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

Volume XV, Issue #3,695
Monday, April 24th, 2017
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In the News:

0) Brief note
1) France: Macron, Le Pen advance to presidential runoff
2) Trump pressures Democrats on ObamaCare to get border wall deal
3) Luhansk People’s Republic: American paramedic killed by mine
4) CA: Santa Rosa woman arrested for allegedly inhaling drugs while talking with cops
5) KY: GOP school board member charged with human sex trafficking of a minor
6) VA: Navy SEAL charged in child porn, assault cases
7) UK: Corbyn says Labour government would suspend Syria airstrikes
8) American detained in North Korea
9) Aurora photographers find new night sky lights and call them Steve
10) Pope Francis notices that concentration camps have returned to Europe
11) MI: Doctor accused of mutilating genitals of young girls defends procedure as religious practice
12) Cherokee Nation: Idiot pols pursue frivolous suit against drug businesses for selling drugs
13) US home sales shoot to ten-year high
14) US Surgeon General removed from post by Trump administration, replaced by deputy
15) Researchers unearth second parchment copy of Declaration of Independence
16) Trump regime prosecutors consider vexatious/malicious prosecution of WikiLeaks heroes
17) Russia: Court bans Jehovah’s Witnesses as extremist group
18) Iran: Ahmadinejad “disqualified” from presidential election

Everybody Has An Opinion:

19) Tax reform: Two places to start
20) The new age of Ayn Rand? Ha!
21) State governments are becoming the biggest drug lords of all
22) Workplace smoking
23) The only solution to the Trumps’ conflicts of interest
24) Technology, sharing, and regulation
25) My mother taught me the basics
26) Why the US is a bigger threat than North Korea
27) Little Creep
28) Liberty criminalized in Michigan
29) Liberty butts
30) How a systems-thinking president can settle the climate science debate
31) The spy state unleashed
32) Baltasar Gracian’s aphorism #138: The art of letting things alone
33) Should US imports be taxed to subsidize exports?
34) One toke over the line with Trump and Sessions
35) A threat to Americans
36) Wag that tail, dog
37) Trump learns the reality of governance
38) The price of justice doesn’t cover the bills
39) Donald Trump: Ruling class president
40) The Non-Battle of Auburn was a true victory for liberty
41) Nixon had his “madman theory.” Trump is just a madman
42) Yes, rights are double-edged swords
43) From France to the US, why “self-made” politicians are winning
44) Accommodative monetary police is encroaching on fiscal policy
45) Decision time for Bitcoin?
46) Who will build the roads? Anarchists.
47) Polls: People don’t know Trump’s infrastructure plan is a scam
48) The fear racket

The Sound and the Fury:

49) spiked podcast, 04/23/17
50) Free Talk Live, 04/22/17
51) Felony Friday, episode 68
52) Johnny Rocket Launch Pad, episode 121
53) The Jason Stapleton Program, episode 586
54) The Tom Woods Show, episode 894
55) Cato Daily Podcast, 04/21/17
56) Foreign Policy Focus, episode 30
57) Free Thoughts Podcast, episode 184
58) The weird history of Trump’s “winter White House”

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

0) Brief note

Dear readers,

Last week, I mentioned that our brother RRND/FND editor R. Lee Wrights had been hospitalized and was home recovering. Today, I’m sorry to report that Lee is once again in the hospital. The last word I have is that he’s unconscious and in the Intensive Care Unit, but improving. Please keep Lee in your thoughts and, if you are a believer of any type, in your prayers.

Yours in liberty,
Tom Knapp

—–

1) France: Macron, Le Pen advance to presidential runoff
Source: USA Today

“Centrist independent Emmanuel Macron and far-right anti-immigration nationalist Marine Le Pen will advance to a showdown for president of France that will determine whether the nation stays the course or upends European unity and its liberal immigration policies, results of first-round voting Sunday showed. The election was a historic repudiation of major party candidates, who quickly rallied around Macron in the May 7 runoff to prevent the election of Le Pen, who wants to ban Muslim immigration and pull France out of the European Union it helped found 60 years ago. With 34% of the vote counted, France’s Interior Ministry says Le Pen is leading with 24.6% of the vote followed by Macron with 21.9%, the Associated Press reports. Le Pen said Sunday her National Front party will represent ‘the great alternative’ to the French people. Macron and Le Pen have vastly different visions for how to govern France, and of French identity.” (04/23/17)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2017/04/23/french-voters-begin-casting-ballots-in-presidential-election/100812382

—–

2) Trump pressures Democrats on ObamaCare to get border wall deal
Source: Reuters

“President Donald Trump put pressure on Democrats on Sunday as U.S. lawmakers worked to avoid a government shutdown, saying Obamacare would die without a cash infusion the White House has offered in exchange for their agreement to fund his border wall. The escalated push to get Trump’s priorities, which Democrats reject, into spending legislation could jeopardize prospects for an agreement to keep the government open. If talks fail, the government would shut down [sic] on Saturday, Trump’s 100th day in office. ‘Obamacare is in serious trouble. The Dems need big money to keep it going — otherwise it dies far sooner than anyone would have thought,’ the Republican president said in a Twitter post.” (04/23/17)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-congress-shutdown-idUSKBN17P0FH

—–

3) Luhansk People’s Republic: American paramedic killed by mine
Source: Reuters

“An American paramedic working for European security watchdog OSCE’s monitoring mission in [the Luhansk People’s Republic, which seceded in 2014 from] Ukraine was killed and two others were injured on Sunday when their vehicle struck a mine, triggering a U.S. call for a transparent, timely investigation. The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) said the killing was the first death of one of its members while on patrol in [the seceded state], where more than 700 international observers help report on a [Ukrainian invasion] that has deeply strained relations between Russia and the West. A 2015 ceasefire between Ukraine and Russian-backed separatists in [areas seceded from the] country is regularly violated, and Washington cites the conflict as a key obstacle to improved relations between Russia and the United States.” (04/23/17)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-ukraine-crisis-osce-idUSKBN17P0CZ

—–

4) CA: Santa Rosa woman arrested for allegedly inhaling drugs while talking with cops
Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“A woman was arrested after doing drugs while talking to police officers in the parking lot of a Santa Rosa hospital Saturday, police said. Police were summoned to Memorial Hospital around noon when a caller said there was a woman with a gun sitting in a car in the parking lot. Officers found the car near the emergency room entrance, and one officer began talking with the woman, identified by police as Vanessa Harlan, 36. As they spoke, the woman began doing ‘whip its’ — inhaling shots of nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas, from a canister in order to get high, police said. Harlan was removed from the car, where officers found a .45-caliber semiautomatic pistol, according to police. She was arrested for inhaling nitrous oxide with intent to get high and carrying a concealed firearm in a vehicle.” (04/23/17)

http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Santa-Rosa-woman-arrested-for-allegedly-inhaling-11092779.php

—–

5) KY: GOP school board member charged with human sex trafficking of a minor
Source: Raw Story

“A former judge now serving as a school board member in suburban Cincinnati has been charged with felony human trafficking of a minor, felony inducing a minor to engage in sex and a third count of giving alcohol to a minor. The indictment was obtained by River City News publisher Michael Monks, who described Nolan as an ‘outspoken and controversial’ political figure. Judge Tim Nolan of California, Kentucky represents District 5 on the Campbell County School Board. Yesterday afternoon he was lead into court wearing handcuffs as the ‘perp walk’ was filmed by the local CBS station. News anchor Cammy Dierking of WKRC described Judge Nolan as an ‘outspoken supporter of the local Tea Party.’ The sex trafficking allegedly occurred in August 2016 — while Judge Nolan was serving as the chair of the Donald Trump campaign in Campbell County, KY.” [editor’s note: while Raw Story chose to focus its headline on the Trump connection, it seems far more distressing that this creep was on a school board – SAT] (04/23/17)

http://www.rawstory.com/2017/04/gop-school-board-member-indicted-on-sex-trafficking-charges

—–

6) VA: Navy SEAL charged in child porn, assault cases
Source: Fox News

“A U.S. Navy SEAL raped an unconscious woman in Virginia, kept images of child porn involving sex with animals on his phone and may have filmed his own sexual assault of a sleeping girl, authorities alleged in recently unsealed federal charges. SEAL Team 1 Petty Officer 1st Class Gregory Kyle Seerden, 31, was arrested in San Diego on April 3 on child pornography and child sex assault charges that stem from an investigation into a rape in Virginia, The LA Times reported. An unidentified Virginia woman said Seerden raped her after she blacked out in his hotel room at Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek–Fort Story. The woman quickly reported her account to authorities, and Naval Criminal Investigative Service agents probing the charge allegedly found nearly 80 images of child pornography on Seerden’s phone, The Virginia Pilot reported.” (04/23/17)

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2017/04/23/navy-seal-charged-in-child-porn-assault-cases.html

—–

7) UK: Corbyn says Labour government would suspend Syria airstrikes
Source: Independent [UK]

“A Labour government would move to suspend British air strikes against targets in Syria, Jeremy Corbyn has said. The Labour leader said his foreign policy priority in the country if he became the Prime Minister would be to urge US President Donald Trump to resume international peace talks in Geneva. RAF warplanes are currently hitting Isis targets in Iraq and Syria, though they are not engaging with Assad regime targets. The US has made strikes against the Assad regime under Mr Trump, however.” (04/23/17)

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/jeremy-corbyn-syria-british-airstrikes-a7697441.html

—–

8) American detained in North Korea
Source: CNN

“North Korea detained an unidentified US citizen for unknown reasons as he was planning to fly out of Pyongyang International Airport on Saturday morning. The detention was confirmed by Martina Aberg, deputy chief of mission at the Embassy of Sweden in Pyongyang. The Swedish Embassy represents US interests in North Korea, since Washington and Pyongyang do not have direct diplomatic relations. … The detained American is a professor with the frequently-used Korean surname “Kim,” according to South Korea’s Yonhap News Agency. At least two other US citizens are known to be in North Korean custody.” (04/23/17)

http://www.cnn.com/2017/04/23/asia/american-detained-in-north-korea/

—–

9) Aurora photographers find new night sky lights and call them Steve
Source: BBC [UK state media]

“Eric Donovan from the University of Calgary in Canada spotted the feature in photos shared on a Facebook group. He did not recognise it as a catalogued phenomenon and although the group were calling it a proton arc, he knew proton auroras were not visible. Testing showed it appeared to be a hot stream of fast-flowing gas in the higher reaches of the atmosphere. … There are reports that the group called it Steve in homage to a 2006 children’s film, Over the Hedge, where the characters give the name to a creature they have not seen before.” [editor’s note: while it’s nice to see something “named after me” I am certainly not “a hot stream of fast-flowing gas” – SAT] [additional editor’s note: Well, sometimes your friends think maybe you are, at least a little 🙂 – TLK] (04/23/17)

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-39686055

—–

10) Pope Francis notices that concentration camps have returned to Europe
Source: BBC News [UK state media]

“Pope Francis has described some of Europe’s holding centres for migrants and refugees as concentration camps. The Roman Catholic leader made the comments while meeting migrants during a visit to a basilica in Rome. He thanked those who welcomed refugees but said that it appeared ‘international accords are more important than human rights.’ The American Jewish Committee said the Pope should rethink his ‘regrettable’ reference to concentration camps. The term ‘concentration camp,’ which predates World War Two, is nonetheless evocative of the centres set up by the Nazis for slave labour and the extermination of millions of Jews and others.” [editor’s note: The purpose of concentration camps is to concentrate troublesome populations — they were first called that by the British during the Boer War. Objecting to accurate use of the term is like demanding that nobody notices something is green because green reminds you of asparagus and you hate asparagus – TLK] (04/23/17)

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-39685253

—–

11) MI: Doctor accused of mutilating genitals of young girls defends procedure as religious practice
Source: Washington Post

“The attorney for a Detroit-area doctor accused of mutilating the genitals of young girls acknowledges that her client performed the procedure, but she says it was part of a religious practice. The revelation came during a detention hearing on Monday, a few days after Jumana Nagarwala was charged in what authorities say is the first case of its kind in the country. Shannon Smith said in federal court in Michigan that her client removed the girls’ genital membrane as part of a custom practiced by the Dawoodi Bohra, a small sect of Indian Muslims of which Nagarwala is a part, the Detroit Free-Press reported. … Authorities arrested another doctor, Fakhruddin Attar, 53, and his wife, Farida Attar, 50, both of Livonia, Mich., on Friday. Federal prosecutors say Fakhruddin Attar owns the clinic where Nagarwala performed genital mutilations, while his wife, the clinic’s office manager, assisted during the procedures.” [editor’s note: Ugly indeed. But not many seem interested in discussing the fact that young males are not only much more likely to be genitally mutilated, but are also denied the equal protection of laws against the practice – TLK] (04/22/17)

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2017/04/22/doctor-accused-of-mutilating-genitals-of-young-girls-defends-procedure-as-religious-practice/

—–

12) Cherokee Nation: Idiot pols pursue frivolous suit against drug businesses for selling drugs
Source: CBS News

“The Cherokee Nation sued distributors and retailers of opioid medications on Thursday, alleging the companies have contributed to ‘an epidemic of prescription opioid abuse’ within the tribe and have not done enough to prevent tribal members from acquiring illegally prescribed opioid painkillers. The lawsuit alleges that six distribution and pharmacy companies have created conditions in which ‘vast amounts of opioids have flowed freely from manufacturers to abusers and drug dealers’ within the 14 northeastern Oklahoma counties that comprise the Cherokee Nation.” (04/21/17)

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/cherokee-nation-opioid-lawsuit-cvs-walgreens-wal-mart-drug-stores/

—–

13) US home sales shoot to ten-year high
Source: Business Insider

“Americans purchased homes in March at the fastest pace in over a decade, a strong start to the traditional spring buying season. Sales of existing homes climbed 4.4 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.71 million, the National Association of Realtors said Friday. This was the fastest sales rate since February 2007.” (04/21/17)

http://www.businessinsider.com/ap-us-home-sales-shoot-up-to-10-year-high-2017-4

—–

14) US Surgeon General removed from post by Trump administration, replaced by deputy
Source: ABC News

“U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy was removed from his post by the Trump administration and has been replaced temporarily by his deputy. Murthy, an appointee of former President Obama, announced on Friday that he resigned. Department of Health and Human Services spokesperson Alleigh Marre said in a statement that Murthy was asked to step down. … Rear Admiral Sylvia Trent-Adams, a nurse who served as Murthy’s deputy, will serve as the acting Surgeon General, according to the statement.” (04/22/17)

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/obama-appointee-vivek-murthy-resigns-surgeon-general-replaced/story?id=46951009

—–

15) Researchers unearth second parchment copy of Declaration of Independence
Source: United Press International

“A pair of U.S. archivists said they have uncovered only the second known parchment copy of the Declaration of Independence in a tiny records office in England. The only other known handwritten parchment copy of the Declaration is the one on display at the National Archives in Washington, D.C. esearchers Emily Sneff and Danielle Allen of Harvard University said they uncovered the document after noticing a note in a computer database created to track historic documents. Though skeptical of its authenticity, they traveled to the archive office of the town of Chichester in southern England. There, folded into a small square, was — for historical archivists — the find of a lifetime. They said the document probably dates to the 1780s, though they are devising a method to test the parchment without damaging the actual document to confirm their suspicions.” (04/21/17)

http://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2017/04/22/Researchers-unearth-second-parchment-copy-of-Declaration-of-Independence/7091492903205/

—–

16) Trump regime prosecutors consider vexatious/malicious prosecution of WikiLeaks heroes
Source: Washington Post

“Federal prosecutors are weighing whether to bring criminal charges against members of the WikiLeaks organization, taking a second look at a 2010 leak of diplomatic cables and military documents and investigating whether the group bears criminal responsibility for the more recent revelation of sensitive CIA cyber-tools, according to people familiar with the case. The Justice Department under President Barack Obama had decided not to charge WikiLeaks for revealing some of the government’s most sensitive secrets — concluding that doing so would be akin to prosecuting a news organization for publishing classified information. Justice Department leadership under President Trump, though, has indicated to prosecutors that it is open to taking another look at the case, which the Obama administration did not formally close.” (04/20/17)

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/justice-dept-debating-charges-against-wikileaks-members-in-revelations-of-diplomatic-cia-materials/2017/04/20/32b15336-2548-11e7-a1b3-faff0034e2de_story.html

—–

17) Russia: Court bans Jehovah’s Witnesses as extremist group
Source: USA Today

“Russia’s Supreme Court formally banned Jehovah’s Witnesses as an extremist organization Thursday and ordered the state to seize its property in Russia, according to Russian news media. The court, after six days of hearings, ordered the closing of the group’s Russia headquarters and its 395 local chapters. The Interfax news agency quoted Justice Ministry attorney Svetlana Borisova in court as saying the Jehovah’s Witnesses pose a threat to Russians. ‘They pose a threat to the rights of the citizens, public order and public security,’ she told the court. Borisova also said the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ opposition to blood transfusions violates Russian health care laws.” (04/20/17)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2017/04/20/russian-court-bans-jehovahs-witnesses-extremist-group/100701524/

—–

18) Iran: Ahmadinejad “disqualified” from presidential election
Source: Al Jazeera [Qatar]

“Iran’s former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been disqualified from running in next month’s presidential election, according to state media. The decision on Thursday was taken by the Guardian Council, a clerical body charged with vetting candidates for the May 19 election. In a surprise move, Ahmadinejad registered as a candidate last week, despite previously saying he would not stand. Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei had previously urged him not to run.” (04/20/17)

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/04/mahmoud-ahmadinejad-disqualified-iran-elections-170420190716061.html

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

19) Tax reform: Two places to start
Source: Garrison Center
by Thomas L Knapp

“An anonymous announcement of a forthcoming public announcement: On April 26, an anonymous White House source says, the Trump administration ‘will outline our broad principles and priorities …. We are moving forward on comprehensive tax reform that cuts tax rates for individuals, simplifies our overly-complicated system and creates jobs by making American businesses competitive.’ That sounds very nice. But given the administration’s previously revealed ‘principles and priorities,’ it’s reasonable to expect a heaping helping of economically dumb protectionist tinkering floating atop a billowing cloud of hot air. If Trump, his administration, and congressional Republicans were serious about real tax reform (they aren’t, but if they were), I’d expect to see two major initial proposals: A measure increasing the ‘personal exemption’ to the federal income tax once a year, every year, automatically, and a ‘FICA floor’ that likewise increases each year.” (04/22/17)

http://thegarrisoncenter.org/archives/10341

—–

20) The new age of Ayn Rand? Ha!
Source: Notablog
by Chris Matthew Sciabarra

“I’ve been reading a number of essays online about the alleged ‘New Age of Ayn Rand,’ and the authors typically give us a list of folks in the administration of Donald Trump and in the legislative and judicial branches of government who are supposedly Rand ‘acolytes.’ Two essays come to mind: Jonathan Freedland’s Guardian piece, ‘The New Age of Ayn Rand: How She Won Over Trump and Silicon Valley’ and the far better piece by Thu-Huong Ha in Quartz, ‘US Repubican leaders love Ayn Rand’s controversial philosophy — and are increasingly misinterpreting it.’ Freedland goes on and on about how Rand’s ‘particularly hardcore brand of free-market fundamentalism’ is ‘having a moment,’ reflected in views expressed by Speaker Paul Ryan, former Presidential candidate Ron Paul, and his Senator son Rand Paul, and a host of folks in the Trump administration, including Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Labor Secretary Andy Puzder, and even Donald Trump himself, who once said something nice about Rand’s novel, The Fountainhead.” (04/22/17)

https://www.nyu.edu/projects/sciabarra/notablog/archives/002267.html

—–

21) State governments are becoming the biggest drug lords of all
Source: Independent Institute
by Robert Higgs

“[S]tates that are ‘liberalizing’ their marijuana laws are not doing so by simply repealing existing laws that make the possession, distribution, and production of these products illegal. Instead, the states are creating a complex regime of control, regulation, and taxation. By these expedients, state governments are in effect responding to the public’s growing opposition to the old regime of arrest, prosecution, and imprisonment by creating a legalized arrangement in which the governments themselves will rig the markets and skim off a large part of the earnings of sellers via fees and taxation. Thus, the state governments are turning themselves into de facto landlords of drug-dealer sharecroppers: the producers that grow, process, and sell marijuana will be required to pay the government what amounts to a share of the income.” (04/21/17)

http://blog.independent.org/2017/04/21/state-governments-are-becoming-the-biggest-drug-lords-of-all/

—–

22) Workplace smoking
Source: Future of Freedom Foundation
by Laurence M Vance

“[R]egardless of how unhealthy smoking is, regardless of how many people die from smoking-related diseases, and regardless of how successful Florida’s TFF program is, some important questions must still be answered about the proper role of government: 1. Is it the proper role of government to educate people about the health risks of smoking? 2. Is it the proper role of government to persuade people to quit smoking? 3. Is it the proper role of government to help people to quit smoking? From a libertarian perspective, the answer, of course, is a resounding ‘no’ to all three questions.” (04/21/17)

http://www.fff.org/explore-freedom/article/workplace-smoking

—–

23) The only solution to the Trumps’ conflicts of interest
Source: Libertarian Institute
by Sheldon Richman

“The heart of the potential for conflicts of interests is not the Trumps’ business empire. Rather it’s presidential power to steer benefits to particular interests. So the surest way to eliminate the potential for conflicts is to eliminate the president’s power to steer benefits to anyone. This would include not only favors granted by executive action but also those that a president can push through Congress. Here we have an analogy with campaign finance. Those who fret over that issue don’t want to understand that no one would make mega-contributions to candidates if officeholders had no favors to sell. Who shops where there’s nothing to buy? By the same token, no one will do favors for a presidential daughter if the president has nothing to bestow in return. If politicians could not impose trade restrictions (and therefore could not selectively lift them either) or provide foreign aid or grant any of the other favors the government today can grant, we wouldn’t have to worry about conflicts of interest. Of course, the people who do worry are the same ones who think the government should have the power to do all those things — and more.

https://www.libertarianinstitute.org/articles/sheldon/tgif-solution-trumps-conflicts-interest

—–

24) Technology, sharing, and regulation
Source: Heartland Institute
by Daniel Sutter

“Police in cities where Uber is illegal have tried sting operations to catch drivers, but have been frequently ‘greyballed,’ as reported by the New York Times. Uber’s technology does not just suspend the account of a questionable rider. Instead, it lets the rider line up a ride, but then cancels the ride. The same thing happens again if the rider puts in another request. The technology has been adept at identifying law enforcement accounts. Greyballing has helped Uber enter new markets without permission and build up loyal riders, who then push for legalization The company has admitted to and agreed to stop using greyballing to evade law enforcement where its service is not legal. Before condemning the technology, Uber has good reasons to block certain people from hailing rides.” (04/23/17)

http://blog.heartland.org/2017/04/technology-sharing-and-regulation/

—–

25) My mother taught me the basics
Source: The Price of Liberty
by MamaLiberty

“My mother taught me everything I really needed to know about being a good person and living a good life. After reading the gist of a lot of the ‘news’ this morning (I can only stand for so much), I thought I’d share her lessons with you.” (04/21/17)

https://thepriceofliberty.org/2017/04/21/my-mother-taught-me-the-basics/

—–

26) Why the US is a bigger threat than North Korea
Source: In These Times
by Vijay Prashad

“Amnesia is the mode of thought in the United States. Cluelessness about its belligerent history is now general. It would sound strange to ask why the North Koreans feel such palpable threat from the United States. Odd to raise the fact that it was the United States that brutally bombed North Korea in the 1950s, targeting its towns and cities as well as farms and dams. The data is inescapable. The United States dropped 635,000 tons of bombs on North Korea. This includes 32,557 tons of napalm–essentially a chemical weapon. As a comparison, it is fitting to see that in all of the Pacific sector of World War II, the United States dropped a mere 503,000 tons of bombs. The United States, in other words, dropped more bombs on North Korea during the ill-named ‘limited war’ than it dropped during the entire engagement against Japan during World War II. Three million Koreans died in that war, the majority in the North. North Korea has never attacked the United States.” [editor’s note: This should be read by anyone concerned about the “Korea threat” – SAT] (04/21/17)

http://inthesetimes.com/article/20076/why-the-us-is-a-bigger-threat-than-north-korea

—–

27) Little Creep
Source: National Review
by Kevin D Williamson

“Chelsea Clinton, most recently lionized on the cover of Vanity Fair, is a 37-year-old multi-millionaire who has never uttered an interesting word about any subject at any time during the course of her life. Judging from the evidence of her public statements, she has never had an original thought — it isn’t clear that she has had a thought at all. In tribute to her parents, she was given a series of lucrative sinecures, producing a smattering of sophomoric videos for NBC at a salary of $600,000 a year. She later went more formally into the family business, leaving her fake job at NBC for a fake job in her parents’ fake charity. … since her mother’s most recent foray into ignominious defeat, she has been inescapable: magazine covers, fawning interviews, talk of running her in New York’s 17th congressional district. The Democrats are doing their best to make Chelsea happen. And, who knows, it might work.” (04/23/17)

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/446973/chelsea-clinton-bill-clinton-hillary-clinton-democrats-vapid-creep

—–

28) Liberty criminalized in Michigan
Source: Authority!

“Nick Taylor, (no relation), committed a ‘crime’ in Roseville Michigan by leaving his own car unlocked and idling unattended to warm up in his girlfriend’s driveway on a bitterly cold winter morning. ‘Every person warms up their car,’ he explains. ‘We live in Michigan!’ Not that it should matter, but he didn’t want his girlfriend’s son, who has cerebral palsy, to get into a cold car on a freezing day. Never-mind flimsy excuses croaked the Roseville cop who slapped Taylor with a $128 ticket for violating a city ordinance.” (04/23/17)

http://authoritycon.blogspot.com/2017/04/liberty-criminalized-in-michigan.html

—–

29) Liberty butts
Source: Kent’s “Hooligan Libertarian” Blog
by Kent McManigal

“It’s interesting to me how committed most people are to liberty. Liberty … but not if it means leaving people alone to do things I don’t like. Liberty … unless it means I can’t control other people. Liberty … except when people want to use their property in ways that annoy me.” (04/22/17)

http://blog.kentforliberty.com/2017/04/liberty-butts.html

—–

30) How a systems-thinking president can settle the climate science debate
Source: Scott Adams Blog
by Scott Adams

“This idea in today’s Wall Street Journal talks about creating a ‘Red Team’ to dig into the climate science debate and come up with a conclusion for the public. I call that a good system. Systems are better than goals. A goal, in this case, might be to ‘convince the public that climate change is a big problem.’ That’s a clear goal, but what if it isn’t the best outcome? That’s where a system (such as forming a Red Team) comes in handy. The system will solve for credibility while informing the public of whatever comes out of the exercise. You can’t govern better than that. Period. We have, for the first time, a ‘Systems-thinking’ president. You see it in everything President Trump does.” [editor’s note: Scott Adams might have much more confidence in Trump actually being this benign, but we share the vision of it (I also have his new book on order) – SAT] (04/21/17)

http://blog.dilbert.com/post/159824817036/how-a-systems-thinking-president-can-settle-the

—–

31) The spy state unleashed
Source: Antiwar.com
by Justin Raimondo

“None of the official reports issued by our intelligence agencies and made public contains a lick of real evidence that the Kremlin guided and encouraged Trump’s rise to power: they consist of simple assertions, and exclamations of ‘high confidence,’ without giving anyone a reason to feel the least amount of confidence in their conclusions. They hide behind the old ‘sources and methods’ excuse in their failure to provide what could even loosely be defined as proof of their allegations. Yet some of these ‘sources and methods’ have come to light anyway, as the leakers desperately try to salvage their failing narrative.” (04/21/17)

http://original.antiwar.com/justin/2017/04/20/the-spy-state-unleashed/

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32) Baltasar Gracian’s aphorism #138: The art of letting things alone
Source: WendyMcElroy.com
by Wendy McElroy

“Gracian writes of ‘the storms of the vulgar’ by which he means the shrill opinions of the ignorant, the malicious, the foolish. Against these storms, it is probably best to seek the recommended safe haven of just getting on with your life. But even here, I can imagine scenarios in which speaking up is important. It might be impossible to dissuade the vulgar from spreading lies — after all, they enjoy slander so much — but 3rd and neutral parties who are listening might be swayed against you by the uncontested lies. I suspect you need to take each conflict on a case by case basis. One question to ask yourself: is this a matter of substance?” (04/23/17)

http://www.wendymcelroy.com/news.php?item.7956.22

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33) Should US imports be taxed to subsidize exports?
Source: National Center for Policy Analysis
by David Ranson

“The tax debate in Congress has shifted away from simply cutting taxes to restructuring the tax system. There is no shortage of reform proposals, but current initiatives in tax and trade policy are no longer pointing in the right direction.” [summary — full paper available as PDF download] (04/17)

http://www.ncpa.org/sub/dpd/index.php?Article_ID=26745

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34) One toke over the line with Trump and Sessions
Source: The American Prospect
Gabrielle Gurley

“Attorney General Jeff Sessions had little to celebrate on the annual marijuana holiday this week. President Donald Trump has not said much to back him up on the issue, leaving Sessions as a lone voice in the federal wilderness. He has opined that medical marijuana has been ‘hyped,’ and he doubles down at every available opportunity on beefing up enforcement against the Schedule 1 drug, even though many states and localities have taken off in a completely different direction. With too many balls already in the air, administration officials are positioned to have another one conk them on their collective head. For one thing, Sessions is simply too late: A number of states have already decided the marijuana question. Any federal move to crack down on recreational users or medical marijuana patients and their suppliers users would be met with a blowback similar to, if not even more vociferous than, the recent grassroots uproar over the effort to repeal Obamacare. It would be very difficult for the Justice Department and the White House to quell the public protests across the political spectrum that would likely ensue.” (04/21/17)

http://prospect.org/article/one-toke-over-line-trump-and-sessions

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35) A threat to Americans
Source: Cato Institute
by Ilya Somin

“As the Trump administration seeks to cut H-1B visas for skilled workers and ramps up arrests of immigrants without legal status, including thousands who do not have a criminal record, it is worth remembering that immigrants are not the only ones harmed by the new administration’s harshly restrictionist immigration policies. Severe restrictions on migration condemn hundreds of thousands of potential immigrants to lives of poverty and oppression in underdeveloped nations, yet such policies severely harm American citizens, as well.” (04/21/17)

https://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/threat-americans

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36) Wag that tail, dog
Source: Common Sense
by Paul Jacob

“Last November, Maine voters passed a ballot measure, Question 5, to begin electing their federal representatives to Congress, and their governor and state legislators, using Ranked Choice Voting. This selection mechanism allows voters to rank their choices, thereby removing the ‘spoiler effect’ that often pushes citizens to support the lesser of two popular evils. Last month, Maine’s State Senate submitted advisory questions to the Maine Supreme Court about the new law’s constitutionality. … Justices Donald Alexander and Joseph Jabar seemed concerned about ranked-choice voting making it easier to vote for the person and not the party. That’s not unconstitutional. But is it somehow bad? ‘We are going to have a lot of people abandoning the political parties if ranked-choice voting remains,’ argued Alexander. Or perhaps the parties might better serve voters?” (04/21/17)

http://thisiscommonsense.com/2017/04/21/wag-that-tail-dog/

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37) Trump learns the reality of governance
Source: Mises Canada
by Taylor Lewis

“April is the cruellest month, said the poet. And for supporters of the president, no month has been crueler. Donald Trump has not only foregone his skepticism toward foreign military intervention, he’s veered away from the nationalist instincts that made him a stand-out among a crowd of stilted, suited pull-string dolls that was the Republican presidential field. For his moderation in recent days, the press has praised the businessman-cum-commander of the armed forces. But that’s only because the reality of governing has caught up, as it always does, with campaign rhetoric. Trump was never going to be immune to the flow of administrative democracy. He only won the vote of the people by convincing them, and perhaps himself, otherwise. The shock to his fans has to be as big as the shock to himself. The Trump of a year ago would hardly believe the actions of the Trump of today.” (04/22/17)

https://www.mises.ca/trump-learns-the-reality-of-governance/

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38) The price of justice doesn’t cover the bills
Source: USA Today
by Jon Wool

“On Wednesday, the Supreme Court ruled 7-1 on the Nelson v. Colorado case, which shows just how reliant cities are on revenue from the mainly poor users of the criminal justice system. The Colorado law at the center of the case requires people whose criminal convictions have been overturned to file suit and further prove their innocence to get back the money they paid in conviction fees. ‘Such an approach violates due process,’ Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote for the court, because once a person’s conviction is overturned, the state has ‘zero claim of right’ to the fines and fees taken from the person. This result should be obvious, so why did it require the Supreme Court to resolve it?” (04/21/17)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/policing/politics-policing/2017/04/21/price-justice-doesnt-cover-bills-column/100701998

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39) Donald Trump: Ruling class president
Source: CounterPunch
by Paul Street

“One of the many irritating things about the dominant United States corporate media is the way it repeatedly discovers anew things that are not remotely novel. Take its recent discovery that Donald Trump isn’t really the swamp-draining populist working class champion he pretended to be on the campaign trail. … You don’t say! Gee, who knew? Anyone who’s paid serious attention to American electoral politics and policy over the course of history, that’s who. Seventeen years ago, the then still left Christopher Hitchens usefully described the ‘essence of American politics’ as ‘the manipulation of populism by elitism.'” (04/21/17)

http://www.counterpunch.org/2017/04/21/donald-trump-ruling-class-president/

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40) The Non-Battle of Auburn was a true victory for liberty
Source: Foundation for Economic Education
by Dan Sanchez

“Auburn, Alabama is nicknamed ‘the loveliest village on the plains.’ But ugliness threatened to descend on it last Tuesday when outsiders came looking for a fight. Thankfully, residents and Auburn University students refused to oblige, much to their honor and wisdom. The occasion was a speech on campus by white-nationalist provocateur Richard Spencer. Spencer’s representatives had booked the space ahead of time, but the university tried to rescind. Spencer intended to deliver the speech anyway, but a federal court settled the matter by forcing the school to fulfill the contract on First Amendment grounds. In a stroke of brilliance, student groups, including AU’s chapter of Young Americans for Liberty, organized a music concert for students to attend as a peaceful protest, and generally encouraged all to be civil. This creative and constructive response proudly stands in stark contrast to the screaming fits and vandalism that has met right-wing speakers on other campuses throughout the country.” (04/22/17)

https://fee.org/articles/the-non-battle-of-auburn-was-a-true-victory-for-liberty/

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41) Nixon had his “madman theory.” Trump is just a madman
Source: The New Republic
by Jeet Heer

“Jared Kushner, reportedly the new power behind the throne in the Trump administration, has tried to borrow luster from another presidential éminence grise, Henry Kissinger. Kushner introduced himself to Kissinger after a foreign policy lecture in 2015, and since then has kept in touch with the former secretary of state. We know this because Kissinger wrote an exceptionally lukewarm tribute to Kushner for Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People issue, which he concluded by comparing Kushner to the mythical Icarus, a nepotism hire who crashed and burned after flying too close to the sun. Whatever Kissinger’s private reservations about Kushner, there are some parallels to be drawn between the Nixon and Trump administrations, especially in their bureaucratic intrigue and the cultivation of an image of unpredictability (what Nixon called the ‘madman theory’). But Trump isn’t so much a modern Nixon as a clown Nixon, repeating the tragedy of the 37th president’s flawed policies without having the Nixonian intelligence or competence to know what he’s doing.” [editor’s note: This is a disturbingly perceptive essay about how Trump is not Nixon’s doppleganger – SAT] (04/21/17)

https://newrepublic.com/article/142205/nixon-madman-theory-trump-just-madman

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42) Yes, rights are double-edged swords
Source: A Geek With Guns
by Christopher Burg

“The beauty of the idea of the right to free speech is that it can turn a minority idea into a majority idea. Free speech is why same-sex marriage went from strongly opposed by the majority of people in this society heavily influenced by Judeo-Christian values to being generally accepted, at least within the realm of government marriage. Likewise, cannabis legalization efforts have been made possible because the right to free speech has allowed legalization advocates to inform the public that the government claims about cannabis are false. … But free speech, as with any concept developed by humans, is a double-edged sword. It allows minority and majority opinions to be expressed. Free speech is not ‘appropriated’ when people use it to express an opinion that is unpopular within your sphere of influence, it’s exactly what the concept of free speech was created to allow.” (04/21/17)

https://blog.christopherburg.com/2017/04/21/yes-rights-are-double-edged-swords/

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43) From France to the US, why “self-made” politicians are winning
Source: Reuters
by John Lloyd

The political party is dying and independents now rule among voters around the globe. France has emerged as the leader of this movement, and the first confirmation of its depth and likely permanence will come on Sunday, when the French vote in the first round of their presidential election. We know something is serious when a comic takes it up as a cause. Earlier this week the comedian-pundit John Oliver told his viewers that the election of National Front candidate Marine Le Pen would destroy Europe. Yet of the three leading candidates, Le Pen is the most traditional. Compared to her two main challengers, Jean-Luc Melenchon and Emmanuel Macron, Le Pen is still ‘rooted’ in a party with a history and tradition. The National Front was founded in 1972 and dominated by her father, Jean-Marie Le Pen, who soon became its leader. It was an heir to the less radical Poujadisme movement of the 1950s, which united small traders and farmers against the forces of modernity. The elder Le Pen made the party overtly racist and especially anti-Semitic. His daughter has dropped much of the anti-Semitism in favour of strong opposition to Muslim immigration, and still stronger attacks on globalisation and the European Union, seen as the major factors in a betrayal of the working and lower middle classes.” (04/21/17)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-french-election-commentary-idUSKBN17M2HR

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44) Accommodative monetary police is encroaching on fiscal policy
Source: Cobden Centre

“We believe that the ECB is presently using monetary policy in effect to conduct fiscal, as well as monetary policy. Elected politicians should be up in arms; that they are not would imply either that they do not understand this or that they simply accept it. This may provide an interesting pointer as to the future of the EU itself.” (04/21/17)

http://www.cobdencentre.org/2017/04/accommodative-monetary-policy-is-encroaching-on-fiscal-policy/

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45) Decision time for Bitcoin?
Source: American Institute for Economic Research
by Patrick Coate, PhD

“The current problems are an impressive illustration of both Bitcoin’s strengths and weaknesses. Bitcoin’s blockchain — the ledger of official records of Bitcoin creation and transactions — is continually updated by computers running Bitcoin software. A new block is added every ten minutes, and ‘miners’ that add these blocks are rewarded with newly created Bitcoins and transaction fees. The problem that has been brewing for some time is that the network is designed to add a new block every ten minutes no matter what the traffic, and each block only contains 1 MB of information. If there are more desired transactions than can be fit onto a new block, users have to pay higher transaction fees or wait. This is in contrast to credit card transactions, for instance, in which Visa or MasterCard can process huge numbers of transactions almost instantaneously. As Bitcoin increases in popularity, demand for transactions continually increases and this problem only becomes more acute. This is a serious bottleneck to any desire for Bitcoin to be used by a wide consumer base.” (04/21/17)

https://www.aier.org/research/decision-time-bitcoin

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46) Who will build the roads? Anarchists.
Source: Everything Voluntary
by Kenny Kelly

“‘Who will build the roads?’ is a question government advocates ask in discussions with voluntaryists. The economic answer is quite simple: customers will pay for roads themselves or pay for construction workers do it in lieu of having their money stolen to have it done. Or they will build and repair the roads themselves. Like the anarchists in the bridge city of Portland, Oregon did in February and March 2017.” (04/22/17)

http://everything-voluntary.com/will-build-roads-anarchists

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47) Polls: People don’t know Trump’s infrastructure plan is a scam
Source: Our Future
by Dave Johnson

Polls show that the public likes President Trump’s plan to spend $1 trillion on infrastructure. That’s because they think he actually plans to spend $1 trillion on infrastructure. He doesn’t. Not hardly. Not by a long shot. In fact … [media quotes from several polls] … So the public wants our government to spend money fixing up our infrastructure. But we have a Republican Congress, which has spent the last 8 years filibustering every attempt to allocate money to do just that. They say any ‘government spending’ is bad, even though in a true democracy, that’s how government makes our lives better. So what are they really up to?” [editor’s note: Mr Johnson is apparently still under the delusion that the GOPers are about their claimed standards – SAT] (04/21/17)

https://ourfuture.org/20170420/polls-people-dont-know-that-trump-is-scamming-them-on-infrastructure

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48) The fear racket
Source: Future of Freedom Foundation
by Jacob G Hornberger

“When a powerful foreign power unleashes death and destruction on poor, Third World countries, there is a big possibility of retaliation in the form of terrorist attacks. U.S. foreign interventionism is why America is under an ongoing, never-ending threat of terrorism. I call it the greatest terrorist producing racket in history. There is a way to end anti-American terrorism: Bring the troops home today. Don’t count on Kelly to point that out. That could jeopardize the jobs of many of his friends, buddies, and cohorts in the military-industrial complex. It’s no different with illegal immigration.” (04/21/17)

http://www.fff.org/2017/04/21/the-fear-racket/

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

49) spiked podcast, 04/23/17
Source: spiked

“On this week’s spiked podcast, Brendan O’Neill discusses the snap election, Christian Butler talks Prince Harry and mental health, and Blair Spowart explains why we must fight back against the nanny state.” [Flash audio or MP3] (04/23/17)

http://www.spiked-online.com/newsite/article/brexiteers-cannot-afford-to-sit-this-one-out/

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50) Free Talk Live, 04/22/17
Source: Free Talk Live

“Are millenials bums? :: Recession :: Hate Government? Love Cops? :: Global Warming :: NH Exit :: Statistics :: Antifa in Berkeley :: CalExit :: Unconstitutional Government :: Rent Control :: When is adulthood? :: HOSTS — Mark. Vincent.” [Flash audio or MP3] (04/22/17)

https://www.freetalklive.com/podcast/2017-04-22

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51) Felony Friday, episode 68
Source: Lions of Liberty

“On today’s show host John Odermatt is joined by Nazgol Ghandnoosh from the The Sentencing Project.” [various formats] (04/21/17)

http://lionsofliberty.com/2017/04/21/ff68/

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52) Johnny Rocket Launch Pad, episode 121
Source: Johnny Rocket Launch Pad

“This week we rock out with the chair MAN of the Washington State Libertarian Party David Traynor! David is a principled libertarian first, and a chairman second. David explains the balance he has had to maintain for the year between being pragmatic and principled. David shares his stories and experiences about the job, and shares his deepest secret ever! We’re kidding.” [various formats] (04/21/17)

http://jrlp.podbean.com/e/johnny-rocket-launch-pad-episode-121-principles-and-pragmatism/

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53) The Jason Stapleton Program, episode 586
Source: The Jason Stapleton Program

“[C]entral banks have created a record 1 Trillion dollars in new debt in 2017. That money is being used to fuel a bond and equity bubble larger than any in history. I shudder to think what will happen when they stop buying. Most of Wall Street remains bullish, mainly because … well … most of Wall Street remains bullish. Nobody wants to be the guy who pulls out early and misses another 10 or 15 percent move. Better to lose money with everyone else when the market turns than get out early and look like you don’t know what you’re doing. But there is a small group of seasoned fund managers who are sounding the alarm.” [various formats] (04/21/17)

https://jasonstapleton.com/586-liquidity-supernova-threatens-global-economy/

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54) The Tom Woods Show, episode 894
Source: The Tom Woods Show

“During the presidential election season, the prolific libertarian scholar Walter Block headed up an organization called Libertarians for Trump. At the time, financial analyst and libertarian blogger Robert Wenzel debated him on the subject on this very show. Today, with the end of President Donald Trump’s first 100 days in office just around the corner, we revisit the subject in a very lively discussion.” [various formats] (04/22/17)

http://tomwoods.com/ep-894-revisiting-libertarians-for-trump-as-the-first-hundred-days-come-to-a-close/

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55) Cato Daily Podcast, 04/21/17
Source: Cato Institute

“Typical medical malpractice reform efforts are aimed at lowering costs for physicians, but what if many problems associated with medical malpractice could be handled via contract? Walter Olson explains.” [various formats] (04/21/17)

https://www.cato.org/multimedia/cato-daily-podcast/fixing-elements-medical-malpractice-contract

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56) Foreign Policy Focus, episode 30
Source: Foreign Policy Focus

“On FPF #30, I discuss news stories of war and terror from around the globe. An ISIS terrorist attack occurred in France. The US is arming the Peshmerga for more war in Iraq. The White House and MSM continue to push the Assad used chemical weapons narrative, while scientists disprove it. In Afghanistan, the US is fighting ISIS near the site of the MOAB strike. I also update Kony, Egypt, Venezuela, and Yemen.” [various formats] (04/21/17)

http://foreignpolicyfocus.libsyn.com/fpf-30-more-war-more-terror

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57) Free Thoughts Podcast, episode 184
Source: Libertarianism.org

“Andrew Turner joins us to talk about his experience being stationed at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp in 2009 and 2010.” [various formats] (04/21/17)

https://www.libertarianism.org/media/free-thoughts/guantanamo-bay-is-still-open

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58) The weird history of Trump’s “winter White House”
Source: Cracked

“If you think the name ‘Winter White House’ is both bizarre and dumb, then you might not be able to handle the place’s weird history.” [Flash video] [editor’s note: This might go under the general heading of “irony” although it’s just politics as usual, written larger – SAT] (04/22/17)

http://www.cracked.com/video_20456_the-weird-history-trumpE28099s-winter-white-house.html

*****
RATIONAL REVIEW NEWS DIGEST

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

Editor Emeritus:
Mary Lou Seymour
*****