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I have to say, I’m flattered that you’re all so eager to keep up our communication - but I should make clear that I

I, Sandwich. In 1958, Leonard E. Read wrote I, Pencil. Here’s a modern day version with sandwiches. How many peopl

Love is Anarchy by A Peacock Named Walter

The Clinton surplus is often cited by liberals who wish to show that the “tax and spend” philosophy isn’t as f

The SFL regional conference conference season is here and we want to share what they’re all about! Tune in for an

Question: is there nothing sacred? Answer: of course not! Well, except under American Democracy, where nothing seems to

It is time for those who profess to care about human suffering to start being honest about this. If we are truly going t

Before I say, “everything we thought we knew about physics is wrong” let me qualify that statement. Modern p

Ancap in the Sun by Creative Destruction

Tune in for a livestream of select speeches from the exciting London ESFL Regional Conference! The tentative schedule is

A few days ago I heard about the Oregon shooting along with the rest of you. My initial reaction was one of sadness and

As the Fraser Institute found for the - I don’t know, billionth? - time in its annual survey comparing freer economies

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  • Nico Metten‘s article Why “Accumulating Wealth” is Wrong has a new comment 30 minutes ago

    Stack of GoldLast week I went to a humanist event on Human Rights. There were two speakers exploring the topic of whether human rights are universal or not. One of them was a young sociologist who argued for a relativist [Read story]
    • Good point, man. I’m going to start talking about “creating wealth” instead of more opaquely “gaining” it or even worse “accumulating” it.

    • The question in itself was silly. Why (and how) could someone amass an unlimited amount of wealth?

    • Very nice piece, Nico. Why didn’t you participate right there to the Q&A and rephrased the question as you mention: “Should anyone be allowed to create an unlimited amount of wealth”? I would have loved to hear your description of the faces of those two guys.

    • I sometimes ask questions at these type of events. That is when I think asking a question can help the debate. More often however, I just go as an observer, to get an idea of what other views of politics and the world are out there. That can be insightful as it was here. I was a bit surprised to find so strong relativist views on this topic. The debate was so confused that it would have been hard to bring it in order in a 1 minute question. That would also have needed a debate on economics rather than human rights.

  • Darryl W Perry posted an update 47 minutes ago

    Syria expands western offensive backed by Russian strikes :: House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy drops bid for speaker :: Some areas in flooded South Carolina facing second deluge

  • Loki Verloren started the topic Libertarian groups in europe in the forum Emigration 1 hour, 15 minutes ago

    I’ve been living in Amsterdam for about a year now, and I have not been able to find any kind of affinity groups associated with anarchism (of the market variety) or for that matter just the fringe electronic scene that i am a big fan of (there is no regular events here), and so, I am considering my options in relation to emigration elsewhere to…[Read more]

  • Loki Verloren just joined Liberty.me 1 hour, 25 minutes ago

  • Tom Liberman‘s article What to do with a Fraud like Shemitah? has a new comment 1 hour, 28 minutes ago

    shemitah-idiocyI belong to a Libertarian website where a healthy gathering of free thinkers get to express their thoughts. Recently a fellow named Jeff Berwick has been writing any number of blogs about a thing called [Read story]
    • To me the key principle is ostracism — particularly when rooted in evidence and substantive critique. It’s far more effective and liberty oriented than top-down censorship. A command and control model prevents an open hearing of ideas and objections — and for scammers, it lets them go somewhere else and do their thing without having been publicly “outed.”

    • Ostracism is an interesting reference in this context, David. The original ostracism does not look particularly libertarian, being a decision of the mob that did not have to be justified and completely ignored the natural rights of the person object of the decision. On the other hand, it respected the property of the person, and was limited to 10 years without further degrading of his rights after the end of the period. So, it could be constructed as libertarian, if we assume that the Greek city-states were voluntary communities. Of course this can rebutted with the classical Spooner argument, nobody ever signed an explicit agreement on ostracism, as far as we know, and certainly not the citizens living toward the end of the 150 years or so in which ostracism was used. But again, the citizens potentially subjects to ostracism were the elite of Athens, so it could be argued that they really had the option of moving somewhere else, and therefore for them living in Athens was a voluntary decision which implied the acceptance of ostracism as part of the rules of the voluntary community.

      It is, apparently, all pretty confusing. Unless, of course, you take into account that Athens was indeed a republic (res publica, “thing in common”) and, as such, it needed a political form of resolving conflicts. And as far as political means go, ostracism is hardly the most offending around, in libertarian terms.

      But liberty.me is not a community, in an economic sense. It is private property. No political means are needed, just the choice of the free market. If having the Shemita non-sense in the posts is too irritating, a person can always leave liberty.me. I have my doubts about the wisdom, from a business perspective, of the owners of Liberty.me in letting this bullshit around, I suspect the damage to the brand is not compensated by the cash-flows to the venture provided by Jeff B (but again, what do I know? maybe Jeff B pays a substantial amount of money to be able to crypto-advertising in the site). But what I think is irrelevant anyway. Liberty.me is their property, their circus, and they have the right to manage it as they fit. This is why I am an anarchist libertarian (which, by the way, is the only possible type, in my humble opinion): because I do not want my life to be involved with political means, none at all, zero, zip. I do not want or need to use ostracism on somebody, I prefer to walk away myself, if I do not feel comfortable enough anymore.

      I do not like communities (in economic sense). I like private property, and the liberty that goes with it.

    • This post was awesome, Tom! Great perspective on it. I originally took the “get this scumbag off the site” approach, but over the past couple weeks, I’ve definitely started to see it your way.

    • Jeff is deluded about Shemitah, as he is about many topics that benefit from critical thought. But his heart is in the right place and he is no threat to any free person.

      As Cassius Clay would have said, “I ain’t got no beef with Jeff Berwick. No Berwick ever violated the NAP towards me.”

      Also I don’t think it’s productive to describe this as fraud. I think Jeff really believes this crazy stuff. Fraud implies a deliberate attempt to deceive.

    • “I’m for limited government, not no government because of people like Berwick.”
      How does the existence of people like Berwick justify the most powerful and dangerous criminal institution in human history?

    • I don’t mind doom porn so much. There may be nuggets of value in a pile of rough. Name calling, however, usually doesn’t accomplish much, unless your objective is more name calling.

  • Sheldon Richman‘s article Realism and Utopianism in the Gun Debate has a new comment 1 hour, 43 minutes ago

    gun violenceAfter an atrocity like the shootings at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon, what’s needed is hard-headed realism, not pie-in-the-sky utopianism. Unfortunately we always get more of the latter than the f [Read story]
    • The incoherence of the Utopian argument is stunning. In Utopia, there would be no “bad” people. Therefore, mass murder via gun would never occur in Utopia, so there would be no logical reason to advocate for gun control.

  • Ken Jons-un posted an update in the group Liberty.Meme 1 hour, 47 minutes ago

    Post your Friday Funny meme or share what others put up.

  • TPP-World-War-III-Shemitah-Dollar-Vigilante-676x380This summer we said things were going to get crazy this fall. As always, some people scoffed. But we are only a week-and-a-half into fall and already there have been massive, massive events. Aside from the global [Read story]
    • Actually, as I recall, you railed on and on about a market collapse in September. Then, of course, when it didn’t happen, you moved it to Autumn. When nothing happens this Autumn you will find some other way to frighten people and rationalize your lunacy. Congratulations.

    • I confess to reading Cassandra blogs occasionally, largely for the entertainment value but also to get all of the foreboding news on Leviathan in one place. The U.S. VP has declared a “proxy war” between the U.S. and Russia, and that’s newsworthy, even if it doesn’t portend the end of civilization. This “war” is more newsworthy given the ridiculous pretext for declaring it. A coalition attacking the bad guys isn’t good enough. It must be a coalition attacking the bad guys led by the U.S. and simultaneously toppling an established state in favor of a state more friendly to the U.S., despite the fact that the established state is the only force effectively resisting the bad guys at the moment, unless we count al-Qaeda among the good guys.

      Significant constituents of the United State are clearly looking for any excuse for a war with Russia while constituents of the Russian state clearly want to end the “unipolar moment” that American neocons have declared. All of this thinking is megalomania as far as I’m concerned, but the megalomaniacs have their fingers on the big triggers. That’s just how it is.

      Since U.S. hegemony hinges on the petro dollar, and since this hinge seems increasingly unstable, a clash of would be hegemons in the Middle East seems more troubling than a clash over Ukraine, the last excuse the war party was willing to accept. I’ve been mostly out of corporate equities for the last couple of months, and I’m still very happy with the move. I took a shorter position for fundamental reason, not because I expect any particular event to end civilization, but when bullish sentiment raises prices to unrealistic levels, a sharp correction often follows some sort of triggering event, and a full-blown war between the U.S. and Russia over Syrian regime change could be a triggering event, Shemitah or no Shemitah.

    • “Two months ago, Russia and the US were not basically at war, but today they are thanks to Syria.”

      Are we at war with Russia? Seems more like proxy wars then direct action. Anything can happen, but I don’t think we are there just yet.

    • @tomlib Yeah, that’s pretty how all of these “end-of-days” things seem to work. “It’s happening on THIS date!” “I interpreted the data wrong; it is definitely happening on THIS date!”

      Definitely getting sick of seeing this scam artist here. Hope no one is falling for this Shemitah b/s. Unfortunately, we can’t say the same for the victims of his fraudulent passport bribery scheme or the whole Galt’s Gulch debacle.

    • @d3d1rty What was his passport scheme about?

    • @d3d1rty

      I had a friend who sold about half his stocks the weekend before the expected market collapse. I warned him but he insisted. That Monday the dollar rallied, the stock market rose and he missed out on some big gains. I didn’t change a thing and profited accordingly. :) Just goes to show, the market rewards rational thinking.

    • Wait, wait, wait, wait… Are you saying that I shouldn’t base my investment decisions off of Shemitah?! Bah.

      /s :)

    • Sure you can base your investment decisions off Shemitah. But don’t go by the calendar date, wait for it to actually happen.

      Part of the Shemitah cycle is the forgiveness of debt. When you see people burning their US Treasury certificates in the streets, that’s a signal to sell your stocks. And when millions have renounced the debt owed to them by the US gov, there will be blood in the streets and THAT is the time to buy great stocks for pennies.

  • “Separation of church and state” is a phrase used by Thomas Jefferson in a letter when he was president to the Danbury Baptists. It was his understanding of the intent and function of the Establishment Clause and [Read story]
    • What about looking at judicial precedents on the matter? They usually have more strength

    • Doesn’t wash. First of all, the courts, by a strict interpretation of The Constitution have no right to interpret it. Judicial precedents have pretty much all relied on Jefferson’s statement or something similar. Also, The First Amendment only says that Congress shall not establish a religion; it doesn’t say the states which judicial imperialism has extended it to and at the time, several states did have an established religion. Would they have ratified if they thought it would extend to them?

      I don’t like the thought, but states are allowed to establish a religion.

  • chad mcrae published a new article, Intellectuals ignorance of family, on the site The abyss of liberty and markets that we stare into 6 hours, 5 minutes ago

    american-dream-post-war-abundance-swscan00536-copyFor as long as history can remember man has tried to build the utopia. However Mankind has shown very little evidence on what this utopia would look like let alone how it would achieve it. Of what is accepted from [Read story]
  • Taylor Pace just joined Liberty.me 6 hours, 52 minutes ago

  • Kristin Colca‘s article Gun Control and Why We Can’t Talk Like Adults Anymore has a new comment 7 hours, 16 minutes ago

    gun controlA few days ago I heard about the Oregon shooting along with the rest of you. My initial reaction was one of sadness and disappointment, and then I avoided the media for the rest of the day. All forms of media. [Read story]
    • Thanks Kristin, I’ve had some success with this tactic!

    • Re: We need as many converts as we can get etc etc.

      It’s not necessary to convert nor petition others…nor is it to adopt methods of those you despise. Nor to social engineer…

      Individuals still don’t know their own power. Build your own model instead of fighting the existing. “You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.” ~ R. Buckminster Fuller

      To this day many are unaware of spontaneous order of individuals in society and methodological individualism and human ignorance in making calculations for others. One school of thought leads to what I am pointing to which is each individual doing their own thing (not petitioning nor manipulating nor converting) also happen to create a path thru the forest of complexity of groups traps, which includes such things as self correcting pricing, making and delivering bread or security to a whole city, which was not the intention of each individual nor within their capability as one individual to dictate; and the other school is social engineering command control theorists who support the state ignorance of and interference of and destruction of spontaneous order that manifests thru methodological individualism.

      Adam Smith may not have been the first economist, as he is sometimes called. But more than any other social philosopher he popularized the notion that human beings, left free to pur- sue their own goals, would give rise to a social order that none of them had consciously planned. As Smith famously put it in The Wealth of Nations, free man acts as if “led by an invisible hand to promote an end which was no part of his intention.”

      The Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises said in his mag- num opus, Human Action, that this discovery left people filled with stupefaction that there is another aspect from which human action might be viewed than that of good and bad, of fair and unfair, of just and unjust. In the course of social events there prevails a regularity of phenomena to which man must adjust his actions if he wishes to succeed.

      Check out Wendy Mcelroy’s The Art of Being Free and Gene Callahan’s Economics for Real People. The latter is free at Mises.org the other can be purchased anywhere or free at Jeffrey Tucker’s Liberty.me with a subscription

      P. 44 of Wendy McElroy’s ebook “The Art of Being Free”: provided byliberty.me:

      “…order espoused by Mises and Hayek was a spontaneous one in which individuals pursued their own diverse interests without coordination by a central authority. What does such an order look like?”

      As it pertains. I was reviewing this recently: Denver DA Creates Countless Fully Informed Jurors

      It occurs to me that perhaps it begins to look like a few individuals peacefully passing out a gift: pamphlets for jury nullification at a court house not to fight govt, not convert others, but to provide information…

      And Yes the MORE the central authourity interfere with that need for autonomy to give and receive a gift of care, support, collaboration, and contribution, the more individuals appear, awaken, and Leave By Their own preferences, interests and actions.

      This is far cry from converting and manipulating and social engineering…

      And yet No it is not how I would secure my freedom. It smacks too much of petitioning others as it pertains to this: “To secure freedom requires intelligence. It must be comprehended and self—asserted. To petition for it is to stultify oneself, for a petitioner is a confessed subject and lacks the spirit of a freeman. To rail and rant against tyranny is to manifest inferiority, for there is no tyranny but ignorance; to be conscious of one’s powers is to lose consciousness of tyranny. Self government is not a remote aim. It is an intimate and inescapable fact. To govern oneself is a natural imperative, and all tyranny is the miscarriage of self government. The first requisite of freedom is to accept responsibility for the lack it…

    • Best comment ever. Thank you.

    • @atlasaikido Mathew Reece posted this as it relates https://liberty.me/discuss/t/tucker-vs-cantwell-on-refugees/

      And I posted this:
      Natural laws playing out. Spontaneous order looks chaotic. However there IS a self correcting taking place here. Both Tucker and Cantwell offer strategies, mind sets etc. Jeffrey is pointing out that NON INTERFERENCE with migration will allow individuals to sort out what Statism deems impossible without command control, social engineering etc

      Cantwell has fallen for the WE have an emergency what are WE going to do? And the We-ist traps that come from such!

      There is no WE! tinyurl.com/there-is-no-we

    • Mal, I appreciate your counter to my argument above. You have brought up some great points here. The most poignant one for me being the thin line between coercion and sharing of information.
      Although my intent is pure – is the means to the end justifiable and supported by my own beliefs; or am I just as guilty as others using emotional appeals?
      I will be rolling this one around in my head for a while!

    • The Art of Persuasion – you hit upon an important key to changing hearts and minds. Thanks for sharing. And you are right, Jason is great:

    • “ugh, gross.” I totally get this. It would seem on the surface that you can treat adults like mature, responsible, rational human beings. I’m really good at this but it gets me almost nowhere in arguments. Instead I have to go out of my way to emote, which I’m considerably less skilled at than rhetoric. Ugh.

    • Great article! It’s funny how in some ways it feels like we’re Vulcans having to deal with communicating on the emotions-first human level. Do you not think that this could lead to outrage escalation in which it all becomes ridiculous and pointless to engage on an emotions first approach?

    • Kristina, Yes there is a language outside of punishment paradigm…I posted here because the comment box was getting too elongated! LOL

      The Lesson Of The Polka-Dotted Suit
      I would like to illustrate the process of mourning and self-for- giveness by recalling a personal event. The day before an impor- tant workshop, I had bought a light gray summer suit to wear.

      At the end of the well-attended workshop, I was swarmed by partici- pants asking for my address, signature, and other information. With time closing in on another appointment, I hastened to attend to the requests of the participants, signing and scribbling on the many bits of paper thrust in front of me. As I rushed out the door, I stuck my pen—uncapped—in the pocket of my new suit. Once out- side, I discovered to my horror that instead of the nice light gray suit, I now had a polka-dotted suit!

      For twenty minutes I was brutal with myself: “How could you be so careless? What a stupid thing to do!” I had just ruined a brand new suit: if ever I needed compassion and understanding, this was the time, yet here I was responding to myself in a way that left me feeling worse than ever.

      Fortunately—after only twenty minutes—I noticed what I was doing. I stopped, looked for the need of mine that was UNMET by having left the pen uncapped and asked myself, “What need lies behind my judging myself as ‘careless’ and ‘stupid’”?

      Immediately I saw that it was to take better care of myself: to have given more attention to my own needs while I was rushing toaddress everyone else’s needs. As soon as I touched that part of myself and connected to the deep longing to be more aware and caring of my own needs, my feelings shifted.

      There was a release of tension in my body as the anger, shame and guilt I was harbor- ing towards myself dissipated. I fully MOURNED the ruined suit and uncapped pen as I opened to feelings of sadness now arising along with the yearning to take better care of myself.

      Next I shifted my attention to the need I was meeting when I slipped the uncapped pen in my pocket. I recognized how much I valued care and consideration for other people’s needs. Of course, in taking such good care of other people’s needs, I had not taken the time to do the same for myself. But instead of blame, I felt a wave of compassion for myself as I realized that even my rushing and putting the pen away unthinkingly had come out of serving my own need to respond to others in a caring way!

      In that compassionate place, I am able to hold both needs: in one hand, to respond in a caring way to others’ needs, and in the other, to be aware of and take better care of my own. Being conscious of both needs, I can imagine ways of behaving differently in similar situations and arriv- ing at solutions more resourcefully than if I lose that consciousness in a sea of self judgement.
      Compassionate Communication self-forgiveness : connecting with the need we were trying to meet when we took the action which we now regret.

      Non Violent Communication
      Chapter 9 Connecting

    • @kristincolca Well https://disqus.com/by/Bob_Robert/ has 7666 up votes of 4415 posts and doing fine in the thick of it, so to speak. Handles the Emotional-ISM types with logic and reason
      and the readers seem to just love it!

    • @billyrock Much much appreciated and esteemed Dear Friend…May our roads stay open ~ Louis L’ Amour

    • @kristincolca Much much appreciated and esteemed Dear Friend…May our roads stay open ~ Louis L’Amore.

      I stayed up all night looking thru my notes and writing as I was deeply moved by your poignancy…And the prior night pretty much the same. I was tired but wanted to press on and connect with you as it seemed urgent…

  • Mark Tordai published a new article, Why Birdman is Completely Overrated, on the site Movies 4 Maniacs 7 hours, 53 minutes ago

    2014 was a tremendous year for film. Many of my favourites of last year broke new ground in storytelling, visual FX, box office success and cinematography. However, one movie ended up just rubbing me the wrong way [Read story]
  • Julian Roô posted an update 8 hours, 16 minutes ago

    Senator Bernie Sanders thinks you can delegate a right that you do not have.
    The interview is about his theory of legitimate government and where the right to govern comes from, as well as a proper legal system. Senator Bernie Sanders thinks you can delegate a right that you do not have.
    Watch the off camera harassment at the end revealing…[Read more]

  • Dale Weaver just joined Liberty.me 8 hours, 19 minutes ago

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