Libertarian Commentary on the News, 25 June 2015, #15-25C: Stupidity and fear in modern life

By Nathan Barton

Gee! An article, “More Spending Doesn’t Lead To Improved Student Learning,” in Forbes, asks. Have we hit a wall where more spending on traditional public schools will not lead to improved student learning? Applying commonly-accepted statistical tools to the state of Wisconsin, results show this may be the case. Like the United States, Wisconsin has spent more on public schools but has not gotten more for this investment.  Here are some highlights: (1) In the United States, since 1966, per-student spending in constant dollars on public education has increased by 300 percent. (2) In 2011, the United States spent $11,841 for every student enrolled in traditional primary and secondary public schools. This amount is 5th highest among all countries in the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and $2,973 per pupil higher than the OECD average. (3) Yet, despite these expenditures, the United States has failed to create a world-class education system. Continue reading

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Libertarian Commentary on the News, 23 June 2015, #15-25B: Hoplophobes and Hoploclasts

By Nathan Barton

Stephen King, who has made a fortune writing horror stories – many of which feature guns prominently, has publically attacked the stupidity and pride of gunowners and called for more laws following the Charleston killings.  How can such a smart man be so stupid?  It is claimed that he owns guns, which puts him in the same category of hypocrite as are so many Tranzi politicians.

King is not the only seemingly stupid person out there, of course. Gizmodo reports that Uber’s managers are just as stupid. Drivers and riders must be completely defenseless now. “Uber has changed it[s] legal policies in order to prohibit the carrying of firearms by both drivers and passengers. … In April, an Uber driver in Chicago shot a man who was himself shooting at a group of people. The unnamed driver had dropped off a passenger just minutes before. That news was perhaps enough to convince the company that it had to take action.”  Heaven forbid that either a driver or passenger be able to defend themselves OR other people, lest the company get criticized for it. Continue reading

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Libertarian Commentary on the News, 22 June 2015, #15-25A: Lost Freedoms

By Nathan Barton

The Organic Prepper has a great “list article” about children, worth reading and sharing (and connecting to the links for things you may not have heard about). “Nurture the rebellion this summer. Boot them outside. Get your kids away from their TVs, laptops, and video games. Get sweaty and dirty. Do things that makes the wind blow through your hair. Go off in search of the best climbing tree you can find. Shoot guns. Learn to use a bow and arrow. Play outside all day long and catch fireflies after dark. Do things that the coddled world considers too dangerous and watch your children blossom.  Teach your kids what freedom feels like.”

Teach your children what liberty IS.  Yes, back in the 50s through (in some places) the 90s and even within the last decade (and rumors have it – but you didn’t hear it from me! – that some communities and some families even still do some of these things today), these were all a part of childhood, and NOT crimes. Continue reading

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Killings in South Carolina: Vicious Venom

By Nathan Barton

It is incredibly predictable, but the venom seems to be more vicious than ever. No, not the racism.  One man in millions being a racist and willing to kill strangers because of it is bad, but not as bad as even 20 years ago, much less 50 or a hundred.  No, it is the vicious display of hatred for liberty, and for those who practice and promote liberty.

The killing of nine people in a Charleston meetinghouse, by a man who admits to wanting to start a race war, has dominated the news for the last 36 hours (as I write this at noontime on Friday).  We see that, as always, the Tranzis and Hoplophobes/Hoploclasts let no crisis go by without taking advantage of it.  JPFO discusses it, as do other sites. Continue reading

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The True “root of all evil”

By MamaLiberty

Just imagine if 1% of the population of each town had the ability to control the weather. You’d hear all of the platitudes connected to environmental pseudo science, and others would be convinced that they were doing what was “right” for everyone. Those with the ability would create changes THEY believed were prudent and “for the good of all,” most likely, but they would still inflict the weather they chose on everyone else regardless of their motivation.

Of course there would be a tremendous overlap and many contradictions between those so able, and weather chaos would be automatic even if an individual’s sphere of influence was small. Outright war, with thunderbolts and personal sized tornadoes would probably be inevitable. Continue reading

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Libertarian Commentary on the News, 19 June 2015, #15-24D: Lies and politicians

By Nathan Barton

Lies, especially from politicians, are in the news this week.  The old adage is true: “How can you tell if a politician is lying? Is their mouth open?” Let’s look at a few.

Panic time! Oh, NO!!! Is Nutella destroying the environment?  A French (government) minister claims it is, because it includes palm oil, production of which is not green according to environists. The guy strikes me as the kind of nanny Tranzi who is desperately afraid that someone, somewhere, is having fun – even if it is just enjoying the wonderful taste and smell of Nutella on a warm biscuit or tortilla with some johannesberen (current) preserves…  And of course, the only thing that would spur a market boycott or government banning would be if they could prove it was addicting to the children, not just destroying the ozone layer or accelerating global warming.  Of course, this minister’s words are lies: her claims were immediately refuted by the manufacturer.  Not that we had any reason to trust her previously.  She is the former mistress of a French president and gave birth to four children for him: and her immorality in many things, including a lack of familiarity with the truth on almost anything, is well-documented. Continue reading

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Libertarian Commentary on the News, 17 June 2015, #15-24C: RU Kidding? Tyranny? Police State?

By Nathan Barton

Tyranny? Police state?  RU Kidding?  What DO we live in?  For your consideration, the following:

Police seized six children from a family because they were camping, according to Off the Grid News. The agonizing experience for Christopher and Antonia Hernandez began 19th May when Otsego County (Michigan) sheriff deputies and a CPS official took their children, and ended June 10 when their children were returned after the parents won a court ruling based on the fact the mother and children are eligible for enrollment in the Tlingit AmerInd tribe of Washington state. The federal Indian Child Welfare Act makes it more difficult for state officials to separate Native American families. Michigan has a similar state law.  This strikes close to home: my parents were similar “abusers” as the summers of 1966, 1967, and 1968, the family (including myself and my younger brother and sister, ages 13 down to 7) camped for the entire summer EACH of those three years.  And most places we camped (in two old style tents) we had no electricity, and the campground didn’t even have running water (except for the month of June when it normally rains every evening in the Black Hills).  We had to use pit latrines in several of the places we camped.  Of course, the experience scarred me for life: my younger sibs were not so damaged: neither of them are politically astute, much less libertarian.  Seriously, I cannot imagine the trauma these children went through: nearly 4 weeks without their parents!  For camping! Continue reading

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Libertarian Commentary on the News, 16 June 2015, #15-24B: Signs of decay

By Nathan Barton

This weekend, a very bizarre and major incident took place in Dallas, as reported in Freedom’s Phoenix and numerous other news outlets: A number of people attacked the headquarters of the Dallas Police Department, supposedly using automatic weapons and bombs (improved explosive devices). Following a chase and standoff, one man was killed by a police sniper.  Now the screams of accusation and horror are reverberating across the land.  The dead man was “mentally unstable” (as are so many supposed perps of mass killings and bizarre attacks, even if the media refuses to admit that much of the time) and may have been on drugs for his instability (another common feature).   Continue reading

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Libertarian Commentary on the News, 15 June 2015, #15-24A: Government Incompetence At All Time Highs

By Nathan Barton

How incompetent IS government?  Gee, that is hard to quantify:  100%?  99%? 90%?  Every day in the news we see examples of it.  Here are a few.

The incompetence of government is revealed in high tech and energy applications. The Wall Street Journal explains how taxpayers are footing costs for solar-thermal technology failures. High-tech solar power projects are not living up to promises their backers made about how much electricity they could generate…  Note that this is despite claims by a lot of people that solar power is “finally” maturing and is now better than coal, even natural gas and other petroleum fuels.  Continue reading

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Do we really want to do this?

By Nathan Barton

Get Rid of Special Operations Units and Troops?

Sheldon Richman, in his blog Free Association, calls for the abolition of Special Operations forces (Spec-Ops) stating, “if we didn’t have these units, we wouldn’t need them.” He points out, correctly, that SEAL Team 6 and other units have a hideous track record of needless killing and blurring the “traditional lines between soldier and spy.” He concludes saying, “The existence of secretive military units conducting private [sic] lethal operations should bother anyone who aspires to live in a free society.”  He talks about the obvious, but little-admitted impact of US intervention in the Muslim world, and ends with, “For our own safety, we must disband these squads of killers.” Continue reading

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