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  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 3 weeks 3 days ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    Alex, you got me on a roll here -- and I meant to address your reference in the paragraph you introduced with use of the phrase "...a culture steeped in Christian orthodoxy..." That, too, was an interesting hurdle for me to vault early on. Not wishing to appear the clown of the rodeo, it was necessary to deal with the "g-d" thing (out-loud prayers, etc etc). But in reading some of the history of AA, I discovered that was one of the first obstacles that needed scarification in 1935, at the outset of AA. I was not alone. They finally came up with the "...g-d as you understand him..." routine. There is a stark analogy to be made with some of the flak over religious beliefs and practices in "libertarian" circles -- in right here at STR. I won't attempt to go into detail at this time. Suffice it to say it is not necessary to, as you phrased it, impugn religious folks before they get their tether severed in anarchy. Because none of us knows for absolute certain (in spite of dogmatic religionists and dogmatic atheists) what causes and/or caused this pale blue dot to come about and spin as it does -- without missing a beat. So I settled upon standing in the circle silently at the finale of AA meetings, trying not to look stupid, but refraining from piety. I used that as a time to count heads for the "hat ticket" once I took on the chairing of meetings. I came to understand that I could live in a world where religiosity was accepted as normal without having to become abnormal myself. I tried some of the "agnostic AA" meetings. They left me cold. I also accepted an invitation once to a meeting at a church (lots of AA meetings are in churches due to space accommodations, availability, etc) that turned out an attempt to incorporate religiosity with AA. There was a "prayer circle", "bible study hour", etc. I never went back, and I heard it folded after a few meetings. Lots of wisdom in the mantra, "...if it works, don't fix it..." As anybody who knows me understands, I've come to the place where I believe soundly that I can be free. Here. Today. Where I'm "at". So can you. But we need to try to abstain from beans. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 3 weeks 3 days ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    Jonny, it's nice to see your comment. And you're so right. In my comment above I started out by claiming to propose the "answer" to Alex's query, "...What Defines Success in Alcoholics Anonymous?..." But my answer left the heavy side of the puzzle out. Old timers in AA insist one MUST go much further than to say, "I have not had a drink of alcohol today". The genuine answer is: "I have not found it NECESSARY to take a drink today". Because the Big Book never once admonishes the problem drinker to try not to drink. From stem to stern it provides ways of thinking and ways of living that makes it UNNECESSARY to take a drink. But in addressing whether and how to stop drinking it insists one must first identify the problem: are you, or are you not (an alcoholic)??? Then, in the first part of Chapter 3 (end of p31 and start of p32 of the above referenced online publication): We do not like to pronounce any individual as alco- holic, but you can quickly diagnose yourself. Step over to the nearest barroom and try some controlled drinking. Try to drink and stop abruptly. Try it more than once. It will not take long for you to de- cide, if you are honest with yourself about it. It may be worth a bad case of jitters if you get a full knowl- edge of your condition. The "program" addresses how we should treat our neighbors, friends, coworkers, family members, etc. It's all about feeling OK about ourselves and our relationships with others. How to get along in a not-too-friendly world without finding it necessary to drink alcohol. So to the analogy with anarchy. Most who will ever read this understand that if everybody -- EVERYBODY -- would stop voting (and "stay stopped") our "problem" would soon be solved. That, along with ceasing to submit confessions to the white man ("file returns -- voluntarily" ha ha) outlining all resources and earnings. That, of course, is a greater hill to climb, because "we" have already given the beast his head in that regard. Reining him in brings forth the only "jurisdiction" in town (outside of family governance) -- loaded firearms in the hands of dangerous criminals. Our friend, Jim Davies, can illuminate a late mutual friend, Irwin Schiff's plight dealing with state gangsters -- and what happens when one attempts to publish and teach truth in an unfree world. But everybody won't. I remember early in my sobriety, I was in the midst of unbelievable lawsuits and parole violations, threats of further incarceration, etc., -- my AA sponsor (of soon to be 40 years) took me aside and admonished: "Sam -- don't TRY to make sense out of the world around you. IT-DOES-NOT-MAKE-SENSE. Just remember that, and you'll never need to drink again!" Sam
  • jonnyh's picture
    jonnyh 3 weeks 3 days ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    Thanks much Alex from a fellow libertarian anarchist who also started getting what he needed from the 12 steps 25 years ago at the end of this month. I too was convinced that the program works, after much struggle, by a second chance at life after two decades of drug- and alcohol-fueled adventures with jails, institutions, and near death experiences. While it was a "nudge from the judge" that motivated my first attendance at meetings, my experience with 12-step programs around the world since then has shown them to be the most anarchic organizations imaginable. There are no rules, no rulers, and no one to tell you what to do in 12-step recovery. If some people decide they should order others around, they are usually disregarded and ridiculed by those who know better. AA certainly doesn't work for everyone, and only a dogmatic few would claim otherwise. And it could never work if it was forced on others. Just like government, attempting to control others by force is a long-term impossibility. But dogmatic types exist everywhere, including among those who say they believe in freedom. Funny they don't see the contradiction in claiming to know the one true way to be a libertarian anarchist/voluntaryist. Stay lucky, Jonny
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 3 days ago
    Slaves of the Law
    Page Paul Bonneau
    So Francis evidently confused anarchism with the absence of "social controls against violent, anti-social, or aberrant behavior."   It's a common error, but explains why his term "anarcho-tyranny" is so hopelessly wrong.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 3 weeks 3 days ago
    Slaves of the Law
    Page Paul Bonneau
    It's good for the an-cap movement that this stuff goes on I suppose, (e.g., the possession and the open carrying of weapons needs to be re-normalized most places in American society), but I fear liberty ain't gaining any ground with it either tho. Really, it's just clawing onto what we already have, in terms of "legal rights". Laws are a lagging indicater, culture, history, and custom being much greater social normalizers. https://youtu.be/SjpoVjyXuGw Some of these things go better than others. https://youtu.be/HrJISO2tRJY On the other hand,  many unintentional authority encounters go to shit right away. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BXQDKksEpfo How much these candid camera techniques help toward actually abolishing the state and holding gov police accountable is debateable. IMO an-caps don't need any more shitlording on social media, they need direct action. No blog post or instagram pic is gonna stop water flowing down hill. Only physically blocking and redirecting the water will. Make of that what you will.   Over & out.      
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 3 weeks 3 days ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    Sam, I had figured you would weigh in on this one -- and by no means did you disappoint.  :-)  Thank you.   Ken, you are so correct.  That said, I felt personally compelled to offer them rebuttal, and have -- without any sense of obligation towards them whatsoever.  Thank you, as well.  :-)
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 3 weeks 3 days ago
    Slaves of the Law
    Page Paul Bonneau
    The late Sam Francis coined the term anarcho-tyranny . Francis was a paleo-con who was not steeped in an-cap nomenclature (which may annoy spergs who insist on a Stanford Encyclopedia  of Philosophy level 30,000 word definition) and so I paraphrase: The social controls against violent, anti-social, or aberrant behavior are relaxed or dismissed altogether while the full cultural and legal apparatus is deployed against people and groups that resist social engineering schemes by the left. To wit: The state won't help you with street crime, but it will land on you like a ton of bricks if you resist allowing strange people into public lavatories with your children.   I hope this helps. Don't complain to me if you have quibbles with Francis' definition. He made it, he owns it. Sounds like a pretty accurate discription of today's modern America tho.   Where I live activists walk around with guns and then record the proceedings when the cops show up and put it on youtube. Better than nothing, but still pretty weak.    
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 3 weeks 3 days ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    Bottom line for Alex. If AA helps you not drink, and you're good with that, then fuck em'. The unnamed critics, that this. You owe those guys nada.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 3 weeks 3 days ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    "...What Defines Success in Alcoholics Anonymous?..." Answer: I have not taken a drink of alcohol today. It's really that simple. I truly hope you haven't (that is, if you call yourself an AA member and have the desire to stop drinking). Because I truly care about you -- even though we've never met or attended the same meetings. But whether you do or do not drink does not affect "the success of AA". My abstaining from alcohol today does. I come to STR for the very same reason that I attend AA. It can be lonely "...out thar in radio land..." Few understand. Here's the fact: 1) AA: Only an esoteric few of us comprehend the affliction and the angst that accompany the knowledge that we simply cannot have a drink of alcohol without consigning ourselves to a world of drunken debauchery. Many "shmexperts" will come forth to argue over that. That's why (or one of several primary reasons why) we remain anonymous and don't advertise our "program-of-recovery". Let the shmexperts bicker and argue with each other and leave us in peace. If it turns out your psychological and physiological situation is anything like mine, you have enough on your plate without pulling them into the foray. 2) Anarchy: Once again, I'll let John Hasnas (2nd paragraph of his essay) do the talking: 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 is really productive of order, popular support for government would almost instantly collapse. I'll refrain from boring you with my take on "anarchist theorists". Suffice it to say that none of us has experienced freedom from the white man since before the first Europeans set foot on the eastern shore of this continent. It might be a while before we do. You might think this a peculiar analogy -- "non sequitur". It's not. I've been involved with AA for over 50 years. Looking back, I recognized that AA was indeed, for me, "home". I didn't know exactly why at the time -- it took some years to come to analyze it for it's real worth. This was even prior to the 1964 US presidential debacle with which I was heavily involved. My hero of the moment, Barry Goldwater, got his butt trounced by a criminal named Lyndon Johnson. That involvement, and its results, sent me out on a long, debilitating bender. And it landed me in lengthy lockup in the white man's prison system. A marvelous learning experience. AA is the most libertarian collection of individuals in town. I abstain from the term "movement". It's our way of life. But AA as an organization is vulnerable to parasites -- and attacks. As you mention in your essay, Alex, AA's "position" (there can actually be no such thing) is to leave the parasites -- as well as attackers -- be, and to go on with our business of helping each other stay sober. It's the only thing we can do when you think about it. We have no authorities (you used the names Jim Jones or David Koresh) -- or even spokespeople. We are truly anarchist by nature. You can't speak for me, and I can't speak for you. "Our leaders are but trusted servants. They do not govern" Dr Bob is quoted with what has become an AA motto, or declaration of sorts: "...wherever, whenever someone reaches out for help, I want the hand of AA to always be there. For that, I am responsible". So, we end up with members forming groups in and about jails, rehab facilities, etc. -- wherever problem drinkers are hoping to become set free from the insanity that got them there. And out into a cold, unthinking, unresponsive, misunderstanding "society". And, like Hasnas' outline of anarchy quoted above, things get turned around in the heads of nonmembers (and a few newer members as well). Outsiders and newbie's will tend to associate Alcoholics Anonymous (the "movement") with the host(s), rather than to see each of the members as individuals who are there to help. There are no AA officials to countermand that Orwellian twisted thought process. And, due to the apparent success of AA, those rehab and government officials (often professing AA members themselves) will sling their lassos around AA with abandon, to make it appear that it's "...I got you, Babe...". That tends to inflame criticism of AA in the heads of the ill-informed and the uninformed. And the naysayers. There is an abundance of AA naysayers on the web -- perhaps as many as libertarian and/or anarchist naysayers. When you think about it, a local "judge" has every bit as much "right" (please let's not get back into that "rights" silliness) to send his or her victims down to Catholic Catechism as she does to send them to AA meetings. But the difference between the Catholic Church (or any church) and AA is anarchy. The priests and the bishops and the boards of directors wouldn't stand still for it. On the other hand, they might welcome it with open arms. But most members of AA acting as chairmen simply sign the attendance sheets and go on staying sober. AA is not without controversy -- lots and lots of it. I've attended business meetings where the issue of the signing of attendance papers has come up. Some (governmentalist types) insist "we" should always wait until the meeting is almost over to sign. That's to make certain the parolee doesn't slip out before the l-rd's prayer. Others declare "we" shouldn't sign them at all. Then they generally take a "group conscience" vote. I always say, "I don't care what you guys vote. I'm still going to make my standard announcement at the beginning of any meeting I chair: 'Anybody with "papers" should have them signed immediately by the guy or gal sitting next to you. Then, you are free to either leave or stay. You're certainly more than welcome to stay, but you do need to understand that whoever sent you here had no authority to do that. I'll not refuse to sign or cause you any difficulty serving time'." And a fun time was had by all. Sam
  • rothbardian's picture
    rothbardian 3 weeks 4 days ago
    Slaves of the Law
    Page Paul Bonneau
  • rothbardian's picture
    rothbardian 3 weeks 4 days ago
    Slaves of the Law
    Page Paul Bonneau
    Is this any evidence that it is falling apart? Perhaps we should be glad that our fellow ancaps are doing less doomer blogging and preparing themselves for contingencies, and or being capitalists and improving the world. Yeah I agree, with Jim, I don't even know what the throwaway line about what anarcho-tyranny even means. 
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 3 weeks 5 days ago
    Slaves of the Law
    Page Paul Bonneau
    My use of the phrase, "gone-to-seed" may have emanated from a forlorn countenance of the moment. I'm prone to those emotional outbursts. I linked to the old "Daily Anarchist" forum, which appears to have now gone belly-up, along with "Anarchism.net", which I think was Per Bylund's old forum (and Per seems to have moved on to bigger and better haunts). Talk about emotional outbursts -- it's really difficult for me (and I surmise that might apply to any of us) to accurately predict just how freedom is going to play out. Your "2025" prediction (can't put my finger on the link to your article[s], and I'm late for work) might be quite realistic. I suspect, subconsciously, my definition of "freedom" is when everybody agrees with (or is agreeable toward) me. There is only so much we can lament over the current lack of freedom -- and so much "anarchist theory" that can be presented. Just how land titles, disputes, etc., will be recorded, surveyed, etc., in the absence of central political authority is subject to speculation and debate. You won't need "county recorders" in the absence of government robbery, but there will need to be equitable means by which to settle disputes. I miss the old "White Indian" days here at STR. He came aboard, bad-mouthed libertarianism, aroused the ire and the angst of many participants of the moment. Then he apparently quashed his bivouac, folded his tent, and left the battlefield for more lucrative engagements. "Indian" was a fun sort. Sam
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 5 days ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    I take it, Alex, that you are one of the 33% who have been sober these ten years, so congrats are clearly due.  It's hard for me as one who can handle and enjoy moderate drinking to appreciate the grip it can get over some folk, but obviously it's powerful and any who can break that grip are surely the stronger for it.   To criticise AA when it's producing better results than any other method (yes?) seems a waste of time and may even hurt people by deterring some who need it from taking part. I'm sorry to read that even anarchists are doing that.   Who, though? - if I understand your article correctly, Mr Dodes did a poor job but you say he is not one of them. So who are these libertarians who have echoed him, and are they proposing any improvement on AA?
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 5 days ago
    Slaves of the Law
    Page Paul Bonneau
    Ken, I beg to differ. First, "anarcho-tyranny" is impossible, being internally contradictory. If there is no rule or ruler, there can be no tyranny. If, perversely, some anarchist loses his mind and starts ruling tyranically, he is by definition no longer an anarchist.   Then, "dropping out of activism" is not IMHO any indication that "the whole ancap thing is kinda falling apart." Depends what one means by "the whole ancap thing." Does it mean being active in a public sense, running meetings and demonstrations etc? - I don't think so.   It means first something internal: to know and understand that everyone rightfully rules him or herself. Not just as a casual passing fad or idea, but by deep conviction based on solid logic and meaningful study. Anyone who lacks a library similar to this one probably hasn't studied enough.   Then it means, I suggest, doing something positive to cause that true theory to come about in practice; and meetings, demonstrations, civil disobedience and other noisy "activism" is not, as I see it, the way to do that. Something much more quiet and simple, as suggested here. One could call that "activism", I suppose, but I doubt that it's the usual meaning of the term.   Coincidentally, today's edition of the Zero Government Blog touches on that theme.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 5 days ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    It may be very gentlemanly of you not to "name names", but the article is headed "Voluntaryist Vitriol" and without citing specific examples I suggest it has not substantiated that theme. If someone has published a false and damaging view, why not call him out - as you did Mr Dodes?
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 3 weeks 5 days ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    I'll not name names -- they know who they are and are presumably free to comment here if they so choose.  But there are an entire cadre of "voluntaryists" on Facebook who have taken the position(s) described.  No, they haven't pointed to any specific AA alternatives, but have rather only chosen to hurl stones -- again, as described.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 3 weeks 6 days ago
    Slaves of the Law
    Page Paul Bonneau
    The whole ancap thing is kinda falling apart. Many of the ones I know/knew have dropped out of activism altogether, a few have become alt-righters. (Look at Stephan Molyneaux, et al.) I don't know about ancapistan ever happening but anarcho-tyranny is a real possiblilty. 
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 weeks 6 days ago
    Slaves of the Law
    Page Paul Bonneau
    Has STR "gone to seed", Sam? - there's evidence each way.   Yes, compared with only a few years ago there are far fewer reader comments (despite your own sterling contributions) and far fewer original articles. But that's not all it does.   The Editors present each day a selection of stimulating articles to be read elsewhere. There is a link to STR's "Blog", where others, including my own, can be found - along with links to interesting videos and some original comments. And there's a huge archive of previous "strikes", organized by author and, to some extent, subject.   Most of all, STR keeps the faith, more or less. A few really bad articles do somehow get past our primary Editor's scrutiny, but not often; here, there is nothing like the wholesale sellout to the Trump phenomenon, for example, that has characterized LewRockwell.com this year, in which not a single LRC article I have seen rebuts the outrageous argument of Hoppe regarding immigration.
  • GainesvilleCoins's picture
    GainesvilleCoins 4 weeks 5 days ago
    The Elastic Standard
    Page Paul Hein
    Great points, Paul. I work in the coin / precious metals industry, so a few notes: Those $50 silver dollars are collectibles; the "bullion" versions of the U.S. Mint's American Silver Eagle coins sell for a small premium above the melt value of its silver content (1 troy oz), so a little over $20. But your point stands. The legal tender value of a Silver Eagle is a farce. Sure, they're redeemable for 1 "dollar," but who would do so when you can sell the coin for at least the spot price of silver? The mint confers legal tender status onto the coins just so it can say they are "silver coins." (If they weren't legal tender, they'd merely be "medals" instead.) You could fairly call them specie, but they aren't intended to circulate—nor should they, upon rational consideration, at least not at a rate of one fictional USD. We should certainly ask ourselves why an ounce of silver is $20; throughout the history of this country, a silver dollar coin was standardized at 0.7734 troy ounce of silver content. That standard didn't change for well over a century. The government changed the composition of U.S. coins after 1964 so that dimes, quarters, and half dollars no longer contained silver. At the time, it was becoming profitable to hoard coins for their silver value rather than using them as money. Like Sam mentions, the value of the dollar is only due to fiat (government decree)—you must accept our worthless money under penalty of law! Nothing tangible backs this absurd monetary system. It's less useful to think of the price of silver as "going up" than it is to say (as you have here) that the "dollar" is a futile measuring stick. It's lost over 95% of its purchasing power since the Federal Reserve opened its doors in 1913. Federal Reserve notes are simply debt obligations masquerading as capital. Meanwhile, the relative value of the precious metals have been remarkably steady over that time.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 5 weeks 6 hours ago Web link KenK
    Ever wonder about the funding of studies such as this? Or why??? And people wonder why I, long retired "science" teacher, generally always question "science" excruciatingly??? Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 5 weeks 23 hours ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    Thinking to amend my most recent response to Paul's comment on Alex's essay, I decided to post another remark. Because, looking at my earlier comment where I used the arbitrary figure 99.5% (of general population who will never read what we write here -- or other anarchist forums), I think truth would verify a much stronger -- more like 99.995% -- figure. That's during my more anarchistically unenthusiastic phases. The waning days of summer and autumn seem filled with political holidays (one coming up in just a few more days) designed to unabashedly sell socialistic murder and mayhem to the hoi polloi as being good and deserving of their celebration and their support. Hard acts to follow. Which put me to mind of an article Butler Shaffer posted several years ago: https://www.lewrockwell.com/2008/07/butler-shaffer/the-july-4th-lie/ And even Butler -- one of my many mentors -- seemed to cling to vestiges of statism with his tongue-in-cheek recommendations for additional holidays. Alex is right: "...The fight against socialism is not one waged against a mere difference of opinion, but, to be sure, a struggle for every aspect of human survival itself..." I believe we're going to win the struggle. I believe my 26th grandchild -- a little girl, Naomi Mae, born last Thursday -- will grow up to see the victory. I'll be fortunate to still be capable of witnessing her triumph. Gotta keep biking every day to make it happen. And, of course, continue to abstain from beans. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 5 weeks 1 day ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    Yet, when you think about it deeply, you begin to see that the entire infrastructure of state rests upon a bedrock of jealousy and envy. Which is exactly what Alex's little essay encompasses -- nicely, I should add. The enormity of the truth is incredible. Sam
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 5 weeks 1 day ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    One wonders about people whose worldview is so infused with and dependent on such a disreputable emotion as jealousy. Are they not ashamed? Maybe there is not much shame left in this world.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 5 weeks 1 day ago
    Yes, Or No?
    Page Paul Hein
    I don't know Paul. Sending such a thing to anyone would seem to put me in a subservient position. I'd rather not. Not that I haven't myself done or imagined doing the same thing in the past. The point though, is not to change the thinking of a member of the ruling class, but to open others' eyes. Not that even that limited aim seems to have much success, but I suppose little ideas could dig into an observer's mind and eventually bear fruit (pardon the mixed metaphor), without us being around to notice it.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 5 weeks 1 day ago
    Slaves of the Law
    Page Paul Bonneau
    "After all, it's an election year, LOL" Yes, people go temporarily insane during the silly season. I suspect that is why STR et. al. go begging at times.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 5 weeks 1 day ago
    Slaves of the Law
    Page Paul Bonneau
    "The way I think and express myself determines how free I can be -- or become." Exactly. It's all part of that self-enforcement.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 5 weeks 2 days ago Web link KenK
    Duplicate. Sorry.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 5 weeks 2 days ago Web link KenK
    Nobody asks how or why one gains "authority" to lock another up. Only whinging and whanging over the natural progression of that evil act. Sex being the sacred cow in this instance. Ask wrong questions and one needn't fear answers. Sam
  • dhowlandjr's picture
    dhowlandjr 5 weeks 2 days ago
    Slaves of the Law
    Page Paul Bonneau
    Hey Paul! This is a good one! With your usual feistiness, but hey! Slavery is objectionable even though you can't tell so much by looking around these days. And Sam, thanks for all your comments, I read the Delmar England material you recommended and really enjoyed it! I agree about the forums, I guess currently they think libertarian ideas need to be dumbed down or something. After all, it's an election year, LOL
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 5 weeks 3 days ago
    Slaves of the Law
    Page Paul Bonneau
    Additional thought (adding to my predominance of late to the "comments" section on STR). This from a "Lew Rockwell" article this morning -- most of which stray solidly into the realm of "minarchist", or "mini-state" mentality: "...by now more than half the population in most Western democracies draw half or more of their income from public administration, as government employees, recipients of social programs, and/or retirees..." Paul Gottfried, author of the article, probably leans more heavily to libertarian thinking than most who reside in academe. But never assume that Gottfried is anarchist by any sense of the imagination. Whenever I see a term like "...public administration..." in vocabulary, I recognize mini-statism (if not full-blown governmentalism). Many of these writers (including most of the articles posted at STR) do relatively decent work pointing out the fallacies and malfeasance of monopoly state. But in their whimpering and their grumbling is embedded the idea that "we" must "elect the right people" in order to make things right again. In order to "...GET OUR COUNTRY BACK!..." How many of these writers could recognize "income-from-public-administration" as robbery, pure and simple? How many understand that there is no such thing as "public-administration" -- that the phrase points to a mindless abstraction??? The way I think and express myself determines how free I can be -- or become. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 5 weeks 3 days ago
    Slaves of the Law
    Page Paul Bonneau
    Anybody who knows me would be disappointed if I ever did a thing -- or refrained from a thing -- because it was a rule, or a law, or a regulation, or a policy. If it don't make sense -- to me -- I ain't a-gonna comply. "Voluntarily", that is. I might comply if confronted by jurisdiction. The only jurisdiction in existence anywhere on this pale blue dot is force of arms. I believe a man with a loaded gun. Or woman (l-rd have mercy! :-]). Especially those wearing state costumes. They're definitely the most dangerous of the armed. You've outlined the religion -- the superstition -- called "state" quite adequately: "...slave mentality in action on Internet forums. In the gun forum I frequent, there is even a sub-board dealing with the intricacies of the law, where members debate endlessly over the fine points and jump through hoops in an often futile attempt to stay on the “right side” of laws for which there is never any victim--except for themselves if they get caught violating one..." You've put your finger on the enemy, Paul. Most libertarian forums have virtually gone to seed, literally and figuratively. Unless there are some I've missed. I counted only ten comments posted here over the last two weeks. Half were mine. In past years I've seen (don't know that I've ever counted) at least 25 or 30 -- and probably more -- comments in a single day. Granted, some were needless squabbling -- particularly when "religion" entered the topic. Or "rights". And I fully agree with your conclusion: like Frederick Douglass, my goal must be to "...dispensed with (my) slave mind-set...". Unlike Douglass in his day, I'm old. I ain't got that much time left to become free. I'd better do it now. Here. Today. Where I'm "at". Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 5 weeks 4 days ago
    Yes, Or No?
    Page Paul Hein
    True, the entire superstition of government and politics is obfuscation from stem to stern. It would be unthinkable for psychopaths, grouped under one of those brainless abstractions, to make statements or provide answers in direct, understandable format. The science of rulership dictates that the governed constantly be manipulated into believing and standing in awe of those doing the governing. Why do you suppose, if you wind up in one of the white man's courts, are you forced to be treated to the spectacle of it being virtually mandatory that everyone rise ("all rise!") when a "judge" swaggers in? We libertarians often smile at and refer to the little story "The-Emperor-Is-Naked". But how often is the question asked, "...why do people stand around watching an emperor parade by in the first place?..." What force, or eerie spirit, has appeared to afflict individuals since the earliest recorded history to want to follow emperors and their collectivist insanity? And to aggrandize their machinations and their endless wars? Bernie Sanders' answers to the ignorant interviewer are as natural for the lunatics of his category as corn bread in January. What else should one expect from his type -- reason??? Logic??? Insanity is the Social Norm. In order for me to achieve freedom it has been necessary to cease thinking and/or writing in terms of "Our Rulers". They might be your rulers. They are not our rulers. Sam
  • mishochu's picture
    mishochu 5 weeks 5 days ago
    Yes, Or No?
    Page Paul Hein
    I like the idea but politicians can't, generally, answer simply "yes", "no", or "no comment": https://youtu.be/tBIKP4W50-I
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 6 weeks 2 days ago Blog entry Jim Davies
    Great thinking, mishochu, and good luck. But why not have both?   Statists will certainly extinguish liberty whenever they can; just give them time. Consider: "non-profit" is a term that they define. When they see "too many" people taking advantage of that status, they will change its meaning or just repeal the loophole.   There is no alternative: government must go, 100%. If not, you may raise your children well, only for them to grow up into a world in which freedom is impossible.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 6 weeks 2 days ago Web link Westernerd
    When those feeding from a common nosebag • Make laws, • Enforce laws, • Prosecute laws, • Hire prosecutors, • License “defense” attorneys, • Pay “judges”, • Build jails, • Contract jails out to private entities, • Employ and pay wardens, • Employ and pay guards, • Employ and pay parole officers, You’re dealing with tyranny – not “…an unbiased system…” But when a large and unsavory segment of the population demand central political authority, it's what you get. Live with it. Either that or abstain from beans and become sovereign (I may post an additional comment later regarding "becoming sovereign". Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 6 weeks 4 days ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    I'm prejudiced, of course, since I gave up television over 50 years ago. I've also abstained from all spectator sports. Endless covert and not-so-covert propaganda, flag worship and fireworks displays (an insidious form of state hype) nauseate me. Sam
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 6 weeks 5 days ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    But  Melinda is correct. CNN commentators are mostly PC douchebags, even in sports, and so fuck em anyhow.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 6 weeks 5 days ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    The nation state model of competition is largely outmoded in modern times. Few nation states are as ethnically pure as they were in early 1900's. For example, European futbul stars today are mostly ethnic Africans and in American baseball the stars are mostly Caribes from DR, Cuba, & Venezuela. The Olympics are a fucking scam anyway. The whole thing is about crony cap media profitabilty combined with graft glalore for the local boosters and pols. 
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 6 weeks 6 days ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    If stories like this keep coming along, Strike will need to have a "New Jersey" hash tag soon. What is it about NJ pols that they feel there is no human behavior or action that is not with their purview to regulate? If you go there or to NY, CA, CT, the people themselves seem okay, but then look at the legislatures they vote in. Incomprehensible.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 7 weeks 2 days ago Web link Westernerd
    I'd not disagree that Rutherford Institute in general and John Whitehead in particular amount to "minarchist blather": "...There is still a lot Americans can do to topple the police state tyrants, but any revolution that has any hope of succeeding needs to be prepared to reform the system from the bottom up. And that will mean re-learning step by painful step what it actually means to be a government of the people, by the people and for the people..." His mentality defaults naturally into "rebuilding a system", or "our-beloved-democracy". What we know that he apparently hasn't discovered (yet) is that no matter where you intend to start that predator "system", it will grow and metastasize to eventually consume its host. Government "...of the people, by the people and for the people..." is the collectivist malarkey that has sustained and augmented the Gettysburg's that have plagued mankind from time immemorial. Government "...of the individual, by the individual, and for the individual..." is the philosophy I eventually assimilated after my traumatic disenchantment 50+ years ago with the trouncing of my political hero of the time, Barry Goldwater. Karl Hess led me to Harry Browne and Robert Ringer who eventually led me here. So let's not give up on the likes of John Whitehead. He appears to be mad as hell over the "system" he so avidly promotes. That, I think, might be an opening cannon to anarchy (at least it was for me). Of course I had one advantage: I had no writing, publishing or evangelistic skills, or "connections". Therefore, I had no previous "stance" or "acclamation" to defend. It gave me permission to change as change was indicated. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 7 weeks 3 days ago Blog entry Jim Davies
    Mishochu, I read countless articles daily such as this and this, and this; and I want to think that you and I and all anarchists and libertarians are on the cutting edge of something very, very big. That's on my "good" days. That's when I'm encouraged by the Internet Reformation. Then, a day or two later, reality sets in. Our numbers are dismal by comparison. And even among ourselves we're needy to gee and haw with the machinations of psychopaths hiding under the mantle of "state" in order to sidestep the beast. "Non-profits" are strictly state devices to assure -- or ensure -- "voluntary compliance", or conformance. Yet I strongly encourage what you're doing to encourage homeschooling and inoculate against statism. Don't get me wrong -- we individuals declaring sovereign statehood can't ignore the serfdom that has encapsulated all our neighbors, friends and families. We have to manipulate and mold our lives to keep the dangerously armed agents in state costumes off our backs. I've often used the rattlesnake analogy -- I can't or shouldn't go to the woods (in the snake-infested part of the world where I grew up) without adequate leg, hand and arm protection. Can we preach and teach our "society" into freedom in order for we ourselves to experience freedom? I strongly agree with you: for me anyway, I have to be free. Today. Here. Where I'm "at". I'm strongly into octogenarian-ism. I don't have time to wait for the world around me to achieve liberty and freedom. If it's going to be, it's up to me. Now. Sam
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 7 weeks 3 days ago Web link Westernerd
    Minarchist blather.
  • mishochu's picture
    mishochu 7 weeks 3 days ago Blog entry Jim Davies
    I'm beginning not to care about proselytization. And instead turning things on their head and earn only Bitcoin (converted and stored as metal) and create a non-profit to handle property taxes (non-profits are exempt where I am). I'm thinking of having the non-profit focus on home schooling and the needs of home schooling families (which may do some little towards inoculating against statism). Forget this free future, I want it for my family now. With technology it is beginning to seem a lot easier to do what I'm calling "live sovereign in plain sight".
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 7 weeks 5 days ago Blog entry Jim Davies
    An interesting article by Chris Cantwell a few months back, and an interchange on "Liberty Me" forum this morning, sort of point up a few of the communication problems facing the idea that liberty and freedom, like religion, can be proselytized. "...So will you spell out how a total collapse here would necessarily produce a free society?..." I'm not a prognosticator, Jim -- merely an observer. And I'm not a believer that "recent history" is as accurate a predictor of outcomes as it once might have been, in this age of Internet Reformation. More, perhaps, later. Sam
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 7 weeks 5 days ago Blog entry Jim Davies
    Sam, you've put your finger on a vital point: can the State be rolled back to zero?   Yes, it's been around for about 400 generations - and on its present scale in the US for about 4 generations. We face a big job.   The first para of "A Little Good News" links to a ZGBlog showing why and how I think it can be done, even so. I know of no other way. My book Transition to Liberty details the likely progress. But what of the alternative you name: a "cataclysmic collapse of their 'system'"?   Several times in recent history, states have collapsed; often after losing a war. In every case, government either continued (eg Zambia) or was replaced (eg Germany.)   So will you spell out how a total collapse here would necessarily produce a free society?
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 7 weeks 6 days ago Blog entry Jim Davies
    Perhaps it's because I'm in one of those not-so-good "moods" this morning. But I'm convinced that the vast, overwhelming majority of individuals have been so sucked in to the lust for central political "authority", over so lengthy of a time period (hundreds of "generations"), that nothing -- nothing -- will exorcise them other than a complete and cataclysmic collapse of their "system". That is not going to be pretty. You did your normal excellent job, Jim, of outlining the situation with this analogue. Most have seen this video (statist to the core, but entertaining and truthful -- from the mouths of babes). Nobody should ever at any time and for any reason ever talk to "police". And it is more essential than ever before that more of us see the light and abstain from beans. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 8 weeks 2 days ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    "...Now think about envy, covetousness, jealousy – and its sociopolitical end-product, socialism, and whatever we can possibly do to oust it and its influences from our lives forever..." It was important that I learn early-on that there is not a lot I can do about YOUR "...envy, covetousness, jealousy..." (and the end-product of socialism). But there is something I can do about MINE. Well, in a sense, Alex, since both you and I are here on STR I can have some influence upon you and perhaps a few others, and you're certainly having an influence upon me -- and many others. But keep in mind -- probably 99.5% (more or less) of folks who engage in envy, covetousness and jealousy (and who root for socialism) are not here and will never read your article or my comments. And I don't have time to go out and attempt to recruit a sizable dent in that 99.5%. So I've got to find a way to be free. Here. Now. Today. Where I'm "at". Freedom starts between my ears. The challenge of anarchy is learning to circumnavigate and sidestep the socialistic trip-hazards. I may not eliminate them all, but I can learn to avoid allowing them to constantly trip me up. It's eerie, the number of people who appear to crave central political authority -- and ensuing socialism. And it appears that my primary defense against those throngs is to abstain from beans. Sam
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 8 weeks 3 days ago Web link Westernerd
    The parties both get taxpayer money for these spectacles too. 
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 8 weeks 3 days ago Web link A. Magnus
    Here's Simon Black's version: https://www.sovereignman.com/trends/new-legislation-proposes-to-bail-in-... (Aw, shucks! After going back and reading the posted article I note GovtSlaves has printed Black's version also, so this link is redundant. As you were). Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 8 weeks 3 days ago Web link Westernerd
    I'm raising Whitehead's grade up to "almost". https://www.lewrockwell.com/2016/07/john-w-whitehead/stop-drinking-kool-... At least he's getting pissed. Never will he urge us to abstain from beans, but he does say, at the end, "...Stop playing the game. Stop supporting the system. Stop defending the insanity. Just stop..." Almost sounds like he's suggesting that I "opt out" -- but not quite. "...It takes a citizenry** willing to do more than grouse and complain. We must act—and act responsibly—keeping in mind that the duties of citizenship extend beyond the act of voting..." **He doesn't explain what he means by the brainless abstraction, "citizenry". Would that be thee? Or me???? I'll stick with our old friend, Mark Davis' take of 11+ years ago: "...Working within the system means to become a part of the system. When you go into the voting booth, the only meaningful significance that your action will have is to show that one more person supports the state..." ~Mark Davis From Be Free, by Mark Davis July 10, 2005. http://www.strike-the-root.com/52/davis_m/davis1.html Sam