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Today: Sun, November 23 2014  -  Last modified: April, 26 2007
 Politics
22 November 2014
 
 
Mr. Cameron and Mrs. May
by The Darn-Poor Rhymer
 sub-topic» General

Mr. Cameron and Mrs. May
Have both become a little fey.
“Extremism,” or so they say,
Should get adherents put away.

Yet, as so many times before,
They choose, unwisely, to ignore
Their premise’s big, fatal flaw;
It contradicts the rule of law.

 more» 
19 November 2014
 
 
Liar, Fantasist or Fool?
Cameron can not reform the EU. The only question is why he's telling us he can
by Alex Rantwell
 sub-topic» General

It makes me wonder if Cameron is less of a manipulator or fantasist and instead genuinely misunderstands the whole nature of the project. Perhaps he genuinely believes the line trotted out by generations of Tory leaders, that Europe is a trade agreement that got a little out of hand. This would actually mean he was worse than a deluded fantasist or a liar, which we expect of our politicians, and in fact a blithering idiot who has somehow managed to get himself to the position of Prime Minister without even a basic grasp of the nature of the European Union. Hardly a strong position for someone hoping to lead Britain to a better position in our most important foreign relationship.

 more» 
18 November 2014
 
 
Burn the F****ing System to the Ground
by Clark
 sub-topic» General

The system is not fixable because it is not broken. It is working, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, to give the insiders their royal prerogatives, and to shove the regulations, the laws, and the debt up the asses of everyone else.

 more» 
15 November 2014
 
 
Relax - Both Parties are Going Extinct
by The Daily Beast
 sub-topic» General

What’s going on? The short version is that political, cultural, and even economic power has been decentralizing and unraveling for a long time. Whether you like it or not, The Libertarian Moment is here, a technologically driven individualization of experience and a breakdown of the large institutions—governments, corporations, churches, you name it—that used to govern and structure our lives. The result is that top-down systems, whether public or private, right wing or left wing, have less and less ability to organize our lives. That’s true whether you’re talking about the workplace, the bedroom, or the bar down the street (that may now be serving legal pot). This is mostly good, though it’s also profoundly disruptive too.

 more» 
14 November 2014
 
 
Why you shouldn't vote for politicians
by Neil Lock
 sub-topic» General

There are at least three very good reasons why you shouldn’t vote for any politician. First and most obviously, there is all but zero chance that one individual’s vote can ever make a difference, even in which politician gets elected. And a far smaller chance that one individual’s vote can ever influence any policy, even in the slightest.

Second, there’s not much difference between the main parties anyway. In the UK, choosing between the Hoary Gories, the Slaver Party and the Slob Dims is like choosing between being hung, being shot, or being beheaded with an axe. In the USA, the choice between Repressive Reptiles and Depressive Demons doesn’t look much more appealing.

And third, there’s a very strong moral reason why you should never vote for any mainstream political party. For to vote for a political party is to underwrite both that party, and the system within which it exists. It will be taken as an expression of satisfaction with the party’s previous policies, however evil. It enables the next political government, whether or not you voted for it and however badly it behaves, to claim that you gave it an endorsement of legitimacy. It also violates the Law of No Aiding or Abetting, by showing support for the party’s agenda – which, for all the mainstream parties today, is to harm innocent people, to violate rights and to restrict or destroy freedom.

 more» 
13 November 2014
 
 
The General Challenge to People Who Believe There's a Duty to Vote
by Jason Brennan
 sub-topic» General

Most Americans believe there’s a duty to vote; at least, they’ll say they believe in such a duty when answering surveys.

 more» 
01 November 2014
 
 
Supreme Court Shirks Responsibility in Avoiding Sixth Amendment Case
by Ilya Shapiro
 sub-topic» General

The situation that Scalia feared became manifest in Jones for three criminal defendants who were convicted of selling small quantities of drugs but acquitted of conspiracy charges relating to larger quantities. Despite the acquittals, all three received sentences four times greater than any other defendant convicted of the same crimes in the post-Booker era using the U.S. Sentencing Commission’s guidelines.

 more» 
23 October 2014
 
 
Liberty doesn't require you to vote
by Kent McManigal
 sub-topic» General

It’s odd that the only choices I see offered concern who you’ll have violating your life, liberty, and property in the near future, depending on which “side” you vote for. Rightful liberty, empowered by self-ownership and self-responsibility, free of official violation, is never offered as an option. It’s antimatter to politics.

 more» 
22 October 2014
 
 
Mandated Charity is Evil, Immoral and Destructive
by Jacob G. Hornberger
 sub-topic» General

It’s that mindset of governmental dependency that the welfare state has inculcated into the American people. In the process, the traits that characterized our American ancestors, such as can-do, self-reliance, and independence, have fallen by the wayside.

With their embrace of mandated charity, conservatives and liberals have led out nation down the wrong road — the road to moral debauchery, envy, covetousness, looting, plunder, dependency, economic chaos, and financial crises.

 more» 
15 October 2014
 
 
Defections and By-Elections
by Get Britain Out
 sub-topic» General

In many ways, the Scottish referendum can be seen as a test-run of the arguments we Brexiters will be using in our own independence – though our arguments will be markedly different because our currency certainly does not depend on retaining EU membership. What have we learned from it? Big businesses will use every scare-tactic in the book to frighten the public into sticking with the status-quo.

Rest assured - our campaign will be prepared to challenge any and all scaremongering in the event of an In/Out referendum.

 more» 
09 October 2014
 
 
The Danger We Face Is From Within
by Jacob G. Hornberger
 sub-topic» General

No matter how bad things continue to get, Americans just won’t let go of their welfare-warfare state way of life. Indeed, they don’t even see that their many political and economic woes are rooted in the welfare-warfare state way of life.

Meanwhile, the internal rot grows larger by the day. It’s that internal rot that poses the real danger to America. The same thing happened under the Roman Empire.

 more» 
02 October 2014
 
 
Honesty, Common Sense and a Sound Mind
by Patricia L. Dickson
 sub-topic» General

The only explanation for an individual to not to see what is obvious is for him or her to chooses to ignore facts or deny reality. Ignoring and denying facts involves work. Accepting facts does not require work. In fact, it is easy and less stressful to accept the obvious. If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it is a duck. Two plus two equals four. Liberals will twist themselves into a pretzel in order to ignore facts, deny reality and explain away failure. It depends on the definition of IS. How else can one explain defending President Obama and the Democrat Party’s failed policies?

 more» 
30 September 2014
 
 
Reflections on Politics
by Godfrey Bloom
 sub-topic» General

But I wanted to dig deeper, none of this is new. Any horny handed son of the soil at my local pub is on to the wind scam, yet now they see landowners add to their monstrous single farm payment rent for pipelines to carry CO2 out to sea whilst their neighbours growing tomatoes and cucumbers buy machines to manufacture it to assist production. The local power station, Drax, burns wood chippings from Canada and local grass which takes thousands of acres out of food production. Old age pensioners struggle by on a pittance in the local towns and the greenies claim the moral high ground!

 more» 
13 September 2014
 
 
Another reason the Home Secretary can go hang
by Tim Worstall
 sub-topic» General

Imagine if someone suggested that at some future date a Labour Party Minister should have the ability to sack the duly elected Member of Parliament for Maidenhead? Theresa May would be first upon the barricades protesting this vile intrusion into the democratic process. Which is a useful point for all to remember. When in power never try to claim powers that you really wouldn’t want your opponents to have next time around.

 more» 
11 September 2014
 
 
Thoughts on Scottish Independence
by Sean Gabb
 sub-topic» General

Take Scotland out of our electoral politics, and Labour would become largely the party of the ethnic minorities and the public sector. These interest groups are unlikely yet to secure it victory in a general election. We could, then, for the first time, think seriously about voting for a party we actually liked. I repeat that England has its own authoritarian radicals. But I also repeat that, without the Scottish political class and its client vote in the Scottish cities, the native enemies of our ways would lose much of their hold.

 more» 
22 August 2014
 
 
Patent Examiners Regularly Engaged In Fraud And Abuse Via Telework Program
by the and-lied-about-it dept
 sub-topic» General

For quite some time now, we've discussed how the USPTO had a massive backlog, and that former boss David Kappos solved this "problem" by getting examiners to approve more patents faster, mainly by lowering their standards and granting more patents. Whenever we write about this, we hear about overworked patent examiners who are really trying their best. Except, it appears that the system is actually rife with abuse and fraud by patent examiners:

 more» 
03 August 2014
 
 
Freedom is Neither 'Left'nor 'Right'
by Richard Ebeling
 sub-topic» General

Society is not some giant chessboard, to use a metaphor of Adam Smith's, on which the social engineer moves us about to suit his political pleasure. Rather, the civil society of free men is one in which we form patterns of association with one another as we find them good, desirable and beneficial.

The great political dichotomy, therefore, is between those who advocate force (often and perversely in the name of "good intentions" and "noble causes") and those who value freedom (for the flowering of the individual and the fostering of a just and prosperous society).

For this reason, the cause of liberty continues to transcend the erroneous distinction between "left" and right."

 more» 
31 July 2014
 
 
Labor Unions are Anti-Labor
by George Reisman
 sub-topic» General

To anyone who understands the role of the productivity of labor in raising real wages, it should be obvious that the unions’ policy of combating the rise in the productivity of labor renders them in fact a leading enemy of the rise in real wages. However radical this conclusion may seem, however much at odds it is with the prevailing view of the unions as the leading source of the rise in real wages over the last hundred and fifty years or more, the fact is that in combating the rise in the productivity of labor, the unions actively combat the rise in real wages!

 more» 
18 July 2014
 
 
The Question Is, Why Should ANYONE Trust the Government?
by Kevin Carson
 sub-topic» General

So why should anyone trust the US government? It’s been the tool of one economic ruling class or another ever since the big merchants, bond holders, land barons and slave owners at Philadelphia created it. At the most delusional height of confidence in government, it was promoting torture, murder, terror and tyranny to defend a neocolonial world order — and it never stopped doing that. Indeed, the state takes advantage of every increase in public trust to ramp up its criminal activities.

So maybe popular distrust of government isn’t such a bad thing.

 more» 
12 July 2014
 
 
Well-meaning thieves
by Kent McManigal
 sub-topic» General

I have had people argue that they aren't thieves because they work for their money... they don't believe it is work to mug people in the park, or to break into houses and carry out all the valuables? Not only is it "work", it is dangerous "work". Do they believe those thieves should be compensated for the hard work they do?

Well, a mugger's "job" isn't wanted by me – and neither is the government school teacher's position, nor the cop's, nor the bureaucrat's. I willingly pay for what I want, but when I am forced to pay for what I don't want and would prefer to do without, I am being robbed. And so are you.

 more» 
11 July 2014
 
 
Legal action: Christian bakers in gay campaign cake row
by The Christian Institute
 sub-topic» General

“All the McArthurs want is to run their bakery according to their Christian beliefs. There won’t be many situations where they need to turn down an order but this is obviously one of them. No one should be forced to use their creative skills to promote a cause which goes against their consciences. Imbalanced equality laws are making it increasingly hard for people, especially Christians.

 more» 
06 July 2014
 
 
British Politics for Beginners: Lesson One
by Without Prejudice
 sub-topic» General

 more» 
28 June 2014
 
 
Would You Push the Button?
by Jeffrey Tucker
 sub-topic» General

It strikes me as rather obvious that the state today is declining in its perceived social merit, relevance for the good life, and functioning even at the most basic level. It is being bested at every turn by technology, social organizing, globalization, and private enterprise. In many respects, it is more vicious than ever; in more profound respects, it is more useless than ever.

We need to start thinking about what life would be like without the state. This is why button pushing is such a fun thought experiment, and so much better than wallowing in the bloody childhood fantasies of public-school civics texts.

 more» 
14 June 2014
 
 
Total Recall?
by Alexandra Runswick
 sub-topic» General

Last week’s Queens Speech finally saw the Government announce their intention to bring forward a Recall Bill for debate in Parliament. Good news you would think. But it was yet another tick box exercise rather than real reform.

Why? Because instead of empowering voters with the right to recall an errant MP, government want to give the power of recall to a parliamentary committee. And the grounds for recall would be limited to serious financial offences or if an MP was sentenced to 12 months in jail. This is unacceptable.

 more» 
10 June 2014
 
 
Recall stitch-up: The coalition doesn't trust voters to discipline their MPs
by Andy Silvester
 sub-topic» General

Yesterday’s fudge will do the opposite of what it was intended to do; it won’t restore the trust lost in Westminster after the expenses scandal. By offering something that looks like recall, sounds like recall, but very definitely isn’t recall, the coalition is only likely to have widened the gap between the electorate and their representatives.

 more» 
09 June 2014
 
 
Comment re Sean Gabb on UKIP
by Vabadus
 sub-topic» General

It is the Conservative Party, not Labour, that we need to attack. Voting for them is counter-productive, pointless, and inexcusable.

 more» 
08 June 2014
 
 
Earthquake Europe
European election results point to a different road for the continent
by Iain Murray
 sub-topic» General

An earthquake, they called it. The European political establishment looked on helplessly over Memorial Day weekend as elections for representatives to the European Parliament showed populist parties of right and left making large gains—from Britain to Greece, from Spain to Finland. Yet, some already are saying that things won’t change much. A reprise of “Small earthquake in Chile, not many dead”? No, the reality is that European politics have> shifted. And while there are reasons for worry, the future may look brighter for the momentarily dark continent.

 more» 
26 May 2014
 
 
Paramilitary Tactics Learned Abroad, Used at Home
by Ted Baumann
 sub-topic» General

The paramilitaries are from the U.S. government. The objects of their reign of terror are U.S. citizens, living peacefully in their homes on U.S. soil. There is a foreign angle to this, however — the weapons, clothing, tactics and even language these thugs use are all taken straight from U.S. combat experience in Afghanistan and Iraq.

 more» 
20 May 2014
 
 
What UKIP Must Learn from the American Liberty Movement
by Robin Koerner
 sub-topic» General

Throughout history, political movements that have captured the young – and thereby secured their longevity – have inspired and impassioned, leaving no doubt about the intention to build something bigger and better than exists today.

Positive vision inspires; policies alone do not. To win in the long-run takes both.

 more» 
13 May 2014
 
 
Politics Makes Life Ugly
by Paul Rosenberg
 sub-topic» General

Politics is ugly by nature. Think about what a political process really involves.

Once a political process is completed, people have a binary choice: either obey or be punished.

At the end of every political process are armed men, violently enforcing it. That’s barbaric, and it’s ugly.

The truth is that we really don’t need those embittering ideologies. And if we ever really did need them, we’ve outgrown them.

 more» 
03 May 2014
 
 
The Sun: False and defamatory
by Roger Helmer MEP
 sub-topic» General

I was deeply shocked today by today’s report, and editorial piece, in the Sun. It claimed that I had said “It’s fine to despise gay people”, that “being gay is a mental health issue”, and that I had suggested that “homophobia is OK”. None of these propositions is true, or remotely relates to my views.

 more» 
02 April 2014
 
 
The "Progressive" Welfare State Fantasy - Part 2
by Kevin Carson
 sub-topic» General

So the actual dynamic we have here is: 1) the state set up a whole system of artificial scarcities, artificial property rights, monopolies, cartels and entry barriers, which enable an economic ruling class to extract rents of various sorts from the working population; and 2) the welfare state takes a tiny fraction of this surplus (previously extracted with the help of the state) and gives the most destitute of the working class just enough to prevent the disparities of wealth from undermining the levels of aggregate demand needed to keep the system running, and to prevent outright homelessness and starvation leading to political destabilization.

 more» 
01 April 2014
 
 
REVEALED: Government underestimates public sector pension liability by £610 billion
by The TaxPayers' Alliance
 sub-topic» General

The official National Debt is around £1.2 trillion. But that doesn’t include liabilities for public sector pensions, which are kept off the books. Unlike private sector and local government pension plans, no funds are saved to meet the expected pension payments when they become due. The bill is simply left for future taxpayers to pay.

 more» 
31 March 2014
 
 
The "Progressive" Welfare State Fantasy - Part 1
by Kevin Carson
 sub-topic» General

More recently, as described by Colin Ward, the emerging welfare state bureaucracy in Britain actively suppressed working class mutuals, seeing them as atavistic relics of an outdated era. Then when the welfare state came under attack from the Right, the alternatives it proposed all involved “privatization” of state agencies by selling them off to the highest corporate bidder. So in fact the state itself played a central role in reducing the alternatives to a choice between the bureaucratic centralized welfare state and neoliberal “privatization.”

 more» 
14 March 2014
 
 
A 21st Century Magna Carta?
by Unlock Democracy
 sub-topic» General

The Magna Carta is admired around the world as a symbol of liberty – the first occasion the people of England were granted rights against an absolute king. It will be fitting that we celebrate this important moment in our history, but we must not lose sight of how far we still have to go. We want to hear what you think a Magna Carta for today should contain:

 more» 
10 March 2014
 
 
Head of Dutch Libertarian Party Arrested Just Weeks Before Election
by Peter Beukelman
 sub-topic» General

The Netherlands has become a country where violent criminals can be free to go the next day, while others are locked away in a psychiatric ward for a year (after having already endured a year in jail) for throwing a tealight holder in frustration at the Queen enroute to a presentation about how taxes were going to be wasted the following year. It has become a country in which Toine Manders, who advocates the non-aggression principle, is at risk of missing the first birthday of his son because he is held in a cage by a monopoly of violence that saw their revenue stream threatened.

 more» 
01 March 2014
 
 
Defining the Enemy
by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
 sub-topic» General

One crucial factor in creating a cohesive group is to define who is excluded from membership. Nazi propagandists contributed to the regime's policies by publicly identifying groups for exclusion, inciting hatred or cultivating indifference, and justifying their pariah status to the populace. Nazi propaganda played a crucial role in selling the myth of the “national community” to Germans who longed for unity, national pride and greatness, and a break with the rigid social stratification of the past. But a second, more sinister aspect of the Nazi myth was that not all Germans were welcome in the new community. Propaganda helped to define who would be excluded from the new society and justified measures against the “outsiders”: Jews, Sinti and Roma (Gypsies), homosexuals, political dissidents, and Germans viewed as genetically inferior and harmful to “national health” (people with mental illness and intellectual or physical disabilities, epileptics, congenitally deaf and blind persons, chronic alcoholics, drug users, and others).

 more» 
17 February 2014
 
 
What the British people want from their politicians... and what they get
by Robert Henderson
 sub-topic» General

The manifesto described above would not appeal in every respect to ever member of the “disenfranchised majority”. But its general political slant would be palatable to that majority and there would be sufficient within the detail to allow any individual who is currently disenchanted with politics to feel that there were a decent number of important policies for which he or she could happily vote. That is the best any voter can expect in a representative democracy. People could again believe that voting might actually change things.

 more» 
14 February 2014
 
 
Courage, mon vieux!
by Roger Helmer MEP
 sub-topic» General

I think that there may be two practical options for a referendum. First, while Miliband is dead set against it, there is significant and increasing pressure on Labour to offer a referendum. It may become a political necessity. Second, the EU machine is pursuing substantial internal changes which will require a new Treaty, and therefore a UK referendum.

 more» 
12 February 2014
 
 
William Roache Should Never Have Been Put on Trial
by The Libertarian Alliance
 sub-topic» General

We further suggest that whoever in the Crown Prosecution Service authorised the charges against Mr Roache to go to trial should be named and sacked and deprived of his or her pension.

 more» 
30 January 2014
 
 
America's Bipartisan Political Class
by Doug Bandow
 sub-topic» General

Inequality is inevitable in any free society. However, the rule of law can limit political inequality. The starting point should be to make those in government to live by the same laws as the rest of us.

 more» 
15 January 2014
 
 
Nothing but Failure for Welfare-Warfare Statists
by Jacob G. Hornberger
 sub-topic» General

Despite the manifest failure of their most beloved programs, welfare statists and warfare statists just won’t let go. They plead, “We’re not responsible for this. Things just happened that were beyond our control. Judge us by our good intentions, not by the actual results of our statist programs. Please give us 10 more years to turn things around.”

They’re not entitled to another day. They’ve done enough damage. Their statist programs need to be dismantled, not reformed, along with the welfare-warfare departments and agencies that operate them. The time has come to let libertarian principles lead us to peace, prosperity, harmony, and freedom.

 more» 
08 January 2014
 
 
Marching Toward Smaller Government
by Jeff D. Opdyke
 sub-topic» General

Why should the 29,200 residents of those five counties pay taxes to and align themselves with a state that does not represent their values and interests — in fact, a state that forces upon them values they find abhorrent and which threaten their local economy? And don’t say they have the freedom to uproot and find somewhere more conducive to their beliefs. While that might be true, it’s just as true that they have the freedom to breakaway and form North Colorado if that best fits their needs.

 more» 
07 January 2014
 
 
ode to parasites
by Ted
 sub-topic» General

A tiny bit of research showed me that I could have every bit as much money in my pocket if I moved to the other side. Since the management I was working under was, to be polite, HORRID, I took my leave and moved over to the parasite class.

A parasite on a wholesome host is a bad thing. I’m not so sure how to classify a parasite on an evil beast. Are you?

 more» 
04 January 2014
 
 
From the annals of standard bureaucratic behaviour we bring you the RSPCA
by Tim Worstall
 sub-topic» General

But the real point comes from what this suggestion tells us about those inside the RSPCA. They're a bureaucracy just doing what bureaucracies do. Which is, as Parkinson pointed out to us, simply exist for the sake of existing. Once established, once past that first flush of success in addressing whatever it is, the point and purpose of a bureaucracy is simply to maintain its own existence and, if possible, expand the budget and size of it. And that's it.

Which is precisely what the RSPCA is doing here. There is no point or purpose to licencing all of the nations pets other than to give the RSPCA something to do. Which is why they have suggested it.

And, of course, why we should tell them where they can get off and the horse they rode in on.

 more» 
28 December 2013
 
 
The Criminal ATF
by James Wilson and Jim Babka
 sub-topic» General

If it is wrong for citizens to initiate criminal conspiracies, then it is doubly wrong for "public servants" to do so. Agents of The State are supposed to "serve and protect," not "entrap and sting."

 more» 
21 December 2013
 
 
What Divide Between Liberals and Conservatives?
by Jacob G. Hornberger
 sub-topic» General

But when one deals with principle, it is easy to see that there really isn’t any divide at all. The argument between conservatives and liberals is not over such issues as the role of government in a free society or the meaning of liberty. They both agree that it’s the role of government to take care of people and that that is what freedom is all about. Their differences are over the extent to which they want government taking care of people.

 more» 
11 December 2013
 
 
Freedom is the Cure for the Homelessness Problem (and Everything Else!) in America
by Scott Lazarowitz
 sub-topic» General

Alas, to some people the thought of such freedom is so overwhelming and frightening, they fear that it would cause rampant criminality by the masses who presumably need government restrictions on activities to control them.

But we already HAVE rampant criminality being committed against us, by corrupt and covetous, greedy politicians and bureaucrats, banksters and other corporatists, police, prosecutors and judges. Let’s take away their legislative and weaponized means of committing such criminality, frauds and extortions, and such violence against so many millions of innocent people, I say.

 more» 
27 November 2013
 
 
"The Commies, the Terrorists, the Uh, Er, Bogeymen are Coming!"
by Butler Shaffer
 sub-topic» General

Should the threat of the “terrorist” ever wear thin – or should Boobus become bored by it – rest assured that the corporate-state forces are resilient enough to fathom the depths of our inner fears of ourselves to find a substitute for the unpleasant task of self-examination. For all that we know, aliens from the planet Xaniptikon – in the galaxy of Andromeda – may already be on their way to destroy us. In that case, we may enlist the “terrorist” forces as allies against the “dreaded Xans.” The post-World War II transformations of Germany, Italy, and Japan from “enemies” to “friends” served the political establishment quite well. There is little doubt that such trickery – bolstered by well-trained and obedient media and academic hacks – will continue to be energized on behalf of keeping the Lemuel Gullibles of society huddled at the feet of those who presume to be their masters.

 more» 
23 November 2013
 
 
A More Unequal America
by Hans Bader
 sub-topic» General

Inequality grows hand-in-hand with the growth of the regulatory state. The proliferation of regulations increases economic inequality, since powerful people and politically connected companies know how to shape and manipulate the regulatory process to harm their rivals and enrich themselves at the expense of the public. As the Roman senator and historian Tacitus observed, ‘The more corrupt the state, the more numerous the laws.” Moreover, regulations disproportionately increase the cost of consumer staples that are a larger part of middle class people’s budgets than of rich people’s budgets.

 more» 
18 November 2013
 
 
Politicians as Interchangeable Units
by Wendy McElroy
 sub-topic» General

The double standards within Obamacare have received little attention compared to the act’s disastrous roll out. For one thing, only comedians (not the mainstream media) seem to discuss the exemptions, all of which have been granted oh so quietly. And the politicians themselves have been unusually mute, especially about their own elite health care.

 more» 
23 October 2013
 
 
American Apocalypse
The case for divine retribution
by Justin Raimondo
 sub-topic» General

As the workers go off every morning, lining up at Starbucks and preparing to earn their daily bread, American drones take off from secret silos somewhere in the desert, seeking out their intended victims – and some not intended. As the sounds of normalcy stream in through an open window – leafblowers in the distance, chirping birds crowding around the feeder, children brawling in the schoolyard – the news that the NSA is collecting our emails seems irrelevant. We go about our business, and the political class goes about theirs – the former quite ordinary, the latter quite another story altogether.

 more» 
12 October 2013
 
 
Politics, Ideas and the West
by Samuel Gregg
 sub-topic» General

This brings me to what I think has to be conservatism’s long-term agenda as well as a central element in any lasting conservative resurgence: the defense and promotion of what we should unapologetically call Western civilization. By this, I mean that unique culture which emerged from the encounter of Jerusalem, Athens, and Rome, the brilliance of which—if I may be deeply politically-incorrect for a moment—is somewhat harder to discern in other societies. As anathema as this culture may be in the contemporary faculty lounge, this is the tradition that conservatives should be in the business of safeguarding and advocating: not just in opposition to those who deploy violence in the name of a divine un-reason, but also against the obsessive egalitarianism, rank sentimentalism and wild-eyed utopianism of those who live inside the West’s gates but who have long inhabited a different mental universe altogether.

 more» 
09 October 2013
 
 
The Kinda-Coolness of Liberty
by Lori Heine
 sub-topic» General

One special surprise has been that even deep in the woods of Obama’s rule, far more liberals express concern about government overreach and the erosion of our freedoms than I remember conservatives displaying when Bush II was in power. We can, perhaps, tell more about people’s affinity for liberty when their “side” holds the upper hand than we can when they are out in the cold. Outright Libertarians, I know, are attracting far more interest from those to the left of us than we are from conservatives such as my snarling friend with the brother in Afghanistan.

Maybe that’s why dedicated leftwing statists are so afraid of libertarians. The field may be riper for poaching than we realized. That is a very interesting discovery. And for this former progressive Democrat, it is a heartening one.

 more» 
04 October 2013
 
 
The Inhumanity of Politics
by Aaron Ross Powell
 sub-topic» General

The trouble is, as politics grows–as political decision making continues to crowd out private decision making–it becomes increasingly difficult to escape the inhumanity it engenders in us. Political decisions are either-or. Either this is legal or it’s not. Either my preference wins out or yours does. As a result, politics encourages us to see each other as enemies. You aren’t just someone with a different opinion on a given issue than me. Instead, you’re someone who wants to make me do things your way–and backs it up with threats of violence.

 more» 
03 October 2013
 
 
Two, Three, Many Snowdens!
by Kevin Carson
 sub-topic» General

These are not people who believe “the rules” governing institutions are made for the benefit of “all of us,” or that information is secret for a good reason. These are people who believe those in charge will screw them over without thinking twice, and that secrecy exists mainly to hide the dirty stuff those in authority are up to.

But the entire system depends on this generation for its grunt work. The post-industrial, informational model of corporate capitalism depends heavily on what McKenzie Wark called the “Hacker Class.” Even in authoritarian institutions like the NSA, the cubicles are riddled with the kind of people who, like Snowden, would have Electronic Frontier Foundation stickers on their laptops. The Hacker Class is governed largely by its own set of mores, largely corresponding to Pekka Himmanen’s “Hacker Ethos.” They include an increased desire for autonomy, a blurring of the lines between work and play, a belief that a “good hack” is its own reward, and a strong resentment of interference by pointy-haired bosses.

 more» 
30 September 2013
 
 
What the GramscoFabiaNazis forget (or perhaps don’t give a f**k about) is how angry, how really, really deeply angry, we all now are
by David Davis
 sub-topic» General

The MSM will of course be all over this for days, orgasmically wetting their pants about the “death of UKIP” and the “killing of its conference”. However, I suspect that because there are so many angry, really very, very deeply angry people out here, it will not quite turn out as hoped for the GramscoFabiaNazis. I expect that there will be a temporary blip in the polling figures for UKIP, especially among the more Nazi-leaning organisations and “caucuses or groupings” such as “mumsnet” and the “BBC”, whatever that is. But I don’t think any long-term damage will be dome by telling the truth about racism among leftoNazi journalists as Bloom did, and about behind-the-fridge-cleaning.

 more» 
05 September 2013
 
 
Is Obama Looking for a Way to Preempt Congress?
by Thomas L. Knapp
 sub-topic» General

But not so fast. That very day, I predicted that between Obama’s speech and any congressional vote on the issue, some new incident or atrocity would be brought forward to justify immediate, “emergency” action on the president’s orders, followed by high pressure on Congress to retroactively approve.

Why? Because if Obama loses the vote in Congress, he’s faced with the choice of provoking constitutional crisis by acting anyway, or conceding that the executive branch lacks authority to go to war on its own hook. And no president wants to make such a concession.

 more» 
26 August 2013
 
 
The Whshful Thinking Left
by Jean Bricmont
 sub-topic» General

People who succumb to the illusions of revolutionary romanticism or who side with the apparent underdog, regardless of the underdog’s agenda, are being taken in by the tactics of present-day imperialism. But those who aspire to a more peaceful and more just world order, and who think that a precondition of this order is the weakening of U.S. imperialism, easily see through this camouflage. These two different world views divide both the Left and the Right: liberal interventionists and neoconservatives on one side, libertarians, paleoconservatives and traditional leftists on the other, and it may call for new and heterodox alliances.

 more» 
30 July 2013
 
 
We shouldn't subsidize the new political class
by James Lawson
 sub-topic» General

Rather than cutting the number of MPs and supporting politics as a full time career, MPs should be part time. Politicians should understand real world working Britons as workers themselves. They should bring genuine specialist expertise, not just the skillset of a student hack. This might reduce time for legislation, though the MPs of past debated in the evenings after work and were not supported by a modern Civil Service. Why must every government create more laws anyway? What of simplification and repeals?

MPs should take a pay cut. We need more parliamentarians from the real world rather than the rising political class. MPs should be part time, and driven by a desire for public service not the raw pursuit of power and a fat cheque at the expense of their constituents.

 more» 
20 July 2013
 
 
How to Fix MPs' Pay
by Neil Humphrey
 sub-topic» General

And this is where my idea comes in. MPs’ salaries should be withdrawn, and instead, they should solicit contributions from their “constituents.” Each of us should give what we wish to them – no compulsion, of course - up to a maximum of £2 a year.

Why the maximum of £2? Well, anyone who claims to “represent the people” in his area must, surely, have a majority behind him? So, if the majority are willing to pay £2 rather than £1, because an MP genuinely does represent his “constituents,” that MP will earn more than now? Even a bit extra from the half-hearted, who don’t contribute the full £2?

Heh heh.

 more» 
19 July 2013
 
 
On Politics in British Columbia
by Paul Vaughan
 sub-topic» General

For the frustrated BC electorate, the lesser of evils ends up being a parasite because people deeply fear the other option is a predator that will kill the economy.

People aren’t voting for the crap they get. They’ve voting against something they deeply fear will be far worse.

 more» 
06 May 2013
 
 
In praise of UKIP
by Russell Taylor
 sub-topic» General

Mainstream political parties must be spooked by the rise of UKIP, because they’ve paid it the compliment of slander. By describing its members as racist, sexist clowns, they have inadvertently played into its hands. What they have failed to grasp is that their consensus on what respectable opinion looks like doesn’t hold much sway beyond the Westminster bubble and members of the chattering classes. Having spent years browbeating the public into holding the ‘right’ beliefs, they thought they had instilled a refined liberal conscience in everyone. They thought they could turn the searchlight on those who had left the ideological reservation and the nation would recoil in horror.

 more» 
24 April 2013
 
 
The 'you are the government' canard
Obama joins predecessors in blaming his overreach on us
by James Bovard
 sub-topic» General

The notion that “the people are the government” is one of the biggest slanders that the average citizen will endure in his lifetime. This is the political version of the doctrine of Original Sin: It assumes that a person is born politically damned with the weight of all of the past and future sins of his government upon his head. The notion that “you are the government” is simply a way to shift the guilt for every crime by the government onto every victim of government.

 more» 
15 April 2013
 
 
Hope Amid Death and Destruction in La Plata, Argentina
by Alan Furth
 sub-topic» General

With political leaders of supposedly diametrically opposing ideologies all of a sudden displaying strikingly similar incompetency and cynicism, collective anger began to subtly shift toward the state per se rather than a particular political party. One could almost hear a faint echo of the “out with them all!” shout that rocked the country during the 2001 financial crisis.

But more than people directing their anger at the right target, what was truly remarkable was the spontaneous eruption of solidarity they showed toward each other, in sharp contrast with the clumsy and slow governmental response. Across the country, organizations from civil society collected funds, clothes, food and drinking water for Platenses. The media haven’t stopped portraying stories of La Plata neighbors who risked their lives rescuing children and the elderly.

 more» 
06 April 2013
 
 
Politicisation of Authority
by Ralf Ellis
 sub-topic» General

  • Police superintendents who happily prosecute thought crimes in line with political policy, but let career criminals go free.
  • Archbishops who give sermons that could have been written by the government, and fail to maintain their own organisation.
  • Health officials who not only abide by government policy, but sue anyone who isagrees.
  • Chief scientists who spout government policy, rather than science, to the grave detriment of science as a whole.
  • Local councilors who spout government policy, even though they know their area will suffer as a result.

 more» 
20 March 2013
 
 
Watch Cyprus
by Wendy McElroy
 sub-topic» General

For the last day and a half I have been following the news from Cyprus. In case you hadn't heard, the country's banks are nearly insolvent, the country itself can't afford to bail them out, and as part of a bailout package, the EU has insisted that the country levy a special "tax" on the deposits of the bank. Even those below the Euro 100,000 deposit guarantee.

 more» 
15 March 2013
 
 
Iraq Shows the Failure of Militarism and Socialism
by Jacob G. Hornberger
 sub-topic» General

U.S. officials blame the failure of their “rebuilding” projects on poor planning and supervision. They just don’t get it. The projects are nothing more than socialist public-works projects, no different from those in socialist countries. As such, they are inherently defective. Therefore, it’s not a question of incompetency or inefficiency. Instead, the problem is that the Pentagon embraces socialism as the way to rebuild the countries it destroys. It fails to realize that socialism has never worked and will never work.

 more» 
14 March 2013
 
 
Italy's Populists
by Alvaro Vargas Llosa
 sub-topic» General

The populist reaction against Europe’s crisis continues to move south, as exemplified by the astounding success of the Five Star Movement led by comedian Giuseppe Grillo, which became Italy’s largest single party in the recent general elections. An organization that has been in existence for three years, the Five Star Movement has capitalized on the country’s growing disgust with politics, austerity and Europe.

 more» 
13 February 2013
 
 
Iceland's Revolt Wants to Go Viral
by Andrew Sullivan
 sub-topic» General

Another by-product of the overall reform movement is the expansion of older forms of direct democracy. Once the draft of the new Constitution had been published and submitted to Parliament, six of its proposals were presented to the people in a national referendum. One of the questions even pertained to the future use of national referendums. Before the crisis, Iceland had not held a national referendum since its independence in 1944. Since 2010, three have been held, including two relating to major economic policies. All six proposals in the constitutional referendum were approved by a majority of respondents. Although many found the response unequivocal, members of the Independence Party asserted the results were not truly representative of the majority of citizens. Nevertheless, the draft will now be debated in the legislature.

 more» 
13 January 2013
 
 
The Washington Con Game Goes On
by Sheldon Richman
 sub-topic» General

America is smothered by government, but the news media are too busy to notice. They’re far more interested in picking political winners and losers. That’s to be expected. The Washington media are little more than the propaganda arm of the ruling elite, and most reporters and pundits see things through the eyes of the governing class. Cable TV programs are merely parades of stale establishment types who repeat the same old clichés, while blithely tossing off plans to spend other people’s money. Fed a steady diet of this gruel, most people are lulled into a state of semiconsciousness (at most) or helplessness about government policy.

 more» 
23 November 2012
 
 
Police elections: undo the damage
by Unlock Democracy
 sub-topic» General

Turnout across England and Wales varied from 11.6% in Staffordshire to a high of 20% in Northamptonshire, where the high profile by-election in Corby was being held on the same day. The number of spoiled ballot papers was also unusually high.

 more» 
21 November 2012
 
 
The orgy of greed spoiling our countryside: why I campaigned in Corby
by James Delingpole
 sub-topic» General

Here, roughly, is how the spoils will be divided among the troughers at Ovenden Moor. The landowner will be paid £401,000?pa, index-linked, for the next 25 years. The developer will get an income of around £2,679,300?pa, index-linked, over the same period. The vast bulk of this will come straight from the taxpayer in the form of compulsory subsidies, payable even if the turbines produce no power.

And the energy that will emerge from this orgy of greed and destruction? It will be neither green, clean, abundant or useful. Wind power requires full back-up from fossil-fuel-powered stations. It doesn’t save CO2, nor provide energy security, nor contribute anything to the base load power Britain so badly needs to keep the lights on.

 more» 
15 November 2012
 
 
An Open Letter to Republicans
by Babar Jumbo Skreeleel
 sub-topic» General

To sum up, if you ever possessed a scrap of honor, decency, or integrity, you have long since abandoned them. We want nothing more to do with you. Please remove us from your logos, banners, bumper stickers, and advertising.

For our part, we will strive to forget—not an easy thing for us to do, you'll understand—that we were ever associated with you and yours in any way.

Sincerely,
The Elephants

 more» 
13 November 2012
 
 
Is This Child Dead Enough for You?
by Chris Floyd
 sub-topic» General

Is that what you would say if shrapnel from a missile blew into your comfortable house and killed your own beloved little boy? You would not only accept, understand, forgive, shrug it off, move on — you would actively support the person who did it, you would cheer his personal triumphs and sneer at all those who questioned his moral worthiness and good intentions? Is that really what you would do?

 more» 
31 October 2012
 
 
Fred Throws Sombrero in Ring
by Fred Reed
 sub-topic» General

Do not misunderstand me. I am as patriotic as the next guy, and consequently happy to kill remote strangers for no reason, and their wives, children, dogs, and flocks. Unfortunately, we can no longer afford it. Do you know what bombs cost these days? Thus we must either find a cheaper means of terminating Afghan children, perhaps by poisoning, or else, on purely economic grounds, we must restrain the Pentagon’s appetites.

Therefore, under my administration all military officers will be required to wear pink tutus, toe shoes, and brassieres with expandable boob compartments. This will discourage history majors in arrested development from becoming lieutenants and strutting around like Genghis Kahn simulacra. An army of ballerinas will be much less troublesome.

 more» 
28 October 2012
 
 
Doug Casey on Voting, Redux - Part 3
by Louis James
 sub-topic» General

Doug: I think it's like they said during the war with Viet Nam: Suppose they gave a war, and nobody came? I also like to say: Suppose they levied a tax, and nobody paid? And at this time of year: Suppose they gave an election, and nobody voted?

The only way to truly de-legitimize a corrupt system is by not voting. When tin-plated dictators around the world have their rigged elections, and people stay home in droves, even today's "we love governments of all sorts" international community won't recognize the results of the election.

 more» 
27 October 2012
 
 
Doug Casey on Voting, Redux - Part 2
by Louis James
 sub-topic» General

Doug: The whole constellation of concepts is ridiculous. This leads us to the subject of democracy. People say that if you live in a democracy, you should vote. But that begs the question of whether democracy itself is any good. And I would say that, no, it’s not. Especially a democracy unconstrained by a constitution. That, sadly, is the case in the U.S., where the Constitution is 100% a dead letter. Democracy is nothing more than mob rule dressed up in a suit and tie. It's no way for a civilized society to be run. At this point, it's a democracy consisting of two wolves and a sheep, voting about what to eat for dinner.

 more» 
26 October 2012
 
 
Doug Casey on Voting, Redux - Part 1
by Louis James
 sub-topic» General

Doug: Right. The modern state not only routinely coerces people into doing all sorts of things they don't want to do – often very clearly against their own interests – but it necessarily does so, by its nature. People who want to know more about that should read our conversation on anarchy. This distinction is very important in a society with a government that is no longer limited by a constitution that restrains it from violating individual rights. And when you vote, you participate in, and endorse, this unethical system.

 more» 
22 October 2012
 
 
The Lesser of Two Evils
by Ellen Finnigan
 sub-topic» General

If you are choosing the lesser evil, it is still evil, and you are registering your consent to that evil. If you refuse to vote, you are at least depriving them of that: your consent. Flannery O’Connor once wrote: "Does one’s integrity ever lie in what one is not able to do? I think that usually it does." So stay home. Bake a cake. Say a prayer. Mow your lawn. Smoke a joint. Do anything except vote. After all, the whole point of a Christian life is to try your best to "come out with clean hands," right?

 more» 
12 October 2012
 
 
Statism Is Finished
by Jacob G. Hornberger
 sub-topic» General

It’s all cracking apart. The long run is upon us. The welfare-warfare state is finished. Oh, sure, they can still resort to their standard monetary crackpot policy of inflation for a short-term fix, but they’re just delaying the inevitable.

When a paradigm no longer works, there is only one choice — abandon it in favor of one that works. The one that works is libertarianism — i.e., free markets, private property, sound money, and a limited government, constitutional republic.

 more» 
08 October 2012
 
 
Down with Politics
by Gene Healy
 sub-topic» General

I've long found electoral politics seedy and dispiriting, but that sensibility has lately become a debilitating affliction: like being a sportswriter struck by the unhelpful epiphany that it's silly for a grown man to write about other grown men playing a game for kids.

 more» 
26 September 2012
 
 
The Death of the Death of a Thousand Cuts
by Thomas L. Knapp
 sub-topic» General

The current “emergency spending bill” nonsense is just that — nonsense. No “government shutdown” is at stake. In Washington, a “government shutdown” means that certain “non-essential government services” are temporarily stopped. The government employees who get laid off for a day or a week in order to heighten audience suspension of disbelief get paid for that time off when they return (as they inevitably shall). And if a “government service” is not, in fact, “essential,” then why is government providing that “service” in the first place, and how does the prospect that it might cease to do so become an “emergency?”

 more» 
24 September 2012
 
 
The War on Words and Facts
by Wendy McElroy
 sub-topic» General

A vigorous war on words is being waged. Whether you call the process political correctness, cultural Marxism or thought control, certain words have become crimes; they have become hate speech. Thought-crime legislation prohibits the expression of specific ideas, including religious ones and ones that ‘bully’, while encouraging the expression of sanctioned ideas. It is also illegal to indicate an intent to commit violence – for example, posting that Obama needs to be shot or the government should be overthrown through violence; it is illegal even if you take no action and have no means to do so.

In other words, some of the pamphlets that sparked the American Revolution would now be illegal. Or they would be rewritten, as school textbooks currently are, to eliminate politically wrong words and ideas.

 more» 
20 September 2012
 
 
The Cudjoemeter on the Campaign Trail: Hilarious but Serious
by Franklin Cudjoe
 sub-topic» General

It is pretty annoying hearing the two major political parties, NDC and NPP struggle over who has paid public sector workers more money. Isn’t it a little contradictory to hear our President suggest that we must demand value for money from the largely non-performing public service, seeing that we are forking out $3bn in taxes (Ghc 6bn, a fifth of our GDP) to pay for their ‘’services’’? Yet, the NPP intends on continuing the party if and when they get elected. The grim picture about the low confidence in the ability of many governments to create and sustain employment is mainly due to a not so forward looking understanding of the dynamics of creating employment. That forward looking attitude is in the place of the private sector. Incidentally with Government’s attempt to quadruple salaries of public sector workers through the single spine salary scheme, there has been a drawback to strengthening the private sector as crucially needed talent to think and innovate is lost to the largely unproductive public sector. The private sector must be seen as the real engine of growth.

 more» 
18 September 2012
 
 
Terrorizing the Two-Party System
by Jonathan David Morris
 sub-topic» General

Personally, I would love to see this. I would love to see every person in the country stay home. I would love to see a situation in which they couldn't name a president because zero people turned out on Election Day. This would be exactly the kind of chaos that I could sit back and enjoy with a beer. But since it would only take one person in a country of 300 million to blow it for everyone, this kind of thing would be hard to coordinate. Therefore, I cannot get behind it.

 more» 
14 September 2012
 
 
Sitrep 2012
by L. Neil Smith
 sub-topic» General

From the point of view of the Productive Class, democracy has been an abysmal failure, elevating the very worst among us, the dumbest, the least sane, and the most evil. In my lifetime—indeed, in all of the 21st century so far, in all of the 20th, and in most of the 19th, the White House, Senate, and House of Representatives have been filled with almost nothing but the moral equivalent of paralyzed autistic lepers.

 more» 
18 August 2012
 
 
Beware the Psychopath, My Son - Part 3
by Clinton Callahan
 sub-topic» General

Only when the 75% of humanity with a healthy conscience come to understand that we have a natural predator, a group of people who live amongst us, viewing us as powerless victims to be freely fed upon for achieving their inhuman ends, only then will we take the fierce and immediate actions needed to defend what is preciously human. Psychological deviants have to be removed from any position of power over people of conscience, period. People must be made aware that such individuals exist and must learn how to spot them and their manipulations. The hard part is that one must also struggle against those tendencies to mercy and kindness in oneself in order not to become prey.

 more» 
17 August 2012
 
 
Beware the Psychopath, My Son - Part 2
by Clinton Callahan
 sub-topic» General

Psychopaths are, to some extent, self-aware as a group even in childhood! Recognizing their fundamental difference from the rest of humanity, their allegiance would be to others of their kind, that is, to other psychopaths.

Their own twisted sense of honor compels them to cheat and revile non-psychopaths and their values. In contradiction to the ideals of normal people, psychopaths feel breaking promises and agreements is normal behavior.

 more» 
16 August 2012
 
 
Beware the Psychopath, My Son - Part 1
by Clinton Callahan
 sub-topic» General

When you understand the true nature of psychopathic influence, that it is conscienceless, emotionless, selfish, cold and calculating, and devoid of any moral or ethical standards, you are horrified, but at the same time everything suddenly begins to makes sense. Our society is ever more soulless because the people who lead it and who set the example are soulless – they literally have no conscience.

 more» 
13 August 2012
 
 
Expand freedom, not government
by Gary M. Galles
 sub-topic» General

What follows from the fact that Americans didn’t build their successes without cooperation from others? Not the President’s conclusion--pay more and expand government that does little well except inhibit social cooperation. It means we should expand the system that enabled those successes by expanding areas of voluntary individual choices—i.e., expanding freedom.

 more» 
10 August 2012
 
 
"I voted Demopublicratican because..."
by Kent McManigal
 sub-topic» General

12. I voted Republican because my head is so firmly planted up my a**, it's unlikely that I'll ever have another point of view.

12a. I voted Democrat because my head is so firmly planted up my a**, it's unlikely that I'll ever have another point of view.

 more» 
02 August 2012
 
 
Anglers infuriate bird campaigners as they call for cull of cormorants that are demolishing fish stocks
by Tamara Cohen
 sub-topic» General

The Angling Trust, which has three million affiliated members, say some fisheries have been virtually destroyed and tackle shops have been forced to close due to the menace.

It launched the Action on Cormorants campaign yesterday calling for them to be generally licenced for culling, like magpies and crows, which can be killed if they threaten agriculture or public health.

 more» 
26 July 2012
 
 
The Massive Failure of the Welfare-Warfare State
by Jacob G. Hornberger
 sub-topic» General

We are living in an age of perpetual crisis, chaos, death, destruction, impoverishment, and loss of liberty. That’s because we’re living under a welfare state and a warfare state.

Why in the world would any rational American want to continue this aberrant system? It just makes no sense at all.

 more» 
14 July 2012
 
 
Assange's Last Stand?
They may get him, but he'll go down in history as a hero
by Justin Raimondo
 sub-topic» General

If there was ever a clear cut case of good versus evil, then surely it is the contest between Julian Assange and most of the world’s governments. They hate him because he exposed their lies, their manipulations, and their routine violations of the most elementary rules of human decency. By publishing virtually the entire corpus of messages sent to and fro between Mordor (Washington) and their Nazgûl (diplomats) in the field, WikiLeaks has given us the true history of the world in modern times, or, at least, a good glimpse into its secret underside historians rarely uncover.

 more» 
04 July 2012
 
 
Obama vs. the Rule of Law
by Jacob G. Hornberger
 sub-topic» General

The idea is that people should have to answer only to well-defined laws that have been enacted in advance of criminal punishment. In that way, people can adjust their conduct and decide whether to risk violating the law. But the point is that they answer to the law, not to the ruler’s arbitrary, ad hoc edicts.

Thus, the rule of law is necessarily a prerequisite to a free society. Under a regime governed by “the rule of men,” the government can punish people for whatever it happens to define as a crime at that particular time. When people are subject to that type of arbitrary power, there is no way that people in that society can genuinely be considered free.

 more» 
01 July 2012
 
 
A political glossary
by Thomas Sowell
 sub-topic» General

A political term that had me baffled for a long time was "the hungry." Since we all get hungry, it was not obvious to me how you single out some particular segment of the population to refer to as "the hungry."

Eventually, over the years, it finally dawned on me what the distinction was. People who make no provision to feed themselves, but expect others to provide food for them, are those whom politicians and the media refer to as "the hungry."

 more» 
14 June 2012
 
 
The Wisconsin Union Fight Reconsidered
by Sheldon Richman
 sub-topic» General

This analysis sheds light on the bargaining that takes place between governments and government-employee unions. Both sides of the negotiation have a basic goal: extraction of wealth from the taxpayers. And those taxpayers have no seat at the table! It is hardly an exaggeration to say that collective bargaining in the government realm is a conspiracy against the taxpayers, who of course include workers in private employment. If there is a harmony of interest, it is between government workers and their employers, not between government workers and private-sector workers.

 more» 
09 June 2012
 
 
This man called you "silly"
by The People's Pledge
 sub-topic» General

A few days ago, The Rt Hon Kenneth Clarke QC MP said on Radio 4: “A referendum on our membership of the EU is an irrelevance. It is the demand of a few Right-wing journalists and a few extreme nationalist politicians. I cannot think of anything sillier to do than to hold a referendum.”

 more» 
05 June 2012
 
 
Dusk falling on era of authority
by Kent McManigal
 sub-topic» General

If you are in the group that doesn't care about liberty, then stay alert. You may seem to be on the winning side right now, but dusk has fallen on the era of authority. Its repetitious failures have awakened a new generation to the promise of liberty, just as a previous generation got a glimmer a couple of centuries ago, before their descendants dropped the ball. Let's make it a permanent change this time.

 more» 
04 June 2012
 
 
Thoughts on the Diamond Jubilee
Sixty Years a Rubber Stamp
by Sean Gabb
 sub-topic» General

The Queen has not sustained our national identity. It is actually worse than this. By expressing that identity, she has allowed many people to overlook the structures of absolute and unaccountable power that have grown up during her reign. She has fronted a revolution to dispossess us of our country and of our rights within it. How many of the people who turn out on Jubilee Day, with their union flags and street parties, will fully realise that the forms they are celebrating now contain an alien and utterly malign substance?

 more» 
29 May 2012
 
 
Should we obey all laws?
by Walter E. Williams
 sub-topic» General

In a word, if the Supreme Court rules that Obamacare is constitutional, citizens should press their state governors and legislatures to nullify the law. You say, "Williams, the last time states got into this nullification business, it led to a war that cost 600,000 lives." Two things are different this time. First, most Americans are against Obamacare, and secondly, I don't believe that you could find a U.S. soldier who would follow a presidential order to descend on a state to round up or shoot down fellow Americans because they refuse to follow a congressional order to buy health insurance.

 more» 
15 May 2012
 
 
In Europe and America, "Austerity" Doesn't Mean What You Think it Does
by Thomas L. Knapp
 sub-topic» General

“Austerity,” it seems, is for the little people. You know, the ones busting their asses on factory floors and behind shop counters and in the farm fields, paying those taxes so that politicians can continue buying expensive toys from their friends at an ever-increasing (“but hey, we’ll slow the increases down a little!”) rate.

 more» 
11 May 2012
 
 
The Systematic Organization of Hatreds
by Robert Higgs
 sub-topic» General

We see the importance of this element of politics clearly in the contemporary conflict between Democrats and Republicans. Given that these two parties are but two wings of the same predatory one-party state that rules the United States, we might well wonder why their intramural feuding often reaches such vitriolic extremes. The short answer is that despite the two parties’ general similarity of fundamental positions, they comprise somewhat different sorts of people—different in regard to religious conviction (or the lack thereof), typical social position, culture, background, occupational distribution, urban-rural composition, and ethnic makeup, among other things—and the two groups tend to dislike each other; indeed, in many individual instances, they despise one another. And their political representatives, though more inclined to conspire and cut deals with the other side, also represent their supporters along the hatred dimension. Occasionally, when a politician does not realize that the microphone is live, we hear some honest expression of his true feelings about his political opponents—“enemies” is the more accurate word.

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10 May 2012
 
 
We can relate to Occupier anger
by Steven Greenhut
 sub-topic» General

Occupy Wall Street protesters are reminiscent of writer R. Emmett Tyrrell's criticism of radical feminists: They don't know what they want, but they want it very badly. On May Day, the protesters tied up the streets of Oakland, San Francisco and elsewhere. They are mad as hell, and they are not going to take it anymore, although it remains unclear what, specifically, they are angry about.

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09 May 2012
 
 
The Worms are Turning?
by Klingon Off the Starboard Bow
 sub-topic» General

We always DO revolt in the end, but things have to get REALLY bad first, because basically we are hard-working, civilised people who believe in "democracy". THAT TOO, the powers depend on. The problem is that too few people see how the democratic system has been abused.

However, there is also the old English saying: "The worm has turned." As a well-qualified worm, I feel myself very close to the turning point ......

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08 May 2012
 
 
The electorate's silently withering rebellion against the political class
by Brendan O'Neill
 sub-topic» General

Sixty-eight per cent of eligible voters did not vote in the elections, a bloc of people so big it could be described as "the vast majority", or certainly "most people". Most people chose not to take part in these elections, and in doing so they implicitly rejected the political class in its entirety; its ideas, its policy proposals, its representatives – all were very publicly and humiliatingly cold-shouldered. What we witnessed yesterday was a silent, withering rebellion against the political elites of this country. A good night for Labour? Are you kidding me? Labour got roughly 39 per cent of the vote on an estimated turnout of 32 per cent. This means around 12 per cent of the eligible electorate voted Labour. To put it another way, 88 per cent of us – the heaving mass of society – did not vote Labour. If that's a good night for Labour, I'd hate to see a bad one.

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02 May 2012
 
 
If I Wanted America to Fail
by Ryan Houck
 sub-topic» General

If I wanted America to fail …

I would prey on the goodness and decency of ordinary Americans.

I would only need to convince them … that all of this is for the greater good.

If I wanted America to fail, I suppose I wouldn’t change a thing.

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18 April 2012
 
 
Obama Gives Coal Miners the Shaft
by Cliff Kincaid
 sub-topic» General

The notion that President Obama is trying to fire up his “base,” as he prepares for a re-election campaign, raises the question of what constitutes his base. It is becoming increasingly clear that the “workers” he is supposedly concerned about are going to be dismissed or ignored so that wealthy environmental groups can be accommodated.

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05 April 2012
 
 
On the home straight in Thurrock
by The People's Pledge
 sub-topic» General

The polls close at 5pm this Thursday 5 April. No one knows how it will go, but having over 9,000 Pledges signed up locally is a good indication that the people of Thurrock want a referendum on the EU despite their local politicians, like national ones, trying to ignore the issue. We will email the result as soon as we know it.

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04 April 2012
 
 
Bradford's Spring - a peaceful, democratic uprising
by George Galloway MP
 sub-topic» General

The Bradford spring. No matter how seemingly powerful, no corrupted, out-of-touch elite can last forever. The people of Bradford West have spoken, and politics in the city and in this country will never be the same again. Anyone who took part in this historic campaign, or who observed it dispassionately, knew by last weekend that something spectacular was going to take place.

A 5,000 Labour majority was transformed into a 10,000 majority for Respect – the same total vote for me as the outgoing MP had in a general election – winning across every ward in the constituency. It was the most spectacular by-election result in British political history.

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27 March 2012
 
 
'An absolute shocker': Queensland Labor humiliated
by The Brisbane Times
 sub-topic» General

Voters have emphatically ended Labor's rule in Queensland, effectively reducing the trounced government to the status of minor party.

So comprehensive was the LNP election victory under Campbell Newman that Labor has been virtually erased from the Queensland electoral map.

The ALP looks likely to be reduced to just seven of parliament's 89 seats. This would be four fewer seats than that won by One Nation in 1998.

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23 March 2012
 
 
The 99% and the 1%
by Sheldon Richman
 sub-topic» General

So our inquiry is directed to whether 1 percenters make their money through the political means or the economic means. The right answer is “both.” Let’s start by acknowledging that we do not live in a free-market economy, by which I mean an economy based solely on “equality of authority” and voluntary exchange, void of all privilege founded in coercion. Quite the contrary. Corporatist privilege abounds, and so we may reasonably suspect that any large fortune is the result of a combination of the economic and political means. In any individual case one or the other may predominate. Some people are genuine market entrepreneurs. But others are largely political entrepreneurs. Since the State touches all aspects of life, we are talking about matters of degree.

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22 March 2012
 
 
Keep Cool. Don't Panic.
by Claire Wolfe
 sub-topic» General

So keep cool. Don’t panic. “Humanity is Rising.” The so-called powerful, as cruel and dangerous as they are, FEAR US. And in their terror they retreat into a fantasy that modern history has shown to be just that — fantasy. They imagine that they can control the whole world from some centralized Tower of Power.

Day after day after day, our minds slip out of their control. Our parents, our grandparents, respected government. They believed the propaganda about it being Our Wise Protector. They Obeyed. We increasingly see government for exactly what it is.

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15 March 2012
 
 
Moving to UKIP
by Roger Helmer MEP
 sub-topic» General

I think that everyone who reads this newsletter will understand already why I finally decided to make my move to UKIP. For years I have disagreed fundamentally with the Tory leadership on the EU. They roll out the eurosceptic rhetoric at election time, and then forget all about it.

We had seen too many false dawns and dashed hopes. William Hague; IDS; Michael Howard, and now David Cameron, who has done nothing about the Party's repatriation commitment, and who has told me face-to-face that he doesn't want an EU referendum because we're "better off in the EU"

The irony is that most East Midlands Conservatives broadly agree with me on these issues. That's why they selected me as their #1 euro-candidate three times running. The Tory Party doesn't agree with them. UKIP does.

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08 March 2012
 
 
Quietly, quietly, the Revolution arrives
by Wendy McElroy
 sub-topic» General

The mass of disillusioned fall into two general camps: those who still trust the political method and those who realize politics can bring no value to their lives. The politicos join the Tea Party or its like and campaign to elect the One Man Fit to Rule Us All. The non-politicos realize that no one man is fit to rule and, so, they take control of their own lives. They often do so silently because many of the peaceful, productive activities are illegal or could otherwise rouse the resentment of the bureaucracies they eschew.

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15 February 2012
 
 
PowerPigs
by L. Neil Smith
 sub-topic» General

American powerpigs have bullied, coerced, maimed, murdered, and destroyed their way to wealth and power all over the world since the middle of the 19th century, beginning, of course, with their very own people in the South and the unfortunate former Siberians they found in the West. What they don't understand yet (and quite possibly never will) is that this era of bullying, coercion, maiming, murder, and destruction is about to end abruptly. The rise of the Internet (turning communications ninety degrees from vertical to lateral) and the development by Iran of their own atom bombs only hint at what lies ahead.

The Age of Authority has reached its inevitable and inexorable end. There can be no going back. But between the easy way and the hard way that history appears to be presenting us with, those who still perceive themselves to be in authority seem to be opting for the hard way.

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11 February 2012
 
 
Romney! Romney! Romney!
by Larken Rose
 sub-topic» General

The shortest path from where we are today, to an actually free society, starts with Mitt Romney as President. Now there’s an awesome sentence to take out of context, huh? But it’s true. If you want state worship and blind faith in “government” to crumble, you should try to put the biggest elitist buffoon, the most obviously corrupt liar possible, on the throne. And Mitt Romney sure fits that bill! Go Mitt!

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09 February 2012
 
 
Does Britain Need a Libertarian Party?
by Alexander Baron
 sub-topic» General

Does Britain need a Libertarian Party? I remember discussing this issue on several occasions with the late Chris Tame, and he was firmly against the idea. Having given it some considerable thought over the past few years I can say that I have come to agree with his view that under no circumstances should Libertarians consider forming a political party in Britain. I will add further that all Libertarian parties in other countries should disband forthwith and spend their money in ways that will effectively further the cause of liberty.

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06 February 2012
 
 
First EU Referendum shortlist announced
by The People's Pledge
 sub-topic» General

Today, the People’s Pledge starts the largest ground campaign for an EU referendum ever held in this country.

There will be a first local referendum in one carefully chosen constituency beginning now, followed by a further 10 later this year, and then another 100 in 2013.

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04 February 2012
 
 
Huhne: you'd need a heart of stone not to laugh
by James Delingpole
 sub-topic» General

It is indeed a singular achievement for one man to rise so high in the reasonably clubbable, popularity-dependent world of politics while yet remaining so heroically charmless in almost every possible way.

But Huhne has managed it. That is why today on this happiest of days, let us all raise our glasses and let joy be unconfined.

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28 January 2012
 
 
Total Recall
by Unlock Democracy
 sub-topic» General

How many jobs do you know where you can’t be fired for five years, even if you don’t do what you promised you would and steal from the till? This is our chance to make sure MPs don’t think they can get away with ignoring us, or just toeing their party’s line.

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25 January 2012
 
 
Resignation Postponed
A short personal statement
by Roger Helmer MEP
 sub-topic» General

I have always argued that when a Conservative MEP is out of sympathy with Party policy, and unable to defend it, he should resign to make way for another Conservative. I believe that that is the decent and honourable thing to do, and I have sought to do it, but my intention has been frustrated by the Party’s reprehensible prevarication.

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22 December 2011
 
 
Deliver Occupy from its "Friends"
by Kevin Carson
 sub-topic» General

So this time they’re not playing by the old rules. What, exactly, are they trying to accomplish? I believe their significance has to more to do with their form of organization itself — a distributed, self-organized network — as a model of the society they hope to build, than with any concrete demands. In Rowan Wolf’s elegant phrase, “the organizational model … is the carrier wave of the movement.”

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11 December 2011
 
 
End the Big Donor Culture
by Unlock Democracy
 sub-topic» General

It is crucial we take action on capping party donations before the next big scandal erupts. If the result is that political parties will have to live within their means - like everyone else at the moment - so be it. They shouldn’t be able to use the excuse of the economy being in a parlous state as an excuse for more delay. Indeed, at a time of cuts, ensuring the political process isn’t being dominated by vested interests is even more pressing.

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05 December 2011
 
 
Dear Left: Corporatism Is Your Fault
by Jason Brennan
 sub-topic» General

You balk: Isn’t the problem the regressive pro-market post-Reagan politics? Please, people. Let’s be serious a moment. Reagan used a bunch of pro-market, pro-liberty, anti-big government rhetoric, but the man was no libertarian, and he did little to make the country more libertarian. Reagan spent and spent, and thus ran up the debt. He doubled the number of imports with trade restrictions. He pursued militaristic foreign policy. He increased rather than decreased the size, scope, and power of government. Reagan ramped up the war on Americans’ civil liberties drugs. He wasn’t even a big deregulator—that was Carter. Look past rhetoric to reality. Reagan was in practice just a more militaristic version of one of you. (More militaristic? Maybe I’m giving you too much credit. While we spent Black Friday shopping, Obama spent it having his military murder innocent Afghan children.)

Point your fingers at yourself. You did this.

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