L. Neil Smith's
THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 129, July 9, 2001
SHAME, SHAME, SHAME!
I have just read and signed the online petition:
hosted on the web by PetitionOnline.com, the free online petition service, at:
I personally agree with what this petition says, and I think you might agree, too. If you can spare a moment, please take a look, and consider signing yourself.
Scott Bieser [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Michael Lorrey might find that California's use of the Federal gun-buyer registration database for purely "private" transfers gets around that pesky little problem of "private" use of the database by the simple matter of requiring any and all transfers of ownership of a firearm, all of them, to be processed through an FFL. since all FFL holders are also state license holders, the requisite state paperwork is also filed on the transfer of ownership.
it doesn't take too long for every firearm in the state to have gone through this sieve. gee, mr. police man, i sure do hope you're destroying those records like you're 'upposed to. oh, what is that you say? California state laws say the state records are kept as long as the dealer lives? and those same records are confiscated from the dealer when they die or go out of business?
well, gee. i wonder if North Carolina used the same back door?
i guess Michael was right when he asked, "why California?" but the weather really is very nice...
Curt Howland [email@example.com]
the article at http://grc.com/dos/grcdos.htm is very interesting to me, and i hope to the readers of The Libertarian Enterprise.
i've personally found that if i am asked what my politics are, i can start the discussion "disarming" my opponents a little by saying, "i believe in individual responsibility for ones actions."
while i think Steve Gibson is a little bit on the paranoid manic side, "being paranoid does not mean people are NOT out to get you" would be a good motto.
windows users take note: these are widely available scripts which require little skill to use. if your "windows networking" is bound to your IP interface, you are vulnerable. grc.com is a good source of information on locking down windows machines to at least some small extent, quickly and for nothing.
windows is a security nightmare, but the simple scripts are also simple to avoid. it's "script kiddies" and other crackers who give annonymity a bad name. (is that possible?)
network security consulting for a fee... :^)
Curt Howland [firstname.lastname@example.org]
I don't usually write to LTE sections, as I find that debating politics with folks online is too much of a time sink these days. However, I feel compelled to respond to the following paragraph, excerpted from James Odle's letter in TLE #128, with the subject heading "Dr. Ruwart - FDA Commissioner?":
While I am sure that Mr. Odle's basic premise is correct, his disparaging remarks about the "silly Chinese Yin-Yang symbol" are unworthy of the usually fine discourse that takes place in TLE. It makes me wonder just how much Mr. Odle knows about that silly symbol and it's meaning.
It's pretty much indisputable that the Yin-Yang symbol has been corrupted through it's adoption by the New Agers. That, however, has no bearing on it's true meaning and significance, something Mr. Odle should be very much aware of. The symbol represents balance at it's most basic level. It stands for male/female, light/dark, fire/water, good/evil, vision/blindness, etc. In other words, the basic necessity of the existence of opposites, the essential paradox of nature. In Chinese philosophy, balance is the fundamental underpinning of all human life. While I don't agree with all the principles of Oriental thought (they tend to lean too far towards the "obey your betters" direction), I most certainly agree with that. Perhaps Mr. Odle would care to explain how life would be possible without balance? The phrase "You can't have one without the other" springs immediately to mind.
We libertarians place great emphasis on the non-aggression principle. We do not initiate force, but we respond to force with force. Is this not a balanced approach to life? Our economic principles tend to rest on a foundation of free trade and free markets, with a premise that one can not expect something for nothing. Is this not a balanced approach to economics? Our political philosophy is based on the belief that inalienable rights combine with individual responsibilities to create a free society. Is this not a balanced approach to politics?
This principle of balance in all things is inescapable. Those who refuse to learn it and accept it will find that their lives are full of tension and strain, and will remain so until the imbalance is corrected. The socialists we rail against are living proof of this. Show me an existing socialist society that is not a great basket of tension and stress, always on the verge of self-destruction. Show me a formerly socialist society that did not cause it's own destruction.
Until I personally embraced the concept of balance, my life was an example of this as well. After I did so, I also came to embrace things like libertarian philosophy, simply because it's the most balanced approach to life. To say that accepting the concept of balance was the best thing that could have happened to me would be an extreme understatement. It's enabled me to understand the philosophy of our founding fathers and the foundation of our form of government, turned me into an activist, helped me to enjoy my life more, enabled me to see the beauty of our great country as ride my Harley across it, and opened up a thousand other vistas of the mind that would have otherwise remained closed. This is the beauty of balance. If there is a downside to the concept, I have yet to find it. Given all this, I don't think that Mr. Odle, upon meeting me, would mistake me for a "New Age, 'touchie-feelie' type", despite having that silly symbol tattooed on my left forearm. If nothing else, the Glock 21 that usually hangs on my strong side hip would dispel that impression right away.
As libertarians, we should not be so quick to dismiss a useful concept, or a useful symbol of that concept, simply because some group of misguided fools has decided to misinterpret it and then appropriate it for it's own. We are the folks who are supposed to take the time to study things, consider the various facets, and make informed decisions. Perhaps we should remember that, lest we become that which we despise.
Dave Kopp [email@example.com]
[See also Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics for a famous discussion of balance in life. -- webmaster]
With apoligies to Mark Twain, Will Rogers, H. L. Mencken and all the other great paragraphers, the fraudral (sic) gummint (sic) is bankrupt; it (the fraudral gummint; gummy money?) hasn't yet acknowledged that fact.
In the 1960s I flew a thirteen-star flag. Today, on what was Independence Day, I refuse to fly the fifty-star flag of a totally corrupt government. To govern is to control, and I refuse to be controlled. I control myself. "Don't Tread on Me" That's a flag worth flying, and I intend to fly it every day of the year.
Brian Monahan [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Dear John and Matd20@excite.com
With regard to your first letter from the last issue concerning enumerated powers, Congressman John Shaddegg of Arizona has offer similar legislation for years. I understand, he has about eight co-signers.