Recent comments

  • Glen Allport's picture
    Glen Allport 3 years 16 weeks ago Page tzo
    Another terrific column, Tzo. And it's worth saying that we've HAD a minarchy, right here in River City and the rest of the USA. We KNOW how minarchy turns out over the long run, because we're living in the result. I'm still in the camp that believes Ron Paul does more good than harm, partly because I know so many voluntaryists (me, for one) who came to that position by way of either Paul or some other minarchist. For most people, the road from statism is long and like all journeys it has to start SOMEWHERE. But that doesn't mean I disagree with your points about the ultimate wrongness and stupidity of the coercive state, regardless of size or rationale: you are exactly right and you've written an excellent description of why institutionalizing initiated (non-defensive) coercion in a body of any size is morally wrong and impossible to restrain.
  • Guest's picture
    Temujin (not verified) 3 years 16 weeks ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    tremendous.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 3 years 16 weeks ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    You're right on, Alex! A gangster is a gangster is a gangster. Actually, Adolf Hitler was a relatively "good" gang leader ("politician") if you consider the fact he and his ardent followers raised the German economy from abject ruin after the first "holocaust" to a relatively productive (albeit waring) environment. But alas: all monopolistic, parasitic gangs ("my country" [gag]) always end up murdering, pillaging and destroying the very territory they deign to rule. Neither Hitler nor Obama nor Bushes nor Clinton's have been exceptions to that rule. Abstain from beans. http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig7/lefevre2.html Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 3 years 16 weeks ago Page tzo
    Mighty fine follow-up, Tzo. When I read your work I'm reminded of a line from one of our old friend Jim Davies' essays: "...No government anywhere, at any time, has ever brought net benefit to any society, and there is no desirable function that any government performs that could not be performed better, or less expensively, by free people operating on a voluntary basis for profit or for charity..." ~Jim Davies http://www.takelifeback.com/tdaw/
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 3 years 16 weeks ago
    Food Stamps
    Web link Michael Dunn
    It's important to understand Natural News folks truly believe state gangsters are capable of serving a socially useful purpose. When dealing with people like this it's hard to respond. Like arguing with dem's or pub's. No win. Congrats to the guy who sold the soda pop. At least he and his customers were honest. Not so with the real welfare fraudsters (the ones who hand out the stolen funds). Sam
  • helio's picture
    helio 3 years 16 weeks ago Page tzo
    Great article, and I want to add something. Those of us who hold the view that participating in politricks is a violation of the non-aggression principle should keep one thing in mind, however. Be kind and respectful to minarchists since they are more likely to become voluntaryists. I was once a minarchist, but no longer. The difference? A further years worth of reading and the positive encouragement from the many 'noble' voluntaryists on the web, such as Tzo. As Sun Tzu said, "Victorious warriors win first, and then go to war while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win." I have minarchist friends and I have learned that the best strategy is to be silent until they bring up a topic that can be used to demonstrate how minarchism fails. Rather than starting arguments, I wait till they step into a contradiction, and then calmly show them a way out. Always be mindful that to them, the state is their parent and family and we all know what happens when you insult someone's momma. Only they can convince themselves that momma don't love them. Statism's contradictions are its weakness and imbalance and when a statist takes an unbalanced position, throw them like the anarcho-aikido master you are.
  • golefevre's picture
    golefevre 3 years 16 weeks ago Page tzo
    The only way to win is never to play the game. That's why I can't understand how people like Roderick Long, Tom Woods and others can so incredulously dismiss these points about voting, telling us participation in politics would be defensive. If a principle is sound and rooted in reason, it is never worth giving up.
  • Lawrence M. Ludlow's picture
    Lawrence M. Ludlow 3 years 16 weeks ago Page tzo
    Tzo, thanks for the follow-up on part 1! Excellent as usual!
  • Scott Lazarowitz's picture
    Scott Lazarowitz 3 years 16 weeks ago Page tzo
    You said it in a nutshell: "But if Ron Paul can “fix stuff” because as an elected individual he wields so much power that he can transform the nation, then the next evil person to take that power can undo everything, and more. This is a reasonable way to organize society?"
  • rita's picture
    rita 3 years 16 weeks ago
    Food Stamps
    Web link Michael Dunn
    I'm not against government per se; but I do believe that no government is preferable to the one we have now. Who gets to decide, etc. is a rhetorical question -- of course, the same monsters who decide what drugs we may or may not use will be the ones deciding what we may or may not eat. What I'd like to know is why an article promoting more interference in priovate lives ever ended up here in the first place. Poverty as we know it in the US today, was created by our so-called "leaders." I get that. And I get that the black market is the free market exerting itself. I also get that the "Arab Spring" didn't arise because people yearned for democracy, it arose because people were hungry. Trading in food stamps is one way the poor have left to survive.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 16 weeks ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    "Consent must be individual and explicit in order to be valid. It’s that simple, and that true." ~ Alex R. Knight III G'day Alex R. Knight III, are you a citizen of the United States or any of the several States that have subjected their collective membership to the dominion of the United States government? Check Yes or No, and Sign here______________________.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 16 weeks ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    "... the world is governed by very different personages from what is imagined by those who are not behind the scenes." ~  Prime Minister of England, Benjamin Disraeli (during reign of Queen Victoria) Coningsby, by Disraeli; Longmans Co., 1881, page 252
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 3 years 16 weeks ago Web link Jad Davis
    Minus out the drug offenders and PBSP is chock full of people that need to be locked up. My heart don't bleed for those pricks.
  • John deLaubenfels's picture
    John deLaubenfels 3 years 16 weeks ago Page Alex R. Knight III
    I agree with your thesis, and, like you, don't vote and consider voting pointless at best and immoral at worst. I do want to disagree slightly, however, and cut people who voted for Obama a little more slack than you do. Obama promised many wonderful things and reneged on every promise. Should those who voted for him have foreseen this? I suppose that informed would-be voters WOULD foresee his turn-around, but I admit to being slightly surprised at how complete it has been. He praised whistleblowers, for example; who could have predicted that once in office, he'd go after them with a vengeance never before seen in the U.S.? Ultimately, all of this reinforces your point. Obama and his minions are illegitimate. Neither you nor I nor millions of others agreed to be pushed around by his thugs. Where he was born is irrelevant.
  • GeoffreyTransom's picture
    GeoffreyTransom 3 years 16 weeks ago Page Bob Wallace
    The "ignorant of one's own ignorance" thingy is now called the "Dunning-Kruger Effect" (the original paper is here - http://bit.ly/k4kyhO ) I also take issue with this - "The estimate of war deaths in the 20th Century range from 177 million to 200 million people, almost all of them due to those two ideologies" (the 'two ideologies' being Nazism and Communism, for those who read comments in email). The deaths attributed to both Nazism and Communism in WWII were, in reality, due more to the reaction of the (waning) Great Powers' reaction to the regime in Germany. France and Britain did not like the Hitler government, and were keen to foment conflict. Yes, naughty old Adolf tried to annex bits of Poland and Czechoslovakia - but the notion that Britain and France were 'obliged' to go to war as a result of either annexation are risible. Given how badly the same ploy worked in 1914, it is lamentable that anyone would have thought it would fare better in 1939 - but at the end of the day, perhaps it makes sense: war is about enriching one's cronies who own the arms manufactories and financiers, n'est-ce pas? The deaths in WWII - almost to a man - were entirely avoidable. There is little evidence that even the unpleasantness experienced by 'internal enemies' (e.g., Jews - whose transnational hierarchy declared 'war' on Germany in 1933) would have reached the heights it did, had the war not been started by France and Britain. After all, the Americans interned all their Japanese (without regard as to whether they were actively working for the Emperor) without incident: deplorable and racist though it was, internment per se does not indicate a predilection for genocide. As a kratoclast (a word I think I made up - it means "one who wants to break State power"), I am an enemy of ALL States - so I am certainly no fan of Naughty Old Adolf or his regime (even though they had spiffy uniforms and were quite popular at the time). But history is not a cartoon, and as Pat Buchanan has noted, Hitler was not interested in any territory outside of Germanophone bits of the Sudetenland and the Danzig corridor... until the inbred syphilitic catamite warmonger Churchill began agitating for war. Imagine for an instant, a world in which German-speakers in the Sudetenland and Danzig were reintegrated into Germany: where England and France simply reneged on their defence pacts with Poland and Czechoslovakia. Would there have been mass deaths in camps? Given that the overwhelming majority of internees were from regions captured as a result of being forced into war (not a single 'death camp' exists in areas not liberated by the Soviets), my conjecture is 'No'. And of course the 3-4 million dead in South East Asia were not 'caused' by Communism - they were caused by the US refusing to permit the Vietnamese to experiment with Communism. Had the US kept its nose out, Communism would have failed in Viet Nam due to its inability to furnish growing material prosperity. In summary: all those deaths were caused by the combination of hubris and insouciance on the part of the political class REGARDLESS of specific ideology. Same with all the deaths in the First World War, and all the deaths in Viet Nam, Korea, Iraq, Afghanistan and anywhere else that the downtrodden are sent to kill each other on behalf of the scum who seek to rule.
  • GregL's picture
    GregL 3 years 16 weeks ago
    Openwatch
    Web link Jad Davis
    Great tool for surreptitiously documenting interactions with authorities.
  • rita's picture
    rita 3 years 16 weeks ago Web link Jad Davis
    Everything about the so-called "war on drugs", including its much-lamented "failure", is a lie. The prohibition of drugs has its roots in racism. It is, and always has been, a tool of oppression. The reason to end the war isn't that it has failed. The reason to end it is that is has succeeded, far beyond anyone's wildest dreams.
  • rita's picture
    rita 3 years 16 weeks ago Web link Jad Davis
    The author loses me at "murderous drug trade." The link between "illegal drugs" and violence isn't the word "drug." The link is "illegal." Trying to stop the cartels without legalizing drugs is the equivalent of putting a band-aid on a mortal wound; mopping up blood while nations bleed. Our government, our so-called "leaders", have the power, right now, to STOP the violence in Mexico. They won't do it, because it's America's collective, insane fear of "drugs" and "drug dealers" that maintains the status quo.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 16 weeks ago
    Goodbye, Number Five
    Web link Melinda L. Secor
    Oh, for cryin' out loud, "the Fifth Amendment to the Bill of Rights[sic]" doesn't apply to 14th Amendment citizens, those who have "subjected themselves to the dominion[1] of [the United States] government"! Furthermore, it is not "the Fifth Amendment to the Bill of Rights", it's the Fifth Amendment (Amendment V) to the United States Constitution. ________________________________________________________________________________________ [1] Dominion. Generally accepted definition of "dominion" is perfect control in right of ownership. ~ Black's Law Dictionary, Sixth Edition (c.1991), page 486 [Emphasis added]
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 16 weeks ago
    Food Stamps
    Web link Michael Dunn
    G'day rita, So, if you see a man in need of food and you offer him a 'handout', you think that there is something wrong with you telling him what he may and may buy not with that 'handout'? Also, if it was only YOUR 'sweat' that was paying for that 'handout', then you could certainly say, "go ahead and buy anything you like with it", and "it's okay to resell that stuff at half price if you want to, so you can buy booze or drugs with it", but you see, rita, it isn't only YOUR 'sweat' that is paying for it. In a collectivist society the 'sweat' to pay for that 'handout' comes from the collective, i.e. all the individuals that voluntarily choose to be members of that collective, so you, alone, don't get to decide how that 'handout' will be regulated. "...who gets to decide, and who gets to enforce, and what are you going to do with people who violate?" Your "representative", called "your government", gets to decide all those things, rita. "I'm not an anarchist, not yet..." Wow, rita!! If, after all your chosen rulers have apparently done to you, and after hanging out here at STR for over a year, you are still "not yet" an anarchist, I can't help but wonder what it's going to take. By the way, you might be interested in knowing, the opposite of anarchist or anti-archist, i.e. one who is against having a ruler, is pro-archist, one who is in favor of having a ruler. So, if you're "not yet" an anarchist...
  • tzo's picture
    tzo 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    Well, I think there is another option besides fighting and running, and that is to stay put and figure out how to put personal freedom into action for yourself. If you work a typical job that requires SSN, then you will be on IRS radar. So perhaps you pay taxes to avoid attention. In the real world of today, that is a tradeoff for living in society. But your day to day activities can be pretty government-free. Step one is to forget about participating. Don't worry about who is running for what under some platform with such and such promises. Just eliminating this static from your brain eventually clears your head and makes you feel better. If you can interact with others who are like-minded, then all the better. If you can disconnect from the typical employment chains, even better. If you can't, don't worry about it. Life cannot be perfect, and even if it looks miles away from perfect, you cannot worry about what you cannot change. I address this a bit in Part II of this article, arriving soon. I am a bit embarrassed to admit I haven't read it, but Harry Browne's How I found Freedom in an Unfree World http://www.amazon.com/How-Found-Freedom-Unfree-World/dp/0965603679 probably helps one adjust his mind and actions to peacefully coexist with less-than-ideal surroundings. A pdf of it is here: http://www.4shared.com/document/HiMYLb9x/Harry_Browne_-_How_I_Found_Fre.... From the prologue: *** Freedom is the opportunity to live your life as you want to live it. The freedom you seek is already available to you, but it has gone unnoticed.  There probably are two basic reasons you haven’t taken advantage of that freedom. 1. One reason is that you’re unaware of the many alternatives available to you. 2. The second reason you’re not free is because you’ve probably accepted without challenge certain assumptions that restrict your freedom. *** It is perfectly natural to feel a bit adrift after cutting your mind loose from the old government tether. That anxiety dissipates over time. Now you just have to figure out how to apply what you know to your own life. Don't worry that the world, or the US, or whatever state or county you live in may never reflect the principles of a free society. Your existence is defined by the people and places that surround you. You have a measure of control over that, and so figure out a way to carve out a little slice of good life for yourself and your family and friends. These little pockets will eventually connect up, but for right now you are one of the little sparks that has to help light the big fire.
  • Darkcrusade's picture
    Darkcrusade 3 years 17 weeks ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    They are getting better at the killings. http://www.vinsuprynowicz.com/?p=562
  • Melinda L. Secor's picture
    Melinda L. Secor 3 years 17 weeks ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    HA HA....I wasn't advocating for the monkeys with that link....I found the parallel between captive chimps, higher rates of mental illness and what is happening in our own society a tad amusing in a dark sort of way....spiraling rates of mental illness in people as we are regulated, policed and micromanaged from cradle to grave....
  • GregL's picture
    GregL 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    Geoffrey, Thanks for a very interesting post. One of the difficulties of implementing "Liberty Pools" is the lack of an efficient way of anonymously transferring money. I was wondering how you think the advent of bitcoin possibly coupled with Tor (see Silk Road) might impact this in the future.
  • rita's picture
    rita 3 years 17 weeks ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    Oh, dear -- free the monkeys. Then you can use the extra cages for human beings, because God forbid you ever stop caging human beings.
  • rita's picture
    rita 3 years 17 weeks ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    Welcome to OUR world, Mayor -- the world of the people you step on every day.
  • rita's picture
    rita 3 years 17 weeks ago
    Food Stamps
    Web link Michael Dunn
    I'm not an anarchist, not yet, although I can sure see it from here -- but here's the thing -- if you're going to give handouts, give handouts. If you can't help, stay the f**k away. One thing none of us, and the poor in particular, need, is more regulation. You can buy this, but not that -- who gets to decide, and who gets to enforce, and what are you going to do with people who violate?
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    Hi GeoffreyTransom, My 'First Axiom of Political Power' is simply this: "Any person who desires political power, should be kept from political power at all costs." EXACTLY right, (with no reference to Black's Law Dictionary)!
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    We tend to toss the word "law" around as though there is only one law, one set of rules. Here is a partial list found under the heading "LAW" in Webster's 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language. 2. Municipal law... Municipal or civil laws... 3. Law of nature... 4. Laws of animal nature... 5. Laws of vegetation... 6. Physical laws, or laws of nature... 7. Laws of nations... 8. Moral law... 9. Ecclesiastical law... 10. Written law... 11. Unwritten or common law... 12. By-law... 13. Mosaic law... 14. Ceremonial law... 21. Law martial, or martial law... 22. Marine laws... 23. Commercial law, law-merchant... 26. ...Civil law, criminal law... Laws of honor. I believe that "true laws" are discoverable, provable, and unchangeable, all the rest are the arbitrary and capricious laws created by men, "the congealed shit left over after a bunch of career parasites are finished taking bribes; when they get around to the serious business of politics, which is simply forcing people to obey their whims" (Quote by GeoffreyTransom).
  • DanClore's picture
    DanClore 3 years 17 weeks ago Web link Westernerd
    I dislike the way this article equates lack of an effective central government with lack of government -- Somalia has been overflowing with competing governments, from the warlords that divided the country into a patchwork of fiefdoms, to the Islamic Courts Union that provided a loose federation of regional authorities, to the US/UN/AU-backed Transitional National Government, to the Ethiopian military that invaded and occupied the country, to al-Shabaab, the extreme Islamist wing of the ICU that has seized power in most of the country now, as interventions from outside resulted in the opposite of their intended result. Anyway, I've followed the story closely enough over the years to know that warlords in particular favored the growth of the telecommunications industry, because that meant more remittances from expatriots, and hence more money for them to leech from their subjects.
  • GeoffreyTransom's picture
    GeoffreyTransom 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    Hi @Suverans2... EXACTLY right: the "without due process of law" is the thing that gives it away... all you need is a pet charlatan like Scalia, Yoo or Bybee, and hey Presto! Torture is legal, dropping bombs on water treatment plants and killing children is not 'war' (but hacking the Pentagon is an 'act of war'). YAY! I also have nothing but contempt for people who think highly of the notion of a bunch of robed geriatrics hand-picked by the political class, engaging in silly mediaeval theatre set pieces. No doubt that Tom Paine and (some of) the rest of them had the good intentions, but anyone with an IQ above about 60 sees the word 'law' FAR too often in the key documents of the Revolutionary (French and US) periods. For example - the French 1789 "Declaration of the Rights of Man" should fill its reader with nothing but dismay... leaving the way open for the Scalias, Yoos and Bybees of the world to parse its language out of all recognition. (By contrast, I find no fault whatsoever with Articles 30-35 of the 1793 version...) At bottom though, the political and juridical process are - as Tzo so eloquently put it - dancing around the volcano. Bones in the nose, grass skirts, stupid masks... when you boil it down, the "hooblah hoo" industry persists, be it at SCOTUS, the Congress or the Vatican. 'Law' is the congealed shit left over after a bunch of career parasites are finished taking bribes; when they get around to the serious business of politics, which is simply forcing people to obey their whims. My 'First Axiom of Political Power' is simply this: "Any person who desires political power, should be kept from political power at all costs."
  • GeoffreyTransom's picture
    GeoffreyTransom 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    Neil D., It's possible to undertake (defensive) violent action against the State and its armed goons, without front-on confrontation in serried ranks... nobody with a lick of sense advocates a 'storm the barricades' action à la the French peasants at the Bastille - for the precise reason that had the Crown possessed modern high powered weaponry in 1789, history books would contain a story about how one day a bunch of uppity French peasants got cut to shreds. Serried ranks against the modern machinery of tyranny... that is the definition of stupid. In contrast, Jim Bell's "Assassination Politics" has a very stupid name, but its inner workings are a quite-precise formulation of how to go about things sensibly. In short, it's obvious on a moment's reflection that the right way to degrade State power is to degrade the operational effectiveness of its enforcement arm... and the way to do that is to 'tilt' incentives enough to engender a fall in the State-goon's willingness to furnish his labour. Targeted, extreme ultraviolence is the answer - Ghandians are simply wrong. The best recent example of the "swan's legs" fury that underpins 'peaceful protest", is the msot successful of the Arab Spring actions - OpEgypt. During OpEgypt, while DDoS furnished a diversion, folks like me were diligently hacking the Egyptian Department of the Interior in order to get information about Mubarak's secret police - the Mukhabarat. We got access to the Ministry's personnel database, which included lists of Mukhabarat undercover operatives and informants - names, cover names, addresses, safe-house extraction addresses, family details... you name it. There were about 3200 names from Cairo, of which 1600 were actual Mukhabarat (i.e., not just informants). From there, we identified a few dozen single men without children, and a subset of those were beaten to within an inch of their lives (5 died, in fact - you cannot control via the internet, the zeal of the man who gets to confront his oppressor). Thereafter, telephone calls were place to 5% of the remaining list - telling them what had happened to their colleagues, WHY it had happened, and informing the listener that their fate was similar if they continued to profit from participating in the machinery of tyranny... and that they should let everyone know that this was the case. The 'grapevine' did the rest. This attempt to use relatively-low levels of targeted violence followed by an information campaign to engender a 'chilling effect' is PRECISELY the primary operational feature of "Assassination Politics" (I prefer to call it "Liberty Pools" - but in deference to Jim Bell I stick with his nomenclature). And everywhere it gets implemented, it works. And it works FAST. The OpEgypt hack took place on January 24th: the attacks and phone calls happened on the night of January 26th. On January 27th there was ZERO State security presence on the streets of Cairo. The protest leaders were actually frightened - they were certain that Mubarak's forces had positioned themselves (or infiltrated the protests in plain clothes - that had happened before). When it became clear that the State's machinery of oppression had simply given up, it was clear that the Egyptian government would fall. By the end, Mubarak's remaining powerbase had to give out KFC vouchers to the unemployed to get counter-protests going... they became known as the 'shabaab kantacki' (Kentucky [Fried] Rabble). The reason for this long-winded explanation is to point out that, even (in fact ESPECIALLY) under the most despotic regime, the forces of tyranny are susceptible to focused ultraviolence: SWAT swaggering fucktards don't wear kevlar in their homes, and their vehicles are not in secure parking at all times. And if they're not in a pack, they are usually pussies - steroid enhancement or not. They might have visions of getting all Steven Segal against multiple attackers, but in real life getting jumped by just 3 decent sized men is a fucking nightmare and is impossible for even the best-trained fellow to counter: basically, unless you immobilise one of the 3 before the jump, you end up getting the shit kicked out of you (and it only stops when your attackers decide it stops). The basic point is this - if your average SWAT-tard knows he has to hold his breath every time he starts his car in the morning, he will feel more inclined to call in sick (and/or go look for productive work as a mallcop). If the local Deppidy-Sherrif knows he has to keep one eye on the window while jacking off to re-runs of COPS, he will feel less inclined to confiscate some poor guy's weed. If the undercover narc knows that he can be identified by an information insecurity, he feels more like quitting. And so on and so forth: in the humint world, clandestine operatives spend half of their psychic energy shitting themselves at the prospect of discovery... adding infosec vulnerability to that is a GOOD thing for the liberty-minded. The best bit: the 'Ooh-rah!' loud-mouth types are actually the biggest cowards. They give up first when the going gets seriously tough: the smarter cops/spooks/snitches learn to adapt their behaviour and start behaving like a human. It's harder with military or paramilitary - like the French gendarmes - because they live in barracks (this is precisely to remove them from interaction with those they oversee)... but undercover cops can't live in barracks - and the Surété's cyber-defences were written by an amateur. If you want to get a good parallel, think of Afghanistan and Iraq: the anti-invasion forces are undermanned and WAY underpowered - but they are gradually forcing the invader out of their homeland by harassment and insurgency. The same way the 'mighty' US military was defeated in Viet Nam and Mogadishu, and the French in Indochina and Algeria. And the blowback is that the US winds up with 2 million men who have been driven half out of their minds by combat stress... vast numbers of whom become progressively disenchanted with their post-deployment treatment.
  • Tony Pivetta's picture
    Tony Pivetta 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    Constitutionalists are fond of mocking the myth of democracy, likening it to mob rule. "God's law trumps man's law," they'll say, if they're inclined to a Judeo-Christian view of natural rights. "The Commandment is 'Thou Shalt Not Steal,' not 'Thou Shalt Not Steal Except By Majority Rule.'" Then they'll turn around and defend the Constitution, which even under a narrow reading (whose?!) authorizes the Congress to violate all kinds of rights to life and property. In other words, "Thou Shalt Not Steal Except to Fund the Few and Enumerated Powers of the Federal Government as Stipulated by Article 1, Section 8." Who can mock that?
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    G'day tzo, You wrote: "Here the Constitutionalist jumps in to point out that the Constitution—the basis of this government—is not the source of rights, but merely the declaration that those innate rights shall not be infringed upon by the government." It's not even that, in my opinion, because, to be more precise, their beloved Constitution states that their voluntary members innate [natural] rights cannot be infringed upon by the government without "due process of law" , and, as has been mentioned elsewhere, "due process of law" is whatever the fox guarding the hen house says it is. "No person shall...be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation*." ~ Excerpted from Amendment V of the Bill of Rights [Emphasis added] * Care to take a guess at who gets to decide what "just compensation" is? Furthermore, if that is true, then the opposite is also true, that is to say, if their voluntary members innate rights cannot be infringed upon by the government without "due process of law", then their innate rights can be infringed upon by the government with "due process of law", which, again, because it bears repeating, is whatever the fox guarding the hen house says it is.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    "...you apparently missed these three questions, (the previous three times I posted them), since you failed to answer...", so I will try once more. (1) What is it you are looking for, the "magic bullet", the perfectly painless way to withdraw from membership in the STATE? [Edited for accuracy] (2) What is your strategy, change enough people's minds with your rhetoric, and "alternative news", that they will "alter or...abolish" the STATE for you? (3) Do you even know me, Michael Kleen? [This last one I have now asked five times!]
  • Neil D.'s picture
    Neil D. 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    Tzo, as an ex-constitutionalist, I find your points to be very interesting. A concept that I only recently discovered as truth (I'm a slow learner) is that ultimately it is the individual (me) that can act in my own interest, with "act" being the important term. Rights that are "bestowed" upon me by the wonderful government benefactors are meaningless, for reasons you've already described. Lead-in aside, I invariably find this thought process ends in a "me-vs.-literally everyone else" situation. To wit, the only foreseeable outcome in a disagreement between a free man and agents of the government is death. David Koresh and his friends are an obvious example, but the hundreds of thousands of people rotting away inside prisons for what I would deem purely philosophical crimes (felony weapon possession, for example, which while not usually a life term has lifelong and life-altering consequences regardless of whether they are just or not) is also equally illustrative. It is insanity to engage in a physical confrontation with agents of the government with any expectation of victory; there are very many of them with vast amounts of resources. So as I see it, the only other option is to run. Where I am going with this is that it is an excellent thing to say, "Well, I'm not going to pay my taxes any more, because that money's mine." All of this philosophizing will not help one bit when goons show up to extract that tax; telling them that the property they seek is mine won't do much as they commence kicking my head in or locking me in a cage. OK, fine, I may flee from them. But then what? Does being a free man necessitate giving up some of the greatest advancements of humankind - division of labor, for example - for the sake of living in hiding? Thanks for tolerating my no-doubt poorly written wall of text. Please keep writing.
  • GeoffreyTransom's picture
    GeoffreyTransom 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    Very, very good. I've read most of your stuff here, and this is the best thus far. Your 'dancing round the volcano' imagery is as good a metaphor as Stef Molyneux's 'Giant Stone Chicken'. if you invented it; sudo kudos. As you are no doubt aware, a certain pirate vessel recently slipped anchor and began running a privateer operation on the information ocean; the growth in its fleet has been nothing short of staggering, and some of the captains of vessels in the flotilla are men of Hornblower-esque cunning and derring-do. Journalists understand DDoS (it's sufficiently simple) but the fleet's armements are now to DDoS, what Trident is to grapeshot (apologies for the state-navy imagery... but we's sea-farin' folk... arrrr) How I wish that Rothbard was still alive to witness the State's equivalent of the Church's foundering after Gutenberg (the first technological shift that helped disenchant - in the literal sense - a large chunk of the masses). Nobody with an IQ above 'educable' has any excuse for ignorance now - an with that, the modal forecast is that State hegemony will erode in the same way as Church hegemony eroded. Folks like us used to be called 'the Remnant', but now we are over 9000. We are Legion. Expect Us.
  • Glen Allport's picture
    Glen Allport 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    Highly logical, Mr. Spock, and well-spoken! I agree with nearly every word. But this give me pause: "There is very little difference between a citizen who supports the Patriot Act and one who doesn’t. Both have placed their faith and their human rights into a crapshoot wherein they accept to be forced into complying with whoever can summon enough force to get their way." I'd say it differently. There may be very little difference in the political framework those two people have absorbed, yes -- both may believe in the legitimacy of the State and of the Constitution -- but there is likely a large difference between them in terms of how they see and feel about their fellow man, and about how they feel about the freedom of each person. The Patriot Act supporter supports fascism (for whatever reason); the person who opposes the Act at least retains some of the spirit on which America was founded; i.e., that freedom was of central importance and the government was there only to protect that. Clearly -- and you've done a great job of making the point -- that belief was wrong, big-time. Small government is the ember that ignites the conflagration of big government. But that's a cognitive error, not necessarily a symptom of emotional damage. It's not necessarily a display of disrespect for one's fellow human beings. This person is far closer to the abolitionist position than the Patriot Act supporter, and I believe that as the Constitutional State becomes ever-more-clearly harmful to life and liberty, more and more of these confused but essentially decent people will find themselves crossing a mental Rubicon that puts them in the camp of (or at least on the road to) abolition of all State coercion. Writings like yours can help with that -- what other reason would you have for writing? And Dr. Paul's writing and interviews and so on help as well -- he's educating people about central banking, about the severe disconnect between the Constitution and actual government behavior, and so on. He's a way-station on the road to abolitionism, and unlike you and I, Paul has an audience of hundreds of millions, all around the world. He's a major boon to the freedom movement, not because his small-government Statism is the answer but because by consistently and honestly supporting and describing small government and the REASONS for keeping government small, he is shining a spotlght on both the evils of our present huge government and on the inherent failure of using ANY coercive government, no matter how small and "restrained", as the arbiter and protector of civil society. Aggression is not civil, and a civil society must completely embrace the non-aggression principle -- plus, it must do one thing more: it must widely and effectively encourage compassion and the sense of connection with others; that is, it must support emotional health, which in turn means it must strongly support the proper treatment of the very young. Even real freedom cannot survive the harm from a society full of emotionally damaged people; love (compassion, sense of connection, or whatever you want to call it) is the lubricant and anti-corrosive for a free society.
  • Dwight Packer's picture
    Dwight Packer 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    Of course, Spooner and Rothbard were right, and Ron Paul, ultimately, is wrong. But I, too, have a soft spot for Ron. In 2007, while in college, I discovered Ron and the freedom movement. If it weren't for him, I would have never found Rothbard, Spooner, and the other giants. I won't vote, but I will silently hope Ron Paul goes far in the election.
  • Lawrence M. Ludlow's picture
    Lawrence M. Ludlow 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    GregL: I, too, have a "soft" spot for Ron, but see below about sitting down. His value is that of a gateway drug.
  • Lawrence M. Ludlow's picture
    Lawrence M. Ludlow 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    This is so damn good. Tzo, you're it. I've clipped bits of this to go on my FB page! Yes, I prefer Ron Paul to the others on Congress -- much as I prefer a non-bleeding hemorrhoid to a bleeding one! Go Ron, but don't sit down!
  • tzo's picture
    tzo 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    Your comment has triggered the Kleen filter.
  • Scott Lazarowitz's picture
    Scott Lazarowitz 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    I'm verklempt.
  • GregL's picture
    GregL 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    You're right as usual, but I still have a warm spot in my heart for Ron Paul. I see him as a portal through which more people might discover the likes of Spooner, Rothbard, and Tzo.
  • Michael Kleen's picture
    Michael Kleen 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    Just sycophantic praise, Suverans2, no reference to Black's Law Dictionary?
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    Standing and applauding! Encore! Encore! I'll have your horse saddled and ready, sir.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 17 weeks ago
    Food Stamps
    Web link Michael Dunn
    KenK, Spoken like a true collectivist spin doctor. I'm sure we'd all like to see where Ludwig, Murray and Ayn explain "how it's the moral thing to do to let the poor starve".
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 3 years 17 weeks ago
    Food Stamps
    Web link Michael Dunn
    I agree with you Rita. But I fully expect someone to post a Mises/Rothbard/Randanista explanation of how it's the moral thing to do to let the poor starve.
  • rita's picture
    rita 3 years 17 weeks ago
    Food Stamps
    Web link Michael Dunn
    Oh, yeah, make the poor stand in line at soup kitchens if they want to eat -- oh, wait, the people running the soup kitchens are being arrested for feeding the poor without the proper permits. I know, if they want to eat, let 'em get jobs! Oh, wait, there ARE no jobs, even for those capable of working. Lock 'em up! Lock 'em up for being poor! Oh, we already DO that. Here's a better idea -- why don't you just leave them the hell alone? Any program designed to help the needy is bound to be abused. People being what they are, there will ALWAYS be those among us who will take advantage. Being a taxpayer myself, and being, by reason of a drug felony, ineligible for food stamps myself, I'd rather my tax dollars buy steak and lobster and, yes, cigarettes, for a relative few than see the many go without.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 17 weeks ago Page tzo
    Seems that Noah Webster wasn't the only one who knows that a "right" is a "just claim". From "Word Magic Translation Software" we find these: just claim Noun Plural: just claims 1. derecho, reclamación justa; Synonyms: right, individual right... ___________________________________________________________________________________ de·re·cho Masculine - Noun - Singular Plural: derechos Feminine: derecha Plural and Feminine: derechas 1. right, individual right, just claim... __________________________________________________________________________________ re·cla·ma·ción jus·ta Feminine - Noun - Singular Plural: reclamaciones justas 1. just claim; Synonyms: derecho