Saturday, September 25, 2010

Some Libertarian websites for your consideration

More and more libertarians are going online with their opinions.  Having Statists run the country is probably a factor.
Please consider bookmarking these (relatively new) bloggers.  You will be enlightened and entertained. 

I don't even know where to start with this first character.   As best I can tell, he is Baron Von Liberte on Facebook....

...and he is the proprietor of - a site dedicated to Swashbuckling, Liberty, and Waffles.  Yes, waffles.  But enough about breakfast foods.  Here's The Baron's take on the recent Stephen Colbert congressional testimony debacle:

Our country is in a shithole right now and we waste time on Stephen Colbert playing fictional Stephen Colbert in front of our real Congress? What’s next? Robert Downey, Jr. playing fictional Tony Stark in front of the Senate debating over who owns his fictional armor? How many tax dollars were wasted on this pointless stunt? What a stupid f***ing move, especially before the midterm elections....
The Baron also has a regular feature called "Libertarian Spotlight" where he posts videos and quotes from celebrities, academics, and musicians who value liberty.  Go here to see the total collection.  (I didn't know about Kurt Russell and Dean Koontz.)  And if you don't already know who this drummer is, and what he believes, you haven't spent enough time on Objectivist websites.  Hit the link for more info !

Here's a link to one of The Barron's motivational posters.  NSFW, but my thoughts exactly. 

My next suggestion is a site called Liberty On Tour.

These guys ride around on a bus promoting liberty and freedom.  "Liberty On Tour is a dynamic freedom-oriented project created by two friends, Pete Eyre and Adam Mueller, who are touring 13 cities in 13 weeks in their RV (dubbed MARV) to advance the message of voluntaryism and a free society."

But there's obviously gotta be more to it than that, right? 
Their pet peeve, and they will run into it in almost every city they visit, is law enforcement/code enforcement officers who keep people from feeding the homeless. 
I repeat...there are people out there with the authority to put you in jail if they don't approve of your giving food to street people.  Here's something from a post called Food Not Bombs:

PHOENIX, AZ – This past Sunday (just a couple short hours before Adam was arrested) we joined the good folks associated with Food Not Bombs Las Vegas who were providing food to people in need.

Their group is doing great work. Yet as many of those featured in this video touch on, harassment from the police is common. A Google search of “Food Not Bombs arrest” results in over 500,000 results and in 2006, this particular chapter was targeted by local law enforcement. Its members were issued citations and threatened with arrest simply for feeding the homeless. Fortunately, they teamed up with the ACLU and recently the court ruled in their favor.
Still, even if the court had not sided with them, they are not doing anything wrong. Far from it. They are voluntarily helping those less fortunate. When the State, or more accurately, individuals wearing silly costumes and badges, tell them that they cannot give freely of their property to consenting individuals it violates their rights.
So why the use of aggressive force? It could be a couple of things – State agencies that were created to supposedly help the homeless may feel their legitimacy eroded when people see that they can better help each other directly rather than through inefficient, unaccountable (and immoral) government (for more on this, check out David Beito’s From Mutual Aid to the Welfare State). For the cops, since they claim a monopoly, they simply lack any incentive to have good customer service (their salaries are paid via stolen money) so they seek to maximize the number of arrests and citations issued for those who violate arbitrary man-made legislation for which there is no victim. They are nothing more than revenue generators for the State (for more on this, check out Bruce Benson’s The Enterprise of Law).
Despite these hurdles, the Food Not Bombs folks have kept at it, and they’ve undoubtedly saved lives in the process.
Like what Food Not Bombs does? Good news – they have over 1,000 chapters and are on every continent save for Antarctica. And, if there’s not yet one near you, you can start a chapter in seven steps.
They do good work, those boys at Liberty On Tour.  They're going to stay on the road through the beginning of November. 

Now take a deep, deep, deep breath and hold it.....
Exhale and go visit The Libertarian Stoner

After reading that poster, I'll never again read the book of Genesis in the same way. 

Here's The Stoner on a friend who our government has put in a steel cage for 5 years. 

Marc Emery,our fallen Prince of Pot,has been sentenced by a U.S. Court to five years in prison for selling a seed created by God grown wild for thousands of years that never hurt a soul...
...."U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan told the court Marc Emery made millions of dollars by shipping seeds into the United States and now he’s paying the price for being part of the illegal drug trade.
“Marc Emery decided that U.S. laws did not apply to him, but he was wrong,” Durkan said in a news release Friday.

“Now, Emery is paying the price for being part of the illegal drug trade that damages lives, homes and the environment.”"

Let me ask you readers has marijuana ever once damaged a life, home, or the environment?

Beyond the fact that ,like a gun, marijuana is inanimate and thus can do nothing good or evil the only thing that has ever damaged the lives,homes, and environment in this issue is prohibition enforced by the police.
Police raid homes,murder innocent people,and burn down massive fields every year and yet according to Jenny Durkan Marc is the one to blame, not them. Was he really the one that caused all that suffering?
The really long answer is "no". 

The next two are Aggregator sites.  These folks tirelessly search The Web for liberty-oriented stories so you don't have to. 
The first is a site called Hammer Of Truth.   Stephen Van Duke typically posts about a dozen links per day and provides commentary on at least one of them. 

Go here for a first-class rant about whether it should be legal for our government to tag you like a Ducks Unlimited experiment in wildlife migration. 

Last is NewsAlert.  I think this guy has been around for a while, but I only found him sometime in the last 6 months.  Gaze upon his blogroll and despair, O Ye Mortals !  Wow. 
Steve Bartin provides tons of links to the liberty-loving masses, and now has almost two million hits to show for it.  I wish he would write more of his own stuff, because his comic asides are usually great. 

That's all I've got.  Hope you like these folks.  Bookmark them, blogroll them, and email their good stuff to your friends. 
Have a great Saturday !

Friday, September 24, 2010

The Washington D.C. food truck wars, with another brief rant about illegal tamales

Here's some classic protectionism for those who are fans of the genre:

From the Washington City Paper:

If anyone can understand the tension between brick-and-mortar restaurants and the mobile army of food trucks that has stormed D.C. in the past year, it’s Stephan Boillon. After he lost his job at Dino in Cleveland Park in 2008, the veteran chef sought to launch an upscale sandwich shop on Connecticut Avenue NW. His plan was to offer only cold sandwiches, which would enable him to build a restaurant with no burners, no oven, and no deep fryers.

But even Boillon’s stripped-down concept was going to cost $750,000 before the doors opened—a figure that didn’t include rent, utilities, insurance, advertising, taxes, labor, association fees, or any of the other overhead it takes to operate a business in a neighborhood that expects a lot from its entrepreneurs.

So with credit tight and investment money scarce, Boillon found a cheaper way into the gourmet sandwich business: a food truck.

For $50,000, one-fifteenth of the price to build his brick-and-mortar concept, Boillon started El Floridano, his rolling unit dedicated to home-made roast-pork Cubans and other bread-driven bites. Boillon had traded a restaurant’s higher profit margin for a truck’s lower start-up costs.


If only supply-and-demand economics were so easy. The sudden appearance of gourmet food trucks that delighted so many lunch-hour consumers simultaneously horrified the established restaurant community—a deep-pocketed, politically wired bunch.

Now, like in Brooklyn and Los Angeles and every other city where mobile vendors represent new competition, the District’s inline businesses are turning to the legislative process to ease their pain. Thus when it comes to the street-food options, you may not have the ultimate say. Lawyers, lobbyists, social-media activists, councilmembers, and business owners are all working the levers of power to determine what rolls your way for lunch.

And here’s the unique D.C. twist to this traditional battle between the rolling and stationary food providers: The old-school street carts, and the powerful depot owners who represent them, don’t care much for these four-wheeled foodies, either.

In the battle for Washington’s food dollars, the mobile vendors have public opinion—and 47,000 Twitter followers—on their side. But their competitors have what might be a more powerful weapon: money.

Well-financed entities like the Golden Triangle Business Improvement District, the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington, the Dupont Circle Merchants and Professionals Association, and the Apartment and Office Building Association of Metropolitan Washington have all submitted proposals asking the D.C. Council to put new restrictions on trucks. Some of the proposals are downright draconian.

Go here to read the proposals, all of which are designed to keep consumers from getting what they want. 

Fort Worth has businesses doing the same thing but at a lower level.  In Cowtown, it's usually the food truck guys who are trying to stifle the competitors. 

Several years ago at Jukt Micronics, I had a Roach Coach operator complain to me about the Mexican dude selling tamales from a bicycle to my employees (which they were joyfully purchasing instead of buying the nuclear winter-proof gunk from her Roach Coach).  She wanted me to throw the bicyclist out of the parking lot because he didn't have a Food Handler's Permit, and no one knew what he was putting in those tamales. 

This confrontation took place before my political awakening, but I already had enough sense to ridicule the notion that a government-issued permit was enough to purify the contents of the bicycle tamale bin or the preservative-laden cholesterol bombs in her van. 

I don't remember how that worked itself out.  But speaking of illegal tamales....

Go here for a much later rant about illegal tamales being sold outside another Jukt Micronics location.  Something about businesses and regulators trying to stifle the tamale market gets me fired up.

Here's a video about the D.C. Roach Coach food truck operators. 

I do love me some homemade tamales.  A fresh coat of Whitening to The Agitator for the link.

A Libertarian Contract With America

The Republicans have released their "Pledge To America".  If they honor any of it (except the pledges to continue blowing money overseas) I'll be amazed. 

The Democrats haven't released any summary of their goals and objectives since it is hard to predict the direction of an ongoing train wreck. 

One cool thing about being a Libertarian is that our platform doesn't really change. 
I own me, you own you. 
 Leave everyone alone as much as possible. 
Government should provide some infrastructure, some defense, plus enforce contracts and referee in disputes. 
That's it. 

Let me propose the following Libertarian Contract With America.  (Yes, this could probably use some crowdsourcing.)

1)  If Libertarians are elected in sufficient numbers, they will repeal ObamaCare.  They will lower medical costs for all Americans by allowing a free market approach to medicine.  Things are costly when they are scarce, and any healthcare proposal that doesn't begin with eliminating scarcity is doomed to failure. 

2) If Libertarians are elected, they will ensure that The United States is the most secure nation on earth.  However, the United States will no longer ensure this security for Europe, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, or any of our other economic competitors.  Our boys and girls will come back home. 

3) Since we will no longer be defending the borders of South Korea, Taiwan, Japan, or Europe, we will no longer need 50% of our military capability.  Our government will give some of this savings back to the American taxpayers, and apply some of it to our national debt.  Even if we cut defense by 50%, we will still have the largest military on earth. 

4) The Libertarian Party will shut down a random Cabinet-level department, partly to prove that it is serious, and partly for the sheer fun of it.  The Department of Energy has more than 100,000 employees and does nothing but consume energy.  That would be a good place to start. 

5) The government will audit the Federal Reserve and publicize the findings.  The government will limit The Fed's ability to print money to pay off government debt. 

6)  Anyone wanting a bailout will have to consult his brother-in-law.  Ditto for earmarks, grants, subsidies or other forms of pork. 

7)  As American taxpayers have a sentimental attachment to public education, we will provide parents with an education voucher for their children.  Public schools will have to compete for these vouchers since this will be their only source of funding. 

8)  Since I own me and you own you, it makes no sense to continue locking recreational drug users into steel cages with rapists and murderers.  "No harm, no foul" will be the order of the day.  The violence along the Canadian border ended when our government legalized alcohol sales, and the same approach will end the violence along our border with Mexico if marijuana prohibition is ended. 

9)  The government will no longer have an opinion on who can or cannot marry, as long as he or she has reached the age of consent.  Marriage is a religious issue.  Civil Unions are a government issue and will be available to any adult partners or groups willing to be united civilly. 

10)  Throughout history, the nations with the highest levels of trade were the nations with the highest levels of prosperity.  Therefore all protective tariffs, quotas, and import taxes will be reduced to the lowest possible levels.  When Target has a sale on jeans, we don't worry about the impact on Wal-Mart, or worry about protecting Wal-Mart from unfair competition.  The same philosophy will apply to all manufacturers and other businesses.  Protecting business equals shafting consumers.   

11)  The government will support your right to shop where you want to shop.  The government will support the rights of businesses to charge whatever they want to charge, as long as it doesn't violate a pre-existing agreement.  The government will support the rights of workers to unionize and also support the rights of employers to kick out the unions and hire someone else. 
It's called "freedom of contract", and these financial transactions are none of the government's business unless one side or the other doesn't follow through on its promises. 

12) As minimum wage laws set an arbitrary minimum threshold for employment, thereby making it illegal to hire anyone whose labor is not worth this amount, minimum wages will be abolished.  The government will no longer saw the lower rungs off of the employment ladder. 

13)  Abortion rights will be left to each state.  No federal funds will be used for abortions, or any other medical procedures. 

14)  Anyone who has paid into Social Security, Medicaid, or Medicare will be given a "cash out" option that he or she can use for retirement, for immediate needs, or to take to Vegas.  Those wishing to remain in the system can do so.  (The money IS still there, right?) 

15)  Anyone wanting to bring ghosts, goblins or gods into a school will have to start a school of his own.  Anyone wanting to pray to these spirits can do so on his own time.  Silently. 

There.  That should do it.  Does anyone want to run those savings past the Congressional Budget Office?  Would we then have some money available to save and create jobs ? 

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Unions hire non-union help, at low wages, to protest hiring of non-union help at low wages

When my employer, Jukt Micronics, goes to trade shows, we are invariably confronted with the stereotypical union "help".  (Note the scorn quotes.)
They charge us more to forklift the equipment to our booth than it costs us to ship the equipment from Fort Worth to Chicago, or Fort Worth to Vegas. 
THEN they ask for a kickback, "just to avoid any problems in the future". 

When Yellow Freight and Roadway merged to become YRC Worldwide, The Teamsters sent us a bewildering array of "drivers" (once again, note the scorn quotes) who couldn't succesfully back up to a toilet in just one attempt, much less a freight dock. 

Then there's the glorious mess that you're paying to straighten out at Chrysler and G.M. 

And the teacher's union. 

Well guys, when you've lost Jon Stewart, you've lost America.  Greatest. Daily. Show. Video. EVER ! !

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Working Stiffed
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorTea Party


Gay and Lesbian activists are finally figuring it out.  The person who programs The Teleprompter Jesus isn't going to do anything for them.  Here's Politico:

NEW YORK – President Barack Obama was heckled multiple times during his speech at a Democratic fundraiser in one of the country’s most Democratic cities.

....Obama showed a flash of irritation after he was forced repeatedly off his prepared remarks. “We listened to you, we heard your point,” he told the “young lady” who continued shouting at him about AIDS funding. “This is not the time or the place to do what you’re talking about.”....The “don’t ask, don’t tell” protest came moments later, as Obama began talking about how incomes for the middle class fell by 5 percent – a statement he had to repeat twice.

Blah blah blah blah blah.  Here's the truly amazing part of the article.  Brace yourself:

“We need your energy and enthusiasm,” he told the 550 donors who had paid $100 to hear him speak.

I'm sorry, but if you'll pay $100 to listen to this guy after what we've heard for the last year and a half?????   I've got a ski resort in New Orleans' 9th Ward that I would like to sell you. 
Please send me your email address so I can forward it to Nigerian email scammers.  We know some people who have been trying to get in touch with you.
Oh, and I've got tickets for an Elvis concert.  Cash only, please. 
Here's Doctor Zero, with a fresh coat of Whitening to Instapundit:

Let me put this bluntly: virtually no one in America gives a damn what Barack Obama says about anything at this point.
What could be more predictable, and less interesting, than Obama’s opinion on any given subject?
Who wants to contemplate the economic wisdom of a guy who looted the Treasury for a trillion dollars, with less benefit than we could have achieved by stuffing hundred dollar bills into random cereal boxes?
Who’s excited to hear about the next plan to convert taxpayer dollars into Democrat campaign funds? Who’s hungry for another hour of tedious excuses about permanently broken markets and the titanic dead hand of George W. Bush?
Who wants a lecture on ethical business practices from the titular head of the party that gave us Charlie Rangel and Maxine Waters?
What use is another hollow foreign-policy speech from a man who sees no global adversary to rival the menace of Arizona?
Even Obama’s supporters don’t hear anything he says any more.
There’s nothing left to hear. 

Agreed.  But he still has an audience.  A paying audience.  (Just curious here....Are there still people who go to vaudeville performances?  How about minstrel shows?) 
Still.  I can't believe they found 550 people willing to pay $100 to listen to this guy. 

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Public Education Billboard Of The Day


NOT a Photoshop. 

The Libertarian TV ad we've all been waiting for !

This is the Libertarian political ad we've all been waiting for. 

We just need more money to get it on television more often. 

John Jay Myers is running for Congress against Pete "Bailout" Sessions Texas 32nd District.  Here's part of the press release:

The Libertarian campaign for John Jay Myers is releasing a very professional TV ad next week, which highlights the need to end the two party mindset. The video was actually created in the spare time of two Republicans, (one a Precinct Chair) furthering the idea that it is principle over party.

“I honestly believe in principle over party, every Republican that wants to end the wars, bring our troops home, and end the nanny state would get my support.  And both of them (the Republicans) that believe that do.” says Myers.

Myers is in an uphill battle against Pete Sessions the RNCC chair who has raised over $1 million dollars for his race.  Recognizing the odds, Myers jokingly said “There is a slim, very slim chance that I may NOT win this election” but went on to say “What matters is that I am right, and  I am giving people the opportunity to do what is right”.

Myers likes to point out that the Democrat and the Republican are actually very similar.  “Both Pete Sessions and Grier Raggio are the same.  They both want to continue our foreign policy which costs over a trillion a year, they both believe in socialised medicine, and they both believe in bail outs and stimulus.”

For more information about the campaign see:
or contact Mr. Myers at 469-939-7141

Predictions for the new Contract With America

The Republicans are about to unveil a new "Contract With America".  The 1990's contract has gotten some credit for the Newt Gingrich Republican Revolution, which was about as revolutionary as a decision to change crack dealers. 
Remember all the hype about cutting government spending?  Of the departments and programs that the Republicans pledged to eliminate, their combined budgets had grown by 13% by the year 2000

Since their previous Bait'n'Switch was so succesful, here are some predictions for the contents (or at least the results) of the new Republican Contract With America.

1) To enhance our image as the defenders of something or another, we will continue to harrass gays and lesbians in the military, and defend Japan, Germany, South Korea, Italy, Bulgaria, etc. 
2) To ensure that we have other enemies to fight, we will do everything in our power to fight marijuana legalization.  The prison lobby, prison guards, parole & probation officers, and the piss test industry all need jobs too. 
3) Because they are such easy targets, we will keep the Departments of Energy and Education in place for the next 8 years. 
4) Because there is so much money in it for politically-connected companies and donors, we will buy into the Anthropogenic Global Warming Global Climate Disruption myth and start investing in windmills, green stuff, and perpetual motion machines. 
5) We will guarantee that subsidies continue to flow to mega-corporations, like the $600 million dollar gift we give BP every year for throwing some ethanol into their fossil fuels.  There's something vaguely "green" about what Enron is doing, and that's supposed to be good. 
6) We will fight to defend your rights, your property, and your home.  Unless, of course, your property or home is in a great spot for a sports arena or a new shopping center. 
7) Dammit, we are going to end personal welfare.  With those savings, we are going to beat the Democrats in handing out corporate welfare. 
8) We pledge to fight the Ground Zero Mosque with everything we've got.  While you are distracted by our performance, we will push through thousands of earmarks for our campaign donors. 
9) We will never, ever, ever audit the Federal Reserve. 
10) Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and ObamaCare® are all safe with us.  We haven't repealed anything since Prohibition.  Wait a minute....the Democrats did that.  We continue to talk tough, but do nothing. 

Disagree with any of the above?  Hide and watch what they do. 
The Libertarian party awaits ! 

Monday, September 20, 2010

Do you ever voluntarily participate in activities where success is punished?

Here are some quick Monday morning questions.

Who would you rather have investing your money?  10 billionaires, selected at random, or the top 10 people on the president's economic advisory team?

Who would select the investments most likely to assure a long term profit?   10 billionaires, selected at random, or the top 10 people on the president's economic advisory team?

When government spends your money, do you believe that they are making the best possible decisions when doing so?  Even when they spend it on Turtle Tunnels and African Genital Washing?  (Google it.)  Are the Turtle and Sanitizing jobs likely to grow without further government support?   

If the Bush Tax Cuts are allowed to expire, do you believe that the wealthy will continue to put the same amount of money at risk, which, by the way, is the only way to create continued employment growth? 

Do you know how much Federal tax revenue declined after the Bush tax cuts went into effect?  Is it possible that Capital Gains Tax revenues doubled after the tax cuts? 

If Capital Gains Tax revenues doubled after the Bush tax cuts, if you were going for the maximum amount of tax revenue, would you prefer to take 39% of $100 or 35% of $200?

Do you voluntarily participate in activities where success is punished? 

I'm just wondering.....

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Lord Monckton on Global Climate Disruption, or the lack thereof

This is painful. 
This is probably the 3rd or 4th Lord Monckton video that I've posted.  He's probably my favorite Global Warming Global Climate Disruption skeptic. 
What should we take away from all of this? 
When in doubt, look at your thermometer. 
Just because people are trying to make money from the weather doesn't mean you should give it to them.