THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 491, November 2, 2008
"The next two to eight years
are going to suck like a Hoover"
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Blown to bits:
In four years it will all go away. Keep telling yourself that. The majority in Congress will change. The solutions to current problems offered by both parties and their candidates are so irrelevant and the problems themselves so much a consequence of the failures of the demcans' policies that the current majority will be voted out in two years and we can hang on that long. Keep telling yourself that.
We're tough. We can survive these bozos and their failures will open the way to our eventual success. It's almost worth it. Keep telling yourself that.
We're tough. It will go away. It's almost worth it. We can hang on that long. Keep telling yourself these things.
The truth is, the next two to eight years are going to suck like a Hoover.
If I had to chose between
"Other People's Bills" by A.X. Perez
"What National Debt?" by Abe Clark
there would be NO CONTEST!
I love the clean, simple logic and sensibility of Abe Clark's articleso much so, that I have included it on my personal web site along with several supporting articles from Jim Davidson, Murray Rothbard and Butler Shaffer.
For any who are interested, I have created a specially dedicated link.
Ok, repudiate the debt. That still leaves the pensioners plus social security recipients cut off. One of the best tools we have in overthrowing a government that binds people by their economic dependency on them is to show we will take over that obligation even as Uncle Sugar fails to live up to it.
The promise of libertarianism is that we can guarantee people freer, wealthier lives. Cutting off their pension and telling them the government savings bond in their retirement funds are worthless strikes me as a peculiar way to do this. Now me, I don't own any savings bonds and I'm not eligible for Social Security unless the law changes, so repudiating the debt and Social Security doesn't directly effect me. However, in about twenty years I'm going to be just a little irate to come out of retirement and start a second career as a book dealer or tobacconist to enjoy the benefits of rejuvenation and life extension treatments and find out I can't get a business loan because the repudiation of the debt has left credit too tight.
Regardless, the current government and banking coalition's upcoming failure to honor their debt will be part of the circumstances that will lead either to a dictatorship or libertarian revolution. Demonstrating that we can and will pay off this debt may help us create the free society we wish to achieve.
Of course, I oppose keeping any agency with the power to tax around to finish paying debts and pensions. Maybe figuring out how to complete these obligations without collecting taxes will keep the government functionaries who survive the revolution and don't deserve execution too busy to get into trouble.
Let me see if I understand A.X.Perez properly ("Other People's Bills"). When the economy falls apart (because of the actions of people in government), we in the free market sector need to forget that people in government are paid through theft, and have pensions we can only dream of, also supported via theftso we can make sure they have a soft landing when the bottom falls out?
And doing so will allow us to be free (just because we've supposedly "proved" something, which no doubt will be reported honestly by the Ministy of Propaganda); while not doing it will leave us slaves?
That's some powerful stuff he's smoking.
We'll be doing well just to keep our own families from starving or being made penniless or being killed or thrown into a concentration camp. Government feeders-at-the-trough will just have to be responsible for themselves for once. They'll get no help from me, other than what they steal (and let's not imagine they'll have any scruples about it).
Not my debt, monkey boy
Re: "Other People's Bills" by A.X. Perez
The debt of the United States government is not my debt. I did not incur it. I gained no benefit from it. I signed no agreement to guaranty it. I am not liable for it.
The obligations of the Ponzi scheme operator to the victims of his fraud are not mine. I did not engage in a Ponzi scheme. If socialist insecurity recipients are insecure and seek to gain compensation for their past payments into a bankrupt Ponzi scheme, I suggest they individually take it out of the hides of the Congresscritters and Presidents who authorised the legislation involved. If those people are dead, their heirs and assigns would do.
When Somalia's dictator was deposed in 1991, he fled to Abu Dhabi. There, he had access to tens of millions of dollars he stole from the Somali people. His purloined wealth was ensconced in Swiss bank accounts, Dubai gold, and elsewhere.
Among the other sins of the banking cartel, the International Monetary Fund lent $333 million to the dictator, and encouraged banks to lend a further $2.3 billion. The dictator, Siad Barre, used much of that money to finance his military ambitions in the Ogaden, to spy on his own people, to torture his own people, and, beginning in 1969 and continuing throughout his reign, to butcher his own people in massacres. The bankers knew of these massacres, knew of the mass graves, knew the loans were for more weapons, more torture chambers, more prisons, more abuse of power, and kept lending the money.
Today the CIA in their so-called World Fact Book, which you can find on cia.govtake normal precautions with your IP address using proxy or VPN technologyindicates that Somalia has an external debt of some $2.9 billion. Why is this debt not assigned to the dictator, or his heirs now that he is dead?
Who is going to impose taxes in Somalia to collect the interest and the principle? I tell you, since 1992, the UN has been hard at work, sometimes with the full support of the USA, to impose a government on Somalia and make its people pay back that debt.
The Somali people are armed. The Vietnamese people were armed. The Afghans are armed. The banking cartel has repeatedly tried to enslave well armed people. It has never succeeded. It has managed to disarm people, and subsequently enslave them.
Debt peonage is slavery. Anyone who thinks that I owe this debt, who thinks my property is forfeit as a result of the meaningless promises of gutless politicians, can come up and take it. Molon Labe, m#therf*cker.
The national debt clock is a fraud. My family does not owe $80,000. The American people do not owe $10 trillion. These are lies. The politicians and the corporate United States and the banking gangsters and the big auto makers and the other scum may owe this money, but thee and me do not.
Anyone who believes otherwise is a fool, or a villain, or both.
To me the eventual triumph of libertarianism is not a theoretical exercise. The combination of advancing manufacturing and communication technology and the self destructive corruption of the current statists guarantees that we will get our chance to take over (as much as a group trying to abolish as much government as possible can be described as taking over). The three possibilities are that libertarians will win by election, that we will win an armed struggle, or that the current house of cards will collapse and a libertarian society will arise. In the last case the debt gets erased. In the first we still have to deal with pesky things such as opposition party members, lobbyists, law suits by debtors, and so on, many of whom will insist the debt needs to be paid. In the middle case we have to make deals with people to get enough guns to win. A political deal about the debt will be part of this effort.
It may be that raising money through subscription , lotteries, bake sales and so on to chip at the debt while our statist opponents fail to deal with it is how we prove that libertarianism is the best way to run a society.
Or maybe I'm still griped about my kinsmen to the South inviting foreign investors in and then expropriating their holdings when they feel the foreigners have made enough profit.
Meanwhile both letters criticizing Other People's Debts have disregarded pensioners. Something like forty percent of the US population are government employees or pensioners or their dependents. What are your thoughts on dealing with this obligation?
Here's my thoughts in response to Albert.
The creditors are more likely to sue than the debtors. I say that the Somalis have the path. Don't elect a new government. When called upon to answer a census, they kill the census takers. What purpose has a census but to find the assets to be taxed? When called upon to pay taxes, they kill the tax collectors. Many efforts to govern the Somalis by coercion have been tried since 1991. All of them have failed.
We? I don't have to make these deals.
In case you've been asleep in recent weeks, the current deal, such as it is, involves printing money to pay off the debt. It is an excruciating irony that just at the moment that the printing presses (especially the digital ones) are going full speed ahead, the $560 trillion in derivative positions and credit default swaps have created an enormous demand for dollars. The dollar is, very briefly, in high demand. When it ceases to be in high demand, in a few weeks, all the dollars in the world (and there are very many) are going to come here, looking for something, anything, of value. Stock up on gasoline while you may.
The statis are dealing with it by printing. See also Weimar Germany 1919-1923 and Yugoslavia 1993-1995.
Sorry, did you press the non-sequitur button?
My thought is that it is not my obligation. I never told any old people that they could take 15% of my pay from me and my employer. Then again, it has been a very long time since I've had an employer, or been employed. Income taxes are much reduced if you have no income. Property taxes are near zero for those of us who have no property.
Now, you might claim that the 15% taken from them and their employers created some sort of obligation. But, upon whom? The government promised to keep doing it, and wants an ever larger population because the system is full of losses. People now in the 80s can expect to receive about $65,000 more in benefits over their lives than they paid into the system. People my age can expect to receive about $250,000 less than they paid into the system. I expect to receive nothing.
And I made them no promises. Let them go collect from the Congress critters. Let Nancy Pelosi be stripped of all her assets and put to work in a coal mine without breathing gear until she dies, with all her wages attached. Let those pensioners decide whether she gets to eat. And the same for the rest of these scum.
Some years ago, Harry Browne asserted that he would sell all federal lands to pay off the socialist obligations. First off, most of those lands aren't properly federal. Look at the constitution. There's no authority for land on which a needful building is not erected. The government doesn't own what it claims. Second, to the extent that the land is the property of the entire USA population collectively, why is my part of it being sold to pay for some idiotic pensioner who was too stupid to provide for his own retirement and so gullible as to believe that the government would do so?
This whole proposal is preposterous. And so is the whole notion that some jackasses in Congress can impose a financial obligation on me without my consent. And so is your inherently collectivist notion that I have some obligation to people who are retired or have dependents or are charity cases. I give what I think ought to be given to those who I think are worthy, including charities like the International Society for Individual Liberty at isil.org and the Randolph Bourne Institute at Anti-war.com.
I do not give a dime to your pensioners. I do not give a moment's thought to their difficulties. I did not make their difficulties. I bear no responsibility for them. And I have sworn on my life and by my love of it that I shall live my life for my own sake and not for anyone else. Nor shall I permit anyone to live for mine. You can do just as you please.
But, when the RMS Titanic sinks, Albert, and you are floating on the frigid waters clinging to a bit of flotsam, exactly how many of the other passengers are you going to save by attempting to hold them out of the water? And if their weight pulls you under, how have you saved any of them?
I regret very much the effusion of blood and the massive suffering that I see ahead. I regret it very much, but I was not the cause of it, so I do not offer to apologise, nor to make amends.
Your comment reminds me very much of "who will think of the children?" Yes, the poor pensioners. The poor children. Something must be done, you say, so you sell your brothers into slavery or debt peonage that amounts to slavery. Is that the extent of your commitment to freedom?
Is freedom only a tool for you? Is it to be discarded when it becomes too inconvenient, too costly, too momentous? It is not a tool for me, but a goal. It is the pearl of great price for which the wise man doth sell his every possession to claim.
I believe that the same confluence of economics and technology of which you speak is not only going to make the triumph of liberty possible, but also make the possession of cornucopia available. The free market brings the horn of plenty, and everyone lives well. But these things are not inevitable. If you aren't aware of it, let me note that there are politicians who are more interested in who has power, in who does what to whom, and whether they are subject or object in that clause, than in anyone else's welfare. They will, in short, send you to the ovens before they release their grasp on power.
I did not build the debt pyramid. I did not promise the pensioners a life of ease and free medical care. I did not make the world that is a horror show of graft, corruption, massacres, and genocide. Ultimately, my friends and I are going to fix these problems, as incidentals in our quest for opportunity and adventure. Before long, the singularity is either going to end the human race, or bring the blessings of cornucopia.
Either way, the pensioners get to free themselves. Ultimately, individually, the care and feeding of each pensioner is the obligation of that person, alone. The extent to which you don't like this fact is the exact extent to which you reject individual sovereignty.
Actually you're right, I meant creditors (that's what I get for answering correspondence after midnight). That said, most of these creditors owe money and planned to use the money they get from the USG to pay their debts. So yeah, expect these people to sue to get the wherewithal to pay their debts.
Repudiating debt feels like the south of the border expropriations to me.
I propose the following compromise on our difference of opinion on the debt and pensions: Those of us who wish to voluntarily turn in money to pay these bills owed by the current gov) don't have to.
It's our money to use as we please. Of course, this discussion assumes a successful libertarian revolution, peaceful, violent, or a little of both. I'm just saying that those who wish to voluntarily participate in paying these obligations need to have a mechanism in place to do so when we overthrow the current bunch of tyrannical bastards in power.
Most of the money that has been given to the likes of Goldman Sachs is going to be used to acquire other banks, furthering the consolidation of the financial industry. There was a phone conversation among the key personnel of a major bank where a senior staffer made this point very clear. Happens someone from the financial media was on the line.
We got into this mess because the finance industry has been consolidated over the last 100 years like never before. We got into it because very high barriers to entry prevent new companies from entering this market, or innovating at all. We are in it now.
Prosperous people don't revolt, rebel, or overthrow institutions because they don't want to stop the prosperity. My buddy Tom Knapp has identified this cargo cult mentality in another context.
After the crash of 1722, over 90% of the value of surviving stocks on London, Paris, and Amsterdam markets was wiped out. About 95% of the companies listed went bankrupt. It took sixty years to recover to the previous peak, which became known as the South Sea Bubble. During that time, yes, the American colonies had their revolution. But the very first glimmerings of unrest, Patrick Henry's speech identifying George III as a tyrant, didn't come until 1765. If you expect a popular uprising, soon, you are badly mistaken.
We are entering a peak period for slave uprisings. Though slavery has ended in its formal system, it has returned as debt peonage. And, not surprisingly the periodic slave uprisings continued as urban rioting right into the 20th Century. The last major period of rioting was 43 years ago. America's cities burned. The riots were brutally suppressed. There is extensive evidence that rioting, especially by the police against protesters, is going on now.
Please watch the video at this page:
You should expect a series of riots and rebellions, all brutally crushed by the powers that be.
Really? I think that's a lot of nonsense. Paying the debts of others seems like a bad business. What part of taxation is compulsory did you not understand?
Dude, I reserve the right to actively prevent them from collecting funds from you or anyone else. The money masters think they own this country and the people in it. They want you to believe you are owned, believe that you have an obligation to pay them. I want you to give up that belief. I want you to choose freedom.
If you choose to give them a bunch of money to prop up their dictatorship, I might choose to intervene and keep it from reaching them. If you want to be a collaborator with the banking cartel, don't expect a lot of mercy from the people they are crushing beneath their boots.
Perhaps. I don't know why you think so. Given that the bailout money is not being used to make payments owed, but to make acquisitions to further ramp up the consolidation of the finance industry, what makes you think the money you send on the debt you don't owe is going to pensioners?
They are going to use the money you send them to buy weapons to thwart liberty. They are going to use your money to round up people like thee and me and butcher us in camps. I suggest you not tell your friends about this ugly habit of yours to believe propaganda and pay money you don't owe.
I know when to quit.
Obviously many supporters of the freedom movement believe that paying off federal debt and pensions is not necessary to creating post revolution America, and may be antithetical to goal of creating a free America.
Not a problem. Please to remember that it is necessary to be able to create a stable economy (with or without paying said debt) or enemies of liberty will use instability of economy as way of raising support for "temporary" dictatorship to straighten out mess. Planning ahead of time how to create this economy will make it easier to block would be new tyrants. Plan will probably have to be junked, but should provide starting place to make transition to truly free economy easier and faster.
Meanwhile, those who are managing portfolios that are expected to survive revolution need to make sure their investments will survive if debt is either repudiated or honored after fall of current US.
There will be a second American Revolution within the next twenty years. With proper planning it will be one that creates a freer America. Planning ahead of time to reduce economic hardship and body counts will make it easier for those who love freedom to win; just as poverty, hunger, and death is the natural environment of slavery and tyranny.
The Local CW Network station in El Paso is a cable station, not a broadcast station. As a result I added the Denver CW station to my satellite service.
Following stories caught my attention watching the Channel 2 News at 9.
Teaser for weather: "Elections this Tuesday, is there a storm coming?" (Shades of Sarah Connor!)
Report of coyote problem in Denver suburb included people asking for government to do something.
I thought that's why God created kids with .22's.
About a decade ago Spider Robinson wrote a novel entitled The Free Lunch. If I remember right I ordered it from Amazon.com the same time I bought my first copy of The Mitzvah.
The premise of the novel is that people from a polluted, dying, far future Earth send people and technology to the more or less near future Earth to share said technology with our immediate descendents and stave of their fate. This technology was supposed to be a "free lunch" for the recipients.
Wrong! Sometimes it is worth it to me to treat someone else to lunch. It may a gift to a friend. It may be an act of charity to satisfy my self respect. It may be advertising to recruit an employee or gain a customer. It may be a case of taking care of people whom I need around to take care of me. None of these is a free lunch, it is simply one in which someone else picks up the tab for his own reasons.
The people who come back from the future in The Free Lunch are engaging in this last behavior. They expect that 21st Centurians will implement the technologies they are sharing and save the donors' time. The donors are expecting a benefit from the people that receive the future technology. Doesn't sound like they're giving a free lunch to me.
Of course there is one difference between liberals (or progressives as they now call themselves) and libertarians. As a libertarian I claim the right to pick who I treat to lunch. Liberals (and even a lot of so called conservatives) claim the right to pick who I treat for me.
I thought that was outlawed with the 13th Amendment.
I am writing to alert you to a recent poll released by the American Bar Association regarding judicial selection that contains data that is similar to previous polling conducted by The Polling Company on behalf of The Federalist Society. (See Federalist Society poll of Missouri citizens for similar results.)
According to the ABA poll, most Americans favor direct election of state court judges. Nineteen percent of those polled (19%) favored selection by a commission system like the Missouri Plan, which uses four lawyers and three non-lawyers to nominate a panel of three judges from which the Governor must appoint. (Click here and here for a Pro and Con view of the Missouri Plan.)
Earlier this year, the ABA proposed a resolution that encourages the use of a Missouri Plan-like system at the federal level. The ABA poll found that a substantial minority of Americans, 24%, believe lawyers should be on the commissions. (Click here for the Wall Street Journal's view of the proposal or here for the LA Times.)
The way judges are chosen can have long-lasting impact on everything from property rights and gun rights to contract law and cultural policy.
The Federalist Society believes that providing balanced analysis of state supreme court issues is critical to informing the public about the proper role of the state courts in our constitutional system of government.
The Federalist Society State Courts Project
Will Iran be attacked because the Ruskies are cash strapped and need a higher price for their oil? Will they fold and allow Iran to be a scapegoat for higher oil prices? Will the Neocrazies finally get their WET DREAM of a mid east devoid of any advanced nation other than Israel? I think Dr. Prather is on to a trend. Time to hit the bookie and check the line on Iran and see which way it is moving.
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