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Month: January 2012

Economic Freedom, Not Economic Slavery, Is the Only Way Out of America’s Current Crisis

A few days ago I had this response to Paul Craig Roberts’s article, in which Roberts called on Ron Paul to compromise by supporting policies such as minimum wage and other regulations as a meas of attracting more people from the Left. I stated that Ron Paul won’t compromise on such policies which he knows are economically unsound as well as immoral, and I called on the Left to do the compromising. And I also included a list of books with online editions and articles online for people to read to learn more about why freedom and free markets contribute far more to economic growth and prosperity than do government intrusions, and in fact freedom and free markets are more ethical and moral as well.

Here are some additional comments on why the Left (and everyone else) should oppose a regulated economy just as much as they oppose governmental intrusions into their personal lives.

One thing that those who support more regulations of private businesses don’t understand is that, the more regulations (that is, arbitrary rules, mandates and dictates given by government bureaucrats) there are, the more power you are giving to the armed agents of government to enforce those regulations, be they local police, FBI, SEC, FTC, etc. Just look at what Gibson Guitar had to endure, with S.W.A.T. team raids and government theft of the company’s property, and what Rawsome Foods suffered at the hands of the bureaucracy police because some people happen to prefer raw milk rather than the chemical-laden crap we buy at the local grocer.

This fascism of bureaucracy is only getting worse, as that is what can be expected when you abandon the ideas of individual rights, property rights and the rule of law, which is exactly what before-the-fact, presumption-of-guilt arbitrary government regulations, bureaucratic red tape and reporting requirements do. And this applies to the financial sector as well. There is no need for a psychopathic, fanatically bureaucratized, Soviet-like Dodd-Frank monstrosity, when all you really have to do is go by the rule of law.

For the financial crisis that we have had to endure in recent years, if there were actual free markets in banking, financing and housing, and no government mandates and bailouts, and under the rule of law that actually punishes theft and fraud, we would not have the problems our society has now. Some people on blogs and in articles recently have been calling such a situation (a situation that would be approved of by Thomas Jefferson et al. were they around today, by the way) “utopian,” but it actually is those who are calling for more and more nanny-state regulations and intrusions who are the utopians, as though the never-ending growth in regulations and intrusions that treat the population like babies and like criminals in their obedience to dumb, non-productive bureaucrats will finally solve problems.

No, Dodd-Frank and other intrusions calls for more bureaus and more bureaucrats, and gives more power to more police, FBI, and so on. With cases like Rawsome Foods and Gibson Guitars, and various “insider trading” laws and other made-up “crimes,” it only gives the armed agents of government more excuses to get off on their power trips in their raids and their more recent Nazi-like tactics. The police state that we have now isn’t just evident with the ‘Occupy’ movement, traffic fascism and the education system, but with all sorts of businesses in which people are just trying to make a living and have a right to be left alone and a right to be presumed innocent until actually suspected of some actual crime.

Further, the more regulations you have, and the more costly and intrusive they are, the more damaging they are economically to smaller businesses and those just starting out in their fields, and just plain discouraging of those who were merely considering entering the business world. And the more protective such regulations are of the more established businesses who can afford the extra lawyers, lobbyists, and, of course, those campaign contributions for the Congresspeople to vote for legislation to restrict smaller businesspeople and entrepreneurs, and that will help those established businesses in protecting their high profits.

Besides the police state that further regulations enhance, and the government-protectionism of established businesses, on a more fundamental level it is a matter of rights. Individuals have a right to live and right to liberty, and have a right to be free from the aggression and intrusion of others. This means more specifically that individuals have a right “to be secure” in their persons, property and effects from intrusions by others. People have a right to own their own lives, and that includes the right to own their labor, the energy and effort they themselves exert in order to be productive. The individual is the initial rightful owner of one’s labor, until one trades one’s labor with an employer, a customer or client in a mutually-beneficial, voluntary contract.

For some reason, some people seem to think that your labor is initially owned by your community in which you live or by the collective or the population in general. Those are the people who believe that the individual is owned by the collective and exists to serve the collective’s needs. However, the truth is that such a destructive philosophy, on which many of our current “laws” and regulations are based, is directly violating of the rights of the individual: the right of self-ownership, the right to be secure in one’s person, property and effects, and the right to use one’s own labor and productivity as one sees fit to sustain one’s own life.

People have a right to establish voluntary contracts with others, and those contracts are private contracts and they are only the business of those parties involved in such contracts. That applies to employer-employee contracts, private contractors dealing with clients, sales people dealing with customers, etc. For some reason, there are people who don’t like the idea of that kind of freedom, that kind of voluntaryism amongst free, consenting individuals, and that such contracts are really owned by the community and that the community has a right to know what the terms of private contracts are and even have a right to demand specific terms of contracts. And they believe that they have a right to a certain take on those contracts and/or profits from any transactions (via the State). But such demands, such takings are really intrusions into those contracts of others, and really amount to acts of trespass and theft (via the State).

There is also the idea of the government demanding information from you regarding your personal life or your economic life. This demanding of private information comes from the idea that people are guilty until they prove themselves innocent by allowing such governmental intrusions. That goes against the idea of presumption of innocence and the right to be secure in one’s person, property and effects. Intrusions are trespasses. Remember, if it’s wrong for your neighbors to intrude in your private affairs, then it’s wrong for the government to do so.

I know, a lot of people have been indoctrinated for generations and generations to believe otherwise, but no, if you believe in the rule of law, and you believe in true justice and living in a peaceful society, you have to decide whether only some acts of trespass and theft should be considered criminal, or whether all such acts are criminal. Unfortunately, our society has allowed the community and the State to encroach themselves into private people’s private personal and economic matters, in the name of this or that, when in reality, these intrusions are just institutionalized criminality. And at the same time, we have laws upon laws upon laws that make up phony crimes, in which people minding their own business are persecuted by their neighbors via government and police. Amerika has become an inside out, upside down world of a bizarre Orwellian nature.

Now, I would like to address this ignorant ideology of “soak the rich.” For some reason, some people seem to think that an individual’s right to one’s life and self-ownership, including the right to sell one’s labor and property as one sees fit, and the right to the fruits of one’s labor and the right to one’s justly acquired property, become diminished rights the more wealth one has. That is, for example, if someone accumulates $100,000, then one has less of a right to that wealth than someone who has accumulated $1,000. And that the neighbors or the community has a right or ought to be empowered to take more of the first individual’s wealth then the second individual’s wealth.

So the more wealth one honestly accumulates, the less he actually owns it and the more the community, one’s neighbors, can claim ownership of it? No, that just goes against the concept of a society forbidding aggression, and against the moral principles of private property and the rule of law. Just who are the neighbors to make a claim on that wealth without the consent of the owner? What’s the difference between those neighbors claiming such wealth via government force and those people just stealing it themselves by force? A society that says that some taking of private property is allowed by law is a society that is doomed to degenerate morally, and that is what we have today.

There is a control freakishness of some people in society, in which they must give orders and make demands on others, to reveal personal information and to open up bank accounts and businesses to government snoopers, and there are those control freaks who are just compelled to forcibly enter the private homes and businesses of others, this need to be intrusive. There is a covetousness of some people who must have what others have and take it from them by force. All these trespasses and thefts have had their rationalizations throughout the decades, but they are still thefts and trespasses, and it is still covetousness, regardless how it is rationalized.

“But, it’s for the poor,” etc. Actually, it has been these government mandates, regulations, reporting requirements, fees, licensure, minimum wage laws, union protectionism, etc. that have been stealing from the poor, stealing their opportunities by restricting their entering into the work force or from starting a small business, and so forth. It’s not “for the poor,” it’s for the government bureaucrats, and to protect the Establishment.

I hope that Ron Paul does not compromise on his principles of morality, private property, freedom of association and freedom of contract as Paul Craig Roberts requests of him on behalf of getting more votes from the Left. What we need is more freedom. Freedom begets economic prosperity and higher standard of living for the most number of people in a society.

American Exceptionalists Love their Primitive Secular State Theocracy

January 30, 2012

Copyright © 2012 by LewRockwell.com (Link to article)

At a recent debate when Ron Paul mentioned the “Golden Rule,” that we should treat foreigners as we should be treated, he was booed by a number of people in the audience. This happened at a previous debate. At that previous debate, Paul further questioned how we would like it if a foreign government invaded and occupied the U.S. and set up its military bases here.

How can so many people (and so many popular radio talk hosts and their listeners) condemn the suggestion that everyone must be equal under the rule of law?

The myth of American exceptionalism is that the U.S. is an example of moral progress, peace and prosperity for the rest of the world to follow. But that has not been the case during most of America’s existence.

Perhaps America was somewhat exceptional at its founding, when the ideas of the rights of the individual and private property were taken seriously. But when a Constitution, which limited the rights of the individual and empowered a centralized government, was written and ratified, that was really the end of such moral exceptionalism.

The Founders had the right idea, but the statists, centralists and fraudsters took control, and that was the end of that.

The societal and moral advancement that the Founders took from the Enlightenment has tended to regress backwards, as America’s federal government continually expanded in size and intrusiveness, and its actions overseas became more primitively aggressive.

The moral degeneracy of America escalated considerably when Honest Abe Lincoln waged a brutal and immoral war against civilians in order to compel the population into a life of enslavement by central planners. Woodrow Wilson unnecessarily extended World War I, which contributed to the rise of Hitler. FDR’s New Deal really was the final nail in the coffin for whatever freedom there was remaining in America.

In foreign affairs, for the past century the reality of American exceptionalism has been this: that our government may interfere in the internal affairs of foreign nations, may place its governmental apparatus and military bases on other peoples’ territories, may commit acts of aggression, murder, and property destruction, and get away with it through rationalization and propaganda – but other governments may not do that on our lands or do those things to our people.

American exceptionalism is the belief that our government need not be accountable under the rule of law, while we hold foreigners accountable.

Regarding the current “War on Terror,” yes, real terrorists attacked America on September 11, 2001. But when our government then invades and destroys whole countries that had nothing to do with 9/11, then you should logically expect the targeted innocent foreigners to defend their territories.

One thing that America’s government-controlled schools (both public and private) have accomplished over the past century is the suppression of critical thinking skills. Instead, because the people have allowed the almighty State and its media stenographers and propagandists so much influence and intrusion into the entire education system, the result has been generations of people with an instilled unquestioned loyalty to the State theocracy.

Because of this, America has become increasingly authoritarian and restrictive in its liberty to the point of the police state and non-sustainable, bankrupting empire we currently suffer. Those who question The Powers That Be are themselves stigmatized and marginalized, and in some cases, punished and persecuted. Americans have been cheering their government’s illicit aggressions overseas, and booing those who stand for the Golden rule and the rule of law.

In fact, some of the same people who have been supporting the U.S. government’s immoral aggressions overseas have been those preaching the loudest about “Christian moral values.” Sorry, but when one supports one’s government invading other countries that were of no threat to us, one’s preaching of Christian morality is just hypocrisy.

And when people assert Americans’ right to defend America against invaders, yet refer to foreigners who defend their own lands, their lives and their families from invaders and occupiers as “terrorists,” no wonder Christianity and moral values have declined in America.

The narcissism of modern State worship is such that, when the exceptionalists assert that the U.S government must have a “presence” on foreign lands, it is as though they view those lands as theirs, just like a possessive child would do. It seems more like covetousness, if you ask me.

No, the narcissistic exceptionalists, who pray to the democratic god of the secular State, seem to believe that their government may commit acts of aggression against foreigners, but not the other way around. Praise the almighty State, as it can do no wrong.

Former Senator and current presidential candidate Rick Santorum seems to be one of those more outspoken worshipers of the State and its aggressive expansion overseas. Santorum even believes in the central planning of the almighty State domestically, in the social area.

Santorum wants to use the armed police apparatus of the State to impose his own personal social views onto the rest of the population, much like the Islamists that he ironically criticizes for wanting to impose their Sharia Law onto others.

If we don’t behave in our private lives as Santorum and his beloved almighty State order us to do, then we are infidels, apparently.

And I heard another American exceptionalist recently, Sean Hannity, express total cluelessness in his pushing the anti-Iran fearmongering that is being used to start yet another unnecessary, counter-productive war. In arguing with a caller, Hannity was saying that (and I am paraphrasing) he merely wanted to prevent mass violence and bloodshed that could be prevented by forcibly removing Iran’s nuclear capability. Hannity was referring primarily to protecting Israel (despite the fact that Israel has a few hundred nuclear warheads and Iran knows this).

So regarding the possibility of mass bloodshed, Hannity has apparently been oblivious to the hundreds of thousands of dead Iraqis throughout the 1990s, killed by U.S. government violence and sanctions, and the further hundreds of thousands of dead Iraqis since the U.S. government’s 2003 invasion.

Because of reliance on mainstream news outlets and talk radio for their brainwashing information, most people don’t even know recent history, and they therefore don’t seem to understand Ron Paul’s point about “blowback.”

When dissidents openly criticize the State, its intrusions and its violence, the faithful seem intensely threatened, as though they have been personally harmed. The dissidents must be booed and ostracized, even though here Ron Paul is the one with the sense of morality and he is the one who believes that our government must be accountable under the rule of law as others must be.

But as our society gradually degenerated over the past century in its abandonment of moral values and the rule of law, it should be of no surprise now that the exceptionalists have no problem with their primitive priests of the almighty State apprehending and detaining someone without charges, without even being required to show evidence against the accused, as agents in an advanced society would have to do. The exceptionalists have faith in their beloved State (until they find themselves falsely accused and unlawfully detained, of course).

The religion of State has shown its ugliness with the Bradley Manning whistleblower case. Many people have reacted emotionally to this case, and with much ignorance, that’s for sure. It is as though whistleblower critics have been on a medieval witch hunt with the Manning case.

This young soldier allegedly released “classified” information to WikiLeaks. But, if the chat logs are legitimate, Manning’s motivations were not on behalf of any foreign government, financial interest or any element hostile to America.

On the contrary, Manning’s motive was out of love for his country, and to expose the corruption of our government’s imbecilic bureaucrats and expose the military’s war crimes. If anything were un-American, it would be covering up those crimes.

And despite the government’s hysterical propaganda, the truth is that the release of the classified information probably could not have caused any harm to any U.S. soldier overseas or to any American at home.

Some critics of Manning and WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange have been calling for their imprisonment or death. That is because the critics’ loyalty just doesn’t seem to be as much to their country as it seems to be to the government, the almighty State.

That is what our sick culture has become: an authoritarian theocracy with total rule over us. The Total State seems to be what the primitive-thinking narcissists want, and that is why so many people cheer the State, cheer its wars and the deaths of foreigners, and that is why they boo the ideas of freedom, personal responsibility and accountability under the rule of law.

With our authoritarian culture now, we are definitely surrounded – not by Muslims, but by the almighty criminal State, by federal, state and local government Gestapo bureaucrats.

And we are doomed unless we reverse course – and that means chopping away at the many, many layers of Leviathan, the bureaucracies, the foreign bases and the domestic camps, chopping away until we finally are able to restore the freedom the founders envisioned when they created America.

Don’t Ask Ron Paul to Compromise His Principles – The Left Can Compromise Too, You Know

Paul Craig Roberts has been writing some of the best articles in recent months in defense of government transparency and the truth, and in criticism of government and corporate corruption, criminality and cover-ups. Here are his article archives at LewRockwell.com.

But in his latest column, a further endorsement for Ron Paul as America’s last hope, he calls for Ron Paul to compromise on some basic principles in order to win progressives over. Even that isn’t necessary, because many on the Left are realizing how awful Obama has been on civil liberties, especially with his pushing and then signing into law the unlawful, immoral police-state indefinite detention bill, and what a warmonger Obama has been.

But I do not believe that Dr. Paul will compromise on the issues of government regulation, social welfare legislation, and environmentalism that Dr. Roberts brings up. And it is unfortunate that, in his realistic view of principled libertarians who won’t compromise, Roberts concludes the essay with the statement that “Libertarians will be pure to the end and take the Constitution and the rest of us down with them.”

First, I have read several blogs of the Left in which people praise Ron Paul for his pro-peace and pro-civil liberties positions but say they would have a hard time voting for him because of his economic views. Actually, I think it is these people on the Left who are the “purists,” as it is THEY who will not compromise in order to vote for someone — the ONLY one — who will close the bloated foreign military bases and bring all the troops home, and who will restore our civil liberties that the fascist-police-staters in Washington have thrown out the window.

The uncompromising leftists are not willing to vote for someone they KNOW will address those most important issue, and ASAP. The other economic issues that Dr. Roberts mentioned are actually less important and they can actually wait for now. Dr. Roberts also didn’t mention how Ron Paul is supportive of the progressives and the ‘Occupy’ movement when it comes down to making the big banks and the fraudsters accountable and ending the idea of tax-funded welfare for the banksters. Even Obama is bought and paid for by the banksters!

It actually is asking a LOT of a candidate such as Ron Paul to compromise and say he will support more (counter-productive) regulations and more (unemployment-causing) government-compulsory wage and price controls in order to get more votes. But it actually isn’t asking too much for voters to look at the issues that are most crucially important at this time and to vote accordingly.

After all, if we look at the character of all the candidates out there, and even all the past candidates, which person do you actually trust the most? Who is the one who won’t be on the take for this or that special interest group, or this or that corporate contributor? Which candidate actually wants us to have our freedom?

Now, it is unfortunate that on those economic issues on which people disagree with Ron Paul, a lot of people just happen to be ignorant of actual history and economics. I’m sure that Dr. Roberts has probably read much of Ron Paul’s writing, as well as that of Murray Rothbard et al. But I doubt very much that most people on the Left have even heard of the ideas about which Rothbard and Ludwig von Mises have written, and I doubt that very many people have read or heard of accurate accounts of historical events in American history other than the false accounts they’ve been spoon-fed by biased teachers and their biased textbooks, as well as by the State-stenographers of the mainstream media and pop culture.

So I am going to post links here to articles and books that people can read so that they will understand the actual truths of what real liberty is. The bottom line: It is freedom that has contributed to the most prosperity and the highest standard of living for the most number of people in a society, and it has been the State that kills it.

The Ethics of Liberty, by Murray Rothbard

Outlawing Jobs, by Rothbard

Wall Street Couldn’t Have Done It Alone, by Sheldon Richman

The Minimum Wage Protects the Rich, by Jacob Hornberger

Making Economic Sense, by Murray Rothbard

Free Banking and Contract Law, by Ludwig von Mises

How Unions Scheme to Keep Black Americans Out of High-Paying Jobs, by Walter Williams

America’s Great Depression, by Murray Rothbard

The Clean Water Act vs. Clean Water, by Rad Geek

Law, Property Rights, and Air Pollution, by Rothbard

The Socialist Bailout of Wall Street, by Jacob Hornberger

“Living Wage” Kills Jobs, by Thomas Sowell

The Case Against the Fed, by Murray Rothbard

Future of Freedom Foundation articles on Environmentalism

Future of Freedom Foundation articles on Social Security

FFF articles on Regulation Policy and Welfare

FFF articles on Taxation

The Moral Case for Drug Freedom, by Laurence Vance

Trying to Make Sense of Santorum’s Irrational Lawless Authoritarianism

Here is a quote by Rick Santorum that has been referred to quite a lot on the Internet:

One of the criticisms I make is to what I refer to as more of a Libertarianish right. They have this idea that people should be left alone, be able to do whatever they want to do, government should keep our taxes down and keep our regulations low, that we shouldn’t get involved in the bedroom, we shouldn’t get involved in cultural issues. That is not how traditional conservatives view the world. There is no such society that I am aware of, where we’ve had radical individualism and that it succeeds as a culture

But the hypocrisy is extreme with Rick Santorum, who constantly speaks about the “War on Radical Islam” or on “jihadism,” even though he’s the one on the religious crusade. He is right there along with the other neocons who are warning us that the Islamists are trying to spread their religious repression and Sharia Law, and that “they want to kill us,” yet Santorum has been supporting these wars, U.S. government invasions and occupations over the past ten years that have killed hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians, mainly in Iraq. And he is the one who wants to use the government and police to force his social and cultural views down other people’s throats.

As I have pointed out, the warmongers of the past 20 years — the neoconservatives — who started two wars against Iraq (1991, 2003), and one in Afghanistan as well as several unofficial wars, are not really “right-wingers,” because their ideal of “reshaping the Middle East in our image” is a socialist, central-planning ideal, and is therefore on the left. They are collectivists who either are hostile to or just do not understand the concepts of individual liberty, natural rights (to life, liberty and property, etc.), property rights, voluntary association and voluntary contracts, and especially, the rule of law.

In his strong anti-individualism, anti-natural rights feelings and his wanting to have a Big Leviathan Government empowered to make rules regarding how individuals must live in their private lives, Santorum therefore is not a “right-winger,” but a left-winger. That is because, as I noted in the above linked post, individualism, private property and voluntary exchange are on the right, while collectivism and all its forms such as statism, communism, socialism, etc. are on the left. Santorum is a collectivist because he strongly opposes the very ideas and principles of individualism upon which America was founded, as expressed in the Declaration of Independence and many other writings of the Founders and American Revolutionaries.

And it’s not as though he is saying the things he’s been saying just to get votes (as opposed to Willard Romney, who has no strong views or principled stands on anything). Santorum really believes strongly in his collectivism, and his wanting to use the armed police powers of government to intrude into other people’ private lives as well as invade and occupy the territories of foreigners. I hope people are beginning to understand the relationship between anti-individual freedom central planners (Santorum’s culture war collectivism, “progressives’” anti-traditional values culture war central planning in schools, etc.) and the government-interventionist foreign policy central planners. Santorum is a dangerous collectivist and statist with the both domestic and foreign policy intrusions he craves.

Here is the hypocrisy of Santorum’s anti-”radical individualism,” which some conservatives tend to view as “self-centered” or accusing people of “self-worship.” They just can’t see how they themselves are very “self-oriented” and narcissistic in their policies of intrusion into the lives of others. The “libertarianish right,” in contrast, tends to view the individual as having rights to life and liberty, and the right to live one’s life however one pleases, as long as one does not interfere with the same rights of others to live as they want to live. That is not Santorum’s view at all. He wants to have his way of life, but he wants to use armed force of government to force others to live in his particular way, just as the so-called “Islamists” about which Santorum warns us. This is an extreme, aggressive form of self-centeredness, a total disregard for the lives and rights of other human beings. The collectivists are much more “selfish” in their agendas than individualists.

That is why the Santorum authoritarians and collectivists do not believe in the rule of law, in which The Law is there to protect the individual, one’s person and property from the aggression of others. In contrast, Santorum wants to use the armed apparatus of “law enforcement” to impose his way of life onto others, i.e. to commit acts of aggression against others’ persons and property, the opposite of protecting others from aggression.

And then there is the idea of authority. Santorum collectivists and statists are authoritarians. They do not believe in the right of an individual to have authority over one’s own life. The authoritarians believe in a paternalistic authoritarian government. (Another aspect of the Nanny State War on Drugs.) The Santorum collectivists seem to say they believe in God, but really, quite frankly, their god is government, the State. Or perhaps a merger of God and State. Now, I am an individualist who believes in individual freedom, but I don’t exactly “worship” myself as the conservatives tend to accuse individualists of doing. I merely have a sense of self-respect. I do believe in God or Superior Intelligent Being who created human life and everything else around here. In fact, as long as I’m going back to past posts, here is something I said about that back in 2009:

Recently, there have been criticisms by people in the news media of conservatives’ “listening tour,” with the pundits bringing up the old creation vs. evolution debate. They are constantly labeling those who believe in God or a creator as knuckle-dragging, flat-Earth-thinking Neanderthals. Most people who believe that we were created by a superior being or beings also believe that we were products of evolution from earlier life forms, and gradually over a period of centuries, millennia, etc. It’s just as each individual evolves from conception to birth to adulthood to death.

One may ask the critics of creationism how exactly humans formed, with the heart the way that works and the brain and how it functions, and so on. Is their answer that it all came about by total randomness, with particles and matter and chemicals coming together and developing the means of life on their own? What are the chances of our heart and entire circulatory system being the results of spontaneous events and randomness? Just look at how every part of us works, and how everything functions, and all working together. Look at the eyes and how complex the optic nerve is, communicating visual messages to the brain. It’s all coincidental?

All these biological facts of existence and their complexity really should be seen as evidence that we were created, because the odds of being the results of such randomness are so great, you’d have to believe in that randomness as a matter of faith.

Unlike the Santorium collectivists and authoritarians, while I believe that God (or Superior Intelligent Being) created human life, I don’t believe that God has any particular agenda for us to follow. We already have free will (which the Santorum authoritarians and collectivists don’t believe in, because they believe in State force and dictates), and I believe in that free will, and that things were not “God’s will,” and so on. Our culture has declined not because of “radical individualism,” as Santorum describes it, but because of the Santorum religious collectivists and central planners, and from the FDR New Dealers and Wilson “make-the-world-safe-for-democracy” expansionists to the Bush-Cheney-Obama “remaking-the-Middle-East” leftists.

Another recommended way of understanding all this is Hans-Hermann Hoppe’s book, Democracy, the God That Failed. And in his article, Political Economy of Monarchy and Democracy, Hoppe notes the idea of time preferences, and the post-World War I period when private government ownerships (as in monarchies) were completely replaced by public government ownerships (as in democracies), which were characterized by present-orientedness and government exploitation. In modern governments, the temporary caretakers exploit whatever public government resources they can while they still can.

We can see how in the past century selfishness and immediate-gratification have been the traits of our declined culture. After 9/11, the Cheney-Bush central planners exploited to a maximum whatever fears Americans experienced after that day, as a means of implementing police state policies and starting wars that had already been planned well in advance. They rushed through policies to further strengthen and expand the power of the centralized Leviathan U.S. government, for these non-productive professional bureaucrats to gratify themselves with power-grabs and for their corporate sponsors to further enrich themselves at taxpayer expense as well.

So the present-orientedness, immediate-gratification exploitation of publicly-owned government isn’t just from the Obommunist Left welfare statists. It has also been, especially in these past 20 years, from the Cheney-Bush-Santorum warmongers and corporatist military-security-industrial complex who have been starting all these wars and provoking foreigners as a means of expanding the federal government as much as possible to shake down the workers and producers of America while these people still temporarily have their access into the public trough.

And now we have a police state that is expanding each day and becoming more and more oppressive. So, it is not we individualists (the ones who believe in non-aggression, individual liberty and private property) who are the cause of the cultural decline and loss of liberty. Right along with the Obama-Pelosi-Clinton-Kennedy leftists, the Santorum collectivist authoritarians and Cheney-Bush foreign aggressors and police-staters have all been the true moral relativists of our time.

Homeschooling in USSA Amerika

Author Tom Woods had this post regarding the chairman of the Home School Legal Defense Association, who believes that Ron Paul is a bad choice for homeschoolers, based on differing views of states’ rights and Constitutional reasonings. Woods provides a rebuttal by history professor Kevin Gutzman. I disagree with the Constitutional arguments of all these people, including Ron Paul.

To begin, I think that reliance on a central government’s constitution for protection of our rights has been a lost cause. The U.S. Constitution may have a “Bill of Rights,” but it doesn’t protect our liberty. It empowers a central government, and such a document and such a centralized governmental apparatus will always grow once they have been initiated. It was doomed to be that way from the beginning because that is what happens with the institutionalizing of a compulsory, centralized territorial monopoly. And this homeschooling issue, along with the drug war and the so-called War on Terror that the government created to further empower itself, are all part of the same problem.

Regarding the homeschooling issue, for the time being — that is, until the impending collapse of the system and subsequent decentralization process that will occur — at least Dr. Paul considers the Tenth Amendment as an available means for homeschooling parents to protect themselves from the overreach of federal bureaucrats. However, given how inherently flawed and destructive the U.S. Constitution has been, and how hostile the Supreme Court has been to the Ninth and Tenth Amendments, Dr. Paul’s wanting, according to Gutzman, “citizens to work (these matters)  out in their respective states through ordinary state-level republican politics,” would be just as destructive to homeschooling freedom.

But how are families to protect themselves from overreaching local government intruders who invade families’ homes and private matters that are none of the bureaucrats’ business? Go to the state supreme courts or the U.S. Supreme Court? I interpret Dr. Paul’s view on homeschooling as similar to his view with the issue of drug criminalization or legalization, in which Paul wants to let the states via state governments have control over those issues (which means that if one state wants to throw people in a cage for ingesting a particular chemical, i.e. seizing control over an individual’s ownership of one’s body, that’s okay). With the homeschooling issue, as with other educational matters, there seems to be a struggle over who controls the child’s education (and the child in general, as a matter of fact), the parents or the community at large and its compulsory government.

Here is the real issue, regarding homeschooling: Who has higher authority over your kids (including their educational matters), you? Or the State? This should be a no-brainer. When you allow government bureaucrats to order you to disclose how or where you educate your children, and when you submit to a government bureaucrat’s order to educate your kids in some particular way that bureaucrats approve of (but that you may not necessarily approve of), you are giving the State ownership of your kids. Now, I’m not saying that parents “own” their children (more about self-ownership below), but, morally and thus it should be legally, you have higher authority over your children. Certainly higher authority than some government bureaucrat. And higher authority than your neighbors as a collective or community on whose behalf the agents of the State act.

Now, to digress a little bit, I want to briefly address the issue of self-ownership, and when an individual’s right to self-ownership actually begins, with this post from 2009:

Last week, S.M. Oliva wrote for the Mises Economics Blog:

“Let’s say that, in fact, creation is a source of property rights. Does that mean parents have intellectual property rights in their children? After all, they created them.”

Since then, I’ve had some thoughts on that.

Parents can’t own their offspring, regardless of their labor they exerted  and “tools” they used, because their “product” happens to be another separate, individual human being.

Human beings inherently have natural, inalienable rights, among them the rights to life and liberty. Part of the right to life and liberty is the right of an individual to self-ownership. The right to self-ownership begins when the human being begins. But when does the human being’s life actually begin?

At the time of the  Roe v. Wade decision, the concept of “personhood” was brought up by Justice Harry Blackmun:

“(If the) suggestion of personhood [of the preborn] is established, the [abortion rights] case, of course, collapses, for the fetus’ right to life is then guaranteed specifically by the [14th] Amendment.”

I’ve seen references to “personhood,” “viability,” “sentience,” and “consciousness, “  and I have some questions.

What is the viability of a born baby? If baby is left alone for a particular amount of time, one cannot survive for very long, because at that early stage of development one is dependent on one’s caretakers for feeding. The same can be said of a 2-year-old, maybe even older children, although the older the child, the more able one is to go out and seek food, unless one is locked inside and can’t get out. Is there a difference between the viability of a born individual and an unborn individual (at whatever stage of development)?

What about “sentience” and “consciousness?” How do we know whether or not a two-month-old “fetus” or a 2-day-old “fetus” can have any physical sensation or conscious awareness? If it is important whether or not that individual has sentience or consciousness in considering whether that individual has any right to life and liberty, and self-ownership, then, what about a born human being or a grown adult who has a neurological disorder and has no “sentience” or who is in a “persistent vegetative state” and has no consciousness, but is still “alive” (or can be kept alive via artificial means)?

I can’t say for sure that a human life begins at conception (although I believe that to be the case and have believed that for 20 years now), but I can sure say without any doubt that, IF a human life begins at conception, then self-ownership begins at conception…

And in a later post, I wrote this:

However, more recently I’ve seen in Murray Rothbard’s Ethics of Liberty, his comments on the abortion issue. Rothbard asks this question:

….when, or in what way, does a growing child acquire his natural right to liberty and self-ownership?

If one has a natural right to liberty and self-ownership, and “natural rights,” as far as I know, means “inherent” in us as human beings (i.e. from conception onward, or just a part of the human being’s “nature”), then how can you “acquire” a natural right to liberty and self-ownership?

But back to our discussion on homeschooling, the inherent, natural rights of families extend from the rights of individuals to have control (and authority) over one’s own life, and one’s own family. For outsiders — whether they are next-door neighbors, the majority amongst the community, or government bureaucrats — to step in and give some orders as to how that family must live or raise their children is, in my view, a gross violation of the family’s right to exist peacefully, and right to self-determination.

The real problems of our society and its cultural, moral, educational and economic decline are really caused by statism and collectivism. And the worst form of statism, in my opinion, is centralized statism, such as with our current 230+ year-old federalism structure with a U.S. Constitution for which government officials and bureaucrats care very little, just as they care very little for the rule of law in general. If you look around or see on the Internet, you will see all the abuses now, thanks to the centralization of government bureaucracies and the government-monopolization of everyday life, from local CPS police goons breaking into families’ homes and kidnapping innocent children from their innocent parents, to police traffic Nazis randomly stopping middle-aged soccer moms and pulling them out of their cars and beating up on them, to neanderthals nonchalantly spraying pepper spray into young protesters’ faces.

Individual rights and family rights have all been usurped and encroached egregiously by criminal local, state and federal government bureaucrats and armed thugs here in USSA Amerika. And it is continually getting worse. Do you really believe that a constitution or a Supreme Court is going to protect you or your family from these government criminals?

As I have noted in the past, the Supreme Court justices are employed by the State. They will not protect you from the State. They will not protect you from CPS Nazis or from the airport’s TSA gropers and cancer-scanners. And that is not only because the justices are employed by the State, but also because they are just not accountable. The Supreme Court, as Hans Hoppe has pointed out (more here) has a monopoly in ultimate judicial decision-making, and monopolists are not accountable, no matter how “prestigious” they are. The lettered State-guardians on the High Court are there on behalf of the State. It seems that soon homeschooling families may have to forget about the U.S. Constitution and use some sort of alternative forms of protecting their children from government goons.

Will New Hampshire Pick the Orwellian ‘Conservative,’ Willard Mitt Romney?

January 9, 2012

Copyright © 2012 by LewRockwell.com (Link to article)

WAR IS PEACE

FREEDOM IS SLAVERY

IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH

MITT ROMNEY IS A CONSERVATIVE

~ An updated version of the Ministry of Truth’s slogan from George Orwell’s 1984

The media pundits and the talk radio hosts and their callers have been bending over backwards to label Willard Mitt Romney a “conservative.” They have been desperately trying to fit their ideal of a conservative into Romney like fitting a piece into a puzzle that will never fit – not without a pair of scissors, that is. It is truly Orwellian, this thing with calling a far-left socialist a “conservative.” They might as well call Barack Obama a “conservative.”

In addition to that, many people are trying to find a Republican who is “electable,” someone who can beat Obama in the November, 2012 election. But if Romney does become the Republican nominee and then wins the election, then what? Given that he is bought and paid for by Wall Street, do you really believe that Romney will do anything to fix the underlying causes of our current economic depression (central banking, the Fed, the collusions between Wall Street and the U.S. government, the government’s expansionist empire abroad and deficit spending and ever-increasing debt)? Given what a tax-raiser he was as governor, do you really believe Romney will not be exactly like George H.W. Bush and Bush Jr. in caving like a jellyfish to the Capitol Hill big spenders?

As governor of Taxachusetts, Romney raised corporate taxes, and he also raised hundreds of millions of dollars in higher fees, on guns, marriages, property transfers, you name it. And “Massachusetts conservative” Willard Romney, who went on record in 2002 opposing getting rid of the state income tax, dramatically increased the state budget, according to Center for Small Government President Carla Howell. Any income tax, whether it be federal, state or city, is so dreadfully invasive of property rights, privacy and contracts, and so violating of freedom, who in his right mind could possibly oppose getting rid of it?

And many people have been saying that they support Romney because of his business experience. He had a lot of experience at his Bain Capital firm driving some companies out of business and getting rich from the early investments and tax deductions in the process. But how much of his work in the private sector was spent providing something of actual value to others? To me, given his record with Bain, it is as though they were trying to act like government bureaucrats, many of whom currently in Washington having also gotten rich off the backs of working class Americans.

Given the way he treated various businesspeople during his time with Bain, one wonders just how – in the political world – he will deal with dissenting Americans, especially those of the Tea Party movement and the Occupy movement who are extremely critical of the federal government. How will Romney handle the further expanded powers of the presidency if he is given the new powers of indefinite detention of anyone he chooses, without due process?

Speaking of security issues, Romney is also unwilling to oppose cutting “defense” spending. In fact, he wants to increase spending on the already bloated military-security-industrial-complex. Romney supports the Big Government foreign interventionism of the military central planners in Washington, and wants to expand the intrusions and aggressions abroad.

While some people in New Hampshire might disagree with me on this, true conservatives oppose any governmental interventionism, foreign or domestic. Unfortunately, so many people have been taken in by the government propagandists who have been insisting that the wars and expanded military bureaucracy of the past ten years had been necessary, and some still believe it despite the wars’ utter failures, destruction, counter-productiveness, waste of lives and bankrupting costs.

Many people do not want to believe that terrorism of the 1990s and 2000s were direct results of the aggressions committed overseas by the U.S. government especially since 1990 and especially in Iraq. Some people just don’t like to hear reality told to them, which is why Ron Paul got booed at those debates. But generally, the events of terrorism blowback were results of central planning.

This central planning by the government interventionists is not conservative, nor is it liberal. It is statist. (See Jacob Hornberger on libertarianism versus statism.) The statists believe in using the monopolistic, armed power of the centralized federal government not only to interfere with the lives of their own people domestically, but with the lives of foreigners. Willard Mitt Romney aligns himself with these Bush-Cheney-Feith-Wolfowitz central planners of foreign interventionist statism and all its destruction.

Some of Americans’ support for such foreign interventionism and central planning comes from this idea of American exceptionalism, which Romney has repeatedly stated should be renewed and projected across the globe. Whether people want to acknowledge it or not, American exceptionalism means that our government should have the power to intrude into and interfere with the internal affairs of foreign peoples – and militarily no less – but foreigners shouldn’t have the right to place their government apparatus and military bases on our lands. This philosophy contradicts the Christian principle of “Do unto others what one would want others to do unto you,” and “Don’t do unto others what one would not want others to do unto you.” Such a Christian philosophy is exactly that of Ron Paul, certainly not of Willard Romney.

My own personal opinion is that, given Romney’s past insincerities and flip-flopping, I don’t particularly believe his sincerity in the national security debate. He seems to be pandering to the public’s post-9/11 fears, and to the fear-mongering of the neoconservatives. And, just as Romney will probably have a hard time saying “no” to his Wall Street benefactors, so too will it be hard for him to say “no” to the defense contractors, the merchants of death.

In a nutshell, Romney is no conservative, nor is he a “liberal.” Romney is a politician. In fact, he is the epitome of “weathervane politician.” He would fit right in as a character in Orwell’s novel, 1984 (and a very scary one at that).

“But, we need someone who can beat Obama in November. We can’t afford to take the chance of Obama getting reelected,” people cry. Yeah, and once your “electable” Willard Romney were to take the oath of office in January, 2013, he will continue the socialism, the environmentalist voodooism and the warmongering, as well as the Fed’s inflationary money printing, and drive America completely into the ground like he did those businesses from his Bain Capital steering wheel.

There actually is a conservative, however, who believes that the government should only do what the Constitution says, and who actually will reduce the size, power and intrusiveness of the federal government, and restore the protection of our natural rights and civil liberties. Most readers here know who that is.

The people of New Hampshire will make a choice this week. The choice is between continuing the socialism, corporate-government cronyism and central planning which are destroying America from within and will leave us to ruin – or reason, common sense, and the restoration of the rule of law and freedom. Let’s hope they choose the latter.

It Can’t Happen Here

Russia and other Eastern Bloc countries recently observed the 20th anniversary of the official end of the Soviet Union. During the late 1980s-early 1990s millions of people were freed from the repressive shackles of the almighty Soviet communist State. Unfortunately, over these past 20 years, here in the U.S. the federal government has grown and grown and become increasingly oppressive and tyrannical. As I noted recently, the FEMA camps are being manufactured by the feds that, unless the police state trend is stopped, will most probably become very much like the Soviet gulags.

And this is coinciding not accidentally with the new law that the dupes and criminals of Congress passed overwhelmingly and that Barack Obama signed that gives the president the power to have the military apprehend any American and detain indefinitely anyone the president labels a “terrorist” or accuses of conspiring or being an accessory to terrorism, without evidence brought forward (as the president assassinated U.S. citizen Anwar al-Awlaki without evidence provided). You see, if someone accuses someone else of something — regardless of how horrible or heinous the crime — the accuser is morally and legally obligated to show evidence against the accused. This is because anyone can claim that someone is a “terrorist” or a pedophile etc., but you need proof of your claim. It doesn’t matter who the accuser is, an ordinary civilian or the president, it doesn’t matter. Especially given that the government is a compulsory monopolist of territorial protection and judicial decision-making, and that such monopoly police powers attract the worst amongst us, we must never trust the word alone of any government official. Even the Nuremberg Tribunals were obligated to give alleged Nazi war criminals their right to due process.

In 2002, Ron Paul gave this speech before the House of representatives, Are We Doomed to Be a Police State? in which he foresaw that the post-9/11 hysterical policies the Bush Administration put into place could very well cause America to become a police state. Given the political nature of government — the power that such an apparatus gives to individuals working for it or associated with it — if you know the history of past governments, the Nazi regime and the Soviets especially, then you can see that giving government officials, military or police these extra intrusive powers that violate civilians’ persons or property without due process is the way to tyranny.

Even back in the 1980s, White House basement Iran-Contra organizer Oliver North wanted martial law, particularly as a means of stifling political dissent. (Further info on North, and please read my piece on martial law, if you haven’t already.) North’s ideal of stifling political dissent is what the Soviet gulags were for. People on the side of State power and its police powers do not like political dissent. Such dissent undermines their power, although they like to lie and fool the masses by saying that such dissent “undermines the country.” As we have seen, it is the government and its expansionism and intrusiveness that have been undermining America.

It is unfortunate that so many people on the Left support groups such as ACORN, S.E.I.U., AmeriCorps, and other pro-Obama, anti-liberty organizations, even though it is these organizations of the Left who will be the “brownshirts” that, along with Obama’s obedient yes-men of the military, will apprehend people from their homes and offices, from the baseball park and from the local diner, people known to be political dissenters and critics of the regime, and detain them indefinitely. That is what the FEMA camps are for. That is what ObamaCare is really for: let the government have access into every aspect of everybody’s medical matters, as a means for greater control.

There is little to no difference between the Obama-Leftists and the Oliver North-Dick Cheney military central planners. They are all of the same anti-liberty, pro-absolute government control ilk. Both sides believe religiously in the Total State.

The Establishment — politicians and their media stenographers — have been ignoring, smearing, and shunning Ron Paul and his message of individual liberty and private property, free markets and freedom of association, because the State’s brownshirts, Stasi, Gestapo and KGB-wannabes do not want major changes to their regime, their precious government wealth-confiscating and expropriating apparatus. They are as clinging to it as the communists were in their resisting the desocializing and “capitalizing” efforts of their people (See this on how the Gorby communists and their clinging prolonged the pain of desocializing, and Rothbard on the right way to desocialize).

As the 20th anniversary of the official end of the Soviet Union comes and goes, we must remember that the people of the old Soviet Union wanted to cut the shackles with which the State enslaved them, and the State’s criminals couldn’t cope with the thought of such a loss of control over the people. We are experiencing all that now, as those Americans who desire freedom want desparately to dismantle that oppressive regime in Washington and cut their own shackles of repression, while the DC resisters panic and want to impose martial law against the dissenters. Some people are just evil, and thrive on control over others.

More on the “Racist Newsletters”

When he’s not doing boxing matches with Paul Krugman, economist Robert Murphy keeps a blog, with his most recent post regarding the “racist newsletters” that were published under Ron Paul’s name. Prof. Murphy also includes a defense of the Ludwig von Mises Institute.

If you have read enough of Ron Paul’s material, you would know that the style of writing in those newsletter publications is not at all similar to Ron Paul’s writing style. I have never met Dr. Paul, but I’ve seen plenty of his appearances on the Internet in videos, and during the 1987-88 presidential campaign I saw several news interviews of him then on TV (when I used to watch TV, that is). I just can’t believe that he could have written such immature kinds of things, and he couldn’t have. And Paul has disavowed and expressed his disapproval of those newsletters long ago. Additionally, there have been accusations against Lew Rockwell for being the author of those newsletters. According to Murphy, “Lew Rockwell himself has denied that he wrote the newsletters … he said something along the lines that the actual author is no longer with us.”

Now, I have already addressed this “racist newsletters” issue here, and I’m quite tired of it now. I provided links to Ron Paul’s many columns and books, including links to free, online editions of some of his books, including A Foreign Policy of Freedom [.pdf]. Some of the writing and speeches in that book shows great wisdom and a belief in moral values and personal responsibility in the context of foreign policy. If you’re unsure about Ron Paul because of foreign policy, give that book a look. Here is an excerpt of a speech before the House of Representatives from 1982 that is included in the book (pp.13-16):

July 14, 1982

THE MIDEAST CONFLICT

HON. RON PAUL of TEXAS IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Mr. Speaker, our involvement in the Palestinian-Israel conflict poses a moral and political dilemma for all Americans. I have met no one eager to send troops to Lebanon or willing to assume the financial burden it is bound to create. If true peace could be bought with money or foreign commitments, many Americans, as they have in the past, would go along with continuing financial and military aid to the Mideast.

Many Americans, however, reject the entire notion of overseas adventurism and giveaways for both moral and constitutional reasons… They will no longer stand idly by and watch our young people get bamboozled into another no-win war by being put between two warring factions with the false hope that peace will be miraculously achieved. The only thing holding the Camp David accords together are billions of dollars of American taxpayers’ money, and for this reason they are built on a shaky foundation, bound to crumble whenever the storm winds of conflict blow.

I find it inappropriate to criticize Israel for wanting to secure its borders. Yet if this means more military action than seems reasonable and it is financed entirely with American tax dollars, the U.S. Congress and the people of the United States who elect the Members of Congress bear a responsibility for what is happening.

Interventionism in the internal affairs of other nations and policing the world to “make it safe for democracy” do exactly the same thing as domestic economic intervention. They create many more problems than they solve. The Vietnam War is a good example of what is likely to result when intervention is pursued and our national security is not our only concern. Obviously our loss in Vietnam did not precipitate a war in Hawaii or California. It has been frequently argued that the reason why we stay in Europe, the Mideast, and the Far East is to prevent the battles from occurring on our own shores. In an age of ICBMs and space technology, this argument seems ludicrous. Yet the policies never change…

Now we witness again this same absurd policy in the Mideast – we supply all the weapons and tacitly endorse the invasion of Lebanon, at a significant dollar cost to all Americans. Because innocent Lebanese civilians have been injured and killed, we cannot stand idly by. A proposed $20 million grant to Lebanon is quickly increased to $50 million for “humanitarian” reasons. To refuse would mean that America and the U.S. Congress are heartless and enjoy seeing the innocent suffer.

Because of the war we helped create, we offer to risk not only more dollars but now American boys to rescue the PLO, an organization we have never recognized and have as a policy tried for decades to destroy. When will this ever end? Economically we are teetering on the brink of collapse, and militarily we remain weak, weak and defenseless from a Soviet missile attack. All this interventionist activity designed to make us look strong serves only to weaken and demoralize our people. The American people are tired of sacrificing themselves for the world. It never seems to help and the cost is now prohibitive. On top of it all, we are not respected, and generally condemned for our meddling…

It is interventionism, inflation and trade wars that inevitably lead to economic isolationism and finally to war. The pattern of the 1930s is a typical pattern of interventionism and trade wars leading to war. A sound money, free trade, and “keep your guns at home” program can give us peace and prosperity. The inflation that has permitted a massive international debt to accumulate is clearly intertwined with all the military activities of recent years. Martial law was declared in Poland on the day many loans were due to be paid to the international bankers…

Last year the Congress encouraged the president to pursue a course he deemed necessary to stabilize the Mideast. By resolution the House – overwhelmingly 391 to I – encouraged “the president to pursue a comprehensive and coordinated policy in Lebanon, including the development of an effective cease-fire, resolution of the issue of Syrian missiles, and promotion of the independence, sovereignty, unity, and territorial integrity of Lebanon.” Although the resolution does not have the force of law, it implies that Congress endorses virtually whatever action the president deems necessary and encourages further involvement in the Mideast…

Our experiment with foreign policy interventionism has failed, just as our experience with domestic economic interventionism has failed.

Let us learn from that experience and revive the polices of free trade, neutrality, and a strong defense that took this country from an underdeveloped agrarian economy to the world’s major economic force. Only such policies will extricate us from absurd situations such as that which now prevails in the Mideast.

Read hundreds of Ron Paul’s columns and hundreds of Lew Rockwell’s columns, and you really won’t find any racism there. Why? Because racism is of collectivism, and you can’t find anyone more anti-collectivism and pro-individualism than Paul and Rockwell. (Except me, of course.) It is those collectivists out there, from Willard Romney and Smoot Gingrich to Barry and Evita in the White House, who are the problem.

Those of us who agree with Ron Paul — that it’s immoral and counter-productive for our government to trespass on foreign lands and interfere with the internal affairs of foreign nations — shouldn’t have to waste our time with these posts defending Ron Paul and his views on individual liberty and personal responsibility against attacks by those who are afraid of freedom and independence.