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What Social Animals Owe to Each Other

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

TGIF: Rights Violations Aren't the Only Bads

The erroneous belief that only conduct for which a coercive response is appropriate — that is, rights violations — may be condemned leads too easily to the corollary error that if some conduct is deserving of condemnation, it must somehow be a rights violation. The initiation of force is not the only bad thing in the world.
The rest is here.

IP's Purpose Is to Encourage Innovation? Ha!

See this.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Libertarian Papers

I'm happy to announce that I have joined the editorial board of Libertarian Papers. I am honored by this recognition.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Op-ed: They Don't Mean Well

Americans have a strange need to believe that their “leaders” mean well. Nowhere is this more true than in foreign policy. Even when the horror of some government operation is revealed (usually after being kept from the American people), solemn pundits and elder statesmen will drone on about unintended consequences and the fog of war, while admonishing against “pointless” recriminations. Typically, the harshest accusation leveled against those responsible for a calamity is incompetence, and even that’s rare.
Yet when one examines the U.S. government’s bloody record in foreign affairs, it is tough to come away thinking that the long trail of death, mayhem, and devastation is anything but the result of malevolence in the pursuit of political and economic interest.
Read it here.

Finally Something to Admire in Obama

Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates writes in his new book, Duty, that Barack Obama was suspicious of the senior military leadership. Finally! A quality in Obama I share and admire!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Ariel Sharon

Good riddance. He was a monster who saw Palestinians as subhuman creatures who defiled Jewish land. He thought nothing of overseeing, if not ordering, the slaughter of noncombatants. He was thoroughly despicable. His demagogy is well captured in this quote: "There are people out there who don't understand the true intentions of the Palestinians. I am not one of them. They want to destroy Israel. They want our country."

David Ben-Gurion, the first prime minister of Israel, was far more honest: "Why should the Arabs make peace? If I was an Arab leader I would never make terms with Israel. That is natural: we have taken their country.... We have come here and stolen their country. Why should they accept that?"

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

How to End Poverty Corporate State-Style

  1. Erect countless state-backed tollgates along the road to personal success, starting with the schools. 
  2. Filter tens of trillions of dollars through a humongous bureaucracy staffed by middle-class and upper-middle-class people, letting just enough money through to give the appearance of compassion, to avert civil unrest, and to create multigenerational dependency. 
  3. Send low-income kids off to fight and die in periodic wars in foreign lands. 
  4. Repeat as necessary.

Saturday, January 04, 2014

Liars and Fools

We already knew this, but it's good to see it documented in the February issue of Reason: The advocates of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act -- Obamacare -- were willing to say anything -- ANY GODDAMN THING -- to get the bill passed. Those who were not outright conscious liars -- and that accounts for many of them -- were so guilty of irresponsible wishful thinking that they should never be trusted with anything of importance for as long as they live.

There will always be people like that. It's the state that gives them power over us. Let's not make it that easy for them.

This Week's Scribblings

TGIF: "Dump the Contraception Mandate and All the Rest"
Op-ed: "Let's Make 2014 the Year of Freedom for Low-Wage Workers"