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

Volume XVI, Issue #3,960
Wednesday, April 25th, 2018
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In the News:

1) CA: Calexit gets go-ahead to start collecting signatures
2) Facebook releases long-secret rules on how it polices the service
3) NY: ICE thugs abduct 225
4) SCOTUS upholds legality of patent review process
5) TN: Judge revokes bond for Nashville shooting suspect after public outcry
6) CA: Social media erupts over restaurant serving “deconstructed avocado toast bowl”
7) Trump & Macron call for “new” nuclear deal with Iran
8) Record concentration of microplastics found in Arctic
9) AZ: Legislators haggle over funding before teacher strike
10) Scott Pruitt wants to change how science is used for EPA regulations
11) Sanjay Gupta tells Sessions how cannabis can save lives from opioids
12) Smallville actress Allison Mack negotiating possible plea after “sex trafficking” arrest
13) $150k stolen from MyEtherWallet users in DNS server hijacking
14) Bitcoin Cash proponents prepare for the largest block size increase ever
15) US Senate postpones confirmation hearing for Jackson to head VA

Everybody Has An Opinion:

16) Fan ownership, not stadium welfare, would be best for sports fans and taxpayers
17) Tell Congress: Curb the president’s war powers
18) Who to blame for your debt
19) Yes, you can be anti-war and anti-Assad too (and you should be)
20) Just War Theory and the US attack on Syria
21) The Guardian is committing journalistic malpractice by not retracting this claim
22) Two (libertarian) reasons conservatives should oppose Trump’s wall
23) The shameful silence of the CEOs
24) British politicians declare war on knives
25) Teachers with guns
26) Incessantly repeating “the Earth is flat” doesn’t make the Earth flat
27) Why Brexit Britain should look to Turkey
28) My five favorite evil corporations
29) On cannabis, let the FDA make the decisions
30) In defense of cash
31) Mueller legislation is unconstitutional
32) An unsustainable world managed with an iron fist
33) The crony side of the Internet sales tax
34) Comey says FBI’s surveillance of MLK was “shameful” — but Comey’s FBI surveilled black activists
35) Turns out the rich will pay a bigger share of income taxes under GOP tax cuts
36) The Trump-Macron bromance: Somewhere between tragedy and farce
37) Mexico: A debate that for now, won’t change anything
38) The cowardice of covering for too-violent cops
39) Worlds apart: How neoliberalism shapes the global economy and limits the power of democracies
40) How ludicrously stupid about gender equity — Julia Pascal edition
41) Syria is a moral problem, not a legal one
42) So you want my opinion?
43) Why German-style apprenticeships are not an easy fit in the United States
44) The road to 2025, part 4 — a very bright future if we demand it
45) America’s polarization has nothing to do with ideology
46) Some lives matter (more than others)
47) The conservative creed, part 2
48) The Cuban slavery-and-freedom sandwich
49) Christian nationalism: Good for politicians, bad for America and the world
50) The state-ordered killing of young Alfie Evans

The Sound and the Fury:

51) Reason Podcast, 04/24/18
52) Scott Adams Says, 04/24/18
53) Ron Paul Liberty Report, 04/24/18
54) The Libertarian Angle, 04/24/18
55) Liberty Chronicles Podcast, episode 53
56) Free Talk Live, 04/23/18
57) One Free Family, episode 14
58) Five Minutes Five Issues, episode 104
59) Lions of Liberty Podcast, episode 344
60) The Tom Woods Show, episode 1140

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

1) CA: Calexit gets go-ahead to start collecting signatures
Source: Fox News

“Advocates who want California to secede from the rest of the United States were given the green light Monday to begin collecting signatures for their initiative. California’s Secretary of State Alex Padilla announced the ballot proposal had been cleared. The latest measure would ask voters in 2020 to decide whether to open up a secession discussion. If passed, a second election would be held a year later asking voters to affirm the decision and become an independent country. Advocates have until mid-October to gather 365,880 signatures of registered voters to get it on the ballot. Marcus Ruiz Evans and Louis J. Marinelli, co-founders of the group Yes California, said the second vote would show that Californians are serious about secession and would strengthen the case for foreign governments to recognize the state’s independence.” [editor’s note: I find myself musing over the effect this would have on the other 49, beginning with the Electoral College (or the popular vote) never again having a Democratic majority for president (do the math) – SAT] [additional editor’s note: Sort of a gerrymander effect if Steve is right … but his math doesn’t account for some states changing parties from election to election – TLK] (04/24/18)

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/04/24/calexit-gets-go-ahead-to-start-collecting-signatures.html

—–

2) Facebook releases long-secret rules on how it polices the service
Source: Reuters

“Facebook Inc on Tuesday released a rule book for the types of posts it allows on its social network, giving far more detail than ever before on what is permitted on subjects ranging from drug use and sex work to bullying, hate speech and inciting violence. Facebook for years has had ‘community standards’ for what people can post. But only a relatively brief and general version was publicly available, while it had a far more detailed internal document to decide when individual posts or accounts should be removed. Now, the company is providing the longer document on its website to clear up confusion and be more open about its operations, said Monika Bickert, Facebook’s vice president of product policy and counter-terrorism.” (04/24/18)

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-facebook-abuse/facebook-releases-long-secret-rules-on-how-it-polices-the-service-idUSKBN1HV0VR

—–

3) NY: ICE thugs abduct 225
Source: New York Daily News

“Federal immigration officials [abducted] 225 people in a sweeping six-day raid in the five boroughs and surrounding counties, officials said. Operation Keep Safe, as the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency called it, netted 163 people in the city between April 9 through April 14 — 45 of whom had no outstanding criminal issue. ICE officials said that 180 of those [abducted] were convicted criminals or had criminal charges pending against them, but refused to release their names. Those people now face deportation. The feds groused that the city refused to cooperate in the [abductions], claiming that it only increases the amount of people [abducted] who pose no public safety threat.” (04/24/18)

http://beta.nydailynews.com/new-york/ice-busts-225-people-sweeping-six-day-raid-new-york-article-1.3950760

—–

4) SCOTUS upholds legality of patent review process
Source: Reuters

“The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday gave its stamp of approval to a government review process prized by high technology companies as an easy and cheap way to combat ‘patent trolls’ and others that bring patent infringement lawsuits. The justices ruled 7-2 that a type of in-house patent review at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office does not violate a defendant’s right under the U.S. Constitution to have a case adjudicated by a federal court and jury. The court ruled against Oil States International Inc (OIS.N), a Houston-based oilfield services company that had challenged the legality of the process, called inter partes review (IPR). Justices John Roberts and Neil Gorsuch dissented from the decision authored by fellow conservative Justice Clarence Thomas.” (04/24/18)

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-court-patent/u-s-supreme-court-upholds-legality-of-patent-review-process-idUSKBN1HV1VF

—–

5) TN: Judge revokes bond for Nashville shooting suspect after public outcry
Source: Raw Story

“A Tennessee judge on Tuesday revoked a $2 million bond set for the man accused of opening fire at a Nashville-area Waffle House restaurant, killing four people, while new details emerged of the suspect’s struggles with paranoia and delusions. Davidson County Judge Michael Mondelli did not give a reason for overturning the bond order issued by a night magistrate following the arrest of Travis Reinking, but his decision followed a public outcry over the possibility that the suspect could potentially be freed from jail. The Nashville District Attorney’s office was ‘inundated with calls’ from angry members of the public saying the shooting rampage suspect should not be released under any circumstances, spokesman Steve Hayslip said.” [editor’s note: The purpose of bond is to ensure appearance at trial, not to meet the standards of “public outcry” – TLK] (04/24/18)

https://www.rawstory.com/2018/04/judge-revokes-bond-nashville-shooting-suspect-public-outcry

—–

6) CA: Social media erupts over restaurant serving “deconstructed avocado toast bowl”
Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“A Venice Beach restaurant’s attempt to lure the hipster crowd with a dish melding together multiple food trends has backfired. The Twitterverse is laughing at the eatery for calling what appears to be a basic salad a ‘deconstructed avocado toast bowl.’ San Francisco tech journalist Kara Swisher spotted a photo and description of the menu item at the unnamed restaurant and snapped a photo for Twitter. ‘Ok, now California trends are just f—- with me,’ she wrote. Social media users were quick to point out that the recipe for avocado toast is basic (avocado, bread and salt) and doesn’t warrant ‘deconstruction.’” (04/24/18)

https://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Kara-Swisher-deconstructed-avocado-toast-bowl-12861391.php

—–

7) Trump & Macron call for “new” nuclear deal with Iran
Source: Raw Story

“US President Donald Trump and French counterpart Emmanuel Macron called for a ‘new’ deal with Iran Tuesday, looking beyond divisions over a landmark nuclear accord that now hangs in the balance. Trump pilloried a three-year old agreement designed to curb Iran’s nuclear program as ‘insane’ and ‘ridiculous,’ despite European pleas for him not to walk away from the accord. Instead, Trump eyed a ‘grand bargain’ that would also limit Iran’s ballistic missile program and support for militant groups across the Middle East. ‘I think we will have a great shot at doing a much bigger, maybe, deal,’ said Trump, stressing that any new accord would have to be built on ;solid foundations.’ … ‘They should have made a deal that covered Yemen, that covered Syria, that covered other parts of the Middle East,’ said Trump.” (04/24/18)

https://www.rawstory.com/2018/04/trump-macron-call-new-nuclear-deal-iran

—–

8) Record concentration of microplastics found in Arctic
Source: BBC News [UK state media]

“Record levels of microplastics have been found trapped inside sea ice floating in the Arctic. Ice cores gathered across the Arctic Ocean reveal microplastics at concentrations two to three times higher than previously recorded. As sea ice melts with climate change, the plastic will be released back into the water, with unknown effects on wildlife, say German scientists. Traces of 17 different types of plastic were found in frozen seawater. Microplastics are tiny plastic pieces under five millimetres long. They can be eaten by filter-feeding animals and passed up the food chain. A considerable amount of microplastic is released directly into the ocean by the gradual breakdown of larger pieces of plastic. But microplastics can also enter the sea from health and beauty products, washing synthetic textiles or abrasion of car tyres.” (04/24/18)

http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-43879389

—–

9) AZ: Legislators haggle over funding before teacher strike
Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“Arizona policymakers have yet to agree how to increase teacher pay or education funding ahead of a first-ever statewide walkout this week, prompting calls from Democrats and even one Republican to generate new tax revenue in the conservative state. Republicans who control the state Legislature have yet to fully back Gov. Doug Ducey’s plan for a 20 percent teacher raise, which would cost $650 million by 2020. Many have shared concerns about the rosy revenue projections Ducey is using to cover the increase. Teachers have protested for weeks and took a vote on whether to launch the first statewide strike after Ducey unveiled his plan, saying they’re concerned it doesn’t increase funding for classrooms and students. With Ducey and legislative leaders meeting behind closed doors to negotiate a deal, Republican state Rep. Noel Campbell offered a plan for a sales tax increase. He said the three-year boost of 1 percent would generate $1 billion annually.” (04/24/18)

https://www.sfgate.com/news/education/article/Arizona-lawmakers-haggle-over-funding-before-12861716.php

—–

10) Scott Pruitt wants to change how science is used for EPA regulations
Source: USA Today

“In a move that could fundamentally reshape the way science supports environmental regulation, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt announced Tuesday he wants the agency to rely only on studies that are fully transparent. ‘The era of secret science at EPA is coming to an end,’ Pruitt said. ‘The ability to test, authenticate, and reproduce scientific findings is vital for the integrity of rulemaking process. Americans deserve to assess the legitimacy of the science underpinning EPA decisions that may impact their lives.’ The proposal was immediately denounced by environmental activists, public health advocates and Democratic lawmakers as a cynical and dangerous maneuver to slash long-established public health protections because much of the data behind anti-pollution rules are individual health records that are privately protected. Pruitt has earned the unabating scorn of environmentalists and public health advocacy groups (and praise from industry) for the aggressive manner in which he is trying to undo a number of Obama-era regulations addressing water quality, clean air and climate change.” (04/24/18)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2018/04/24/scott-pruitt-wants-change-how-science-used-epa-regulations/547443002

—–

11) Sanjay Gupta tells Sessions how cannabis can save lives from opioids
Source: Smell the Truth

“Sanjay Gupta hopes he can change Jeff Sessions’ mind about marijuana. Gupta has written an open letter to the current Attorney General about the relationship between cannabis and opioids, just days before the premiere of CNN’s special report, Weed 4: Pot Versus Pills. ‘Not only can cannabis work for a variety of conditions such as epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and pain, sometimes, it is the only thing that works,’ Gupta said. ‘I changed my mind, and I am certain you can, as well.’ Sessions holds a long history of opposing cannabis for both recreational and medicinal use. Long before recent comments comparing marijuana to heroin, Sessions also supported death sentences for drug dealers while working as Alabama’s attorney general over 20 years ago. However, Gupta himself was also once against marijuana legalization and medical use in general.” (04/24/18)

https://blog.sfgate.com/smellthetruth/2018/04/24/sanjay-gupta-tells-jeff-sessions-how-marijuana-can-save-lives-from-opioids

—–

12) Smallville actress Allison Mack negotiating possible plea after “sex trafficking” arrest
Source: People

“Actress Allison Mack is working out a possible plea following her Friday arrest on sex-trafficking charges in connection with Nxivm, a controversial self-help group and alleged ‘cult’ based in New York, PEOPLE learns. Mack, 35, and federal prosecutors disclosed their pending plea negotiations in a joint petition filed Friday, asking the court to exclude the next several days from the larger period of time under which Mack’s speedy trial must begin. … Mack faces three federal charges in connection with Nxivm, whose co-founder Keith Raniere was arrested in Mexico in March on the same three accusations. Both are accused of sex trafficking, sex trafficking conspiracy and forced labor conspiracy for their alleged roles in running a secretive sub-group within Nxivm involving ‘masters’ and ‘slaves.’” [editor’s note: I’ll be interested in whether or not the prosecution shows any evidence of actual coercion; I looked into Nxivm some time back and tentatively concluded that there didn’t seem to be much going on there other than in-group peer pressure – TLK] (04/24/18)

http://people.com/crime/allison-mack-plea-deal-sex-cult-nxivm-arrest/

—–

13) $150k stolen from MyEtherWallet users in DNS server hijacking
Source: CoinDesk

“Users of MyEtherWallet, a web app for storing and sending ether and ethereum-based tokens, experienced an attack Tuesday that saw users of the service lose around $152,000 worth of ether. The company was quick to alert users to the danger, tweeting a warning at 7:29 a.m. EDT, within 15 minutes of when the hack began …. Micky Socaci, lead developer at BlockBits.io, explained the attack in a post to the ethereum subreddit. ‘Do not use myetherwallet.com if you’re using Google Public DNS (8.8.8.8 / 8.8.4.4) at this moment,’ he wrote, adding: ‘It seems these DNS servers are resolving the domain to a bad server that CAN steal your keys!’ His explanation fits with MyEtherWallet’s assertion that the attack was not on their side. Domain Name System (DNS) servers resolve website URLs to the appropriate IP addresses.” (04/24/18)

https://www.coindesk.com/150k-stolen-myetherwallet-users-dns-server-hijacking/

—–

14) Bitcoin Cash proponents prepare for the largest block size increase ever
Source: Bitcoin.com

“In a little more than three weeks time the Bitcoin (BCH) network will hard fork by upgrading its block size to 32MB and incorporate additional functionalities to the protocol. Currently, the entire community is steadily preparing for the consensus change as development teams release new code, while users and infrastructure providers upgrade their full node implementations.” (03/24/18)

https://news.bitcoin.com/bitcoin-cash-proponents-prepare-for-the-largest-block-size-increase-ever/

—–

15) US Senate postpones confirmation hearing for Jackson to head VA
Source: Bangor Daily News

“Senate lawmakers have postponed the confirmation hearing for Ronny Jackson, President Donald Trump’s nominee to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs, after top Republicans and Democrats raised concerns about his qualifications and oversight of the White House medical staff, White House and other administration officials were told Monday. The development came just two days before Jackson, the White House physician, was scheduled to testify before the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs and threw what was looking to be a difficult confirmation process into further jeopardy. In addition to Jackson’s lack of management experience, the former combat surgeon had come under fire for his glowing appraisal of Trump’s health following his annual physical in January. Jackson said then that the president might live to the age of 200 with a healthier diet. In recent days, fresh concerns arose about Jackson’s management of the White House medical office, said the officials, who declined to provide details.” (04/24/14)

http://bangordailynews.com/2018/04/24/national-politics/senate-to-postpone-confirmation-hearing-for-jackson-to-head-va/

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

16) Fan ownership, not stadium welfare, would be best for sports fans and taxpayers
Source: Heartland Institute
by Jesse Hathaway

“Elected officials often justify using taxpayer money to pay for the construction or renovation of sports stadiums by arguing it helps to create local economic growth. In reality, corporate welfare is a losing proposition for the very people elected officials claim to be helping: the taxpayers. … Instead of greasing the palms of lawmakers seeking a handout, sports teams should be emulating the taxpayer-friendly model used by a National Football League team with an extensive history of success and a very strong fan base: the Green Bay Packers. Unlike most other top-level professional sports teams, the Packers are owned by the fans themselves.” (04/24/18)

http://blog.heartland.org/2018/04/fan-ownership-not-stadium-welfare-would-be-best-for-sports-fans-and-taxpayers/

—–

17) Tell Congress: Curb the president’s war powers
Source: Our Future
by Robert Borosage

“This week, the Senate will decide whether to confirm CIA Director Mike Pompeo as Secretary of State. Pompeo is a key figure in Trump’s new war cabinet, along with National Security Advisor John Bolton and Gina Haspel, who he wants to take Pompeo’s place the CIA. The Senate is also likely to move towards a new Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUFM), which grants congressional authority to expand the global war on terror. What remains to be seen is whether Congress will finally curb presidential war making. This president, like his predecessors, claims the right to make war unilaterally, unrestrained by international law or the Constitution. … This attack on Syria was an open violation of international law and the United Nations Charter, the centerpiece of the ‘rules-based’ order the U.S. claims to uphold. This Charter prohibits ‘the threat or use of force’ against a sovereign nation, unless the attack is authorized by the U.N. Security Council, an act of self-defense, or consented to by the sovereign government. None of these apply here.” (04/24/18)

https://ourfuture.org/20180424/tell-congress-curb-the-presidents-war-powers

—–

18) Who to blame for your debt
Source: Freeman’s Perspective
by Paul Rosenberg

“The most obvious target for blame is the person who signed for it. And while there’s certainly a good deal of truth to that, it’s not quite that simple. So, yes, if you’re in debt, you did bring it upon yourself, and you could have done better. So, before I begin to excuse you, take that to heart. We’ve all made mistakes (Lord knows I have), and this one was yours. Don’t defend your error; learn from it. And don’t do it again. That Said … The truth is that the people of the West (and of the US in particular) have been manipulated into debt. The forces arrayed against them are a virtual armada of undue influence. And so we’ll go through the largest of them one at a time.” (04/24/18)

https://www.freemansperspective.com/who-to-blame-for-your-debt/

—–

19) Yes, you can be anti-war and anti-Assad too (and you should be)
Source: OpEdNews
by Charles Pierson

“I believe that the US should immediately end its bombing of Syria and withdraw all of its 2000+ troops. I also believe that Syrian president Bashar al-Assad is a dictator and torturer responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Syrians. There is no contradiction between these two beliefs. Not everyone would agree. The Workers World Party, the Party for Socialism and Liberation, International ANSWER, and the Freedom Road Socialist Organization are just a few of the groups on the left that contend that it is impossible to be antiwar and anti-Assad. Assad is good because he is opposed by the capitalist, racist, imperialist US. Oppose Assad and you support the US, no matter how loudly you declare that you oppose both Assad and the US.” (04/24/18)

https://www.opednews.com/articles/Yes-You-Can-Be-Antiwar-an-by-Charles-Pierson-Antiwar_Imperialism_Intervention_Revolution-180424-125.html

—–

20) Just War Theory and the US attack on Syria
Source: Ludwig von Mises Institute
by David Gordon

“On April 13, the United States launched a missile attack on Syria, in response to an alleged chemical attack using chlorine gas by the Syrian government on the town of Douma, Was this attack justified? One way to answer this question appeals to the ‘just war’ tradition, developed by Augustine and Thomas Aquinas, and further refined by Vitoria, Suarez, Hugo Grotius, and other thinkers. The criteria for a just war are stringent, and the missile attack violates a number of them.” (04/24/18)

https://mises.org/wire/just-war-theory-and-us-attack-syria

—–

21) The Guardian is committing journalistic malpractice by not retracting this claim
Source: Medium
by Caitlin Johnstone

“On the 19th of April, The Guardian published an article making the positive assertion that two Twitter accounts were run not by real people, but by automated bot software based in Russia. Since the article was published, the owners of both accounts have stepped forward, on video, demonstrating in no uncertain terms that they are in fact real human beings and not software programs. As of this writing, days later, there has been neither retraction nor correction of the false claims made by The Guardian, and the article remains as published.” (04/24/18)

—–

22) Two (libertarian) reasons conservatives should oppose Trump’s wall
Source: Center for a Stateless Society
by Eric Fleischmann

“As the debate around immigration has escalated in the United States, one of the focal points — and a cornerstone of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign — has been the proposed wall along the nation’s southern border. As a libertarian I believe in the free-market, and a truly free-market entails movement of people, not simply products and ideas. However, putting aside the arguments regarding immigration itself, there are sound reasons for a united libertarian-conservative opposition to a southern border wall, specifically those of cost and property rights.” (04/24/18)

https://c4ss.org/content/50720

—–

23) The shameful silence of the CEOs
Source: The American Prospect
by Robert Reich

“Congressional Republicans would be more willing to stand up to Trump if their major financial backers (big business and Wall Street) had more backbone. Ever since 1971, when the then future Supreme Court justice Lewis Powell urged corporations to mobilize politically, corporate money has flooded Washington — most of it into Republican coffers. Today, big corporations and Wall Street essentially own the Republican Party. In the 2016 campaign cycle, they contributed $34 to candidates from both parties for every $1 donated by labor unions and all public interest organizations combined. They donate far more to Republicans than do extremists like the Koch brothers, and have far more influence over the GOP than does the Tea Party. Which means the CEOs of America’s largest firms have the power to constrain the most dangerous, divisive, and anti-democratic president ever to occupy the Oval Office. So why don’t they? What explains their silence?” (04/24/18)

http://prospect.org/article/shameful-silence-ceos

—–

24) British politicians declare war on knives
Source: Reason
by JD Tuccille

“It turns out that when you pass laws disarming people in an attempt to prevent violence, criminals who habitually disregard all laws don’t make exceptions for the new rules. In London, crime still thrives despite the U.K.’s tight gun controls and the British political class is now desperately turning its attention to restricting knives. A flurry of recent headlines reveal that London now has a higher murder rate than New York City, a metropolis of nearly identical population and one long considered more vulnerable to crime. … Commentators note that this may be a blip and that New York City’s murder rate for 2017 stood at more than double that for London. In fact, London’s murder rate really hasn’t risen much — instead, New York’s has dropped dramatically. But that still represents a big shift. … Having failed to disarm criminals with gun controls that they defy, British politicians are now turning their attention to implementing something new and different: knife control. Because criminals will be much more respectful of knife laws than of those targeted at firearms, I guess.” (04/24/18)

https://reason.com/archives/2018/04/24/londoners-embrace-knife-control

—–

25) Teachers with guns
Source: Town Hall
by John Stossel

“What should be done about school shootings? After the horrible shooting in Parkland, Florida, President Trump suggested that some teachers carry guns. ‘We need to let people know, you come into our schools — you’re gonna be dead.’ Anti-gun activists were horrified. But they probably didn’t know that many teachers have brought guns to work with them for years. Some teachers at the Keene Independent School District in Texas carry concealed weapons at school. ‘We know our staff and our teachers are gonna go’ defend students, Texas'[s] Keene Independent School District superintendent Ricky Stephens told me for this week’s online video. ‘Do we want them to go with a pencil or go with a pistol?’ Stephens acknowledges that an attacker might have heavier weaponry than his teachers’ handguns. ‘It’s not much, but it’s better than nothing,’ he argues. ‘If you go there with nothing, you have no chance of stopping anything.’” (04/24/18)

https://townhall.com/columnists/johnstossel/2018/04/24/teachers-with-guns-n2474145

—–

26) Incessantly repeating “the Earth is flat” doesn’t make the Earth flat
Source: Cafe Hayek
by Don Boudreaux

“Reihan Salam is right both to bemoan Uncle Sam’s fiscal profligacy and to counsel trade hawks to change their feathers into those of deficit hawks (‘A Trump Trade and Economic Doctrine,’ April 18). But the strength of his argument is compromised by flaws in his assessment of trade deficits and surpluses. Salam’s flaws are rooted in his acceptance of the administration’s presumption that so-called trade ‘imbalances’ are a problem that can and should be solved by wise government policies. Yet contrary to the administration’s belief, U.S. trade deficits are not necessarily evidence of bad policies, either here or abroad, or drags on U.S. economic growth.” (04/24/18)

http://cafehayek.com/2018/04/incessant-repeating-earth-flat-doesnt-make-earth-flat.html

—–

27) Why Brexit Britain should look to Turkey
Source: Reuters
by Paul Wallace

“In the long learning curve of Brexit a handful of countries outside the European Union have become shorthand for Britain’s options. Norway offers a continuing place in the single market for those who want the softest form of leaving the EU. Canada stands for the free-trade agreement broadly on offer from the union. Now it’s Turkey’s turn to enter the Brexit lexicon — thanks to its customs union with the bloc. Until now the Turkey option has barely surfaced. But that is set to change as Tory rebels who oppose a hard Brexit ally themselves with the opposition Labour Party in parliamentary votes. An early test will be on Thursday, when members of Parliament vote on a motion calling upon the government to make one of its negotiating objectives ‘an effective customs union’ between Britain and the EU. Though the outcome will not bind the government, it will reveal whether there is a majority in the House of Commons for crucial votes likely in May or June on amendments to Brexit-related legislation that will require the government to pursue this goal.” (04/24/18)

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-wallace-brexit-commentary/commentary-why-brexit-britain-should-look-to-turkey-idUSKBN1HV24D

—–

28) My five favorite evil corporations
Source: Foundation for Economic Education
by Ryan Ferguson

“Everyone loves to hate Uber, but there are few companies that have made the world so much better in such a short period of time. They have done significantly more to improve the world than the Red Cross, Unicef, and every other nonprofit. They have given millions of people around the world a means to make money and crushed corrupt and exploitative Taxi monopolies. The public loves Lyft, their feel-good approach, their willingness to comply with regulations, and lack of effective surge pricing, but Lyft can only be the good guy because Uber fought the corrupt governments to establish ride sharing in cities around the world.” (04/24/18)

https://fee.org/articles/my-5-favorite-evil-corporations/

—–

29) On cannabis, let the FDA make the decisions
Source: Fox News Forum
by Paul J Larkin Jr.

“Whether and how to regulate marijuana use has been in the news again recently. Currently, federal laws classify marijuana as a ‘Schedule I’ (unhelpful and dangerous) drug. This means that physicians cannot prescribe marijuana for therapeutic or recreational purposes. Since 1996, however, numerous states have revised their state criminal laws to permit marijuana to be sold and used for medical purposes. Some of these states (and the District of Columbia) even allow marijuana to be sold for recreational use by adults. And Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., recently announced that he had reached a deal with President Trump to modify the federal criminal code regarding marijuana. In addition, Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y, said he will introduce legislation to leave it up to the states to decide whether to prohibit the distribution of marijuana.” (04/24/18)

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2018/04/24/on-marijuana-let-food-and-drug-administration-make-decisions.html

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30) In defense of cash
Source: Cato Institute
by William J Luther

“The case for cash presumes that we should be free to go about our lives so long as our actions do not harm others. It maintains that governments are not entitled to the intimate details of people’s lives. Whether they realize it or not, Rogoff and other demonetization advocates hold a progressive view of government. They think that existing laws and regulations have been rationally constructed by enlightened experts or are the product of an enlightened electorate. Adjust the requisite policy levers and one can fine-tune the social system. Demonetization advocates are not utopian, to be sure. They understand that the world is complicated, that bad rules are occasionally adopted and once-good rules can persist long after their usefulness ends. But that just means a little more adjusting is in order. Eliminating cash, in their view, patches the hole in an otherwise well-designed system.” (04/24/18)

https://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/defense-cash

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31) Mueller legislation is unconstitutional
Source: USA Today
by US Senator Mike Lee (R-UT)

“This week, the Senate Judiciary Committee will consider legislation providing that any special counsel appointed by the Justice Department may be fired only for good cause and allowing a special counsel who has been fired to challenge the decision in court. The proposal is politically salient because many fear the president will fire Robert Mueller. To be clear, the president should allow Mueller to finish his investigation into Russia’s election interference in a timely fashion. But this legislation is unconstitutional, and political expedience can never trump the Constitution. Supporters of the legislation argue it is necessary to ensure no one is above the law, but the Constitution is the highest law of the land, and the Constitution provides that only the president can exercise executive power. Because the power to prosecute is the quintessential executive authority, any congressional attempt to direct prosecutions (including by limiting the president’s power to fire a prosecutor) is an unconstitutional breach in the separation of powers.” (04/24/18)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2018/04/24/mueller-legislation-unconstitutional-mike-lee-editorials-debates/34211305

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32) An unsustainable world managed with an iron fist
Source: TomDispatch
by Todd Miller

“Recently, President Trump declared war on undocumented immigrants heading for the southern border — you know, all those marauding ‘rapists’ and their pals — and, as seems appropriate in any ‘war,’ he promptly ordered the mobilization of the National Guard. Troops from its ranks were to be dispatched border-wards permanently, or at least until his Great Wall could be funded and built by someone or other. … Up to 4,000 National Guard troops are officially to take on the task, except that so far only a scattered 900 or so from the states of Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona have actually made it to the border — with another 400 promised by California Governor Jerry Brown, as long as they fulfill none of the anti-immigrant duties that Trump has in mind for them. Are you with me so far? … Think of this as Syria in the Southwest. In response to presidential tweets and boasts, the U.S. military is searching for a way to visually fulfill his promises — oh, those missiles sent into Syria, more than twice as many as the last time! — while actually doing as little as humanly possible to achieve his goals.” (04/24/18)

http://www.tomdispatch.com/post/176414/tomgram%3A_todd_miller%2C_an_unsustainable_world_managed_with_an_iron_fist

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33) The crony side of the Internet sales tax
Source: The American Spectator
by Andrew Wilford

“One of the most pervasive myths in politics is that all big businesses want government to be smaller. Policymakers and commentators often misinterpret big business support for regulation as being the ultimate vindication of their beliefs — the need for regulation is so apparent, they say, that even those harmed by it agree that it is necessary! Yet while it is true that large businesses generally want lower taxes, they sometimes lobby for regulation because regulation often represents a greater burden for smaller businesses than for larger ones. The greater access and influence that larger businesses enjoy enables them to set the rules that smaller businesses have to play by. This is the case with big retailers’ support for misguided internet sales tax laws.” (04/24/18)

https://spectator.org/__trashed/

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34) Comey says FBI’s surveillance of MLK was “shameful” — but Comey’s FBI surveilled black activists
Source: The Intercept
by Jeanne Theoharis

“In his new book, James Comey describes his deep admiration for Martin Luther King Jr. and decries the FBI’s treatment of him as ‘a dark chapter in the Bureau’s history.’ Shortly after he became FBI director in 2013, Comey instructed the entire workforce of the FBI to read King’s ‘Letter from a Birmingham Jail,’ one of Comey’s favorite writings. He created a curriculum for new agents to ‘remember how well-meaning folks lost their way,’ and introduced an exercise for the new recruits to visit the King memorial, pick one of the quotes inscribed on the marble wall, and write an essay ‘about the intersections of that quotation and the FBI’s values.’ On his desk at the bureau, Comey kept a copy of the letter authorizing the wall-to-wall surveillance of King as a reminder of this ‘shameful’ history. Despite this professed appreciation for King and his aim to right the wrongs of the bureau’s past, Comey presided over many of the same racialized tactics and assumptions in his tenure as FBI director …” (04/24/18)

https://theintercept.com/2018/04/24/james-comey-mlk-martin-luther-king-surveillance-muslims/

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35) Turns out the rich will pay a bigger share of income taxes under GOP tax cuts
Source: Investors Business Daily
by staff

“The most frequently repeated complaint about the Republican tax cuts is that they are a massive ‘giveaway’ to the rich. New evidence shows that this claim, like almost every other attack on the tax bill, is false. In the run-up to the passage of the tax reform plan, which President Trump signed into law on Dec. 22, critics attacked it on several fronts. They said there was no way the tax cuts would spur extra economic or job growth. But after the tax cuts went into effect, several economists sharply increased their growth forecasts for 2018. They said the plan would raise taxes on the middle class. Nancy Pelosi claimed as recently as this month that the tax bill will boost taxes on ’86 million middle-class families.’ Even the Washington Post called her out for this falsehood. They said none of the benefits of the corporate tax cuts would ‘trickle down’ to workers. That would be news to the more than 4 million workers who’ve received bonuses, wages, or improved benefits as a direct result of these cuts.” (04/24/18)

https://www.investors.com/politics/editorials/republican-tax-cuts-fairness-rich-share-paid

—–

36) The Trump-Macron bromance: Somewhere between tragedy and farce
Source: The Daily Beast
by Erin Zaleski

“On Monday evening, the French watched reports of President Emmanuel Macron’s state visit to Washington as if spectators at the Comedie Francaise, unsure whether the elaborately choreographed new play would veer toward tragedy or farce. As the first ladies in spike heels teetered on the lawn during a White House tree planting, and the burly, clownish President Donald Trump received the slight, elegant Macron with kisses, the spectacle both amazed and amused. The big unanswerable question is how it will end –– but since the beginning this ‘bromance’ (a term Macron aides keep trying to shoot down) has been a curious drama.” (04/24/18)

https://www.thedailybeast.com/the-trump-macron-bromance-somewhere-between-tragedy-and-farce

—–

37) Mexico: A debate that for now, won’t change anything
Source: PanAm Post
by Victor H Becerra

“This Sunday Mexicans saw the first of three debates required by electoral law between the presidential candidates. It was a debate with little space for discussion, improvisation, or surprise, clearly more concerned with protecting party interests than the right of citizens to an informed choice, displaying the candidates’ contrasts. It was, to put it graphically, like a football match played in a stadium without an audience, without emotion or urgency. … Realistically, the interest in this debate was the potential to watch an electorally serious setback for the leader in the polls, Lopez Obrador, or else, a clear boost for either of the two candidates remaining major candidates, Jose Antonio Meade and Ricardo Anaya. Neither of those possibilities took place, at least for now.” (04/24/18)

https://panampost.com/editor/2018/04/24/mexico-a-debate-that-for-now-wont-change-anything/

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38) The cowardice of covering for too-violent cops
Source: The Atlantic
by Conor Friedersdorf

“When last I explored the subject in ‘The Kind of Courage America Demands of Its Police,’ President Trump was calling a deputy in Broward County, Florida, a coward for staying outside a high-school building even as an active shooter killed inside. Yet the label of ‘coward’ is almost never deployed when an excessively jittery police officer needlessly shoots an unarmed person, I noticed, even though nearly all who do so say, ‘I feared for my life.’ Would police officers in the U.S. still kill so many more people than officers in any other wealthy country if we valued the courage it can take to refrain from using lethal force as much as we value the courage to run into danger?” (04/24/18)

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2018/04/the-cowardice-of-covering-for-too-violent-cops/557603/

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39) Worlds apart: How neoliberalism shapes the global economy and limits the power of democracies
Source: The New Republic
by Patrick Iber

“It is difficult to consider the state of the world in 2018 and not feel a sense of vertigo. Humanity has greater capacity for production than it has ever had before, and simultaneously, the ability to destroy the world many times over. The products we rely on (whether for food, fuel or communication) are woven together in supply chains that have the complexity of medieval tapestries. Some people can make unimaginable fortunes in microseconds, while others still scratch a living out of the dry ground. Eight men, it is calculated, hold as much wealth as the poorest half of the planet: 3.6 billion people. A global system underlies this vastly unequal distribution of wealth and power. But what to call this system? What is its name? It is not enough to call it capitalism, since capitalism has been around for hundreds of years and transforms itself with great dexterity.” (04/23/18)

https://newrepublic.com/article/147810/worlds-apart-neoliberalism-shapes-global-economy

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40) How ludicrously stupid about gender equity — Julia Pascal edition
Source: Continental Telegraph
by Tim Worstall

“There are indeed — at least historically there have been — entirely fair and reasonable complaints about gender equity. It’s perhaps a little less so these days — we all in the rich world are the best off human beings that have ever existed. And more especially, women in today’s rich countries are the most privileged females who have ever existed. Both in any absolute terms and also in relation to the men in the society surrounding them. Sure, this doesn’t mean things are perfect but we’re sweating the details now, if even that. Then there are people like Julia Pascal who wants to tell us all how irredeemably sexist the performing arts are.” (04/24/18)

http://www.continentaltelegraph.com/2018/04/24/how-ludicrously-stupid-about-gender-equity-julia-pascal-edition/

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41) Syria is a moral problem, not a legal one
Source: spiked
by Luke Gittos

“Appealing to international law is presented as a way of challenging military interventionism, yet it is just as often done to justify such intervention. When Russia invaded the Crimea in 2014, many Western commentators called for a reaction, not for any moral or geopolitical reason, but on the basis that failing to act would set a dangerous precedent for further violations of international law. Perversely, the world came dangerously close to a huge war on the basis that avoiding war would be contrary to international law. Today, international law is just as likely to be a motor for conflict as a safeguard against it. Those who appeal to international law to solve the problems in Syria are just as morally confused as those they accuse of ignoring international law.” (04/24/18)

http://www.spiked-online.com/newsite/article/luke-gittos-syria-war-legalism/

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42) So you want my opinion?
Source: EconLog
by Scott Sumner

“When people find out that I’m an economist, they often ask me for my opinion on some issue. Unfortunately, they almost always ask the wrong sorts of questions: 1. What do you think will happen to interest rates? 2. Do you think stocks are likely to fall? 3. When will the next recession occur? Economic theory suggests that economists are unable to answer these questions. Asking me to answer these questions is like asking an astronomer whether June is a good month for a Libra to start a new endeavor.” (04/24/18)

http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/2018/04/so_you_want_my.html

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43) Why German-style apprenticeships are not an easy fit in the United States
Source: The Volokh Conspiracy
by Gail Heriot

“More than half of young Germans serve at least one apprenticeship. And Germans are less likely than Americans to go to college. But because German employers provide the training, they face the same problem that early American ‘masters’ who took on apprentices had: How can you ensure that the apprentice won’t skip out on the apprenticeship? The dominant solution to the ‘runaway apprentice’ problem there is to have complicated certification requirements for many jobs. If you don’t stick it out in your apprenticeship, you won’t get your certification and you therefore won’t get a job in your chosen field. Union membership can work the same way there. If you don’t finish your apprenticeship, you don’t get into the union (and hence you don’t get a job). Americans aren’t keen on unions having that level of power. … As for licensing and certifications, there is now bipartisan agreement: We already have too many licensing and certification requirements. Most Americans don’t want more. As a result, we probably can’t hope to have the large number of apprenticeships the Germans have.” (04/24/18)

https://reason.com/volokh/2018/04/24/why-german-style-apprenticeships-are-not

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44) The road to 2025, part 4 — a very bright future if we demand it
Source: Liberty Blitzkrieg
by Michael Krieger

“If you take an honest look at the U.S. today, you won’t see Constitutional government. Politicians don’t care about it, intelligence agencies don’t care about it, and the average person doesn’t really care either. Our national evolution into the world’s dominant imperial force has transformed the Republic into a centralized superstate. Most of you already understand all this. Where things get interesting is that this centralized superstate, aka the U.S. empire, is likely to experience a serious collapse in the years ahead under the weight of excessive corruption, mismanagement and a loss of the consent of the governed. American citizens are rapidly climbing the learning curve as to how things really work and they’re not too happy. I believe such a collapse is essentially inevitable at this point, which means we should be focusing our energy on what comes next.” (04/24/18)

https://libertyblitzkrieg.com/2018/04/24/the-road-to-2025-part-4-a-very-bright-future-if-we-demand-it/

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45) America’s polarization has nothing to do with ideology
Source: The American Conservative
by George Hawley

“Although a seemingly simple concept, the issue of polarization has long frustrated political scientists. A superficial examination of the American political scene suggests an intensely polarized electorate, divided along partisan and ideological lines. Watching cable news, we see competing camps that have few points of agreement, with anger the dominant emotion. Yet a dive into public opinion on questions of policy tells a different story.” (04/24/18)

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/americas-polarization-has-nothing-to-do-with-ideology/

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46) Some lives matter (more than others)
Source: Antiwar.com
by Major Danny Sjursen, US Army

“Sure, chemical weapons are banned under most international laws. Then again, so are the white phosphorous and cluster munitions the US military has used as a matter of course in the ongoing ‘war on terror.’ By no means did the Syrian civilians in Douma deserve their grisly fate. Still, one wonders why the West — and President Trump — are up-in-arms about some 40 dead Syrians in a Damascus suburb, but ignore thousands of other civilian deaths unfolding daily in the Mideast region? Alleged chemical attacks that kill dozens are worthy of a swift military response, the daily demise of hundreds of other — Yemeni, Afghan, Libyan, or Palestinian — civilians warrant, apparently, a collective shrug of the shoulders.” (04/24/18)

https://original.antiwar.com/danny_sjursen/2018/04/23/some-lives-matter-more-than-others/

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47) The conservative creed, part 2
Source: Future of Freedom Foundation
by Jacob G Hornberger

“We, the conservatives of America, wholeheartedly embrace our favorite mantra, ‘free enterprise, private property, and limited government,’ except for the following 50 items …” (04/24/18)

https://www.fff.org/2018/04/24/conservative-creed-part-2/

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48) The Cuban slavery-and-freedom sandwich
Source: Common Sense
by Paul Jacob

“How easy is it to mix freedom with just the right amount of slavery? New York Times reporter Azam Ahmed regards the attempt to mingle political opposites as noble or at least understandable. He doesn’t call Cuban Communism and its destructive effects ‘bad’ — it’s a ‘unique tapestry.’ He wonders, instead, to what extent the Cuban government can fine-tune the contradiction.” (04/24/18)

http://thisiscommonsense.com/2018/04/24/the-cuban-slavery-and-freedom-sandwich/

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49) Christian nationalism: Good for politicians, bad for America and the world
Source: CounterPunch
by Peter Montgomery

“White evangelical Christians voted overwhelmingly for Donald Trump, despite his well-documented character flaws and moral failings. It turns out that their support wasn’t just about hatred of Hillary Clinton or Trump’s promise to give them the Supreme Court of their dreams. A new study points to another more disturbing motivating force: Christian nationalism.” (04/24/18)

https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/04/24/christian-nationalism-good-for-politicians-bad-for-america-and-the-world/

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50) The state-ordered killing of young Alfie Evans
Source: National Review
by John O’Sullivan

“When I was nine years old, I spent almost a year of my brief life in Alder Hey hospital, Liverpool, being cured of tuberculosis. The care and treatment I got from the doctors, nurses, and stern matrons of those days was of the highest quality then available, and I’m grateful for it still. Not only did it cure me, but it meant I never developed a fear of hospitals that afflicts some people. My time in hospital also gave me a lifelong addiction to reading. So I’ve paid some attention to the case of Alfie Evans, the little boy whose brain has been largely destroyed by a mysterious illness and who as a result is dependent for his continued life on feeding and breathing machines in the same hospital. That life seems likely to end in the next few days because a succession of British and European courts has refused to allow his parents to remove him from Alder Hey to receive further treatment either at home or in an Italian hospital that would continue treating him.” (04/23/18)

https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/the-state-ordered-killing-of-young-alfie-evans/

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

51) Reason Podcast, 04/24/18
Source: Reason

“‘You go into family court and it’s the same experience as at the DMV, only there are children’s lives on the line,’ says Naomi Schaefer Riley in today’s Reason Podcast. Riley is a visiting scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, where she studies the foster system, adoption, and religious liberty. In today’s podcast, we talk about parenting, policy, and what happens when the state gets entangled in the business of raising children.” [various formats] (04/24/18)

https://reason.com/blog/2018/04/24/naomi-riley-podcast

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52) Scott Adams Says, 04/24/18
Source: Scott Adams Says

“Scott Adams clears away the fog of fake news about himself using nothing but words and coffee.” [Flash video] (04/24/18)

https://www.periscope.tv/ScottAdamsSays/1nAKERyNrgvGL

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53) Ron Paul Liberty Report, 04/24/18
Source: Ron Paul Liberty Report

“Will Russia deliver a more modern air defense system to Syria after the US-led attack earlier this month? Will NATO be weakened by increased US support for the Kurds? Trump’s bombing run over Syria has produced some unintended consequences and facts on the ground.” [Flash video] (04/24/18)

http://www.ronpaullibertyreport.com/archives/unintended-consequences-of-trumps-syria-attack

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54) The Libertarian Angle, 04/24/18
Source: Future of Freedom Foundation

“What works better — socialism or the free market? Jacob Hornberger and Richard Ebeling apply libertarian principles to Social Security.” [various formats] (04/24/18)

https://www.fff.org/explore-freedom/article/libertarian-angle-socialism-social-security-video/

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55) Liberty Chronicles Podcast, episode 53
Source: Libertarianism.org

“Mike Douma and Phil Magness join us to discuss their new book What is Classical Liberal History?” [various formats] (04/24/18)

https://www.libertarianism.org/media/liberty-chronicles/what-is-classical-liberal-history-mike-douma-phil-magness

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56) Free Talk Live, 04/23/18
Source: Free Talk Live

“Man Runs Down Two Dozen in Van in Toronto, Killing Nine :: Guns and Suicide :: CDC Study Supports Gun Ownership :: Anypay DASH Proposal :: Bitcoin Shoppe Gets International Coverage :: Federal Reserve :: Bitcoin Cash Price Shooting Up :: Young Marriage :: Earth Day, Starvation, Regulation :: HOSTS — Ian, Mark, Melanie.” [Flash audio] (04/23/18)

https://www.freetalklive.com/podcast/2018-04-23

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57) One Free Family, episode 14
Source: Pax Libertas Productions

“Do you know what’s going on inside your toddler’s head? In this episode, James and Taylor discuss how they think, what triggers their behavior, and how you can help with your toddler’s development.” [Flash video] (04/23/18)

https://onefreefamily.com/toddler-troubles-off014/

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58) Five Minutes Five Issues, episode 104
Source: Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity

“Friends and Adversaries, Partisan War, Texas Marijuana, Syria Attack, US Marijuana.” [Flash audio or MP3] (04/23/18)

http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/april/23/five-minutes-five-issues-friends-and-adversaries-partisan-war-texas-marijuana-syria-attack-us-marijuana/

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59) Lions of Liberty Podcast, episode 344
Source: Lions of Liberty

“It’s time once again for America’s favorite libertarian drinking show, ‘Libertarians in Living Rooms Drinking Liquor!’ Marc is joined by ‘Electric Libertyland’ host Brian McWilliams, ‘Felony Friday’ host John Odermatt, and the elusive and mysterious ‘Rico’ as they toss back some adult beverages and talk some off-the-cuff liberty. They find themselves playing an impromptu game of ‘Trump or Dump’ as they discuss the latest news on peace talks between North and South Korea, the bombing of Syria, the hiring of John Bolton, James Comey and the OIG’s recommendation of charges against Andrew McCabe.” [various formats] (04/23/28)

http://lionsofliberty.com/2018/04/23/libertarians-in-living-rooms-drinking-liquor-trump-or-dump-edition/

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60) The Tom Woods Show, episode 1140
Source: The Tom Woods Show

“Patrick Newman, who recently edited a brand new Rothbard book out of the archives, joins me for a bird’s-eye overview of one of the least understood periods of American history.” [various formats] (04/23/18)

https://tomwoods.com/ep-1140-the-progressive-era-was-a-scam/

*****
RATIONAL REVIEW NEWS DIGEST

Editors:
Thomas L. Knapp
Steve Trinward

Editors Emeritus:
Mary Lou Seymour
R. Lee Wrights
*****