May 262016
 

I’ve heard a little bit of Libertarian Party Presidential candidates Austin Petersen and John McAfee on with Glenn Beck, and I’ve heard Steve Deace discussing Petersen just this week. Apparently Beck has actually endorsed Petersen. One of the candidates (and I can’t remember which one) stated when asked what is libertarianism that libertarianism is “limited government,” when no, government has nothing to do with libertarianism.

When it comes to government, libertarianism is the advocacy for freedom, for the people to be liberated from the intrusions, restrictions, shackles, and criminality of the State. That is why when there’s a candidate such as Darryl Perry who says that if he’s President he will pardon and release from the jails and prisons any prisoner who hadn’t harmed anyone, who hadn’t violated anyone else’s person or property, that is the actual libertarian candidate. As long as you don’t violate someone else’s person or property then you are not a criminal, and the rest of the world especially the government should leave you the hell alone.

In contrast, Austin Petersen said on the Glenn Beck Show, according to PJ Media, that as President he would enforce all the laws on the books, even those he personally disagrees with. That’s no libertarian, that’s a statist!

There are thousands and thousands of unjust and immoral laws on the books, the enforcement of which is the actual criminality against innocent people. The real criminals are those enforcers who immorally stop and detain, throw in a cage or worse, others who have not committed any actual crime, who have not harmed anyone, who have not violated the person or property of anyone else.

The freedom that real libertarians advocate is the freedom to live your life and go about your business without the aggressions or intrusions of others, as long as you don’t violate the persons or property of others. Live and let live.

Speaking of government law enforcement, which is a socialist way of dealing with community security, with government law enforcers enforcing unjust or immoral laws, Anthony Gregory wrote about why this form of socialism is just as bad as any other form of socialism. Now, I’m sure there are police-lovers out there scoffing at the notion that government law enforcement is “socialist,” but that is exactly what it is. Gregory writes:

Just as when the means of production of any good or service are monopolized by the state, the result is havoc, we see similar problems when the state owns the means of production of the service of protecting the innocent and going after the guilty.

The socialization of the cost of law enforcement, just as with any other industry, has led to shortages and shoddy products. In this case, it is justice that is shoddy and in short supply. We get a war on drugs that has imprisoned millions and squandered billions and encouraged homicide and corruption. We get a policy of disarming the civilian population of private weapons, which deter crime far more effectively than government police do. We get a prison system in which innocent and guilty are locked together to be beaten, raped, tortured, shot, and ruled by sadistic prison guards and the worst of the  inmates.

There are many libertarians who advocate for more freedom by repealing laws and policies which violate the rights of the individual, but keeping the State intact, especially its monopoly in “security” provision. And there are other libertarians who believe that the State’s monopoly of any endeavor is itself inherently destructive and needs to be entirely dismantled.

Conservatives, especially, love the State’s monopoly in security provision, because conservatives are generally authoritarian-minded and they love the State’s armed authority, police and military and all that. Conservatives show their true statist-authoritarian colors when it comes to gun rights and the Second Amendment. They say the individual has a right to keep and bear arms, but ultimately for the authoritarian conservatives it’s the State who has the final say as far as who gets to have what arms, not the other way around.

In contrast, libertarians believe that the “right to keep and bear arms” really is a right and not a State-granted privilege, and that the individual has the right to keep and possess whatever weaponry one wants to have, including military-style weapons or whatever. As Judge Andrew Napolitano pointed out,

The principal reason the colonists won the American Revolution is that they possessed weapons equivalent in power and precision to those of the British government. If the colonists had been limited to crossbows that they had registered with the king’s government in London, while the British troops used gunpowder when they fought us here, George Washington and Jefferson would have been captured and hanged.

However, as I have mentioned before, Murray Rothbard noted that an exception could or should be made in the case of nuclear weapons.

But to conservatives, ultimately, the State may prohibit private ownership of certain armaments if the State wants to. Given that most of the conservatives are just authoritarians and collectivists, the State comes first, then the community, and the individual last, despite what they might tell you.

Another example is licensing and gun background checks. Conservatives generally support them. The courageous Judge Napolitano continues:

We also defeated the king’s soldiers because they didn’t know who among us was armed, because there was no requirement of a permission slip from the government in order to exercise the right to self-defense. (Imagine the howls of protest if permission were required as a precondition to exercising the freedom of speech.) Today, the limitations on the power and precision of the guns we can lawfully own not only violate our natural right to self-defense and our personal sovereignties; they assure that a tyrant can more easily disarm and overcome us.

But the required background checks are government background checks. Just how many cases have we seen now when a psychopath has gone postal even though he passed all the government background checks? Libertarians don’t support government databases into which private people’s personal information is placed and could be at the hands of who knows what ghastly creatures could be lurking about wanting to wreak havoc on innocents.

Now, I am not advocating that anyone violate any laws regarding firearms, or any other matters, in which they could get in trouble. Don’t take any stupid risks.

But libertarianism really does advocate that innocent individuals are free to live and to be left alone by others including government bureaucrats and their enforcers, unless someone is actually suspected of some specific act of criminality against the person or property of others.

Returning to the issue of the State’s monopoly vs. private, free competition in security provision, the 19th Century economist Gustave de Molinari makes a thorough and convincing case against government-monopolized security provision, and promotes the free market.

Now, in that article Molinari was referring more to national security provision than to local community security. But the concepts are the same as far as the practicality and morality of free market vs. State-monopolized security. We have had generations now of advocates of ever-expanding U.S. federal government military powers reaching their tentacles all over the world. “Founding Father” James Madison passionately opposed a standing government army. He believed it should be the other way around, with an armed people in watch over the government. In Federalist No. 46, Madison wrote,

Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation, the existence of subordinate governments, to which the people are attached, and by which the militia officers are appointed, forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition, more insurmountable than any which a simple government of any form can admit of. Notwithstanding the military establishments in the several kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the public resources will bear, the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.

But with the institutionalized government military monopoly in America, its territorial expansion in other countries has caused chaos and death and an expanded police state domestically, costing trillions. But the military and security corporatists have been raking in the dough, so they continue to be pleased.

But, let’s be honest. If there were no centralized monopoly in national security, would President Lincoln have been able to stop the seceding states from peacefully seceding from the U.S.? Of course not. What, you think that people should be forcibly compelled to belong to a union they don’t want to belong to? (But isn’t that a form of slavery?) And also, chances are that efforts in nullifying Fugitive Slave Laws would have expanded greatly were there not an armed monopoly for Lincoln to use to enforce that kind of tyranny.

And if there were no centralized monopoly in national security, would President Wilson have entered the U.S. into World War I thus extending the war? Some people have argued that there wouldn’t have been a subsequent Hitler in power and a World War II had Wilson not done that.

And if there were no centralized monopoly in national security, would President Eisenhower and U.S. government bureaucrats have imposed a coup on Iran’s leadership in 1953 in the name of helping the British steal Iranian oil? If there were no coup thus setting up the Shah’s regime and his notorious Savak police state that the U.S. government supported, there probably wouldn’t have been a 1979 Revolution and American hostages taken.

And if there were no centralized monopoly in national security, President George H.W. Bush couldn’t have used such an apparatus to invade and bomb and cause the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians in Iraq in his 1990-91 war of aggression on Iraq and evil sanctions. The blowback of that government criminality included the 9/11 attacks, although many true believers in American Exceptionalism think that such an assertion is absurd, and “blaming America,” when no, the bureaucrats of the U.S. government are the ones to be blamed.

A lot of people, generations and millions of Americans now, have a mystical view of the nationalized security monopoly currently in place, and they see nothing wrong with our government starting wars and invading other countries. Their problem is that they obediently believe the lies and propaganda that government bureaucrats give them, as repeated over and over by the government’s sycophants and stenographers in the mainstream media. Well, they sure do need to be deprogrammed, in my view.

Generally speaking regarding security provision, the economist philosopher Hans-Hermann Hoppe has written about the absurdity of submitting the protection of one’s life to a monopolist with the absence of a contract. Hoppe notes,

The state, as ultimate decision maker and judge, operates in a contractless legal vacuum. There exists no contract between the state and its citizens. It is not contractually fixed, what is actually owned by whom, and what, accordingly, is to be protected. It is not fixed, what service the state is to provide, what is to happen if the state fails in its duty, nor what the price is that the ‘customer’ of such ‘service’ must pay.

Rather, the state unilaterally fixes the rules of the game and can change them, per legislation, during the game.

Back to government-monopolized law enforcement and security, Murray Rothbard wrote about the free enterprise alternative to government policing and law enforcement in Chapter 12 of his For a New Liberty: The Libertarian Manifesto. Economist Bryan Caplan summarizes the main points in an article on EconLog, and comments:

This chapter that has literally converted thousands of highly intelligent, economically informed people to anarcho-capitalism.  The first time I read it, I thought it was crazy.  By the tenth time I’d read it, Rothbard had made a believer out of me.

What’s the appeal?   In all honesty, its sheer eloquence is hard to resist.  I still get chills from passages like:

“And, indeed, what is the State anyway but organized banditry? What is taxation but theft on a gigantic, unchecked, scale? What is war but mass murder on a scale impossible by private police forces? What is conscription but mass enslavement? Can anyone envision a private police force getting away with a tiny fraction of what States get away with, and do habitually, year after year, century after century?”

While Rothbard and others who have advocated the security provision free market alternative to the State’s monopoly have mentioned insurance and private security agencies, it is worth noting that the primary means of security is the armed status of the people. Real freedom, which should be advocated by libertarians, includes the right of the individual to be armed, and the right of private individual groups to organize themselves to provide their own community or neighborhood security, or territorial security, or provide it to others — for profit, or voluntarily. There would be far fewer murders, assaults, rapes, thefts, burglaries, if no one knew exactly who might be armed and who might not be armed. And even the threat of a foreign invasion would be much less, given that the ownership of any and every kind of military-grade weaponry would not be in the hands of power-driven monopolist government bureaucrats. The society would not only be a safer one but a more moral one if there were no official authority and no officially armed enforcers by compulsion over the people.

Finally, I think that economic historian Robert Higgs makes the best case for freedom here:

Although I admit that the outcome in a stateless society will be bad, because not only are people not angels, but many of them are irredeemably vicious in the extreme, I conjecture that the outcome in a society under a state will be worse, indeed much worse, because, first, the most vicious people in society will tend to gain control of the state and, second, by virtue of this control over the state’s powerful engines of death and destruction, they will wreak vastly more harm than they ever could have caused outside the state. It is unfortunate that some individuals commit crimes, but it is stunningly worse when such criminally inclined individuals wield state powers.

May 242016
 

Here is their website.

Our signatures below are a plea for former Congressman Dr. Ron Paul to please come out of retirement for one last run at the White House under the Libertarian Party banner. We have seen the current options available and no one would have close to the level of support and excitement that a Ron Paul campaign would create.

According to the Article 15 of the LP Bylaws, we would just need Dr. Paul to express “a willingness to accept the Libertarian Party nomination” in order to be nominated at the LP Convention in Orlando. It is our belief that should Dr. Paul publicly express that willingness, we would be able to convince enough delegates in a short period of time to secure his nomination.

We are asking Ron Paul to accept the nomination should he win it to address these crucial issues this election cycle:

  • Ending the Federal Reserve
  • Bringing Home Our Troops
  • Promoting a Non-Interventionist Foriegn Policy
  • Ending the War on Drugs
  • And most of all: PROMOTING LIBERTY

With Ron Paul as the Libertarian Party nominee, we will be able to get him into the debates with Hillary and Donald to show the American people that there is a better option available.

More News and Commentary

 Posted by at 10:04 am
May 242016
 

Jacob Hornberger responds to critics of his “open borders” immigration views.

Paul Craig Roberts says that when they killed JFK they killed America.

David Gordon discusses Murray Rothbard’s comments on former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld.

Washington’s Blog says the U.S. government is the most corrupt in history.

Lew Rockwell says that Keynes must die.

Brandon Smith asks, Are globalists evil or just misunderstood?

Fortune magazine on the Real Donald.

Jim Davies on self-ownership.

Butler Shaffer asks, Why do we pretend that it matters?

Laurence Vance on the rights and wrongs of segregation, and discusses the candidates’ fatal flaw on taxes.

Charles Burris compares the Founding Fathers.

The Guardian with an article on how the Pentagon punished NSA whistleblowers.

Mike Marion says that anti-war is pro-American.

William Grigg discusses commie anti-discrimination commissars.

James Lewis asks, Does Obama’s troubled childhood explain his bathroom weirdness?

Chris Rossini on the dangers of the Donald Trump lovefest.

Robert Morrow with many links to discussions of Hillary as Bill Clinton’s enabler.

Dr. Mercola discusses medical errors as the third leading cause of death.

Arjun Walia writes about a Pfizer VP telling the truth about the pharmaceutical companies.

Alex Knight on a vital religion: Automatic voter registration in Vermont.

James Bovard says that Obama’s anti-corruption cops should call Internal Affairs.

James Ostrowski discusses the progressives vs. Dr. Scapegoat.

Richard Ebeling says that governments create monopolies and cause worker exploitation.

Robert Murphy says that capitalism gives power to the people.

Mark Perry on $15 an hour minimum wage.

Jason Ditz on biased Israeli school civics textbooks

Nada Elia comments on Palestinians on Nakba Day in 2016.

Uri Avnery discusses the parallels between Israel and 1930s Germany.

Christopher Manion on George W. Bush’s anti-Christian blowback in Iraq.

Dan Sanchez explains how schooling leads to war.

And Retta Fontana on tyranny in the U.S.

May 222016
 

It is very sad that millions of misguided and uninformed Americans are supporting Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump and their socialist, anti-free market, anti-private property agendas. Bernie is worse, in that he pretty much wants complete government control over the entire economy, over all industry and so on. Bernie Sanders, if elected, will turn the U.S. into a further basketcase than it already is, like Venezuela is now. Why are the Pope and others so critical of free market capitalism, which lifted people up from poverty, and full of praise for socialism which has failed wherever it has been tried?

Unfortunately, some people appreciate equality and dependence more than they appreciate freedom and prosperity. They seem to feel better not when they see that more people are better off, but when everyone is equally impoverished.

What Sanders and Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro don’t seem to understand is, economically, when the government imposes price and wage controls it causes distortions in the market, shortages, inflation and unemployment. And when you empower the government to seize entire operations of various industries, industries that most if not all of the bureaucrats know nothing about, you get exactly what we saw with the old Soviet Union, with North Korea and Cuba, and Venezuela now.

Doctors say Venezuela’s health care in collapse

Venezuela to nationalize occupied supermarket accused of hoarding food amid shortages

Amid unrest, looting and electricity rationing, Venezuela president becomes recall target

Study: Poverty in Venezuela at 73% of households

Venezuela moves to nationalize food, ration medicine, kill comedy

Venezuelans are fleeing the country in droves, and starting new lives in other countries such as Ecuador.

All these dysfunctions and crises are being caused by socialist government central planning. And a big reason that bureaucrats and their minions and supporters feel compelled to impose their controls over everything is their resentment toward those who achieve, and those who profit from their work. It isn’t just a control freak mentality, but also a pathological envy toward those who have abilities and use them to serve their fellow people, voluntarily. It is a resentment of freedom and the free market, of people producing goods and operating services which give others what they want and need, and profit from such endeavors.

Instead of recognizing that it is their own intrusions and government criminality against society which are causing the chaos and poverty, the socialists and bureaucrats like Bernie Sanders and Maduro blame the free market and the producers and private ownership as the causes of the problems.

In Venezuela, among the several proposals there to try to make Venezuelans’ situation better, the proposals are all about rearranging the deck chairs. The officials and “leaders” do not seem to be proposing to lift the government controls, the price controls and wage controls, lifting their government seizures of industries and production, ending the rationing. They need to get rid of all the regulations and other government thefts of property and wealth which are what bring a society down and impoverish the masses.

Can Maduro (and other bureaucrats such as Obama et al.) possibly consider letting the people have their freedom? Just relax, now. Leave people alone and let those who want to run a business such as grocery store or food distribution company just do what they think is right, and they will serve the people with what the people need. And yes, they will profit.

You know, a large majority of businesses in America are small businesses, like “Mom and Pop” kinds of places. They have a right to make a profit just as you do when you receive your weekly paycheck. Yes, your paycheck is a “profit.” You have given your time, labor and energy to the employer or client in exchange for something you value more than that time and labor, that financial compensation.

So let businesspeople profit from their work, too. They also have to make ends meet just as you do, and they have themselves and their families to feed. Let people make a profit and stop stealing from them, directly through taxes and indirectly through costly and regressive regulations. I’m sure it’s similar in Venezuela. Just what is wrong with people like Bernie Sanders, Maduro and the Pope, that they resent so much a free people making a living and profiting from it? Something is clearly going on in the minds of these resentful socialists.

When government bureaucrats take over ownership and control over the operations of the basic necessities of daily living, they screw it all up, because bureaucrats have no idea what they’re doing. But with freedom and private ownership and control of the means of production and industries, all the individual private business owners are specialists in their particular field of endeavor, and they generally know what they’re doing. Those who don’t know what they’re doing will be weeded out of the market by consumer dissatisfaction and lack of customers thus lack of profits to survive. And the criminals amongst these businesses who commit actual theft or fraud, well, they are few and far between as most of those kinds of people tend to work for the government.

May 202016
 

Already the Libertarian Party, and Gary Johnson in particular, are showing that they are clueless politically. I know, politics is not the moral or practical way to spread the word of liberty. In fact it is the opposite. But if you are going to use the political process and the political system, then you need to at least play the game in some way, if you’re serious toward the goal of getting elected, or at least getting more than 200,000 votes nationally.

For instance, Gary Johnson, if he is to be the LP nominee for President, should want to attract all those disillusioned Republican conservatives out there who will not vote for Donald Trump because they know Trump is a left-liberal progressive who wants nationalized health care-single payer, and so on. And Johnson should want to attract social conservatives. Now, Johnson is not a social conservative. He not only supports LGBT “Civil Rights,” and thinks the Christian baker should be forced to have to bake a cake for a lesbian wedding, but he really believes that a Jewish baker should be forced to bake a Nazi wedding cake. So picking a fellow like-minded social liberal like Bill Weld for VP will not get those conservatives to his side.

And it isn’t just that Weld wants to punish discrimination against people based on color, race, ethnicity or sex. No, Weld thinks it should also be based on people’s lifestyles, as well. According to Ontheissues.org, Weld stated in 1996, “I think it’s very important that we not have discrimination in housing, employment against people who may be of any, any particular, particular lifestyle.”

Additionally, as far as political “strategy” is concerned, Gary Johnson already is a governor, he doesn’t need a second governor on the same ticket. So if he is the Libertarian Party’s nominee for President, he would do better by picking a social conservative and perhaps someone with the kind of legislative experience that Ron Paul has.

Wait a minute! There’s an idea. How about Ron Paul for VP, if Gary Johnson (or anyone else) is the LP nominee? With the Libertarian Party, however, the delegates to the convention have a separate nominating process for Vice President. I don’t think that Ron Paul would actively run for that. But they should consider him as a possibility.

But one thing that the Libertarian Party needs to work on — and they need a LOT of work in this area — is communicating the actual principles of libertarianism. After all, the LP has boasted all these years as “The Party of Principle.” But in recent years they have shown utter abandonment of libertarian principles.

Among the important principles of libertarianism are private property, freedom of speech, and freedom of association. These are concepts the ACLU still does not get, which is why they back LGBT “Civil Rights” laws. While part of the 1964 Civil Rights Act is good in that it forbids the government from discriminating on the basis of race, color, sex, etc., it is bad because it forbids private people from discriminating, it empowers particular groups of people to enter the private property of others without the others’ consent, and it imposes violations of individuals’ freedom of thought and conscience. If you are going to say that someone’s reasons for banishing certain others from one’s property should be forbidden, then you are talking about thought crimes. No, private property owners have the absolute right of freedom of association to determine for themselves with whom to associate or not associate, and the right of freedom of thought and conscience to have any damn reason they want to exercise that control.

And by the way, by “private property,” that includes one’s person, one’s mind, one’s labor, as well as one’s home, land or business.

And private property owners have the private property right to control who goes onto or into their property, whether it is residential or commercial. Commercial property is no less private property than residential regardless of its being commercial. Why do liberals or progressives, the NAACP, ACLU, LGBT activists not insist that Civil Rights laws also cover the private residential property of others? Why should people be allowed to discriminate and prevent certain groups of people from entering their homes as well as their businesses? As Jacob Hornberger wrote a few years ago,

How would things have turned out if businesses had been left free to discriminate? Well, does anyone today get into an uproar over the fact that people are free to discriminate in their homes? And yes, people get into an uproar over a Nazi march in Skokie, just as they get upset over the periodic burning of the flag, but how many people lose sleep over the fact that people have such rights?

Freedom necessarily entails the right to make choices that other people find offensive, abhorrent, unpopular, and irresponsible. If people are free only to make the correct choices, then they are not truly free.

Liberals understand this principle, but only up to a point. That’s why they support the right of homeowners and Nazi sympathizers to discriminate. But they steadfastly refuse to extend their principles to private businesses.

Why?

I suspect that the answer lies in the long-time, deep antipathy that liberals have to the free market — to free enterprise — to capitalism — to profit. This of course raises the ugly head of socialism, the economic philosophy that has long attracted the liberal community.

Now, it isn’t just free enterprise which is why the people on the Left want to intrude and impose into private businesses, it’s also a cultural matter as we are seeing with the transgender restroom and locker room issues now. But the people on the Left are using the cultural and social intrusions as a way to aid them in further bringing about their beloved socialism.

Thomas DiLorenzo recently quoted Ludwig von Mises in this post, What the (Anti-) Cultural Marxists Are Up To:

Same thing that all varieties of Marxists are (and have been) up to, as explained by Ludwig von Mises:

“Socialist policy employs two methods to accomplish its purposes: the first aims directly at converting society to Socialism; the second aims only indirectly at this conversion by destroying the social order which is based on private ownership . . . . the second is the weapon of revolutionary Socialism” and “sabotage.”

“Thus the beginning and end of the socialist policy, which has dominated the world for decades, is destruction . . . .  Our whole life is so given over to destructionism that one can name hardly a field which it has not penetrated.  ‘Social’ art preaches it, schools teach it, the churches disseminate it.”

–Ludwig von Mises, Socialism (first published in 1922), pp. 424-425

Now, I know many in the Libertarian Party wants to be socially “liberal,” but they have to find a way to reintroduce the actual principles of private property and freedom of thought and freedom of association into the Party. The society is in desperate need to restore freedom. These principles, by the way, are not at all understood by the conservatives, as their rationale for opposing the transgender laws is “religious liberty.” That is not at all the case, because their religious liberty is not at issue. The rights being threatened involve private property, mainly.

People who want to advance the case for liberty will have difficulty considering a statist Gary Johnson or a statist Bill Weld, or most of the other statist LP candidates, just as we wouldn’t think of considering ultra-statists Bernie, Hillary or Donald.

The Libertarian Party, “The Party of Principle,” needs to stop compromising those important principles of liberty.

May 202016
 

Here is my latest article on LewRockwell.com, Libertarianism and the Libertarian Party

Now that Mary Matalin and the mainstream media have mentioned the Libertarian Party as a possible alternative to the Republicrat Party, already there is misinformation about what libertarianism actually is.

For starters, Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary Johnson’s apparent choice for Vice President is former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld. People are actually referring to Weld as a “libertarian” because he is supposedly a “fiscal conservative/social liberal.”

Sorry, folks. But “fiscal conservative/social liberal” means “Let’s make the existing intrusive governmental apparatus more efficient (which is close to impossible), and let’s expand private property-destroying, freedom of association-destroying Civil Rights laws even further.”

Libertarianism, on the other hand, includes the non-aggression principle, self-ownership and self-determination and the right to self-defense, private property rights, voluntary association and freedom of non-association, free markets and voluntary exchange. You know, “Live and let live.”

So libertarianism is about liberty, liberating the people from government’s intrusions, its coercion, threats and criminal violence. As Murray Rothbard wrote in The Anatomy of the State:

The State, in the words of Oppenheimer, is the “organization of the political means”; it is the systematization of the predatory process over a given territory. For crime, at best, is sporadic and uncertain; the parasitism is ephemeral, and the coercive, parasitic lifeline may be cut off at any time by the resistance of the victims. The State provides a legal, orderly, systematic channel for the predation of private property; it renders certain, secure, and relatively “peaceful” the lifeline of the parasitic caste in society. Since production must always precede predation, the free market is anterior to the State. The State has never been created by a “social contract”; it has always been born in conquest and exploitation. The classic paradigm was a conquering tribe pausing in its time-honored method of looting and murdering a conquered tribe, to realize that the time-span of plunder would be longer and more secure, and the situation more pleasant, if the conquered tribe were allowed to live and produce, with the conquerors settling among them as rulers exacting a steady annual tribute.

This is why true libertarians would want to liberate the people from the State’s criminality, not make reforms to the criminal State or merely rearrange the deck chairs on an inherently flawed centralized bureaucracy.

Alas, since Ron Paul’s 1988 LP campaign for President, the Libertarian Party seems to have lost touch with its actual libertarian roots, and has been stuck in the quagmire of statism.

A problem that the current top-polling Libertarian Party candidates for President have is that they seem to assume that the State and specifically the centralized federal government is a given, like it is some natural institution that has always existed. Not only that but they seem to have the assumption that taxation exists, therefore it is moral and legitimate. Bureaucracies exist, therefore they should continue to exist, but should be “reformed” or “trimmed” and so on.

Nope. The libertarian view is that if an institution such as the U.S. government has power and authority over you and it isn’t a voluntary arrangement, then it is an illegitimate institution.

For instance, consumers choose voluntarily to patronize various businesses, and they voluntarily establish mutually beneficial contracts. However, if one party uses some kind of coercion or threats against the other, we would call that something of a criminal nature.

Libertarians believe in voluntary associations, relationships and contracts. If something is involuntary or coerced, then it is not only illegitimate but it is criminal. Libertarians believe in non-aggression. Obviously it would take the initiation of aggression to force someone to obey the bureaucrats’ authority.

Did you voluntarily consent to some various people or agency having some kind of artificial authority over your life? Did you actually ponder the legitimacy of some politicians making up new laws or rules that you must obey or prohibitions that you must avoid, whether you agree with it or not?

I know, a lot of people really believe that such a system of involuntary submission to the will of artificial elites is a legitimate system, because they were indoctrinated to believe that during their 12 or 16 years of government-controlled schooling, and from heavy influence of their parents and pop culture.

If the people are not ready to consider voluntaryism or libertarianism, then given their current dissatisfaction with the Republicrat Party, perhaps they could give the Libertarian Party a try. I know, I myself have looked upon the LP with contempt, and rightfully so, but I’m willing to be flexible these days.

Murray Rothbard was influential in the Libertarian Party during its first decade of existence. The 1984 LP platform was extremely libertarian in its principles and statements. Very pro-private property and freedom of association, pro-due process and endorsing of self-ownership and voluntaryism, as was the 1988 LP platform that coincided with Ron Paul’s LP candidacy. But you can see how in the LP’s 2005 clueless Iraq “exit strategy” and then in the 2012 LP platform the Party’s principles have been whittled away somewhat, particularly regarding foreign policy. Shameful. Gary Johnson was the nominee that year.

Ron Paul in 1988 was very thorough and consistent in his recognition of libertarian principles of non-interventionism in both foreign and domestic affairs, the rights of self-defense and freedom of speech and religion, due process and so on.

Dr. Paul remained consistent in his 2008 and 2012 Republican Presidential campaigns. Close down all U.S. foreign military bases and bring all the troops home. And good riddance to the unconstitutional CIA, FBI, NSA, FTC, FCC, the Fed, and all the rest.

However, Dr. Paul is not for totally dismantling the entire federal government, as I am. (I know, some people think that would be crazy. That’s because they apparently never thought to question the whole system of central planning. For if they did, they would see how central planning doesn’t work, is immoral and destroying America and the lives of millions of its inhabitants, and will eventually crash and collapse on its own weight, like the Soviet Union did.)

Now, the three top-polling Libertarian Party candidates for President in 2016 are good with some libertarian rhetoric, but are inconsistent in their views and, in the end, are statists. They are Gary Johnson, who wants to cut “43%” from the defense budget but not close down all the hundreds of foreign U.S. military bases which shouldn’t be there overseas; Austin Petersen, who clearly doesn’t understand Ron Paul’s criticism of the blowback of U.S. military invasions and occupations overseas, who disagrees with the non-aggression principle, and who wants to make a mere 1% cut to federal programs rather than eliminating them completely; and security software entrepreneur John McAfee.

But there are other candidates who will be considered at the party’s national convention May 26-30.

Among some of lesser-polling Libertarian Party candidates for President, there’s Marc Allan Feldman, a Cleveland anesthesiologist. In his “Progressive plan to shrink the federal government,” Dr. Feldman states: “I will declare a National Fiscal Emergency and, by executive order, direct every government agency to apply (strict) controls to limit spending to available revenue.”

Sorry, Dr. Feldman. Instead of directing every government agency to limit spending, the true libertarian act would be to dismantle every one of those damned government agencies! Or just about every one, as most of the federal governmental apparatus as it currently exists is not authorized by the U.S. Constitution and, more important, doesn’t have the moral authority to exist and exert power over the people compulsorily.

Dr. Feldman writes, “For every agency and every federal law, objective measurable survey instruments will be used to give evidence whether they are working, making people safer, more secure, feeding the hungry, healing the sick, or sheltering the homeless.”

Huh? Are you serious? The government “feeding the hungry, healing the sick, or sheltering the homeless”? What’s this guy doing in the “Libertarian” Party?

Dr. Feldman also wants to make Kanye West be his Vice President. (I am not. Making. This. Up.)

And Derrick Michael Reid seems to have an understanding of the criminality of the State especially the federal government, but still seems to have this “Restore American Greatness” thing (sounding like Donald Trump).

But I just want our freedom restored. “Freedom First” is my motto, not “America First.” But that’s just me. And this Reid quotes the Pledge of Allegiance (to the flag, etc., etc.) on his website. The Pledge of Allegiance is really a Pledge of Obedience to the government, as far as I’m concerned. And why is his campaign website domain “Totalitariandemocracy.com”?

Jack B. Robinson, Jr. wants to “end poverty and provide healthcare for all Americans; and then worldwide,” and “protect Social Security and Medicare, strengthen our military, transform the poorest of countries with infrastructure, healthcare.” Not particularly libertarian, this guy. Are you sure you are on the right planet, Mr. Robinson?

But one candidate in particular, Darryl Perry, is clearly the most libertarian of the candidates. He states:

I believe…
…that all coercive forms of taxation should be eliminated, and government programs should be funded voluntarily.
…that people should be allowed to travel freely without government interference; this includes the right of individuals to choose where they decide to live.
…in the right of self-determination; that is the right of “determination by the people of a territorial unit of their own future political status.”
…that every person and/or group of people should be allowed to decide for themselves if and/or how they will be governed.
…that men do not need leaders, we are all capable of leading ourselves. Governments only get in the way of allowing this to happen.
…that the United States government, as it exists today, should be abolished!

Hey! Perry is the one candidate here who actually distinguishes between voluntary contracts and forced, coerced or compelled contracts. And he also believes that the U.S. government should be abolished.

But as America stands right now, I don’t think that the masses have any understanding of what damage the U.S. government has done to the country and that it needs to be dismantled forthwith. The masses mainly believe the propaganda dished out by government officials as repeated by their lapdogs in the mainstream media. Thus, they flock to Trump, Hillary, Bernie, and Ted Scruz. The masses really believe that the central planners of the Regime will protect them from foreign aggression, or that they will actually be protected from those very central planners’ aggressions.

So, it is unlikely that Perry could make sense to those people no matter how well he might communicate such important ideas.

Unlike the other “Libertarians,” Perry has a clear understanding of libertarianism. He also states: “All peaceful prisoners should be released, so long as their offense does not have a victim. Police should no longer arrest or ticket people for offenses with no victim, and such crimes should be eliminated from federal statutes, state statutes and local ordinances.”

And, “I oppose all laws at any level of government restricting, registering, or monitoring the ownership, manufacture, transport, or transfer of firearms, ammunition, or any other tool that could be used for self-defense. Additionally, I oppose all laws requiring registration of firearms or ammunition, and oppose any government efforts to ban or restrict the use of other self-defensive tools, including (but not limited to) pepper spray, stun guns, tear gas (mace). I further oppose all attempts to ban weapons or ammunition.”

But in the end, I don’t know whether Perry’s hard-core libertarian message is what today’s American sheeple are ready for, even though that is exactly what they need to restore their freedom.

Perhaps a compromise could consist of the LP drafting Ron Paul to be its nominee, especially given that so many people really did vote for him and he received many Republican delegates in 2012. Dr. Paul’s message of peace and freedom resonates with millions. And while voluntaryist libertarians such as myself disagree, Dr. Paul does believe that the federal government should continue to exist. It’s just that he would cut most of it away as not authorized by the Constitution — definitely a plus.

In any event, some people see America as headed toward a real, terrible collapse. Like Venezuela is experiencing right now. But we can avoid that at the very least by abolishing Leviathan. So, in the event that we ever do see the actual dismantling of the U.S. federal government, thus bringing about the largest period of human liberation, economic growth and prosperity in World History, Murray Rothbard has some important advice on how to go about the desocializing process.

May 102016
 

There seems to be some attention now on possible third parties, including the Libertarian Party (LP), as an alternative to the two government parties, Republicrat and Demopublican. Gary Johnson, the Libertarian Party’s 2012 Presidential nominee and a current candidate in 2016, was interviewed on Sunday by the unbiased and honorable George Snuffleupagus. But there are other candidates seeking the Libertarian Party nomination for President besides Gary Johnson. More about some of them below. However, because of his being well-known, like Donald Trump Gary Johnson will probably get more attention (unless he doesn’t get the LP nomination).

I have written about Gary Johnson in the past, and concluded that he is a statist, or a “libertarian lite” (i.e. statist), as some people have called him. Robert Wenzel had this analysis of Johnson, considering him a “lightweight libertarian,” and gave Johnson a tough interview here. Justin Raimondo wrote about Johnson when he was launching his losing 2012 Republican Presidential campaign, prior to switching to the LP. Raimondo says that Johnson promotes waging “humanitarian” wars, whatever that means. (It means murdering innocents for their own good is what that means.)

According to this Daily Caller interview, Johnson wants to cut defense spending by “43%” but wants to continue the U.S. drone murders overseas even though he acknowledges that such criminality creates new enemies. He also said he wants to keep the unconstitutional Guantanamo torture prison open. That’s unconscionable, and completely un-libertarian! And he says that while the U.S. should get out of Afghanistan, he is not sure whether they should actually close down the U.S. military bases there.

You would think that strategically we should be in the Middle East. Should we be in the Philippines? I’m just saying that this isn’t going to be a wholesale — a 43 percent reduction, in my opinion, gets us back to 2003 funding levels and just wrings out the excess.

Huh? As opposed to Ron Paul, who was saying close down ALL foreign U.S. government military bases and bring all the troops home. Dr. Paul has been saying this since at least his 1988 Presidential campaign, and probably for years before that. So, on foreign policy, Gary Johnson is inconsistent and incoherent at best, and certainly un-libertarian, that’s for sure.

In this CNS interview, Gary Johnson says he is for legalizing marijuana, but only “decriminalizing” heroin but not legalizing heroin and other illegal drugs. He says that the states should control that. While he says he wouldn’t want his state of New Mexico to have a state-operated marijuana store, he is okay with other states doing that. Would a real libertarian really be okay with any state or local government operating any kind of store, for drugs, liquor, or otherwise? (Nope.)

The CNS interviewer, Terence Jeffrey, really gives Johnson a hard time in trying to get Johnson to clarify his views on drug legalization. It appears that Johnson is just as confused in this area as he is in foreign policy. He certainly doesn’t have a grasp on the libertarian view of drugs. See Laurence Vance’s article on the moral case for drug freedom.

In my view, it is all about self-ownership and private property rights. If you own your own body, then you have a right to put into your own body whatever the hell you want, as long as you take responsibility for the consequences of your decisions and actions. If the government (or the community or the “majority,” etc.) owns your body, then the government has a right to tell you what you may or may not put into your own body. The true libertarian position on that is that YOU own your own body! The same goes for buying and selling, growing, possessing or trading, any damn thing you want, it’s your own business as long as you don’t steal, defraud, trespass, or initiate aggression against others.

Johnson also wants a Fair Tax, or consumption tax, a 23% national sales tax on new goods and services. At the 2012 Libertarian Party nominating convention, Johnson was grilled, booed, and heckled by skeptics who fear that a national sales tax that is intended to replace the income tax will only be made in addition to the income tax. As Laurence Vance wrote in 2010 on the Fair Tax,

The FairTax creates new taxes, new taxpayers, and new tax collectors, makes it easier for the federal government to raise taxes, institutes universal welfare with its prebate check, has unknown and potential huge transition costs, could saddle us with a sales tax and a reconstituted income tax, and has a stated rate that is too low to achieve revenue neutrality, a problematic concept in itself. The federal government has an insatiable lust for Americans’ money to maintain the welfare/warfare state. All revenue-neutral tax-reform plans allow Congress to maintain its spending orgy while appearing to make taxes “fairer.”

Another LP candidate for President is John McAfee, the founder of the McAfee antivirus software now owned by Intel. When Intel took the name “McAfee” off its security brand in 2014, McAfee was quoted by BBC as stating, “I am now everlastingly grateful to Intel for freeing me from this terrible association with the worst software on the planet. These are not my words, but the words of millions of irate users.” Well, at least he’s honest about it.

I’ve seen some ads with McAfee and don’t particularly like his style. (Sorry, but I’m a Rated G kinda guy.) This in-depth analysis of McAfee tells a lot about his personal history. Very spooky guy, if you ask me. On his campaign website, he seems to understand some of the basic principles of libertarianism. However, he calls for a flat tax on income. In this interview, he states that the income tax “implies that we and the fruits of our labor somehow belong to the government, which is nuts. Ultimately we need to find some sort of system that has no income tax whatsoever. That is unrealistic to start with. A flat tax is not.” Sorry. We did have a system without an income tax for decades and decades in America. It was called freedom. That is not unrealistic.

And then there’s this young guy, Austin Petersen. Already, Petersen is against the very basis for libertarianism, the non-aggression principle, which he says, in his scholarly paper on the subject, is “pacifist anarchism.” No, the non-aggression principle is just saying, Don’t initiate aggression against others. Don’t violate the person or property of another. If someone initiates aggression against you, then of course you have a right to use aggression to protect yourself. That is not “pacifism.”

On his campaign website, Petersen wants to “reduce economic inequality by lowering barriers to entry in the marketplace, licensing, taxation, and fees.” First, there will always be economic inequality. And second, “lowering barriers”? How about totally eliminating barriers? And by “barriers” I assume he means government-imposed barriers. The libertarian position is: There shouldn’t be any government barriers!

And he writes, “Urge congress to adopt the ‘Penny Plan,’ across the board spending cuts of 1% per program.” Ooooh, a whopping 1%! Whoa, you might as well have a Cruz-style shut-down! I hope the bureaucrats can handle that one! (Note how “bureaucrat” ends in “rat.” Just sayin’.)

“Rein in the NSA, and demand accountability in our security agencies so as to protect our 4th Amendment rights.” No, “Protect our 4th Amendment rights” by abolishing the NSA!

“Reclassify the war on drugs as a medical problem, not a criminal problem. Deschedule all drugs at the federal level and end the federal War on Drugs once and for all.”

No, the war on drugs is a government problem, not a medical problem. There shouldn’t be any government “scheduling” of drugs!

On entitlements, Petersen writes, “Allow young people to opt out of Social Security.”

Allow everyone to opt out! Abolish government usurpations of the people’s right to manage their own retirements! Doh!

So these so-called “libertarians” are taking things from a government perspective, not really a freedom perspective. The libertarian, freedom perspective is that for transactions between or among the people to be moral and legitimate, such transactions must be voluntary. When the bureaucrats demand a payment from you involuntarily, or demand that you must do this or that (submit personal information, participate in a government-run retirement scheme, buy health insurance, etc.), using coercion and threats, that is a criminal act on the part of the bureaucrats. It is theft. And institutionalized theft and plunder must be abolished. Otherwise, you would have to repeal laws against theft, extortion, and racketeering to be consistent in your allowing government bureaucrats to commit those criminal acts against you.

This article on Reason describes what political hacks even these libertarians appear to be in their shenanigans. Politics really is not the answer to society’s problems. These campaigns really show themselves to be a frantic search for who will best enslave the people, be their master, and parasite off their hard labor.

Here is the full recent Libertarian Party debate moderated by John Stossel with the three aforementioned top-polling candidates.

But if you want to get a really good idea of what actual libertarianism is all about, here are some suggestions:

The Ethics of Liberty, Free Market, For a New Liberty, and The Case Against the Fed by Murray Rothbard

Economics in One Lesson, by Henry Hazlitt

The Criminality of the State by Albert Jay Nock

No Treason: The Constitution of No Authority by Lysander Spooner

Democracy: The God That Failed by Hans-Hermann Hoppe

Against the State by Lew Rockwell

The Origins of Totalitarianism by Hannah Arendt

Hans-Hermann Hoppe’s lecture on Private Law Society

Swords into Plowshares by Ron Paul

Foreign Aggression by Morris and Linda Tannehill

Libertarianism is also about human freedom, and in most arguments, human beings are assumed to have natural rights, among them the rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. These rights are in ALL human beings, not just American “citizens.” And they are rights, not privileges granted to us by governments. These rights preexist the formation of any government. In many of these political discussions including the libertarian ones, it seems that such discussions are in the context of government existing prior to the people. Nope. Remember, the people created the government and they can abolish it. (And I hope they do!)

May 082016
 

In my post on the Libertarian Partly, I was considering including some encouragement for Jesse Ventura to run for President, because I had seen an article suggesting that he might do that. Gov. Ventura has in the past spoken positively about civil liberties and due process, and unlike most other politicians he mentions the U.S. Constitution (albeit as flawed as it happens to be). And also, I liked it when Ventura, himself a Navy SEAL vet, had said that he would not serve in the military today and that he would be a “conscientious objector.” He stated, “I don’t believe that the military fights for our freedom.” Which is true. Laurence Vance has written many articles on that.

However, Ventura’s list of priorities if he were President do not seem to address what really needs to be done. He does make some good points with his quoting of Maj. Gen. Smedley Butler:

To summarize: Three steps must be taken to smash the war racket. 1.  We must take the profit out of war. 2.  We must permit the youth of the land who would bear arms to decide whether or not there should be war.  3.  We must limit our military forces to home defense purposes

But Ventura’s platform as a prospective President doesn’t address the important issues, in that he writes:

My platform would be simple:
1. Rebuilding our country: focus on alternative energy sources, and fix our infrastructure.
2. Getting out of the wars.
3. Legalizing and ending the war on drugs.
4. Get the money out of politics and work towards reforming campaign financing.

As far as getting money out of politics and reforming campaign financing, that shouldn’t be a priority. People have a right to spend or waste their money on whatever they want. People have a right to waste as much of their own money on politicians as they want to. There should be no restrictions on how much money someone can spend on whatever he wants to spend it on (or waste it on, in the case of political campaigns).

Yes, get out of the wars. U.S. Presidents have been starting wars of aggression against foreigners to act as provocations as a means to justify the federal government’s constant expansion, exploiting the fears and insecurities of the masses, and profiting from them.

Ending the war on drugs is also good. Government agents, federal, state and local, profit from the drug war. The drug war itself has resulted in many more deaths, ruined lives and destroyed families than drugs themselves ever could.

So those two points are good. But Ventura wants to “rebuild our country” with “alternative energy sources.” Energy source development needs to be decentralized and get the government out of it all completely. And he says, “fix our infrastructure.” I hope he doesn’t mean by governmental “stimulus,” like the Obama stimulus, shovel-ready jobs and all that. No, let local communities and neighborhoods fix their own infrastructure, and privatize as much as possible.

But while Ventura is right when he states, “We have so much work to do here in the United States. I’m tired of seeing our resources being used abroad.  Let the world handle their own problems, when it’s clear we have so many of our own,” he really loses me when he concludes that with: “If we did that, we could fully implement all of Bernie Sanders’ propositions.”

Huh? Bernie Sanders? His propositions? Like “free college” for everyone? Free health care? Free everything else?

Expanding the size and power of the federal government by trillions more? As I wrote in this post,

How do you think Bernie is going to enforce all the further government empowerments and expanded tax-thefts and even more intrusive regulations?

With law enforcement! The police! The regulatory state is a police state. But we already have a police state! That means Bernie Sanders is going to further empower the IRS with all their high powered machine guns and S.W.A.T. teams, and further empower the FBI with all their high powered machine guns and S.W.A.T. teams, and further empower all the other agencies who will be strengthened even more to “protect” us from the “billionaires” (who start businesses and provide jobs and create wealth and produce all the goods and services we need to prosper, shame on them!).

But who will protect us from the IRS and FBI and all their high powered machine guns and S.W.A.T. teams? Especially when they constantly go to the wrong address? Especially when they are criminally enforcing unjust legislation against the people? It sure won’t be the Second Amendment, because the progressives want to disarm the civilian population and keep the government class armed to the teeth!

Sorry. The real priority for the people of America is to restore our freedom! Some people are saying “America First,” but I don’t care about “America first,” second or third. What matters is Freedom First! That is what matters. It was freedom that the people of America had which was the biggest contributor to the economic boom of the 19th-20th Centuries and which raised the standard of living for the most people in the society ever in the history of the world! So, restoring our freedom means restoring the ideas of self-ownership, live and let live, private property, voluntary association and voluntary contract and the non-aggression principle. No coercion, no government authority over anyone’s lives as higher than their own authority over their own lives, no government monopolies forced on the people.

Finally, A real libertarian running for President would promise to pardon and set free anyone who is being kept involuntarily in the jails and prisons who is a non-criminal, that is, who has been prosecuted for disobeying some arbitrary order or prohibition, for doing something the government says is a “crime,” but of which there is no victim. A real libertarian running for President would also promise to pardon and set free any non-criminal who is accused of disobeying some arbitrary order and being harassed, jailed and persecuted by the bureaucrats or their enforcers. And besides advocating the repeal of the thousands and thousands of such unjust laws currently on the books, a real libertarian should also go so far as to suggest prosecuting government legislators for making up all those laws which are used to violate the lives and liberty of innocent non-criminals, and prosecuting all those criminal prosecutors and police out there who are enforcing such orders or prohibitions which violate the people’s lives and liberty.

May 082016
 

Brandon Smith explains how a collapse in South America could trigger martial law in the U.S.

Ron Paul says that drafting women means equality in slavery.

Andrew Napolitano discusses the government’s immoral, unconstitutional, and criminal spying.

Glenn Greenwald discusses new empirical evidence showing how mas surveillance breeds fear and self-censorship.

Chelsea Manning (a.k.a. Bradley Manning) says that solitary confinement is torture and should be abolished.

Laurence Vance on the free market at work.

Robert Wenzel analyzes Trump’s plans for huge spending and debts, and says that Trump may replace the Establishment with something worse.

Joshua Krause on the Harvard mumps outbreak: they had all been vaccinated.

Ludwig von Mises explains how taxation kills entrepreneurship.

Jacob Hornberger and Richard Ebeling discuss abolishing the income tax.

Tate Fegley discusses asset forfeiture and the income tax.

Walter Williams on common sense.

The Mises Institute will have a Town Hall event with speakers in Seattle on May 21st.

Jacob Hornberger says, Remember how we got out of Vietnam.

Edmund Wright on Coulter vs. Coulter.

Bill Sardi says that health cometh not from healthcare.

Peter Schiff has some suggestions for Donald Trump.

Thomas DiLorenzo comments on the Establishment’s love affair with Hamilton.

Bionic Mosquito on The Freemen.

Don Boudreaux says that original resource location is irrelevant.

David D’Amato discusses the tyranny of eminent domain.

Patrick Cockburn discusses Saudi Arabia’s attempt to do their own version of Mao’s “Great Leap Forward”

And Breitbart with an article on Obama’s plan to push transgender and “gender identity” rules on all K-12 schools.