Visit the forums at Liberty HQ.
They hired a young handicapped woman to help get them to the front of the lines. (Thanks to Josh Hoffstatter.)
Before I divulge the secret to having fun, let me note that I have been unable to post much in recent days because I’ve been traveling, and because I’ve been really busy. I have more travel coming up next week, but I’ll do my best with the blog. I am preparing 180 video lessons (36 weeks times five lessons a week) for each of the homeschool courses I’m teaching for Ron Paul, so that’s pretty time-consuming.
Anyway, the secret to fun is….
Seeing Bob Murphy and me in New York City in our Zombie Returns variety show, June 8. Take $5 off tickets with discount code Krugman. (No, that’s not a joke.) Come to our VIP luncheon and get five signed books by Bob and me.
Here’s Bob’s video pitch. (And by the way, if you are missing the zombie reference, here is the explanation.)
I’m hosting the Peter Schiff Show today. The show runs from 10am-12pm Eastern; you can listen free (no subscription necessary) at SchiffRadio.com during showtime. Tune in!
Mike Church and Brion McClanahan have produced what looks to be an excellent new edition of Albert Taylor Bledsoe’s 19th-century work Is Davis a Traitor? or Was Secession a Constitutional Right Previous to the War of 1861? Having read the book myself years ago, I can tell you it is indeed an excellent work, full of information no one encounters in school, but which helps you break out of the establishment’s suffocating box.
You can download a free chapter here.
The brain dead establishment’s contribution to this discussion is to shout “neo-Confederate!” or express outrage that we peons would even raise what our betters have told us is a closed question. But the arguments for the constitutionality of secession are very strong, and are not refuted by calling secession backward, out of date, stupid, not-progressive, etc. — especially after the experience of the 20th century, for heaven’s sake — or pretending that anyone who favors decentralization secretly supports or is indifferent to slavery. The massive slave states of the 20th-century world could have used rather more decentralization, wouldn’t you say? William Lloyd Garrison favored the secession of the North; presumably even the thought controllers would balk at calling Garrison a “neo-Confederate.”
Thanks to Mike and Brion. I am proud to say that Brion McClanahan teaches U.S. history with me at my LibertyClassroom.com.
Check this out. This appeared around the time of Margaret Thatcher’s funeral.
This is in response to Thatcher’s statement that “there’s no such thing as society.” So these progressives are going to show her!
Naturally, they interpret her perfectly defensible statement in the most inane and uncharitable way possible. Why, we’ll show her there really is society by helping our fellow man!
But that was exactly her point. There is no such thing as an abstract, disembodied blob called “society.” All that exists are individuals, and it is up to those individuals — not “society” — to perform the great works of charity and civilization.
Her actual words: “There is no such thing as society. There is living tapestry of men and women and people and the beauty of that tapestry and the quality of our lives will depend upon how much each of us is prepared to take responsibility for ourselves and each of us prepared to turn round and help by our own efforts those who are unfortunate.”
Now go back and read the juvenile statement in that box above. Every one of those statements is a reflection of what Thatcher actually said, yet the progressives who drafted it seriously think they are letting her have it. Not even an effort to understand the people they oppose. They actually seem to think she meant, “It’s every man 4 himself!! Don’t help anyone!!! KEEP ALL UR STUFF FOR URSELF!!!!”
Just beneath the surface here, and the source of much “progressive” confusion, is the failure to distinguish between society (a shorthand term for the individuals of whom the polity is composed) and the state. No, we don’t think people should be exploited by guys with guns, even if 10% of the exploitation is laughingly portrayed as helping the poor. That doesn’t mean we’re “atomistic individuals” who despise mankind. The state’s thuggish behavior is at odds with society.
(Thanks to this post for the inspiration.)
And it still would be, if we were on the gold standard, says Mark Thornton.
This is a shame.
Sure it was. (From The Vampire Economy, by Guenter Riemann.)
This morning I spoke to the juniors at my kids’ (private) school about libertarianism, as part of a course they’re taking on political philosophy. The session lasted 90 minutes. I do a lot of public speaking, and I can tell you that high school students are a tough audience. But they laughed at my jokes, which means I kept their attention. It went really well, in fact.
I had them read Rothbard’s The Anatomy of the State in advance.
Here’s the outline I worked from:
— concerned with use of violence in society
— nonaggression principle
— key text: Frederic Bastiat, The Law (1850)
– e.g., Ludwig von Mises
— natural rights
– e.g., Murray Rothbard
— John Locke
– “Every man has a property in his own person.”
— Rothbardian development of Locke
– each person is a full self-owner
– denial of this principle leads to absurdities
Social Harmony Promoted
— conflict-free use of productive resources
— how property rights provide social peace
— Robinson Crusoe
– may do whatever he pleases; social cooperation does not arise
— Crusoe and Friday, without scarcity of goods
– still, potential conflict over standing room
– rule: place body anywhere, provided no one else already standing there
— Crusoe, Friday, and scarcity of goods
– own physical bodies, places and nature-given goods they occupy and put to use
–again, so long as nobody else has done so before him
— libertarian principle: first user/homesteader
— other possibilities
– property acquired by verbal declaration
– property accrues to second (or third, or fourth, etc.) user
– property held by no one
Implication: Laissez-Faire Economy
— individuals free to buy and sell, and to make contracts
— profit drives production into socially optimal channels
— price system and government interference
– price floors, price ceilings
The “Someone in Charge” Mentality
— contrary examples
– English language
– “I, Pencil” essay
Myths and Misconceptions
— leads to “monopoly”
– nineteenth-century stats
– James J. Hill
— low wages
– Industrial Revolution
– “standard of living” debate
– what makes wages rise?
— “rich get richer, poor get poorer”
— “atomistic individualism”
Some of these themes are raised in “The Libertarian Speech I Would Deliver to the Whole Country,” some remarks I made last year.