There Ain’t No Such Thing As A Free Lunch! - Robert A. Heinlein
This is the most basic of economics. Everything costs something.
And yet, it appears roughly half the population of The United States believes in ‘if it’s FREE, it’s for ME!’
The ‘Affordable’ Care Act? Hey, FREE health care! Food Stamps? Hey, FREE Food!
There’s even a circular route short bus system in my college town – it goes and connects all over, in a 10 square mile area, largely around older commercial and university venues. And, even one of my staunchest libertarian friends uses it. Why?
BECAUSE IT’S FREE! (The tax dollars paying for it, notwithstanding)
I, for one, have chosen NOT to use it, thinking doing so only perpetuates the myth of FREE. Of course, as my 2000 Oldsmobile Intrigue gets older, and requires more maintenance (at more cost) it may become a necessity.
THEN, I can get a bicycle, and join the hoards of collegiate bike riders ignoring traffic laws, putting themselves in harm’s way, and demanding more bike paths.
Because, eventually, we WILL turn into Beijing.
Going backwards is such a great way to move forward, don’t you think?
I do, too. But Kent’s “Hooligan Libertarian Blog” offers perspective, along with support.
To wit (in part):
The powderkeg of “troops”Are individuals in America better off that there are US troops all over the planet? Do troops really help “the people”?Think about it.Was Germany better off by having and supporting the Nazi troops? Or, in the long run was the normal, average German made less safe and less prosperous because of “the troops”? (And don’t bother trying to misuse Godwin’s Law on me- I’m on to that game.)
The only ones helped by “the troops” are those who work for that gang of thugs called “government”. Everyone else is harmed. They may think they are benefiting, but only until consequences catch up to them all. At that time the veil is ripped away.
You should go to Kent’s link above and read the whole thing. Blind obedience isn’t thinking, and it certainly isn’t what freedom and liberty are about.
Question Authority. Not just for the exercise, but for the meaning; the agenda.
TThe Whited Sepulchre reminded us of The Wisdom of David Nolan – founder of the Libertarian Party.
How does one tell if one is truly a Libertarian (philosophically, not necessarily a card-carrying LP member!)
In David’s words, below:
As a founder of the Libertarian Party and editor-in-chief of California Liberty, I am often asked how to tell if someone is “really” a libertarian. There are probably as many different definitions of the word “libertarian” as there are people who claim the label. These range from overly broad (“anyone who calls himself a libertarian is one”) to impossibly doctrinaire (“only those who agree with every word in the party platform are truly annointed”).
My own definition is that in order to be considered a libertarian, at least in the political context, an individual must adhere without compromise to five key points. Ideally, of course, we’d all be in agreement on everything. But we’re not, and probably never will be. Debate is likely to continue indefinitely on such matters as abortion, foreign policy, and whether, when, and how various government programs can be discontinued or privatized. But as far as I’m concerned, if someone is sound on these five points, he/she is de facto a libertarian; if he fails on even one of the five, he isn’t.
What then, are the “indispensible five” — the points of no compromise?
YOU OWN YOURSELF
First and foremost, libertarians believe in the the principle of self-ownership. You own your own body and mind; no extermal power has the right to force you into the service of “society” or “mankind” or any other individual or group for any purpose, however noble. Slavery is wrong, period.
Because you own yourself, you are responsible for your own well-being. Others are not obligated to feed you, clothe you, or provide you with health care. Most of us choose to help one another voluntarily, for a variety of reasons — and that’s as it should be — but “forced compassion” is an oxymoron, a contradiction in terms.
THE RIGHT TO SELF-DEFENSE
Self-ownership implies the right to self-defense. Libertarians yield to no one in their support for our right as individuals to keep and bear arms. We only wish that the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution said “The right to self-defense being inalienable…” instead of that stuff about a “well-regulated militia”. Anyone who thinks that government — any government — has the right to disarm its citizens is NOT a libertarian!
NO “CRIMINAL POSSESSION” LAWS
In fact, libertarians believe that individuals have the right to own and use anything- gold, guns, marijuana, sexually explicit material- so long as they do not harm others through force or the threat of force. Laws criminalizing the simple possession of anything are tailor-made for police states; it is all too easy to plant a forbidden substance in someone’s home, car or pocket. Libertarians are as tough on crime- real crime- as anyone. But criminal possession laws are an affront to liberty, whatever the rhetoric used to defend them.
NO TAXES ON PRODUCTIVITY
In an ideal world, there would be no taxation. All services would be paid for on an as-used basis. But in a less-than-ideal world, some services will be force-financed for the foreseeable future. However, not all taxes are equally deleterious, and the worst form of taxation is a tax on productivity — i.e., an income tax — and no libertarian supports this type of taxation.
What kind of taxation is least harmful? This is a topic still open for debate. My own preference is for a single tax on land. Is this “the” libertarian position on taxes? No. But all libertarians oppose any form of income tax.
A SOUND MONEY SYSTEM
The fifth and final key test of anyone’s claim to being a libertarian is their support for an honest money system; i.e. one where the currency is backed by something of true value (usually gold or silver). Fiat money — money with no backing, whose acceptance is mandated by the State — is simply legalized counterfeiting and is one of the keys to expanding government power.
The five points enumerated here are not a complete, comprehensive prescription for freedom… but they would take us most of the way. A government which cannot conscript, confiscate, or counterfeit, and which imposes no criminal penalties for the mere possession and peaceful use of anything, is one that almost all libertarians would be comfortable with.
You notice you don’t see the word control in there, except perhaps the understood doctrine of self-control. Fascists, Communists, Statists, For-your-own-good-ists need not apply! No Nudgers, either!
(from The San Antonio Express News, courtesy of Live from the Alamo)
We have advocated in the past for universal background checks and an assault weapon ban. Incompatible with the Second Amendment? Not if the concept of “guns in the wrong hands” has any meaning.
I had a thought upon reading this. What if we promoted universal background checks for anyone who wished to establish religion and freely exercise it, or speak freely, or publish, or peaceably assemble or petition the government for redress of grievances? And ban certain kinds of rapid dissemination of published material. Incompatible with the First Amendment?
After all, isn’t there a concept of “words in the wrong hands”?
How far do you think we’d get? Questioning the inviolability of The First Amendment? We’d be tarred and feathered and pilloried and spat upon and run out of town on a rail. Then hanged, drawn and quartered and the pieces arrested!
Of course there are “common sense” controls on The First Amendment! Laws against libel/slander, inciting riots, yelling fire in a crowded theatre. And there already are “common sense” controls on The Second Amendment. Laws against armed robbery, armed rape, armed mayhem, armed murder.
Mr, President, Mr. Blumberg, and Mr. King – leave me and my rights alone! If I do something wrong, arrest me.
♫…I don’t feel much like dancin’…♫
Kent McManigal shares with us an essay regarding the essence of personal liberty, freedom and individual rights in this Constitutional Republic.
I find it sad that whenever someone wants to do something, the first question most people ask is whether government allows it, requires a license, or forbids it.
There is so much that isn’t (or shouldn’t be) the business of government. Most personal conflicts are attached to an understood contract between individuals in the free marketplace – If you don’t like guns, don’t buy one; if that head of lettuce is bad too soon, don’t buy them there, anymore; don’t like illegal drugs, don’t use them.
There are remedies before getting the government involved. That shouldn’t be our go-to choice. It should be the last resort.
This isn’t a pointless philosophical debate. On May 5, President Obama warned Ohio State University graduates to reject the warnings people like me are passing along, and to simply trust government.
My motivation is that I trust you to run your own life, and I want you to understand liberty and experience it in all its glory.
What might his motivation be?
If you can be fooled into asking the wrong questions, the answers don’t matter.
This should be our (libertarian’s) anthem. – Guffaw
h/t Kent’s “Hooligan Libertarian” Blog
(What follows has some language that is Not-Safe-For-Work. I thought it best not to edit or censor it, to give it it’s full impact - Guffaw)
This is the crux of the libertarian, Constitutional argument. Why are we so against all these ubiquitous encroachments on our civil liberties? And why we should continue to be.
Every time I see something like this, be it use of a no-knock warrant (or no warrant at all), surveillance cameras everywhere, GPS on modern cell phones that we cannot disconnect, institutionalized warrantless searches at airports (and elsewhere) or beating a confession out of a suspect, I recognize we have lost something beyond price. And, I know we probably won’t get these liberties back without a fight.
Kent’s “Hooligan Libertarian” Blog touches on the most recent of these issues. The lock-down and methodical search of an entire city to locate a terrorism suspect. He says, in part:
The same goes for imposing a police state and illegally/unethically/immorally locking down a city and invading homes to catch a suspect. Every cop who entered any property without the explicit permission of the owner/renter deserved to be shot dead. Immediately. Good thing for those stormtroopers that the “people” there gave up their responsibility and guns long ago, and are cheering fans of Big Brother. Makes me furious to even think about.
Follow this up with Lurking Rhythmically’s screed regarding some folks disdain for an individual’s natural rights. She says, in part:
From a comment on my previous post:
You know, I like most of what you post, and followed you even though I disagreed with you on your position on so-called “gun rights”.
Oooh. Isn’t that just delicious contempt ? It’s so thick and creamy you could drizzle it on a pancake. I especially like the one-two punch of so-called and the scare quotes. They aren’t rights, they’re “rights”. That’s quality passive-aggression right there.
Here’s the lovely thing about rights: They aren’t up for a vote. That’s why they’re rights.
Let’s put it another way:
Are you offended yet? You should be. You should be screamingly furious that anyone would diminish these rights with the phrase “so-called”.
And yet my inalienable right to defend myself with the most effective means possible is threatened because one, ONE asshole out of 10 million law-abiding gun owners decided to commit a raft of crimes that another law would not have stopped.
You say, “Compromise.” I say, ”Fuck you, you mewling cowards. I will not embrace victimhood. I will not willingly disarm. If you demand I give up my life just to make you feel better, you are selfish on a level that is beyond comprehension.”
I believe this is how most of us feel, even if we can’t quite put our feelings into words. Individual rights are individual rights. Whether ‘natural’ or ‘derived from our Creator’, it doesn’t matter. They are not up for debate or vote. Period.
And to allow them to be voted on is yet another encroachment.
Go and read the entire Declaration of Independence, and then the two links above. Then look at the news, and read what we accept as a normal course of government business every day.
Then, perhaps become angry about the state of our Nation. And cry a little.
S. Weasel brings us the following:
This is Li Meng. He hasn’t left this computer terminal for six years. He gets up to pee and shower and they hold his place for him. The rest of the time, he’s sitting in this internet cafe in this very chair playing video games. If you Google “Li Meng” and “internet cafe” you’ll get a ton of different takes on the story, mostly a bunch of handwringing about “internet addiction”.
But here’s the thing: renting a spot full time in the internet cafe costs him about eighty bucks a month. Playing video games, he says he’s making about $325 a month. You know what I say? THIS MAN IS THE KING OF AWESOME.
Plays video games all night, sleeps in the chair all day, slips out for a wash and some Chinese takeaway and puts money in the bank every month. I am NOT seeing a problem here.
It’s like when heroin got cheap in the Nineties and there were all these articles about how horrible it was that junkies could take a McDonald’s job and have enough money to rent a small apartment and support a smack habit. And I’m thinking, “wait…they’re fully supporting themselves and their wicked habits with an honest job? So what part of this is your business?” (emphasis Guffaw)
“No Good Cops”
That’s what Kent’s Hooligan Libertarian Blog says…
He suggests that any cop doing his job (i.e. enforcing current non-libertarian laws) is simply a tool of the State, not unlike the folks who ‘did as they were told’. The Nuremberg Defense. To wit:
But then consider: Has this person ever enforced a single counterfeit “law”? Any anti-drug ”law”, anti-gun ”law”, “tax law”, speed limit, seat belt enforcement, property “code”, asset forfeiture, etc.? If so, the person isn’t a “good cop”- certainly not a good person while acting as a cop.
Some cops may be less evil than others; I certainly hope so. But “less evil” falls very short of “good”.
I come from a family of cops, with a cop (and Marine) history. I know they enforced the laws as written, including those laws with which they may have personally disagreed. They took an oath.
Of course, much of the legislation with which Kent disagrees hadn’t been passed, yet, when they were ‘on the job’. And I know some ‘street justice’ also occurred. Contempt of cop and all that.
But, I do believe they were good and honorable men. Here Kevin and I disagree.
This got me to thinking. Do we hold those persons who took an oath to the letter of said oath?
Senators and Representatives?
United States Constitution under Article IV it states:
“The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution…“
(U. S. Constitution 1787)
The American Dictionary of the English Language, define an oath as:
“A solemn affirmation or declaration, made with an appeal to God for truth of what is affirmed. The appeal to God in an oath, implies that the person imprecates his vengeance and renounces his favor if the declaration is false,or if the declaration is a promise, the person invokes the vengeance of God if he should fail to fulfill it. A false oath is called perjury.“
(Webster Dictionary 1828)
The presidential oath of office is required by Article 2, Section 1 of the Constitution, which deals with the executive branch and outlines how the president is elected. In part, it reads:
Before he enter on the Execution of his Office, he shall take the following Oath or Affirmation:–”I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.
HAVE ANY OF THESE CLOWNS IN WASHINGTON EVER TAKEN THEIR OATH SERIOUSLY? WILL THE STREET COP, WHEN ORDERED TO DISARM THE AMERICAN PUBLIC, DO SO WITH IMPUNITY? WHAT ABOUT THEIR OATH? HOW MANY PRESIDENTS WERE/ARE IMPEACHABLE FOR DELIBERATELY DISOBEYING THE ESSENCE OF THEIR OATH?
What ARE we doing?
We have a court system for bad cops, and a Constitutional system to remove bad politicians. Including Presidents. When do we hold their feet to the fire?
Why are we dragging our feet?
Two years ago, today, I began writing this blog.
I’d been on disability, and passed the time on the Internet reading blogs. I was frankly looking for some female friends who liked guns, and found some female gun bloggers. Unfortunately, these were in Ohio, Indiana and Idaho. They became my blogmothers. (Note-to-self: find female gun bloggers in AZ!)
I had no clue what I was doing. Some would say I still don’t.
In the past two years I’ve learned to write in paragraphs, write about those things I know, and to be disciplined. (sometimes)
I’ve written at least one blog post daily (sometimes two, occasionally three, once or twice four) every day.
And I’ve included a cartoon, a tasteful photo of a beautiful woman and a You Tube clip of my choosing, every day, as well.
And a quote of the day.
I told a couple friends locally I was writing a blog, and, before I knew it, I had followers (!)
Follower number 10 was North , the first person not actually known to me at the time. Since then he and many others have become friends!
As of this post, I have 89 followers, including a female blogger in Pakistan.
Over 164,821 pageviews! (if we include the 84K from the first year’s BLOGGER version) 5,397 comments, (some of which weren’t even from me!)
I’ve written 1,146 posts, about 2/3 of which were of my own authorship (not stolen borrowed or expounded upon from another blog).
And I’ve made many friends in the United States, and around the World.
I’m proud to say I’ve actually met some of these folks, and spoken with others on the telephone. Some have regularly communicated via email. A few have become close. One even gifted me ammunition! I’m both proud and humbled.
And still amazed.
One of my early followers was my good friend Mark Bell, who passed away February 1, 2012. He told me one of his first stops every morning was Guffaw in AZ. I like to think he still stops by.
I will continue to strive to report the facts and truth as I know them, for as long as I am able, and I care to.
And perhaps a few more PI stories.
tampered with amended The Usual Suspects to add those who have been friends and contributors and delete those who have stopped blogging. Sadly, some have passed away.
My thanks to all of you for your support.
Your obedient servant,
Real News Reporter shares with us an essay by Brandon Smith of Alt-Market
The Constitution of the United States is an undeniably powerful document. So powerful in fact, that it took establishment elitists with aspirations of globalized governance over a century to diminish the American people’s connection to it. It’s been a long time coming, but in the new millennium, there is now indeed a subsection of the masses that not only have no relationship to our founding roots, they actually despise those of us who do!
Including the following video, wherein a New Hampshire politician voices his opposition to libertarians moving into his State:
The essay IS a worthy read!