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L. Neil Smith's
Number 388, October 8, 2006

"Why Don't They Get It?"


Letters to the Editor

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Letter from L. Neil Smith

Letter from E.J. Totty

Letter from Dick Wetherbee

Letter from Kent McManigal

Another Letter from E.J. Totty

Letter from Elizabeth Price Foley


You might mention, if you would, that the graphic version of The Probability Broach has just started on as a free serial webcomic, somewhat like Roswell, Texas. New installements every Wednesday.


L. Neil Smith

Alex, & Ken,

Re.: "Letter from Alex Benton"

Alex, I'm confused. Your letter is an apparent attack upon a group of people who seem not to agree with your particular position(s) as they are expressed.

I take particular note of the remark:

"You won't find scribblers like J. Raimondo, L. Smith, T. Knapp et al. discussing that evidence very scrupulously. You won't find them conceding the actual significance of world-wide rioting, threats and violence in response to cartoons (militarism?) and speeches (militarism?) and the like—the actual words and deeds and articulated goals, prolifically recorded, of those engaged in jihad. Why not?"

'Why not' you ask?
Indeed, it would seem that you would have an awful lot of people be unthinking fools, with no memory of historical events—long preceding our own time.

Rather than attack the likes of those you have in your statement above, I would strongly suggest that you pay closer attention to some words penned by no less a man than the 'father of the United States Constitution, James Madison—which have an especially relevant connection—as concerns current events:

    Of all the enemies of true liberty, war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other.

    War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes; and armies, and debts, and taxes are the known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few.

    In war, too, the discretionary power of the Executive is extended; its influence in dealing out offices, honors and emoluments is multiplied; and all the means of seducing the minds, are added to those of subduing the force, of the people.

    The same malignant aspect in republicanism may be traced in the inequality of fortunes, and the opportunities of fraud, growing out of a state of war, and in the degeneracy of manner and of morals, engendered in both.

    No nation can preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare.

    War is in fact the true nurse of executive aggrandizement. In war, a physical force is to be created; and it is the executive will, which is to direct it.

    In war, the public treasuries are to be unlocked; and it is the executive hand which is to dispense them.

    In war, the honors and emoluments of office are to be multiplied; and it is the executive patronage under which they are to be enjoyed; and it is the executive brow they are to encircle

    The strongest passions and most dangerous weaknesses of the human breast; ambition, avarice, vanity, the honorable or venal love of fame, are all in conspiracy against the desire and duty of peace.
    —James Madison, from "Political Observations," April 20, 1795 in Letters and Other Writings of James Madison , Volume IV, page 491.

You absolutely must remember, that those people—the Muslims—did not go out of their way for the last 100 years, and meddle in the politics of this land, did not fund wars of attrition on American soil, did not invade American shores, borders, territories, attack American shipping or American citizens.

Neither have they sought to invade these shores in search of 'WMD,' or to institute 'regime change.'

Rather, it has been the United States Government which has done all of those things—for no reason other than political and personal gain on the part of the very few.

But, I will presume that such facts are rather 'inconvenient' for your particular version of history.

If someone is pissing into your face, what do you do?
Do you ask for more of the same, or do you give the SOB a firm kick to the groin?

So, lambast if you will, decry as you must, and dismiss on the premise of what promises to be the final leg of a journey of a once free nation on its way out the door, and into the waiting arms of fascists everywhere.

May you live in interesting times!

E.J. Totty

Mr. Beatty, as always, has made it quite clear what has happened to our once moderately free republic. I must disagree with him on one point. He suggests "What can we do? Get loud!". I think it is far too late for that.

I suggest that you find an extremely corrupt third world country and move there. There you can buy liberty if you can afford it.

I'm no revolutionary. Had I lived in the colonies in 1776, I would have fled to India. Had I owned land in the south in 1860, I would have sold it all and gone to Mexico.

As it is, I am going south where their constitutions don't make your heart swell with pride, but day to day life is largely free as long as you don't call your local tyrant bad names.

Some may disagree, but I find it easier and wiser to learn a new language and buy T-shirts for the local futbol team than to get into a confrontation with Homeland Security.

Dick Wetherbee

Below is a copy of a letter I sent to several newspapers with regards to the recent school shootings. I may be dismissed as a gun-loving nutcase, but I don't care.

I am sickened, appalled, and infuriated that government still demands that teachers and students continue to be sacrificed on the blood-soaked altar of gun control! Call it what it is: victim disarmament. If the state is to continue to demand that children be herded into their indoctrination centers, then at the very least, allow teachers the tools to defend our kids' lives! And for goodness sake, don't advertise schools as "gun-free zones". Anyone with a mind can see that this is just begging for violence. The Amish school shooting shows another side of the guns in schools issue. Guns do you no good if you have a moral prohibition against self defense. To me, self defense denial is equal to saying that your life or the lives of your family are not worth protecting. This is abominable. To me, those little Amish girls were worth dying (or going to prison for violating counterfeit "laws") to save. Watch out for copy-cat crimes anytime a tragedy like this occurs. Sick, evil people need little provocation to set them off. That is why these things always happen in clusters. This crime lays directly on the hands of every politician, bureaucrat, or activist who has ever advanced the theory that "guns cause violence". Evil people cause violence, with or without guns. Guns are the only tool that can effectively give the small and the weak a fighting chance against predators. Only a monster would forbid them the use of this tool. Are you a monster?

Kent McManigal
2008 Presidential Candidate
My Blog


It would seem that some are determined to deprive me of a voice—to silence me.
So be it.

Your letters column will provide all the evidence necessary to substantiate my remark.
In any case, I supply all the necessary ammunition needed to quell their false assignations of unsuitability regarding the matter of who's really honest in the matter themselves: I act, they squawk.
People talk about signing pieces of paper, and/or swearing an oath.
As I've said previously: A signed piece of paper is as worthless as a falsely sworn oath.

What matters so very muchmore than anything else in this world is action. Words are useless things, they possess no life, no intelligence, no sentience. People who think that a set of words on a piece of paper are going to define them as being honorable, are either fools of the worst sort, or they are out to deceive every other person in this world.

Actions speak louder than any words consigned to whatever medium.

Signing a piece of whatever does not define a man as anything other than a fool, for he consigns his person to wiles and perfidies of others who will in time declare he is bound to their idea of whatever obligations are manifest in whatever guise expressed.

So, let the squawkers squawk, because I don't need any stinking 'covenant' to define me.
Honor does not reside in a man's words—or his signature.

Honor resides in the man himself.

Most respectfully, and kindest regards.

E.J. Totty

Dear Ken,

I just wanted to take a quick second to plug my new book, just out by Yale University Press, called Liberty for All: Reclaiming Individual Privacy in a New Era of Public Morality. As you can tell from the title, the basic thesis is that the founding generation's conceptualization of limited government and residual individual sovereignty (liberty) has been eroded. Discarding these twin foundational principles—what I term the "morality of American law"—has led to the creation of a labyrinth of laws that regulate virtually every aspect of human behaviour, from the picayune to the fundamental.

The book offers a theory of constitutional law, grounded in original meaning, that supports a much broader scope for individual liberty—not narrower, as most "original meaning" or "original intent" theories suggest. The book then applies this theory to all of the most controversial liberty issues of the day, including same-sex marriage, physician-assisted suicide, reproductive choice, polygamy, and alcohol/drug policy.

I hope you might help give this book a bit of positive publicity? I know your readers would enjoy it! It's academic, but very accessible to non-lawyers.

Many thanks for your time.

Elizabeth Price Foley
Professor of Law
FIU College of Law

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