Available Now! (click cover)

America's Counter-Revolution
The Constitution Revisited

From the back cover:

This book challenges the assumption that the Constitution was a landmark in the struggle for liberty. Instead, Sheldon Richman argues, it was the product of a counter-revolution, a setback for the radicalism represented by America’s break with the British empire. Drawing on careful, credible historical scholarship and contemporary political analysis, Richman suggests that this counter-revolution was the work of conservatives who sought a nation of “power, consequence, and grandeur.” America’s Counter-Revolution makes a persuasive case that the Constitution was a victory not for liberty but for the agendas and interests of a militaristic, aristocratic, privilege-seeking ruling class.

Friday, December 27, 2013

TGIF: The Moral Case for Freedom Is the Practical Case for Freedom

So I, for one, don’t accept the division of the case for freedom into “the moral” and “the practical.” It’s a mistake, not to mention harmful to the cause.
Read it here.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Op-ed: Congress Must Not Cede Its War Power to Israel

I don't want Congress (or the president) to have the power to make war at all, but as long as it has such power, it must not turn it over the Israel (or anyone else).

Read the op-ed here.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

The Christmas Truce of 1914

Kevin Carson relates one of the most remarkable stories I know: The Christmas Truce of 1914, "a spontaneous soldiers’ truce that broke out on Christmas Eve all along the Western Front in France, lasting in places until the day after Christmas."

Saturday, December 21, 2013

TGIF: The Pope Dabbles in Economics

The pope’s concern with the poor and excluded is well-placed. We should not tolerate their condition or its causes. But what the poor and excluded need are freedom and freed markets — really free markets, not “the prevailing economic system” — so they may be liberated from the oppression that holds them back.
Read it here.

Remember This . . .

Soldiers don't die for their country. They die for vain politicians and war profiteers. That's what they kill for too.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Op-ed: Mandela Wasn't Radical Enough

He led the effort to end the evil apartheid system, but he left in place the corporate state. It's all here.

TGIF: Crime and Punishment in a Free Society

In the latest TGIF, I argue that there should be no crime and punishment, but only torts and restitution. Read about it here.

Saturday, December 07, 2013

Infamy, Indeed

From my 1991 Future of Freedom Foundation article "Pearl Harbor: The Controversy Continues":
At 7:53 am. on Sunday, December 7, 1941, a Japanese force of 183 fighters, bombers, and torpedo planes struck the United States Pacific fleet at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. Some 4,500 Americans were killed or wounded. As news of the surprise attack spread, William F. Friedman, an Army cryptanalyst who had helped to break the Japanese diplomatic “Purple” code, said to his wife repeatedly, “But they knew, they knew, they knew.”
Read the full article here.

Ethnic-Cleansing Continues in Israel

SEE UPDATE

From Nadia Ben-Youssef's Huffington Post article "Put a Stop to the Displacement of Bedouin Communities in Israel":
The Prawer Plan is specifically targeting the some 70,000 Palestinian-Bedouin citizens of Israel who continue to live in 35 historic villages, which are unrecognized by the state and therefore denied access to all basic services such as water, electricity, sewage, schools and health clinics. The Prawer Plan seeks to destroy these villages and forcibly displace their residents (again, all citizens of Israel). If fully implemented, the Prawer Plan would be the largest confiscation of Palestinian-owned land since the 1950s.
The Bedouin have lived in the Negev since the 7th century, and, while members of the Palestinian people, have retained a traditional, pastoral existence in the desert. Since the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948, the government has sought to dispossess the community not only of their ancestral lands, but also of their very livelihoods, concentrating them into crowded and impoverished urban towns, unsuited to their way of life. Simultaneously, the government has sought to encourage Jewish settlement and agricultural activity in the same area, developing over one hundred small rural communities (kibbutzim and moshavim) as well as sixty individual single-family farmson confiscated Bedouin land.
The Prawer Plan seeks to legalize Israel's discriminatory treatment of its most vulnerable citizens, through a piece of legislation known as the Prawer-Begin bill. The bill passed its first reading (a critical initial vote of approval) in the Israeli Knesset in June of this year, and is expected to be brought for its final readings in the coming weeks. The Prawer-Begin bill joins the wave of discriminatory legislation to have been proposed or passed in recent years by successive Israeli governments that directly threatens the rights of Palestinian citizens of Israel, a 20 percent national minority. While not unique in its explicit and exclusive applicability to only a subset of the population in Israel, the Prawer-Begin bill exceptionally proposes a legal regime for the Bedouin citizens of Israel, which is completely separate from the one that applies to their Jewish neighbors....
The Bedouin community, together with civil society, have proposed an Alternative Master Plan that, on the basis of equality, recognizes the Bedouin villages in their existing locations, using the traditional land system as a foundation for future planning. The community has presented the plan to the government several times, but in response, is witnessing an increase in home demolitions coupled with government approval to build new Jewish towns, Jewish National Fund forests, and industrial or military projects on Bedouin land.
This is a monstrous violation of individual rights and a flagrant act ethnic-cleansing based on the presumed superiority of Jews. Friends of liberty everywhere will demand that the plan be stopped.

UPDATE: The Israeli Knesset has shelved the plan under pressure.

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Are Journalists More Trustworthy than State Personnel?

Art Silber says no, and he's right. Edward Snowden leaked a ton of documents, but the Guardian says it has published only 1 percent -- and that's all it will publish. Who wins in the end, the people or the national-security state? Silber nails it:
Consider the enormous value of the hugely restricted publication of the Snowden documents to the various States involved. Rusbridger, Greenwald, et al. all trumpet the great triumph represented by the "debate" publication has engendered -- the clamor of public voices demands "reform," so committees will be formed, investigations will be undertaken, and when the dust has settled, life for the States involved will go on almost exactly as before (remember: if the NSA were disbanded today, identical surveillance would continue via other agencies and institutions of power) -- and the States will be able to claim that the public knows the "truth," and their activities now have the full blessing of informed public consent.
Read about it here.