L. Neil Smith's
THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 302, January 16, 2005
"We now return you to your regularly scheduled agitation."
Lux Lucre archived website
The late creative libertarian genius "Lux Lucre" died way too young about a year ago; his Firefly artwork website has been archived, surf to, and bookmark:
I haven't been seen in the pages of TLE for about a year and I decided to explain why not. In late 2003 I decided to write a book about survivalism called "Warhawke's guide to basic Survivalism", which a friend had agreed to edit for me, if I could get it done quickly enough. I didn't get it done, in fact I'm still working on it. The book took up almost all of my time away from my 9 to 5 job, leaving no time for TLE articles, as I knew it would.
Later, as it became apparent that I would not finish the book in the time-frame necessary for my friend to edit it, I wanted to do some more articles, but other issues intervened. The first was my bankruptcy. I filed Chapter 13 in 2001 and the effort to keep body and soul together has required a steadily increasing amount of my time over the past year. In case you're wondering, I viewed bankruptcy in much the same way I would view an amputation, as an absolute last resort. I know a great many readers view bankruptcy as a cop-out, a means to shirk responsibility for one's debts or an escape hatch for those who cannot manage their obligations, and I don't intend to debate it, just to say that much of the fault for my particular situation lies with outside factors, and I still consider it my moral obligation to repay those obligations which "I" incurred voluntarily, 'nuff said.
The other factor keeping me from these pages is a little more bizarre, a starring role in a movie. A friend of mine introduced me to an independent movie producer as a possible extra in the film she was producing. I didn't get that part as she decided I was perfect for the male lead. If anyone is interested, they can view the details at;
(if you think that is shameless self-promotion, all I can say is, yep!)
Anyway, this has also led to my working on the screenplay (nothing major, just a little grind and polish), which, in turn, has led to my writing my own screenplays. All of which has taken an even greater toll on my 'free' time, although one can hope that the future rewards will make up for the current effort.
Recently however, I decided to scratch out a few minutes to work on some articles for TLE even if it costs me some much needed sleep. World and domestic events are just screaming for comment and, while others seen in these pages do a yeoman's work, I feel the need to add my own voice once again. So, hopefully, you will be seeing my name once again in these pages (if not in the scandal-rags at your local grocery store, though one can hope there too).
Patrick K. Martin
[I'm looking forward to your return!Editor]
Happy New Year!
In this issue:
What Is Porc Fest?
What is Porc Fest?
The 2005 Porcupine Freedom Festival (Porc Fest) is gearing up to be one of the biggest libertarian gatherings in 2005! The dates are July 23-31 and the location is Roger's Campground in Lancaster, NH. It's a fun, friendly, informal gathering with some free time to tour around and some scheduled activities. Scheduled activities include hiking, shooting, eating, campfires, vendors, workshops, speakers, and lots more! Anyone who loves freedom is invited to attend. For more information about Porc Fest '05 see:
Art Contest Reminder:
Speaking of camping, how would you like a free campsite and other great prizes? We need a logo and we need your help! We're running an art contest. Anyone is free to participate, but time is of the essence. The deadline is January 10th, so get your submissions in right away. Contest rules and submission guidelines are at the bottom of the main Porc Fest page here:
Remember, the Art Contest deadline is January 10th!
Extended Campsite Discount:
With the New Year comes New Years Resolutions. If your resolution is to come to the 2005 Porcupine Freedom Festival, but you haven't made reservations yet, we've just worked out a great deal for you. Roger's Campground has agreed to extend the deadline for the discount on campsite registrations! Through the end of February, reserve your campsite for 7 days and get two days free!
To make your reservations, please contact Roger's Directly and tell them you're with the Free State Project. You can email rogers at email@example.com, call them at 603-636-1062, fax them at 603-788-3697, or snail mail them at Roger's Campground, 10 Roger's Campground Rd., Lancaster, NH 03584.
Who's Coming to Porc Fest?
Are you coming to Porc Fest? Have you put your name on the We'll Be There list? We already have over 50 people on the list and it's growing rapidly! Check the list to see who's coming. If your name isn't on the list yet and you're planning to be there, add your name to the list! It's fun to see the names from all across the country and you might even see someone you recognize on that list! To see the whole list, go here:
Hope to see all of you at Porc Fest '05!
Please at least add a link to this in the next TLE.
[As one who's wife and mother-in-law are suffering from chronic pain (and me too, although controlled by Bextra, so far), this article is an eye-openerEditor:]
Conflict Over Pain Management Heats Up as Mainstream Medical Groups Wake Up
Dear Mr. Ed/Editor/Ken,
Re.: Letter from Susan Wells http://www.ncc-1776.org/tle2004/tle301-20041219-01.html#letter2
While Susan's suggestion might on the face of it look like a good deal, buried in the details is one devil that nobody should ever have to suffer: The US Government in the name of the IRS.
Paying a tax is one thing, but having your entire operation under a microscope along with compromising your client donators lives as wellshould an audit be conducted, is not something I'd like to consider.
A 501-c-3 is the very same as having bull's-eye targets painted everywhere on your body: It invites attention.
It's bad enough that the pariahs in office mayat the drop of a hat, declare the necessity of a tax audit for someone (or group of them) because of whatever slight.
One person audited is one thing, but an organization consists of its members, and those members may be declared as accessoriesif the ogres deem it necessary.
I don't desire to become part of a 'fishing expedition' at the hands of the USG.
Not mentioned in all of this is the necessity of gathering a passel of background staff such a accountants, tax lawyers, and various support personnel.
The overall business picture looks good only to those whose operation is taking in lots of cold hard cash, or those who desire to walk a very narrow line, and very confining political life.
"The real fun of living wisely is that you get to be smug about it." Hobbs, in "Calvin and Hobbs", by Bill Watterson
Dear Legal Affairs,
Mr. Hunter, in his article "Marxist-Lessigism", has demonstrated a remarkable contradiction. His excellent expression of the public reaction to, and the efforts to defeat, the abuses of copyright and other intellectual property enforcement are surrounded by a complete lack of historical and economic knowledge.
For instance, the "New Deal" was not a reaction to the "excesses of capitalism". The Great Depression was directly caused by government intervention, the antithesis of capitalism. It was central control of the money supply by the newly formed Federal Reserve, price controlls, nationalization of industries and other interventions which prevented economic correction during and after the first World War. Exactly like the latest "business cycle", intervention leads to more intervention to try to "correct" the results of the earlier intervention, ad nausium.
The Open Source participants are not Marxists. Marx advocated the use of force. Open Source has nothing to do with force, since the programmers come together voluntarily and can leave any time they like. The capital they contribute and the rewards they gain may not be in money, but it is no less economic in its structure. People trade their time and effort in exchange for renown, skills and other rewards which they value more. As a user, I gain value by using Open Source software, and at the same time I contribute my effort and time to notify the developers of problems I see or features I would like.
It's called capitalism.
Mr. Hunter needs to realize that corporations are an invention of government. Government extends its own limited liability to the officers of the corporation in exchange for taxes and fees. It is the abuses of the corporate-government alliance against the individual which Mr. Hunter repeatedly referrs to, not the private ownership of the means of production or voluntary trade, and to which both Mr. Lessig and Mr. Hunter are objecting.
The weekly online Freedom Conference, Sunday night.
Details at http://network76.com/
6:30 PM to 8:30 PM Arizona time.
Y'all welcome! My user name on skype is roberto-76
Other details on the site.
"MYOB" is what got us into this mess...
Re: "Letter from EJ Totty" http://www.ncc-1776.org/tle2004/tle299-20041128-01.html#letter1
In regards to EJ Totty's response to my letter, have to ask what libertarian claims to say to every fellow man, "screw you, I've got mine"? I would say that we are in the mess we are in today because too many libertarians prefer this head-in-the-sand approach with its roots in moral cowardice, allowing evil men to conspire and collude against us and our liberties.
The fact is that it is a sad, despised, and lonely person who steadfastly refuses to come to the aid of another in distress, who seeks to save himself from a sinking ship, hogging a life raft to himself while fellow-men call out to be drawn from the icy depths.
Are you free to be so selfish? Of course you are. This does not mean you deserve the respect or admiration of anyone by your pedantic adherence to absolutism. Freedom is about being free to choose to help others or not. When you let your philosophy bind you from aiding another being in distress, or bondage, or coersion, you are as unfree as the person you turn your back on. Worse, even, because while even a human slave master or tyrant can be appealed to for sympathy, a philosophy held up as the chains that bind Totty to absolute selfishness cares not for you or those you might help free. A totalistic philosophy has no mercy, it only seeks to bind you in the darkness of solitude.
This all being said, should the government be in Iraq? It is going to be there whether we will it or not. The US is clearly on a course toward Empire as much as communist China is. Those who think the end of the Cold War was the end of history are sadly mistaken. The Sino-American rivalry will become as serious as the Cold War was, as the Japanese-American and Anglo-German rivalries were. The Islamo-fascist front is merely a diversionary tactic to sap American strength before the real confrontation (where do you think all that nuke and missile tech came from in Pakistan, Iran and Libya? China).
This is the wrong time in history for the libertarian movement to take an absolutist anti-US stance, as too many are doing. Instead, we need to take the same stance as Hayek and Friedman took during the Cold War, convincing the neo-cons that their will-to-power is counterproductive, that we need to both make the US back into the sort of country were people can be free again, but help educate the rest of the world that they can have the same prosperity and wealth if they first free their people.
I caught a documentary today entitled "Ancient Journeys" from "History International", which seems to be a version of the History Channel for the rest of the English speaking world rather than the Americanized "Disney" version.
Anyway, the show involves tracing the backgrounds and reasons for major cities and cultures along the ancient trading routes such as the Silk Road.
My point: The oldest city yet found, at approx. 9K years bc, is in a desolate spot on the Anatolian plain in central Turkey. I'm struck by this to ask "Why?" What was it about this spot without rivers, without forests, what would enable people to come together exceed subsistence living enough to form a city?
It turns out that this is a stones throw from the only source of obsidian in the "middle east". Finished products have been found thousands of miles away made from this source. The city buildings have caches of obsidian hidden in the walls and floors, at the same time that there are far more people than could be supported by the farming techniques of the time.
Division of labor and trade, the basis of voluntary economics. As far back as has been found, prosperity follows where trade exists, civilizations fall when trade fails.
Just a thought for a warm and muggy January. May everyone enjoy a prosperous and free New Year.