*****
RATIONAL REVIEW NEWS DIGEST
The Freedom Movement’s Daily Newspaper

Volume XV, Issue #3,619
Friday, January 6th, 2017
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In the News:

1) Turkey: Regime says it may shut off US access to Incirlik air base
2) Bitcoin plunges [sic] as much as 20% as Chinese yuan soars
3) Trump to nominate longtime establishment insider Dan Coats for DNI
4) Iraq: Car bomb kills nine at Baghdad market; seven die in other attacks
5) Mexico surpasses Canada as top agricultural supplier to the United States
6) UC Berkeley researcher debunks [sic] global warming hiatus
7) AR: Judge allegedly exchanged light sentences for sex, pills, money
8) Colombia: State oil company to face corruption charges
9) Saudi Arabian video on women’s rights goes viral
10) Stanley Black & Decker to open US plant after Trump’s “border tax” threat
11) Fired “Bridgegate” aide heads for Trump’s White House
12) Trump’s deportation vow spurs California farmers into action
13) New allergy guidance: Most kids should try peanuts
14) Obama regime puts bin Laden’s son on terror blacklist
15) Myanmar: Regime accused of “whitewash” as panel rejects claims it is persecuting Rohingya
16) FBI hacked, again; hacker leaks data after agency fails to patch its site
17) Israel: Two arrested for threatening judges who convicted soldier
18) US court rules Volkswagen must face investor lawsuits over Dieselgate
19) IL: Social media video appears to show torture of man in Chicago
20) France: Citizen’s organs now become state property unless they specifically decline

Everybody Has An Opinion:

21) Countries are not companies
22) Term limits: Painkiller, not cure
23) New status anxiety fuels Trump derangement
24) There is only one healthcare solution
25) Don’t get caught up in the nonsense
26) Very powerful people in the US government want war — this is their sales pitch
27) Death and Bitcoin: How I prepared my family’s digital inheritance
28) Media played like a “phish” over Russian hacking incident
29) The Titanic sails at dawn: Warning signs point to danger ahead in 2017
30) Rodrigo Duterte’s army of online trolls
31) Venezuela’s march toward default
32) There’s little reason to be optimistic about Trump and privacy
33) Prosperity, not upward mobility, is what matters
34) The war [sic] on public schools
35) For those who say all gun buyers should be screened, the data don’t matter
36) Trump’s trump
37) The scientific reason cops are highly vulnerable to experiencing hallucinations
38) Why Russia’s most effective hack is still taking place
39) Superabundance or scarcity?
40) Will Trump’s infrastructure stimulus spending work?
41) A note on the role of the LNC’s chair
42) The Carolina coup and the fight for public education
43) Government: Always a bad deal
44) Gender identity and gender misidentification
45) Robert Reich: “There’s not very much time”
46) Die young, stay pretty
47) Leveson II: Revenge of the freedom-snatchers
48) The US government thinks thousands of Russian hackers may be reading my blog. They aren’t.
49) The pro-work case for Universal Basic Income
50) Having unrealistic expectations for the federal government
51) Gracian’s aphorism #163: Never, from sympathy with the unfortunate, seek to share his fate
52) Netanyahu — running from the law
53) Sexism and zombie economics
54) Think before sanctioning Russia
55) The coming state of fear

The Sound and the Fury:

56) The Jason Stapleton Program, 01/05/17
57) Electric LibertyLand, episode 1
58) Freedom Feens Radio, 01/05/17
59) Free Talk Live, 01/04/17
60) The Tom Woods Show, episode 817

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***** In the News *****

1) Turkey: Regime says it may shut off US access to Incirlik air base
Source: United Press International

“Turkish officials said they are considering shutting down an air base being used by NATO allies in a bombing campaign against the Islamic State over a disagreement about a lack of allied support for Turkey’s own military campaign in the Middle East. Turkish Foreign Minister Melvut Cavusoglu said Wednesday that Turkey has the right to shut off international access to Incirlik Air Base, the launching spot for U.S.-led air strikes against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. He called the situation a ‘confidence crisis’ between the two nations. Turkey has been running its own bombing campaign against Kurdish fighters that it considers terrorists. The United States, however, has supported the Kurdish fighters as allies in the larger fight against the Islamic State.” (01/05/17)

http://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2017/01/05/Turkey-says-it-may-shut-off-US-access-to-Incirlik-Air-Base/8961483626338/

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2) Bitcoin plunges [sic] as much as 20% as Chinese yuan soars
Source: Reuters

“A dramatic rally in digital currency bitcoin came to a spectacular end on Thursday with a plunge of up to 20 percent as China’s yuan rose sharply — further evidence of an intriguing inverse relationship between the pair. Bitcoin had gained more than 40 percent in two weeks to hit a three-year high of $1,139.89 on Wednesday, just shy of its all-time record of $1,163 on the Europe-based Bitstamp exchange BTC=BTSP. But it dived as low as $885.41 on Thursday as the yuan jumped by over 1 percent in offshore trading and headed for its strongest two-day performance on record. … Bitcoin can [be] used for moving money across the globe quickly and anonymously, and operates outside the control of any central authority.” [editor’s note: According to those who know, this “plunge” is the same adjustment that occurs daily on the conventional stock market, as profit takers sell off a bit after a sudden large jump – SAT] [additional editor’s note: A fluctuation — up OR down — of 20% in a single day isn’t the kind of volatility you’d want to see on a regular basis. But yeah, this is almost certainly a profit-taking dip, not an indicator of collapse. No, I’m not an investment advisor and this is not investment advice; but I think I may be buying 🙂 – TLK] (01/05/17)

—–

3) Trump to nominate longtime establishment insider Dan Coats for DNI
Source: The Hill

“Trump will name former Indiana Sen. Dan Coats to lead the nation’s sprawling intelligence community, according to multiple reports Thursday. The mild-mannered Republican, who did not seek reelection in November, was a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee. A former ambassador to Germany under George W. Bush, Coats served in the Senate twice — from 1989 to 1999 and again from 2011 until this year. The news comes as rumors swirl that Trump is weighing dismantling the very agency he has now reportedly tapped Coats to lead, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI).” [editor’s note: So much for “Trump the outsider.” Even if he was one (he isn’t), he’s surrounding himself with the usual suspects – TLK] (01/05/17)

http://thehill.com/policy/national-security/312903-trump-to-tap-coats-for-national-intelligence-director

—–

4) Iraq: Car bomb kills nine at Baghdad market; seven die in other attacks
Source: ABC News

“A car bomb tore through a Baghdad market on Thursday, killing at least nine people in what appeared to be the latest in a series of deadly attacks by the Islamic State group. Elsewhere, four attacks in and around Baghdad killed at least seven people, bringing the day’s overall death toll to at least 16. Those attacks, mostly by bombs that went off in commercial areas or targeted security forces, also wounded at least 20 people, police and medical officials said.” (01/05/17)

http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/car-bomb-strikes-baghdad-market-killing-44567005

—–

5) Mexico surpasses Canada as top agricultural supplier to the United States
Source: PanAm Post

“In 2016, Mexico managed to position itself as the main supplier of agricultural products to the United States, surpassing Canada and the European Union, according to data from the US Department of Agriculture. Mexico closed 2016 with a 19.9-percent share of the US agricultural market, Canada with 19 percent and the European Union with 18 percent. This increase in importance of Mexican agricultural products in the United States began after the implementation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).” (01/05/17)

https://panampost.com/elena-toledo/2017/01/05/mexico-surpasses-canada-as-top-agricultural-supplier-to-the-united-states/

—–

6) UC Berkeley researcher debunks [sic] global warming hiatus
Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“Suggestions by climate change skeptics that ocean cooling put global warming on hiatus more than a decade ago were based on faulty measurements of seawater temperatures, a new study led by a UC Berkeley researcher confirms. Zeke Hausfather, a graduate student at UC Berkeley and analyst with the nonprofit climate science group Berkeley Earth, and his research team concluded that temperatures during the past 15 years rose just as they did in the latter half of the 20th century. Their findings, published Wednesday in the online journal Science Advances, are the latest to debunk the assertion that there was little or no warming between 1998 and 2012.” [editor’s note: Meanwhile, a noted GW skeptic just resigned in disgust from her Georgia Tech ivory tower – SAT] (01/05/17)

http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/UC-Berkeley-researcher-debunks-global-warming-10837437.php

—–

7) AR: Judge allegedly exchanged light sentences for sex, pills, money
Source: New York Daily News

“He allegedly used the bench to get women in the bedroom. An Arkansas judge has stepped down after being accused of giving female defendants lenient sentences in exchange for sexual favors. Judge Timothy Parker, of Carroll County, allegedly allowed more than a dozen women to exchange sex acts for better bond or release conditions. He was also accused of swapping cash and prescription pills with some of the women. … The judge left the bench on the last day of 2016, despite denying the allegations, and officials announced his ouster Tuesday. As part of his exit, he will never again be allowed to serve as a judge in the state.” (01/05/17)

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/ark-judge-allegedly-exchanged-sentences-sex-article-1.2935750

—–

8) Colombia: State oil company to face corruption charges
Source: PanAm Post

“The Colombian Comptroller’s Office revealed that it had found irregular contracts by the oil and gas company Ecopetrol, adding up to 145 billion dollars that favors one of the affiliates of the Pacific Rubiales group, Agrocascada. According to the government entity, Ecopetrol hired the company during exploration of fields in the Eastern Plains of Colombia, which resulted in purchases of unnecessary machinery and a loss of equity.” (01/05/17)

https://panampost.com/ysol-delgado/2017/01/05/colombian-comptroller-reveals-irregularities-in-ecopetrol-oil-company-contracts/

—–

9) Saudi Arabian video on women’s rights goes viral
Source: BBC News [UK state media]

“A video of a pop song that highlights the oppression of women in Saudi Arabia has amassed millions of views on social media. The video entitled ‘Hwages’ (loosely translated in English as ‘Concerns’) shows women in Saudi Arabia skateboarding, playing basketball and dancing. Created by media production company 8ies, the video has been viewed nearly three million times on YouTube since it was uploaded in late December. It features women in full Islamic dress taking part in various activities, singing lyrics that include: ‘If only God would rid us of men.’ The video appears to express women’s frustration with the male-dominated society in Saudi Arabia.” (01/05/17)

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-38520492

—–

10) Stanley Black & Decker to open US plant after Trump’s “border tax” threat
Source: USA TODAY

“Stanley Black & Decker said Thursday that it would open a new $35 million manufacturing plant in the U.S. after acquiring the Craftsman tool brand from ailing retailer Sears Holdings. Expanding American manufacturing makes ‘business sense’ amid ‘pervasive’ uncertainty regarding the future of U.S. trade with China and Mexico, Stanley Black & Decker CEO James Loree told investors Thursday in a conference call.” (01/05/17)

http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2017/01/05/stanley-black-decker-sears-holdings-craftsman-donald-trump/96192526

—–

11) Fired “Bridgegate” aide heads for Trump’s White House
Source: CNN

“New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, the first of President-elect Donald Trump’s primary rivals to endorse him and once vetted as a vice presidential pick, has been shut out the new administration. But an ex-aide who played a role in the Bridgegate scandal that tarnished Christie will be in it. Bill Stepien, who joined the Trump campaign in August as national field director, snagged a senior role as White House political director, Trump’s transition team announced Wednesday. Christie fired Stepien in January 2014 amid the Bridgegate scandal in which Christie aides directed the closure of lanes on the George Washington Bridge as political retribution.” (01/04/17)

http://www.cnn.com/2017/01/04/politics/bill-stepien-chris-christie-donald-trump-white-house/

—–

12) Trump’s deportation vow spurs California farmers into action
Source: Fox News

“Days after Donald Trump won the White House vowing to deport millions of people in the country illegally and fortify the Mexican border, California farmer Kevin Herman ordered nearly $600,000 in new equipment, cutting the number of workers he’ll need starting with the next harvest. Herman, who grows figs, persimmons and almonds in the nation’s most productive farming state, said Trump’s comments pushed him to make the purchase, larger than he would have otherwise. ‘No doubt about it,’ Herman said. ‘I probably wouldn’t have spent as much or bought as much machinery as I did.’ Others in California’s farming industry say Trump’s tough campaign talk targeting immigrants in the country illegally (including a vast number of farmworkers) spurred them into action, too.” (01/05/17)

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2017/01/05/trumps-deportation-vow-spurs-california-farmers-into-action.html

—–

13) New allergy guidance: Most kids should try peanuts
Source: NBC News

“Even children with the highest risk of having a peanut allergy should be tested with a tiny dose of the nut because it might prevent the allergy from ever developing, doctors said in new guidelines released Thursday. Most kids should get a small taste of peanut protein by the time they are 6 months old, and they should get regular doses if they don’t have an allergic reaction. Those at highest risk should be tested in a specialist’s office. … It’s a big change from previous guidelines, which recommended that people keep peanuts and peanut products away from their kids completely until they are 3 years old if there is a risk of allergies.” (01/05/17)

http://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-news/new-allergy-guidance-most-kids-should-try-peanuts-n703316

—–

14) Obama regime puts bin Laden’s son on terror blacklist
Source: Raw Story

“The United States added Hamza bin Laden, son and would-be heir of the late global jihadist leader Osama bin Laden, to its terrorist blacklist on Thursday. Hamza, who is in his mid-twenties, has become active as an Al-Qaeda propagandist since his father’s death at the hands of US special forces on May 2, 2011. According to letters found in the Navy SEAL raid on Osama’s hideout in Pakistan, Hamza wrote to the Saudi-born Al-Qaeda leader asking to be trained to follow him. A CIA analyst who examined the letters told AFP that, in July 2009, when Hamza wrote to his father’s Abbottabad hideout, they had not seen each other for eight years. But the elder bin Laden was making plans to send for his son, who was at the time under house arrest in Iran, and planned to groom him to become Al-Qaeda’s leader.” (01/05/17)

http://www.rawstory.com/2017/01/us-puts-bin-ladens-son-on-terror-blacklist

—–

15) Myanmar: Regime accused of “whitewash” as panel rejects claims it is persecuting Rohingya
Source: Yahoo! News

“Human rights groups said Myanmar’s government is trying to cover up abuses against civilians in a Muslim-majority part of Rakhine State after an investigation panel dismissed claims a government crackdown there amounts to ‘genocide.’ A commission appointed by the government of Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi issued interim findings refuting allegations of abuses by security forces on Wednesday, even as authorities were still investigating alleged police abuses after a video emerged appearing to show officers beating and kicking Rohingya villagers. Troops have poured into northern Rakhine since insurgents believed to be from the mostly stateless Rohingya minority attacked border posts on Oct. 9, killing nine police officers.” (01/05/17)

https://www.yahoo.com/news/myanmar-accused-whitewash-panel-rejects-claims-persecuting-rohingya-064220142.html

—–

16) FBI hacked, again; hacker leaks data after agency fails to patch its site
Source: The Hacker News

“It seems like the FBI has been hacked, once again! A hacker, using Twitter handle CyberZeist, has claimed to have hacked the FBI’s website (fbi.gov) and leaked personal account information of several FBI agents publically. CyberZeist had initially exposed the flaw on 22 December, giving the FBI time to patch the vulnerability in its website’s code before making the data public.” (01/05/17)

http://thehackernews.com/2017/01/fbi-plone-cms-hacked.html

—–

17) Israel: Two arrested for threatening judges who convicted soldier
Source: Reuters

“Israeli police said on Thursday they arrested two people for inciting violence on social media against three military judges who convicted a soldier of manslaughter over his fatal shooting of a wounded Palestinian attacker. The judges found Sergeant Elor Azaria, 20, guilty of the charge on Wednesday, and supporters have set up several Facebook pages urging Israel’s president to pardon him. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has also called for a pardon on his own Facebook page.” (01/05/17)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-israel-palestinians-soldier-idUSKBN14P0Y0

—–

18) US court rules Volkswagen must face investor lawsuits over Dieselgate
Source: Deutsche Welle [Germany]

“American investors suing German carmaker Volkswagen will have the right to have their cases heard in a US court, a judge ruled on Wednesday. Volkswagen had requested to have an investor lawsuit in California dismissed, arguing that German courts were the proper place to handle cases relating to the Dieselgate emissions scandal. However, in a 41-page ruling, US District Judge Charles Breyer denied the claims. The judge further rejected a request by VW brand chief Herbert Diess to have proposed securities fraud lawsuits also tossed out. In his ruling, Breyer said that ‘because the United States has an interest in protecting domestic investors against securities fraud,’ the lawsuits should go ahead in an American court.” (01/04/17)

http://www.dw.com/en/california-court-rules-vw-must-face-us-investor-lawsuits-over-dieselgate/a-37012501

—–

19) IL: Social media video appears to show torture of man in Chicago
Source: USA Today

“Police say formal charges are expected to be filed Thursday against four suspects in connection with a half-hour video, which exploded on social media, that appears to show at least one black man torturing and taunting a white man and making disparaging remarks about President-elect Donald Trump. The video was initially posted via Facebook Live under the account of someone named Brittany Herring and spread quickly via Twitter and under the hashtag #BLMKidnapping.” (01/05/17)

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2017/01/04/social-media-video-appears-show-torture-man-three-chicago/96184306/

—–

20) France: Citizen’s organs now become state property unless they specifically decline
Source: WFXT Fox 25

“All French citizens are now automatic organ donors, unless they officially opt out of the program. A new law that went into effect on Jan. 1 makes everyone an organ and tissue donor. People can opt out of the program, but they must enroll in something called the National Rejection Register in order to do so.” (01/04/17)

http://www.fox25boston.com/news/french-citizens-now-automatic-organ-donors-under-new-law/481205340

***** Everybody Has An Opinion *****

21) Countries are not companies
Source: Foundation for Economic Education
by Steven Horwitz

“One of the most persistent false beliefs held by American voters is that someone with ‘business experience’ would do a better job ‘running the economy’ than politicians have. Let’s put aside the idea that an economy is something that needs to be, or can be, ‘run’ and explore whether a CEO of a major company as president really would be better for the economy. Of course we have precisely this situation in front of us as Donald Trump prepares to take the oath of office. There are dozens of theories about why so many voted for Trump, but surely one part of his appeal was that his apparently successful business career made him more qualified to fix the US economy. In his runs at the presidency in the 1990s, Ross Perot had a similar appeal.” (01/05/17)

https://fee.org/articles/countries-are-not-companies/

—–

22) Term limits: Painkiller, not cure
Source: Garrison Center
by Thomas L Knapp

“Two favorite arguments in favor of term limits are that they will replace the corruption and careerism of incumbency with wholesome ‘citizen legislators’ who labor briefly in the political vineyards before returning to private life. But will that really work out?” (01/05/17)

http://thegarrisoncenter.org/archives/9111

—–

23) New status anxiety fuels Trump derangement
Source: USA Today
Glenn Harlan Reynolds

“It’s been nearly two months since the election, and Democrats and leftists still haven’t settled down. The campus safe spaces and cry-ins immediately after the votes were counted were bad enough. But the craziness is still going on. Why are they so upset? I think it’s because of status anxiety. Our privileged, college-educated left (what Joel Kotkin calls the gentry liberals) feels that its preeminent position in American society is under threat. And people care a lot about status. What’s more, the people who seem to be lashing out the most are, in fact, just those gentry liberals: academics, entertainers, pundits, low-level tech types, and so on.” (01/05/17)

http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2017/01/05/gentry-liberals-trump-college-campuses-elite-glenn-reynolds-column/96155458

—–

24) There is only one healthcare solution
Source: Future of Freedom Foundation
by Jacob G Hornberger

“Ever since the Affordable Care Act was enacted in 2010, conservatives have had a field day complaining about Obamacare and promising to repeal it whenever they got the chance to do so. That chance has now arrived, with Republicans now controlling both houses of Congress and the presidency. Now they don’t know what to do. Many people have become dependent on Obamacare. They’re likely to be left out in the cold with respect to insurance coverage if Obamacare is repealed. What do conservatives do about them? Conservatives are now trapped by their own mantras and penchant for reform.” (01/05/17)

http://www.fff.org/2017/01/05/one-healthcare-solution/

—–

25) Don’t get caught up in the nonsense
Source: A Geek With Guns
by Christopher Burg

“Libertarians, especially new ones, often believe that they care about the important issues while everybody else is wasting time on meaningless issues. Important issues include the economic damage done by the Federal Reserve, the iron grip the Republican and Democratic parties have on American politics, the seemingly endless state of unprovoked warfare, and whether or not colleges establish safe spaces for students. Wait, what was that last one? It’s true. A lot of libertarians have fallen into the trap of what is commonly referred to as the culture wars. I call it a trap because it gets in the way of the struggle for freedom …” (01/05/17)

https://blog.christopherburg.com/2017/01/05/dont-get-caught-up-in-the-nonsense/

—–

26) Very powerful people in the US government want war — this is their sales pitch
Source: Liberty Blitzkrieg
by Michael Krieger

“One of the main reasons I opposed Hillary Clinton so vehemently, was I felt she embodied the neocon, neoliberal, military-intelligence-industrial complex’s burning desire for a global confrontation with Russia, as well as continued disastrous imperial adventures all over the world. Many of us hoped that with her loss, cooler heads would prevail and the American public might receive a much needed respite from never-ending war. This has not happened. If anything, those in the Hillary camp have become even more aggressive and unhinged in their bloodlust, and appear willing to do ‘whatever it takes’ to start a fight that will result in unimaginable devastation for the American public.” (01/05/17)

https://libertyblitzkrieg.com/2017/01/05/very-powerful-people-in-the-u-s-government-want-war-this-is-their-sales-pitch/

—–

27) Death and Bitcoin: How I prepared my family’s digital inheritance
Source: Bitcoin.com
by Jamie Redman

“Getting old is something we can’t stop, but we can prepare our loved ones for when we leave the earth. Recently, I have been making somewhat of a digital will for my wife for when I die so she will be able to access all my online accounts and bitcoin access. If I were to unexpectedly die it would be tough for my wife to manage our bitcoin assets without help and guidance. This issue is something bitcoiners should consider.” (01/05/17)

https://news.bitcoin.com/death-bitcoin-digital-inheritance/

—–

28) Media played like a “phish” over Russian hacking incident
Source: Heartland Institute
by Nancy Thorner & Ed Ingold

“The press is being played like a ‘phish’ by President Obama over the Russian hacking incident. First of all, it is a distraction from the real damage which Democrats inflicted on themselves by using dirty tactics against Hillary’s opponents and disrespecting many of the groups on which they depend for support. If you can’t defend the message, attack the messenger. Secondly, it is not an attack on democracy or the election process, it was an attack on Democrats. If there was an effect on the election, it was the content of these emails, not the fact that they were hacked.” (01/05/17)

http://blog.heartland.org/2017/01/media-played-like-a-phish-over-russian-hacking-incident/

—–

29) The Titanic sails at dawn: Warning signs point to danger ahead in 2017
Source: LewRockwell.com
by John W Whitehead

“Despite our best efforts, we in the American police state seem to be stuck on repeat, reliving the same set of circumstances over and over and over again: egregious surveillance, strip searches, police shootings of unarmed citizens, government spying, censorship, retaliatory arrests, the criminalization of lawful activities, warmongering, indefinite detentions, SWAT team raids, asset forfeiture, etc. Unfortunately, as a nation we’ve become so desensitized to the government’s acts of violence, so accustomed to reports of government corruption, and so anesthetized to the sights and sounds of Corporate America marching in lockstep with the police state that few seem to pay heed to the warning signs blaring out the message: Danger Ahead.” (01/05/17)

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2017/01/john-w-whitehead/theres-real-trouble-ahead/

—–

30) Rodrigo Duterte’s army of online trolls
Source: The New Republic
by Sean Williams

“Since Rodrigo Duterte was elected president of the Philippines last June, he has waged a brutal crackdown on drug dealers and addicts. Nearly 4,000 people have been killed by government forces, and Duterte has invoked the Holocaust to describe the scope of his ambition. ‘Hitler massacred three million Jews,’ he declared in September. ‘Now there is three million drug addicts. There are. I’d be happy to slaughter them.’ Duterte’s authoritarian rhetoric has elicited sharp condemnations from human rights advocates and foreign leaders. But there’s another front in his war on drugs that has escaped international attention. Last fall, as I reported on the violence in the Philippines, I picked up an ardent critic on social media. Her name was Madelyn, and she was young and attractive, with long hair and deep, brown eyes. When I posted about Duterte’s war on drugs, Madelyn responded with derision.” (01/04/17)

https://newrepublic.com/article/138952/rodrigo-dutertes-army-online-trolls

—–

31) Venezuela’s march toward default
Source: Ludwig von Mises Institute
by Antony P Mueller

“It is only a matter of time until Venezuela will default on its foreign debt. After a short peak in 2009, when the country’s foreign exchange reserves stood at over $40 billion, Venezuela has been steadily hemorrhaging its reserves down to $10 billion. In 2016, Venezuela started to sell gold in order to compensate for the loss of its monetary reserves. As a consequence, Venezuela’s gold reserves plunged from over 360 tons down to less than 190 tons. Other than in the case that some foreign power, such as China, for example, would jump in as a lender, Venezuela’s default seems unavoidable.” (01/05/17)

https://mises.org/blog/venezuela%E2%80%99s-march-toward-default

—–

32) There’s little reason to be optimistic about Trump and privacy
Source: Antiwar.com
by Lucy Steigerwald

“It’s still impossible to know what president-elect Donald Trump will do. His statements over the past 18 months, and before, have often contradicted each other on issues as varied as foreign policy and transgender people using the bathroom of their choice. On one important issue, however, Trump has been depressingly consistent. From all appearances, he does not seem to be a friend of the Fourth Amendment. But then, that puts him into the camp of the vast majority of politicians.” (01/05/17)

http://original.antiwar.com/lucy/2017/01/04/theres-little-reason-to-be-optimistic-about-trump-and-privacy/

—–

33) Prosperity, not upward mobility, is what matters
Source: The Atlantic
by Neil Gilbert

“When people talk about the U.S.’s social mobility, they tend to talk about relative mobility — how much of the difference between one generation’s incomes is associated with the difference between the incomes of their parents’ generation. The best evidence suggests that this has not changed since 1970. But relative mobility rates indicate very little about standards of living, which is the way ordinary citizens assess their well-being. Progressives emphasize the vague psychological discomfort of relative deprivation, which may be felt when people compare how much their income changes between generations to how much others gain or lose. This view of economic mobility discounts the tangible material comfort of an absolute gain in one’s own standard of living, regardless of how the neighbors are doing.” (01/05/17)

https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2017/01/prosperity-upward-mobility/511925/

—–

34) The war [sic] on public schools
Source: The American Prospect
by Rachel M Cohen

“To say education conservatives are ecstatic about their new political opportunities would be an understatement. With Republicans controlling the House and Senate, a politically savvy conservative ideologue leading the federal education department, a vice president who earned notoriety in his home state for expanding vouchers, charters, and battling teacher unions, not to mention a president-elect who initially asked creationist Jerry Falwell Jr. to head up his Department of Education, the stars have aligned for market-driven education advocates. Donald Trump neither prioritized education on the campaign trail, nor unveiled detailed policy proposals, but the ideas he did put forth, in addition to his selection of Betsy DeVos, make clear where public education may be headed on his watch.” (01/04/17)

http://prospect.org/article/war-public-schools

—–

35) For those who say all gun buyers should be screened, the data don’t matter
Source: Reason
by Jacob Sullum

“The federal background-check requirement applies only to licensed gun dealers, but it applies to them no matter where the transaction takes place. It does not apply to so-called private sales, which do not involve a licensed dealer, also regardless of location. That’s why demands for closing the ‘gun show loophole’ are misleading. Notably, all of the respondents in this survey who had bought firearms at gun shows in the previous two years underwent background checks. The researchers found that the share of guns acquired in private sales without a background check was lower in states that require screening for such transactions: 26 percent, compared to 57 percent in the other states. That suggests about a quarter of private sales occur without a background check even when one is legally required, which is not surprising, since private sales are inherently hard to monitor. The persistence of unrecorded private sales, combined with gun theft and straw purchases by people with clean records, means that extending the background check requirement cannot reasonably be expected to prevent criminals from arming themselves.”

http://reason.com/blog/2017/01/05/for-those-who-say-all-gun-buyers-should

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36) Trump’s trump
Source: Common Sense
by Paul Jacob

“President-Elect Donald J. Trump wasn’t my choice. Yet, as with any president of these United States, I say: work with him when he’s doing right. And Mr. Trump is doing right by pushing Congress to vote on term limits.” (01/05/17)

http://thisiscommonsense.com/2017/01/05/trumps-trump/

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37) The scientific reason cops are highly vulnerable to experiencing hallucinations
Source: Cop Block
by Joshua Scott Hotchkin

“Whether or not police are actually under a real threat does little to remedy the cultural and official narrative of the dangers of policing. Being told that you will constantly be in danger causes you to react as though that were true, and especially when those reactions are tied to instinctual impulses manufactured in police training exercises that essentially teach officers to identify when they are allowed to kill. Under so much pressure to be prepared for self-preservation, hypervigilance becomes a reasonable perceptual model, but as we see, it can also lead to imagining those fears where they do not actually exist.” (01/05/17)

http://www.copblock.org/169807/cops-vulnerable-hallucinations/

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38) Why Russia’s most effective hack is still taking place
Source: Cracked
by Robert Evans

“So the FBI and Homeland Security just released a report saying Russian spy agencies were responsible for hacking all those internal emails from the Democratic National Committee. Julian Assange, on the other hand, is 1,000 percent sure Russia had nothing to do with that. Other smart people without cotton candy hair and pending rape charges [sic] also doubt Russian involvement. It’s one of those confusing debates that even the beardiest of computer nerds disagree on. So what’s going on here? Did Russia hack the 2016 election? I struggle to work my smartphone’s alarm some mornings, so no, I don’t know if Russia ‘hacked’ the election. But they sure as hell found a backdoor entrance to hack our democracy. They didn’t need an army of Mr. Robots — just an army of writers who knew how to generate clickable content. See, almost half of us get our news from links we see shared on Facebook.” [editor’s note: Evans’s disinfo attempt on Assange tells me all I need to know about his credibility – TLK] (01/05/17)

http://www.cracked.com/blog/russia-didnt-hack-election-they-hacked-democracy

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39) Superabundance or scarcity?
Source: Cafe Hayek
by Don Boudreaux

“One important aspect of reality that sound economics highlights and clarifies is the unavoidability and ubiquity of scarcity. ‘The economic problem’ (as it is commonly called) exists only because not all human wants can be satisfied with the means — resources, tools, time, knowledge — available to us. Some — indeed, most — of our desires will forever go unsatisfied in order that we might use the scarce resources, tools, time, and knowledge that we have to satisfy those relatively few desires that we judge to be the most important. We — as individuals and as society — never act perfectly. We make lots of mistakes. But if we keep our mistakes to some achievable minimum, we’ll prosper.” (01/05/17)

http://cafehayek.com/2017/01/41943.html

—–

40) Will Trump’s infrastructure stimulus spending work?
Source: Libertarian Institute
by Thomas Eddlem

“President-elect Donald Trump proposed a new $1 trillion infrastructure spending and tax cut package which his campaign promised is ‘a golden opportunity for accelerated economic growth and more rapid productivity gains.’ But is more government spending a golden opportunity for economic growth? The answer to that question would surprise most establishment economists.” (01/05/17)

https://www.libertarianinstitute.org/economics/will-trumps-infrastructure-stimulus-spending-work/

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41) A note on the role of the LNC’s chair
Source: KN@PPSTER
by Thomas L. Knapp

“When you run for, and are elected to, the office of chair of the Libertarian National Committee, you have to give up certain things in order to do the job right. Some of those things are obvious. For example, you give up a lot of your own time, and you spend a lot of your own money, to do the work. You have to give up some personal space, engaging with people you might avoid if engaging with them wasn’t your job. One of those things is less obvious …” (01/05/17)

http://knappster.blogspot.com/2017/01/a-note-on-role-of-lncs-chair.html

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42) The Carolina coup and the fight for public education
Source: Our Future
by Jeff Bryant

“The nation’s eyes are on my home state of North Carolina, where what many are calling a coup has shown the lengths to which Republicans will go to protect and expand their political power. The naked power grab by Republicans has shocked the nation. But few people really understand that a struggle over public education is at the center of the fight against an authoritarian government in the era of Donald Trump. What did Republicans do? … Specifically, on the elections front, Republicans robbed incoming Democratic Governor Roy Cooper of his ability to change the composition of state and county boards of elections, diluted the governor’s appointment authority, and rigged the timing of county board leadership to favor Republicans.” (01/04/17)

https://ourfuture.org/20170104/the-carolina-coup-and-the-fight-for-public-education

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43) Government: Always a bad deal
Source: Everything Voluntary
by Larken Rose

“When the average, well-trained statist says, ‘I’m proud to pay my taxes, because I like to have roads!’ they are demonstrating not only a serious degree of Stockholm Syndrome (it’s pretty stupid to be ‘proud’ of being forced to buy a product, even if the product is good), but they are also demonstrating profound economic ignorance. about 1% of federal spending has anything to do with ‘muh roads.’ So if the roads are why you like taxes, you should ask for an immediate 99% tax cut … for starters.” (01/04/17)

http://everything-voluntary.com/government-always-bad-deal

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44) Gender identity and gender misidentification
Source: The Anarchist Shemale
by Aria DiMezzo

“After sharing my previous article to an Anarchist, Voluntaryist, and Libertarian page on Facebook — not something I do often; in fact, this was only the second time in a year that I’ve done so — the very first comment was, predictably, that no one cares about my mental illness. Right, because that is a conversation transgender people aren’t sick of having. And it’s extremely common. With almost every video, every post, every article around the Internet that is from a transgender author about transgender things, there is very likely to be some asshat who thinks that he, and only he — because, sorry, I have yet to come across a female doing this — understands that gender is binary, transgender people are insane, and being transgender undermines everything else you have to say because you’re insane.” (01/05/17)

https://anarchistshemale.com/2017/01/05/gender-identity-gender-misidentification/

—–

45) Robert Reich: “There’s not very much time”
Source: In These Times
by Joel Bleifuss

“One wonders what Bill Clinton thinks of the fact that one of the most relevant political thinkers of the early 21st century is Robert Reich. As secretary of labor, Reich tried to get the Clinton administration to address growing income inequality, but the ‘new Democrats’ would have none of it. Reich, a professor of public policy at the University of California, Berkeley, began his career in public service as an attorney in the Ford administration, worked in the Carter administration and served in Clinton’s first term.” (01/03/17)

http://inthesetimes.com/article/19769/robert-reichs-plan-to-fix-the-democratic-party-sanders-populism-wall-street

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46) Die young, stay pretty
Source: The Honest Courtesan
by Maggie McNeill

“As I’ve stated before, I have absolutely no intention of ever enduring chemotherapy; if I develop cancer I’m going to seek out palliative care, put my affairs in order and let the disease take its course. I’ve seen more than my share of people I love spending their last days hooked to machines in sterile institutions, dying in infernal contraptions surrounded by shouting doctors and nurses pounding on their chests and shooting chemicals into their veins, or electrically shocking their soon-to-be-corpses, instead of expiring quietly in their own beds surrounded by loved ones. So I have a DNR order; if it’s respected I will die when I die rather than being dragged violently back across the threshold because mere humans have decided I’m not allowed to leave this plane yet.” (01/05/17)

https://maggiemcneill.wordpress.com/2017/01/05/die-young-stay-pretty/

—–

47) Leveson II: Revenge of the freedom-snatchers
Source: spiked
by Mick Hume

“It is a truth universally acknowledged that sequels are almost always worse than the original. Part One of the Leveson Inquiry did serious harm to press freedom in Britain. Leveson Part Two would likely do even more damage to investigative journalism, and take us closer to a secret state. … For the first time since 1695, Britain now has an official state-backed regulator, called Impress, recognised by a suitably medieval-sounding Royal Charter. This little-known outfit has been largely funded by the tabloid-caning Max Mosley. As revealed by the Guido Fawkes website, leading figures at Impress also support the ‘Stop Funding Hate’ lobby, which presses corporations to withdraw adverts from the Sun, Daily Mail and Express. In other words, we now have a state-backed ‘independent’ press regulator whose key members want to censor and potentially close down tabloid newspapers that are not to their tastes.” (01/05/17)

http://www.spiked-online.com/newsite/article/leveson-ii-revenge-of-the-freedom-snatchers/

—–

48) The US government thinks thousands of Russian hackers may be reading my blog. They aren’t.
Source: The Intercept
by Micah Lee

“After the US government published a report on Russia’s cyber attacks against the U.S. election system, and included a list of computers that were allegedly used by Russian hackers, I became curious if any of these hackers had visited my personal blog. The U.S. report … came with a list of 876 suspicious IP addresses used by the hackers, and these addresses were the clues I needed to, in the end, understand a gaping weakness in the report. … I searched my web server logs for the suspicious IP addresses, and I was shocked to discover over 80,000 web requests from IPs used by the Russian hackers in the last 14 months! … I found out, after some digging, that of the 876 suspicious IP addresses that the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of National Intelligence put on the Russian cyber attacker list, at least 367 of them (roughly 42%) are either Tor exit nodes right now, or were Tor exit nodes in the last few years. I have a lot of regular readers who are Tor users, and I’m pretty sure they’re not all Russian hackers.” (01/04/17)

https://theintercept.com/2017/01/04/the-u-s-government-thinks-thousands-of-russian-hackers-are-reading-my-blog-they-arent/

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49) The pro-work case for Universal Basic Income
Source: Niskanen Center
by Samuel Hammond

“The idea of a Universal Basic Income — an unconditional cash stipend from the government that could, in principle, greatly simplify the existing system of means-tested programs — has come under fire for being antithetical to one of America’s strongest values: Work. The argument, most recently articulated by Josh Barro at Business Insider, states that while a cash transfer may be able to provide subsistence, it cannot provide the sense of purpose and dignity that only a job can. This echoes an argument made frequently by AEI president Arthur Brooks that, more than money, the poor lack a feeling of being needed, and for most people only work can provide that feeling. The problem with these arguments is that they simply assume a UBI would significantly undermine the incentive to work, shifting the debate to the red-herring of work’s relationship with purpose.” [editor’s note: Cash stipends don’t come “from the government.” They come from the people the government steals them from – TLK] (01/04/17)

https://niskanencenter.org/blog/ubi-pro-work/

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50) Having unrealistic expectations for the federal government
Source: Tenth Amendment Center
by Michael Boldin

“If your favorite sports team was really awful, and you knew that they’d likely lose a vast majority of their games, would you be disappointed at the end of the season to learn that they did just what you expected them to do? No, of course not. Unfortunately, however, when it comes to the federal government, a lot of people seem to do the opposite.” (01/04/17)

http://blog.tenthamendmentcenter.com/2017/01/having-unrealistic-expectations-for-the-federal-government/

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51) Gracian’s aphorism #163: Never, from sympathy with the unfortunate, seek to share his fate
Source: WendyMcElroy.com
by Wendy McElroy

“This aphorism expresses two attitudes (at least) toward the unfortunate. 1) the person Gracian advises is clearly sympathetic to the plight of the unfortunate, which means he probably extends compassion to others; Gracian considers that response to be part of a noble soul. 2) whatever assistance or solace may be extended by the noble soul, however, it should not go so far as to make him share in the person’s fate;. doing so reveals a lack of the worldly wisdom that is necessary to a successful life.” (01/05/17)

http://www.wendymcelroy.com/news.php?extend.7650

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52) Netanyahu — running from the law
Source: OpEdNews
by Lawrence Davidson

“Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu threw a temper tantrum (24 December 2016) after the U.S. failed to veto United Nations Security Council Resolution 2234 condemning Zionist settlements on Palestinian territory. Netanyahu called the resolution “shameful.” He went so far as to tell the foreign secretary of New Zealand, one of the countries that brought the resolution forward for a vote, that this action was the equivalent of ‘an act of war.’ He then started recalling Israeli ambassadors from the Security Council states that backed the resolution. Finally, Netanyahu said Israel would ‘not abide by it [the resolution].’ All in all, it was quite a performance. In order to put the prime minister’s outrage in context, let’s look at what, in part, the resolution actually says. … UNSC Resolution 2234 told the Israeli government that it is obliged to follow the rule of law — in this case international law.” (01/05/17)

http://www.opednews.com/articles/Netanyahu–Running-from-by-Lawrence-Davidson-International_Israel_Netanyahu-170105-467.html

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53) Sexism and zombie economics
Source: Independent Institute
by Abigail R Hall Blanco

“When I tell people about the policies I discuss in my economics principles classes, I often say it’s like the economic version of the movie Groundhog Day. Every semester we debunk popular economic fallacies. We learn that free trade creates jobs as opposed to killing them, and that the minimum wage harms low-skilled workers as opposed to helping them. These ‘economic zombies’ come back again time after time. While it’s sometimes depressing to see the same fallacious thinking over and over, I don’t consider our class discussions a Sisyphean exercise. As any teacher knows, students often need to be exposed to an idea several times before it ‘sticks.'” (01/04/17)

http://blog.independent.org/2017/01/04/sexism-and-zombie-economics/

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54) Think before sanctioning Russia
Source: The American Conservative
by Daniel R DePetris

“Between the cyberattacks it allegedly directed, its continued military support for the Assad regime in Syria, its deployment of nuclear-capable missiles on NATO’s eastern border, and its obstruction in the UN Security Council, Russia has gotten a lot of people in Washington angry — and justifiably so. It is a certainty that once the new administration is settled in and the new Congress gets down to business, sanctions bills targeting Moscow’s economy will be introduced and debated. They will likely pass. An important question, however, is whether more sanctions will help or hurt a U.S.-Russia relationship that has plunged deeper and deeper into the sewer over the past two years. For Russia hawks in Washington and Western Europe, that seems to be precisely the objective: Moscow is acting badly and making peaceful relations harder to attain, so Russia’s ties with the West ought to suffer. But retribution shouldn’t be the sole objective here.” (01/05/17)

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/think-before-sanctioning-russia/

—–

55) The coming state of fear
Source: CounterPunch
by Edmund Berger

“Despite not even being installed in office yet, the soon-to-be-leader of the United States brazenly deployed [Twitter] to carry out government contracting cronyism, call for the imprisonment of flag-burners, and get death-threats rained down upon a unionist who contradicted one of the incoming administration’s best narratives. Trump, somehow, has managed to now top all these by using Twitter to announce the advent of a new nuclear arms race — a Cold War 2.0 against, oddly enough, Vladimir Putin. Every step Trump has taken since election day has confirmed many of the worst fears of anarchists and libertarians. This latest maneuver is a continuation, for nuclear arms build-up is one of the gravest threats to the possibility of a stateless society.” (01/05/17)

http://www.counterpunch.org/2017/01/05/the-coming-state-of-fear/

***** The Sound and the Fury *****

56) The Jason Stapleton Program, 01/05/17
Source: The Jason Stapleton Program

“Alright, so I had a little rant today after destroying my phone and a little incident with a shipping company but once we got to the meat of the episode I had some really good stories to share. We start off with a discussion of the kidnapping of that young white by a few, soon to be convicted felons. It’s a terrible story that leaves me with more questions than answers. From there I hit on Obama’s recent award and his confiscation of more than 500 million acres of land. I want to dispell some myths about private land ownership and what would happen if the government didn’t provide for public lands.” [various formats] (01/05/17)

http://www.jasonstapleton.com/reuters-says-joblessness-at-43-year-low-jason-explains-why/

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57) Electric LibertyLand, episode 1
Source: Lions of Liberty

“The Lions of Liberty are welcoming 2017 with a brand new weekly podcast, Electric LibertyLand, hos[t]ed by Lions co-founder and he of ‘Rand Pauluses & Minuses’ and ‘Mr. Johnson’s Libertyhood,’ Brian McWilliams. Electric LibertyLand will take on current events, with a mix of pop culture and comedy and feature regular guests from our shows as well as a rotating cast of libertarians, comedians, pundits and the occasional man of legal mystery.” [various formats] (01/04/17)

https://lionsoflibertypodcast.podbean.com/e/electric-libertyland-episode-01/

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58) Freedom Feens Radio, 01/05/17
Source: Freedom Feens Radio

“James Weeks II, Jeremy Heisenn-word, and MWD yak about James'[s] stripping for liberty, Jeremy sends MWD some BTC on air, the Rights Brigade gets talked up, and MWD mentions his blog post about ugly paper crypto wallets and teases a discussion about Jello Biafra. In the second hour, MWD interrupts himself while filibustering about Jello and continues interrupting while James reads an article about the former Dead Kennedys front man, Jeremy explains how came down with the sickness during Monday night’s show, MWD salutes Kyle Knutson and declares that BipCoin is more punk than a coin named Punk Coin with Jello Biafra’s face as the logo, and Jeremy reads about the Nigerian bureaucrats who have the sads because their graft has been taken away.” [various formats] (01/05/17)

https://www.freedomfeens.com/?p=13525

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59) Free Talk Live, 01/04/17
Source: Free Talk Live

“Police Arrest Old Lady Running Wellness Center for Selling Cannabis :: Police IQ :: Cop Calls In :: Bitcoin Price :: Radio and the FCC and Contract :: Peace Officers and the Law :: Persons :: Global Cannabis Legalization :: States’ Rights and the Libertarian Party :: Mexican Border Check :: The Respectables :: Govt Healthcare :: Solar Panels :: Bitcoin Miners Fees Going Crazy and Watch My Bit.” [Flash audio or MP3] (01/04/17)

https://www.freetalklive.com/podcast/2017-01-04

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60) The Tom Woods Show, episode 817
Source: The Tom Woods Show

“Human Resources departments have for practical purposes become wings of the federal regime. Instead of seeking out the best employees who also happen to fit the company’s internal culture, HR departments have adopted a social work philosophy aimed at boosting particular kinds of candidates. Jeb Kinnison discusses how this came to be in his new book, Death by HR.” [various formats] (01/04/17)

http://tomwoods.com/ep-817-death-by-hr-how-affirmative-action-cripples-organizations/

*****
RATIONAL REVIEW NEWS DIGEST

Editors:
Thomas L. Knapp
R. Lee Wrights
Steve Trinward

Editor Emeritus:
Mary Lou Seymour
*****