L. Neil Smith's
I read Barbara Cunningham's letter on the term "pro-life" with great interest. I agree with her completely that one cannot be "pro-life" while favoring the death penalty (or bombing other countries).
But I think the term used by the other side -- "pro-choice" -- could also use a little work. Except in instances of rape, the pregnant lady has already made her choice. No birth control method is 100 percent reliable. If you want to be 100 percent sure you don't get pregnant, you don't have sex. If you have sex, you've made your choice. "Pro-choice" should be changed to "pro-second thoughts."
Laura W. Haywood firstname.lastname@example.org
RE: L. Neil Smith's "A LETTER TO PAT BUCHANAN" (TLE #158, January 26, 2002 issue)
L. Neil Smith is maddenly precise with his insight and wit, once again and as usual, in taking Pat Buchanan to task for taking cheap shots at the Libertarian Party. When politicians backhand individuals or groups without properly and respectfully supporting said assertions with reason, logic and fact, they are akin to a schoolyard child who, unable to win a verbal contest with the smaller kid, resorts to name-calling, or fists.
Meanwhile, Pat Buchanan's misguided approach notwithstanding, his stance in opposition to opening our borders in 21st century America holds water.
Mr. Smith said, "some libertarians enthusiastically favor open borders. But others enthusiastically do not." I happen to be one of those who does not favor opening our borders, but not because it's not an idealistically good idea. I don't favor open borders at present because, as it stands in America today, the Demopublican party will lure several million non-English-speaking folks to vote for them by taking more of my money and giving it to them, in one form or another -- and those votes, invariably, lead to yet another slew of moronic bills and laws that foolishly seek to deny my right to keep and bear any arms I damn well please (and many other rights, as well).
Mexican nationals' votes for the Demopublican Party -- born of a lack of understanding of what "America" really means -- are being used to further defile our nation and undermine what's left of individual liberty. Adding to the numbers of uneducated not-Americans who are given access to voting booths -- cannons pointed at the Constitution -- at this juncture is dangerous.
Water flows downhill. Always.
Mr. Smith suggested, in his letter to Pat, that "What it sounds like to me is a typical Republican excuse for not even going to the effort of trying to reach the immigrant heart and mind." I'm curious as to how one might go about "trying" to accomplish such a task when the overwhelming sentiment coming from the "Reconquistadores" jumping the border in California, Arizona and Texas is that "we don't even have to learn your language, let alone your values" -- or, vastly more importantly, the values of our nation's Founding Fathers.
Take a look at the Mexican-border towns and tell me which one you'd like to call home. Or which one to which you'll be booking your next vacation.
The educated hispanics I know who understand and fully support the unabridged United States Constitution don't want open borders. When queried as to why, their reasoning is simple. In essence, and I've asked many times, their hesitation revolves around not wanting their own people being used to further strip them of the rights they've come to call their own.
If we lived in an America akin to the America Mr. Smith writes about in one of my all-time favorite books -- The Probability Broach, highly recommended to all -- border problems wouldn't be an issue. But that book is a fantasy, and the reality in America today is that we are being purposely and igno-maliciously Balkanized -- ignorance from foreign places is being used as a divisive wedge to sow the seeds of our nation's destruction.
As Mr. Smith said, "It isn't libertarianism that leads to statism -- we were already there a long time before the birth of the modern movement..."
And we're already "there" as far as having our current "relaxed border" used against Liberty, too. Ya gotta fix the negatives of what is happening on this side of the border before you open the floodgates.
Correct me if I am wrong, Neil -- even make it sting, if you must. I'd love to hear all about that "trying to reach the immigrant heart and mind." How? All I ask is that you take off your Philosopher Hat and put on your Presidential Cap and overlay your answer with what is truly doable in 2004, all current socio-political realities weighed and considered.
Angel Shamaya Director@KeepAndBearArms.com
In TLE #158, "Would Hayek Have a Shotgun Rack in His Pickup Truck?", Joel Simon wrote:
May I highly recommend Professor David Friedman's "Hidden Order" (Available from Laissez Faire Press). A sample chapter is on the web at http://www.daviddfriedman.com/Academic/Hidden_Order/Hidden_Order_Chapter_20.html, and the table of contents at http://www.daviddfriedman.com/Academic/Hidden_Order/Hidden_Order_Contents.html. You won't need math beyond simple arithmetic, and not too much of that. Friedman is mostly as easy to read as Joel Simon's essay, if less folksy. (Professor Friedman teaches economics at the University of Santa Clara, and he seems to have learned how to hold a student's attention.)
Bill Bunn email@example.com
Two notes of caution to your readers from letters in TLE158.
1. Beck Horne brings attention to the SRO project in support of The Isaacson Society Internationale in a federal court (FEC) case against John Wayne Zidar. FEC or no FEC, libertarians should be careful about supporting fraudulent investment schemes. This is nothing compared with Enron, but promises of exorbitant returns on investments that aren't investments and a secret contract which threatens a million-dollar penalty for withdrawal or disclosure needs some serious scrutiny. Before libertarians rally around what appears to be a cult Ponzi scheme, they should review the digest: http://library.wsb.com/sectoday/sample/digest.html.
And the indictment against three individuals running three companies who have failed to keep their promises to the court: http://pub17.ezboard.com/fdiligizerfrm4.showMessage?topicID=443.topic
2. Barbara Cunningham makes a point regarding the use of the term "pro-life," insisting that users should oppose the death penalty, rather than limiting it to anti-abortion positions, which she considers "grab[bing] the moral high ground."
Her error is assuming that the label "pro-life" means anything whatever. Literally, a person who claims to be "pro-life" should be opposed to any kind of contraception, opposed to eating any "live" thing, from animal to vegetable. A true "pro-life" person should be starving to death. It's literally a self-contradictory position.
Nor is it anywhere near "the moral high ground." The only pro-human-being position is to be in favor of choice (not necessarily in favor of abortion). On numerous occasions over several years, I've challenged Doris Gordon, founder of "Libertarians for Life" to debate the issue. She has declined on every occasion. I'll renew my challenge to anyone who would like to debate the correct libertarian position on reproductive choice and invite TLE to host the exchange.
William Westmiller firstname.lastname@example.org
Why does JPFO exist? What motivates us year after year? You can find the answers in our brand new book.
People have asked us to present the whole JPFO argument in one place. We have done it. Available now in an easy-reading format and a handy size, the new book is entitled Death by Gun Control: The Human Cost of Victim Disarmament.
The message is simple: Disarmed people are neither free nor safe - they become the criminals' prey and the tyrants' playthings. When the civilians are defenseless and their government goes bad, however, thousands and millions of innocents die.
Order from JPFO NOW!
NOW AVAILABLE: The State vs. The People, by Claire Wolfe and Aaron Zelman