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L. Neil Smith's
THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 560, March 7, 2010

"Nicotine is one of the universe's little jokes."


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Letters to the Editor

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[Letters to the editor are welcome on any and all subjects. Sign your letter in the text body with your name and e-mail address as you wish them to appear, otherwise we will use the information in the "From:" header!]


Letter from Kent McManigal

Letter from A.X. Perez

Letter from Curt Howland

Letter from Rocky Frisco

Letter from Rex "Baloo" May

Another Letter from A.X. Perez with comments by L. Neil Smith and Richard Bartucci

Letter from Yet Another Letter from A.X. Perez

Again a Letter from A.X. Perez

And Yet Another Letter from A.X. Perez

Letter from Crazy Al


Reading the statements from those who are vehemently against abortion (not just personally, like I am, but for everyone else, too) I keep getting the feeling that it comes down to these people feeling that somehow sex is dirty and wrong and people should be punished in some way for engaging in it, unless they do so only within very narrowly defined limits. And nothing provides this opportunity better than an unexpected and unwanted pregnancy. I could be misreading them somehow. If this is the case they are free to convince me otherwise, although they have no obligation to do so. Until then they seem to be doing their very best to make me flat-out "pro-abortion". I'm still resisting, and not there yet by a long shot.

Kent McManigal
dullhawk@hotmail.com
Albuquerque Libertarian Examiner
KentForLiberty.com

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It was mentioned in the nightly news that President Obama is receiving treatment to cut back on his smoking habit.

A few hints, don't stress out about it. All that will do is make you smoke more.

Smoke stronger not milder cigarettes. Extend time between nic fits. Of course this will stop working as you get habituated so:

Smoke in a pipe. The fuss involved will help you cut back. There are several Native American ceremonial supply websites that will sell you pure, relatively strong tobacco.

Also, Native Spirit, Al in a Can, Bugler Boy and other tobacco for hand rollers can be smoked in a nice briar or meerschaum pipe.

Remember Lloyd Bridges' famous line in Airplane: Looks like I picked the wrong time to quit smoking.

Get rid of some of the idiots working for you and get the Democrats in Congress to overthrow Pelosi and Reed. Lord Jesus help me, but I swain these people were picked to be part of your team by the frackin' GOP.

Oh yeah, don't run for reelection in 2012. Or else don't even try to quit until 2017.

I'm sure you have busies in law enforcement who read TLE and other publications searching for "seditious content." Hopefully one of them will pass these tidbits on to you.

One last thing, it's not really my business if you do or don't quit smoking. It is my business if you manage America's business effectively without violating my rights under the Constitution. If smoking helps you do that great, if quitting does great.

Having a clear conscience about this will help you limit your smoking to enjoyment instead of nervous habit smoking.

A.X. Perez
perez180ehs@hotmail.com

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Dear Editor,

It seems that the successful 'Net campaigns of folks like Ron Paul, and the campaign contributions of old media, are having their effect on the elites in Rome... I mean, in Washington, DC.

"The US government's policy of leaving the Internet alone is over, according to Obama's top official at the Department of Commerce."
US government rescinds 'leave internet alone' policy—The Register

So while the prior administration found it sufficient to simply monitor all 'Net traffic, this administration is ready to try to restrict it.

Interesting Times, indeed.

Curt Howland
Howland@priss.com

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Re: "Never Argue with a Fool" by L. Neil Smith

This sentence:

"Our so-called leaders are a random bag of murderous thieves and blithering incompetents."

Led me to write the following:

"Don't Let Them Ride."

A friend of mine, Scotty Santee, likes to sing a James Peterson song, called "Don't Let Him Ride." The gist of the song is that if you let the Devil ride, he's going to want to drive. In fact, those are the words that complete the chorus.

I think that this knowledge can be applied to national politics. The United States Constitution has no place for national leaders, or any other kind. We are neither sheep nor dogs; we have no need for leaders. What we need and what we are supposed to have can be better described as representatives, people whose job is to promote our desires and choices in the halls of government. The fact that the press almost universally refers to our representatives as "leaders" is undoubtedly a big part of the problem. Words have power. There's a funny thing about people who think of themselves as leader: they have a strong tendency to want to be rulers. Government, especially government composed of those who think of themselves as leaders and want to be rulers, tends to both attract and create psychopaths: charming, charismatic conscienceless monsters.

Don't Let Them Ride.

Power corrupts. The kind of power being exerted in the nation's capitol corrupts absolutely.

"Flush It: No Incumbents" is a slogan I have been promoting for a while; I even created a group on Facebook with that name. You can count on one hand the number of representatives in Washington, D. C. who have proved so far to be incorruptible and you will still have fingers unused.

It usually takes a lot less than one full term to show the corruption. Take careful note of who in our national government has the ambition to be a leader and then refuse to collude in this evil enterprise.

Don't Let Them Ride (or they're gonna want to drive)

Rocky Frisco
rock@rockyfrisco.com
www.rockyfrisco.com
www.rocky4tulsa.com

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Baloo News!
Baloo News

Hi everybody!

This week's big news is that there is now a Baloo Fan Page on Facebook, here.

I already had a regular personal page there, at [this address]

but I'm told that fans can communicate with each other as well as with me on a fan page. Anyhow, there it is. Please visit and become a fan!

And please forward the e-mail to anyone who might be interested.

Thanks!

Rex May
rmay@mac.com
PHONE: 1-970-218-0889
All about me here:
www.baloocartoons.com
balooscartoonblog.blogspot.com
www.zazzle.com/rexfmay*

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We Didn't Did It

The Earthquake that lately hit Chile was so big it actually moved the Earth's axis about three inches and shortened the day by 1.26 milliseconds. How this will affect the weather is beyond me. The probable rise in the Andes and shrinking of the Pacific Ocean as the Ocean plate involved was and is subducted will eventually do so.

Human activity did not cause this. In the long run the release of plutonic gasses, the raising and sinking of mountains, islands, and continents, and other tectonic activity will change the Earth's climate more than anything we do. It is hubristic of the AGCC (anthrpogenic global climate change) bunch to ignore this fact. Yet that is what they do.

Should we be more careful about releasing pollutants into our environment? Forced answer, isn't this? Is doing so worth the price in liberty, economic opportunity, and technological advance that some people are willing to impose on the rest of us (these people often enjoy wealth and power and will get to keep it under the new regimes they propose.)? Again, for readers of the TLE, a forced answer.

A.X. Perez
perez180ehs@hotmail.com

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To which L. Neil Smith commented:

I saw the headline on Drudge this morning but didn't have time to follow up. (Striving to finish Sweeter Than Wine.) In the light of the current climate scandals at UEA, Penn State, and NASA, I'd like to know the source of this information.

For that matter, is there any reason to believe that smoking causes cancer? Everything's up for grabs.

L. Neil Smith
lneil@netzero.com

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And Richard Bartucci commented:

Neil:

Plenty of reason to attribute a whole bunch of primary oropharyngeal, bronchial, and pulmonary malignancies to tobacco smoking. Lots of the chemical products of tobacco combustion (particularly the treated stuff rolled into cigarettes, which burns at higher temperatures than does cigar or pipe tobacco) are proven to be carcinogenic. Beyond that, there's demonstration of the fact that the carbon monoxide generated by such combustion (which is never complete) has a paralytic effect upon bronchial villi, reducing the lungs' ability to kick the primary carcinogens and other crap—including infectious organisms that colonize the mucous secretions in the airways—up and out.

I can't pull up the publications right offhand, but studies done among uranium miners—who are exposed to all sorts of particulate and gaseous stuff capable of emitting ionizing radiation—showed that those who didn't smoke had rates of lung cancer no higher than in the general population. The ones who did smoke, however.... Squamous cell and "oat cell" carcinomata out the kazoo. Smoking screws with the immunological defense mechanisms in the respiratory tract, and that increases susceptibility not only to infection but also to metaplasia and eventual dysplasia.

In the sciences, the term "believe" is really a kind of obscenity. You look for the highest probability of congruence with objective reality, and try to determine causal relationships so as to compensate for potentially adverse processes (and exploit potentially good stuff).

Any time I hear somebody talk about "belief," my skin crawls. It feels too much like Rand's witch-doctor is conniving with Attila again.

Richard Bartucci
bartucci01@verizon.net

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And L. Neil Smith commented:

Richard—

I know quite a lot about the physiology of tobacco smoking, believe—er, trust me. I smoked two packs of mostly Marlboros a day for thirty years, and then quit cold in 1993, having had a couple of myocardial infarctions.

Nicotine is one of the universe's little jokes. Just for instance, it contracts your blood vessels while increasing your heart rate, and then clumps your red cells together so they'll really slam into the next partial occlusion they hit. Almost proof that there's a god— how could cold insensate nature be that sadistic?

I was just trying to make the point that now, thanks to a gang of tenured, grant-sucking global warming hoaxers, it's almost as if we have to go back and reexamine everything we think we know.

L. Neil Smith
lneil@netzero.com

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And the Editor commented

[This is the problem with "authority". It is obvious that we must have "authorities" in the various fields and sub-fields of knowledge—nobody can know everything about everything. But when we learn "authorities" have been lying to us, all the ground we stand on begins to feel unstable in reaction. "Authorities" are supposed to engage in a practice of "checks and balances" to keep this kind of thing from happening. That's turning out to work about as well as the "checks and balances" on those holding power over us has worked.

Fetch the rope?

The Editor]

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Weirder and Weirder

Read the Huffington Post for Wednesday 3 March, 2010. In it there was an article supporting the claim in Gura's presentation of the MacDonald vs. the City of Chicago (State and local governments are bound to respect the Second Amendment) on the 14th Amendment Privileges and Immunities clause.

Justice Scalia had criticized this line of argument because he does not like this clause. This left the liberals at the Huffington Post in a quandary. do they support the Privileges and Immunities clause even when it applies to a right they don't like (the right to keep and bear arms) or do they reject the portion of the Constitution behind over a half century of liberal judicial activism.

The author of the article in question understands that the tail goes with the hide and came out in favor of Gura. If more people will begin to accept the idea that we have to accept the parts of the Constitution we don't like to enjoy the benefits of the parts we do the liberty of the american people may survive just a bit longer.

A.X. Perez
perez180ehs@hotmail.com

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L. Neil Smith commented:

Al—

Please examine the following, which greatly predates the 14th Amendment and renders it—and the specious doctrine of incorporation—unnecessary:

Article 6, Section 2

This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

I owe this extremely useful insight to John Taylor. What's going on at the Supreme Court right now is a farce.

L. Neil Smith
lneil@netzero.com

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John Taylor (distinguished former editor of TLE) commented

Thanks for the nod, and yes, the current case is a farce.

Trust me, when the smoke clears, three things will be obvious:

  • the Supremes will have appeared to have given us something, while actually taking something bigger (thought less obvious) away

  • the NRA will blow their own "horns" without justification

  • you personally will be no freer than you were before the decision

See also "Heller"!

John Taylor
jtaylor48@gmail.com

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A.X. Perez commented:

I agree with the Supremacy Clause making the 14th Amendment unnecessary and redundant. However that is the Amendment Gura is using to plea MacDonald.

I wished to note that at least one person who identifies himself as a liberal admits that it is appropriate to apply the 14th Amendment to apply the 2nd Amendment to state and local actions just as liberals have used it to extend Federal power to protect civil rights and liberties over state denial of these rights. Historically the staunchest federalist liberals have turned to advocates of states' rights the minute the issue of gun control comes up, specifically to defend the right of state and local governments to disarm their citizens.

This attack of intellectual honesty, that if the 14th amendment can be used to bind the states to respect part of the Bill of Rights it binds them to respect the whole thing, is refreshing. It provides a minor impediment in the decline of liberty in the US.

As for MacDonald's efficacy in protecting gun rights, I have no doubt that if the Court rules that the 14th does bind the states to obey the Second Amendment, the wording will be as mealy mouthed and narrow as possible. Politicians hate and fear the Second Amendment. Essentially it proclaims that the only way you can trust a politician is to have the drop on him. Very few people are willing to concede that other people have the absolute right to keep a gun pointed at their heads.

There is more to the Huffington article than this point of course. I recommend people read the original article and then have a lawyer explain the difference between substantial and procedural rights.

Regardless of how you and I view the 14th Amendment it is the One Gura used to argue MacDonald. Some liberals are actually beginning to admit that if the 14th extends the rest of the Bill of Rights to the several States it extends the Second also. And if winning MacDonald won't gain us progunners much, think how bad losing it would hurt.

A.X. Perez
perez180ehs@hotmail.com

PS.: It is worth noting that one of the arguments used to pass the 14th Amendment was to specifically prevent Southern States from banning the ownership of guns by Black people. So Gura is historically correct in his argument. I anxious to see if the Court makes note of this point in its final decision.

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John Taylor remarked:

On the contrary. Regardless of Gura using the 14th, the purpose of Clause 1 is to extend federal power over the states. It is Hamiltonian (well, Lincolnian) in its intent, and Gura's argument is both divisive and not well-received by the court.

I smell a "Gurat".

John Taylor
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A.X. Perez remarked:

Abraham Lincoln was already dead when the 14th Amendment was proposed in Congress. Its purpose was definitely to expand the power of the Fed and even more so guarantee the power of Yankee manufacturers and bankers (read Section Three.)

The circumstances under which the 14th was ratified and the inclusion of language in it to politically emasculate and punish the South for the War of Secession make it unjust. At best it is a redundant reassertion of Article VI and Section 2 of Article IV.

I'm jealous of the pun.
A.X. Perez
perez180ehs@hotmail.com

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Cheap Shot

Last Tuesday while MacDonald was being plead before the Supreme Court my local rag printed an editorial supporting the (correct) notion that State and local governments should be bound to respect the right to keep and bear arms. Seeing that my hometown is a hotbed of liberal statism this is quite refreshing.

The newspaper also printed a general article of the wire on the MacDonald case that started antigun moved on to present argument on both sides and included words to the effect that the Founding fathers intended the States to regulate weapons ownership.

The Founding Fathers did indeed intend for the States to regulate weapons ownership. They expected the States to make and enforce laws banning the ownership of weapons by slaves, free blacks, indentured servants and Indians unless specially licensed to do so.

So apparently the states were expected to use "gun control" to oppress members of the servile class and or ethnic minorities selected for persecution.

Most supporters of gun control are liberals, in fact they often insist that supporting gun control is a requirement to be a liberal.

Liberalism is about enslaving people and oppressing minorities?

When did this happen?

A.X. Perez
perez180ehs@hotmail.com

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To which Richard Bartucci replied:

Al:

It happened late in the 19th Century, when "progressivism" began to be taken up as he Leitmotif of the Republican Party and the word "liberal" in these United States lost the meaning it had been accorded earlier in that Century and became, to the contrary, indicative of an intention to violate rather than to preserve the rights of the individual.

For the Republicans—always corrupt, always predatory, always peculative, always the heirs of Alexander Hamilton and Henry Clay—blame Theodore Roosevelt. For the Democrats, lay the blame at the feet of Woodrow Wilson.

Richard Bartucci
bartucci01@verizon.net

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Pro gun lberals?

There is a tendency to assume that to be a liberal is to support gun control and to be conservative is to oppose gun control. This is ridiculous. Strom Thurmond, Tricky Dick Nixon and Papa bush all supported gun control. currently there is a percentage of newly elected otherwise liberal Congresscritters who have it in their head that their constituents expect them to be progun and have yet to become so arrogant in their power as to blow off the will of the people.

If you talk to people you will find that many people who are liberals on most issues are adamant in their support of the private individual's right to keep and bear arms. They might list "reasonable exceptions" but they really are (admittedly incorrectly) reasoned out (as opposed to the victim disarmers' habit of saying "Surely you don't object to a few reasonable regulations," just before trying to ban all weapons short of personal fortitude for any private person.). Still, this is a matter of politely and patiently showing them where and why they are wrong.

Obviously it is inherent upon us to bring these people more firmly into the progun camp. Please note that the gist of antigun propaganda is to separate them from the progun side. We need to counter this with a message that keeps progun liberals pro gun until they turn to libertarianism.

In an encouraging note on this point we need to look at the March 8 2010 issue of Newsweek. In it is explained the reason why the Liberal Constitutional Advocacy Center is supporting the plaintiff in MacDonald v. City of Chicago. They do this as a logical extension of what the article calls the "right to bodily autonomy" or what we would call self ownership. This is the core of the Propietarian philosophy discussed in L.Neil Smith's The Probability Broach, that each person owns himself and that all rights derive from this self ownership. Basically they argue that bodily autonomy includes the right to self defense which includes the right to own the necessary tools to achieve that end.

Interestingly while "traditional" liberals don't want to include weapons ownership in bodily autonomy, many Conservatives don't want to accept the idea that we have a constitutional right of bodily autonomy. I have the feeling they are both acting axiomatically, in other words a "don't confuse me with logic or facts, I've made up my mind" mode.

I'm sure a lot of liberals also reject the bodily autonomy philosophy. This may become the point of a new political dichotomy, not between those who currently call themselves liberals and conservatives but between collectivists and autonomists. I think that the readers of this article are probably autonomists. It is time to bring converts to this viewpoint.

A.X. Perez
perez180ehs@hotmail.com

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Re: "Never Argue with a Fool" by L. Neil Smith

Hey Guys,

Mr. Miller really can't read. If he'd read what the Dutch politician in question had to say he'd have noticed that said politician wanted to us to fight a war for him that his own people don't want to bother with.

Also, we went through this in America with German, Polish, Italian, and yes, Dutch immigrants. Also Mexican immigrants. Several times. We assimilated them, without becoming the Borg collective. Your turn, Dutchboy.

Crazy Al

PS.: The statement "Your turn, Dutchboy." was a reference to the ongoing fights between Torg (aka Nerdboy) and Bunbun (murderous talking lop ear rabbit) of Sluggy Freelance fame (sluggy.com), not a shot at people who come from Holland. No comscious xenophobia intended. I kinda dig armored warrior chicks.

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