  I just think you're angry that anyone has the "temerity" to disagree with you, and call your cards.   Quarrel into an echo chamber all you want, call me wrong -- all meaningless gestures.  You can never provide any evidence for your position, and hence, the rest is just blowing off steam impotently.   Rest assured I'll be ignoring the promised "great deal more to come."  There's no benefit in it, or this discussion.  I'm doing you too big of a favor already by providing you with what little audience you have left.  And with that, I'm done.   Have fun.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 2 weeks 1 day ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Quite right, 1776 was a big fraud; like all known violent revolutions it was the only the replacement of one government by another. What I meant by a new world-view was that for the first time, I think, the crafters deliberately replaced a monarchy by a form of democracy; no big deal to anarchists, but quite a significant advance for the time.   Quite right too about the apparent dwindling of STR participants, though I don't know the visitor statistics. I wonder why, though, you should place any blame for that upon me? The last time I wrote an STRticle was in March 2014, two and a half years ago. At that point I quit, because the Editor declined to expel Paul Bonneau, after he had so outrageously denied the primary foundation of anarchist thought. Paul and I harmoniously agreed, you may possibly recall, that STR did not have room for us both. So, if I'm in any way to blame for the decline, it was not by my presence but by my absence. The true cause lies elsewhere.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 2 weeks 1 day ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    "a forum whose views he disagrees with"   Wrong, Alex, yet again. Exraordinary, how one writer can be so wrong, so often (as well as so personally offensive.) I have no disagreement at all with STR. Its stated purpose, and basis of belief, is admirable. My quarrel is only with writers like you and Paul, who explicitly deny that basis.
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 2 weeks 2 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Yes Sam, you "should" oppose me and Paul Bonneau (both a government plant and communist) -- because Jim Davies says you should.   And remember that part of Jim's continuing goal is to get us (Paul and myself) both expelled from a website from which he has already chosen to partially remove himself -- though of course not fully, like any normal person would do with respect to a forum whose views he disagrees with.  No, he's chosen to stay, determined to be a rather amusing circus-like irritant who is taken less and less seriously all the time -- but where he can continue to make a pathetic display of ego and perceived self-importance.  And as for his aforementioned stated goal of convincing STR's owner to engage in outright censorship, there's a common expression these days which fits most aptly:  "Good luck with that."  :-D   However, "...there is a great deal more to come," yet, evidently!  Might some of it eventually produce concrete evidence of "rights?"  One would hope so, with the abundant volume of bloviation already expelled, and so promised in the future.   However, I'll hold to the final sentence of my essay above, with respect to the ultimate disposition of that question.  :-D
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 2 weeks 2 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    The "crafting" that occurred in the sacred (Gregorian) "1776" appears to have amounted to a mere reinstatement or reshuffling of a more egregious and metastatic situation that had been in place to begin with. With large numbers of destroyed lives, injuries and deaths concomitant with the origins of states everywhere throughout history. "...please try to get used to it. It's not going away, and there is a great deal more to come..." There appear to be dwindling numbers of participants here. I strongly suspect that has to do with combative "teachings" that have been incoming, along with judgemental strikes emanating from your world view. But I'll try. Can't say I won't make that effort. To get used to it, I mean. I can't guarantee you won't be preaching to an increasingly empty choir presbytery. Sam
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 2 weeks 2 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    "I don't introduce world view(s)" - glad to read that. There are quite enough already. Glad, also, that you come close to defining a free thinker as one who questions prevailing ones. I agree.   Questions ideally get answers, and if a prevailing world view provides sound ones, it ought to go on prevailing. Would you go along with that? - that only when the answers are deficient is it appropriate to craft a new one. That famously happened hereabouts in 1776.   In our smaller society, Rand and Rothbard particularly, in the third quarter of the 1900s, prominently did so again. They had much in common, though not everything. Rothbard most elegantly nailed the newly-discovered axiom of the right of self-ownership, so that became the standard way to recognize libertarian, or anarcho-capitalist, philosophy. As noted above, the widely used NAP was derived from it.   Now, when someone like Bonneau or Knight flatly denies that fundemental axiom, I shall oppose them. So should you. If they do so from within a supposedly anarchist group like STR and pretend still to be anarchists, I shall oppose them the more vigorously and accuse them roundly of being  hypocritical, and shall call for their expulsion from that group. Please note that "vigorously" is not the same as "vicious" or "aggressive." If it is "didactic" - if I am attempting to teach something that is demonstrably true yet is being denied, and if for some reason you don't like that, please try to get used to it. It's not going away, and there is a great deal more to come.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 2 weeks 2 days ago Page Douglas Herman
    Well, that may not be too hard. The Far East was East because to reach it Westwards involved braving the storms of Cape Horn, whereas to go East meant only to round the Cape of Good Hope. Clearly, good hope beats horns any day - no dilemmas - and the North West Passage (it lies to your North East) was not yet open, due to Global Warming not having then been invented. As for the Panama Canal, the idea that some Damn Yankee should speak softly, carry a big stick and cause it to be dug was just the stuff of fairy tales. What was a Yankee, anyway?  
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 2 weeks 2 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    (to continue): 'Tell us more about what you mean by a "free thinker."' Didactic -- which is how you've been coming off of late, Jim. Which could explain how you've gotten yourself into such combative squabbles -- such as the "rights" thing generally, and specifically your hostility toward our friend, Mr. Bonneau. My closest "answer" (if it would improve my grade-point :-]) would be your multiple-choice (b) above. With the possible exception of the tail-end, "...to introduce an improved world view..." I don't introduce world view(s). However, if by that phrase you're referring to my sharing with you and others here and at other forums the way I see myself achieving liberty, then so-be-it. And, since the world revolves around my belly-button (my world), perhaps the phrase fits me closer than I'd care to admit. "...in virtually all of your many comments in this forum you tell us rather emphatically what you think a libertarian should be? - including this one?..." Beg to differ. Well, if you were to leave out the authoritarian "should", perhaps you're close. I have absolutely no "authority" to delineate who on this forum "...fits the title..." I see the word, libertarian, as describing an individual who believes in liberty. If you've stumbled across STR and stuck around to post essays and comments, you fit. You might still be in the inquisition stage, but stick around. You'll help me as much as I can help you. We'll both stand a good chance of learning. Hopefully, one of the vital lessons each of us might learn is how to stay out of vicious and aggressive written attacks. Sam
  • Douglas Herman's picture
    Douglas Herman 2 weeks 2 days ago Page Douglas Herman
      Jimbo -  Yes Indeedy! And WHY, pray tell, as we Brits would say, is the so-called "Far East" actually WEST?  I can look out over the Pacific Ocean and see Japan (on a map or Google Earth) and it sort of looks way west. Must be some kind of programming going on as you have surmised.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 2 weeks 2 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Ya know Jim -- I get the feeling that what you're looking for nowadays is "back-to-the-wall" sorts of argumentation. I'm such a marvelous debater that I'll keep your back to the wall. Thus, I win through (what I perceive to be) your loss. I ain't a-fallin'. That's a lose-lose mindset. As Mishochu has stated above: "...In any case, I think it's important to say that I do like and enjoy Jim Davies' work. I hope others follow it. I'd like to think I've already done so in my life..." I'll second Mishochu -- you've written good stuff that I maintain in my library of excellent web material for reference when attempting to put my thoughts to an issue or topic. I often reference articles you've written in my comments here and abroad. So none of us are denigrating you (or Bastiat, or Spooner, or von Mises, or Rothbard, or Rand, or Friedman, or Hayek, or Hazlitt, or Samuels or any of the many others). That's poppycock. "...In your view is being free just a feeling, or does the mind get involved?..." As I replied to Mark Davis' comment above regarding the concept that our common goal is the freeing of people's minds: "It occurs to me that the body will writhe in slavery until the mind becomes free". There are actions I can take today for my personal liberty -- one of which is to recognize that there are things over which I have absolutely no control. Yours or Mishochu's or Mark's opinions and/or attitudes would fall into that category -- to a certain degree. The fact that we're all here interchanging with each other (in respectful, civil web conversation) might imply that each of us has some effect upon the other. Hopefully for the better. My compooter's slowing down, so that will have to hold me for now. Sam
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 2 weeks 2 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    So, Sam, was all that intellectual stuff over which Bastiat, Spooner, von Mises, Rothbard, Rand, Friedman, Hayek, Hazlitt, Samuels and many others wrestled with just a waste of time? In your view is being free just a feeling, or does the mind get involved?   Tell us more about what you mean by a "free thinker." Is he (a) someone free to believe and advocate anything whatever, including the view that there is and ought to be a class of rulers in any society that governs the rest of it, or is he (b) someone whose mind breaks free of whatever may be the prevailing orthodoxy and uses reason to introduce an improved world view? Or is there perhaps a third meaning in your use of the phrase?   I notice you say you "don't know what a libertarian should be". Really? Wouldn't it be fair to say that in virtually all of your many comments in this forum you tell us rather emphatically what you think a libertarian should be? - including this one?   You mention the NAP, and as it happens that's the first proposition I met when first I met the LP back in 1980. It made a whole heap of sense to me, and delineated the LP from all other political parties without any fixed principle at all, and I gladly signed up. Much later on, I wondered about its source. Was it just plucked out of thin air, as a nice way for people to relate to each other, or did it have some kind of intellectual foundation? The answer is, of course, that it derives from the self-ownership axiom, the right to run ones' own life. The very subject of this exchange, and the very thing, if I read you right, that you intend to continue to do.  
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 2 weeks 2 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    re-posted as a reply. Sorry, again.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 2 weeks 2 days ago Page Douglas Herman
    It is, indeed, quite odd!  New Yorkers call Chicago the "North West", and there's even an airline named that way, which nonetheless flies North East among other directions. And Maine is often called "Down East", even though if one holds the map in the conventional way it's definitely "up". And did you, whilst dwelling in the City of Angels, refer to yourself as a "Midwesterner" while facing East?   Perhaps there's a conspiracy at work, to confuse us all.
  • mishochu's picture
    mishochu 2 weeks 2 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    In any case, I think it's important to say that I do like and enjoy Jim Davies' work. I hope others follow it. I'd like to think I've already done so in my life. I am, however, an impatient bugger and would prefer to experience corporeal freedoms (not just mental ones) while this corpus is still living, breathing and ambulatory.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 2 weeks 3 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Rather than join the foray I'll make a general comment. First, this essay was probably inappropriate. But "libertarians" can be the fightingest, scrappiestness, surlyist claimers of "freedom-for-all" types imaginable. So perhaps the essay is appropriate after all. The nature of liberty is freedom. Freedom implies that few of us are going to agree altogether in lock-step with some doctrinal idea of what a "libertarian" is, or must be. It's not in the cards. Not for free-thinkers, it isn't. So scrapping with each other and making the laughingly dumb accusations that so-and-so "...is not libertarian..." is beyond the pale. But, it's probably natural. Many of us feel like we've discovered an entirely new proposition, this "freedom" thing; since we've always been under the gun of psychopaths who make up "state". It's new stuff -- and I secretly want to be in charge. I want to go down in history as having "discovered" and "promulgated" freedom. Fair enough. Wanting a feeling of importance is normal as rain. Like the alcoholic who must give up managing and controlling if s/he ever wants to achieve sanity; the libertarian would do well (I think) to do the same. I don't know what "a libertarian" should be. There's talk around the forums about the idea that a libertarian must sign some agreement to abide by a rather nebulous "NAP" or s/he cannot be truly libertarian. Something about a contract of mutual consent, or some such. I've never "signed". I can be free. Here. Today. Where I'm "at". So can you. I think. Sam