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  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 2 weeks 5 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 5 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 5 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
  • Douglas Herman's picture
    Douglas Herman 2 weeks 5 days ago Page Douglas Herman
    Jim, You are so right that sometimes I wonder about myself. Not northern England at all, but simply north of London. But then, while living in southern California years ago, as a transplanted Mid Westerner, I found it curious that local Los Angelenos called Anywhere north of Santa Barbara or Monterey, "Northern" California. To me, the northern part of that state started hundreds of miles north, or at least north of San Francisco Bay, in Marin County.     
  • Douglas Herman's picture
    Douglas Herman 2 weeks 5 days ago Page Douglas Herman
    Thank you Alex. Loved hearing about your treasure hunts. I found the smokers bow, or captains chair as we Americans often call it, at a thrift store years ago. The trio of others surprised me, an amateur sleuth, as to the Who and Why and How. I'm probably the old veteran in the chairs now but I try not to spill my beer.   
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 2 weeks 5 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    You seem to have a great many ideas about what others "need" to do in order to fulfill your particular vision of perfection.  How very libertarian.   The only thing I've explicitly rejected here is the notion that you possess the keys to the kingdom, and that any and all disagreement with you is both heresy and apostasy.   Hypocrisy?  That's you projecting onto others.  In fact, I wouldn't even make vague reference to that word, were I you.  It leaves you wide open.  
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 2 weeks 5 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Mishocu needs a great deal less correction than you do, Alex. Yes, he needs to focus his mind on the rational basis for libertarianism and then make a decision about whether or not to accept it;  but he is at present honest enough to admit that he is not one. You, on the other hand, even while explicitly rejecting the most central feature of libertarian theory, have miserably failed to acknowledge that you have reneged on your previous commitment and become a turncoat. That's despicable hypocrisy.
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 2 weeks 6 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Well evidently, mishochu, you "needed" to be "corrected" too.  After all, anyone who disagrees with Jim Davies does, of course, and anyone who disagrees with that...well, they're just "irrational" and everyone needs to be "protected" from them.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 2 weeks 6 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    The "correction" pointed out an error concerning the very heart of libertarianism, so I'm certainly glad to have had the opportunity to do so.   Naturally, as a non-libertarian you might not realize how important it is. I again suggest getting down to some seious homework, mishochu.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 2 weeks 6 days ago Web link Westernerd
    From a state that started as a secular republic, the U.S. gov has morphed into an elected-tyrant form of democracy, a variant of old fashioned mob rule. Lefts and rights are fine with fascism as long as it's THEIR preferred fascist tyrant at the top running it.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 2 weeks 6 days ago Web link Westernerd
    "Faith" is indeed the correct word. Government is faith-based (backed by firearms). Once a critical number of folks (perhaps recent Trump and former Ron Paul voters for starters) come to grasp that, popular support organized religion and for government will collapse. The ideal of "Separation-of-Church-and-State" is/was a pipe dream. They are inseparable, because both are mindless abstractions engendered in the brains of "the governed". They are two incestuously-entwined ideals. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 2 weeks 6 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Mishochu, I'm glad to have been alcoholic, however you wish to define chronic drunkenness (as long as we're ragging over definitions). Many alcoholics refuse to accept the nature of their condition, and carry it into insanity and death. In order to be restored to a modicum of sanity it became necessary for me to grasp and internalize the reality that I cannot change you, or any other human being -- only myself. The harder I try, the deeper s/he will likely entrench herself into what I perceive to be her error. And the deeper will become my frustration (and my need for another drink to "...lighten myself up..."). I always enjoy your sagacious comments. Sam
  • mishochu's picture
    mishochu 2 weeks 6 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Ha, he couldn't even refrain from "correcting" the guy who suggested lightening up.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 6 hours ago Page Douglas Herman
    Nice tale, Doug. Small correction: High Wycombe is not in "Northern England." It's in the "home counties" - those close to London - about 30 miles NW of the city center. Or centre.   The chair may have been bought first in Yorkshire, but if so would have had quite a trip, for that county is indeed in the North of the country.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 6 hours ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Glad you jumped in, Mark, with a little humor too as Sam remarked.   Unfortunately I think you're mistaken about the angels/pinhead model. This dispute goes to the very heart of what a libertarian is, of the world-view itself. I will be showing how and why in my ZGBlog next week.   You're right though about it being a pity the disagreement has descended to personal epithets. For my part I've tried to minimize them, but observe that Alex has thrown them around like confetti. You may care to read the exchange again and count the number of ad-hominem insults and let us know the score. Today I see that Alex's latest is that he wishes damnation upon me.   I certainly wish damnation on his poisonous ideas, but have no such personal animosity. He is, or was until recently, a  very genial fellow.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 3 weeks 15 hours ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    "...Lighten up guys, life is too short..." Indeed. Leave it to you, Mark, to inject logic, wisdom and a touch of humor into an unnecessary and alarming squabble between "libertarians". You and I have seen more than a few forum disputes over this and claptrap such as "do parents own their children?" or "does a man own his wife -- and she her husband?" etc etc. I like your 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. I've said for decades that the human family is the only legitimate governing unit. All other claims to "jurisdiction" are from coercive interlopers backed by loaded guns. Knowing you over the web as I have, I'd conclude that you and Mrs. Davis have been superb parents. And, presuming some or all of your children to have reached adulthood, they also are or will be outstanding parents. Sam
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 3 weeks 22 hours ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    This is a classic "How many angels can dance on the head of pin?" type debate that turns off many would-be libertarians. Believing in the concrete nature of rights vs. understanding that rights are but a conceptual label matters little as long as we agree on how valuable this tool can be in building a free society. Either method of conveying the idea of rights can appeal to people with different understandings and belief systems such that which is right or wrong becomes of dubious value to the common goal of freeing people’s minds. I'm profoundly disappointed in how personal this spat has become. Lighten up guys, life is too short.   By the way, I do not own my body – my wife does. I conveyed title via a marriage contract about 30 years ago and couldn’t be happier as a love slave. Of course, I still do pretty much whatever I want as long as it doesn’t hurt her. So there is a bit of a grey area there between control, power and influence in the matter that we must all reconcile in our minds in order to make sense of the world.
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 3 weeks 1 day ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    For all of your "rational" hyperbole about "liberty," you love your role as policeman, don't you?  From stabbing vigorous accusatory fingers at statements made in mere passing, to actually viewing yourself as a "protector" of what others might happen to read, see, or hear.   You are not only an absolute hypocrite, but a very sick person with an utterly warped mentality and sense of self-importance, as well.   Be damned with you.
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 3 weeks 1 day ago Page Douglas Herman
    Doug:  My late mother -- who just passed in April of this year -- was a lifelong antiques dealer, and would've related instantly to this piece.  Many were the times both of us, or just she alone, rummaged through "trash" left by the roadside that was in actuality valuable history.  Reflect for a moment, sadly, on how much of this stuff is never rescued, and ends up being destroyed forever in dump fires and landfills.   Beyond that, finish this novel!  Jen's ability reminds me of Stephen King's The Dead Zone.  Great stuff!  :-) 
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 1 day ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    So as I suspected but did not say, "I'm quite done with it" which you wrote here only yesterday, was a terminological inexactitude.   No emotion involved on my part, Alex. Just a cool resolve to try to protect any and all who will read and reflect, from the poison you are spreading. There are some good people on STR, but some may need help to recognize it. If that inconveniences you, splendid.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 1 day ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    (Re-posted as a reply. Sorry.)
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 3 weeks 1 day ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    I'm not really interested in your emotional reactions, any more than I am in your feeble attempts to defend the indefensible. Except perhaps as a sideshow -- but even that's getting tired.  And I have far better and more productive things to do with my time.   The only thing remaining which may or may not interest you is that there are any number of frequenters and habitues of this site who are earnestly wondering -- given your stated positions -- why you continue to stick around here.  They may not have made this explicitly known to you, for whatever reasons (perhaps they felt it wasn't worth their own time), but I assure you that -- unlike "rights" -- they exist, and in numbers that might be quite surprising to you, at that.   Just parting food for thought.  If reality still has any place in your echo-chamber world whatsoever.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 1 day ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    I am by no means "done with it." The nonsense you have embraced during the last year or two is pure poison to the cause of human liberty, and I shall denounce it at every opportunity. I've been at pains to suggest you are not the prime culprit but have been misled; now, I'm not so sure.   The nasty ad-hominem remarks with which you have peppered all your entries in this thread I will not dignify by rebutting - but will note that they are there; four, I see, in your most recent post alone. The poison appears to have affected your character as well as your mind. You used to be an agreeable, friendly and courteous companion. Not any longer.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 1 day ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    I asked that you "review [what I'd explained] and tell me explicitly of any flaw you find in the reasoning above. If none, I hope you will join us" but I notice you didn't do that. No matter, of course, there's no obligation. But please excuse me from responding further until you do.   I should however have added that if and when you are interested to consider becoming a libertarian, please make use of The On Line Freedom Academy. It begins with a useful Entrance Questionnaire so you can estimate how much work you'll face, and continues with a short account of the Benefits of so doing. Hence, you can get a quick idea of costs & benefits. Then comes a key page, How to Get the Best out of the Academy. Don't hurry over that one. It emphasizes the value of taking time to study well, as much as may be needed.
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 3 weeks 1 day ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    It is only a "reality" inside the walls of your own thick skull, and no place besides.   Even were it so, however -- if you could actually "own" what you already are -- it would make precisely zero difference with respect to "rights":  Those are determined by the constraints placed on us by others, and shift perpetually from culture, time, and place.  That's not ideology.  It's reality.  And you seem to be utterly determined to not understand the difference. So be it.   I might also make mention here of the nature of "ownership."  Unlike "rights," we can, most often, find an objective basis for that, though in practice we usually don't.  We operate under a kind of unspoken assumption that someone's claim to property is legitimate -- even though were we to research such down to the last detail, we might find otherwise.  But we typically don't.  Not only because it's entirely impractical in the course of day to day business, but because we implicitly understand that the alternative is perpetual war, bloodshed, and chaos.  Thus we opt for the easier road, in the name of expediency.  Even things like sales receipts, deeds, etc. only get us so far.  At some point, in the vast majority of cases, we find ourselves operating on "good faith."   In short, it's one thing to claim ownership of something.  It's another to prove it unquestionably.  The self, again, presents a special case:  We don't own ourselves, and nor does anyone else.  We are ourselves.  Ownership applies to objects, and arguably animals, perhaps.  But not and never people.  Except in your universe, where opinions become solid absolutes, without a single shred of hard evidence, and in total denial of the way society operates, on top of all else.   Lastly, my question about "anarchist libertarians" was obviously a rhetorical one -- but in typical pedagogical fashion, you answered it still -- and quite condescendingly.  No surprise there.  As is typical, you delight in treating everyone you speak to as if they were a child; it feeds your god-complex.     And I'm quite done with it.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 2 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    It may amuse you, Alex, to "feel" that persons are not owned (by themselves or someone else) but that is the reality. Either you have the right to make your own decisions, or you don't. It's binary, and no amount of ridicule on your part will alter that fact. When last replying I posed you a question: "since you evidently deny [that you have the right of self ownership], you would tell us who is, now, your owner and how he or she acquired title". You did not answer it. That failure is reprehensible.   Having so failed, you've no business expecting replies from me to yours, but I'll attempt one even so, in the interests of courtesy. You ask whether or not all libertarians are anarchist.   Logically, yes; the underlying axiom of both descriptors is the self-ownership right. If a person denies that, he is neither. However I'm reluctant to discourage someone who may have recently encountered libertarians and has got as far as accepting the "NAP" - he agrees it's a good idea not to aggress, and so (say) joins the LP, but hasn't had time to figure out whence the NAP derives.        
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 3 weeks 2 days ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    Kind of like 9/11.  Actually, no:  Just like.
  • mishochu's picture
    mishochu 3 weeks 2 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    I am not a libertarian because they don't go far enough. That doesn't mean I lack their tendencies. Stating the "doctrine of individual rights" is religious does not also mean that believing in the state is not religious (the two beliefs can coexist, as it does in the present day). Some group may not have the "right" to rule over others, presently, they have the ability. Just because you prove your own agency or formulate your own thought doesn't mean the state won't accept simply the fruit of your labor. The thugs will just say, "We didn't get his mind. Very well, we'll get his children's mind on the next go round, and get him to pay for it." You seem to have this "with us or against us" mentality. I hope you do win believers, lots of them, the more the merrier. I wish more people would believe like you do. It is from that level of understanding that I may convince them to go further, beyond just believing...to being. You intend to proselytize. I intend to evade. In the end, I hope your converts do what's in their best interest.
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 3 weeks 2 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    For someone who ostensibly places a premium on rationality, you continue to fail miserably in that regard.   "Anarchist libertarians?"  Are there any other kind?   And I also think it's amusing how you feel we must either "own" ourselves...or then someone else must.  It's evidently beyond your powers of comprehension -- such as they are -- to consider that life and existence merely are.  They contain no inherent precepts.     Until someone craving intellectual recognition comes along, that is; someone both incredibly narcissistic and incapable of handling the idea that human existence doesn't just neatly fit into pre-ordained slots in some imaginary glass carousel he has constructed in his own inflated mind.  Someone whose crude outlook consists only of "owners" and "owned."   But keep going:  You've made yourself into even more of a laughing stock here than you know.  It's fun to watch you sink even deeper into the chasm you've constructed.  
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 2 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Very illuminating, mishochu. You admit then that you are "not a libertarian per se" and that solves a major puzzle for me; I had assumed that anyone who takes the time to write comments in the STR forum was a professing libertarian. So at least you are consistent; you reject the doctrine of individual rights, and you make no claim to be a libertarian. The two go together; those two things are true of the vast majority of the population, alas.  So you're no hypocrite, unlike some. Good.   You're also correct in saying that a religion may have a reasoned component, but not "evidence". That's my understanding too, though I'd put it slightly differently and wonder if you might agree: religions begin with a premise that is by no means impossible to rebut (eg, that a God exists) and then may build a doctrinal superstructure on top of that premise in quite a well-reasoned manner. That's certainly true of Christianity.   Incidentally it's for that reason that governments are a kind of religion; the premise is that some group has the right (and/or need) to rule others. If that premise were sound, the rest may follow quite reasonably. But it's not.   In contrast, the premise underlying anarchism is absolutely sound, for it cannot be refuted. That's where at present you and I disagree, for you say "There isn't much *evidence* suggesting that the right [of self-ownership] exists." Any premise ("evidence") is irrefutable and so becomes an axiom if, while attempting its rebuttal explicitly, it becomes necessary to assume it implicitly; and such is the case here. In the very act of trying to prove I have no self-ownership right, I would have to express thoughts and opinions and reasoning that were my own, the product of my own mind. But, oops! it's not my own mind, and therefore the task is impossible. I'd have to assume the premise is correct, in order to try to prove it incorrect. Additionally as already mentioned, the impossible question remains: if I don't own myself, who does and how did he acquire title? - for if nobody has the right to own himself, he clearly is unqualified to take any kind of decision, or execute any kind of contract or even decree, that would make him the owner of someone else.   That is the axiom ("evidence") beneath the right of self ownership, and so is the principle distinguishing libertarians from all others. Please review it and tell me explicitly of any flaw you find in the reasoning above. If none, I hope you will join us.
  • mishochu's picture
    mishochu 3 weeks 3 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Should I continue? It is a little fun triggering you, I'll admit. First, a religious belief can be based on reason[ing], but not evidence. I don't think there's a genuinely honest apologetic who claims evidence for their faith. I actually would rather the vast number of people in the world *believed* their fellow man had first the right to own his own body, and all the rights one could conclude from there (like how one may defend it, what compensation is acceptable for that body's labor, with whom that body may or may not associate, what substances could be put into that body, etc.). Alas, like you said, the reality "in which we presently exist" suggests that these people do not believe that his neighbor owns his whole body. There isn't much *evidence* suggesting that the right exists. That's what makes it religious. Would I rather have faith in rights? Yes, but I'll be *honest* with myself that it is my faith (and apparently not anyone else's). I'm not a libertarian per se, the closest label I have come across to which I want to attach myself is crypto-anarchist (the capitalistic nature of which should be implied). The reason is, though I believe in my right to own my own body, that body (and its activities) must remain hidden in order to be as free as possible. Perhaps when popular *opinion* regards self-ownership as absolute I'll come out of the woodwork but I'll teach my progeny how to remain hidden (even in plain sight) if needs be.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 3 weeks 3 days ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    Totally dishonest crap from the French state. Every one of the ring leaqders of the Bataclan Massacre were known to the police and intelligence services and yet they still were able to do what they did.  
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 3 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Thank you, Alex, for spotting my error. You're quite right; I used the wrong phrase. The fact "that individuals do have the inherent, inalienable, sovereign right to own and operate their own lives" is not a view, an opinion among several, but an objective fact that is undeniable. Mea culpa; I have in this very exchange made that point several times so I was foolish in that one instance to call it a mere perception.   Those who deny it, however, are clearly not anarchist libertarians and are not rational in this respect. Alex, apparently you do now deny it. That saddens me a great deal. I posed the question to mishochu, and await his response. Perhaps meanwhile since you evidently deny it, you would tell us who is, now, your owner and how he or she acquired title.
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 3 weeks 3 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Notice, misochu, how in order to rescue his position from the inevitable jaws of reason, Davies claims a "right" to life -- rather than simply accepting life as something that merely is, and no more.  He cannot conceive of life as just being.  No, it can only be defined within his terms, as something up for grabs, something requiring ownership:  You either assert forcefully your "right" to it...or someone will snatch it away from you at the nearest available opportunity.  That really says more about him personally than it does about the nature of reality.  Things must be within his control.  Otherwise, of course, none of it is "rational." And we just can't have that, can we?   Note also that even as he presumes to speak for an entire category of people -- "Anarchist libertarians hold the opposite view" -- he still openly admits that it is indeed just a view.  An opinion.  Nothing more.   His entire "argument," as it were, amounts to little more than a plea for everyone to agree with him.  A plea for recognition of an opinion.  And a pathetic one at that. One which can supply zero evidence.  In short, a ridiculous flexing of the ego.   And correspondingly, a waste of time.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 4 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Thank you. I still have some trouble understanding its relevance to Alex's blog. Whom do you have in mind, who might be engaging in non-thiestic religious activity? Are there Buddhists nearby?   So I'll go out on a limb, and take a guess - based on your two first words, "Great stuff", apparently referring to that blog. I'm guessing that you regard a belief in rights as a religious belief. Yes?   If so, you could hardly be more wrong - if we can agree that a religious belief is one based not on reason but on faith; a widely accepted definition. Alex' position is that rights don't exist because none can be "seen on the street" and because they are abstract "concepts", while mine is that every person does have the right to live and to own his or her own life, as an attribute as real as a wide variety of other concepts such as conscience, love, goodness, justice, right, wrong, mathematics, philosophy, economics, language musical and writing abilities, and imagination; all of which are mere concepts but all of which are entirely real and demonstrable by rational observation of their results and all of which were mentioned in the ZGBlog which Alex attempted to discredit. No naked faith at all is needed, to acknowledge the reality of any of them; and the same is true of rights.   True ones, as I noted, all derive from the basic self ownership right (and we're not discussing government "permission slips" which are alleged privileges, not rights at all even though government people use the same word) and that right is inherent in human nature. As I noted, it must logically be so because no alternative exists; if you do not have the right to your own life, who does and how did he get it?   We can extend that reasoning a little. If arguendo you do not have the right of self-ownership, you certainly have no right to hold or express an opinion; and yet you did so! You wrote "Great stuff". Right or (as in this case) wrong, that's an opinion, and if someone else has the right to control what you do and say, you've no business expressing it. You're a mere instrument, in the hands of some other party, like a keyboard. Can a keyboard express its own opinion? The notion is absurd.   The alternative is a world much like the one in which we presently exist; life is lived by premission of those with the biggest weapons. Justice is what the ruler says it is. Good and evil are what he says there are. He asserts a "right to rule", but on the stated premise he can have no such right; he does so purely on the basis of force. Absent rights, there are only "opinions", as Alex said. Thus, if an opinion is popular in some society, it prevails; if the culture holds that Jews are sub-humans like rodents or that blacks are mere three fifths of human beings, that's the way it is and there is no objective, rational standard to which to hold its rulers accountable.   Anarchist libertarians hold the opposite view; that individuals do have the inherent, inalienable, sovereign right to own and operate their own lives and that any who impede or deny that right are interlopers who must be overcome - as peacefully as possible. Are you a libertarian, mishochu?
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 3 weeks 4 days ago Web link KenK
    Given that "democracy" is that gambit utilized for ongoing belief and participation of the hoi polloi by the group of psychopaths hiding under the mantle of "the state", my answer would definitely have to be "no". Democracy was/is a stroke of genius. Sam
  • mishochu's picture
    mishochu 3 weeks 5 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    I'm using it in terms of "religious activity, dedication and belief". How it's defined.
  • D. Saul Weiner's picture
    D. Saul Weiner 3 weeks 5 days ago Web link KenK
    Private companies continue to make vaccines. They threatened to pull out of the market in the 80's, but were given exemption from liability in 1986. Government props up the vaccine program in many ways and has turned it into a great threat to mankind. I wrote extensively about that here: https://www.lewrockwell.com/2015/08/d-saul-weiner/oppose-the-vaccine-pro...
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 3 weeks 6 days ago Web link KenK
    I'm not sure what you mean Saul. No private companies make vaccines any more due to lawsuits and other liability issues. Political democracy really doesn't have a bearing on vaccine production except economically. Banning lawsuits except for actual, provable, damages would improve things but I don't see that happening except by a referendum, and even that would be a stretch given the political and economic clout of the trial lawyer lobby.
  • D. Saul Weiner's picture
    D. Saul Weiner 3 weeks 6 days ago Web link KenK
    "In that case, advocating democracy for what it expresses would be perverse—akin to insisting we outlaw vaccines in order to express concern for human health.”  The latter would actually be an excellent idea, as long as vaccines continue to be made available through the government vaccine program.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 6 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    mischochu, might you expand that thought? - how are you using "religiosity"?
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 3 weeks 6 days ago Web link Westernerd
    No political authority will ever make anybody "great". Ever. There is no such thing as "limited government". Government is a malignancy that will always metastasize. Always. No constitution or bill (of "rights"?) or formal agreement signed by psychopaths can ever change that. If you read FEE's article (I think that might be on another post) you can read Sam's comment there. But I'll repeat it here: Why is it that conventional thinking in regard to "secession" always seems to default to the collectivist? "The Group", or "The Political Relationship" are generally what come to mind as the entities needed to secede. I am a sovereign state. I've seceded. I recognize one "jurisdiction", and one only: a loaded firearm. I have to believe the man with the loaded gun. Or woman -- l-rd have mercy! I treat all "authority" in the the same manner I treat rattlesnakes: with due caution. Where practical, I'll always keep my distance from threat, and will form my own action plans. Of course, knowing snakes as I do, I'm aware that they will try to evade me prior to confrontation. Not so with your revered authorities. So it is necessary for me to develop more in the way of circumnavigation skills when evading or dealing with them. I do not petition (beg) presumed authorities to allow me to be free. They won't. That's the nature of authority. The authority rests upon "voluntary compliance". I do not comply -- not voluntarily, I don't. Expatriation is not in my vocabulary. I want you to like me. Knowing that, you can be confident that I will treat you and those you love with respect and courtesy. But I would do that before I seceded. It just makes common sense. Freedom is using common sense. I'm sorta glad to see Trump "win" (a dubious "victory" indeed), if for no other reason than -- well, here, I'll use Simon Black's wordage: "It’s almost comical to suggest there was any semblance of objectivity throughout the entire cycle. "Hillary Clinton had the full and unabashed backing of the entire media establishment. "And the banking establishment. And the political establishment. And countless billionaires, Hollywood celebrities, rock stars, international press, foreign leaders, and even the President of the United States. "Yet all of those big guns proved to be ineffective against a citizenry that’s fed up with the status quo". But I have no hope that Trump will change your or my life for the better -- any more than would have Clinton. My hope is that those bickering and niggling over trifles here at STR cease and desist and come to see the challenge at hand. Sam
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 3 weeks 6 days ago Web link Westernerd
    More Americans were killed by the US Gov under Reno's tenure than at any time since the Civil War, so fuck that bitch & I hope she's burning in hell.  
  • mishochu's picture
    mishochu 3 weeks 6 days ago Web link Westernerd
    Love the Biafra reference (as a former Nigerian, but not an Igbo tribesman, that still resounds with me).
  • mishochu's picture
    mishochu 3 weeks 6 days ago Web link Westernerd
    Love the Biafra reference (as a former Nigerian, but not an Igbo tribesman, that still resounds with me).
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 3 weeks 6 days ago Web link Westernerd
    States, like abusive partners, tend to resort to physical violence to prevent any separations they don't approve of, (cf. U.S. Civil War 1861-5, Biafra 1967-70, Ireland, 1916, Chechnya,1995-6 & 1999-2000, Kurdistan, 1990-ongoing). And even if the over-state agrees to some sort of referendum on succession (c.f. , Quebec 1995, Scotland 2014, "Brexit" referendum, 2016), legal flim-flammery and other okey-dokey often belie the promises made. The only true independence comes either from an armed uprising, (Ireland, 1916), or if the over-state just bails (East Germany, 1989). Only exception I can think of is the Mormom migration away from Illinois to  the Salt Lake Valley, 1844-1850. Although SLV was claimed by the U.S. gov, the Republic of Mexico, and by native aboriginal people, none were willing or able to excercise state-level violence to oppose their migration, and so the Mormons were sucessfully able to have an independent community for a few decades. 
  • mishochu's picture
    mishochu 3 weeks 6 days ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Atheism doesn't inoculate one from religiosity. Great stuff.
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 4 weeks 21 hours ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    Indeed.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 weeks 1 day ago Blog entry Alex R. Knight III
    In the ZGBlog to which you refer, Alex, I commended you for your powerful imagination when creating works of horror fiction.  I see above that that conceptual, abstract attribute is still at work.   Thanks though for its second sentence. I'm quite content that STReaders study both arguments, and pick the one for themselves that makes the better sense.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 weeks 1 day ago
    Keep Hillary Out
    Blog entry Jim Davies
    Thanks to all who sent a copy of yesterday's ZGBlog to their zillions of voting friends. 80 of 90 big newspapers endorsed Hillary, but your action kept her out :-)