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July 02 , 2007

Counting Our Blessings On Liberty Day
By Nathan A. Barton (TM and © 2007)

Traditionally, the 4th of July is celebrated as “Independence Day” because the Declaration of Independence was formally dated that day. However, as historians, especially libertarian historians, are wont to point out, the 2nd of July, 1776, was the day that the Continental Congress actually voted to declare independence, and the last of the signers did not get to append their signatures to the formal copy until some months later. Many people celebrate the 2nd, then, with actual firing of salutes and other weapons, rather than with the traditional fireworks of two days later. I chose to call the 2nd of July, then, “Liberty Day.”

We approach the beginning of Anno Libertatus 232; the 231st anniversary of that first Liberty Day, Tuesday, 2 July 1776 Anno Domini. The day when a handful of men, supported by perhaps a third of the people who lived along a narrow edge of a vast continent, chose to defy the world’s most powerful monarch, parliament, and empire. It is therefore seemly to count the blessings of liberty which we, as physical and spiritual heirs of those people, enjoy more than two centuries later. (Read the rest here)

Exclusive to The Price of Liberty

Libertarian Commentary on The News, 24 - 30 June 2007
By Nathan A. Barton © 2007

Theft by government:
MA: Even backers stunned by local tax-hike OK
Boston Globe
“Across the state this spring, town officials and school advocates have gone hat in hand to voters, pleading with them to back property tax hikes at the ballot box to stave off the budget ax . And in most towns, they have had their hats handed to them by voters who said their own budgets were already stretched too thin…. But yesterday in Taunton, a working-class community that no one could recall voting in favor of a tax increase, people expressed shock that their city had bucked the statewide trend. By a nearly 2-to-1 margin Saturday, voters approved a plan to borrow $18 million of the $104 million it will cost to build a new middle school and renovate a cramped, crumbling high school, seizing an opportunity to reap $86 million in reimbursements from the state.” [Editor’s note: So much for the claims that a “legitimate use” of taxpayer money cannot be sold to a town’s voters, and therefore pushing for such voter approval is inappropriate (note also that the voter turnout for this was … a whopping 22%!) - SAT] (06/25/07)

Sadly, the once-free people of New England, including the People’s State of Mass, have become so depraved and debased that they vote for the state to rob them more and more. I am not sure I understand Steve’s comments on this: less than 1/6th of the people of this town have approved stealing $18 million from 100% of the people, in order to use $86 million already stolen from 100% of the people of the state – for a worthless project with the objective of further brainwashing and debasing the future generations of their town. And this is good how?

Mama's Note: I think the secret to Steve's remark is in the quoted "legitimate use." The voters were "sold" on this illegitimate use of stolen goods. He's not saying it's a good thing.

Steve Trinward responds:
1) the fact that they did override the limitation, in a public vote, puts the lie to the opponents of Prop 2-1/2 that says voters would never "understand the need" for new spending, and thus should be forced to accept it without a vote. (This was the argument against our petition to limit Nashville's metro property tax increases to inflation, without a public vote to allow the new spending. We passed it anyway.)

2) the fact that only 22% of the eligible voters came out to vote on this issue, shows that said opponents can easily game the system, and so should have no problem accepting what is actually a phantom effort to empower taxpayers.

I tried to make both points in my editor's note; sorry NB did not get it ...SAT
(Read the rest here) [Two full pages again!]

Still time to stop millions in feminist pork
By Trudy W. Schuett

There has never been a better time to speak out and be heard. Our legislators in Washington are learning quickly that the people will not be ignored, and despite their political intentions, they must serve the desires of the people.

While the big news of the immigration reform bill was being talked about last week all over the country, the Senate Appropriations Committee was quietly rubber-stamping funding for some of the most divisive and least productive programs in the country. While the National Network to End Domestic Violence is lauding this markup as a done deal, this funding has yet to be approved. (Read the rest here)

We Are Not Nearly As Free As We Think We Are
By Doug Newman

Indeed, we enjoy a measure of liberty. However, we are subject to myriad intrusions on our ability to maneuver through life. And because so many of us think we are free, we are incredibly easy pickings for those who would enslave us.

Tyranny is a lot like cancer. While early detection is a great thing, prevention is a far better thing. Millions have survived both totalitarianism and cancer. I would rather avoid than survive either of these. This is why I am being so vocal NOW, while I can still do so without fear of government retribution. Consider it early detection. (Read the rest here)

Equal Pay for Equal Work at Wimbledon?
By Carey Roberts

We have it on the authority of Hillary Clinton that women playing at the Wimbledon tournament will finally receive their due this year: "Wimbledon agreed to pay their women tennis champions the same amount of prize money as their male champions. It only took 123 years for them to do the right thing," Mrs. Clinton recently exulted.

Hillary has long been an outspoken advocate of equal pay for equal work. So does this news from the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club represent a breakthrough for the cause of female equality? (Read the rest here)

Rights of Taxpayers is Missing Element in Stem Cell Debate
by Congressman Ron Paul - R - TX

On one side, those who support the President’s veto tend to argue against embryonic stem cell research, pointing to the individual rights of the embryo being discarded for use in research. On the other hand are those who argue the embryo will be discarded any way, and the research may provide valuable cures for people suffering from terrible illnesses.

In Washington, these two camps generally advocate very different policies. The first group wants a federal ban on all such research, while the latter group expects the research to be federally-subsidized. Neither side in this battle seems to consider the morality surrounding the rights of federal taxpayers. (Read the rest here)

From The Archives
A Little Temporary Safety - Short and Sweet

By L. Reichard White

Polls have consistently shown that, being the macho folks we apparently are, we Americans don't care if the U.S. Government listens in on our phone conversations, spies on our e-mails, and/or secretely black-bags our domiciles, frames some of us, and now, peeks over our shoulders at our bank accounts. Even if "the government" breaks its own laws doing it -- and doesn't really have to.

After all, despite Ben Franklin's quip that "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety," what's a loss of "essential liberty" and less privacy -- as long as "the government" provides us a "little temporary safety?" (Read the rest here)

The Independent Institute
The Return of Fidel Castro and Post-Fidel Cuba

By William Ratliff

We finally have tolerably good evidence that Fidel Castro is really alive and at least to some degree recuperating after ten months and several surgeries. The key event was a fifty-minute pre-recorded interview broadcast on Cuban National Television in early June, in which Castro, still clearly weak, aimlessly reminisced and at times appeared a bit incoherent.

The only people who had seen Fidel since he disappeared from public view (besides medical personnel) were, reportedly, his international revolutionary heir apparent, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, high level Asian communist officials and assorted crony bureaucrats and political lap dogs. Reportedly he recently met with the top leaders of Vietnam, Venezuela, Bolivia and Nicaragua. (Read the rest here)

The Future of Freedom Foundation
Why They Hate Us
by Sheldon Richman

We often hear American politicians and commentators reciting a list of "terrorist" acts committed against the "United States." It typically includes the 1982 bombing of the Marine barracks in Beirut, the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center, the 1996 bombing of U.S. Air Force housing in Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia, the 1998 bombings of the U.S. embassies in Tanzania and Kenya, and the 2000 bombing of the USS Cole in the port of Aden in Yemen. Reciting this string of attacks supposedly demonstrates, without further argument, that the United States has been the major victim of violence on the world stage -- unprovoked violence perpetrated by "Islamofascists" because we are free. Indeed, it is widely believed that the attacks on September 11, 2001, were in part the result of "our" failure to retaliate for the earlier attacks.

But this is sheer balderdash. The attacks, while often criminally misdirected, were hardly unprovoked. (Read the rest here)

Individual Liberty - 101
From The Ludwig von Mises Institute
The State breeds social conflict
by Vedran Vuk

“The political season brings promises to ‘bring us together as a community’ and ‘heal the divisions between us.’ Here is what the political class won’t reveal: their laws, programs, restrictions, subsidies — the whole panoply of interventionist measures they love and of which they promise ever more — are the main source of social division. In contrast, markets draw people into peaceful social relationships, and encourage and reward harmonious interaction among people.” (Read the rest here) (Read the entire article at the source website. Use the back button to return.)

External Articles
Movie review: The Gang
Buckeye Firearms Association
by staff

“In 2003, the Jews For The Preservation Of Firearms Ownership (JPFO), released an amazing documentary called Innocents Betrayed. Now in 2007, the JPFO has produced another Oscar worthy and hard hitting documentary. This time, they are exposing the truth about the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF). Their new documentary is appropriately named The Gang.” (Read the rest here) (Read the entire article at the source website. Use the back button to return.)

Features From The Last Issue

Libertarian Commentary on The News (06/25/07)
By Nathan A. Barton © 2007

Immigration and The REAL ID
By Nathan A. Barton (TM and © 2007)

Communism in a Pink Pantsuit
By Carey Roberts

Who’s An “Illegal”??
By Emiliano Antunez

Earmark Victory May Be A Hollow One
by Congressman Ron Paul - R - TX

From The Archives
You Go First: The Peace Amendment
by L. Neil Smith

The Independent Institute
Accept Reality: Iran and North Korea Will Not Be Denied Nuclear Weapons

By Ivan Eland

The Future of Freedom Foundation
Dare We Call It Tyranny?
by Sheldon Richman

Individual Liberty - 101
From The Ludwig von Mises Institute
What If Social Security Were Completely Scrapped?
By D.W. MacKenzie

External Articles
Income Taxation Is Immoral, Not Illegal and Unconstitutional
by Todd Andrew Barnett

 

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