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"We need to repeat this idea to ourselves, if we are to successfully prevent the reemergence of conscription in our time. We must dedicate ourselves to the moral cause of opposing the draft as we would dedicate ourselves to opposing the greatest of all totalitarian threats to our freedom. Conscription is slavery, and if it returns, any arguments over whether America is a free country become obsolete."
"[B]ack to the Hardyville Whiskey Day Memorial Machine Gun Shoot and Ice Cream Social ... The whole Hardyville gang is here, plus lots of out-of-town visitors. Those of us who can't afford our own full-auto weapons can rent some time…."
"The answer, my friends, is good old-fashioned discrimination. Profiling, if you prefer. No, I'm not talking about racial discrimination. I mean using the good sense each of us was born with to detect unambiguous context clues and make a hasty judgment."
"[P]rivate insurers are free to charge fat people more, and their customers are free to shop around for a better deal if they don't like the terms of their coverage. By contrast, government-supported health care imposes the costs of fat-related illnesses on people who have not agreed to the arrangement and cannot opt out. But even here, the net financial impact is unclear. If overweight people tend to die earlier and therefore draw less on Medicare and Social Security in old age, fatness may save taxpayers as much as or more than it costs, as seems to be the case with smoking."
"Gonzales's theory of limitless executive power resurfaced in what have come to be known as the 'torture memos.' An August 2002 memo prepared under Gonzales's direction argues that the 1994 statute Congress passed prohibiting torture infringes on the president's constitutional power as commander in chief...."
"Obviously, people need to be informed. We want to know pertinent details regarding a storm's arrival. We really appreciate the tireless efforts of our local emergency workers, Red Cross volunteers, law enforcement personnel, medical staffers, road crew laborers, power company linemen, etc. However, we do not need 'experts' from a supposedly reputable national weather source making it their life's work to try and scare people half to death! "
"Dreaming and thinking are harmless pursuits - yet they're often astonishingly effective and productive uses of time. There's a deceptive element at work in the minds of people who resentfully point at the dreamer and accuse him of doing nothing."
"Free association, strong family ties and good will in the community all diminish and undermine the power and legitimacy of the state. The state is thus shown up to be unnecessary, unneeded and unwanted when people act free. Liberty is about peace and love. Tyranny is about force and hate. The power of truth must shine brightly through the darkness of individual souls before it can manifest itself in collective organizations. Focusing on the collective before focusing on the self is a fool's errand of futility."
"In order to see examples of how irresponsible the state, any state, can be, one need only look at the numbers of deaths caused by state-involved war and atrocity."
"Parents are increasingly turning to home-schooling and other forms of private education as alternatives to government schools; alternative medicine and health-care systems continue to prosper; the Internet -- with its myriad and interconnected web and blog sites -- is increasingly relied upon by men and women for all kinds of information, with a corresponding decline in newspaper readership and network television news viewing. These are just a few of the more prominent examples of a world that is becoming increasingly decentralized, spontaneous, and individualized."
"In the 1930s there were hundreds of Jews who came to American shores aboard the SS St. Louis, forcibly rejected under the guise of immigration quotas, many of whom ultimately perished in Hitler's concentration camps. Countless potential immigrants watched in desperate disappointment. But suppose those passengers had defied immigration law and jumped ship in Miami harbor. Would anyone today call them criminals? I think not."
"Would the same police who believed Simon Gonzales was not dangerous have believed Jessica to be justified in picking up a gun to protect her children from him? Would the police have charged her for use of a weapon? Regardless, these sticky debates would probably be taking place in the presence of three living children and not three dead ones."
"[T]hey can be said to be on the same side as the terrorists, and this congruence is not just ideological: every time the neo-authoritarians face a setback, it seems, their brothers-in-spirit come to the rescue with a fresh attack. The world is coming to resemble John LeCarre's darkly pessimistic novel Absolute Friends. In the fictive world so skillfully constructed by the author, the reader discovers in the end that the terrorists and the government are essentially the same, that one is engaged in propagating the other in a sinister symbiosis."
"It might seem odd, if you are one of those who buy into the Bush rhetoric that America was 'liberating' Iraqis from a brutal regime. ... The answer, of course, is that the U.S. invasion of Iraq was not and is not about liberation; it's about conquest and creation of, if not a colony, then a client state."
"On February 17, 2003, Hus-san Mustafa Osama Nasr was walking down the Via Guerzoni in Milan to attend daily prayers in a mosque. A radical imam, Nasr had been under surveillance by Italian prosecutors and police for ties to Al Qaeda. But Italian agents were not told that the CIA was about to kidnap him."
"There has been widespread outrage at the LP's Iraq plan. State-level parties are increasingly annoyed at the ideological drift of the national party, which is located in DC and has developed a bad case of beltway brain. That's the mentality that imagines only one kind of intellectual activism, that which regards the powerful -- as versus just regular people -- as the target audience of all one's ideological work."
"These were revenues supposedly earmarked for the Iraqi government -- but no one knows where they actually went, except for a few dollops.... And this epic rapine -- looting on a scale not seen since the days of the Mongol Horde -- is just a single rivulet in the vast delta of corruption draining the conquered land."
"No wonder so many in the Democrat establishment continue to support the internationalist 'democracy' project being undertaken hand-in-hand with (or under the guise of) the 'War on Terror' long after the Iraq war has been exposed as having been built on a foundation of half-truths and outright lies. Envisioning a future in which the Republican machine collapses under its own weight (and the weight of the Bush administration's incompetence), they understand they will be the heirs to the shiny new police state the administration has constructed."
"The free market and private property rights are the best -- if not the only -- way to determine the appropriate amount of endangered species demanded by the American public and the world at large, and to protect those species which are truly at risk of extinction."
"A quick glance, a nod, a wink, or a few words exchanged is all that is required for the four riders at hand to build a successful coalition. Public Choice will have none of this reality. They say that negotiation cannot be frictionless and that only through government interventions can people agree to work together."
"A true market system would allow educators to start new schools just like people start new businesses. Customer preferences would determine how much schools charge for their services, what services they would provide, and what curriculum would be used. Schools would be free to specialize and parents would be free to shop around for the type of school they feel is best for their children. Even the best school choice programs today don't provide these options."
"Those miserable countries in sub-Saharan Africa would do better if they adopted the ways of the West rather than turning up at international crisis meetings with a begging bowl. In fact, the hopelessness of these African countries is largely a consequence of the misguided generosity of West, which has ensured their permanent poverty. Hundreds of billions of dollars have been poured into Africa in aid since independence yet most of the countries are poorer now than 20 years ago. "
"The worst thing that can be done is to give more foreign aid to African nations. Foreign aid goes from government to government. Foreign aid allows Africa's corrupt regimes to buy military equipment, pay off cronies and continue to oppress their people. It also provides resources for its leaders to set up 'retirement' accounts in Swiss banks."
"African poverty is rooted in government corruption, corruption that actually is fostered by western aid. We should ask ourselves a simple question: Why is private capital so scarce in Africa? The obvious answer is that many African nations are ruled by terrible men who pursue disastrous economic policies."
"The more violently the U.S. government behaves, the more people are going to join up with the suicide bombers. The benefits of our policy to jihad recruiters everywhere and the American warfare state are nearly endless. The new terrorists we've created help to justify the reach of the national security state into the pockets and lives of the American public."
"I'm leery of conspiracy theories, especially when they involve convoluted plots. Occam's Razor is my guide, however, ever since the events of July 7 something has been nagging at me about the nature of the latest terrorist attack, and not merely the timing but the methods."
"Husbands and wives are tied to a treaty of mutual support. But the concentric circles of jointly bound people become progressively less influential the further out from the family they are. In contrast, most people in time of war become group-oriented. ... This is why war is the health of the state."
"Guevara spent most of 1965 helping the rebels in the east before fleeing the country ignominiously. Soon afterward, Mobutu came to power and installed a decades-long tyranny. (In Latin American countries too, from Argentina to Peru, Che-inspired revolutions had the practical result of reinforcing brutal militarism for many years.)"
"Is freedom an act of 'divine grace?' Some Christians (I among them) would answer with a resounding; Yes. However, that is not the point here. The point is that freedom always has been and always will be an act of an individual's volition, yearning, courage, burden, and resolve while remaining, ultimately, the central characteristic along with the sole responsibility of each person."
"Escalating the process, 1906 saw passage of the Pure Food and Drug Act which obliged labels on patent medicines to show the name of the drugs and the amounts they contained. A good thing one might think, but it soon led to the Harrison Narcotics Act in 1915. The latter was pushed by Senator William Jennings Bryan, a fundamentalist and prohibitionist."
"The premise, apparently, is that the United States is a nation unique in moral authority. Nothing could be wrong with the initiation of force by the all-beneficent United States, which properly uses it to mete out just punishment to evildoers. In this utopian context one may recall the initial name for the military campaign in Afghanistan: 'Operation Infinite Justice.' The purpose of all of America's actions is, of course, to preserve 'peace.' One thinks of what Tacitus said about Roman policy: 'They create a desolation and call it peace'."
"Anytime non-combatants are purposefully killed, a monstrous moral crime has been committed. But in the United States, no one ever seems to ask why the attackers are motivated to commit such horrendous acts. Much of the U.S. public seems to believe President Bush’s erroneous claim that the Islamists are attacking the United States because it is 'free' instead of honestly examining the history of the U.S. government's profligate meddling in the affairs of other countries."
"As George Santayana said, 'Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.' Already we're seeing some of the perverse outcomes of President Bush's 'democracy-spreading' rationale for invading Iraq…."
"In all, Rembrandt produced around 600 paintings, 300 etchings, and 2,000 drawings. He was a prolific painter of self-portraits, producing almost a hundred of them (including some 20 etchings) throughout his long career."
"In the 100 year history of the American musical, two works stand above all others in their development of the artform: SHOW BOAT and OKLAHOMA! The author of both was Oscar Hammerstein II (1895-1960)."
"Those who knew her as a little girl often said that Ginger could dance before she could walk. "
"Jean Valjean's story is a classic tale of redemption. It contrasts two drastically differing views of human relations. ... Rush's Javert is a thorough-going establishment-oriented statist, while Neeson's Valjean ... is a practitioner of voluntary mutual aid."
"I am a fan of Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Wilson's Conspiracies and The Tomb, and as for Wellman, anything by him, but especially his tales of Silver John, a singer and guitar player who wandered through the countryside of America, taking on such monsters as the Behinder, who one never saw because of course he got you from behind, and the gardinels, which only look like houses. It took me a while to figure out what all three writers had in common: the desire for freedom, and the quest for it."
"If you haven't seen the series yet -- and are in the least bit curious why a quickly cancelled TV show has built such a broad 'cult' following and is even returning this fall as a full-blown theatrical movie (Serenity) -- here's your chance to catch up."
"The coalition is calling for the passage of a constitutional amendment or other legislation guaranteeing "equal access to businesses and services for all citizens, regardless of one's degree of bodily coverage." If no such legislation is passed, NAASP members have threatened to retaliate with Denny's-booth sit-ins, Burger King boycotts, and a program of exercise designed to make their torsos glisten with malodorous sweat." This week's Onion is hilarious, even more than usual, since it is a collection of choice older pieces.
"A man with slicked-back hair and fat yellow suspenders from the 80s waved me inside. 'Rick Rothstein,' he said. 'Glad to meet you.' 'Matt Taibbi,' I said, shaking his hand. 'Right. So, Matt,' he said, retaking his seat behind his desk. 'Why do you want to work at the news cycle?' I shrugged as I sat. 'Well,' I said. 'I'm immensely lazy, and I want to make gigantic money without having to move or think much. Plus, as I've gotten older, I just don't give a damn anymore.' He nodded and wrote in a notebook. 'Those are all excellent reasons,' he said."
"In a press briefing, spokesman Scott McClellan acknowledged the difficulties of trying to wipe out the insurgency and gay weddings at the same time: 'It turns out that these insurgents are more determined than we originally expected, and so are these damn gay couples.' Mr. McClellan also raised the possibility that the insurgency in Iraq could prevent the U.S. from continuing to fight the war on obesity."
"'Tother day in the afternoon I went down the holler to ask Uncle Hant about this here Eye-rack. One of them blonde gals on TV that looks like they've been hit on the head or maybe drank Drano and didn't have her mind working right, if she had one, was talking about it. I didn't much understand. Hant, he knows everything. Hell, there's people in Wheeling even that don't know as much as he does."
"Only the individualist and consistent anti-statist position can effectively safeguard subsidiary institutions from government's pernicious influence, for it is only the individualist that recognizes that the source of these institutions is the free exercise of human nature which the state is always and everywhere the enemy of. "
"Dr. Robison suggests we inculcate in kids a healthier approach to food, one that emphasizes the inherit risks and fallibility of dieting, accepts the fact that we human beings come in a wide variety of sizes and shapes, encourages pleasurable, sustainable physical activity, and fosters normal eating patterns based on our internal cues of hunger appetite and satiety."
"Of course, there's more to hosting the Olympics than government spending and grand urban makeovers. You get to be the international capital of nationalist furor for a few weeks, and you get a security apparatus so tight it makes an airport look like a free country."
"We are being mass-drugged as a point and mandate of public-private partnership. There is no denying the legislated facts and corruption behind the pharmaceutical industry and its funding of politically complicit monsters. If you own stock in big pharma, you are poisoning and killing, and you, too, are complicit. "
"The nature of war being what it is, the degreed men and women will be the officer class of the struggle. The actual suicide bombers and the rest of the cannon fodder will still be the depressed, poor, and desperate underclass denizens for whom heavenly rewards, not to mention a $25,000 'death benefit' paid to their families, is the principal motivation."
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